Diversify and fill all niches. Samsung seems to have learned its basic sciences, because they're applying a naturalist approach to the tablet market: a ton of models for consumers, new specialized versions for professionals, and now a tablet made just for the lucrative education market. Today Samsung announced a new Galaxy Tab especially for K-12 schools. It's only new in a technical sense - the hardware is clearly a black 10-inch Galaxy Tab 3.
If Samsung has not yet scared you away with its recent indiscretions, the new NotePRO 12.2 can be pre-ordered in the UK. You won't even have to wait very long for this stylus-friendly monster to ship. Samsung expects the NotePro (Samsung usually leaves the screen size off) to hop a truck to your home on February 4th.
The NotePro is very similar to the previously announced 2014 version of the Note 10.1, except for the size, of course.
An Android 4.4 update has been hitting Galaxy Note 3s all over the world, and while some people who have yet to receive it may feel a bit envious, there are benefits to waiting. Some users have reported being unable to use third-party flip covers that trigger a special lockscreen when closed. Following the upgrade to KitKat, only Samsung's official products, which contain a special identification chip, would work. Now Ars Technica has received a statement from Samsung acknowledging the issue as a "bug" and announcing a future OTA update that will return functionality to third-party accessories.
Samsung has been gradually rolling out the KitKat software update for international models of the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3 over the last couple of weeks. But surprisingly, it looks like at least one American carrier is eager to get Android 4.4 on the latest Samsung flagships as well. Noted XDA Developers forum member Designgears has posted official leaked builds of KitKat for AT&T's variants of the Galaxy S4 and Galaxy Note 3 - you can download and flash them right now.
Through its official global blog, Samsung today announced a new patent licensing deal reached with Google, whereby both companies will have access to each other's existing patents and those filed over the next ten years, covering "a broad range of technologies and business areas."
The cross-licensing agreement is described by Google's Deputy General Counsel for Patents, Allen Lo, as one that will help the two giants "reduce the potential for litigation, and focus instead on innovation." Indeed that has been a popular refrain as both Google and Samsung have historically faced (and continue to face) patent challenges from various other companies on various grounds.
Samsung is slowly but surely sending its Android 4.4.2 update out to more and more regions and variants of the Galaxy Note 3. This morning SamMobile reports that both the LTE Snapdragon (SM-N9005) and the 3G Exynos (SM-N900) versions of the Note 3 are being updated over-the-air on networks in India, South Korea, and Switzerland. As usual, the rollout is staged, but users in these countries can try a manual update check via the Settings menu.
We heard rumors a number of months ago that Samsung was mulling a plan to begin restricting the functionality of uncertified accessories like cases and chargers on its devices. It seems that the company has started doing just that with the Android 4.4.2 update for the Note 3. Users who have updated are reporting that third-party S-View cases, like the one sold by Spigen, are no longer working.
Samsung includes a small identification chip in the official S-View case that allows it to work properly with the phone.
The Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 currently has a starting price of $549.99 at most retailers, making it a relatively pricey tablet. Yet with its 2560x1600 10-inch display, 3GB of RAM, and quirky S Pen functionality, there's a lot to like here. So if you have your heart set on this device, and you aren't above picking up a refurbished model, then you can currently get one on Groupon for just $389.99.
The Galaxy Note 3 is one of the more desirable high-end phones on the market at the moment, especially if you like your mobile hardware big and pleathery. If you also like your service from Sprint, then Amazon's wireless store has a heck of a deal for new customers: a Galaxy Note 3 for $112.49 on a subsidized plan. That's more than $200 off the retail price. Black and white models are available, and shipping is free with Amazon Prime.
Samsung tends to introduce phones with two or three color options, then slowly branch out to all parts of the visible spectrum in time. It's time for the Note 3 to start shifting colors, and you can experience it on Verizon Wireless. The new Rose Gold version of the Note 3 is coming to Big Red as an exclusive device.
The Rose Gold color scheme is basically a white Note 3 with gold trim – it actually looks a bit like the gold iPhone.