launch Stories June 15, 2016

Google Fonts 2016-06-15 13-16-03

Google has today completely revamped its longstanding Google Fonts website with Material Design, making it easier — and more beautiful —  than ever to browse and try out the site’s huge collection of open source designer fonts. The old Fonts site — which first launched in 2010 — was practically begging to be reborn, and today Google delivered…

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launch Stories June 14, 2016

nexus2cee_oneplus-3-amazon-in-1-1

Update: After a time of VR store exclusivity (why is that a thing?), the OnePlus 3 is now available for purchase from OnePlus.net.


The launch of the OnePlus One was pretty much the worst thing ever (thanks to the company’s loathed invite system), and the OnePlus Two launch was not much better. Now, after many leaks over the last several months, OnePlus has made its next flagship official in its The Loop VR app. The best part? You don’t need an invitation to purchase one.

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launch Stories May 31, 2016

htc

Rumors of an HTC-made Android Wear watch have been tossed around for more than a year now. Before Mobile World Congress last year, many thought that the company would finally launch its offering as it was rumored that the company had a wearable planned to be shown off. In reality, the company launched a fitness wearable made in partnership with Under Armour. That device never even hit the market.

Recently, well-respected leakster Evan Blass suggested that the long-awaited Android Wear offering from the company would finally launch the week of June 6th. Now, the same guy is pulling that claim, suggesting that HTC has delayed its wearable once again — to the fall… expand full story

launch Stories May 9, 2016

Honor 5X comes to Canada by the name of Huawei GR5

We’ve done a lot of coverage on the Honor 5X that Huawei launched in the United States earlier this year. Now, the phone is coming to Canada under a different name: Huawei GR5…

launch Stories May 5, 2016

htc-10

And it seems as if HTC’s downward spiral continues. The latest in its seemingly never-ending doomsday news cycle comes today in the form of a pair of reports from Focus Taiwan, with the former suggesting that the lower-specced HTC 10 has been an absolute flop in China and the latter saying that the company has formed a completely separate company for its VR ambitions

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launch Stories April 11, 2016

voice access

After first planning to launch the app during Google I/O 2015 and changing its mind at the last minute, Google has finally launched Voice Access in beta, a new accessibility app that allows users to control their phone using their voice. With Voice Access, you can use a wide variety of voice commands like “open Chrome” to bring up the browser or “go home” to go to the home screen…

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launch Stories March 29, 2016

Nintendo’s first Android game Miitomo will launch in US & other countries on March 31

Update: The Miitomo app is now available on the Play Store.

The game is already available in Japan— that’s how Jeff managed to go hands-on in our first look video earlier this month— but today Nintendo confirmed that its first smartphone game, Miitomo, will officially arrive in the US on March 31st.

The game isn’t exactly bringing over any of Nintendo’s very popular first party franchises to Android devices, but it does feature known Mii characters and, as we noted in our review, the release feels very much like a Nintendo title:

When you first start Miitomo, it’s immediately recognizable as a Nintendo title. It feels like someone took my Nintendo Wii and shrunk it down to fit inside of my iPhone 6s. The music and sound effects, most notably, are of the characteristic Nintendo style. The Miis themselves look just like the Miis on the game-maker’s handheld and home consoles. The writing — witty, with just a hint of corniness thrown in for good measure — is classic Nintendo.

Nintendo noted in its press release today that Miitomo was downloaded over a million times in the first three days after launch in Japan and it also managed to become the #1 most downloaded free app in both the App Store and Google Play.

While Nintendo didn’t mention other countries by name today, it did say that “several other countries” will receive the title on the 31st alongside users in the US.

