Posted: 01 Feb 2012 03:57 PM PST
So if you haven’t realized from my posts by now, I like to experiment with Android from time to time and today was one of those more special days. While poking around FaceLock.apk, which I decompiled with apktool, I opened this. The screenshot above portrays a file “arrays.xml,” which contains what looks like phrases to be presented on the lock screen when a user’s face is not recognized. As those of you fortunate enough to run ICS know, currently an unrecognized face only returns “Sorry, don’t recognize you” or in some cases “Couldn’t find a face.” Aside from a different spelling of “recognize,” the list above also offers a substantially more varied output. So what is the meaning of this? I supposed it could be simply leftovers, never scrapped before release, or, letting my optimistic imagination run just a little bit, perhaps this is some preliminary work towards a future update; Majel maybe? It’s a stretch, but the varied and pretty casual responses seem more AI like to me. In any case, an interesting little something indeed.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 12:51 PM PST
While rumors that the S III would make its debut at MWC were quickly and officially refuted by Samsung, that hasn’t stopped the Korean manufacturer from showing their hand in regards to the Galaxy S II Plus. Even with the announcement of the Galaxy S Advance, and two new tablets, Samsung is pushing forward with the release of the SII Plus. If the benchmarks are any indication this is a good move as the phone will surely be able to carry its own weight.
While at first it was considered to only be an incremental upgrade to the S II it appears that Samsung has took some time and put in some decent hardware in the device. The device will carry a 1.5GHz (I assume dual-core and possibly the OMAP 4470) processor, a WVGA display, and Android 2.3.4. I am sure that the device’s presence will be made better known at MWC and when it does we will surely update you with the specifics. Stay tuned!
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 12:42 PM PST
NFC chip. Check out what these guys have managed to come up with:
Click here to view the embedded video.
via: Stanford MobiSocial News
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 12:33 PM PST
Are you ready for some football!?! As most of you know, Super Bowl XLVI is this weekend and some of you may even be lucky enough to be heading to the Lucas Oil Stadium for some first person action. If so, Verizon has got you covered and has sponsored a Super Bowl XLVI app that will give you plenty of relevant info and even a little social media integration as well.
From 3D maps and guides to where to go for ecxiting nightlife, this app has everything a stadium attendee would need. Actually this can even be usefull for those who are just watching the big game from the comfort of their own couch! The social media within the app will allow you to get updates from NFL huddle and on-scene spectators.
Although this app is sponsored by Verizon it isn’t limited to just Verizon phones, anyone can download the app and it’s free. To get your free download hit the market link below, and for those of you who will be in Indy this weekend, shout out on the comments below!
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:52 AM PST
It was just a couple days ago that we got official info from Samsung about the upcoming Galaxy S Advance smartphone, and we’re pretty confident that the device will be shown at MWC in a few weeks. If you read our previous article than you have already seen press images of the phone, but recently some real-life images surfaced on the web.
Philippine tech site, TechPinas, was able to get their hands on the images you see above and below. According to the tipster who sent these images in, the Galaxy S Advance feels good in the hand and resembles that of a solid construction. Based on these images I would imagine the construction to be very similar to Sammy’s current line of Galaxy handsets, plastic-y yet maintains a quality appeal and heft. TechPinas also mentioned that the device should run 22,990 PHP (Philippine Pesos) which is roughly $536.
If you need a refresher on the basic specs of the device you are looking at at 1GHz dual-core NovaThor ST-Ericsson processor, 4-inch Super AMOLED display, 16GB of memory and 768MB of RAM. To get the full specs run-down check out our previous post. For those of you here in the U.S. I wouldn’t get your hopes up too much, it still looks like the device will launch everywhere else but here.
Best Buy Offering $50 Gift Card If Customers Upgrade Their Phones By The End Of 2012, Must Register By February 12th
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:35 AM PST
source: Best Buy
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 10:20 AM PST
Last year, Samsung filed for injunctions in several EU countries againt competitors for infringing patents. Back in 1998 Samsung pledged to license its patents to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms.
