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Motorola Moto G with ‘universal LTE” now being listed on Amazon

Posted: 12 May 2014 05:04 PM PDT

Motorola Moto G 4G LTE Amazon

When Motorola announced the original Moto G, it’s safe to say the general consensus was that the Android handset offered a lot of bang for the buck. ‘Course, as we all know, this came at the cost of several key hardware specs we’ve since grown accustomed to, one of which was the inclusion of 4G LTE compatibility. The Moto G simply wasn’t having it.

Lately, we’ve heard murmurings around the webernets that Motorola could be upping their game, announcing an updated Moto G model with 4G LTE. Those rumors have now hit the ground running as the Motorola Moto G with “universal LTE” has appeared on Amazon.

It can be found by jumping onto the usual product listing for the Moto G on Amazon and clicking on “10 new from $_.” That link will take you to another page listing off all the available Moto G variants including this new “universal LTE” model, available in either black of white. Unfortunately, clicking on either model brings back a 404, but we think it’s only because the phones have appeared ahead of an official announcement.

Motorola currently has an event scheduled for tomorrow in London and where we were already expecting for the Motorola Moto E to become official, it’s entirely possible they’ll also announced this updated Moto G LTE. Still up in the air is if the inclusion of LTE will come with a higher premium (makes sense), or if the price of the non-LTE models will drop to accommodate the new model selling for $200. We’ll keep you posted.

Thanks, Tito!

[Motorola Moto G on Amazon]

Additional Moto X+1 details tipped on Motorola’s site – carriers, storage options, and more

Posted: 12 May 2014 04:10 PM PDT

Sprint Moto X+1 FLEXR2 page

After making a small, semi official, appearance last week on Motorola’s site, the Motorola Moto X+1 is popping up on our radar yet again. Reddit member Octopenis did a little digging into the XML on Motorola.com and what he found was a few additional clues about the the Moto X+1, including color and possible storage configurations.

According to the code, which shows the Moto+1 as the “FLEXR2″ (last year’s Moto X was the FLEXR1), we have Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint variants of the Moto X+1, with no mention of T-Mobile. It’s not much, but the fact that there are specific URLs for each of the carrier “front plates” is leading some to suspect the Moto X+1 could be branded with carrier logos on the front. Of course, it’s nothing solid.

Motorola Moto X+1 FLEXR2

When digging around on the Moto X+1 page for the Sprint variant, the phone is only listed as coming in either 16GB or 32GB storage configurations, along with the color options black or white. Once again, it’s nothing too official, but this could be a clue that Motomaker will once again be a carrier exclusive for the Moto X+1 at launch.

There was also mention of leather color options: grey, black, blue, and red. This lines up perfectly with what we heard from @evleaks towards the middle of last month.

As one of the year’s most anticipated Android flagships (we know we’re excited), we’ll continue scouring the net in search of anything else we can dig up on the Motorola Moto X+1. In the meantime, how are you guys feeling about the possible 16/32GB storage options?

[Motorola | via Reddit]

Verizon posts KitKat support docs for Droid RAZR HD and RAZR M, here’s the full changelog

Posted: 12 May 2014 03:17 PM PDT

Motorola Droid RAZR HD KitKat update Verizon

After watching as soak tests began for the Motorola DROID RAZR HD /RAZR MAXX HD last week, Verizon has now posted the necessary changelogs to their support page, signaling a nationwide rollout should be commencing any minute now. The update — which also includes the Motorola DROID RAZR M — was promised all the way back in November of last year, so the road to Android 4.4.2 KitKat has been a long one.

