As Cameron explained in his latest "What We Use" entry, technology can change a lot in just one year. Around this time last year, I was running with a 2012 Nexus 7, a Galaxy Tab 10.1, and an Evo LTE. All of those devices have changed since then, as have my favorite apps and other gadgets. The family of devices I use has grown and evolved significantly since last October, so I thought it may be fun to detail just what I use to get through a normal day.
Samsung KNOX separates data and apps into containers, making it difficult for malware or intruders to gain access or cause damage where they aren't wanted, and it is integrated to a device's hardware and each individual level of the Android framework, making it a full-coverage solution. The software has been available to enterprises for some time now, alleviating concerns that Android isn't secure enough to protect corporate data and communications.
The Galaxy Gear has been leaked, rumored, and talked about for months now, and it's finally here. Well, it exists and we've seen it, anyway. We got some quick hands-on time with Samsung's don't-call-it-a-watch smart watch, and have plenty to say.
First off, Samsung was very clear during our hands-on time that the Gear shouldn't be thought of as a watch. The question of whether non-watch-wearers will be willing to pick one up is moot to the manufacturer, as the experience and functionality provided by the watch should be enough to sway users toward adding the high-tech accessory to their wardrobe.
Samsung just announced its fall catalog at the Unpacked pre-IFA event. There are very few surprises: the Galaxy Note 3 is here with a new leather-style stitched design, the Galaxy Gear smartwatch, and a revised version of the Galaxy Note 10.1.
Galaxy Note 3
The Galaxy Note 3 is Samsung's new flagship "phablet." It's been given a pretty huge update in terms of physical design: the rear cover is a faux leather, stitched design, combining with the banded sides to make it look like a journal.
ASUS is getting into the gigantic phone market in a big way. After their initial offerings in the Fonepad line (that's large, tablet-style phones, not to be confused with the docking Padfone) the company has announced a new model and at IFA in Germany, along with a previously announced but unreleased one. The Fonepad Note 6 (ME560CG) is a conventional "phablet" design, complete with stylus, which we saw back in June.
After having been leaked in full yesterday, Sony has officially announced the QX series of 'lens-style' cameras, with two models introduced today at IFA in Berlin.
The DSC-QX100 is the flagship version, coming it at $500, and is based on the RX-100 II camera, utilizing the same big 1x1" 20.2MP Exmor R sensor. It's equipped with an f/1.8 Zeiss lens capable of 3.6x optical zoom, and even has a manual-focus / zoom adjustment ring.
Prepare for a week filled with new product announcements, Android newshounds. Acer isn't letting their rivals get the better of them at IFA in Berlin (or indeed at the pre-show events that are becoming standard). This morning the company announced no less than three new products: the Liquid S2, a 6-inch Android phone with 1080p video recording, the 10.1-inch Iconia A3 tablet, and the DA241HL, a 24-inch all-in-one desktop powered by Android 4.2.
If you've never heard of Skylanders, you either don't have children aged 6-10 or you haven't walked down the video game aisle of a supermarket in the last two years. Today Activision has released the first Android entry in the series, Skylanders Cloud Patrol, which integrates with the eponymous toy line. It's available 18 months after the iOS version - try not to act surprised.
The game is a pretty basic tap-and-drag shooter, tasking the player with shooting down trolls from a mounted turret on an airship.
Xperia Tablet Z WiFi owners, the time has come for you to make the jump to Android 4.2.2. The latest firmware update, version 10.3.1.C.0.136, updates the six-month tablet to the next version of Jelly Bean and brings with it a slew of features worth salivating over, such as support for 64GB SD cards, and some that may be more subjective, such as the transition from a tablet UI to a phone UI.