Even though a majority of us here at The Flickcast use smartphones made by Apple, that doesn’t mean we only care about iOS or things from Cupertino. We also like Android quite a bit too. And when a new smartphone is reportedly ready to be announced by Google itself, we pay particular attention.
That phone is the much-discussed “X Phone.” And now we’ve got a picture (or two) of it, curtesy of gadget blog Tinthe.tn, so you can see exactly what it’s all about.
From the pics we can say that the device does look a lot like other Android smartphones, particularly those from Samsung. Not that that’s a bad thing. In addition to the pics, there’s also info about the internals of the device.
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So I did it. I finally gave in. After months of avoiding Facebook invites from friends, family and total strangers, it was only after the recommendation of our own Matt Raub when he talked about how addictive it was that I decided to give Candy Crush Saga a chance. And now I see what the hype is about.
On the surface, one could attempt to say that Candy Crush Saga is a ripoff of the classic “Match 3″ formula that made titles like Bejeweled so successful. But it takes bits and pieces from various other “Match 3″ games into an incredibly simple but addictive formula. Early levels involve hitting a certain amount of points within a specific number of moves.
Quickly the gears get clogged up when levels change shape and it isn’t just the perfect square that they are used to. And then comes the jelly which players must not only hit a minimum score on but also make matches over specific squares to clear them. And once you think you’ve mastered that, then you have “ingredients” which are pieces that you must work down to the bottom of the screen by eliminating the blocks below them.
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As expected, Samsung revealed a new flagship smartphone in its quest to beat Apple and dominate the world during a press event today. That device: the Galaxy S IV.
Based on earlier leaks and reports, the device’s specs are pretty much known. However, that doesn’t make them any less impressive. In fact, they’re quite impressive indeed.
The Galaxy S IV sports a 5-inch Super AMOLED display with 1080p HD resolution, an Exynos 5 Octa eight-core processor in the international version and a quad-core Snapdragon chipset in the U.S. version, a 13-megapixel rear camera, up to 64GB of storage, 2GB of RAM, microSDXC support and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.
It’s not all specs, though, as the new device also features some cool stuff to try and further separate it from the pack. From facial recognition for touch-free controls and adaptive sound and display functions, to new social features and a completely overhauled camera, Samsung has really gone above and beyond to make this device stand out.
Samsung’s full press release follows after the break. This really looks like a great device. Maybe it’s time to consider and Android phone and give up the iPhone? Maybe.
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With Google’s Maps app for iOS pretty much dominating the scene, the company has released another app for iOS that could be almost as useful. Or, at least, potentially more fun.
The new app, called Field Trip, had previously been Android-only and is a location-based augmented reality app that displays information on your screen or into your Bluetooth headset when you are near an area of interest.
Here are some of the apps main features from the iTunes Store description:
• Discover thousands of interesting places/experiences that fall under the following categories: Architecture, Historic Places & Events, Lifestyle, Offers & Deals, Food Drinks & Fun, Movie Locations, Outdoor Art and Obscure Places of Interest around you.
• Choose from three different modes to set frequency of Field Trip notifications. See “Field Trip”-worthy places around you on a map, by tapping on cards in map view to pull up enthralling points of interest around you.
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Right about now, it seems like there are a few companies that have been given the license to print money. LucasArts, the men holding the rights to all things Star Wars, and Rovio, the creators of the Angry Birds franchise, are two such companies. You can’t go into a mall in America and not see something Star Wars or Angry Birds in your line of site. Imagine the power if the two were to team up. Well, on November 8th, we will get to see what that’s like with Angry Birds Star Wars.
Below, catch the teaser trailer which shows a shrouded bird holding a very special lightsaber in what is sure to be one of the fastest selling apps on iOS and the Android marketplace as soon as it launches. This will be the second time Angry Birds will tie in with another franchise, after the success of Angry Birds Rio (which was actually a logical fit considering the movie was all about birds). Instead of just adding a new set of levels though, Angry Birds Star Wars will be getting what appears to be a visual makeover like we have seen with Angry Birds Space with some teaser images of a Obi-Wan black bird, Luke Skywalker red bird or the big Chewbacca bird.
Look for the game to arrive on November 8th. Check out a trailer for it after the break.
