Phandroid » Featured http://phandroid.com Android Phone News, Rumors, Reviews, Apps, Forums & More! Sun, 29 Mar 2015 00:08:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 Decision Day: Samsung Galaxy S6 or HTC One M9? [POLL] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/26/decision-day-samsung-galaxy-s6-or-htc-one-m9-poll/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/26/decision-day-samsung-galaxy-s6-or-htc-one-m9-poll/#comments Thu, 26 Mar 2015 14:53:07 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=162082 galaxy s6 vs htc one m9

March 27th just became a very big day in mobile. The main flagship releases from two of the smartphone industry’s biggest heavy hitters will be available to purchase (in some capacity) as soon as tonight.

For HTC, they will allow you to purchase the unlocked version of the HTC One M9 on their website starting at Midnight Eastern. Meanwhile, Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge will be at Best Buy and all major carrier stores for demo and pre-sale tomorrow morning.

This, folks, is D-Day. No, not doomsday (though that could very well happen, too), but Decision Day. Are you going with the Samsung Galaxy S6 or the HTC One M9? It’ll be a tough decision for many, though we’re sure a good deal of you already have your minds made up.

On the fence still? Perhaps some of these early previews, feature blowouts and hands-on experiences will give you a better idea of which one is worth your money.

Samsung Galaxy S6

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HTC One M9

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And you can’t forget the big head to head comparison of the two juggernauts: here’s a tale-of-the-tape look at the Samsung Galaxy S6 vs the HTC One M9. Our reviews for both devices will be along soon enough so be sure to stay on the lookout for those if you need a hard verdict.

So it comes down to tomorrow, March 27th: which one are you going to buy? The poll below is waiting for your vote, and we also wouldn’t mind hearing your reasoning no matter which way you decide to go (even if you don’t plan to buy either one). Sound off!

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How to root the Motorola Droid Turbo http://phandroid.com/2015/03/25/how-to-root-droid-turbo/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/25/how-to-root-droid-turbo/#comments Thu, 26 Mar 2015 02:06:29 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=162066 If you’ve been scouring the Motorola Droid Turbo forums and looking for All Things Root you’ve likely been disappointed by the lack of content. Not anymore: there is now a Droid Turbo Root method available for the taking this very minute.

It’s called MOFOROOT and there are three important things you should know:

  1. It’ll cost you $20 at the MOFOROOT website
  2. Instructions are few and far between so watch the above video
  3. For further support, head on over to this thread on Android Forums

Plenty of conversations will inevitably be had on the topic and if you’ve got a specific question, you can start a new conversation. But be warned: if it’s about bricking your phone, we’re not responsible!

Happy Rooting!

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HTC One M9 Reviews [ROUNDUP] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/24/htc-one-m9-reviews/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/24/htc-one-m9-reviews/#comments Tue, 24 Mar 2015 15:19:51 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=161923 HTC One M9 DSC08393

In case you haven’t heard, the HTC One M9 has officially launched in Taiwan and reviews of the international version of the phone have started pouring in. While our HTC One M9 review is still in the works and will be along shortly (here’s everything you need to know about it in the meantime, and you can always talk about it at AndroidForums.com), we thought it wise to bring you the opinions of some of the web’s top tech outlets ahead of the phone’s April 10th availability here in the United States.

Engadget, who rated the phone 84 out of 100, says that while it looks and feel just as good as the previous two entrants have, there wasn’t a big enough improvement in the camera department to completely win them over. “Alas, the M9 is let down by a camera that isn’t as good as it should be,” said the reviewer, who noted that it wasn’t much better than yesteryear’s Ultrapixel counterpart that now sits on the front.

HTC One M9 Custom Nav Bar DSC08929 copy

The Verge gave it a similar rating of 8.3/10, and echoed Engadget’s sentiments about the HTC One M9’s 20.7 megapixel camera. “For the third year in a row, HTC has a really compelling phone with a disappointing camera,” writes Dan Seifert.

And that seems to be the common theme here — the familiar design is fine, because it’s actually good. HTC Sense is better than ever, and the Snapdragon 810 is plenty powerful to make it run smoothly. But if the HTC One M9 is supposed to one-up its predecessor in every other way, then the camera seems to have missed the memo. Here’s a bundle of impressions from other notable outlets:

Gizmodo:

“HTC played it safe this year instead of pushing things further. Honestly, if you’re willing to settle for the M9, you should also look at the M8 while you’re at it. It lasts longer, it feels just as fast, and it costs less.”

Anandtech:

“Although we’re still missing some of the pieces, based upon what data we have the One M9 is in an alarming place for a new smartphone. It’s pretty rare that a new phone ends up regressing in almost every major way compared to an old phone, but the One M9 ends up doing this in display and battery life. “

Phone Arena (8.3/10):

“As we take a look at the bigger picture, we certainly can agree that the HTC One M9, as a whole, has been tweaked and refined to correct the issues that were left outstanding with the M8.”

ZDNet (9.5/10):

The only thing I don’t like about the new HTC One M9 is that I cannot yet buy one on T-Mobile. Actually, I am a bit disappointed that there is no OIS support for the rear camera.”

PocketNow (8.7/10):

“As a sequel to the One M8, it’s definitely a letdown: the new camera is worse in low light; the aesthetic changes are subjective; and most of the software improvements will probably come to the M8 anyway.”

Trusted Reviews:

“There’s no denying it, the One M9 is another fantastic phone from HTC. Yes, it is let down slightly by an inconsistent camera and some software niggles, but the One range remains one of the best all-round flagships you can get thanks to the One M9.”

Pocket-Lint (4/5):

“If you’re an HTC fan, the M9 is HTC delivering what you love, with power, precision and sophistication. But with the overriding aim of refinement, of correcting the parts of the M8 that didn’t quite work, HTC has focused attention on its camera. It’s here that the M9 stumbles.”

TechnoBuffalo (7/10):

“The HTC One M9 is a great phone, but it’s so much more of the same. In a lot of ways, this is simply a One M8+.”

GSMArena:

“Latest Snapdragon, latest Android and Sense, Dolby Surround added to HTC Boomsound, very good screen quality. With a proper camera finally on the list, the HTC One M9 is the all-round flagship smartphone the company should have had a while ago. “

Slash Gear:

“Refinement, not revolution. HTC took what was undoubtedly a handsome, capable phone in last year’s M8, and thoughtfully polished away the rough edges. “

CNet (8/10):

“One M9’s camera is improved, but not not enough to make it a “killer app” that sets this phone apart from its peers. And — in early testing — the battery life does not impress.”

