All the latest that you may have missed in mobile news this week, including the Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime, a Motorola World Cup tie-in and Android apps on BlackBerry 10.
1. Nike Fuelband app launches on Android
Sometime after becoming available on iOS, Nike has launched the accompanying app for its Fuelband fitness tracker for Android. The app will only work on the Samsung Galaxy S5, S4 and S3 along with the HTC One, Moto X and Nexus 5, and needs the Fuelband itself to do anything. Once set up, you can track your calorie intake and fitness regime.
2. Almost everyone thinks their phone is tapped
The surprising results of a study by research group OnePoll suggest that 88% of British people think the government is listening in on their phone calls. Further results from the survey found that 35% of people are careful what they say over a mobile phone call and that 20% think government-sanctioned phone tapping is acceptable.
3. Samsung sneaks out the Galaxy S5 Prime
In a very low key announcement, Samsung has launched the S5 Prime smartphone that has been rumoured for some time. Featuring a few spec upgrades, the device is likely to be limited to the Korean market. Surprisingly, it doesn’t feature the much-anticipated metal backplate, instead sticking with the plastic one seen on the Galaxy S5. Take a look at our review of the latter below.
4. Samsung launches new homescreen app
Samsung has taken the covers off a new homescreen app for Android which changes the way the platform’s interface works. Called Terrain, the app brings information and controls to the homescreen of a smartphone, in a card-based system that is a little like Google Now.
5. Microsoft patents new screen zoom tech
While we’re all now familiar with the pinch-to-zoom control method, Microsoft is looking further. The software giant has patented an idea which sees whatever is on a smartphone’s screen being zoomed in and out as the user moves the phone toward and away from their face. There’s no word on when, or if, this will ever make it to a real phone, but the concept is certainly interesting.
6. LG G Watch pops up online
Smartwatch fans have been given a teaser of the LG G Watch coming to market, as the device very briefly popped up in a listing on the German Google Play store. The watch will be one of the first gadgets to run Android Wear alongside the Motorola Moto 360, which we had a brief view of on US TV a few weeks ago.
7. Motorola rolls out world cup boot animation
Everyone’s jumping in on the World Cup, and Motorola has introduced a very small trick to its software. Anyone who updates the Motorola Boot Services app on a Moto X, Moto G, or Moto E in the next few weeks will see a Brasil 2014-themed start up animation when they switch on their phone. Anyone else can take a look at it below.
8. LG will not make the Nexus 6
We don’t know how the Nexus range of phones will continue, or even whether another of the stock Android phones will emerge at all. However, if the Nexus 6 does eventually become a reality, it won’t be made by LG. That’s according to Ken Hong, the firm’s Communications Director, who has denied that his firm has anything to do with the project anymore.
9. Samsung’s gaming headset gets a name
The Korean tech giant is rumoured to be working on a competitor to the Oculus Rift, and the device now seems to have a name. Samsung has registered the trademark Gear VR, which sits in line with its other product ranges. The word is that the headset won’t run Android or the firm’s in-house Tizen OS, but will be powered by Oculus’ own software.
10. Amazon Android app store comes to BlackBerry
One big criticism that has been levelled at recent iterations of BlackBerry’s OS is the lack of available apps. To combat this, Amazon’s Android app store will be available as a part of BlackBerry 10.3, which will launch in the autumn.