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Dragon Quest 2 arrives to Google Play

By Andrew Grush

dragon-quest-2

Fans of the Dragon Quest (aka Dragon Warrior) series will be happy to know that Dragon Quest II has now arrived to Google Play joining Dragon Quest VIII, Dragon Quest IV and the original Dragon Quest.

For those that have never played the game before, it takes place a 100 years after the original game’s story, in three new lands that were built by the descendants of the Alefgard hero. Everything is peaceful enough and so, as games go, that means a corrupt badguy shows up to rain down terror — in this case a High Priest who has summoned a bunch of demons. And so the young prince of Midenhall has been sent out to search for the other two heirs of the three kingdoms so they can kick some High Priest butt and restore peace.

If you’re a Square-Enix fan, or an RPG fan in general, I highly recommend giving this a try. Of course that’s based on my playtime of the NES classic from 1987. So what’s different in this version? For one thing, it’s now touch-optimized. For another, the graphics have been touched up a TINY bit and the gameplay has been changed up to allow you to control individual part members and not just the main hero.

As is often the case of Square-Enix Android ports the game isn’t exactly cheap at $4.99, but could be worth it if you’re looking for a fun RPG to play on the go.


Source: Google Play; …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Sharp Aquos Crystal arrives to Boost and Sprint Prepaid, $150 outright

By Andrew Grush

Sharp-aquos-crystal

When you think of smartphone brands, Sharp probably isn’t a name that comes to mind, at least not for those of us in the United States. In Japan and a few other markets, however, the brand produces some pretty epic devices under its Aquos moniker that are known for their ultra-thin bezels. And now some of that ultra-tiny-bezel goodness has arrived to the US market in the form of the Aquos Crystal.

Back in August we learned that Sprint and Boost Mobile would eventually see the device, and now that day has come for Boost Mobile and Sprint prepaid customers. The handset is priced at just $149.99 outright for prepaid customers. For those that prefer going post-paid, starting October 17th Sprint will directly offer the phone through its Easy Pay program for $10 a month for 24 months or $239.99 outright.

As for the specs? You get a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400 CPU with 1.5GB RAM, 8GB storage, a 5-inch 720p display, a 2040mAh battery, an 8MP rear cam, 1.2MP front cam, Android 4.4..2 KitKat and some of the thinnest bezels around. Considering the price, it’s actually a pretty impressive looking mid-ranger. What do you think, anyone planning on picking this one up?


Source: Boost, Best Buy; …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Looking back, what has been your most memorable Android device?

By Andrew Grush

Google Lawn Statues of Android versions

Generally with our Friday Debate topics we turn to the future or recent happenings to see what the team and our readers think. This week we want to do something a little bit different. It’s 2014, Android has evolved considerably and is about to take a major jump forward with Android L, so let’s take a trip back through memory lane.

For this week we discuss our past Android experiences. Out of all the Android devices you’ve had over the years, what do you have the most fond memories of? What about your experience with it made it so memorable?

Be sure to check out some of the near-novel sized responses from our team and then share your own experience in the comments!

Jonathan Feist

Please go grab some popcorn and a drink, I’ve got a novel for you! So far in my Android career, I cannot talk about my “most memorable Android device” without mentioning three devices. There is my first Android phone, my first Nexus device and, as it happens, the phone I have beside me right now.

Each of these devices have had a different impact on my life, partially due to form factor and partially due to capabilities. Aside from simply being memorable, these three devices, as a whole, have endured the majority of my experiences with Android, and formed my feelings on the OS.

Enough of all the talk, my devices are the LG Optimus One (P500), the Nexus 7 and the Motorola Moto G.

It was pure fluke that I got the P500, I was driving back home from a trip to Vancouver, BC, Canada, passing through the mountains listening to tech podcast on my HTC Touch, Windows Mobile phone. It was a hot day in the mountains and I made the mistake of letting the Touch sit in the sun for a bit. (Fun fact, my Google+ cover photo was taken that morning, just entering the mountains during sunrise.)

I still don’t know if it was just the backlight, or if the whole display called it quits that day, but I found myself pulling into the first Best Buy I could find, grabbing the first Android phone I could get with the $150 I had in my pocket. I knew all about Android the OS, but I had little concept of device brands, specs and performance at that time. I had recently had an LG flip phone, it was a good phone, so how could I go wrong?

The P500 came with Froyo, later to receive Gingerbread. Although, I had no idea there was an update for several months. I was, and still am, using Linux for my computers. It was not until I was setting up a Windows machine just to root the P500 that I connected LG’s software and found the update.