BGR:

“HTC’s new One M9 is a strong offering from the scrappy Taiwanese company. It’s the strongest phone HTC has ever made. The hardware is sleek, the performance is smooth, the power is there and it has been improved in almost every way compared to its predecessors.”

Forbes:

“There’s no headline grabbing innovative ideas here. There’s no HTC Pay or curved edges, but there is a solid phone that has some decent standout features. The fact is that I enjoyed using the One M9, which is probably the most important metric to measure anything against. But some glaring mistakes means HTC missed an opportunity to make this the complete smartphone.”

Tech Radar:

“Let me make one thing clear: the HTC One M9 is an excellent phone, filled to the brim with good features, a clever interface and a design that it should rightly be proud of, once again showing every other brand how it should be done. The issue is that it doesn’t improve enough.”

And there you have it. We’ll have to put the device through its paces ourselves to see if we agree with any of these opinions, but trot on over to the HTC One M9 section at AndroidForums to discuss these early impressions and whether the HTC One M9 will be worthy of your attention once it hits retail (and feel free to drop a comment below, too).

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Google REALLY wishes you’d stop saying Glass is dead, because it isn’t http://phandroid.com/2015/03/23/google-glass-isnt-dead-dammit/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/23/google-glass-isnt-dead-dammit/#comments Mon, 23 Mar 2015 18:13:26 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=161889 Google-Glass-chris-featured-LARGE

Ever since Google Glass “graduated” from Google X Labs, it seems we can’t write an article about the device without people proclaiming it’s dead. It’s not. Google is working on it. They’ve taken it private. Tony Fadell wants to take the early work done by the excellent team at Google and make sure he gets it just right, just like he did for Nest and the iPod, and he doesn’t want to show it until it’s ready.

Google Glass Camera closeup

Google Glass isn’t dead, so stop saying it. They’ve said it once, and now Eric Schmidt is saying it again:

“It is a big and very fundamental platform for Google,” Schmidt said. “We ended the Explorer program and the press conflated this into us canceling the whole project, which isn’t true. Google is about taking risks and there’s nothing about adjusting Glass that suggests we’re ending it.”

This is a thing. A real thing. A thing that’s happening. It might not be here as soon as we’d liked, but it’s not something Google is sweeping under the rug.

If you’re already an Explorer with the latest publicly-released unit, enjoy it. Stop obsessing and complaining over a new version that you won’t even be able to see until Google is ready to put them up for sale.

It’s OK to be concerned (and even angry) about the $1,500 prototype you bought that will eventually be obsoleted, and we certainly do hope those folks are hooked up with some sort of upgrade path once the consumer version is ready, but no amount of petitioning and rioting will change Google’s stance on the future development of Glass if they haven’t already changed it.

Beyond that, you knew what you were getting into. You knew Glass was still in the exploratory and platform-building phases and Google only wanted people who truly understood that to use it, which is why they asked you to pay $1,500 for a piece of kit that likely didn’t take nearly as much money to manufacture.

If Glass were truly dead, don’t you think they’d tell us just as they’ve done countless times in the past when they retired a lot of their other products? Sit back, relax, and let Google do their thing.

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A tour of the Samsung Galaxy S6 “Edge Screen” features and settings [VIDEO] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/20/samsung-galaxy-s6-edge-screen-features/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/20/samsung-galaxy-s6-edge-screen-features/#comments Fri, 20 Mar 2015 17:23:07 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=161774 Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge screen settings DSC08583

The Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge is one of the coolest looking Android devices in recent years. The curved edges make it look like a phone you might see in a sci-fi movie. However, the curved display is for more than just looks. Samsung has made use of the “Edge Screen” with some nifty features. Let’s taker a closer look at what you can do with the Edge Screen.

People Edge & Notifications

Since the Galaxy S6 Edge has curved displays you can actually see part of the display even when the phone is lying on its face. Samsung uses this area as a notification indicator. When certain notifications come in, such as a phone call, the Edge Screen lights up. If you’re getting a call and your phone is lying on its face you can even use the heart-rate sensor on the back to reject the call.

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(click to enlarge)

When the phone is not lying on its face you can use a feature called “People Edge.” By swiping from the side of the Edge Screen you can bring up a list of five favorite contacts. You can use these as shortcuts to make calls and send SMS messages. If one of the five contacts has sent you some type of notification it will show a colored line that you can drag over to view.

Information Streams

Another thing you can do with the extra screen real estate on the edges is display information. Samsung calls this feature “Information streams,” and it allows you to display information from several different sources only on the edge. When the display is off you can slide your finger along the edge of the screen to bring up the stream, and then you can swipe through the sources.

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(click to enlarge)

Some of the Information streams include Twitter, Facebook, and a few from Yahoo including news, sports, and finance. It’s a handy little feature for quickly getting some information without having to unlock the phone and dive into apps.

Night Clock

The Galaxy S6 Edge also has a Night Clock built in. When this feature is enabled it will show the current time and date only on the curved edge of the display. Since the clock is only on the edge display you can easily see it from your bed. The AMOLED display means the Night Clock doesn’t emit much light, and it can stay on all night with minimal battery drain.

2015-03-11 01.02.36

What do you think about the Edge Screen features on the Galaxy S6 Edge? Are they useful or just gimmicky? Would you buy the Edge for these features, or do you just think it looks cool?

 

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Take control of March Madness with these sporty Android apps http://phandroid.com/2015/03/15/ncaa-march-madness-android-apps/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/15/ncaa-march-madness-android-apps/#comments Sun, 15 Mar 2015 22:00:01 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=161146 march android madness

The field of 68 teams will soon be announced, and the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament will officially be underway. For many sports fans this is considered the best time of the year. There will be games happening at all hours of the day, buzzer beaters, massive upsets, and tons of excitement. We’ve got a list of essential apps that will help you get the most out of this year’s March Madness.

Brackets

bracket

What makes March Madness so exciting? It’s a tournament filled with schools you wouldn’t normally care about, until you fill out a bracket. Suddenly you’re cheering for a school called “Robert Morris” like you’re an alumni. Filling out a bracket and entering it in pools at work or in online challenges is what makes this tournament so fun. We’ve got a few apps that can fill your bracket needs.

