08
Oct
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Last Updated: August 2nd, 2012

The FedEx man brought me a lovely little gift yesterday: The T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S II. This is the last stateside arrival of the Galaxy S II family. The review will take a bit to get out the door, so until then I figured I'd whet your appetite with some initial impressions.

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First of all, this thing is big. Really big. I have to say though, I love the design of it.

26
Sep
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Broadcom, an innovative player in the communications semiconductor business, announced yesterday their new family of NFC chips, affectionately called BCM2079x.

The corporation seeks to aid in making NFC as widespread as technologies such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi by introducing the 40nm chip which is said to consume 90% less power than current NFC chips, and utilize "field power harvesting" to gain power from the environment.

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Making the chip even easier for manufacturers to integrate, Broadcom's new line has slashed the number of components needed to build the chip, and reduced board space requirements as well.

26
Sep
Last Updated: August 2nd, 2012

With Ice Cream Sandwich on the horizon, we at AP thought it would be a good idea to give you a roundup of what Google's been cooking up in Building 44. We actually know a good deal about the future of Android; I'm talking real, solid facts. These are features Android engineers have demoed or talked about, and acquisitions Google has made related to Android technology. We even have pretty clear timelines for most of them.

25
Sep
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Superuser, the preferred app to "hook into your phone's power," has at last been updated to version 3.0, bringing a huge overhaul both in terms of design and functionality.

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The release of version 3.0 into the Android Market brings with it many bug fixes and new features, perhaps the most notable of these being the ability to write NFC tags, the ability to backup apps and preferences, and PIN capabilities (available with Superuser Elite).

20
Sep
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In addition to replacing your wallet, it looks like your Android device may eventually replace your key ring as well. Yale Locks and Hardware showed off their Real Living line of motorized locks this year at CEDIA Expo, promising that your NFC-enabled phone will soon be able to open your front door digitally.

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The new line of locks is also compatible with Zigbee and Z-Wave home automation systems and offers support for Assa Abloy's existing Mobile Keys system which allows users to securely store all their digital keys on their phone.

19
Sep
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True to last night's rumblings, Google and Sprint have announced the launch of Google Wallet, a revolutionary new tap-to-pay service that allows customers to store credit card information and make payments from one app on their Android phone.

For now Google Wallet is only available to those with a Nexus S 4G and a Citi MasterCard. Google plans on adding support for various other card companies, and more Android devices with NFC capabilities are on the horizon.

31
Aug
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Adding to the pile of news surrounding the Samsung Galaxy S II this week, we have some new info -- some good and some bad . The good news is that the AT&T and T-Mobile variants will both be equipped with NFC. Engadget (along with François Simond) took a peak earlier today into the system files of AT&T's S II variant and found conclusive evidence of NFC presence, including a pre-installed app, but whether mobile payments will be one of the SII's capabilities remains to be seen.

29
Jul
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Normally, we don't post FCC filings, but this one caught our attention. It appears that a variant of the Samsung Galaxy S II with NFC just hit the FCC sporting AT&T radios. But wait, this is where it starts to get interesting. Back in March, another variant with AT&T bands hit the FCC. Curious, yes?

The rabbit hole gets deeper: earlier this week, we saw photos of a version of the GSII sporting a keyboard that is rumored to be heading to AT&T, yet today's filing shows identical dimensions to the European variant of the GSII, suggesting that there is no keyboard.

13
Jul
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It's been a while since the Nexus S hit the Android scene, bringing two noteworthy new features with it: Gingerbread and NFC. While the former has seen relatively wide adoption, the latter hasn't gotten much action as of yet - the closest we've come to witnessing a useful example of the technology is Google Wallet, and we have yet to find out when that will be available for public consumption.

07
Jul
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Well, well, well - looks like there was more to yesterday's Nexus S GRJ90 leak than originally met the eye. Though the update doesn't contain many changes, the bigwigs at Mountain View apparently deemed it substantial enough to warrant a new version number: 2.3.5.

Again, the update includes:

  • Fixes for the Nexus S 4G's signal reception issues
  • A 4G settings widget for the Nexus S 4G
  • TTY (teletypewriter) support
  • NI push support
  • The NFC secure element, which is critical to Google Wallet

So there you have it - assuming that Droid Life's sources are credible (and given the blog's track record, I'd say they are), you'll be able to refer to the update that should be hitting your Nexus S 4G next Monday not only as GRJ90, but also as Android 2.3.5.

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