Headlines

4 years ago

Steve Jobs calls out HTC Droid Eris during his explanation of 'Antennagate'

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs led a news conference today to explain what he's now dubbed "Antennagate" -- and he called out a couple of other smartphones to show that the iPhone 4 isn't the only one to drop signal strength when held. On the Android side, Apple chose the HTC Droid Eris, which has since been replaced by the HTC Droid Incredible.

We get it. A whole lot of people have had their eyes opened to the wonderful world of RF engineering, and suddenly we're all amateur EEs and are going to be watching our "bars" -- the little lines that approximate signal strength. Fine. And there's chatter going on that the new Samsung Galaxy S phones have the same sort of "death grip."

Fact is, you're likely to see signal attenuation on any phone. And if you want to stare at your bars all day, be our guest. Where we start to worry is when calls are dropped. And that's always going to be a marriage between hardware design and network capability.

Our suggestion: Everybody relax a tad. This iPhone thing might well be blown out of proportion. Or it might well be bigger than we think. Frankly, we're not going to let it drag us down. While Apple fans have a single phone on which to focus, Android has more phones than we know what to do with. We'll judge call quality the same way we always have -- by using the phone and making calls.

(Oh, and Jobs' crack about nobody wanting to buy that "Hummer" of a Droid X? We think that's been disproven, right?)

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4 years ago

Android Central Podcast Episode 21

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Audio-only stream below

We've got the launches of the Droid X on Verizon and Samsung Vibrant on T-Mobile, the saga of the locked bootloader, who's not getting Froyo this week, the Fring-Skype feud -- and we even gave out a free phone -- congrats, Kevin! Plus, a bunch of your e-mails and voicemail. Listen in!

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4 years ago

Motorola Devour, original Droid reportedly nearing end-of-life

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Perhaps you remember this picture of the Motorola Devour. (Take your time. You'll find it.) This was just six months ago, when the mid-range Android phone was released on Verizon and even garnered its own Super Bowl ad. Today, it appears that the Devour and the original Droid -- which isn't even a year old -- are headed for the big smartphone meetup in the sky, with Verizon listing them as being "End of life."

Now, that doesn't mean your Droid sucks, or that it won't be supported. In fact, in the document leaked on DroidForums, it clearly lists the two phones under "Current devices with limited or no remaining shipments from the vendor." In the case of the Droid, that's hardly surprising, as we're expecting its sequel anytime now.

And while the Devour hardly was a head-turner (read our full review if you want to know how we really feel about it), it's a stark reminder of how short a lifespan phones can have. Hell, think about how many phones we've seen announced and/or released in the last month. Anyhoo, if you still want a Droid or Devour, better get 'em while you still can. Or, you know, you can wait a tad and get something newer and better. [DroidForums via DroidLife]

(Oh, and just because we can, check out the Devour ad after the break.)

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4 years ago

'Antennas' app locates your carrier's towers, puts 'bars' to shame

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If you have been keeping up with news in the tech world lately, you might have noticed something of a debate concerning signal strength. Antennas looks to do away with the simplistic "bars" measure of signal strength by letting Android users know what towers they are connected to, and roughly where they are. The app uses your phone's GPS along with data collected from the antenna and puts both up against Google's antenna database.

CDMA users (That's you, Verizon and Sprint) will have less succes, as the Android OS prevents connecting to more than one tower. This causes only one tower, the strongest, to be shown and requires Android 2.x to work. Everyone else in the world on GSM will have the best results by turning 3G off and allowing the app to run on EDGE/2G. [Panix via LifeHacker | AppBrain]

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4 years ago

Unrevoked root method now works on Verizon Droid Incredible

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The Droid Incredible was a tough nut to crack, but cracked it was, though the method for rooting was a bit, shall we say, difficult. But the Unrevoked team has updated its one-click method for the Dinc, and it's a new day in America, folks. Fear not, and get your root on. [Unrevoked via Twitter] Thanks to everyone, and we mean everyone, who sent this in.

