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Editorial: Is Samsung's Patent Licensing Deal With Microsoft The End Of Royalty-Free Android?

It certainly seems like it. Yesterday, Microsoft announced via blog that it had concluded negotiations with Samsung and reached a licensing deal for the same seven patents it previously licensed to HTC for Android (along with other, smaller Android manufacturers). There were rumblings about just what royalty rate Samsung is paying, but the guess is anywhere from $5 to $15 per handset (it's likely on a percentage-of-MSRP basis - so think about 1-3% per $500 MSRP phone).

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Samsung Announces Next Generation Of Mobile Processors With The 1.5GHz Dual-Core Exynos 4212

In a press release earlier today Samsung announced an update to its Exynos line of mobile processors with the release of the Exynos 4212 a 1.5 GHz dual core ARM Cortex-A9 chip. The chip is designed on Samsung's advanced 32nm low-power processes and is intended for the burgeoning smartphone and tablet market. According to Samsung's release the Exynos 4212 will deliver a full 25% increase in processing power over the previous chip and will feature an enhanced GPU capable of delivering 50% higher 3D graphics performance.

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Skype For Android Updated To v2.5 With Whitelist For 13 More Devices, Landscape Support, More. Oh Yeah, And Ads

Skype for Android, an app that gets almost as much love as it does hate, was updated to version 2.5 a few minutes ago. Because the last update unofficially opened up Skype to all 2.2+ devices, this time around Skype simply listed 13 more devices as whitelisted and approved for video chat capabilities:

  1. Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (T-Mobile)
  2. HTC SHOOTER (KDDI)
  3. Sony Ericsson Xperia Live with Walkman
  4. Sony Ericsson Xperia neo V
  5. Acer Iconia Tablet (A500)
  6. LG Optimus Black LANDSCAPE ONLY
  7. LG Optimus 3D LANDSCAPE ONLY
  8. LG Optimus 2x LANDSCAPE ONLY
  9. Motorola Photon
  10. Motorola Droid3 LANDSCAPE ONLY
  11. Motorola Bionic LANDSCAPE ONLY
  12. Motorola Xoom
  13. Motorola Atrix

Notice how the list contains 13 devices, even though the changelog says 14.

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Rogers Rolls Out LTE For Major Canadian Cities, Leaks Pricing For Device Line Up

After just over a year of envious grumbling, the Canadians have finally gotten their first taste of LTE. Rogers Wireless announced today that true 4G speeds are available to customers in specific coverage areas in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Vancouver.

While this is surely a cause for excitement for my fellow Canucks, the devices that are currently on this new network aren't. At the time of launch, the only LTE device available to consumers is the Sierra Wireless AirCard 313U, a mobile "LTE Rocket stick" for laptops.

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Samsung Mobile Promises To Tell Us "What's New From Android" At Unpacked 2011 - We Have A Pretty Good Idea What This Is About

Samsung sent out invites today for Samsung Mobile Unpacked 2011, promising to reveal "what's new with Android" at the event in San Diego on October 11th.

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Considering Eric Schmidt's indication of an October/November release for Android Ice Cream Sandwich, and the fact that the Nexus Prime (Google's flagship ICS phone) is said to be a Samsung device,  it's looking like this announcement will almost certainly be related to Android's latest iteration, and perhaps, if we're lucky, the latest Nexus device as well.

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T-Mobile Follows Verizon's Lead, Tells Court Not To Allow Apple To Ban Import Of Samsung Android Devices

Everyone's getting on the peace train, it seems. T-Mobile, in concert with Verizon's filing last week, submitted an amicus curiae ("friend of the court") brief to the Federal Court for the Northern District of California this morning in regard to the ongoing patent and trademark suit between Samsung and Apple. Its contents? Basically the same thing Verizon's said - that denying Americans their 4G Samsung devices just for some silly little patent infringement will hurt 4G deployment in the US and decrease access to high-speed mobile broadband.

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Samsung Releases Kernel Source Code For The Galaxy Tab 8.9 Wi-Fi And LTE Variants

Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Tab 8.9 yesterday, and today, the kernel source has been released. Considering we already know what the Tegra 2 is capable of and how much it can be overclocked while remaining completely stable, I expect to see 1.4GHz kernels pop up before the device is even released.

The source is out for both the Wi-Fi and LTE variants, so if you're into tinkerin', hit the respective links below to download.

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Poll: Does The Samsung Galaxy Player Really Have A Place In The US?

When I saw the announcement by Samsung that they were bringing the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.0 and 5.0 portable media players to the US, I paused, and thought "Uh, why?" We have yet to come up with an answer.

That's to say, we're not sure what Samsung is thinking bringing a PMP (portable media player) product line into the United States, where the iPod Touch dominates that already-dwindling market to a laughable extent.

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New Nexus S 2.3.6 OTA Update Rolling Out (GRK39F), Reportedly Fixes Tethering - Here Is How To Install It Manually

A few weeks ago, a GSM Nexus S update 2.3.6 (GRK39C) with voice search fixes started rolling out, but it was immediately discovered to break Wi-Fi and USB tethering. After many complaints, Google pulled the OTA, and it seems like they've spent the last couple of weeks making sure everything works as expected.

A new update surfaced tonight, also numbered 2.3.6, but this time bearing build GRK39F. While there is no official changelog, based on the fact that an update with the same exact build hit the Nexus One a few days ago and didn't break tethering, I think it's safe to say it fixes at least that issue (Update: thanks to our buddy Omar for an additional confirmation of working tethering).

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Samsung Mobile Unveils Galaxy Tab 8.9, Galaxy Player 5.0 and 4.0 - All Slated For October Release

It seems that T-Mobile isn't the only one with a handful of big announcements today.  Samsung has just unveiled a selection of brand new devices to give us even more to look forward to in the coming months.

Samsung has finally announced the Galaxy Tab 8.9, the slightly smaller counterpart to the 10.1. It's packing a 1GHz Tegra 2 dual-core processor, 1280x800 TFT display, a 6100mAh battery, and other specs made familiar to us by the Tab 10.1 (including Samsung's Touchwiz UX overlay).

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