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Jul 1, 2014

LG G3 Prime Receives Bluetooth Certification




South Korean mobile phone maker LG Electronics appears set to make official a new flavor of its flagship LG G3 smartphone, one that might arrive on shelves under the name of LG G3 Prime, and which has already started to emerge on certification sites.

The mobile phone has emerged over at Bluetooth SIG with model number F460S attached to it, and rumor has it that it is none other than the aforementioned LG G3 Prime handset. By the looks of it, LG-F460S might be a carrier version of the smartphone, as a certain LG-F460L was spotted online several days ago, also said to be the yet unannounced device. Given LG’s current model numbering scheme, we expect the smartphone to be launched at wireless carriers in South Korea, with LG-F460S headed for SK Telecom, and with LG-F460L set to land at LG U+ in the country. For those out of the loop, we should note that LG G3 Prime is expected to arrive on the market with roughly the same hardware specs as the original LG G3, but with an updated processor inside. To be more precise, the phone is said to be powered by the Snapdragon 805 chipset from Qualcomm, which would provide users not only with faster performance capabilities when compared to the original handset, but also with better data transfer speeds.

In fact, the CPU will enable LG to include support for LTE-Advanced connectivity in its smartphone, which also explains why it would arrive on shelves in South Korea, given that this is the only market where this technology has gained traction among end users. The Snapdragon 805 processor inside LG G5 Prime should be accompanied by Adreno 420 graphics, as well as by the Qualcomm MDM9635 modem (which is capable of data transfer rates of around 225 Mbps). Unfortunately, no official confirmation on the new device model has been provided as of now, but it might not be too long before one arrives.

After all, we should not forget that Samsung has already launched the Galaxy S5 Prime model in South Korea, so as to deliver the aforementioned improved features to its users. This implies that LG will make a similar move shortly, so as to ensure that its smartphones remain competitive on the local market. Rumor has it that LG G3 Prime will go official in July or August, so keep an eye on this space for additional info on the matter.

LG G3 spotted at Bluetooth SIG
Image credits to Bluetooth SIG

ZTE Nubia Z7 Leaked Photos Emerges Again




One of the smartphones that have been long rumored to become official before the end of this year is the ZTE Nubia Z7, which can now be admired in a new series of leaked photos.

The mobile phone has emerged over at cnbeta only several days before its official unveiling, supposedly set to take place on July 8 in Beijing. The handset is said to arrive on shelves with high-end hardware capabilities packed inside, while also featuring a thin, metallic body that is only 8.5mm thick. The mobile phone is expected to become available for purchase with a large, 5.5-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a full HD resolution. Moreover, rumor has it that ZTE will pack it with a quad-core processor inside, either a Snapdragon 801 or a Snapdragon 805 CPU, as well as with 2GB of RAM, so as to ensure that it offers appealing performance capabilities. ZTE Nubia Z7 is also said to arrive on shelves with 16GB of internal memory, as well as with a microSD memory card slot, so that users could add more storage to it.

On the back, the new device should feature an 8-megapixel camera, most probably capable of recording videos in full HD resolution. It would be paired with a 5MP front camera for making video calls while on the go. The specifications list of this device is also said to include dual-SIM capabilities, 4G LTE connectivity, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and a GPS receiver. The latest flavor of Android should also be loaded on top of this device right from the start. All in all, the ZTE Nubia Z7 appears poised to arrive on shelves as a high-end smartphone for the Chinese market, as no specific details on its availability outside this market have emerged as of now. Rumor has it that ZTE might launch it with a price tag of only $560 (€409) attached to it, which will certainly make it even more appealing when compared to what other handsets in its segment cost today.

Unfortunately, no official confirmation on any of the above has been provided as of now, though all on the matter should be unveiled as soon as next week, during the aforementioned launch event. What remains to be seen, however, is whether ZTE will indeed manage to attract a lot of users to its side with the new handset, as rival vendors in China will certainly react to this launch with the release of their own new high-end smartphones. Keep an eye on this space for additional details on Nubia Z7.



ZTE Nubia Z7
Images credits to cnbeta

Apple iPhone 6 Glass Leaked, Features Curvature Around the Edges




It seems that the iPhone 6 will indeed sport a “curved” display, but not in a way you might imagine. Apple isn’t bending the phone outright, but rather giving it a tapering around the edges to achieve a rounder design.

