Just bought a shiny new Galaxy S4? Showing off your sleek new HTC One? Holding it down with a BlackBerry Z10? Tapping away on a new Q10? Bucking the trend with a Sony Xperia ZL?
We know you love your phones, otherwise you wouldn’t put up with our blathering all week long. We also know you love talking about your new phones!
After having spent a bunch of time with these new releases, we’ve formed our own opinions, which you can read in our many recent reviews.
The “world’s first professional-grade tablet” might finally be receiving that long-awaited OS update. BlackBerry PlayBook users have been promised an upgrade from the current PlayBook OS to the new BlackBerry 10 OS. Rumours pointed toward Thorsten Heins, BlackBerry’s CEO, to update the masses during their BlackBerry Live developer conference last week, but no such talks occurred.
An astute visitor to the Thailand Mobile Expo noticed something strange and new about a Nexus 4 rigged up to a demonstration panel: it was running Android 4.3.
The long-rumoured new version of Jelly Bean was expected to be announced last week at Google I/O but instead we got a bunch of new developer tools for all versions dating back to Android 2.2. Still, there hasn’t been a new Android version announced since November, so it’s about time for at least a modest refresh.
Despite denying its existence, rumours persist of an HTC One “Google Edition”. During the Google I/O keynote address earlier this month, Google announced it was partnering with Samsung to bring a Galaxy S4 to Google Play that runs vanilla Android. While that particular device will only be available in the United States, it stoked the rumours that other manufacturers such as HTC would be getting in on the “almost-Nexus” game.
During the keynote, one of HTC’s PR mavens intimated that there would be a similar model of the One released with stock Android, presumably a newer version than is currently running on the device. But official channels quashed the rumour, leading to a short cessation of any talk.
In recent days, though, several sites including Geek.com and Android Central have independently confirmed that such a device does exist, and will be announced in the coming weeks. This news comes after a string of negative press, including several executives leaving the company, news of relatively underwhelming sales of the One, and indications that its Facebook phone, the First, has been unceremoniously discontinued.
It’s likely that HTC is going ahead with the project after seeing the positive reaction to the stock Galaxy S4, aware that there is a large market in North America for devices running unblemished Android and, perhaps more importantly, ones that receive updates directly from Google.
One thing to keep in mind about an HTC One “Google Edition” is that it will unlikely be sold in Canada. The same thing is true of the HTC One Developer Edition and the upcoming Play Store Galaxy S4, so you’re going to need a source in the United States to obtain one.
If HTC does release a One running stock Android, would you buy one?
Gmail for Android has been rumoured to receive a redesign for some time, and some thought that it would even arrive during Google I/O last week. Instead, we were issued a number of refreshed Google apps, including Play Music, Play Magazines, Play Books, Google Earth and others. Among all these refreshed apps was a unified look, with a left-side navigation bar that includes three lines at the top left — referred to internally at Google as the “hamburger.”
Android Police was looking through some slides from just-released I/O developer sessions and came across a slide showing a newly-updated Gmail for Android interface with, as you may guess, the same left-side sliding bar.
The new look does away with the bottom access bar, bringing the Compose and Search icons to the top right of the screen. There no drop-down action bar to switch between labels, either, as all the main app navigation has been moved to the slide-in menu.
Gmail for Android, while an advanced and competent email client, hasn’t received a significant redesign since October 2011, when Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was introduced. Since then, the company has largely unified its design language, both for its own apps and for third-party apps across the ecosystem. This upcoming design refresh may look minor, but it’s a significant step forward in terms of functionality and ease-of-use.
Hopefully it gets released soon. What do you think of the upcoming Gmail redesign?
Source: Android Police
The Huawei Ascend P6 is one of the industry’s worst-kept secrets, having been leaked numerous times before its actual announcement. Today we have the first glimpse of the phone in high-resolution renders thanks to evleaks, and the Chinese OEM looks to be taking a page out of Samsung’s book by releasing the 6.2mm phone in multiple colours.
Seemingly coming in black, white and pink, the Ascend P6 won’t knock anyone over with its specs, but it does promise to be a fairly well-rounded mid-range smartphone. The device, which looks from the sides like a thinner, taller iPhone 4S, could be announced in mid-June, based on reports of a Huawei press conference.
If you thought the new BlackBerry Q10 was priced a tab bit too high – which retails for $199.99 on a 3-year – then Best Buy might be a good pit stop today. The big box retailer has priced drop the Rogers, Bell and TELUS QWERTY/Touch BB10 device by $50 to $149.99 on a 3-year, but the offer is only valid today (May 24th).
A day after bringing its native version to parity with the beta — and all the nice new features that come with it — Google has once again iterated Chrome beta for Android.
Now on base version 28, the same as the desktop browser, Chrome beta for Android brings in-house language translation to the table, so webpages in languages other than your native tongue will be prompted to be changed. This is a really handy feature that we’ve come to take for granted on the desktop side of things, so having it on mobile is truly great.
In this new version, tablet users will also benefit from the fullscreen browsing experience that phone users have been enjoying since the previous beta. There’s also a new bandwidth-saving feature that Google promises will save up to 50% of data usage on the average cellular connection. It does this by routing traffic through its SPDY proxy, compressing images and other content before sending it to the user. This was previously enabled only through the chrome://flags address, but has since been added to the main branch of Chrome for Android.
Download Chrome beta for Android.
Via: Chrome Releases
Apple’s new iOS 7 will be unveiled at the upcoming WWDC on June 10th. Rumours are that the OS will receive a complete “software overhaul” and scrap the “realistic images” in favour of a “flat” design. 9to5Mac, who’s been incredibly reliable over the years, has written an in-depth piece from insider sources about the upcoming features within iOS 7.
The site reports that the OS will come with a few new features, but mostly sport design enhancements that will see it be “black, white, and flat all over.” Apparently Jony Ive, Apple’s SVP of Industrial Design, wanted to shed the “texture-heavy” iOS of past years (designed by Steve Jobs and former iOS chief Scott Forstall) by making “his mark on every corner of the operating system.”
Some other notable takeaways are that the lock screen will “drop the shiny, transparent time bar on the top of the Lock screen in exchange for a shine-free, black interface. Additionally, the square-grid for entering a pin code has been replaced with round, black buttons with white text and white borders.” In addition, the drop down notifications will be changed to a dark grey/black colour with white text. Apple is apparently also testing new panels/widgets that could see easy access to WiFi, Airplane Mode, and Bluetooth (like on Android).
It’s also rumoured that Apple will possibly announce a new iPhone with upgraded specs (faster processor, better camera, more colour options). Everything will be officially revealed at WWDC in a couple weeks.
Samsung’s Galaxy S4 surpassed 10 million in “global channel sales” earlier this week. This milestone made it the fastest selling Android in history, which Samsung claims is selling at a rate of four units per second. The GS4 is available on every Canadian carrier – Rogers, Bell, TELUS, Fido, Virgin, Koodo, WIND, Mobilicity, Videotron, SaskTel, Eastlink, MTS – in both Black Mist and White Frost.
Samsung also confirmed a few new colours are coming, but no specifics for fine our land yet. In their global press release Samsung said they’re “planning to introduce more color variations to meet various consumer tastes and preferences. In addition to the currently available White Mist and Black Forest, new color iterations will be added this summer, including Blue Arctic and Red Aurora, followed by Purple Mirage and Brown Autumn.”
TELUS previously stated they will launch “additional color options to follow later this year,” so we could see at least one of these new flavours arrive on their network. Down in the United States, AT&T opened up pre-orders for Red Aurora, so this colour might be one of the first to arrive here. We’ve reached out to Samsung Canada more details and timing.