A couple of days ago, the CyanogenMod team announced via Google+ a new feature merged to CM's Jelly Bean code branch – Quick Message. In case you missed it, Quick Message is a feature (built by David van Tonder) that displays a pop-up notification upon receipt of a new SMS message, offering the ability to reply from within the pop-up, view the message in Android's Messaging app, swipe to another new message, or close the notification.
Just days after we learned of an expanded international availability, another interesting bit of news may be on the way for the Nexus 7.
According to Paul O'Brien of MoDaCo, a "very well placed insider" has indicated that a 3G-connected variant of the device is on the horizon, expected to be ready for shipping "in around six weeks."
If you've been holding out on buying the Nexus 7 due to its WiFi-only capability, this may be the news you've been waiting for.
Huawei's list of announcements for this year's IFA conference is busting at the seams with a whopping four phones and two tablets, all with different screen sizes, specs, and prices, all slated for a 2012 introduction to the German market, with launch in other markets to follow, though we aren't privy to specific dates for other regions.
Ascend D1 Quad XL
The lovingly named Ascend D1 Quad XL is by all accounts the leader of Huawei's new smartphone pack, packing a 4.5" with an extremely impressive 330ppi density (and unknown resolution), a 1.2GHz K3V2 ARM quad-core processor built by Huawei, a 2600mAh battery, 8MP camera with 1.3MP front shooter, and a microSD slot for an extra boost of internal memory.
Amazon, in a press release posted this morning, announced that its "#1 best-selling product," the Kindle Fire, is now sold out. The release boasts the Fire's millions of sales, noting that it managed to eat up an impressive 22% of tablet sales in the US, and added to the overall success of Amazon's digital product sales.
What makes this announcement interesting is that Amazon has a press conference scheduled for September 6th, meaning we're likely to see the latest member of the Kindle family unveiled very soon.
PayPal's official Android app received a big update recently, bringing it up to version 184.108.40.206. The update carries a much-needed interface redesign, bringing the web payment solution's mobile client more into line with Android's design language. Using a warm, espresso-and-orange color scheme with a few well-placed textures and conservative gradients, the app's new interface looks infinitely better than its previous iteration.
The update isn't just about looks though – it also carries some functional improvements.
It's not often that I hear of a startup and think "I would love to have that in my town!," yet that's exactly what I thought when I heard about Lyft. For the unaware, Lyft is a new service in San Francisco that helps people find a ride at around 20% the cost of a taxi. In fact, payment is actually optional (though not paying at all isn't recommended - more on that in a few).
The Now Network continues to march forward in its 4G LTE Network Vision build-out, today announcing four markets in which the LTE switch is being flipped. You may remember Sprint's July statement that it would be bringing LTE to four new cities by September 3rd, and it looks like the carrier has already made good on that promise, with one exception – the list has dropped Sherman-Denison, TX in favor of Sedalia MO.
Owners of Sprint's One X-inspired EVO 4G LTE may be interested to know that they can expect a minor software update to begin rolling out over the air today. The update, which carries software build 2.13.651.1, brings the device up to Android 4.0.4 with Sense 4.1 on top, meaning the menu bar fix the HTC One X got a few weeks ago has arrived, among other things.
The update's other offerings include a fix for random browser closes, a minor Bluetooth fix, an updated version of both Google Wallet and Sprint's Visual Voicemail, and an LTE scanning improvement that should help users better find Sprint's burgeoning 4G network.
ARCHOS, in an announcement that ambitiously looks to "revolutionize" Android gaming, has just unveiled the GamePad – a 7-inch, dual-core gaming tablet with built in controls (including buttons, a d-pad, triggers, and analog sticks) that remind us a little bit of Sony's PSP.
The interesting bit about this tablet is that it includes "automatic game recognition and mapping tools" which ARCHOS promises will "ensure control compatibility with every advanced Android game."
Of course, one of the most important things about a mobile device meant to center around gaming is its spec sheet.
As a long time Android user, ASTRO is one of those apps that has been on nearly every device I own/have owned. I've seen it change and progress over the years, and to this day it remains one of my favorite file managers.
And it just got even better on Jelly Bean devices.
The app received an update today that brings a beautiful new UI to Jelly Bean devices; don't worry, the ASTRO team will be bringing it to "other" devices shortly.