Plenty of phones tied to carriers get left behind in the update game, but the Moto X has kept up surprisingly well. The AT&T variant is currently sitting at 4.4.2, but AT&T has started pushing 4.4.4 updates to a soak testing group. If all goes as planned, it could roll out to everyone soon.
Perhaps you noticed that AT&T started selling the low-cost HTC Desire 610 late last month for just $0.99 on-contract and $200 without. That was apparently only the first step in HTC's attempted conquest on the mid-range device market in the US. The 610 is now on sale direct from HTC and the Desire 816 is launching on August 12th (tomorrow) on Virgin Mobile and direct from HTC.
You'll finally be able to hitch your wagon to the Sprint Spark LTE network in tablet fashion come this Friday. That's when Sprint plans to launch its first tablet with support for tri-band LTE. The device in question is the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0, and other than the LTE radio, it looks to be the same device you can get now sans mobile data.
T-Mobile is really taking a run at this whole kinder, gentler carrier thing. Among its many initiatives is the Samsung Galaxy Avant, a modestly specced phone that you can unlock (to use on other carriers) with the newly released SIM unlock app. It might come to more phones later, but it's a step in the right direction anyway.
T-Mobile, hot on the heels of rejecting a $15 billion buyout from Iliad and an apparently abandoned takeover by Sprint, has announced today that it's now the US's #1 prepaid wireless provider by subscriber volume.
The exact number of prepaid subscribers T-Mobile cites is 15.64 million, about half a million above former #1 Sprint's 15.19 million. Sprint, of course, operates two major American prepaids - Virgin Mobile and Boost. AT&T and Verizon lag behind at 11.34 million and 6.04 million prepaid subscribers, respectively.
The folks over at Laptop Mag have undertaken a test that really piques our interest. The results show that T-Mobile smartphones consistently get the best battery life among the big four US carriers. The difference isn't insignificant either. We're talking about a steady gap of up to three hours, depending on the phone.
In the chart below we see variation between the 2013 and 2014 versions of Samsung and HTC's flagships.
Sony tends not to push its flagship phones on US carriers, for whatever reason. Sometimes a tweaked version will happen along at a later date, and that was the case with the Xperia Z1. T-Mobile got the Xperia Z1s in January of this year, but it was still on Android 4.3. Well, not anymore—KitKat is rolling out now.
The HTC One M8 is one of the more desirable Android phones available at the moment, and if you're looking to find a good deal on one, "qualitycellz" (may not a be a real name) is happy to oblige on eBay. The seller has at least a few refurbished AT&T-branded One M8 models going for $449.99, a full $220 off of the new retail price at AT&T. You can have any color you want, so long as you want silver.
The rumors that Sprint was moving on from the Hesse era were true. After seven years at the helm of the Now Network, Dan Hesse is stepping aside so Sprint's parent company SoftBank can bring in someone new. Its choice is Marcelo Claure, the founder and current CEO of SoftBank subsidiary Brightstar.