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Even if you’re an iPhone and iOS user, you have to give props to Google and Android in at least some areas. One such area is Maps.
Google has been doing maps for a long time and has really gotten them right, especially in its more recent versions of its Maps application for Android. Now they’ve updated the app to version 6.10 and have included even more useful features including full schedules for more than 1 million transit stops across the globe.
In addition, the updated app now has a more polished UI for viewing transit schedules and a new Transit map layer so you can filter by bus, train, tram or subway. They also added more info to My Places, location history, and included area borders during searches.
This is a great update and makes the Maps app even more useful, especially to those on the go. It’s almost enough to make me regret not using an Android-powered smartphone as my primary device every day. Almost.
The update is now live so go forth and, well, update. Let us know if you find any other cool features.
In the race to dominate the mobile gaming space we can’t count Android out even if Apple’s iPad does seem to be in the lead. Obvoiosuly, the folks at Activison feel the same way as they’ve announced a cool game for for the platform that any Android-using gamer will be happy to play: Call of Duty: Black Ops Zombies.
Yep, that’s right. All your favorite zombie killing action is coming to Android. Sadly, it will be exclusive to the Sony Xperia for the first 30 days. Yeah, we know, that sucks.
Still, 30 days isn’t that long. Here’s all the scoop directly from the source:
CALL OF DUTY®: BLACK OPS ZOMBIES APP
NOW AVAILABLE ON ANDROID
Santa Monica, CA – August 3, 2012 – Call of Duty®: Black Ops Zombies, the fan-favorite app based on the popular Zombies mode from Treyarch’s and Activision’s record-setting hit Call of Duty®: Black Ops, is now coming to Android.
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Great news for those of you who eagerly pre-ordered a Google Nexus 7 tablet when they were first announced because it loks like those orders are starting to ship. That’s right, according to the folks at Droid-Life (who should know) an automated recording that can be heard through Google’s Support line says that the first wave of Nexus 7 orders will ship today, with all pre-orders shipping within the next three business days.
The site also says that once your new hotness ships you should get an email confirmation from Google telling you the great news. At that point, calling them will tell you nothing and then you’ll have to start the waiting game and checking on your shipping status updates and tracking info.
It’s a fun way to spend some time but it’s, of course, not nearly as fun as when you have the device actually in hand. Our own Chris Ullrich pre-orderd one at launch, so expect some sort of hands-on report as soon as it arrives in his, um, hands.
Until then, if you ordered one yourself, listen to the recording in question by calling Google Support at 1-855-83-NEXUS. Expect a bit of a hold time on that number though. Lots of other eager folks probably doing the same thing right about now.
Let us know if you get your Nexus 7 and what you think!
As Steve Jobs predicted over five years ago, Adobe’s Flash is on the way out. How do we know for sure? Well, the company that makes it has taken a radical step and announced it won’t support Flash in Android 4.1 (aka Jelly Bean) and no longer provide new installs for any Android devices after August 15th.
“We will use the configuration settings in the Google Play Store to limit continued access to Flash Player updates to only those devices that have Flash Player already installed,” the company wrote on its website. “Devices that do not have Flash Player already installed are increasingly likely to be incompatible with Flash Player and will no longer be able to install it from the Google Play Store after August 15th.”
How’s that for predictions coming true? What does this mean for those of you not running the latest Android OS or who already have Flash installed? Not much at this point. However, it is a very interesting development.
It means that even Adobe knows Flash’s time, at least on mobile devices, is coming to an end. Flash has been banned from iOS devices from the begining and now Android is next, although at Adobe’s own hand.
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This morning during the keynote event at Google’s I/O confrence in San Francisco, the company announced what many were expecting and many were looking forward to: a new Nexus 7 tablet, updated version of the Android OS and much more. Of course, the center of attention at the event was the new Asus-built Nexus 7 tablet.
Here’s what we know about the Nexus 7: The 7-inch tablet running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean will have a 1.3GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor as well as 1280×800 IPS display with a 178-degree viewing angle. It will also have a 1.2-megapixel camera, 1GB of RAM, and a 4,235mAh battery that will get it 8 hours of battery life “during active use” or 9 hours of video playback.
