A few weeks back rumors surfaced suggesting that Motorola Mobility was working on a device called the Moto X+1. Soon after this claim, additional details about the unannounced handset’s customization options emerged, with rumors of it offering a new leather back plate as an optional design. While we’re still not completely sure what the Moto X+1 might be, recently the mysterious device was spotted in Motorola’s MotoMaker by German mobile blog MobiFlip.
When I was a kid, we used to watch films from the confines of an automobile at the drive-in and in order to hear the movie’s soundtrack you had to connect a low-tech doodad to your car’s antenna to broadcast audio through your stereo system. Technology sure has come a long way and the folks at ClockworkMod are putting a next-gen spin on this retro idea. The software developer is working on a new feature for its AllCast app that will let Fire TV users mute their TV’s audio and broadcast it from their smartphone. Toss in a set of headphones and you’ll be able to stay up all night watching hours of old HBO shows without disturbing anyone in your house.
Over the past few weeks we’ve seen bits and pieces of the forthcoming LG G3 and today we’ve got another set of pictures of the South Korean consumer electronics maker’s new flagship smartphone. Pictured above are two images with different origins. The front view of the handset comes from Seeko and the backside image was obtained by GSM Arena. While they both appear to be the same device, the phone on the left has a blank plastic backing, suggesting that it could be a prototype.
Consumer rights group Hagens Berman has filed a new class-action lawsuit against Google alleging that the company’s rise to dominance in the search market was only driven by its inclusion as the default search option in Android, and that Google’s insistence that corporate Android licensees include the company’s first party software has artificially driven up the price of mobile phones.
To better explain exactly what the company is actually claiming, let’s break down a few quotes from the official press release on the lawsuit.
Today, Google opened Google Play merchant registration for eight new territories. Developers residing in Greece, Luxembourg, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Turkey, Ukraine and Vietnam can now apply for a merchant account with Google Play, which will allow them to collect money for paid apps in local their local currency.
We’ve already heard that HTC may possibly be working on a cheaper plastic version of its HTC One (M8), but how about a broader set of hues for its flagship smartphone? According to the often reliable @evleaks, the Taiwanese phone maker is preparing to reissue the M8 in red, blue and pink. Not too much else was shared about these colorful options, but this wouldn’t be the first time HTC decided to have a little fun with its color palette — remember the purple EVO 3D from Sprint?
Today Foursquare announced that it will be repurposing its mobile app to focus specifically on search, reviews and finding places to eat. As for check-ins, that’ll soon be handled by a new piece of software known as Swarm. This new application will focus on the social media side of things, giving users an easy way to locate and connect with their friends when out and about.
Following various leaks and rumors, BGR has obtained a photo of Amazon’s upcoming smartphone. While the device itself is still a month or more away from being officially unveiled, the above image is the first to show off the device without a protective case obscuring the design.
The device itself is similar in appearance to the Nexus 4, which received praise for its understated design. As Amazon’s phone will likely compete on price, it isn’t a surprise that its materials will shy away from the flashy metallic materials of devices like the iPhone or the HTC One M8. Read more
Snapchat received a massive update today that introduces video chats and instant messaging. As for those of you concerned about privacy, don’t worry, self-destructing messages aren’t going anywhere. Users can swipe to the right on a contact’s name in their inbox to start a regular chat. Whenever you leave a session, messages viewed by you and the other participant will be cleared, however both of you will have the option to screenshot anything you’d like to save.
Samsung today launched a new app exclusively for Galaxy owners that allows them to stay up to date with the latest from Lebron James and the Miami Heat. Think Twitter, but the only person you’re able to follow is Lebron. Yes, it’s absolutely a strange move. But with Lebron already on the payroll as one of the company’s main spokespeople, it’s not too surprising that Samsung is trying to get its money worth and offer Galaxy owners exclusive content in the process.
Samsung has made it clear that offer apps exclusively to Galaxy owners will be part of its pitch to get people buying its phones. It already offered an exclusive stream of Jay-Z’s latest, a concert just for Galaxy owners at SXSW, and more recently introduced its Milk Music app for Galaxy devices. Here’s what you get with the new LeBron app: Read more
Update: It turns out Google Search/Now on Android is also getting a ton of other new features in addition to the ability to find a parked vehicle (via SearchEngineLand):
- Offline support: Google Now cards will remain loaded when users lose their internet or mobile connections
- Indoor maps: in “some malls” Google Now will offer a searchable directory of stores (US + Japan) and then take users to an indoor map of that mall. We don’t know which particular malls but probably the ones available on the US and Japan lists here. In addition Google has individual store maps (probably coming later) for some retailers such as Best Buy, Home Depot, Ikea and others. It doesn’t have everyone store in those chains however.
- Product search reminders: If you’ve done a previous search for a product online or on a mobile device and you happen to be near a store that carries that product, Google will show you a Now card (kind of like a reminder/notification) about the product.
Google this afternoon has updated its Search app on Android with several new features. The update bumps the app to version 3.4 and has some pretty useful features within it. First off, it adds a Google Now card that offers the ability to automatically detect where you’ve parked and help you find that spot later, a feature that was rumored earlier this month.
Earlier today LG started sending out invites to its big G3 reveal and now Motorola is following suit by announcing an event of its own dated for May 13th. However, unlike its competitors that appear to be focusing on building high-end flagship smartphones, Motorola’s invitation hints at a more modest announcement. “Connect more people to the world’s information and each other, and they can do great things,” the invitation reads. “Introducing the next smartphone from Motorola to make these connections happen. Made to last. Priced for all.”