Headlines

2 years ago

webOS 'running' on an EVO 3D isn't really webOS 'running' on an EVO 3D

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We've all seen this by now -- it's webOS booted up on an EVO 3D, and it's got everyone in a tizzy.  While webOS fans who have spent decades (it seems like decades anyway) having the horrible hardware of the Pre and Pixi have reason to be excited, everyone seems to be getting ahead of themselves.

This has nothing to do with today's news of HP open-sourcing webOS.  In fact, Ryan Hope, the fellow who did it and took these pics is more than happy to tell everyone they are three months old.  To top it all off, nothing is working and it's not even close to being usable.

Think of it as an early SDK port of ICS, like the ones we saw last month -- those ones where radios, cameras, even the touch interface didn't work.  The EVO 3D has the same basic internals as the TouchPad, so getting webOS booting (which is a far cry from actually running) was an awesome project to start on.  Now that Mr. Hope and others will be getting source code, expect this sort of thing to happen for real.  In the meantime, stop bugging your favorite webOS and Android developers and let them enjoy the day -- it will come soon enough.

Source: Twitter; via Pre Central, The Verge

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2 years ago

Secret Weapon: Smart Actions, Customizing buttons [From the Forums]

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We've managed to steam roll through another week of news here at Android Central and no one lost any limbs -- that's quite a feat. If you're looking for something to do this weekend you might as well get caught up on any Android news and discussion you may have missed out on.

If you're not already a member of the Android Central forums, you can register your account today.

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2 years ago

What an open-source webOS means for Android

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You might have heard -- webOS just got open-sourced today by HP, joining the world of great, free software like Ubuntu, Firefox, and Android.  It's a pretty big deal for some people, including all those developers you see doing wonderful things with the software on their electronic devices.  HP made the right decision here: let the fate of webOS be in the hands of those who know it best -- like the fellows at webOS Internals.  I'll bet there's one hell of a party going on in Oz this evening.

But what does that mean for Android is what we're interested in, because we're Android Central and that's what we do.  The answer?  Maybe a lot, maybe not so much.  While we don't know what open-source license HP plans to release webOS under (remember things like HTC Sense and iOS started as open-source, but the license allowed them to keep code changes to themselves), as it sits now any code that is owned by HP should be made available to manufacturers and developers.  Some of the proprietary bits will stay closed, and provided as something that plugs in to the running system, but those are almost always hardware- or network-specific bits, so we're not too concerned.

The big and important parts will be available for everyone from the CyanogenMod team to Motorola to use and develop further.  You read that right -- we're all thinking "Wow, the CM guys can port stuff from webOS into CM9!" and we're right, but more important is that so can Google and all the OEMs out there.  Soon there will be a few million lines of new code for engineers to look through and cherry pick the best parts from to add to their existing projects -- and that's a damn good thing.

That doesn't mean it will happen though.  The cores of Android and webOS are pretty different, and things won't just drop in and work.  If it were that easy, we'd already have a bastardized version of Meego, Symbian and Android running on some awesome phone from the far east (and I'd totally be using it).  But having the code sitting there so people can see how it's done certainly makes it possible, and very interesting.  And to be honest, simply open-sourcing webOS isn't going to save it.  If someone (like Google or Samsung) steps in and nurtures it and keeps pumping money and ideas into it, it will keep getting better and better.  If nobody but hobbyists cares, it will wither and disappear, even if those hobbyists are talented geniuses like the webOS Internals guys (and gals). 

We don't know what will happen here.  Just because something can be done doesn't mean it will be done, and with everyone making money hand over fist with Android there isn't a lot of incentive for big changes.  I'm sure we'll see some ideas brought over, and someone will start porting webOS to things like the Xoom or Galaxy S II, but the big picture may not change a whole lot.  It's going to be an exciting time, and we're lucky that HP made this multi-billion dollar gift to the open source community. 

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2 years ago

ASTRO File Manager updated, brings themes and cloud backup registration with it

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With 19 million downloads from the Android Market, it might be easy to get complacent. Not so in the case of ASTRO File Manager which today received an update to version 3.1, and brought a couple of big new features along with it. 

The first of these are the new themes functionality, allowing you to download various different themes to customize the app with including the "classic ASTRO" theme from version 2.0. 

The other big new feature is the ability to pre-register for a free ASTRO backup account. There's no further information at this stage on this part of the service, but registration is as simple as entering your email address from the splashscreen. 

Other notable updates include Honeycomb support, various fixes, drag and drop capabilities and tablet users are now able to set the external SD and USB directories. 

Check out a selection of screenshots along with the download links after the break. 

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2 years ago

A closer look at the 10 billion Android app downloads

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We recently learned that Google was celebrating their 10 billionth app download with some 10-cent sales, but what is pretty interesting is Google took the time to break these downloads down. Did you know that Sunday at 9 p.m. is the most popular download time for applications, or that South Korea is the most app-crazed country? Hit the break for some more information!

