gigaset-me

Smartphones made by little known manufacturers are usually not worth the risk, but once in a blue moon an outstanding one will appear. Today we are taking a look at three of them – the Gigaset ME, ME Pure and ME Pro. This company may be a complete stranger to most of us, but they have built some phones that can easily compete with the biggest players in the industry.

The ME series touts a sleek design, powerful specs and a fair (though not amazing) prices. Their plan is to build an experience with no compromises. Did they achieve it? Let’s look into the details and find out!

Gigaset ME

We can say the Gigaset ME is the star player here. It’s a powerful phone, but doesn’t go too far. Its sleek body is gorgeous, as it is put together with premium materials like stainless steel, aluminum alloy and Corning Gorilla Glass. It looks good and feels even better.

Inside you will find a 5-inch 1080p display, a powerful 1.8 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, an Adreno 430 GPU, 32 GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot (supports up to 128 GB), a 16 MP rear camera, an 8 MP front shooter, a 3000 mAh battery and a USB Type-C port. It also has a heart rate scanner, a pedometer, a UV sensor and a fingerprint reader. This phone is missing nothing!

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Gigaset ME Pure

The ME Pure is not as impressive, but it should be an enticing deal for those looking to get a more affordable handset. It’s pretty much the same, except for a few downgrades. It only comes with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal storage. The processor was also downgraded to a Snapdragon 615, and it sports a lower resolution 13 MP rear camera. But maybe you will be fine with those sacrifices when you realize battery life is better, as this phone has 3320 mAh of juice.

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Gigaset ME Pure (Left) / Gigaset ME Pro (right)

Gigaset ME Pro

Now, let’s talk about the big guy in the room. The Gigaset ME Pro is one hell of a smartphone. Not only is it bigger at 5.5 inches, but this thing comes with a whopping 5 GB of RAM and a 4000 mAh battery. That is aside from all the components you can also find in the regular ME, including the Snapdragon 810 chipset.

Price and availability

Want in? Sadly, we can’t get all these smartphones right off the bat, or everywhere. The Gigaset ME is available in the UK, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, France, Belgium, Italy, Turkey, Poland and Spain for 469 Euros. Meanwhile the ME Pure and ME Pro will launch later this year at 349 Euros and 549 Euros, relatively.

Are you buying? I woulddefinitely consider that Gigaset ME Pro! The only issue is the uncertainty of this phone ever making it to the USA. Would you want it to?

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best CyanogenMod themes (by developer)

CyanogenMod continues to be the most popular third-party Android ROM in the world, so you can be sure they are trying to keep their software as fresh as possible. This does warrant plenty of software upgrades a year. Today we are here to welcome a few stable releases to CyanogenMod; these would be versions 11.0, 12.0 and 12.1.

What are these software updates all about? The most important of the bunch is likely the 12.1 release, which marks the first time the company launches an Android 5.1.1 build. There’s plenty of improvements to be had. These upgrades include changes to the Settings menus, as well as added features like ‘double-tap to wake’ and ‘lift to wake’. Read all about these new capabilities here.

cyanogen 12 lollipop

On the other hand, the new CyanogenMod 11.0 and 12.0 releases are all about security. These updates are said to include patches to vulnerabilities, including those which affect Stagefright. This Stagefright craze has everyone going nuts over the possibility of attackers gaining control of our devices with simple MMS messages. It definitely didn’t help that the vulnerability affected 95% of all Android smartphones. Now CyanogenMod users can be at ease.

Don’t go trying to download and install these software updates quite yet, though. Pay close attention to the CyanogenMod release versions. Make sure everything is compatible. And remember, not every CyanogenMod-supported device can take advantage of this software right away. Only those marked as “Good to go” by the maintainer are… well, good to go.

CyanogenMod Void Warranty

There’s likely no longer a need to mention this, but here we go: keep in mind rooting and installing third-party ROMs may void your warranty and/or harm your device. Be careful, do your research and keep reminding yourself that if something bad is to happen, all responsibility falls on you.

With that out of the way, here’s the link to the Downloads page; go get your new software!

Download CyanogenMod software here!

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pokemon-shuffle-mobile-launch-169

Fans have been begging for a Pokemon game to make it to mobile for years. Today we can finally report that a release is here, but it’s definitely not what you were hoping for. Nevertheless, it should be a fun title for your casual gaming sessions. It’s also worth mentioning that it’s not only the first Pokemon game to officially hit mobile devices, it’s also the first title to be ported from Nintendo consoles to mobile!

So, what is this Pokemon Shuffle all about? You will understand the game right away, as it is really nothing new. In essence, it’s the same as Bejeweled (or Candy Crush)… except with Pokemon faces instead of jewels or candy.

