For most people, a black phone is fine. The slightly more trendy might be drawn to a clean white exterior. But not you. Oh no, you want a phone that's brown like fine Corinthian leather. A phone that you can feel proud to hoist above your head and exclaim for all the world to hear that you are a man, and this is a man's phone! Ladies will probably like it too, but for different reasons.
For the couple of years, Samsung's cheaper, smaller handsets have been sold mostly on America's small regional carriers. It looks like Verizon is bucking that trend by bringing the Galaxy S4 Mini, a phone that's related to is big brother in name only, to US consumers. Engadget was tipped with some photos and screenshots of the phone "in the wild," with a pretty convincing set of Verizon logos and a boot-up sequence.
In preparation for reporting on the general state of the Moto X bootloader, we reached out to AT&T for an official statement on the matter. We know that many potential buyers want to know whether they can fully modify their phones, especially after the HTC One X and Galaxy S4 were denied unlockable bootloaders on the carrier. Here's what they said in reply:
Sprint announced the Flash back in November last year, when it launched with Android 4.0. Well, it's finally getting an update to Android 4.1... 9 months later. Ugh. The new software version is N9100V1.0.0B15. Improvements aside from things like Google Now and expandable notifications include enhancements to the camera app, which now includes blink detection, flash mode toggle, an EXIF data menu, and a detailed settings menu.
You can start checking for the update on your device now, though the rollout may be staged over the next week or two.
The One VX was a rather quickly-forgotten mid-range handset released only on AT&T in the US, and we haven't heard much about it since its announcement. Those who purchased what is best called HTC's follow-up to the One S, though, will be pleased to know that an Android 4.1 update is head their way starting today. You can see HTC's announcement of the update, software version 2.21.502.1, here. Of course, Android 4.1 brings awesome stuff like Google Now and expandable notifications.
The AT&T-branded variant of the HTC One has a new maintenance update available, bringing the device to version 1.26.502.15. HTC's official announcement and update instructions can be found here. This is the second OTA update to be issued to the AT&T version of HTC's flagship handset, and the changelog is but a single item long. That item? "LTE Enhancements." Hooray! (?)
Image via XDA
According to a growing XDA thread, the update is around 245MB, though it downloads much more quickly than one would expect it to for a package of that size.
Update 2: Verizon has confirmed that it is in fact an update to Android 4.1.2, not Android 4.2, as the screenshot below now reflects.
Update: It sounds like this may be an Android 4.1.2 update, not Android 4.2. The build number JZO54M is, according to Google's own codename site, an Android 4.1.2 build (specifically, Android 4.1.2 R2.1). Sounds like Verizon done goofed. We've reached out for confirmation, but I'd be skeptical if the Verizon XOOM suddenly bunny-hopped from Android 4.0 to Android 4.2.
One of the coolest features for the Moto X is Motorola's Moto Maker system, a website that allows buyers to customize the color of the front, back, and accents for the phone. At launch it will only be available for the AT&T model, but Motorola is planning to expand availability to other carriers later in the year. Check out the video for the system below.
Verizon has already confirmed that they're getting access to Moto Maker, via a tweet from the official Verizon News account.
While the AT&T Galaxy S III received its Android 4.1 update way back in December 2012, it still had yet to get the Samsung "Premium Suite" upgrade with the much-vaunted multi window feature. Starting today, that update is rolling out - a full two months after even infamously-slow Verizon managed with its own S III. Better late than never, I guess.
Here's AT&T's brief changelog:
The Isis mobile payment platform backed by AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile hasn't exactly taken off, but that's to be expected: today it's only available as a trial program in Austin and Salt Lake City. The latest press release from Isis announces that the NFC-powered platform will expand nationwide later this year, though a specific date was not mentioned. Isis is widely regarded as the reason that Google Wallet remains inaccessible to most Android users on the networks of its three founding companies.