Nintendo’s DeNA deal is a bad sign for the Japanese video game industry

Nintendo’s DeNA deal is a bad sign for the Japanese video game industry

Nintendo’s DeNA deal is a bad sign for the Japanese video game industry

At the risk of sounding overly dramatic here, I was absolutely devastated at the news from yesterday that saw Nintendo finally take the plunge into smartphone apps… with none other than IAP king, DeNA. In the decade I’ve spent in Japan, there has been a lot of surprises, but perhaps none as large as this. Let’s explore just what the Nintendo partnership means and what may-or-may-not occur.

On DeNA

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Acer announces two budget Liquid Z phones alongside the mid-tier Liquid Jade Z

Acer announces two budget Liquid Z phones alongside the mid-tier Liquid Jade Z

Acer announces two budget Liquid Z phones alongside the mid-tier Liquid Jade Z

Hot on the heels of its 4G Liquid Z410, Acer has unveiled three new smartphones in its Liquid line-up, the Z220, Z520 and Jade Z. The first two are aimed at the budget-tier of the market, while the new Jade Z is more of a mid-range package flecked with high-end features.

Starting with the Liquid Z220 and Z520, both phones come packing the same basic specs. A 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon 200 processor and 1GB of RAM offer suitable performance for day-to-day tasks. The Z220 is listed with a 4-inch WVGA 233PPI display, the Z520 looks larger, but details aren’t clear. Both also offer 8GB of internal storage, dual SIM card slots, a 2-megapixel front facing camera, and Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box. Acer’s customised software features a Basic Mode for kids, which offers simple call and text tools, an Easy Mode that opens up a few extra functions, and the Standard Mode for users who presumable know their way around a smartphone.

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LG announces four new midrange smartphones

LG announces four new midrange smartphones

LG announces four new midrange smartphones

Much of the recent focus may be on LG’s new G Flex 2 and upcoming G4 smartphones, but that hasn’t stopped the company releasing four other new smartphones ahead of the Mobile World Congress. The new handsets are called the Magna, Spirit, Leon and Joy.

The smartphones vary in size and specifications, but are all targeted at the midrange segment of the market. But that doesn’t mean that LG is scrimping on the features, the new LG range features handsets with FullHD displays, 8MP rear and 5MP front cameras, Category 4 LTE capable variants, and all handsets, except the Joy in some markets, will arrive with Android 5.0 Lollipop already installed, complete with many of LG’s flagship software features.

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Meizu M1 announced: 5-inch display, LTE, 13MP camera, only $110

Meizu M1 announced: 5-inch display, LTE, 13MP camera, only $110

Meizu M1 announced: 5-inch display, LTE, 13MP camera, only $110

Meizu has been putting out some rather good hardware recently and has just launched another competitively priced smartphone – the Meizu M1. The M1 is a large mid-range handset, which seems to be targeted as a direct competitor to Xiaomi’s Redmi Note line. Let’s delve right on into the specs.

For starters, the 5-inch display comes with a 1280 x 768 resolution, a smidgen above 720p, resulting in a pixel density of 300 PPI. The smartphone is equipped with a 1.5GHz quad-core MT6732 SoC, which is apparently capable of scoring over 30,000 points in the AnTuTu benchmark, for what that’s worth. The SoC features four power efficient Cortex-A53 cores and a high-end Mali-T760 GPU. The handset’s internal hardware also features 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, a 2,610 mAh battery, and an SD card slot with support for a whopping 128GB of extra storage.

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BLU Products has some affordable LTE devices for you: enter the Studio LTE trio

BLU Products has some affordable LTE devices for you: enter the Studio LTE trio

BLU Products has some affordable LTE devices for you: enter the Studio LTE trio

In days long past, the term “budget friendly” had some awful connotations. Unknown OEMs crafted products that were of questionable quality and content which, although they had a low price point, came with little reassurance they wouldn’t last more than a few months, let alone receive a software update. In modern times, however, we have devices like the Moto G and Moto E, and even smaller manufacturers have stepped up their game.

American OEM, BLU Products,  has just announced three new perfectly priced products that further the efforts of manufacturing for those not looking to break the bank,  yet still have something nice. Called the Studio LTE Series, the devices are all sold contract-free via Amazon.

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Oppo Find 7 available for pre-order at Amazon UK

Oppo Find 7 available for pre-order at Amazon UK

Oppo Find 7 available for pre-order at Amazon UK

The Oppo Find 7 is heading to the UK through e-retailer Amazon. You can currently pre-order your handset, which is due for release in the region on December 17th.

There are four different options available for purchase. One with 16GB of internal memory costs £319, while 32GB of storage brings the price up to £379. Both memory variants are available in your choice of either Astro Black or White at no extra cost. Interestingly, this makes the Find 7 slightly more expensive than the similarly specced LG G3.

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Redditor gets free replacement for cracked Nexus 6 from Google, with love!

Redditor gets free replacement for cracked Nexus 6 from Google, with love!

Redditor gets free replacement for cracked Nexus 6 from Google, with love!

Good gosh the Nexus 6 is big. Having just received it a few hours ago, let it be known that gravity is not its friend. For all those with slippery fingers, there is a certain element of fear at having spent a ton of money on a new Nexus and it breaking. All the more so without any kind of extended warranty plan in tow. Google had previously surprised Nexus 5 owners when it decided to repair those with damaged screens, and apparently this gift most gracious is expanding to the Sea World-sized stand-in for this year.

Here’s the full story, straight from Reddit user aznfury:

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Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 MDP smartphone and tablet give us a glimpse of the future

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 MDP smartphone and tablet give us a glimpse of the future

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 MDP smartphone and tablet give us a glimpse of the future

Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 810 Mobile Development Platform smartphone and tablet are now available for purchase, each equipped with some of the best mobile technology currently available. Priced at $799 and $999 respectively, these developer oriented devices aren’t cheap. Fortunately, staring in quiet awe is free of charge.

The Snapdragon 810 developer smartphone is a 6.2-inch behemoth, packing a 2560×1600 (490ppi) display. It also comes with 4GB of LP-DDR4 RAM, a 3020mAh battery, 13MP OIS and dual flash rear camera, 4MP front facing camera capable of 1080p 120fps recording, QuickCharge 2.0 technology, and a fingerprint reader on the back. The handset also features a huge array of sensors, 8 microphones, a micro HDMI slot that supports 4K displays, USB 3.0 support, and an ultrasound emitter. Plenty of toys for developers to play around with.

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Samsung may be planning to replace its head of mobile division

Samsung may be planning to replace its head of mobile division

Samsung may be planning to replace its head of mobile division

The Wall Street Journal

Samsung makes many mobile machines. Within the time it takes someone to repeat that phrase ten times fast, chances are the Korean company will have either announced or released a new product. Having been the top dog for so many years now, Samsung is facing increased competition from OEMs around the world, something quite visible with last quarter’s tumultuous financial turnout.

Having previously announced a plan to reduce handset product lines in the coming year and a pledge to new forms of devices, Samsung may now be seeking to restructure its executive management. According to a story by The Wall Street Journal, Co-CEO B. K. Yoon may be taking over the mobile division, with J. K. Shin, fresh from his recent pay cut, may be going elsewhere. Yoon is currently in charge of home appliances and television products, and thus WSJ speculates this could foster a more connected relationship between the digital device families.

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