22
Aug
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Update: HTC has officially denied the veracity of this rumor, and stated that it has no plans to discontinue use of Beats Audio in its handsets.

Original Article: I don't like Beats. You probably don't like Beats. In fact, it's really, really easy to not like Beats. According to news site MyDrivers.com, HTC might not like Beats anymore, either.

After ditching bundled Beats earbuds in April, and then selling 50% of its stake in the headphone and, uh, sound enhancement company, industry sources (yeah, yeah, we know how that goes) are saying that HTC is going to drop Beats Audio from its handset lineup entirely.

22
Aug
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Are you looking for a new game to fill your daily commute? Pebble Universe might just fit the bill. The physics-based puzzle game has made its way over to Android from iOS, and offers 25 levels of gameplay for free.

The storyline behind the game is quite straight forward: you're responsible for a group of Pebbles (naturally), who are being attacked by soot-lump creatures wanting to eat delicious Pebble meat.

Now, in order to protect themselves against the evil creatures above, the Pebbles take advantage of the fact that their hats explode when they bump into each other.

22
Aug
wild-blood-shot

Gameloft has released the first gameplay trailer for its upcoming Android game, Wild Blood. The game will be the first Gameloft title based on the Unreal Engine, and the action-packed, blood-filled trailer certainly doesn't disappoint.

This is the second trailer to be released for the game, with a teaser trailer being unveiled a few weeks ago. Gameloft has promised that the game will be coming "very soon" to Android. It will likely be followed by the company's other title based on the Unreal Engine, March of Heroes.

22
Aug
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One small and two major sites that have a long history of distributing pirated Android apps have been seized in a first of its kind operation conducted by the FBI, DoJ, and a variety of U.S. and foreign governments. These sites are:

  • applanet.net
  • snappzmarket.com
  • appbucket.net

seized

Each of the taken down hosts is now displaying this FBI seizure notice

According to PC World, FBI agents downloaded numerous copies of paid Android apps as part of the operation before seizing all three domains and executing nine search warrants on August 21st.

21
Aug
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Show of hands: who wants to pay $350 for a low-end point-and-shoot camera? How about it has a built in WiFi connection? No?  OK, last chance: what if it ran Android... Gingerbread?

Anyone?

coolpixs800cnikon

Nikon is hoping to hear more than crickets when it brings the Coolpix S800c to market in September, with a suggested retail price of $349.95. All joking aside, as a low-end camera it's got some pretty decent specs: 16 megapixels, a 10x optical zoom, a 3.5-inch touch-sensitive OLED display, and 1080p video recording.

21
Aug
tmobile_4g

Only in the confusing realm of smartphone data plans can 'unlimited' not really mean unlimited. We started to see the big carriers cut back on all-you-can-eat data a few years ago, and T-Mobile was no different. The nation's smallest national carrier relied on vague language and semantics to justify its continued use of the word 'unlimited.' Now it looks like T-Mobile is going to finally offer real unlimited data again.

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The new unlimited 4G data plan will be available starting on September 5, and it does away with all the caps and throttling that angered power users.

21
Aug
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It looks like another one of HTC's handsets (besides the Thunderbolt) has gotten a Sense-ified Ice Cream Sandwich ROM of its own – today, XDA user nitsuj17 posted a ROM for the Droid Incredible 2 (aka vivow) allegedly based on another leaked RUU from HTC. Readers may remember the Incredible 2 as being among devices officially slated by HTC to receive Ice Cream Sandwich "by the end of August," so this leak's timing isn't too hard to figure out.

21
Aug
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Despite the fact that we're pretty sure to see the unveiling of Samsung's Galaxy Note 2 at IFA this year, there are undoubtedly still some folks out there still looking to get their hands on the original. If you're among them, you're in luck – Amazon Wireless is offering the AT&T-connected, 5.3" Super AMOLED display-toting Galaxy Note for just $159.99 (a cool $40 off AT&T's price for those keeping count). We haven't seen a deal this good on the AT&T Note since way back in February, meaning those still waiting for a discount would be well advised to check this out.

21
Aug
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According to a Taiwanese newspaper, as reported by Fox Business, HTC was the subject of a recent plea by the head of the country's central bank. He urged the Taiwanese government to offer some sort of financial assistance to HTC, whose stock has dropped over 80% from its peak in Spring of 2011. While HTC is still profitable, the bank's governor points not only to HTC's dramatically waning share figures, but the impact of its slowed growth on Taiwan's net exports, which have fallen 11% year over year.

21
Aug
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Since hearing earlier this month that HTC's Desire S, Thunderbolt, and other select handsets would receive ICS updates "by the end of August," we have heard nary a peep from the Taiwanese manufacturer. Today though, thanks to an alleged leaked RUU, we have a stock Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.3 build for the Thunderbolt (aka Mecha).

According to Administrator's post at TeamBAMF's forums, the ROM, based on a leaked RUU (and carrying build number 7.00.605.2), is said to be fully functional and fully stock, but it's worth noting that the ROM is deodexed and rooted, meaning those wishing to retain root are in luck, but if you – for one reason or another – want a strictly stock, non-rooted experience, you'll have to wait.