Samsung every once in a while launches a blinged out version of one of its smartphones to give it an image makeover. Following up the launch of the Galaxy S III mini Crystal Edition in Germany last month, Samsung has released a Crystal Edition of the Galaxy S4 which has gone up for sale in Thailand this time round. Similar to the Galaxy SIII mini Crystal Edition, the blinged out Galaxy S4 has Swarovski crystal elements studded on the back-plate. As far as the specifications, the Crystal Edition is based on the Exynos variant of the Galaxy S4.
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Two new devices yesterday joined the Google Play Edition line-up which only had HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4 till now. Latest to receive unadulterated vanilla Android love are Sony Xperia Z Ultra and LG’s newly launched tablet G Pad 8.3. Both will run stock Android 4.4 KitKat becoming the first non-nexus devices to ship with the latest version of Android out of the box. Given the growing popularity of devices running vanilla Android, expanding the Google Play Edition line-up with latest products in the market sporting strong specs under the hood is only a logical way to move ahead.
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Talk about tall claims and you will find Samsung up there, with the necessary justifications for all they harp about. So it comes to pass that the Korean phone maker has shipped 10 million Galaxy Note 3 handsets in a period of just two months! Of course, these have gone out to retailers, carriers and distributors, but they do significantly count as shipments for Samsung. This puts the Samsung Galaxy Note as a close catch-up to the Samsung Galaxy S4, which shipped the same amount in just a month. All this in comparison with the original Galaxy Note shows a significant rise in usage. The latter took 9 months to clock these numbers, while the following Galaxy Note 2 took four months.
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It would really suck to be a Russian official who loves using an Apple or Samsung smartphone, just like the rest of the world. In light of the heated agitation against US global snooping, Russian lawmakers will soon be considering banning foreign-made phones in the country, to maintain the integrity of data and prevent any such leaks. Instead, they would rather promote the popular Russian YotaPhones. This decision has been endorsed by key members in Russian politics. Izvestia reports that a commission of the Federation Council (which comprises of Russia’s upper house of parliament) along with experts, will scrutinize the security aspects of popular gadgets. Senator Ruslan Gattarov believes that the iPhone is not suitable for use by Russian officials owing to its vulnerability. “I’m afraid it is likely that all smartphones would have to be banned. I don’t know any safe smartphones. Maybe the new Russian gadget, YotaPhone, will become one,” Gattarov is quoted as saying.
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Asus confirmed it would come out with a smaller version of its PadFone in September this year. It has started sending out invitation for an event in Taiwan on the 11th December where it’ll unveil the PadFone mini along with other latest products. While the device was spotted for a brief moment by Engadget at a Global Certification Forum (GSF) listing which revealed some of the specifications, serial leaker @evleaks has published press shots of the purported device on its official twitter account. The leaked press-render which also shows the smartphone docking station suggests that the smartphone would slide into the tablet dock in portrait mode.
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There’s no end to troubles for Samsung as they are coming thick and fast. We quite often come across PR teams of big conglomerates getting it wrong and this time the Korean tech giant got themselves into a sticky situation. Another instance of Samsung Galaxy S4 catching fire has come to the fore. But that’s not the worst bit; the way Samsung dealt with the situation is what can be best described as absolutely rubbish. What exactly happened is — Youtube user GhostlyRich posted a video on his channel earlier this month showing his Samsung Galaxy S4 that had caught fire while charging. While the damage was not as extensive as seen in earlier cases but the smartphone’s MicroUSB port was badly burnt and the battery damaged leaving the device unusable. As the phone was still under warranty so the user got into contact with Samsung to get it replaced.
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Till the time regulatory authorities don’t set in stern guidelines, companies hardly launch products that are meant to be in the interest of people but aren’t necessarily popular. But Japanese cell phone provider DoCoMo has released a new type of Android smartphone that has special sense of responsibility. The smartphone has a ‘safety mode’ that detects if the user is trying to text while walking and locks the phone. There has been a steady rise in such freak accidents where people have got into an unforeseen incident while texting and this kind of a feature should be really helpful.
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Nexus 7 (2013)
There is no doubt that Google has made some great tablets which have seen their own share of success, but somehow they have always been overshadowed by Apple iPads. In fact the dominance of Apple in the tablet market is so incredibly strong that the rest of the competitors lag far behind in terms of market share. We have to admit Google Nexus 7 (2013) is a great device and is highly underrated. Made in collaboration with Asus, the new Nexus 7 boasts quite a few key improvements from the original version. It’s not only 2mm slimmer than the old Nexus 7 but also lighter by 50g (WiFi model). The new Nexus 7 comes with a full HD 7-inch display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels which brings the pixel density to 323ppi, only one less than the iPad mini 2 with retina display and a huge improvement from the original Nexus 7.
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Admit it, we all love spoof video ads by tech companies. The spoof ads generally are playful banters directed towards rivals but in a surprising move, LG’s marketing team has adopted an unorthodox approach to advertise its optical image stabilizing feature of its flagship smartphone, LG G2 with a funny spoof avert. The spoof video wants us to believe that a hen’s amazingly stable head was used as an inspiration for the OIS system on the smartphone. A hen named ‘Lizzy’ uses its natural ability to keeps it head leveled at all time and demonstrates it using a tiny helmet with a wireless camera mounted on it.
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NTT DoCoMo in collaboration with Square Enix announce the SH-01F, Dragon Quest special edition handset
Dragon Quest fans in Japan will be happy to hear that NTT DoCoMo will be launching a special edition smartphone. In collaboration with developer Square Enix, the SH-01F Dragon Quest handset manufactured by Sharp, will be heading to stores in that part of the world in the first week of December, so if you haven’t emailed Santa yet, it’d be a good time to do so now. The metal housing of the device will be adorned with a metal slime coloration and will feature popular logos from the game all over the panel. Naturally, the handset will ship with all kinds of Dragon Quest goodies pre-loaded. For one, the mobile version of the game will be on board – Dragon Quest VIII. In case it’s not already there make sure you get the installation code so you can still download it for free. Wallpapers etc will also be on provided.
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