Tag Archives: event

Acer event April 29 hints at new device, maybe a wearable

[#protected_0#]

Acer has begun sending invitations to an event in New York on April 29. Just what’s being rolled out isn’t noted, but the announcement says “Please join us for a (their logo) touch more connected”. From there, it seems as though we’ll be getting a myriad of devices, perhaps even wearables.


The invitation does say Acer is rolling out new products, but doesn’t even hint at what they could be. We’d think that with the event title all will be touch capable. From their recent line of Chromebooks, down to the handhelds we saw at MWC this year, touch seems to be something Acer is comfortable with — and pretty good at.

With wearables, we’ve already noted [#protected_0#] with previous reports putting their entry in the second half of 2014. An April announcement would likely serve as a precursor for a late Fall rollout, but does it fit the “touch” theme? A source previously put Acer as entering the wearable market with something alternative to a wrist wearable or headwear. A necklace was mentioned, but any or all could come with some touch capacity. It could be Acer’s foray into Android Wear.

Come late April, we’ll find out for sure. We are subtly looking for a new product here, seeing as how both the Acer logo and “touch” are in green on the invitation. Acer always has really nice products, and they often have the added benefit of being competitively priced.

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Nokia sends invites for mystery “Under the Tree” event at MWC

nokia under the tree mwc 2014

The Nokia Normandy story began life as a wild rumor, but it quickly gained credibility once reputable sources including The Verge and the defunct AllThingsD reported that Nokia’s developing an Android phone, and is doing it “at full steam ahead”.

Reports, more or less credible, about the Nokia Normandy have been popping up regularly for the past weeks, keeping the hope alive for those who are – still – waiting for the perfect combination of Google software and Nokia hardware.

Nokia Normandy

Now the Finnish company sent out invites for its press event at Mobile World Congress. The company is asking journalists to congregate under a mystery tree, and we have no idea what that means.

The Verge’s Tom Warren reports that sources at Nokia claimed that Normandy would be released at MWC 2014. And the green theme of the invitation reminds us of the signature color of Android.

Then again, Nokia could be preparing something else altogether. The company, which is in the midst of finalizing the sale of its smartphone business to Microsoft, may release new Lumia and Asha devices, just like it did last year at MWC. Or, it may be announcing something related to its own services, which are not part of the Microsoft deal, such as the Here mapping service.

Even if it’s indeed an Android device that Nokia wants us to show under that three, once Microsoft takes over, all bets are off. Some speculate that the Redmond company could swallow its pride and release a Windows-ified entry-level Android device, to act as a sort of gateway to the real thing. But it seems just as likely that Microsoft would want the project dead and forgotten. After all, what sort of message would adopting Android, even on the low end, send out to users and developers?

Normandy or no-Normandy, we’ll be at MWC 2014 to bring you all the news. Stay tuned.

Android Authority

Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 10.1 official, confirmed ahead of Samsung CES press event

Galaxy-tab-pro-1The Galaxy TabPro hasn’t exactly been the best kept secret in the mobile world. We’ve been hearing about Samsung’s pro series of tablets for over a month now, and today we’ve not only seen a billboard confirming the Tab Pro name but we even saw leaked specs from @evleaks. And now ahead of their press conference, Samsung jumped the gun and released information about their device to their own website. The listing has since been removed but the damage is already done.

As expected, the Galaxy Tab Pro features a 10.1-inch Super Clear LCD with a resolution of 2560 x 1600 and either a 1.9GHz Exynos OctaCPU for Wi-Fi/3G markets, or a 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 for the LTE version.

Other specs for the tablet include 2GB of RAM, an 8MP rear cam, 2MP front cam, 16 or 32GB storage with microSD for expansion, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS + GLONASS, an IR blaster and a 8220 mAh battery. Not surprisingly, there’s also Android 4.4 KitKat right out of the box.

Previously we heard rumors suggesting that Samsung would be changing up the look of Touchwiz, at least on the Pro series. It looks like this change might really be happening, but we’ll have to wait until Samsung’s press conference for more details on that.

Pricing and availability 

As for when we’ll see the Galaxy TabPro? Although we don’t have an official timeframe or price just yet, the rumor mill suggests it will arrive in black and white colors in the coming weeks.

Samsung’s official press event is later this afternoon, so we’ll be sure to update with additional details then. As always, stayed tuned to Android Authority’s CES 2014 coverage, where we’ll be sure to have more news related to the Galaxy TabPro and many other upcoming Samsung announcements!

Android Authority

Ingress exits beta after worldwide event

Ingress Players Cheering_BA Google+

Today, Niantic Labs brought its alternate reality game Ingress out of beta, finally releasing the game for all Android users who want a chance to play.

