Nexus 6 Review: The New Standard of Android

Easily the Nexus 6 is the best Android device on T-Mobile, period. The Sony Xperia Z3 is a great competitor, as well as the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, but Android 5.0, Lollipop, makes a HUGE difference. Of course, currently released devices will eventually get the update to Android 5.0, but why wait? Fragmentation is the biggest argument that iPhone fans use against Android advocates, so just eliminate that completely with the Nexus 6. This phone is the first device to receive the updates to Android as Google publishes them. There is no need to wait for manufactures and carriers to bake in their bloatware, then wait for approval, then be tested, then finally be pushed out, and hoping they caught all the major, annoying bugs before rollout. If the Z3 Compact or the Motorola DROID Turbo were available on T-Mobile, we would have a different discussion on our hands, but since that is not the case, the Nexus 6 is the only choice going forward for an Android customer on T-Mobile.

The 6-Inch Monster
Many may be concerned, worried, or just plain scared about having a 6-inch screen, but trust me it is worth it. Open hands and eyes welcome the switch to an AMOLED display! The screen is drop dead gorgeous and extremely pleasing to gaze upon. A number of people claim there is not a noticeable difference on smartphone’s small screens after a resolution of 720p and that anything beyond that is just hurting battery life, graphics performance, and keeping phone prices artificially inflated. Whether or not that may be true, I ask you to try this out first. Go to an AT&T or Best Buy and look at the Samsung Galaxy Alpha (720p), the Samsung Galaxy S5 (1080p), and then the Note 4 (2K) to see the difference that resolution makes for the latest generation of AMOLED screens. Okay, I am just saying that there is just something elegant about the Note 4’s screen, which makes it stand out above all the others. In other words, it is B-E-A-U-TIFUL! The colors pop out at you, and they are exceedingly accurate and vivid. It even seems the brightness of the screen can illuminate the night sky. Straining to see the screen outdoors is outdated. This does not include the fact that the viewing angle of the screen reaches 180 degrees. This is exactly what you can expect to receive with the Nexus 6. Never again will Nexus users have to deal with calibrating washed out colors or avoid the sun because the glare on the screen is too harsh. More than likely, most of you are worried about the mammoth sized screen, but fear not! I am here to tell you that it is not necessary to reach up to top of the phone at all. Google has eliminated any need of this by building the double-tap-to-wake feature into Lollipop, which was originally exclusive to only the LG G2 and LG G3. More importantly, they moved the notifications alerts displayed on the lockscreen to the center of the screen to facilitate one-handed operation of the Nexus 6 and phablets overall.

Nexus 6

Larger than Life or Misunderstood?
Consider this, the Nexus 6 is the virtually the same physical size as the iPhone 6 Plus, and only a little bit bigger than the Note 4. It is also very close in thickness to the Motorola X (2014), yet the Moto X has a dismal 2300mAh battery compared to the Nexus 6’s massive 3220mAh. The reason that the Nexus 6 is thicker than the average smartphone is mainly due to the gigantic battery found inside. Shocking, so what precisely is the problem with the Nexus 6 being the same as the Moto X while it increases battery size dramatically? I will take a thicker phone in exchange for a larger battery any day, especially since the Nexus 6 is already bigger in general! That said I am going to refrain from discussing the battery any further, because I discuss the battery life further down in my review.

Do not be surprised when you go to pick up the Nexus 6 and it is much lighter than you expected it to be. It is literally only 12 grams heavier than the iPhone 6 Plus, and 10 grams over the Note 4. If you have held either of those devices, you know that they are not a burden at all. A mere 10 to 12 grams really does not make that significant of a difference. What you should take away here is that the Nexus 6 is super comfortable to hold in the hand, and it has not caused me any cramping at all. The total package and design of the phone is essentially flawless in almost everyway. The only thing I would change is the button placement. What I mean by that is if I could have decided where the buttons were on the device, I would have liked to put the volume buttons in the upper-middle on the left side, and the power button to be lowered a smidge, but that is just my personal opinion. I actually love the ergonomic design of the G3’s volume and power button placement on the back to be able to make the Nexus 6 that much slimmer, though I might just be asking for too much.

