Nokia announces the Lumia 928: 4.5-inch OLED display, OIS camera, xenon flash, available May 16th for $100

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If you’ve heard enough of Nokia’s near future plans for its Lumia range, sorry — there’s more. While the company’s official event isn’t until next Tuesday in London, that hasn’t stopped it from announcing the Lumia 928 on Verizon. Again. Nokia’s latest installment supplants the Lumia 822 and HTC’s 8X for the US carrier, matching the camera specifications (Carl Zeiss f/2.0 lens, 8.7-megapixel sensor) we saw in the Lumia 920 and pairing it all with a potent xenon flash. There’s also high-amp mics and a 4.5-inch OLED (1,280 x 768) display protected by a layer of Gorilla Glass. Inside, you’ll find a capable 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, 2,000mAH battery and 32GB of storage for all those low-blur photos. As for the phone itself, compared to the bright (admittedly chunky) looks of its predecessor, we’re looking at a toned-down refresh, in black and white options, with a more squared design aiming to complement those Windows Phone Live Tiles.Contactless charging and NFC are both built in, as are all those extra Nokia software additions, including Here maps and Nokia Music. It’ll launch in the US on May 16th, priced at $99.99 with a mail-in rebate, while you’ll also pick up $25 of credit for Windows Phone apps and games if you decide to sign up. Nokia’s got an officially sanctioned hands-on after the break — expect to see our opinions on it next week.

source : engadget

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Mozilla offering free phones in hopes of bolstering Firefox OS app development

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Attention HTML5 virtuosos: Mozilla is thirsty for your talents. So much, in fact, that the outfit is baiting developers with a free smartphone in the hopes they’ll return the favor with fresh Firefox OS apps. In order to qualify for a device, you’ll need to submit a proposal to Mozilla outlining the app you wish to build or port to its new mobile platform. If your pitch is accepted, the company will hook you up with a free Geeksphone Keon to thank you for your labor. Sure, the device’s 3.5-inch HVGA display, 1GHz Snapdragon S1 processor, 512MB of RAM and 3-megapixel rear-facing camera are entry-level at best, but remember you’re getting this handset gratis. The program is set to close at the end of the month or when supplies run out, whichever comes first. So, if you’re interested in adding “Firefox OS developer” to your resume, hit up the source link to apply.

 source : engadget

HP ElitePad 900 review: HP’s first Windows 8 tablet for the business world

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HP’s business PCs have always been surprisingly pretty. Not that good looks are high on our list of criteria, mind you, but at the very least they make a strong impression. Now that companies have gotten more comfortable with tablets (and Windows 8 in particular) HP is selling the ElitePad 900, its first Win 8 tablet built for the enterprise. Like all those EliteBook laptops that came before it, it has a metal chassis that’s not only sleek, but meets the military’s MIL-Spec standards too. Otherwise, it has everything you’d expect from a business tablet: support for pen input, mobile broadband and security features like TPM. It’s also being sold alongside various accessories, including some cases that add further functionality besides just protection from scratches. With a starting price of $699 for the 32GB model, though, it’s a little more expensive than its competitors. Does that mean it’s a little bit better too?

source : Engadget

Amazon reportedly developing multiple smartphones, including one with a 3D display HD

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Remember the EVO 3D? Swap out the HTC logo for an Amazon one, and you just might be onto something. According to a new Wall Street Journal report, one of the world’s most famed forkers of Android is looking to expand its mobile portfolio by adding the one crucial device it lacks: a phone. As the story goes, the company has been toiling on a pair of smartphones as well as an “audio-only streaming device,” all to “expand its reach beyond its Kindle Fire line of tablet computers.” If you’ll recall, we’ve heard that Amazon was dabbling in similar works since at least 2010, but the notion of expanding the Amazon ecosystem is now more pertinent. One of those phones is a higher-end device that offers up a glasses-free 3D display — it’s bruited that it would use “retina-tracking technology” to enable visuals that “seem to float above the screen like a [Tupac?] hologram.” In fact, that eye-scrolling technology that was initially rumored to be a part of the Galaxy S4 may instead make its debut on Amazon hardware. Of course, rumors of an Amazon phone have been running just about as long as rumors of a Facebook phone, but it seems that the company is (still) making a very concerted effort to further expand into the hardware arena. We’re told that the prototypes are being nurtured within Amazon’s Lab126 facility in Cupertino, “where each of the devices have been under development, the efforts are known as Project A, B, C and D, or collectively as the Alphabet Projects.” If all goes well, Amazon could release at least some of these products in the coming months, but there’s also the chance that every last one of ’em could be “shelved because of performance, financial or other concerns.” Come to think of it, it’s been a hot minute since Amazon threw a launch party for anything — what say we change that, Jeff?

source : Engadget

 

Huawei W1, the company’s first Windows Phone 8 device, comes to the US in prepaid form

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Huawei and the United States government may have their differences, but here’s something we can all agree on: Walmart’s going to sell whatever it darn well pleases. Including, mind you, Huawei’s first Windows Phone 8 smartphone. The W1 — which has made inroads in multiple markets already — is heading to Yankee soil, with shipments expected to begin “this month” at Walmart.com and at select Walmart stores. For those in need of a refresher, it’ll pack a 1.2GHz dual-core CPU, a 4-inch IPS touchpanel, 1.7GB of user-available internal storage (expandable to 32GB via microSD card), a 5 megapixel rear camera (with a 0.3MP shooter on the front) and the latest iteration of Microsoft’s mobile OS. Strangely, Huawei nor Walmart are saying what the damage will be, but it’ll reportedly be priced “competitively” on a prepaid, no-contract plan.