I’m talking too much, the P500 was my first device, I rocked it for a lot longer than I thought I would. It was never particularly awesome, but it was, and still is, solid and performs more than good enough to get through the basics. I still use it as a media player and hiking companion with offline maps and such. Its even got an early model 32GB microSD in it.

The Nexus 7 was my first tablet. I can never forget the day it arrived, almost exactly one month after Google I/O 2012. I got back from lunch to find it on my desk, happy times!!! Before I could open the box, my P500 rang, my brother had been in an automobile accident.

I rushed home, grabbed a couple things and made the 4 hour drive. I basically did the initial setup of the Nexus 7 in the hospital waiting room and spent most of the next week playing on it without data. My brother was mostly sedated for that time, I stayed hospital bedside as much as I could.

I then spent much of the next few months at my bro’s house helping out. If you were wondering, the worst of it was a broken leg, he is as fully recovered now as he’ll ever be with a pound and a half of titanium rods and screws holding things together, sounds bad, but he’s doing well. Anyway, during that time, the Nexus 7 became my main computer. I had a crappy work laptop along, but the Nexus 7 proved better and easier to use.

During this entire time, I was in the midst of my immigration from Canada to the U.S. My wife had already moved down, and the Nexus 7 became my single most used communication tool to bridge the distance. This is also why I am a Hangouts loyalist to the end. Thank you Google.

But wait, there’s more! The Nexus 7 had a few glitches to it, nothing I couldn’t live with, but a screen flicker developed and warranty became my only option. With just days to spare, talk about luck, I got my warranty approved and a replacement Nexus 7 was in the mail.

I did mention that I purchased the Nexus 7 from the Play Store in Canada, right? I didn’t mention that I had now moved to the U.S. – do you see the problem here? It cost me nearly $100 in shipping mishaps and several months to get the new unit shipped down and the dead unit back up to Google Canada. What a pain.

This, folks, is why I am rarely more than arms length from my Nexus 7, and why I carried it everywhere I went. At least until it developed a charging problem in recent weeks, but I’ll have more to say about later.

Now, that Moto G. It saved my life, twice! I’m kidding, completely kidding. There is no story here, I bought it while waiting for MWC-era flagships to start shipping this year, I figured I was going to buy something, but I got the Moto G to get through a couple months there.

The Moto G is the single most surprising device I’ve ever handled. The P500 wasn’t …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Sony Xperia Z3 Review

By Logan Abbott

The Sony Xperia Z3 is Sony’s newest flagship Android phone. A big upgrade over the Xperia Z2, the Z3 impresses with a high-end display, and refined design.

Sony Xperia Z3 Specs:

  • 5.2-inch 1080×1920 IPS LCD display
  • 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 quad-core processor
  • 20.7MP camera
  • 4K video recording
  • 3,100mAh battery
  • Stereo Speakers
  • Noise Cancellation
  • 16/32 GB storage, expandable to 128GB
  • 3GB RAM
  • IP68 certified water and dust proof
  • Android 4.4.4 KitKat

What do you think of it?

…read more

Source:: androidandme

    

Xiaomi prepares to enter the Smart Home business

By Rob Triggs

xiaomi mi4 review aa (9 of 19)

Xiaomi has been taking on the big players in the smartphone market this year and seems to have its eyes set on the home automation business too. The China-based company has released a small selection of smart home products for beta testing today.

The four smart home accessories are quite similar to existing products on the market. There’s a smart light bulb with multiple colour options and a power plug which can be set on a timer, controlled remotely, and also has a USB interface for charging your gadgets. The wide angled lens webcam, which can capture video at 720p and can be controlled remotely, is a slightly more niche product. Xiaomi is also working on an all-in-one smart remote centre to control your TV, music player, air conditioner, etc.

xiaomi smart home products

Timers can be setup to automate each device around your home/work schedule. Although Xiaomi hasn’t released all of the details yet, it seems logical that products will all be controlled by an app on your smartphone. This would make Xiaomi’s efforts similar to Samsung’s existing smart home setup.

There currently isn’t any indication as to when these items will go on sale, or in which regions Xiaomi will be making them available. There could be a wider range of products to come too, but Xiaomi simply says that more details will come in time. Interested?


Source: +Mi; …read more

Source:: android authority

    

Droid Landing just tweeted a Droid Turbo image by mistake

By Bogdan Petrovan

droid landing

Someone on Verizon’s social media team is having a bad Friday.

Droid Landing, the account that Verizon only uses to promote incoming launches of new Droid devices, tweeted a few minutes ago a beautiful, hi-res image of the red version of the Droid Turbo.