Steep Pricing, Still Competitive
I have noticed that price has been noted as a concern of many, but look at it this way, the direct competitors to this device are all more expensive and either lacking in performance, features, design, or a combination of all of the above. The iPhone 6 Plus and Note 4 are both priced at $750, the Z3 is $630, the “stunning” Note Edge will be a ridiculous $870, and even the infamous iPhone 6 is $650 at full price. All the rest of the devices available on T-Mobile are either outdated by hardware or software by the Nexus 6. So, why exactly is the $650 price point of the Nexus 6 a problem when all the other options are just as expensive, more costly, and/or just inferior products? Just because the Nexus 4 and 5 were cheaper, does not mean that every product developed by Google has to be the same cutting-edge price. People have been demanding a bleeding-edge Nexus device; well your voices have been heard loud and clear. This time by the newly titled “King of Android,” Motorola, who is proving to be a clear and present threat to all smartphone manufactures. The Nexus 6 is just another superior device that the Motorola can claim as one of their own. Best of all, T-Mobile is selling the Nexus 6 fully unlocked right out of the box. Can it get any better?

The Battery that Never Ends
Finally, it is time for the ever-important battery discussion. Google has also done wonders with Project Volta featured in Android 5.0. This feature in Lollipop will have the greatest impact on all current and future Android devices. Google has employed a massive amount of battery optimizations that are immediately present on first day of usage, or should I say the first two days. You WILL get two days out of this phone; I would bet on it. This holds true for everyone unless you are a hardcore tweaker, video watcher, or game player, which you should already understand that there is no phone out yet that is going to last you over day, let alone 12 to 16 hours. In a typical day with normal usage, I am able to get through it without ever needing to worry about the Nexus 6 dying or needing to find a place to get my next charging fix. Even if I do need to charge the phone, the new Turbo Charging technology developed by Motorola works phenomenally. Turbo Charging mode enables once the battery in substantially depleted. If I recall correctly that means below 15% of battery life. Plugging the Nexus 6 into the charger that comes in the box with the phone will super charge the phone to over 30% in literally 15 minutes. This is enough battery life to easily get you through the rest of the day until you can return home. The Turbo Charging technology floored me by how quick it was able to charge the enormous 3220mAh battery found within Nexus 6 by just using the standard microUSB 2.0. The only downside to this is the part where I noted that this is only if you use the Motorola Turbo Charger. That means you cannot expect your friends charger to perform in the same manner. As well, it compels you to carry the charger around, or buy a spare to keep with you incase of an emergency. However, I want to reiterate that this is not necessary for most individuals simply because the battery will not die that fast or often!

Simple Yet Satisfying
The camera has to be the single most improved feature in the Nexus line. The Nexus 6 sports a 13-megapixel OIS+ camera, and man does it take great shots! It does not let you down at all. The focus, clarity, and quality of the photographs the Nexus 6 takes are 1000% better than the Nexus 4 and at least 500% better than the Nexus 5. I am still disappointed in the simplicity and complete lack of features of the Google Camera software, but that said, I could not be happier with the performance of the point-and-shoot ability of the hardware. The videos are even crisp and stable without any signs of choppiness or pixilation. I know with my old Nexus 4, videos were horrendous, and the Nexus 5 was not much better. Audio quality is subpar, but I will take what I can get. I have not come across a phone that can record exceptional audio while simultaneously videoing a scene. Professionals’ rare usage of the high-end camcorder’s onboard microphones supports my findings. The best video cameras in the world can still have terrible stock microphones. Sometimes it is necessary to record the audio in different setting or time. When that is not an option, the Nexus 6’s microphone does a decent job, but that still might be a stretch.