“The (European) Commission will investigate, in particular, whether in doing so (seeking injunctions on patent infringements in 2011) Samsung has failed to honor its irrevocable commitment given in 1998 to the European Telecommunications Standards,” the EU executive said.
Did Samsung abuse its dominate position with these actions? So far Samsung hasn’t made a comment.
It’s also possible other companies like Motorola could be subject to this same investigation. If the European Commission finds any company in breach of EU competition rules, they could fine them up to 10 percent of their global turnover.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 09:19 AM PST
Super Bowl commercial from Samsung. It will air during the 4th quarter, and it will be about the upcoming 5.3-inch beast, the AT&T Galaxy Note. They just released a teaser clip, which is 45 seconds long or half of the full 90-second spot. Enjoy!!
Click here to view the embedded video.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 08:19 AM PST
ASUS Transformer Prime because of “complaints of faults with the model.” As we know, the availability of the Transformer Prime has been scarce, and Clove didn’t expect to have sufficient stock levels until February/March. They were able to get some stock sooner than expected, but because of these complaints, they decided to test their stock. What they found, we don’t know, but at this time, they aren’t satisfied that all units are working correctly.
They decided to stop all sales and to cancel any impending orders. They did say they will return to selling the Tegra 3 beast as soon as they’re satisfied that the situation has been resolved.
We already know about complaints of WiFi and GPS issues, as well as lock-ups, but ASUS claims the units in the UK aren’t affected, not to mention other retailers in the UK haven’t taken any action.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 08:17 AM PST
In case you’ve forgotten, Disney launched Android smartphones in Japan last year. Apparently Disney’s venture is a resounding success because they are set to collaborate with mobile carrier NTT DoCoMo and form the Disney Mobile on DoCoMo brand. Disney will start off with two new Android-powered handsets launching over the next couple of months and features exclusive content from Disney such as full-length animations and games. The first device is the F-08D which is a “luxury smartphone” featuring a 4.3-inch HD LCD display, dual cameras and a snappy 1.2Ghz dual-core TI OMAP 4430 CPU. The F-08D will be available in pink or white next month with preorders opening up February 17th. The next device is the P-05D, which features a slim 7.8mm thick frame, rear camera and 4.3-inch OLED screen all powered by a dual-core 1Ghz processor that will launch sometime in March. Hit the break for the full presser.
DOCOMO Unveils First 2 “Disney Mobile on docomo” Android SmartphonesTOKYO, JAPAN, February 1, 2012 — NTT DOCOMO, INC. announced today the first two Android™ smartphones under the “Disney Mobile on docomo” brand that it is launching in cooperation with The Walt Disney Company (Japan) Ltd. The “Disney Mobile on docomo F-08D” model will go on sale in the end of February and the “Disney Mobile on docomo P-05D” model will launch in March. Both models will be sold in Japan only.The magical world of Disney is featured throughout the two smartphones, from their outer designs to user interfaces, including main displays and screen icons. Both models are waterproof and compatible with popular DOCOMO services, such as Osaifu-Keitai® mobile-wallet services.Users will enjoy free access (excluding packet-data charges) with their smartphones to movie services, original live wallpapers, puzzle and music game applications for children and family-entertainment.
Special customer benefits also will be offered from this spring in cooperation with Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea, where DOCOMO is an official corporate sponsor.
Pre-orders for the “Disney Mobile on docomo F-08D” model scheduled for release in late February will be accepted at docomo shops from February 17. Pre-orders for the Disney Mobile on docomo P-05D model scheduled for release in March will be announced later.
Disney Mobile on docomo Smartphones (2 models)
Disney Mobile on docomo
Luxury smartphone with sparkling silhouettes of Mickey and Minnie.
Tabletop holder featuring the world-famous Mickey Head Design.
4.3-inch high-resolution HD display with 1.2 GHz dual core CPU to experience dynamic Disney video content.
Waterproof/dustproof design and compatible with Osaifu-Keitai mobile-wallet service and one-seg services.
Disney Mobile on docomo
Stylish smartphone designed to fit comfortably in the palm of one’s hand.