Here’s everything you can expect once the update — software build 182.46.10 for the RAZR HD/RAZR MAXX HD, and 183.46.10 for the RAZR M — finally hits your device:

Android 4.4.2 KitKat

  • A new full-screen mode, color emoji support, improved closed captioning support, stronger security, smarter power use, and more tools and capabilities for better app development
  • Access SMS, MMS, and video calls in one place
  • Google Talk has been replaced with Google Hangouts
  • Supports location-sharing and animated GIF's through Google Hangouts

Immersive Interface

  • Full-screen album and movie art appear when streaming/projecting
  • Play, pause and jump to a certain song or movie chapter easily
  • Less invasive status bar
  • Hides the status bar until you swipe the screen edge to bring it back

Droid Zap 2.0 update
The fastest and easiest way to share HD videos and pictures

  • New ZAP app interface
  • ZAP is available from the Play Store


  • Personalize messages with smileys, cars, animals and icons


  • Android Security Patches
  • WiFi has been improved
  • Roaming has been improved

The update should be rolling out soon, but if you don’t want to wait around for Verizon ping you, you could always attempt to manually pull the update by jumping into your Settings and selecting > About phone > System updates > Download.

[Verizon Support]

Blue HTC One M8 press shot leaked, looks as gorgeous as we’d imagined

Posted: 12 May 2014 01:41 PM PDT

Blue HTC One M8

Last year’s HTC One in blue was one of our favorite color variants of the device. For those that had even the smallest doubt that HTC would also give their latest flagship a similar paint job, the electric blue HTC One M8 has unofficially been leaked by @evleaks.

Last week we caught glimpse of the pink edition HTC One M8 and although there still isn’t word on where these colored M8s will be headed, we’re expecting these to be exclusive to specific carriers/retailers like the blue HTC One (M7) last time around.

How to back up your photos with Google+ [Android 101]

Posted: 12 May 2014 01:11 PM PDT

Google Photos

The device that people use to take a majority of photos is their phone. Even when smartphone cameras weren’t that great it was still better than lugging around a camera. The result of this convenience is people carrying around all of their personal photos everywhere they go. That makes losing them all that much easier. Luckily there are plenty of ways to back-up your photos for safe keeping. A popular method for Android devices is through the Google+ app. We’ll show you how.

When you download the Google+ app from the Google Play Store it also gives you a companion “Photos” app. The icon should look like this:

photo guide

If you’re not already signed in with your Google account it will ask you to do that now. When you are signing in for the first time it will ask if you want to automatically back-up your photos. You can enable it right there. If you haven’t already done that, or you want to adjust the settings, follow the steps below.

  1. Tap the Menu button in the top right corner and select Settings.
  2. On the next screen select Auto Backup at the top of the screen.
  3. Now flip the switch in the top right from Off to On.
  4. That’s it!

photo guide 2

Now you can adjust the auto back-up settings. You can adjust things like photo resolution, when photos should be uploaded, which folders to back-up, and more. One thing you will want to do is make sure photos only upload over WiFi, which is found in the “Backup Settings” section.

Now that you have this enabled you will be able to access all of the photos you take on the web. Go to Google+ and visit the “Photos” page to see all of your automatically uploaded photos. These photos are private by default. They will only be shared if you share them yourself. All your photos are now safely backed up. Should something happen to your phone you won’t have to worry about losing them! Do you have this set up on your device?

Moto E brings modern day smartphone back to the basics, throws curveball with front facing speaker [LEAK]

Posted: 12 May 2014 12:25 PM PDT

motorola moto-e-white

We’ve known for quite sometime about Motorola plans to introduce a rock bottom low priced smartphone for the masses. After stripping away several “high-end” smartphone features for the Moto G, it appears Motorola will take this one step further with the newly leaked Motorola Moto E — bringing the modern day smartphone back its basics.

Moto E FastShop leak


Discovered on Brazilian retailer FastShop’s website, the Motorola Moto E made a brief appearance before the entire listing was removed. But while it was up, the listing revealed not only a handful of press images of the phone, but its hardware specs as well. A screenshot was grabbed by the folks at Technoblog and while pricing doesn’t always translate so well overseas, it’s clear Motorola is planning on making the phone nearly half the price of the Motorola Moto G.

motorola moto e black

So exactly what else can Motorola strip away from the Moto G to bring the price down further? Here are just a few of the luxury amenities Motorola will be leaving out of the Moto E in an effort to drive down costs: no LTE, no front facing camera, no LED flash. You will notice the surprising inclusion of what appears to be a front facing speaker (likely not stereo). Even if only mono, let’s hope this is the start of a new trend in mobile. Here are a few of the specs that were revealed in its listing before it was removed.

