Thursday, March 24, 2011

Amazon Appstore for Android is Here, and so is Angry Birds Rio

Amazon Appstore is live, and with it comes free Angry Birds Rio! The downside, yes I'm sorry folks, there is a have to be a U.S. resident to access the store. One more bit of bad news, even if you are in the U.S., if your carrier is AT&T, they are currently blocking access to the Amazon Appstore. Just why, I can't really say? Could it be the 'Big Brother Syndrome?' Or is there something much deeper like censorship or perhaps communism? Well, I was able to install the Amazon Appstore, and get Angry Birds Rio, because I'm with T-Mobile. Oh my gosh, AT&T just bought them, didn't they? I sure hope they change some of their policies before completely taking over T-Mo! Please give me a small smile AT&T customers, I hear they are working on making the Amazon Appstore available. Click on this link to let AT&T know you want Amazon Appstore access, and they will notify you when it's available.

The Amazon Appstore is awesome, and so is Angry Birds Rio! The graphics are really great! One great plus, Amazon will be featuring one paid app for free every day, so be sure to log on at least once a day to see if you want that app. I hope this nice gesture from Amazon will continue.

You can use the Amazon Appstore mobile app to get your apps right through your phone, or use the Amazon Appstore web interface. The nice part about the web interface is that you can test drive the app for a 30 minute period before deciding to purchase.

The Amazon Appstore currently has around 3,800 apps available, and I'm sure there are more to come. So hurry on over, sign up, and enjoy! You'll love Rio, take a peak at these shots of the game.

FINALLY...The Best 10.1 Inch Android Tablet is Almost Here Thanks to Toshiba

Have you been looking and looking, and waiting and waiting for the perfect Android tablet to come along like I have? Well, your wait is almost over thanks to Toshiba, and Amazon. Toshiba's superior 10.1 inch tablet just appeared on the Amazon website. No price is available, nor is the tablet just yet, but you can sign up to be notified when it goes on sale.

Oh my gosh, I can't wait. This tablet is one beauty, so packed with features I don't know where to begin. Here's a bit about some of the many features;

"Well-equipped with stand-out performance and features plus smart technologies that adapt to the way you want to use it, the Android-powered Toshiba Tablet features a brilliant 10.1-inch wide view screen with Toshiba Adaptive Display technology and an advanced NVIDIA Tegra 2 mobile processor. Powered by the Android OS, the Toshiba Tablet is ready to delight and entertain, delivering a lightning-fast web experience complete with support for Adobe Flash and a broad range of HD multimedia content--including rich console-like games and movies.

The Toshiba Tablet features both a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for video conferencing and 5-megapixel rear-facing camera for taking high-resolution photos and videos, and it includes integrated GPS and compass so you can take advantage of location-based services. It also offers built-in HDMI, USB, mini-USB and SD memory card ports, making it easy to share content with your other devices.

It's loaded with exclusive Toshiba smart technologies, like Resolution+ video upconversion as well as ambient screen and sound technologies to enhance your Tablet experience. Other features include ultra-fast Wireless-N Wi-Fi networking, Bluetooth with connectivity to peripherals plus stereo headphones, user replaceable battery, and access to more Android apps via the Toshiba App Place and Android Market.
Dressed in an exclusive soft-to-the-touch Easy Grip surface, the Toshiba Tablet is comfortable and customizable, with changeable backplates available in a spectrum of exciting colors. An optional docking station allows you to connect and recharge the device at a desk or at home, and it provides additional connectivity ports."
Feast your eyes on this array of pictures of the yet to be named Toshiba tablet. I hope it gets a really rugged name, cause it sure looks like one awesomely tough tablet! I sure hope the price is right too, considering it's being sold on Amazon, I think the price should be reasonable. I plan on getting one, do you? This is one tablet sure to blow the iPad out of top sales spot. Thanks Toshiba, now make it available for purchase!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Sprint & T-Mobile Merger; Will It Happen?

I've heard this morning that Deutsche Telekom is in talks with Sprint to create a merger. I know, we've heard this all before, and honestly I don't know if there's any weight to it this time, but people at Bloomberg seem to think so.

Sprint and T-Mobile are the third and fourth largest US carriers respectively. This is being called a merger rather than a buy-out since Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile) will still have a major share of the newly formed company. What do you think the new name should be? Please leave me some comments, so we can come up with one. What do you think of the new logo at the top of this article? Is that a good name?

Timotheus Hoettges, CFO of Deutsche Telekom says, "All options are open in the U.S. to sell the whole business or parts of it separately." Business Week tells us that talks have been on and off, with the biggest stumbling block being failure to mutually agree on the value of T-Mobile.

I personally, being a T-Mobile customer do hold hope that this merger will soon go through. It can only bring better wireless service and pricing for all. A blended company will also have much more competitive strength against Verizon and AT&T.

