Samsung Galaxy Tab S with AMOLED touchscreen and fingerprint sensor coming, specs get detailed
May05

Samsung Galaxy Tab S with AMOLED touchscreen and fingerprint sensor coming, specs get detailed

Samsung loves using AMOLED touchscreens for its smartphones, as you may know. All of the company’s flagship offerings have had displays with that particular technology, but the situation has been very different when it comes to tablets. In September 2011, the Korean company launched what has so far been its one and only tablet to come with an AMOLED screen, the Galaxy Tab 7.7. Since then, we’ve only had constantly recurring rumors that a new AMOLED tablet is coming, but that hasn’t happened yet. However, it looks like 2014 will in fact be the year when Samsung will finally bring back AMOLED displays for tablets. This was said last month with regard to a 10.5-inch device, but apparently there will be another AMOLED-touting offering in Samsung’s tablet portfolio. The two will be called Galaxy Tab S, to differentiate them from the ‘vanilla’ Galaxy Tab line (lower-midrange), as well as from the Galaxy Tab Pro tablets (high-end, but with LCD screens). We’ll get an 8.4-inch Galaxy Tab S alongside the 10.5″ device. Both will come with a screen resolution of 2,560×1,600, marking the first time an AMOLED panel had such a high resolution. This amount of pixels matches that seen in the Tab Pro (and Note Pro) line, so you can imagine that the rest of the specs will be top notch too. The Galaxy Tab S tablets are said to each sport an octa-core Samsung Exynos 5420 processor with 4 ARM Cortex-A15 cores clocked at up to 1.9 GHz and 4 ARM Cortex-A7 cores clocked at up to 1.3 GHz, a 6-core Mali T628 GPU with 533 MHz clock speed, 3 GB of RAM, an 8 MP rear camera with 1080p Full HD video recording, a 2.1 MP front camera, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, GPS, an IR blaster, and the same fingerprint scanner as seen in the Galaxy S5 smartphone. The fingerprint sensor will be embedded in the Home button, and it will allow you to unlock the tablets, pay for stuff using PayPal, login to Samsung apps, create private folders, and, in an extension of Google’s multi-user support built into Android for tablets, you’ll be able to assign fingerprints to each user. So when a particular user swipes the sensor, he or she will be automatically taken to his or her account, home screen, and so on. In terms of design, you should expect back covers with a pattern reminiscent of that first seen on the Galaxy S5, while the general form factor of the tablets will resemble that of the Tab 4 devices that were recently unveiled – with much slimmer bezels, though. The Galaxy Tab...

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Cheap Acer Iconia One 7 and Acer Iconia Tab 7 tablets unveiled
Apr30

Cheap Acer Iconia One 7 and Acer Iconia Tab 7 tablets unveiled

Today Acer announced a couple of new tablets, namely the Iconia One 7 and the Iconia Tab 7. The former of those is the tablet that we know as the leaked Acer B1-730, the successor to the B1-720 that strangely isn’t actually that old – it only got unveiled in January. Perhaps Acer is trying to send us the message that the mobile world moves fast. Or something like that. Anyway, the new Iconia One 7 is better than its predecessor in every way, so we’re all for such rapid portfolio updates. The Acer Iconia One 7 (B1-730) has a 7-inch 1,280×800 touchscreen, a 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2560 processor, 1 GB of RAM, 8 GB of internal storage, microSD card support, a 5 MP rear camera, a secondary front-facing camera, Wi-Fi, and a 3,700 mAh battery. It runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, though an update to version 4.4 KitKat has been promised. The Iconia One 7 will be available in black, red, white, blue, and pink. In the Americas, it will arrive in June for $129.99, while Europe, the Middle East, and Africa it will be out in May for €139. The Acer Iconia Tab 7 is another 7-incher, this one though coming with phone call functionality – presumably for those who think that even a 6-inch phablet is too small for their taste. The Iconia Tab 7 has a 7-inch 1,280×800 touchscreen (except in Mexico, where the resolution will be just 1,024×600), a quad-core MediaTek CPU, 3G support, Wi-Fi, microSD card slot, and 6-hour battery life. It runs Android 4.4 KitKat from day one, which is certainly welcome, but Acer hasn’t detailed the rest of its specs. From the press images though it’s clear that it has both a rear camera and a front-facing snapper. The Acer Iconia Tab 7 will be offered in Latin America, other emerging markets, and parts of Europe. In the latter it will cost €149 and will launch in May, whereas in Mexico it will be priced at 1,990 pesos (which is about $151 or €110 at the current exchange rates), and is set to arrive sometime in June. These are clearly not going to be high-performing tablets, but their prices sort of make up for all their disadvantages in terms of specs. If you want to buy a new Android tablet and your budget is limited to, say, $150, then either of these will be a decent choice. However if you can spare a few more bucks, it’s a good idea to get the Nexus 7 instead. It has better specs and much better software...

