All posts by Omkar Dutta

Omkar Dutta is a Mobile Enthusiast from Mumbai, India. He loves to check out latest software, mobile phones and web services. Currently, he writes for this awesome blog as well as Fone Arena. You can follow him on Twitter @0mkarr

US Cellular Galaxy S4 Pre-Sales Begins From April 16

Earlier this week, Three UK has started accepting the pre-orders of the Galaxy S4. After some days, it was announced that AT&T will start the pre-sales from April 16 in the US. Now, US Cellular is the country’s second wireless carrier to join the bandwagon. Samsung has already announced that the Galaxy S4 will not be released before April-end.

Samsung has sold more than 50 million units of the Galaxy S III. This handset is expected to even break the record of its predecessor. If you are still unaware of the complete features, then check out the complete specs after the break.

galaxy_s4_us_cellular

Samsung Galaxy S4 features a 5 inch Super-AMOLED display, sporting a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels, 1.9 GHz quad-core processor, Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) OS, TouchWiz Nature UX, 13 megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and flash, full HD (1080p) video recording and playback, 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video chats, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and more.

It also comes with a 3.5 mm headset jack, Stereo FM Radio with RDS, 16 GB internal memory, microSD card slot, 64 GB expandable memory, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, 4G LTE Connectivity, Smart stay, Smart pause, Smart scroll, full HTML web browser, DLNA, HDMI out, Bluetooth 4.0 with EDR, 2 GB RAM, Wi-Fi Direct and a 2600 mAh Lithium-ion battery.

US Cellular subscribers can pre-order the Galaxy S4 from April 16. The price and release date has not been announced yet. You can sign-up at the US Cellular’s website to receive an email reminder about the online pre-order offer.

Nokia Lumia 520 Up For Pre-Order In India

Last month, Nokia unveiled the entry-level Lumia 520 and mid-range Lumia 720 smartphones at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2013 in Barcelona. These devices are powered by the Windows Phone 8 Operating System. Nokia India’s official store as well as Flipkart has already started accepting the pre-orders of the Lumia 520. It is touted to be the cheapest Windows Phone 8 smartphone.

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Nokia Lumia 520 features a 4 inch WVGA display, sporting a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels, 1 Ghz Qualcomm MSM8227 dual-core processor, Windows Phone 8 OS, 5 megapixel rear camera with autofocus and LED flash, HD (720p) video recording and playback, 512 MB RAM, 8 GB internal memory, MicroSD card slot, 64 GB expandable memory and much more.

Other features include a 3.5mm headset jack, A-GPS, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G Connectivity, Office 365, Xbox Live, IE9 with HTML 5 support, 7 GB Microsoft SkyDrive cloud storage, USB 2.0, Bluetooth 3.0 + EDR, Nokia Drive, Nokia Maps, Bing Maps, up to 61 hours of music playback in offline mode, up to 10 hours of talk-time, up to 360 hours of stand-by time and a 1430 mAh battery.

The Nokia Lumia 520 comes with a price-tag of just Rs.10,499 (approx. $190) in India. This handset is expected to go on sale from the second week of April. If you want to experience the Windows Phone 8 OS without burning a hole in your pocket, then you should definitely go ahead and get the Lumia 520. You can pre-order this device from Nokia India’s online store as well as from Flipkart.

Verizon Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere II Gets The Android 4.1 Update

Last year, Samsung launched the Galaxy Stratosphere II smartphone exclusively for the Verizon Wireless subscribers in the US. As the name suggests, this handset is the successor of the entry-level Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere. This unique smartphone comes with a touchscreen display as well as a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere II was shipped with the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) Operating System. Verizon has recently announced that the carrier will soon roll out the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean update for this device. As usual, this update will brings Google Now, Project Butter, improved voice and data connectivity, new Gallery app, offline text-to-speech, better performance in camera, improved power management and advanced notifications.

samaung_galaxy_stratrosphere_2

Changelog:

Device Features and Enhancements:

  • Polaris and Verizon Remote Diagnostics has been added
  • VZ Apps, Verizon Video, Zappos, Color App, and VPN Client (icon only) have been removed
  • Quick Office application has been updated to allow users to use S-Beam without downloading any external app
  • Connectivity while streaming music on Pandora has been improved
  • Improvements have been made for sending and receiving text messages
  • Improved Wi-Fi connectivity

Verizon will roll out this update in the coming days via OTA (Over-The-Air). You will be automatically notified once the update is available for your device. If you have not yet received the update, then just go to Settings > About Device > System updates and check for the update. To learn more, head over to this page.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Up For Pre-Order At Three UK

Earlier this month, Samsung unveiled its latest flagship device, the Samsung Galaxy S4. Sadly, the Korean manufacturer will start shipping this device from April-end in Europe and Asia. I’m sure almost everyone is eagerly waiting to get their hands-on this device. However, Three subscribers in the UK can finally pre-order the much-awaited Galaxy S4 and begin the countdown. As expected, Three UK’s variant will come with the 1.9 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor instead of the 1.6 GHz Exynos 5 octa-core processor.