White Nexus 6

Goodbye Beats and BoomSound
The sound playback of the Nexus 6 is spectacular. It far exceeded my expectations. I previously owned an HTC One M8, and it was amazing when it came to sound quality. The dual stereo speakers on the front of the Nexus 6 replicates the same performance I experienced with the M8, if not even outperforms it. This is shocking considering the “BoomSound” amplification that the HTC touts as the clearest and loudest sound quality for a smartphone. While that may have been true previously, the Nexus 6 has overtaken the M8 in this category along with a magnitude of others.

A Realistic Point of View
Furthermore, I am going to switch gears and be realistic for a moment. The Nexus 6 is a developer device for a reason. The phone’s target audience is skewed more towards the experienced and technologically inclined Android user, and I am reluctant to say that I would not recommend it for a first time Android user, let alone a novel smartphone adopter. There are many other devices much simpler and easier to use than the Nexus 6. I say that with a grain of salt, because I still agree that this is the best Android device on T-Mobile. It is definitely a learnable device for anyone, but only if you have the time and patience to practice and play with the phone to understand it completely. The colossal size of the screen does make it highly appealing the older generation and folks with deteriorating vision. Now, I will say that the Nexus 6 is the most finger friendly phone I have ever used, and that has not been something I have considered important since the pre-iPhone era of Windows Mobile.

Top of the Line Hardware Helps A Lot
To round out the specifications of this monster and touch on them a tad, the Adreno 420 GPU equipped within the Nexus 6 blows away every other smartphone/phablet out there in benchmarks and graphics performance. The only GPU the Adreno 420 has not beaten is NVIDIA Tegra K1’s integrated Kepler GPU found in the Nexus 9, but that is not a smartphone CPU/GPU, so technically it does not count. The previews of the Nexus 6 conducted so far by technology news websites have them all raving about the superb performance by this innovative beast of a GPU! Clocking in at whooping 2.7GHz, the Snapdragon 805 CPU found inside the Nexus 6 is no slouch either. Android 5.0 and 3GB of RAM combined with the already impressive CPU makes the phone seamlessly glide through applications and processes. Multitasking has never been smoother or faster when switching between windows. The device never seems to slow down or hesitate ever, even when running the most intense applications, benchmarks, and games. There just does not appear to be a program out yet to wholly test the upper limits of the Nexus 6 and its hardware.

Front of Nexus 6

Observations and Analysis of the Smartphone Market
Moreover, Google’s move to a phablet design for the Nexus 6 signifies something much deeper, larger, and more elaborate than just avoiding competition with the Moto X. The decision to construct the Nexus 6 as a phablet forced Google to make the appropriate changes in Lollipop to increase the usability of phablets in general, and it certainly has made an immeasurable difference. Once manufactures administer Android 5.0 to their phablets, such as the LG G Flex, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Note 4, and ZTE ZMAX, it will become clear how effective the alterations were to the Android phablet family. Google prided themselves on making Android increasingly efficient in utilizing the larger screens of the phablets, as well as limiting the focus of the phone to the bottom portion of the screen. This is noteworthy due to the difficulty experienced when using a phablet on older versions of Android. Characteristically, Google created Android to provide more features, customizations, and functionality to the users throughout the entire phone. This is current even today in Android 4.4.4, KitKat. It is fundamentally required to access the top portion of the screen to be able to use the phone fully. Therefore, it caused excessive objections for users considering purchasing a phablet. Potential phablet consumers uttered, “My thumb cannot reach the notification bar,” more times than needed. This hurt the phablet market drastically, and even though there is a gargantuan demand for bigger and larger phones, Google’s Android continued to neglect its biggest potential marketing opportunity. Well, it took until Apple to finally make a move to capture that market share to finally realize that Google could not ignore the obvious gap any longer. Thankfully, it is definitely not too late for Google to fix this lapse in judgment. Reflecting on Apple’s “Bendgate” blunder with the iPhone 6 Plus and the new rumors of recalling the 128GB models, they showed inexperience in an area where a growing number of Android manufactures have been targeting for years. This is a completely reversal of roles in the industry. Apple is normally the leader in innovation and known to produce the highest quality products; however, it seems they have lost their grip and fortunately, Google and manufacturer followers are in a position to take the reigns from the technology giant. Will they be able to maintain the strategic advantage they have over Apple, or will Android falter their first major opportunity they have had in this never ending battle?

