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26 Dec 12 How To Install Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean On Sprint Samsung Galaxy S3


The custom firmware, Slim Bean Beta 1 ROM, also brings a number of customization features to Galaxy S3. Apart from that, the Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean exclusive features include multi-user support, gesture typing, new quick settings option, lock-screen widget, new camera app, photo sphere, improved Google Now, new daydream feature, miracast display and many more, according to Android Jinn.

The report states that the custom ROM in question is known for low file size and fast speedy nature. However, it is still under development and therefore the users might face some issues and bugs. All the issues are expected to be fixed as development progresses.

Here is a list of key features of the Slim Bean Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean Beta 1:

- Dotted Battery Mod and color picker

- Battery bar mod

- Notification Background customization

- Notification row transparency

- Quick Settings option

- Network mode tile

- Profile Tile

- Dismiss on toggle

- Updated APN + SPN

- Wi-Fi name in notification drawer

- Power widget

- Device Parts

- Performance Settings (need to tap build number a few times)

- Cursor control using volume keys

- Disable full screen keyboard

- Alternate app chooser

- Clock styles and color chooser

- ADB over Wi-Fi

- Camera power shutter mod

- Wi-Fi country specific settings

- Notification IME selector

- SMS quick reply mark as read from notification

- All MMS features

- All Contacts feature

Below is a tutorial showing how to install Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean on Sprint Samsung Galaxy S3 (SPH-L710) using Slim Bean Beta 1 ROM. Before going ahead, take a look at the preciosities that need to be aware of.

- Backup your data.

- The device must have at least 80 percent battery power.

USB driver must be installed for Samsung Galaxy S3 (SPH-L710) in your PC.

- USB Debugging must be enabled.

Backup your EFS Folder.

- The device must be rooted and have ClockworkMod Recovery Installed.

- Flashing this ROM on Galaxy S3 L710 will increase your binary counter.

- Don’t skip Nandroid backup as it’s very helpful if this custom ROM doesn’t work the way you wanted.

The users should also keep in mind that this tutorial is only for Sprint variant of the Samsung Galaxy S3. Therefore, it should not be implemented on any other Android device. In addition, IBTimes cannot be held responsible if anything goes wrong. The users should proceed at their own risk.

Files Needed

1. Slim Bean Beta 1 4.2.1 Jelly Bean ROM For Galaxy S3 L710 [Filename: Slim-4.2.1.Beta.1-d2spr-20121222-0812-OFFICIAL.zip]

2. Google Apps [Filename: Slim_Gapps.zip]

How To Install

Step 1: Connect your Sprint Galaxy S3 to PC using USB cable.

Step 2: Copy downloaded files to the SD card of your phone without extracting them.

Step 3: Disconnect USB and turn off your phone.

Step 4: Boot into ClockworkMod recovery in your Galaxy S3 by pressing and holding the Volume Up, Power and Home buttons together until the Samsung logo appears on screen.

Step 5: Leave the buttons and hold then again. You will get ClockworkMod recovery screen soon. Now browse between options in recovery using Volume keys while using Power key to select an option.

Step 6: Carry out a Nandroid backup of your existing ROM by selecting Backup and Restore, then on the next screen, selecting Backup again. Once back up is complete, go back to the main recovery menu.

Step 7: Now perform the data wiping task. To do so, select wipe data/factory reset, then select Yes on next screen to confirm your action. Wait for a few minutes till the data wipe is completed.

Step 8: Select install zip from SD card, then select choose zip from SD card. After that, locate the Slim-4.2.1.Beta.1-d2spr-20121222-0812-OFFICIAL.zip file and select it by pressing Power button (tap on it if using touch version).

Confirm installation by selecting Yes – Install _____.zip on the next screen. The ROM installation will begin.

Step 9: Once the ROM installation is done, repeat step 8 but choose the Slim_Gapps.zip file instead of ROM zip to install the Google apps package.

Step 10: After the installation is completed, go back to the main recovery menu and select reboot system now to reboot the phone and boot up into customized Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean ROM Slim Bean Beta 1. The first boot will take time.

[Source: Android Jinn]

Article source: http://www.ibtimes.com/how-install-android-421-jelly-bean-sprint-samsung-galaxy-s3-using-slim-bean-custom-rom-tutorial

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17 Dec 12 U.S. Cellular’s Samsung Galaxy S III Gets Jelly Bean Friday | News & Opinion …


U.S. Cellular will ring in the holidays with Friday’s rollout of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean to all Samsung Galaxy S III smartphones.

The upgrade, U.S. Cellular said, “enhances the wireless experience by making the device faster, smoother and more responsive.”

Jelly Bean comes with a number of new features, including a refined camera with built-in filters and a pause-and-resume option while recording video, as well as Easy Mode for first-time smartphone users and improved usability with multiple keyboard options.

