Now that Sony, LG, HTC, and Samsung have all pulled back the curtains on their flagship Android smartphones, the rumor mill can churn with renewed focus on yet another nebulous device — Motorola’s secretive X Phone.
Or rather, X Phones. According to Android And Me’s Taylor Wimberly, X Phone isn’t going to be a product name so much as it is a banner that multiple phones will fly under, and his sources assert that we’ve already seen the first of those devices in wild.
(I think it goes without saying that you should take all this information with a hefty grain of salt.)
The supposed culprit was captured on film earlier this week by the noted team at Tinhte, the Vietnamese site that thrives on getting their hands on unreleased gadgets well before the rest of us do. It was a fairly unassuming device — it bears a mild resemblance to the Galaxy Nexus when viewed dead-on, and sports a cleaner, rounded design that doesn’t quite jibe with many of Motorola’s recent angular design efforts.
What’s more, its modest spec sheet prompted many (myself included) to dismiss its odds of being the fabled X Phone. To wit: it sports one of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro systems-on-a-chip, 2GB of RAM, a 4.65-inch display, and a 2,200 mAh battery. In fairness, that’s not a shabby device at all. That’s essentially what the Nexus 4 is working with, but it just didn’t seem flashy enough to be what Motorola and Google have been working on all this time.
But if this new report holds true, that lack of next-gen horsepower could be because Google intends to sell this particular X Phone dirt cheap sans contract — $ 199 or so.
Curiously, the original video of the device was yanked from YouTube, and the original post on Tinhte seems to have disappeared as well. That’s far from a confirmation that Tinhte has ruffled some major feathers, but it’s something to consider.
Now to call this whole thing a little kooky would be putting it very mildly, but such an approach wouldn’t exactly come out of left field. One could look at the Nexus 4′s launch as a grand experiment of sorts, meant to see if the consuming public would be open to purchasing unsubsidized hardware directly from the people making it. The answer, clearly, is yes. The Nexus 4 isn’t exactly a mass-market success but demand for the device and its reasonably low price tag led to some notable woes for people trying to purchase the thing early on.
Moreover, the more limited launch of a high-end device like the Nexus 4 could help Google gauge their ability to fulfill device demand in markets across the globe. Now that Google has more or less figured out what needs to happen to keep a global device rollout from going immediately south, it’s arguably better prepared to push out a solid phone at a crazy low price point. Only time will tell whether or not Google and Motorola truly plan to inundate the world with a horde of cheap X Phones, but with I/O on the horizon I imagine it won’t be long before the next chapter of the X Phone saga begins to unfold.
One of the coolest (and most useful) features of Google’s Android Jelly Been 4.2 update is multiple user account switching, offering up the option to have several users share access to a device, while keeping their settings and content walled off from each other. It’s something we’ve been used to on PCs forever, so it’s bound to be welcomed by Android users. However, we’ve learned that the new feature will likely only apply to tablets, certainly as far as Google’s Nexus range is concerned. Phones need not apply. The reason — and this is purely an educated guess on my part — could well be that back in the day Nokia already patented the idea (via its involvement with Symbian).
Here we go again.
The patent ‘Multi-user mobile telephone’, whose inventor is Tim Ocock, an ex-Symbian employee, is described as follows:
A mobile telephone is designed to be used by several different end-users at different times. A first end-user can alter the mobile telephone so that it operates in a manner specific to that first end-user and a subsequent end-user can alter the mobile telephone so that it operates in a manner specific to that subsequent end-user; each end-user has only to respond to prompts displayed on a screen in order to alter the mobile telephone so that it operates in a manner specific to that end-user.
In contrast, here’s how Google’s marketing material describes the new tablet-only Android feature (my emphasis):
With support for multiple users, you can give each person their own space. Everyone can have their own homescreen, background, widgets, apps and games – even individual high scores and levels! And since Android is built with multitasking at its core, it’s a snap to switch between users – no need to log in and out. Available only on tablets.
As I understand it, the use-case that Nokia had in mind was emerging markets where the prohibitive cost of a mobile phone might mean that family members shared the device. But clearly, the patent is more widespread than that. And whilst it might be a more relevant and useful feature on a post-PC tablet device, the fact that Nokia appears to hold a patent for multiple user switching on a phone, might well explain why Google is limiting the feature to tablets only and not phones.
More from that Symbian/Nokia patent:
The present invention therefore moves away from the established assumption that a mobile telephone is personal to a single end-user and instead readily allows the mobile telephone to be used by several end-users through appropriate on-screen prompts. Such a device may be especially relevant to communities where few individuals can afford the cost of their own personal telephone. More generally, it is useful for any entity to whom there are benefits from being able to easily share mobile telephones across multiple end-users (e.g. large corporation may have a pool of such mobile telephones; any employee can then simply pick up one of these telephones and be able to use it like a personal device).
Question by robbie c: How to set up multiple displays to one camera? Could you connect multiple displays (OLED) to a video feed from 1 camera?
Answer by TV guyYou need a video splitter.
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Amazon in its ongoing press conference has hinted at some improvements to the Kindle Fire software. It seems to be a completely new interface with great improvements to existing apps — or, in some cases, totally new apps. Over the past few days, developers have spotted that the Kindle Fire OS is now based on Android 4.0 instead of 2.2. It remains to be confirmed but the important changes seem to indicate that.
Among the new features, Amazon has a completely new email client with Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo support out of the box, a custom Facebook app in which, for example, you can share your book highlights and a custom Skype app to take advantage of the HD camera on the new devices.
