Thursday, January 31, 2013

Apple adds 128GB iPad in its lineup

iPad 4th generation 128GB Philippines

Apple recently announced that it will start offering the 4th generation iPad with a 128GB storage capacity.

Currently, the iPad is available on 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB variants. But with the increasing app sizes due to the high resolution graphics required on apps targeted for the Retina display, a 64GB storage is not enough for some users, especially those who deal with lots of music, videos, and photos on their iPad. And with over 800,000 applications (over 300,000 designed for iPad) available on the App Store, I think it’s just right to have a larger storage option.

The 128GB iPad is going to be available on February 5 and will be priced $799 or P38,990 for the Wi-Fi model and $929 or P44,990 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model.

Source: Apple

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Review: Google Nexus 4 by LG

The Nexus 4 is Google's fourth smartphone under their Nexus lineup, and this time it’s courtesy of LG. As a refresher, devices launched under that brand comes with stock version of Android. It doesn't come with any manufacturer or carrier customizations. In fact, Google dubs Nexus devices as 'Pure Google' devices.

Google Nexus 4 by LG Philippines

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

iOS 6.1 also brings LTE on iPad, only Globe users need apply

iPad LTE Globe and Smart Philippines

With the release of iOS 6.1, Apple did not only add LTE support on the iPhone 5, they also enabled it on the 4th-generation iPad and iPad mini Wi-Fi + Cellular models.

As of now, LTE is only available on Globe. You should also make sure you have the iPad with model number A1460 or the iPad mini with model number A1455 lest you will not see the LTE option on your iPad.

Source: Apple

Monday, January 28, 2013

Apple enables LTE on iPhone 5 on Globe and SMART


iPhone 5 LTE Globe and Smart Philippines

Apple has officially enabled the LTE functionality on the iPhone 5 both on Globe and SMART. As we have reported last week, Apple is set to unlock the previously restricted feature of the iPhone 5 on 36 more carriers this week.

Now that it’s here, all it takes for you to see that ‘Enable LTE’ toggle (which replaces the 3G toggle) on your iPhone 5 is to update it to iOS 6.1.

Up until now, though, both Globe and SMART are yet to detail out the processes their subscribers should do to be able to get LTE service on their phones. But since it has been officially announced by Apple, they should be on that matter anytime now.

Source: Apple

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Nokia announces $3.99 Music+ subscription service

Nokia Music

Nokia recently announced their new Music+ premium subscription. The Nokia Music+ is an upgrade over the existing Mix Radio service which is currently available for free to the Lumia Windows Phone users.

The premium subscription, which will set you back $3.99/€3.99 a month, adds unlimited skipping, higher quality streams, lyrics support which can be displayed in s scrolling list, in a karaoke-style format, or in a static display you can manually scroll.

As with any other premium music subscription service available, the Nokia Music+ also allows unlimited downloads of music which you can play not just on your phone but also on your desktop, TV, and other ‘connected screens’, even when offline.

Nokia says the service will be available starting sometime in the next few weeks.

Source: Nokia

Saturday, January 26, 2013

SMART updates SmartNet, brings free access to Yahoo!


SMART today announced that it has updated the SmartNet application for Android. The app, which allows users to access their Facebook and Twitter accounts for free, now also supports some Yahoo! services.

The latest version of SmartNet now has support for Yahoo! Search, Yahoo! Mail, and Yahoo! OMG. This should be useful for those who want to occasionally check their emails, or the latest news even without prepaid load or racking up huge bill charges.

The app also includes Headlines, an aggregator of the latest news from blogs and websites. Access to it is also free of charge. “SmartNet enables users to maximize their phones’ capabilities as they experience using mobile Internet on the Philippines’ first and only super-charged mobile network—all without fear of racking up unexpected data charges or ‘bill shock,” Smart Head for Product Development for Internet Services Mitch Padua said.

SmartNet is also available for Nokia S40 users. They should just visit to access the service. The update is now available for Android at Google Play Store will also be made available for iOS and Windows Phone devices soon.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Samsung GALAXY S III mini swings by Globe, available starting at P999 per month

Samsung GALAXY S III mini Philippines

Samsung recently launched the GALAXY S III mini, the miniature version of the GALAXY S III.

The Samsung GALAXY S III mini has a slightly smaller 4-inch screen with 800x480 resolution and a Super AMOLED panel. It has a 5 Megapixels main camera with auto-focus and LED flash, and a VGA one on the front.