Additionally, the new Google Now feature offers information any time — check rush-hour traffic or the subway schedule before leaving work, or find out the latest score of a sports game, delivered as a notification to your phone. Google Now also serves as a personal assistant, providing users with weather, maps, navigation, search, flight status, and other information, and can be launched directly from the lock screen shortcut, or with a long press on the menu button, from any screen.

Samsung Galaxy S III (U.S. Cellular)


Samsung Galaxy S III (U.S. Cellular) : Front


Samsung Galaxy S III (U.S. Cellular) : Back


Samsung Galaxy S III (U.S. Cellular) : Front


Samsung Galaxy S III (U.S. Cellular) : Back

Galaxy S III owners will soon have access to rich notifications, which can expand and shrink with a pinch, showing as much or as little information as the user wants. Other enhancements allow actions to be taken directly from the notifications platform, without having to launch an app first.

Customization will also get easier, with automatically resizing widgets to fit on the screen with other icons.

U.S. Cellular is the latest Samsung’s carrier partner to receive the upgrade. Since the phone maker confirmed in early October that it would be pushing Android 4.1 to its flagship Galaxy S III, Sprint, T-Mobile, ATT, and Verizon Wireless have all begun offering their customers the latest Google OS.

On Friday, Galaxy S III users can visit the U.S. Cellular website for details on the upgrade process. Owners can upgrade wirelessly, or by connecting their device to a computer via USB cable.

For more, check out PCMag’s review of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. Also, see our review of the Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone and the slideshow above.

For more from Stephanie, follow her on Twitter @smlotPCMag.

Article source: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2413307,00.asp

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17 Dec 12 E FUN’s 7" Nextbook Premium Android Tablet With Google Play Now Available – SYS




WEST COVINA, CA — (Marketwire) — 12/16/12 — E FUN, a consumer electronics designer and manufacturer of fun, easy-to-use lifestyle products, announced that its newest Nextbook Android tablet featuring full access to Google Play™, the Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP, is available now for $99.99 at retail nationwide. The 7″ tablet features Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, Google Play and access to a full suite of Google apps.

“Our Premium 7SE-GP is the perfect holiday gift for those interested in a high performance tablet at an affordable price,” remarked Jason Liszewski, managing director and vice president of sales for E FUN. “Its combination of hardware, software and pre-loaded content make this tablet one of the year’s hottest items for everyone on your list.”

Optimized for Google Play, the Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP gives users numerous benefits including:

  • Access to more than 600,000 apps and games, millions of songs and books, and thousands of movies in the Google Play store.
  • Capability to read, listen and watch content not just on the Nextbook but on any device including a desktop, laptop or mobile phone with Google Play’s cloud feature.
  • Access to Android apps from Google including Gmail™, Google Talk™, Google+™, Google Maps™, YouTube™ and much more.
  • 5GB of free cloud storage with Google Drive™.

The Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP features a 7″ five-finger multi-touch capacitive color screen and runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with a fast Amlogic A9 1GHz processor and 1GB DDR3 RAM. Additionally, it features a front-facing camera and a high-definition video player that can send a 1080p HD video to an HDTV or computer via the HDMI-out port.

Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP users can now watch YouTube videos, listen to Internet music, receive and send e-mails, or simply browse the Internet with the built-in Wi-Fi connectivity.

To keep all of a user’s files safely stored, the Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP includes 8GB of built-in flash memory, expandable both via the microSD slot (supporting SDHC cards up to 32GB), or via a USB flash drive in its full-sized USB host port. It has an 800×480 screen with 16:9 ratio and a G-sensor auto-rotate orientation feature for landscape or portrait viewing, as well as over-the-air (OTA) firmware update capabilities.

The Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP is preloaded with a wide selection of applications including Net Nanny parental controls and CloudLink’s “Productivity Toolbox,” which includes numerous free applications such as 5GB of free cloud storage, free mobile security, wireless printing, and credit card processing.

The new Nextbook Premium 7SE-GP (model #NEXT7P12-8G) is available now for $99.99 at retail nationwide.

For more information, please visit http://www.nextbookusa.com/productdetail.php?product_id=14.

About E FUN
As its name implies, E FUN is a designer and marketer of fun, lifestyle e-products that are easily accessible. While appreciated by techies, E FUN products are primarily designed for consumers who desire the latest technological products, but are more concerned with what they do, not how they do it. E FUN’s ongoing product innovation focuses on making electronics and computing more fun! Initial products offerings from E FUN include the APEN digital pen and Nextbook Android tablets. E FUN is headquartered in West Covina, California.

For additional information regarding E FUN’s brands, please visit APEN at www.apenusa.com; and Nextbook at www.nextbookusa.com.

All products/services and trademarks mentioned in this release are the properties of their respective companies.
© 2012 E FUN. All rights reserved.

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Article source: http://www.sys-con.com/node/2485908

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16 Dec 12 Official Nexus 7 dock unboxed, but no word of a release | CNET UK


The Google Nexus 7 went on sale what seems like ages ago now. (Actually it was just back in the summer, but a lot has happened since then.) And the official dock is still yet to be released. Which is pretty puzzling, considering we brought you news of it leaking way back in August.