A Side Note for Wi-Fi Calling Users
To those of you who rely on Wi-Fi Calling on T-Mobile need to wait until next year. In order to meet the new “Wi-Fi Unleashed” requirements, the Google will be issuing an update for the Nexus 6 in early 2015. This feature is being baked into Android 5.0 and every phone running Lollipop from here on out. The lack of this feature alone notably hurt the sales of the Nexus 4 and 5 on T-Mobile. The same can be said for the iPhone users who attempted to switch to T-Mobile before the iOS8 announcement and update. When the Wi-Fi Calling support update is rolled out to the Nexus 6, there is no question that this is the only Android phone for you. Potentially, this is the only phone that you should even consider.

Samsung wants to Unlock the Future with Retina Scanning Tech

Samsung was set to drop a surprise through the Twitter account for their Exynos line, and tonight they did just that. Ready for a Samsung’s Retina scanning tech?

The tweet from @SamsungExynos was brief, but they chose their characters well. They talked about a unique type of “security” and posted the picture you see below. A picture is worth a thousand words as they say…

samsung.exynos.retina

It’s obvious they’re talking about retina scanning, and as the Galaxy S5 has already dropped there’s only two real options left this year – the mythical S5 Prime or Galaxy Note 4. Samsung could always pop the tech into a new tablet or a device we know nothing about to compete against the iPhone 6, but our money’s on the Note 4 if we see retina scanning this year.

Having a retina scanner on your handset would definitely up the ante in the security department. It would also be a major selling point if they are the first ones to bring it to market. Stay tuned, and we’ll keep you in the loop on Sammy’s plans for retina scanning.

HTC Dot View Case coming to more Devices?

dot view caseNot a day goes by that we don’t get a new smartphone leak, and this weekend has been no different. We’ve seen a slew of rumors hit the mill, but a new one regarding HTC’s Dot View Case has grabbed our attention as the coolest case around may be coming to more devices.

HTC made some new friends when they introduced the Dot View case, but it’s been limited to the HTC One M8. Leaker extraordinaire, @evleaks is saying that may not be the case much longer as the Dot View case looks to be headed to other devices in HTC’s lineup.dv

The leaked pic shows the Dot View case in three variations with Premium, Standard and Lite. The Premium is listed with the M8, M8 Ace, HTC Eye, B2 (Butterfly 2), and the HTC W8 which is believed to be a Windows handset. The Dot View standard will be compatible with the A51 while the Dot View Lite will work with the A21 and A11.

Nothing is known about the differences between Dot View cases or the devices listed with the standard and lite editions. Either way, it’s great news if you dig the Dot case, hopefully we’ll hear something official soon.

 

Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores Review

dino hunter deadly shoresGlu gained some fans when the released Deer Hunter 2014 last year, and gamers have been chomping at the bit to get ahold of the next hunting game in the series. Glu finally gave their fans what they wanted last week when Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores arrived for Android and iOS devices.

If you have ever dreamed about hunting a T-Rex with a shotgun, Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores is just the thing for you. Dino Hunter is much easier to swallow for those that want to hunt, but don’t want to feel bad about taking down Bambi’s mother while she eats grass in a meadow. Deer Hunter looked great, but there was always a twinge of guilt due to the way Glu presented the animals. That’s not the case in Dino Hunter….Screenshot_2014-07-10-22-07-36

Taking down a dinosaur is as easy as dragging your finger across the screen. You drag to aim, tap on the scope icon to get a closer look at your prey, and tap again to fire. You can pull up X-Ray vision if you need to target the internals, but overall the gameplay is about as straightforward as it gets. No strategy is involved, you just need to be able to buy a good enough weapon.

