UMA (Unlicensed Mobile Access) for Android looks to be right around the corner (never mind what T-Mobile said), thanks to Kineto's Smart WiFi. You folks using T-Mobile, Rogers, British Telecom and O2 know exactly what I'm talking about, but for those who don't -- UMA lets you use your existing WiFi access point as a standalone femtocell, providing voice and SMS capabilities independent of your carrier's network. It's great for travelers and people who may not have a strong signal indoors, and something that many Android users have been missing. Just like you can now connect to WiFi for a data connection, Smart WiFi connects and gives voice and texts. It is as cool as it sounds.
It's not all wine and roses though. Kineto is quick to point out that they haven't designed an application you can download from the Market, but are working with OEMs to build the software into the phone. It's very much like Swype and Skype are now doing. You're also going to need Froyo to run it, as we've all come to expect by now. Lastly, there's no word on when exactly to expect this, but it sounds like Kineto has their end figured out and the rest is up to carriers and manufacturers. Hit the break to read Kineto's press release, and see their demonstration video. [Kineto Wireless]
That's according to this image handed to the Droid Guy. The picture doesn't give much away, but the rumored specs are a 3.2-inch touchscreen and a 600 MHz processor (and the usual sundries you'd expect on any phone these days). So that'd make it mid-level phone, along the lines of the Optimus One.
So that's that. It's good to see at least one more player in the U.S. market, but we'd still much rather see one of its high-end phones, like the Optimus Chic, or the Optimus Z, which we reviewed previously.
But we'll take what we can get, we reckon, and just keep our fingers crossed that something untoward doesn't happen to what may be an otherwise decent mid-level Android phone. [The Droid Guy] Thanks, Paul.
It's not often that a smartphone gets all the way into testers' hands and in-store marketing materials are printed up, only to see the device killed off before ever making a sale. But that may be what happened in the case of the Motorola Flipout on AT&T. Engadget got a tip on Saturday that it would hit stores a day later. But here we are a couple days later, and there's no Flipout to be flipped.
Adobe AIR for Android should go live on the Android Market on Oct. 8, according to a tip posted in the Android Central Forums by aquakevem, and developers will be able to upload their apps as soon as the runtimes are live. In simple terms, AIR is a framework that allows Adobe Flash style applications (check out these from the Adobe Flash Summit) to run as installed apps on your Android phone. A huge plus to developers is that the same code can run, using Adobe Air, on multiple platforms, which means there are a ton of apps already built that can be ported to Android with little or no changes to the code.
From the department of news nobody wanted to hear -- the HTC Lexikon RUU has been extracted, and it's been Binged. The image above says it all, the full suite of bing products, and no Google search app to be found. Looks like Phil has a new project once this one rolls out! Other than that, there's not much here we haven't seen before. Looks like "old" Sense UI as opposed to the new version as is on the Desire HD, all the Verizon utilities are there, including a VZW branded Slacker app and an eReader.
All that said, there's no telling just how old this leaked RUU is and what all might change by launch time. I've repackaged it all up in a user friendly way and you can get download links from the Android Central Forums. [Android Central Forums]
A critical vulnerability exists in Adobe Flash Player 10.1.82.76 and earlier versions for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and Solaris, and Adobe Flash Player 10.1.92.10 for Android. ... This vulnerability (CVE-2010-2884) could cause a crash and potentially allow an attacker to take control of the affected system.
Props to Adobe for turning around the fix less than a week after the vulnerability was announced. Now we can all tend to our Farmville farms without worry. [Adobe]
Remember when it broke that Sony might be working on a Playstation-branded Android 3.0 gaming phone? Well, it seems now that Sony is actively seeking game developers with Android experience, as seen from the job posting screen shot above. This could mean nothing, but my money is that Sony is looking to bolster it's internal game development teams with some Android mojo to ensure they have some launch titles for that Android 3.0 PSPhone. But, we will all just have to wait and see when (or if) this whole thing becomes official. [Sony via DroidGamers]
Google has begun rolling out much-improved account security features for its Google Apps Premiere, Education, and Government customers. The system features the standard "username and password" we are all used to now, but it also will contain a second verification step. This will require a special code that can be obtained in one of three ways:
This system is designed primarily to entice business, education, and government users who require the added security to do their daily business, which is why they will be seeing it first. Google does plan on rolling out the added security to all Google accounts within the next few months. Users can choose to have the code required upon every login, once per computer, or turn it off completely. Requiring it upon every login would ensure that any would-be hacker would need both your password and access to your phone. Download links for the Android app are past the break. [Google]
Sure, activating 200,000 phones per day is great, but what really matters at the end of the day is how many of your devices are in the hands of consumers. Well, new numbers have come out from ComScore and they are impressive to say the least. For the three-month period between April and July (that's May, June, and July folks), Android saw its active user marketshare in the U.S. rise from 12 percent to 17 percent. The total number of active smartphones in the U.S. came in just under 54 million, so this translates to about 9.2 million Americans on Android phones at the end of July.