We first thought the image was part of a tease campaign, but the tweet has since been deleted, suggesting that someone simply clicked the wrong button.

The image shows a rather good looking device wrapped in red Kevlar. The design is distinctly Motorola, but it doesn’t share a resemblance with the new Moto X or with the rumored Nexus 6.

…read more

Source:: android authority

    

Official image shows off a new side to the Motorola DROID Turbo

By Sean Riley

Given that we have seen the entire user manual already, we thought that pretty much everything that the Droid Turbo had to offer was already laid bare.

But the @DroidLanding Twitter account just hit us with the image above revealing a much flashier (and Verizon-appropriate) version of the DROID Turbo than the standard issue black Kevlar we had seen in previous leaks.

If those fairly plain looks had you ignoring the Turbo before, then here’s a refresher on the impressive specs inside this red shell:

  • 5.2-inch “ultra high-definition display”
  • 3,900 mAh battery
  • 21-megapixel rear camera
  • nano SIM
  • 4G LTE
  • NFC
  • Droid Zap
  • Motorola Migrate, Moto Assist, Moto Voice and Moto Actions

The new Moto X probably still has the edge for most people in the looks department, but at least based on this photo, the red is a nice look for the DROID Turbo. And if what’s on the inside counts for you, the DROID Turbo is running away with this competition.

Are any of you swayed by this new look at the DROID Turbo or are you still locked on one of the other options coming this fall?

…read more

Source:: androidandme

    

Top 10 Android app updates this week: Todoist, Fitbit

By Steve Raycraft

8tracks

Welcome back to our weekly Top 10 Android App Updates column, where we take a look at the most frequently upgraded apps for the week. We’ve found that one of the best ways to discover useful apps is to find the ones that are actually being updated by the developers rather than selecting the apps with the most installs. As in the past, we’re going to filter out minor updates for the super-popular apps that have over 10 million installs, but we’ll make exceptions for apps that have had significant updates. We hope you enjoy this weekly feature and that you discover some apps that end up being useful.

8tracks playlist radio – Version 3.1.0

What’s new in this version:

  • We added Chromecast support, so now you can beam 8tracks playlists to your TV Starship Enterprise-style.
  • Those bugs that were giving you trouble? We told ‘em to scram!
  • You can once again sort by trending, newest and popular. We’re giving the power back to the people.
  • The new permission is so you can send us your 8tracks logs.

Amazon Kindle – Version 4.7.0

Kindle

What’s new in this version:

  • Start playing narration before audiobook download is complete
  • Localized support for Dutch
  • Tap on highlight to edit
  • Several bug fixes

Chromecast – Version 1.8.22

Chromecast

What’s new in this version:

  • Personalize your TV home screen with art, personal photos, news and more by setting up backdrop.

Square Order – Version 2.0.0

Square Order

What’s new in this version:

  • Two-tap ordering
  • Arrival prediction
  • Item suggestions
  • Remembers your favorites
  • Ability to cancel orders

Fitbit – Version 2.0.0

FitBit

What’s new in this version:

  • Redesigned and improved the steps to set up a Fitbit tracker
  • Stay motivated with Fitbit Challenges (BETA)

WordPress – Version 3.2.0

WordPress

What’s new in this version:

  • Notifications screen redesigned for better readability
  • Post upload notification improvement with new thumbnail and progress bar
  • Post list now auto refreshes
  • Infinite post swipe in the Reader
  • Swipe between photos in the photo viewer
  • QuickPress widget fixed

Netflix – Version 3.8.0

Netflix

What’s new in this version:

  • In-app profile management
  • Enhanced visual search results
  • Backgrounded playback with notification for quick resume (on select devices only)

MediaBrowser Android Client – Version 2.0.0

MediaBrowser

What’s new in this version:

  • Live TV. You can watch TV, schedule and manage recordings. (requires a tv-tuner card and a Live TV provider installed on the MB Server)
  • View and play your Channel content
  • Unified remote playback. Control supported clients and Chromecasts from one location
  • Greatly improved music centered layouts and a new audio player
  • Playlists. View and play your favorite audio mix
  • Tons of visual improvements. Thumbs, item grouping and more!

