Samsung

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Samsung's Newest Chromebook Now Available Directly Through Google Play

A few days ago, Google intro'd a new entry to the ChromeOS family: the 11.6", Exynos 5-powered Samsung Chromebook. At $250, this dual-core ultraportable isn't going to break the bank, and for users who don't normally venture outside of the web browser, it's a pretty ideal solution. And starting today, you can grab this little guy directly from Google Play.

Just to avoid confusion, this does not run Android. It runs ChromeOS.

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This new Chromebook is the first non-Android device to make its way into Play Store, which is clearly going to be Google's new storefront for future hardware sold directly by the company.

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Jelly Bean Update For The Samsung Galaxy S III Goes Live On Vodafone And O2 After Brief Delays

European O2 and Vodafone Galaxy S III owners, it's finally your turn to check out Jelly Bean first hand. Following last week's updates on Hutchison Whampoa networks (Three/3/H3G), now O2 and Vodafone joined the party and started pushing out Android 4.1.1 to Galaxy S IIIs in at least the following locations:

  • O2: United Kingdom, Ireland
  • Vodafone: United Kingdom, Italy, Czech Republic, Germany

The Vodafone launch started today right on schedule, as per this post from a few days ago.

The O2 rollout was scheduled to begin on the 19th of October, but was delayed until today, the 22nd, as confirmed by several updates to this blog post on O2's forums:

image sgs3

Watch out for the update notification in the next few days or load up Kies for instant gratification.

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[Weekend Poll] Pick A Phablet Edition: HTC DLX, Samsung Galaxy Note II, Or LG Optimus Vu II?

This is the latest in our Weekend Poll series. For last week's, see Are You Content With Your Phone's Stock Battery Life?

Complain as some people might, smartphones are getting bigger and bigger. Nothing exemplifies that fact more than phablets like the HTC DLX (or other variants, such as the J Butterfly), Samsung Galaxy Note II, and LG Optimus Vu II. Packing 5"+ displays, powerful CPUs, and 2GB of RAM, these phones aren't for your grandmother.

JButterfly NoteII VuII

Left to right: HTC J Butterfly (Japanese variant of the purported DLX), Samsung Galaxy Note II, and LG Optimus Vu II.

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Samsung Releases Unity Extension SDK For Galaxy Note S Pen Game Integration

Device-specific hardware tends to get overlooked by the third-party development community, but the S Pen from Samsung's Note phones might be the exception. There are a lot of Note users out there and it has a stylus that's actually worth using. Samsung is now offering game developers a way to better utilize that feature with the Unity Extension SDK, which can be downloaded from Samsung's developer site.

unity

In case you're not aware, Unity is a 3D game engine that's used by a number of popular titles. The new SDK will allow developers to accept input from the S Pen. The SDK provides devs with access to SCanvasView in their games.

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MetroPCS Is Getting The Galaxy S III Too, Priced At $499 Without A Contract

When we think of "budget" phones, a $500 Galaxy S III may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, MetroPCS' usual strategy of having customers buy phones off contract and save money on the service is in full swing here. The device comes with a hefty price tag up front, but pick up the carrier's $50/month plan for unlimited talk, text, and 2.5GB of data, and you're looking at around $1700 over the course of 2 years. Compare that to, say an $80/month plan with a $200 device ($2120 over two years) and you could face some steep savings.

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Apple Still Required To Run 'Samsung Didn't Copy Us' Ads In The UK After Appeals Ruling

It may be pretty hard for Apple to get away from the ruling that it has to state publicly on its website and in advertisements that Samsung didn't copy the iPad. An appeals court has ruled that the previous sentence should still be in place. The judges stated that, if Apple wasn't the one to clear up the confusion, the damage caused by the lawsuits all over Europe would be irreparable to Samsung.

Said the judges:

The acknowledgment must come from the horse's mouth. Nothing short of that will be sure to do the job completely.

The one thing the appeals court did change is that the web-based disclaimer doesn't need to take up a large amount of real estate on Apple's homepage, and instead a simple link to "Samsung/Apple judgment" will suffice.

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Samsung Continues Pushing Out Jelly Bean To Galaxy S IIIs In Europe - Italy, United Kingdom, Switzerland, And Ireland Join The List

The Jelly Bean update for the Galaxy S III is steadily spreading to more countries in Europe, in addition to Poland, Sweden, France, Spain, Romania, and Austria. Today, it started rolling out in Italy (H3G), United Kingdom (H3G), Switzerland (Swisscom), and Ireland (Three), as well as on another Austrian carrier called 3 Austria. As far as I can tell, H3G, Three, and 3 are all owned by the same giant company - Hutchison Whampoa (some names are even interchangeable), so four out of five pushes today seem to be a coordinated effort.

Curiously, the majority of the updates (those pushed by Hutchinson-owned carriers) are no longer I9300XXDLIH dated September 28, but rather I9300XXDLJ1 which is a fresher build dated October 8.

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Android 4.1.2 OTA (JZO54K) Rolling Out To Takju Galaxy Nexus, Manual Update Link Available

It truly is update season as Google gets all its Nexus devices up to date prior to the presumed announcement of 4.2 at the event later this month. Today an update to 4.1.2 has started to reach the Takju variant of the Galaxy Nexus, and you don't have to wait if you don't want to.

phone-galaxy-a

Before you get too excited, your device is only compatible with this update if it meets the following criteria:

  • Your device is the Takju version of the Galaxy Nexus. This is the GSM Nexus being sold in the Play Store, not the European GSM Nexus.
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T-Mobile's Samsung Galaxy S III Getting A Small OTA Update To Build T999UVLJ4

Well, you already know it's not Jelly Bean, but T-Mo is sending an OTA update to the Galaxy S III right now. It's a minor one, mostly dealing with some Touchwiz stuff you likely don't use, as well as a behind-the-scenes tweak to pinch and zoom. Woo.

Current Version - Android version 4.0.4/Software version T999UVLJ4

  • Version:
    • Android version 4.0.4/Software version T999UVLJ4
    • Approved 10/17/2012
  • Improvements:
    • Resolved Media Hub playback issues
    • Pinch & Zoom backend changes – No visible user  changes
  • Prerequisites
    • OTA and Samsung Kies update
    • T999UVLH2, T999UVLG1 or T999UVLEM
    • Device software is not rooted
    • 50% battery life
    • Data connection
    • 50 MB available memory (File size of update is 12 MB)

The 12MB update is available via OTA right now, but if you'd rather use Kies for some weird reason, you'll have to wait until tomorrow.

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Samsung Announces Jelly Bean For The U.S. Galaxy S III, Available 'In The Coming Months'

Since the JB update started rolling out to the GSIII in Europe last night, Samsung decided this would be the perfect time to let U.S. owners know that the update will be available "in the coming months." Can you guess the reason why it's going to take so much longer? Allow me to enlighten you:

The specific timing and update method will be announced by each carrier partner, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and U.S. Cellular.

Yep, it's the carriers. Still, while the timing may not be ideal, at least the update is guaranteed.

Samsung goes on to brag about the "host of new and enhanced TouchWiz features," including camera enhancements, blocking mode (which can disable calls, notifications, and alarms), easy mode (which simplifies the interface), and of course, overall usability improvements.

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