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30 Dec 12 Samsung Year in Review: Galaxy Triumphs, Apple Losses

Samsung produces a number of products – from kitchen appliances to PCs – but it was the company’s mobile division that made the most headlines in 2012.

The Korea-based company dominated the mobile phone space, introducing several new Galaxy devices throughout the year. But it couldn’t shake one its biggest rivals, Apple, which proved to be a worthy opponent in the courtroom and in stores.

Still, despite all the hysteria surrounding the launch of the iPhone 5 and iPad mini, it was Samsung and its Android-heavy lineup of devices like the Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II that were the really mobile winners in 2012. Those two smartphones were only introduced in the second half of the year and they have already sold at least 30 million and 5 million worldwide, respectively.

Samsung didn’t fare as well in court, however. Though it nabbed a few patent victories here and there in its battle with Cupertino, it suffered a huge setback in August when a California jury handed down a $1.05 billion judgment; Samsung is appealing.

The Galaxy Train Steamrolls the Competition
The year opened with some hands-on time with the huge, 5-inch Galaxy Note “phablet” at CES. Samsung unveiled the massive smartphone/tablet at IFA several months before, and PCMag was a tad skeptical that it could succeed. But by March, Samsung announced that the Galaxy Note had been snapped up by 5 million consumers.

The first half of the year also saw an LTE-powered Galaxy Nexus for Sprint, the Galaxy Tab 2 with Ice Cream Sandwich, the rugged Rugby Smart, and the Galaxy Beam, a phone plus projector.

In late April, Samsung unveiled its new Exynos Quad 4 chip, which it said would power the next-generation of Galaxy devices. That included the much-anticipated Galaxy S III , which Samsung showed off during a London press event in May. It hit Europe later that month and the U.S. in June. It has been released for all major U.S. carriers and sold at least 30 million units worldwide.

Apple Patent Breakdown: Which Samsung Tech, Gadgets Infringe?

One hit smartphone was not enough, however, and Samsung followed up with the Galaxy Note II, which was even bigger than its predecessor at 5.3 inches. Despite its almost comically large size, shoppers were intrigued by the gadget and its built-in stylus, snapping up more than 5 million by the end of November.

Samsung also released the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet, which included a split-screen mode, and the Android-based Galaxy Camera. The company will also try its hand at the Windows Phone platform with the Ativ S smartphone.

We’re already hearing rumblings about a Galaxy S IV, which could make an appearance at February’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, so stay tuned.

Patent Showdown at the Cupertino Corral
But despite all of Samsung’s successes with its Galaxy lineup this year, the company spent a good chunk of its time (and money) battling Apple over patents.

The two companies have been battling since April 2011, when Apple sued Samsung for “slavishly” copying the look and feel of the iPhone and iPad with its Galaxy lineup of devices. For the first half of 2012, there were a number of headlines about wins and losses in German and Dutch courts, but things really got rolling when Apple and Samsung faced off against a jury in a California courtroom this summer.

Following several weeks of sometimes intense and sometimes boring testimony, the jury gave Apple an early Christmas present in the form of a $1.05 billion judgment. The jury did, however, find that Samsung did not infringe on Apple’s iPad design patent, so the judge lifted a ban on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in the U.S.

That’s not the end of it, of course. Samsung is appealing and the two companies have another, very similar case in the same court that will go to trial in 2014. Just last week, meanwhile, Judge Lucy Koh denied Samsung’s request for a new trial over juror misconduct and shot down Apple’s injunction demands.

Samsung did score a small victory in the U.K., when a court there required Apple to state publicly – on its website and in newspaper ads – that Samsung did not copy the iPad with its Galaxy tablets. An initial post on the Apple website did not satisfy the court, and Apple was forced to update its “noncompliant” message.

While it might seem like Apple is the bad guy here since it started things, Samsung hasn’t gotten off with some scrutiny of its own. Last week, the European Commission accused Samsung of patent abuse by not offering Apple fair and reasonable licensing terms for its 3G patents. The patents are considered “essential” for the operation of today’s most popular gadgets and Samsung, therefore, has an obligation to license them at a fair price, but Apple claims Samsung is asking for too much. Samsung, naturally, disagrees. Samsung now has a chance to respond to the EU’s charges and the commission will then decide what, if any, action to take.

Battling for the Smartphone Crown
Many of the Samsung-related headlines this year, meanwhile, touched on Samsung’s domination of the mobile phone market. The success of the Galaxy lineup even helped Samsung best Nokia, which had been the biggest phone maker for the last 14 years.

