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A new update to the Sony WALKMAN application is now rolling which moves the build number from version 8.4.A.5.4 to 8.5.A.0.6. The main new feature is Android Wear support – you can control music playback from your Android Wear device. In addition, you can also download playlists to your Android Wear device. Seems like a great update if you recently bought the SmartWatch 3.


Sony is behind that e-paper FES Watch after all

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A couple of days back we reported that Sony was working on a watch that would feature an electronic paper face and strap. In that post, we referenced the ‘FES Watch’ as to what the Sony e-paper watch might look like. At the time it was believed that the FES Watch was developed by an independent company looking to crowd sourcing to bring it to market.

Well it actually turns out that the FES Watch was developed by Sony all along under the name “Fashion Entertainments.” The five-person Sony engineering team wants to redefine e-paper as a fabric and looked to keep the project under wraps.

A person involved in the project said: “We hid Sony’s name because we wanted to test the real value of the product, whether there will be demand for our concept.” It has received support to the tune of 3.5 million yen ($30k) from over 150 supporters.

Sony’s CEO Kazuo Hirai is trying to reignite the company’s creative streak by encouraging employees to come up with new ideas. This small team was assisted by an outside agency to develop e-paper products including hat accessories, paper holders and even bow ties. This particular crowd-sourced product is due to launch in May 2015, according to those that have pre-ordered.

Via Wall Street Journal.

Though the hardware was mildly refreshed back in June, Google Glass has been running on much the same internals for the better part of two years. With the rise of Android Wear, at least some of us were wondering whether Google still intended to bring its head-mounted wearable system to retail at all. According to the latest report from the Wall Street Journal, Google is indeed planning at least one more version of Glass, this time running on an Intel chipset. The new hardware will reportedly be released next year.


The original and current Glass models use Texas Instruments processors. Inside the slim electronic housing is an OMAP 4430, which was popular among smartphone manufacturers way back in 2011, finding its way into devices like the original Motorola DROID RAZR. Texas Instruments has since all but exited the mobile chip market, and new offerings from Qualcomm and many others have vastly exceeded even the best TI designs in both power and efficiency. The latter is pretty important for wearables (see the Moto 360 TI controversy for a good example), and even the newer versions of Google Glass running the latest Android-based software builds struggle to get through a full day of use.

Intel has been pushing hard into the mobile space to make up for lost time. A few major manufacturers have started using Intel chips for mobile hardware, most notably Samsung and Asus, but usually only for mid-range or low-end devices. That said, Intel’s x86 chipsets seem to be much faster and more stable than you might expect from a company still working on a beachhead.

Since a full consumer rollout for the next Glass hardware update seems unlikely, Google could just as well be using it as an experimental platform for its own x86-based software. This also might be a good way of keeping relations with Intel rosy (which Google certainly wants to do for the long-term health of its Chromebook platform) without giving them a major smartphone or tablet release.

The WSJ rarely publishes stories like this without being fairly certain of their accuracy. Nevertheless, they do quote the usual “people familiar with the matter,” so consider it a strong rumor at this point.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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Jolla set themselves an achievable target of $380,000 to get their first tablet out to interested consumers. Now they’re pushing to boat (currently at $1.3M).

  • $1.5M microSD support
  • $1.75m split screen
  • $2.5M 3.5G!

In the first two days, Jolla reached a million and seems to have slowed down now. But it may interest a few more buyers now this option is available.

Stretch goals mean that even if the new goals aren’t reached, you’re still going to get your Jolla tablet.

I’m not sure why they need more money for split screen. Isn’t that simply software? Jolla recognises that this is the most wanted feature according to their users so they should really put this in regardless.

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3.5G will only be for EU users. It’ll be $30 on top to get the 3.5G version.


Cheers Sefriol for the tip!

It looks like manufacturer HTC may be addressing at least some of the problems with the initial batch of tablets, its first since the HTC Jetstream way back in 2011. According to one poster on the dedicated Nexus 9 subreddit, a tablet manufactured last week which arrived to a customer on Wednesday has buttons that are noticeably better than those on previous hardware. The photo below shows that they stick out from the case by an appreciably longer amount, and Reddit poster “Sebianoti” reports that they’re much easier to press, probably thanks to a longer travel and or/stiffer action.


