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Google’s Dianne Hackborn talks about hardware acceleration in Android, says it had it in it all along

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Every time an Android device skipped a frame someone somewhere blamed it on the lack of hardware acceleration. Ice Cream Sandwich was hailed as the first iteration of Android to bring hardware acceleration, even though Honeycomb has been doing it all along so did the older versions of Android, to some extent.

As you can see, there is a lot of misinformation regarding this particular topic and so to address this, Google’s Dianne Hackborn decided to write a lengthy post on Google+ and put the issue to rest once and for all. She touched upon multiple points and I’ll attempt to summarize the important ones below. Read more »

LG Nitro HD completed our battery trial, here are the results [TEST]

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The LG Nitro HD for AT&T Wireless is the second smartphone with an HD screen to take a run on our battery test track. The HTC Rezound was the first device we tested with this type of screen and its achievement did not impress. We were thus curious to see how another competitor with similar spec sheet will fare in the same conditions.

At a first glance, the 1830mAh Li-Ion battery of the LG Nitro HD looks Read more »

Huawei U8850 Vision lands at ours, sprays some SPB UI magic around [VIDEO]

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Yet another Android smartphone joined our review queue and here we are, rushing to give you some quick first impressions of it to give you an idea of what to expect. The Huawei U8850 Vision is a mid-range Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread smartphone that comes with surprisingly sophisticated design for its price.

You probably noticed that the back of the Huawei U8850 Vision is really reminiscent of some HTC smartphones, but you may be surprised to know that Huawei also matched their Taiwanese rivals for build quality and feel of the materials used. Read more »

NOVO7 is a $99 Android 4.0 ICS tablet with a 7″ capacitive screen

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One of the beauties of the open and free nature of Android is that it allows the creation of very affordable devices. The Chinese manufacturer MIPS technology seized this opportunity and created the NOVO7 – a 7″ Ice Cream Sandwich slate that only costs $99.

With its 1GHz single-core CPU and 444 MHz GPU (of unknown kind), the NOVO7 will hardly be a benchmark champion, but that’s hardly its purpose. What matters is that it comes with a capacitive touchscreen (most ultra-cheap slates still use resistive screens), and can play all kinds of video formats up to 1080p resolution. Read more »

Xbox 360 getting a Metro UI-styled dashboard tomorrow

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The Xbox 360 fall update is coming tomorrow and it will bring tons of new stuff. But the first and most important change is the complete interface overhaul. Microsoft has put the Metro UI in charge.

It’s hardly a surprise to see the Metro UI here though – after all, it is Microsoft’s “all-in” both in the desktop and mobile versions of Windows. And I think the dashboard has never been so awesome. Read more »

A newly developed smudge repellent coating may save you the trouble of cleaning your smartphone

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Touch smartphones and tablets are all the rage these days, but there’s no denying the fact that working with them intensively makes a real mess out of their fromnt glass panels. Some manufacturer apply some kind of smudge-resistant coating to their screens to make cleaning easier, but it’s not a perfect solution.

Scientist from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz have stepped up with a claim that they have developed a new smudge repellent coating that could eradicate the problem altogether. Read more »

Desktop Ivy Bridge processors reportedly getting delayed again, this time until Q2 2012

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Ivy Bridge seems to be moving away from us every time we get closer – Intel has reportedly told its partners that their next generation desktop CPUs won’t be hitting the market in March-April as previously thought, but instead will come out some time in Q2 2012.

The new processors feature several key improvements that make it worth the wait – or it did at least when we thought they were coming sooner. Read more »

Future smartphones and tablets will allow you to physically feel the textures shown on screen [VIDEO]

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We as humans have this great gift of being aware what surrounds us by our vision and hearing, but we are also blessed with the ability to touch and feel everything around us. Soon enough we’ll be able to use our smartphones and tablets in a whole different way thanks to a company called Senseg and their revolutionary touchscreen technology.