The Galaxy S III gave Samsung a boost in smartphones earlier this year, a lead that closed a bit with the release of Apple’s iPhone 5, but was not enough to give Cupertino the crown.

For more, see PCMag’s year in review for Apple, Google, Intel, Facebook, HP, and Amazon.

For more from Chloe, follow her on Twitter @ChloeAlbanesius.

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28 Dec 12 LG wants Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 banned in Korea

LG Display has fired back at Samsung in the ongoing patent skirmish between the two Korean companies.

An injunction filed today by LG seeks to ban Samsung’s
Galaxy Note 10.1 in Korea based on allegations that the
tablet ‘s display panel violates certain LG patents. LG said it filed the suit over Samsung’s use of OLED displays, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

The patents in question are related to the viewing technology used in OLED displays, which helps people better see the screen from any angle. In addition to halting sales of the Galaxy Note, LG is also looking for damages of 1 billion won ($933,000) each day in the event of “continued non-compliance,” Dow Jones added.

This suit marks the latest action in the OLED (organic light-emitting diode) patent wars between the two display manufacturers.

In September, LG filed a patent lawsuit against Samsung, claiming infringement of seven of its OLED patents. Alleging that Samsung violated the design, driver circuitry, and device design of its OLED panels, that suit wanted an an unspecified amount in damages and a permanent ban on five products, including the Galaxy S3 phone, the Galaxy Tab 7.7 tablet, and the smaller Galaxy Note.

In November, Samsung retaliated by filing its own suit against LG seeking to invalidate the patents in question on the grounds that they “lack innovation.”

The bad blood between the two goes back even further.

Earlier this year, 11 current and former Samsung Mobile employees were arrested on charges that they allegedly stole and leaked details to LG about a Samsung AMOLED TV. Six of LG’s own workers were also reportedly involved in the theft.

As Korea’s top two display manufacturers, LG and Samsung have been jockeying for dominant market share, especially in the area of OLED panels, which are used for smartphones, tablets, and TVs.

Shim Jaeboo, a Samsung Display vice president, told Dow Jones that his company did not infringe on LG’s patents and that it will respond to “unjustified claims” made by LG.

CNET contacted both LG and Samsung for comment and will update the story if we receive any information.

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26 Dec 12 Intel to Take on iPhone 5S, Galaxy S IV with New Smartphone Platform

Intel (NASDAQ:


) is reportedly building an all-new smartphone platform to
compete more effectively in the mobile device market. According

, the company will unveil the platform — along with new Atom
processors designed for lower power consumption — at the 2013
Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The event is scheduled
to take place at the end of February.

If this report is accurate, Intel’s announcement will come
around the same time that Samsung is expected to unveil the
Galaxy S IV. The South Korean manufacturer was expected to
introduce the new phone a little sooner, but Samsung quashed that
rumor when it jumped ahead and unveiled the
Galaxy Grand

last week. The Grand runs the latest version of Google (NASDAQ:


) Android and includes a five-inch display. Many speculate that
the Galaxy S IV will feature a screen that is even bigger, though
not as big as the Galaxy Note 2, which contains a 5.5-inch

Apple (NASDAQ:


) — which uses Intel chips in the iMac, MacBook Air, MacBook
Pro, Mac Mini and other computers — is rumored to be developing
an iPhone upgrade for an early spring 2013 release. The device,
which many suspect will be called the iPhone 5S, could be
unveiled in March.

Intel has had its eye on the smartphone market for some time.
The company is famous for manufacturing the Pentium, Celeron,
Core Duo and Core i7 brands, which have helped Intel to become
the world’s largest chipmaker.

Despite its size and massive revenue (roughly
$50 billion

annually), Intel is losing ground. It has learned that PCs –
desktops, notebooks and other forms — may not be the future. If
Intel is to maintain its spot at the top, it must build a
successful platform for the devices that stand to replace PCs:
smartphones and tablets.

Intel attempted to cash in on the mobile market when it
developed Medfield, a mobile platform used by Motorola, Lenovo
and a handful of other manufacturers. Thus far, none of the
Medfield-powered smartphones have produced a runaway success
story. Instead of hearing more about Motorola’s RAZR I, investors
have been bombarded with reports of
low shipment volumes

and the
surprising revelation

that the Medfield X86 chips did not initially support 4G LTE. The
processor also
prevented multiple Android apps

from running, including Google Chrome.

