The Competition

Leaked Google Nexus 7 images and video show newer, sleeker iPad mini competitor

Apple wasn't the first small-sized tablet on the market but it's iPad mini has been far and away the most successful to date, so it's no surprise Google wants to get back into the game with a new, improved Nexus 7. Rumors of just such a sequel device have been circulating for a while now, but our sibling site has now gotten their hands on the first pictures and video of what just might be the next Nexus 7. Phil Nickinson from Android Central:

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You can now get the best Samsung and HTC phones on the market with 100% less Samsung and HTC software... (Something something iPhone)

While we're still waiting on a 2013 iPhone 5s, Android Central has already gotten the second versions of both their flagship Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One only this time without any trace of Samsung or HTC software. That's right, these are "Google Editions" and that means they come with stock Android Jelly Bean. Phil Nickinson took a first look at the Google Play editions HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4 and here's his take away:

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Are you jealous of BlackBerry 10? [Poll]

Are you jealous of BlackBerry 10?

Our friends over at CrackBerry highlighted a forum thread today where a BlackBerry 10 user claimed their iPhone-totting friends were jealous of all the shiny new features that phone had to offer. I've been using a BlackBerry Z10 for over a month now, and while I like a lot of the ideas BlackBerry is testing out in their new OS, I'm not in the least bit inclined to switch over yet, and I'm not sure jealousy has reared its ugly head even once.

The gesture navigation, even if less discoverable, is great once you get the hang of it, as are features like peek, where you can glimpse messages without transitioning completely into them, and the hub where all communications are aggregated. It really does feel like webOS all grown up, now sporting a suit and a tie. But there are still the types of quirks you'd expect to find in any new operating system, which need smoothing out and polishing up, and not only are a lot of major apps still missing, I can't find any of the apps I use every day on any platform outside iOS (looking at you Twitterrific, Tweetbot, Launch Center Pro, Fantastical, Drafts, Elements, etc.)

But I'm curious, if you've had a chance to see or try out BlackBerry 10, have you felt the least bit jealous? iOS is now the oldest platform in mobile, and BlackBerry 10 the newest, does that tempt you in any way? Or are you too busy enjoying what's still the best interface, app, and content experience to have even noticed BB10 yet?

Vote in the poll up top and let me know the details in the comments below!

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Samsung releases new Galaxy S4 commercial, targets the iPhone. Well.

Samsung has just released a new commercial for their new flagship phone, the Galaxy S4... and it's pretty good. The sheer size of the Galaxy S4 is evident in the ad, as are features like Drama Mode, which lets you capture a series of images -- think multi-exposure sports pics -- and Air Gestures that let you navigate without touching the screen with sticky -- in this case tasty rib covered -- fingers. Some of the other features, like Hover, which feels like a terrible violation of Fitts' law, and S Beam, which is like Bump over NFC, are a tad more gimmicky, and more demo-ware than software, but they come off okay in commercials for just that reason. (Samsung even suggests their screens support smell capture, which was probably a bad idea since injecting farce into an otherwise real, if strange, feature set only creates confusion.)

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Facebook's not-a-phone gets not-a-commercial

Facebook, like Microsoft before it, chose to pitch their new Home interface as people-centric. That's in contrast to the app-centric approach of Apple's iOS Springboard, and other platforms before it dating back to Palm and Newton. To emphasize the difference, and in hopes of selling it to the masses, Facebook has released a commercial of sorts. And... I'm not really sure what vibe they were going for. It seems to land somewhere between the original Palm Pre lady and Google's give-us-all-your-kids-stuff on the creepy scale.

The Facebook not-a-phone is targeted at people for whom Facebook is the primary purpose of the internet. If you're one of those people, chances are you're already okay with Facebook getting all up in your information in exchange for socially sorted communications and connections, I don't know how this commercial helps make you feel good about giving them that level of trust. If you're scared of Facebook and don't want their tentacles anywhere near your life or loved ones, I don't know how this commercial helps move you from that opinion.

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Unibody aluminium iPhone competitor HTC One gets reviewed

Android Central's Alex Dobie has posted his definitive HTC One review. While he bewilderingly managed to misspell aluminium, Dobie otherwise did a fantastic job looking at the almost Apple-class unibody hardware, stunning 1080p LCD display, and the interesting if more divisive HTC Sense 5 interface. His conclusion:

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Apple adds new webpage, sends out emails telling us why people love iPhones... more than other phones

Apple has updated Apple.com with a new page, and sent out an email campaign, aimed at telling us just why people love iPhones... and why competing phones just aren't as good. The timing, so soon after Samsung announced the Galaxy S4 is certainly interesting, and feels like it marks a shift in Apple's strategy towards the more aggressive, more competitive product marketing. Apple did a lot of this in the "Get a Mac" days with their "I'm a Mac" and "I'm a PC" character commercials, but it hasn't been a major focus of their mobile campaigns until now.

Mixed into the new webpage and mailer, are lines like:

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Samsung gets ready to counter-program the iPhone with the Galaxy S4

I'm in New York with our Windows Phone editor, Daniel Rubino and our videographer, Martin Reisch, to help Android Central's Phil Nickinson cover the ever-loving stuffing out of the Samsung Galaxy S4 event at Radio City Music Hall tonight. (Yeah, all of us can work cross-platform, go figure?)

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HTC seeks to counter-program iPhone 5 with HTC One

Our sibling site, Android Central, is live at the HTC events in New York and London, and I'm hugely interested in what they're going to report for us today. Why? Because it's that time of year again. The iPhone 5 is almost 6 months old, and if Apple stays to pattern, we won't see an iPhone 5s -- or whatever they call it -- for several more months to come. So it's absolutely the perfect time for competitors to start counter-programming. HTC, who pretty much invented that strategy with the original Google Nexus One back 2010, is hoping to work some of that magic again with what's rumored to be the HTC One. And they're hoping to start working it today.

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Nokia tries to preempt iPhone 5 with amazing Lumia 920 camera, absolutely no launch details

Once news got out that Apple would be holding an iPhone event on September 12, every competitor and their platform partner scrambled to announce events ahead of time. Mostly. The first was Nokia's Windows Phone event this morning, which showed off the new flagship Nokia Lumia 920 with a brief nod to the mode budget-friendly Nokia Lumia 820. Daniel Rubino from our Mobile Nations sibling site, WPCentral was there live to catch all the actions.

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