  • 4.3-inch (possibly 720p) display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.2GHz dual-core processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • 4GB internal storage
  • 5MP rear camera
  • Micro SD card slot
  • 1,980mAh battery with “all day” battery life
  • Removable battery covers (turquoise, yellow, black, white)
  •  124.8 x 64.8 x 12.3mm
  • Android 4.4. KitKat

For many of us, these are common smartphone features we’ve grown accustomed to over the years. But think about it — when was the last time you needed to stream and HD video while on the go? How about the last time you needed to take a picture in pitch darkness? Snapped a quick selfie?

It’s clear for older/younger folks, some of these features aren’t in their list of needs (more like wants). Stripping away all these extra hardware features leaves you with a smartphone in its purest form, and one that’s easy on the wallet. After already leaking on Motorola’s site and popping up in retailer sites around the world, we imagine it wont be very much longer before Motorola finally takes the wraps off the Moto E.

Motorola has been hyping a social media campaign they’re calling “#GoodbyeFlipPhone” with a mysterious date of May 13th. Sounds like the Moto E could be the way out some users need to finally ditch their feature phone and get on the Android train.

[via PhoneArena]

Samsung Galaxy S5 update improves camera lag, fingerprint scanner accuracy

Posted: 12 May 2014 10:51 AM PDT

Samsung Galaxy S5 hand DSC05788

Samsung is pushing out a new software upgrade to their international Samsung Galaxy S5, with the first folks to get them being those in the UK. Early reports suggest two huge improvements to areas many thought were hampering the Galaxy S5 experience.

For starters, the camera and gallery apps have seen substantially improved performance. Shutter lag in the camera app is said to be cleared up, which is something many complained about to this point.

Another big fix is increased accuracy for the fingerprint scanner. Even in our own review we noted how finnicky the fingerprint scanner was, with users often having to swipe their finger more than once in order for it to register.

The upgrade appears to be going out over the air right now, with Kies also being an option for those who prefer doing stuff over the wire. As usual, the rollout may not get to everyone right away depending on market and carrier, so if you aren’t in the UK with an international unlocked version you’ll need to sit patiently until Samsung delivers the goods to everyone else.

[via SamMobile]

LG G3 leaks in metallic black and pearl white, previous leaked cases now on Amazon for $7

Posted: 12 May 2014 10:30 AM PDT

LG G3 high res black white

In case you missed it over the busy weekend (what with it being Mother’s Day and all), the LG G3 once again made another appearance online, as the subject of a leak from the boys at PhoneArena.

The image shows the LG G3 in both metallic black, and pearly white finishes, with the gold version — which we’ve already seen in a previous leak — photo bombing above. The brushed texture is plain to see and we have to say, we’re liking the very minimal back plate/buttons.

LG G3 Rearth Case Amazon

Also, you may remember last week when we got one of our first clear looks at the upcoming LG G3 after it popped up inside a 3rd party case press image. We talked it about it briefly on last week’s Mobile Roar podcast and sure enough, the cases belong to Rearth (one of our personal favorite case manufacturers).

Available right now on Amazon, the cases are going for only $7 ($4 shipping) and mention availability is set for June 30th. Now we’re not saying that is the exact day when you should be expecting the LG G3 to officially launch, but it could be a good indicator of its rough release timing.

