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16Mar/120

Five of the new iPad’s most hardcore games

Those of you purchasing the new iPad from Apple today will be glad to know that developers have already released a set of games that not only make use of your fabulous Retina display, they’re set to make full use of that awesome new A5X chip you’ve got running as well. You’ll be making the most of your four GPU cores with a litany of fantastic beasts of games in the future, and already today you’ll be set to have hours, days, and weeks of fun with the initial offering for this next generation iPad. Behold the first wave: racing, shooting, and role-playing galore!

This post is meant to be a companion to the several other 2012 iPad app guides we’ve got already – don’t be surprised if one or two games appear here as well as there: they’re just that good. We’ll be beginning with a racing game you might already be familiar with, enhanced this week to bring you up to full Retina quality speed. Expect this kind of excellence soon from other racers, but for now this game stands utterly alone in its HD-quality:

Real Racing 2 HD

This game is available for the iPad only at the moment, the HD quality being just one of the fantastic new features you’ll have working in this newly minted version 1.13 of the instantly classic top-fuel game. This game will cost you a cool [$2.99 to download now] and you’ll never look back. Yellow cars go faster, always remember that.

Order & Chaos Online

This game is no less than a full real-time 3D Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game made to work fantastically on your iPad. This game brings on a fabulous fantasy world of magic, mayhem, and the occasional team up for quests in the Lower City dungeon. Fans of such epic games as Diablo and World of Warcraft beware: such greatness on the iPad awaits! This game will run you [$6.99 on the App Market] if you buy it now!

Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation

This game offers you not only first person shooting in as high definition an environment as you’re ever going to find outside the PC, it also brings you Airplay gaming at a full 720p – you’ll want to pick up a new Apple TV to make this happen as slick as possible. The app itself will only cost you [$0.99 for a download] and you’ll be able to play on your iPhone as well!

Mass Effect Infiltrator

For those of you that like to massacre your opponents with high-powered weapons but aren’t able to get into the first-person-shooter genre, there’s the third-person-shooter as well! This game takes the highest definition graphics you’ve ever seen in such a game and slaps them down on the new iPad as well as the iPhone for [$6.99 for hours of adventure] Don’t forget to duck and snipe!

Infinity Blade II

The Infinity Blade series has been recommended by Apple in each of its iterations since the iPad 2 first showed its fantastic ability to work with its A5 dual-core chip like a boss all the way back 12 months ago. This version of the game is the pre-cursor to Infinity Blade: Dungeons, another game you simply must download and play to get the full iPad experience. High definition finger-swiping sword battles await for [$6.99 and worth every penny]

And there’s more!

You’ll want to head back to our Gaming on the new iPad pre-preparation post for a few more suggestions as you stock up for the summer, and of course check out our [iOS App Review Portal] for a selection of applications that cannot be beat. The timeline you see below this paragraph should also be a healthy guide for you to continue down the 2012 iPad path towards eternal addiction to this seemingly unstoppable machine.

Five of the new iPad’s most hardcore games is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G Hands-on and Unboxing

T-Mobile’s newest offering in the Android world is this Samsung device by the name of Blaze, a dual-core Super AMOLED display-having miniature beast. This is the same device that we said would be Spring’s Perfect Smartphone so it’s time to put it to the test in a hardcore manner. Will its 3.97-inch screen be perfect for our thumbs? Will the Qualcomm S3 processor be enough to placate our desire for everyday apps and T-Mobile’s version of 4G connectivity? Let’s take a quick peek!

You should know at this point that this is NOT the full review of the device. We’ve still got to put this smartphone through the paces, as right now we’ve only just received the phone in the mail. What this post consists of is a selection of lovely close-up photos of the device as well as a hands-on video with a full unboxing of the device, as it were. You’ll see Android 2.3 Gingerbread running on this smartphone with Samsung’s own specially tuned TouchWiz user interface over the top.

The display is super bright, the phone fits perfectly in an adult male’s hand like mine, and the device costs just $150 after $50 mail-in rebate from T-Mobile. Does this device look like a device you’d like to be using for the next two years? Have a peek at the video and the photos we’ve got so far and don’t forget to ask any and all questions we’ll be able to answer for the full review – soon!