Source: Google+

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2 years ago

Coby Electronics announces collection of Android 4.0 tablets

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Looking to heat things up ahead of CES, Coby Electronics Corporation has announced a new line-up of cost effective Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablets to be available for Q1 2012. In total, Coby will be bring five tablets to market in a variety of styles and sizes:

  • 7-inch MID7042 (4:3 aspect ratio)
  • 8-inch MID8042 (4:3 aspect ratio)
  • 9-inch MID9042 (4:3 aspect ratio)
  • 9.7-inch MID9742 (4:3 aspect ratio)
  • 10-inch MID1042 (4:3 aspect ratio) 

All will feature a 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 CPU and offer capacitive multi-touch screens, up to 1GB of RAM,  expandable memory up to 32GB, Wi-Fi and HDMI 1080p output. Sadly, missing from the announcement is any mention of whether or not they'll gain access to the Android Market but it'll be interesting to see not only how well they perform but how much they cost as well when they hit store shelves. Full press release is available past the break.

Source: Press release

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2 years ago

Help Android Central on a new feature

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Greetings, distinguished Android Central Reader. (Yeah, we're giving you the benefit of the doubt.) We're working on a kick-ass new feature and want a little feedback.

Interested in a sneak peek? Read on.

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2 years ago

YouMail returns to the Android Market, shares blame with T-Mobile for its removal

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With a case of bad communication now cleared up, YouMail has made its way back to the Android Market. As it turns out, T-Mobile was to blame for the pulling but it was all pretty much a misunderstanding and if nothing else -- a hard lesson for YouMail.  As noted on the YouMail blog, here is what happened:

  • First, a  subset of the YouMail Android applications have a real problem.   It looks like 15,000 users who went straight from 1.8.3 (an old version) to 2.0.45 (the one that was in the market and was taken down) got into a situation where the app is polling our servers continuously (the polling time got set to zero).   Of course, this leads to a host of issues for those clients, such as bad battery life, and a boatload of transactions, eating up network bandwidth.   T-mobile saying that we disrupted their network is fair, though we were unknowingly causing that.
  • Second, T-mobile did try to reach out to us that they were seeing an issue.   Unfortunately, it was in way that was almost guaranteed to be ineffective, and is probably not how businesses should communicate.   As far as we can tell, one of their engineering team sent an e-mail to our free customer support e-mail address in early November, and one of the support team basically replied it’s fixed in next release and treated it as resolved, not reporting it to anyone else.   With 1000s of e-mails/week from over two million registered users, random users weekly threatening to pull us from various stores, and lots of users with tmobile.com email addresses,  it was easy for this one message to get lost in the shuffle.   
  • Third, after almost 30 days with no response from us, T-mobile went to Google with charts showing the traffic our bad apps were generating, said we were unresponsive, and that the traffic was growing quickly.   Google then immediately cut us off - without ever sending us an e-mail beforehand, or providing us anyway to contact someone at T-mobile. That left us wondering what the heck was going on - and having a hard time figuring it out.

So, as you can tell -- T-Mobile did have genuine concerns wth YouMail disrupting their network but they seemingly went about handling them the most uneffective way possible. Either way, lesson learned -- one for YouMail and potentially other developers out there and now YouMail is back in the Android Market where it belongs.

Source: YouMail

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2 years ago

German court rules in favor of Motorola Mobility against Apple in patent suit

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The Mannheim Regional Court ruled in favor of Motorola Mobility against Apple today in an ongoing patent suit. The same German court ruled also ruled against Apple last month, but today's decision is much more significant. 

The patent in question is EP1010336, which is:

"method for performing a countdown function during a mobile-originated transfer for a packet radio system". 

The court ruled that Apple Sales International is infringing on this patent owned by Motorola Mobility.

So what happens now?

Motorola Mobility could make steps to enforce the injunction, which could result in banning Apple products from being sold in the German market. This is an extreme situation and is unlikely to happen. More likely is Motorola to work out a deal with Apple to license the technology. They are also seeking compensation for past infringements.

Apple is likely going to request a stay, which could change the ruling entirely. 

These patent wars are likely to go on for a long time, and we'd expect none of them to result in the outright banning of consumer goods. Licensing deals and money to make up for infringing in the past are a lot more likely. 

We've got the press release from Motorola Mobility after the break. 

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2 years ago

HP's webOS joins Android in the land of open-source operating systems

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Android just got a new friend in the open-source playground. HP today announced that the beloved-but-floundering mobile operating system will released to the open-source community.

"HP plans to continue to be active in the development and suppport of webOS," the company said. Like the core Android OS, webOS will be made available under an open-source license.

Exactly what that means in regards to webOS as a competitor to Android? We'll just have to see. Certainly it's great news for anyone who likes to tinker -- and you know how Android folks like to tinker. Will it overtake Android as the current embedded OS of choice? We will see some sort of mutant Android-webOS hybrid emerge from these murkey depths? (And how cool would that be?) We'll just have to see.

There's loads more, including the official announcement, at the link below.

More at PreCentral.net

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