Are Google and HTC planning to launch an Android tablet on Verizon Wireless before the holidays? According to Download Squad, yes. They even have the launch date pegged for November 26th — Black Friday, of course! While it isn’t a surprise Google wants this thing out in the market ASAP, it is a little strange that this is the first we’re hearing of it. In any case, if the rumors hold true, we could be looking at a very heavily subsidized device by Verizon. Possibly even free, though $199 would sound more reasonable. As far as specifications go, here is what’s being reported: the device will most probably be based on NVIDIA’s Tegra 2 platform, have 2 GB of RAM, a 32 GB SSD, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, front-facing camera, and a 1280 x 720 multitouch display. Now, couple that with the rumored Motorola and Samsung tablets and we’d say Google really isn’t playing around anymore. More →
This information comes from a new tipster, but we have very good reason to believe that Verizon will begin rolling out its LTE network in 25 markets starting on November 15th. While 25 markets might not sound like a lot, but apparently they’re enough to give 100 million subscribers access to the next-generation wireless network. LTE handsets will not be immediately available at launch, but Verizon is planning to release “a slew of new devices” on Black Friday which is on November 26th. LTE data plans will indeed be tiered, but Big Red won’t be pulling a Sprint and charing a $10 premium for access to its 4G network. Oh, and don’t be surprised if Verizon starts harping about how its “empowering the user” with open devices.
Thanks, C.! More →
We gave you a glimpse of Apple’s Black Friday deals a bit early this year, and now, Piper Jaffray Apple-lover analyst Gene Munster has chimed in with some numbers to let us know exactly how the iVendor did. The world’s favorite iPod maker saw online sales increase by a staggering 39% this Black Friday — compare with this years average of 11% growth in online sales — which was driven by a mere 2% boost in web traffic. That is just about where the good news ends however, as G-Mizzle states that Apple Stores were selling, “8.3 Macs per hour, down from 13 Macs per hour last year” on Black Friday. Now, Munster uses an extremely scientific formula, one the consists of visiting three Apple Stores and counting how many Mac’s they are selling per hour, and while this formula is in all likelihood potentially flawed, it does show a decline in year-over-year sales as the economy continues to slump — note that the increase in Apple Store locations was not taken into account by this “formula.” Even with this decree Munster still thinks Apple will hit its Wall Street predicted December number. Thanks Gene, all of your insights are, as always, extremely helpful. More →
If you’ve been dying to grab some Apple gear but are waiting for a tiny bit of incentive (seriously, we mean tiny), today might be the day. Available online from Apple’s online store as well as in all Apple retail stores (with extended shopping hours), you can currently save a little money on practically anything they carry. Here’s what your savings will look like, just as we reported:
- iMacs are discounted $101
- iPod nanos are discounted $11
- iPod touch in 8GB, 32GB, or 64GB are discounted as much as $41
- Apple TVs are discounted $21
- AirPort Express is now $88 instead of $99
- Magic Mouse and Wireless Keyboards are $5 off each
- Monster Beats headphones in exclusive Apple silver are discounted $71
There’s a lot, lot more so click on over, or head on over depending on how social you want to be today. More →
One of our Verizon connects was kind enough to hit us up with some info regarding Big Red’s upcoming Black Friday sale which will be going on all weekend. Sadly we weren’t told anything about super hot smartphones like the DROID, Storm2 and Touch Pro2, but we’d like to think that at least one of those phones will have a few bucks knocked off of its sticker price. Having said that, these deals are definitely worth checking out, so here we go:
- Gateway LT Netbook: $29.99 after $100 MIR
- Blackberry Pearl Flip: $9.99 after $100 MIR [BOGO]
- HTC Ozone: $9.99 after $100 MIR [BOGO]
- LG Glance: $0
- LG Versa: $29.99 after $50 MIR [BOGO]
- Mifi 2200 Intelligent Mobile Hotspot: $49.99 after $50 MIR. (Black Friday only)
- Motorola Entice $19.99 after $50 MIR [BOGO]
- Motorola VU204: $0
- Nokia 7705 Twist: $29.99 after $50 MIR
- Samsung Smooth: $0 after $50 MIR
In addition to what’s listed above, anyone purchasing an LG enV3 or enV Touch on Black Friday will receive a free LG HBM-210 Bluetooth headset.
