Headlines

4 years ago

Vodafone preps for Samsung Galaxy Tab

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 Samsung Galaxy Tab on Vodafone

If you're on Vodafone and itching to get the as-yet-announced Samsung Galaxy Tab Android tablet, see here! Looks like the Euro carrier's getting ready for the big guy, and it'll be available off-contract as well as on contract, which is nice. As for when it will be available? That's still an unknown, though word on the street is we may see it announced in a month or so. 

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4 years ago

Custom recovery for Droid X -- almost there

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Droid X recovery

Android hacker Koush has done it again, this time by creating a method to (almost) have his famous Clockwork recovery on the Motorola Droid X.  He does state that this isn't a "real" recovery, and there's a big list of caveats and issues attached. Frankly, unless you understand the cautions and warnings pointed out, wait another week before giving it a whirl.  I don't think this can brick your X, but it could leave you scratching your head and feeling helpless while it refuses to boot up.

The good news -- this is Koush we're talking about.  If anyone can work magic on a Moto, he can.  He already has plans to get this in Rom Manager, which will make things easier, and while the locked and encrypted bootloader may keep a full custom recovery from ever happening, you can bet this working method will be refined and made more usable in the near future. 

Moto, we love you.  We love your Android phones.  Do you see now that it isn't worth it?  As long as you make handsets we want to buy, we will find a way to open them up.  Save yourself the headache, and the money and stop locking down your phones, please.

We're not going to give any download links for this one, because each and every person who plans to use it needs to read the warnings from the developer himself.  You can find those, as well as download information in the source link.  [MyBrainHurts -- Koushik Dutta's blog]

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4 years ago

How to keep your friends from checking you in on Facebook

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 Facebook Places

Facebook tonight announced its "Places" feature, wherein it allows you to directly "check in" at any location, without the use of a third-party app to do so. And that's fine. And it also lets your friends check in for you, which is not so fine. The good news is that the first time someone does this, you'll get an e-mail asking if it's OK and if you want to allow people to check you in in the future. It's currently available in the updated iOS app, say our pals at TiPb, and at touch.facebook.com if your browser supports HTML5 and geolocation -- two things Google's made a big deal of in its mobile browser technology -- and it's safe to assume it'll be coming to the Android Facebook app at some point.

Me? I'm not taking any chances. (And, quite frankly, if you're in the same place as me, you're incriminating yourself just as much.) You can disable that "feature" now by going into your privacy settings. Hit the "customize" link, scroll down to the "things other share" section, and disable the "Friends can check me into places" feature."

Last time my friends checked me into somewhere, I woke up in a padded room with a single light bulb and a bunch of ink blots. Never again, folks. Never again. [Facebook]

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4 years ago

New App Inventor invites from Google; showcase your creations in our forums

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Google is in the midst of sending out a new round of beta invites for its Android App Inventor service. Invites have been scarce since the launch back in July, so make sure to check your Gmail inbox if you signed up for your own golden ticket. The program works by pairing a webapp accessed through your browser and a downloadable Java file and requires no coding experience to get up and running. The interface is drag-and-drop, and Google even provedes a couple tutorials to get you up and running. 

And to boot, we're opening up the Android Central Forums to the Android App Inventor. Here, you can connect to other users of the program to discuss features, ask and answer questions, and even post your apps for other users to try out before releasing them onto the Android Market. Hit up the links to sign up for an App Inventor invite and then dive into the forums. See you there! [Android App Inventor | Android Central Forums] Thanks to @_JKK_  for confirming! 

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4 years ago

T-Mobile confirms Motorola Charm for Aug. 25 release for a mere $75

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T-Mobile confirms Charm release date

T-Mobile has confirmed via Twitter that the Motorola Charm will be available on August 25.  We were pretty sure this was the date, as we saw a leaked T-Mobile document a few weeks back with the same date, but it's always nice to get confirmation from the carrier instead of riding the coattails of a rumor. We also have pricing: $75 after the usual contract and rebate stuff.