[Rearth LG G3 Case on Amazon $7 ($4 shipping)]

Verizon’s Galaxy Note 3 is now receiving Android 4.4 KitKat over-the-wire

Posted: 12 May 2014 09:19 AM PDT


Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3 users have been stuck on Jelly Bean until this point, but fret no longer — the upgrade to Android 4.4 KitKat is now available for the taking. This one isn’t yet available over-the-air, so you’ll need a PC to install it via Samsung Kies (right here) or Verizon’s Upgrade Assistant (right here).

No word on what’s new yet, though we imagine the usual KitKat changes are being served up in this package. Any further specific details will have to wait until Verizon or Samsung officially delivers the news (which will hopefully be followed by an over-the-air process for those who can’t find their way to a PC). Hook your Note 3 up to your PC and give it a try ASAP. Let us know how it’s treating once you’ve finally pulled the upgrade down.

[via PhoneDog]

Annoying Comcast ad brags about their stance on Net Neutrality

Posted: 12 May 2014 09:00 AM PDT

There aren’t many things I hate more than misleading advertisements. Flip through the print edition of the Wall Street Journal today and you’ll see one such ad from Comcast and Time Warner.


The ad is posed as a multiple choice question listing 4 potential benefits from the proposed Comcast and Time Warner merger. It leads with “Net Neutrality Protection” but of course  has “All Of The Above” selected, suggesting the merger will also create faster, more secure, more reliable, and more readily available internet for its customers.

Comcast leading with Net Neutrality is laughable, but unfortunately, Net Neutrality isn’t a laughing matter.

Ever wonder why Netflix used to be so slow on Comcast? It’s because Netflix hadn’t yet started paying Comcast for preferential treatment to ensure better speeds for its customers. The idea that Internet Service Providers like Comcast can pick and choose which sites and services get good speeds and which get worse speeds is what the entire net neutrality debate hinges upon. Yet they’ve created an entire site to spout about their dedication to net neutrality.

“There has been no company that has had a stronger commitment to openness of the Internet than Comcast.”

Yeah and Donald Sterling is the next Gandhi.

Technically speaking, Comcast does support Net Neutrality… but only because the current proposed version of Net Neutrality laws are in direct conflict with the spirit of a free and open Internet. Comcast supports the version of Net Neutrality where things aren’t neutral because they can sell preferred access to specific companies. So by my measure there are at least 150 companies that have a stronger commitment to openness of the Internet.

So how can Comcast stoop so low as to masquerade the net neutrality buzzword around like a crown jewel achievement when most people think a merger with Time Warner will be a disaster for users and severe blow to net neutrality? Where do they derive the gusto to promote participation in a movement when they’re widely considered the number one threat to that movement’s success?

In an open letter to the FCC, a long list of powerhouse tech companies shunned a proposal to legally allow for Internet “Fast Lanes”. Signed by the likes of Google, Microsoft, Facebook, and 147 others, here’s a snippet of what they had to say:

According to recent news reports, the Commission intends to propose rules that would enable phone and cable Internet service providers to discriminate both technically and financially against Internet companies and to impose new tolls on them. If these reports are correct, this represents a grave threat to the Internet.

As you’ll notice, Comcast isn’t among those that signed. That’s because they’re among the Internet Service Providers who would (and do) charge tolls. They stand to make huge profits by charging companies like Netflix extra to ensure Netflix streaming videos load quick enough through Comcast’s bandwidth. You can bet those costs will be passed onto the consumer, so don’t blame Netflix if subscription hikes come soon- blame Comcast and the FCC.

If Comcast and the FCC have their way, it could prove to be a complete disaster for the Internet. It could be the start of something much bigger. We’re putting our toes on the tippy top of a slippery slope with an Internet iceberg underneath.

This Comcast advertisement is maddening, because in my mind, it couldn’t be more misleading. Or maybe they’re just delusional. This is the type of smoke and mirror advertising typically reserved for presidential campaigns, so disturbingly filled with BS propaganda that it makes me lack faith in humanity. It makes me loathe whoever schemed up these ads in some thought polluted, idiot filled backroom. It makes me more desperately crave Google Fiber.

