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Published on December 7th, 2014 | by Jason Ephraim

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A Week in Tech – Episode 18: Sprint Cutting Bill in Half, Google Glass v2.0, and More




Hey fans of qbking77! Who’s ready for episode 18 of ‘A Week in Tech’?!

Lot’s of awesome news this week so get ready!

Quick News

– Some details have been popping up about the next generation of Google Glass and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.  For one, it appears that, through a recent deal between Intel and Google, Intel will be supplying the processor for the next iteration of Glass.  In addition, the second generation of Google Glass has gone through the USPTO showing off a slimmer, less bulky design.  Hit up the source to see the sketch of the next Google Glass!

– A recent patent has been released by Nintendo in what appears to be a Game Boy emulator.  Apparently, Nintendo would like to enter the mobile industry by putting Game Boy emulators in cars and airplanes.  In addition, this patent could bring the Game Boy and similar portables replicated in software and thus third-party game developers could release their code for new and different devices.

– In unfortunate news for we consumers, a new service which is soon to be implemented on Android phones, will allow carriers to install their bloatware on your phone at any time.  They say they are doing this so they can add those apps later and get your device to you sooner at launch, but they will be be adding them without your consent when the time comes.

– An international company known as Circular Devices announced a competitor to Google’s Project Ara with the Puzzlephone.  The team will initially use Android as the OS and their modular phone will come in three “pieces” – the Brain, or where the processing electronics are, the Heart, or where the battery and such go, and the Spine, or where the display, speakers, etc. will go.

– This past week brought with it some rumors for HTC’s next flagship device – the HTC One M9 – or at least that’s the name that would make sense.  The rumors state the device will come with a 5.5inch QHD display, 16MP camera with OIS, 3GB RAM, a Snapdragon 805 processor, and a huge 3,500 mAh battery.  Additionally, it appears that HTC is trying to partner with Bose to have Bose audio in their next flagship.

– There have also been rumors this past week in regards to Samsung’s next flagship device – The Galaxy S6.  This device is leaked to have a 2560 x 1440 QHD display, an Exynos 7420 chip, 64-bit processor, Exynos LTE Modem 333, 3GB RAM, and 32GB to 128GB of internal storage.  In addition, there is rumor that Samsung is working on a curved variant of the S6 dubbed the S6 Edge.

Sprint announced this week that they will cut your bill in half if you transfer from Verizon or AT&T to Sprint.  All you have to do is bring your bill in from AT&T or Verizon to a Sprint store and they will chop that price in half with their service – they will even pay your ETF fees so you can back out of your old contracts.  But, here’s the catch – Sprint will only cut the part of your bill in half that relates to the data you are getting.  So, on Verizon, it is normally, I believe, $50/smartphone plus the shared data plan – Sprint will only cut the price of that shared data part in half.  In addition, you obviously have to trade in your old phone and buy one of their phones.  So, before you jump into what seems like an awesome deal, do some research first!

– A French phone carrier, SFR, recently released a document revealing the update roll-out plan for various phones.  This document shows us that a lot of devices will be getting Android 4.4 and 5.0 soon – including the LG G3 and Moto G which will reportedly receive Android 5.0 this month.  Hit up the document here!

– The CEO of Amazon announced this past week that they plan on making more attempts in the mobile industry with future iterations of the Fire Phone.  He sees their first attempt as more of a learning experience than a failure and would rather try to innovate then just keep doing what they are doing.  Hopefully Amazon’s next Fire Phone will come with some better specs…and maybe even stock Android as the OS!

– Corning, which is known for its widely used product Gorilla Glass, has acquired Samsung’s fiber optics business.  This acquisition will allow Corning to expand its business into Asia as well as expand to the hardware side as well.  I wonder if this acquisition will have any affect on us in the U.S.?

– This past week Google launched a new app onto the Play Store to help those who aren’t as tech savvy as we are.  This app, titled Device Assist, aims to help users understand and troubleshoot their phone.  It can give support for detected issues and can offer tips on how to use certain features.  Download the app here!

– This past week Google has put out an update to the YouTube app bringing with it Material Design!  This update doesn’t seem to be available through the Play Store yet so check out Tim’s video for more information and a download link!

Deals and Gadgets

– You might have seen this product through social media, but if you haven’t – be prepared to have your mind blown.  The device I am talking about is a bracelet by the company Cicret that will allow you to project a smartphone onto your forearm and use it as you would any phone.  This device uses a pico-projector and 8 sensors to detect where you are touching on your skin.  Now, don’t expect this anytime soon as the company is currently asking for 700,000 euros in donations just to make a prototype and then they will probably go into a Kickstarter campaign to raise more money to mass produce it – so this amazing device is quite a ways away.  Hit up the website here!

– A pretty nice deal is going on right now for Google’s Chromecast!  If you buy the Chromecast from the Play Store, Amazon or Best Buy between now and December 21st, you will receive a $20 Google Play credit to use towards movies and other media.  This promo technically makes the cost of the Chromecast only $15 – which is a huge deal if you ask me!

Software Updates

– This past week Verizon put out an update to their Samsung Galaxy Note 3 bringing it to Android 4.4.4.  This update brought with it some Android related bug fixes, patch for a Bluetooth bug, LTE connectivity improvements, Kids Mode, Knox 2.0 and a virtual tour mode for the camera.  Hit up Verizon to learn more!

– This past week AT&T put out an update to their Samsung Galaxy Note 4 bringing it to firmware version N910AUCU1BNK3.  This update brought with it HD VoiceSM, some various improvements and, unfortunately, some more bloatware.  Check out DroidLife to learn more!

Let me know what you think about the news in the comment section below!

 

Sources:

Google Glass V2.0 (1) (2)
Nintendo Game Boy Emulator
Carriers Installing Apps without Consent
Project Ara Competitor
HTC One M9 Leaked
Samsung S6 Rumors
Sprint To Cut Bill in Half
French Carrier Spills Update Rollout
Amazon To Make Another Fire Phone
Corning Acquires Samsung’s Fiber Optics
Google’s Device Assist App

Cicret Bracelet
Chromecast Deal

 

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About the Author

Jason Ephraim

Current student at Binghamton University who loves Android and everything tech!



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