Despite running on a dual-core processor, Samsung has stuffed the GALAXY S III mini with the same features people has become familiar with the likes of the GALAXY S III and Note II, such as the Pop-up Play which allows you to watch video over apps, Smart Stay which tracks your eye to prevent the screen from going off, Smart Alert which gives a brief vibration for missed calls and texts when you pick up your phone, and Direct Call which lets you call instantly just by putting your phone on your ear.

The GALAXY S III mini does not sacrifice features and power despite being small.

Samsung GALAXY S III mini Specifications and Features
4-inch Super AMOLED display with 800x480 (WVGA) resolution
5 Megapixels autofocus camera with LED flash
VGA front camera
8/16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1GHz dual-core CPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0
Accelerometer, Digital Compass, Gyroscope
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA (900, 1900, 2100 MHz) 
1,500mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

The Samsung GALAXY S III mini retails at P14,990 and is available in Marble White, Pebble Blue, Garnet Red and Titanium Gray. It is also available on Globe My Super Plan 999 which comes with P900 Consumable, 50MB data and two call and text freebies. Subscribers may also opt for My Super Plan Unli Surf Combo 999 which comes with unlimited data and one call and text freebie which you can also change every month.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Temple Run 2 available now for Android

Temple Run 2 for Android

Following the release on iOS last week, Imangi Studios has released the Temple Run 2 today on Android at the Google Play Store.

Temple Run 2 launched on iOS last week and had over 20 million downloads just in the first 4 days after the release. The sequel brings in new features like the entirely different environment wherein you can ride mine carts and cling through zip lines. There’s also new obstacles, more powerups, more achievements, and special powers for each character.

You can get Temple Run 2 now at the Google Play Store.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

iPhone 5 to finally get LTE in the Philippines next week

iPhone 5 LTE Globe and Smart Philippines

Heads up, iPhone 5 users! Your phones are finally set to get LTE service beginning next week, says Tim Cook at their quarterly conference call.

The iPhone 5 was released in the Philippines last December 14 and it didn’t come with LTE at the time, as expected. But next week, you should see a small carrier bundle update to at least version 13.1. The iPhone 5 on Globe and Smart currently has the version 13.0. To install the update when it’s released, go to Settings > General > About and a prompt will pop up instructing you to update.

Until now, Apple has only enabled LTE on the iPhone 5 in the US, Canada, Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, Australia, Korea, Hong Kong, and Singapore. The Philippines, along with Switzerland, Finland, and 33 other countries will join the mostly first world countries in the LTE iPhone bandwagon.

Now let’s just wait for the local carriers to flip their LTE networks in more markets so you can really benefit from it. As of now, LTE is currently limited to select cities in the National Capital Region.

Oh, by the way! 4th generation iPad and iPad mini users who own a Wi-Fi + Cellular model should also be able to use LTE next week!

Source: iMore

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Nokia Drive+ brings turn-by-turn navigation to all Windows Phone devices

Nokia Drive  Windows Phone

Microsoft and Nokia today released the Nokia Drive+ app for all Windows Phone devices.

The Nokia Drive+, which is still in beta, provides  turn-by-turn navigation with voice guidance, offline maps (which is also available in the built-in Maps app), speed limit warnings, day and night modes for maximum visibility, and also 2D and 3D landmarks.

The app is now available for download for all Windows Phone devices from all OEMs. For now, though, it only works In United States, Canada, and United Kingdom.

I tried to install it on my HTC 8X using from the US Windows Phone Store and it didn’t work. It needs a SIM card from the supported countries. Hopefully it will be available for all countries when it graduates from beta.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Sony announces the 10.1-inch Xperia Tablet Z

Sony Xperia Tablet Z Philippines

Coming up right after the Xperia Z announcement at CES, Sony has just announced its bigger brother, the Sony Xperia Tablet Z.

The Xperia Tablet Z flaunts a 10.1-inch screen with a 1920x1200 resolution with Reality Display. It is powered by a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor and has an 8 Megapixels camera with Exmor R sensor which Sony has always touted for low-light capturing of photos.

Sony Xperia Tablet Z Philippines 2

With its side measuring only 6.9mm, the Xperia Tablet Z is thinner by a bit than the iPad mini. And, as it has always been with Sony’s devices, it is also water and dust resistant, just like the Xperia Z. It also includes NFC and LTE connectivity which is not that usual on tablets, but its still welcome nonetheless.

