The year 2017 will go down in history for being the beginning of the end for bezels. Who needs 'em anyway? Samsung, LG, Apple, and others are doing everything possible to get rid of all that unused space on the front of their phones, but Sharp has been tinkering with the bezel-free approach for some time. Remember the Aquos Crystal from a few years ago? Now, Sharp has unveiled the Aquos S2, which bears a striking resemblance to the Essential Phone. Read More
Sharp hasn't sold phones in North America for a while, but the company is still working on some very interesting devices. Back in 2014, it released the Aquos Crystal, one of the first "bezel-less" phones to hit the market (I use that term loosely, because it had a massive bottom bezel). Now it appears to be working on two similar phones, the Sharp Aquos S1 and S2. Read More
Over in Japan, Sharp has taken the wraps off of its newest flagship. Dubbed the Aquos R, it features some top-tier specs with a lot of hype around the display technology and included artificial intelligence. The choice of the letter 'R' has a four-fold meaning around which the phone's marketing will be unified: Reality, Response, Reliability, and Robotics.
Here's a Google Home trick we haven't seen really publicized: the Assistant in Home can play you a six-note scale in any key. ( Read More
Note: This does not seem to work on the Pixel Assistant. Sigh. Correction: See update, this is just really broken in general, unfortunately.) Just tell Home to play you any key - for example, "play me a B sharp" - and the Assistant will respond with an ascending six-note scale. Neat.
Android One isn't Google's most-loved product initiative, but it does proposition consumers with a deal they aren't getting anywhere this side of a Nexus: updates direct from Google and minimal bloatware. Android One has predominantly launched in Southeast Asia and a few other locations - such as Turkey - but has remained firmly out of tier-one economies to date. Today's announcement by Google, Sharp, and Y! Mobile, then, is quite interesting. Read More
While it's hardly taking the world by storm, it looks like Android TV is gaining enough of a footing that there are now high-end televisions equipped with Google's entertainment OS being discounted on a regular basis. (Of course, that might simply indicate that no one is buying them. Either way, it means low prices for us.) Today's television deal comes from Sharp, and it's a big-un: the LC-70UE30U, a 70-inch, 4K smart TV. Buydig's eBay outlet has a new model on sale for $1599.99, a solid $200 off of the price for most remaining new stock.
The LC-70UE30U includes Android TV running on a quad-core processor of unknown origin (though I'm betting it's one of Qualcomm's inexpensive SoC systems). Read More
It was inevitable. Inevitable, I tell you. With the smartphone market becoming a ridiculous battlefield of overpowered spec sheets, it was only a matter of time before someone decided to cram a 4K resolution into a phone. That someone is Japanese smartphone maker and frequent part supplier Sharp, who revealed a 5.5" screen module with a resolution of 3840 by 2160 pixels. That's a density of 806 pixels per square inch, for those of you keeping score at home. Read More
Google's lone Android TV box is getting some company, but not in the form of a more capable over-the-top box. Sharp has announced three new 4K TV series at CES 2015, and two of them have Android TV built-in. It'll cost you, though.
If you own a Sharp Aquos Crystal on Sprint, you've got an update on the way. According to Sprint, there are quite a few bug fixes as well as some new bloatware added, such as Sprint's new premium caller ID service that lets you see a caller's name as well as their phone number, and integration with Yahoo's Communications Suite.
The new update bumps the firmware version to SA300 and is still based on Android 4.4.2/KitKat. The update rolls out in batches over the course of 1-2 weeks usually, so if you don't have the update available yet, keep checking.
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The Sharp Aquos Crystal is very close to being an Android nerd's dream device. It has virtually no bezel (except on the bottom) and comes with a stock version of Android 4.4.2. It looks unlike anything else on the market in the US today, and many Sprint customers will no doubt be happy to pick one up from the carrier starting today at $239.99 off-contract. People who prefer to walk out without putting any money down can get the phone for $10 a month.
People looking to pick up the Aquos Crystal through one of the carrier's MVNOs can get a better deal. Read More