• Rumors

    by Published on 07-05-2016 03:30 PM
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    If there's one source I believe for Nexus leaks, it's Android Police. After posting specs for both upcoming devices—the smaller Sailfish and the larger Marlin—they've just posted a render that they say can be applied to the both of them.

    Here's author David Ruddock with a quick tour:

    "On the front we see the single earpiece speaker, front-facing camera, a small sensor cluster, and that's about it. On the back, you've got some antenna bands on the bottom (horizontal) and top (vertical, off-center), with that big glossy pane likely serving as a window for NFC and other radios. The three holes next to the camera are a bit of a mystery at this point, but our guess is that two of them relate to the camera (auto-focus and perhaps a secondary sensor of some kind) and one is likely a secondary microphone."

    Also interesting is that both made-by-HTC devices will sport an all-aluminum body this year. And what's really interesting is a rumored (but not confirmed) "electric blue" version—perhaps to match the iPhone 7?

    AP gives this render a "confidence level" of 8/10. Assuming they're right, what do you make of the new Nexus(es)? ...
    by Published on 06-27-2016 06:25 AM
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    Entirely believable and somewhat questionable.

    I'll start with the almost sure thing first. On Saturday Evan Blass tweeted this graphic, giving more weight to the rumours that Samsung will be skipping the Galaxy Note 6 and going straight to 7 this year, to better compete against the forthcoming iPhone 7 and fall in line with the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge.

    Some specs were leaked as well:

    • 5.7 inch, 2560 x 1440 pixel AMOLED display
    • IP68 waterproof design
    • Iris scanner
    • 12MP rear and 5MP front cameras
    • 64GB of storage
    • microSD card slot
    • black, silver, and blue color options

    The latest iteration of the original phablet is expected to be revealed on August 2nd. I think Blass may have leaked that too. ...
    by Published on 06-24-2016 06:00 AM
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    So you're probably getting tired of me writing about the OnePlus 3. Well, you know what? I'm getting tired of me writing about the OnePlus 3. So here's something a little different: a very early peek at one of the new Nexus phones coming later this year from HTC.

    It's been confirmed from multiple sources that HTC are on tap to be the next Nexus OEM, producing two different models for Google: the T50 "Sailfish" and T55 "Marlin". A trusted source has apparently provided Android Police with the specs for what would seem to be the smaller of the two devices.

    AP gives this leak a confidence level of 8/10. They have an excellent track record when it comes to Nexus leaks, so I likewise feel confident in reposting them for you here. ...
    by Published on 06-23-2016 08:29 AM
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    Just when I was wondering if Blackberry was going to release a Priv follow up, I got news of 3 new devices that they have in the pipeline; the Argon, Neon and Mercury. All run Android. Sorry no pics of these devices (that's a Priv in the picture).

    Blackberry Neon:
    • touch only
    • $0 (400 MSRP)
    • Qualcomm 8952 (a 617 like the Moto G4 Plus)
    • 3GB RAM
    • 5.2" 1080P display
    • 16GB storage
    • 13MP rear camera
    • 8MP front camera
    • 2610mAh battery
    • Quick charge 2
    • aluminum frame
    • soft touch rear casing
    • Cat 6LTE
    • 130g
    • aimed at consumers and enterprise
    • August 2016 launch


    Blackberry Argon:
    • touch only
    • $200 (600-700MSRP)
    • Qualcomm 8996 (a Snapdragon 820 "lite")
    • 4GB RAM
    • 5.5" 1440P
    • 32GB storage
    • 21MP rear camera
    • fingerprint reader (finally)
    • 8MP front camera
    • 3000mAh battery
    • Quick Charge 3
    • USB type-C
    • aimed at consumers and enterprise
    • October 2016 launch


    Blackberry Mercury:
    • design like the Blackberry Classic:
    • QWERTY keyboard
    • Qualcomm 8953 (Snapdragon 625)
    • 4.5" screen with 3:2 display ratio
    • 3GB RAM
    • 32GB storage
    • 18MP rear camera
    • 8MP front camera
    • 3400mAh battery
    • Quick Charge 3.0
    • "High precision & Craftsmanship"
    • aluminum housing
    • aimed at enterprise
    • February 2017 launch


    To me, 4 things stand out; first, the price point of the Neon and Argon seem very reasonable. While the Priv is a nice device it's just priced way too high and probably falls off a lot of people's shopping lists because of that. Traditionally you paid quite a premium to get a Blackberry logo but that looks like that's changing.

    Secondly, while the Neon and Argon are still a few months off, their specs will probably be more in-line with the rest of the market. Typically Blackberry specs lagged the market by about 6 months but these ones look to be much more competitive. I mean August isn't far off and they probably could have gotten away with just 2GB of RAM. Then again, while I didn't hear word of it I hope it shows up a fingerprint reader.

    While the Mercury is still way, way off it's good to know that the QWERTY only Blackberry isn't going away. A power sipping Snapdragon 625 coupled with a smaller 4.5" display and a large 3400mAh battery should make for some epic battery life too.