ESPN Tournament Challenge

Back in the day joining an office pool meant printing out a dozen brackets and keeping track of winners and losers by hand. ESPN Tournament Challenge makes it much easier. Simply create a group and invite your friends. ESPN will automatically keep track of the brackets and show you who’s winning. It’s also a great place to read news and updates from the tourney. [FREE]

Bracket Tracker

Bracket Tracker is great if you’re just looking for a simple way to fill out and track your bracket. You can create multiple brackets, for both men and women, and keep track of wins and losses. It’s a nice alternative to keeping a folded up bracket in your pocket all day. [FREE]

Scores & News

ncb_ncaa_tournament_09

You might not be interested in filling out brackets, but you still want to keep up with news and scores.. We’ve got a few apps that will help you stay on top of all the happenings from this year’s tournament.

Thuuz Sports

Thuuz is one app that every sports fan should have in their arsenal. It uses an algorithm to rate all live and upcoming games for level of enthusiasm. It will also send alerts when a live game is particularly exciting. This year they used their algorithm to determine that the 2013 Sweet 16 game between Michigan and Kansas was the most exciting tournament game from the last few years. Thuuz is indispensable during March Madness. [FREE]

NCAA Sports

When watching an NCAA sporting event you can’t for wrong with the official NCAA Sports app. With this app you can get live scores and updates, breaking news, custom alerts for your favorite teams, and a special hub for your favorite team. When you want NCAA go to the NCAA. [FREE]

ESPN

The ESPN App gives you up-to-the-minute scores and news with loads of video highlights from the “worldwide leader in sports.” You know ESPN is going to cover every single inch of March Madness goodness. Check out the “NOW” views for real-time updates while the tournament action is hot and heavy. [ESPN]

theScore

If you’re not a fan of the “Mothership,” a.k.a ESPN, you can use my personal favorite sports app: theScore. With the score you get news and scores without all the extra fluff. You can also set up favorite teams and sports to get custom alerts. It’s simple, fast, customizable, and easy to use. [FREE]

CBS Sports

One of the main TV networks to broadcast NCAA Tournament games is CBS, so you know they have a good app for coverage. Follow live action with GameTrackers, scoreboards, stats, and more. Plus you can set up scoring, team news, and breaking news alerts to keep you on top of all the action. [FREE]

Watching Live

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The most important thing to do during March Madness is, of course, watch as many basketball games as humanly possible. In order to do this you’ll need much more than just a television. Use these apps to watch games while you’re at work, on the train, in the bathroom, sitting in a waiting room, or any other possible moment of free time.

NCAA March Madness Live

Far and away the best app for watching live tournament games is the official March Madness app. Log in with your TV provider to enjoy unlimited access to live streaming video of all 67 games of the 2014 NCAA® Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, across TBS, CBS, TNT and truTV. If you don’t have cable a temporary preview period is available for live game streaming before login is required. [FREE]

Sling TV

If you don’t have cable, but still want to watch as many games as you can, consider trying Sling TV. You can get 7 for free and then it’s $20 for a full month. SImply cancel your subscription after March Madness is over. With Sling you’ll get TBS and TNT, which leaves just CBS (free OTA), and truTV. The service is not free, but it’s not a bad price for one month of basketball. [FREE]

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With Galaxy S6 and One M9 looming, our list of best android phones remains unchanged… for now http://phandroid.com/2015/03/12/best-android-phone-march-2015/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/12/best-android-phone-march-2015/#comments Thu, 12 Mar 2015 16:12:26 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=161311 Samsung Galaxy S6 vs S5 DSC08959

Polling our panel of Android enthusiasts, the consensus is that not much has changed at the top of our Best Phones list. There’s a good reason: last year brought us perhaps the best crop of Android smartphones we have ever seen, and major manufacturers have been riding that success out, staying quiet in terms of earth-shaking announcements. That all changed last week with Mobile World Congress and the introduction of the Samsung Galaxy S6 and HTC One M9.

Those devices (along with the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge) promise to force us to rethink our rankings come next month. Both will be on the market by early April, and our initial time with the devices has us with one impression: it’s going to be hard to find a better phone than the Galaxy S6 or One M9 come next month.

We’ve got the lowdown on all of these upcoming devices, rumored phones like the LG G4, and, of course, our list of the best Android phones currently available, all as part of Phandroid’s Android phone guide.

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Everything you need to know about the Samsung Galaxy S6 http://phandroid.com/2015/03/09/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-samsung-galaxy-s6/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/09/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-samsung-galaxy-s6/#comments Mon, 09 Mar 2015 17:04:37 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160972 Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge DSC08444

At Mobile World Congress, Samsung unveiled not one, but two 2015 flagship devices, the  Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. Since the phones have been revealed, we have been diving into everything they have to offer to find out what’s new, how the S6 devices compare to the competition, and what we can expect come launch day. Here is everything you need to know about the Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S 6 Edge.

Galaxy S6 vs. Galaxy S6 Edge

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge DSC08487

When Samsung launched the Galaxy Note 4, they gave us a one-two punch that included the Galaxy Note Edge, the first widely-available device to utilize the company’s curved AMOLED technology (we’ll count the Samsung Galaxy Round as more or less a proof of concept). With the Samsung Galaxy S6, the folks behind the world’s most popular line of Android smartphones followed an identical strategy with the unveil of the Galaxy S6 Edge.

The Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge in many ways takes the concept introduced with the Note Edge to the logical next step, opting for a curved edge on both sides of the display rather than the one sloping side of the Note variant. The functionality has also been simplified. Samsung has ditched the “Edge Display” interface of the Note Edge in favor of a more subtle approach.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge screen settings DSC08583

The curved sides of the S6 Edge in normal circumstances merely continue the flow of the main display in an aesthetically pleasing way, but they also act to provide at-a-glance information about notifications by flashing colors that can be assigned to specific contacts. Dragging from the edge opens up a menu of quick actions to respond to incoming calls and messages. A toned down information ticker is still available, but it serves a much smaller overall purpose than it did with the Note Edge.

Other than their displays, the two devices are identical in terms of hardware and other aspects of their design. The Galaxy S6 Edge’s name implies that it is secondary to the flagship Galaxy S6, but Samsung has been featuring the more unique version of the device most prominently in advertising since its launch at MWC 2015. If it wasn’t for a slightly higher price tag and potential supply constraints as a result of the curved AMOLED technology, we might imagine Samsung could have ditched the traditional S6 altogether. You can get a quick look at how they compare in our hands-on videos with each device.