Tom Malleschitz, Marketing Director at Three said,
“Following the phenomenal success of the Samsung Galaxy S III we’re very excited to bring the Samsung Galaxy S4 to Three. With so many great features, the Galaxy S4 is a sure fire crowd pleaser. We have every confidence that customers will be able to enjoy great speeds and get the ultimate mobile internet experience without a hefty price tag.”

galaxy_s4_white

Samsung Galaxy S4 features a 5 inch Super-AMOLED display, sporting a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels, Corning Gorilla Glass 3, 1.9 GHz quad-core processor, Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) OS, TouchWiz Nature UX, 13 megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and flash, full HD (1080p) video recording and playback, 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video chats and much more.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, Stereo FM Radio with RDS, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, 4G LTE Connectivity, Smart stay, Smart pause, Smart scroll, 16 GB internal memory, microSD card slot, 64 GB expandable memory, full HTML web browser, DLNA, HDMI out, Bluetooth 4.0 with EDR, 2 GB RAM, Wi-Fi Direct and a 2600 mAh Lithium-ion battery.

Three UK subscribers can pre-order the Galaxy S4 right now. However, the wireless carrier will ship this device from April 26. This handset will be available for free with a two year service agreement. You will need to subscribe to the £35 per month Ultimate Internet 500 plan or £37 per month The One Plan. What are you waiting for? Just head over to this page and pre-order the powerful Galaxy S4.

Flipboard 2.0 For iOS Brings Custom Magazines, Read Later And More

Flipboard is an extremely popular news reading app for smartphones and tablets running on the iOS and Android Operating Systems. Flipboard was originally designed for the iPad, which was later updated to add support for the iPhone and iPod Touch followed by Android smartphones and tablets. Flipboard is one of those apps which I’ve been using almost everyday on my iPad.

Flipboard recently released the version 2.0 of this amazing app. The new Flipboard allows you to collect and save articles, photos, audio and video by organizing them into beautiful magazines. You heard it right! Now you can even create you own digital magazines on Flipboard. These magazines can be made public to share them with the Flipboard community or you can choose to make your magazines private.

flipboard_2

What’s new in Flipboard 2.0?

  • You can now collect and save content into your own magazines, tap the new “+” button to get started.
  • Your magazines are public, but can be made private (viewable only to you).
  • Use the new bookmarklet to add items to your magazines from your browser.
  • Get Flipboard notifications when people like, comment or subscribe to your magazines.
  • Easily email or share magazines to Facebook, Twitter, G+, etc.
  • Personalized recommendations for more to add to your Flipboard.
  • Search is now front and center on your Flipboard, with new and improved results.
  • Faster page-loading and faster flipping performance.

Flipboard 2.0 has also introduced a new commenting system which allows you to comments on articles and even use @mentions to interact with other Flipboard users. Apart from that, Flipboard also brings new “Flip It” bookmarklet which lets you flip the current page on Flipboard. This update is currently available only for iPad and iPhone users. Android users might have to wait for few weeks before getting their hands-on these amazing new features.

Sony Xperia E Goes On Sale In India For Rs.9,999

Last year, Sony unveiled the entry-level Xperia E smartphone. This handset is specially targeted for those who are planning to jump from feature phones to smartphones. Sony Xperia E runs on the Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) Operating System. This handset features noise cancellation that filters out background noise and allows you to have clear conversations in any environment.

Sony has not yet officially launched this handset. However, Infibeam has already started selling this budget smartphone in India. The specs of this handset is slightly better than its competitors. If you are planning to buy one, then check out the complete specs below.

sony xperia e

Sony Xperia E features a 3.5 inch HVGA display, sporting a resolution of 320 x 480 pixels, 1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM7227A processor, Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS, 3.2 megapixel autofocus camera, VGA front-facing camera for video calls, 4 GB internal memory, MicroSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory and more.

It also comes with a 3.5 mm audio jack, FM radio with RDS, GPS with A-GPS, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR, DLNA Certified, Micro USB, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G connectivity, 512 MB RAM, Google Play Store, up to 6 hrs 30 min of talk-time, up to 530 hrs of stand-by time and a 1500 mAh battery.

Infibeam is currently selling the Sony Xperia E for just Rs.9,999 (approx. $185) in India. This handset is currently available in black, white and pink colors. You will also get a Sony headphone (MDR-ZX100A) worth Rs.1,490 with this handset. To purchase the Xperia E, head over to Infibeam.

Airtel Launches 40Mbps Broadband Services In Hyderabad

Bharti Airtel finally launched its 40 Mbps broadband services in Hyderabad, India. Bharti Airtel is the first operator in the city to launch broadband services on VDSL (Very-high-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Line) technology. VDSL is said to be the newest and most advanced standard of Broadband wireline communications. Airtel is currently offering two plans for its subscribers who wish to experience the 40 Mbps high-speed internet.

