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Posts Tagged ‘cellphone’

Microsoft employees ‘sign off’ on Windows Phone 8 RTM

September 20th, 2012

Microsoft employees 'sign off' on Windows Phone 8 RTM

Windows Phone 8 may not have a firm release date, but reports are flooding in that it’s just been released to manufacturers (RTM) so they can work on their side of the equation: hardware production. According to LiveSino, pictures posted to Chinese social network Sina Weibo show members of the Windows Phone team signing a banner marking the milestone. In particular, Terry Myerson, Corporate Vice President of the Windows Phone Division, was caught penning his name alongside others. ZDNet’s own sources corroborate that Ballmer and Co. have deemed the operating system fit to ship. With manufacturers seemingly taken care of, developers will be able to get their mitts on the WP8 software development kit in roughly two weeks.

SOURCE via Live Sino

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Apple updates nearly every app for iOS 6, sneaks in key GarageBand, iPhoto and Podcasts updates

September 20th, 2012

Apple updates nearly every app for iOS 6, sneaks in key GarageBand, iPhoto and Podcasts updates

If you didn’t already know that iOS 6 was out in the wild, Apple just delivered a torrent of mobile app updates to make it perfectly clear. Virtually every app that isn’t preloaded now has explicit iOS 6 support to keep it running smoothly, and some of the upgrades are thankfully more than just skin-deep compatibility tweaks. Among the highlights are Podcasts’ new subscription list syncing through iCloud, ringtone creation with GarageBand and iPhoto support for 36.5-megapixel image editing on the latest devices — you know, for that moment you need to tweak Nikon D800 photos on an iPhone 5. We’re including direct links to a few of the juicier updates, but we’d recommend checking AppleInsider’s comprehensive list to see everything that you’re missing.

SOURCE via AppleInsider

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HTC shows design work for Windows Phone 8X and 8S, strips them bare

September 20th, 2012

HTC shows design work for Windows Phone 8X and 8S, strips them bare

HTC and Microsoft have been cautious about what they’ll let us see of the software on the Windows Phone 8X and its 8S counterpart. Apparently, they don’t have any such compunction about leaving the phones’ naked components hanging in the breeze. Along with outlining the essentialist, Metro-inspired philosophy behind the Windows Phone 8 devices’ design, HTC’s new behind-the-scenes video (after the break) shows the internals without that extra-colorful shell getting in the way. The exposé is more about the sheer demand for customized hardware to match those distinctive enclosures than anything too scandalous — that tapered shape requires some finessing on the inside, we’re told. Whatever you think of HTC’s guided tour, the company has at least learned its lesson and decided against including any unexpected prototypes this time around.

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Google buys Snapseed developer Nik Software, raises the eyebrows of Instagram shutterbugs

September 18th, 2012

Google buys Snapseed developer Nik Software, raises the eyebrows of Instagram shutterbugs

Google makes a lot of acquisitions, some of them more important than others. Its latest purchase might skew towards the grander side, as it just bought imaging app developer Nik Software. While the company is known for pro photography apps like Capture NX and its Efex Pro series, the real prize might be Snapseed, Nik’s simpler image tool for desktop and iOS users. Both Nik and Google’s Senior Engineering VP Vic Gundotra are silent on the exact plans, but it doesn’t take much to imagine a parallel between Facebook’s buyout of Instagram and what Google is doing here: there’s no direct, Google-run equivalent to Instagram’s social photo service in Android or for Google+ users, and Nik’s technology might bridge the gap. Whether or not Googlegram becomes a reality, the deal is likely to create waves among photographers of all kinds — including those who’ve never bought a dedicated camera.

SOURCE via Vic Gundotra (Google+)

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Intel wraps up Jelly Bean port for Atom smartphones, can’t say when devices get it

September 14th, 2012

Intel wraps up Jelly Bean port for Atom smartphones, can't say when devices get it

Intel was fast to promise a port of Jelly Bean to Atom-based smartphones. We were left in the dark as to when that port would be ready, but mobile group general manager Mike Bell has put that to rest for PCWorld with news that the Medfield-native Android 4.1 build is both complete and running on Intel workers’ devices — including his. Before dreaming of Google Now searches on an Orange San Diego, though, we’d warn that the usual delays apply. Bell notes that phone makers and the carriers still need go through the lengthy process of signing off on any upgrades. Existing owners will no doubt find it frustrating to be so close and yet so far, although the limbo at least proves that Intel-based hardware isn’t being held back relative to its competition; ARM-running phone manufacturers are in the same boat.

SOURCE via PC World

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Insiders claim Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer has left Apple

September 12th, 2012

Insiders claim Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer has left Apple

It’s not uncommon for executives of smaller companies to jump ship within a few years of the business selling to a larger firm, whether it’s out of entrepreneurial restlessness or unhappiness with the corporate status quo. We don’t know which of the two (if any) is a factor with Siri co-founder Adam Cheyer, but tipsters for AllThingsD and Bloomberg still say that he left Apple in June to “pursue other projects.” The reported departure follows that of Dag Kittlaus, who quit Apple a year earlier, and should leave the Siri team without the brunt of its early leadership two years after Apple bought the company. Although the impact is uncertain, this doesn’t necessarily mean Apple’s version of Siri is at risk: along with holding on to any remaining Siri staff, Cupertino will have had a long time to familiarize itself with the code. We’d also take it all with a grain of salt. Apple has declined to comment, and Cheyer’s LinkedIn profile still shows him as an Apple employee. Whatever’s the truth, the rumor’s sources don’t have the best timing.

