» Android News http://androinica.com Google Android phones, news and apps Fri, 17 Jan 2014 18:41:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.5.1 Sprint: LG G Flex Will Launch Online on January 31 for $299 on Contract http://androinica.com/2014/01/sprint-lg-g-flex-will-launch-online-on-january-31-for-299-on-contract/ http://androinica.com/2014/01/sprint-lg-g-flex-will-launch-online-on-january-31-for-299-on-contract/#comments Thu, 16 Jan 2014 17:57:39 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=47008

Starting today, Sprint customers can pre-order the unique LG G Flex smartphone for $299 online with a two year contract.  By pre-ordering between now and January 31st, customers will receive a complimentary Quickwindow Folio Case, which is valued at $60.  Sprint…

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Starting today, Sprint customers can pre-order the unique LG G Flex smartphone for $299 online with a two year contract.  By pre-ordering between now and January 31st, customers will receive a complimentary Quickwindow Folio Case, which is valued at $60.  Sprint announced that pre-orders will ship to customers by January 31st, which is the day the device officially launches online and in TeleSales.  Customers who prefer to purchase devices in-store will have to wait until February 7 to pick up the smartphone.

For those who need a quick refresher, the curved phone features a large 6 inch 720p display, 3500 mAh battery, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of onboard storage, 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, Android 4.2.2, and a 13MP rear facing camera.  On the hardware side, the G Flex is pretty good, except for the lackluster 720p display.

However, I still have reservations about the success of the LG G Flex on Sprint given its high price tag.  I am not fully convinced that a curved smartphone at last year’s hardware is worth the premium price of $299.  Granted, I haven’t held or used the device yet, so I can’t make too many claims without having used one.

If you are interested in pre-ordering the device, feel free to check out the Sprint listing below.  Again, the device launches online on January 31 and in stores on February 7 for $299 on contract.

[Sprint]

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Consumers Can Purchase the $99 Moto G from Verizon Wireless Starting Today http://androinica.com/2014/01/consumers-can-purchase-the-99-moto-g-from-verizon-wireless-starting-today/ http://androinica.com/2014/01/consumers-can-purchase-the-99-moto-g-from-verizon-wireless-starting-today/#comments Thu, 09 Jan 2014 18:36:47 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46988

If you are looking for a terrific budget-Android experience on Verizon Wireless, then look no further than the Moto G by Motorola, which can be yours for $99 without a contract.  The device is meant to be used in conjunction…

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If you are looking for a terrific budget-Android experience on Verizon Wireless, then look no further than the Moto G by Motorola, which can be yours for $99 without a contract.  The device is meant to be used in conjunction with Verizon Wireless’ two main prepaid plans.  The only difference between the two plans is the amount of data.  For instance, the $60 plan offers unlimited talk, text, and 2GB of data.  The $70 plan, on the other hand, offers the same unlimited talk and text, but doubles the data to 4GB.

Moving on, interested customers can jump on the $99 Moto G immediately through purchases online or in-store.  For casual smartphone users who do not need the best hardware or 4G LTE, the Moto G represents a valuable option since it offers capable hardware at a low-end price.

In terms of specs, the Moto G offers a 4.5 inch display, 1GB of RAM, 1.2GHz quad-core, Android 4.3, 5MP rear facing camera, 8GB of on board storage, a 2070mAh battery, and 3G connectivity.  One of the main knocks against the Moto G is the fact that the screen is mediocre, the camera is lacking, and 3G is not nearly as robust as Verizon’s 4G LTE network.  However, the cost of $99 without a contract is truly remarkable.