Sony has not yet announced on when will the Xperia Tablet Z become available.

Via: The Verge
Source: Sony

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sun Cellular introduces Name Ur Number SIM, lets you pick your own phone number

Sun Cellular Name Ur Number

Here’s a rather new and unique offering from Sun Cellular, the Name Ur Number SIM card.

The Sun Cellular Name Ur Number SIM card is the first of its kind in the country. It is basically just an ordinary prepaid SIM card which does not come with a predefined phone number. Instead, you will get to choose your own phone number when you activate it.

Details are scarce at the moment as the release has been put on hold by the carrier but an initial batch of SIMs is already available at the Sun Shops and other stores. Sun Cellular says customers will be able to choose their own 3 to 6 digit phone number, provided that it is still available. The phone numbers will start with 0942-8XX-XXXX, 0943-8XX-XXXX, or 0943-9XX-XXXX.

The Sun Cellular Name Ur Number SIM card retails for P59 and it comes with the usual free SMS and minutes.

I personally think this should become the standard for all SIM cards on all carriers. Instead of producing SIM cards with predefined phone numbers, users should just be able to choose from a series or by their own when they activate it. How about you? What do you think about this new offering by Sun Cellular?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

SMART unveils 5GB LTE data plan for P1,299

Smart 4G LTE Plan 1299

SMART today announced the new 5GB LTE data plan for P1,299 that will be joining their 10GB and 21GB data plans currently available. The 5GB plan is made available for those who want to occasionally ride on the LTE network, supposedly for those who already have Internet at home.

SMART says the 5GB plan can take advantage of the maximum LTE speeds unlike what its competitor offers. You can also use it without any limits until January 31, after which the 5GB allocation will be imposed. Read the full press release below for the details.

Friday, January 18, 2013

HTC Butterfly goes on sale January 21 for P32,190

HTC Butterfly Philippines

Are you looking to buy the HTC Butterfly? Well, you may now be able to do so as it will be flying to the shelves as soon as this Monday. We have learned that HTC Philippines will be releasing the 1080p smartphone here in the country this coming Monday, January 21.

The HTC Butterfly is their first 1080p smartphone to officially reach the Philippine shores. It packs a 5-inch 1920x1080 Super LCD 3 screen, 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, 8 Megapixels camera, 16GB of storage, 2,020mAh battery, and runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

The HTC Butterfly is the international variant of the Droid DNA that is exclusively available on Verizon in the US.

HTC Butterfly X920D Specifications and Features
5-inch Super LCD 3 display with 1920x1080 full HD resolution
Corning® Gorilla® Glass 2
8 Megapixels autofocus camera with LED flash, and BSI sensor
F2.0 aperture and 28mm lens
2.1 megapixel front camera
16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro quad-core CPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA+ (850, 2100 MHz)
Beats Audio™
2,020mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

The HTC Butterfly will retail for P32,190 at HTC Concept Stores in the country.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

SMART introduces new Family Circle Plans

Smart Postpaid Family Circle Plans

SMART Communications recently announced the newest addition to their postpaid lineup, the Family Circle Plans.

The Family Circle Plans is SMART’s offering for families looking for a way to be always connected with each other. It has two tiers, the 3 circle (Plans 800 and 1200) and 4 circle (Plans 1800 and 2500). The 3 circle plans come with 3 lines with consecutive phone numbers, latter one comes with 4. Each line gets its own credit limit, consumable amount allotment, and billing statement.

For example, the Family Circle Plan 2500 comes with 4 mobile phone lines. The primary line gets a P700 allocation and the 3 remaining lines get P600 each. Allocations may vary with each plan. The Family Circle Plan 800 has a P300 allocation for the primary line and P250 each for the remaining lines.

Subscribers will also get one device for each line in the plans. All plans come with consecutive phone numbers so it will be easy to remember.

Check out SMART’s website for more details.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

First image of the HTC M7 leaks out

HTC M7 Philippines

UnwiredView, thru the infamous @evleaks, got hold of an allegedly render of HTC’s flagship smartphone for 2013, the HTC M7.

The image you see above is the front (I initially thought it’s the back part) face of the device, with the earpiece on the top, and the front-facing camera and other sensors on its opposite sides. The loudspeaker seems to have been moved to the front of the device, which should alleviate the muffling of the sound that’s plaguing other devices with the loudspeakers on the back.