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Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G Hands-on and Unboxing is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

New Verizon iPad able to connect to AT&T’s 3G network

If you’re lookng to pick up a 4G LTE model of the new iPad today and hoping for some cross network compatbility, you’re in luck. A MacRumors forum member decided to test if his Verizon 4G LTE model would work on AT&T’s GSM network. The result? Turns out that 4G iPads are unlocked.

When jsnuff1 swapped out his Verizon microSIM for an AT&T card, he discovered that after tweaking APN settings, his model would connect to AT&T’s 3G GSM network:

I was one of the first to obtain a Verizon iPad and can happily confirm that this is allowed! I used my ATT iPhone 4S sim card and took out the Verizon sim, and data worked! You must apply the AT&T APN carrier settings before this works though.

Devices were already confirmed to roam on worldwide networks, although now that LTE models are confirmed to be unlocked, you can take it one step further and swap out the microSIMs for local offerings to keep costs down.

Verizon LTE iPad models will not work on AT&T’s LTE network, however, due to different bands being used – the best you’ll be able to receive is 3G/HSPA+. AT&T’s LTE models also probably won’t be able to connect to Verizon’s legacy CDMA network.

[via Ars Technica]

New Verizon iPad able to connect to AT&T’s 3G network is written by Ben Kersey & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

New iPad Jailbroken on release day

Here on the first day of its release, the new Retina-quality iPad has been jailbroken. It certainly does not take long for users on the hacking front to get their devices busted open these days, and Apple‘s new iPad is no exception to the rule! What you’re seeing here is the first of many steps towards jailbreaking and keeping the iPad jailbroken – expect a full release of the method soon!

We’re sitting here on the first day that the iPad is out in the wild and it’s not even 2.5 hours since Los Angeles actually had the device released and poof! The device has been jailbroken – in Los Angeles, believe it or not. It’s self-professed iPhone Hacker MuscleNerd who appears to have done it, showing off his hacked front screen and Cydia working just fine here in the newest generation Apple slate.

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We’ll be waiting for the wide release of this break-in on the tablet in the coming days (and perhaps weeks). For now we’ve got plenty of apps and games and all manner of activities we can do on the new iPad without doing such mischief! Have a peek at the timeline below to get the full list of iPad action today and into the weekend!

New iPad Jailbroken on release day is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

This American Life Apple episode retracted as “partially fabricated”

Public Radio International has retracted its controversial This American Life episode on Apple and Foxconn worker conditions, claiming that it discovered the content was “partially fabricated” by commentator Mike Daisey. The Mr.Daisey Goes to the Apple Factory episode – described by PRI as “one of our most popular” – documented Daisey’s supposed journey to discover the manufacturing practices behind Apple’s products, painting a picture of poor treatment at odds with the Cupertino company’s own claims.

“This American Life has retracted this story because we learned that many of Mike Daisey’s experiences in China were fabricated” PRI said today of the decision. “We produced an entire new episode about the retraction, featuring Marketplace reporter Rob Schmitz, who interviewed Mike’s translator Cathy and discovered discrepancies between her account and Mike’s, and New York Times reporter Charles Duhigg, who has reported extensively on Apple. Ira also re-interviewed Mike Daisey to learn why he misled us.”

That new episode will air this coming Sunday. However, Daisey – who bills himself as an “actor, author, commentator, playwright, and general layabout” – has come out in defense of the PRI claims, arguing that his only regret is allowing the program to quote from his monologue, which he describes as “a theatrical piece.” “What I do is not journalism” Daisey says, “the tools of the theater are not the same as the tools of journalism.”

PRI’s report was one of several damning critiques of Apple and manufacturers like Foxconn that surfaced earlier in the year, and led to greater attention to where consumer electronics – from all companies – were produced and under what conditions. The timing of the retraction – on the same day as the new iPad is released – is perhaps somewhat calculated, however.

Mike Daisey statement:

“I stand by my work. My show is a theatrical piece whose goal is to create a human connection between our gorgeous devices and the brutal circumstances from which they emerge. It uses a combination of fact, memoir, and dramatic license to tell its story, and I believe it does so with integrity. Certainly, the comprehensive investigations undertaken by The New York Times and a number of labor rights groups to document conditions in electronics manufacturing would seem to bear this out.

