Nest learning thermostat hands-on and installation

By on December 6, 2011 at 12:09 PM.

Nest learning thermostat hands-on and installation

When a product emerges that is created by a team of ex-Apple employees — including one responsible in part for leading the hardware teams behind the iPod and iPhone — that product sells out almost immediately. The latest device to fit the bill isn’t a new smartphone or even a tablet; no, this time around it’s actually a thermostat. As odd as that sounds, the Nest thermostat is exciting in many, many ways. For starters, the amount of thought that went into just the hardware alone is, well, Apple-like. It’s miles ahead of any comparable product in terms of look, form and function. It’s sleek yet is based on a classic and familiar Honeywell T87 round thermostat, and it is packed to the brim with technology including, among other things, a vivid color LCD display and Wi-Fi support. More →

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Verizon shows off DROID 4, Xyboard tablets

By on December 2, 2011 at 8:55 AM.

Verizon shows off DROID 4, Xyboard tablets

Verizon Wireless has yet to announce the Motorola DROID 4 or either of its XOOM tablet successors, but that hasn’t stopped the carrier from showing them off to at least one website. CNET on Thursday published details and images of the devices following a briefing with Verizon, and the information lines up with earlier rumors. The DROID 4 will essentially be a DROID RAZR with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard that could launch as soon as next week. Specs include a 4-inch qHD display, Android 2.3.5, a 1.2GHz dual-core processor and 4G LTE compatibility. Read on for more. More →

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Nokia Lumia 900 revealed in leaked promo [video]

By on November 17, 2011 at 8:15 PM.

Nokia Lumia 900 revealed in leaked promo [video]

Nokia’s upcoming flagship Windows Phone, the Lumia 900, has been revealed in a leaked promotional video aimed at developers. First discovered by Netherlands-based All About Phones, the video was accidentally posted to Nokia’s public YouTube channel before being marked private. The video offers very little in the way of details, though it does show an image of the sleek Windows Phone next to the text, “When you bring together Nokia’s stunning new hardware and a dynamic Microsoft OS you get amazing every day.” Nokia’s Lumia 900, code-named Ace, is expected to feature a 4.3-inch ClearBlack AMOLED display, a 1.4GHz processor and an 8-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics. Nokia France boss Paul Amsellem on Wednesday alluded to the device while speaking with a French newspaper, but Nokia responded to reports by saying it had nothing to announce at this time. Nokia’s full promotional video follows below. More →

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Samsung Galaxy Nexus hands-on

By on November 17, 2011 at 1:00 PM.

Samsung Galaxy Nexus hands-on

We’ve been playing with a Samsung Galaxy Nexus for the last day, and after shuffling between a Motorola DROID RAZR, an HTC Vivid and an HTC Rezound, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus is a welcome change in many ways. It’s obviously the Google reference handset for Ice Cream Sandwich, and in almost all cases, it is the best Android handset we’ve seen far as hardware and software go. Android 4.0 is the most cohesive release from Google yet, and while it’s not that straight forward out of the box, you do eventually get the feeling that this phone has a distinct personality as opposed to many other Android phones, which often seem to blend together. Be sure to check out our hands-on photos in the gallery below, and hit the break for more thoughts.

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HTC Zeta image, specs leak: 2.5GHz quad-core CPU, Android 4.0

By on November 16, 2011 at 9:00 AM.

HTC Zeta image, specs leak: 2.5GHz quad-core CPU, Android 4.0

An image and details surrounding a purported new HTC smartphone code-named “Zeta” have been uncovered. Following BGR’s exclusive reports revealing two upcoming HTC phones set to be unveiled early next year at Mobile World Congress — the HTC Edge and HTC VilleEngadget on Tuesday published a render of the HTC Zeta. Featuring a unique design and a near-edgeless 4.5-inch 720p display, the Zeta is rumored to sport a unibody aluminum case, quad-core 2.5GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, Beats Audio, Bluetooth 4.0, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera and a 1,830 mAh battery. The phone will run Android 4 Ice Cream Sandwich according to the report, likely beneath a new version of HTC’s Sense UI. Pricing and a launch date are still mysteries, but the beefed up 2.5GHz quad-core chipset could mean this flagship Android phone will be announced later in the year while the Edge and Ville help lead HTC’s lineup in the first half. More →

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Facebook slammed by porn attack, investigation ongoing [updated]

By on November 15, 2011 at 2:46 PM.

Facebook slammed by porn attack, investigation ongoing [updated]

Are pornographic images invading your Facebook news feed? We have yet to see it here at BGR, but ZDNET recently reported that “gory, violent pictures” and “hardcore pornography” are spreading across the social network. Facebook says it is getting to the bottom of the problem, but hasn’t yet revealed a solution or how the fiasco started. “Protecting the people who use Facebook from spam and malicious content is a top priority for us and we are always working to improve our systems to isolate and remove material that violates our terms,” Facebook spokesperson Andrew Noyes said. “We have recently experienced an increase in reports and we are investigating and addressing the issue.” It is unclear who is behind the attack. As The Washington Post points out, the flood could be a trick played by the now infamous hacker group Anonymous, in celebration of Guy Fawkes Day, which occurred on November 5th, but the group typically stakes its claim on major attacks. The images, which are apparently spreading like a wild fire, could also be the result of unsuspecting users having been tricked into clicking malicious links. Updated with statement from Facebook.  More →

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Purported Google music store screenshots reveal ‘Free Song of the Day,’ more

By on November 14, 2011 at 11:00 AM.

