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OPPO R1S spotted with Qualcomm Snapdragon inside

Posted by wicked April - 15 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

It was only the other day that the OPPO R1 was trying to make its way to the US and now it seems that a new variant is already available. It is also entirely possible that this LTE-capable OPPO R1S seen at TENAA is, in fact, the very smartphone spotted at the FCC, retrofitted with a Qualcomm SoC instead of the original MediaTek.

The reason for this substantial change is the addition of LTE support. While affordable, MediaTek‘s system-on-chip isn’t exactly as capable as Qualcomm, especially when it comes to network technology. If OPPO wanted to add LTE support, it would have to switch the SoC as well, making Qualcomm’s Snapdragon the reasonable possibility. The exact Snapdragon model isn’t known yet, but there is speculation that it would be an MSM8926, one of the LTE-supporting members of the mid-tier Snapdragon 400 family.

The rest of the specs of the OPPO R1S is fairly the same as the original OPPO R1, even down to the dimensions. You have 2 GB of RAM, though some markets offer only the 1 GB variant, 16 GB of, unfortunately, inextensible data storage, and a 5-inch 1280×820 display. You also have the 13 megapixel rear camera as well as the rather large 5 megapixet front shooter. Android 4.3 is noted to be running out of the box, which puts it just one version ahead of the original R1, but still one step short from the latest Android.

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Of course, the addition of LTE is the highlight of this variant. The specs coming from TENAA show that the device supports TD-LTE, which, unfortunately, isn’t the same LTE technology used in the US. However, if the guess regarding the MSM8926 is accurate, then the chip is capable of supporting both TD-LTE as well as FDD-LTE networks in the US, reinforcing our theory that the OPPO R1S will be the variant that will hit US shores soon.

oppo-r1s-5

VIA: MyDrivers

OPPO R1 spotted in FCC with LTE support in tow

Posted by wicked April - 14 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

If OPPO has gotten you interested with its range of smartphones but don’t have the budget for the latest Find 7a, then this might be a bit of welcome news. Seen making its way through the FCC approval process is the OPPO R1, which, in this incarnation, has gained support for 4G LTE.

The OPPO R1 isn’t exactly the top of its class, but that might also mean that it won’t be as expensive as OPPO’s more recent devices. The R1 offers a mishmash of mid-tier and high-end specs, such as a 5-inch 1280×720 IPS screen, 2 GB of RAM, an 8 megapixel F/2.0 rear camera, and a 5 megapixel front shooter. Perhaps the two biggest warts on the otherwise decent device is the 1.3 GHz quad-core MediaTek processor and the 16 GB of internal storage which cannot be expanded with a microSD card.

The version of the OPPO R1 passing through the FCC, however, adds one more feature to the device that might make it worth the dollars. The smartphone is marked as having support for LTE networks, particularly the FDD-LTE Band 4 used by US mobile carriers. No word on pricing yet, though it will hopefully come lower than most high-end flagships today. However, interested buyers might have to look towards retailers for one, as no carrier has yet included one under contract.

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Those looking for the latest, or at least semi-latest, hardware might better be off spending a bit more on a OPPO Find 7a. This one sports a 2.3 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 and a 5.5-inch 1080p display. It also has support for LTE bands used in the US, as well as an international model for those outside the country. Of course, it will cost more, with a $499 price tag, compared to the $410 of the non-LTE OPPO R1 when it was announced last December.

VIA: SlashGear

ZTE V5 Red Bull tries to take on Xiaomi

Posted by wicked April - 11 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

ZTE has just a unveiled a new budget smartphone in China, one that it seemingly poised to rival a very specific contender. With a name like “V5 Red Bull”, this device seems poised to be ZTE’s answer to the Xiaomi Redmi Note unveiled last month.

The two might indeed be mistaken for the other given their very colorful facades, but deep inside the they are very different. The Redmi Note is a rather giant device, with a 5.5-inch 720p screen, an octa-core MediaTek CPU, 1 or 2 GB of RAM, 8 GB of storage, and a 13 megapixel rear shooter.