What I do is not journalism. The tools of the theater are not the same as the tools of journalism. For this reason, I regret that I allowed THIS AMERICAN LIFE to air an excerpt from my monologue. THIS AMERICAN LIFE is essentially a journalistic ­- not a theatrical ­- enterprise, and as such it operates under a different set of rules and expectations. But this is my only regret. I am proud that my work seems to have sparked a growing storm of attention and concern over the often appalling conditions under which many of the high-tech products we love so much are assembled in China.”

[via Business Insider]

This American Life Apple episode retracted as “partially fabricated” is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

RIM buoyant over bizarre $1.5bn Samsung investment rumor

RIM has seen a sudden jump in share price this morning, after rumors surfaced that Samsung is considering a potential $1.5bn investment into the Canadian company. Although tenuous, the rumor has been enough to prod RIM’s stock up 5-percent, Barrons reports, as investors cling – perhaps desperately – to the idea that the BlackBerry manufacturer is facing a short-term turnaround. In Samsung’s favor, it’s suggested, is a broadening of its portfolio beyond Android.

RIM – and the Canadian government – has said previously that selling the company is not an option, despite long-standing rumors to the contrary. However, analysts suggest that a significant stake in RIM might be an option for the Korean company, in return for using the new BlackBerry 10 OS.

A licensing push was also speculated on for some time, though new RIM CEO Thorsten Heins said that while the company would consider it if it received the right approach, it preferred to focus on the strengths of its own, tightly-integrated ecosystem. Nonetheless, with BB10 devices not expected from RIM until the end of the year, the company might still be persuaded to look abroad for partners.

The chatter would be almost completely unbelievable, if Samsung wasn’t facing software headaches of its own. The company has seen Android – on which it has built its current smartphone fortune – potentially change to its own detriment, with the Google acquisition of Motorola Mobility. Samsung execs said they would need to reconsider the company’s software “competitiveness” as a result of the deal, with subsequent news that the company’s own bada platform was likely to be baked into up-and-coming Tizen.

Nonetheless, having access to RIM’s BBM instant messaging service and other exclusive features could give Samsung an instant foot in the door with the enterprise market, something Microsoft, Apple and RIM have all been fighting over. Alternatively, of course, Samsung has already inked patent licensing deals with Microsoft over using Windows Phone, though there the Korean firm faces competition from closer Microsoft partner Nokia.

RIM buoyant over bizarre $1.5bn Samsung investment rumor is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

SlashGear Morning Wrap-Up: March 16, 2012

Today the newest iPad comes out, and we’ve already been in line, out of line, and are back in the house sitting comfortably to give you all the tech news you crave all day long. You’ll want to start off your gadget-loving day by checking out our Mall of America Apple Store experience and start your iPad life off right with 24 must-have iPad Retina Display-worthy apps, all of them winners! Then know the truth: Google picked up Kevin Rose and Milk for real!

Next get your eyes on the newest build of the hacked Android-loving CyanogenMod 9 for TouchPad – complete with Cornerstone multitasking! For those of you in the market for an Android tablet in the coming months – $149 per tablet might be all you’re paying – cheap! For those of you in the Microsoft game, check out the newly leaked Windows Phone Tango for the HTC HD2!

Get in on our brand spanking new Transformer Prime Quad-Core Pack Giveaway if you’re looking to get a tablet (and a keyboard dock, and an awesome Powerbag to carry it all in) courtesy of SlashGear and NVIDIA!

Meanwhile scientists have discovered a way to communicate through rock using neutrino technology. Microsoft is denying that they’ll have an Xbox 720 at E3 2012 – but who would believe such a thing? The next version of Elder Scrolls is coming to the web soon. Jailbreaking for the new iPad is well on its way.

Lenovo is being called the first Windows 8 tablet makers to the market – soon! Apple may be making a MacBook Air-style MacBook Pro soon as well. Intel is showing off their own wares in an Ultrabook Temptations video. Fun stuff all day long coming up!

SlashGear Morning Wrap-Up: March 16, 2012 is written by Chris Burns & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

Samsung NX20 WiFi camera leaks

Just a couple of days ago Samsung and Panasonic both revealed that they were mulling the idea of a smart camera, able to run Android and integrate with social networks via WiFi connectivity. Now a leak from Dutch website Focus Media suggests that a Samsung made digital camera with WiFi is indeed on the horizon.

