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Saturday, 30.04.11
APPROVAL: GCF approves the Huawei Ideos X1/U8180 Android Smartphone
Posted by Arne Hess - at 15:31 CET under 04 - Android News

Following the previous launch of Huawei's Ideos X5 and the later announcement of the Ideos X3, the Global Certification Forum (GCF) has just approved the Huawei Ideos X1/U8180. As always, the GCF isn't giving any further information other than the supported GSM and UMTS bands but since the Ideos brand was announced during Huawei's IFA 2010 press conference as the manufacturer's brand for smartphones, it's most likely that the X1 will be an entry-level Android smartphone, especially because it lacks HSUPA but only supports quadband GSM/GPRS/EDGE as well as dualband UMTS/HSDPA at 900/2100 MHz.

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LINEUP: Sony announces range of Android Tablets
Posted by Arne Hess - at 14:09 CET under 04 - Android News

Earlier this week, not Sony Ericsson but Sony has announced its line of "Sony Tablet" that is said to deliver the perfect combination of hardware, content and network with seamless usability for a high-quality, engaging entertainment experience. Based on decades of engineering heritage, Sony is developing two Android tablets with unprecedented design, including the S1 (codename) which is optimized for rich media entertainment and the S2 (codename) which is ideal for mobile communication and entertainment. All Sony Tablet are equipped with Android 3.0/Honeycomb and both tablets are WiFi and WWAN (3G/4G) compatible.

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Friday, 29.04.11
COMMUNICATION: Google releases Google Talk with Video for Android - brings Video Telephony to Android
Posted by Arne Hess - at 00:16 CET under 04 - Android News

Not that video telephony is anything new, it was introduced before with ISDN and went mobile with UMTS, but it looks like only the Internet made it popular and Apple made it mobile recently. Anyway, Google has announced today that it's launching Google Talk with video and voice chat for Android phones. It now allows to video and voice chat with friends, family or colleagues - right from a supported Android phone, whether the chat partners are on their compatible Android tablet or phone or using Gmail with Google Talk on their computer.

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Thursday, 28.04.11
OFFICE: Google releases Google Docs for Android - brings Office functionalities to Android
Posted by Arne Hess - at 12:09 CET under 04 - Android News

While Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 comes with a pre-installed mobile Office suite, Google's Android OS hasn't have a native documents solution but Google is still focusing on its online version. Nevertheless, Google has now released the new Google Docs app for Android to follow the trend that people are increasingly using mobile phones to access, create and edit information, which can now be done with Google Docs for Android. With this new app it's easy to filter and search for content across any Google account as well as editing docs using the online mobile editors. The app also allows to easily share items with contacts on the Android device, right from within the app.

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Thursday, 21.04.11
ENHANCED: Seesmic updates Seesmic for Windows Phone 7 - adds features & fixes bugs
Posted by Arne Hess - at 08:32 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Seesmic has not only updated its Android version but has also updated Seesmic for Windows Phone 7 to v1.5. The latest update features a couple of enhancements like general improvements of the user experience with the context menus in Twitter and Facebook. Furthermore, Seesmic has improved the Saleforce Chatter UI to make navigation more intuitive. Kind of fancy is the new "Speak a Tweet" feature which reads the tweets. Also new is trend integration as well as SMS integration which allows to tweets via text messages. Like the Android app, also the Windows Phone 7 app now features the option to select if hyperlinks should be opened either in-app browser or Internet Explorer.

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Wednesday, 20.04.11
ENHANCED: Seesmic updates Seesmic for Android to v1.7 - goes faster with Shortcuts & More
Posted by Arne Hess - at 18:03 CET under 04 - Android News

Seesmic has just announced Seesmic for Android v1.7 which comes with a couple of useful improvements. Seesmic for Android 1.7 now features shortcuts and more of what users have asked for. Seesmic's new Shortcuts allows to add Twitter and Facebook shortcuts for anything within Seesmic directly to the home screen. It allows to access accounts, the composer, searches, lists, Facebook pages, Chatter groups in one tap. In addition to shortcuts, there are further enhancements including "Translation" which allows to translate updates to the user's current language instantly, "Spam" which allows to mark Twitter accounts as spam in one tap.