Check out our review of the game on our sister site 9to5Mac from earlier this month to get a first look before it officially arrives in the US and other countries on the 31st.

launch Stories March 22, 2016

lg-x

LG revealed details of two Android Marshmallow-powered phones called the X screen and X cam just about a month ago, and now the Korean company has announced that they’re beginning to roll out first in South Korea and then following in other markets including “Europe, Latin America and Asia.” It’s not exactly surprising, but LG seems to be taking a pass on these phones for North America…

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launch Stories March 15, 2016

xprize

A new JJ Abrams-backed web series called “Moon Shot” officially launched at SXSW this week, telling the stories of the actual scientists behind the teams that are competing for $30 million in prizes. The series spans across nine short films, all of which are now available for download on Google Play and will soon be available on YouTube…

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launch Stories February 22, 2016

xperia-x

Sony has unveiled three new Xperia phones, known as the X-series. The entry-level device is the XA, with a MediaTek MT6755 processor rather than a Snapdragon chip. With a 720p display and 16GB storage, Sony’s description of it as a “super mid-range” device seems to be pushing it, though you do get 2GB RAM and 13MP/8MP cameras.

The standard X gets much better specs and should make photography fans happy. It boasts a Snapdragon 650 processor with 3GB of RAM plus 32GB of storage. The display is a good if unexceptional 5-inch 1080p one, but the standout element here is the camera combo. The X gets the same 23MP rear camera as in the Z5 (though with improved firmware) and a 13MP front camera Sony says offers 6400ISO for ultra-capable low-light performance – and a new predictive auto-focus that can track a moving object in the frame … 

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launch Stories February 21, 2016

CbsnGTTXIAQwwnd

Not more than a couple days after saying that his fans “criticized [themselves] out of any leaks for a while,” (in reference to hateful comments about the LG G5) Evan Blass is on fire once again. Now, he has shared images of a mysterious Sony “Xperia PP10” smartphone (he says that might not be its launch name), as well as Moto Hint-like accessory called the Sony Smart Ear…

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launch Stories February 5, 2016

Huawei starts selling its GX8 mid-range phone in the United States

Huawei recently announced the Mate 8 for intenernational markets and brought its low-end Honor 5X to the United States, but the company apparently isn’t stopping there. Today, the Chinese company began selling another smartphone in the United States. As per its Amazon listing the US version of the Huawei GX8 is available for $350…

launch Stories January 13, 2016

Google Play Books comes to Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and 5 more new countries

This one’s a quick one. Google has today launched Google Play Books in 9 new countries, bringing the total number of locales that have access to the service to 75. Those residing in Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates will find that they can use Play Books effective immediately.

On a related note, Google updated Play Books this time last month with a new Night Light mode that lets you read in the dark without killing your eyes. Hopefully they’ll bring this feature to the OS as a whole soon, just like Apple is planning to do with the launch of iOS 9.3. Most of us have been using this on our desktops with F.lux.

launch Stories January 11, 2016

google-car1

According to a report today out of The Wall Street Journal, Ford, as part of its plan to reinvent itself, is planning to create a separate business unit dedicated to its ambitions in autonomous cars for “ride-sharing and fleets.” Of course the company is seeking partnerships in this space, and it just so happens that, just as was reported by Yahoo Autos a few weeks ago, Alphabet Inc.’s Google is a big part of this move…

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launch Stories December 7, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: Moto E for Straight Talk $20, Nova Launcher Prime $1, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

TODAY’S CAN’T MISS DEALS:

Straight Talk Moto E XT830C Prepaid Smartphone: $20 shipped (Reg. $50) | Walmart

Nova Launcher Prime via the Play Store is on sale for the holidays: $1 (Reg. $5) | Play Store

Amazon launches New Kindle Fire HD 8 ‘Reader’s Edition’ w/ better night time reading, case bundle, Kindle Unlimited subscription

GoPro HERO bundles starting at $140, cases from $10, headgear from $7, more

Giveaway: SanDisk USB flash drives for iPhone, iPad, and Android mobile devices

9to5Google Gift GuidesStephen, Abner, and Cam’s favorite Chrome and Android-powered products

MORE NEW GEAR FROM TODAY:

This Leviton wall outlet has a pair of powerful USB ports, get it for $17 Prime shipped (Orig. $30)

The latest Omate smartwatch for iOS/Android launches on Indiegogo with instant success

MORE DEALS STILL ALIVE:

Bluetooth Headphones: Jabra MOVE On-ears $60 (Reg. $90), more

NEW PRODUCTS & MORE:

Razor details its new Hovertrax Smart Scooter ahead of release

Anova Culinary updates its sous vide Precision Cooker w/ Wi-Fi  for cooking away from home

launch Stories December 3, 2015

Driver-Speedboat-Paradise

Google has today launched the Google Cast Remote Display plugin for Unity, in hopes that developers will now be able to more easily bring their mobile games to the TV. This is the same plugin that many games on the Play Store — including Monopoly Here & Now, Risk, and more — already use…

Today we launched the Google Cast Remote Display plugin for Unity to make it easy to take your Unity games to TVs. The Google Cast Remote Display APIs use the powerful GPUs, CPUs and sensors of your Android or iOS mobile device to render a local display on your mobile device and a remote display on your TV.

