AT&T Announces The Xperia Play In Blue And With 4G HSPA+

The Xperia Play is headed to AT&T with HSPA+ radios and the same 4-inch LCD screen with a 1GHz Snapdragon processor. After handling it at AT&T’s holiday preview event here in New York City, there are two noticeable things about the AT&T Xperia Play. One, it comes in “Stealth Blue”, and two, uses the Timescape UI on top of Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread, and not Vanilla like the Verizon variant. 

And here’s a bit of welcome news: whereas the games for the Xperia Play were sold on Verizon’s V Cast apps store (essentially a crapware kingdom), according to the AT&T rep I spoke to, will instead be sold in the AT&T tab of the Android Market. This is a much better idea. 

Android 3.2 Honeycomb Will See “Zoom Mode” For Smartphone Apps

A feature long overdue, Android 3.2 Honeycomb will be the dawn of a new feature in the mainstream Android tablets’ arsenal: a zoom function for smartphone apps not yet optimized for larger, tablet-sized screens. The zoom function works exactly like it does on the iPad — the app becomes very pixelated, but still usable. 

The stretch to screen function has already been in use for Honeycomb for quite some time now, but with Android 3.2 devs will have the urge (hopefully) to better optimize their smaller apps for bigger screens due to the zoom function looking like an absolute shame. This definitely helps Android tablets in the quantity issue of apps (only 200-350 Honeycomb apps actually exist), however quality of apps still remain a problem on the Android Market. At least this is a step in the right direction. 

Via: Android Developers Blog

iOS 5 Beta 3 Hits Developers

Available for nearly all the iOS devices, iOS 5 Beta 3 has been seeded to developers. There are many bug fixes, improvements, and so on to be found, but all of that is rather subtle. Ask your dev friend to let you in on the .ipsw download along with iTunes 10.5, or if you really are a dev, just get downloading right away. Full changelog after the break. Via: Apple

MSi GX660R Review: Pew, Pew, Pew On Extreme Settings

This isn’t the pinnacle of new tech — it’s the aging MSi GX660R, which uses a first-generation Inter Core i processor clocked at 1.73GHz with TurboBoosst, has 6GB of DDR3 RAM, an AMD HD5870 mobile graphics card, a 15.6-inch screen at 1920×1080 resolution, 2 megapixel webcam capable of recording 720p HD video, 802.11b/g/n WiFi, and finally two 320GB hard drives in RAID 0 configuration clocked at 7,200RPM, making for 640GB of total storage space. It’s no slouch at all, and can still combat with today’s onslaught of new Sandy Bridge systems.

Motorola DROID 3: Still Uses 3G, Costs $199, But Is Still Totally Awesome

 The Motorola DROID 3 anyone? This is the best Droid on paper (forget the Samsung Droid Charge, despite its amazing 4G LTE data speeds). The DROID 3 packs a dual-core 1GHz processor, 4-inch qHD (960 x 540 pixels) touchscreen display, a full slide-out QWERTY keypad, an 8-megapixel camera with 1080p HD video capture support, front-facing camera, 16GB of storage,  3G mobile hotspot, global roaming support, and Google’s Android 2.3 Gingerbread with Motorola’s user interface enhancement skin on top. It will cost $199.99 on 2-year agreement and requires the new tiered data plans for new customers as well. PR after the break.

Amazon Cloud Player Has Dedicated iPad Web App And Unlimited Storage For $20 A Year

It’s a big change in the rather new cloud music land. Amazon lead the pack first with the Cloud Player, then Google followed with the less interesting Music Beta. In the latest developments on Amazon’s end, the Cloud Player now has full support for the iPad (in the form of an iPad web app) along with a new plan, besides the free one: $20 a year gets you unlimited storage of your .mp3 and .m4a files, including all music bought on Amazon. However, this offer is available for a “limited time”, according to Amazon. But who cares? Amazon Cloud Player and cloud music competition just got a lot more fierce — and better. Via: Amazon