[Verizon Wireless]

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T-Mobile Removes ETF Customer Pain Point with UnCarrier 4.0 Starting Tomorrow http://androinica.com/2014/01/t-mobile-removes-etf-customer-pain-point-with-uncarrier-4-0-starting-tomorrow/ http://androinica.com/2014/01/t-mobile-removes-etf-customer-pain-point-with-uncarrier-4-0-starting-tomorrow/#comments Wed, 08 Jan 2014 22:32:14 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46983

The main impediment for consumers trying to switch between various carriers in the United States is typically the ETF (Early Termination Fee).  Since most carriers subsidize the cost of a smartphone, leaving the contract early requires the customer to pay…

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The main impediment for consumers trying to switch between various carriers in the United States is typically the ETF (Early Termination Fee).  Since most carriers subsidize the cost of a smartphone, leaving the contract early requires the customer to pay a penalty that puts the carrier in the status quo for the full cost of the smartphone.

In order to help customers experience “contract freedom,” CEO John Legere and company will pay your ETF up to five lines and $650 per line to switch.  T-Mobile offers up to $350 per ETF and up to $300 per smartphone that you trade-in — totaling $650 per line.  According to a poll ran by GigaOM and cited by T-Mobile, 78% of customers would switch to T-Mobile if reimbursed for the ETF.

T-Mobile clearly sees potential in gaining new customers by reimbursing for the ETF up to five lines and UnCarrier 4.0 should be successful in its mission.  Consumers interested in taking advantage of the new offer can begin applying starting tomorrow (1/9/2013).  Feel free to chime in with your thoughts below!

[T-Mobile]

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AT&T Expects to Launch LG G Flex in Q1 2014, Price to be Revealed Later http://androinica.com/2014/01/att-expects-to-launch-lg-g-flex-in-q1-2014-price-to-be-revealed-later/ http://androinica.com/2014/01/att-expects-to-launch-lg-g-flex-in-q1-2014-price-to-be-revealed-later/#comments Wed, 08 Jan 2014 20:07:56 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46980

Whether curved displays will be a hit among U.S. smartphone users remains to be seen, but LG is betting that it will be more than a passing fancy.  In fact, LG has already lined up AT&T to carry its unique…

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Whether curved displays will be a hit among U.S. smartphone users remains to be seen, but LG is betting that it will be more than a passing fancy.  In fact, LG has already lined up AT&T to carry its unique LG G Flex smartphone launching in Q1 of 2014.

Some key features of a curved display includes a reduction in glare and added comfort when operating the device.  In terms of specs and features, the LG G Flex will offer a 2.3 GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of on board storage, a whopping 3500 mAh battery, 6 inch 1280 x 720p display, and a 13MP rear facing camera.  In terms of software, the device will run Android 4.2.2 out of the box.  Hopefully, there is an update to Android 4.4 in its near future.

All in all, the LG G Flex offers top-notch hardware, but the display resolution may not suit those accustomed to 1080p displays.  I imagine that pricing and a specific launch date will be announced in the coming weeks.

[AT&T]

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Verizon Wireless confirms LG G2 launch date for September 12, costs $199 on contract http://androinica.com/2013/09/verizon-wireless-confirms-lg-g2-launch-date-for-september-12-costs-199-on-contract/ http://androinica.com/2013/09/verizon-wireless-confirms-lg-g2-launch-date-for-september-12-costs-199-on-contract/#comments Thu, 05 Sep 2013 20:32:31 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46976

For those who are interested in the LG G2 on Verizon Wireless, we have some good news for you.  Earlier today, Verizon Wireless announced the launch date and pricing information for the high-end G2 flagship device.  According to the announcement,…

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For those who are interested in the LG G2 on Verizon Wireless, we have some good news for you.  Earlier today, Verizon Wireless announced the launch date and pricing information for the high-end G2 flagship device.  According to the announcement, America’s largest carrier will launch it on September 12 for $199 on a two year contract.

My immediate thought is thank goodness Verizon Wireless did not delay the launch of the G2 similar to what it did to the HTC One.  In fact, September 12 is a pretty earlier, considering T-Mobile is waiting until September 25th to launch.  The price point of $199 on contract also seems fair considering the cutting edge technology the G2 employs.

As a refresher, the G2 offers a 5.2 inch 1080p display, 2GB of RAM, Snapdragon 800 2.3GHz quad-core processor, 13MP rear facing camera, Android 4.2, and a 3000 mAh battery.