Well here it is on video for the first time, being unboxed and twirled for your viewing pleasure, Pocketnow reports. Hopefully we’ll see it hit the shelves sometime before 2015.

Embedding the video has been disabled by request, but you can check it out here.  

First up, we get a look at the back of the box, showing it is indeed the real deal, made by Asus. (There’s some suitably dramatic music to go with this as well.) Then it’s on to the manual, and then, just over a minute into the video, there’s the dock. Hurrah!

There’s Nexus branding in the corner, and a micro USB port and headphone jack on the back, along with the Asus logo. And generally it looks pretty much as we expected from the previous leak.

It also uses the Nexus 7′s pogo-pin support, meaning there’s no need to connect any cables or even really dock the tablet properly. Just drop it in place and you’re good to go. A bit like the Nokia Lumia 920‘s wireless charging.

So why is it taking so long to reach these shores? Good question. So far it’s only been spotted on the Japanese Asus site, for the equivalent of about $42 (£26). Previously, word reached us it’d cost around $50. There’s no word on a UK release, but I can’t see why Asus wouldn’t bring it out over here. 

How do you think the Nexus 7 stacks up against the iPad in terms of accessories? Would you buy the official dock? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page.

Article source: http://crave.cnet.co.uk/accessories/official-nexus-7-dock-unboxed-but-no-word-of-a-release-50009991/

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17 Jun 12 new, more robust Chrome hardware



A year after unveiling Chromebooks to the world, Google and Samsung today are announcing two new devices, including the first “Chromebox” desktop PC. Google is also rolling out several major software improvements, including a new window manager for Chrome OS, better trackpad support, upgrades to a remote desktop access tool, and offline editing for Google Docs.

The new Chromebook has a slicker, more attractive design than previous models, and both the new laptop and desktop take a big step forward in memory and CPU. Instead of Intel Atom processors, Samsung’s latest Chrome computers use Sandy Bridge-based Intel Celeron CPUs, and double the RAM to 4GB. Both devices will be on sale online today and in Best Buy stores soon.

The Samsung Chromebook Series 5 550 has a 12.1″ display with resolution of 1280×800, starts up in about 7 seconds, weighs 3.3 pounds, is rated for six hours of battery life, and costs $449 for a WiFi-only edition and $549 for one with WiFi and 3G cellular access. Google says it’s about 2.5 times faster than last year’s models, while the Samsung Chromebox Series 3 will be 3.5 times faster. The Chromebox, which costs $329 and has roughly the same size and shape as an Apple Mac Mini, runs faster because with battery life not being a concern, it can use a higher-wattage version of the Intel Celeron processors.

The new Samsung Chromebook runs a dual-core Intel Celeron Processor 867 at 1.3GHz, compared to last year’s Chromebook which ran a dual-core Intel Atom N570 at 1.66GHz. The Celeron architecture is more advanced, and the laptop certainly seems zippy in our limited testing so far. We’ll have more to say on performance in an upcoming article, which will include some benchmarking. The Chromebox has an Intel Celeron B840 running at 1.9GHz.

The Chromebox has a good number of ports, including six USB 2.0 ports and two DisplayPort++ slots that are compatible with HDMI, DVI, and VGA. Chrome OS is optimized for screens up to 30 inches and can support multiple monitors, Sengupta said.


Oddly, the Chromebox has no SD card reader, but USB devices that can read SD cards are common anyway. The new Chromebook has two USB 2.0 ports, DisplayPort++ output, and an SD card reader. Both the laptop and desktop have a Gigabit Ethernet port. Because the laptop is quite thin, the Ethernet port opens up and juts out a bit to fit the cable.

While the computers are cheaper than any Mac and many Windows PCs, we still think they’re a bit pricey for devices designed to run just one application: the Chrome Web browser. But Chrome devices are fast, and extraordinarily easy to use. Google and its hardware partners haven’t revealed sales figures, and significant market share doesn’t seem to be forthcoming any time soon. However, Google is offering support packages to businesses and education customers ($150 for businesses, $30 for schools, in addition to the device cost) and says the Chromebooks are proving quite popular in educational settings.

Acer and Samsung both released Chromebooks a year ago, but Samsung is the only hardware maker doing so this time around. However, Chrome OS Director Caesar Sengupta says Google is working closely with Intel and expects to have “a few more OEMs shipping later this year.”

Samsung has done well in delivering strong hardware, with a very responsive trackpad. But ultimately, software improvements are needed to give Google any shot at gaining significant market share from Windows and Mac OS X. New features being rolled out today and over the new few weeks provide a good start.

Offline Google Docs editing at last, Google Drive integration

Google used to allow offline editing of Google Docs through a Google Gears extension, but killed the project with the promise of delivering offline functionality natively through the browser. Offline viewing capabilities were brought back last September and editing is coming sometime in June, Sengupta told Ars. Any changes made while offline will sync with the Google server once a user gains an Internet connection.

“Offline viewing has existed for a while, but the Docs team is readying the release of offline editing,” Sengupta said. “We are using this internally at Google right now and we are going to gradually migrate users over the next several weeks.”

Offline editing of Docs will be available in all versions of the Chrome browser, not just the one for Chrome OS devices. No other browsers are supported just yet, but Sengupta didn’t rule it out as long as competing browsers use similar HTML5 technology. Google is using IndexedDB to store files locally when an Internet connection is severed.

Two other additions help on the offline documents and storage fronts. New viewing capabilities allow opening of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files in a browser tab, online or offline. The files can be viewed without Google Docs, although editing requires Docs. Chrome OS is also being integrated with Google Drive, the new cloud storage service with 5GB of free storage. Drive integration is built into the Chrome OS development release, and will hit the stable channel in mid-to-late June, Sengupta said. Because Chromebooks contain 16GB solid-state disk capacity, a user’s Drive files will be cached locally.

Chrome OS, now with more windows

We recently posted an in-depth examination of Google’s new Aura interface for Chrome OS, a window manager that makes Chromebooks act a lot more like the Windows, Mac, and Linux computers people are used to. When Chromebooks first came out last year, they supported viewing of only one browser tab at a time so you couldn’t, for example, type in a Google Doc and view a separate webpage at the same time. Simultaneous viewing of multiple browser windows was added within a few months, and the more robust Aura interface hit the Chrome OS developer channel in April of this year.

Today, Aura becomes the standard interface for Chrome OS as part of an operating system update. For the first time, this provides Chrome OS a graphical user interface that exists outside of the browser, although it’s still very Web-centric. There’s an icon for a file manager, but for the most part the “applications” listed are links to websites. Users can still fill the whole screen with the Chrome browser simply by clicking a little box at the top right of the screen.

Although Aura is pleasing to the eye, it doesn’t change the fact that Chrome OS’s biggest limitation is still its limited usefulness when a user lacks an Internet connection.

Better trackpad software and remote desktop access

As mentioned earlier, the Samsung Chromebook has a very responsive trackpad, easily recognizing tap-to-click, scrolling, and the two-finger click. We give Samsung much of the credit for this as its trackpads are generally good regardless of which OS is running, but Google says it has improved trackpad support on the software side as well.

“Our trackpad last year was a bit fiddly,” Sengupta said. With many Googlers using the Chromebooks internally, Google set out to analyze the problems that can be caused by differences in people’s thumbs and fingers and how they click. Google even used robotic thumbs and fingers to duplicate unique digits.

“Some people have thumbs that have a waist in the middle. They’re used to resting it on the trackpad and so they click with that and it looks like two different points,” Sengupta said. “We now know more about thumbs than we ever cared to know. We realize human beings come in different shapes and sizes.”

Improvements to trackpad support made their way into the open source Chromium OS as a new component.

One last software improvement announced by Google today is an upgrade to Chrome Remote Desktop, which we tested out last October and provides a remote desktop connection between two computers running the Chrome browser. This would let a Chromebook user access any Windows, Mac, or Linux machine, but it required a person on each computer to type in an access code, limiting its use for truly “remote” scenarios. Google says it is now launching a persistent connection, allowing a user to set up the remote desktop tool only once and have it be accessible from then on.

Business and school adoption

According to Google, more than 500 schools have purchased Chromebooks and are using them in curriculum. Newly announced customers include Dillard’s, which will deploy hundreds of Chromeboxes to retail stores; California libraries, which will use 1,000 new Chromebooks for patron checkout purposes; Mollen Clinics, which will deploy 4,500 Chrome devices to mobile immunization clinics at Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores; and Kaplan, which is using them in a New York City call center.

Google is hoping for a bigger push into businesses and schools with its $150 per-device support charge for businesses and $30 per-device for schools, which includes 24/7 phone support, a management console, and a hardware warranty. The support cost is in addition to the regular retail price of the devices. Google used to sell support to businesses and schools with a monthly subscription model. The new pricing is a one-time up-front cost with support for the lifetime of the device.

We don’t know many regular consumers buying Chromebooks, but Google has a compelling pitch for businesses with employees that use only Web applications, or are satisfied with accessing Windows programs through Citrix’s virtualization software. Call centers, back offices, retail stores, and other “non-mobile” scenarios are good for the Chromebook and Chromebox, said Rajen Sheth, Chrome for Business Group Product Manager.

Google has further optimized Chrome OS for businesses, allowing the devices to automatically configure applications, network settings, WiFi, VPN access, and organizational policies, Sheth said. Sheth believes businesses can take a Chromebook from a delivery truck and hand it directly to an end user without any IT involvement.

“To do that with a PC is almost impossible,” he said.

Article was updated to correct business and education pricing.

Article source: http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/05/slick-new-chromebook-first-chromebox-desktop-out-from-samsung-today/

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10 Jun 12 2013 Super Duty Platinum – About


Ford is expanding its luxury Platinum Edition truck lineup, formerly only available on F-150 pickups, to 2013 F-250, F-350 and F-450 Super Duty crew cab trucks.

Ford’s Super Duty lineup has always had a reputation for delivering rugged work trucks, but a growing number of today’s owners are using their trucks for both work and play, and want a pickup with the latest technology and a comfortable, luxurious interior. A hefty number of heavy duty pickup trucks are used for hauling large fifth wheel campers or horse trailers, and for those owners, a truck is their home-away-from-home, making comfort a priority. Platinum edition trucks provide luxury and utility in one package.

2013 Super Duty Platinum’s Exterior

On the outside, the Super Duty Platinum Edition is fitted with chrome door handles, running boards, mirror caps and exhaust tips. The grille has a satin chrome surround, with perforated mesh inside. Platinum Super Duty logos ride on the tailgate and both sides of the truck’s bed. Super Duty’s twenty-inch polished aluminum wheels are accented with black inserts.

The Platinum Super Duty is available in five colors for 2013: Ruby Red, Tuxedo Black, Kodiak Brown, White Platinum and Ingot Silver.

2013 Super Duty Platinum’s Interior

Once inside the truck, you’ll find wood grain trim on the door panels, instrument panel and center stack. The heated steering wheel is wrapped in leather, and the truck’s seats are covered with soft leather (the word Platinum is embroidered on the seat backs). Power adjustable pedals, power telescoping outside mirrors, a rear view camera system and remote start are all part of the Platinum package.

The centerpiece of the truck’s interior is Ford SYNC with MyFord Touch, both new to the lineup for 2013. SYNC allows drivers to pair a cell phone, compatible bluetooth media players and USB compatible items and control them all with voice commands. Other features include 911 Assist, Vehicle Health Report, traffic alerts and business search, all voice controlled.

MyTouch uses an 8-inch touch screen to display the back up camera screen, heat and A/C settings, radio controls and navigation. The screen was developed especially for the Super Duty, and engineers focused on providing a design that’s easy to use, even if drivers are wearing work gloves.

The truck has a new storage area on top of the dash, with two USB ports, an audio-video connections, SD card slot and a 12-volt charging port for cell phones and other digital devices.

2013 Platinum Super Duty Capabilities

The Platinum Edition has all of the normal Super Duty capabilities, including a choice of the 6.2 liter gas engine (385 horsepower and 405 pound feet of torque) or the 6.7 liter Power Stroke turbo diesel (400 horsepower and 800 pound feet of torque). A six speed TorqShift automatic transmission is the only transmission available for the Super Duty (and does the job nicely).

More About the Platinum Truck Lineup:

  • 2013 Ford Super Duty trucks are available in 2WD or 4WD.

  • All Super Duty pickup trucks have 4-wheel disc brakes.
  • Conventional towing capabilities range from 12,200 pounds to 17,500 pounds, depending on equipment.
  • Fifth wheel towing ratings range from 12,200 pounds to 24,700 pounds, depending on equipment.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a workhorse pickup truck that’s built to last, but is equipped with an interior that feels and looks like what you expect to find in a luxury car, you should plan to take a close look at the 2013 Ford Super Duty Platinum Edition.

Article source: http://trucks.about.com/od/2013-Ford-Trucks/a/2013-Ford-Super-Duty-Pickup-Trucks.htm

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10 Jun 12 Android Phone Case Review: Seidio Surface Case for HTC EVO 4G LTE Review


Android Phone Case Review: Seidio Surface Case for HTC EVO 4G LTE Review

Editor’s Ratings (1-5): 4.5

What’s Hot: Slim and durable, nice color selection, easy to use.

What’s Not: No screen protector included.

Reviewed by Tong Zhang

Seidio has released several protective cases for the recently released HTC EVO 4G LTE Android smartphone on Sprint. Among the new collection of cases, the Surface case is the thinnest and offers convenience of using the smartphone without adding lots of bulk or weight. The Seidio Surface case matches the curves of the HTC EVO 4G LTE and comes in five colors including black, glossed white, garnet red, amethyst and royal blue. The case is also affordable and can work with Seidio’s other accessories like holsters and car kits.

Design

The Seidio Surface for HTC EVO 4G LTE is a very form fitting case. The hard plastic frame has a layer of soft coating that feels very nice in hand, and the interior has a thin layer of soft pelt lining that won’t scratch your device. The case is very well designed to fit the HTC EVO 4G LTE perfectly with all edges smoothed out thanks to the soft coating and perfectly machined cuts on the edges. It’s quite easy to install the case thanks to the design: the case has two pieces connected by a small latch; slide your phone into the bottom piece, then slide the top piece of the case to connect with the bottom piece to install the case; and to take the case off by releasing the small latch (press the indicated area on the bottom piece), the case will easily slide off.

