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Samsung Galaxy Note 4 phablet takes the stage at IFA 2014

The biggest news from Samsung at IFA 2014 is its launch of its “second flagship” – the Galaxy Note 4, which joins the Galaxy Edge atop the sprawling Samsung smartphone/phablet range. Read on to find out more!

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 SM-N910 Android phablet

Samsung’s big brawler

Let’s start with the first thing people will look at, the screen. The Note 4’s got a terrific one: a 5.7 inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display. It’s got 2560 x 1440 resolution and can supposedly offer excellent viewing angles and really sharp response times.

Pick it up and you’ll notice that this time around, Samsung’s seen fit to incorporate plenty of metal in this version of the Note. It’s got a metal frame, like the one that debuted on the company’s Galaxy Alpha unit. But Samsung’s stopping short of aping Apple by installing a soft and textured back for the rear; by doing so, it’s working to make the Note 4 more grippable and a little less cold to the touch than, say, an iPhone 5S.

Two versions of the Note 4, differentiated by processor, will be sold (availability will of course differ per global market). The first version will be powered by an Exynos 5 system on a chip that will be combined with the big.LITTLE power optimization and Heterogenous Multi Processing power technologies. If that’s not good enough for you, you might be interested in the second one, which rocks a Snapdragon 805 clocked at 2.7 GHz with Krait 450 cores, an Adreno 420 GPU – and 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage.

Cameras, you say? The Note 4 boasts a 16 MP main snapper with Smart optical image stabilization and Ultra HD video capability, as well as a 3.7 MP resolution front-facing unit (which has an F/1.9 aperture to make your selfies that much sharper).

Other key specs include fifth generation Wi-Fi, NFC and Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 technology that allows users to get up to 50% charge from zero in just half an hour. (The battery, by the way, is 3229 mAh.) The sensor-laden Note 4 (a smorgasbord of sensors here: accelerometer, gyroscope, fingerprint scanner, heart rate monitor and more) also, per usual, comes with an S Pen stylus and improved features like the Air Command “no touch” feature.

When and how much?

If you’re drooling over a Samsung Galaxy Note 4, you’ll have to wait until October, when the phablet will be unleashed for approximately 800 euros. But this phablet’s first test might just come next week when Apple unleashes its bigger iPhone – that is, if the rumors are true. Until then, keep checking back with us for more phablet news!

source [Tablet-News]

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Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0 Android tablet revealed

Yes, here we are with yet another pre-IFA 2014 debut! It’s now Huawei’s turn to introduce a new tablet. This time around it’s the Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0 Android slate that’s being launched for sale in the Chinese market – very reasonably priced, and more or less specced to match – but watch out, this one’s got a bit of a surprise up its sleeve. Read on to find out more.

Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0 Android tablet PC
image via shop.huawei.ru. Something looks wrong in this picture. Can you spot it?

Bare-bones, basic – wait, no, not entirely!

In almost every way, the MediaPad T1 8.0 – also known, apparently, as the Honor S8-701u – is a simple little slate with solid, if unexciting specs. Its 8-inch IPS LCD display boasts 1280 x 800 pixel resolution; it’s got a 5 MP CMOS camera as its main snapper and a 0.3 MP front-facing camera for the occasional selfie or video chat. Only 8 GB of storage is in the offing.

The operating system of this tablet is sadly out of date – the T1 runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean with Huawei’s Emotion UI 1.6 user interface overlying it – sort of a downer considering that Google is purportedly just about to release “Android L”, the successor of Jelly Bean’s own successor. Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 and a 4800 mAh battery round out the package.

But wait, as the saying goes – there’s more! Huawei turned to Qualcomm for help powering this device, and Qualcomm has responded in an interesting way. The T1 is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 200 processor, clocked at 1.2 GHz for this specific application. This is unexpected, as, to paraphrase something our source says, buyers wouldn’t really expect to see a Snapdragon chip in a low-cost tablet, but here we are. (Might this be taken as a sign that Qualcomm is rushing downmarket? Only time will tell.)

Lastly, the T1 can be had in either silver or white.

OK then, so how much?

The Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0 isn’t going to cost a pretty penny, no sir. Our source indicates that buyers of this unit will only need to fork out the local equivalent of US $162 to pick one up when it does drop in China. When might that be, you say? We’re not sure exactly when yet, but we’re working on finding out.

source [Softpedia]

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Archos 80 Helium 4G Android slate hits the UK

Even though manufacturers keep on rolling out tablets despite the “tablet slowdown”, we suspect that said slowdown appears to be forcing a bit of a rethink as to how their slates can be differentiated and sold. Case in point: this new Archos 80 Helium 4G unit. In a nutshell, it isn’t just another eight-incher; its claim to fame is that it’s the least-expensive 4G LTE-compatible tablet available on the market today. Read on and find out more!

Archos 80 Helium 4G Android tablet PC

The 4-1-1

4G LTE is rapidly becoming a standard feature of all of today’s top tablets, and is beginning to trickle down to midrange and low-end units. This is why the French tech firm’s offering really stands out, as it’s the very first LTE unit to be made available this cheaply.

(What’s with LTE, you might be asking? In case you aren’t in the know, it enables tablet users to enjoy media faster – they can watch videos in a snap and can enjoy video calls at HD resolution – plus they’re able to enjoy file downloads as fast as 150 Mbps. Not bad, really.)

How does it stack up in terms of its other specs? Well, they’re not really worth writing home about. This is a 1024 x 768 IPS tablet – a bit low in terms of resolution vis-à-vis standout units like the Retina Display iPad mini and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S, but not too bad for the segment in which it competes. It’s powered by a 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8926 processor and an Adreno 305 GPU, plus it’s got 1 GB of RAM. The battery is all of 3500mAh.

Would-be buyers might be disappointed to hear that the 80 Helium 4G will only come with 8 GB of internal memory. However, it IS expandable via its microSD card slot (plus you can always stream music and movies via a good and generous 4G connection). Additionally, it only runs Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, which is especially disappointing given that Android L, the replacement for the current version KitKat, is looming on the horizon. Lastly, it’s a bit of a heavyweight – it clocks in at 430g (to compare, the original iPad mini weights only 312g).

What’s the damage?

In case its formula of 4G LTE connectivity has you interested (and you live in the UK), you can pick up an Archos 80 Helium 4G tablet for 199 GBP or $330, slightly cheaper than competing (and also LTE-toting) slates such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and Lenovo ThinkPad 8 – whether its run-of-the-mill other features will turn you off is, of course, entirely up to you.

source [TechRadar]

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Unannounced Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact may drop at IFA 2014

The supposed slowdown in tablet sales notwithstanding, entrants into the small-tablet segment are only continuing to debut. Here we serve advance notice of what might be another one: a heretofore unannounced little Sony slate called the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. Read on to find out more about this little guy!

A sneak peak of a new little Xperia tablet?

Our sources tell us that a few days ago, they heard that Sony might be preparing a small tablet for release (the ‘Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact’ moniker apparently showed up in the compatibility list of a Sony Bluetooth speaker), but the details about any such device were few and far between. Earlier today, however, an image of what appears to be this intriguing mystery tablet was posted on a Facebook page maintained by the Japanese tech firm – even more interestingly, one focused on its SmartBand smartwatch.

Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact Android Tablet PC

The picture shows the purported tablet (in white) cradled in the hands of a guy who could be sitting on the edge of a swimming pool, apparently either playing a game or watching a movie on the device , and wearing an all-black watch (a smartwatch perhaps?) on his left wrist. The tablet isn’t a large one; it appears to be all of seven or eight inches.

Very interestingly – and as if the supposed user’s proximity to said pool wasn’t enough of an indication – the tablet has water drops on its surface, yet apparently isn’t fazed by the dampness. It doesn’t seem illogical to conclude that this tablet will be able to survive a dunking – it may be waterproof, just like many high-end devices that have been released over the past few months.

The purported spec list

Aside from what’s been revealed (or at least suspected to have been revealed), our sources also tell us that we might be able to expect the same basic specs as Sony’s Xperia Z3 smartphone – including a high-resolution display, a Snapdragon 801 processor, a powerful main camera and 3 GB of RAM. An LTE version is probably also in the cards, and there’s a chance that the tablet may even come with Android L, the next version of the popular mobile OS.

