Sprint Prepping New Online Store
Sprint has launched a new online web store in beta that lets customers search for and purchase new handsets. The site offers a number of filters so users can pick phones based on features and possible uses. It will also include reviews of handsets, as well as easier ways to compare voice and data plan options. It also lets existing customers access their account and more easily add to or change their plans. Sprint is hoping users of the beta storefront will provide feedback before it launches in full.
Microsoft Releases Cortana for Android in Beta Form
Microsoft today made its Cortana voice-activated personal assistant available to Android users via the Google Play Store beta channel. The app had previously only been available through a closed beta, but is now accessible through an open beta program.
Google, Sprint Deploy RCS on Android Phones
Google and Sprint today said some of Sprint's Android phones now have access to RCS-based messaging features. Google added Rich Communication Services, powered by its Jibe cloud platform, to its own Messenger SMS application.
Sprint Confirms No More Contracts Starting Today
Sprint said beginning January 8 new customers will not be able to buy handsets at subsidized prices by signing a contract. The company is following the industry trend of moving toward installment-based options for financing handset costs.
Google Opens Up Beta Testing for Search App
Google is inviting some Android users to join a new beta program for testing the Google Search app. Google did not call out any specific new features in the first beta release, but warned testers it may be unstable or buggy.
I don't understand the significance of this.