To celebrate the end of the beta period, Niantic held a special event called #13Magnus which had players from across the world working together towards one of two common goals. The event saw players creating portals all across the globe to transport shards of the man known as Roland Jarvis, the self-proclaimed ruler of the Enlightened Faction, to one of two locations.

Light show - Jarvis Appears Niantic

Players could either work to bring the shards to San Francisco to resurrect Jarvis, or to Buenos Aires to destroy him forever. Those who stand with the Enlightened faction wanted to save Jarvis, while those who stand with the Resistance sought to destroy him. In the end, the Enlightened Faction won, resurrecting Jarvis in San Francisco.

New players can now jump into the game with a fresh story like what they’d find at the beginning of a new season in a TV show. With luck, Niantic Labs will inform the players of any story developments in the ARG (Alternate Reality Game) that they missed that may be pertinent to the current story.

Excited Players_BA Niantic

Those who participated in the beta and reached level five before December 14 will receive a special badge called “The Founder Medal” when they next launch the app. The end of beta also means the contest to find the Ingress Elite V contest is over, and the top five players in the beta will get a chance to see a behind-the-scenes tour of the world.

Ingress is available now in the Google Play Store for free.

Are you excited to try to science-fiction alternate reality game?

Android Authority

Bored, bothered, and bewildered: Exploring the reaction to the 2013 iPad & Mac event

It’s almost impossible to actually watch an event when you’re covering it live. Whether you’re transcribing what’s being said, or providing play-by-play commentary, color, and analysis, you’re forced to pay only partial attention to what’s going on because the rest of your attention is busy digesting, translating, and expounding on it. So, after I finished doing the [live iMore show[(http://www.imore.com/imore-show-369-ipad-mac-event-live) during Apple's 2013 iPad and Mac event I had to go back and watch it in order to fully appreciate everything that went on, to get the subtleties and nuances, to catch the slips, and to formulate an overall opinion of the event. I've done that twice now. And overall, I'm conflicted.

I can understand what Nick Bilton of the New York Times experienced at the event:

Lately, however, [Apple] events have replaced the “wow” with the “boring.”

Bilton thinks the products are still good, but the presentation is getting old. Marco Arment:

Something felt a bit off about this week’s Apple event.

Arment chalks it up to a combination of lack of surprise, flat presentation, repetitive messaging, and a lack of timely preorders.

I can also understand what John Gruber of Daring Fireball experienced:

Apple’s events are more like watching episodes of the same TV show, but with different bits each time. The show itself grows ever more familiar, but the content changes with each episode.

And Jim Dalrymple on The Loop:

If there was any event in recent memory that demonstrated the depth and scope of Apple’s products, it had to be this one. Every new product tied into the last and the next announcement in one way or another. Whether iOS or Mac, software or hardware, the connection was there.

So, what’s going on?

Predictability

The iPad mini going Retina was predictable, but would anyone rather have had it go down in display density instead? That would have been a surprise, but not a good one. The iPad turning into the iPad Air was predictable too, but would anyone have better welcomed it getting heavier and thicker? This, of all arguments against the Apple event, is the most tenuous. Absent new products, any updates to existing products will be logical and incremental. A triangular iPad would be different, but it would also be stupid.

Mavericks and the redesigned Mac Pro were technically new, but Apple had already shown both off at WWDC 2013, so they were expected, and hence not really, truly new. Likewise the new MacBook Pros, even though the 13-inch ended up being thinner and lighter again, were anticipated because their product cycles are linked to Intel’s processor roadmap and Haswell had already come to both the MacBook Air and iMac lines. It was their turn. So, again, not really, truly new.

The iWork and iLife app updates were new, but also existing product lines, and it turns out some people aren’t very happy with them, so they get to be both not really, truly new, and, by some, unwelcome for their not really, truly newness.

The problem is, the world tends towards patterns, and humans are really good at spotting patterns. When things make sense, they’re predictable, and as much as we love that, we also kind of hate it.

Ad to that Apple’s massive manufacturing scale, which makes leaks more likely than ever, and we have people doing the gadget equivalent of reading a movie script before going to the theater, and then being upset the movie doesn’t surprise them. Spoiler. Alert.

Making the iPad Air as thin as it is wasn’t easy. Going to Retina in the iPad mini this year was even less easy. Apple barely got it done in time (look no further than the “later this November” shipping date). Pushing Apple A7 chipsets across the entire new iPad lineup wasn’t easy either. It was, dare I say it, a surprise. (Or more technically, a payoff years in the making). Not having Touch ID in the new iPads, most likely because Apple is struggling to produce enough sensors for the iPhone 5s lineup as it is, was also a surprise. Also an unwelcome one by many.