The image reportedly came from an internal instructional video for SIM card installation, thus the missing branding and other details. The HTC M7 is expected to pack a 4.7-inch 1080p full HD screen and a 1.7GHz quad-core processor, supposedly the S4 Pro from Qualcomm. UnwiredView also says HTC added an IR port on the top of the device just beside the power button.

The HTC M7 is expected to be announced at the Mobile Word Congress (MWC) in Barcelona this February. It will reportedly come with a price tag just upwards of $600.

Is it just me or it looks like the back face of the iPhone 5?

Source: UnwiredView

Temple Run 2 launches on iOS

Temple Run 2 for iOS

Calling all Temple Run fans! If you think you have had enough of it, well, think again. Prepare your fingers for endless flicking and flinging again as Imangi Studios, the developer behind the very successful and popular hit game Temple Run, launches—you guessed it right, Temple Run 2!

The sequel brings in new features like the entirely different environment wherein you can ride mine carts and cling through zip lines. There’s also new obstacles, more powerups, more achievements, and special powers for each character. Lastly, the monkeys got even bigger on Temple Run 2.

Temple Run 2 is now available for iOS devices starting in New Zealand. It should be rolling out to the other App Stores as midnight strikes the time zones. No words yet though on when it will be available to Android and Windows Phone.

Via: The Verge

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

ASUS bares 7-inch $149 MeMO Pad tablet

ASUS MeMO Pad Philippines

ASUS announced yesterday the new MeMO Pad, a 7-iinch $149 tablet that runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

The ASUS MeMO Pad (pronounced “meemo) is small 7-inch tablet (think Nexus 7) which packs a 1024x600 screen resolution (170 ppi) with a 170-degree viewing angle and 350-nit brightness, 1GHz VIA WM8950 processor, MALI 400 GPU, and 16GB of storage which is expandable by a microSD card up to 32GB. It has a 1 Megapixel front-facing camera which can capture 720p videos at 30 frames per second.

The MeMO Pad runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and it comes pre-loaded with ASUS apps such as SuperNote Lite, BuddyBuzz, ASUS WebStorage, ASUS Studio and WebStorage Office.

ASUS MeMO Pad Specifications and Features
7-inch LED-backlit display with 1024x600 resolution (170 ppi)
1 Megapixel front-facing camera
16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1GHz VIA WM8950 processor, Mali 400 GPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
4,270mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

The ASUS MeMO Pad will be available in the Philippines this February, but the pricing has not been announced yet. It will come in three colors, Sugar White, Titanium Grey, and Cherry Pink.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Official app finally comes to Windows Phone

Official Application for Windows Phone

Another useful and handy app lands in the Windows Phone land, this time it’s the app by Ookla. is the online tool many people uses to measure their Internet connection bandwidth. It could be for reporting purposes so they can determine if their ISPs delivers the right speed they are promised. It is also available on iOS and Android.

The app for Windows Phone is different from its two other counterparts. The user interface is different and is still beautiful. It has two live tile sizes which displays your recent tests right on your Start screen.

Use for easy, one-tap connection testing in under 30 seconds—accurate anywhere thanks to our global network.

Millions of users have made the #1 app for testing internet speeds, and it’s trusted by the professionals like Anandtech, Engadget, and the BBC and New York Times!

- Discover your Download, Upload, and Ping
- Real-time graphs show connection consistency

WP_20130115 1 WP_20130115 5WP_20130115 3 WP_20130115 4

Now get Speedtesting! Get the app on the Windows Phone Store.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Samsung GALAXY S III mini arriving January 26

Samsung GALAXY S III mini Philippines

The smaller and younger sibling of the Samsung GALAXY S III, aptly named the GALAXY S III mini, is set to arrive in the Philippines on January 26.

The Samsung GALAXY S III mini is a stripped-down version of the GALAXY S III. It has a smaller 4-inch screen with 800x480 resolution and a Super AMOLED panel. It has a 5 Megapixels main camera with auto-focus and LED flash, and a VGA snapper on the front.

There are two options for the internal memory on the GALAXY S III mini, 8 and 16 gigabytes, but we are not sure which one Samsung is going to offer in the local market. It is powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM.

