Rumours have been flying the last couple of years about Jeff Bezos and the innovators at Amazon delivering their own branded smartphone. Will this time, it seems like more than the rumours are afoot at the world’s largest online retailer. It appears that a smartphone with some 3D capabilities is prepared to launch this year. Mobile tech centred site BGR just this week reported that Apple’s iPhones and Samsung’s popular Galaxy handsets are the direct targets of the new Qualcomm Snapdragon powered handset which Amazon will be releasing. Also on board is a 4.70 inch True HD 720P display and 2.0 GB of RAM system memory.
While that resolution is slightly lower than popular Apple and Samsung smartphones, the 3D features the phone will allegedly deliver are definitely game changers. Four separate cameras and special sensors are embedded into the handset. It is thought at this time that Amazon could use this breakthrough technology to allow customers three-dimensional browsing of product images on its retail website. This will allow potential purchasers more revealing physical information about products, which could boost sales.
Also, any new Kindle Fires which are released could possibly boast this new technology as well. The company’s FireOS software is on board, and if you are wondering about a name for the upcoming Amazon smartphone, the company has given it the title of Duke. Not as sexy or attention-grabbing as the Fire moniker of Amazon’s tablets, but this product will certainly be selling on the 3D capability rather than its name. Also, the screen itself will not be three-dimensional. Rather, working in congress with the special cameras and a unique software package, the display will be able to simulate three-dimensional effects. The four cameras are mounted on the front four corners of the handset, and by tilting and rotating the phone, the image on the screen in some applications will be seen in 3D.
At this point, there are no hard launch dates or debuts lined up. Also, a set retail price has not been given. But we have learned from Amazon in the past that the company is willing to lose money on its hardware simply to extend the reach of its e-book store and retail website. As of now, there are definite rumours of a late September launch, which would mirror past Amazon device rollouts which appeared just in time for the busy holiday shopping season in the United States. Amazon has not debunked this rumour, but multiple industry analysts agreed that there is definitely a 3D phone in the works.
There are reports that Amazon is currently shopping the phone to major software developers to build third-party support before the much-anticipated handset hits the marketplace. This is far from the first rumour of an Amazon smartphone appearing. And reputable sources say there could be a couple of handsets that debut at the same time. The Wall Street Journal went as far as to say an announcement would be made in June and a late third quarter launch is likely. The announcement by BGR is not uncommon for an Amazon device. In the past, that company has reported exclusively on products such as Kindle Fire tablets and e-book readers and most recently was the first to make the Fire TV announcement.
Whether or not the Moto X is going to be replaced by another version of the device is not really the debate that has popped up online over the last few days. Instead, it is more about the name of the new device. According to a leaked image that was posted on Twitter, the device that is going to be replacing the popular Moto X is going to be called the Moto X +1. The Moto X hit the web last year shortly after Google purchased Motorola and it took the mobile world by storm for the most part.
The main draw for the new device was the price, the fact that it was unlocked for any mobile carriers and the fact that it could be customized unlike any other devices on the market these days. Now that the mobile world has finally seen most of the confirmations from the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the HTC One (M8) is out of the way, it is time to find a new device to focus on. Other than the rumored LG G3, the Moto X replacement is gaining plenty of attention at this time.
The Moto X +1 might just be a rumored name, codename or the real deal, but without confirmation from Motorola, it is just speculation at this point. The ideal name for the device would be the Moto X2, but that is if the company wants to keep things simple. Now that Lenovo is just about ready to complete the purchase of Motorola Mobility from Google, the naming could change and who knows what to expect. When the original Moto X showed up last year by the way of the Moto Maker website, it was the first time that consumers were able to customize just about every part of their smartphone.
Rather than just being stuck with colored cases and covers, MotoMaker.com users were able to choose from colors for the cases, accents and can even choose a wooden back cover if they want. All of this happens when the phone is being put together and arrives out of the box the same way you ordered it through the website. The phone features a larger display, dual-core processor, 8MP camera and 2GB of RAM. The specs would be expected to get a boost this time around, but we will have to wait until Motorola is ready to confirm.
Twitter has not been in the news for buying up other companies in recent years, but this week the company did make a purchase. According to news reports, Twitter purchased Cover, which is a company that replaces the typical Android lock screen and has been quite popular since being added to the Google Play Store last December. Cover announced the purchase via its official blog saying that Twitter also believes in the “incredible potential of Android”. Cover hopes to make smartphones more useful and contextual with its app and the fact that it now has the power of Twitter behind it the sky is the limit.