These results could be very troubling to smartphone makers
that are concerned with 4G LTE and/or Android app

Shares of Intel are down nearly 16 percent year-to-date.

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25 Dec 12 Samsung Galaxy Note 3 And Huawei Ascend Mate Push Displays Past 6 Inches

(Photo : Samsung) The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 already sports a 5.55-inch display. Samsung and other companies are planning on making smartphones even bigger in 2013

Smartphone companies, especially those manufacturing Android phones, are all beginning to jump on the “bigger is better” bandwagon after the initial success of the original Samsung Galaxy Note proved there are customers out there who enjoy massive screens. While 2012 gave us the 5.55-inch Samsung Galaxy Note 2, 2013 will give us our first taste of 6-inch smartphones with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Huawei Ascend Mate.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is rumored to be pushing the screen size set by its predecessors the Galaxy Note and Galaxy Note 2 by utilizing a 6.3-inch display that is expected to display 1080p. No other details are known, although there is a slim chance Samsung might use flexible, unbreakable displays for the Galaxy Note 3.

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The Huawei Ascend Mate will be making its official debut at CES 2013 in January, but senior vice president of Huawei, Yu Chengdong, recently whipped out an Ascend Mate to show to a crowd at a Huawei store.

Turns out that the Ascend Mate will be coming with a 6.1-inch 1080p display with 316 pixels per inch and a 1.8GHz quad-core processor. To power that massive screen and powerful processor Huawei is sticking a 4,000mAh battery into the Ascend Mate. The phablet will also be fairly big, measuring 9.6mm thick.

While more screen space is great on the eyes, there are many consumers for whom a 6-inch smartphone is simply unwieldy and space consuming. A lot of people have pockets to house such large devices, but there are also a lot of people who don’t, and let’s hope that in their rush to offer more eye candy, tech companies don’t forget about those who still prefer a compact cell phone with a display around 4 inches.

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25 Dec 12 7-inch Samsung Galaxy Note 7 appears on GLBenchmark

Samsung has always been bullish about the 7-inch tablet segment and
seems like the company is now gearing up to launch Galaxy Note 7.

this month, a model by the name GT-N5100 had surfaced in NenaMark2 and
now it has been spotted at GLBenchmark. According to grapevine this
device might be 7-inch Galaxy Note.

The benchmarks
seem to confirm that the Galaxy Note 7 will sport a 1.6GHz Exynos 4412
processor, a 1280 x 800 display resolution and Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean
right out of the box.

It is now a little too early to predict
whether Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will be unveiled at the forthcoming CES
2013 or Mobile World Congress (MWC), or in fact any other time.

has managed to taste success with its previous Note models. Samsung
Galaxy Note II managed to sell over 5 million units within two months
since the phablet started shipping. Currently, Samsung is also offering 10.1-inch Samsung Galaxy Note
800, (aka Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1) for Rs. 39,990 in India.

there are going to be plenty of expectations pegged around Samsung
Galaxy Note 7 when it launches and it will be interesting to see what
will be Samsung’s pricing strategy for this tablet. There are already
rumours doing the rounds that Asus and Acer may launch affordable 7-inch
tablets soon that will be available for $99. In order to compete with
them, Samsung too might have to price its forthcoming tablet on the
similar lines.

Another interesting Samsung device that might be
launched at the CES of MWC is Samsung Galaxy S IV. While the Samsung Galaxy S III was unveiled in May 2012,
there’s plenty of buzz that its successor may be unveiled a bit earlier
next year.

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25 Dec 12 Samsung Galaxy Note GT-N5100 possibly seen testing, may put quad Exynos in …

Samsung Galaxy Note GTN5100 possibly caught testing, may bring quad Exynos to small tablets

Feeling that Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 could use some more grunt? There’s a chance you’ll get your wish. An unannounced Galaxy Note GT-N5100 has popped up in benchmark scores with what looks to be a 1.6GHz Exynos 4412, better known as the Exynos 4 Quad variant that’s used in the speedy Galaxy Note II. We don’t know that it’s a small tablet, but the 1,280 x 800 resolution matches that of the Galaxy Note 10.1 — it’s not very likely that Samsung wants to duplicate its recent design efforts. Whatever the dimensions, the testing shows that the slate is using Android 4.1.2, and it may be a cellular-equipped model with that “kona3g” codename. If the GT-N5100 is more than just a set of benchmarks, the real question may be when we’ll see it; there’s no guarantee of a tinier Galaxy Note in Las Vegas.