For connectivity, it includes the normal stuffs. Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, and 3G data which can handle speeds of up to 14.4Mbps, depending on your network. To top it off, the GALAXY S III mini has a 1500mAh battery.

Samsung GALAXY S III mini Specifications and Features
4-inch Super AMOLED display with 800x480 (WVGA) resolution
5 Megapixels autofocus camera with LED flash
VGA front camera
8/16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1GHz dual-core CPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0
Accelerometer, Digital Compass, Gyroscope
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA (900, 1900, 2100 MHz) 
1,500mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

Samsung will start selling the GALAXY S III mini in the Philippines on January 26 for P14,990 — but, they are going to slash it by P2,000 in the first day. If you’re not able to afford a GALAXY S III but still want to own a piece of Samsung’s GALAXY, I think this the way to go for you.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Nokia: Launch of Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 in the Philippines delayed

Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 Philippines

Remember when Nokia said that they will be releasing the Lumia 920 in the Philippines this January? Well, guess what? That statement is now not effective.

Nokia Philippines says the launch is “now expected to commence a little later” than they had hoped. The Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 is now anticipated to arrived '”the latter part of 2013”, which likely means sometime in March.

Nokia cites the reason for the delay is that “it is sometimes necessary to revise delivery schedules based on global product availability.” It looks like they are prioritizing other countries which has bigger demands on the two devices and that the supply is not enough.

They also said that the Lumia 620 will be launched in Q1 2013.

Source: Nokia

Friday, January 11, 2013

Rumor: Nexus 4 production halted by LG, successor likely to launch next month

Google Nexus 4 by LG

Rumor has it that LG has halted the production of the just-launched Nexus 4, the flagship smartphone of Google under its Nexus brand of devices. International Business Times quotes LG Senior Vice President James Fisher as saying that the Nexus 4 is just "the first of many" Nexus products the company is working on, which hints LG and Google might be already working on the successor of the Nexus 4.

Fisher further added that "at Mobile World Congress next month and throughout the year, you'll see us bring to market more tier-one premium handsets in various screen sizes." The successor of the Nexus 4 is expected to launch along Google’s next version of Android, the Key Lime Pie.

If that is the case, well I feel sorry for the early adopters of the Nexus 4, and even more for the ones whose orders are only about to ship.

Source: International Business Times

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Facebook’s Pages Manager app now out for Android

Facebook Pages Manager for Android 3

If you happen to be managing a Facebook page, then we have a good news for you. Facebook recently released the Pages Manager app for Android, which should come really useful for page managers out there.

Facebook Pages Manager allows you to post status updates, share photos, and respond to your users’ posts and comments on the go. It also allows you to read and send messages if you have it enabled on your page.

And what would be an official Facebook without notifications support? Yup, you can check your pages’ new notifications too. Lastly, you can check the insights and analytics for every post you’ve made on your page. The app supports multiple pages management.

You can get the Facebook Pages Manager app from the Google Play Store.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

ASUS announces the VivoTab Smart tablet

ASUS VivoTab Smart Philippines

ASUS today announced their new tablet, the VivoTab Smart running Windows 8. It has the full PC experience unlike other tablets, which means you can run your existing software on this device. It is powered by a dual-core Intel Atom Z2760 processor. The screen measures 10.1-inch IPS panel with a 1366x768 HD resolution.

The Vivo Tab Smart can be attached to an option keyboard, called the TranSleeve Keyboard which also doubles as a stand and protective cover when not in use. It has an 8-Megapixels camera on the back which can do 1080p full HD video recording. On the front there is a 2-Megapixels shooter for video calling and other uses. The WI-Fi only model has a 9.5-hour battery life, while the Wi-Fi + LTE model only has 8-hours.

ASUS VivoTab Smart Specifications and Features
10.1-inch (1366 x 768) display
Intel® Atom™ Z2760 dual-core processor
64GB onboard storage
802.11 b/g/n
265.5 x 171 x 9.7mm
9.5 hours of battery life (8.5 hours for Wi-Fi + LTE model)

The ASUS VivoTab Smart will be available here in the Philippines this Q1 2013. It will come in white and black and will retail for P25,995.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Sony Xperia Z and Xperia ZL becomes official

Sony Xperia Z Philippines

Sony Mobile finally unveiled their flagship smartphone for 2013, or the first half I think, the Xperia Z. The Xperia Z is a splendid smartphone by Sony, with it’s body beautifully sandwiched by two slabs of glass on the front and back. A 5-inch 1080p full HD screen makes this thing imaginably large by the number. Its display is packed with 443 pixels per inch, so we expect things on it to look really crisp.