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VIDEOVIEW: HTC Sense 3.0 Hands-on
Posted by Arne Hess - at 17:42 CET under 08 - Reviews

Last weeks announced HTC Sensation isn't only the first HTC smartphone which features a dual-core CPU but it's also the first Android smartphone which comes with the new HTC Sense 3.0 user interface. HTC said that the Sense experience was designed to put people at the center by making their smartphones work in a more simple and natural way and indeed, the latest Sense version features some pretty useful enhancements. For instance, HTC Sense introduces a new customizable "active lockscreen" that transforms the lockscreen into a real-time window to the most important information and content, such as social updates, photos, etc. that are viewed by simply turning on the display.

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EXPERIENCE: HTC puts the Customer at the centre with a Roadshow through the UK and Ireland
Posted by Arne Hess - at 14:53 CET under 01 - General News

HTC had such a roadshow in Germany last year and as far as I heard, it was quite successful. At least it gave potential customers the possibility to play with HTC's latest devices. Now, it's time for a UK and Ireland roadshow and HTC yesterday announced the kick-off of a roadshow designed to help retail staff and their customers get more out of their mobile phone experience. The specially-designed HTC trailer will visit 11 cities across the UK and Ireland over a six-week period, showcasing some of the many features of HTC Sense as well as the company's 2011 product portfolio. A team of HTC specialists will be available to help new HTC customers learn how to get the best out of their phone.

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Tuesday, 19.04.11
CONFIRMED: Microsoft is working on a Security Update for Windows Phone 7
Posted by Arne Hess - at 19:04 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Yesterday, news broken that Microsoft is working on a security patch for Windows Phone 7 and indeed, as sources confirmed the::unwired today, there is such a security fix in work. As a matter of fact, it's not fixing anything which Microsoft made wrong but the update is an emergency fix to prevent a malicious attacker from potentially intercepting web browser traffic because Comodo, a 3rd party Certification Authority, issued fraudulent digital certificates which has signed certificates on behalf of a third party without sufficiently validating its identity. These certificates may be used to spoof content, perform phishing attacks or perform man-in-the-middle attacks against all web browsers including Internet Explorer on Windows Phone 7.

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PHOTOVIEW: HTC Sensation Dual-Core Android Smartphone
Posted by Arne Hess - at 18:16 CET under 08 - Reviews

Last week's announced HTC Sensation is the latest Android power-house from the Taiwanese smartphone specialist! Also, it's HTC's first device which features a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU at 1.2 GHz. Running on Android 2.3.3 and featuring HTC's brand new HTC Sense 3.0 user interface, the device supports quadband GSM/GPRS/EDGE and triband UMTS/HSDPA (up to 14.4 Mbps)/HSUPA (up to 5.76 Mbps) at 900/1700/2100 MHz as well as Bluetooth 3.0, WiFi b/g/n and aGPS. The HTC Sensation also features a gyroscope, an accelerometer-, proximity- and ambient light sensor as well as a digital compass. The massive 4.3" and slightly curved Super-LCD touchscreen supports a qHD resolution at 540 x 960 pixel.

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AVAILABILITY: Sonos Controller for Android now available
Posted by Arne Hess - at 16:18 CET under 04 - Android News

Sonos users here? If so, you might be interested to hear that Sonos, maker of the wireless multi-room music systems for the home, today announced that the previously announced Sonos Controller for Android is now available for download as a free app on Android Market. Sonos Controller for Android transforms most Android smartphones into a wireless music controller for the award-winning Sonos Multi-Room Music System. It allows to access and play all the music from the Internet and the personal music library - throughout the home, wirelessly. It either plays the same song in every room of the house – perfectly synchronized - or mixes it and plays different songs in different rooms.

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Monday, 18.04.11
QUICKVIEW: Eye-Fi Android App for Eye-Fi Memory Cards
Posted by Arne Hess - at 19:42 CET under 08 - Reviews

Earlier last week, Eye-Fi announced its new Mobile X2 SD memory card as well as the upcoming release of the Eye-Fi app for Android and iOS and since yesterday, the Android app, which requires Android 2.1 or higher, is available for free from Google's Android Market. It allows users with an Eye-Fi X2 card, to instantly upload full resolution photos and videos - straight from the digital camera - to the Android smartphone or tablet, from where it can be forwarded via E-Mail or uploaded to favorite online services. Furthermore, since not everybody is carrying a mobile hotspot, it allows to directly connect a Eye-Fi X2 card to an Android device, using Eye-Fi's own "Direct Mode".

