Appeals court partly reverses ruling on Google-Oracle decision, says Java can be copyrighted

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A seemingly drastic turn of events in the appeals court has reversed the ruling on some elements of the Google-Oracle trial.

The ruling enables Oracle to claim copyright ownership over some parts of Java. The crux of the trial was whether API names and constructs could be owned. The initial decision said that it couldn’t, giving Google a landslide victory. However, the appeal court papers now say the exact opposite:

For the reasons that follow, we conclude that the declaring code and the structure, sequence, and organiza- tion of the 37 Java API packages are entitled to copyright protection. Because there is an insufficient record as to the relevant fair use factors, we remand for further proceedings on Google’s fair use defense.

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Photo of alleged Moto E spotted on Facebook, looks kind of cheap

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Motorola has already announced that its next smartphone will be revealed on May 13th and that it will most likely be budget-friendly. An affordable phone isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however if a recent photo of the alleged Moto E is the device in question, consider us slightly underwhelmed. Posted and removed from Motorola Mexico’s Facebook page is a photo of what is said to be Motorola’s new affordable smartphone. Pictured next to the highly praised Moto G, the Moto E (or whatever it might be) looks like a throwback to about four years ago.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 breaks cover, reveals proprietary book cover connectors

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Earlier this week, we received word that Samsung was working on an unannounced AMOLED tablet called the Galaxy Tab S. This new slate is rumored to ship in two different sizes: 8.5-inch and 10.5-inch. Pictured above is a purported shot of the latter. Obtained by SamMobile, the device’s appearance lines up with most of the recent rumors. At first glance, the Galaxy Tab S bears a strong resemblance to the Galaxy Tab Pro, however it sports a textured back similar to the Galaxy S5.

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Moto G Cinema leaks on Motorola’s website, possibly arriving May 13?

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Motorola’s website has been the source of various leaks in the last few weeks, and today we have another one. Captured in an image after the break by the @evleaks Twitter account, the website leaked only the name — no image or details are available. The device has also so far slipped by under the radar, with basically nothing being known about it. Read more

California passes bill forcing smartphone makers to offer kill switch by July 2015

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Bloomberg reports California’s Senate has passed a bill that will force smartphone makers like Samsung to implement “technology that would let customers remotely wipe data from their devices and render them inoperable when stolen.” Officials have been attempting to pass similar bills with no luck but have since made tweaks to the legislation removing tablets and other terms.

Under the new bill, smartphones sold in California must include the technology starting in July 2015. While the bill was passing 25-8, the margin in the Democratic-controlled Senate can change as absent members continue to enter votes. The state Assembly, also controlled by Democrats, will consider the legislation next.

Last year Apple and Google introduced new theft deterrent features just as government officials in San Francisco were increasing pressure on smartphone makers to implement such features. While Apple’s new “Activation Lock” feature requires an Apple ID and password to reactivate a stolen phone after being remotely erased/wiped by the owner, it fell short of a full-on kill switch feature that officials were hoping for and required the user to enable it. Google has since introduced similar features for Android devices.

Samsung and Google have yet to respond to comment on the bill, but an Apple spokesperson told Bloomberg the following: Read more

Want that Harman Kardon sound on your HTC One? Here’s how to get it (video)

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Sprint recently announced that it would carry a special edition of the HTC One M8 that would feature sound enhancing software from Harman Kardon. While we’re happy for the carrier and its legions of customers, we couldn’t help but feel sorry for M8 owners outside of Sprint’s service. If you happen to be a part of this group, turn that frown upside down! We’ve got some good news for you today! This crafty individuals over at The Unlockr how found a workaround that brings Harman Kardon’s Clari-fi tech to just about any version of HTC’s new flagship phone.

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“Flounder” could be the codename for Google’s next Nexus device

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Historically, Google has been known to use quirky codenames when working on internal projects and Nexus devices are no exception. In the past the company’s homegrown Android products have carried in-house names patterned after aquatic animals when being under development. For example: Maguro was used for the GSM Galaxy Nexus, Mako represented the Nexus 4, Hammerhead covered the Nexus 5 and Mantaray was the moniker for the Nexus 10. When it comes to Nexus devices, Google has a thing for sea creatures.

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Here’s another LG G3 leak, this time in gold

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Over the past few weeks, we’ve had a pretty good look at LG’s upcoming G3 and while the phone is differentiating itself from its predecessor, the latest purported photos of the device suggests that it’s taking its cues from its competition. Pictured above is a front to back view of a gold G3, yes, gold like the iPhone 5s, Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One. It’s like gold is the new white. Remember a few years back when everyone wanted a white phone because of the iPhone? Sadly, Apple releasing the iPhone 5s in gold appears to be having the same effect on smartphone manufacturer’s today.

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Yahoo launches its News Digest app on Android, adds international & Canadian editions

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Following confirmation during an interview with Marissa Mayer at the TechCrunch Disrupt event this week, a version of Yahoo’s popular News Digest app is now available to Android users. Yahoo made the announcement on its blog today where it also noted that new international and Canadian editions of the app have arrived.

Mayer noted in the interview this week that News Digest was one of the company’s mobile apps that its most proud of. The app, which offers users a daily dose of news in a concise format, has been experiencing impressive engagement among users on iOS since launching last year.

Here’s a breakdown of what you’ll get where in terms of the new editions in each country: Read more

Samsung’s head of mobile design resigns, VP Lee Min-hyouk to replace

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Chang Dong-hoon, Samsung’s head of mobile design, has stepped down from his position due to criticism of the Galaxy S5, according to Reuters. Chang will be replaced by the company’s current vice president of mobile design, Lee Min-hyouk. Lee joined Samsung’s executive team in 2010 after helping design the company’s Galaxy lineup.

Samsung is the largest manufacturer of Android devices in the world, and recently wrapped up a software patent lawsuit brought by Apple in which the Korean company was ordered to pay out just under $120 million for in which several Galaxy devices were found to infringe on Apple’s intellectual property.

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LG announces 5.5″ 2560×1440 display, coming soon to a G3 near you

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LG tonight announced its latest mobile display, which will bring about a QHD (also known as 2K, or 2560×1440 pixels) panel in a 5.5″ form factor. That brings a whopping 538 pixels per inch. As chance would have it, LG is also about to release its latest flagship device, the G3, which also just happens to be rumored to ship with a 5.5″ 2560×1440 display. Coincidence? I think not. Read more

Motorola website listing adds fuel to the X+1 smartphone rumors

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A store listing on Motorola’s website (via Droid Life) has given us an early look at the currently-unannounced Moto X+1, which will be available on AT&T whenever it’s finally made public. The phone looks very similar to the current Moto X, so most of the big changes to the device will presumably be under-the-hood.

There is at least one change being made to the outside of the phone. The X+1 recently showed up on the MotoMaker tool that allows users to build customized versions of the Moto X. According to the options on that website, the phone will be available with 25 different backplates to choose from.

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