Deal Alert: HP Chromebook 14 w/4GB RAM, Haswell & 200MB/month of free 4G: $200 shipped

From 9to5Toys.com:

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Today’s Amazon Gold Box Deal of the Day is the HP Chromebook 14 in Red or Turquoise refurb for $199.99 with free shipping. That’s $129.01 off the list price and the lowest we’ve ever seen this Chromebook which includes 200MB of free 4G wireless for life thru T-Mobile with the ability to get more data at T-Mobile’s rates. The 4-lb machine features 14-inch/1366 x 768 display, 4GB RAM/16GB Storage amd 1.4GHz Haswell processor.
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Google issuing $150 refund to LTE Chromebook Pixel owners burned by Verizon data promo

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Google is trying to right a wrong plaguing customers who purchased the LTE version of its Chromebook Pixel. Released last year, this network connected edition of Mountain View’s uber-Chromebook originally shipped with a free 100MB of monthly 4G data from Verizon for a period of two years. However, for one reason or another, Big Red has stopped honoring this promotion, with its customer service reps telling Pixel owners that they’re unfamiliar with this service offer.

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HP’s LTE Chromebook 11 to skip on 3G hardware, says chip supplier Altair

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Update: Best Buy is already listing the new model online for $379 (via Liliputing).

Reuters is reporting a claim by Israel’s Altair Semiconductor that HP will be launching a LTE-only Chromebook 11, with connectivity provided by the company’s chips.

“Our solution equips the Chromebook with a dependable and incredibly fast Internet connection,” said Eran Eshed, vice president of marketing and business development at Altair. “By focusing on 100 percent LTE and eliminating costly 3G components, we were able to help our partners lower the cost of this critical LTE connectivity feature” …

Google’s high end Chromebook Pixel is also LTE-only but the move for a more bargain-centric product has some folks scratching their heads…. Read more

T-Mobile unveils global data coverage in 100 countries at no extra charge

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T-Mobile unveiled a new offering that will provide global data coverage allowing users to access their data plan in over 100 countries at no extra charge (via Engadget). CEO John Legere has been hinting at the announcement on his Twitter account in recent days: “Today is the day! The day we change the way the world uses their phones!”

This new plan will allow Simple Choice customers to get unlimited 2G data and texting in supported Simple Global countries. Voice calls on the plan cost $.20 per minute for in-country calls. There are no extra fees for this service, as it is included in all Simple Choice plans automatically.

The “un-carrier” also announced a few other changes to its plans, including a new international talk and text option from the US to all other Simple Global countries. That will cost an additional $10/month and include $.20/minute voice calls and unlimited texting. Adding this option to your plan will also enable unlimited calling to landlines in over 70 Simple Global countries for free.

Finally, T-Mobile announced that its 4G LTE network is available nationwide and reaches over 200 million potential customers.

Republic Wireless launching Moto X for $299 off contract in November

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Normally available for around $600 unsubsidized, Republic Wireless announced today that it will soon begin offering the Moto for just $299. That’s the carrier’s no contract price and just $100 more than most carriers are charging for the device on the usual two-year contract:

The Moto X will retail at $299 (plus taxes and surcharges) from the Republic Wireless store. That’s right – we took the hot, new Moto X, added Republic’s great Hybrid service and priced it at $299 with no contract required. That’s a price that’s, like, impossible to match anywhere in the industry. How did we do it? The phone is $299 because we are footing the bill.  Period.  This is NOT a $299 phone.   Take a quick look around the web and look at “no contract” pricing for the Moto X.

The device will be available on two of the carrier unlimited plans that start at just $5 a month, but customers will have the following plans to choose from: Read more

Samsung announces Galaxy NX Android camera with LTE, 20.3mp sensor, and 13 lenses

Samsung just announced live on stage during its Premiere 2013 event in London the much rumored Galaxy NX Android camera. We already heard reports about the device leading up to the event, but the company has finally made things official on stage today. Samsung says its the “World’s first interchangeable lens Android camera with 4G LTE.”

Some specs it shared for the device: Android 4.2.2, a 4.8″ HD TFT LCD display, a 1.6GHz quad core processor with separate image signalling processor, hybrid autofocus, and a 20.3mp sensor. There will also be 13 interchangeable lenses initially (those from the NX series), including a brand new 10mm fish eye lens. Samsung showed off its UX running on top of Android on the device, which includes 30 smart modes similar to those included in Galaxy Camera and its other NX cameras.

The device will also include an interchangeable 4000mAh battery, microSD, HDMI out, MicroUSB, and HDMI out, an external microphone port.

The company didn’t share any information on pricing or availability for the device, but below is one of the first hands-on reviews popping up: Read more

Student (or play one)? Here, have $50 off a Kindle HD 8.9-inch, now starting at $249

From 9to5Toys.com:

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If you are a student (or have access to a .edu email address), Amazon is having a special New Years Day deal on the Kindle HD 8.9. The online retailing giant is offering $50 off the price of an 8.9-inch Kindle Fire that yields a $249 price.