The camera of the Xperia Z is a 13 Megapixels one with their new Exmor RS™ sensor which Sony say should allow for clear and quality photos under low-light conditions. It can also capture HDR video.

Sony Xperia Z Philippines - Back

It is also IP55 and IP57-certified which means it can resist dust and water. Sony equipped the Xperia Z with the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core processor and coupled it with 2GB of RAM. As for the battery life, they added a new feature called Battery Stamina which, when activated, will improve standby times by up to 4 times.

It also supports LTE, particularly the bands 1, 3, and 5 which local carriers use.

Sony Xperia Z Specifications and Features
5-inch TFT HD Reality display with 1920x1080 full HD resolution
Sony Mobile Bravia Engine 2
13 Megapixels autofocus camera with LED flash, Exmor RS sensor
2.1 megapixel front camera
1080p video recording
16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core CPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA+ (850, 900, 2100 MHz)
LTE (Bands 1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 20)
2,330mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS (upgrade to 4.2 after release)

The Sony Xperia Z will be released this Q1 2013 globally. They will also release a slightly different variant of it, the Xperia ZL in some countries that will not get the Xperia Z. The Xperia ZL offers a smaller form-factor and design but still retains the same specs.

The Sony Xperia Z and Xperia ZL will launch on Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) and will be upgraded to 4.2 shortly after launch.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Apple App Store surpasses 40 billion downloads

App Store 40 Billion Downloads

Apple has announced that the App Store has topped 40 billion downloads today. They also say that in December alone, users have made 2 billion installs in the App Store. The number excludes re-installs and app updates.

The App Store is now home to some 775,000 apps for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. 300,000 apps alone are designed for the large iPad display. Apple has also stated that they have paid out over 7 billion dollars to the developers.

“It has been an incredible year for the iOS developer community,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “Developers have made over seven billion dollars on the App Store, and we continue to invest in providing them with the best ecosystem so they can create the most innovative apps in the world.”

Apple last announced in June 2012 that the App Store saw 30 billion downloads.

NVIDIA announces Tegra 4 processor

NVIDIA Tegra 4

NVIDIA today bared their latest generation mobile processor, the Tegra 4. The company dubs it as the ‘world’s fastest mobile processor’, and that’s due to the ARM A15 chipsets with four cores. The Tegra 4 has retained the same 4-plus-1 processor design as on the previous Tegra 3 which is supposed to improve battery life. The company claims it uses 45% less power than its predecessor and can have up to 14 hours of HD video playback time on phones.

The graphics performance of the Tegra 4 has significantly improved as it now has 72 GPU cores, as opposed on the Tegra 3 which only had 12. NVIDIA says this will pave way for more realistic game experiences and high-resolution displays, like 1080p, which is expected to be included in a number of devices soon.

Tegra 4 will now also finally support LTE through an extra (read: not integrated) chipset, the Icera® i500. The Tegra 3 did not support LTE at the time, and a number of device manufacturers was forced to opt for the competing chipsets like that of Qualcomm’s just to bring their devices to many American carriers. NVIDIA says it is 40% less than the size of conventional modems and has 4 times more processor power.

It will also have a new feature which is what they call the Computational Photography Architecture. It will allow for almost-real-time HDR photo and video processing, by combining the powers of the GPU and CPU. It will also support 4K ultra-high definition video playback — that’s a 3140x2160 resolution out there.

As of now, there’s only two devices that has been announced to run on Tegra 4, Vizio’s 10-inch and 7-inch stock Android 4.2 Jelly Bean tablets.

NVIDIA Introduces World's Fastest Mobile Processor

Sunday, January 6, 2013
CES -- NVIDIA today introduced NVIDIA® Tegra® 4, the world's fastest mobile processor, with record-setting performance and battery life to flawlessly power smartphones and tablets, gaming devices, auto infotainment and navigation systems, and PCs.

Tegra 4 offers exceptional graphics processing, with lightning-fast web browsing, stunning visuals and new camera capabilities through computational photography.

Previously codenamed "Wayne," Tegra 4 features 72 custom NVIDIA GeForce™ GPU cores -- or six times the GPU horsepower of Tegra 3 -- which deliver more realistic gaming experiences and higher resolution displays. It includes the first quad-core application of ARM's most advanced CPU core, the Cortex-A15, which delivers 2.6x faster web browsing and breakthrough performance for apps.

