Verizon Wireless still hasn’t officially announced the Motorola DROID 4, but it has been leaked several times during the past few months. Best Buy recently spilled the beans yet again in one of its Reward Zone advertisements. While it doesn’t specifically name the phone, the DROID 4 makes an appearance front and center in the ad. The Android 2.3.5-powered DROID 4 is expected to be very similar to a DROID RAZR, but with a full QWERTY keyboard. Rumored specs include a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, support for Verizon Wireless’s 4G LTE network and a 4-inch qHD display. Verizon might be saving an announcement for CES, which kicks off in less than two weeks.
Apple will launch a new high-end iPad model in early 2012 featuring a battery that includes more than twice the capacity of the current iPad 2 battery. Citing anonymous sources from within Apple’s supply chain, DigiTimes recently reported that Apple’s upcoming next-generation flagship iPad will feature a new 14,000 mAh battery, as will a new mid-range iPad model. The new power pack will feature more than twice the capacity of the 6,500 mAh battery currently used in Apple’s iPad 2. DigiTimes also reported late Wednesday that Apple’s 2012 iPad lineup will include three models: a low-end iPad 2, likely available at a discount compared to current pricing, a mid-range next-generation iPad and a high-end model. The new mid-range and high-end models will also reportedly feature an upgraded 2,048 x 1,536-pixel displays with dual-LED backlighting.
Bluestacks, the team behind the Android app player for Windows, has released the company’s first “Mr.Android” study. Ever wonder what the average Android user may look like? Pretty normal, apparently. Using data collected from Nielsen Media Research along with a survey of Bluestacks’s 145,000 Facebook fans, the company created a composite of what the average Android user looks like and even what kind of clothes typical Android users might wear. Additionally, the chart includes country of origin, phone habits and much more. Interestingly enough, 18% of users have unusually large heads according to the study, while 62% wear jeans and 63% have a significant other. The data was collected between December 12th to December 19th, and it is in no way scientific. The company’s full press release follows after the break.
Verizon Wireless will begin to roll out a new convenience fee on January 15th which will add an additional $2.00 fee to customers who make single bill payments online or by telephone. Verizon claims the fee will allow the company to continue to support these payment options, however the fee is waived for those who pay by electronic check or enroll in Verizon’s AutoPay service. Additionally, customers who pay their bills in the store, online through a bank, or physically mail a check to Verizon will be not be charged the new fee. The telephone and online single payment fee will be disclosed up-front and throughout the transaction, Verizon said.
Last May, HTC’s chief executive officer Peter Chou responded to customer feedback and announced that the company would no longer be locking the bootloaders on its devices. HTC later introduced the web-based HTCDev unlocking tool, giving users a simple and safe way to unlock their devices. The solution was not perfect though, and phones such as the HTC Vivid and HTC Rezound were released with locked bootloaders and users had no method to unlock them. HTC has made good on its promise once again, however, and the company’s developer site has now been updated with the following message:
SiriusXM today unveiled its latest portable satellite radio — the Lynx — and wouldn’t ya know it, this sucker’s running Android. Actually, it’s running an unknown version of Android, and if we hadn’t told you, chances are you wouldn’t even notice. It’s being billed as “everything you can imagine,” and it’s a triple threat as a dockable in-car satellite radio, or you can use it with a home docking kit, or just palm the sucker and play back via 3.5mm headphones — or Bluetooth.
End Date: Tuesday Jan-17-2012 13:42:19 PST
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We’re getting ready to toss away 2011 on tonight’s Android Central podcast but if you’re looking for something to do while we get things ready, you can check out the Android Central forums and hit up some of the threads below.
We heard last week that US Cellular would be carrying the Huawei Ascend II — a 3.5-inch candy bar style Android phone running Gingerbread — and today they have made it available at the low price of free on a new agreement and after rebates. While the Ascend II isn’t a powerhouse (it has a Qualcomm MSM7627 at 600MHz) it has specs that make it more than acceptable to most folks. It’s nice to see a more consumer-friendly company like US Cellular getting closer with Android, and it’s clearly what a lot of people want. If you’re interested in grabbing one of these free Android phones, hit the link and have a look.
Analytics firm ComScore just released a new batch of numbers, showing Android extending its lead over, well, everybody in the United States for September through November of 2011.
Out of the 91.4 million smartphone subscribers in the United States, ComScore says 46.9 percent — about 43 million give or take — have Android smartphones. That’s up 3.1 percentage points from the June through August. Apple, meanwhile, saw slower growth, at 28.7 percent (up from 27.3 percent for the previous period).
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