While the original Stratosphere is in line to get a kinda-sorta ICS-esque update, it looks like its successor is already in the pipeline for VZW. Unoriginally dubbed the Stratosphere 2, the device carries the same slide-out QWERTY and 4" Super AMOLED display as its predecessor; other than that, details are pretty non-existent. We probably wouldn't be too off base to assume it'll have some sort of dual-core processor and around 1GB of RAM, but past that, it's hard to say.
If you have a Gingerbread phone, you want ICS. There's no arguing that fact. Even if you're happy with Gingerbread and have never used ICS before, you may not realize it, but you still want it.
Unfortunately for Stratosphere owners, it doesn't looks like Samsung wants to give you the full ICS experience; instead, they want to put Ice Cream Sandwich all over Gingerbread. Kind of like the "Galaxy S Suite" that was to bring some of the best features from ICS to GB, the Stratosphere is getting a cosmetic (and perhaps slightly functional) update that brings face unlock, a better app tray, new incoming call GUI, and a photo editor.
We've known for a while that Verizon is slated to get its own variant of the massive LG Vu, but it seems the "Vu" name just isn't good enough for Big Red. According to a new leak that landed in the hands of Droid Life, the Vu for Verizon is slated to be named the... wait for it... LG Intuition.
While we don't know exactly when it will be available, the
Vu Intuition should be available for $199 with a two-year agreement ($549 off contract). Looks like this is as close as we're getting to a phablet on Verizon; unless, of course, the rumored 5" HTC monster becomes a reality.
We don't normally make a fuss over budget phones, and we definitely don't readily recommend that people buy them (even when they're free). For the Pantech Marauder on Verizon Wireless, however, we'll make an exception. Its Snapdragon S4 processor, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and 4G LTE connectivity make this a budget device that stands out from the pack.
For the unfamiliar, the Marauder is a new offering from Verizon, packing some very respectable hardware (for the most part, anyway):
- Processor: 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4
- RAM: 1GB
- Storage: 4GB
- Display: 3.8" 480x800
- Battery: 1680mAh
- OS: Android 4.0
- Dimensions: 5.07" (H) x 2.57" (W) x 0.46" (D)
- Camera: 5MP rear, VGA front
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11b/g/n, WiFi Direct
The clear downside of the Marauder is its smaller-ish 3.8" display, but if you loved the OG Droid and no other phone has been able to fill that void since, the Marauder is your best choice.
It was only a couple days ago that we heard the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the Motorola Xyboard Wi-Fi models would be rolling out. Now, Verizon has announced that the same update for the LTE version of the tablet is about to rollout to customers via an OTA upgrade. The package will be about 336.4 MB, so hope you're on Wi-Fi.
Here are some of the changes you'll see with the upgrade:
Despite Verizon's best efforts to keep their own variant of the Galaxy SIII locked down, ingenious users haven't been deterred in rooting, flashing custom ROMs, and even bypassing the device's locked bootloader to use custom kernels. The fact remained, however, that VZW's SIII had a locked bootloader which, in general, is a hassle for developers and tweakers hoping to customize the SIII to its fullest potential. It was this fact that made Samsung's promised Developer Edition SIII appealing to many.
This morning, Verizon announced that Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 has been infused with LTE, and that the mobile data-fied cheap-slate will be available on August 17th for a rather appealing $350. The Tab 2 may not be our favorite 7" Android tablet anymore (hey, who can blame us?), but when Eric reviewed it back in April, he found it to be a highly capable little device. And that's surprising, because he hates things with stupid names.
While Ice Cream Sandwich continues to struggle to gain significant proliferation, more and more devices are receiving the bump to Android 4.0. The latest entrant into the post-crappy-design world of Android is the Motorola Droid 4. According to Verizon's software update page, a new upgrade is on the way. In addition to bringing Android 4.0.4 and everything that entails, the software will also enable Global Roaming capabilities. This should make international travellers very happy.
It's no secret that Google Wallet got off to an extremely rough start. The service was announced nearly a year ago to a mild amount of fanfare, then almost immediately started hitting barrier after barrier, fighting for carrier and card support. Just a few days ago, they revealed that the big four (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover) were finally on board, thus bringing the service many steps closer to actually...
If you still had any doubts at this point that the HTC Rezound Ice Cream Sandwich update was indeed rolling out as reported by the first batch of users, let me dispel them right now. Verizon Wireless just updated the official document detailing the Android 4.0.3 rollout (it's indeed HTC build version 3.14.605.12 and Sense 3.6). Here are some screenshots of the doc along with the changelog: