Google Chromecast Update, New Google Play Edition Devices from Sony, LG

Two new Google Play Edition devices are at Google Play: LG’s G Pad 8.3 tablet and Sony’s Z Ultra G smartphone. Here’s what’s inside — plus Chromecast upgrade news and 10 new apps. Read all about it. Watch for more analysis. — Just in time for the holidays, two new Google Play edition mobile devices are in the Google Play Store. Find details on the LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition tablet and the Sony Z Ultra Google Play Edition smartphone below.

The LG G Pad 8.3

First, here’s what’s in the tablet. The LG G Pad 8.3 is thin, light and features a 273 PPI IPS display, 16GB of storage and 2GB of RAM. It’s powered by a Snapdragon 1.7GHz quad-core processor. Unlike the Nexus 7, the G Pad sports a microSD slot, providing up to 64GB of additional storage. Rounding out the tablet are two cameras, a 5 megapixel rear camera and a 1.3 megapixel front-facing cam. The 4,600 mAh Lithium battery should provide several hours of use between charging, at least according to the specs.

Photo credit: LG

These specs and projected cost are essential for the unit and future reviews, where more often than not bang for the buck is everything. The LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play edition tablet will set you back about $350 — less if you go through an online discount retailer like this one. As always, carefully check specs when you comparison shop so you get the intended quality goods.

On to the Google Play edition Sony smartphone that’s also available now at Google Play.

The Sony Z Ultra

The Sony Z Ultra is Sony’s most-recent take on the smartphone. It’s a solid entry. The 6.4-inch HD screen is based on Sony’s Bravia TV technology. Both scratch resistant and waterproof, the Z Ultra is one of the more-durable smartphones available. Better still, it’s an unlocked phone — and powered by a Qualcomm quad-core 2.2 GHz processor. It includes 16GB of storage, 2GB of RAM, a microSD slot, an 8 megapixel main camera and a 2 megapixel front shooter. The Sony Z Ultra Google Play edition is priced at $648, a solid chunk of change, so be sure to shop around to find better deals where available.

Sony Z Ultra

Photo Credit:

This week Google execs also announced that they’ve certified 10 new Chromecast-compatible apps. Those are: VEVO, Red Bull.TV, Songza, PostTV, Viki, Revision 3, BeyondPod, Plex, Avia and RealPlayer Cloud.

Plex, Avia, and RealPlayer Cloud compatibility introduce the ability to stream your personal media from your mobile device to a TV.

Make sure to watch this space for analysis and reviews on all the products I mention above.

For, I’m Mike Olsen.

Based in Ann Arbor Michigan, Mike Olsen is a tech enthusiast, freelance writer and a senior contributor to Follow his stream on Google+ and email him

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