Your goal is to solve puzzles by matching identical Pokemon figures. You get a limited amount of moves, as well as lives. Each game costs one life, which is regenerated in 30 minutes. Of course, you can also buy game currency via in-app purchases, which can help you buy power-ups and speed up your advancement.

Admittedly, this is not really a Pokemon game. It’s just using the franchise’s image to try and get more users. Regardless, it’s still fun, and it represents something much larger. Nintendo is entering the mobile market and this happens to be one of the first steps into this transition. More is coming, and maybe even actual Pokemon games are to follow. Not to mention other amazingly popular franchises like Zelda, Mario Bros and more.

pokemon-shuffle

Good things are to come, guys! Just let this game be a good reminder of that. Also, who doesn’t like matching figures?! Go download Pokemon Shuffle from the Google Play Store!

Download Pokemon Shuffle from the Google Play Store!

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Sony-Xperia-Z5-family_1

We are gearing up for the IFA 2015 craze and Sony is expected to announce some of the most important devices at the event. Rumors have been going nuts about three devices coming from the Japanese manufacturer – the Sony Xperia Z5, Z5 Compact and Z5 Premium. We know you have already seen plenty of leaks, but there’s never too much, right?

The announcement of these devices is expected to be tomorrow, and we have what may be the last look at these three handsets before Sony takes the stage in Berlin. The leak offers multiple images, showcasing variable angles from all Sony Xperia Z5 iterations.

Sony-Xperia-Z5-family_2

In all honesty, there is no remarkable aspects we haven’t seen before. On the back we can still see that classic, clean design with the word “Sony” engraved right in the middle. A tiny NFC logo is included above the branding, and there’s a 23 MP in the top-left corner. On the front we have the usual rectangular black slab look Sony has become so well-known for. Additionally, we can find the power button on the right side of all handsets (which doubles as a fingerprint reader), as well as the volume rocker and a dedicated camera button.

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Otherwise, this is nothing but another close look at the phones! There’s so much left to learn about these handsets. We know the Xperia Z5 should have a 5.2-inch 1080p display, while the Compact will settle with a 4-inch 720p panel. Meanwhile, the Premium version takes things up a notch with a larger 5.5-inch screen. But get this – the largest of these phones is rumored to be the very first phone to come with a 4K resolution display. That would be 4096 x 2160 pixels!

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Hey, if you thought QHD (2560x1440p) was already pushing it, you will definitely be surprised by Sony’s new Premium handset. Do take all of this with a grain of salt, though, as these are still all rumors. By the way, we have plenty of other murmurs in our Xperia Z5 rumor roundup. We will also have all the official details up as soon as possible, so keep it tuned to our home page for all your IFA 2015 news!

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An Intel Skylake chip (its architecture is in the background)

To say that Intel has been dragging out the launch of its Skylake-based processors would be an understatement when it didn’t even reveal full details after it started shipping the first CPUs. Most of that secrecy is coming to an end today, however, as the semiconductor giant is officially launching the wider 6th-generation Core family. You’ll soon see mainstream Core i3, i5 and i7 chips in desktops and laptops, as well as updated Core M processors in ultraportables, convertible PCs and tablets. As you’ll see in a minute, though, this isn’t just a straightforward refresh. Slideshow-316076

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Tags: 6thgeneration, core, corei3, corei5, corei7, corem, corem3, corem5, corem7, cpu, desktop, ifa2015, intel, iris, irispro, laptop, processor, skylake, tablet, thunderbolt3, usbtype-c, video, xeon

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A report has revealed that Google has dropped plans of launching a highly invasive, location-based service that would track a user and push notifications to their device accordingly. Read more…

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Samsung Gear S2 shoot crop

Samsung’s Gear S2 smartwatch, previously referred to as Project Orbis or the Gear A, has finally been formally announced. Two main models will be released, the Gear S2 and the Gear S2 Classic to allow consumers more choice in what they wear. There will also be cellular models that can make use of 3G network services, and according to a report by SamMobile, all four major U.S. carriers will sell them.

While AT&T and Sprint have yet to actually post their plans, both Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile have already taken to Twitter to tell the world what is in store for their stores:

Samsung Gear S2 (both Bluetooth & 3G connected models) will be avail from Verizon. Availability & pricing will be announced at a later date

— Verizon News (@VerizonNews) August 31, 2015

Note that Verizon in particular, mentions selling a “Bluetooth” model – which probably refers to the Wi-Fi only variant – thus indicating even greater choice will be provided to shoppers of Big Red.