[VZWNews]

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Moto X by Motorola on AT&T Review http://androinica.com/2013/09/moto-x-by-motorola-on-att-review/ http://androinica.com/2013/09/moto-x-by-motorola-on-att-review/#comments Sun, 01 Sep 2013 21:33:27 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46968

The Moto X is one of the more interesting smartphones to launch in recent memory for a couple of fundamental reasons.  To begin, it offers mid-range specs (on paper), coupled with a high-end price tag ($199 on contract), and…

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The Moto X is one of the more interesting smartphones to launch in recent memory for a couple of fundamental reasons.  To begin, it offers mid-range specs (on paper), coupled with a high-end price tag ($199 on contract), and the best customization options currently in the marketplace.  Despite the mid-range specs and high-end price tag, many are falling in love with the device simply because of high quality design and ease of use.  Without giving too much of the review away, the Moto X is definitely a fun phone to use, but my only concern is whether it can last two plus years.

Hardware

As you probably know by now, the Moto X offers a 4.7 inch display with a 1280 x 720 resolution, 16GB of storage, 1.7GHz dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM, 10 MP rear facing camera, LTE, and a 2,200 mAh battery.  At first glance, the device seems mid-range with its display resolution and processor, but the display is actually quite terrific and vibrant.  In fact, it offers a better viewing experience than my stock Nexus 4.  On the processor side, it handles multi-tasking and switching between apps with ease — as you would naturally expect from a flagship device.  As I mentioned before, the Moto X operates without missing a beat for now, but I do have slight concern how it will fare in two years since most devices currently possess quad-core processors.

The build quality of the Moto X is astoundingly good, as the device is just a joy to hold and use.  The curved design was not something thought up by a rookie engineer, it had to be something studied and researched carefully by Motorola.  One of the aspects of the Moto X I enjoy the most is how Motorola managed to make it feel small despite owning a 4.7 inch display.  My Nexus 4 has the same screen size, but is noticeably bigger than the Moto X.  I prefer larger displays, but the device needs to maintain some semblance of being small, which the Moto X has perfectly captured.  With one hand-usability being a key feature for some users, the Moto X enables one hand usage for sure.

In terms of the camera, Motorola packs a 10MP shooter into the device.  Some say the camera is mediocre and some say it works really well.  In my opinion, it gets the job done as smartphone camera.  It will not best the Nokia Lumia 1020, but it will allow you snap quick pictures and have them turn out just fine.  In fact, Motorola added a gesture sensor to the camera so users can easily launch the camera from a sleeping device with two shakes of the wrist.  It does take some time getting used to, but if it becomes a habit, then taking pictures can occur faster.

The battery life is another shining aspect of the device since the Moto X only uses a dual-core processor, it is able to work more efficiently when handling tasks.  In my testing, I could almost always get through a day with some power remaining.  On a slow usage day, the phone could easily last a day and a half, but heavy operation would require a charge at night.  Regardless, it performed better than my Nexus 4 on the battery front, and I imagine most users will be satisfied with its performance.  It may not be as powerful as its cousin’s battery life (DROID MAXX), but it certainly gets the job done.

Software

The uniqueness of the Moto X is heavily derived from the software aspect of the device.  A couple of examples include Active Display and Touchless controls.  Most people interested in Moto X will presumably hear these terms constantly tossed around — and for good reason.  Active Display is an interesting way of receiving notifications since the phone will only light up portions of the screen when drawn from the pocket or lifted up from a table.  At a quick glance, it shows what kind of notification, and if you press the icon, it will display the message and allow you to act upon it.  For the most part, I enjoyed how Active Notifications operated, but there would be times where the screen would randomly light up on its own for no apparent reason.  In addition, there were some instances where I wanted to see the notifications, but the screen didn’t light up.  Most of the time, Active Display works as you would expect, but I would say it is not completely flawless.

