AA Weekly: top Android news of the week, July 28, 2013

July 28, 2013
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Don’t you think it was about time we saw some real releases instead of leaks? Motorola has officially come out of the shadows with a new Droid line, the new Nexus 7 has been unleashed, and we got a new way of watching online content! Oh, and more Moto X leaks.

These may be the DROIDS you’re looking for

Verizon’s DROID event this past week was covered by Kris and he did a great job of putting together the info on these three new devices. His video roundup can be found here. Motorola effectively bolstered the Verizon smartphone lineup with three new phones – the DROID Mini, the DROID MAXX, and the DROID Ultra.

Droid mini, Ultra, Maxx

Every phone sports a processor package called the Motorola X8, which includes multi-core GPUs and CPUs with a couple single-core processors tailored for specific functions. And all three of these new DROIDs sport features we saw in Moto X leaks, like the Open Mic. You can pre-order the new DROIDs now at Verizon and they will ship on August 20 (Droid Ultra and Droid Maxx) and August 29 (Droid Mini).

Android 4.3, Nexus 7, and Chromecast for breakfast

Another press event brought even more releases. Google’s breakfast event brought a very well received couple of updates and then one new product that could very well be a sleeper hit. Nate did a great recap of the event’s announcements while the video below is Josh’s own Rundown video.

Android 4.3 was finally made official and brings with it  support for a new OpenGL system and restricted profiles. It ships on the new Nexus 7 and should be made available to other Nexus devices in due time. Unsurprisingly, the Nexus devices are getting them first but the Google Play Editions of the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One are going to get it “soon.” As for OEMs, Sony is currently the only one to make their plans for Android 4.3 clear.

Android 4.3 features hugo barra (2)

Then we move on to the Nexus 7, the hotly anticipated update to last year’s Tegra 3-powered tablet. It brings a slightly smaller but overall much better handling profile and better bits underneath – the Snapdragon S4 Pro, the Adreno 320, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB on the base model. A 5-megapixel rear facing camera rounds out the updates. You can get the new Nexus 7 now for $229 on the base model and $269 for the 32GB model.

Nexus 7

And finally, the Chromecast. What was once the Nexus Q, essentially, has been shrunken down and streams content straight from outlets like YouTube and Netflix. Plenty of people have been flocking to the Chromecast and for good reason – it’s got great potential, all of which was outlined by our own Derek Ross.

google chromecast features

So we got 7… how about 10?

So we got a new Nexus 7 – what about our Nexus 10? A reporter from the Wall Street Journal got to talk to Sundar Pichai who gave us a signature Google tease – apparently, the Nexus 10 is coming out in the “near future.”

xperia tablet z vs nexus 10 aa 10 google now

Moto X partners with your wrist

But of course we can’t go too long without more Moto X leaks. This week’s leak brought us a couple new bits of information about the phone’s build and a possible accessory. Supposedly the Moto X will sport Moto Magic Glass, which is basically a slab of Gorilla Glass molded in such a way as to create a gap-free surface all around the phone. It could also feature dual-LTE antennas along with another antenna for 2 or 3G instead of the usual one antenna that handles both. And finally the fabled smartwatch that Google was supposedly working on might be launched with the Moto X on August 1.

Moto X dual LTE antenna

With the Moto X launch event just days away, we could expect even more substantial leaks to occur. But rest assured that when the event actually happens, we’ll have all the coverage right here.

Video roundup

What’s your take?

What do you think was the biggest news of the week?

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