Today, you can pick up HP’s newest piece of hardware, the Slate 7, an Android-powered tablet complete with licensed Beats Audio software on board. The tablet is powered by a dual-core ARM Cortex A9 chip clocked at 1.6GHz, 1GB of RAM, features 8GB of internal memory, runs Android 4.1, and sports a not-so-hot 7″ WVA display. What redeems this tablet’s sub-par specs is the price though, set at just $170.
When HTC first acquired Beats by Dre, it was seen as a fantastic move that had a lot of upside for both the mobile device industry and the niche of high-quality headphones. Unfortunately for both companies, the money spent never exactly made the project take off, which led to HTC selling back a lot of their stake in Beats recently. But now, it seems that Beats is ready to make some moves on its own. Rumors state that the headphone manufacturer is planning a Beats-themed smartphone sometime soon.
Obviously, the phone itself would be made by HTC since they are still business partners, but the rumored phone will not bear any HTC logos. It will however, feature a custom Beats user interface which we are assuming will be built over Android. Not content to stop there, Beats wants to jump into the music service by making an iTunes competitor and also a system that connects your new phone, TV, tablet and computer so that they can share streaming music between all of them. A juicy rumor for sure.
Does Beats have the clout to enter into the music game where Apple dominates, Google is trying to make headway and everyone else lags behind?
The HTC Rezound and its Beats Audio enhancements take over the streets of NYC in this latest commercial from Verizon. Flash mob!
Well, that didn’t last too long. Over the weekend, HTC posted that they have sold back 25% of their 51% stake in Beats Audio to the original owners. Long story short, any majority powers that HTC once held over the company are no longer there. But don’t worry, this isn’t the end of their relationship that began only back in August of last year. According to the release, HTC and Beats plan to have a large joint marketing campaign later this year, which could mean we might see a nice new phone for Christmas.
When HTC released their first set of Beats Audio-enabled devices last year, the fact that the “enhancements” were limited to the native music app were a bit of a disappointment. We wanted Beats in Google Music, PowerAMP, and every other major music application for Android. Unfortunately that just wasn’t the case. As of today though, HTC has given developers access to their Beats API, which means that going forward, this new audio experience can be built into all sorts of apps. Who knows if Google will jump on it as the #1 music app, but one can hope.
Along with the Beats API, HTC released their Lockscreen API, giving devs the opportunity to work their apps into another area of Sense. HTC’s lockscreen tweaks are one of the bright spots of Sense UI, so you have to be excited about this move, as more and more of your favorite apps will be worked in.
They also gave developers access to their mobile device management API and have plans to bring access to their MediaLink HD API. Dev friendly.
Since HTC went and bought out Beats By Dre to use exclusively in their handsets, the rest of the Android world was a little jealous. Put the awesome Android developer community behind that jealousy and you have the news that we have today. XDA user fuss132 has found a way to port Beats Audio to any ROM based on Gingerbread. One questions we have had since this audio software came out is “does it really help?” Fuss132 has evidence to back up Beats’ claims, and we have the shots below.
Sources of Gigaom are reporting that HTC may be looking to launch a music streaming service to go hand in hand with their newly acquired Beats Audio wares. Reports say that the service may launch as early as this month at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. Along with the possible music service, HTC is also rumored to be showing off their newest tablet and smartphone devices at MWC which could be running this new service.
According to the reports, HTC is still working on price plans and other aspects of the service. What is everyone’s feelings toward the direction the HTC and the Beats deal that happened a few months ago is heading? Still liking the idea?
We received a report yesterday that some owners of the HTC Rezound were experiencing an annoying static noise while listening to music or playing any sort of media. As a phone marketed specifically as the ultimate audio device, this was troubling. After posting, our readers (who are the best by the way) commented on whether or not this issue was noticeable on their phones – some were noticing it, some were not.
HTC is under the impression that most are not experiencing the static noise and that it is an isolated issue:
HTC has received a very small number of calls related to audio on the Rezound, but nothing that so far points to a broader issue. We’re continuing to monitor it closely but currently believe the few calls we’ve received are isolated cases.
So what does that mean for owners who are having audio problems? You should call into HTC’s customer service at 866-449-8358. Not exactly sure what they will do, but the thought is that they will look into swapping it out on a warranty replacement or attempting to fix the problem.
Via: The Verge