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Lollipop beginning to roll out to the Verizon Galaxy Note 3

By Jimmy Westenberg

Rise of the Phablet - Galaxy Note 3

Verizon’s Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is next in line to receive the big update to Android 5.0 Lollipop. The update, which is rolling out now, will bring your software version up to LRX21V.N900VVRUEOB6.

So what’s new in the Lollipop update? For starters, a big portion of the user interface will be revamped with Google’s Material Design guidelines. You can expect a redesigned notification shade, Settings menu and a few other tweaks on the UI side. Unfortunately the aesthetic changes won’t be as apparent as you’d see on a device running vanilla Android, but we think you’ll like the changes overall. You’ll also get a bunch of other new features like priority mode notifications, Smart Lock, actionable lock screen notifications and more.

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 9.10.29 AM

The update is just beginning to roll out today, but if you haven’t gotten it yet, don’t worry. It might take a few days to come to your device. If you’d like to check for the update manually, head to Settings>About phone>Software updates>Check for updates. For more information on exactly what the Lollipop update will bring, check out the source link below. And be sure to let us know in the comments when you receive your update!

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Source:: android authority

    

Samsung Galaxy S6 coming to Cricket Wireless on April 24th

By Rob Triggs

samsung galaxy s6 review aa (37 of 45)

Cricket Wireless has announced that it will also be selling the Samsung Galaxy S6. The handset will be made available in stores and through its retail website on April 24th.

Cricket Wireless’s no-contract model sees the upfront cost come in at a hefty $649.99, although this is still cheaper than some other US carrier one-off costs. If that’s a bit steep, Cricket’s new Phone Payment Plans allows customers to grab a Galaxy S6 for $19.99 up front with a smartphone plan and an approved credit card. Alternatively, Cricket’s 90 day same-as-cash option sets the price at $49.99 upfront without the need for a credit check.

For a limited time, customers moving from T-Mobile, Metro-PCS, Sprint, Boost, or other carriers, over to one of Cricket’s $50/mo or $60/mo Smart and Pro plans will receive one month of free service. This offer ends at the end of April.

There’s no news on whether or not Cricket Wireless will also be offering the Galaxy S6 Edge at some point.

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Source:: android authority

    

Best Wireless Chargers for Samsung Galaxy S6

By Ankit Banerjee

samsung galaxy s6 review aa (30 of 45)

While some hardware features like expandable storage and a removable battery are no longer available, Samsung’s latest flagship did add something new in the form of wireless charging capabilities — built-in this time around, and not requiring additional receivers like previous generations. The best part is that the Samsung Galaxy S6 is compliant with both the Qi and PMA standards, which means that you don’t have to worry about which type of charger you choose, or may already have. That said, if you are in the market for a new wireless charger to use with the Galaxy S6 or S6 Edge, here is a roundup of some of the best options out there!

Samsung Wireless Charger for the Galaxy S6

The latest wireless charger from Samsung is an official accessory of the Galaxy S6, and is very easy to setup and use. This sleek charger leaves a small footprint, requiring minimal space. Properly aligning the device on the charging pad is needed though, and the built-in LED indicator light will alert you if the device is not properly aligned and when a good charge alignment is acquired (LED lights up blue). If using with the Galaxy S6, it will also alert you when your device is fully charged (LED lights up green). The charger also comes with over-charging protection.

Of course, this charger is also compatible with any other smartphone that comes with Qi wireless charging capabilities. While officially priced at the $69.99, the Samsung Wireless Charger is available on Amazon for $49.99, with color options including black sapphire and white pearl.

Buy Now from Amazon

Yootech Qi Wireless Charging Pad

galaxy s6 wireless charger yootech

This compact and light-weight wireless charging pad is a great option for those looking for a wireless charging solution on a budget. It’s compact nature makes this device very portable, and the charger also comes with a standby mode to stop the continuous charging of the battery after it is full. A green indication light shows when the alignment is perfect and that the phone is charging, and a red light shows when it goes into standby mode. This charging pad can also be used with cases of a certain thickness, even if it is recommended that the case be removed to avoid overheating the phone. Keep in mind that an AC adapter isn’t available with this product. The Yootech Qi Wireless Charging Pad is available for $13.99, with black as the only available color option.