    Lastly, all 3 devices run Android. I guess there just isn't enough demand for a Blackberry OS device. ...
    by Published on 05-25-2016 06:32 AM
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    The other day while rummaging through a drawer I came across a pair of bright red USB cables and thought to myself: "What a shame about OnePlus."

    Despite a controversial marketing campaign and the invite system that everyone loved to hate, their first smartphone was actually pretty good; if nothing else the OnePlus One at least showed the world that in 2014 an extra 32GB of onboard storage didn't have to cost an arm and a leg.

    Then came the OnePlus 2, which pretty much ruined the brand for Western markets—this "2016 flagship killer" (first sold in 2015) shipped with a USB-C cable that wasn't up to basic spec. It was quickly followed by the OnePlus X, a device that no one asked for and few customers seemed to want.

    But Carl Pei and company haven't thrown in the towel just yet. Their OnePlus 3 will be officially unveiled on June 14th. And this one will at least have NFC. ...
    by Published on 05-16-2016 06:20 AM
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    As an addendum to last week's post, here are two new press renders of the 4th generation Moto G—sorry, Moto Gs. There are two of them.

    First up is the XT1622. According to Android Central it's launching in India tomorrow, but has already received FCC certification for the USA. "But wait," you say, "I thought the new Moto G had a physical home button/fingerprint reader..." Nope, apparently that's a feature of its bigger brother, the XT1642—Otherwise known as the G4 Plus. ...
    by Published on 05-09-2016 06:25 AM
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    If these renders are to be believed, we now know what 2016's Moto X, Moto G and Moto Droid look like. This first image is supposedly the Moto X. The images were published by a Google+ account called hellomotoHK; they were republished by Android Police, so presumably there's some legitimacy to them.

    New to the X is a physical home button with what will almost surely be a fingerprint reader. There's also a curious 16-pin assembly on the back. Finally, there's a cutout in the bottom lens assembly that might possibly house a dual LED flash, but at the very least will attempt to make users feel better about the flat tire on their Moto 360 smartwatch. Yeah, I went there. ...
    by Published on 03-21-2016 06:40 AM
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    With LG and Samsung's flagships now officially official, let's take a look at what HTC has planned for Q2 2016.

    Here are some leaked press images for the HTC 10. Going clockwise from the top left we've got Carbon Gray, Glacier Silver (White), Glacier Silver (Black) and Topaz Gold. The date shown on all four screens is Tuesday, April 19th—widely believed to be when the phone will be announced. I guess HTC finally figured out that calling three different phones the HTC One was a tad confusing, so this forthcoming device will simply be called the HTC 10. ...
    by Published on 02-10-2016 06:55 AM
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    This morning Howard has invited me along to his 11am appointment at The iPR Group. All I really know about it is that it has something to do with Waze, a popular app for those who commute by car.

    Acquired by Google in 2013 and now feeding data into Google Maps, Waze continues to roll along as a standalone app with some unique features. The biggest differentiator is the social aspect—Wazers are encouraged to share real-time traffic info with the app and each other.

    And on the subject of sharing, I may have just unlocked the secret to this morning's mystery meeting. According to a new post on Phandroid, Waze is about to get into the ridesharing racket. ...
    by Published on 02-04-2016 06:22 AM
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    The LG G5 will make its début at Mobile World Congress on February 21st, the same day that Samsung is set to announce its Galaxy S7 and S7 edge. But if the render you see here turns out to be true, then LG's 2016 flagship will have a design unlike anything we've ever seen before.

    CNET Korea reports that the G5 will incorporate both a metal body and removable battery with the slide-out drawer that you see here. And that's not all; there are additional rumours of a "magic slot"—a proprietary expansion port to plug in accessories like an external keyboard, VR headset, audio amplifier...?

    Okay LG, you've definitely got my attention. ...
    by Published on 02-02-2016 07:05 AM
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    Remember Android Silver, the "premium" Android handset program we first heard about back in the spring of 2014? The program that was ultimately scrapped but too late to give us anything other than the decidedly un-Nexus-y Moto Nexus 6 later that year?

    This Nexus fan remembers.

    Android Silver was never officially confirmed nor denied by Google, of course. But thanks in part to some additional scoops provided to Android Police the rumours first reported by paywalled site The Information came to be accepted as fact. Now, according to that same source, Google is intent on messing with Nexus again. ...
    by Published on 02-01-2016 07:05 AM
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    Anyone waiting for the next iteration of Samsung's non-stylus flagship—and bonus "edge" variant—won't have to wait much longer. The King of Android OEMs will reveal all in a livestreamed event on Sunday, February 21st.

    As you'd expect, both press renders and specs for the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge have already been leaked. There are actually a lot of familiar things about the new Galaxy flagships, but one for me stands out in particular: a decidedly olde-timey micro-USB charging port, rather than the new USB Type C. ...
    by Published on 01-25-2016 06:15 AM
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    If this photo is to be believed, the phone on the right is Apple's forthcoming successor to the iPhone 5c. It's shown next to an iPhone 5 for comparison's sake.

