sony xperia z3 first impressions aa (9 of 17)

Update: Pre-order the T-Mobile Xperia Z3 until October 28 and get a free copy of the PS4-exclusive title Driveclub. Details on how to redeem the offer here.

Original post:

Last week Sony announced its plans to bring their flagship device over to Verizon’s network in the form of the Xperia Z3v. What we didn’t hear at the event, however, is when exactly the Xperia Z3 would be arriving to T-Mobile, the other US carrier scheduled to get Sony’s latest and greatest.

Today T-mobile has finally let the cat out of the bag, with plans to launch the Z3 in-store and online come October 29th, with presales beginning on the 15th. No word on when presale devices will ship, other than it will likely arrive a bit ahead of the ‘official’ launch date on the 29th.

The Z3 will set customers back $26.25 a month for 24 months, or $630 outright. If that’s a bit too pricey for you, it’s worth noting that Sony is also selling the unlocked Z3 Compact for just $530 or only $477 for students.

For more details on what to expect from T-Mobile’s Z3, be sure to check out our unboxing and first impressions:

What do you think, planning on picking up the Xperia Z3 through T-Mobile or not?

Source: T-Mobile;

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play store ratings filter (2)

The app section of Google’s Play Store can be like the Wild West at times, what with the barely disguised adware, clone infestation, and plain-old poor quality apps. The low barrier of entry for apps in the Play Store has made possible a rich and varied ecosystem, but we wished Google did a better job at improving app discovery, especially since Google is so good at search in general.

Now Google has taken a step towards improving the app search experience with the addition of a ratings-based filter. You can now limit search results to apps that have a 4-star rating or higher, which, in theory, should weed out most bad or exploitive apps.

play store ratings filter (1)

It probably won’t remove all poor quality apps, for a couple of reasons – this may not catch some new apps with just a handful of reviews, and, second, apps with tons of fake reviews will still go through.

Nevertheless, this small new feature will weed out most blatantly bad apps and is a good addition to an area where Google still has lots of room to improve.

For now, the ratings-based filter is only available in the web version of the Play Store, but Google will probably waste no time bringing it to the Android app as well.

Via: Android Police;

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The Nexus 6 and Nexus 9 have been announced. The preview builds of Android Lollipop have been released. It’s been a crazy weekend for Nexus and Android fans. Now, we’re in a state of limbo until these devices and the latest Android OS actually comes out. Let’s take a quick look at what we know right now!


Nexus 6

To check out a complete list of the Nexus 6 specs, check out our specs sheet and Google’s specs sheet!

A lot of people were skeptical when this was first announced and really most people still are. The price tag is much higher than the nexus 5 and there are those who take exception to that. The 6-inch display is also gigantic and is almost too big even for most fans of phablets. The normal sized phone crowd has repeatedly expressed their unhappiness about that.

Even without the device, there are a few educated guesses that we can make. There are very few phones that have over 3000mAh batteries that have poor battery life. The 1440 display will probably keep it from attaining the kind of battery we saw in the Note 3 but most people should be able to make it through the day with a battery that size.

See how the Nexus 6 compares to the competition!

The processor is top of the line, so is the GPU, and so is the operating system. That means we can expect nearly flawless performance that results in a very pleasant and pretty much lag free experience. There will probably still be a hiccup occasionally but overall this should be one of the best performing phones ever.

We know this is pretty much the same camera that’s on the Moto X 2014 edition. Unfortunately that camera has come with mixed reactions. Some people think it’s alright and others think it’s pretty bad. A lot of that depends o

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PlutoTV featured

What is Pluto.TV

Pluto.TV is a video aggregation service that finds interesting video content on the web and allows you to follow and watch it. It utilizes a familiar and interesting user interface that is reminiscent of your standard TV guide. It’s currently free to use with no in app purchases.

Here’s how it works. You open the application and you’ll see what looks like a TV guide. There are “channels” that you can tune into that show you content relevant to that channel’s name. For instance, you can find tech news from various tech sources or music channels from various artists. You simply “tune in” to that station and it begins playing video. Then you can set up your device somewhere and have what is essentially a little TV.

The interface will be familiar to most people but it does feel incomplete in some ways. There isn’t a settings menu so you can’t change anything. That means if a setting like the push notifications bother you then you can’t do anything about it. The functionality is cool but it’s also somewhat limited. We would’ve liked to have seen more features. The service also only pulls from a select few sources for right now so you’ll see a lot of content from the same sources without much variance.

PlutoTV review

It’s like YouTube and television had a baby.

PROS
  • You can tune into ‘channels’ that play the kind of content you like much like a television.
  • Simple, familiar interface is easy to use and looks really good.
  • For most, videos will play well and there is an HD/SD option to turn down the resolution if your internet speed is slower.
  • Free to use with no in app purchases.
CONS
  • The Chromecast was basically made for apps like this and this app doesn’t support it.
  • No settings menu, no option to do things like select favorite stations or search for content. It really bottlenecks the experience.
  • Some people have had issues playing video. It’s not widespread but that may be a problem you run into.

7.0

Overall, Pluto.TV is a pretty fun little application. It does fall short here and there but it’s also a new application and we hope more things get added in the future. If you’re interested, the app is free to use with no in app purchases for right now.

google play

Check out the last indie app of the day: Tingz.Me
Join us in the Apps and Games section of the Android Authority forums! Just don’t forget to read the rules first!

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The Big Android BBQ is something of a unique Android event most years in that it’s usually a few weeks before the next version of Android is released. This means that while project teams for things like CyanogenMod can still discuss a good many things, most are still waiting on the new version of Android in order to announce when and what features will be coming to their products and their users.

This year wasn’t like that.



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Here are a few apps we think you should try

It’s that time of the week again. When we single out a handful of apps that we think you might want to take a look at, then read the comments to see which ones you think we should try. There are all sorts of ways to discover apps — both new and old — but in our opinion, nothing beats a recommendation from the people you interact with every day. Let’s put our happy Android family to work and help each other out with some cool app recommendations.



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Here’s the lowdown on how to get fantastic looking Backdrop images onto your TV

Google first announced Backdrop for Chromecast back at Google I/O, but has now finally flipped the switch and let us customize what images we see displayed by our Chromecast when it’s in idle mode.

There are a few things that you need to know going into Backdrop and a few little tips and tricks to help you get the best out of the experience. Read on for the lowdown.



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The results are in — polls will remain on the homepage

We tried a little experiment last week with our weekly poll. Google did a really nice job with the way they handled the implementation of embedding a poll into a post and we had to give it a spin. It looks good, and more importantly, is easy to set up. A week later, I’ve looked at the results, read all the comments and email, thought about the numbers and have decided to keep the polls right here on the AC homepage.



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The Verizon Motorola Droid Turbo still isn’t official, despite the number of leaks we’ve seen from photos to full-on specs, so here’s another press photo instead. While we’ve seen the new Verizon Droid in both red kevlar and black kevlar, the latest leaked image shows a heretofore unseen version with a textured black inset back that we dare saw looks at the very least somewhat interesting.



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