Posts by Stephen Schenck

Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits Read more about Stephen Schenck!

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    Yesterday Samsung brought us news that something was about to happen with its Exynos lineup of SoCs. We popped-on our speculation caps (patent pending) and took a few stabs at working out what Samsung might have in store for us today. Some new low-power offerings? News about 64-bit components? As it turns out, all those guesses missed the mark, but what we got is still pretty noteworthy in its own right, as Samsung unveils its Exynos ModAP chip with integrated LTE radio. Remember all the multiple hardware configurations we've come to expect from Samsung phones, with a few key version ...

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    Back in March, OnePlus gave us hope that the company's One might be the next Moto X of sorts, giving users a fair degree of customization through some alternate backplates featuring (for phones, at least) pretty exotic materials. Sure, the sandstone finish on currently available One handsets isn't real sandstone, but a few of the others OnePlus teased as part of its StyleSwap offerings were going to be the real deal: bamboo, Kevlar, and even denim. Only problem is, we've yet to see them arrive. Well, at least one could be right around the corner, as OnePlus drops a new teaser. Considering ...

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    Slowly but surely, LG has been releasing details about the latest additions to its Android tablet lineup. Back in May it first announced the G Pad 7.0, 8.0, and 10.1, following the introduction of the G Pad 8.3 last summer. While it only had some very basic descriptions of the hardware to offer at first, it followed that news up in June with additional details, like the somewhat disappointing 1280 x 800 resolution all three tablets share. And while that helped complete the hardware picture, LG still wasn't sharing all the specifics when it came to the start of sales, telling us it would ...

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    Satya Nadella is finishing out his first six months as CEO of Microsoft, a time that's saw the company already make some big steps in mobile, like the unexpected release of the Surface Pro 3 or the completion of the Nokia Devices & Services acquisition. As the company heads into fiscal year 2015, Nadella is addressing his troops via staff-wide email, and spells-out a modified core vision for the company, impacting its focus on hardware. At least, Microsoft used to describe itself as a “devices and services” company, but Nadella's not satisfied with how that reflects its current ...

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    The trajectory of Motorola's work on wearables is pretty transparent for the immediate future: the Moto 360 is very much happening, and right now it's just a matter of waiting for sales to begin. But while the company has been quite forthcoming with its smartwatch plans, that hasn't been the case with its phones. Instead, we've been poring through leaks and rumors trying to work out what's going on with this X+1 Moto X successor. While there's been no shortage of raw info, it's been tricky to work out just what's really the X+1, and what might be other upcoming Motorola Androids. We've got ...

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    Android Wear is here in full force, following the arrival of LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live hardware. We've already been giving both smartwatches a spin, as well as checking out some of the new software that's been coming in with the addition of Wear-specific features. While both these watches should keep us busy for some time to come, their presence isn't being enjoyed without a little lingering disappointment: Google I/O came and went without the start of sales for the Moto 360. Rumors have suggested that Motorola might be holding back until the Moto X+1 is ready to launch, so as to ...

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    Cloud storage has already made securing the data on your smartphone or tablet hugely more convenient than manual device backups; instead of tethering your phone to a computer and copying its contents every so often, your files can just safely live out in the aether. That works fine for individual documents, but what about something a little more comprehensive? A full backup of your device's data, stored remotely, ready for you to restore its contents (all at once or piecemeal) or even transfer them to a new device at your command? Google may be working on enhancing its current backup ...

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    If smartwatches really want to catch the public's eye, they need to prove to us that they're genuinely useful pieces of hardware worth adding to our lives: giving us something we didn't have before. For some smartphone users, the convenience of wrist-borne notifications may very well be enough, while others of us are waiting to see what additional capabilities arrive. With Android Wear smartwatches now live, developers are already delivering updates for apps that bring new Wear components. Google's getting in on that action itself, and today releases a new Camera app that lets Wear devices ...

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    It's a been a while now since we've had an announcement about new Exynos SoCs from Samsung. Back at MWC we were expecting the company to reveal a series of new 64-bit chips, but instead got the 5422 Octa and 5260 Hexa: interesting chips, sure, especially that six-core configuration, just not the specific components we were hoping to see. But now Samsung's once again teasing the arrival of forthcoming Exynos news, with some sort of statement set to land tomorrow. We're not picking up on anything particularly 64-bit about the image above, distributed as part of Samsung's teaser, and instead ...

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    The idea that Samsung's next-gen Galaxy Note phablet will be powered by a 64-bit chip is pretty far from controversial at this point. We know Samsung's been pursuing 64-bit tech, and have seen evidence pointing to just such a 64-bit Exynos in testing. We've even specifically checked out the 64-bit Exynos 5433 attached to Note 4 leaks. So when @evleaks chimed-in early this morning that the Note 4 will be a 64-bit device, it was a pretty easy rumor to accept. What's possibly more interesting, though, and certainly far more head-scratching, is the puzzling analogy that came alongside it: The ...

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    New hardware destined for Verizon has found itself at the center of quite of stories we've brought you lately. For instance, there was that leak earlier this week that sure seemed to reveal Verizon's plans to train staff on an incoming Sony Xperia Z2. We've also been on the lookout for news of the start of Verizon LG G3 sales, as all three other major carriers have already announced their plans. There's still nothing official just yet, but today a series of Verizon rumors attempts to shed some light on what's just about to go down at big red. Word is that Verizon will announce the start of ...

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    LG sure seems interested in adding some new members to the LG G3 family, and just last week we saw some images of the G3 Beat for China. But was that five-inch handset the “G3 Mini” we'd been talking about, or a fully separate G3 spin-off? We're still looking for an answer there, but even with that question open-ended, new details on LG's plans continue to arrive, and today we check out a leak that claims to reveal the LG G3S. According to @evleaks, this is the device we've been calling the G3 Mini, and at least the one we're looking at here will be have dual SIM support – that seems ...

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    What's next for Google's tablet aspirations? We're nearly a year removed from the launch of the second-gen Nexus 7, and it's still uncertain where Google intends to go from here. Rumors have long talked about the possibilities of a Nexus 8 or Nexus 9, and while a fair amount of circumstantial evidence has accompanied those theories, it's been notoriously difficult to talk with much certainty about the next Nexus tablet. That's what makes this latest find all the more interesting, as it seems to state with crystal clarity that a Nexus 8 in in the cards – but should we be a bit critical of ...

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    Early last week we got to check out a couple components form unreleased Sony handsets, which sources claimed to belong to upcoming Xperia Z3 and Xperia Z3 Compact models. It wasn't a lot to go on, but Sony did move quite swiftly from the Z1 to the Z2, so it's not crazy to think that we should already be talking about plans for the arrival of a Z3. Later, we saw a leak give us a little hardware insight into the Z3 Compact, but it didn't help us narrow down Sony's possible launch window any. Today, though, we finally start closing in on when this hardware might arrive, as a new carrier leak ...

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    The feeling of change coming to Google's lineup of Play edition devices has been almost palpable these past couple months. There was that brief hint of a GPe Galaxy S5 back in April, and then last month we noticed half of the six devices making up the series going out of stock, no longer up for purchase. Were new models just about to arrive? Was Google ready to kill-off Play editions entirely in favor of Android Silver or some other new effort? We're still not sure just where this is all headed, but this evening we've witnessed a pretty big shift occurring, as those three out-of-stock ...

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