The Seidio Surface case covers the back of the phone, and curves along to the sides and covers a good amount of the front bezel. We like this design as it provides a solid barrier for the display when you put the phone face down on a surface. The case is also thick enough to protect the rear camera lens and flash from touching flat surfaces when you put the phone down on its back.

Features

The Seidio Surface for HTC EVO 4G LTE has precise cutouts for all ports and raised buttons that protect the device’s buttons. The cutouts for the micro USB port, the audio out jack and the rear camera and flash are large enough to accommodate the thickness of the case; and you should have no trouble using cables and headphones while the HTC EVO 4G LTE is in this case. The case also has cutouts for the rear speaker and the kickstand. The kickstand cutout has two small crops to let you open the stand easily. The case also has small cutout holes for both the top and bottom mics.

The Seidio Surface case covers the power button, the volume controls and the side camera button. The raised plastic pieces make it very easy to operate the buttons underneath them.

Conclusion

The Seidio Surface for HTC EVO 4G LTE manages to look good while provide scratch and some drop protection for the large phone. The case is slim yet durable. The two-piece design with a quick release latch makes the case very easy to use, and the cutouts and raised buttons never get in the way of operating your phone smoothly. We like the color selection, and the price is reasonable. There isn’t anything in the package for covering the screen, but the case works well with Seidio’s screen guards sold separately. It’s also compatible with Seidio’s Surface holster, and if you need one, Seidio sells a bundle that includes the case and the holster.

Price: $29.95
Web site: Seidio

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Check out our iPhone case reviews:
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Check out our iPad case reviews:
http://www.mobiletechreview.com/iPad-Case-Reviews.htm

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Article source: http://www.mobiletechreview.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php?Number=42776

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08 Jun 12 HDMI Dongle Converts Any TV into Android Smart TV


This USB stick-sized micro-computer will turn an HDMI-capable TV into an Android 4.0-based TV that can download apps, play movies off a microSD card and more.

Startup company Infinitec has introduced the Pocket TV, an Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) based HDMI dongle that converts any HDTV into a Smart TV. It’s essentially a thumb-sized micro-computer packed with a 1 GHz Cortex A9 SoC, a Mali-400MP GPU, 512 MB of RAM, a USB 2.0 port, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi and a microSD card slot (for up to 32 GB of storage) that’s capable of transforming a TV into a mega-sized tablet — only without the touchscreen capabilities, of course.

“You can download apps from the Google Play Store to stream videos, play games, connect with your friends on Facebook, catch up on news, do some work or simply surf the web,” the company said on Thursday. “You can even attach a video camera to do Skype video-calls on your TV. “

One of Infinitec’s big selling points with its new gadget is portability. Not only can end-users stream video, listen to music, get the latest news or check the latest Facebook feeds at home on their big screen TV, but they can take all of that content on the go by simply stuffing the dongle into their pocket, and then plug it into the HDMI port of a hotel TV. Executives won’t even need to take their laptop, as they could plug the Pocket TV into the projector and stream a presentation from the cloud (like a Dropbox account) or locally from the SD Card.

To control Pocket TV, Infinitec has thrown a standard IR Remote into the package. It uses an infrared signal and gives consumers the ability to control the Pocket TV interface using the up, down, side arrows and several buttons. There’s also an optional Air Remote which features a gyroscope sensor that allows the user to control Pocket TV simply by moving it around like a Wii controller. Move a hand up, down or sideways, and the cursor on the screen will follow.

“If you want you can also use your iPhone or Android smartphone to control the Pocket TV,” the company said. “Just download the Google Remote TV app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store and your phone will become your remote. We’re also working on our own app for your phone with some very cool features.”

The USB 2.0 port allows consumers to add an external hard drive, a wireless keyboard and mouse or a video camera for video calls. Pocket TV can even be connected to any standard TV as long as it has an HDMI port (or an attached HDMI converter box), and is capable of displaying up to 1080p. The only drawback to this gadget is that it needs to be plugged into a power outlet via a miniUSB port, and that the IR camera for the remote needs to be draped across the top of the TV.

Recently surpassing over $100,000 in pledges, the Pocket TV can be pre-ordered for a limited pre-order price of $99 (regular price $160) right here. As seen in the video below, the company actually used a 4-port USB hub so that they could use multiple USB devices. How users will be able to play Angry Birds with the IR Remote is unknown, if possible at all.

Article source: http://www.tomsguide.com/us/Infinitec-Dongle-Pocket-TV-Android-Kickstarter,news-15480.html

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08 Jun 12 Chrome OS review


The first version of Google’s Chrome OS wasn’t much more than a Chrome browser window with a few apps. It felt more like a statement – “Who needs local storage?” – than an operating system you could rely on.

A year and a half later, the latest version of the Chrome OS adds some of the features of a more traditional OS: a file manager (hooray!), a desktop and the ability to use storage connected through a USB port. Google’s Cloud Print system even makes it fairly easy to print.