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Sprint LG G Flex and Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Android 4.4 KitKat updates now out
Apr29

Sprint LG G Flex and Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Android 4.4 KitKat updates now out

The Android 4.4 KitKat updates keep on coming… to devices near you, hopefully. This time around we’re talking about Sprint’s LG G Flex and Verizon’s Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition. Both of these are now in the process of receiving updates to the latest version of Google’s mobile operating system. If you own an LG G Flex bought from Sprint, know that the KitKat rollout is coming over-the-air, but it’s staggered. All G Flex units should get a notification that the update is available by May 7. When you get that notification, you can download and install the software straight on your smartphone. After applying the update, you’ll be running software version LS995ZV6. The only new thing about this version seems to be the underlying KitKat update, with no LG-specific additions this time around (not that that’s a bad thing, by the way). The LTE-capable version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition sold by Verizon is also getting a taste of KitKat, and this is also rolling out starting today. The update brings with it Immersive Mode for better full screen viewing, faster multitasking, cloud print service support, Multi-User Mode, and a bunch of bug fixes. The full details of the update are available from Verizon in this PDF. After applying the update, you’ll be running software version KOT49H.P605VVRUCNC2. Via Sprint and Droid...

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Asus K01A tablet revealed by the FCC
Apr28

Asus K01A tablet revealed by the FCC

Asus has launched many Android tablets over the past few years, and recently it seems to have focused on low-cost models primarily. If you like that, well, then you’ll also appreciate that the Taiwanese company seems to be hard at work on yet another such offering. The model number is K01A, and this Asus tablet is as low-end as you can make one these days. It has a 7-inch 1,024×600 touchscreen, 4 GB of internal storage, microSD card support, a couple of cameras (one on the front, one on the back), Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, GPS, and a 3,200 mAh battery. The exact pixel count of the cameras isn’t known yet, nor is the chipset used or the amount of RAM. Or, really anything other than what you’ve just read. This limited information comes from an FCC report that has surfaced today via Phone Arena. At the moment, we also don’t know which version of Android the K01A runs. Surely some more detailed specs will leak soon, because this device is clearly on its way to the market… somewhere. We’ll bring you more about the Asus K01A as we...

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Intel-powered cheap Acer Iconia B1-730 tablet coming soon
Apr26

Intel-powered cheap Acer Iconia B1-730 tablet coming soon

Acer currently has a couple of affordable tablets that it announced in January – the A1-830 and the B1-720. The latter is apparently getting a beefed-up version very soon, even though it’s only been official for three months or so. Still, we can’t call the Iconia B1-730 a successor to the 720, since we assume both will be sold at the same time (though maybe not in the same markets). The new Acer B1-730 tablet may be marketed as Acer Iconia One 7, at least in Germany. That’s where all of the leaked information that you’re about to read comes from (alongside the images, naturally). And it’s the pricing for Germany that got leaked too. The Iconia B1-730 will cost just €139 over there, so you can’t say it’s not going to be affordable. What do you get for that amount of cash? A 7-inch 1,280×800 touchscreen, a 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Atom Z2560 processor, 1 GB of RAM, 8 or 16 GB of internal storage, microSD card support, a 5 MP camera, Wi-Fi, and a 3,700 mAh battery. It will be 10 mm thick and will weigh 320 grams. It will obviously run Android, though which exact version remains a mystery for now. It’s interesting to see an Intel processor at this price point. Intel is trying harder and harder to make it in the mobile world, no doubt. Clearly this Acer tablet isn’t for the spec-lovers out there, but it may be a good fit for a more mainstream audience, so to speak. We assume it will launch outside of Germany too, but it’s unclear where. Via...

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 line will be available in the US on May 1, pre-orders start tomorrow
Apr23

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 line will be available in the US on May 1, pre-orders start tomorrow

On April 1 (of all days), Samsung finally made the fourth generation Galaxy Tab line official. It comprises of three members, the Galaxy Tab 4 7.0, the Galaxy Tab 4 8.0, and the Galaxy Tab 4 10.1. All of these tablets will become available in the US on May 1, so exactly one month after their announcement. Pre-orders for all three Wi-Fi-only models start tomorrow at Samsung.com, Amazon.com, Best Buy, Fry’s, Office Depot, OfficeMax, PC Richard and Son, Sears, and Tiger Direct. The Wi-Fi-only Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 will cost $199.99. The 8-inch tablet will go for $269.99, and the 10.1-inch offering is priced at $349.99. As for versions with 4G LTE mobile data connectivity, these will be coming during the summer. Verizon will be offering the 8-inch and 10-inch tablets, Sprint will go with the 7-incher, and T-Mobile will have just the Galaxy Tab 4 8.0. AT&T will be in on the action too, though for now it’s unclear which SKUs it will sell. The Galaxy Tab 4 tablets are certainly affordable, though their specs aren’t top of the line either. Still, offering a decent user experience they may sell...

