Andy Rubin's Essential Phone to Arrive In 'A Few Weeks'

Andy Rubin today provided an update concerning the expected arrival of his new company’s Essential PH-1 smartphone. “We’ve been hard at work getting everything ready and the good news is that we’re now going through certification and testing with multiple U.S. and international carriers,” said Rubin in an email to supporters. “You might be getting impatient to get your hands on your new Essential Phone (and I’m also impatient to get it to you!) but rest assured that you will have a device in your hands in a few weeks.” Rubin said his team is “sweating the details and working long hours to get this device shipped.” Rubin had previously committed to shipping the phone by the end of June. It now appears the device will arrive in August. The Essential PH-1 has a unique, magnet-based system for accepting modular attachments, such as a 360-degree camera, on the back panel. It includes a 5.7-inch quad HD screen with curved corners, Snapdragon 835 processor, and dual rear cameras. It will run a near-stock version of Android 7 Nougat and ship completely devoid of brand names or logos. Essential will sell the PH-1 directly to consumers, though Sprint also plans to carry the phone. It costs $699.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

T-Mobile Clearing Out iPhone 7 Inventory

T-Mobile today introduced a limited-time offer to save big bucks on the Apple iPhone 7. The Uncarrier will give a $300 credit to those who trade in an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s, or 6s Plus for an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus. Trade-ins must be owned outright, with no remaining payments or commitments. T-mobile says the value of the trade-in can be applied to the purchase of a new iPhone 7 immediately, with the remainder of the $300 offer to arrive later in the form of a prepaid MasterCard. The offer requires people to finance the new iPhone on an installment plan with a T-Mobile service agreement. Sales tax is due on the full price of the new handset at the point of purchase. T-Mobile says the offer can be combined with its iPhone memory upgrade program, which knocks $100 off the price of the 256 GB iPhone for a potential total savings of $400. The balance of the $300 offer will arrive up to 8 weeks after T-Mobile customers sign up for the promotion on T-Mobile’s web site. The offer cannot be combined with T-Mobile’s Carrier Freedom program.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

LG Q8 Appears to Be Smaller Variant of the V20

LG’s Italian web site recently provided details about an unannounced handset called the Q8. The Q8 appears to be a less-expensive, smaller version of the LG V20. The Q8 does not carryover the 2:1 aspect ratio or FullVision display of the new Q series, such as the Q6, which was announced earlier this month. Instead, the Q8 boasts a metal body with a 5.2-inch quad HD display and second screen for alerts and other action items. Other features include a Snapdragon 820 processor with 4 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage, 3,000mAh battery, stereo headphone jack and USB-C. Like the V20, the Q8 has a dual-camera configuration and rear-mounted fingerprint reader. The main camera has a 13-megapixel sensor with 78-degree lens at f/1.8 and optical image stabilization, while the secondary shooter has an 8-megapixel sensor with 135-degree lens at f/2.4 for wide-angle shots. Both sensors can take advantage of the dual LED flash. The front camera has a wide-angle, 5-megapixel sensor. Other specs include Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, WiFi, LTE 4G, and an IP67 rating for protection against water ingress. The LG Q8 will be sold in European markets soon. LG’s U.S. press team would not comment on the phone’s potential availability in North America.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

Vodafone reveal continued increase in data usage

A trading update? That’s normally quite a dry document and not one we’d feature here on Coolsmartphone, but the latest one from Vodafone has a number of pretty interesting points.

Amongst mentions of “Q1 organic service revenue” and “acceleration in AMAP”, it also shows that data traffic has grown quite substantially. The figures show that for Q1 European data usage increased by 59% and…

In absolute terms, the growth in traffic during the quarter was equivalent to our total quarterly data traffic just two years ago.

Vodafone reveal continued increase in data usage

That’s a pretty big uptick in data usage. The network also reveals that 4G adoption and larger data allowances mean that each customer is using on average 1.8GB of data per month – up 39%. Some 67% of the data traffic in Europe is now on 4G. The company says that this technology is “substantially more cost efficient than 3G”.