Buy NOw from Amazon

P.I. Mobile Store Qi Wireless Charger

galaxy s6 wireless charger pi mobile store

This ultra thin charging pad is another sleek and portable wireless charging solution. An aspect that some users will appreciate is the fact that the charger is silent and doesn’t come with the beeps that other chargers do, with only the LED lights being used to indicate whether the alignment is correct and the device is being charged. While the charger will work if the device is protected by a case, cases with thickness that exceeds 5 mm may reduce performance. Keep in mind that an AC adapter is not available with this product. the P.I. Mobile Store Qi Wireless Charger is available for $19.97.

Buy Now from Amazon

TYLT Vu

best-wireless-charger-tylt-3

The TYLT Vu may be one of the more expensive options available, but could be well worth the price for some, with it serving a dual purpose of being a wireless charger as well as a desktop cradle. The cradle sits at an angle that makes it comfortable for media consumption while the device is charging. It’s made with a soft touch rubber at the top, with a sturdy plastic frame for support. It boasts a minimalistic design, but does come with an LED light to show whether the phone is charging or not. It uses a proprietary power cable, that tucks into the bottom of the charger, and remains out of sight when the cradle is kept on your desk, adding to its sleek look. The TYLT Vu is available in multiple color choices, including black, green, red, and blue, with a price point starting at $58.99.

Buy Now from Amazon

TechMatte Wireless Charger

galaxy s6 wireless charger techmatte

The TechMatte Wireless Charger is durable, compact, and lightweight, with a sleek design, and comes with an LED light to indicate charging status. The charger also offers an energy efficient idle mode that helps protect your device from overcharging. Unlike some other chargers on this list, an AC adapter is also available with this product. While this charger will work with protective cases, those with a thickness of more than 5 mm may result in a reduced performance. The TechMatte Wireless Charger is available for $23.99.

Buy Now from Amazon

Anker Ultra-Slim Wireless Charging Pad

galaxy s6 wireless charger anker

The Anker Ultra-Slim Wireless Charging Pad holds true to its name and is about the same size and thickness of a coffee cup coaster. Proper alignment is required, and a LED light indicates charging status. This charger also comes with a power efficient idle mode to prevent overcharging your device. Charging devices with a case on is possible, but like most other chargers, will see a reduction in performance if the case is thicker than 5 mm. The Anker Ultra-Slim Wireless Charging Pad is available for $25.99.

Buy Now from Amazon

2-in-1 RAVPower Portable Wireless Charger

best-wireless-charger-ravpower-15

The RAVPower Portable Qi Wireless Charger is a wireless charger with an in-built battery extension pack with a 4,800 mAh unit, which is perfect for when …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Samsung is prepping Android 5.1 for the Galaxy S6 and more

By Nick Sarafolean

A new report from SamMobile has revealed that Samsung is working hard to get a build of Android 5.1 Lollipop for multiple devices, notably the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge. Android 5.1 is also in the works for the Galaxy Grand Prime, and both the Galaxy Core Prime and Galaxy Mega 2 are going to get Android 5.0.

SamMobile also made mention of the Galaxy Note II, which currently is not under active software development. While the site believes that the Note 2 will receive Android 5.0 alongside the Galaxy Mega 2, Samsung hasn’t begun any development yet, so the future is still uncertain for the Galaxy Note II. Some of Samsung’s regional branches, however, have said that the Note II will receive Lollipop, so don’t get too worried.

There’s no word on when these updates will be rolling out, but stay tuned for more info.

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Source:: androidandme

    

European Commission launches antitrust investigation into Android

By Rob Triggs

Lollipop statue Android Google logo close

Following three years of scrutiny, the European Commission is to formally investigate claims that Google is abusing its Android operating system to unfairly gain market share for its services and software.

The investigation will examine whether Google has unfairly hindered access to rival applications, excessively bundled its apps with other essential services or APIs, and if the company has illegally prevented manufacturers from running modified versions of the open-source Android operating system.