On the other hand, the ZTE V5 Red Bull leans towards a smaller, but still phablet, size, with a 5-inch screen still at 720p. Deeper, the two are even more dissimilar, with ZTE sporting a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400, of which two versions are said to be available, an MSM8926 and an MSM8928. But here lies ZTE’s trump card that puts it above all of its kin. It has 4G LTE support, something that even the Redmi Note can’t boast about. It actually supports both TD-LTE and, via unlocking, FDD-LTE as well.

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That said, the ZTE V5 Red Bull is aimed squarely at the budget smartphone market. A configuration with 1 GB of RAM and 4 GB of storage is marked at 799 RMB, or around $130 dollars, and quite similar to the Redmi Note. A higher 2 GB RAM and 8 GB internal storage, on the other hand, will cost 999 RMB or roughly $160. For a LTE-capable Android smartphone, that might not be a bad deal. The only question now is whether ZTE has any plans of introducing it to other markets outside China.

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SOURCE: ZTE

US Cellular 4G LTE expansion plans detailed

Posted by wicked April - 8 - 2014 - Tuesday Comments Off

US Cellular has revealed some details on their 4G LTE expansion plans. It is looking like they have plans to add more than 1,200 4G LTE sites this year. That will bring the US Cellular 4G LTE coverage to an additional 13 states across the US. But perhaps a bit more important for current customers — this means that “more than” 93 percent of US Cellular customers will have LTE available by the end of this year.

The carrier hasn’t offered a full breakdown of those 1,200 promised 4G LTE sites, however they did touch a bit on where the coverage can be expected. The expansion will be adding “vast” LTE coverage in several states to include Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and North Carolina. There was also mention of additional service areas coming to Iowa, Illinois, Maine, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin.

A list of specific cities and markets included the following; Oklahoma City, Emporia, Kansas, and areas of Door County, Wisconsin. We still have quite a bit of time left in 2014, which really just goes to show that US Cellular customers may still have many months of waiting left.

Along with the increase in LTE coverage, we are seeing plenty of LTE compatible devices arriving with US Cellular. Samsung Galaxy S5 pre-orders went live a few weeks earlier with shipments expected to begin on April 9th. Of course, there are also quite a few LTE devices already available such as the Moto X, Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4.

SOURCE: MarketWatch

EE’s introduces Kestrel, a 4G LTE mid-range device

Posted by wicked March - 26 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

The UK has their first true LTE mid-range device. EE is responsible for bringing this one to the masses, with their self-branded Kestrel. The device, in addition to being an LTE capable handset, has another feature many will be interested in: a staggeringly low price tag.


If you choose to get one with a contracted subsidy via EE, the device is free (frEE?). EE also has a new plan they’re launching with the device: £13.99/month for 500 talk minutes, unlimited text, and 500MB 4G data. If that plan doesn’t suit you, the device is still free so long as you choose a plan similarly priced or higher. If you choose a pay-as-you-go scheme from EE, the device will set you back a mere £99.99.

We know, you want specs. The device isn’t a world beater, but it does have some honorable heft to it. A 4.5-inch 540×60 screen fronts a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400. You’ll get 1GB RAM, 8GB Memory with microSD card support, WiFI, Bluetooth, and a 2,000mAh battery. There is a rear-facing 5MP camera capable of 720p video, and a 1MP front-facing camera as well. It currently runs Android 4.3, too.

If you’re suspect of a device void of a big name, rest assured knowing Huawei was responsible for bringing the device to EE. That’s a solid OEM backing a very respectable carrier device, and a low price to get it in your hands. We can’t complain with this one; its an all-around good deal.

Via: The Next Web

AT&T Expands 4G LTE Network to Lots of New Markets

Posted by Tim-o-tato March - 26 - 2014 - Wednesday Comments Off

AT&T announced a gang of new 4G LTE markets this morning, spanning from New York state on over to California. In total, there are nineteen new LTE markets listed, brining the wireless carrier’s number of markets over 500.

The full list can be seen below. 