The tablet weighs 340 grams, just shy of 12 ounces, and is 10.45mm thick. Both 8GB and 16GB configurations will be available. Bluetooth, WiFi, and NFC all come standard but there’s currently no version that works with 3G or 4G networks. Bummer that.
The Nexus 7 will cost $199 and will be available for pre-order in the Google Play Store today. It is expected to ship in mid-July.
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Even though many people seem to prefer Apple’s iPad, that hasn’t stopped others from trying to make a competitive tablet to potentially dethrone the Cupertino giant. It seems Google is next to enter the fray directly with the much rumored Nexus tablet, which is reportedly to be unveiled during the company’s I/O conference this week. If so, what would said tablet look like and what would its capabilities be?
Well, it seems pictures and details surrounding the upcoming Google Nexus tablet have leaked and Gizmodo Australia has the scoop. According to the report, the “Nexus 7” tablet (no Nexus 6, bummer) will feature a 1.3Ghz quad-core Tegra 3 processor, a GeForce 12-core GPU, a 7-inch display, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and 1GB of RAM.
In addition, the ASUS-built tablet will supposedly be two different models: an 8GB one for $199 and a 16GB one for $249. If so, that’s a price that’s sure to hurt sales of both the iPad and the already suffering Kindle Fire.
Things could get interesting indeed. We’ll see what happens on Wednesday.
One of the apps I use the most often on my iPad has finally come to Android. That’s right, for you Android users jealous of your iOS using friends who get to enjoy Flipboard, your time has come.
The very popular social news reader app is now officially available for all Android phones running Android OS version 2.2 or higher. The new Android version is very similar to the one for the iPhone but will also work on tablets of 7 inches or smaller, just in time for Google to announce a new Nexus 7 inch tablet next week.
The app is available in the Google Play Store, Amazon Appstore, Nook Store and Samsung Apps store. Go get it. It’s a great app.
In the tablet world, Apple’s iPad is pretty much the undisputed market leader. However, that doesn’t stop others from trying to enter the space with tablets of their own.
The next competetor looking to enter the ring is Google, which will reportedly unveal a new Asus-built Nexus tablet at next month’s Google I/O event in San Francisco. The tablet is reported to feature a 7″ screen, be running NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 chip and sell for $199.00 directly from Google’s Play Store.
In addition, the tablet is reported to be running Google’s new Jelly Bean OS instead of Ice Cream Sandwich. No word yet on if it will have anything other than Wifi but we can most likely expect some sort of wireless carrier partnerships will be offered, much like Apple does with AT&T and Verizon.
Whatever happens, with this new tablet announcement expected as well as announcements about new multi-vendor Nexus smartphones, Google’s I/O conference is shaping up to be quite the event. Of course, we’ll keep you updated with news as we get it.
If you’re an Android user who also enjoys using the Google+ social media service, you may have been a bit miffed to see the iOS version of the G+ app get a big update a few weeks ago. Well don’t worry, your time has come.
That’s right, Google today took the wraps off a big update for the Android version of the Google+ app and with it has come several improvements to the UI including the big thing you may love or hate: giant pictures. The new app also makes starting a hangout with your pals possible from a mobiel device.
In addition, there’s also a new navigation ribbon on the left side, much like the desktop version, that features quick shortcuts to all the areas of Google+ you might need to go to. You also get some new transitions as you scroll through feeds, the ability to download pics as wallpaper, the ability to edit posts inline and more.
The new app is available through the Google Play store. So, what do we think?
You have to get up pretty early in the morning to beat the guys over at Droid Life. This time around they’re out with the scoop on the soon-to-be-released HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE.
According to the report, the highly anticipated device popped up on the Droid Does website, complete with full specs, only to vanish a short while later. We can only assume one or more people are now looking for work this morning or, at the very least, nursing the results of a severe ass kicking for letting this info out early.
Of course, now that the full specs are confirmed, you may or may not be excited about the device. Either way, here they are:
• 1.2GHz dual-core processor (likely the Snapdragon S4)
• 1GB RAM
• Sense 4.0
• 4″Super LCD qHD display (so slightly different than the One S display)
• 8MP rear camera; VGA front camera
• Beats Audio
• 1700mAh battery
• 8GB internal storage (expandable to 32GB)
• 4G LTE
• Size: 2.4 x 4.8 x 0.46 inches
• Weight: 4.66 ounces
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