But most of all… it makes me want to cancel my Comcast service.

[Thanks Tokugawa!]

LG F90 heads to Boost and Virgin Mobile as the LG Volt

Posted: 12 May 2014 08:31 AM PDT

lg volt boost virgin

A new LG smartphone option has launched for those of you who prefer prepaid carriers. It’s the LG Volt, and it’s pretty much an LG F90 branded for Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile.

There’s nothing too exciting going on in terms of specs: it has a 4.7-inch qHD display, a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon chipset, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot, an 8 megapixel camera on the rear and a 1.3 megapixel sensor on the front, a 3,000mAh battery and support for Sprint Spark LTE. It comes with KitKat and LG’s custom user experience, giving you access to features like KnockOn and KnockCode.

And all of that is coming to you for a neat $180. It’s not a bad device if you prefer to stay contract-free and you need a capable smartphone to get you through your days. Of course, it isn’t the only affordable smartphone packing a decent punch, but it’s always nice to have options. Head to Boost or Virgin to buy one starting today if you’re interested.

[via LG]

AT&T brings in-store pickup option for online shoppers

Posted: 12 May 2014 08:05 AM PDT

AT&T has just announced that you’ll now be able to purchase smartphones, tablets and accessories online and pick them up in-store. In-store pickup is something their competitor Verizon has been doing for quite some time, and it’s proven to be a very valuable service for those who’ve used it.

The concept is simple: select a phone, and AT&T’s site will show you all the stores in your area with stock currently available. Choose from one of those stores, complete the checkout process, and you’ll be able to waltz into your local store and have your phone ready and waiting for you as soon as you get there.

All of that adds to some cool things AT&T introduced last year, including the ability to see stock for phones at each AT&T store, as well as scheduling in-store appointments online for those who needed in-person technical or account support.

Verizon is a bit further ahead, of course, with the company currently expanding same-day home or office delivery to more locations, but AT&T is on the right path and we hope they continue add more of these services in the near future. Give it a shot if you’re planning on buying something soon by heading to AT&T’s online storefront.

[via AT&T]

Half-Life 2 and Portal for NVIDIA SHIELD now available for $10 each

Posted: 12 May 2014 07:21 AM PDT

portal shield

NVIDIA told us Portal would be arriving for their SHIELD gaming handheld today. It’s in the Google Play Store for $10, as promised. What they didn’t tell us is that Half-Life 2 would be jumping on for the ride on the same date and for the same price.

Both games — staples of Valve from earlier this century and in recent years — feature the same full-fledged experience you’d find if you played it on PC. It won’t look nearly as good as it would on a high-end gaming PC obviously, but for an Android-based handheld they’ve achieved something pretty remarkable.

We imagine you could just as easily stream these games in higher quality using NVIDIA’s GameStream feature, though that requires a capable PC and an always-on data connection. A native option could prove to be much more useful for folks who don’t have such flexibility or the required hardware.

half-life 2 shield

Portal is a first-person perspective puzzle shooting platformer. Try saying that 3 times fast. You use a gun that will open portals that you can walk through or send objects through to complete many different levels and challenges. It’s one of the most unique concepts ever brought to gaming, and its insurmountable Metacritic score of 90% is very well deserved.

On the flipside, Half-Life 2 is a bit long in the tooth by today’s standards, but it was one of those genre-defining games when it launched nearly a decade ago. We’re glad to say that the game has aged quite well after all this time, and it’s that level of quality that has us eternally hoping for a Half Life 3 launch to eventually happen. Half-Life 2′s biggest feat were its advanced physics and interesting weapons. None of it is too interesting to the new-age gamer, but what it was capable of was largely unheard of back when it first launched.

Whether these games alone are enough of a reason to buy a SHIELD is up to you to decide for yourself, but if you don’t already have one and you decide you want to play these classics on the go you can grab one for just $200 from Amazon right now. Already hooked up with a SHIELD? Then head to the source links for the Google Play downloads.