NBA Game Time 2014-15 – Version 5.0.0

NBA Game Time

What’s new in this version:

  • Updated for the 2014-15 season
  • Updated design
  • Offseason bug fixes and performance enhancements
  • Universal app for Android phones and tablets

Todoist – Version 6.0.1

Todoist

What’s new in this version:

  • • Achieve all your goals with Todoist Karma — now on Android!
    • Added a start guide for new users

…read more

Source:: androidandme

    

Sharp Aquos Crystal now available at Boost Mobile, Sprint model coming next Friday

By Nick Sarafolean

The Sharp Aquos Crystal, Sharp’s phone with an edgeless display, is now available at Boost Mobile for $149.99. You can pick it up at a Boost Mobile retail store or a Best Buy store. For Boost Mobile customers, the white version is the only model available. The Aquos Crystal will also come to Sprint Prepaid today for $149.99 and will be available at Best Buy. If you wait until October 21, however, you can also pick up the Aquos Crystal on Sprint Prepaid at RadioShack.

Next Friday, October 17, will see the Sharp Aquos Crystal coming to Sprint’s postpaid service for $0 down and $10/month for 24 months. As a refresher, the Sharp Aquos Crystal features a 5-inch 720p edgeless display, 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor, 1.5GB RAM, 8GB storage, 8-megapixel rear camera, 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera, Android 4.4.2 KitKat and a 2040mAh battery to keep it running. The specs are mid-range, but that edgeless design might just enough to sell you on it.

Let us know if you pick one up!

Show Press Release

The wait is over for customers who can’t wait to get their hands on Sharp AQUOS Crystal featuring a stunning edge-to-edge display.

Let’s break down the availability details for you:

Boost Mobile – AQUOS Crystal is available for $149.99 (excludes taxes) in white at www.boostmobile.com/aquoscrystal, Boost Mobile branded retail stores and Best Buy beginning today, October 10.

Sprint – With Sprint Easy Pay, well-qualified buyers can purchase the black AQUOS Crystal in all Sprint retail channels including www.sprint.com/sharp and Telesales (1800-SPRINT1) beginning Friday, Oct. 17, with $0 down (plus tax) and 24 monthly payments of $101 (service plan is required).

Sprint Prepaid – Sharp AQUOS Crystal will be available in black through Sprint Prepaid for $149.99 (excludes taxes) in Best Buy stores on October 10 and in Radio Shack locations on October 21.

This great-looking device breaks the mold of traditional smartphone design with its frameless 5-inch edge-to-edge vibrant display and stunning picture quality. Key features include:

· Harman Kardon LiveStage™ provides a more lifelike headphone listening experience by adding dimension to the sound
· Clari-Fi™ technology improves digital sound quality by restoring all types of compressed digital music
· Clip Now, which takes screenshots with one swipe and saves them with an embedded URL for easy sharing
· 8MP rear-facing and 1.2MP front-facing cameras
· Crystal clear HD Voice
· 2,040mAh battery
· 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1.5GB (RAM) and 8GB (ROM)

…read more

Source:: androidandme

    

Report: $399 Nexus 9 to launch October 15, availability from November 3

By Bogdan Petrovan

nexus 9 upleaks

Another report suggests that Google is gearing up to unveil the Nexus 9 next week, with availability starting from early November.

Android Authority has reported exclusively that Android L and new hardware will be introduced on October 15 or October 16, while the new device will actually become available in stores from November 1.

Now Bright Side of News is reporting something very similar: a launch (and pre-orders) on October 15, with availability in stores from November 3. The report, supposedly coming from a trusted source, also mentions a price for the HTC-manufactured device: $399. Just like the Nexus 7 (2013), the Nexus 9 will reportedly be available at retailers, both online and brick and mortar, from day one. Of course, the device will still sell through the Play Store.

If BSN’s report is accurate, the Nexus 9 will be significantly more expensive than the Nexus 7 (2013), which started from $229 for the base model. But that’s hardly a surprise given the specifications and features that the device is reported to have. These include a Quad HD screen, a 64-bit Tegra K1 processor, and probably a massive battery. There’s been talk about metal design, though a credible leaked image suggests that at least one version will feature a plastic body.

While we can’t confirm the $399 price tag, a source close to the matter told Android Authority that the Nexus 9 will be priced similarly to the premium version of Apple’s iPad Mini. The LTE-enabled iPad Mini costs $429, so $399 for the Nexus 9 sounds plausible.

Things often change from day to day when it comes to product launches, so there’s still room for surprises. We think though that we’ll finally see the new Nexus tablet (and perhaps the new Nexus 6 phone, which the WSJ confirmed is coming soon) next week.

Will you buy the Nexus 9 if it costs $399? How much would you be willing to spend on an HTC-made Nexus tablet, considering that LTE versions may cost more than $399?


Via: Phone Arena;
Source: Bright Side of News; …read more

Source:: android authority