It's a question we get all the time, so let's answer it. The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 has Gorilla Glass. And given the history Samsung has with using Corning, the latest press release confirming that the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is making use of Gorilla Glass shouldn't really come as much of a surprise but it's certainly comforting.
Hankil Yoon, vice president of Smartphone Product Planning, Samsung Electronics, said “GALAXY Tab 10.1 is recognized for its high-end technology and amazing design, even among industry experts. For the GALAXY Tab 10.1, Samsung Electronics searched for the most durable, scratch-resistant glass, and again found the perfect solution with Corning Gorilla Glass.”
Now that we know for certain -- that doesn't mean we're suggesting you run off testing it out as soon as possible. Just know, the screen can handle a few bumps here and there and be quite alright.
Oh, Toshiba Thrive, where do you fit in this sea of tablets? Having succeeded where the Folio 100 fell short, there are still the doubters and the skeptics, brushing off your bulk as the ultimate design faux pas.
Fortunately, there's more to the Thrive than it's bigger backside, and a lot of it is worth mentioning. In the world of ultrathin and uberlight tablets, the Thrive dares to be different, and that's not a bad thing.
And since Android is all about choices, it never hurts to have a new kid on the block, even if it's not for you. But it might be. Join us after the break to see if Toshiba's newest foray into the tablet market is worth your time or was a second-best from the moment it moved here.
I think there's zero shame in admitting I'm actually pretty excited for this Android kids app. Chances are if you've had kids in the past 20 years or so, you've read them a book from Sandra Boynton. Blue Hat, Green Hat; Moo Baa La La La; Hippos Go Berserk; But Not The Hippopotamus.
And, of course, the Going to Bed Book, which is now available on Android. The app is exquisitely done by Loud Crow Interactive, going so far as to keep the feel of the original indestructible book, which you'll notice when you turn the page.
You can choose to have the book read to you -- narrated by Billy J. Kramer (the Cow Planet guy!) -- or you can read it yourself. Tapping on an individual word repeats it, which is great for teaching the young ones to recognize words. The characters on each page are interactive, with a couple of surprise (one of which we show you in the video above). There's also music that can be controlled via a slider on the first screen.
Will this replace reading actual physical books to your kids? Nah. There's the slobber factor, and I don't want anyone chewing on a $600 tablet. But it's still pretty darn cool, and well worth a quick $2. Download links are after the break.
Android's Skype client just gave itself a sizable update, officially bringing video calling to a number of new devices. And they are:
Samsung Galaxy S II
Samsung Galaxy S
Samsung Droid Charge - Verizon
Samsung Galaxy Tab
HTC Desire (2.2)
HTC Thunderbolt - Verizon
HTC Evo 4G
HTC Evo 3D
HTC Incredible S
HTC Desire HD
LG Revolution - Verizon (2.2)
Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY
Sony Ericsson Xperia ray
Sony Ericsson Xperia mini pro
That's a nice little increase from the previous quorum, which comprised the Nexus S, Xperia neo and Xperia pro, and the Desire S.
Now, the bad news. If the phone listed above isn't yet running Gingerbread, only the rear camera will work. (The app listing does a nice job explaining that's a Froyo limitation, and not the app's fault.)
Update in the market, or use the download links after the break.
"Your Honor, I present Exhibit A -- an e-mail I posted on Twitter."
This, apparently, is where we now stand in the he said-she said battle that has become Google v. the World in regards to patents. Where to begin ...
It all started tonight with a tweet from Brad Smith, general counsel (aka lawyer) for Microsoft, who says that Google had been asked to join Microsoft in ultimate $4.5 billion bid for a suite of patents. Microsoft (and others) had a stake in that bid. Google? Tapped out at $3.14 billion. Yep. Π
According to Smith, Google could have thrown in had it wanted to. But Google apparently declined.
Now we have Frank X. Shaw -- aka @fxshaw on Twitter and lead for corporate communications for Microsoft -- (sidebar: anyone who has a middle name that starts with the letter X is legally required to use it whenever possible) who took to the social networking site Wednesday night to respond to Google chief legal officer David Drummond's blog post that said that "Android’s success has yielded something else: a hostile, organized campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple and other companies, waged through bogus patents."