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AVAILABILITY: Orange unveils pricing and availability for the Motorola ATRIX and Accessories
Posted by Arne Hess - at 13:58 CET under 04 - Android News

As Motorola's exclusive UK launch partner, Orange UK today announced pricing and availability for Motorola ATRIX - the world's most powerful smartphone. From today, consumers will be able to register their interest online or reserve their device from Orange retail shops and Orange telesales ahead of launch in early May. The Motorola ATRIX is the true epitome of mobile computing. The Android handset features a dual core processor which delivers up to 2 GHz of processing power. As a result, Motorola ATRIX is capable of opening web pages twice as fast as most other smartphones, and it has been designed to become a user's primary digital hub to create and edit media content on the go.

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AVAILABILITY: Microsoft Office 365 hits Public Beta
Posted by Arne Hess - at 09:20 CET under 01 - General News

Back in October 2010, Kurt DelBene, president, Microsoft Office Division, and Chris Capossela, vice president, Microsoft Office Division, announced Office 365, Microsoft's next generation productivity service which was initially available as a closed Beta. It brings together Office, SharePoint, Exchange and Lync in an always-up-to-date cloud service and today, Microsoft announced the public Beta of Microsoft Office 365. The public Beta allows millions of people in more countries and more languages - a total of 38 markets and 17 languages in all - to try Office 365 for the first time.

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Friday, 15.04.11
CHANGES: Microsoft enhances Windows Phone 7 Hardware Specs with introduction of Mango
Posted by Arne Hess - at 16:29 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Microsoft's first major Windows Phone 7 upgrade - which is code-named Mango - is not just about new and improved OS features and services as well as new developer tools, but as it looks today, Mango is also bringing enhanced Windows Phone 7 hardware specs. So far, Microsoft has one chassis-spec which means that all Windows Phone 7 devices are quite similar, only differentiating in terms of the used camera (while 5 megapixel is the minimum) and display technology (LCD, S-LCD, AMOLED, S-AMOLED). However, all of today's Windows Phones are running the same MSM8x55 Qualcomm CPU but at yesterday's MIX11 presentation, Microsoft's Istvan Cseri unveiled a couple of hardware changes and updates!

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THOUGHT: The Bird Cam - an experiment for watching Mother Nature and streaming Video wireless
Posted by Arne Hess - at 09:42 CET under 09 - Thoughts

Somewhat off-topic but just the right topic for today's Friday column is the Bird Cam I'm currently running. Roughly two weeks ago we noticed a Blackbird node with three eggs, next to our balcony and unlike the previous years, where we also had nodes but never followed the breeding, this year I wanted to follow the bird's work. Since we live in the 21st century I thought that it might be good idea to follow it with a webcam and first I thought about snapping a photo every minute and uploading it to the web server. However, it's the 21st century and uploading photos is old school and not the YouTube-way the Internet is about these days. Therefore I've installed the webcam with the plan to stream the breeding to the Internet.

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Thursday, 14.04.11
UTILITY: Hidden Wi-Fi connects HTC Windows Phone 7 Smartphones to hidden WiFi networks
Posted by Arne Hess - at 20:07 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

While Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 supports WiFi by default, it's part of the hardware specs every device have to follow, the Windows Phone 7 UI is rather simplistic and only shows WiFi networks which are broadcasting the SSID (WiFi network name). As a matter of fact it means that Windows Phone 7 devices are unable to connect to networks which are hidden and not broadcasting their SSID - for security reasons. However, HTC has just released a tool called "Hidden Wi-Fi" which allows users to add 3 WiFi access points with hidden networks to the device list of WiFi networks. After the hidden network is added, it can be connected like any other WiFi network.