Google says that, as of today, developers can download the new Remote Display plugin for Unity from both GitHub and the Unity Asset Store.

Developers with preexisting Unity games simply need to import the Remote Display package to their project, add the CastRemoteDisplayManager prefab, and configure cameras for the local and remote displays. More detailed information can be found at Google’s Developers Blog.

launch Stories November 20, 2015

china

A few months ago a report surfaced suggesting that Google has plans to bring the Play Store to China, and today another report surfaced (via Reuters) that Google has plans to bring the Play Store to China. You read that sentence correctly; there isn’t anything new here. But if you had any doubt that Google was going to be headed (back) over the Pacific, I think you can put that doubt to rest… expand full story

launch Stories October 27, 2015

Verizon also offering its employees a bright red DROID Turbo 2

Right before Verizon and Motorola took the stage earlier today to show off its new Droid Turbo 2 and Droid Maxx 2 smartphones, a red version of the former showed up on the red carrier’s website. And while we now have a clear look at everything the phone offers, it’s interesting to note nonetheless that Verizon seemingly intends to carry on with the “Employee Edition” tradition…

As is the case with the regular Droid Turbo 2, the device’s listing that popped up earlier today showed that it has a lightweight design with a Snapdragon 810 system-on-a-chip from Qualcomm, a 5.4-inch QHD display, and a couple of great 21-megapixel and 5-megapixel cameras (although those are pretty standard for 2015). This particular phone seems to only be available in 64 GB.

While Verizon has already pulled the page detailing the phone, we can assume that it’s not going to be available to consumers — at least for now — anyway. It is the “Employee Edition,” after all. Be sure to read up on the regular Droid Turbo 2 and Droid Maxx 2, and if you’re really pining for some red on your Droid, you’ll be happy to learn that you can now use Moto Maker on the Turbo 2.

launch Stories October 21, 2015

fossil-q-founder

Fossil has today made official its entry into the Android Wear space with the “Q Founder,” a nice-looking but oddly-named smartwatch that definitely pulls inspiration from Fossil’s traditional watches… expand full story

launch Stories October 20, 2015

The HTC One A9. Topaz Gold. - YouTube 2015-10-20 11-29-04

HTC just announced the HTC One A9, and a new phone means new marketing materials. It looks like the struggling Taiwanese company may have over-delivered in this area, as there are 9 (yes, nine) new YouTube videos on the company’s channel… expand full story

htc-one-a9-event-lead

Today, HTC will take the wraps off its latest addition to the One handset family. The One A9 is expected to feature an all-metal body, but more slim-lined and without the trademark front-facing speakers of current HTC flagships. HTC’s #BeBrilliant event is going to start at 12pm Eastern/9am Pacific/5pm British Summer Time, and will be available to watch live online. You can watch the live stream on the company’s dedicated launch page, or just stay here and watch the embedded live stream below: expand full story

launch Stories October 19, 2015

Google giving out instant invites for Project Fi today to celebrate Nexus 5X launch

Before today, signing up for Project Fi meant waiting several weeks in most cases before being about to sign up for the Mountain View company’s MVNO.  At least for today, you can sign up without a waiting period. To celebrate the shipment of the Nexus 5X, Google says it is today giving out instant Project Fi invites to those that sign up for one…

launch Stories October 16, 2015

Introducing PRIV - YouTube 2015-10-16 12-54-19

BlackBerry already made the PRIV official last month, and then followed up with some of the first official images of the device posted to its blog. Not much of what the company has said up to this point though has been new, though. Even the official images it published a couple weeks ago were pretty much the same as the ones we saw four months ago.