Shaw posted an e-mail on Twitter on Wednesday night, prefacing it with "Free advice for David Drummond -- next time check with Kent Walker before you blog. :)" The e-mail Shaw posted purportedly is between Kent Walker, a lawyer for Google, and Smith. Under the subject line "Following up," Walker explains that "after talking with people here, it sounds as though for various reasons a joint bid wouldn't be advisable for us on this one."
That's a single, solitary e-mail, with no real context or follow-up, at least publicly, from anyone actually involved. But that's not really our point here. Or maybe it is.
Like most things legal, patent law is slow, for a reason. It's also important. Far too important for discovery to take place over Twitter from Microsoft. Or in a blog post from Google. You'll see a bunch of "Microsoft strikes back" posts after this latest round. It makes for good television, and is great blog fodder (which we're admittedly taking place in now). It doesn't make for the good practice of law.
Google might well have screwed the pooch with this one and is posturing itself as best it can. Or maybe Microsoft's lawyers are stretching things a bit. That's the game, for better or worse. But that the players have found themselves in the 140-character world of Twitter is just ridiculous, if the stakes are as high as they'd have us believe.
When last we left the Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 (in the U.S., anyway), we'd been told it had a "late summer" launch window. That, really, could mean just about anything. And seeing as how most people relate summer with heat, we might not see this thing here until November, the way things are going.
Anyhoo, Amazon UK's apparently got the thing slated for being in stock -- from a third-party retailer, anyway -- in about a week and a half. Aug. 12, to be exact. That doesn't really do us much good stateside, and we're really not putting too much faith into this, seeing as how it's already moved back a day since it was first spotted.
Heads up, EVO Shift 4G owners. A small update that will bump you up to v2.76.651.5 should be arriving on Monday, Aug. 8. Once updated, anyone experiencing intermittent MMS/SMS sending issues will no longer be seeing error messages and MMS/SMS messages will go through as expected. Let us know when you get the update -- it should pop up as a notification on your device.
Update: We just heard from AC reader Zachary that he has this update available now. Go into "HTC Software Update" in your settings menu, and have a look. Pic after the break. Thanks Zachary!
Update: We've added a video of some of the lucky Tab 10.1, Galaxy S II and Samsung TV winners after the jump!
While a few lucky Americans waited to have their Galaxy Tab 10.1's updated with Samsung's TouchWiz UX, we were lined up among hundreds of eager British shoppers waiting to get their hands on the European version before anyone else. Like the Tab 10.1 currenty on sale in the US, it's rocking Android 3.1, however the European version comes with TouchWiz out of the box. We've taken a closer look at TouchWiz on the Tab in our sneak peek and hands-on features, so be sure to check them out.
Early adopters were treated to a selection of drinks and delicious miniature snacks courtesy of Samsung, and there was also the chance to win Galaxy S II phones, Galaxy Tab 10.1's and £1500 (~$2450) value Samsung TV's via the Samsung Tab Grabber. We used the Tab Grabber, but all we grabbed was a plastic egg containing a raffle ticket that didn't win us anything :(
Check out our tour of the event after the jump, where you'll find photos and videos of people having fun and winning expensive Samsung gear.
We've just left behind the flurry of tablets, giveaways and canapes that was Samsung's London-based launch event for the European Galaxy Tab 10.1, and can offer up some brief first impressions of the final retail units that were on show, complete with Sammy's TouchWiz software out of the box.
We've also got a quick look at TouchWiz running on production hardware, so join us after the jump for more words and video!
Sensation, EVO 3D up first; future devices will still ship locked
It's been nearly a month since HTC's last updated us on how it intends to start unlocking bootloaders, and it the Taiwanese manufacturer just dropped a doozy of an update on Facebook. Here's the deal:
New devices will continue to ship with locked bootloaders.
HTC will allow bootloaders to be unlocked using a web-based tool.
This month, you'll see an update to the the non-U.S. version of the HTC Sensation, with the T-Mobile U.S. to follow shortly thereafter. The EVO 3D will follow the HTC Sensation. This update won't actually unlock the bootloader -- it'll lay the groundwork for doing so.
The actual bootloader unlocking will take place via a web tool. You'll have to give HTC an e-mail address and acknowledge that you know what you're doing and promise not to complain when you brick your phone.