The bottom line, at least for now, is that this upcoming Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact appears to be yet another one following in the footsteps of the iPad mini and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S – small tablets that pack a punch. We have a few days to find out if that’s really the case – it’s supposedly doing to drop at the IFA 2014 in Berlin beginning this September 5. Stay stuck!

sources [Tablet News, Tabtech (German site)]

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HP’s new Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus debuts on GFXBench

A few months back, Hewlett-Packard introduced two VoiceTab phablets, and from the looks of it, the company is ready to refresh the smaller 6-inch model. Meet the HP Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus. If the GFXBench specs are to be believed, the Plus is basically a slightly improved version of the phablet’s first iteration. So what can we expect from this little baby?

HP Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus Android Phablet

The 411 on the Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus

For one thing, it’s ever so slightly smaller at 5.9 inches. The 1280 x 720 pixel resolution display supports at least 5 finger gesture support and is backed up with a 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 ARM Cortex-A7 quad core processor, an Adreno 305 graphics processor, and 1 GB of RAM. There’s 16 GB of on board storage, and if the Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus follows its predecessor’s footsteps, it will most likely come with a microSD card slot for extra space too. According to the details listed in the benchmark, this baby will also feature two cameras – a 7 MP main shooter and a 1.8 MP front camera.

Other features include Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity, a SIM card slot, and all your standard sensors (accelerometer, compass, GPS, gyroscope, light, and proximity). If the deets listed are to be believed, this phablet will pack Google’s latest operating system, Android 4.4.4 KitKat.

We’ll have to wait for the rest of the details

That’s because the HP Slate 6 VoiceTab Plus is still technically unofficial. We’ll keep an eye out for any official announcements once HP decides to throw us a bone.

In the meantime, what do you think? It’s certainly better than the first Slate 6. HP traded in the Marvell processor and upgraded it to a Qualcomm CPU while the main camera received a boost from 5 MP to 7 MP. The rest is pretty much the same – though we’ll know that for sure once the official spec sheet becomes available.

The original Slate 6 hit the stores in India and sold for 22,990 rupees (somewhere in the vicinity of US $370). Will the Plus model arrive on these shores? And if so, how much? Would you buy this phablet? Tell us in the comments below.

Via [Tablet-News]

Source [GFXBench]

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Sony prepping an Xperia phablet?

Of late, the benchmarking site GFXBench has been a steady source of unofficial details of soon-to-be released slates. Sure, some of the stuff you’d find there would probably never see the light of day – being dev devices and all – but the others we’ve seen have actually been made and are now available in the market. Today’s subject of our tablet PC leakage comes from Sony, and our sources report that it will be an entry level Xperia phablet. Read on to know more about it.

Sony Xperia Phablet D2203 - image from GFXBench
image via GFXBench

A Sony Xperia phablet in the works?

According to the info sheet in GFXBench, this baby will sport a 6.1-inch display, which the Xperia Blog assumed to be a FWVGA panel, judging perhaps from its 480 x 854 pixel resolution. The info sheet further indicates that it will feature a 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 MSM8926 quad core processor coupled with an Andreno 305 GPU, 1 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of internal storage. Other features listed include a VGA front camera, a 5 MP main shooter (with flash and autofocus), Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity, NFC, a SIM card slot, and various sensors (accelerometer, proximity, compass, and light).

Software-wise, the Xperia phablet will come with Android 4.4.2 KitKat out of the box.

Additional notes

The said phablet is currently listed as D22XX (Sony D2203, D2202, and D2212) but it will probably come in a saucier name once Sony officially announces it. So far, that’s all we know, or at least, that’s all that is listed on the info sheet. It is pretty thin, but we’ll throw you a bone once more info becomes available.

Judging from its specs though, this Sony Xperia phablet looks to be geared toward the budget-conscious. Let that sink in for a moment. The words “Sony” and “budget-friendly” don’t usually come in the same sentence, but when they do, it usually means that it’s smaller device. Was there a typo in the screen size?

