RIM wins legal battle over BBM trademark

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May 312012

Research In MotionLate last year, Research In Motion was hit with a lawsuit alleging trademark infringement over the use of the name “BBM” by Canadian company BBM Canada. Today, RIM got some good news as a Canadian Federal Court ruled in its favour in the case. While BBM does own the trademark, the court found that the two companies operate in different industries and that the trademark was not infringed upon as a result.

Needless to say, RIM was quite pleased with the outcome. According to RIM spokeswoman Tenille Kennedy: “We are pleased that the Federal Court of Canada sided with RIM and confirmed that RIM’s use of BBM does not infringe the trademark rights of BBM Canada as they had alleged.”

For its part, BBM Canada has not yet decided whether it will appeal the ruling or not.

Read more: The Globe and Mail

Rumour: Taller iPhone 5 display panel caught on video

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May 312012

First it was leaked part images and schematics showing a taller iPhone. Now a short video by Japanese site Macotakara compares the iPhone 4S to the front-panel of the alleged next generation iPhone. The display comes in at 4.07-inch, lending credence to past rumours suggesting a larger 4-inch display. The video seems to confirm that the new iPhone will be as wide as the current one but longer.

Rumoured iPhone 5 front display casing

The video also shows that the FaceTime camera has been centered and moved above the earpiece.

While there is nothing new here, it is another piece of evidence that points to what the next iPhone may look like.

Read more: Macotakara (in Japanese) [Google translation]

Windows 8 Release Preview now available for download

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May 312012

Microsoft WindowsSlightly ahead of schedule, Microsoft today announced Microsoft the availability of the Windows 8 Release Preview. It is the final pre-release and will be followed up by the final version likely this fall (perhaps in October). It includes Windows 8, Internet Explorer 10, new Windows 8 apps for connecting to Hotmail, SkyDrive, and Messenger (and many more), and hundreds of additional apps in the Windows Store.

It’s Windows reimagined and reinvented from a solid core of Windows 7 speed and reliability. It’s an all-new touch interface. It’s a new Windows for new devices. And it’s easy to try now—whether you’re installing it for the first time, or moving from Windows 8 Consumer Preview.

For Microsoft, the next step is getting the release ready for RTM (Release to Manufacturing) when it will release Windows 8 to its PC manufacturing partners. It expects to do so “in about 2 months” with a goal of having PCs running both Windows 8 and Windows RT available for the holidays.

The Windows 8 Release Preview is a free download available in 14 languages.

Read more: Windows 8 Release Preview (Source: Microsoft)

ASUS launches two more Computex teaser videos

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May 312012

ASUS launched a teaser video called “The Incredible Transformations” earlier this week. Continuing its buildup to next week’s Computex tradeshow, it today launched two new videos that reveal ever so little more. The first one, called “All-in-One is No Longer In One,” shows the Windows and Android logos appear on water drops that just separated. The second, called “When Two Sides Unite,” is more cryptic but still refers to a coming together of sorts.

How ASUS will possibly bring Android and Windows together remains to be seen. Could it be as simple as future Transformer tablets coming in a choice of configurations? Or could future tablets dual-boot?

Computex kicks off on June 4th so we should know then (if rumours don’t reveal all before).

Read more: Android and Me

CBC Music launches streaming music Android app

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May 312012

CBC today launched its Android app for its streaming CBC Music service.

The new app gives Android device users immediate access to CBC Music wherever they are. With the touch of an icon, Android users can enjoy the best in Canadian and international music through 40 genre-specific web radio stations as well as CBC Radio 2 and CBC Radio 3.

CBC Music app for Android

Something to keep in mind when on the go: CBC Music streams its content at 128kbps. An hour of streaming will use up about 60MB of data (roughly 1MB per minute).

While an iOS version already exists, a BlackBerry mobile version appears unlikely at this time: “For Blackberry mobile phone users, we hope to have a Blackberry solution in the future, but no app is imminent.” The full CBC Music experience at CBCMusic.ca is recommended for PlayBook tablet users.

Read more: Google Play

Google Translate for Android updated with new UI

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May 312012

Google today released an update for Google Translate for Android. The main enhancement is a new design with a new icon and the Holo theme that Google introduced with Android 4.0. Also included are:

  • Esperanto translation
  • Many new text to speech languages

Google Translate now supports text translation between 64 languages, speaking text translations in 17 languages, and translations spoken back to you in 40 languages.

