01
Oct
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When Verizon and T-Mobile filed amicus curiae briefs in favor of Samsung in the company's ongoing patent litigation against Apple in the Federal Court for the Northern District of California, we cheered inside a little. It's always nice to see Android and its handset partners have friends in high places.

However, the question of how the court would respond to these briefs remained - as the decision is an entirely discretionary one.

30
Sep
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The DROID BIONIC, it's no secret, hasn't been launched bug-free. In fact, there's a number of bugs, particularly the dreaded data connection drop, that make using the BIONIC a major annoyance at times. Verizon has apparently been keeping track, and has a very detailed list of the glitches currently afflicting the phone, given to a customer in a support e-mail (weird, we know). The good folks over at Droid-life have compiled a "Top 10" bug list along with all the reported issues (here), and we've excerpted a few that we've noticed most:

1.  Issue:  4G/3G Service – Data Connectivity

  • Marginal 4G to 3G transition:  Loss of data connectivity – The device may display 3G service indication but no data connections are possible.

30
Sep
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Before we get rolling with this review, I want to get one thing out in the open: I don't like cases. On any of my devices. They add bulk, restrict access to certain elements of the hardware (in some situations), and are just all around inconvenient. Honestly -- what's the point of having one of the thinnest tablets (or phones) on the planet just so you can fatten it up with a case?

30
Sep
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The HTC Flyer was the Taiwanese handset company's first foray into the tablet game - a 7" device with a 1.5GHz single-core processor, two cameras, an SD card slot, and 16GB of storage (digital stylus not included). At $500, it was pretty obviously overpriced. But for 300 bucks, the this tablet is at least nearing what we'd call the competitive range.

The Flyer runs Gingerbread, though a Honeycomb update is in the pipes, and its bootloader presents no obstacles to the flashing of custom ROMs.

30
Sep
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Update: In a not-so-unexpected (read: expected) twist, Big Red has pulled the update for the TBolt, so if you haven't gotten it yet, now you know why. There isn't much info as to when it will start rolling out again, but we'll let you know when we find something out.

The wait is finally over - Thunderbolt users can now officially pull the latest update for their devices, Android Gingerbread 2.3.4, fresh from the oven.

30
Sep
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When we reported that Amazon was working on a number of Android devices earlier this year, shortly thereafter, reports began surfacing that the company would release two Android tablets before year's end, one 7", the other 10". The 7" device, now known as the Kindle Fire, is obviously for real.

But what about its supposed big brother? At this point, it seems almost imminent that it will be released. It also sounds very much like Amazon will unveil this bigger, better, Fiery-er device in time for Christmas in the US, and now we've got at least two reasons to think this is happening.

30
Sep
virgin_mobile

So there you are, at the end of the two-year agreement with your current carrier. You're at fork in the road. On one hand, you could drop a couple hundred bucks for a new phone, sign a new agreement, and start the cycle all over again. On the other, you could spend a couple hundred bucks with Virgin Mobile, nix the contract, and be a free man (or woman, whatevs). So what do you do?

30
Sep
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If you've downloaded or had the Android 2.3.6 update pushed to your AT&T, T-Mobile, or unlocked Nexus S recently without issue, consider yourself lucky. None of this applies to the Nexus S 4G on the Sprint network.

While we reported that the update was breaking Wi-Fi and USB tethering initially, it seems something much, much worse is happening to some users who have received 2.3.6 OTA.

If you check out this Google thread, you'll see a number of poor souls have had all cellular connectivity stripped from their devices after updating.

30
Sep
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Looking to get a full-color eReader on the cheap? Or perhaps a CyanogenMod conversion candidate? DailySteals is offering up refurbished B&N NOOK Color tablets for just $150, shipping included (next best price we've found is $190 shipped for a refurb).

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That's quite a steal for a 7" IPS display, complete with the NOOK's signature carabineer hook thing. The NOOK Color has been renowned for its hackability, particularly because you can get it to run CyanogenMod 7 pretty easily.

29
Sep
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Panasonic has announced a unique Android offering headed for Softbank, a Japanese carrier, officially unveiling the Lumix Phone 101P today.

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The Lumix Phone looks almost exactly like a pocket-sized digital camera, except for its 4" touch screen and Android 2.3 software. Under its surprisingly slender frame, it houses some interesting specs:

  • 4-inch QHD LCD screen with 960×540 resolution
  • 13.2MP CMOS Lumix sensor with “Mobile Venus Engine“
  • Waterproof body
  • TI OMAP4430 dual-core CPU (1GHz)
  • Ultra Speed compatibility (Softbank's broadband network)
  • microSD card slot
  • Infrared connection
  • E-wallet function
  • Digital TV tuner
  • A sleek body (64×123×9.8mm)
  • Android 2.3 Gingerbread

There's no word yet on pricing, or whether this phone will make an appearance in other countries, but it seems like a unique fusion between a point-and-shoot camera and a mobile phone, and it will be interesting to see how its 13.2MP sensor performs, especially next to Samsung's newly-announced 16MP sensors.