Hardware

Galaxy S6 specs

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge DSC08452

Both the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge feature an identical hardware compliment, offering one of the most powerful Android experiences we have seen to date. The list of specs features the following highlights:

  • 64-bit Exynos 7 Octa chipset
  • 3GB of LPDDR4 RAM
  • 32GB, 64GB or 128GB UFS 2.0 storage options
  • 16 megapixel rear camera with optical image stabilization, 5 megapixel front camera with real-time HDR
  • 5.1-inch Quad-HD Super AMOLED display (577 ppi)
  • Dual-mode wireless charging with support for both WPC and PMA charging pads
  • NFC, heart-rate sensor and improved fingerprint scanner
  • Depth: 6.8mm/7.0mm edge
  • Weight: 138g/132g edge

Samsung has spared no expense in outfitting their 2015 flagship with top-tier hardware, improving many of the features introduced with the Samsung Galaxy S5. This includes the holdover heart rate sensor (which now doubles as an input to acknowledge notifications) and a vastly improved finger scanner.

Galaxy S6 battery & Qi charging

Samsung GalaxY S6 wireless charging DSC08674

One minor difference between the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge is the battery; the handsets feature 2550mAh and 2600mAh batteries respectively. In order to achieve the sleek design that makes the S6 so appealing, Samsung for the first time has opted to make the battery non-removable. One plus side to this is the inclusion of wireless charging as a standard option out of the box.

Audio enhancements

Samsung has also taken the time to improve the Galaxy S6’s onboard speakers. The company claims the device offers 1.5x the audio output volume of the Galaxy S5, and we can confirm that the S6 is a much louder phone if not measure the  results empirically. Sound quality overall was markedly improved.

What’s missing: waterproof construction, expandable storage

One area where the S6 backtracks is a lack of waterproof construction. This was a major selling point for the Galaxy S5 and one hammered home by variant releases like the Samsung Galaxy S5 Sport and Samsung Galaxy S5 Active. A lack of resistance to the elements of nature is a compromise Samsung had to make to in order to achieve the gorgeous design of the S6, but there is at least some hope the company will followup with an Active edition to satisfy the needs of the more adventurous set of users out there.

Going hand-in-hand with the design changes from the S5 to the S6, a non-removable backplate has led Samsung to leave out the option for expandable storage via microSD card. Samsung has counteracted potential storage limits by offering the Galaxy S6 with internal storage of up to 128GB.

Toned-down TouchWiz

Samsung Galaxy S6 vs S5 DSC08959

The Galaxy S6’s hardware would imply a pretty powerful device on paper, but we have seen the performance of Samsung’s best made phones suffer under the bloat of their TouchWiz interface in the past. With the Galaxy S6 this is not the case thanks in large part to Samsung’s efforts in trimming the fat from their custom Android user interface.

While the UI looks pretty similar to that of the Galaxy S5 on the surface, the under-the-hood enhancements equate to a device that feels faster and performs more smoothly, despite their shared Android Lollipop base. Samsung has made great strides to reduce the clutter of previous TouchWiz iterations, giving the interface a refined look that should be more approachable to the user. Just take a look at this new screen-off animation:

screenoff

The software also comes with a few of its own special features, including the new Samsung Pay mobile payments platform. Utilizing the built-in NFC chip of the S6 and S6 Edge, the new service will be available when the phones reach retail.

Improved fingerprint scanner

Samsung Galaxy S6 Fingerprint sign in DSC08979

The fingerprint scanner of the Samsung Galaxy S5 offered some novel uses such as PayPal payments and Private mode for stored files, but it was awkward and clunky to use and far from reliable. With the Galaxy S6 things have changed drastically. Gone is the swiping motion needed to read a fingerprint on last year’s model, replaced by a method very similar in use to Apple’s Touch ID. In fact, Samsung’s latest fingerprint scanner is on par, if not better, than Apple’s.

The improved finger scanner is quick and accurate; rest your finger over the home button and the device will unlock in short order. Samsung has also added some intriguing functionality, such as the ability to store credentials for your frequently visited websites, using your fingerprint to effortlessly login via the browser.

Lightning-fast camera

One area where Samsung has greatly improved with the Galaxy S6 is the camera. While Samsung’s recent releases have all offered pretty solid camera experiences, the software side of things has become increasingly bloated. Samsung opted for a simplified interface to make quickly capturing photos easy.

Samsung still includes plenty of what we expect — filters, various photo modes, slow motion video, and panoramas, to name a few — but it is presented in a less cluttered way. The features are there when you want them, but won’t get in the way of taking that spur-of-the-moment shot.

When you really want to dive into a shot, Samsung offers a Pro mode that allows the user to make adjustments to a number of parameters more typically associated with standalone cameras. These include white balance, focus, ISO, and more.

But this would all mean nothing if the Galaxy S6 didn’t offer a solid camera sensor to begin with, and again Samsung has delivered. A 16MP camera is paired with optical image stabilization to make capturing shots a breeze. The OIS itself is impressive when compared to the iPhone 6, which lacks stabilization altogether. The Galaxy S6 proved to be a quite capable shooter when pitted head-to-head against Apple’s latest iPhone.

Most impressive, though, is the Galaxy S6’s ability to go from screen off to photo in under a second — 0.7 seconds to be exact. A quick home button gesture combined with the S6’s awesome hardware are what make this possible.

Gear VR, new cases, and other accessories

Samsung Gear VR DSC08515

The Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge will be Samsung’s second and third devices to support their Gear VR platform powered by Oculus. An updated Gear VR headset will be released that will fit the S6, giving future owners the ability to dive into the world of in-home virtual reality. We were big fans of the Note 4 version, and expect more of the same from the Galaxy S6 with Gear VR.

A new phone release would be nothing without a few new cases to go along with it. Samsung has introduced an updated S View style folio case tailor-fit for the S6 Edge. It features a translucent plastic front that pairs with a low-energy notification view to provide a quick look at incoming calls and messages. We also get some standard slim-profile cases from Samsung for the S6 and S6 Edge.

Samsung Galaxy S6 flip case open DSC08607

We can expect to see plenty of third party cases hit the market for the new Galaxy S phones. Speck has unveiled their lineup and other have followed suit. Expect a few first-party options from Samsung when it comes to wireless charging, though the S6 will support a number of docks already on the market.

Samsung Galaxy S6 vs. the competition

Samsung Galaxy S6 vs HTC One M9

The Galaxy S6 wasn’t the only device recently unveiled. The HTC One M9 looks to be its biggest competition. The two devices stack up favorably in terms of power and performance, but the curved AMOLED of the S6 Edge really sets it apart. For those wondering whether or not the S6 is a worthy upgrade over their current S5, the below chart highlights the major differences.

