Remember a few months ago when LG showed off its new Optimus L series, with three new Android-powered smartphones across several price points? Yeah, neither do we. But in any case, the biggest and relatively baddest of those phones will be available on Sprint subsidiary Boost Mobile sometime in the near future, under the new alias of the LG Venice. EV Leaks got a hold of an official photo of the device - we've only got their word that it's coming to Boost, but they're usually spot-on with this sort of thing.
Hello and welcome to a new feature! I'm going to start calling this "What's Really New," the series where we do more than just post a change log with the canned screenshots when something important gets updated. We're going in-depth (as usual). We'll be ripping apart APKs, doing full side-by-side comparisons, and, hopefully, letting you know about all the cool new stuff before it comes out.
Previous experiments in this area have been a stunning success.
Let's face it. The patent system is a mess. Applying for a patent can be a process that takes years. Then there's the issue of prior art. Is this patent valid? Was it obvious? Should it have been granted in the first place? And that's without getting into whether or not other devices infringe. It can be a huge cluster of ugly. Enter AskPatents. This new Stack Exchange site has been set up to crowd source the finding of prior art and researching whether or not patents are valid.
Reuters is reporting that Samsung will be amending its counterclaims against Apple in the two companies' second lawsuit in California, currently scheduled for trial in March 2014. Here's what Samsung is saying:
"Samsung anticipates that it will file, in the near future, a motion to amend its infringement contentions to add the iPhone 5 as an accused product ... Based on information currently available, Samsung expects that the iPhone 5 will infringe the asserted Samsung patents-in-suit in the same way as the other accused iPhone models."
This trial focuses squarely on software patents Apple is claiming are violated by the entire Android operating system (eg, the app picker, unified search, auto-correct), and has essentially nothing to do with product design.
Looks like ASUS is gearing up to announce the second iteration of its Turducken phone, the Padfone. A save the date for October 16th was sent out this morning to numerous Italian blogs, highlighting a dual-announcement - one in Milan, Italy, and another in Taipei, Taiwan, which is where ASUS is headquartered.
We haven't heard much about this updated phone-in-a-tablet-in-a-laptop before now, but rumor has it that a quad-core processor should be powering the device this go around.
Back at the end of May, a gaming accessory company called PowerA announced a new Bluetooth gaming controller for Android phones called the MOGA. At the time, release date and pricing information wasn't yet available, only that the controller would be released "before the holiday season." Looks like PowerA met that deadline, because it just officially announced the MOGA would be hitting the streets on October 21st for $50.
For those who may not be familiar with the MOGA, it's a game controller that includes a nifty built-in clamp-style holder for your smartphone, essentially turning it into a handheld gaming system.
No, it's not the Bard of Avon, but this smarmy rogue should still be able to keep you plenty entertained. The Bard's Tale is a Diablo-ish RPG starring Cary Elwes (best known for ruining your perception of the Dread Pirate Roberts and Mel Brooks' Robin Hood by doing this). Complete with absurd humor, catchy drinking songs, and adventure galore, this game promises to keep you engaged for up to 3.5GB worth of your time (for Tegra device owners, 1.7GB otherwise).
SoundCloud's Android app received a substantial update today, adding some new features to the recording UI that's been present in the app for some time.
Namely, track trimming and fade in / out effects, which should be a godsend for those who actually use the app for this sort of thing, as opposed to simply for listening to your feed (or for listening to our podcast, which you totally should).
It's been a long time since Desktop Tower Defense - the genre needs a little shaking up. And with the Prey series of shooter games under their belts, Human Head Studios thinks they're the ones to do it. Their latest game is Fort Courage, and it fits broadly into the mobile-friendly category. The free game is available right now on the Google Play Store, but you'll need an NVIDIA Tegra-powered device to run it, and a Tegra 3 for the best results.
MetroPCS just announced a new 4G smartphone from ZTE for its ever-expanding 4G LTE network. Dubbed the Anthem, this new handset offers mid-range specs under a 4.3" 480x800 display, including a 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor and Android 2.3. Past that, the pay-as-you-go carrier was overly-scant on details, but we'll assume it's packing 1GB of RAM and some sort of camera (5MP, maybe?).
So far as looks are concerned, it's not the prettiest thing we've ever seen, but it's hard to complain for around $220 (after MiR) with no contractual agreement.