Now, there are a couple important points to note here. First, the major Android devices launched during this time were the Droid Incredible (end of April) and the Evo 4G (beginning of June). Finally, nearly all the OS's saw increases of sales year-over-year, but Android is growing at a much faster rate than the competition. Still, Android had huge gains on the back of HTC during the period and everyone over at Google should be more than pleased. Something tells me the numbers for this current quarter will blow that 17 percent out of the water. [ComScore]
When last we saw the HTC Lexikon, it was just a smattering of rumored specs. Now we have a leaked ROM to go with it, courtesy of some good old-fashioned Chinese file dumps. Funny thing about the Lexikon, though. When we go back and look at the specs again -- 3.8-inch screen, 512MB RAM/4MB ROM, Qualcomm 72xx processor at 800MHz, QWERTY keyboard, 5MP camera -- sure sounds like a lot like the T-Mobile G2, doesn't it?
But, of course, this isn't the G2, as the Verizon branding on the RUU screen shot clearly shows. So what will the Lexikon end up being for Verizon (assuming it makes it all the way to market)? News at 11, folks. [911 HTC via Android Guys]
While some may spend their weekends lounging poolside or at toddler birthday parties, some sit and hack. We're glad in this case, as Cory (our Android Central Forums admin) found something that a good number of us need to be careful about -- in many cases your passwords are stored as plain text in internal databases. We spent a good portion of our Saturday tracking down the issues, scouring Google's code bugs pages, testing various phones running various ROMs, and even calling in the pros for clarification. Hit the break to see what was found, and what you might need to watch for if you've rooted your phone. [Android Central forums] And big props to Cory!
With how much personal data is stored on our Android devices now a days it is only natural to have a fear of misplacing or losing the device and all that information leaking into someone else's hands, and who know's where else. Verizon has partnered with device insurance company Asurion to bring users the most protection possible on its smartphones, including its entire Android line. Mobile Recovery allows users to rest their fears of their information being tampered with as they can lock their device remotely as well as wipe it and they can use GPS locating to find out exactly where the device is at any given time. This feature will be included for users who are currently enrolled in Total Equipment Coverage through Asurion and Verizon, unfortunately if you do not meet this you are unable to take advantage of this added protection for your data. For more information, and a complete list of compatible devices head over to MyMobileRecovery.
Fall is in the air, and in North America that means Football season is upon us -- Flick Kick Field Goal for Android answers the call. Just because you can't (or don't want to) be out in the mud, the blood and the beer doesn't mean you have to go without your fix. The aim of the game is to score field goals, at various distances, and fighting the wind the whole time. It runs like butter on the Evo 4G, so most 2010 devices should run it well and a new Droid X or Galaxy S class phone should chew through it without a hitch. The bottom line is that it delivers in the fun department, and is just hard enough to hold some replay value -- I'm not refunding it, you probably won't either.
We also have a quick look at Open Feint, as Flick Kick Field Goal (say that five times fast) is another Feint game (like Fruit Ninja and Mini Squadron). I'm really glad to see this catching on, as I think having a big Android user base can only make the service more robust. You can pick it up on the Market for 99 cents. Check out the video, and download links after the break.
A result of Android's enormous popularity is the increase in books dedicated to the OS. Two that we want to highlight at the moment are The Complete Android Guide, by Kevin Purdy of Lifehacker and My Droid by CrackBerry's own Craig James Johnston.
Purdy's book just went on sale and can be bought for $19.95 (paperback) or $9.95 (DRM-free E-book) [CompleteAndroidGuide] Purdy also created a Twitter handle called @completeandroid, which will provide tips periodically to its followers.
Johnston's book is available for pre-order from Amazon for $16.49.[Amazon]
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