Anyone seeing anything they wouldn’t mind picking up, or are you going to be trying your luck elsewhere?
How about some holiday discounts? Yes, please. T-Mobile is offering some Black Friday weekend deals for new and existing customers. What are these magical deals you ask? Well, the Motorola CLIQ will set you back $149, the BlackBerry Bold 9700 will be priced at $149, and the Samsung Highlight will cost $49 — a $50 savings on all three handsets, two-year agreement required of course. The deals don’t stop there however; everyone, at least we hope, has someone in their lives who they care about dearly, someone they adore so much, that they would be willing to pay full retail price for cell phone to give that person as a gift for the holidays. Brings a tear to your eye doesn’t it? Well, if the thought of that special person doesn’t make you all misty then the idea of spending $300+ for a cell phone might just be enough to do it — and T-Mobile thinks it has a solution. Those of you who are on a T-Mobile Even More plan will now be allowed to purchase any phone at full retail price, spread the payments out into monthly installments, and gift that phone to a friend. Not a bad idea. Now, the number of people who can take advantage of this deal is obviously limited, as you will have to: have T-Mobile service, be on an Even More plan, have a friend you like enough to drop $300+ on, and have that lucky person also be on (or ready to switch to) T-Mobile. Nice job T-Mo, we appreciate the sentiment. ‘Tis the holiday season after all, and it is that thought that counts. No?
We weren’t too positive about that last one as it was from a new source, but this new image comes from a pretty credible connect of ours and it seems to be more reasonable. Here’s what we’ve got for you this time:
iMacs starting at $1098, iPod nanos starting at $138, iPod touch starting at $178, MacBook Pros starting at $1098, Apple TVs starting at $208, Airport Express starting at $88, Magic Mouse and Wireless Keyboard going for $64 each, and a whole lot more! Again, we’re feeling pretty confident about this one and everything looks like it’s in the realm of what Apple would normally do for Black Friday.
P.S. Also note that the Black Friday deals are only on Apple’s Online store, not retail stores.
So far, all of the Black Friday leaks we’ve seen haven’t been all that friendly to smartphone lovers, but according to our sources, Wirefly will be picking up the slack come Friday with the following deals:
Verizon BlackBerry Storm2: $0.99 for new subs / $29.99 for existing VZW customers (Friday only) followed by $9.99 / $49.99 until Monday
AT&T BlackBerry Bold 9700: $0 / $29.99 (Friday to Monday)
Sprint Samsung Moment: $79.99 / $99.99 (Friday to Monday)
If none of those phones catch your fancy, there are still some savings to be had as Wirefly will be waiving activations for AT&T and Verizon phones until Midnight on December 1st.
One of our connects just hit us up with some intriguing Apple information. According to them, what you see detailed above is a shot of Apple’s yearly Black Friday deals. It’s reported to be something Apple will email out shortly. This time around, it looks as if Apple will be offering up to 30% off on all iPods (Update: excluding iPhone and iPod shuffle, sorry), up to 25% off Macs, and up to 15% off all accessories as well as Apple software and hardware. The deal is only good for the day of November 27th and if that’s not good enough, “select” Apple stores will open at 6AM. This is unconfirmed but it doesn’t seem too unrealistic. Thoughts?
Pardon us while we think out loud, but that high resolution screen with an HTC Sense UI-looking clock/weather widget looks like Android to us. We’ve also confirmed that this photo was taken of a Verizon handset, and with all signs pointing to an impending release, we’re just going to venture out on a limb and say that we believe this photo is of HTC’s next Android device for Verizon Wireless. In case you forgot, the rumored device we’re talking about is supposedly one bad ass piece of telephonery — 5 megapixel camera, Android 2.0, and much, much more. One of connects said this thing could be out as early as Black Friday, and while it seems a little far fetched, we’re slowly coming around to the possibility.