Two customizable Disney jackets for personalized styling.
Slim 7.8 mm body combined with large 4.3-inch Organic EL display for full enjoyment of Disney content.
Waterproof/dustproof design and compatible with Osaifu-Keitai mobile-wallet services.
DOCOMO and Disney to Jointly Offer Smartphones and Mobile Services Under New “Disney Mobile on docomo” Brand
TOKYO, JAPAN, February 1, 2012 — NTT DOCOMO, INC. and The Walt Disney Company (Japan) Ltd. jointly announced today that they will introduce an exclusive smartphone brand, “Disney Mobile on docomo,” beginning with the launch of one model in late February and a second model in March.
Smartphones developed by the two companies will be sold by DOCOMO under the “Disney Mobile on docomo” brand.
A variety of exclusive benefits and special services and content will enable users of these smartphones, including adult women and others, to encounter unique Disney experiences.
Exclusive content and services will include:
Access to Disney full-length animations, live actions and overseas dramas.
Digital content from Disney, such as puzzle and music game applications for children and family-entertainment.
Original Disney applications, live wallpapers and more.
Various customer benefits in cooperation with Tokyo Disney Resort.
Wednesday, 1 February 2012
Steve Jobs Finally Gets An Android Tablet In The Afterlife – Taiwanese Ad In Extremely Poor Taste [Video]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 06:30 PM PST
Apple bashing, while sometimes fun, could be seen by some as poor taste. I can jive with that. But then there’s this. An ad spot from the Taiwanese manufacturer Action Electronics portraying the late Steve Jobs as an angelic Asian character who, set free from the confines of Apple, is finally able to choose an Android tablet — the Action Pad specifically — over the iPad. Now, I get that humor doesn’t translate so well from country to country, but this could be seen as downright offending. And not only to the Jobs family, but to Android users alike.
An Action Electronics spokeswoman defended the ad saying,
“Steve Jobs always promoted things that were good for people, Apple products, so his image can also promote other things that are good.”Not that I would even attempt to speak for the late Steve Jobs (he was one hell of an orator) but c’mon… he wouldn’t touch that horrible example of an Android tablet with a 10ft pole. And neither would we.
As far as the ad goes, what do you guys think? Offensive? Or are we being too sensitive?
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 06:06 PM PST
You may remember from a previous post that because of change in Sprint’s terms, some Sprint customers were able to get out of their contracts early. Well, following that news, it seems Sprint is making moves to keep “upgrade eligible” customers from leaving by offering up discounts anywhere from $25, $50, to $100, all for remaining loyal to ‘Ol Yeller. While we’re not exactly sure of the criteria Sprint is using to select these lucky customers, (how many months do you need to be off-contract?), we find it interesting the timing of the promotion, where customers who’s contracts were affected by Sprint’s change in discounts gives them until the end of February to cancel ETF free.
Those that don’t have any intention of leaving may be able to cash in on this new promo, which when combined with an existing upgrade, offers a substantial discount on a new device. The offer begins Feb. 5th and will last until March 18th. Now might be a good time to call customer service to see if you apply. Keep in mind, taking advantage of Sprint’s promo offer will lock you in for another 2-years so choose your device wisely.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 05:10 PM PST
New to the official Google Store are the all new Android wristwatches to better show the world your undying devotion for Google’s green robot. Coming in at $60, if the price sounds a bit steep for you, keep in mind that you’re receiving 2 custom straps — both dark and light color — in either small or large face watch sizes. At the time of writing, the larges seem to be sold out and no telling when they’ll return but now you know they’re there and can keep an eye out for them.
Google’s specialty store always keeps me coming back for more and after buying a $60 Android cookie jar not too long ago, I think I’m better off staying away for the time being. “Hi, I’m Chris and I’m addicted to Android memorabilia.”
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 04:45 PM PST
Originally released for iOS back in July of ’09, Cartoon Wars is finally hitting the Android Market today, courtesy of Gamevil who is offering the game free of charge. Mixing a healthy dose of tower defense and a sidescrolling RTS, Cartoon Wars gives players control of a small army where the player must carefully choose the units he/she will use when going into battle against the opposing force.