Samsung Galaxy S6 vs Galaxy S5

The other prime competitor is Apple’s iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. While Samsung has again proven they are not against aping the design choices coming out of Cupertino, they have actually done a lot with the S6 to set their phone apart. Where Samsung faltered previously (weak fingerprint scanner, software lag, and beauty in design, to name a few), they have now matched or exceeded what we get with Apple’s latest smartphones.

Pricing & Availability

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When can you get your hands on what is so far the hottest Android phone of 2015? Samsung has scheduled an April 10th worldwide launch for both the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. Samsung has pulled in a record 20 million reservations for their latest Android handset through retailers and carriers stocking up for launch day. The phone should be widely available for pre-order by April 1st through most carriers, including Verizon and Sprint.

A specific street price for both the GS6 and GS6 Edge have not been revealed. The closest we have come is what has been leaked in the rules of a T-Mobile contest, which put a $699 off-contract price tag on the Galaxy S6, though there is no indication of what storage configuration this price pertains to. The S6 Edge is expected to cost slightly more.

As we await more info the launch, we can take solace in the official unboxing and hands-on video posted to Samsung’s YouTube account.

Galaxy S6 Tips & Tricks

Why do you need tips and tricks for an unreleased smartphone? So you can spend less time learning about your device out of the box and more time actually using it.

Here are a few helpful tutorials to get you started:

To read up even more on the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, head over and download the official user manuals for both phones.

Galaxy S6 forums

Then you will want to head over to Android Forums, where we have dedicated forums for both the Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. There you will find a growing number of resources and discussions.

For the Galaxy S6:

For the Galaxy S6 Edge:

Be sure to head over an add your own tips and tricks, or simply join the conversation and pass the time as we await the official launch of Samsung’s latest Android flagship devices.

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Everything you need to know about the HTC One M9 http://phandroid.com/2015/03/09/everything-you-need-to-know-htc-one-m9/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/09/everything-you-need-to-know-htc-one-m9/#comments Mon, 09 Mar 2015 16:43:57 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160965

Mobile World Congress was dominated by two new devices, the Samsung Galaxy S6 and HTC One M9. We pumped out a lot of content about these two heavy hitters, which means you might have missed some important stuff. In this guide we’ll be covering the One M9. The device might not look much different from last year’s model, but there is plenty of new stuff to discover. Here’s everything you need to know.

HTC One M9 Specs

HTC One M9 everything

On the surface the M9 appears almost identical to the HTC One M8. For the most part that’s a very good thing, considering the One M8 was one of the best-looking Android devices ever made. There are really only two things that differentiate the two. 1) The M9 has only one camera on the back, and it’s more square than round. 2) The metal on the M9 has a brushed texture to it whereas the M8 was more smooth.

Under the surface is where the M9 has many improvements. Better processor, more RAM, improved camera, the latest version of Android, etc. You can read the full spec sheet for all the inner goodies, but here are the specs you need to know:

  • 2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor
  • 5-inch Super LCD3 1080p display
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 32GB of internal storage with microSD
  • 20 megapixel rear camera, 4 megapixel (UltraPixel) front camera
  • GPS, WiFi AC, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, 4G LTE
  • 5.68 x 2.73 x 0.38 inches, 4.96 ounces
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop with HTC Sense 7

HTC One M9 vs The Competition

To see how these specs stack up check out the side-by-side comparison of the HTC One M9 vs One M8, and the One M9 vs Samsung Galaxy S6.

HTC Sense 7

The HTC One M9 comes with the latest version of Sense on top of Android 5.0 Lollipop. Sense 7 has quite a few new features and improvements. Most of these new features will eventually make their way to older HTC devices, but for now they are only on the One M9.

Custom Sense Themes

Another great feature of Sense 7 is the ability to create completely custom themes. Sense has had themes for a while, but now HTC has opened them up to be much more personal. You can create a custom theme simply by taking a photo. Sense will then identify colors from that photo and change accent colors, icons, and even system sounds. There are also a bunch of pre-loaded themes, see all the HTC One M9 themes here.

Custom Nav Bar

One of the best new features in Sense 7 is the ability to customize the buttons in the bottom nav bar. Typical Android devices with software buttons have “back, home, and recents.” The HTC One M9 has these buttons as well, but there is room for a 4th user-defined button. You can set it to turn off the screen, auto rotate, show notifications, or hide the nav bar completely (swipe up to show).

Personalized Recommendations

HTC has also done a lot to make Sense 7 smarter. A new option called “Meal Time Bundles” shows local places to eat on your lockscreen, and later this year “Morning Bundle” will show news on the lockscreen. They’ve also added a “Sense Home” widget to the homescreen. The widget shows apps based on your location. Productivity apps when you’re at work, social apps when you’re home, etc. To round things out they’ve added “Smart Folders” that automatically organize apps for you.

HTC One M9 Camera

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The most important aspect of the HTC One M9 might be the camera. The M8 had a decent camera, but many users were disappointed in the performance in non-ideal situations. With the One M9 they’ve finally stopped messing around with “UltraPixels” on the back and went with a traditional 20.7MP camera. They’ve also gotten rid of the “duo-camera” in favor of one big sensor.

The rear camera has autofocus, a backside-illuminated sensor, a f/2.2, 27.8mm lens, and is capable of 4K video recording.The big question is does the switch to megapixels result in better photos? The answer is “yes and no.” The good news is you can actually zoom in before taking a photo and still get a decent result, and photos in ideal situations look better than the One M8. The bad news is low-light photos are still not great.

HTC UltraPixel Front Camera

HTC may have removed UltraPixels from the back camera, but they didn’t remove them from the device entirely. The front-facing camera is now equipped with a 2 UltraPixel camera. HTC says this allows for great seflies in all conditions, including low light. We put that to the test against the iPhone 6 in the video below.

Check out our side-by-side photos of the One M9’s UltraPixel front camera and the iPhone 6 in our comparison post. The One M9 easily outperforms the iPhone 6 in low-light and even perfect conditions. UltraPixels may not have been great for the rear camera, but they seem to be doing an awesome job up front.

The bottom line with the new camera(s) is it’s too early to tell. Right now we only have some short hands-on time and HTC’s own claims to go on. We’ll need to put the One M9 up against the One M8 and other devices before we can see if there are big improvements. So far it’s looking like HTC made some much-needed improvements.

