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Samsung

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Galaxy Note7 devices in the UK will be updated to limit battery capacity to 30% starting December 15th

Samsung's been trying very hard to get all units of the Galaxy Note7 returned to them, but some owners are having trouble letting go of their beloved stylus-equipped phablets. To force owners into giving them back, Samsung will be updating the Note7 to be severely crippled in Canada and literally unusable in the US. Now, Samsung is taking similar measures with UK Note7 units.

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[Deal Alert] Grab a Samsung Gear Fit2 from Amazon for $129.99 ($50 off)

In the market for a fitness tracker with a touchscreen? If you don't particularly fancy the frequently-discounted Moto 360 Sport, perhaps the Gear Fit2 and its less smartwatch-inspired design is more up your alley. Now's a great time to buy, as Amazon is currently taking $50 off the Fit2's $179.99 MSRP, making it $129.99.

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Verizon won't send Samsung's charge-blocking Note 7 update, citing emergency contact concerns

Here's an interesting wrinkle in the rapidly-closing saga of the Galaxy Note 7. Yesterday Samsung announced that it would send a software over-the-air update to the few remaining phones in the US, preventing the devices from taking a new electricity charge, and hopefully stopping any more battery-based fires. It's far from the first measure the company has taken to further encourage owners of the defective phones to accept the voluntary recall, but it might be the last. American wireless carrier Verizon, for reasons of its own, isn't participating in the latest software update.

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Upcoming Galaxy Note7 software update in the USA will completely stop the device from charging

In the ongoing Galaxy Note7 saga, today's chapter includes another drastic measure taken by Samsung in the USA to encourage reluctant owners of the phone to pretty please, come on, it's time already, stop using their device and return it. So after issuing an OTA in the US that limits the battery capacity to 60% in November, Samsung has scheduled another update that will completely prevent the phone from charging.

The OTA, which is scheduled for December 19, will take about 30 days to be distributed to all remaining devices, and will stop the Note7 from ever charging again. So it can only be used for as long as its current battery capacity lasts you, after which it's essentially a useless brick.

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TWRP is now out for the OnePlus 3T, ZTE Axon 7, some BQ devices, and more

For those of us who love to mess around with our Android devices' software, custom recovery is essential. TWRP is, without a doubt, the most popular custom recovery out there, likely due to its easy-to-use interface and availability on a wide variety of devices. Now, it's available for several more devices, including the OnePlus 3T, ZTE Axon 7, a few BQ smartphones, and more.

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Report says Samsung will ditch the physical home button for the Galaxy S8

We're starting to hear a few Galaxy S8 rumors well ahead of the usual Mobile World Congress-ish reveal for Samsung's flagship series (usually around late February or March). That may or may not have something to do with the phenomenal failure of the Galaxy Note 7, after which Samsung must be scrambling to shift potential customers' attention elsewhere. So we're treated with two somewhat credible pieces of Galaxy S8 info in a single week: one that Samsung will drop the headphone jack, and another that the company will finally release its deathgrip on physical home buttons.

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CyanogenMod 14.1 nightlies come to the Galaxy S III, Moto X 2014, some Oppo phones, and more

It's no secret why CyanogenMod is the most popular custom ROM out there; not only does it support a metric crapload of Android devices, but it also keeps them going far past their primes. The latest devices to get support for CM14.1 (Android 7.1 Nougat) nightlies include two variants of the Galaxy S III, the second-generation Moto X, a few Oppo devices, two versions of the HTC One Max, two Xiaomi phones, and more.

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Android Police Readers' Choice Award 2016: Cast your vote for the best smartphone of the year

What's your pick for best smartphone of 2016? For the first time (well, that I can remember), we're asking you to cast your vote for the phone you think stole the show this year. I've assembled a list of 15 devices that I think stood out in one way or another in 2016, so please note that the list does not purport to be exhaustive - this is, gently, curated.

With that in mind, consider your vote carefully. The tallying will continue through December 16th at 11:59PM PST, at which point the poll will close. We will announce the winner in a separate post the following week, declaring that phone the recipient of the Android Police Readers' Choice Award for Best Smartphone of 2016.

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Samsung's Galaxy S7 edge will be available in a new Black Pearl color with 128GB of storage on December 9th

Samsung is no stranger to coming up with unique colors for its smartphones - the S III came in Pebble Blue, the S6 edge debuted with Emerald Green, the Note5 and S6 edge+ launched with Silver Titanium, and the Note7 (RIP) brought us Coral Blue. Samsung has been steadily adding striking colors like Coral Blue and Pink Gold to the S7 edge, and the latest of these is Black Pearl. It's... black. Very black.

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Google, Samsung, HTC, Oculus, Sony, and Acer form the Global Virtual Reality Association, the first VR special interest group

Perhaps you haven't noticed yet, but virtual reality is kind of a big deal. Samsung has holiday-themed ads running on primetime TV and sports, the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift are breaking new ground in a stale gaming industry, and even Google is pushing its new Daydream platform hard. The powers that be think there's money to be made, and that means they're willing to work together (at least to some degree) in pursuit of it. Hence the creation of the Global Virtual Reality Association, announced by Samsung on its corporate blog.

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