They managed to get their hands on a pre-production model of Samsung’s NX20 camera and snapped a few pictures of it for good measure. They say that the design is similar to the NX11, although the body is slightly larger to give a better grip. Specs are said to include a 20.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, as well as ISO support from 100 all the way up to 12,800.

There’s a 3-inch VGA AMOLED display on the back so you can see exactly what you’re shooting. as well as 1080p video recording. There’s also a burst shot mode, capable of taking eight photos per second. The key feature, though, is the WiFi connectivity, which will apparently allow you to upload photos directly from the camera to social networks, or to backup solutions.

No word on pricing or availability yet, although the camera is expected to get an official announcement from Samsung very soon.

[via SammyHub]

Samsung NX20 WiFi camera leaks is written by Ben Kersey & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 - 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.


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16Mar/120

Nexus tablet a ‘done deal,’ could launch without Tegra 3 priced at $149

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A new report says the Google Nexus tablet is a “done deal” and will enter into production beginning in April. The rumored slate is said to be designed by ASUS  and was originally thought to be a repackaged version of the $249 Tegra 3 tablet shown off at CES. It is now being said the the two companies aim to sell the slate for as low as $149, undercutting competitors such as the Kindle Fire, though the reduced price will come with reduced hardware.

Android and Me reports that an industry insider privy to Google and ASUS’ plans can confirm the existence of the device and further reveals that the so-called Nexus tablet’s specs have been tweaked to do away with the quad-core processor. In its place we can expect a dual-core chip. The downside to the rumor is that ASUS has apparently scrapped plans for the Tegra 3 version in order to focus on the new Google design. We can guess quite a few folks will be disappointed to hear that news.

With the way things are lining up, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the device unveiled at Google I/O.

[via BGR]

 


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16Mar/120

Does Huawei’s Ascend D Quad XL Have the Fastest Processor on the Market?

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A ton of great new SoC developments have been introduced as of late. Qualcomm’s S4 is an exciting chipset yet to be publicly available in a product, NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 with its 4+1 quad-core chipset and 12 core GPU has been established and is set to make a big splash this year, and Apple claims their A5X inside the new iPad is way better than that (yet to be proven). But Huawei could have something even more powerful than all of those.

Sweden-based website Nordic Hardware uncovered a bit more information about the chipset inside the Huawei Ascend D Quad XL. It’s an in-house processor called the Huawei K3V2 and is a quad core processor which comes in either 1.2GHz or 1.5GHz (depending on configuration) and has a 16 core GPU, 4 more than what NVIDIA’s GeForce has inside Tegra 3. They figured they’d put the device to the test to see if it really was that much faster than all the rest.

One benchmark they used was from Powerboard.com and it tested megapixels per second in each device’s native resolution. The D Quad outscored Samsung’s Exynos, NVIDIA’s Tegra 3 and Qualcomm’s MSM8260 overclocked to 2GHz. The device houses an HD display so the results aren’t as skewered as it would on, say, a WVGA or qHD device. We’re not sure if screen size differences are a factor in determining results.

They moved on to the ever familiar Nenamark 2 benchmark. This benchmark tests OpenGL ES 2.0 framerate. The Ascend D Quad XL beat out everyone with a frame rate of 62.75. The next closest was Qualcomm’s S4 with Adreno 225, NVIDIA’s GeForce with ULP2 and all the other dual-core options you’d expect it to be. (The S4 is the only dual-core chipset that could hang with it.) Four of the five top results are devices with at least 720p displays, with the Tegra 3-powered ASUS Transformer Prime having a slightly higher resolution (which could skewer results, but not by much).

Benchmarks are never an end-all, be-all method of determining which chipsets are faster and better than one another. Some benchmarks may put more emphasis on certain features of a chipset than others, and some may just be bad benchmarks period.

Another thing to consider is that benchmarks aim to push devices to their limit to see how much they’re capable of, but users often won’t notice differences in the real world. Games are still being developed for older 1GHz single-core processors so you won’t see a huge difference from platform to platform unless games are optimized like they are for Tegra 3. Also, single-core processors utilize Android quite well, so OS speed gains are usually only marginal at best. What do you guys think? [Thanks Anton!]


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