Samsung Galaxy Nexus LTE Revealed to be 9.47mm Thick on Updated Google Landing Page, Verizon In-Store Poster

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Soon after Google unveiled the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, it was reported that the LTE version on Verizon would carry a bit more girth than the 8.9mm HSPA+ version of the device. The exact figure remained a mystery…until now, that is. Google has updated their US Galaxy Nexus site with the phone’s specs and an interactive 360 degree view of the device. With LTE packed inside, the GNex measure in at 9.47mm. That is less than a millimeter of additional thickness, hardly adding to the phone’s overall footprint. The LTE version of the phone also gets a slightly bigger battery at 1850mAh compared to the GSM versions 1750mAh battery. The additional size brings the weight up to 150 grams.

The thickness is again confirmed on material arriving in some Verizon stores, namely a poster detailing the upcoming Android 4.0 handset. The arrival of such materials further suggests that recent rumors of a launch sometime next week (before Black Friday) might just pan out.

[via AndroidForums, Google | Thanks, woodraskam and interestingman!]




Google Benches Checkout in Favor of Google Wallet

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Google Checkout is going the way of the dinosaurs. We’re going with the “evolved into birds” theory for this metaphor, as the redundant Checkout has been merged with Google Wallet. Both services accomplished similar goals, and seeing as Wallet has become a primary focus of Google, the elimination of Checkout sounds like a no-brainer. Those using Google Checkout will be prompted to shift their account to Google Wallet, a process that should be easy enough.

[via Google Commerce]

Asus Transformer Prime Gets its Own Take on the Smart Cover, Now with more Folds

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Remember when the Galaxy Tab 10.1 received its own smart cover accessory? It seemed like a questionable move considering Apple’s penchant for suing the pants off Samsung. The iPad, however, was not the first device to deploy the protective flap, and it certainly won’t be the last. The ASUS Transformer prime is getting it’s own take on the design, and keeping in line with the tablet’s name, added folds allow the case to transform into three different configurations for propping up the slate.

As The Verge points out, the real smart cover for the Transformer Prime would be its detachable keyboard with extended battery, which can be folded over to protect the device’s display when not in use. The origami-like smart cover is a great deal cheaper, however, at €39.

[ via The Verge]

Android Malware Instances Spike, Up 472% since July

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You can turn a blind eye to it all you want, but malware is becoming a serious problem for Android users. After registering steady growth since the launch of the OS, instances of malware have spiked over the past several months as the Android continues to expand as the leading mobile platform. Since July of this year, malware has seen a 472 percent increase, according to Juniper Network’s Global Threat Center. Juniper notes that not only has the volume of malware increased, but so has its level of sophistication.

As Android gains prevalence, hackers are shifting their focus from older platforms and taking advantage of the Android Market’s lack of screening to quickly upload bogus apps and trojans. These malicious apps mostly focus on mining personal data, but some can go so far as to root a user’s device or even give a hacker remote access.

The good news is that despite the increase in malware, protection is still fairly simple — users need only be more observant of the apps they are downloading from the market by thoroughly checking out the description, permissions, and comments/ratings. With many apps often spoofing popular offerings from trusted brands, this admittedly isn’t as easy as it sounds. Click the infographic to the left for the more interesting details of their report.

[via Juniper]

First Galaxy Nexus Sold Came Loaded with Dev Software to Customer’s Dismay

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We mentioned Alex Ioannou in our post detailing the official launch of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus in the UK. He looks mighty happy to have his new smartphone in the above picture tweeted out by Samsung mobile. However, after getting home and powering up his new toy, Alex’s joy quickly turned to frustration. His Galaxy Nexus came loaded up with an older Android 4.0 developer ROM, complete with debug options including the ability to “Report a WTF condition.” Alex also had trouble adding his Google account to the device, leading to a trek back to the store where he currently awaits a replacement. The incident seems isolated as there have been no other reports of such software problems. Perhaps Samsung had a special device set aside for the first person to buy the Galaxy Nexus and that device somehow slipped through the cracks without getting a final software refresh. We might never know the why, but those planning to buy the phone today shouldn’t worry about similar OS issues just yet.

[via Engadget]

Samsung Galaxy Nexus Launches in the UK, YouTube Channel Updated with New Videos

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The day many have been waiting for is here…if you live in the UK, that is. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is now available for purchase and the phone’s landing page has been updated to reflect as much, providing links to snag the phone via Phone4u, Three UK, Carphone Warehouse, Vodafone, and O2. Samsung tweeted out a photo of the first customer to pick up the brand-new Android 4.0 smartphone, one Alex Ioannou.

Google’s Galaxy Nexus YouTube channel has also been updated with a new minute-long ad and plenty of “getting started” videos highlighting the major features of the phone. If you have been lusting for this you will want to check them out; you even get a glimpse of Verizon’s LTE version of the device.

So UK readers, who is going out to pick up the Galaxy Nexus today? Anyone already have the world’s first Ice Cream Sandwich handset?

[via Google+ | Thanks to all who sent this in!]

Busta Rhymes: Put Your Droid Where My Eyes Could See

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Busta Rhymes took some time off from dropping verses to get down with a collaboration of a different kind. The acclaimed rap artist was in attendance at today’s Google Music event (his new album will appear as an exclusive download in the Android Market), and is seen here posing with everyone’s favorite robot mascot. Can we count Andy as the newest member of the Flipmode Squad? Will Busta guest on a remix of the Android Rap?

We can all have dreams, right?

Google Music Updated to Version 4.0.9 in the Android Market

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Coinciding with today’s event, Google Music for Android has been updated to version 4.0.9. The new build brings the features and UI found in the version of the app leaked last month, a refined look in step with Android Ice Cream Sandwich. The updated app also brings access to music purchases from Android Market.

Android Market Link: Google Music

Google Music Launch Features Exclusive Music from Coldplay, Busta Rhymes, and the Rolling Stones

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Google isn’t skimping on the launch of music purchases in the Android Market. While doubt has long been cast on the ability to reach deals with music labels, the exact opposite has proven to be true as Google has scored exclusive rights to releases from a number of artists, including six unreleased live performances by the Rolling Stones, a five-track live EP from Coldplay, and Busta Rhymes’ new studio album. Google Music will also offer free live albums from Pearl Jam, Shakira, and Dave Matthews Band. Much of the content will be available starting today, while other exclusive will come to the Android Market over the course of next year.


Google Music Purchases Can Be Billed Directly to T-Mobile Accounts

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We have been wondering exactly what T-Mobile’s involvement in the Google Music announcements would be, and we now have the answer. Honoring the longstanding relationship between Android and the wireless provider, T-Mobile subscribers will have the ability to bill music purchases directly to their accounts. T-Mobile customers will also get extra incentives in the form of exclusive music and free tracks from the likes of Drake and Maroon 5. Details on when and how subscribers can begin adding music to their monthly bill were not revealed, but the option will be available shortly.