Google Translate for Android

Google’s machine-driven translation still leaves something to be desired but at least the app is now easier to use.

Read more: Google Play

Samsung GALAXY S III uses Corning Gorilla Glass 2

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May 312012

Samsung Galaxy S IIICorning first unveiled its Corning Gorilla Glass 2 earlier this year at CES 2012. Corning says that it is as tough and resistant to scratches as the original Gorilla Glass but is up to 20 percent thinner. Corning today confirmed that its latest cover glass has been “designed into the new Samsung GALAXY S III smartphone.” According to Haeng-Hee (HH) Lee, president and general manager of Corning Korea Company, Ltd.:

“We are excited about the introduction of Corning Gorilla Glass 2 because it provides device makers with numerous design benefits without sacrificing toughness. With Corning Gorilla Glass 2, Samsung GALAXY S III customers will enjoy an enhanced smartphone experience.”

30 major brands use Corning’s Gorilla Glass (1 and 2) in some 750 devices, spanning over 750 million units worldwide. That figure is sure to climb even more if the Samsung Galaxy S III’s pre-orders are any indication.

Read more: Corning

Google Play Store now offering Galaxy Nexus accessories

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May 302012

Google today announced via Google+ that it is now offering accessories for the Galaxy Nexus through its Google Play store. Only three accessories are offered so far: A vehicle dock, the HDMI Portrait Desktop Dock, and the Desktop Dock with Pogo Pin.

Galaxy Nexus accessory on sale on Google Play

Accessories only support the HSPA+ version of the Galaxy Nexus (the same one that is sold on Play).

Like the Galaxy Nexus, the accessories are only available in the U.S. although Google has indicated that it will expand sales to other countries in the future.

Read more: Google Play (Source: Google+)

Rumour: Leaked schematics and parts confirm larger display for iPhone 5

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May 302012

Yesterday, alleged images of the next iPhone’s backplate and other parts leaked online courtesy of 9to5Mac. They revealed a number of changes that have been hinted at by previous rumours. Their sources also added that new iPhone will be taller but just as wide as the current iPhone 4S (again supporting earlier rumours).

Among the changes spotted thanks to the images are modified speaker grills, a smaller dock connector, and a repositioned FaceTime camera and headphone jack. The former is now above the ear speaker while the latter has moved to the bottom of the device. A large portion of the back cover is metal rather than all glass.

Rumoured Apple iPhone 5 case

Yesterday’s images were followed today by schematics that give them some credence. The technical drawings also show a larger display opening, again suggesting a 4-inch display. They also show the FaceTime camera now sitting above the ear speaker instead of next to it.

Rumoured Apple iPhone 5 schematics

Click for larger image

Apple is expected to unveil its newest iPhone this fall. It is also expected to sport a faster processor, LTE connectivity and iOS 6.

Read more: 9to5Mac (iPhone parts) and 9to5Mac (iPhone schematics)

Samsung Canada confirms June 20th launch for Galaxy S III

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May 302012

Samsung Galaxy S IIISamsung Canada today confirmed that the Samsung Galaxy S III will launch in Canada on June 20th. Two models will be offered with the SGH-i747 model headed to Bell Mobility, Virgin Mobile, SaskTel, TELUS and Rogers Wireless and the SGH-iT999 model to be available from Vidéotron, Wind and Mobilicity.

“We are very excited to bring the highly anticipated GALAXY S III to Canadians so they can experience firsthand, the power, performance and passion that Samsung is known for,” said Paul Brannen, Vice President, Enterprise Business Group, Samsung Canada. “This next generation of the GALAXY S series is sleek and stylish, and offers users features that promote sharing, and are intuitive and powerful, allowing Canadians to enjoy a more human experience with their smartphone.”

The two Canadian variants will both ship with the 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chipset rather than the 1.4GHz quad-core Samsung Exynos that the international version will sport. On the flip side, both models will sport 2GB of RAM! Here are the full Canadian specifications:

  • Processor: 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4
  • Operating system: Google Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
  • Data connectivity (SGH-i747): LTE
  • Data connectivity (SGH-iT999): HSPA+ 42Mbps
  • Other connectivity: GPS/GLONASS, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0(LE), NFC, DLNA
  • Display: 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED (1280×720)
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Memory: 2GB RAM
  • Storage: 16 or 32GB on SGH-i747 / 16GB only on SGH-iT999 and microSD cards up to 32GB
  • Rear-facing camera: 8MP with LED flash, 1ms shutter lag, and ‘Burst shot’ mode
  • Front-facing camera: 1.9MP
  • Battery: 2,100mAh
  • Dimensions / weight: 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6 millimeters / 133 grams
  • Colours: Pebble Blue, Marble White

Pricing will fall in the CA$150 range with a three-year contract.

