Over the last day or so we've been seeing reports that Google is now replacing broken Nexus 5 units under its Google Play warranty program, even if those specific phones were damaged by an accidental fall or water damage. That's a pretty significant shift from the usual warranty coverage on the Play Store and elsewhere, which tends to cover a replacement or repair only if the unit is defective or malfunctioning.
Update, 9-4-13: a Verizon Wireless spokesman reached out to say that the wireless provider hasn't been fined by the FCC, and that the landline services provider (providers of home Internet and cable services) is the one being fined. Verizon and Verizon Wireless are technically separate companies. The headline and story text have been altered to reflect this.
There are a lot of good reasons not to like Verizon. But the Federal Communications Commission has taken particular exception to at least one of Verizon's practices from way back in 2006.
Sony's information on the Xperia Z3 and related devices has been coming out fast and furious, but we've been left waiting to hear about which of these devices will actually make it over to the US. Well, T-Mobile has announced that it will offer the Z3 online and in stores this fall.
No US carrier picked up the Z2, but T-Mobile carried the Z1s previously, so this announcement isn't without precedent.
I've only spent a small amount of time taking business classes, and none of them were for marketing. But I have to imagine that somewhere in those big, expensive textbooks, when instruction young minds how to promote a product, is the lesson "don't associate with bloodthirsty terrorists." The electronic mobile payment consortium Isis, wishing to completely and totally distance itself from the ISIS currently holding large swaths of territory in Iraq and Syria, is changing its name to Softcard.
The Room was a phenomenal game when it hit Android last year (after first blowing iOS users' minds in 2012). The sequel, The Room Two (who would have guessed?), continued the stunning 3D puzzle-y goodness. Now developer Fireproof Games has announced that the third entry in the series will come in spring 2015.
Coming shortly after Samsung's Gear VR unveiling, Fireproof Games is also keen to point out that it has an upcoming title already in the works specifically for the virtual reality headset.
Tucked into the flurry of news around Sony's trio of new Xperia Z3 devices was the fact that they'll be the first non-gaming gadgets to use the company's proprietary PlayStation 4 Remote Play system. The flagship Xperia Z3, high-powered "mini" Xperia Z3 Compact, and the 8-inch Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact will be able to stream PS4 games and play them across a home Wi-Fi network later this year. The PS4 can already stream gameplay to the PlayStation Vita.
If you just don't want to wait to see what Google has in store for the next Nexus phone, then there's a good deal over on eBay right now for the Nexus 5. For just $315, you can grab a 16GB N5. No shipping, and no sales tax as long as you're outside of New Jersey. Not a bad deal, really.
Looks like there's a "limited quantity" available, so you should jump on it now if you plan on buying.
Belkin's WeMo switches take generic aspects of a home and make them smarter. If you're interested in giving parts of your house an IQ boost, several of the company's products are currently going for 20 to 25% off as part of Amazon's Gold Box Deal of the Day. The devices come in two primary form factors. There are switches intended for power outlets, and there's a wall-mounted option for controlling the lights. Either way, you're looking at tools that provide the ability to remotely control various parts of the home using an Android device.
Amazon's FireTV has been available since early April here in the US, and since then has become the best selling set-top box on Amazon (naturally). It's a fantastic little unit for the dedicated Amazon customer, especially those who subscribe to Prime. As of today, Amazon is broadening its horizons and making FireTV available in both the UK and Germany.
For those who may not be familiar, FireTV is packing some pretty decent hardware under its hood, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 running the show.
Update: A Fleksy representative contacted us to say that the keyboard will be available as a free download to all Gear S owners, but will not be pre-installed. The title of this post has been changed to reflect this.
The Gear S is an interesting device, not so much for its hardware as for its approach: Samsung decided to equip the smartwatch with a stand-alone wireless connection so it can work just fine on its own, thank you.