Gingerbread is lurking deep in the recesses of your Honeycomb, Android tablet. According to a report filed by mobile blog Pocketables, the interface you’re presented with on your Honeycomb tablet can be changed by adjusting your tablet’s perceived screen density. On a rooted Dell Streak 7 running Android 3.1, the default interface experience is the new Honeycomb UI — complete with updated widgets, homescreens, and controls. By changing a single line, thereby tricking that tablet into thinking its pixel density is 170 instead of 160, the Gingerbread layout is presented upon reboot. What does this mean for you? Nothing… but it is pretty cool to see in action. Hit the jump to see a video demo and let us know what you think. More →
An MSNBC investigative report, and related lawsuit, claims that AT&T has “systematically overstated” the data usage of iPhone and iPad customers. Lawyers for the plaintiffs, seeking class action status, hired an independent computer firm to compare the actual amount data used by iPhone and iPad customers with the amount that AT&T bills users for. “Did you find overcharges on every single transaction,” asked MSNBC’s Lisa Myers, speaking with the investigating firm’s representative. “Yes, every single one,” he responded. “Did you ever find an instance where the discrepancy worked to the benefit of the customer,” poses Myers as a follow-up question. “Never,” quipped the representative. “Always an overcharge; never an undercharge.” The study alleges that AT&T overstates customer data usage by 7% to 14% and, in some rarer cases, by up to 300%. To illustrate its point, the firm bought a new AT&T iPhone and line of service, “disabled everything that might trigger data usage,” and let the phone sit untouched for ten days. During that time period, thirty-five different data charges appeared on the virgin phone’s bill. AT&T responded to the report saying that the claims are “without merit” and that applications may auto-update or refresh in the background without a consumer’s knowledge or consent. Whatever the reasoning is for the purported up-charging, we’re sure this isn’t the last you’re going to hear about this one. A video clip of MSNBC’s report is waiting for you after the break.
UPDATE: An official statement from an AT&T spokesperson is after the break. More →
AppleCare representatives can do a lot of things for Mac owners suffering software issues… except when it comes to malware. In an internal support article leaked to ZDNet, Apple instructs its call center representatives on how to handle calls from users reporting that they have a machine infected with the “Mac Defender” malware trojan. And, as you can see, Apple is definitely taking the hands-off approach. “AppleCare does not provide support for the removal of the malware,” reads the memo. “You should not confirm or deny whether the customer’s Mac is infected or not.” Apple certainly isn’t the first company to instruct its support representatives to shy away from virus/malware assistance, but it is notable as it is the first major Mac OS X virus that — thanks to some moderate social engineering — is propagating. Apple has yet to issue a public statement about the software’s existence or infection levels. The full memo is after the break. More →
AT&T’s “4G” message may be a bit convoluted when its Long Term Evolution (LTE) network begins to bear fruit. The company has already branded its HSPA network as “4G”, although the coverage and real world speeds are less than impressive — especially when compared to other HSPA+ networks, like that of T-Mobile. But that hasn’t stopped the nation’s second largest carrier from working on a second 4G network and, thankfully, this one seems to be bringing the downlink goods. Recently, blog GigaOM was treated to a tour of AT&T’s Foundry laboratory in Texas. The site reports seeing “real world speeds” of 28.87Mbps on the downlink and 10.4Mbps on the uplink. Much better than the paltry 5Mbps down and 1Mbps up being pumped out by the company’s current 4G, HSPA network. AT&T plans to launch its LTE network in several markets by the end of this year and hopefully… these speeds hold up. More →
Motorola has produced several iconic handsets during its storied existence. The DynaTAC, the Vader, the v60 and of course, the Motorola RAZR. What Nokia did for the candy bar-style mobile phone in the 1990’s, Motorola did for the flip phone in the early 21st century. Thin, sleek and stylish, the RAZR was initially brought to market in early 2005. The handset was light, easily fit in the pocket and packed a flat, backlit keypad that proved itself to be a formidable text messaging obstacle. The device was so popular, in fact, that just over 1-year ago we were still talking about the handset — the RAZR3 — before it was scrapped by Moto in favor of Android-based smartphones. During its four year reign of terror, where it retailed for nearly $200 on-contract, over 110 million RAZRs were sold by dozens of carriers the world over. We still have an AT&T V3 lying around BGR HQ for posterity sake, and although its utility is diminished, the handset’s mystique remains. How about it: how many of you cell phone junkies were proud RAZR owners?
BGR’s Throwback Thursday is a weekly series covering our (and your) favorite gadgets, games, and software of yesterday and yesteryear.