Tegra 4 also enables worldwide 4G LTE voice and data support through an optional chipset, the fifth-generation NVIDIA Icera® i500 processor. More efficient and 40 percent the size of conventional modems, i500 delivers four times the processing capability of its predecessor.

"Tegra 4 provides enormous processing power and efficiency to power smartphones and tablets, gaming devices, auto systems and PCs," said Phil Carmack, senior vice president of the Tegra business at NVIDIA. "Its new capabilities, particularly in the area of computational photography, will help improve a whole range of existing products and lead to the creation of exciting new ones."

Computational Photography Capability
Among the Tegra 4 processor's breakthroughs is its Computational Photography Architecture, which automatically delivers high dynamic range (HDR) photos and video by fusing together the processing power of the GPU, CPU and the camera's image-signal processor.

Its HDR capability captures images, including those taken with a flash, the way they are seen by the human eye -- with detail in both bright and dark areas.

Unprecedented Power Efficiency
Designed for maximum energy efficiency, Tegra 4 includes a second-generation battery saver core for low power during standard use, and PRISM 2 Display technology to reduce backlight power while delivering superior visuals.

Tegra 4 consumes up to 45 percent less power than its predecessor, Tegra 3, in common use cases. And it enables up to 14 hours of HD video playback on phones.

Tegra 4 Key Features
GeForce GPU with 72 custom cores
Quad-core ARM Cortex-A15 CPU, plus a 2nd Generation Battery Saver Core
Computational Photography Architecture
LTE capability with optional Icera i500 chipset
4K ultra-high-def video support

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Sunday, January 6, 2013

How to access Google Maps on Windows Phone in 2 steps

Google Maps for Windows Phone

Many technology publications on the Internet are abuzz with the recent news about Google blocking Windows Phone users from accessing its Maps service. The search giant was quoted saying the following statement.

The mobile web version of Google Maps is optimized for WebKit browsers such as Chrome and Safari. However, since Internet Explorer is not a WebKit browser, Windows Phone devices are not able to access Google Maps for the mobile web.

While it is true that Google Maps on the mobile web is optimized for WebKit-based browsers, the part that says Windows Phone users are not able to use it due to the different engine it uses is just a blatant lie. Google Maps has always worked on Windows Phone even before, albeit not as smooth as on the other browsers. It’s just Google blocking the access by redirecting Windows Phone users who go to to their homepage.

In fact, you can still access Google Maps on your Windows Phone’s browser, just don’t expect an excellent an aesthetic interface as Google seemed to made it look awful (it didn’t look this way before). So how? Simple. Go to, search for a place and put the phrase ‘Google Maps’ on the end of the keyword, just like ‘Manhattan Google Maps’. Now click the first link to, and it will take you to the right place. See the image below.

Google Maps for Windows Phone

This just proves that Google Maps does work in Windows Phone and that they’re the only ones who say otherwise.

By the way, if you want a decent Google Maps app on your phone, you can use gMaps (free, pro), a nice alternative to the mobile web version.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

HTC teases release of 5-inch 1080p Butterfly in the Philippines

HTC Butterfly and Droid DNA Philippines

Want to experience 1080p goodness in your handheld mobile device? Well, train your eyes now to appreciate the pixel-packed screen of the HTC Butterfly, also know as the international version of the Droid DNA for Verizon in the US, as it is finally set to reach the Philippine shores.

How’d we know? HTC Philippines posted the above photo on their Facebook page yesterday, implying that they will officially release the 5-incher in the country soon. Info circulating around says it will be sometime this January.

HTC Butterfly X920D Specifications and Features
5-inch Super LCD 3 display with 1920x1080 full HD resolution
Corning® Gorilla® Glass 2
8 Megapixels autofocus camera with LED flash, and BSI sensor
F2.0 aperture and 28mm lens
2.1 megapixel front camera
16GB internal memory, expandable up to 32GB using microSD card
1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro quad-core CPU
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.0
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA+ (850, 2100 MHz)
Beats Audio™
2,020mAh battery capacity
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS

We have asked HTC for more info about the release date and the pricing as well.

Source: HTC Philippines

Friday, January 4, 2013

Is this the Samsung GALAXY S IV?

