Verizon Galaxy S5 Now Receiving Build G900VVRU1ANE9, Here is the Full Changelog

Verizon approved an update today for their variant of the Galaxy S5 as build G900VVRU1ANE9, but leaves the phone at Android 4.4.2. The update looks like a massive bug fixer, as it includes improvements to performance, brings updates to bloatware, and addresses all sorts of issues.

In the update, users will find new versions of Caller Name ID, Message+, and Cloud. Once past the bloatware, issues like better connectivity when streaming music, Gear Manager stability, and Visual Voicemail working when a Samsung Flip Cover is closed have all been resolved.  (more…)

Verizon Plans Response to FCC Over Throttling, Stands by Its Network Optimization

Yesterday afternoon, a letter from FCC chairman Tom Wheeler to Verizon Wireless CEO Dan Mead concerning the wireless carrier’s plans to throttle unlimited data users under its “Network Optimization” policy stole headlines. Wheeler was clear in his letter that he is both “troubled” by and concerned that this move is nothing but a chance for Verizon to add to its revenue streams. He finished by asking for a response from Big Red to three specific questions.

While we wait for Verizon to do just that, the company issued a brief statement this morning noting that it will respond, but also that the purpose of “Network Optimization” is to make sure everyone on their network always has capacity available for use.  (more…)

LG G Vista Now Available From Verizon for $99 on Contract (Updated)

Verizon has quietly gone ahead and made the LG G Vista available for order through their web store. For those not familiar with the G Vista, this is LG’s mid-range and affordable, yet oversized phone that sports a 5.7-inch display. We outed the official specs, price, and release date yesterday, but are still somewhat surprised that Verizon is already selling the phone without ever having mentioned it publicly.  (more…)

FCC Chairman Not Excited About Verizon’s Plans to Throttle Unlimited Data Users

Last week, we exclusively reported that Verizon planned to begin throttling the top 5% of unlimited data users with 4G LTE phones come October 1, a move which Verizon has since confirmed. The throttling is a part of Big Red’s “Network Optimization” policy, which up until now has only affected 3G customers with unlimited data. As you can imagine, this news didn’t exactly excite those with unlimited data plans who have been long-time Verizon customers. According to a letter sent to Verizon Wireless CEO Dan Mead, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler isn’t excited either.  (more…)

Here is Verizon’s LG G Vista and Its Real Specs, Arrives Thursday

This Thursday, Verizon will launch another LG phone, though this one should only be considered as a budget-friendly option. We are talking about the oft-leaked LG G Vista, a massive 5.7-inch phone that is isn’t so massive when it comes to specs. That’s not to say that this won’t be a fully capable phone, it just doesn’t rank up there with the recently released LG G3, a phone we called the best available in our review(more…)

Dear Carriers, If You are Going to Take Features From Phones to Make Money, Give Us Options to Get Them Back

Last week, we featured a deal for an unlocked LG G3 that could be snagged on eBay for $500. We picked one up because international versions of phones not only seem to receive updates much quicker than their counterparts here in the States (a topic for another day), but this is the model of the G3 that features wireless charging out of the box, something US carriers (Verizon and AT&T in particular) removed so that they could make extra money off of customers like you and me with accessories that add features like this on.

Once the device arrived, I slapped it on the Qi wireless charger that never leaves my desk, just to test the functionality on a G3. Sure enough, it worked without hassle straight out of the box. I didn’t need to slap a new cover on or attach a case, it just charges as if the feature is built-in, which it is. While this should have brought immediate joy, it also brought on a substantial amount of anger even quicker. Why? Because carriers in the US have robbed us of features like this for years to help them make an extra buck or two. And while I’m fine with companies trying to get richer (I’m sure we all would do the same), the way they go about it frustrates the hell out of me. What I mean is that if you are going to dumb down my smart device, so that you can charge me for accessories to make it smarter, give me some damn choices.  (more…)

Verizon Moto X Android 4.4.4 Update Now Available to All, Here is the Changelog

Verizon has gone ahead and approved the Android 4.4.4 update for their variant of the Moto X, making it available this morning to all. The update, which first hit soak testers on Friday, includes improved camera picture quality by improving photos taken in fluorescent lighting and enhancing the dynamic range. It also introduces an option for pausing and resuming videos during recording. Finally, a new dialer with a new graphical layout and colors has been introduced.

The update jumps the device up to build 210.12.41.

To check for the update, head into Settings>About phone>System updates>Check for system updates.   (more…)

T-Mobile Launches Own “Best Ever” Family Plan, 10GB of Data Plus Unlimited Talk/Text for $100

T-Mobile’s John Legere is just as sick of seeing AT&T ads for their “Best ever prices” family plan as you are. To try and directly compete with that plan, T-Mobile will launch their own best ever-like pricing, with a new family plan that runs just $100 per month for four lines, yet includes the same 10GB of data as the competitors, along with unlimited talk and text.

For comparison, T-Mobile put together a chart to show you how this new plan beats out not only AT&T, but also similar plans from Verizon and Sprint. Since the chart was created by T-Mo, you have to take it for what it is. However, it does show the major points here, like price, which is $60 lower and the 2.5GB of data per line, with no overages. T-Mobile is still giving away unlimited data and text in over 120 countries with this plan, plus they are letting you stream music from many of the top music services without it counting against your data.  (more…)