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4 years ago

Iowan Android fans, AT&T has their own scavenger hunt for you

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Seeing all this Droid X scavenger hunt news, but feeling a little left out because you use AT&T?  Well if you're anywhere close to the Jordan Creek Mall in Des Moines, Iowa (or feel up for a road trip) the AT&T store has a treat this upcoming Saturday.  Starting at 1:30 PM the Passport for Prizes contest kicks off and prizes include LCD televisions, gift certificates, and best of all, HTC Aria phones. 

Be sure to drop by the Jordan Creek Mall AT&T store, or see the Facebook page for more information.  Good luck, and be sure to let us know if you win, lose, or just have a good time!

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4 years ago

Cyanogen 6 to bring awesomeness to your Evo

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If you know anything about customizing Android, then you know about Cyanogen. They were the first group to actually root and customize the G1 back in its hayday, and since then they have become the authority on “unlocking and hacking” the Android platform. Cyanogen 6 – the latest version of the software – is based on Froyo (Android 2.2), and will be bringing some interesting new treats to the Evo. For one, both the front and the rear camera are rumored to be fully functional in their new release – something that’s unheard of in present Froyo ROM builds. Furthermore, the group has developed HID support, which stands for Human Interface Device. This allows a bluetooth mouse or keyboard to be connected as well as the use of a cursor. Cyanogen released an unofficial statement on XDA forums earlier this week:

The goal is BT HID + full HDMI out. That turns your phone into a real computer.

Apparently, the idea is to hook your phone up to a monitor via the HDMI cable, and then use a mouse or keyboard to access it like a desktop workstation.  The quality isn't great, but check out the video of him demonstrating bluetooth HID after the break.  And keep your eyes peeled! [via XDA Developers]

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4 years ago

The Snaptic 'Move Your App! Developer Challenge'

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Once again, the folks at Snaptic are reaching out to Android developers, this time to help their participation in the 2010 Health2.0 Challenge.  As Snaptic tell us, "It’s for a great cause and it’s an opportunity for developers from all types of backgrounds and expertise to contribute to innovation in health."

The first leg of Snaptic's challenge (earlier this year) was won by Peter Ma, who is currently enjoying his trip to TEDGlobal 2010.  This time around, the prizes will be a MacBook Pro, and an Android Phone. 

Prizes aside, it's for a worthy cause, and is a way for Android developers from all backgrounds to push innovation for good health.  Snaptic is asking developers "What can you build to inspire movement?"  Everyone here at Android Central is behind the idea, and hopefully some of you guys can polish up your coding skills, work towards a great goal, and maybe even win a killer prize.  Check out the Health2.0 Dev challenge here, and learn a bit more about exactly what Snaptic is doing, read all the rules, and sign up right here. [Snaptic]

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4 years ago

Paid apps now available in South Korea

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Just like the title says, you can now purchase apps from the Android Market if you're in South Korea. (There's a larger issue of being able to purchase paid apps in every international market, but that's for another time.) Google's Tim Bray explains:

As of today, Android Market is open for business to application buyers in the Republic of Korea. We hope that this will make the outstanding Android devices now available in that nation even more useful and fun. We welcome the people of Korea, acknowledged everywhere as one of the world's most-wired societies, to the world of Android.

Good to see things continue to grow. [Android Developers Blog]

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4 years ago

HTC Desire officially headed to Canada on Telus

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The HTC Desire (see our hands-on), one of the more popular Android phones in Europe, is officially headed to North America. Telus, the Canadian mobile provider, has officially announced it will soon carry the device. HTC has said that it wants to bring the Desire across the Atlantic, and Telus will be its first step. No word yet from Bell or Rogers on if they will be carrying it as well. 

No dates or prices yet, but this is great news for Android fans living in Canada. The Desire is a high-end phone that is very similar in specs and features to the Nexus One. [Telus] Thanks, jaycop!.

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