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Wednesday, 13.04.11
DEAL: Vote for a Fan-made Windows Phone 7 Video and Microsoft will bring it to TV
Posted by Arne Hess - at 19:36 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Fan made product-ads are pretty popular these days and we have seen some very good in the past already, for instance the Palm webOS ads which advertised what Palm missed to do. However, today's MIX11 keynote in Las Vegas kicked-off with a 2 minutes Windows Phone 7 fan-ad, created by Brandon Foy and Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president and director of Windows Phone Program Management, promised that Microsoft "will put in on TV if 200k users love it too" on YouTube! Now that's a deal - so head over to YouTube and see Brandon's work and vote for it to see it prime time (most likely in the U.S. only).

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OUTLOOK: Microsoft shows new Capabilities of Windows Phone "Mango" at its Mix Conference
Posted by Arne Hess - at 18:17 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Today, during its MIX11 keynote, Microsoft is providing the first deep look at the development platform for the next version of Windows Phone - code named Mango - arriving on new and existing handsets later this year. Developers will soon have updated Windows Phone Developer Tools. Improved tools include a performance profiler and sensor simulation, enabling developers to build more integrated and high-performing applications. However, Microsoft also provided an early glimpse of app concepts for the next version of Windows Phone OS with new experiences from Skype, Spotify, Layar, Qantas, Amazon

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EXPANDED: Eye-Fi announces the Mobile X2 SD Card and prepares to launch Direct Mode soon
Posted by Arne Hess - at 10:24 CET under 01 - General News

Following last year's introduction of the X2 series and the earlier announcement of the upcoming Direct Mode apps for Android and iOS, Eye-Fi yesterday announced a new and powerful addition to the Eye-Fi family - the Eye-Fi Mobile X2. It unleashes the power of instant uploads by instantly sending photos and videos straight from the camera to an iPhone, iPad or Android device. The Eye-Fi Mobile X2 will use Eye-Fi's upcoming Direct Mode technology which wirelessly connects the camera to the mobile device to allow viewing, using or uploading and sharing photos straight from the mobile device. In addition, photos and videos can automatically and wirelessly be backed up and organized in the user's private Eye-Fi View account.

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Tuesday, 12.04.11
INTRODUCED: HTC announces the HTC Sensation Android Smartphone with Dual-Core Snapdragon CPU
Posted by Arne Hess - at 14:45 CET under 04 - Android News

As expected, HTC today announced at its press event in London the HTC Sensation - so far better known under its code-name "Pyramid". The Android 2.3/Gingerbread smartphone is powered by a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU at 1.2 GHz and features a 4.3" qHD widescreen SLCD display as well as a main 8 megapixel autofocus camera with dual-flash LED, which also allows to record 1080p HD videos up to 30 fps! The front-facing camera supports VGA. Tapping into HTC's trademark design language, the HTC Sensation's premium look and feel is enhanced by its rounded edges, aluminum unibody construction and the touch screen surface is protected by a contoured screen that feels more natural as a finger is glided across it.

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Monday, 11.04.11
EXPANDED: First LTE Mobile Devices achieve GCF Certification
Posted by Arne Hess - at 08:39 CET under 01 - General News

The Global Certification Forum today announced, that the Samsung GT-B3740, a USB modem, became the first LTE device to achieve GCF Certification on 31 March 2011. A second device, the LG FM300 Xenon, an LTE-connected WiFi router, was certified on 4 April 2011. Both devices operate in Band 20, the "European Digital Dividend band", in which LTE is currently being deployed in Germany. Developed and maintained by an active partnership of operators, device manufacturers, the test industry and other interested parties, GCF Certification is designed to provide confidence that new devices are compliant with relevant standards and interoperable with network systems irrespective of infrastructure vendor.

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Wednesday, 06.04.11
UPDATE: HTC first to update Windows Phone 7 with its own ROM
Posted by Arne Hess - at 19:24 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

While Microsoft and its carrier partners are still in the process of rolling-out Windows Phone 7's pre-NoDo and NoDo updates, it looks like HTC is going even further and is currently distributing its first own Windows Phone 7 update! We've just received the following screenshot which shows that a "HTC update for Windows Phone" is available! While we have previously heard that manufacturers will also be able to push updates to their Windows Phone 7 devices (for instance it's expected that Dell will release a separate WiFi bug-fix for its Venue Pro soon after the NoDo update), this is the first screenshot of a manufacturer Windows Phone 7 update which I'm aware of.