What’s taking up this data? Well, 60% of the traffic is “video, social and audio applications” across Europe.

Further details can be found here, but it’s interesting to see that data usage is climbing so rapidly and our thirst for streaming audio and video is increasing.

The post Vodafone reveal continued increase in data usage is original content from Coolsmartphone. If you see it on another news website, please let us know.

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    Source: CoolSmartPhone.com News

  • Cricket Offering 2 Lines of Unlimited Service for $80

    Cricket Wireless today annouced new service and handset promotions meant to entice customers to sign up for the prepaid carrier. To start, Cricket is offering new and existing customers two lines of unlimited service for $80 per month. That includes unlimited mobile data, messaging, and voice calls. Cricket caps data speeds at 3 Mbps, and will throttle unlimited customers who exceed 22 GB of data per billing period. In addition to the new service promo, Cricket has a number of deals on smartphones. For example, the Alcatel PulseMix is $80 with a new activation, or just $30 with a port-in. Similarly, the LG x charge is $130 with a new activation or just $100 with a port-in. Other phones with available discounts include the ZTE Sonata 3 and Blade X Max; LG Fortune, Harmony, and Stylo 3; and the Samsung Galaxy Amp 2. Cricket said the promos are available for a limited time.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

    Alexa Arrives In Amazon's Android App

    Amazon is making Alexa, its artificial intelligence, available to the Android mobile shopping application beginning this week. Any Android device with the Amazon app aboard will have access to Alexa, allowing people to search for and buy goods simply by asking Alexa. Amazon brought this functionality to the iOS Amazon shopping app earlier this year. Amazon says Android users can search for paper towels or reorder batteries and Alexa will do those things within the confines of the Amazon app. The app also lets people listen to music and play Kindle books, ask basic questions, add skills, access Smart Home features, and check the news, weather, and traffic via voice requests. The app works with Android users’ Amazon accounts and subscriptions to services such as Amazon Prime. Android device owned can access Alexa by tapping a microphone built into the app. Separate Alexa-powered devices, such as the Amazon Echo, are not required. The Amazon mobile shopping app for Android is free to download from the Google Play Store.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

    CallMiner Uses Robust Measures To Protect Customer Data

    CallMiner, the leading platform provider of award-winning speech and customer engagement analytics reaffirmed today its multi-layered security procedures in response to the recent serious breach that occurred in the industry. The personal information of millions of customer records of a major telecom provider were recently exposed due to security lapses involving the actions of staff members of the provider’s technology supplier. The exposed information included phone numbers, PIN data, names, analytical data, and call audio which may have other sensitive customer information.

    “In light of the serious data breach affecting our specific industry, we thought it was prudent to discuss the robustness of our security protocols and how seriously we take data security,” says CallMiner CEO, Terry Leahy. “The recent breach did not result in someone taking advantage of the data, but it’s still a breach, and should raise questions about how technology suppliers in our space are handling security. We understand the concerns from customers about the security of cloud applications. The key is to know how to properly manage cloud-based data, through the right training and technology such as data redaction that removes sensitive information from transcripts.”

    CallMiner follows strict data storage and processing standards that it deems essential as a cloud-based provider. The company is the industry leader in using data redaction to suppress or remove sensitive data such as credit card information or PCI data from the speech analytics-derived data it pulls from every agent-customer interaction including call recordings.

    The CallMiner Eureka Redaction functionality is especially powerful because it prevents sensitive data exposure even in cases of human error or illegal access of stored data. If a customer or agent states a sensitive word (such as a credit card number) during a conversation, the Eureka platform marks that occurrence and replaces…
    Source: Mobile Tech Today

    Update Your iPhone, iPad To Squash Dangerous Wi-Fi Bug

    Apple yesterday made a number of security updates to its iOS mobile operating system, including a fix for a Wi-Fi chip vulnerability that could let hackers gain wireless access to iPhones and iPads.

    The iOS 10.3.3 update addresses nearly four dozen security flaws, one of which, called “Broadpwn,” lies in the Broadcom Wi-Fi chip used in many iPhones and Android devices. Google announced an Android fix for Broadpwn earlier this month. Apple’s patch is available for the iPhone 5 and later, 4th-generation and later iPads, and the 6th-generation iPod touch.