Purported Google music store screenshots reveal ‘Free Song of the Day,’ more

Images of what is purported to be Google’s upcoming Android music store surfaced over the weekend, and they may reveal several details surrounding the upcoming music service Google is expected to unveil on Wednesday. Spanish-language blog TecnoDroidVe published a number of screenshots over the weekend, claiming that they depict an early version of Google’s Android music store. The store reportedly supports song previews, includes a featured artists section and provides music discovery via a similar artists feature. Google’s mobile music store will also seemingly sport a “Free Song of the Day” page that will allow users to download one free track each day, and a “Free Songs” section populated with no-fee song downloads. Google is rumored to have signed deals with only two major record labels thus far, and it may be forced to launch its new service without the support of one or more labels. More →

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HTC Rezound hands-on (again)

By on November 11, 2011 at 11:11 AM.

HTC Rezound hands-on (again)

HTC Rezound 4G LTE smartphone

We just received our HTC Rezound review unit, and although we spent a few moments with the device at HTC’s announcement in New York City, we have some more thoughts on the 4G LTE smartphone after using it for the morning. For starters, while the phone isn’t nearly as thin as other 4G LTE devices like the Motorola DROID RAZR or Samsung Galaxy Nexus, it’s a completely different animal than the HTC Thunderbolt. It fits nicely in your hand, and it feels good to use and hold. The 4.3-inch 720p HD display is absolutely beautiful. In fact, it’s probably the best display on any mobile device we’ve ever seen besides the iPhone’s Retina Display. It’s so good that there are elements in HTC’s Sense interface that aren’t high quality enough for the display, but we’ll touch on that more in our review. The included Beats headphones are decent and offer very good audio reproduction, and the HTC Rezound has taken everything we’ve thrown at it and powered through without a hiccup — this device is fast. We have hands-on photos in the gallery below, so make sure to check those out while we work on our full review.

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Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet hands-on

By on November 7, 2011 at 11:39 AM.

Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet hands-on

Barnes & Noble took the wraps off its brand new Nook Tablet at a press conference in New York City on Monday, and we just spent some hands-on time with the sleek new slate. First things first: the display is amazing. Barnes & Noble spent a fair amount of time during the tablet’s unveiling touting the quality of the display and we have to say, B&N CEO William Lynch wasn’t exaggerating. The display is obviously one of the most important components of any tablet and Barnes & Noble didn’t skimp in this area. The bookseller spent a lot of time comparing its new tablet with Amazon’s upcoming Kindle Fire, and in the display department it’s really not even close. Hit the break for more and don’t forget to check out our hands-on photos in the gallery below.

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Motorola quietly reveals its first Facebook phone, the MOTOKEY SOCIAL

By on November 4, 2011 at 7:00 PM.

Motorola quietly reveals its first Facebook phone, the MOTOKEY SOCIAL

Motorola on Friday quietly published images and details to its website surrounding the MOTOKEY SOCIAL, a feature phone with a strong focus on Facebook. Like HTC’s Chacha and Salsa, this upcoming Motorola phone features a dedicated Facebook button that simplifies the process of sharing images and status updates on the popular social network. The MOTOKEY SOCIAL also features a full QWERTY keyboard, a 2.4-inch QVGA display, a 3-megapixel camera, email, Web access and a 910 mAh battery rated for 480 minutes of talk time. Pricing and launch details have not yet been announced. More →

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Nokia Lumia 800 hands-on

By on October 26, 2011 at 11:15 AM.

Nokia Lumia 800 hands-on

Nokia announced a pair of Windows Phones on Wednesday and while the Lumia 710 is a fantastic value, the Lumia 800 was clearly the star of the show. Code-named Sea Ray, Nokia’s Lumia 800 features the same sleek unibody case as the MeeGo-powered Nokia N9, but the similarities end there. The Lumia 800 packs a powerful 1.4GHz Snapdragon processor by Qualcomm, and it was impossible to trip this handset up while navigating Microsoft’s slick Windows Phone UI. The 3.7-inch ClearBlack AMOLED display is gorgeous, as it is on the N9, and colors are amazing in apps and during video playback. Hit the jump for more and be sure to check out our hands-on photo gallery below.

More →

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Hands on with the HTC Titan

By on October 12, 2011 at 4:40 PM.

Hands on with the HTC Titan

We already ran a quick hands-on when HTC unveiled the Titan back in September, but now we’ve spent some time with a review unit and it’s time to revisit this beastly Windows Phone. If ever there was a handset that deserved its given name, it is this phone — the HTC Titan is nothing short of titanic. It’s large, it’s powerful and it’s about as solid as they come. The build materials include metal, hardened plastic that is anything but cheap-feeling, and of course a huge sheet of glass that covers the face of the phone. Windows Phone Mango is a smooth operator on first-generation Windows Phones, so you can imagine how quick it is with the Titan’s 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset running the show. The massive 4.7-inch display spreads the Titan’s 480 x 800-pixel resolution a bit wide, but the screen is nice and bright just like the HTC Arrive. Is this the Windows Phone we’ve been hoping for? You’ll have to wait for our full review to find out but in the meantime, be sure to check out our photo gallery below.

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iPod touch (white) hands-on

By on October 12, 2011 at 3:35 PM.

iPod touch (white) hands-on

While Apple’s white iPod touch is the same iPod touch that millions and millions of people own and are familiar with — just in another color — it’s the first device from Apple to ship with iOS 5 pre-installed. The experience right out of the box with iOS 5 is now perfect, requiring no computer whatsoever to get going. And while this doesn’t yet apply to the general public since the only people with iOS 5 back-ups are developers, you can also effortlessly restore all of your backed-up information right to the device from iCloud — no syncing, no cables. Apple’s iPod touch is insanely popular for many reasons, but with a new lower price point starting at only $199, a white color option to freshen things up for the holiday season, and iOS 5, Apple has another hit on its hands. Be sure to check out our hands-on photos of the new white iPod touch in the gallery!

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