AT&T increasing monthly data allotments on $40 and $70 service plans starting on November 2nd

AT&T-Data

AT&T announced today that it’s increasing the data allotment on two of its wireless service plans. Starting on Sunday, November 2nd, Ma Bell will begin offering 3GB of data for $40 per month and 6GB of date for $70 a month. Also sweetening the pot, AT&T is tossing in unlimited talk, text and international messaging at no additional charge.

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Spain approves new law that orders Google to pay publishers for web search results

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Spain’s parliament recently approved a set of new intellectual property laws referred to as “the Google tax” that give publishers the right to charge aggregators whenever they display their news content in web search results. This new law is set to go into effect on January 1st, 2015 and doesn’t disclose how much search engines like Google or Bing could be charge for an incident.

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Samsung’s new Galaxy A3 and A5 are slim metal selfie machines with mid-range specifications

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Samsung has just unveiled two new Galaxy devices. The rumored “A Series” is finally here. Samsung’s Galaxy A3 and A5 are some of Samsung’s slimmest smartphones to date with a variety of social networking features and full metal unibody designs. The Galaxy A3 is a mere 6.9mm thin, while the A5 sits at just 6.7mm. Unfortunately, there’s nothing crazy happening in the specifications department…

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Android co-founder Andy Rubin is leaving Google, robotics division now under new leadership

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Android co-founder Andy Rubin is leaving Google, according to the Wall Street Journal. Rubin joined Google when the company bought Android and most recently headed up the new robotics division. That division will reportedly remain intact under the leadership of James Kuffner, who is currently a member of that team.

The change was confirmed by CEO Larry Page. The Wall Street Journal reports that Rubin is planning to launch an incubator for startups that focus on creating high-tech hardware.

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Amazon drunkenly posts Moto 360 Champagne Metal, Leather Cognac band

 

Amazon jumped the gun on the release of what appears to be two new Moto 360 products, both named after expensive booze. First, you have the Champagne (read: Gold) Moto 360 face and strap which will, according to the site, set you back $300.

No sir, I don’t like it.

On the other hand, the new Cognac strap ships at the same $249 price as current band/face combos and is definitely easy on the eyes. No word yet on standalone price.

Both are given a launch time of 1-2 months so maaaybe before Christmas? At time of writing, both were taken down by Amazon but not before someone gave them a 5 star rating. Screenshots below…

Amazon cache (1) (2) (3) via DROID LIFE
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LG shows off impressive 5.3-inch LCD w/ ‘world’s narrowest” 0.7mm bezel, hits mass production next month

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You won’t find this display on a smartphone you can buy just yet, but LG Display is today showing off a new 5.3-inch LCD smartphone panel that includes an almost non-existent 0.7mm bezel. That’s even thinner than some of the other super thin bezels to hit recent devices like the Sharp Aquos line and, according to LG, the world’s thinnest.

LG explained how it’s been able to achieve the extremely thin bezel, which it points out is thinner than the 0.8mm thickness of a credit card: Read more

Increases for top Android OEMs push Apple’s worldwide tablet share down to 22%

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Worldwide unit shipments for the top 5 tablet plus 2-in-1 device vendors over last five quarters

New data from IDC tracking worldwide tablet shipments shows that Apple has maintained its lead during the third quarter despite “a decline in overall iPad shipment volume in 3Q14.” Specifically, Apple grabbed 22.8% of the market with 12.3 million shipments during the quarter compared to 14.1 million units and 29.2% share in the year ago quarter. That compares to Samsung at 18.3% of the market and 9.9 million units shipped up from 19.3% and 9.3 million units shipped in the third quarter last year: Read more

Google Play Books gains new ‘skim’ feature for quickly jumping through books, improved bookmarking, and more

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Skim Mode control (Click for animation)

Google has pushed an update to the Play Books application for Android that includes an all-new ‘skim’ mode that makes it easier to quickly flip through a book. Google says the feature is designed with reference books in mind, allowing readers to quickly flip through the book to find specific sections, notes, or highlights.

The update also includes support for quick bookmarking that makes it easier to quickly jump between different sections of a book. Of course, the focus on reference materials fits nicely with the app’s existing notes and highlighting features, which can be browsed more easily in the new version.

You can grab the updated Google Play Books app for free from the Play Store.

Samsung to launch 3G-connected Gear S smartwatch in United States next week

Samsung Gear SSamsung on Thursday announced that it will be launching the Gear S smartwatch in the United States on next Friday, November 7th. The first 3G-connected smartwatch was originally announced in August and features a 2-inch curved Super AMOLED display, 1.0 GHz dual-core processor, network connectivity, 300 mAh battery and more.

The Gear S essentially doubles as a fitness tracker, with a myriad of sensors including an accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, heart rate monitor, ambient light sensor, UV sensor and barometer. The smartwatch is based on Samsung’s own Tizen software platform, a clear differentiation over Samsung’s other smartwatches and Android Wear. Read more

Motorola officially ‘a Lenovo company’, Moto and Droid brands live on

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While Google confirmed the $2.9B sale of Motorola way back in January, it is only today that the last piece of paperwork was signed and the formerly American-owned Motorola officially became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chinese electronics manufacturer Lenovo.

Announcing the completion of the acquisition on the Motorola blog, the company said that its headquarters would remain in Chicago, along with its offices in Silicon Valley …  Read more

First Look Review: Nexus 6, Nexus 9 and Player Lollipops

Google invited some journalists to a location near its New York office today to look at its new Nexus products. On display were the Nexus 6, Player and 9 with plenty of accessories. I asked some questions, I took some notes I played around a little bit.

The Player:

  • You’ve seen the video and there wasn’t anything new on display though I have to say the Material Graphics looked great on what I believe was at least a 70-inch display
  • I talked to the product manager who told me that some of Google TV devices would be upgradable to Player. It was up to the OEM and hardware specs. I imagine Sony among others will update some of their products. I’m not as sure about the other “players”.
  • Sony is again all in on Android Player all of their Smart TVs and set boxes (outside of Playstation) will be Players
  • Many more OEM announcements will be coming at CES (we’ll be there!)

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