New Markets

  • Sweetwater, TX
  • Merkel, TX
  • Tye, TX
  • Abilene, TX
  • Traverse City, Mich.
  • Ogdensburg, NY
  • Norfolk, NY
  • Lisbon, NY
  • Rensselaer Falls, NY
  • Waddington, NY
  • Lisbon, NY
  • Massena, NY
  • Plattsburgh, NY
  • Reno, NV
  • Truckee, CA
  • Grass Valley, Ca
  • Elkhart, Ind.
  • Eureka, CA
  • Yuma, AZ
Via: PR Newswire

Snoopy drone can be used to spy on mobile users

Posted by wicked March - 21 - 2014 - Friday Comments Off

If you thought drones, especially those that can be used to deliver your packages, were cool, you might want to think again when you learn about their other potential uses. A couple of folks at the Black Hat Asia conference in Singapore are set to demonstrate how they can steal user login credentials and more using a drone named Snoopy.

No this isn’t your favorite lazy beagle. Snoopy is a drone designed specifically to demonstrate one and only one thing: the vulnerability of our mobile devices and the life of carelessness we might be living. The drone is able to snoop, hence the name, on unsuspecting users, masquerading as a familiar wireless network that they were able to previously use.

Most mobile users connect to a myriad of public WiFi networks when outside their home. For the sake of convenience, they usually leave their smartphone’s or tablet’s WiFi enabled so that they can automatically switch to those networks whenever they’re within range. Snoopy takes advantage of this habit by becoming Spoofy, which spoofs WiFi clients by pretending to be that familiar network. Once connected, anything that users send over the Internet are intercepted by the drone for the hacker to use for fun and profit.

The good news is that Snoopy is only a proof of concept for the purposes of demonstartion and not an actual mass-produced weapon of mass nuisance.Though one can argue that the idea might now start to catch on. Of course, spoofing isn’t exactly new and what Snoopy brings to the table is a more mobile mode. Nonetheless, a great deal of its harm can be mitigated by simply practicing safe computing habits.

SOURCE: CNN Money
VIA: SlashGear

Sprint Expands 4G LTE Network to 20 New Markets, Spark to 20 Cities

Posted by wicked March - 17 - 2014 - Monday Comments Off

Sprint’s 4G LTE network keeps on growing. Today, the wireless carrier announced that it’s bringing LTE to 20 new markets. Also, Sprint said it plans to expand Spark and HD Voice to Provo, Utah, and Trenton, N.J., later this year.

The expansion should help Sprint reach its LTE coverage goal of 250 million people by mid-year, and the wider availability of Sprint Spark – 20 cities after today’s additions – will certainly make its revamped prepaid plans with Spark access more appealing.

Here’s the list of newly-covered cities:

  • Bakersfield, Calif.
  • Bridgeport/Stamford/Norwalk, Conn.
  • El Centro, Calif.
  • Hot Springs, Ark.
  • Kenosha, Wis.
  • Lancaster, Pa.
  • Mason City, Iowa
  • Myrtle Beach, S.C.
  • Nogales, Ariz.
  • Ocean City, N.J.
  • Omaha, Neb.
  • Peoria, Ill.
  • Prov/Orem, Utah
  • Sarasota/Bradenton, Fla.
  • Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
  • Shawnee, Okla.
  • Trenton/Ewing, N.J.
  • Visalia/Porterille, Calife.
  • Willimantic, Conn.
  • Zanesville, Ohio
Via: Sprint

T-Mobile Celebrates First Anniversary of 4G LTE Rollout, Announces Major Network Upgrade Program

Posted by Tim-o-tato March - 13 - 2014 - Thursday Comments Off

Less than a single year ago, T-Mobile launched its 4G LTE network in just a handful of markets across the US. Today, the Magenta Monster covers 210 million people in 273 metro areas nationwide with its LTE network. To celebrate this joyous occasion, T-Mobile announced a “major network upgrade plan,” one which will turn most of its 2G/EDGE service areas into an oasis of LTE coverage. 