Leaked by Aussie Sonny Dickson, various images showing the glass cover of the iPhone 6 display reveal that Apple is indeed using a tapered design for the front of the device this time around. This marks a departure from the current flat glass used in the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, as well as the former models. The tapering allows the company to achieve a round design across the entire handset, as well as make it appear ultra-thin. The company has used tapering for years to hide the thickest point of its devices, something most evidenced in the iMac line and the iPad tablet computers. The images further show a relocation of the front-facing FaceTime camera. The hole that currently sits atop the earpiece in the iPhone 5/5s/5c will be located to the left side of the speaker in the iPhone 6. The cutout could also be for a sensor, though it seems far too big for anything else but a camera.

So when can we expect to see a full-fledged iPhone 6? Well, if history is any indication, we might not have to wait until the rumored September launch. Mockup artists will probably be the first to create 3D models of the thing based on this new leak. Case manufacturers will soon deliver their own “assembled” mockups by combining these screens with the cases that they’re already producing. And just before the launch we could well see a fully-assembled model leaked, as was the case in 2010 with the infamous iPhone 4 prototype left on a stool by one of Apple’s testers. However, the best bet remains Apple’s launch event in fall. Rumor has it that the iPhone 6 will ship (physically) to stores around September 19.

iPhone 6 will reportedly come in two flavors, one with a screen measuring 4.7 inches on the diagonal, the other with a whopping 5.5-inch display, in what would mark Apple’s first foray into phablet territory. The bigger device is said to use sapphire crystal instead of glass. Sapphire is more durable and scratch-resistant, but also a bit heavier than traditional glass. The bigger version is also expected to cost more than the 4.7-inch model.

iPhone 6 front glass
Image credits to Sonny Dickson via 9to5mac

Android 4.4 KitKat Is Now Available for ASUS PadFone 2




After announcing in late February that Android 4.4 KitKat for PadFone 2 would be released by the end of Q2 2014, ASUS has just made available the firmware update, namely version 11.8.3.3, which does exactly what the producer claimed – update the PadFone 2 to Android 4.4

If you own this device and intend to upgrade it, you should know that ASUS has provided several downloadable packages that are compatible with a specific Stock-Keeping Unit (or SKU). Bear in mind that the update process isn’t able to apply a different SKU than the one already installed on the PadFone 2, or an earlier firmware version. Trying to perform these steps will cause the update to fail, event that will seriously damage your device.Therefore, from the unit’s setup menu, go to Settings → About PadFone → Build Number, and from there read both your SKU and firmware version. In order to be clear, if the build number is “WWE_PadFone-10.4.17.15,” then the SKU is “WWE” and the firmware version is “10.4.17.15.”

With this in mind, get and extract the appropriate archive for your stock-keeping unit, back up all your personal files as this process will erase everything and will reset the device to its factory defaults, and make sure you use a fully charged battery to perform this task. Now, copy the zip file from the newly-extracted archive onto the root folder of the PadFone 2’s internal storage, tap “System Update File Detected” from the notification area, and then select “Ok” to initiate the upgrade.

That being said, download Android 4.4 for ASUS PadFone 2 (ASUS PadFone 2 Firmware 11.8.3.3 WWE direct link), carefully read the update procedure, and update your device. Also, download ASUS PadFone 2 PC Tool Utility 1.0.0.6, as this will help back up and restore all your personal data.

ASUS PadFone 2
Image credits to ASUS

Moto X+1 Emerges in Brazil, Specs Revealed




One of the mobile phones that handset vendor Motorola has been rumored to plan on making available before the end of this year is the Moto X+1, and some more info on the device is now available.

The handset has made an appearance in Brazil on the website of a local retailer, where all of the necessary details on its hardware specs have been unveiled (the listing appears to have been removed in the meantime). The page is still under construction, and there’s no info available on when the device might become available for purchase or at what price tag. In fact, as Phandroid notes, the page even says that a description for the device needs to be added, and that the manufacturer has already provided it via email. Moto X+1 leaked online quite a few times over the past several months, yet Motorola has managed to keep details on it wrapped tight until now. However, as the phone’s availability date approaches, details on it are leaking online through various sources. They also prove that an official announcement on the smartphone is close. According to said listing at the Brazilian retailer, the upcoming Moto X+1 will arrive on the market with a 5.2-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a full HD resolution.