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STATISTICS: Microsoft Germany unveils Windows Phone 7 Marketplace and Developer Information
Posted by Arne Hess - at 11:50 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Right ahead of next week's MIX11, Microsoft's international web developer conference in Las Vegas, Microsoft Germany unveiled new data about its Windows Mobile 7 app developments. According to that, the Windows Mobile Developer Tools have been downloaded more than 1.5 million times and worldwide, Microsoft has more than 36,000 registered App Hub developers with roughly 1,200 new developers signing-in each week. Germany is doing quite well and Microsoft Germany counts over 2,000 registered developers which have developed and uploaded over 700 apps to the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. Furthermore, the Marketplace is said to now feature more than 11,500 apps with 7,500 pay-apps while roughly 44 % of these apps are available as free test (try before buy) versions.

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Monday, 04.04.11
UTILITY: ChevronWP7.Updater flashes Windows Phone 7 NoDo to any supported Device [UPDATE 4]
Posted by Arne Hess - at 16:39 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Over the weekend, Microsoft released its Windows Phone Support Tool and it seems the support tool was good for more than just getting a failed Windows Phone 7 update working again. Chris Walsh, one of the developers of the later removed ChevronWP7 tool, has just released a project called "ChevronWP7.Updater". According to Walsh, inside the Windows Phone Support Tool, Microsoft created a managed wrapper which takes care about the whole update process. ChevronWP.Updater takes benefit of this wrapper and now allows to flash every Windows Phone 7 to pre-NoDo (7008), NoDo (7355), NoDo update 1 (7389) and NoDo update 2 (7390) - all in a single process and with the proper firmware - accordingly to the phone!

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CONNECTED: Microsoft releases free simple E-Mail client for Zune HD
Posted by Arne Hess - at 10:06 CET under 01 - General News

Whatever Microsoft plans for its Zune hardware, you know the media player platform which never made it to a broad market or acceptance, Zune HD owners have received some further app-love from Microsoft by now getting a free E-Mail client. As the name indicates, "email for Zune HD" allows users to check their Gmail, Hotmail as well as Exchange (but not POP3 or IMAP?) inboxes straight from the device. While it's nothing fancy, it might be a great alternative to your phone in case you're relaxing on the hotel pool, listening some of the latest tracks from Zune while still having the office in mind. Also not a surprise at all is that Zune HD's E-Mail client looks quite similar to Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 E-Mail.

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HELPER: Microsoft releases Windows Phone Support Tool to resolve faulty Window Phone updates
Posted by Arne Hess - at 09:36 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News

Not that I've seen this kind of error messages yet, but all my Windows Phone 7 pre- and NoDo updates went painless so far, Microsoft has released a utility called "Windows Phone Support Tool" which is an application that fixes problems that prevent Windows Phone 7 devices from updating successfully. The tool only works for the following two error codes: "800705B4 - The timer ran out on what Microsoft's Zune Player tried to do" and "80180080 - Microsoft couldn't update the connected phone because the operating system might be corrupt". The support tool will install an update that fixes the above mentioned problems and allows to install the latest phone update by using the Zune after.

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Friday, 01.04.11
EXPANDED: mSpot Music now offers 5 GB of free Cloud Storage
Posted by Arne Hess - at 13:53 CET under 04 - Android News

Earlier this week, Amazon launched its Amazon Cloud Drive and Amazon Cloud Player for Web and Amazon is giving 5 GB of cloud storage away - for free. Therefore the competition had to answer and mSpot - which was launched roughly one year ago - just did so, by also increasing its free storage offering to 5 GB now. While some might prefer to use Amazon, mSpot has one real benefit which Amazon hasn't: It's supporting iPhone, Android, PCs/Macs and Internet TV as well as it also works outside the U.S., unlike Amazon's Cloud Player for Android which only works for U.S. customers! However, like Amazon Cloud Drive, mSpot enables users to quickly upload their music to the mSpot Cloud and then immediately start listening from desktop browsers, Android devices and iPhones for free.

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