The layout is similar to Glu’s other hunting titles where you start out in the first region (Deadly Shores) before moving on to tougher game in the other two regions. You progress by unlocking map pieces, and you’ll get those pieces by taking down “boss” dinosaurs in Trophy Hunts. Therein lies the rub as you have to play Rifle and AR series levels to earn enough cash for the weapons you need in the Trophy Hunts.Screenshot_2014-07-11-21-46-42

As you’d expect, this is where things get tricky as Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores uses the same energy-based setup of Deer Hunter with loads of IAP’s thrown in for good measure. It’s the same setup as Deer Hunter, but seems to be tweaked a bit as you can almost play straight through. If you have played any of Glu’s other freemium titles, you already know about the in-app purchases and they are front & center in Dino Hunter.Screenshot_2014-07-11-21-10-42

By the numbers, Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores offers up 3 different zones and more levels than you can shake a stick at. There are around 23 different weapons in the shop, and including premium high-powered guns like a rocket launcher and laser crossbow. There are scores of Dinosaurs to slaughter as well, and you’ll get to take down T-Rex’s, Bambiraptors, Crowned Dragons and various other reptiles.

Screenshot_2014-07-12-12-02-59

Verdict

If you enjoyed Deer Hunter, you will definitely dig Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores as it’s essentially the same game – with Dinosaurs. That’s not a bad thing considering the previous game was extremely popular and has amassed a staggering amount of downloads.

Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores may not offer up much of a challenge, but it’s a fun game nonetheless and it’s free. If you’re ready to take on a T-Rex you can pick up Glu’s Dino Hunter: Deadly Shores on the App Store or Google Play.

The ZTE Nubia Z7 is a Flagship to Watch

Nubia.z7ZTE unveiled three new smartphones this week, but one of them stands a bit taller than the rest. It’s the company’s new flagship, and it’s called the Nubia Z7.

The ZTE Nubia Z7 was one of three handsets shown off by ZTE, and while all of them are similar, the Nubia Z7 is the cream of the crop. If you’re wondering what’s so special about the Z7, how does a Snapdragon 801, 32GB of storage, and 3GB of RAM sound? If you’re still not impressed, you may want to consider the 13MP rear camera w/OIS and 5MP front-facing camera. Last but certainly not least is he display, and it’s a doozy as you’re getting 5.5-inches with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440.nubia

The other two handsets shown off were nothing to scoff at either. The Nubia Z7 Max is identical to the Z7 except it has 2GB of RAM, no OIS and a FHD display. Both are powered by 3,000mAh batteries. The Nubia Z7 mini drops down to a 5-inch 1080 display with 16GB of storage and a 2,300mAh battery. The Nubia Z7 may be the flagship, but the others aren’t far behind.

The Nubia Z7 is going for around $550 while the Max ($322) and Mini ($242) are quite a bit cheaper. As you’d expect, ZTE’s new smartphones will launch in China, but we do expect to see them arrive in other regions at some point. Hopefully that day will come soon as ZTE could pick up some new fans stateside with those price points.

 

LG G3 and LG G Watch coming to AT&T on July 11

LG G 3It’s going to be a good year for LG when it comes to Android. They’ve got the LG G3 and the G Watch set to debut, and both devices just got a release date from AT&T.