HTC Dot View 2

Most manufacturers make cases for their phones, but none put as much thought into them as HTC. The Dot View case was one of our favorite things about the One M8, and HTC made it even better with the One M9. Dot View 2 fixes a few things users complained about and adds some really neat new features and designs.

The new Dot View case sits flat now when flipped behind the device. A lot of people complained about this one. They also made the new Dot View case clear on the back so the beautiful brushed aluminum can shine through. The biggest new features come in the companion Dot View app. You can draw your own designs, convert photos, and even play 8-bit games. It’s a really great app, and easily the best case out there.

HTC One M9 Pricing & Availability

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The last thing to know about the One M9 is when it will go on sale and for how much. HTC hasn’t given an exact release date yet, but they did say it will be available “mid-March,” and one major retailer suggests March 25th. They also didn’t provide pricing information. We can assume the One M9 will cost around $599-650 unlocked and $199 with a new contract from participating carriers. The device will be available in gunmetal grey, silver+gold, and pink.

Join in the HTC One M9 discussion at Android Forums

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While you wait for the One M9 to be released you can chat with other fans in Android Forums. It’s a great place to ask questions and find out more information before you buy the device. Here are a few popular threads to get your started.

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Take a look at the entire Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge user manuals ahead of launch day http://phandroid.com/2015/03/05/samsung-galaxy-s6-edge-user-manual/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/05/samsung-galaxy-s6-edge-user-manual/#comments Thu, 05 Mar 2015 18:41:58 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160898 Samsung Galaxy S6 all colors DSC08554

We take user manuals for granted these days. Most devices come with small tutorials to show you the basics, and then leave you off to explore your new toy with glee.

But if you’re the type who likes the informative literature that’ll show you the ins and outs of your device before using it, then you’ll be happy to know that the manual accompanying some of 2015’s most anticipated phones — the Samsung Galaxy S6 and the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge — is already available for your viewing pleasure.

We’ve already given you an in-depth look at all the exciting new stuff the Galaxy S6 devices have to offer such as an improved fingerprint scanner, an awesome camera, and — in the case of the Edge variant — some great new display features. You’ve even already gotten a full unboxing experience. Now it’s time to get the rest and take your pre-launch hype experience full circle.

AndroidForums.com has the guides — Samsung Galaxy S6 user manual is here, while the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge user manual is right hereas well as all the great discussion you can handle to get yourself prepared for the device’s launch this April.

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I tried the new HTC Vive Virtual Reality Headset and it blew my mind [VIDEO] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/04/htc-vive-review/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/04/htc-vive-review/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2015 18:22:30 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160802 HTC Re Vive DSC08870

Blown away: that was my reaction after demoing HTC’s new virtual reality headset – the Vive – at Mobile World Congress. It will be available to consumers later this year, and depending on price, could absolutely change the game. To say it left me speechless would, well…

Explaining the HTC Vive experience is like telling a friend about a dream you had last night… it’s nearly impossible, but you try anyways, and fail miserably. There is no substitute for its visual immersion or interactive experience. If a picture is worth a thousand words than I think the HTC Vive just exploded my brain.

The 15-Minute Demo

I was given a 15-minute window to demo the HTC Vive…. here is what happened.

Suiting up

My time with the HTC Vive was short but epic. I entered a small room and they suited me up in the gear which, for now, is quite cumbersome, with a lot of wires held up by a belt and connected to the main computer system. The consumer version, HTC ensures, will be wireless- including both the Vive headset itself and the two handheld controllers that act as your virtual arms.

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The front of the Vive has sensors all over it, which communicate with sensors placed in opposite corners of the room on the ceiling. How will this work for the version sold to consumers? I’m not exactly sure, but I’m guessing HTC has some tricks up their sleeve.

After strapping on the headset, I saw two handheld controllers floating towards me, quickly realizing it was the HTC representative walking over and handing them to me. It was surprising how natural the process was of identifying the controllers, realizing I was to take action, reaching out, and grabbing them.

The controllers were Wii like in nature but with a trackpad for each thumb, trigger for each pointer finger, and grip buttons on the left and right of each controllers base. For the purpose of this demo, I only used the triggers and trackpad.

Training in the Matrix

The start of the “training” truly felt like the Matrix:

Everything in the HTC Vive starting scenario was like the scene above. Just one big, white, endless sea of nothing. Before walking around, I had to learn to use my arms. We did this by blowing balloons.

Balloons Away

Holding down on the left trackpad would inflate a colored balloon from the tip of the (graphical representation of) the controller. You’d hear that *gkwwwoooooosh* sound while inflating it and just as you let go of the trackpad it would complete. Then there it would sit- a bright, cartoonish yet lifelike balloon on the tip of your controller in a completely white room.

“Try to send the balloon off,” the HTC rep suggested.

htc-vive-balloons

So holding the balloon with my left controller, I tapped it with my right controller, and off it went! It floated away in such a beautiful and natural way, slowly disappearing into the distance. After getting the okay to continue with more, I was soon looking every which direction, inflating balloons, sending them off, and spinning in wonderment at how awesome it was that I felt transported to a completely different place.

Little did I know the fun was just starting.

Learning my boundaries

Most virtual reality headsets let you crane your neck to explore the virtual world around you, but the HTC Vive takes that one step further. With the Vive you’re able to physically walk around in real life, and while doing so, you’re visually exploring the virtual world shown in your headset. This really helps the Vive make the leap from being a voyeur to being an active participant.

But you’re in a room, wearing a headset, and you don’t want to run into a wall and fall down. The HTC Rep vocally guided me to walk towards the wall, pointing out that as I approached, I’d see dotted warning lines on the ground. Just after that you could see virtual walls. Two feet beyond that were real life walls, basically meaning I had 2 visual warnings/indicators before crashing.

Walking around seeing one world but knowing I’m in another was a bit… disorienting at first.

mime-glass-wall
Spoiler: I survived

After tiptoeing around a little bit I was placed in a room of vertically protruding white geometric blocks. While walking around the room they would recede into the ground before my eyes, almost predicting my steps before I took them. The room was reacting to my every movement.

After a couple minutes I was ready for the big leagues… and by leagues I mean unit of measurement, as in 20,000 leagues under the sea.

Walking on the deck of a sunken ship

Ready for my first full adventure, my headset lights were first dimmed to black. When they raised up, I was standing on the deck of a sunken ship in the middle of the ocean. As I wheeled my head around I felt surrounded by a living, breathing world around me.

