Rumor Has It
Watch out Spotify, YouTube is coming for youA less-awesome Note 3 could be on its way, and Samsung doesn't care that it has a million phones out there that are all competing with each other. Also, YouTube makes a pass at subscription-based 'Music Pass.'
Hey, IÃ¯Â¿Â½m Karyne Levy. Welcome to Rumor Has It! The show that rounds up the week's biggest tech rumors. You can vote on what you think about the rumors, in the interactive player if you're watching on CNET. This week is all about Samsung phone rumors, plus there's a little something from YouTube that could make music- lovers rejoice. Let's get started. First up, if you missed all the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals and didn't get your hands on a Galaxy Note 3, you might be in luck on scoring a cheaper version of the big phone if you just wait a bit longer. An unnamed insider told blog site SamMobile that the lower-cost Note 3 Lite will appear at Mobile World Congress, and will reach consumers in February or March. No specifics were mentioned beyond its availability in black and white colors. But then some sneaky sneaks found shipment records for model number SM-N7505, which could be the Note 3 Lite, but, you know, might not be. The records show that Sammy is testing versions with screen sizes of 5.49 inches and 5.7 inches, which is the size of the current Note 3. Previous rumors suggest that the phone's screen would be LCD instead of AMOLED, and the camera would be 8 megapixels instead of 13. That sounds about right for a "lite" version of a phone. Would you be interested in a lite version of the Note 3? How much would you spend? Let me know in the comments. Next, in even MORE Samsung news, Korean site ETNews is reporting that the Samsung Galaxy S5 will start production in January -- just 10 or so months after the release of the Galaxy S4. And according to industry sources, the phone could be released as early as February or March, alongside the Galaxy Gear 2 watch. And, as we just mentioned, the Note 3 Lite. The phone could either be available in a plastic case or a more premium model with a metal body, and will come loaded with a 64-bit processor, 3GB of RAM, a 16-megapixel camera, and a huge battery to power a 5-inch flexible display. I know, I know. it seems kinda weird that the company would release a new flagship phone not even a year after its other flagship phone, but let's remember that this is Samsung we're talking about. It does what it wants, when it wants. And finally, according to a string of code in its Android app, YouTube might be poised to release an ad-free subscription service called "Music Pass." The code, which was found by the blog Android Police, apparently reveals: Background music to keep playing while you use other apps; Uninterrupted playback -- so no ads; and Offline play, so you can watch videos and listen to music while not on Wi-Fi without going over your data allowance. A Billboard report from October says that there'd be both a free and premium service, and it would allow you to stream full albums. As for pricing, the company could be looking at $10 a month for the premium version, which is what you pay for other competing services, like Spotify and my fave, Rhapsody. Google offers a subscription music service called All Access, but it's been struggling to gain traction. YouTube, on the other hand, which is owned by Google, has a huge music-loving user base, so it could be a force to be reckoned with. What do you guys think? Would you sign up for a YouTube subscription? What if you never had to watch a commercial ever again? I think that's totally worth $10. Do you? Do you use Spotify, Rhapsody, or one of the others? Don't forget to vote in our poll, and leave a comment. ThatÃ¯Â¿Â½s our show! Share your rumors at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 1-800-750-CNET. And tweet us! And tune in next week for more tech rumors.