If you like a little story with your RTS’ing, it goes a little something like this:
Two tribes existed in the Cartoon World; the vicious Color Tribe and their slaves, the Black and White Cartoon Tribe.Already receiving rave reviews in both the Market (and App Store), Cartoon Wars treats players with all out, balls out, action packed battles, while still offering a surprising amount of depth. You find the app for free right now in the Android Market. Once you give a try, let me what you guys think.
[Market Link |Via DroidGamers]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 03:12 PM PST
Bamboo is a very useful wood. It can be used for all sorts of things. You can use it to build houses, scaffolding and even feed it to pandas. Another new use has sprung up – you can use it as the chassis for a phone. The device you see above was once a mere concept by Middlesex student Kieron-Scott Woodhouse. (That’s about as fitting a last name as you could have for this project.)
Its name is the AdZero and it’s made out of real bamboo. Each phone’s block of wood is naturally unique. The woody nature contributes to how light it is with TechCrunch saying it weighs half as much as an iPhone 4S. There are questions about the lifetime of the finish.
As it’s wood you can expect it to look a bit worse over time but there will likely be protective coating. I wouldn’t mind a sheet of glass covering it, personally.
The device has recently received interest from investors who want to see these things in the hands of everyone in China and production looks to be on track to begin this year.
It’ll be running Android but the OS version wasn’t mentioned. I could see this being a great device to apply a custom wood theme to but it’s not clear where they’ll go in that regard. At this point we’re not even sure who “they” are but we hope they’re serious about bringing something like this to the masses. I know I’d want to carry one. [TechCrunch]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 02:10 PM PST
Qualcomm have just released their financial figures from their first fiscal quarter of 2012. The company generated $4.68 billion in revenue, up 40% from the same quarter in a year ago and up 14% from last quarter. Net income (profit) was $1.40 billion, up 20 percent year-on-year and up 33% from last quarter. The company did all this by shipping 156 million MSM units, up 23% from the previous quarter. Needless to say, Qualcomm is enjoying the fast-growing smartphone and tablet market just as much as their OEM partners are. Check out all the juicy numbers at the link ahead. Look for the first link under “Quarterly Results.” [Qualcomm]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 12:56 PM PST
The Samsung Galaxy Note for AT&T won’t be here until February 19th (presales begin on the fifth of this month) but its source code is already available for developers to download. This will allow folks to get started on creating ROMs well before its launch but don’t expect to see a lot of that happening before the device is in developers’ hands. If you want to take a look be sure to download the source at Samsung’s site via the link ahead. [Source, Via]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 12:29 PM PST
If you have an upgrade available this year you may want to consider getting it through Best Buy. They’re offering a $50 gift card to anyone who upgrades their cell phone in 2012, but it isn’t without a catch, natch. You have to sign up by February 12th to be eligible, but after taking care of that you’ll be in line to receive a gift card whenever you upgrade your phone at their stores. You might as well sign up even if you don’t know how you’ll be upgrading yet. Get started here.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:59 AM PST
Google has updated another one of their applications today. This time, it’s Chrome to Phone, an application that gets extensive use out of me. The application allows users to send webpages that they’re viewing on Chrome to their Android devices that have the application installed. My main use for it has been to send maps and directions to my device before I leave to go to a place I don’t know.
The new update fixes an error that caused the app to crash on Honeycomb devices. Google has also added landscape support and an improved look and feel. A solid update, all in all. Find it here in the Android market. [via Android Police]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:55 AM PST
The Galaxy Nexus, like its predecessors, is headed to just about every carrier imaginable outside the United States and the PAYG Canadian alternative WIND Mobile is next in line. They’re set to release the device this Friday, February 3rd, for $250 for WINDTab+ customers (cost of the rest of the device is figured into your monthly bill over a three-year contract) and $600 outright.
