Mobile Magazine » Andrew Grush Gadgets, Smartphones, Android Tablets, iPhone, iPad and all the latest tech you'd expect. Fri, 21 Feb 2014 10:36:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Alleged Nexus 5 Screenshot and Log File Surfaces, Gives Us A Closer Look At Nexus 5 Specs Mon, 30 Sep 2013 16:52:51 +0000 Andrew Grush nexus5-screen

Loved the Nexus 4, but wished that the device had a better camera? If you had your hopes set for a 13MP OIS camera in the Nexus 5 (like in the LG G2 it is based on), you might want to sit down – luckily, you probably already are.

What you see in the image above is an alleged screenshot of the Nexus 5 running Android 4.4 KitKat. As you can see, the screenshot shows off a new notification bar with gray icons. That’s not the big news here, though. The screenshot actually came from a 10MB log file that upon further examination by Android World gives us a closer look at what may be the Nexus 5′s specs.

First, the info indicates the Nexus 5 will contain an 8MP camera – not a 13MP OIS cam. Of course, there is more to a camera than just megapixels, so it could still turn out to be better than the one equipped by the Nexus 4.

Other specs dug up by the log file include:

  • a 5-inch full HD display with 442ppi
  • A 2.3GHz Snapdrgon 800 CPU
  • 2GB RAM
  • 1.2MP front cam
  • 16GB storage
  • 2,300 mAh battery with wireless charging
  • Sensors: accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity, light, barometer, orientation, magnetometer

Camera aside, this is still shaping up to be a pretty impressive handset. As for price, we have no clue but we hold out hope that the Nexus 5 could achieve similar pricing to the Nexus 4 ($300 for base, $350 for bigger storage model).

What do you think, if the Nexus 5 is priced right – are you happy with these specs or not?

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iOS 7 is Apparently Making Some Folks Motion Sick Fri, 27 Sep 2013 15:47:48 +0000 Andrew Grush 130926-iphone

Does Apple’s new interface make you absolutely sick – literally? You may not be alone. Apparently the new parallax wallpapers and other visual tricks in OS 7 are making some folks “sea sick”.

It’s worth mentioning this isn’t a common problem, but if you are one of the few folks that are feeling sick to the stomach after using iOS 7 – there’s no easy way to fix the problem. While you can change the wallpaper, other visual affects can’t be turned off.

That said, we imagine that Apple will end up introducing some kind of changes in the Accessibility settings to help those that get motion sickness from the new iOS 7 changes. In the meantime, if you’ve yet to upgrade to iOS 7 but are known for having motion sickness trouble, you might want to wait off on downloading this one.

It’s too bad too, as iOS 7 is an impressive upgrade with quite a few excellent new features.

For those that already have iOS 7, are you having any motion sickness issues? Let us know in the comments below!

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Beats Audio Will Buy Back HTC’s 25% Share for $265 Million Fri, 27 Sep 2013 13:33:26 +0000 Andrew Grush beats-audio

It’s been a long time coming, but HTC and Beats Electronics are officially separating. It seems that Beats has already taken on a new partner in the form of Carlyle Group, which is said to be investing $500 million into Beat’s expansion efforts.

What about HTC’s remaining 25% stake in the company? Beats has agreed to buy back the stake for $265 million.

Factoring in the $150 million that Beats already paid HTC last year, that comes to Beats paying $415 million for something HTC originally bought for $300. That might sound like a good deal, but considering how much Beat’s value has grown – it’s not.

Now that the partnership is ending, Beats is free to continue down the path of pushing its Beats audio technology into other products including in-car dashes, HP computers and – of course- its premium headphone line. For HTC, it means a pretty hefty cash infusion that can help the company can (hopefully) use to further facilitate growth and recovery after years of struggle.

So does this mean that we will never see an HTC phone with the Beats Audio logo again? Not necessarily. HTC claims it will continue to partner with Beats “as future opportunities arise”.

What do you think of this announcement? Share your thoughts below.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Coming to the United States on October 10th Thu, 26 Sep 2013 18:46:23 +0000 Andrew Grush galaxy-note-10-1-2014

Without a doubt, the most popular 10-inch tablet in the world is still the iPad. That said, not everyone likes Apple products. Some folks are looking for legacy desktop app support and end up with Windows tablets, others want the power and flexibility of Android.

If you consider yourself a member of that third group, listen up! In the world of Android tablets, the 10-inch market is still very much dominated by Samsung – and that includes the Nexus 10.

If you are looking to pick up the latest Samsung 10-incher, you’ll be happy to know that Sammy has announced that the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition will go up for pre-order from select retailers starting tomorrow, with plans to ship by October 10th.

What kind of meat does the refreshed Note 10.1 bring to the table? The new Samsung tablet is powered by a 1.9GHz Exynos 5 CPU and 3GB RAM – or a Snapdragon 800 CPU for the LTE model. Other specs include 64GB of storage, microSD, 8MP rear cam, 2MP front cam, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, S-Pen, an 8,220 mAh battery and Android 4.3 Jelly Bean with Touchwiz.

