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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    Tomorrow Apple begins in-store sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Shoppers are already lined up to get their shot at buying both models, and earlier this week we checked out some leaked docs that tried to offer some insight into Apple's plans for the day. They discussed strategies for dealing with inventory, including how much hardware Apple would be reserving for inevitable returns, but one thing we didn't hear about the time was the 6/6 Plus breakdown; just many of which model would Apple have on-hand in stores? Some last-minute check-ins with Apple retail locations suggests that ...

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    Apple's iOS 8 has been out for a day now. And understandably, plenty of iOS users are flocking to update their hardware to this very latest version of Apple's mobile operating system. But not everyone's quite so keen to be an early adopter, and traffic stats from a number of trackers are revealing a pattern, showing far slower iOS 8 adoption than we saw last year with the release of iOS 7. Obviously, a lot of factors are going to affect the timetable by which an Apple user upgrades to a new version of iOS – maybe they're worried about early bugs and are waiting for Apple to iron-out any ...

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    It's pretty obvious at this point that a new Motorola Droid is coming to Verizon. The DroidLanding Twitter account went active earlier this month, and FCC docs have helped offer some evidence to back up rumors about the device we've been calling the Motorola Quark, which may launch as the Droid Turbo. But just when could we expect this puppy to go official? Based on the timing of last year's Droid launches in comparison to DroidLanding activity, we guessed that an October launch might be likely, and now that idea gets some new support. CNET claims to have heard from its sources that an ...

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    With news of Galaxy Note 4 pre-orders about to open, we've understandably got Samsung's latest phablets on our mind. The statements that have been coming in from carriers all day are finally confirming Note 4 pricing, completing our picture of the phone's launch. But as those questions are answered, we find ourselves searching for similar details concerning the Note Edge, and at the moment official info is hard to come by. But what little we have been able to verify is beginning to reveal that not everyone will be able to check out Samsung's unique wrap-around display before the year's ...

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    Right now, if you want to place an order for the new Moto X, you can do so through the Moto Maker, getting the phone on-contract with AT&T or going for the unlocked GSM edition, which also supports T-Mobile. And we know that Verizon's going to be offering the phone too, even if its own pre-orders have yet to begin. Last year, with the first Moto X, shoppers had their pick of carriers, with Sprint, US Cellular, and Republic Wireless rounding-out the offerings. We might have assumed that we'd eventually see the Moto X enjoy similarly broad carrier support, but that may not be the case ...

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    Yesterday brought some disappointing news for OnePlus fans, as the company announced that it would be ending its plans to deliver interchangeable StyleSwap covers for the One. But even facing that upset, we had cause to be a little optimistic, remembering what we heard late last month about the coming availability of pre-orders for the One that wouldn't require users to track-down invite codes. Today the company shares new details on how all that will work, and this being OnePlus, it's unsurprisingly a little weird. First up, the company formally confirms its intent to open pre-orders ...

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    How overdue are we for a new Nexus tablet? After two straight years of summertime launches for the Nexus 7, 2014 has so far left us empty-handed. But to hear what rumors have been telling us, our Nexus fix could be just around the corner, with expectations that an HTC-made Nexus 9 could be lurking in the shadows, nearly ready to make its debut. The evidence surrounding this device has been steadily building up, most recently in the form of the discovery of an apparent keyboard case. But even if this Nexus 9 is on the way, when would it get here? Last month, we discussed the possibility of ...

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    Over the past couple days now we've had a number of opportunities to talk about Samsung's release plans for its new Galaxy Note models. First we were running some theories about possible Note Edge pricing, before hearing about an accelerated start to the Note 4's release in South Korea. Today we turn our attention to the US, instead, as Samsung formally the start of Note 4 pre-orders tomorrow, in advance of the phone's release on October 17. Samsung's announcement has subsequently prompted statements from a number of US carriers, who add to this story with the pricing info we've been ...

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    A little earlier this afternoon we were talking about Samsung's retail plans for its latest phablets, and in particular what kind of pricing the Note Edge might find. At the time, we mentioned how Samsung didn't give us a very tight release window for the Edge, only saying that it would be out before the end of the year. That's in contrast to what the manufacturer had revealed about the Galaxy Note 4, announcing at the time of the phone's launch that sales would get underway in October. As it turns out, even that may be too long of a wait to get this horse out of the gate, and we hear this ...

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    One of the best things HTC's doing with the software on its Android models lately has been the way it's distributing even HTC-exclusive apps on the Play Store. By doing so, it's able to deliver app updates to users far more easily than it would through monolithic system software updates. We've already seen it go down that path with its Gallery app, and today learn about a new release that's incoming, bringing some additional features to the One M8 and Butterfly 2. The fact that we're talking about those two models should clue you in to the focus here: new Duo Camera stuff. Specifically, we ...

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    To say that OnePlus has struggled a bit with its launch of the One this year might be a bit of an understatement. From initial word of its invite system, to stock shortages, to ill-conceived promotions, it's been a rocky road for the company. Recently, we've been hopeful that things were turning around, especially as we got word late last month that those invites could be going away entirely in the near future. But now we find ourselves bringing you news of another upset, as OnePlus kills-off the One's StyleSwap covers. Announced back in March, the plan was to give users a choice of ...

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    Samsung may have launched the Galaxy Note Edge with its wrap-around screen at its IFA Unpacked event earlier this month, and while it wasn't shy about showing the handset off, it also wasn't too forthcoming with details regarding the smartphone's release. We were told to expect the phablet to hit retail later this year, but with no finer-grained release window, nor hint of possible pricing. Surely, with its unique display the Note Edge would sell for some sort of premium over the more straightforward Note 4, but just how much? While nothing's official just yet, evidence is pointing to one ...

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    Going back years now, to the time when Motorola was first getting its bearings as a Google-owned company, we've been paying attention to the role former-Googler Punit Soni has been playing as Motorola's VP of Product Management. He's kept us in the loop about the manufacturer's plans for software updates, helped drive Motorola away from MOTOBLUR and towards a near-stock Android experience, and occasionally been the unintentional source for upcoming-product rumors. But that's all coming to an end, as today we see his path diverge from Motorola's, with Soni announcing his departure from the ...

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    All things considered, Apple's launch event last week very much delivered on our expectations for new hardware. Yes, the release of the Apple Watch is still months away, but at least Apple announced the wearable. And while rumors had been on the fence about whether we'd see both iPhone 6 sizes launch simultaneously, Apple came through with the pair. The only thing we didn't get was news about this year's iPad line, but even with late-stage rumors suggesting there could be a joint launch event, Apple's modus operandi has been to keep such launches separate. So when is the new iPad going to ...

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    To say that Apple's launch of the Apple Watch was a little unorthodox for the company might be an understatement: we don't have a firm release date, nor a solid sense of pricing. Sure, Apple told us that the line will start at about $350, but with so many different options for both case materials and straps, that figure's bound to go up quickly. But just how quickly, and how high will it get? John Gruber over at Daring Fireball makes the case for his Apple Watch pricing theory, and it quickly sees the company blowing past that $350 mark to hit prices in the thousands of dollars. The base ...

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