What Senseg have manufactured is a new type of touchscreen that allows you to feel the virtual surface, texture or pattern that’s on your device’s screen. Read more »

Windows Phone already feeling the heat of software piracy, Microsoft fights back by remotely deleting apps

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Due to its relatively low popularity Windows Phone was having far less trouble with piracy until recently. Now though, Nokia joined the party and changed a couple of things. The interest towards the platform spiked and that drew the attention of the hacking community.

One of the hackers even went as far as submitting the XAP file of a normally paid navigation app to the Windows Market place as theirs offering it for free. What’s even more, the app was approved and was available for download for a short time. Read more »

Androidland launches in Melbourne courtesy Google and Telstra, lets you get your droid on

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Google and Australian telecommunications company Telstra have joined forces to launch the world’s first store dedicated to Android. Called the Androidland, it’s not just a place to buy Android devices but also where you can experience all the different features in the OS and just enjoy yourself.

There is a lot to do in this Android-themed store, decked in the traditional Android green color. You can play Angry Birds on a giant touchscreen display, Androidify yourself or check out the world on a massive display using Google Earth. They have even gone as far as to have a gingerbread scent in the store and a grass scent where there is grass. And then of course, you have handsets from all the major manufacturers, which you can try out for yourself. Read more »

Verizon Galaxy Nexus to come with bloatware, will let you disable them

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The mythical creature known as the Verizon Galaxy Nexus has been spotted in the wild and much to the surprise of its spotters was found running some Verizon apps. As you may know, the Nexus phones have been known to come with a stock ROM from Google with nothing but Google’s own applications installed. The Galaxy Nexus will be the first to break this tradition and have some bloatware courtesy of Verizon, tarnishing the name of the Nexus brand forever.

It’s not all bad news, however. If you may recall, Ice Cream Sandwich comes with the ability to disable unwanted applications from the Settings menu. Read more »

Google employees taste Ice Cream Sandwich on their Nexus S, mere mortals not far from getting it on theirs

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Ever since Google announced the Galaxy Nexus and along with it Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, those of us with a Nexus S have been salivating at the chance of getting it on our own devices. Unfortunately, Google did not give any official date as to when the update will be made available for download.

It seems now, however, that it won’t be too long now. A Google employee posted on Google+ that he got the Ice Cream Sandwich on his Nexus S and that ‘it’s looking great’. The update was later on deleted from the site but you can see a screenshot below. Read more »

Apple loses legal battle against Samsung in the US, could still win the war

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Apple had filed for a preliminary injunction against Samsung in the US court to block the sales of the Galaxy devices. Unfortunately for Apple, the court has declined to grant the said injunction, which means Samsung can continue to sell their devices in the US. However, the legal war between the two companies is far from over and Apple could still swing this to their advantage.

As it happens, the reason Apple failed to get an injunction against Samsung is that Apple could not prove to the court that Samsung infringing on their patents could cost them irreparable damages. Read more »

Philips launches W920 Android smartphone, packs a 4.3-inch display and a 5 megapixel camera

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Philips has not had much of a success in the mobile phone segment. Many people don’t even know that they exist in this segment and you can’t really blame them for that. Philips mobile phones so far have been mediocre at best and if you see one you wouldn’t even remember its name in T-minus 1 minute.

Now, however, they have launched a new Android smartphone that is likely to stay in your memory for a bit longer. Say hello to the Philips W920. Read more »

Nokia updates Live View app, includes performance enhancements and a new List View

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You may have heard or seen Nokia’s Live View app, an augmented reality software that shows you names and location of objects around you using the phone’s camera, GPS, compass and accelerometer. It’s similar to the Layar app found on iOS and Android.

The app has now been updated and brings performance enhancements, along with some bug fixes. Also in the list of changes is a new list view mode (seen below) other than the camera viewfinder mode and a tutorial to guide you through the Live View usage and feature set. Read more »