UPDATE: Actually, I meant to write mid-December. Our previous scoop said either the Curve2 or Dragon would come out around Black Friday, and we know that the Curve2 is being released on November 20th.
For Verizon fans, the biggest and most anticipated device coming from Big Red is the Droid, and many of you have come to rely on your pals at BGR as your one-stop-shop for Droid news, info and pics. Now we’re bringing a little more to the plate with Verizon’s holiday lineup. Most of this stuff is old news, so we won’t bore you with what you already know, but it is interesting to see how Verizon is gearing up its employees to handle the busiest time of year. In one slide, Verizon says, “No matter what customers want. They can find it here.” Unless they want the iPhone, we guess, right?
Of course, perhaps the juiciest tidbits on all these slides is the one featured above with the new 85xx series Curve with Wi-Fi, which is called the Curve2 for Verizon, and the time line below with the private sale. What could that possibly be? Unfortunately there is no release date for the Curve2, but at least Verizon customers can rest assured that it is indeed coming. You guys didn’t think that was going to stay at T-Mobile for long, did you? Hit the jump for the additional slides and images of the Curve2!
As analysts continue to predict one of the worst retail holiday seasons in recent history, Microsoft announced Monday that the Xbox 360 is apparently the exception to the rule. Recent price drops and some solid marketing have combined to create plenty of hype surrounding the console this holiday season and the result has been tremendous. Xbox 360 didn’t just beat Playstation 3 in terms of sales over the Black Friday shopping weekend, it trounced it. Microsoft is reporting that it outsold Playstation 3 by a huge three-to-one ratio and amidst the troubling economic downturn in 2008, sales over Black Friday weekend were estimated to be up a whopping 25%. Game titles are also hopping off the shelves as Xbox continues to hold the top average of 8.1 games per console. Don Mattrick, senior vice president of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft, had this to say:
We entered into the Black Friday sales period with cautious optimism, knowing that dollar for dollar, Xbox 360 offers more social entertainment value than any other console on the market. Record Black Friday sales in the U.S., coupled with our existing global install base of 25 million and an online community of more than 14 million Xbox LIVE members, have laid the groundwork for continued global sales momentum in 2009.
Microsoft might be losing market share in the computer OS market but there’s no question that it’s strengthening its position in the gaming market. So kids, Xbox 360 is definitely the console du jour this holiday season and if you want to be as cool as your friends come January, you better start nagging your parents for one now – assuming they aren’t able to find a Wii, of course.
Most of us are pretty happy now that Black Friday is behind us. We get to sit back and relax once again, waiting for the inevitable reports of how this was the worst retail Black Friday ever thanks to the current economic slump. It’s not a good thing, but at least we can drive around again without worrying about being rear-ended by a crazed shopper hunting down a $20 DVD player. The weekend deals still continue however, and T-Mobile is running a sweet one through the end of the day tomorrow. If part of your holiday plan was to snag a new handset and service for yourself or friend / family member, it really doesn’t get much better than this. Open a new 2-year contract before the end of the day tomorrow and T-Mobile will hook you up with your choice of one of three free handsets. The first two, the Motorola RIZR and the Nokia 6263, are only options for online shoppers. The cream of the crop, the Morotola MOTOZINE ZN5, is available both online and in stores. The ZN5 is T-Mobile’s most capable camera phone and comes packing a 5 megapixel Kodak camera with a xenon flash. It’s normally available for a reasonable $99 but free beats a hundred every day of the week. Click through or head down to your local T-Mobile store before COB tomorrow and get some high-quality shots of your holiday gatherings this year instead of those terrible 1.3 megapixel blur-fests you usually end up with.