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In Brief

AT&T is giving its Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega more responsibility and a new title, placing him in charge of a combined mobile and business division, FierceWireless reported on Tuesday. Taking de la Vega’s place as head of mobility will be Glenn Lurie, the AT&T President and rising star who ran AT&T’s emerging devices group, encompassing everything from tablets, Kindles and smart watches to connected cars and Ma Bell’s new Digital Life smart home program. To get an idea of how AT&T’s new Mobility CEO thinks, check out my interview with Lurie on the internet of things from 2012.

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In Brief

Asus Android Wear sketch

Asus has already teased a shadowing image of its first smartwatch in advance of next week’s IFA event in Berlin. SlashGear noticed that the Google Android Wear partner offered more device details on its official Facebook page with a sketch of the watch, along with some handwritten notes. Unlike the first two Android Wear watches, it looks like the Asus model has some style: A sandblasted backside as well as a polished satin watch frame and genuine leather strap, for example. As the Android Wear market gets crowded, I wondered how new entrants would make their products stand out. Looks like Asus has a potential answer: Make watches that actually look nice.

In Brief

eyefitifttt

Eyefi, the company that lets you pop a Wi-Fi enabled SD card into a traditional DSLR camera, has built an If This Then That integration that will make it easier to dictate how and where photos are shared. Pics taken from the DSLR get sent to the Eyefi cloud, where a user can then add tags that will trigger the IFTTT recipe. So one might tag a photo #social, and the recipe would share it on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. It apparently works in reverse too. If you want to get a snapshot from your smartphone into the Eyefi cloud just tag it #eyefi (or whatever) on Instagram and it gets stored in the Eyefi cloud.

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In Brief

Google apps on mobiles
photo: Google

Google updated two of its Google Apps for iOS on Monday while also adding a third new title. Docs and Sheets get the updates that the Android versions gained in June: The ability to open Microsoft Office docs and spreadsheets. Google Slides is new for iOS, bringing an option to create presentations on Apple iPhones and iPads. It too has Office compatibility support. Google’s strong support for iOS continues to make it very easy to use Google services, even if you prefer Apple’s hardware: One reason I’ll very likely I’ll buy a new iPhone later this year to complement my Android handset.

In Brief

As Sprint tinkers with its family plans to encourage prepaid customers to go postpaid, T-Mobile is tweaking its entry-level prepaid plan. The barebones $40 Simple Starter plan is a good deal for light data users, but its 500MB cap means it wasn’t an option for many. On Monday, T-Mobile announced a $5 add-on which brings the LTE data cap up to a more reasonable 2GB. After that’s used up, your data gets shut off unless you buy a one-day 500MB bucket for $5 or a seven-day 1GB plan for $10. T-Mobile warns the plan is subject to change, and it will be available starting on September 3.

In Brief

Vodafone’s share price rose Friday on rumors of a takeover bid by AT&T. We’ve so been here before — AT&T promised back in January that it wouldn’t launch a bid for the subsequent 6 months. China Mobile is also reportedly interested in buying a stake in Vodafone. On top of that, AT&T is also reportedly considering buying Ireland’s Eircom as a way into Europe, and Vodafone itself was rumored to be considering a bid for T-Mobile US, so y’know, it’s probably worth seeing what actually happens before getting too excited. One thing that has happened, though, is that Vodafone just stumped up $96 million to take over Greek fixed-line provider Hellas Online.

In Brief

Moto X+1 eveaks

As a farewell gift on his trip to retirement, noted tipster @evleaks has one more leak left to share: The Moto X+1 for Verizon. The images match up with earlier rumors and whispers of a larger Motorola handset, very likely with a higher resolution screen than the 720p display found on last year’s Moto X. Aside from the overall size bump, the speaker grilles are larger and there appear to be two of them, suggesting the possibility of stereo front-facing speakers. In keeping with what helped make the Moto X a popular phone, the successor model looks to be running a mainly stock, skin-less version of Android.

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