And this new video follows in the same vein as that theme. We’ve already seen an in-depth hands-on video with the phone, we’ve seen its specs leaked what feels like a dozen times, pre-registration for the phone opened up a couple of days ago, and just earlier today pre-orders for the phone went live in the UK. I guess it’s just a pretty marketing clip… expand full story

launch Stories October 14, 2015

Monosnap 2015-10-14 12-46-29

You probably know about this little notification center, but it’s very unlikely that you ever use it. That fact is according to data that Google itself has compiled, and — as is definitely not unusual — low usage means cutting features in the name of simplicity…

In some cases, these desktop notifications would appear while users were gone, so in 2013 Chrome launched the notification center, a place for users to find notifications from Chrome apps and extensions that they’d missed.

However, in practice, few users visit the notification center. To keep Chrome simple, it will be removed from Windows, Mac, and Linux in the upcoming release. The notification center on Chrome OS will remain unchanged.

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launch Stories October 13, 2015

Google launches Cloud Datalab, Cloud Shell for Cloud Platform customers

Google has today launched a couple of new products for Google Cloud Platform customers: Google Cloud Datalab, and Google Cloud Shell. Both of them are available via the web today in beta form…

Here’s the scoop on Cloud Datalab:

Google Cloud Datalab, available today in Beta is a web-based interactive developer tool that allows you to get insights from your raw data and explore, share, and publish reports in a fast, simple and cost-effective way. Cloud Datalab combines the power of Google BigQuery and Google Cloud Storage with familiar data science ecosystems built around IPython, removing the need for complex integration between products.

And here’s the gist on Cloud Shell:

Our customers want to be able to easily manage their infrastructure and applications when running on Google Cloud Platform no matter where they are.  Building on the ability to SSH from the browser we released for Google Compute Engine VM instances last year, today we’re launching Google Cloud Shell Beta, which extends from just VMs to all aspects of the platform.

These announcements are certainly irrelevant for the vast majority of regular users, but for those of you out there that are running apps on Google’s Cloud Platform, you have a couple of new tools. On a somewhat related note, an Amazon Web Services VP accidentally showed a picture of Google’s data centers at re:Invent last week.

 

launch Stories October 12, 2015

fold

Google is going global with its affordable Virtual Reality platform. The Mountain View company has announced today that its Google Cardboard app is now available in 39 languages across 100 countries, and that the Cardboard developer documentation is also now published in 10 languages to help even more developers build Cardboard experiences… expand full story

launch Stories October 5, 2015

sonyxperiaz4_1024-x-640

Verizon took the veil off of the Sony Xperia Z4v just about 4 months ago, saying that it would be coming in the summer. That quite obviously didn’t happen even after Sony’s website proudly proclaimed that the phone would be coming on August 13th, leading most to believe that it has just been straight-up cancelled. As of today, Verizon has confirmed that to be the case: The Xperia Z4v will never see the light of day… expand full story

launch Stories September 23, 2015

LG’s Nexus 5X is coming in three colors: white, black, and mint-ish green

We just saw the Huawei Nexus 6P colors earlier today, and now the same source has shared stock imagery showing the upcoming Nexus 5X from LG. While the white variant was all but confirmed (and a black version easily assumable), this image shows that Google is preparing to launch a green-ish blue color as well — lining up pretty well with previous rumors of a “mint” color.

According to an earlier report out of Android Police citing a “reliable source,” LG’s upcoming “Nexus 5” (which we’ve recently learned is actually called the Nexus 5X), will sport a Snapdragon 808 processor, a 5.2-inch 1080p display, 3 GB of RAM, a 2700 mAh battery, support for USB-C, a 12.3-megapixel main camera sensor, and a 5-megapixel front camera.

As is the case with the Huawei Nexus 6P (and the Chromecast 2nd gen. & Chromecast Audio, which we exclusively leaked last week), we’ll know more about Google’s announcements on September 29th.