Read more: Samsung Canada

TELUS now taking Samsung Galaxy S III pre-orders

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May 302012

TELUS has begun to take pre-orders for the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S III. Both the 16GB and 32GB models are available.

Samsung Galaxy S III TELUS pre-orders

TELUS will offer the 16GB Samsung Galaxy S III for CA$159.99 on a three-year contract while the 32GB model will sell for CA$209.99, again with a three-year contract.

TELUS does not indicate when the Samsung Galaxy S III will launch but the offer will last only until June 15th or “while quantities last.”

Read more: TELUS

Sony Mobile launches water resistant Xperia go and Xperia acro S

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May 302012

Sony Mobile today announced two new water resistant smartphones, the Xperia go (to be known as the Xperia advance in the U.S.) and Xperia acro S. Both come with extra durability and water resistance with scratch resistant mineral glass displays and protection against dust and water immersion that meets industry standard IP ratings (International Protection).

Industry research demonstrates that consumers consider durability and water resistance as important features when purchasing a smartphone. For example, a study conducted in Japan by Mobile Marketing Data Labo highlighted water resistance in the top three most important features for smartphone buyers. In a recent poll on Sony Mobile’s Facebook community more than a third of participants stated durability as the most important feature when choosing a smartphone.

Continue reading »

Best Buy Canada reveals Samsung Galaxy S III three-year contract pricing

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May 302012

Best Buy Canada has posted some pricing information about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S III. It lists three-year contract pricing for Rogers, SaskTel, and TELUS for the 16GB version in either Marble White or Pebble Blue. It does not have any availability details to go with the pricing.

Best Buy pricing for Samsung Galaxy S III

If these prices hold until the release date, Rogers will offer it for the lowest at CA$149.99. TELUS will offer it for CA$159.99 while SaskTel will come in at CA$169.99. Bell and Virgin Mobile pre-orders are also available for CA$50.00 with no indication of what their three-year pricing will be.

No-contract pricing has not been revealed yet. There is some conjecture that it will come in around the CA$650 mark.

All pricing details may get clarified later today if carriers make the expected announcements for a June 20th launch.

Read more: Best Buy Canada (Source: Mobile Syrup)

Samsung Galaxy S III to launch in Canada on June 20th

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May 302012

At least one Canadian carrier will launch the Samsung Galaxy S III on June 20th (as rumours had suggested). Vidéotron today put up a sign-up page on its website that confirms the launch date.

Videotron Samsung Galaxy S III launch date

Rogers Wireless has launched a countdown for the Samsung Galaxy S III indicating that it is “Coming Soon to Rogers.” The countdown (which stands at just over three hours as I write this) is likely marking when Rogers will start taking pre-orders (12:00 ET). Then again, maybe it is also counting down to an earlier than expected launch.

There should be lots of Canadian Samsung Galaxy S III news today as other carriers reveal their plans!

Read more: Vidéotron and Rogers (Source: Mobile Syrup)

“Google Asus Nexus 7” tablet spotted on benchmark site

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May 292012

The rumoured Google Nexus tablet appears to have been caught on Rightware’s BaseMark benchmark test results website. Identified as the Google Asus Nexus 7, it slots in at 11th, promising a decently powerful tablet. Along with the name and a few specifications, Android Police have obtained a few additional details. The details line up quite well with the latest rumours.

Rumoured Google ASUS Nexus 7 tablet gets benchmarked

Specifications include a 1.3GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor, an HD (1280×768) display (7-inches based on past rumours and the tablet name here), and Android 4.1. The build number is JRN51B with the J identifying Jelly Bean. If accurate, Jelly Bean will not carry version 5.0 as widely expected but 4.1 instead.

The codename of the device, Grouper, gives further credence that this is an Android device. A number of past Android devices have been named after fish, For example, the G1 was codenamed Trout, the XOOM was known as both Wingray and Stingray (for its variants) and the Nexus One was Mahi-Mahi.

Google is widely expected to unveil its Nexus tablet next month at Google I/O. Attendees may also be given one at the event.

Read more: Rightware (Source: Android Police)