Starting tomorrow, you’ll be able to pre-order the LG G3 or LG G Watch from AT&T, and both devices will be available at retail locations on July 11. The G Watch will set you back $229, while the LG G3 with 4G LTE can be yours for absolutely nothing if you’re willing to go with a Next ($24.17) or Next 12 ($29) plans that let you pay off the device over the life of your contract. If you want a regular two-year contract, the G3 is $199.lg_g_watch_1

In case you’ve been out of the loop, the LG G3 offers up a speedy Snapdragon 801 coupled with a 5.5-inch QHD display and 13MP snapper with OIS and laser assisted auto focus.  It’s a nice device to say the least. As for the LG G Watch, you’re getting a 1.65-inch smartwatch that runs Android Wear and allows you to do all sorts of cool things like send and receive messages and stay in the loop socially while you’re out and about.

The LG G3 is the big story here as it’s the best device out there (at the moment) and it’s going to sell like hotcakes this summer. If you’re in the United States, you’ll be able to pick up the LG G3 everywhere in a few weeks, but if you dig AT&T you can lock down your G3 tomorrow.

Apple adds TAG Heuer’s Sales Director to iWatch Team

Nobody’s gotten a peek at the iWatch yet, but we know it’s coming and we know it’s going to be fancier than your average e-watch. Apple has already added several key hires to their iWatch team, and today word broke that the Sales Director from Tag Heuer has left the company to join Apple in their iWatch launch.

Jean-Claude Biver, head of Jewelry and Watches and TAG, revealed the hire today. It’s not the first time Apple has come after some of their employees, according to Biver, but it is the first time they’ve managed to land one. If it were a competitor, the hire wouldn’t have gone over so well, but Biven said “he was happy for the employee as the new role represents a great opportunity for him.”

The move is one in a string of high-profile hires from Apple as they gear up to show off the iWatch to the world. Last year they brought in Paul Deneve, CEO of Yves Saint Laurent and a few months back it was Angela Ahrendts who left Burberry to join Apple. Needless to say, Apple’s hires don’t necessarily scream “cheap” and the iWatch is looking more like a luxury item with each passing week.

Part of the reason Android was able to break Apple’s hypnotic hold on consumers was pricing, and it remains to be seen if Apple will price the iWatch competitively to compete with the Moto 360 or if it’ll cost as much as an iPad Air. The company has also been rumored to have a couple of versions of their e-watch in the works, so we could see two different models at launch. We’ll find out soon as many expect Apple to show off the smartwatch this September, just in time for the busy holiday season.

Guess what gadget is going to be at the top of a lot of ‘wishlists’ this year?

Did the LG G3 Prime just get Bluetooth Certification?

lg-sign-bgrThe LG G3 is a phone we’ve discussed at length since the first G3 rumors hit the web, and while people are lining up to get the new handset, there may be another one already in the pipeline. Ready for the LG G3 Prime?

Just like the rumored Samsung Prime, the LG G3 Prime is said to be a better version of the LG G3. The eagle-eyed folks at gforgames spotted a needle in the haystack when they noticed a device dubbed the LG-F460S had lg-g3-prime-bluetoothjust passed through Bluetooth certification. A device with a similar model number (F460L) showed up in a .prop file a few weeks back, and that handset had a Snapdragon 805 under the hood to go along with an Adreno 420 GPU.

Does this mean that they’ll be a LG G3 with a Snapdragon 805 in the US? It’s anyone’s guess, but if Samsung drops a Prime variant, then LG could follow suit. There’s also Apple to content with, and they are going to be hard to handle when the larger iPhone 6 is released.

Summer has been exciting, but the fall may be just pack just as much punch in regards to new devices. If LG releases a more powerful version of the LG G3 will you bite, or is just going to be overkill at this point?

Samsung fires up Consumer Trial Program in the U.S.

samsung-logo1Samsung has just announced a new service that will allow folks in the U.S. to test drive some of their new devices before taking one home. It’s called the Consumer Trial Program, and it’ll let you try a handset or smartwatch free of charge.

The Consumer Trial Program was just announced today, and it’s going to allow people to try out some devices in the Galaxy lineup. Users will get 21-days to test out the Galaxy S5, Note 3, Gear 2 or Gear Fit. You’ll be able to bundle a smartwatch with a handset for the trial, and it even comes with carrier service so it’s about as simple as it gets.