The investigation will examine whether Google has unfairly hindered access to rival applications

One of the key causes for the commission’s concern is Google’s controversial approach to controlling its operating system. By preventing forked versions of Android from running its software, Google locks them out of important services like the Play Store.

There are also an increasing number of pre-installed Google services that ship with new devices, which may unfairly disadvantage competeing applications. Chrome, Hangouts, and Youtube are just a handful of the Google owned applications found pre-installed on smartphones these days, and the commision wants to know if manufacturers are being forced or incentivised to exclusively pre-install Google’s apps.

In its defence, Google has responded by suggesting that Android has helped offer users more choice than was available before. Google cites carrier and manufacturer choices to pre-install rival services, such as Facebook or Microsoft’s Office, and its anti-fragmentation agreement, which stipulates that apps work across a range of different Android devices, as part of its rebuttal.

Google says that Android has helped offer users more choice

Google is also keen to point out that it ships far fewer Google apps on Android phones than Apple does on iOS devices. However, the two have rather different business approaches.

Furthermore, the European Commission has formally accused Google of breaching antitrust laws. Specifically, by abusing its dominant position in the search engine space to promote its own services ahead of more relevant results from its rivals.

The EU regulator states that it is “concerned that users do not necessarily see the most relevant results in response to queries—to the detriment of consumers and rival comparison shopping services, as well as stifling innovation.” A final decision regarding the search case could be made before the end of the year. If supported, the commission may impose large fines and injunctions against Google that would affect its European business.

Again Google has already responded, showcasing a selection of the most popular shopping and travel sites in Europe, with Google’s own services ranking among the lowest. Google claims that innovation and competition has increased in these markets, not slowed, and believes that it has a very strong case against these charges.

As for the investigation into Android, Google will be discussing the commission’s concerns in the coming months and any decision could take a considerable length of time. Do you think that the European Commission is right to try and keep Google in check or might these claims unreasonably hamper Google’s ability to offer high-quality services in Europe?

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Source:: android authority

    

Huawei P8 launch event, live from London: watch it here

By Bogdan Petrovan

Huawei is gearing up to unveil its newest flagship, the P8. Dropping the “Ascend” part of the name but walking in the footsteps of last year’s Ascend P7, the P8 shapes up to be a sleek and powerful Android device that can stand its own against the likes of Galaxy S6 and One M9.

Huawei is introducing the P8 at a London event that will be livestreamed starting in about an hour, and we will be there to bring you hands-on impressions of the device and relevant comparisons.

You can watch the Huawei P8 event right here, and keep an eye on the site for timely posts going in detail on Huawei’s latest. The leaks have ruined the surprise when it comes to the P8, but Huawei may have something else in store as well. Stay tuned!

…read more

Source:: android authority

    

9 best baseball apps for Android

By Joe Hindy

Get it on Google Play

Baseball is America’s self-proclaimed past-time and is the oldest professional sport in the United States. Thanks to smartphones, you can carry the game in your pocket at virtually all times and it’s never been a better time to be a baseball fan. Here are the best baseball apps for Android.


9 innings baseball apps9 Innings: 2015 Pro Baseball

[Price: Free with in app purchases]
9 Innings is perhaps the most complete baseball game available for Android currently. It’s been updated to include the latest rosters for all 30 teams. It also has decent graphics, easy controls, challenges, various game modes, and more. There is also a card collecting aspect where you collect player cards and you can even trade them with other players. It’s a lot of fun and probably the best baseball sim available right now.


espn best baseball appsESPN

[Price: Free]
ESPN covers baseball quite well and during the season, you’ll find a bunch of news and updates about your favorite players and teams. The official ESPN app has been slowly improving and it’s a decent source of analysis, stats, news, and opinions. You’ll also be able to see scores and highlights along with the ability to share stories to your Facebook and Twitter. Plus, it’s ESPN which is a name in sports that people trust.
Get it on Google Play
espn best baseball apps


