Talk of Sprint's upcoming LTE network has been on the rise over the last several weeks, with Dan Hesse himself announcing the first four cities (Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio) to gain the ultra-fast network, and Kansas and Baltimore being added to the list shortly after.
We're now hearing word that the San Francisco Bay Area is likely to gain Sprint LTE before the end of 2012, with construction of the network already underway.
The day has finally come, AT&T subscribers - the monstrous Samsung Galaxy Note is now available. For the uninitiated, the G Note is the Incredible Hulk of call-capable devices, blurring the lines between phone and tablet. It's a powerhouse device, albeit targeting a niche demographic:
5.3" 800 x 1280 HD super AMOLED display with Gorilla Glass
1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor
1GB of ram
16GB of internal memory, expandable via microSD
8MP camera with 1080p HD video capabilities
2MP front-facing camera
Gigantic 2,500 mAh battery
178g (6.28 ounces)
5.78" x 3.27" x 0.38"
Android 2.3.6 with Samsung's latest TouchWiz UX
802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi
If you're on the fence about this behemoth, take a look at our initial impressions to get a better idea of how it feels in-hand.
Today has been a busy day in the world of rooting – we've already seen root access given to the Xoom Family Edition and the LG Spectrum. The Galaxy Note, slated for official release tomorrow (but already in the hands of some eager pre-order customers) has also been granted root today, thanks to Da_G over at XDA. The method appears to be similar to the Epic 4G Touch's original root procedure, and requires just a couple of quick Odin commands.
Owners of Motorola's Droid X should be expecting an OTA update "soon," which will bring the device's build up to version 4.5.621.MB810. Despite the fact that Verizon's announcement page says "Droid X2" in the title, the update will in fact bring its bevy of enhancements to the original Droid X. Among these are improvements to the OTA process itself, browser security (a la Google's 2.3.6 security patch), and various stability and bug fixes.
I know what you're thinking - Continuum? Wtf is that? It's that novelty phone released back in November of '10 with two screens: the actual display, and the "ticker" underneath.
When it was release, it shipped with Android 2.1 (that's Éclair for those who haven't been in the Android game for more than a year). Guess what? That hasn't changed. Yes, those poor souls who bought the Continuum have been stuck running 2.1 for more than a year.
At the end of January, a leaked Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.4 build IMM26 for the Sprint Nexus S 4G ended up online, indicating that a possible official release wasn't too far off. We heard this leak caused quite a bit of commotion within the companies involved, which may have had something to do with the XDA post getting wiped clean shortly after (although the poster did state he would only keep it going for a few days).
Verizon may have gotten a head start, but did you know AT&T is building an LTE network too? It's true! In fact, today the mothership activated new networks in Raleigh, NC and Tampa, FL and surrounding areas including Sarasota and Manatee counties, and Durham, NC. So, if you've been living near, but not quite in these cities, this is your time.
AT&T still has a ways to go before they reach Verizon's level of network saturation, but new markets are always welcome.
Verizon's list of LTE upgrades is a short one this month. Big Red is expanding its 4G LTE network in four existing markets, and only adding one new market to the mix this go around:
Expansion in Little Rock, AR
Expansion in Rapid City, SD
Expansion in Clarksville, TN
Expansion in San Antonio, TX
Activating 4G LTE in Cookeville, TN
We normally see between 10 and 20 new markets on Verizon's monthly upgrade schedule, but with most major metropolitan areas already covered in blazing fast LTE, VZW appears to be slowing down before blanketing the rest of the country.
What happens when AT&T sends Fox News' Shep Smith a text message letting him know that he's in the top 5% of data users and will be throttled? A hilarious rant about AT&T ensues, complete with comparison to crack cocaine. Check it out:
They hook you first - it's like giving you crack. It's all-you-can-eat crack, until, until, until you like a lot of crack and then you gotta pay them.
T-Mobile is evidently planning a huge sale in celebration of Valentine's day, offering all phones (plus the Springboard tablet and G-Slate) free for one day only this Saturday, February 11th. The deal will apply to current and new customers with Value or Classic Plans. Customers looking to take advantage of the sale will need to pay the 2-year subsidy, and will receive a full reimbursement via mail-in rebate card.
Update: The sale was apparently extended by an extra day through end of Sunday due to downed systems and busy stores that couldn't handle demand.