With so many phones getting delayed these days, it's refreshing to see a phone manufacturer actually try and beat their release date. The Motorola Devour is rumored to do just that. Originally expected to hit stores sometime in March, the Devour might actually launch a couple of days earlier and be available on February 25th through Verizon's Indirect Channel. The Devour is also expected to be widely available by March 15th, at the latest.
We learned this morning what we'll likely see once the Motorola Droid gets the update to Android 2.1. Now we have have a time frame. Motorola, on its official Facebook page, dropped the following (emphasis ours):
Hi all-- we know you are frustrated with the lack of details regarding Android software upgrades and we sincerely apologize for not being able to share info sooner. We're happy to relay the 2.1 upgrade to DROID will start to roll out this week, and we will have more information to share on other device upgrades later ...this week as well. Thanks for your patience and continued support.
So let's all keep our eyes peeled this week. Next question is what other updates does Moto have up its sleeve? Stay tuned, folks. [Facebook via Engadget] Thanks, Tyler!
Here's a little bit of "good" news for anybody who bought a Nexus One on contract with T-Mobile and is thinking of getting out early. Remember how Google was charging a $350 "Equipment recovery fee" in addition to T-Mobile's $200 early termination fee? The Big G's just lowered that to $150 if you cancel in the first 120 days.
According to the Wall Street Journal:
A Google representative said the company had been working with T-Mobile to lower the equipment fee.
"Google's overall financial philosophy with regard to operator service plans remains unchanged: We make no profit from commissions from operators or from equipment recovery fees, and our recovery fees are based on operator charges to Google for early termination of service," the company said in a statement.
Whether that has anything to do with the FCC's inquiry into early termination fees, or out of the kindness of its not-evil heart, it's a welcome move from Google. [WSJ via Phonescoop]
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The proximity sensor on the Motorola Droid seems to giving its owners a difficult time as of late. Some forum members are reporting pretty odd behavior with their screens turning off or on at odd times. How is that proximity sensor working for you?
The fifth part in Google's YouTube series chronicling the birth (and now life) of the Nexus One is now available. In it we get a look at the Nexus One being used throughout the day (and a guy whose apartment is badly in need of a non-Google decorator). But we also get another brief look at the car dock.
At about 1:08 in we see our hero place his Nexus One in the car dock, which has kind of a dual ball-and-socket joint system for multiple angles. Why dude's using a car dock in a taxi is an interesting question, but we won't look a gift horse in the mouth here. Check out the latest video after the break. [Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4]
Looks like somebody has their hands in HTC's honey pot. Just yesterday we got a look at the HTC Invincible, and now here's the HTC Legend. Looks like it's running the same ol' Sense we've come to know and love, and it looks like the venerable trackball has given way to an optical trackpad, which would be a welcome change. One more shot after the break. [Engadget]
Google Googles is baked into the ROM by default (also standard in Android 2.1-U1).
The Droid's home screen remains as is -- no new rotating app thingy instead of the drawer, and no live wallpapers.
The news and weather widget from the Nexus One will be included.
Yeah, it's a bummer there won't be live wallpapers, and that the app drawer remains. Some of that's likely due to the hardware difference -- the Nexus One does have Snapdragon, after all -- and some of that's likely just the usual customization differences.
Unfortunately, nobody knows when -- or if, really -- this build for the Droid will be released. And so, we wait. [Engadget]
We know a lot of you folks have been excited over Swype, the new keyboard input method that allows you to simply drag your fingers to keys you want to type. It's definitely convenient for one handed 'typing' and for some people Swype really works. We've seen promising videos of Swype in action and even told you how to get Swype yourself, but unlike the keen readers we have here, we're sure the average Android user has little clue about this potentially game changing new input method.
So what if an Android phone launches with Swype? Would that catapult Swype to mainstream usage and success? It looks we'll get a chance to see because rumors are saying that the myTouch 3G 1.2 will include the Swype keyboard out of the box. We definitely support the decision because the more options for us, the better.