Like “one more things”, true surprises at Apple events are few and far between. They’re the iPods and iPhones and iPads. They’re 2001 and 2007 and 2010. Apple will almost certainly attempt more of them, perhaps even as soon as 2014, and we’ll likely suffer the same “oh, a wearable, we expected that!” and the follow on “oh, an updated wearable, where’s the iCar?!”

We’re an incredibly connected, keyed in, revved up, informed, insightful, and grown up community and customer base now. We’ve bitten of the Apple, and we’ve lost the paradise of – and appreciation for – the mysteries of our youth.

In this case, with this complaint, it’s not Apple that’s failing to deliver, it’s our expectations that can no longer reasonably be met.

Presentation

Yeah. There were stumbles. Black Knight? It was like watching dad try to twerk. (Or watching me try to use twerk in a sentence.) It was a script pulled too tightly over too much event. Apple used to release new iPads in the spring, new iPhones in the summer, new iPods in the fall, and new Macs whenever they were ready. For the last two years, they’ve released everything but iPods, iPhones, and a smattering of Macs at one small event in October. It is, arguably, too much.

Mavericks, new MacBook Pros, the new Mac Pro, iWork for iOS, OS X, and iCloud. The iPad Air. The Retina iPad mini. And updates to a bunch of other Apple apps. It’s almost inarguably too much. I’m tried merely from typing it out. Yet October was when Mavericks was ready. It was when the new MacBook Pros got the Haswell chipsets they needed. It was when the iPad Air and, especially, the Retina iPad mini could be shipped before the holidays. It was Apple putting the pedal to the metal and getting stuff out as fast as technology and components would allow. And it was exhausting just to watch, never mind orchestrate.

Eddy Cue in his Kung Fu shirt, and Roger Rosner awkwardly helping him make mock album art was painful. But there have been awkward – and slow – moments at keynotes for years. It’s when it all adds up, the slips, the pace, and the pain, that it begins to create that “off” feeling.

Steve Jobs wasn’t immune to this either. Tossing cameras into the audience, losing it over Mi-Fis, getting lost in small features for minutes at a time. But he was Steve Jobs. Unfortunately, he’s who Apple’s current slate of presenters, from Tim Cook on down are following. Worse, the romanticized memory of Steve Jobs is what Apple’s current slate of presenters, from Tim Cook on down, are following. And that’s an impossible position for anyone to be in. Apple is still lightyears ahead of most other tech companies when it comes to presentations, but they’re held to a higher standard than any other tech company because of it.

There were moments – “mind blown”, for example – that stood out, but given it was an Apple event, given all the announcements were recapitulations or upgrades, given the sheer mass of them, and given the stumbles, there weren’t enough.

Repetitiveness

As a result of incremental updates and presentation problems, Apple’s events have felt more repetitive than they have in the past. They’re not, of course – Apple events have been repetitive for years – but once an illusion shatters, it tends to stay that way.

The advantage to repetitiveness is that, when it works, it’s magical. It’s the chorus in the song you can’t stop playing over and over again. It’s the signature line you’re always waiting for the hero to utter. It’s the moment when anticipation becomes reality.

The disadvantage to receptiveness is that, when it doesn’t work, it falls absolutely flat.

There’s an old saying that the key to a great fight is in the matchmaking. Fighters can have great skills and great game plans, and without changing a thing, explode one night and fall apart another. Likewise with presentations. An off night for Apple’s executives, a malaise among the media, and a few flubs plus a few long moments of silent non-reaction and things start to go south fast.

Does that mean Apple’s gotten stale? Does it mean the media is hopeless jaded? Maybe, and of course not. It’s not immediately clear to me how Apple could, or even if Apple should change their event formula. Having attended numerous events by other companies, including almost all of Apple’s competitors, I can objectively say no one else comes close in terms of clarity of message delivered. Apple tells you what they’re going to say, says it, then tells you what they said. With big, helpful, charts detailing products, pricing, and availability.

Would sideways cars on a broadway stage, or HALO jumpers landing on the roof make Apple events more interesting? Maybe. But would it make them better? I’m not convinced.

What would make it better is a little more relaxation on stage. A little more energy and a little more sense of fun. Apple introduced some great products. The executives knew that as well as the media. We just needed to see that knew it. That they loved it. And that they were willing to worry less about script, and risk getting lost in it just a little more.

Immediacy

There were no pre-orders for the iPad Air, just like there were no pre-orders for the iPhone 5s. My guess is its for similar reasons – there’s simply not enough stock to allow for meaningful pre-orders and supply retail stores for launch day. Instead of having an almost immediate sell out thanks to low pre-order quantities in advance, and under serve people who go to the actual stores on day one, Apple is opting to give retail some breathing room by starting online the same day. In a perfect world, Apple would have enough iPad Air stock to have started pre-orders last week, but we live in the real world and sometimes deadlines are sprints all the way to the end.