You know your wrist wants it. Be there when the #SamsungGearS2 hits the Un-carrier this fall! pic.twitter.com/jNIaSPoI8h

— T-Mobile (@TMobile) August 31, 2015

The data dilemma

Details are still murky at this stage: will any of the four carriers sell the Gear S2 Classic, or only the standard model? Will Verizon be the only one to offer a non-3G enabled model?

The data connectivity issue is, in and of itself, a dilemma as it will inevitably require a separate contract. With the Gear S last year, Samsung included not just mobile data service, but also support for voice calls, making a perfect new contract pitch for carriers to market.

Reports that the Gear S2 will include an eSIM arguably make the situation all the more complicated, as save for the Verizon Gear S last year (which featured an embedded SIM) this will prevent customers from buying the device and using it on other carriers. It will also prevent users who have an existing second line from inserting the SIM into the Gear S2.

Samsung Gear S2 b

The Gear S2 will apparently make use of an embedded eSIM.

 

There is also the simple matter that Samsung has once again chosen to use 3G network infrastructure whereas rival LG has offered an LTE variant of its Watch Urbane in Korea for some time now.

Pricing and availability

Nothing is yet known as to when the devices will be available for purchase other than a vague “fall” target, or how much they will retail for. Given the technology involved, and based on past pricing, it wouldn’t be unrealistic to assume the Gear S2 (or Gear S2 Classic) will land somewhere in the ballpark of $300-400.

Samsung Gear S2 classic c

Will the Gear S2 Classic (pictured) make its way to carriers as well?

We expect more information to be provided when IFA begins later this week. Until then, please feel free to leave us your thoughts on the device and its potential: could this be the first smartwatch you purchase or has Samsung limited its appeal by once again opting for Tizen instead of Android Wear? Do these products actually have the potential to reverse the weardown of consumer interest in wearables?

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lg-g4-color-comparison-aa-9-of-11

Still worried about the Stagefright vulnerability that could grant attackers control over your device with a simple MMS message? This issue left 95% of all Android users susceptible to attacks, but carriers and manufacturers have been quick to patch it up. It’s taking some companies more time than others, though.

Life is finally good again fore LG G4 users on AT&T. The carrier has started pushing out the Stagefright patch, taking many of you back to digital safety. It comes in the form of an OTA software update and seems to feature no other extra improvements.

lg g4 review aa (24 of 34)

All you need is enough battery life to go through the process and a stable WiFi connection for downloading the data. Got that set up? Simply wait for the upgrade notification to show up. You can also go ahead and check for updates in the settings, just in case the device is taking a little longer than it should. Do keep in mind these updates tend to roll out periodically, though, so try not to smash your screen.

Once all is said and done, you should be left with Android 5.1 Lollipop on software version H81010l. The file is 46.7 MB, so make sure you have enough space too. Enjoy your peace of mind!

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Google-IO-2013 Google Maps 6 logo 1600 aa

The Google Maps team seems to be pretty busy lately. It has been only about a week since version 9.13 hit the Play Store, and today we are already starting to see v9.14 hitting Android smartphones. The latest update to Maps brings forth a couple main changes to the application. A revamped interface will help you better plan your trips, and the new ‘Popular times’ chart will keep you posted on the best times to hit up your destination of choice.

Let’s start off with the new Navigation UI, shall we? The design of said section is likely the biggest change we have seen coming to the Google Maps app in a while. Upon requesting a route, the user will be presented with a large map, as opposed to the small thumbnail that really didn’t help much in the past. The different modes of transportation have been moved right below the location fields, making them more accessible and informative, as they also show the travel time without having to access each option.

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Those who need to access more details about trips will also enjoy the new pull-up function, which can be accessed from the route query. This section will display information on toll roads, elevation, accidents, turn-by-turn details and more. Overall, the application has been redesigned to leave more significant information within closer reach.

Screenshot_2015-08-31-17-21-35Planning a trip is not only about routes or immediate traffic data, though. Sometimes you want to take your drive at a later time, and this is what the new feature ‘Popular times’ is all about. Google can predict how busy a location will get depending on the time, taking into account previous data from their servers. Just hit up the business details card and a chart showing you all the details will show up.

Want to grab the new app? Remember these updates usually roll out periodically, so it may not show up for you just yet. Those really itching to test out the new features can download the APK file here. Otherwise, just wait around and hit the comments to let us know what you think about this update. Will either of these improvements ease your specific traveling woes?