The only thing that’s missing is the ability to keep writing, working on a spreadsheet or reading email when you’re offline. We used to have that capability through Google Gears, but since Google shut down that project last winter, services like GMail and Google Drive work only when you have a connection. (Google Senior Vice President of Chrome Apps Sundar Pichai reportedly told the audience at All Things D this week that Google Drive offline is coming in five weeks.)

The advantages of the Chrome OS remain the same. The new Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook I tested shuts down in less than 5 seconds and starts up again in less than 10. When you log in, there’s no waiting for programs to load. You go right back to the last browser window you were working in, with all the same tabs you had open before you shut down. Jumping from window to window (that’s right — now you can have more than one) is instantaneous. And while all new machines are fast, it’s hard to imagine what would slow down a Chromebook over time — there’s no registry to get junked up and no local software to leave debris on your hard drive. Battery life is great, too. I was able to work a full day on a single charge.

And, unlike previous incarnations, you now get a significant price break for buying a Chromebook: The machine I tried, with a 12.1-inch display, costs roughly £288 ($449). The Samsung Series 5 13.3-inch Windows model costs about £799.99.

Multiple windows in separate browsers

Chrome’s new file manager is rudimentary, but its very existence is a big deal. It comes up as a browser tab that shows the different storage devices on your machine. There’s Downloads, which sits on the 16GB SSD drive. You can also store files on a USB drive or a memory card. You can move files from one storage device to another, though you don’t have the drag-and-drop convenience of most operating systems – you have to copy and paste them.

Printing through Google Cloud Print was simple, even though I didn’t have access to an official Cloud printer. I set up cloud printing on my desktop at work (it’s a setting within the Chrome browser), then the Chromebook could use any printer my desktop could access, including printers on the PCWorld network.

Chrome OS now has a desktop, though you likely won’t spend much time there. There’s a taskbar, where you can put shortcuts to apps you use frequently, and a status area that reports things like Wi-Fi connection status and battery life. But I couldn’t find a way to put a shortcut to an app or file on the desktop itself – it’s really just a pretty picture.

You can now use multiple windows in Chrome, though they’re all just separate browser windows. Still, that can be helpful – you can jump from one window to another with Alt-Tab or with a special function button. Each window has something that looks like a Windows maximise button, but it operates four ways through gestures. If you click on it and drag down, the window minimises. Drag up and it goes full screen. Drag to the left or right and the window docks on either side, taking up half the screen. It’s a fun innovation.

Quirky keyboard still in place

The Chromebook still features its quirky keyboard. The biggest quirk is the lack of a Caps Lock key – that’s replaced with a pretty unnecessary search button. All the search button does is open a new tab, something that’s easily done with Ctrl-T. If you miss Caps Lock, you can restore it through the Chromebook’s settings. Other unconventional keyboard choices work better. I like the function button for switching between windows and one for toggling between full screen and normal mode. There are also dedicated forward, back and reload buttons, which make lots of sense for a notebook built for the web. Hit Ctrl and the Search button and you’ll go to an smartphone-like grid of shortcuts to your apps. And if you have a better memory than I do, you can learn the dozens of keyboard shortcuts– hit Ctrl+Alt+? for a full list.

As much as I liked the Chromebook I tested, it had one fatal flaw. I’ve left it to the end of this review because I hope that it’s just a failing of my particular test machine and not one that’s endemic to the Samsung Chromebooks. The problem: My Chromebook would regularly lose its connection to the web – kind of a big deal for a notebook built to work almost entirely online.

I noticed the problem both at work and at home. In both cases, I had other systems on the same Wi-Fi network at the same time and they never seemed to lose their connection. I tried using a mobile hotspot and experienced the same problems. In some cases when I had connection problems, the status area would report that it was trying to reconnect to my Wi-Fi network. In other instances, it would report it was firmly on my Wi-Fi network, even though the browser was unable to reach the web. When I tried surfing from my other system on the same network at the same time, I had no problem. A Samsung representative said she hadn’t heard about similar problems with other test machines. I’ll work with the company to troubleshoot the problem and update this story with what I find out.

Article source: http://review.techworld.com/operating-systems/3362524/chrome-os-review/?intcmp=ros-md-acc-rv

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02 Jun 12 Chrome OS Grows Up


The first version of Google’s Chrome OS wasn’t much more than a Chrome browser window with a few apps. It felt more like a statement — “Who needs local storage?” — than an operating system you could rely on.

A year and a half later, the latest version of the Chrome OS adds some of the features of a more traditional OS: a file manager (hooray!), a desktop and the ability to use storage connected through a USB port. Google’s Cloud Print system even makes it fairly easy to print.

The only thing that’s missing is the ability to keep writing, working on a spreadsheet or reading email when you’re offline. We used to have that capability through Google Gears, but since Google shut down that project last winter, services like GMail and Google Drive work only when you have a connection. (Google Senior Vice President of Chrome Apps Sundar Pichai reportedly told the audience at All Things D this week that Google Drive offline is coming in five weeks.)