As you’d expect, you will have to leave a deposit and be at least 18 years of age to get in on the deal. Unfortunately, the Consumer Trial Program is only available in five locations at this time with Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, and Santa Clara. Great news if you’re near those areas, for everyone else not so much.

The silver lining to this cloud is the fact that everyone seems to be testing the waters with “test drives” these days. Several carriers in the U.S. have starting offering limited trials of new devices sans the contract, and it’s good to see Samsung doing the same. There’s also a good chance this “trial” could expand if globally if Samsung gets enough conversions from the program. You can get more information on Samsung’s Consumer Trial Program at the link below.

Consumer Trial Program

Amazon Promo offering up 31 Android Games & Apps for Free until Tomorrow

amazon.logoEveryone loves a good sale, but it’s hard to beat free. If you own an Android device and have access to the Amazon Appstore, they’re throwing a heck of a deal your way as they’ve put up 31 games and apps for free from now until Saturday at midnight.

The Amazon Promo is a doozy, and it’s not full of mediocre apps either. On the apps side of things you can get Root Explorer, Plex, Notepad+, MyBackup Pro, EZ Money Manager and a slew of others. If you’re in the mood for games, you’ll be able to snag games like Sonic 2, CLARC, League of Heroes Premium, and Adventure Time – Card Wars. There are 31 apps and games in the promotion, and all of them are live and available to download right now.

There are some high-dollar apps in the sale, and Card Wars and Plex are surprising additions considering their popularity and price tag. Needless to say, you’ll regret it if you miss this one as this is the best game & app giveaway we can remember Amazon having in quite some time. The promotion is good from now until Saturday at midnight, hit up the link to get your download on.

Amazon 31 App Promo

ASUS working on an Android Wear Smartwatch

ASUS launches dozens of Android devices every year, and a new report has them working on a new wearable. It’s a smartwatch, and it’s set to run Google’s new Android Wear platform.

TechCrunch is reporting that ASUS is working on an Android Wear smartwatch that’s set to hit the streets later this year in September. Little is known about the device, but it’s said to have an AMOLED display and a very low price tag. Somewhere between $99 and $149 if the information passed to TechCrunch pans out.

It’s not the only new Android device ASUS is working on either, as they were one of several companies confirmed by Google yesterday as hardware partners for Android TV. It’s not the companies first time on the TV bandwagon, and it definitely won’t be their last. We just hope their version of Android TV goes over a little better than ASUS Cube did.

We may not know much about ASUS’s smartwatch plans at the moment, but that will change in the weeks ahead as it’s hard to keep a device under wraps these days. A low price point could make this one popular, but it’ll need something special to compete as 2014 is shaping up to be the year of the smartwatch.

Did the Sony Xperia Z3 get Certified?

Sony-Xperia-Z3-TUV-certificateThe Xperia Z2 is far from an old device, but nobody told Sony that. Xperia Z3 rumors have been circulating around the web for close to a month now, and today we’ve learned the handset may have just passed through certification.

Blog of Mobile, a Japanese website is reporting on a Sony handset that recently passed through certification. There are a slew (seven) of model numbers, and while we won’t list them all, the site claims they could be variants of the Sony Xperia Z3. One of those model numbers (D6603) has previously shown up as an unlisted device as well.

Many manufacturers are starting to do several  releases “top-tier” device release a year now, as we’ve already seen a Galaxy S5 variant in Korea (so far), and the LG G3 is rumored to have a variant in the works as well. Putting out two different flagships in the same calendar year is a bit different though, and we find it unlikely that Sony would actually release the Z3 this year.

It remains to be seen if we just got a quick glimpse of the new Xperia Z3 lineup or if it’s something altogether different from Sony. We expect to hear more Z3 rumors as the summer rolls on, stay tuned and we’ll  keep you in the loop.