The first plan is called as “Ultrasonic 3299″ and it offers 100 GB of data usage as well as 1000 free voice minutes. It comes with a monthly price of Rs.3299. The second plan is called as “Ultrasonic 3999″ and it offers 200 GB of data usage along with 2000 free voice minutes. The Ultrasonic 3999 plan is available for a monthly price of Rs.3999.

airtel logo

Both the plans offers a speed of 40 Mpbs and the speed will be reduced to just 512 kbps as soon as you reach the monthly limit. Airtel also offers additional free Value Added Services (VAS) like Parallel Ringing, PC Secure (Anti-Virus software), Unlimited Gaming through Games on Demand, LearnNext and much more. To use these services, Airtel subscribers will need to purchase the Beetel’s VDSL Wi-Fi modem priced at Rs 3,099.

Sharlin Thayil, CEO – Andhra Pradesh, Bharti Airtel, said,
“We are delighted to introduce 40 Mbps speed – the fastest wireline broadband service on next generation VDSL technology. The all new Ultrasonic 40Mbps plans on Airtel offers the fastest Broadband speed available for customers and will allow data savvy customers to upgrade from the now prevalent 16Mbps speeds they have enjoyed thus far. This plan will allow customers the convenience to download movies in a few minutes, upload photos and videos instantly and lots more.”

HTC Desire P And Desire Q Specs And Pics Revealed

Last week, it was rumored that HTC will soon announce two new budget smartphones, the Desire P and Desire Q. Today, the official images as well as the specs of these devices were revealed. The mid-range Desire P and Desire Q runs on the Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) Operating System. HTC Desire P looks similar to the previously launched Desire SV, while the design of Desire Q is almost similar to Desire X.

htc_desire_p

HTC Desire P comes with a 4.3 inch display, sporting a resolution of 800 x 400 pixels, 1 GHz dual-core processor, HTC Sense UI, Beats Audio technology, 8 megapixel rear camera, VGA front-facing camera for video calls, MicroSD card slot and more. This handset will be available for China Mobile subscribers in red and white colors. HTC Desire P comes with a price-tag of $365.

htc_desire_q

HTC Desire Q features a 4 inch display, 768 MB RAM, Beats Audio and microSD card slot. This handset will first go on sale in Taiwan for just $235. Desire Q will be available in 3 colors – red, white and black. These devices are expected to be launched in other Asian markets including India in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

Google Nexus 7 Goes On Sale in India Via Play Store For Rs.15,999

Google Nexus 7 needs no introduction! It is Google’s first tablet device which was unveiled last year at the company’s I/O event in San Francisco. Nexus 7 is manufactured by Asus and it is officially sold by Google via Play Store in 9 countries including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Spain, United Kingdom and United States.

Google Nexus 7 retails for just $199 in the US, however Croma is already selling this device in India for Rs.19,999 (approx.$370). Today, Google went ahead and officially launched the Nexus 7 in India via Play Store. It is the first device to be sold on the Indian Play Store.

nexus_7_play_store_india

Nexus 7 features a 7 inch HD display, sporting a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels, Corning Gorilla Glass 2, Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS, NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor, 12-core GPU, 1.2 megapixel camera for video calls, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth, MicroUSB, NFC (Near Field Connectivity), Accelerometer, GPS, 1GB RAM and much more.

It also comes with a 4325 mAh battery, which offers up to 300 hours of stand-by time and allows you to watch videos for up to 9 hours. Google is currently selling the 16 GB variant of Nexus 7 in India. This device measures 198.5 mm x 120 mm x 10.45 mm and weighs just 340g.

Google Nexus 7 comes with a price tag of Rs.15,999 (approx. $295) in India. This device will be shipped from April 5, 2013. We hope that Google will also bring the much-awaited Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 in India. To get this device, head over to Play Store India.

Samsung Galaxy S II Plus Goes On Sale In India For Rs.22,900

Back in January, Samsung announced the Galaxy S II Plus smartphone. This handset packs almost same specs from the original Galaxy S II, except the fact that this device will be shipped with the newer Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) Operating System and Samsung’s latest Touchwiz Nature UX out-of-the-box. It also comes with a popup video feature which allows you to play a video anywhere on the screen in a resizable pop-up window while simultaneously running other tasks.

There are no changes in the design of this device, however the mesh like back cover is replaced with the glossy back cover. Samsung has also reduced the internal storage from 16 GB to 8 GB. Infibeam, a popular online retailer has already started selling this device in India. Even the price of this device is similar to the original Galaxy S II. Check out the specs below.

galaxy s 2 plus

Samsung Galaxy S II Plus features a 4.3 inch Super AMOLED Plus display, sporting a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels, 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, Android 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean) OS, TouchWiz 4.0 UI, 8 megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus and LED flash, full HD (1080p) video recording and playback, 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video calls, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, 3G Connectivity and more.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, Stereo FM Radio with RDS, 8 GB internal memory, microSD card slot, 64 GB expandable memory, Samsung Media Hub, Samsung Kies Air, Google Play Store, full HTML web browser, DLNA, HDMI out, Bluetooth 3.0 with EDR, 1 GB RAM, NFC (Near Field Communication), Wi-Fi Direct, up to 610 hrs of stand-by time, up to 8 hrs 40 mins of talk-time and a 1650 mAh battery.

Samsung Galaxy S II Plus comes with a price-tag of Rs.23,999. However, Infibeam is currently selling this device for just Rs.22,900 (approx. $420). If you are planning to buy one, head over to this page.