The colors and shadows were rich and dynamic. Small schools of fish snuck from behind me, zipping past my head, through my legs, and jetting into the distance when I reached my arms in their direction. Then suddenly I realized… I have no clue where I am in the physical world. In only a few short minutes I completely lost my sense of direction in the physical world in favor of the virtual world I was experiencing. I truly felt like I was in a different world.

I felt like Finding Nemo. And I was Nemo. And then the whale came.

That’s exactly what happened next. In the distance, I spotted a whale majestically maneuvering in the distance. Then it got closer. Then a little closer. Then closer. Then CLOSER. Before you knew it, the monstrous creature was swimming directly next to the rail of the ship. I was, quite literally, looking directly into the eye of the giant beast.

I can’t truly explain how lifelike it was to see the whale swim, watch it gradually approach, then walk towards it as we met eye to eye. I also can’t explain the feeling when it swam away, seeing its powerful tail slither, wondering if one quick whip would blow me and my virtual ship clear out of the water. But it didn’t… it calmly swam away and I was left to peacefully explore the edges of the ship once again.

Up to this point an ear-to-ear smile was strapped to my face and I was pretty much left in awe… but pretty soon I’d exclamations would be pouring out of my mouth.

Symphony of Painting

Back to a blank canvas. And this time, I literally mean blank canvas, because in the next demo I became an artist in a 3D world with magical paint. My left hands was the palette, my right hand was the brush, and the rest was up to me. Using the trackpad I could scroll through a 3D cube of options, changing paint colors and types of paint/features, and dipping my right controller into the left palette to make selections.

Now… to paint!

While painting with the HTC Vive I felt a bit like I was Mickey in Fantasia. You know, the part right after he dozes off, paints the sky, and controls the heavens with his magic wand.

As you swiped your brush around the sky it left a trail of textures in colors that looked amazing. It was one thing to be creating 3D art but to walk within it, through it, simultaneously creating it was pretty magical.

HTC has said they’ll allow you to save and share your masterpieces, letting you load and experience the 3D art that your friends and others create. I know there are some outrageously artistic and creative people in the world and I can’t wait to see what they’ll come up with… the HTC Vive is an artists dream and will push the boundaries of what we currently consider “art”.

I wrote my name – ROB – at different angles and levels, then painted a blue fiery arrow blasting through the letter “O”. My 3rd grade art teacher Mrs. Wallace would be proud. But mostly proud of HTC.

My virtual ink didn’t run out but it was time to change subjects, jumping to something a little more scientific.

Shop Class in Robot Land

I was transported to a workshop of sorts after finishing my masterpiece and was led through a series of puzzles. I was using my hands/controllers to open and close various drawers to find what my audio host suggested he needed me to find. Every time I completed a puzzle, the story would further unfold. I couldn’t help but think, “this would make the perfect setting for a murder mystery!”

game-of-clue-murder-mystery

At this point my mind was so firmly blown that – like a dream – I’m having trouble piecing together all the details and parts of what unfolded in those 15 minutes. The walls collapsed, huge rooms beyond the boundaries of my area were exposed, and I saw gigantic robots toiling around.

One of them was thrust into my immediate vicinity, its ribcage slid open, thousands of mechanical moving gears and parts exposed,  and I was tasked with fixing its broken interior.

It was a mini-game.

If I’m being honest, it took me way longer to figure out the mini-game than I would like to admit. Perhaps that’s because my mind was still wandering, thinking of all the applications that the HTC Vive could excel beyond just entertainment and gaming.

How amazing would it be for medical students to explore the human body and practice various types of surgery using the HTC Vive? How about a mechanic in training, learning all the parts of a vehicle and following a tutorial before diving in on the one directly in front of him? How about an educational tool to teach physics? Or how about physics based drawing/puzzle games?!?!

And my time is up…

My time with the HTC Vive had come to an end. The 15 minutes had flown by so quickly, yet somehow, I felt like I saw and experienced so many incredible things. They were vivid in my memory, but because I felt so connected to the experiences themselves, I found it difficult to explain them in a way meaningful enough to let others appreciate it.

As predicted, I’ve probably failed at helping you appreciate how awesome the HTC Vive truly is. You’ll have to either take my word for it or buy one for yourself; they will, after all, be available later this year.

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Bottom Line

The HTC Vive was the single most exciting thing at Mobile World Congress 2015 and when it’s all said and done, it’s very possible that the HTC Vive could be the tech product of the year. We’ve been served up so many subpar VR “experiences” but none of them have touched what HTC has created. It’s the most immersive, vivid, and entertaining VR experience on earth. And it will be available later this year.

In a world where mobile manufacturers have over-hyped and over marketed every little incremental improvement, customers have grown wary of outrageous promises and claims.

Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 7.05.20 PM

Usually I’d say the above is marketing jargon and the below is an overhyped promo…

But after actually using the HTC Vive, I can tell you it’s the real deal, and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m already sold… I’m just hoping I’m able to order one before they sell out.

Excited about the HTC Vive? Join thousands of others in our HTC Vive Forum!

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Hands-on with the elegant Huawei Watch [VIDEO] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/04/hands-on-huawei-watch/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/04/hands-on-huawei-watch/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2015 14:37:41 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160801 Huawei Watch DSC08891

Yesterday we were able to get a close look at the Huawei Watch, but we weren’t actually able to get our hands on it. Today we finally fixed that. Mobile World Congress has produced some awesome Android devices this year, but the Huawei Watch might our favorite. It came out of nowhere and really surprised us. After holding it in our hands we’re still very impressed.

What sets the Huawei Watch apart is the “no compromise” round display. Current round devices all make some sort of sacrifice. The Moto 360 has small bezels, but the infamous “flat tire” keeps the display from being perfectly round. LG’s watches manage to have perfectly round displays, but the bezels are very large. Huawei somehow made a smartwatch with minimal bezel and a perfectly round display.

The display is 1.4-inch AMOLED with 286ppi, and looks really great. It’s powered by a 1.2GHz Qualcomm processor, and has 4GB of storage, 512MB of RAM, 300mAh battery, and a 6-axis sensor for fitness tracking. The Huawei Watch will be sold in 20 countries (including North America), but we don’t know when it will go on sale or how much it will cost. When it does go on sale it will be available in black, silver, and gold.

At what price would you buy the Huawei Watch? Do you think it looks better than the Moto 360 or LG Watch Urbane?