    The vulnerability could allow a remote actor to trigger a memory corruption error via Wi-Fi on a user’s mobile device, according to details on Broadpwn from Security Tracker. That error could then enable the hacker to execute arbitrary code on the device without any actions by the user.

    Chip Vulnerability on ‘Millions’ of Devices

    Apple credits discovery of the Wi-Fi vulnerability to Nitay Artenstein, a security researcher with Exodus Intelligence. Artenstein is scheduled to discuss his findings later this month during a briefing at the Black Hat information security conference in Las Vegas.

    “Remote exploits that compromise Android and iOS devices without user interaction have become an endangered species in recent years,” Artenstein said in a description of his coming Black Hat presentation. “Such exploits present a unique challenge: Without access to the rich scripting environment of the browser, exploit developers have been having a hard time bypassing mitigations such as DEP and ASLR.”

    Rather than targeting a mobile device’s operating system, though, Broadpwn takes aim at the Wi-Fi system on chip (SoC) that’s used to handle a device’s wireless connectivity. The vulnerability exists on “millions” of Android and iOS devices featuring the Broadcom SoC, Artenstein said.

    “The Broadcom BCM43xx family of Wi-Fi chips is found in an extraordinarily wide range…
    Source: Mobile Tech Today

    Amazon Quietly Buys a Startup To Make Alexa Smarter

    Amazon.com Inc. acquired a Santa Barbara data analysis and search engine start-up in May to help improve its Alexa virtual assistant and other services, according to four sources familiar with the deal but unauthorized to discuss it.

    The previously unreported acquisition of Graphiq Inc. and its more than 100 employees has given Amazon a new Southern California outpost. It recently began looking to hire additional software developers and data associates in Santa Barbara to work on Alexa.

    Investors in Graphiq made out with more than they put in, according to a source, suggesting the deal was worth at least tens of millions of dollars. Another source estimated the deal’s value at $50 million. Amazon and Graphiq declined to comment.

    Founded in 2009 as FindTheBest, the company sought to collect and organize details about products, places and people to simplify online research.

    Graphiq Chief Executive Kevin O’Connor has said he came to the idea after struggling to find a reliable way to compare ski resorts while he planned a vacation and colleges as his son eyed further education. He wanted to see key information such as prices, hours and ratings in one online spreadsheet. Data came from public sources, employees and users. The company started generating revenue by selling ads alongside its tables.

    The company later introduced features to tailor comparisons around individual preferences. And it launched websites and apps focused on specific topics such as technology, genealogy, real estate and government data. They draw millions of monthly readers.

    Graphiq not only created a large, internal content development team, but also developed graph and chart tools so that news partners such as the Los Angeles Times, Reuters and the Associated Press could provide interactive visualizations in their articles.

    Last month, Graphiq announced that features for news publishers would no longer be available after Friday. A company spokesperson last…
    Source: Mobile Tech Today

    Google's Motion Stills App Now Available to Android Phones

    Google today made its Motion Stills GIF-making application available to Android handsets for the first time. The app, first released last year, has until now been reserved for the iPhone. It was initially meant to help iPhone owners make shareable GIFs of their Live Photos. The Android version of Motion Stills takes a different approach. Google says the app includes its own recording experience to instantly capture and transform video into short clips that are easy to watch and share. People can capture 3-second clips with a simple tap and turn them into looping GIFs. Motion Stills for Android also includes a tool called Fast Forward, which accelerates longer recordings into shorter time-lapse bursts. Fast Forward can compress up to 1 minute of video and speed it up between 1x and 8x. Users can also string together a bunch of Motion Stills to create short movies. The app automatically stabilizes recordings, and the improved algorithm helps prevent pocket shots. Google says its new recording process can smooth out each frame immediately and produce shake-free GIFs near instantly. People can share the Motion Stills via text, email, and social networks. Motion Stills for Android is free to download from the Play Store.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News