Newer Nexus 9, with improved buttons, on the bottom. Photo credit: Reddit user Sebianoti

The user also says that the screen on the newer Nexus 9 has noticeably less light bleed than one that was bought at launch, though the problem is still present to some degree. David’s review unit had only a small amount of light bleed, which is a pretty common problem on high-resolution LCD screens. The user also reports no flexing on the back panel, another sore point against the N9’s industrial design.

If you’re still set on getting a Nexus 9, it looks like the ones purchased from the Play Store right now are a bit better than they were a few weeks ago. (Don’t forget, US purchases made today get $50 in free Play Store credit.) If you have a slightly older unit and the power and volume buttons are bothering you, a call to Google’s Play Store support or HTC’s customer support might help alleviate the problem.


n the last month Google has offered up the Guardians of the Galaxy mixtape, Lorde’s Pure Heroine, and Night Visions by Imagine Dragons entirely for free. Now you can grab deadmau5’s electronic album titled > album title goes here < (no, that’s not a note for me to come back and wiki the name later). Like previous deals, there’s a good chance this one is only available in the US thanks to labels, licensing, and other shenanigans.

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If you live in the US and don’t have much of a personal connection, now’s a good time to start using Play Music. Each of these albums have appealed to a different musical palate, but if there’s even a slight chance you will grow to like something eventually, free is the perfect price to pay to find out. And with the ability to download the files straight from your library after purchasing, there’s no superliminal messaging or telemiscommunication going on here. > album title goes here < is legitimately free, no strings attached.

> album title goes here< on Google Play

Xperia Z3 owners – Claim your three free movies

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If you recently bought a Sony Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact or Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact then you might want to check out the Xperia Lounge app. Sony is offering three movies for Xperia Z3 series owners, including ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’, ‘Captain Phillips’ and ‘Ghostbusters’.

The offer won’t be available in every region, but it is live in the UK, France, Spain and the US (T-Mobile and Verizon). The offer will appear in the Xperia Lounge app if it is live – you will receive a download code which can be redeemed via the Sony Entertainment Network. Don’t miss out, the offer ends on 31 January 2015.

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Here’s another channel to consider for disassembly and DIY fixing of your devices:

The great thing about these guys is that:

  1. Professional looking set up. Clear videos, clear instructions
  2. They reassemble too.
  3. They show the phone working with the new part at the end of the video. I remember one video by another channel where the screen didn’t work. It didn’t inspire much confidence.

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They say they’ve got the tools available in the link provided but nothing shows up for me when clicking it.


The Sony Xperia Z3 and Xperia Z3 Compact launched with what looks a near-identical camera spec to its predecessors. However, a couple of differences included a wider-angle camera lens (25mm G Lens) and a maximum ISO of 12,800 for low-light photography. The latter is what Sony is highlighting in this latest infographic.

The infographic shares some fun facts around low-light photography and what makes the Xperia Z3 series so capable. This includes explaining what the ISO number actually means, some tips from professionals and social stats. Check it out below.


Via Sony Mobile Blog.

SoftBank launches Xperia Z3 (401SO) in Japan

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One of Sony’s big strategic objectives for its mobile division is wider carrier support. The company is making small inroads on this path, we have seen both T-Mobile and Verizon carry Xperia devices in the United States and now Japanese carrier SoftBank is offering a Sony Xperia handset for the first time.

The Xperia Z3 (401SO) for SoftBank has today launched in Japan in all four colours (black, white, copper and silver green). NTT DoCoMo and au by KDDI are already offering the Xperia Z3, but the SoftBank version is closest to the global model in terms of branding (you won’t notice any SoftBank logos on this Xperia Z3). Like the other Japanese models, it does carry 32GB of internal storage though (versus 16GB for global models). The list price is 69,120 Yen (£374, €468, $587) and is available via SoftBank right now.