Okay, so we know we can pre-order it and get it by the 10th of October, but how much will it cost? The 16GB model will set you back $549.99, and the 32GB model will cost $599.99. No pricing or release details on the LTE variant just yet.

So how about it, anyone thinking about picking this one up, or is there another tablet that has your caught your eye instead?

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Kindle Fire HDX and Refreshed HD Model Announced Wed, 25 Sep 2013 15:53:13 +0000 Andrew Grush kindle-fire-series

As expected, new Kindle Fire tablets are incoming! Today Amazon took the veil of its new Fire HDX line, which comes in both an 8.9-inch and 7-inch variant. There’s also a newly refreshed 7-inch Kindle Fire HD.

Let’s start with the new HDX line.

Both HDX tablets are rocking 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 CPUs, 2GB of RAM, and 16/32/64GB storage options. The tablets also offer a front-facing HD camera, though only the 8.9-inch model has an 8MP rear cam. The 7 and 8.9-inch HDX tablets will have a 3G/4G option as well.

In other words, the only major difference here is in the display size and resolution. The 8.9-inch HDX packs a 2560 x 1600 resolution with 339 ppi. The 7-inch model is 1920 x 1200 with a 323 ppi. Both are very impressive.

What about the refreshed Kindle Fire HD? This 7-inch model has a dual-core 1.5GHz CPU, 8/16GB storage options and no cameras. It does still have a fairly decent (though not nearly as impressive) resolution of 1280 x 800 with 216 ppi.

New Kindle Fire Software Features

While releasing new hardware is a big deal, the software side is equally important. As you probably already know, Kindle Fire devices run on an Android fork known as “Fire OS”. With Fire OS 3.0, there are apparently hundreds of new enhancements, including a new task switcher and the support for second-screen features with the HDX series.

Probably the most significant software feature is the May Day button, though.

Found under quick settings, pressing this button launches Amazon tech support, which includes one-way video chat that can help give you the assistance you need. The Amazon tech support professional can even change settings for you, draw on your screen and more.

Even better, the service is absolutely free and is available 24-7, 365 days a year.

Considering the Kindle line generally attracts a less techy crowd (though not always true), this is a pretty big deal.

When are they coming?

All models are now available for pre-order. The Kindle Fire HD will start at just $139, and ships October 2nd. The HDX 7-inch 16GB model is $229, and will ship October 18th. The 4G model of the HDX 7-inch will set you back $329, and ships November 14th.

As for the bigger, 8.9-inch HDX? It will set you back at least $379 (16GB model), and will also ship on the 14th of November. The $479 LTE model of the device will ship in mid-December.

So what do you think, planning on picking up any of these new Kindle Fire devices? If so, which one do you have your eye on?

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Fake Ad Claims iOS 7 Makes Your iPhone Waterproof – Clearly It Doesn’t Tue, 24 Sep 2013 19:10:58 +0000 Andrew Grush ios-7-waterproof-fake

Apple iOS 7 is a pretty impressive upgrade from past versions of Apple’s mobile OS. It has a redesigned look, plenty of new features and even turns your phone waterproof – except it doesn’t. A fake iPhone ad is going around the web, extolling the virtues of iOS 7’s new (and fake) waterproof feature. The ad has been passed around several social media sites, and elsewhere.

We have to admit the styling is very Apple-esque, and very deceiving if you are the less-than-tech-savvy type. The ad explains that iOS 7 has the ability to shut off your phone’s power supply and other related components to prevent any damage to your iPhone in the event of an accidental situation where you device lands in water. The ad also claims iOS 7 allows an iPhone to detect sudden change in “thermodistribution”.

Even if the iPhone did magically shut off and protect components (which it doesn’t), that wouldn’t make the phone or its components waterproof. At best it would protect your flash memory or something (even that seems unlikely) – but would destroy the rest of your phone.

Of course, no one would ever believe or fall for this fake ad – right? Right?…. Wrong.

Twitter has already seen several tweets regarding broken phones and the like, due to daring iPhone owners’ attempts to test out this fake feature. That said, it’s possible the tweets themselves are also fakes, meant for humor.

Either way, we wouldn’t be surprised if at least one person on the web legitimately believed this claim, even if they didn’t try it out.

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New York Introducing “Text Stops” in Effort to Reduce Texting-Related Car Accidents Tue, 24 Sep 2013 16:38:17 +0000 Andrew Grush text-can-wait

Texting while driving is not only extremely dangerous, but it is a trend that is increasing rapidly. According to Texting and Driving Safety, 23% of automobile accidents in the United States are now attributed to cellphones. That’s 1.3 million crashes!

With that in mind, New York is hoping to buck this negative trend by reaching out to texting drivers and making it clear that not only can it wait – but that they have a safe place for texting nearby. New York will start introducing signs for so-called “Texting Zones” immediately, adding a total of 298 signs along major highways across the entire state.

