Like a lot of manufacturers that hope to sell phones in developing territories, Motorola adds FM radio functionality to its budget models, currently including the Moto E and the first and second generation of the Moto G. And as is the vogue for manufacturer customizations, the developers at the company have published their custom apps on the Play Store for easier updating. Today the built-in version of the FM radio app gets an update adding some much-needed features.
First of all, users can now listen to FM radio audio via Bluetooth, including headphones, car head units, portable speakers, and anything else that uses the A2DP stereo.
One of the issues with the Moto 360 has been the battery life, while I think it's always been good enough to get the job done, there was no denying that other Android Wear devices had it beaten. However, last week's OTA update might have done more than it let on. Some users are reporting as much as 50% more battery life on the 360 after that update.
Relative to last year's downpourofNexus 5leaks, there's been a bit of a drought in Nexus phone rumors this season. So far, we know that Motorola is expected to have made a large Nexus device codenamed Shamu, which multiple sources have affirmed and which is supposed to share an impressive spec sheet with another device codenamed Quark. This device is supposed to be set for a November release.
What it looks like (or how it even came to be) are still up in the air, however. Until we know more concrete info (or hear an official announcement), there's no way to reliably nail down the details.
For people living in the large swathes of the US where Verizon Wireless is the only real option, your chance to get the second generation Moto X has arrived. The handset is now available on the carrier's site for $99.99 with a two-year contract, though the price differs with other payment options depending on color. The site is showing the black one available for $24.99 a month with Verizon Edge or $499.99 outright. For the same phone in white, those numbers jump to $27.99 and $549.99. Both come with 16GB of storage.
If you want a Moto X with more storage space or an exterior that will turn heads, you will need to turn to Moto Maker.
The Moto 360 is still in short supply, but Motorola is slowly working through the backlog of orders. If you haven't gotten your hands on the first round Android Wear smartwatch, it might look a little different when you finally get it on your wrist. The silver Moto 360 is now showing up with a lighter stone leather band. Meanwhile, the gray leather band is gone from Motorola's site.
Just like the original Moto X, AT&T customers were the first ones to get a taste of the new model on the customization site Moto Maker. But it looks like that carrier exclusivity isn't going to last anywhere near as long this time around: the official Verizon Wireless Twitter account said that Big Red versions would be available starting tomorrow. Just like the AT&T version, the on-contract model will cost $99.99 with a two-year commitment. A black version will be available from Verizon retail stores and online.
If Motorola continues its pattern from last year, the new Moto X should be available in all color, finish, and trim combinations, including the premium leather and wood backs, with free engraving of a short message.
We've been hearing a lot about Volantis lately, but what about the other supposed Nexus device - Shamu? Since we originally broke the story back in July (with the Information affirming Shamu's existence soon after) things have been relatively quiet, with only a benchmark test here or there popping up with alleged specs that seemed to point to a smaller device.
Today, however, 9to5Google has divulged specs and details about the device in which the outlet seems fairly confident. 9to5 says it can corroborate the 5.9" screen size, and notes that "the device we've learned about" actually carries the following specs, some of which clash with earlier reports:
5.92" QHD display (498PPI)
13MP camera and 2MP front shooter
Snapdragon 805 processor
Worth noting is that 9to5's information aligns almost perfectly with information we received earlier this year, but they also sound very close to a device we've seen under the name Quark, which may in fact be the basis for Shamu.
Last year Motorola announced the Droid phones alongside the Moto X, but this year the new Moto X is about to hit the shelves and there's still no official word on new Droid phones. However, a Google+ posting by HeloMotoHK claims to show the rumored Droid Turbo in all its glory. Yep, it still looks like a Droid.
Much to the chagrin of cell carriers and hardware manufacturers, there are still many in the Android community that choose to delve into the world of hacking and modding their phones. Owners of the Verizon Moto G are certainly in this crowd, and they've been eagerly awaiting a reliable method for unlocking their bootloaders. It turns out that their wait ends today. Sunshine, a tool built by Justin Case, Beaups, and others to unlock HTC and Motorola phones, just gained support for the Moto G on Verizon.
In case you've never heard of SunShine before, you'll want to check out the thread on XDA-Developers for more details, but it's pretty simple.
Motorola currently offers the Moto 360 in silver and black colors, but what if you want something a little more blingy? The company posted a promo image recently that piqued everyone's interest as it showed what is clearly a gold Moto 360. When we asked about it, Motorola was all like "what watch?"
Left to right: original image with gold watch, immediately after we contacted Moto, and a little while later