T-Mobile hopes to complete the bulk of this revamping by mid of this year, with the work set to be complete by the end of next year. For customers who currently only see 2G/EDGE service in their areas, they can expect to see 4G LTE. For those with access already to T-Mo’s LTE, they can now rest assured in knowing they are covered by fast data in even more places.

In addition to pumping up its own network, T-Mobile is striking against Verizon, which is actually quite the change from its usual attacks on AT&T. Now, T-Mobile has taken legal action demanding that Verizon cease and desist the carrier’s network map advertising. The claim is that Verizon has “cherry-picked” a single network technology to base their map advertising on, rather than using an accurate reflection of the many network technologies in use today.

T-Mo kicked off a new marketing campaign to go along with its battle with Big Red, and we have placed the video below.

If you are a T-Mo customer, things are starting to get even better.

Via: T-Mobile

Uncategorized

Verizon CFO, Fran “ShamWow” Shammo, sat down for the opening keynote of the Deutsche Bank Media, Internet and Telecom Conference and weighed in on all sorts of topics. Since we know how many of you are still Big Red customers, even with T-Mobile and AT&T shifting up strategies in order to grab your business, we thought you’d be interested in hearing what he had to say.

Shammo is always worth a few good quotes during his interviews. I don’t want to call him the new Sanjay Jha, because well, that would be a massive insult, but he sure knows how to grab a headline while talking to investors and analysts.

In his sit down today, he walked through everything from how Verizon wants “high creditworthy” customers for EDGE and how they don’t plan to leave the subsidy model any time soon, to how many millions of customers they still want to upgrade to 4G LTE and why his company likes having four major players in the wireless industry. 

On launching Verizon EDGE, but also keeping subsidies around, because they have “done wonders” for the industry:

And I think that if you look at this, it is another option for our customers. We are not going to force our customers into anything. It is really their decision. We believe that the subsidy model is an extremely good model. It has done wonders for us in this industry. So I think to abandon that I think is a mistake. But I do think that there are customers out there that want that installment sale. And obviously with our More Everything, what we did was when we really sat down and looked at it and studied it, we said, okay, we are going to have our subsidy model here we will overlay our Edge program here

On installment sales (EDGE), what happens when customers leave for another carrier, and having options:

And then probably if you look at history between the early termination fee and installment sale, and we know when customers leave your network for dissatisfaction the likelihood of them paying you your early termination fee is probably next to nil. So when a customer leaves for dissatisfaction on the installment sale, they’re not going to come back and give their phone back so they are probably not going to end up paying you.

So there is a lot of risk with the installment sale that has to be monitored. So I think as a carrier for us, we are approaching it, we’re giving our customers all the options. But we do require very high creditworthy customers to go on to our Edge program.

On how many customers still aren’t on 4G or smartphones (over half of their 100 million):

Well, it is pretty much. Because when you think about it almost a little over 50% of our customers there is about 25 million of our customer base out of 100 that are still on basic phones. There is another 26 million customers who still have a 3G device and haven’t converted to 4G. So you are talking about 50 million customers. So there is still a lot of base that we can convert to that 4G network that then they will experience the benefits
of the 4G network. And we already see that.

On why they won’t buy customers from other carriers (like T-Mobile and AT&T are trying to do):

So I think that where we stand is we are not going to buy customers. I think that you have to earn loyalty and loyalty is earned through providing a value package to your customers, making sure they get what they pay for. The network still is the number one reason why people leave you. It is not because of price. I mean there is price sensitivity in the marketplace that you have to respond to.

But the number one reason a customer leaves you is because of network quality. And I think that we just showed through Root and J.D. Powers again that we obviously have the best network. And that is what we built our brand on and we will continue to respond to our customers’ needs.

On Sprint and T-Mobile merging:

Yes. I think Lowell put it best, we are really happy with four competitors. Look, I mean, people will do what they do. I think the one thing I would say is that obviously spectrum would become a big play if there was a consolidation in the industry

To read the full transcript, hit up the source link below.

Via:  Verizon

 

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