St. Patrick's Day Comes to Angry Birds Seasons

Rovio is teasing us with a St. Patrick's Day Seasons update that is not yet available for us to play.

Take a peek at the video. It looks like a whole lotta fun with more pigs, more levels, and of course green is everywhere. Please don't be alarmed when you see the 'available on the app store' at the end of this video. Android will get the update too!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Turbo Tax Snap Tax App Allows You to File Your Taxes From Your Android Phone

Now here's one more reason to get an Android smartphone. You can install an app to quickly and easily file your taxes with your phone. You thought finding your W-2 online was easy, well this is even easier, just snap a picture of your w-2 with your Android phone's camera. This allows Snap Tax to scan and extract the appropriate information from your W-2.

WOW, I can't wait to try this one! It sounds so easy, and almost makes filing my taxes painless. You noticed I said ALMOST! 

Just one catch, while the app itself is free, there is a $14.99 charge for filing from the app. Always a catch, huh? Still, that's pretty reasonable for filing your taxes considering what tax professionals charge. Snap Tax even allows you to save a copy in PDF format. 

This app of course is also available for the iPhone, which is what you will see in the demo video below. Enjoy the video, and don't forget, file your taxes by April 15, 2011, or you may get an unwelcome visit from Uncle Sam.

Get Your Atrix 4G Defender Case from Otterbox

The Motorola Atrix 4G is one of the most impressive new Android devices available through AT&T. This phone can even be quickly turned into a netbook with its dock accessory. I'm sure you don't want any damage to come to such a great looking phone, so you're on the hunt for a protective case.

Otterbox has a rugged Defender case now available on its website, and also at AT&T store locations. The Defender offers a three-layer protection system. It has a screen protector, impact resistant polycarbonate shell, and a durable shock absorbing silicone layer.

This tough case will protect your beautiful Atrix 4G against drops, bumps, and scratches. It will also keep dust out of your smartphone, but please do not put it in water! The case costs $49.95, but that's little for piece of mind protection of such a powerhouse smartphone.

Please enjoy your Atrix 4G to the fullest. It's one great phone that can perform, and so very easy to set up and use. I know, I've spent time with an Atrix for the past week.

Install Chomp and Quickly Find the Apps You Need

Need a better search engine for the Android Market, when the default one fails to find what you want, and frustrates you? Well, 'Chomp' is here to our rescue! I've just installed it myself to my Nexus One, and it works wonderfully. It is much more versatile, and accurate than the default Market search.

Let's face it, we don't always know the name of the app we want, and would prefer to search for it by its function. When you search the Android Market by app name, it works great, but if you search by function it falls short.

Let's just look at a few comparisons of the search results achieved through the default and Chomp. OK, I want a bar-code scanner, so I type in 'bar code scanner'. With the default Market search, two of the top three results are not what I want, they are calorie counters. The second result however, is a very good bar-code scanner.

Now I type in the same thing into 'Chomp', and right away I get the top three most popular bar-code scanners.

I want a web browser next, so I type in 'web browser'. Once again two of the top three results are not what I wanted with Market search. The first is a file explorer, and the third is a music app. The second result is a web browser.

Now I type the same thing into 'Chomp', and again, the top three search results are the most popular, highly-rated web browsers.

So, there you have it. I think you get a clear idea that 'Chomp' is much more accurate, and its a very stunning app as far as appearance too. Why not install 'Chomp' right now, and stop getting all those annoying unrelated and irrelevant search results through the Market search. Chomp is free, and a pleasure to use.

Please enjoy the following video of a quick Chomp demo if you are still not convinced.

Google Removed Malware from Android Market and Infected Phones

An alarming incident has just come to light for Android users. Some kooky individual plucked 21 apps from the Android Market, added root exploits, and republished them as new apps. These apps were then downloaded tens of thousands of times over a four day period.

Thanks to redditor 'lompolo' the scheme was uncovered. It was posted on reddit, then picked up by Android Police, who did two very important things. They contacted Google, and then did some more investigation. They were able to shed light on the fact that not only were these infected apps rooting phones, and sending information back to servers in California, they were also able to download and execute new code.

What can I say? This is pure EVIL in my eyes, certainly much more than a practical joke! I guess some nutty people have nothing better to do with their time than to hurt others. What a boring life they must lead. 

Google moved quickly after being alerted to this, and pulled all 21 apps from the Android Market, and utilized its rarely used ability to remotely remove apps from infected phones of the unsuspecting users who installed them.

In the past malware has been associated with non-Market apps, and this appearance in the Android Market is an eye-opener. A good practice for all Android users to put in place would be to more thoroughly read about each app before installing them to your phone.

Be careful folks! Thanks again to 'lompolo'. We need users like this to help combat against the ones that wish to do harm. So unfortunate.