espn fantasy baseball best baseball appsESPN Fantasy Baseball

[Price: Free]
Fantasy sports is probably among the most fun that sports nerds can have with the game and ESPN offers a fairly good platform to play on. With the app, you can set rosters, browser free agency, manage multiple teams, follow stats and scores, and post messages to your league. You’ll also be linked directly to the baseball portion of ESPN so you don’t need both this and the official ESPN app installed at once. The only issue is the interface is a bit clunky and outdated.
Get it on Google Play
espn fantasy baseball best baseball apps


homerun battle 2 best baseball appsHomerun Battle 2

[Price: Free with in app purchases]
Homerun Battle 2 is a fun little baseball time waster where you hit as many home runs as possible. There are six different game modes including survival, mission, arcade, and training modes and you can play online against people from around the world. You can even choose which stadium you want to play in. It’s a great little time waster for between innings or during commercials.
Get it on Google Play


mlb.com at bat best baseball appsMLB.com At Bat

[Price: Free ($19.99/year, $2.99/month)]
MLB.com At Bat is the official app of Major League Baseball. With it you can watch out-of-market baseball games live (requires subscription), listen to radio broadcasts, view statistics and scores along with breaking news, and there is even Chromecast support. It’s not the best for news and scores thanks to its somewhat outdated and clunky UI, but this is the only app where you can watch live baseball outside of cable TV and the subscription service is reasonably priced.
Get it on Google Play
mlb.com at bat best baseball apps


Bleacher report best baseball appsTeam Stream by Bleacher Report

[Price: Free]
Team Stream is a sports app that boasts speed. The app will allow you to select your favorite teams and favorite sports and send alerts straight to your phone when something happens to that sport or team. A few people find the writing a tad opinionated but that’s true of a lot of sports outlets these days. The analysis may not be the most in-depth but it’s a great way to learn about big events as they’re happening.
Get it on Google Play
Bleacher report best baseball apps


theScore best baseball appstheScore

[Price: Free]
theScore has, arguably, the best all-around sports app out right now. The interface is quick and useful and they cover practically all sports. Along with the slick look and high quality content, you can find live scores and stats. You can also follow any team, player, or even event to customize what news you get. You can also get notifications about breaking news, when your team scores, and the end of quarters/periods. It’s one of the best sports apps of all time and it’s one all baseball fans should check out.
Get it on Google Play


Android apps sochi 2014Yahoo Fantasy Sports

[Price: Free]
Yahoo’s fantasy sports platform is among the best out there and the app is pretty decent too. The Yahoo Fantasy Sports app lets you manage multiple teams, post messages to the league, add/drop/view free agency, trade players, and set rosters. You’ll have links to Yahoo Sports news content including analysis, scores, and more. With the app, you can also participate in drafts (and mock drafts). It’s a solid app built around a solid platform.
Get it on Google Play
Yahoo! Fantasy Sports Football


best baseball appsIndividual Team Apps

[Price: Free]
For most sports teams, there is an app that caters specifically to one sports team. One example is this Toronto Baseball app that covers the Toronto Blue Jays. You can find these for most sports teams in most sports leagues and sometimes it’s nice to have something simple that only covers the one team so you’re not constantly browsing through stuff you don’t care about. You’ll have to search the Google Play Store on your own to see if your team is represented.
Get it on Google Play
<img src="http://cdn02.androidauthority.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Toronto-Baseball-screenshot-710×399.jpg" alt="best baseball …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Nokia is buying Alcatel-Lucent for $16.6 billion

By Bogdan Petrovan

nokia logo mwc 2015 1

Nokia, the telecom giant that sold its handset business to Microsoft in 2013, announced it would be acquiring telecom equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent for $16.6 billion.

The move was announced just a day after Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent confirmed they had entered acquisition talks. The deal will make Nokia the world’s top seller of telecom equipment and services, ahead of Ericsson, Huawei, and ZTE.

After dominating the mobile industry for a decade and a half, Nokia failed to rise to the challenge of the iPhone and Android, with an ill-judged bet on Windows Phone sealing its fate in the handset business. Nokia sold its handset assets to Microsoft, but the Finnish company kept its telecom equipment business, its Here maps unit, as well as a lucrative patent licensing business.