The previous Facebook app was just a link to the mobile website. Other notable features include the addition of multiple profiles to get a custom experience depending on the person using the device, whispersync for games and audio books so you don’t lose your progress between devices and more.
X-Ray for movies is another important addition. It uses Amazon-owned IMDb to get information about actors in a specific scene of a movie. It is now available for textbooks as well. Kindle Free Time is a new feature that allows you to set time limits for each app. For example, you could allow your kid to read books while restricting access to other apps to one hour a day.
In portrait mode, the Kindle Fire displays recommendations at the bottom of the screen for apps or content to buy.
The Kindle Fire was known for its unresponsive operating system. The demos on stage showed a much more responsive operating system than previous versions. The home carousel was very snappy. Amazon gave us an example of a special offer, which would hint at lower-priced ad-subsidized models.
The Kindle Fire OS is still deeply integrated with Amazon’s ecosystem and content cloud. You can stream music from Amazon Cloud Player, download your Kindle books or stream movies if you are an Amazon Prime subscriber. For example, if you buy a song, it is backed up on Amazon’s servers.
Amazon has yet to say if the new features will be only for the new Kindle Fire HD or for all the devices. It will probably be available for the new Kindle Fire. But existing Kindle Fire owners might not get the update as Amazon usually doesn’t add new features to previous-generation devices. It was the case for E Ink Kindles.Related Posts:
To say that Verizon hasn’t been Windows Phone’s most fervent supporter would be an understatement — the company only offers a single Windows Phone device, the ancient HTC Trophy. However, CNET cites Tami Erwin, Verizon’s Chief Marketing Officer, as saying that’s about to change. According to Erwin, Verizon will offer ‘multiple Windows Phones’ next quarter, which happens to coincide with the expected retail launch of Windows Phone 8.
While she wouldn’t detail the company’s exact plans, Erwin said that the network ‘continues to have healthy conversations with Nokia,’ adding that she was ‘excited’ about today’s unveiling of the Lumia 820 and 920. We previously revealed that Nokia and Verizon are working on a variant of the Lumia 820, c…
Question by : Do I have to have XBOX live family pack to save multiple profiles on Biggest Loser Kinect? My wife and I want to save our own progress on Biggest Loser for the XBOX 360 Kinect, will we have to have seperate Live accounts to do this?
Answer by Sergioif you are online then yes, you need to buy two different xbox live gold time.
but if you are not connected to the internet, you still need to sign in with you profile but it is not necessary to have live accounts.
XBOX LIVE is so that you can play online with your friends on most games, get on facebook, espn and other things.
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We have been using MetroTwit on our Windows machines here at The Verge for a while now, even naming it one of our must-have apps to make Windows 7 more beautiful. The app is celebrating its second birthday with a version 1.0 release this week, shipping with a bunch of new features and bug fixes for Metro style fans.
The MetroTwit team have added support for tweet filtering, an undo tweet feature, and Twitter events support for user follows, list membership, and tweet favorites. Perhaps the biggest change, though, is the introduction of multiple account support. The feature brings it on par with rival Windows clients like TweetDeck or Seesmic, but there’s a slight catch. Multiple account support is only available for MetroTwit Plus…
Google’s improved how its calendar and email services interact with Windows Phones running the Mango update. Users can now cram up to 25 different calendars into the Metro OS’s built-in calendar app. The setup’s not exactly seamless; you need to navigate your Windows Phone to the Google Sync page, login and check the boxes found there. While testing on our phones, although one device was able to immediately sync, the other couldn’t pick up on our multiple calendars. We had to delete and re-assign our Google account to the phone in order to get it working. However, once we did, the Metro styling lent itself well to multiple calendar listings, with the ability (like the web-based Google Calendar) to assign colors to each.
At the same Google Sync page, you can now choose to enable the “send mail as” feature if you’re using multiple addresses, with the option to delete unwanted emails instead of archiving. However, aside from replying from the same address that you received emails to, we haven’t discovered a way to assign new mails to our multiple guises. We were able to send messages through our own Engadget mail account, although that’s then used on all future missives. Despite these rough edges, it remains a welcome bit of extra functionality. Are we still longing for a dedicated Gmail app? Definitely. We just hope those devs don’t drop the ball.
Gallery: Windows Phone Google Calendar update
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If you’re a Windows Phone user who uses Google Calendar for your scheduling needs, you’ve probably been frustrated with the lack of support for multiple calendars. Thankfully, it looks like you don’t have a reason to be angry anymore as Google announced today that it has added support for the feature in Google Sync for Windows Phone 7.5. In addition to improving calendar handling, the update lets Windows Phone users search through emails that aren’t stored locally and set which email address to send from by default.
If you previously used a workaround to get access to multiple calendars on your Windows Phone, you won’t be surprised by Google’s method. While you don’t need to change the user-agent string anymore, you still need to go to…
A new product has hit the Android Market and we think you might find it quite nifty. Known as PocketCloud Explore, the app allows users to search for and view files across their PCs and Macs, all without ever needing to surrender data to the cloud. Simple file management is also part of the game, as users can remotely create, rename and delete both folders and documents, as well as upload files from their smartphone to the remote destination. The basic version of PocketCloud Explore retails for $ 4.99, which is limited to two associated computers. For users juggling additional boxes and lappies, the developer plans to introduce a premium service that will allow access to a greater number of systems. Even the basic product, however, offers unlimited transfers, which means your files will always be within reach. Curious for more? You’ll find the full PR after the break.
Continue reading PocketCloud Explore arrives for Android, enables file searching and viewing across multiple computers
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