Anyway, we’ll know for sure in the coming days or months so stay tuned. In the meantime, what do you think? Tell us in the comments below.

via [XperiaBlog]

source [GFXBench]

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Samsung Galaxy Note 4 to be ‘unpacked’ at IFA in September

Samsung is apparently revving up to make up for its semi-disastrous last few quarters, as well as trying to head off the looming threat posed by the supposed larger-screen Apple iPhone. We’ve heard rumors that the upcoming Galaxy Note 4, the replacement for the exceedingly popular Note 3 phablet, could drop as soon as September 3 at this year’s IFA in Berlin. Scroll down and find out more!

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Android phablet
image via galaxynote4update.com

The juggernaut rolls, or tries to

Samsung is apparently working very hard to launch the Galaxy Note 4 before the bigger-screened iPhone drops, so it’s trying to get it out in a little over four weeks from now. Our source says that the company will host an Unpacked event at the IFA, and if you put two and two together – the Galaxy Note devices have always been launched at IFA – this does make quite a bit of sense.

So what can we expect? The screen may remain 5.7 inches or it may not – we’ll have to see. What is most probably not up to change soon will be the thickness of the phone; it probably won’t be ultra thin as the S Pen is stored in the phablet itself.

Specs wise, we will probably see a Quad HD, Super AMOLED display (1440 x 2560); the new Exynos 5433 8-core processor and the Snapdragon 805 processor (2.7 GHz); 3 GB RAM; and 32 GB internal memory. The Note 4 will also most probably come with a UV sensor and water and dust protection; “heavier duty” (as opposed to real “heavy duty”) phones are becoming something of a fad nowadays.

These are far from all the specs (though some specs did land as of this writing, including the 16 MP main camera with OIS and 4 MP front shooter) so we’ll have to wait and see what will emerge in the runup to the launch itself (and of course everything will be confirmed then – let’s wait and see!).

It isn’t coming alone

We and other tech sites doubt that the Galaxy Note 4 will launch by its lonesome. We’ve also been hearing rumblings that two Samsung’s most eagerly awaited now products aside from the Note 4 – the upcoming Galaxy S5 LTE-A and the Galaxy Alpha, which, thanks to its metal back, will take aim directly at the iPhone – might also be introduced on September 3.

Lastly, no word or rumors yet regarding the Note 4’s price; let’s see how it goes.

via [BGR]

source [Tabtech.de] (German site)

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iFixit tears down Android Wear

The folks at iFixit, if you remember them, are quite known for tearing down devices to know just how repairable said devices are (see them in action here, here, and here). This time around, they got their hands on two Android Wear devices, the Samsung Gear Live and the LG G Watch.

Android Wear – The iFixit teardown review

The first two devices to feature Google’s new OS on wearable devices have just shipped to, well, early adopters, but just what is Android Wear? It’s basically an Android operating system built to work on smaller devices like smartwatches.

Anyway, so how did the two devices shape up in the iFixit repairability scale? Pretty high. The Gear Live got an 8, while the LG G (try saying that 5 times, really fast) got a more than respectable 9 out of the possible 10. Interestingly, the watches sport nearly the same specs, save for a few differences.

The Gear Live sports a 1.63-inch Super AMOLED display with a 320 x 320 pixel resolution, which translates to 278 ppi. It features Bluetooth 4.0 LE, a heart rate monitor, a digital compass, an accelerometer, and a gyroscope. Its 300 mAh battery can reportedly last an entire day of use on a single full charge. The LG G watch, on the other hand, packs an ever-so-slightly bigger 1.65-inch IPS LCD display, a 400 mAh battery, Bluetooth 4.0, and the sensor trio (accelerometer, gyro, and compass).

Both Android Wear watches have a 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 APQ8026 quad-core processor, 512 MB of RAM, and 4 GB of internal storage. Both have an IP67 rating, which means that they can survive immersed into a meter of water for 30 minutes. Still though, it’s not recommended.

How much are these again?

If you’re interested in getting one of these Android Wear devices, then be sure to set aside a fair bit of cash. The LG G Watch retails for US $229, while the Samsung Gear Live will set you back US $199.99.