For those considering switching, WIND customers currently enjoy great rates such as their unlimited everything plan for just $40. It’s a viable option if you prefer to go with a smaller carrier to save money – the phone they’re offering in a couple of days isn’t a bad one, either. Read on for full press details.
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:15 AM PST
The good folks at Google have just updated Google Docs for Android. The document editing application had a big crutch in its inability to work offline but that is all changed now. Google has added an offline mode in the latest version. You have to select individual documents to make available offline but that shouldn’t be a problem for most. Your changes offline will be made to the online version as soon as you’re back on a network so you won’t have to remember to do it manually (though you can do it manually if you want). They’ve also made the viewing experience better on Android tablets by presenting the documents and controls in high quality. Three megabytes and a few seconds will get you the update in the Android market here. [via Google+]
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 11:04 AM PST
We’re expecting the Motorola Droid 4 to be launched shortly after its official unveiling at CES but it’s been difficult to pinpoint an exact date. Take this one with a grain of salt, however – Droid-Life is hearing from a source that the 4 inch stretching, LTE having, dual-core pushing, keyboard-laden device will launch February 9th. That’s only a short 8 days from now. Pricing is expected to be either $200 or $300 but we’d expect the latter considering all the features packed inside. Has anyone been holding out for this one?
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 09:53 AM PST
US Cellular gave us a rough timeline of their 4G LTE device launches last month, pegging a tablet for March and a smartphone to follow in April. The regional carrier has announced exactly which devices we can expect: the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and Samsung Galaxy S Aviator (a device appearing to be a rebranded Droid Charge). The timeframe remains the same, with the Galaxy Tab landing in March and the Galaxy S Aviator landing the following month. Specific dates and exact pricing have yet to be announced. Check out the press release below for more details.
U.S. CELLULAR ANNOUNCES LAUNCH OF 4G LTE NETWORK NEXT MONTH ALONG WITH UPCOMING DEVICES
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 09:08 AM PST
What you see above is Samsung’s teaser for their Super Bowl ad. The clip is comprised mostly of segments from previous ads from Samsung’s most recent round of TV spots featuring the commentary of folks waiting in line for what is suggested to be the next iPhone. Of course, Samsung wants to tout that the next big thing is already here in the form of their gargantuan Galaxy Note. Will a full 90-second ad capture the hearts of Americans everywhere during the fourth quarter of the showdown in Indianapolis? Perhaps the bigger questions is: since when do company’s advertise for their own advertisements?
Posted: 01 Feb 2012 09:00 AM PST
Apple has long been the target of criticism over their labor practices, specifically, at overseas factories like Foxconn where harsh working conditions, accidents and suicide rates for Chinese laborers working in these factories have all made headline. Foxconn even had to go as far as installing safety nets along the sides of their buildings to help thwart would-be jumpers. A few months ago, there was also an app “game,” later pulled from the App Store, attempting to shed light on this issue, only to eventually find itself land in the Android Market, where it currently remains.
After news that Apple was sitting on a $97 billion cash pile, twiddling their thumbs, a renewed effort is being led by Apple “fanboys” no less, who have taken to online petitions to raise even more awareness. The hopes are that Apple will use some of this money to force suppliers like Foxconn into improving their working conditions. But as so often is the case, that’s easier said than done.
The thing is, it’s not only Apple who uses Foxconn to make their products. That shiny new Kindle Fire you received for Christmas — guess what? It was built in a Foxconn factory just like the iPad 2. It’s true. Many of your favorite Android OEM’s (and even console manufacturers) are current Foxconn employers. To show you Apple isn’t alone in this, here’s a list of a few of them, 10 of which are US based, and mixed in with other big name manufacturers.
Back in the day, apparel companies like Nike were forced to improve their labor conditions after public outcry and I can only hope these online petitions will catch the attention of Android OEM’s as well. Something needs to be done to improve working conditions for the factory workers at Foxconn and my heart most certainly goes out to them. Since most Android users already boycott Apple products out of devotion to all things Google, you can still further help by signing the online petitions linked below. It’s your duty as a world citizen (yep, I just went there).
[Change.Org | SumOfUs.Org]