Motorola is rolling out its first ad for its upcoming Moto X tomorrow, one day before Americans kick off Independence Day celebrations. This is no coincidence. Motorola wants its Made-In-The-USA smartphone to stir patriotism in the hearts of consumers across the country. Yet that is just the beginning. Not only is the company pushing the Moto X as the first smartphone designed, engineered, and assembled in the USA, it's calling it the first smartphone that you can design yourself.
HTC has confirmed that the One S - something of an unloved stepchild in the 2012 One line of phones - will not be receiving any future Android or Sense version upgrades. We contacted HTC and received a similar statement: the One S will be staying on Android 4.1 with Sense 4+.
The One S received its last major update in December, which was the aforementioned Android 4.1 / Sense 4+ firmware.
After taking Kickstarter by storm, the Pebble smartwatch went on to become a real product. Hey, that's more than you can say for some Kickstarter campaigns. The backers have had their devices for a while now, and the time has come for Pebble to expand. First stop: Best Buy. The Pebble is going to be exclusive to Best Buy, at least for the time being.
You're probably aware, but the Pebble is a slick (kind of) smartwatch with an e-paper display.
Live wallpapers are awesome. The problem is that so many of the offerings available are, well, not. Yes, flowers are certainly pretty, and meandering fish can be quite relaxing, but they just aren't awesome. If I'm going to waste some of my battery life powering an excessive animated background that I'll generally only really see when using my phone as a clock, I want it to get my juices pumping.
Google is continuing to make its monthly Glass updates available in a timely manner. The newest version of the wearable firmware, XE7, is now ready to download on the Google Glass Developers page, right alongside the two older downloads. It's a beefy 346MB package, delivered in the usual ZIP format.
XE7 adds a ton of new features for Glass testers and developers, including more varied "ok glass" commands and contextual actions, improvements to search functionality, an updated home screen, and better contact management and sharing.
While Samsung has been dipping its toes into the single-screen multitasking world, Google has yet to do the same. According to noted Android and Google tipster ryan_socio (Ryan Matthews, not his real name), that's about to change. Ryan posted a message to The Verge's social user section, detailing an upcoming version of the YouTube Android app that will let users watch videos and interact with the rest of Android at the same time.
Kairosoft is one of the most dependably solid Android game developers out there. While their titles tend to have a lot in common, those who appreciate the city builder/RPG formula love it to death. The company's latest title is Pocket League Story 2, which builds on the eponymous original with a handful of new features, most notably the ability to play soccer games (well, sort of) against real-world opponents.
Here's the gist: you're the owner of a brand-new soccer team, represented by tiny pixelated players and managers.
Sphero is a remote-controlled ball that's been making the rounds in both the toy and tech worlds for the last few years. With omni-directional motion and a gyroscopic sensor, it's a combination of remote-controlled toy and Bluetooth game controller, with the requisite smartphone control via Bluetooth. Today Amazon has the Sphero toy for $84.99, $45 off the retail price of $129.99. Like all of Amazon's Gold Box deals, this price is good for one day only.
The launch of the world's most hyped Android-powered mini console might have been something of a dud, but at least the creators are keeping up the support. The first major update after Ouya's release includes some substantial improvements to the app/game store, most notably PIN security for purchases (to make sure those meddling kids don't empty Mommy and Daddy's checking account) and support for pre-paid gift cards. Card totals can now be applied towards new games or in-app purchases.