 

Meet the Lightest & Thinnest Smartwatch: Pebble Time Round - YouTube 2015-09-23 12-17-17

Pebble Time and Pebble Time Steel both launched earlier this year to mixed reviews, and now the company behind two of the most-funded Kickstarter projects ever is at it again. Today, Pebble is launching the Pebble Time Round, its first circular smartwatch… expand full story

launch Stories September 10, 2015

Marshmallow’s ‘Dark mode’ confirmed to be ditched, but it might make a comeback

One of the most exciting new features that popped up in the first Developer Preview of Android Marshmallow was a “Dark” system theme option. While it didn’t do much besides change the background colors of the Settings app, it seemed to be the beginnings of what could have been a system-wide dark theme. Then, the feature disappeared in Developer Preview 2, and its fate was left unclear — until now. For now, the dark mode in Android M is dead, but it might just make a comeback…

Update: Yep, it’s official.

Update 2: The update to Google Wallet is rolling out now, but you can grab the Android Pay APK over at APKMirror right now. Keep an eye out for our hands-on.

According to the well-connected Artem Russakovskii as well as a Re/code report, Android Pay is set to be launched today. This little tidbit comes despite previous rumors — thanks to leaked Verizon documentation — that the service would be launching on September 16th… expand full story

launch Stories September 3, 2015

As we near the September 29 announcement of Google’s new Nexus handsets, the rumors, reports, and speculation just keep building. According to a new report out of Android Authority this morning, the upcoming LG Nexus 5 is going to sport the name “Nexus 5X,” although a “decision on the final name has not been taken yet at Google HQ.” Additionally, the phone is said to start at $400, which is $50 more than the previous Nexus 5 launched in 2013… expand full story

launch Stories September 1, 2015

At this point, it seems like smartphones are coming to market just about as fast as apps. Today, Nextbit, a team made up of former engineers from Google, Apple, and other well-known names in the tech space, has announced their own smartphone entry. It’s called the Robin, and it packs a beautiful and simple design, great-but-sub-flagship specifications, and a cloud-first user experience… expand full story

launch Stories July 20, 2015

YU announces the Yureka Plus w/ full HD 5.5-inch display, Snapdragon 615 for $157

Almost all phone manufacturers seem to be launching “Plus” handset variants this year, and Micromax subsidiary YU isn’t an exception. The company first launched its YU Yureka handset late last year, and now, you can buy a “Plus” version of the device that packs a higher-resolution screen and some very minor spec improvements across the board…

launch Stories July 16, 2015

HBO NOW comes to Android and Fire tablets, Fire TV and Fire TV Stick soon

Update: The app is now available on the Play Store. Link below.

At long last, HBO is bringing HBO NOW, which first launched first on the Apple TV, to Android.

Additionally, Amazon has today announced that the online-only service is now available on the company’s line of Fire tablets, and that NOW will be making its way to the Amazon Fire TV and the Fire TV Stick very soon.

launch Stories July 14, 2015

ZTE-Axon-Phone-side-back-640x188

ZTE isn’t exactly known for premium smartphones, but now the Chinese company is taking a stab at delivering something that’s a bit on the higher-end. It doesn’t exactly set any records, but it’s definitely a decent piece of hardware — and its internals are about on par with that of this year’s Samsung, LG, and HTC headliners… expand full story

launch Stories July 13, 2015

google-glass

We told you earlier this month that Google is internally referring to the next iteration of its Glass hardware as “Enterprise Edition,” and rightfully so — the Explorer Edition is long gone, and people close to Google have said that the company is planning to go full-force with its wearable computer in the workplace. But how are they going to do that? People familiar with the company’s plans have told 9to5Google that Google is currently planning to distribute the device exclusively through its certified set of Glass for Work partners… expand full story

launch Stories June 25, 2015

The company's OnePlus One

The company’s OnePlus One

OnePlus has today announced that they plan to launch their upcoming OnePlus 2 handset by way of virtual reality, something that has never been done before. Tired of traditional keynote-and-an-audience tech announcements, OnePlus decided to do something new — and, perhaps more importantly, way cheaper:

In our industry, product launches tend to be the same. An auditorium, a keynote, and a seated audience. For the OnePlus 2 launch, we didn’t want that barrier between us and you; we want to invite you into our world, because you’re a major part of it. That is why we will be unveiling the OnePlus 2 to the world completely in VR.

