Sony is one of the very rare companies who know how to balance the right level of features between smaller and larger devices. Their newly announced Z5 series has a very powerful Z5 Compact, a good Z5, and a slightly fluffed up Z5 Premium, all without compromising on processor, RAM, or camera performance.
However, that comes at a price and we're just starting to discover what the tag will be on these smartphones. Sony's announcement didn't include any pricing details, but retailers all across Europe and the UK have begun listing the different Z5 devices on their sites. Here are the known amounts of euros and pounds you should part with:
Readers in France and Germany, head on over to your local Google Store if you're looking for an Android-powered set-top box. The Nexus Player, the only Android TV device widely available even six months after the introduction of the platform, is now on sale in your respective countries. Well, sort of: it's "coming soon" with a price of 99 Euro (only about 5% more than the US price). According to Google's hardware availability page, it should go on sale at any moment.
Hong Kong readers, you get something a little more exciting. While you don't have access to the Nexus Player yet, you can finally buy a Nexus 6 without importing it from somewhere else.
After its introduction at CES, the curvtastic LG G Flex 2 is almost ready for primetime. The phone has been available for pre-order on Sprint in the US for a few days with a free Quick Circle case, but its global rollout is about to commence. It will first be offered on "major carriers in the United States, Hong Kong, Singapore, France, Germany, and the U.K," according to an LG Press Release, followed by key markets in North and South America, Europe, and Asia.
Aside from Sprint in the US, we know that AT&T will carry the G Flex 2 (only in grey, red is exclusive to Sprint) but their landing page still marks it as Coming Soon, and that U.S.
Time flies in the tech world. The Moto 360 isn't the latest hotness anymore, but I still love the one strapped to my wrist. In my mind, it remains the most visually stunning smartwatch you can buy. And when I say you, I'm referring to folks in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom—all places where the watch is now listed as available from the Play Store.
Google may have updated the support page a bit early, as the Moto 360 is listed as coming soon. But you can probably look for the watch to be ready for purchase any time now.
OK, European readers. We know Google doesn't always put a rush on features and products outside of the United States. America got lane guidance (which tells you which lane to get into before you approach a turn or exit) way back in May. It looks like US roads were the only ones on which this feature was available, at least until yesterday, when Google announced lane guidance for some European countries on the official Google Europe blog.
Specifically, users in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the Republic of Ireland now have access to lane guidance while turn-by-turn navigation is active.
Samsung's Android-based Galaxy Zoom phones haven't exactly been a runaway hit. Maybe it's because no one really wants a massive camera strapped to the back of their phone, or maybe it's because they're lumpy and expensive. Whatever the case might be, Panasonic is throwing its hat into the super powerful phone-camera with the LUMIX Smart Camera DSC-CM1, a gorgeous little point and shoot that hides a full Android phone (including calls and data) on its back end.
The phone portion of the CM1 is relatively high-end, with a 2.3Ghz Snapdragon 800 processor, a 4.7-inch 1080p screen, 2GB of RAM, and a surprisingly unskinned version of KitKat.
Aside from its round P-OLED screen and stylish case design, the G Watch R is remarkably similar to the original LG G Watch. But as just about anyone could guess, consumers will be paying a premium for that style when the round Android Wear device is released later this year. If LG's German press release announcing the G Watch R is accurate, it's going to be quite a premium indeed. The PR lists the suggested retail price as 299 euro, a full €100 more expensive than the G Watch. It also gives a slightly more precise release date: October.
€300 is approximately $395, but thanks to the economics of releasing electronics and other high-value goods in Europe, the American price will probably be much closer to $300.
More than a few Android fans are ready and willing to get their smartwatch on with the new Android Wear platform, so some German users must have been excited to see LG's G Watch pop up in the Play Store in Germany. AndroidPit spotted a small section of promo text for the device, and while it didn't include any photos or links and it was quickly removed, it certainly implies that the G Watch will be sold on the Play Store. In Germany.
Constantly activated display
The G Watch never sleeps. The constantly activated display shows you at any time to time, and new information, without you having to touch it.
The Google Play Newsstand Android app is pretty and all, but without the ability to subscribe to magazines, it's little more than a dumbed down pseudo-RSS reader. So it's a pretty good thing Google is rolling out access to the digital magazines to more countries. By now, residents in France and Germany should have access to the Newsstand content available in Google Play.