The advantages of the Chrome OS remain the same. The new Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook I tested shuts down in less than 5 seconds and starts up again in less than 10. When you log in, there’s no waiting for programs to load. You go right back to the last browser window you were working in, with all the same tabs you had open before you shut down. Jumping from window to window (that’s right — now you can have more than one) is instantaneous. And while all new machines are fast, it’s hard to imagine what would slow down a Chromebook over time — there’s no registry to get junked up and no local software to leave debris on your hard drive. Battery life is great, too. I was able to work a full day on a single charge.

And, unlike previous incarnations, you now get a significant price break for buying a Chromebook: The machine I tried, with a 12.1-inch display, costs $449. The Samsung Series 5 13.3-inch Windows model costs about $400 more.

Chrome’s new file manager is rudimentary, but its very existence is a big deal. It comes up as a browser tab that shows the different storage devices on your machine. There’s Downloads, which sits on the 16GB SSD drive. You can also store files on a USB drive or a memory card. You can move files from one storage device to another, though you don’t have the drag-and-drop convenience of most operating systems — you have to copy and paste them.

Chrome OS Grows UpThe very basic file manager in Chrome OS.

Printing through Google Cloud Print was simple, even though I didn’t have access to an official Cloud printer. I set up cloud printing on my desktop at work (it’s a setting within the Chrome browser), then the Chromebook could use any printer my desktop could access, including printers on the PCWorld network.

Chrome OS now has a desktop, though you likely won’t spend much time there. There’s a taskbar, where you can put shortcuts to apps you use frequently, and a status area that reports things like Wi-Fi connection status and battery life. But I couldn’t find a way to put a shortcut to an app or file on the desktop itself — it’s really just a pretty picture.

Chrome OS Grows UpThe Chrome OS desktop looks pretty, but doesn’t do a lot.

You can now use multiple windows in Chrome, though they’re all just separate browser windows. Still, that can be helpful — you can jump from one window to another with Alt-Tab or with a special function button. Each window has something that looks like a Windows maximize button, but it operates four ways through gestures. If you click on it and drag down, the window minimizes. Drag up and it goes full screen. Drag to the left or right and the window docks on either side, taking up half the screen. It’s a fun innovation.

Chrome OS Grows UpYou can now work with multiple windows in Chrome OS.

The Chromebook still features its quirky keyboard. The biggest quirk is the lack of a Caps Lock key — that’s replaced with a pretty unnecessary search button. All the search button does is open a new tab, something that’s easily done with Ctrl-T. If you miss Caps Lock, you can restore it through the Chromebook’s settings. Other unconventional keyboard choices work better. I like the function button for switching between windows and one for toggling between full screen and normal mode. There are also dedicated forward, back and reload buttons, which make lots of sense for a notebook built for the web. Hit Ctrl and the Search button and you’ll go to an smartphone-like grid of shortcuts to your apps. And if you have a better memory than I do, you can learn the dozens of keyboard shortcuts — hit Ctrl+Alt+? for a full list.

Chrome OS Grows UpHit a keyboard shortcut and you see links to your apps in a smartphone-like grid.

As much as I liked the Chromebook I tested, it had one fatal flaw. I’ve left it to the end of this review because I hope that it’s just a failing of my particular test machine and not one that’s endemic to the Samsung Chromebooks. The problem: My Chromebook would regularly lose its connection to the web — kind of a big deal for a notebook built to work almost entirely online.

I noticed the problem both at work and at home. In both cases, I had other systems on the same Wi-Fi network at the same time and they never seemed to lose their connection. I tried using a mobile hotspot and experienced the same problems. In some cases when I had connection problems, the status area would report that it was trying to reconnect to my Wi-Fi network. In other instances, it would report it was firmly on my Wi-Fi network, even though the browser was unable to reach the web. When I tried surfing from my other system on the same network at the same time, I had no problem. A Samsung representative said she hadn’t heard about similar problems with other test machines. I’ll work with the company to troubleshoot the problem and update this story with what I find out.

All in all, the Chrome OS and Chromebooks seem to have made vast strides forward. It’ll never be a good solution for people who are often away from a web connection (though it does have a built-in Verizon wireless broadband connection — you get 100MB per month free and can pay for more) or depend on sophisticated desktop software. Or for those who don’t want to have their whole life wrapped up in the Google solar system of Gmail, Google Drive, Google Calendar, etc.

But if much of what you do happens in the cloud anyway, a Chromebook has a lot of advantages — it’s cheaper, fast, simple to operate and gets great battery life. Google’s other OS has grown up a lot in the past year and a half. Chromebooks are already a good option for many people. If Google can add the ability to do significant work offline, all laptop buyers should give them serious consideration.

Article source: http://www.pcworld.com/article/256684/chrome_os_grows_up.html

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