SOURCE via Bloomberg

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JBL freshens its portable speakers with Micro II, Bluetooth-toting Flip and Micro Wireless

September 12th, 2012

JBL freshens its portable speakers with Micro II, Bluetooth-toting Flip and Micro Wireless

JBL has been on a wireless speaker kick lately — it might as well throw some truly portable models into the equation. Accordingly, two of the three speakers it’s shipping today, the Flip and Micro Wireless, sport Bluetooth audio and a 5-hour battery to cut the cord. The Flip (seen above) is the multi-talented athlete of the bunch: its design can work either upright or on its side to stuff into small spaces, and a built-in mic provides speakerphone duties. The Micro Wireless’ puck shape isn’t as clever, but it fits a standard 3.5mm input jack and space to clip to a carabiner or lanyard. Both these and the Micro Wireless’ strictly wired counterpart, the Micro II, have a bass port to improve the low-end frequencies that are so often missing in this class of speaker. Prices may be the real incentives here: the Flip is the most expensive of the trio at $99, while the Micro Wireless and Micro II are even lighter on the wallet at respective $59 and $39 price points.

SOURCE via JBL

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HTC Accord may become the mid-range 8X, make a little more Sense

September 10th, 2012

HTC Accord may become the mid-range 8X, make a little more Sense

HTC’s plans for Windows Phone 8 may be filling out fast. We saw XDA-Developer member Football4PDA post a schematic of the Accord less than a week ago, and today he’s posting what could be more concrete information. Supposedly, HTC’s inaugural device might be named the 8X — not quite as charming, but definitely simple. More importantly, the software in the claimed leak suggests the company will bring a trace of Sense UI style to the home screen, rather than having to relegate it to the HTC Hub: a live tile would bring the oversized clock and weather that One owners know so well. Just don’t anticipate a flagship device here. If the specifications are real, the 8X would bear more in common with the Droid Incredible 4G LTE, sharing its 1.2GHz dual-core chip, 8-megapixel rear camera, Beats Audio and NFC while picking up a slightly larger 4.3-inch screen and 16GB of storage. Our main question centers around the unveiling. While HTC has an event lined up for later this month, there’s no guarantee that the 8X will show up at that gathering or even launch side-by-side with Windows Phone 8 itself.

SOURCE via Twitter

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WSJ: 2012 iPhone to support global 4G LTE

September 10th, 2012

WSJ: 2012 iPhone to support global 4G LTE

Now we’re intrigued. It’s a common (if unconfirmed) belief that the next iPhone will support LTE-based 4G, but the Wall Street Journal now understands through the ever-present “people familiar with the matter” that Apple is taking 4G worldwide. Where the current iPad only supports two LTE frequencies and drops to HSPA+ outside of the US and Canada, the new iPhone will supposedly cover parts of Asia and Europe as well. The exact countries haven’t been outlined, although it’s easy to imagine Apple going for those countries where 4G speeds matter the most: there’s been rumblings of talks with KT and SK Telecom in South Korea, but we could also see France, Germany, Japan and Scandiavian countries in the mix. The rumor hasn’t been confirmed, of course. That said, the iPhone was already purported to be using a new cellular chipset — and a number of carriers, most often in the US, have long said they won’t carry new smartphones unless LTE is part of the package. We’ll know the full scoop on Wednesday.

SOURCE via Wall Street Journal

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Shocker: smartphone users like bigger screens, market share may respond accordingly

September 4th, 2012

Shocker: smartphone users like bigger screens, market share may respond accordingly

There’s been a trend towards big smartphones. Sometimes, really big. Even so, concerns have persisted that the cart is driving the horse — that customers are buying big phones because that’s what’s available, not because they have a preference. Kantar Worldpanel ComTech might not put that issue to bed once and for all, but its latest study suggests that there’s at least some appeal to all that extra glass. Among Android phones sold in the past three months across eight countries, 29 percent of them had a screen larger than 4.5 inches. Their owners were unsurprisingly more active as well, using the internet and watching videos more often than those whose phones have more modest displays.

Shocker: smartphone users like bigger screens, market share may respond accordingly

Market share might be following suit. Throughout the countries Kantar is tracking, Android still has roughly half or more of the market, ranging from 46.8 percent in Brazil to a staggering 86.8 percent of Spain. In Europe alone, it was up by just over a fifth from a year ago. We know iOS is taking a beating outside of the US as a result. Before anyone calls the trend irreversible, however, remember that we’re on the edge of an unpredictable period: we know some mobile fans have been holding out for a new iPhone, and all the apparent rumors have Apple choosing a bigger screen that might satisfy some outstanding gripes with screen sizes. We’re also anticipating at least a few Windows Phone wildcards that could shake up the status quo and make this a three-horse race.

SOURCE via Kantar World Panel

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