 source: Engadget

Sony lifting development license fee on PlayStation Vita and Mobile starting

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Sony’s already got a low barrier to entry for developers on its PlayStation Mobile platform, which encompasses the PlayStation Vita handheld game console and a variety of smartphones — just $99 for a license enables publishing across all PlayStation Mobile devices. Apparently that fee is too much for some folks, so Sony’s waiving it altogether. Starting right now (as of yesterday, actually), Sony’s “removing any existing barriers” between developers and the PS Mobile platform by dropping the publishing fee, thusly making it all the easier for devs to push their games to the Vita and various smartphones. There are already some great indie games featured on Sony’s PS Mobile store, including Vlambeer’s Super Crate Box and Super Icon Ltd.’s Life of Pixel, and this paves the way for even more. Of course, Apple’s iOS publishing fee is $99 per year and the App Store is certainly more flush with content than Sony’s Mobile store, which tells us it isn’t the license fee that’s stopping people from pushing their games to PS Mobile.

source : Engadget

Viber announces new desktop app, revamps Android and iOS versions

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Along with claiming more than 200 million users worldwide, Viber’s also taking this day to announce what it is referring to as the biggest update to the service yet. For starters, the Viber for Android and iOS applications have both been on the receiving end of a pretty meaningful refresh, following the recent introduction of VoIP calling on older versions of BlackBerry OS. An all-new desktop app will, as of today, also be available to Viber users on a Mac or PC (Linux coming soon, we’re told), packing in most of the features the service is well-known for but in a less-mobile form. Folks using Viber’s iOS and Android apps will see many changes to the overall user experience in version 3.0, including added support for video messages, a novel voice engine to help improve call quality, the ability to check contacts’ online status and a completely redesigned interface. Meanwhile, the newly minted Viber Desktop features video calling and seamlessly integrates / syncs with the mobile offerings — which makes things like being able to transfer ongoing voice calls between devices possible. While chatting with the company’s CEO, Talmon Marco, he told us development for BlackBerry 10 is in its “advanced stages,” adding that the latest Viber apps were built from the ground up and are all part of the goal to be better than other competing platforms. Arrive ahead of back-to-school season

source : engadget

 

Sony’s mainstream laptops now named ‘Fit,’ arrive ahead of back-to-school season

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At some point — we’re not sure when — Sony’s naming scheme for laptops got confusing. There was the C series and the E series. The S, T, Z and even the F (RIP). Fortunately, Sony’s been working to clear things up: its first Windows 8 products all had descriptive names like “Duo” or “Tap.” Now, it’s streamlining its mainstream notebooks too. The company just unveiled some redesigned models for back-to-school season, and they’re all named ‘Fit.’ As the replacement to the entry-level E series and most of the T line, the Fit family includes both lower-end models (the Fit 14E / Fit 15E) and premium ones (the Fit 14 / Fit 15). They’ll be available this month, starting at $550 and going all the way up to $2,210, depending on how many upgrades you check off during the configuration process. Regardless, there are certain specs you’ll find across the board – not just on the Fit machines, mind you, but on every Sony PC announced this season. These include NFC, backlit keyboards and webcams with Sony’s Exmor R imaging tech for better low-light performance. They’ll all have 1080p screens, too, with the exception of the 14-inch Fits, which start at 1,600 x 900. Both the Fit and Fit E will be offered with optional NVIDIA GT 740M GPUs (1GB or 2GB), touchscreens, optical drives and a choice of Core i3, i5 and i7 processors (Ivy Bridge for now). Ultimately, then, the difference between the two comes down to build quality: the Fit E is made of plastic, whereas the Fit has a thinner aluminum chassis, with the fans hidden above the keyboard, and a lid that covers the hinge. Also, the Fit will be offered with SSDs, with hybrid drives being the base option; the Fit E comes standard with a regular HDD and can be upgraded to a hybrid drive. And in any event, all of these laptops will be available later this month. For now, check out the press shots below for a closer look.

source : Engadget

 

Nokia Lumia 928 officially confirmed: PureView, OIS and Carl Zeiss camera goodies

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So, print is the new digital. At least when it comes to Verizon’s imminent — and now surely fully acknowledged — Lumia 928. The billboard spotted over the weekend enthused about the camera, but told us little else. This magazine spread spotted in Vanity Fair, however has a few more details. As hinted at, we can expect PureView goodness (though we’re guessing a-la 920, rather than the 808), plus a Carl Zeiss lens and Nokia’s proprietary OIS. As for the rest of the phone, well, that’s still largely under wraps, we’ll just have to wait until the next print run — or not. Update: The Nokia link in the advert is now live, at least enough to show an official image.

source : Engadget

 

 

Switched On: On iOS, Now is Google’s time

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In the early days of the internet economy, the saying went that webpages were created on Macs, served on Unix and viewed on Windows. In the iOS app economy, it’s often the case that apps run on devices by Apple, but connect to services by Google. With the exception of many games, at this point, apps increasingly strive to be internet services. Google has been investing in more of these services for a longer time and in a way more directly tied to apps than Apple has. Google Maps has been the best example, but others include Google Drive (with its editing features), Google Voice and Google+. In contrast, Apple’s biggest consumer online service success (other than the iTunes store) has been iCloud, which is less app-like and more of a silent shuttle for documents and files among iOS devices.

source : Engadget