While the Charm doesn't necessarily qualify as a superphone high-end smartphone, it does carry a very interesting form factor, especially for users who are textaholics.  Yes, I mean you (and me) ex-BlackBerry users.  The bar style with a decent looking QWERTY should appeal to many, and the rear trackpad is one gimmick that I'm in love with.  Anyone picking one of these up? [T-Mobile via Twitter]

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4 years ago

Dell Streak torn down until it's not so big anymore

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Dell Streak teardown

It's not sugar and spice, and everything nice, but sometimes resistors and IC's and ribbon cables are better anyway.  Ifixit has gotten their hands on a Dell Streak, and what you see is the result.  A few highlights found during the process:

  • The LCD is bonded to the front panel glass to increase the strength of the device, as well as the sensitivity of the capacitive touch panel. The front panel's solid construction should withstand drops from above waist height.
  • The five T5 Torx screws holding the unit together are found right underneath the bezels on the front of the device. It's super easy to open it and take it apart.
  • The "C"-shaped motherboard comes out easily after disconnecting some cables. Rather than using daughterboards like the Droid 2, the Streak has all components attached to this singular motherboard.

They also give a very nice component list:

  •    Qualcomm QSD8250 Snapdragon processor
  •    Analog Devices ADV7520 Low Power HDMI™/DVI Transmitter
  •    Hynix H8BES0UU0MCR NAND-based MCP
  •    Qualcomm MXU6219 RF transceiver
  •    Qualcomm PM7540 power management chip
  •    TriQuint Semiconductor TQS 7M5012 Power Amp (Quad-band GSM)
  •    Texas Instruments TPS 65023 integrated Power Management IC

If hardware pr0n is your thing, or if you're just curious about what goes into the world's biggest Android phone, hit the source link to have a peek. [ifixit

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4 years ago

Droid Incredible Froyo update not coming today, Verizon says on Twitter

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 Droid Incredible Froyo update

Look, we've told you guys about rumors before. Especially unsourced rumors. They're a dime a dozen. And Mashable's rumor that the Droid Incredible would get Android 2.2 today is just another one of those bad rumors. We want Froyo on the DInc just as badly as you do (and probably almost as badly as Verizon at this point). It'll come when it comes. In the meantime, you can direct your anger toward the forums. [Twitter] Thanks, Chris!

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4 years ago

Samsung Vibrant for $99 on T-Mobile, today and today only

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T-Mobile is making it easier than ever to get onto the Android craze we all know and love by discounting the Samsung Vibrant to just $99 today. That's a whopping $100 off the standard price on two-year contract. If you have been holding onto that G1 or MyTouch with a death grip, this might be the best time to upgrade. The offer is online only, so hit up the link if that Super AMOLED screen is tempting you (and you know it is). [T-Mobile] Thanks to everyone who sent this in.

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4 years ago

Samsung Galaxy S guest stars on FCU

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Galaxy S on FCU

The NBC short Fact Checkers Unit on Hulu is featuring the Samsung Galaxy S in its recent episode.  With the Hero on Leverage, the Evo 4G on The Closer, The Nexus One on Entourage, and the Epic 4G in the upcoming movie Going the Distance, we're seeing product placement everywhere it seems.  Wonder which phone will be next, and where we'll see it?  Keep your eyes peeled, and let us know when you see the next one pop up!  [Hulu] Thanks Rufflez!

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4 years ago

QuestforStars launches Motorola Droid into space

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droidspace

You may remember the nauseating video that we saw of the Nexus One that was strapped to a rocket. And now, the folks at QuestforStars.com have taken it one step above and sent a Motorola Droid into space with a GPS tracking system and digital camera into space, and recorded the whole thing. The Droid was loaded with an application called LapseDroid, which they used to take time lapsed photography of the journey to share with us. While the initial journey, shown in the video after the break, didn't go quite exactly as planned, they do have intentions of upgrading some equipment and trying this again. [via QuestforStars]

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4 years ago

Moving apps to the SD card [Froyo]

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moving apps to the SD card

One of the big perks about Froyo is the ability to move applications to the microSD card storage.  It's easy to do, and if you don't plan on using swappable SD cards it's something you should check out.  From the home screen:

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4 years ago

Congress to mandate FM radio receivers in all cell phones?