Touchless Control is another superb feature by Motorola that will really come in handy for people who enjoy speaking to their phone.  Essentially, the Moto X can respond and carry out actions based on your voice when you say “Ok, Google Now.”  I often use my phone in the presence of others, so having to speak something aloud isn’t always ideal.  However, navigating in the car is an excellent opportunity to tell the Moto X to pull up directions to location X on a whim.

The last interesting software component is Assist, as the Moto X aims to understand where you are and providing the appropriate notifications.  For instance, if you set up Assist to know when you are driving, it will then read aloud text messages and alert you to calls.  These features both work great if you drive alone; I imagine you may not want your passengers constantly hearing your texts.  Assist can also know when you are in meetings based on your Google Calendar and it will silence notifications appropriately.  There are alternative apps that can do something similar, but it is always nice to have the functionality baked into the OS.

Customization

Unfortunately, the Moto Maker is an AT&T exclusive for the time being, but it is something I would recommend to all those interested in the Moto X.  Essentially, it offers you a free way to customize and personalize your device.  There are over 2,000 possibilities, and Moto Maker specifically allows you to customize the back plating, the front color, an accent color, and eventually users will be able to add a custom signature.  In case you realize your design isn’t absolutely perfect when it ships to your house, you can return it within 14 days and change the design for free.

Conclusion

In order to really understand how the Moto X can benefit your lifestyle, I firmly believe it is necessary to check out the device in person before purchasing it.  To truly understand how the unique software applications work, using it in person will grant you that insight.  The premium build quality and in-hand feel cannot easily be communicated through a review, but it is something that is meant to be experienced.  If you enjoy the feel, speed, and customization of the Moto X, then I think it will be worth the price.  However, keep in mind the hardware is still mid-range and the customization is locked to AT&T for now, so it is hard to completely justify the $199 price tag.

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Google slashes Nexus 4 prices by $100 across the 8GB and 16GB models http://androinica.com/2013/08/google-slashes-nexus-4-prices-by-100-across-the-8gb-and-16gb-models/ http://androinica.com/2013/08/google-slashes-nexus-4-prices-by-100-across-the-8gb-and-16gb-models/#comments Wed, 28 Aug 2013 22:16:08 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46964

For the late adopters among us, Google may make you very happy once you learn that the Nexus 4 price was slashed yesterday by $100 across the board.  Previously, the 8GB model sold for $299, but now costs $199.  Similarly,…

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For the late adopters among us, Google may make you very happy once you learn that the Nexus 4 price was slashed yesterday by $100 across the board.  Previously, the 8GB model sold for $299, but now costs $199.  Similarly, the 16GB model used to cost $349, but now costs $249.

The Nexus 4 by LG was already especially affordable, but the new price cut really makes you question how other devices such as the Moto X command $199 price tags on contract.  The Nexus 4 is still a solid smartphone, but the price cut definitely makes me feel the new Nexus 5 has to be right around the corner.  This pre-emptive price cutting tactic by Google is probably designed to release safety stock and clear inventory for its successor.

Regardless, the Nexus 4 is one of the best budget devices you can currently buy.  The only shortcomings (in my opinion is lack of LTE and mediocre battery life).  However, I find that HSPA+ on T-Mobile is plenty fast and I would prefer to not have LTE reduce the battery life even further.

As one comment on the Internet aptly put it, time to buy another Nexus 4!

[Play Store]

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Moto Maker officially open for business, sells AT&T devices both on and off contract http://androinica.com/2013/08/moto-maker-officially-open-for-business-sells-att-devices-both-on-and-off-contract/ http://androinica.com/2013/08/moto-maker-officially-open-for-business-sells-att-devices-both-on-and-off-contract/#comments Tue, 27 Aug 2013 20:26:53 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46959

Every time I read about the Moto Maker, I am impressed with Motorola’s commitment to personalization and design…but then I remember how it is locked to AT&T customers only.  The latter fact is increasingly disappointing, since the Moto Marker is…

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Every time I read about the Moto Maker, I am impressed with Motorola’s commitment to personalization and design…but then I remember how it is locked to AT&T customers only.  The latter fact is increasingly disappointing, since the Moto Marker is arguably one of the Moto X’s best selling points.  I can only hope that Motorola lifts the exclusivity as soon as possible.