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Here are all the HTC One M9 Themes in one place http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/htc-one-m9-themes/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/htc-one-m9-themes/#comments Mon, 02 Mar 2015 19:03:49 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160618 HTC One M9 Themes app

One of the coolest new features of the HTC One M9 is the all-new theming capability. With a couple taps, you can completely overhaul and customize the entire look and feel of your device. We’ve gathered every single theme currently found on the HTC One M9 for this gallery from Mobile World Congress.

We hope and expect there will be many more in the future… and when that time comes, you’ll know exactly where to hear about them. For now, enjoy these 9 beautiful HTC One M9 Themes.

HTC One M9 Stock Theme

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This is theme that comes preloaded on the M9. The bright and beige sand with water majestically pouring onto it is accompanies by simple blue app trays and icons.

Cascadia Theme

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HTC-One-M9-Cascadia-Theme-Keyboard

This angular, cartoony night scene reminds me a bit of a Tim Burton movie.

Numero Theme

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This is easily one of my favorites… simple geometric shapes, light colors, and a simple numbered clock. Lots to love here.

Innerspace Theme

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This isn’t the only place the M9 and Galaxies collide… but the outcome here is much more fun and peaceful. Abstract planets in an overall cool theme.

Nimbus Theme

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Apparently I don’t know what “Nimbus” means. Neither does Merriam-Webster. Maybe the guy who took this photo was named Nimbus.

Origami Theme

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HTC-One-M9-Origami-Theme-Keyboard

Take a close look at the design of the icons and the numbers in the clock and you’ll see they look like they’re folded out of origami paper. Clever and cool. I’m a fan.

Pastorale Theme

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This rural landscape with flat colors and lots of yellows and greens is perfect for country lovers. Or really anyone fond of simple art and simple living.

Tilt Theme

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A very simple, dark theme with all icons and shades at a very distinct angle.

Traction Theme

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This bright red theme is the most bold of the bunch and I hope HTC includes more like it. The keyboard really ties the room together. I mean theme together.

Bonus Theme – Build Your Own!

Perhaps the coolest feature of the One M9 is the ability to automatically build your own theme based on a photo in your library. In the example below, we took an image of pretty pink flowers found in the stock gallery:

HTC-One-M9-Custom-Theme

After some brief customizations (you can get pretty advanced if you really want), out pops a theme inspired by the pinks and reds and blues and purples from the picture. And of course, our cropped image is used as the wallpaper.

HTC-One-M9-Custom-Theme-Final

So there you have it… all 9 themes for the HTC One M9 that currently exist. What do you think?

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Hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge [VIDEO] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/hands-on-samsung-galaxy-s6-and-galaxy-s6-edge/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/hands-on-samsung-galaxy-s6-and-galaxy-s6-edge/#comments Mon, 02 Mar 2015 14:13:57 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160471 AndroidForums.com Discussion: Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge

We finally got some personal time with the new Samsung Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. These two devices are identical in almost every way. The Edge has one big difference, which of course is the curved display on the long edges. This time Samsung hasn’t used that area for a special display, but it can still do some cool stuff, and makes swiping from the edge a lot easier.

The big story with the S6 and Edge is the brand new design. Gone is the faux metal and plastic. Samsung has replaced those old materials with glass on the front and back and metal around the edges. Many people have accused the devices of taking cues from the iPhone, but you can’t say it’s not a huge improvement. They’ve also added built-in wireless charging for Qi and PMA, which is a super handy addition.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge DSC08490

As mentioned above, these devices are almost identical. They both have 2560 x 1440 Super AMOLED HD displays, 16MP cameras (5MP on front), Samsung Exynos processors, 3GB of RAM, and 2550 mAh batteries. You can check out the full spec sheet for the Galaxy S6 here and the Galaxy S6 Edge right here.

On the software side of things there have been some improvements to TouchWiz. Samsung was very proud about how they’ve cut down on features by “40%.” You know when someone brags about removing features there were some problems. The best new software feature might be the super fast camera. It’s always running in the background so it can be launched in less than a second with a double-tap of the home button.

The funny thing with this new generation of devices is the Galaxy S6 Edge is definitely the more attractive option. The previous Note Edge looked lopsided with a curved display on only one side. With the S6 Edge, the curved display on both edges make it very comfortable to hold and possibly  the most ergonomic phone on the market. The curves just add to the overall sleekness of Samsung’s new design. Check out our hands-on video down below to get a feel for this gorgeous new device.

Which new Samsung Galaxy device do you like the most? Would you get the Edge over the standard S6 model?

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Hands-on with the new HTC One M9 [VIDEO] http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/hands-on-htc-one-m9/ http://phandroid.com/2015/03/02/hands-on-htc-one-m9/#comments Mon, 02 Mar 2015 13:46:34 +0000 http://phandroid.com/?p=160389 Talk about the HTC One M9 at AndroidForums.com!

Yesterday the HTC One M9 was officially announced at Mobile World Congress. We were in attendance at the event, and we had a chance to check out the device in person. The One M9 looks a lot like the One M8. In fact, it’s pretty much identical. From the front they look the same, but the back and insides are what set the M9 apart.

Specs are a very important part of any phone, but even more so for the One M9. Since HTC didn’t change the outer design they have put all the focus on the specs and software. The M9 has a 5-inch 1080p display, 20.7MP camera (2 “UltraPixel” front), Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, and 2840mAh battery. Check out the full HTC One M9 specs here.

HTC One M9 DSC08389

On the software side you’re getting Android 5.0.2 and Sense 7. Like the design of the M9, there aren’t many visual changes in Sense 7, but the functionality has big changes. The biggest change is a new “Sense Home” widget that you’ll find on the home screen by default. HTC tries to predict what apps you’ll need for certain situations and put them in this widget.

If your phone detects that you’re at work it can fill up the widget with productivity apps, and when you’re home it will display entertainment apps. At least that’s the general idea. If you don’t want HTC to try to figure all of this out for you it can be set up manually. There are also “Smart Folders” that automatically organize things for you.

Another cool new software feature is custom navigation buttons. By default you have back, home, and recent, but you can add a virtual power button, notification shade shortcut, fullscreen button, and quick settings, and more. It’s a really cool idea that we’d love to see more manufacturers embrace.

The One M9 lacks the excitement of previous HTC phones, but this is still an excellent device. The M9 will be one of the top devices of 2015. Do you think HTC did enough to improve from the M8? Will you be buying the HTC One M9? Let us know what you think about this device!

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