This summer could see the launch of a smartphone running both Windows and Android
Can't decide between Windows Phone or Android? Perhaps soon you won't have to. Mobile phone maker Karbonn Mobiles is said to be fairly close to finishing a dual-OS handset that will run both Android and Windows Phone platforms. Assuming everything goes to plan -- Karbonn Mobiles said it already signed a licensing agreement with Microsoft -- the dual-booting smartphone will launch by June of this year.
As expected, Samsung introduced its Galaxy S5 smartphone at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, a handset that represents an attempt at returning "back to basics" with a focus on capabilities that consumers want most, the South Korean phone maker said. It starts with a big size display -- a 5.1-inch Full HD 1080p (1920x1080) Super AMOLED powered by a peppy 2.5GHz quad-core processor.
Microsoft's rebranded SkyDrive service, now known as OneDrive, is now available globally, the Redmond outfit announced in a blog post today. If you're already a registered SkyDrive user, don't fret, your data is still there. Furthermore, there are a few incentives to sign back in (or sign up to OneDrive), such as a new automatic camera backup feature for Android, along with different ways to increase your storage ceiling.
Following a successful Kickstarter campaign, Ouya's developers have been trying to drum up interest in its Android-based micro console by offering different color options and, most recently, a model with twice the amount of storage. Color and storage options are nice, but if it's all about the price, here's a heads up that you can purchase an Ouya console for $85 from StackSocial's website.
Android is by far the biggest target of mobile malware
Security firm Kaspersky says it has logged 10 million dubious Android applications to date. It comes down to a numbers game for cyber criminals, and since Android is the most popular mobile operating system on the planet -- market research firm Canalys estimates that Android accounted for 80 percent of smartphones shipped in 2013 -- it attracts the most attention from malware writers.
One of the things that helped drive down the price of Android tablets is the proliferation of smaller size displays in the 7-inch range. This is partially what allowed companies like Amazon and Google to undercut the competition at a time when the market was flooded with 10-inch tablets for $500 and up. This correlation in price also works in reverse, as evidenced by Samsung's 12.2-inch Galaxy Note Pro commanding $850 at Office Depot.
The newest version of Android is tied with Froyo (Android 2.2) for market share
A quick visit to Google's Developers Dashboard for Android reveals that mobile device makers and wireless carriers alike are dragging their collective feet when it comes to embracing Android 4.4 KitKat. After three months, KitKat has inched its way onto 1.4 percent of all Android devices, barely edging out Android 2.2 Froyo, which claims a 1.3 percent share of the market. Meanwhile, Jelly Bean (Android 4.1.x to 4.3) is picking up most of the slack with a 59.1 percent share.
If the first run of the Kickstarter-powered Ouya wasn't enough to inspire you to purchase one, perhaps new and improved hardware will change your mind. A brand new 16GB version of the Ouya is giving the console an overhaul to attract a new audience as well as win back detractors from the initial release.
It’s hard not to have high expectations of Google’s new Nexus 7—the original was a standout product that offered a satisfying Android experience in a highly portable 7-inch form factor, for less than $200. Now we’ve got the new Nexus 7 (is it us, or is it very annoying that it has the exact same name?) promising a number of refinements to the original, but also asking a higher price: $230 for 16GB, $270 for 32GB (reviewed here). You’re probably wondering if it’s still a compelling product.
Note: This article was originally featured in the December 2013 issue of the magazine
Expand your Facebook experience with additional apps
Facebook Home failed to catch on the way it was anticipated to, so it appears Facebook is investigating other venues to keep the brand afloat while making it easier for users to access their profile and other information. It looks like the advent of standalone Facebook apps may be upon us.