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So here's the deal: the National Association of Broadcasters (radio) and the Recording Industry Association of America (music labels) have been arguing and nit-picking at each other for years over who gets what money. As of right now, only songwriters are paid for what is played on the radio. This means both the RIAA and the NAB are missing out on boatloads of money. So, if you were a big multi-million dollar company - what would you do? You would push it onto a third party of course. Well, that's what they're doing at least; and that party just so happens to be the Consumer Electronics Association.

The Consumer Electronics Association is the trade organization that oversees most of the technogly industry - including the maker of that cell phone you're holding. As you can imagine, having someone else dump their money problems on you can have you feeling pretty frustrated.

So what are RIAA and the NAB proposing? They want Congress to enact a law that will mandate that all cell phones, PDAs, portable devices, etc; to include an FM receiver on each device. If passed by Congress, the Consumer Electronics Association would be responsible for the oversight of this transition. Radio would then agree on paying around $100 million a year to record labels and in turn, the stations would gain a much larger network to reach out to. Everybody wins, right?

CEA president, Gary Shapiro, had this to say on the matter, "The backroom scheme of the [National Association of Broadcasters] and RIAA to have Congress mandate broadcast radios in portable devices, including mobile phones, is the height of absurdity. Rather than adapt to the digital marketplace, NAB and RIAA act like buggy-whip industries that refuse to innovate and seek to impose penalties on those that do."

So where are the consumers in this mess of politics and conglomerates? The music labels and and broadcasting industry believe that this will all be in the best intrest of consumers; as it would provide "more music choices."

How do you feel about having an FM receiver in all of your electronics devices? Some Android smartphones are already have FM built-in. Wait, you just really that Pip-Boy 300 -- don't ya? [Ars Technica]

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4 years ago

Asus Eee Pad scheduled for March '11 launch

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Asus Eee Pad

Tablet madness is upon us, and if you're like me you can't wait to see what Android looks and feels like on a proper tablet device.  The Asus Eee pad just may be one of those devices.  Originally planned to release with Windows 7 Embedded, Asus has decided to scrap that and run with Android instead.  And get this -- Asus has not ruled out that the device will ship with Gingerbread on board. 

The unit should cost less than $399 USD, and be available in March 2011.  Looking forward to this one myself, hopefully the Eee Pad is as dependable as the Eee series of netbooks, and the price seems right.  [PC World, Zath.co.uk]

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4 years ago

Symantec's latest -- Tapsnake: watching your every move?

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Tapsnake

Symantec has found more malware in the Android Market1, even going so far as to give the app it's own 'viral' name AndroidOS.Tapsnake.  Symantec states that Tapsnake sends your GPS data, and users with another application can read your location.  And they're right -- but read further and you'll see that calling this any type of threat is as silly as developing it in the first place.

In Symantec's own words:

"For the application to really be used maliciously, an attacker would need to have access to the phone to install the program. For it to work, an email address and “key” must be typed into the phone running AndroidOS.Tapsnake. This same registration information must later be typed into the phone running GPS Spy." 

In other words, you not only have to download a Snake game that tells you it's going to use your GPS data, you also have to enter a keyword, and the e-mail address of the person who will be doing the spying.

There are real threats out there, but this isn't one I'm going to worry about.  Watch what you download and use the tiniest bit of common sense and you'll be just fine.  [Symantec]

1. author's note: I tried seven different Android phones, and couldn't find Tap Snake on the Android Market.  Symantec says it is available, so your mileage may vary.

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4 years ago

If you're waiting on Froyo for your DInc ...

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Droid IncredibleSo today is Aug. 18, 2010. You know, the day the HTC Droid Incredible on Verizon is rumored to get its long-awaited Android 2.2 update.

Not to rain on everybody's parade, but it is worth reminding that the rumor in question started by Mashable was of the "somebody told us" variety, without any real sourcing. And we've seen rumored updates (especially for Verizon updates) fall through before. We're excited right along with you, but we're also sitting back with a fair amount of skepticism.

That said, we'll be in the forums all day today with you guys, too, in hopes that Froyo finally arrives.

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