In an interview with Reuters, Verizon Communications’ chief financial officer, Fran Shammo, reaffirmed several details about his company’s next iPhone offering. “Verizon’s [next iPhone] version will also work in as many countries as AT&T’s iPhone, which has global coverage,” writes Reuters, paraphrasing Mr. Shammo. The executive also noted that the inclusion of LTE in the next CDMA iDevice is not something Verizon has control over. “I think it’s a bigger issue for Apple than it is for us,” said Shammo speaking about the need for an LTE iPhone. “Depending on where Apple plays, that’s where we’ll sell.” The latest rumors have Apple releasing a refreshed version of its smartphone product later this fall. Most pundits agree that the update wil not include a Verizon-compatible LTE radio. More →
In a report today, Reuters noted that Verizon Wireless’ cellular data offerings are in for a major overhaul. “Verizon Wireless plans to kick off pricing changes this summer by eliminating smartphone plans that allow unlimited Web access for a flat fee,” reads the article. “It will replace them with tiered pricing that forces heavy data users to pay more for mobile data.” The report goes on to paraphrase Verizon Communications’ CFO, Fran Shammo, who explained that “after this change, which forces heavy data users to pay more, the company will look to soften the blow by offering more options such as family plans for data services.” Currently, Verizon Wireless smartphone users with family plans are required to pay $29.99 per line for cellular data. Non-family-plan smartphone customers can purchase unlimited mobile data (with a 5GB allowance) for the same monthly price. More →
Does the number 36 mean anything to you? If you’re an Android fan it should. A report from analytics firm Gartner indicates that 36.3 million Android handsets were sold during Q1 of 2011 giving the mobile operating system a 36% share of all smartphones sold during that same period. An impressive figure on its own, but even more-so when considering that Android saw sales of 5.2 million units and held a 9.6% share of sales in Q1 just one year prior. Nokia’s Symbian operating system sold 27.6 million units in Q1 and Apple’s iOS accounted for 16.9 million of the 100.8 million total smartphone units sold. Moral of the story: Android is killing it. The full report is after the break. More →
According to research firm Gartner, although Microsoft shipped 2 million Windows Phone units during Q4 of 2010, it sold 1.6 million units during Q1 of 2011.”Windows Phone saw only modest sales that reached 1.6 million units in the first quarter of 2011,” wrote Gartner. “Devices launched at the end of 2010 failed to grow in consumer preference and CSPs continued to focus on Android.” Gartner is, however, predicting big things for Microsoft’s smartphone operating system. By 2015, the analytics company predicts that Windows Phone will see shipments in excess of 215 million units — thanks in large part to its partnership with Nokia. This would put Microsoft in second place in global market share — behind the open-source smartphone-overlord Android and ahead of the not-so-open-source iOS. More →
Apple has completed a cloud-music streaming deal with record label EMI, according to a report filed by CNET. Citing multiple industry sources, the publication notes that Apple, Sony Music Entertainment and the Universal Music Group are working on agreements as well; a previous report claims that Warner Music Group and Apple already signed a cloud service agreement sometime last month. “Apple will finish behind Google and Amazon in the race to the cloud, but Apple now has the freedom to offer a range of features that rivals are prevented from rolling out because of the licensing restrictions,” continues the article. Rumors state that Apple will use a technology acquired from Lala called “scan and match.” Instead of uploading a subscribers music library to Apple’s cloud-music service, the company would scan a music collection and provide access to the master track it has a license to. Apple and the music labels in question declined to comment on the report when contacted by CNET. More →
A new report published by Millennial Media paints a picture of the global smartphone landscape in April of 2011. The company found that Android continued its domination in pure market share, holding a 53% of impressions on the company’s network. Apple’s iOS came in second with 28% and RIM’s BlackBerry OS came in third with 16%; Symbian, Windows, and “other” totalled under 4% of impressions. While Google continues to maim and destroy in terms of handset numbers, Apple continues to hold the crown when it comes to application revenues. “Revenue generated from applications on the iOS platform grew 6% month-over-month and represented 50% of the Application Platform Mix on our network, ranked by revenue, in April,” reads the report. Android is in a close second with 39% of app revenues and RIM ranked third with 9%. What are users downloading? The report states that games, mobile social networking, and music/entertainment applications are the top application categories. Millennial Media sees over 142 million unique mobile impressions on its network each month from over 5,500 different devices. More →
Asustek Computer is promising to increase monthly production runs of its versatile Eee Pad Transformer tablet. Citing strong demand in the U.S., UK, Taiwan and China, the company will extend production totals from 8,000 units per month to 10,000 units per month. The company also has the lofty goal of manufacturing 300,000 Transformer tablets in the second quarter; with aspirations of shipping 2 million tablets in 2011. The Transformer, which connects to a dockable keyboard, retails for $399 and comes with 16GB of on-board storage. More →
Listen up gaming fanatics. It looks like Nintendo’s Project Café, otherwise known as the Wii 2, has been caught on video thanks to a sneaky developer and their utter disregard of non-disclosure agreements. Aside from slides that showcase the “Screen Stream” controllers, we see the Wii 2 console projected and lurking in the background as well. There appears to be a docking accessory — most likely for controller recharging — shown on the screen towards the end of the clip, although it is hard to tell as an audience member’s head obfuscates our view. The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) is scheduled for next month from June 7th to 9th; don’t be surprised if the Wii 2 gets a lengthy preview from the folks at Nintendo. The video is waiting for you after the break.