Now that we've gone over the new iPad Retina display and the iPad Dictation feature, we're ready to focus on the next big feature of the 3rd generation Apple tablet. The introduction of 4G LTE into the iPad is a bigger deal than many realize, because now you have speeds that rival many home broadband connections, wherever you are. The 3rd generation iPad can even be used as an LTE hotspot, for no additional cost, if you pick up the Verizon Wireless model. In this video, we compare our Wi-Fi network speeds (we have FiOS) against the 4G LTE Verizon Wireless connection. As you'll see, it's impressive.
For those that are itching to get their hands on a new iPad, users looking to tether might be interested to know that Verizon will be offering free hotspot access with its data plans. That means you’ll be able to use your tablet at 4G LTE speeds. That may come in handy when traveling or when the internet is down. But regardless the new feature gives new iPad shoppers more options.
Now as we’ve all come to know, phone carriers try to nickel and dime their customers. For lack of a better cliché, there’s no such thing as a free lunch, when it comes to adding features to your phone plans. That said, Verizon will be including 1 GB of data available as hotspot on all their 4G LTE data plans, that also includes their 1 GB data plan which starts at 20 bucks a month. Furthermore, Verizon is not requiring you to get locked in to an annual data plan, giving you the option to pay for data per monthly usage, as has been typical with iPad data.
Read More | Gotta Be Mobile
Verizon is planning on launching a broadband service as an alternative for those that cannot attain cable or DSL. Verizon claims that it’s HomeFusion service is quicker than DSL, despite the fact that it is running on its 4G LTE network.
For a customer to get up and running they'll need to pay a $200 installation fee, which gets them an antenna placed outside of the home. The monthly fee of $60 gets you 10 GB. Customers do have the option of adding 10 or 20 more gigs to their plans for about 30 or 60 bucks more, respectively.
HomeFusion is set to launch in Dallas, Nashville, and Birmingham first and is expected to reach the rest of Verizon’s network footprint by the end of the year.
Read More | Washington Post
As Netflix continues to bleed customers (although that trend seems to have slowed down considerably,) Redbox has stepped in to save the day, well so we hope. The rental kiosk service will be taking a stab at video streaming options. With the success they’ve had with rentals, it was only a matter of time until the company jumped into on demand streaming. Set to be released later this year, Redbox will be available on your nearest handheld device.
Redbox will be partnering with Verizon to stream their video selection, and it appears that Verizon will be managing their service and streaming content. Though there are no set details as to how the service will work, what it will cost, or when it will launch. This is definitely an interesting one though, so we will be keeping our eye on this one.
Do you pay your Verizon cell phone bill online or by phone? You might want to look into other options, because starting Jan. 15, those methods of payment will include a $2 fee.
As reported by Droid Life, Verizon will impose a $2 "convenience fee" for one-time online and phone payments, starting next month. The move is intended to "balance the support costs" associated with those payment options, Verizon said in documentation posted by the blog.
Users can avoid the fees by signing up for Auto Pay, which makes automatic monthly payments via a major credit or debit card on the same day every month, or when your account reaches a specific dollar amount. With Verizon, the minimum payment is $15 and the max is $250.
Other ways to avoid the $2 fee include: using an electronic check, which will pull the funds directly from your bank account; paying online via your bank's bill pay site; going to a Verizon Store; using a Verizon gift, rebate, or friends and family referral card; or mailing a paper check.
Verizon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
How much does Android 4.0 mean to you? How much do you need to have it right now? Because that's the dilemma with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus smartphone ($299-$649). Overall it's not quite as good a phone as the Motorola Droid RAZR ($299). But right now, it's the only phone running Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS), and that's the future.
In many ways, this is the ultimate early adopter phone. The phone itself isn't perfect; typically, Nexus phones aren't the best hardware on the market. But the software takes a major leap forward, with everything from a better Gmail experience to a faster browser and the ability to put folders on your home screens. Do you need that right now? Then yes, you need the Nexus. Why else might you want to jump on board the latest flagship Google device? Hit the link and follow us through our full Galaxy Nexus review for the answers.
Be it Verizon's fault or Google's, owners of the recently released Galaxy Nexus smartphone can't tap into the device's built-in Near Field Communication feature for use with Google Wallet. It's just not going to happen.
Not going to happen, that is, unless you perform a few lengthy customizations on your smartphone. A crafty workaround has been found that allows Galaxy Nexus owners to use Google Wallet just like all of their friends that own Sprint's Nexus S 4G smartphones. But the hack comes with a few catches: Namely, you're going to hack off both Verizon and Google if you try it.
How's that? Well, the process for enabling Google Wallet on your Galaxy Nexus demands that you unlock the device's bootloader and root the smartphone. And once you've done that, there goes your warranty through Verizon should your smartphone encounter any errors (or catastrophic free-falls) in your future.
And that's just the first half. Google's own terms of service prohibit using Google Wallet, "on a mobile device or Android operating system that has been modified or customized in any way." There's no indication as to what could happen to you or your account should you proceed with the hack for your Galaxy Nexus.
Our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide tries to hit you with gift recommendations at all different price points, and this one may be the least expensive. Radio Shack is selling a bunch of 4G Android smartphones for free, with two-year contract, this holiday season. You can get devices like the Samsung Stratosphere for Verizon, Samsung Infuse 4G for AT&T, and the HTC EVO Design 4G for Sprint. All of these devices support faster data speeds, and at a price of free, they're a tremendous deal.
Had we a nickel every time someone projected a U.S. launch date for Samsung's much-anticipated Galaxy Nexus smartphone. We've all seen it. We've read about it. We've watched the phone's international release come and go. We've even posted our Galaxy Nexus review. So when's the big U.S. release, anyway?
Rumors have suggested everything from Black Friday, to Cyber Monday, to just about any November date under the sun for the launch of Samsung's first big Ice Cream Sandwich device (that's Android 4.0, the latest iteration of Google's mobile operating system). The Android website Droid Life is the latest gossiper to jump into the fray, only it's coming armed with evidence that suggests the Galaxy Nexus launch isn't arriving in November after all: Rather, December 8.
The source of the info is unknown, but the allegedly internal documents list a "Launch / End date" for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus as December 8. Although an accompanying description seems to indicate that the date could be reserved for a marking campaign for the device, instead of the smartphone's actual release date, Droid Life has corroborated its first leaked image with a second.
This is a huge deal. Ice Cream Sandwich is the biggest upgrade to Google's Android OS since Android 2.2 hit in May 2010, and possibly the most important update ever. From what I've seen so far in a day with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus phone, Android users should be demanding their share of Ice Cream—and it should absolutely make a difference in your phone purchases.
Google lent me an international developer unit of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the first ICS phone. This isn't the LTE device that Verizon Wireless will be selling in the U.S., but it's roughly the same size and shape with very similar capabilities, so it's a good way to judge what ICS will be like when it hits the USA.
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