smartphones posts on CNET

smartphones

A deeper dive with the LG G Pro 2's camera

It's been a month since LG's massive 5.9-inch G Pro 2 launched in Korea, and the device has been slowly gaining traction with further roll outs in other Asian countries including Hong Kong and Taiwan. Although no information has been released about its potential availability in Europe and US, we were able to review the unlocked handset here in our San Francisco offices, and were impressed by its sharp 1080p screen and ultra fast quad-core performance.

But the phone also sports some serious camera chops as well. Giving the G Pro 2 a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera and … Read more

Use Link Bubble to open links in the background on Android

While many apps are starting to display in-line media (showing content of a link without opening a new window), this capability isn't omnipresent across Android. Instead, when catching up on one of your feeds, like Twitter, you have to click the link, and then wait for it to load in Chrome. Link Bubble is an app that seeks to bridge the gap between your apps and the Web by letting you queue up a link to read when you're finished catching up on social media or RSS feeds. It's similar to when you open tabs in the … Read more

Dolby to put Atmos surround sound on tablets, smartphones

SAN FRANCISCO -- Anyone who has seen the movie "Gravity" in a Dolby Atmos theater can understand what it's like to truly experience surround-sound.

The viewer becomes completely immersed in booms, echoes, smashes, and whispers -- space debris zooms overhead, loudly crashes into the International Space Station, and then there's total silence with just the faint murmur of Sandra Bullock's panicked breathing.

There's a reason why two of the movie's seven Academy awards were for sound.

Now Dolby is bringing this same experience to mobile. That's right, it's like a movie … Read more

10 must-see videos of the week

Welcome to the weekend! We're getting you caught up with all the hottest happenings this week in CNET video right here.

Earlier this week, at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Sony unveiled its own virtual-reality PlayStation 4 headset, and for now it's called Project Morpheus. While the product is still in concept, Brian Tong was able to take this immersive reality headset for a test spin and runs down some of the early specs in our First Take.

In the latest episode of The Fix, we'll help you master the art of smartphone photography with … Read more

Rumored Amazon phone: Six cameras, summer launch?

Here we go again. New reports online today suggest that the long-rumored Amazon smartphone is finally close at hand.

According to tech blog BGR, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted in a note to clients that "Amazon (US) will launch its own brand smartphone in 3-6 months, using the same hardware strategy as used for its e-reader and tablet." For those keeping track at home, this would put it on the market roughly two years after the first rumors copped up.

Kuo also predicts six cameras that include front and rear cameras, plus additional for touch-less gesture controls. … Read more

Samsung Galaxy S5 price: $199.99 on-contract, preorders begin March 21

AT&T, U.S. Cellular, T-Mobile, Sprint, and RadioShack announced pricing and availability for the Samsung Galaxy S5, which globally goes on sale April 11.

AT&T and U.S. Cellular will charge $200 for the Galaxy S5, with a new two-year contract. Sprint customers will also get it for that price, after a $50 mail-in rebate; the phone runs on Sprint's faster Spark network.

For T-Mobile's part, the carrier's Galaxy S5 comes in at a pre-order price of $660, or $0 down and $27.50 per month for two years. Sprint is also pushing … Read more

Most China Mobile 4G users bought iPhone, chairman says

This might be a good year for Apple in China.

China Mobile Chairman Xi Guohua on Thursday said that "most" of his company's 1.3 million 4G customers have bought the iPhone -- an important success rate for Apple, considering the carrier only started selling the company's handset in January. And despite that figure appearing to be small, China Mobile reported that it expects its total number of 4G subscribers to jump to 50 million by year's end. If Apple can keep its lead, that could mean a boatload of iPhone sales in China.

China … Read more

Huawei drops plan for dual Android-Windows Phone device

Huawei has reversed course on plans for a handset equipped with both Android and Windows Phone.

In a statement sent to FierceWireless on Wednesday, the China-based mobile phone vendor indicated it will continue to support Android and Windows Phone but as separate items.

"Huawei Consumer Business Group adopts an open approach towards mobile operating systems to provide a range of choices for consumers," the company said in its statement. "However, most of our products are based on Android OS, [and] at this stage there are no plans to launch a dual-OS smartphone in the near future."… Read more

Apple aims to keep your iPhone juiced based on your behavior

How often does your smartphone conk out before the day is even done? Apple has proposed a couple of ideas to keep the juice flowing.

Published Thursday by the US Patent and Trademark Office, a patent called "Inferring user intent from battery usage level and charging trends" suggests a way to preserve battery power by determining how and when you use your smartphone.

The technology envisioned would keep track of when you use and don't use your smartphone, when you charge it, and for how long you charge it. The phone could then have the smarts to … Read more

Sony kicks off Android 4.4 KitKat rollout across Xperia line

Sony has started rolling out Android 4.4 KitKat across its Xperia line.

The company on Wednesday announced that the Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Z1, and Xperia Z1 Compact are getting KitKat updates starting on Wednesday, though timing and availability vary by market and carrier. Sony said the KitKat upgrade includes the standard interface improvements baked into the mobile OS, along with the company's "tweaked" Status Bar and Quick Settings features. Sony's KitKat installation also includes PlayStation 4-like user interface elements.

Like most mobile vendors, Sony customizes the standard version of Google's Android to … Read more