David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

05
Apr
cap33

Merger be damned, T-Mobile is continuing the expansion of its (potentially short-lived) 4G HSPA+ network, having added ten new cities, along with promising to double download speed caps in some major markets. The cities that have recently had T-Mobile 4G coverage activated include:

  • Ames, Iowa
  • Anderson, Indiana
  • Battle Creek/Benton Harbor/Jackson, Michigan
  • Fort Collins-Loveland, Colorado
  • Lawrence/Manhattan, Kansas
  • Springfield, Illinois
  • Wichita Falls, Texas

The major markets receiving the upgrade to theoretical 42Mbps HSPA+ (note: there are no 42Mbps HSPA+ phones out there) will first be Las Vegas, Orlando, and New York, with Chicago, Long Island, and Northern New Jersey following shortly after.

05
Apr
markettest

This probably isn't going to be nearly as exciting as the title might lead you to believe - though it's good news nonetheless.

Techfrom10's Samsung Galaxy S was accidentally given access to the test Android Market via an OTA update, and they stumbled upon some goodies while using it. The Market itself has undergone no noticeable changes aside from the addition of the "Content Rating" information publishers are now asked to include as part of their submissions to the Market, so there's not a lot to see on that end.

04
Apr
Android-Money

Well, not solely for Android and Chrome - but presumably those products are the headliners affected by this patent bid. Google is currently bidding on a collection of over 6,000 patents held by Nortel Networks, which is selling the portfolio as part of bankruptcy proceedings. Google tossed its name in the hat with an initial offering of $900,000,000 - not exactly chump change.

Many of the patents relate to wireless technology (such as LTE) and data networking, but undoubtedly Google found some of them to be in the particular interest of protecting Android and Chrome, as Google's General Counsel indicted on the company's blog.

04
Apr
Asus-Transformer-Full

Well-known budget electronics manufacturer ASUS has a big splash-page promo up on Best Buy's website right now for the upcoming Eee Pad Transformer, the manufacturer's first Honeycomb (Android 3.0) tablet, and it's not exactly subtle:

cap2

It's a fair comparison - both will probably break their hinges around the same time

The (unintentional) irony here being that ASUS's product aren't exactly known for their top-notch materials (I'm not saying their products are faulty - just a little flimsy).

04
Apr
hi-256-2-1c55494ffc6a0e6af523321a17b501b25fc1e576

The popular Android music player PowerAMP received an update this morning with new features and numerous bug fixes. Take a look at the change log below:

New:
- PowerAMP now has open API for 3rd party developers. Please check PowerAMP site for reference, samples, and complete Widget Pack sources
- PowerAMP now can be moved to SD card. You can still use PowerAMP widgets if you install PowerAMP Standard Widget Pack
- added Dolby/SRS support for HTC Desire HD (and few other HTC phones with Dolby/SRS) (Equalizer => DHD button)
- added song number/total counter (Settings => Look And Feel Tweaks => Show Track Counter)
- auto-advance option for queue (Settings => Auto-Advance Settings)
- PowerAMP now re-shuffles lists on repeat
- playlist/queue reordering can be now toggled on/off via special icon in list headers
- PowerAMP now shows embed lyrics from tags in its Album Art area.

04
Apr
Capture2
Last Updated: April 29th, 2011

Update: The 10.1-inch big brother of the A100, the A500, is also available for pre-order and ships on April 20, though it will cost you the substantially larger sum of £449. Why? It's packing an LED-backlit display (as opposed to LCD), 32GB of HDD space, and 1GB of RAM.

cap3

This one only applies to our friends across the pond for the moment, but Acer's first attempt at an Android 3.0 tablet has just gone up for pre-order on Amazon UK.

01
Apr
attDeathStar
Last Updated: April 4th, 2011

Update: BGR just confirmed with AT&T that the early upgrade price bump listed for iPhones applies to all smartphones - that means early upgrade pricing for 2-year agreement customers will go up by 50 bucks on all Android phones.

Well, there's not a lot of ways to spin this positively, and it's pretty clear what's going on - AT&T is disincentivizing its 1-year and no contract plans in order to goad customers into making more economical 2-year agreements.

01
Apr
3G-4G-sprint-verizon

An independent test conducted by a research firm in New York City comparing the speeds of Verizon's and Sprint's respective 4G networks has made at least one thing clear: Big Red owns the Big Apple. After conducting over 1000 individual network speed tests in various locations throughout the city, BTIG Research tallied up the averages, and it's not a pretty picture for Sprint:

vz-clwr-laptop-ipad2-new1

The connections were tethered through an HTC Thunderbolt and an HTC EVO 4G, respectively

You're seeing that right - Verizon's 4G LTE is averaging a whopping 10.3Mbps (down) when on a laptop tethered to an HTC Thunderbolt, while the EVO 4G barely eeks out 1.6.

31
Mar
Droid-x-Broken-Screen

It appears Verizon has altered the terms of its "Certified Like New Program" ("CLNP") (pray they don't alter them further) to be a lot more demanding regarding the condition of exchanged devices.

Namely, if you send in your destroyed DROID, don't expect to get a shiny new replacement without a serious penalty - all phones sent in on warranty exchange must now meet the following requirements:

CLNR Cosmetics Standards

CLNR Cosmetic Standard Summary:

  • No blemishes are permitted on front surfaces such as the touch screen, keyboard
  • No more than two flaws, which must be less than 5mm in length, are permitted on other surfaces
  • No flaws or defects on lens
  • No dust, dirt, or fibers under lens
  • Ports must be free of foreign material and corrosion, be in operating condition, and have the plugs in place if applicable

This means even if your Android device suffers from a warrantied defect and fails, you may be out of luck trying to get it exchanged if you haven't kept it in tip-top condition.

30
Mar
sony_logo_1

Engadget is reporting via a number of tipsters that the popular PlayStation emulator PSX4Droid has been pulled from Android market. Google's statement on the issue?

"We remove apps from Android Market that violate our policies."

Well, that's helpful. Actually, upon a short perusal of the US Patent and Trademark Office database, the reason became clear to us: PSX4Droid is infringing on a trademark owned by Sony for the acronym "PSX." This means PSX4Droid probably just needs a name change before being given the green light for republication.

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