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23 Dec 12 Galaxy Note Updated to Android 4.2.1 With SlimBean Beta 1 Custom ROM [How …


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To learn more about bugs and device-specific issues, head to the source page.  

Galaxy Note users who wish to upgrade their devices with SlimBean Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean custom ROM may follow the tutorial below. IBTimes UK reminds its readers that it will not be responsible for any damage to the device. Users are advised to verify the model number of their devices since the Jelly Bean ROM works only on the Samsung Galaxy Note N7000 but not on any other variant.    


1) Download USB Drivers for Samsung Galaxy Note and enable USB Debugging Mode.

2) Back up all your important data.

3) Ensure the device is rooted and ClockworkMod (CWM) Recovery is installed.

4) Ensure the battery of the device has more than 80 per cent of charge.

 Steps to install SlimBean Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean ROM on Galaxy Note N7000  

1) Download Slim Bean Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean ROM on Galaxy Note N7000

2) Download Google Apps package

3) Connect your Galaxy Note to the computer using the USB cable and copy both the downloaded zip files to the SD card of your phone

[Note: Do not extract any file.]

4) Disconnect the phone from the computer. Then boot into ClockworkMod recovery by pressing and holding Volume Up, Power and Home buttons together until the Samsung logo appears. Then leave all three buttons for half a second and hold them again. You should see CWM Recovery soon. Alternatively, you may try for Recovery mode without key combination

5) In CWM Recovery, perform a Nandroid backup of your existing ROM which you can restore later. To do so select Backup and Restore; then select Backup again on the next screen. Return to the main recovery menu once the backup is completed

6) Now perform data wiping by selecting Wipe Data/factory Reset then select Yes on the next screen to confirm the action. Wait until the data wipe is complete

7) Using the Power button select ‘Install zip from SD card’; then again press the Power button to select ‘Choose zip from SD card’ and locate the Slim Jelly Bean ROM zip file which you have copied to the SD card. Select it using the Power button and confirm installation by selecting Yes on the next screen

8) After the ROM is installed, repeat the same procedure to flash the Google Apps package

9) Once the installation process is complete, return to the main recovery menu and select ‘Reboot System Now’ to reboot the phone and boot up into the customised Jelly Bean ROM. The first boot will take some time

Note: If you wish to return to your previous ROM, then boot into recovery, select Backup and Restore and restore your previous ROM by selecting it from the list.   

SlimBean beat 1 custom ROM featuring Android 4.2.1 is now installed and running on your Samsung Galaxy Note N7000. Navigate to Settings About Phone to verify the software version running on your device.

[Source: Android Jinn]

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23 Dec 12 Galaxy Note 10.1 N8000 Gets Android 4.2.1 Via Official CyanogenMod 10.1 …


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1) Download USB Drivers for Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and enable USB Debugging mode.

2) Back up all your important data before proceeding.

3) Ensure the Galaxy Note is rooted and ClockworkMod Recovery is installed.

4) Ensure the device is factory unlocked.

5) The battery of the device should have more than 80 per cent charge.  

Steps to install CM10.1 Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean on Galaxy Note 10.1

1) Download CM10.1 Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean for Galaxy Note 10.1 to your computer [for alternative link click here]

2) Download Google Apps package

3) Connect the Galaxy Note to the computer using USB cable and transfer both the downloaded zip files to the SD card of your device

4) Turn off the Note. Now reboot into recovery mode by pressing and holding Volume Up and Power buttons together until the screen turns on. Then leave the Power button and continue holding the Volume Up button until you enter CWM Recovery

5) In recovery mode, perform a Nandroid back-up of your existing ROM, which you can restore later. To do so select ‘Backup and Restore’ and select Backup again. Once the action is completed, return to the main recovery menu

6) Perform data wiping by selecting Wipe Data/Factory Reset and confirm the action on the next screen. Wait until the data wipe is complete and return to the main recovery menu   

7) Using the Power button, select ‘Install zip from SD card’ and again press the Power button to select ‘Choose zip from SD card’ and locate the Jelly Bean ROM. Select it using the Power button and confirm installation on the next screen

8) Once the ROM is installed, repeat the same procedure to install Google Apps package

9) Once the installation is completed return to the main recovery menu and select ‘Reboot System now’ in order to reboot the device and boot up into the customised ROM

CM10.1 based on Android 4.2.1 is now installed and running on your Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 N8000. Navigate to Settings About Phone to verify the software running on your device.  

