• Rumors

    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! ...
    by Published on 08-24-2015 07:10 AM
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    So there was quite a bit of news for Android fans over the weekend. Let's get right to it!

    What we're looking at here is apparently the Huawei Nexus (codenamed "Angler"), showing front-firing speakers, a fingerprint scanner and a rather retro-looking camera assembly on the back. It was posted to Google+ early this morning and seems to have originated from the popular Chinese social networking service QQ. It does match up with some earlier CAD renders—except for that camera assembly.

    On the subject of fingerprint scanners... ...
    by Published on 08-19-2015 07:15 AM
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    It's a BlackBerry, but it runs Android. It has a physical qwerty keypad, but Lollipop navigation buttons as well. It's the BlackBerry Venice Slider, and if rumours are to be believed, it's coming to your carrier before Christmas.

    Famous phone leaker Evan Blass—who, for the record, was bang-on about Samsung's fall device launch—tweeted last night that the Venice would be available on all four US carriers come November. I can't imagine any reason why it wouldn't be available in Canada as well. Specs for the device are rumoured to be as follows:

    5.4 inch 2K display
    18 MP OIS rear camera (5 MP on the front)
    1.8 GHz Snapdragon 808 processor with 3 GB RAM
    Android Lollipop ...
    by Published on 08-06-2015 07:28 AM
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    What we're looking at here is the back of a prototype Nexus 6, clearly showing an onboard fingerprint sensor below the camera. The sensor was scrapped before launch, perhaps because it would have added to the already-outrageous retail price. But I digress...

    Cut to present day, where there is mounting evidence that fingerprint scanning will indeed be a thing for Nexus in 2015. Other devices already have it—notably the Samsung Galaxy S6—but if Google is indeed adding it to their Nexus line it most likely means wider support for biometric security within Google apps.

    Is this a good or bad thing? I'm honestly not sure. ...
    by Published on 08-04-2015 06:29 AM
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    The phone on the right is basically a super-sized version of the current Galaxy S6 Edge. The phone on the left? Well, that's apparently the Galaxy Note 5. Both of these devices are expected to be launched in New York on August 13th.

    The press images above were tweeted by "retired" leaker Evan Blass, along with specs for the new Note:

    - codename Noble / model SM-N920
    - Exynos 7420 SoC (4 x 2.1 GHz + 4 x 1.5 GHz)
    - 5.66 inch / 2560 x 1440 pixel screen
    - 4 GB RAM / 32 GB storage, no micro SD
    - 16 MP / 5 MP cameras
    - Android 5.1.1

    Even in this age of phablets the Note series remains unique, if only for the stylus included with every unit sold. The Note users I know tend to be a loyal bunch, and for them I suspect that this latest iteration will be yet another no-brainer upgrade. Too bad you have to run an exploit to root them. ...
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