Yesterday saw the release of Android 6.0's factory images and OTA updates for the Nexus family. One other group of devices that are supposed to get the update just as quickly (and way before all the OEM smartphones) is Android One phones. And it looks like Google is making good on its promise to update these One devices timely and efficiently.
You can't gift people apps, books, or albums from the Play Store―but with Google Play gift cards, you can effectively do the same thing. But first, there's the little technicality of where you live. Depending on which country you call home, those little plastic rectangles aren't yet available.
Google announced back in June that gift cards were on their way to India. Now it appears to be fulfilling that promise.
Lenovo, one of the world's largest electronics manufacturers and the proud owner of the Motorola brand, is expanding once again. The company announced that it would begin manufacturing both Lenovo and Motorola phones in a new factory in Chennai, India, starting with the low-price Moto E and Lenovo K3 Note models. According to the press release, 1500 employees have been hired across manufacturing, quality assurance, testing, and other departments.
The change is notable because in the last decade or so most smartphones have been manufactured almost exclusively in China, with a few exceptions for nearby regional companies (like Samsung in South Korea and Asus in Taiwan...
Google has announced that Google News will soon be available in seven new languages - Romanian, Bahasa Indonesia, Bengali, Bulgarian, Lithuanian, and Thai.
The new languages will be available in "the next few days" according to Google. Google claims this will add a potential audience of over 260 million new readers to news, with the native language versions available on the web or the Android and iOS mobile apps.
The Google News & Weather app received a huge version 2.0 release last summer after languishing as a stock Android widget for years, and its popularity has boomed in the meantime, racking up between 100 million and 500 million installs on the Play Store.
Android One is an exciting program. Inexpensive devices with standard hardware running stock Android, with lightning-fast updates straight from Google - what's not to like? But according to a report this weekend, Android One hasn't been as successful in its premiere market as Google would have liked. The Financial Times, in an interview with Google's managing director for India and Southwest Asia, reports that big changes are coming to the series. First up: even cheaper Android-powered phones.
When One launched in India last year, the first set of phones were sold at around the 5000 Rupee mark - somewhere in the $80 range in USD.
India is one of Google and Android's biggest markets both in terms of device sales and Play Store reach, but the country's purchasing power is quite different from the US or Europe's, especially if you simply convert a dollar to rupees (that's approx. Rs. 64).
Previously, the minimum price for apps and in-app purchases on the Play Store in India was Rs. 50 ($0.78), which was quite in-line with the $0.99 minimum in the USA, but still rather expensive for Indian customers. Now it has been dropped to a more affordable Rs. 10 (approx $0.156), the same as Apple's recent price drop for purchases on the Indian App Store.
India is where the Android One initiative got off the ground, and now Google has announced another handset available in the country. The phone is called the Lava Pixel V1.
Yeah, you can't tell much from the video, adorable as it is. Here's the lowdown. The Pixel V1 is a high-end device by Android One standards. It sports a 5.5-inch 720p display and comes with 2GB of RAM. As for the brains, you're looking at a 1.3 GHz Quad Core processor with an ARM Mali 400 MP2 GPU.
The phone offers a comfortable 32GB of built-in storage space and supplements that with a microSD card slot, just in case.
After launching its first phone in India at the end of last year, Micromax subsidiary Yu is now ready to follow up with the ever-so-slightly upgraded and pricier Yu Yureka Plus. Like last time, this handset ships running the latest version of Cyanogen OS.
What's new? Not much. The phone still comes with a Snapgragon 615 processor and 2GB of RAM. The excitement comes from the higher-resolution 1080p display, up from the previous model's 720p. With the screen still 5.5 inches in size, it amounts to a noticeably high pixel density. Though that may be less of a thrill when you consider that the battery capacity remains the same at 2500mAh.
The Moto Maker customization tool, first introduced with the original Moto X and later expanded to the second-gen model and (technically) the Moto 360, has been one of the company's more unique offerings. It's been slowly expanding since its launch in 2013, from the US to the UK, Germany, France, and China. Next up on the schedule is probably India, presumably starting with the second generation Moto X.
Motorola's Indian Twitter account has been hinting at the Moto Maker launch with all the subtlety of a thrown brick.