[Source: Android Egis]

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22 Dec 12 Flipboard Proves — Again — That Android Tablet Apps Don’t Have to Suck

Flipboard’s new tablet-optimized Android app proves, yet again, that Android tablet apps don’t have to be lousy. Photo: Ariel Zambelich/Wired

Flipboard’s tablet-optimized version of its Android app is everything you expect if you’ve ever used Flipboard on another gadget, which is to say it’s awesome. And it’s exactly what other big-time app makers should be doing, but too many aren’t.

The elegant app puts Twitter, Facebook, Rdio, Spotify, Instagram, Dropbox, eBay, Yelp, Foursquare and everyone else on notice: Your Android tablet apps don’t have to suck, and if they do, it’s because you’re lazy. It isn’t that these companies can’t make apps that look as great as they work, it’s just that they chose not to.

Flipboard’s app looks and works fantastically on both 7-inch and 10-inch slates. The stiff board turns seen in Flipboard’s other apps are just as responsive on the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 tablets we tested the app on. My Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Flickr, SoundCloud, Tumblr and Facebook feeds appeared without a hitch. So did articles and videos pulled from dozens of sources around the web. Everything was laid out in Flipboard’s lovely magazine-like user interface — exactly as expected.

The app responds to the various screen sizes found in Android tablets, taking full advantage of the platform’s widescreen displays and perfectly scaling as needed. Flipboard said it spent more than a year working with Samsung to ensure its app works seamlessly on the Galaxy Tab and Galaxy Note tablets, but you can also run it on any other Android tablet, including Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Barnes Noble’s Nook.

Flipboard isn’t alone in making a slick Android tablet app. Netflix, Hulu, Plume, Mint, Instapaper and Tiny Co. offer tablet-optimized apps that rock. Google has released plenty of design tools for tablet-optimized Android apps and practically begged developers to get on board. And of course Google builds fantastic tablet apps, providing many examples for others to follow.

But Flipboard remains remarkable. The app that Steve Jobs loved on his iPad has lost nothing in its translation to Android tablets and makes full use of their different form factors. This is significant, because it proves once again that good Android tablet apps are possible and gives users the great experience they deserve.

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20 Dec 12 Samsung working to fix latest Galaxy S III exploit

Samsung says it’s working “as quickly as possible” to fix an exploit in some of its Android phones, which could allow hackers to gain total control over the device.

The exploit was first reported on the XDA Developers forums on Saturday, and attracted lots of attention from the tech press. It allows malicious apps to control all physical memory on the device, thereby allowing for remote wipes, access to user data and other malicious activities.

All Samsung Android phones based on Exynos 4210 and 4412 processors are vulnerable. As Android Central notes, that includes the Galaxy S II on Sprint, Galaxy Tab 2, Galaxy Note 10.1 and certain Galaxy Player models. International versions of the Galaxy S III, Galaxy Note and Galaxy Note II are affected, as well as U.S. versions of the Galaxy Note II, but U.S. versions of the Galaxy S III are not affected.

In a statement to Android Central, Samsung says it’s aware of the issue and is working on a software update to fix it. “Samsung will continue to closely monitor the situation until the software fix has been made available to all affected mobile devices,” the company said.

No biggie, says Samsung

Although this exploit sounds pretty dangerous, Samsung says that “most devices operating credible and authenticated applications” won’t be affected. In other words, if you’re downloading trustworthy apps from the Google Play Store, you probably have nothing to worry about. (It’s unclear whether Google’s malware scanner, which examines all new apps in its store, is picking up on this new exploit.)

Still, the exploit doesn’t look good for Samsung, which just a few months ago had to scramble to fix another software vulnerability. That security flaw allowed attackers to remotely wipe phones running Samsung’s TouchWiz UI, using only a Web link with malicious code.

To be clear, these are security flaws in specific Samsung phones, not to be confused with general malware such as apps that send premium-rate SMS messages without permission. The common thread, however, is Android’s open app ecosystem, which allows users to install any software they want. While all Google Play Store apps must pass a malware check, the system isn’t foolproof. Neither is the new built-in malware scanner in Android 4.2 for apps from outside the store.

Which brings us back to the usual refrain: An occasional security threat is the byproduct of having that open ecosystem. That means users should take some basic precautions before downloading an app, like seeing how many users have downloaded it, and what they’re saying about it. As Samsung says, credible applications won’t pose any danger, even for this new exploit. But if a little extra care sounds like too much work, there’s always the iPhone or Windows Phone instead.

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