OnePlus has a reputation of being as loud and disruptive as they can in their marketing, and this is yet another step in that direction as the company slowly announces the specifications of the OnePlus 2 one by one… expand full story

launch Stories June 3, 2015

huawei-ascend-p8

As expected, the Huawei P8 Lite has now landed in the United States. The phone isn’t exactly the first of its kind—the Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3 and the ZenFone 2 fall into the same category—but it’s a notable addition to the available mid-range offerings in the US. It’s a stripped down version of the company’s P8, as you might expect… expand full story

launch Stories May 17, 2015

lg-g4-press-render-710

In a pretty ambiguous press release, LG has come out this afternoon (or this morning for those in Seoul) to announce that its recently-announced G4 flagship will begin shipping this week to consumers in “key markets around the world.” The rollout will supposedly begin in Hong Kong, followed by introductions in Turkey, Russia, and Singapore… expand full story

launch Stories May 15, 2015

Mi Store 2015-05-15 12-49-11

Xiaomi is going to very slowly start its entry into Europe and the United States next week, according to a post from the company’s Facebook page. Starting on the 19th of May, the company will offer a small selection of accessories—including power banks and headphones—to buyers in the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Germany… expand full story

Screen-Shot-2015-05-14-at-10.09.43-PM-640x505

Google has begun sending out an email to developers, asking them to opt-in their family-friendly apps and games to the Designed for Families program. The Mountain View company first started inviting developers to take part in the initiative about a month ago, aiming to increase discoverability of family- and kid-friendly apps on the Play Store… expand full story

launch Stories April 16, 2015

G4 PR_logo

There isn’t much new to see of the G4’s externals, as we’ve pretty much seen the device from every angle possible at this point. But what we can gleam once again from the above image, posted by LG itself on the company’s Google+ page, is that the previous leaks were indeed legitimate renders of the upcoming handset. expand full story

launch Stories April 15, 2015

Watch Huawei P8 announcement live stream here 2015-04-15 08-55-59

Huawei is about to announce its next flagship, the Huawei P8, and you can watch the livestream of the global announcement right here. There’s not much known about the P8 besides the fact that Huawei is doing away with the “Ascend” part of its name, but the company is teasing a “Revamp the possibilities of light” motto for today’s event—meaning we might be seeing some kind of new screen or camera technology. expand full story

launch Stories March 23, 2015

Nexus Player shows up on Amazon UK for March 26 launch

The Nexus Player has been available in the US for quite some time, but now we have a bit of an idea of when the device will be launching in the UK. As spotted by Engadget, the Nexus Player has shown up on the UK Amazon website with a launch date of March 26th and a price of £80. Sadly, that page seems to have been taken down already and the only listing for the device is currently via a third-party reseller (at a pretty decent markup).

In January, Google revealed that the Nexus Player would be coming to Japan by the end of February, its first market outside the US. More recently, Google posted the Android 5.1 factory image for the Nexus Player. If you’d like to, you can head over to read our full review that we published all the way back in November. We found it to be a useful new platform for Android, but a lot of its features can feel a bit half-baked.

launch Stories March 12, 2015

LG-G4-Press-01

<a href="http://9to5google.com/2015/03/10/lg-g4-leak-lg-g-flex-2/">Purported rendering</a> of the LG G4

LG has already said that it is working on a phone that is a bit higher-end than its upcoming LG G4 handset, and it looks like the company might go with the familiar “Note” moniker to set this device apart from its siblings. A high-end large screen smartphone specifically called the “G Note” is reportedly in the works (via Korea Herald), and it looks like LG even applied for a trademark for the phablet earlier this month…

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nexus-6-stack

The Verizon Nexus 6 has been a long time coming, and today the Big Red has finally launched Google’s flagship handset (at least via online outlets). But today also brings the launch of another Android device on Verizon: Morotola’s recently launched 2nd generation Moto E.

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launch Stories March 9, 2015

nexus-6-product-photo

It’s been a long time coming for the Verizon Nexus 6, but several new pieces of information that popped up this morning and over the weekend (including a quote straight from a Verizon customer service representative) suggest that the device should be seeing a public launch—at least via Internet sales channels—on March 12th. We now have some information on pricing as well, and it looks like the device might just be shipping with Android 5.1 on the Big Red… expand full story

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