Smartphones & Tablets Briefs

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Google Unwraps Lollipops

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIF. – The first phone and tablet with Android 5.0 Lollipop OS will be the Motorola-made Nexus 6 smartphone with 6-inch display and the HTC-made Nexus 9 with 8.9-inch display and 64-bit processor, Google announced.

The Google-marketed tablet will be available for pre-order Oct. 17 from Google and in stores starting Nov. 3. The Nexus 6 phone will be available for pre-order in late October and in stores in November. An unlocked GSM/W-CDMA/LTE version will be available through Google’s Play store, and versions locked on specific carriers will also be available through carriers, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular and Verizon. Carrier rollouts will be subject to carrier certification tests.

AT&T Readies PadFone X Mini

DALLAS – AT&T, which launched the Asus PadFone X earlier this year, is bringing out the device’s little brother.

The PadFone X Mini smartphone-and-tablet package, billed as “budget-friendly,” will be available exclusively on the AT&T LTE network with no contract at $199 with AT&T’s prepaid GoPhone service.

The PadFone X Mini will be available in select national retailers in October and, on Oct. 24, in all AT&T retail stores that offer GoPhone service and through the Asus and AT&T websites. GoPhone plans start at $40/month for 500MB of data and 500 minutes of talk time.

The PadFone X Mini packages includes an Android 4.4 smartphone with 4.5-inch 854 by 480 FWVGA display. The phone docks into the back of an included tablet-like PadFone Station with 7-inch 1,280 by 800 WXGA display.

GreatCall Calls On RiteAid

SAN DIEGO – MVNO GreatCall, which targets the elderly and growing baby-boomer populations, is expanding its distribution to more than 4,000 Rite Aid pharmacies.

The company hasn’t sold through pharmacy chains before but does sell through Walmart’s pharmacy departments, Sears, Publix, Best Buy, Fry’s Electronics, ShopKo and direct to consumers via telesales and the company’s web store.

The company’s devices are bundled with health and safety services for the active elderly.

Lenovo Expands Yoga Line

LONDON – Lenovo expanded its Yoga tablet series with its first two Windows-based Yoga tablets and three new Android models, one of which is said to be the industry’s first with built-in home-theater pico projector.


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