    And if other rumours turn out to be true then this phone will not be released as the iPhone 6c but instead as the iPhone 5se, taking the place (and price) of the still-available iPhone 5s—possibly as early as March.

    The Dutch forums where this photo was posted has had some prior success with leaks, showing the world what turned out to be the iPad 2 display and iPad Air design. Now, from the same table under the same lamp as the iPad Air comes a pre-production iPhone 5se. Allegedly. ...
    by Published on 01-14-2016 07:22 AM
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    Still catching up on notable news stories that I saved while on vacation... This post is about the future of Motorola under its new owner, Lenovo. Keep in mind that all the pieces I've assembled here are from a single source, albeit a fairly reliable one.

    So apparently last week at the Consumer Electronics Show the following bombshell was dropped:

    At CES today, Lenovo higher-ups announced that their company, which has owned Motorola since 2014, will be phasing out the brand name.
    This was likely the worst possible news for Moto fans, as the products they've come to love over the past few years—the Moto X, Moto G and even Moto E—would be no more. On the other hand the move makes perfect sense for Moto's new owner; I despise using this term, but at the moment Lenovo has no real "brand equity" [shudder] for their mobile products in the Americas—whereas in their home market of mainland China their phones seem to be quite popular. ...
    by Published on 10-29-2015 06:35 AM
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    The good news: Apple Pay will be available to Canadian users by the end of November. The bad news: It will only be available to those users who use American Express. If you hold a VISA or MasterCard with The Bank of Montreal, Bank of Nova Scotia, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, National Bank of Canada, Royal Bank of Canada or TD Canada Trust then, for the foreseeable future, you're out of luck.

    According to The Globe and Mail negotiations between Apple and Canadian banks have been going so badly that Apple has decided to push ahead with AMEX as its sole launch partner. From what I've been following about tap-and-pay solutions in this country, that sounds about right. ...
    by Published on 10-15-2015 06:30 AM
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    Today at lunchtime I'll be tagging along with Howard to an HTC event in downtown Toronto. The timing is curious, as HTC has scheduled a big launch of something next Tuesday, October 20th in New York City. That something is widely expected to be the HTC One A9, a new flagship once thought to be targeted solely for the Chinese market, to woo would-be iPhone users there.

    Thanks to a premature listing by Orange France (since removed) we now have some official images of the device—like the one you see here—along with a price: 599.90€, which at today's rates is equal to about $686 USD or almost $884 CAD. ...
    by Published on 09-22-2015 07:26 AM
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    A new Nexus phone is a big deal in the world of Android. At the very least it runs the latest version of the OS, free of any carrier or OEM bloat. It ships unlocked and with an unlockable bootloader as well, and its history as a reference device for developers means that it will always have the best support for custom ROMs.

    And lucky us, this year we'll be treated to two new devices! ...
    by Published on 09-09-2015 07:06 AM
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    No, these aren't actual leaked product shots, just renders by designer Martin Hajek...

    Today at 10am PST Apple will be hosting an event where the new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus will almost certainly be announced. Less clear is whether or not there will be a new "budget" model to replace the two year-old 5C. Apple is apparently happy enough with sales of the 6 and 6 Plus to continue selling it alongside the new models.

    History teaches us that the 'S' iteration of an iPhone is, in broad strokes, the same hardware as the last release but with beefier internals. This time around, however, Apple will be addressing the "bendgate" issue with stronger aluminum and a possibly thicker chassis. Force Touch is expected to be a new feature on the new devices, along with a new colour option, rose pink. ...
    by Published on 09-08-2015 07:15 AM
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    Never mind the iPhone 6S, set to be announced tomorrow; rumours are already circulating about its successor, the iPhone 7—specifically, how thin it's going to be. There isn't an exact number, but MacRumors is reporting a range of 6-6.5mm, compared to the current iPhone 6/6 Plus at 6.9/7.1mm.

    Here's the top-rated comment on that post:

    I guess that means the camera will stick out even more and battery life will be less than it could be. Both perfectly acceptable trade-offs though as we have all been begging them for thinner phones after all.
    I'm going to assume that last part is sarcastic—that is, that nobody has been begging for thinner phones. Am I right? ...
    by Published on 08-31-2015 06:50 AM
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    And from Sony, no less?

    It looks like the company's smartphone releases for this week's IFA show in Berlin have already been leaked. If sources are to be believed, the new Xperia Z5 will come in three variants:

    1. The Z5 Compact, with a 4.6 inch 720p screen;
    2. The Z5, with a 5.2 inch 1080p screen;
    3. The Z5 Premium, with a 5.5 inch 3840 x 2160 pixel screen.

    That's not quite 4,000 pixels wide, but it's certainly within spec of the Ultra HD consumer format.

    Incredulous as this may seem, it's hard not to believe Olivier Terme, Sony Mobile's director of marketing, caught on-camera in a YouTube video that appeared briefly over the weekend before the inevitable DMCA takedown request. A screen cap has since been re-uploaded by someone else, so dust off that high school French and watch this one before it meets a similar fate! ...
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