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.
Not content to simply blur the line between conventional smartphones and tablets like manufacturers around the world are already doing, HP has decided to completely erase any distinction between the two. This morning the company announced that its first smartphones since the ill-fated HP Pre 3 in 2011 won't be "phones" at all, but rather "voice tablets," competing with low-cost, big-screen models like the Galaxy Mega. Re/code reports that the two inaugural Android devices, the Slate 6 and Slate 7, will be introduced in India next month.
The interesting Notion Ink Adam gained quite a lot of notoriety (if not actual fans) in its initial version. The company's second tablet has been anticipated for almost two full years, and it looks like it's finally on sale. But for the moment you'll only be able to get your hands on it in India: the price is in Rupees, and the order page is only accepting Indian addresses. If you've got room in Link's wallet, the Wi-Fi version is RS16,499 (about $265), and the 3G version is RS18,999 ($305).
A few days ago we reported on a less-than-ideal situation over in India, where users who won Nexus 7s in Google's/Nestle's KitKat contest were receiving the 2012 model instead of the "new Nexus 7" as advertised. Naturally, users were outraged and insulted by this gesture and spoke out against both companies. Today, Nestle has taken to its KitKat India Facebook page to let users know that it plans on righting this wrong.
ZTE is an up-and-comer in the smartphone world, one of about a half-dozen Chinese manufacturers that's slowly increasing its presence on the world stage. The company has released some impressive hardware, even if it never seems to get out of Asia. The ZTE Grand X Quad Lite was just announced for the Indian market. But apparently the sub-continental arm of ZTE lost their password to the company FTP.
Look closely at the sole press shot up there, and you'll see the unmistakable watermark of @evleaks, the Twitter tipster who seems to have scooped just about every major Android phone in the last few months.
We've all played the "Wait, who is that guy again?" or "What song is that?" while watching a movie. Now, with the latest update to the Play Movies app, if you want to get the answer to that question, all you have to do is press pause. Info cards will then pop up with face recognition of actors on screen, what other movies they're in, and what music you're hearing.
The feature only works on "supported movies" and it's a little unclear which ones those are (there doesn't seem to be any icon or indicator that shows whether any given movie in your library can show cards).
Speaking two (or more) languages is cool. Typing in two or more character sets is decidedly less cool. Bilingual speakers who know, say, English and Spanish can have an easy enough time typing since they share a (mostly) common Latin alphabet. However, English/Hindi speakers may have a harder time bouncing between scripts because they use entirely different character sets. Enter Google.
In addition to providing a regular Hindi keyboard (below, right) which takes up multiple pages of letters, this app also offers a transliteration keyboard.
Google gets a lot of abuse for not making various parts of its Play Store available in most countries. It's not necessarily their fault, especially when it comes to books, movies, and music - international content contracts are like trying to trade horses on a quantum level. But a major part of the globe gets more access tonight, as Play Store Books become available to India's population of 1.2 billion. Get your literature on, folks.
We've heard plenty of rumors, and at this point, we have no reason to doubt that there will be an LG Nexus phone appearing at Google's Android event on October 29th. Now, courtesy of LG's head of Mobile Product Planning at an Optimus Vu launch event in New Delhi, we have an idea of when the phone might roll out. If Indian market availability is any indication, that is. Speaking to IBN Live (an Indian news organization of which CNN owns a 26% share), the exec had this to say:
"Google will unveil the LG Nexus on October 29 and the phone will be available in the Indian markets by the end of November."
The former part of the quote we already knew of course, though at least this is some confirmation from the horse's mouth.
Earlier today, Google India uploaded a video to YouTube demoing a long-awaited feature for the Indian market: voice navigation in Maps. However, mere minutes after the video went live, Google made it private - but not before some users caught a glimpse of what was to come.
It's still unknown when Google will make the service available to the public, but considering a video has already been uploaded, we won't be surprised to see it officially announced within the next day or two.