Could Swype eventually become standard on all Android phones? How has your experience been with it?
The keyboard keys are inset and probably have no tactile feedback, however, they should be quite easy to use. It looks like the cutouts are pretty finger-friendly, as they contour to the shape of a standard finger. Under those cutouts is a low-resolution monochrome touch screen, one for each side of the keyboard. This is where the finger presses. The contact area is small, but the plastic grid that surrounds it contours to the fingers. The label and function of each key can be changed to suit certain layouts and applications.
The keyboard has multiple orientations. The keyboard can be pulled from side to side for typing on a surface. A small kickstand angles the phone when typing in this manner. The keyboard can also be pulled to the left for a standard landscape layout. There is also a dial-pad layout.
We're glad that Motorola is exploring different form factors but we really can't imagine how this would really work out. If it does have the ability to display different keys on the keyboard in different orientations, that's kind of cool. But is it cool enough to compromise usability? We'll toss Moto some faith here because the Backflip actually turned out to be a lot better than what we originally thought. Here's to Motorola pulling it off again. The Motosplit is still expected to launch on AT&T in Q3 2010.
The Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 is coming, SE promises us that. But we still don't know the final official details like the date it's coming, the price it'll be, and what US carrier it'll land on (if one at all). For a device that we were rather impressed with after giving it a hands-on and one that is also pretty well known in the Android world, it's surprising that Sony Ericsson hasn't gotten this thing out yet. But we guess it's not surprising since it is Sony Ericsson after all.
Either way, if you want to learn more about the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, a Sony Ericsson employee has answered a bunch of questions over at Tweakers (a Dutch site). The highlights (or lowlights?) are that the X10 runs Android 1.6 and won't launch with multitouch. Luckily, the X10 looks like it will upgrade to 2.1 sometime in the future but we're not exactly sure if they'll be able to add multitouch via software update (like the Nexus One & Droid did).
So we waited this long (and continue to wait) and SE still can't manage to get 2.1 and multitouch on launch? Not the news we wanted to hear!
A little SPE network news before we get to our weekly list o'links. We've been calling TiPb 'TiPb' instead of 'The iPhone Blog' for so long now, we figured we may as well make it official. Add in that the iPhone platform now encompasses the iPhone, iPod Touch, and the newly announced iPad and renaming the site pretty much became a foregone conclusion. Same great content, new shorter URL to type in!
The folks at Pocketnow just got slipped a few shots of the HTC Incredible, a device long rumored to make an appearance on Verizon at some point. Android 2.1 is definitely on board, as is HTC's Sense UI. The tipster also says there's 256MB of RAM -- half that of the Droid Nexus One -- the WGVA screen is 3.5 inches to 3.7 inches in diagonal and is "very vibrant," but it's not sure if it's AMOLED, OLED or just regular ol' LED. Couple more photos and video after the break. [Pocketnow]
We just got slipped a roadmap for Dopod, and with it we get some Chinese Android fare.
First off there's the long-rumored HTC Dragon, noted as a 3.6-inch WVGA China-only Android phone. Then there's what's listed only as the A6388, a 3.4-inch HVGA device. (Screen shot courtesy of 3Gin.net after the break.) And there's also the Huashan, a monstrous 4.3-inch WVGA device (the Windows Mobile HD is 4.3 inches, if that helps put it into perspective. That said, it's noted that the Huashan may see a change in operating system to Windows Mobile, so ... Also noted as "in planning" are the Tianshan, a 3.2-inch QVGA device, and the Songshan, with a 2.8-inch QVGA screen and keyboard (front-facing, from the sound of it).
Anyhoo, that's a good sign that the Dragon is still in development (and, of course, we now know that's it's not another codename for the Passion, which became the Nexus One). Interesting stuff, indeed, coming out of the East. Question is when will we see it?
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