Moreover, the handset is expected to be released with a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor inside, clocked at an unknown speed. Moto X+1 has also emerged online with 2GB of RAM, as well as with 32GB of internal memory, which is complemented by a microSD memory card slot with support for up to 128GB of external storage. On the back, the smartphone sports a 12-megapixel camera, which should be able to record videos in full HD resolution. The handset is also said to come to the market with a 5MP front camera for making video calls. According to said listing, Moto X+1 will also hit the shelves with a 2900mAh battery, which should be able to provide users with around 26 hours of mixed usage. Moreover, the phone is said to be water-resistant.

When released, the new device will run under the Android 4.4.4 KitKat operating system, which does not come as a surprise, considering that Motorola has constantly kept its handsets up to date ever since it was bought by Google. What remains to be seen, however, is whether the info above will pan out, since no official confirmation on the matter has been provided as of now. Hopefully, Motorola will make the phone official sooner rather than later, so stay tuned for more on the matter.

Moto X+1 gets detailed via retailer listing
Image credits to Motorola

Samsung Intros Galaxy Core II with 4.5-Inch Screen, Android 4.4




Ever since the beginning of this year, we have seen South Korean handset vendor Samsung focusing mainly on the high-end level of the market, but it seems that it hasn’t forgotten the entry- and mid-range segments either.

Today, in addition to Galaxy Star 2 and other entry-level devices, the mobile phone maker has also announced the mid-range Galaxy Core II today, with a 4.5-inch touchscreen display and with a 1.2GHz quad-core processor packed inside. Said WVGA screen and processor are complemented with 768MB of RAM, which will certainly result in pretty decent performance capabilities, especially when paired with the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system loaded on top of the handset. Galaxy Core II will arrive on the market with 4GB of internal memory, and with support for up to 64GB of additional storage space via microSD card slot. Moreover, the phone is powered by a 2000mAh battery.

On the back, the new smartphone sports a 5-megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash. Moreover, it packs a VGA front camera for making video calls while on the go. The specs list of this new device also includes Dual-SIM capabilities, along with WiFi b/g/n, and Bluetooth 4.0, GPS receiver, and HSPA+ 21Mbps connectivity. The new Samsung Galaxy Core II will arrive on shelves in White and Black color options, but no specific info on when that might happen has been provided as of now, nor on the price tag it will feature.


Samsung Galaxy Core II
Image credits to SamsungTommorow

Tizen-Based Galaxy S5 Model Emerges in India




One of the devices that South Korean mobile phone maker Samsung Electronics has been long rumored to plan on bringing to the market is a Tizen-based flavor of the Galaxy S5, and the phone has made yet another appearance online today.

No official confirmation on it has been provided as of now, but it seems that the mobile phone maker is already testing it in different markets, including India. In fact, a recent listing on Indian import tracking site Zauba shows that a certain ‘Samsung Galaxy S5 Tizen Test Phone’ has entered the country. No less than three units of this device were brought to India for testing purposes, yet no further details on what the handset has to offer have been provided as of now. One thing that said listing did unveil, however, is the fact that said Galaxy S5 Tizen test phone features a price tag of INR 54,404 ($905). As SamMobile points out, the new model appears to be more expensive when compared to the price tag that Galaxy S5 featured when made available for purchase. Moreover, the news site also points out that the new listing also explains why Samsung has recently decided to rename its software portal, calling it Samsung Galaxy Apps Store (it was Samsung Apps Store before).

The one thing that hasn’t been unveiled as of now, however, is whether the South Korean handset vendor will indeed make a Tizen-based Galaxy S5 smartphone available for purchase or not. While it is not unusual for companies to test new platforms on existing hardware, that does not guarantee that these devices will indeed see a commercial release in the end. Samsung has been expected to launch a Tizen phone ever since the beginning of the last year, but the mobile phone maker has delayed the launch for over a year. The company has already announced such a handset, in the form of Samsung Z, which packs a 4.8-inch touchscreen display, and which appears to be nothing more than a modified Galaxy S4, with the Tizen OS loaded on top.

However, a more powerful device running under the platform was also expected from the company, and a new flavor of Galaxy S5 appears to be fit for this job. Unfortunately, as mentioned above, no official details on the matter have been provided as of now, and it remains to be seen whether or when a Tizen-based Galaxy S5 will arrive. Stay tuned for additional info on the matter.

Galaxy S5
Image credits to AndroidCentral

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