Exclusive Discount on Kindle Fire 8.9″
Special pricing available only to Amazon Student Members with an active Prime account (free six-month or $39/year plan). Join Amazon Student or start your [$39/year] discounted Prime membership to take advantage of this sale. The promo codes below will become available 24 hours after activation of your account, through January 30. New members, don’t forget to check your .edu email and verify your account.

How to Redeem This Deal
Place a Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ or a Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE Wireless in your cart. At checkout, enter the promo code KNDL4STU. If you are an Amazon Student member in a free or paid Prime plan, the discount will be applied to the items in your cart. This promo code may be redeemed once per customer. offer good only while supplies last. Read more

Samsung Galaxy Camera 4G LTE coming to Verizon on Dec. 13 for $549

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Samsung just confirmed the Galaxy Camera will come to Verizon’s 4G LTE network starting Dec. 13 for $549.99. The Android 4.1-powered camera will land on the carrier in two colors, including the white model we’ve seen before and Cobalt Black exclusive to Verizon. Samsung also noted “users will be able to add the Samsung Galaxy Camera to their Share Everything account for the promotional price of $5 per month.” The device will initially be available online through Verizon.

The full press release is below:

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Verizon earnings call reveals 3.4M Android smartphone activations for Q3 2012

Verizon held its Q3 2012 earnings call this morning and —aside from announcing $29 billion in total operating revenue— revealed Android smartphones were 79 percent of its total smartphone activations for the quarter.

The nation’s second-largest carrier also said operating revenue experienced a 3.9-percent gain over last year, while noting a third consecutive quarter of “double-digit percentage growth.” As for mobile device activations, 4G LTE smartphone penetration increased from “just below 50 percent last quarter to more than 53 percent.”

The company further disclosed that it activated 6.8 million smartphone in Q3, and 3.4 million of those activations were Android-powered devices. Three million were also specifically 4G LTE Android. In terms of iPhone activations, for comparison’s sake, Verizon activated 3.1 million with only 21 percent of the iPhones supporting 4G LTE.

The carrier then gave more information on its aggressive LTE rollout across the United States (via Yahoo Finance | Earnings Call Transcript):

[sic] In terms of 4G LTE coverage we are by far the market leader. Our 4G LTE service is currently available in 419 markets covering more than 250 million tops roughly 80% of the U.S. population. As our TV commercial say, we have more 4G LTE coverage than all of our competitors networks combined. We will continue expanding our 4G LTE network with a goal of having a nationwide foot print similar to our 3G network next year.

Visit Verizon’s Investor Relations page for more specifics.

The press release is below.

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Sprint adds Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, LG Optimus G, and LG Mach to Android 4G LTE lineup

Sprint just announced it is adding three new Android-powered devices to its 4G LTE lineup, as well as expanding its 4G mobile broadband portfolio with a new USB dongle.

The Android devices include:

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 features a 10.1-inch 1,280-by-800 display, front-facing VGA camera, and rear-facing 3-megapixel on the back, while the inside touts a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB RAM, 8GB of storage, and a 7,000 mAh battery. The Ice Cream Sandwich-powered tablet also comes with Sprint LTE connectivity and mobile hotspot support for up to 10 devices.

The LG Optimus G offers a 4.7-inch 1,280-by-768 True HD IPS Plus display, 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 13-megapixel rear-facing camera, 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, 32GB ROM, 2GB RAM, and a 2,100 mAh battery. It also touts Ice Cream Sandwich OS, but it further includes LG software like QSlide and QuickMemo.

The LG Mach boasts a QWERTY and slide-out physical keyboard with only a .48-inch thick body. The Ice Cream Sandwich-powered, 4-inch smartphone also packs a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 8GB ROM, 1GB RAM, microSD slot, and a 1,700 mAh battery.

As for the USB dongle: Sprint’s Plug-in-Connect Tri-Mode USB will support 3G, 4G WiMAX and 4G LTE connectivity. The stick even houses a foldaway USB connector, LED service indicator, and it is both Windows- and Mac-compatible.

Sprint said pricing and availability for each new addition will surface “at a later date,” but further specs and details are available in the press release below.

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Analyst: iPhone ‘under pressure’ at Verizon as Droid RAZR MAXX takes top spot during the quarter

William Blair analyst Anil Doradla (via Barron’s) wrote in his notes today that the iPhone is still the best-selling smartphone across the United States, but it is coming “under pressure, particularly at Verizon” due to the carrier’s aggressive marketing of 4G-capable devices. Citing his checks of sales for the current quarter as of June, Doradla claimed the Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX outsold the iPhone on Verizon:

Since Apple’s iPhone launch in North America, we believe this was the first quarter where the iPhone was not the best‐selling smartphone at a North American mobile operator (where it was available). While Apple continued to maintain its top position at AT&T and Sprint, Motorola’s Droid RAZR MAXX was the best‐ selling smartphone at Verizon. Our checks also indicate that at this stage consumers are not pausing in front of the iPhone launch as it is not influencing their purchasing decisions (but we expect it to start impacting over the next couple of months).

While the RAZR MAXX took the top spot, Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus grabbed third position behind the iPhone, according to Doradla. He backed his “outperform” rating on Apple by saying he is “not worried” given the next generation iPhone, which is likely due in October, is expected to include 4G LTE capabilities:
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