Wondering how much this initiative will cost the state? Not much beyond the cost of the signs, as these “texting zones” are merely existing truck stops, rest stops and special parking areas. Still, the idea is that by clearly mentioning these zones are only miles away and are ‘safe to text’, New York hopes to save some lives and reduce texting-related auto accidents.

While this actually work? Maybe it’s the pessimist in me, but I doubt it. Folks that text and drive likely feel their messages are important – and also probably won’t be willing to wait a few miles to check them out. Hopefully I’m wrong though, and I still applaud New York for at least trying something different in order to hopefully better tackle the texting-and-driving problem.

What do you think, are these signs a good idea? Will they make any difference at all?

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Ready to Leave the Milky Way? All You Need to Do is Travel 1.2 Million MPH Tue, 24 Sep 2013 13:41:19 +0000 Andrew Grush milkyway

Sick of the Milky Way Galaxy? Ready to get the heck out of dodge? No problem, all you need is a way to travel at a speed of 1.2 million mph, and BOOM – you’re outta here!

Crazy as it sounds, that’s the new theory – at least according to a team of researchers from the Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics in Potsdam, Germany. Using a Radial Velocity Experiment survey, they analyzed the motion of 90 high-velocity stars and were able to essentially calculate the speed at which objects can exit the Milky Way.

So is it possible for a human craft to eventually generate enough speed and power to leave the Milky Way? Maybe. Your spaceship would have to hit a staggering 1.2 million miles per hour, or .2 percent of the speed of light to escape our Galaxy’s gravitational pull, though.

Astronomer Joss Bland-Hawthorn puts the idea of a spacecraft leaving the Milky Way like this:

“I know it’s a crazy idea, but if you had lots of matter and lots of antimatter, you could power a spaceship out of the galaxy.”

Of course, today’s spacecraft can not even come close to this goal. But there’s always a tomorrow, and our technological prowess continues to grow with every passing year.

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Blackberry Messenger for Android and iOS: Delayed Tue, 24 Sep 2013 00:41:10 +0000 Andrew Grush bbm

Things haven’t exactly been easy for Blackberry recently. Not only has the company ran into serious fiscal issues resulting in huge layoffs, but they haven’t exactly been quick about getting their much hyped iOS/Android version of Blackberry BBM out to customers either. While the first situation might be getting a little better thanks to a potential buyout, the second situation isn’t changing anytime soon.

Blackberry has now confirmed that BBM for Android and iOS is being delayed. The reason for the delay is apparently that, over the weekend, 1 million people downloaded a leaked version of BBM. Why was this a problem? The biggest issue is that the leaked app was an older version and ended up overloading the company’s servers.

Right now Blackberry is working to block users of the older version of the app, and once it gets the mess cleaned up, Blackberry will release the official app for iOS and Android. Even if the app arrives in the next few weeks, it is still overdue from the company’s originally promised “summer release” timeframe. Better late than never, we suppose.

What do you think, are you still interested in BBM for Android/iOS? Conversely, has the long wait caused you to lose interest?

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Microsoft Surface 2 and Pro 2 Now Official Tue, 24 Sep 2013 00:08:46 +0000 Andrew Grush surface-2

As expected, Microsoft has officially unveiled its next-gen Surface tablets at a special event in New York earlier today. Dubbed the Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2, the Windows 8.1 and 8.1 RT-based tablets are considerable updates over their originals.

Let’s jump in and take a quick look:

Microsoft Surface 2

Let’s start with the Surface 2 (pictured above). It seems that Microsoft has decided to drop the “RT” from the device branding here, though this model is still based on an ARM processor, and therefore lacks Windows legacy support.

So what kind of specs are we talking about here? This time around the Surface comes with a full 1080p display and an Nvidia Tegra 4 CPU. There’s also a 5MP back cam, 3.5MP front cam, USB 3.0 and Microsoft Office 2013 with Outlook RT. The Surface RT also has a battery life rated for about 10 hours of video playback and comes in either a 32 or 64GB model.

Pre-orders for the tablet begin on September 24th, and pricing starts at $449, or $549 for the 64GB model. The actual shipping date for the Surface 2 is still a ways off though, with an October 22nd launch in over 22 markets, including the US, Hong Kong, France, Germany, Italy, the UK and Canada.


Surface Pro 2

Next up we have the Surface 2 Pro, which features a massively upgraded Intel Haswell Core i5 CPU, that offers a 20% speed improvements, as well as a 50% graphics bump. The Surface Pro again offers a ClearType HD display, alongside a battery that lasts 75% longer than the original model. The Surface Pro 2 also features 4 or 8GB RAM, and either 256 or 512GB storage.

As for the price, the Surface Pro 2 starts at $899 for the base model, though pricing can become much higher depending on chosen storage size and RAM.

Summing it up…

Both models might seem similar to the originals at first glance, but they are certainly major upgrades from a spec point of view. The addition of Windows 8.1 and 8.1 RT should also make a pretty big difference this time around.

What do you think of the new Surface tablets, interested in them or not?

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