The Cover app will stay in the Google Play Store for now according to the post. If something changes, the people at Cover said they will announce them rather than quietly pulling the application from the Google Play Store. The current version of the Cover app is 0.1.11 and it was recently updated last week. Cover wants to learn the habits of each user, recognize what is going on with their smartphone and offer applications that might be useful based on what the user is currently doing.
Twitter is nothing like Cover, so the curiosity is going to be brewing for those in the mobile world and experts that following major purchases like this one. Twitter is expected to announce the deal soon and maybe that is when more information will be given about the plans the company has for the app. Sometimes app companies are purchased and they just disappear and that would be bad for those that are using it, but on the other hand, with the right amount of guidance, something even better can be constructed in its place.
According to the Cover blog, the company was started one year ago and for just two reasons. The first being the “untapped potential of supercomputers (smartphones) and the amazing power of Android”. The lock screen replacement offers the right apps at the right time to users without them having to unlock their phones to gain that access. Twitter and Cover alike feel that the smartphone can work better and be even smarter than people can imagine. There are many that used the Cover app that are excited about Twitter taking over, so that is a good thing. It will be a matter of time to see what the huge social media company has in mind for the app.
Google is about to release the latest version of the Android operating system and even though they did not confirm it officially there is plenty of speculation out there that it will be coming soon. The update might not be coming to all of the devices that are powered by Android, but you can expect that it will be ready for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 for sure. The Android 4.4 KitKat update was sent out last September and since then the list of those devices getting the access to the download has been growing.
Some of the first devices to get updated included the Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, Nexus 10 and the Moto X and Moto G from Motorola. All of those devices were updated very quickly and then the list of other devices from companies like Samsung, HTC, LG and Sony started to get onboard with the update. With many, but not all, of the smartphones, phablets and tablets on the market getting the latest version of Android, it is time to start thinking about the next version. At first, many though it was going to be the Android 5.0 update, but that is not the case. It appears that Google has a few more things to address with smaller updates like Android 4.4.3, before they get to the major Android 5.0 update.
Once the original Android KitKat software hit the market it was followed very quickly with 3 bug fix updates. Now that the Android 4.4.2 has been out there for a few months and working normally, the Android 4.4.3 update is next in line. There is a reported major bug fix coming with Android 4.4.3 that is aiming to take care of the problems that came along with Android 4.4.2.
One popular source of leaks on in the mobile world claims that the Android 4.4.3 KitKat software will be available for the HTC One Google Play Edition so it can be expected to see the update for other Google Play Edition smartphones from Samsung and Sony. Devices like the Galaxy S4, Moto G, LG G Pad 8.3, Sony Xperia Z Ultra and the HTC One M8 are very likely to be getting the update at some point in the near future. Random reboots, LED notification light issues, VPN fixes and others are expected with the software update but have not been confirmed by Google at this time.
Lenovo is in the process of buying Motorola Mobility from Google, but that is not going to stop the company from getting new products out to the consumers that are demanding them. Getting smartphones and tablets to each and every single person on the globe is the top priority for some companies and now they are able to do it much cheaper. Lenovo does not have a very strong line of mobile devices, but with the latest Android-powered tablets coming to the market, the company is hoping they will be able to stand with the Nexus and Samsung branded tablets that are very popular right now.
Lenovo had some success with a few tablets from last year, but this year the company is hoping to build from that and offer something even better at an even better price point. Bringing the price point down is good if you want to get your tablet in front of a lot of people, but at the same time that usually means it will also be lacking in places where a tablet should not be. The new tablets are reportedly going to be called the A7, A8 and the A10, which is also showing us the final size of each one right in the model number.
If you were not going to be enjoying any Nexus-branded tablet from Google or the popular line of Galaxy Tab devices from Samsung, you can keep an eye out for the Lenovo line coming next month. The 7-inch model is reportedly going to be just $129 out of the box. The other two tablets will cost a little bit more for each model depending on the size you want. The A-series will feature Android 4.2 Jelly Bean software, unfortunately.
All three of the tablet will have the same 1280×800 resolution on an HD display, a quad-core processor from MediaTek and 1GB of RAM. Internal memory is listed at just 16GB, but that should be plenty of room to get you started storing apps, games and music. There will also be a microSD card slot for expansion if needed. All three tablets will also feature Dolby Sound Processing, HD displays and a camera on the front and back side of the device. The A8 will be priced at $179, while the larger 10-inch model will be priced at just $249.