Remember: Kids, do not try this at home. Not only are the iFixit people professionals (which means they can put things back together again), but they are also in possession a budget for tearing down perfectly working US $200+ watches. So if you ever feel the need to see what the makes the Samsung Gear Live and the LG G Watch tick, then head on over to the link below.

source [iFixit (Samsung Gear Live) and (LG G Watch)]

via [Liliputing]

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Enter the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD+

If you’re up to get something with higher specs than Lenovo’s Tab A-Series, then check out their other recent release, the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+. As the name suggests, this is a member of Lenovo’s multi-mode product line. Let’s check it out, shall we?

Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ Android Tablet PC

Yoga Tablet 10 HD+: Specs and Features

This flexible Android tablet packs a 10.1-inch Full HD IPS display with a 1920 x 1200 pixel resolution and wide-viewing angles (178 degrees, according to the specs sheet). It’s available in two models, 3G and WiFi-only, and each model will feature different CPUs. The 3G model will have a 1.6 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 MSM8228 quad-core processor, while the WiFi-only model will have the Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 APQ8028 quad-core processor – don’t worry, it has the same clock speed. Both models will pack 2 GB of LP-DDR2 RAM and will be offered in two storage options: 8 GB and 16 GB variants.

Other features include a 1.6 MP front-facing camera, an 8 MP rear-facing camera, a micro USB port, and a microSD card slot that can support up to 64 GB of extra space. Both models will have WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, though the 3G model will sport a micro SIM card slot. Both models will have a fairly large 9000 mAh battery which can last up to 18 hours of use on a single charge – at least, according to Lenovo’s spec sheet.

The Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ will ship with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, but is upgradeable to 4.4 KitKat via an OTA update. Like most of Lenovo’s Yoga tablets of late, this baby will feature three usage modes: Hold, Tilt, and Stand. It stands on fat cylindrical end with the help of a little built-in kickstand. It will be available in two colors: silver and gold. It will also have some useful accessories, including a MiraCast dongle, a Bluetooth keyboard cover, and colored sleeves.

Pricing and Availability

According to reports, the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ should hit the shelves this month and will start at US $349.  The KitKat update, on the other hand, is due in May.

Overall, it looks like a pretty decent tablet – especially since it sports definite upgrades from its predecessors, the Yoga Tablet 10 and the Yoga Tablet 8. It may prove to be a nice all-day tablet, at least on paper. We’ll have to see how it performs in real world conditions once it hits the shelves.

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Another Leak: Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 10.1

After leaking a couple of images showing Samsung’s 7-inch budget slate, Twitter tech tipster @evleaks has come out with two other images (see them here and here), this time of the Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 tablet PC. Have a look:

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 leaked black from @evleaks

What we know of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 4 10.1

In a previous post, we covered the possible specs on Samsung’s next generation of budget tablet PCs. Like the 7-inch model, the Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 is said to pack a 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 ARM Cortex-A7 quad-core CPU with an Adreno 305 graphics chip. Reports indicate that the slate’s 10.1-inch WXGA TFT display will max out at a 1280 x 800 pixel resolution. Other features include 1.5 GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal storage space. Additionally, the slate will have a 1.3 MP front-facing camera and a 3 MP rear-facing camera, and will ship with an Android 4.4.2 KitKat operating system.

Apart from the fact that the images indicate that the Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 will come in black and white variants, there is not much else to go on. From the looks of it though, the Tab 4 will not stray too far aesthetics-wise from its predecessor. The leaked specs do indicate very slight changes, including swapping its predecessor’s dual core Intel Atom Z2560 processor with a quad-core Snapdragon.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 leaked white from @evleaks

Additional notes

We have to admit that the rumored specs are less than impressive. The Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 is obviously designed with the budget-conscious in mind, but we wouldn’t put it past Samsung to put a slightly higher price tag on this slate. (The Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 debuted with a US $399 price tag.) Will it be worth it? We will have to see it in the flesh, but we have to say that there are a lot of budget tablets out there and we won’t be surprised if you find something better with a lower retail price.

Also, we’ll repeat: There’s little to go on. We will have to wait for an official announcement from Samsung to know exactly when this baby will go on sale and for how much. It’s possible that these images are fakes too, so we’ll file them under the Rumor Bin as well.

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