You'll plug your phone into a computer with the Android SDK loaded, then type in a device ID token, which you'll receive by e-mail, into the web tool.
Then the unlocking process will begin.
This is the perfect scenario. Shipping unlocked phones likely was never in the cards -- even Nexus phones and the Motorola Xoom don't actually ship unlocked. It's a win-win for everybody.
If you want to read HTC's update word for word, hit the Facebook link below, or ease on past the break.
Already checked out the latest news and rumors in the blogs, and wondering what to do now? Have you checked out the Android Central forums yet today? If not, now's as good a time as any to help someone out or just discuss some Android love.
The folks over at IGN (yeah, the game guys) got their hands on a leaked internal Verizon document that shows release dates for a slew of Android phones, as well as info about the LTE upgrade for the Motorola Xoom. The big fellas on the list, the Motorola Bionic and Samsung Stratosphere, look to be scheduled for a September 8 release date, here's the break down:
Interesting to see the Thunderbolt and Revolution getting replaced in stores so soon, but that doesn't mean they are gone out to pasture -- just that something else will occupy their shelf space. Also seeing the Stratosphere (rumored to be Verizon's Samsung Galaxy S II) and Bionic launching on the same day comes as a bit of a shocker. And maybe the most interesting thing is the unnamed Galaxy Tab P8 -- could that be the 8.9 inch Galaxy Tab so many of us have been waiting for? We'll have to wait a bit and see. In the meantime, looks like the whole Verizon lineup just got a good bit better.
The Android 3.2 update for Honeycomb rolled out to folks with Wifi Xooms a few weeks ago, and word is that the update should be hitting LTE 3G Xooms any day now. One of the things people are really looking forward to is the long awaited SD card support for the stock Honeycomb Xoom, and that's included in the 3.2 update as well as things like better rendering and the zooming feature. But not everything is as it seems on the surface. According to Motorola, the SD card support for the Xoom is read-only, meaning you can't write anything to the card unless you use your computer. After a quick look through the Xoom forums, this certainly appears to be the case. Here's exactly what Moto's saying:
The Google Experience Devices like the Motorola XOOM (3.2 update coming soon) and Motorola XOOM WIFI allow you to write to the SD card from your PC and use the Android File Transfer on Mac or a cable transfer on Windows to transfer files from the Motorola Xoom to the SD Card.
While a user cannot move apps to the SD card, the device comes equipped with 32 GB of on-board memory that provides plenty of storage. Users can also store and play videos or music from the SD card if the content was copied to the SD card via the aforementioned file transfer processes. However, videos or pictures taken from the device itself can only be saved to the internal memory and not to the SD card.
Is this a deal breaker? Probably not. (Hell, it's no worse than what you have now, right?) But when other manufacturers and independent Android developers are able to bake read/write SD card support into the operating system that works well -- even through a dongle -- it does make a person scratch their head a bit. I'm sure there was a reason, and Motorola or Google would do well to tell it to us, but instead we're left guessing. Let's hope this is addressed, one way or the other, with Ice Cream Sandwich -- which should be hitting the Xoom shortly after release.
In a press release today, Clearwire has announced their intent to add LTE Advanced capabilities to their existing network infrastructure. LTE Advanced is true 4G technology as originally defined by the various groups that define such things, and this will be its first appearance. The LTE Advanced tech standards call for peak download speeds over 100 Mbps, and Clearwire says their trials have exceeded 120 Mbps. That's fast.
Clearwire also is quick to mention that they are not abandoning their existing Wimax network or customers, and expect to gain over 2 million additional users throughout the rest of 2011.
The big winner here looks to be Sprint, who already has a business arrangement with Clearwire and has announced a partnership with LightSquared to bring LTE to their customers. Customers have 4G now with Wimax, "better" 4G later with LTE, and "real" 4G with LTE Advanced. Sounds like someone has all their ducks in a row, let's hope it pans out. Read the full press release after the break.
We spent some quality time with Samsung this morning at its TouchWiz update event in New York City (you might have seen a tweet or 20), and I got my Galaxy Tab updated as part of the shindig.
We've already done a screenshot preview -- now it's time for our video hands-on. Probably the most important change is the quick-launch tray, which gives you a sort of dock down at the bottom of the screen.
Check out our video above, and stay tuned for more from the London event.
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