[Portal, Half-Life 2]

Dimple reaches funding goal on IndieGoGo, adds TPU cases to stretch goal

Posted: 12 May 2014 06:55 AM PDT

Remember that NFC-equipped sticker that we talked about last week? Its name is Dimple, and it was super close to surpassing its IndieGoGo goal in just a couple of short days. A few more days have passed since then, and those who have pledged funds will be happy to know that the goal has been reached with a ton of room to spare.

dimple tpu cases


There are a whopping 30 days left on the campaign, and now is the time to reach for stretch goals. The first goal has already been unlocked as of the time of this writing, which brings us three new colors to choose from. You’ll now be able to get the Dimple in the following colors:

  • Grey
  • Violet
  • White
  • Black
  • Cyan
  • Light Red

The next goal will be activated at $55,000, and will bring us another 3 colors that the community will help choose. Perhaps the most interesting goal will be at $70,000 — Dimple will make TPU cases with integrated NFC buttons for the Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy S5, Nexus 5, HTC One M7 and HTC One M8.

Owners of those last two devices will especially want to pay attention. Their NFC sensors are located beneath the camera, which pretty much makes it a no-sell for those who use their camera.

It’ll be interesting to see how they look to remedy this in the form of a case, so we’ll be rooting for Dimple to reach that $70,000 goal before time is up. It doesn’t seem like they’ll have much trouble reaching it if these first few days are anything to go by. Haven’t pledged yet? Be sure to head to IndieGoGo to throw some funds down if you want to help the project reach these new, exciting heights.

[Thanks, Lucy!]

Did Samsung really ship 10 million Galaxy S5 units in 25 days? Report says so

Posted: 12 May 2014 05:57 AM PDT

It looks like Samsung may have outdone themselves in a way that even they couldn’t have imagined. New reports out of their hometown of South Korea suggest the company has surpassed 10 million Samsung Galaxy S5 shipments in just 25 days. This would be the first time they’ve done so in that little amount of time.

Samsung Galaxy S5 wood DSC05784

Here’s how the numbers stack up, if true:

  1. Samsung Galaxy S5: 10 million units in 25 days
  2. Samsung Galaxy S4: 10 million units in 30 days
  3. Samsung Galaxy S3: 10 million units in 50 days
  4. Samsung Galaxy S2: 10 million units in 5 months
  5. Samsung Galaxy S: 10 million units in 7 months

Before we awe at the numbers, it’s important to remember that shipped and sell-through numbers are two different things. “Shipped” only refers to the amount that retailers and carriers have ordered to put on store shelves, while “sell-through” is what’s actually going into consumers’ hands. There’s no telling what the latter number looks like right now.

That aside, shipped is as good as sold to Samsung, as they no doubt feel like those carriers and retailers will be able to move those units in the months ahead with no issues.

It’s also worth noting that this is the first device Samsung has simultaneously launched in over 100 countries on the same day, which is a very impressive feat all on its own. That tidbit would explain how they were able to ship so many in such a short time span compared to last year’s model (which has reportedly sold over 40 million units to date last we checked).

It doesn’t seem like anyone or anything will be able to stop this Samsung train anytime soon. Despite cries on the internet of the device’s subpar design, it’s selling well. Despite tons of techies complaining about the “ugly” and laggy user interface, it’s selling well. Despite the likes of HTC, LG and Sony putting forth their best work ever, it’s selling well.

It’s needless to say that Samsung can look at these numbers and feel gratified that there is only one other manufacturer that can even dream of doing the same (and that manufacturer doesn’t even make an Android device).

We’ll be awaiting the full and formal celebratory workup from Samsung in the weeks to come. In the meantime, be sure to check out our review of the Samsung Galaxy S5 to see what the company has done to make a device that can sell so well, and join many others over AndroidForums.com to take part in the exciting discussions going on about the phone every single day.

[Hankyung via UberGizmo]