Likewise the iPad mini, which is crossing the finish line so hot it isn’t even going to be ready to ship with the Air. Whether or not Apple announces pre-orders for it remains to be seen, but there simply aren’t enough to start selling this week. Even more so with the new Mac Pro. However, that’s such a niche, high-end product it doesn’t have the holiday sales pressure on it that the iPad line does.

Mavericks, iWork, iLife, and the new MacBook Pros shipped the same day as the event. Can’t get any more immediate than that.

So

As Apple events go, the products announced last week were absolutely amazing. The equivalent of nuclear weapons in a conventional theater. I still can’t believe they managed to get the iPad Air and Retina iPad mini ready to go as quickly as they did. Mavericks is solid, and the new Mac Pro is porn. I understand the complaints about the new iWork suite, but I also have an idea of the compromise that had to be made there. And there new MacBook Pros are pretty damn fine as well.

But the presentation was rough. They had all the elements, but they just didn’t nail the landing. That’s something that can and should be improved. They’ll never be Steve Jobs, but they can all be good, and relaxed, and happy, and paced, and themselves. The predictability, the repetitiveness, those are things that shouldn’t and almost certainly aren’t concerning Apple. Keep making great products and nail the presentation, and no few, if anyone, will complain about either of those things next time.

That, or save something like the new Mac Pro for the October event next time. WWDC already had iOS 7 and Mavericks, after all.

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iMore show 371: iPad & Mac event… Looped!

Jim Dalrymple of The Loop joins Rene and Peter to talk about Apple’s iPad and Mac event, and the new, Glide-powered The Loop Magazine.

Show notes

Pending.

Guests

Hosts

Credits

You can reach all of us on Twitter @iMore, or you can email us at podcast@imore.com or just leave us a comment below.

For all our podcasts — audio and video — including the iMore show, ZEN and TECH, Iterate, Debug, Ad hoc, and more, see MobileNations.com/shows

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T-Mobile ‘Uncarrier 3.0′ event will take place on October 9th

t-mobile-phase-3

Not terribly long ago, T-Mobile’s CEO John Legere promised that the third phase in the company’s uncarrier strategy would arrive in the fall of 2013. Today Legere fulfills his promise as T-Mobile has announced a special “Uncarrier 3.0” event, which will take place on October 9th.

The upcoming event will kick of in New York this Wednesday, complete with a guest appearance from Shakira, who will perform at a “special event” at Bryant Park. While we don’t know for sure what all the announcement will bring, we have a feeling it will be big – at least judging by the impact caused by phase 1 and phase 2 of the uncarrier initiative.

As you likely already know, phase one saw the death of long-term contracts and phone subsidies for T-Mobile customers. The second phase introduced T-Mobile’s JUMP early upgrade program, which has since been imitated by the other three major U.S. carriers.

Here’s to hoping that phase three stirs the pot even further! Regardless of what the news brings, we’ll be here to cover it, so be sure to check back for more details on October 9th.

What do you think of T-Mobiles’ recent uncarrier strategy, have you been impressed or not? What do you hope to see from phase three?

Android Authority

ASUS sends out invitations for Padfone Infinity launch event next week

ASUS new Padfone Infinity

We’ve seen leaked pics, and we’ve heard the rumors, but ASUS seems primed to launch their new phone/tablet hybrid. Dubbed ‘the new Padfone Infinity’, ASUS has begun sending invitations for the launch event of the one true phablet, and have a fun little video on their website (and below) to commemorate the launch.

Aside from an upgraded processor and the addition of a white model, not much is known about the new Padfone Infinity. The design is said to be the exact same, with no resolution upgrade for the screen. A MicroSD card slot could make an appearance, but those are the only tweaks we’ve heard of. The truncated video also lends us to believe that Asus doesn’t have much to offer or tease, either. No glamour shots, no zippy graphics — just a rocket launching.

The website has a countdown timer as well, so those of you who are really excited for the new phablet, September 17th is your day.

Android Authority

Apple’s new iPhone event video posted in full to watch online

 Apples new iPhone event video posted in full to watch online

We hope you’ve enjoyed iMore’s extensive coverage of today’s iPhone 5s and 5c event, but if you’re wanting to watch the whole thing back, Apple’s got you covered. Over on the Apple Events page you can now view the entire presentation starring Tim Cook, Phil Schiller, Craig Federighi, and of course the new iPhone 5s and 5c.

See the colors. See the fingerprint scanners. See the A7 chip and the cool camera stuff. See it all, right now. What are you waiting for? Hit the link below and get your viewing on!

Source: Apple

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