Samsung GALAXY S IV 4 Philippines

The guys at SamMobile claims they received the press render of Samsung’s upcoming flagship, the GALAXY S IV. The design looks similar to that of the Note II, albeit a little taller. The bezel are also thinner on the sides, and the home button is gone.

The GALAXY S IV is supposed to have a 5-inch 1080p full HD screen, an Exynos 5450 processor, 2GB of RAM, 13 Megapixels camera, and will ship with Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean.

If this is real, what I can say is it’s too early as the GALAXY S III was just announced back in May. Or perhaps, this is one of their upcoming Tizen devices. What do you think?

Source: SamMobile

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean update now available for Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1

Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1 Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean Update Philippines

Samsung started to roll-out the Premium Suite upgrade for the Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1, which now includes Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean and a host of new and improved features.

The biggest change this update brought to the Note 10.1 is the improved multi-window functionality. In this update, Samsung made it possible for any developer to add multi-window capability in their apps. You can now freely resize any open window, ‘pin’ it so it is always visible, and switch between the cascade or dual views.

Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1 Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean Update Philippines 2

Samsung incorporated the features which were previously only available on the Note II, such as the Air View, Quick Command, Easy Clip, and Photo Note, all of which are a very welcome addition to the Note 10.1 since it has a bigger screen that users can use for those said features.

The other changes made include the ability to send handwritten notes via email. You can now also jot down your notes and tasks in a more personal and traditional way on the improved S Planner app.

The S Note app saw some more comical effects & new templates like the Sketch Effect for various photo effects and image filters with Color Picker, you can pick any color you want directly from any images and draw with it.

Moreover, Google’s Project Butter gave the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 a huge performance boost. Gone are the minor lags and stutters that I saw on Ice Cream Sandwich which is the OS it was running on when it originally launched.

If you’re an owner of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1, you may now check for the update on Samsung Kies or just do it right on your device, just go to Settings > About and tap Software update. The update weighs a little hefty at around 420Mb.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Nexus 4 now available for P24,990; LG Optimus G to follow this Q1 2013 (update)

LG Nexus 4 and Optimus G Philippines

We just heard from the folks at LG Philippines that the Google Nexus 4, made by them of course, is now already available at stores for P24,990. The Nexus 4 is Google’s newest Nexus-branded device for 2012. It packs a 4.7-inch HD screen, a quad-core Qualcomm S4 Pro processor, 8 Megapixels camera, and has Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on board.

LG Nexus 4 E960 Specifications and Features
4.7-inch IPS display with 1280x768 (WXGA) resolution
Corning® Gorilla® Glass 2
8 Megapixels main camera, 1.3 Megapixel front
8GB or 16GB internal memory
Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro CPU
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
GSM/EDGE/GPRS (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
3G/HSPA+ (850, 900, 1700, 1900, 2100 MHz)
Wireless charging
SlimPort HDMI
Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS

The stores that are selling official Nexus 4 stocks are very limited to the following: Widget City, MemoXpress (Greater Manila Area), Aerophone (Visayas), Wiltelcom (Mindanao) and in all LG Mobile Concept Stores and kiosks.

The LG Optimus G, on the other hand, is coming soon this Q1 2013, according to LG. The Optimus G shares some specs with the Nexus 4, the only major difference is that it runs Android Ice Cream Sandwich.

UPDATE: Widget City has let us know that they will be stocking Nexus 4 units with official warranty from LG Philippines for P21,890. It will be available starting January 4.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Sony’s full HD flagship, the Xperia Z and Xperia ZL shows its glory in a leaked press shot (update)

Sony Xperia Z and Xperia ZL Philippines

The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2013 is only just one more week away from now. As it has always been, the leaks are now starting to, well, leak out.

One of the anticipated devices to be unveiled is Sony Mobile’s flagship for this year, which is said to pack a full HD 1080p screen, is the Xperia Z. It will join the likes of the HTC Droid DNA in the elusive 1080p club.

The other details that are available for now include Android Jelly Bean as it’s OS, a quad-core processor, and a 13 Megapixels camera. The remaining specs of the device remain unknown. But guess what? We’re only 7 days away from it’s official unveiling. So stay tuned!

UPDATE: Engadget has published a fresh pair of press shots for the Xperia Z and its twin, the Xperia ZL. The latter one is quite a looker due to the thinner bezel at the top and bottom.

Source: UnwiredView