Alcatel-Lucent is a multinational corporation that formed in 2006 when France-based Alcatel merged with Lucent Technologies, a company that AT&T spun off in 2006. A major player in the telecom hardware industry, the Franco-American company also owns the famed Bell Labs, a research subsidiary that employed eight Nobel Prize winners and developed major technologies including the transistor, laser, and the UNIX operating system.

In 2004, Alcatel-Lucent entered a joint venture with China’s TCL to produce cell phones under the Alcatel brand, but since then TCL took over the venture, and today there’s no relationship between Alcatel-Lucent and the Alcatel OneTouch smartphones.

Similarly, Nokia has “borrowed” its brand to Foxconn, which uses it to sell the Nokia N1 tablet; after the expiration of the non-compete agreement that Nokia currently has with Microsoft, Nokia-branded smartphones may be launched as well. With that said, Nokia’s contribution to such a device could be minimal and is entirely hypothetical.

To clarify again, Nokia buying Alcatel-Lucent does not affect the Alcatel OneTouch line and does not signify that Nokia is back in the smartphone game. But it does show that Nokia, even without its legendary phones, is far from dead and will remain a major force in technology for years to come.

…read more

Source:: android authority

    

OnePlus expects to sell 3 to 5 million smartphones this year

By Rob Triggs

oneplus one vs samsung galaxy s5 aa (23 of 29)

OnePlus may not be a household brand quite yet, but the company is anticipating that its global smartphone sales will reach between 3 and 5 million units this year. Not bad for a small company with only a single product on the market right now. Bloomberg’s video report (above) contains some other interesting titbits about the growing Chinese manufacturer as well.

Interestingly, Canalys research suggests that combined Europe and North America sales make up the bulk of OnePlus’ revenue, unlike Chinese rivals such as Xiaomi. This suggests that the controversial invite system has worked out in the company’s favour, allowing it to keep tight control over stock and costs while still meeting foreign demand. East Asia accounts for a substantial 39 percent portion of its sales, while India, the company’s next target market with its own dedicated invite system, has already grabbed a 7 percent share.

Although costing substantially less, the OnePlus One rivalled the hardware of most flagships last year.

Speaking of growth, OnePlus is looking to Silicon Valley to help the company expand into new markets. Rather than seeking additional funding, co-founder Carl Pei says that the company is lean enough to turn a profit, OnePlus is looking for experienced senior staff to help push the company forward. OnePlus aims to become a platform host for software developers within the next five years, according to CEO Pete Lau. The newly developed Oxygen OS could be the starting point for this venture.

The report also reaffirms that two new OnePlus smartphones will be heading our way this year. The flagship OnePlus Two will arrive in the third quarter and another unspecified cheaper model will hit the market by the end of the year. Unfortunately, we don’t know much else about these upcoming phones, but they could be key if OnePlus is to push through the 3 million sales mark by the end of 2015.

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Source:: android authority

    

Android 5.1 rolling out to Nexus 7 2013 LTE, OTA and factory image available

By Bogdan Petrovan

nexus 7 2013 aa design straight on

The Android 5.1 rollout is probably the slowest in living memory, with some of Google’s Nexus devices still waiting for it more than a month after the official announcement of the new version.

Now a new Nexus device is joining the ranks of the up to date, with Android 5.1 going out to the LTE version of the Nexus 7 (2013).

The Nexus 9 has taken over as Google’s reference tablet, but the 2013 Nexus 7 remains a popular and beloved device among Android fans. Android 5.1 will bring to the Nexus 7 2013 LTE bug fixes, performance improvements, and a handful of UI changes and new features. Learn about all things Android 5.1 from this post.

For those who are on the latest version of Android 5.0.2 (LRX22G), updating is as simple as flashing this OTA file. For a full-on system refresh, which also means you will lose your data, a factory system image is available as well.

Of course, the safest and easiest way is to wait for the OTA to hit your device on its own.

We’re still waiting for the Android 5.1 update for the Wi-Fi version of the Nexus 7 2013, but, at least in theory, it shouldn’t be too far behind. Let us know if you’ve got the update on your Nexus tablet!

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Source:: android authority