Download Google Maps from the Play Store

 

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t3vkEai-hks
August has come and gone and with it marks the beginning of the end of the season. It also left us with a bunch of awesome new Android apps and games! Let’s take a quick look at the best ones released this last month.


fallout shelter new Android Apps WeeklyFallout Shelter

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Fallout Shelter turned a lot of heads when it was released on iOS back at E3 2015 and turned even more once it was released on Android. It’s a sim builder where you must create a Vault for survivors and help coax the new community into thriving. It comes packed with things to do including building rooms, exploring the wasteland, and even making babies. There is plenty of that classic Fallout quirkiness to make it feel authentic.
Get it now on Google Play!


final fantasy portal app new Android Apps WeeklyFinal Fantasy Portal App

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Fans of the Final Fantasy series got a new application this last month that lets them stay up to date on the latest Final Fantasy news. On top of that, the app also includes the Triple Triad card game from Final Fantasy VIII with an updated deck that allows you to collect characters from most games in the series. You can also play the original Final Fantasy right from the application. It’s about as good as it gets for a portal app.
Get it now on Google Play!
Final Fantasy Portal App new Android Apps Weekly


fishbrain Android new Apps WeeklyFishBrain

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
FishBrain is an application developed specifically for those who like to go fishing. It’s a crowd sourced application which means other people using the app are the ones providing the data and you can see what fish are biting, where they’re being caught, and there is even a built-in competition where you can climb leaderboards in your favorite fishing spots. It’s a fun little app for anglers and it’s free to download.
Get it now on Google Play!


Focus Android new Apps WeeklyFocus

[Price: Free / $2.79]
Focus is a new gallery application with a lot of fun features. It includes an extensive tagging system that allows you to organize and easily find your photos. You can also sort by date and it comes with gif support along with support for pretty much any other image. If you go premium, you have even more organization and security features, a dark theme, and much more. It’s a powerful app with a light touch and it’s easy to use.
Get it now on Google Play!


Framed new Android Apps WeeklyFramed

[Price: $0.99]
Framed is a new puzzle game out of Noodlecake Studios and it is actually really fun. The premise is you have a bunch of movie panels that play short video clips. Your job is to arrange them in their logical order so that the right actions happen. If you do, you can advance and if not then you fail the level. It also comes with a decent soundtrack, plenty of game play, and a cheap price tag. It’s definitely a different kind of puzzle game.
Get it now on Google Play!


Lara Croft GO Android Apps WeeklyLara Croft GO

[Price: $4.99]
Lara Croft GO is a new puzzle game out of Square Enix where you raid abandoned ruins as the famous Lara Croft. It’s a board-game style puzzler where you must move around, solve puzzles, find hidden items, and kill bad guys to continue on to the next level. It’s beautifully designed, easy to play, and it does feel a bit like a Tomb Raider game. It’s a bit expensive for how short it is, but it is a very well executed game.
Get it now on Google Play!


mirrativ best new android apps and games from august 2015Mirrativ

[Price: Free]
Mirrativ is a brand new application that allows you to broadcast pretty much anything on your device to the world. Before, there were ways to do it with games and broadcasting your camera like Periscope. This allows you to stream anything on your phone and allows people to watch and comment. It’s a unique premise but it is in beta so expect some bugs. It’s also only usable by devices running Android 5.0 or higher.
Get it now on Google Play!


pac man 256 new Android Apps WeeklyPac-Man 256

[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Pac-Man 256 is an infinite runner version of the classic Pacman game. However, unlike most bastardizations where the infinite runner aspect makes the game feel hollow, Pac-Man 256 actually still feels like Pac-Man. You still deal with ghosts and you must eat pellets to increase your score, but now you have to do it fast enough to not die. It’s surprisingly good for a Freemium game and worth checking out.
Get it now on Google Play!


mozilla webmaker new Android Apps WeeklyWebmaker

[Price: Free]
Mozilla quietly released an application earlier this month called Webmaker. This nifty little application allows you to create web pages right from your device. You don’t need a lot of web design experience although from what I’ve seen, a little HTML and CSS knowledge certainly doesn’t hurt. The app is also open source which is always a good thing and comes with a variety of templates to play with. It’s also totally free.
Get it now on Google Play!
mozilla webmaker new Android Apps Weekly


YouTube Gaming new Android Apps WeeklyYouTube Gaming

[Price: Free]
Last and certainly not least this month is YouTube Gaming. Google’s competitor to Twitch is now in the wild and the accompanying app is made to help people find the channels and games they want to watch. It’s a totally free application and it’s easy enough to use. It also comes with notifications to let you know when live streams are starting, chat rooms, and a lot more. It’s going to be fun and we’ll be there very soon.
Get it now on Google Play!


Wrap up

If we missed any great new Android apps or games, tell us about them in the comments!

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