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HTC Nexus 8 rumored again, coming in Q3
Apr21

HTC Nexus 8 rumored again, coming in Q3

Many times so far it has been rumored that Google would release an 8-inch Nexus tablet this year. Some rumors said it would serve as the successor to the 2013 Nexus 7 made by Asus, others talked about an 8.9-inch offering possibly being sold alongside a new 7-incher. It might just be the former option that materializes. And, unlike what many past mumblings have said, it apparently will be HTC, not Asus, making this Nexus 8 for Google. Asus has made the two Nexus 7 iterations for the search giant, so its name was used in connection with this new project a few times, but apparently the company wants to push its own-brand tablets this year and didn’t agree to Google’s terms for the Nexus 8 (it looks like Google wants to have all the “initiative” during development). So Google went to HTC, and this time it didn’t get rejected (the story goes that before contracting Asus for the first Nexus 7, Google asked HTC to do it but the company was too busy pushing its smartphones and declined). The Nexus 8 will sport “a new design”, whatever that might mean, and the infamous “sources from the upstream supply chain” say it will be out sometime during the third quarter (so July to September). Finally, it’s been said that Google is “not very aggressive” about this Nexus 8 tablet, since the two generations of the Nexus 7 served their purpose of making Android tablets mainstream. Hence, the Nexus 8 launching this year may be the last Nexus tablet. As the story around this tablet has shifted so many times until now, it’s clearly a good idea not to take anything you read about it too seriously, at least until two consecutive rumors manage to fully agree with each other. Via...

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Android 4.4 KitKat update now rolling out
Apr17

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition Android 4.4 KitKat update now rolling out

Samsung has been pushing out a lot of KitKat updates to its wares recently, and the latest in line to receive Google’s latest mobile operating system is the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition. This tablet was launched last September alongside the Galaxy Note 3 phablet, which was the first Samsung device to get an update to Android 4.4 KitKat. That happened a few months ago, and now it’s its bigger sibling’s turn. The update is currently out only in Colombia and only for the Wi-Fi-only variant of the tablet (bearing the model number SM-P600). That said, the rollout is sure to expand very soon to many more countries and hopefully to the 4G-enabled versions as well. The update comes to your tablet over-the-air, so you’ll be notified when it’s ready to download and install. Because it’s a staggered rollout, it might take a while before your particular tablet gets it. Don’t panic, though, for it is on the way now. Samsung generally releases such new updates in one territory and for one model first, assesses how the update procedure is going, and if no problems arise and no horrible bugs are found then it’s made available everywhere, but slowly. So you do still need to be patient, unless you’re in Colombia that is. Via...

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Microsoft Surface 2 with 4G LTE now up for pre-order in the UK, ships on May 8
Apr10

Microsoft Surface 2 with 4G LTE now up for pre-order in the UK, ships on May 8

After having gone on sale in the US first last month, the Microsoft Surface 2 with LTE support is preparing to land in the UK. The tablet, which was only officially announced one day before its release in the US, can now be pre-ordered in the UK. If you’re interested in getting one, you can do what’s necessary over at Microsoft’s own online store for the UK. The price you’ll need to pay to receive a Surface 2 complete with 4G mobile data connectivity is £539, VAT included of course. The tablet comes with 64 GB of built-in storage space. Microsoft says it will start shipping pre-orders on May 8, which is also the day on which you’ll be able to find the Surface 2 4G in more places – high-street retailers such as Dixons, for example. The Surface 2 with LTE comes with 200 GB of OneDrive storage valid for two years, as well as unlimited minutes for calling landlines and Wi-Fi hotspot access for one year via Skype. More than 60 countries are included in the ‘unlimited minutes to landlines’ bit, and Skype boasts more than 2 million hotspot locations all over the world – all of which you’ll be able to use for free for 12 months after you purchase one of these...

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LG G Pad 8.3 now getting Android 4.4 KitKat update in the US and Europe
Apr10

LG G Pad 8.3 now getting Android 4.4 KitKat update in the US and Europe

Late last month, the LG G Pad 8.3 started receiving the update to Android 4.4 KitKat, but only in the company’s home country of South Korea. Rolling out the new bits to more places in the world seemed inevitable back then, and indeed it has now happened. Owners of the G Pad 8.3 in both the US and Europe can now run the newest version of Android on their tablets. If you’re in Europe, the update may come over-the-air, which means the only thing you have to do to check if it’s available is go to Settings > About and find the ‘Check for updates’ thing to tap. That is, of course, supposing that your G Pad 8.3 hasn’t already notified you that an update is waiting. In the US however, it looks like for now you have to use LG’s desktop software to get the update. Just locate LG’s support website, download the company’s desktop PC software, then use that to download the update and transfer it to your tablet. It’s a more convoluted procedure, sure, but it does mean you’ll get the update sooner than other folks in the US of A. We assume LG will send out an OTA update soon too, for those who simply can’t be bothered to do all of the above. Via Android...

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