Now that the Moto Maker is selling devices online, you no longer have to go into an AT&T store and pick up a card to complete the customized order online.  Instead, you can navigate to the Moto Maker, create your device online, and place your order for the device online.  In fact, the website has the 16GB and 32GB models for the same in-store AT&T price: $199 and $249 on contract, respectively.

Secondly, Moto Maker is also selling both the 16GB and 32GB Moto X unlocked for $579 and $629, respectively.  This is great news for those who are not able to upgrade right now, but still want to experience the Moto X.

As we mentioned yesterday, Verizon Wireless will begin selling its version of the Moto X online only on August 29.

[Motorola]

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Moto X officially launches with Verizon Wireless on 8/29 for $199 online http://androinica.com/2013/08/moto-x-officially-launches-with-verizon-wireless-on-829-for-199-online-for-now/ http://androinica.com/2013/08/moto-x-officially-launches-with-verizon-wireless-on-829-for-199-online-for-now/#comments Mon, 26 Aug 2013 20:42:28 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46954

As we expected, Verizon Wireless took to its official Twitter account to clear the air on the Moto X by Motorola launch date.  In fact, we can now confirm that on August 29 (which is a mere three days away),…

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As we expected, Verizon Wireless took to its official Twitter account to clear the air on the Moto X by Motorola launch date.  In fact, we can now confirm that on August 29 (which is a mere three days away), the highly anticipated Moto X will launch on Big Red for $199 with a two year contract.  However, we have a little bit of bad news as the device will only be available through Verizon’s online website and the stores will receive stock in the coming weeks.

At the very least, it is great that interested customers can purchase the device online on Thursday, but it is disappointing for those who prefer shopping in store.  By now, many of us know that AT&T has the exclusive on the unique Moto Maker for the Moto X, so Verizon Wireless fans will have to wait indefinitely before the other carriers get their opportunity at Moto Maker.

It is worth mentioning that Verizon Wireless is also selling the Motorola DROID Ultra and DROID MAXX at this time with the DROID Mini in the near future.  Now that the Moto X will soon be available, Verizon certainly has a compelling array of Motorola products.  Which new Motorola smartphone will be yours?

[VZW News]

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Will Verizon Wireless’ HTC One succeed four months late to launch? http://androinica.com/2013/08/will-verizon-wireless-htc-one-succeed-four-months-late-to-launch/ http://androinica.com/2013/08/will-verizon-wireless-htc-one-succeed-four-months-late-to-launch/#comments Sun, 18 Aug 2013 16:36:24 +0000 Natesh Sood http://androinica.com/?p=46950

The tale of the HTC One and Verizon Wireless is a convoluted one simply because the carrier took an additional four months to launch the flagship HTC smartphone.  It is not completely understood why the three other major carriers in…

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The tale of the HTC One and Verizon Wireless is a convoluted one simply because the carrier took an additional four months to launch the flagship HTC smartphone.  It is not completely understood why the three other major carriers in the United States launched the One in mid-April and Verizon Wireless will not launch it until August 22.

While many early adopters were able to purchase one on April 19, Verizon Wireless customers will finally get their chance on August 22 for $199 on a two year contract.  The HTC One is definitely one of the top devices on the market as it contends with the Samsung Galaxy S 4 for the top Android smartphone available.  However, the Moto X, LG G2, and presumably the Galaxy Note 3 are all right around the corner that can challenge the One.

My bet is that many customers ready to upgrade on Verizon Wireless will consider the DROID Maxx/Ultra/Mini or wait for the LG G2, iPhone 5S or Note 3.  Why purchase a smartphone more than four months old when you can grab a brand new device in the upcoming weeks?

There are definitely going to be some HTC fans who will love the One on Verizon’s fast 4G LTE network, but I am sure the majority would prefer to wait for the next best Android or even iOS device.  I would have preferred to see Verizon Wireless knock $100 off the contract price to simply make it more appealing to the masses.

[VZWnews]

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