A few days ago, we caught the leaked pictures of what looked to be an updated Android Market and today Google has made it official. In Android's next update, Android 1.6 Donut, Android Market will receive an update that brings a fresh design and some very important new features, the most important being screeenshots of applications.
We're pretty big fans of the new design--it looks a lot more modern, usable, and seemingly better in every way. The new features of Android Market for developers will also bring in a better user experience--promotional icons, better descriptions, and application screenshots that will let all Android users learn more about the application. Also, four new sub-categories will be added: sports, health, themes and comics.
Unfortunately, no timeline was provided on when we'll be able to use the new Android Market but when Android 1.6 is released to the public you can be sure to check back for our full review!
You lucky, lucky Brits. Already home to more Android devices than us, you guys can now officially purchase the Samsung Galaxy I7500 from O2. Stop by a O2 retail store, head online to o2.co.uk, or even phone in an order to grab Samsung's first Android device. The Samsung Galaxy is a great Android phone that has been kind of swept under the rug in the US (probably because the Lite version has gained traction).
Anyone in UK buying a Samsung Galaxy? Already using one?
Like seemingly every other phone in the world, the HTC Hero will be available at Best Buy. Best Buy Mobile has just announced that they'll be offering up the HTC Hero on October 11th for the same price of $179.99. They'll be the only non-Sprint store that'll sell the Hero so if you have a Best Buy near you but not a Sprint store, you're in luck!
So why is buying the HTC Hero from Best Buy a better deal than buying the phone from a Sprint store? Two words: Instant Rebates. When you buy the Hero from Best Buy the upfront cost is $179.99 (plus applicable fees) as opposed to Sprint retail stores charging you $279.99 with $100 off through mail-in-rebate. The end cost is the same but who wants to deal with mail-in-rebates? Hassle free instant rebates are the way to go
Anyone still buying the Hero from a Sprint retail store?
You can't say Sprint isn't trying. Bleeding money and rumors of downfall can't sink a ship when they continue to bust their behinds trying to get past the rough waters. Translation: Sprint now exclusively has two of the most compelling smartphone options on the market. How could we have written them off? They're just getting down to business.
The Palm Pre and HTC Hero--both are magnificent phones in their own right but more specifically, they're the best options on their respective platforms--on one network. We know a HTC Hero on Verizon or AT&T or the Android-friendly T-Mobile would work better for a lot more people (us included) but we absolutely love how Sprint goes and grabs the best phones available.
So the question we have for you guys, how do you feel about the HTC Hero on Sprint? Would it make you switch? Does it make you stay? How is the Sprint network for you? Love it or hate it, let us know in the comments!
As for us, we've never been a Sprint customer (we rock AT&T and T-Mobile at the Android Central HQ) but we're so excited to see the HTC Hero (and its redesign) in the states that we're deeply contemplating a switch.
If you remember, the T-Mobile Pulse is a device built by Huawei and packs a 3.5 inch touchscreen, 3.2 megapixel camera (with autofocus), WiFi, GPS, etc. What makes the T-Mobile Pulse offering unique on T-Mobile UK is that it'll be the first Android device to be officially sanctioned as a Pay-As-You-Go device (PAYG). We're sure T-Mobile UK customers would be happy to hear that.
T-Mobile UK now has three different Android devices. The T-Mobile G1, G2 Touch (HTC Hero), and the T-Mobile Pulse. We got a feeling that they like Android and love to rebrand their phones.
What do you guys think? Would you want a pay-as-you-go Android phone in the US?
The Samsung Behold 2 passed through the Bluetooth SIG and came out with a spec sheet detailing that it'll likely run Android. To quote the description:
The Samsung SGH-T939 is a GSM phone, featuring a 3.2″ AMOLED full touch screen and WiFi connectivity, giving users access to Google Mobile services and full web browsing at blazing speeds.”
We're pretty sure you guys had no idea that the original Behold was so successful that it warranted a sequel (we didn't) but if the Behold 2 runs Android, this may be one of the few times the sequel is better than the original (the original ran Samsung's own OS). Regardless, we're confused on why Samsung would want to use the Behold brand name for a new device and direction--why boggle yourself down with a device name no one remembers?
We've seen Android implemented in so many proof-of-concept devices that it's almost surprising that no one has cooked up a strictly gaming device based on Android. Enter ODROID. ODROID is an open-source gaming platform based on our open-source Android OS. Built by Handkernel, ODROID will reportedly have the same processor that the iPhone 3GS has along with a 3.5-inch 320 x 480 capacitive touchscreen, HDMI output, composite video output, microSD, SD, and WiFi.
Though it could use some work in the design deparment (what is this 1993?), we think that it's a pretty workable idea. Though the game market in Android isn't as pronounced as the iPhone yet, this is one step in the right direction.
Are Verizon customers ready for an onslaught of Android phones? Because it looks like Big Red is receiving another Android device, this time by HTC. The HTC Desire 6200 was spotted in those infamous "inventory documents" and by the looks of it, 'ADR' and Google' both strongly hint at it being an Android-based device. The leaked Verizon inventory document hint at other documents but honestly, a HTC-built, Android-powered, Verizon-networked phone? Sign us up. We don't even need the details.
With the Motorola Sholes expected to hit Verizon and the HTC Desire heading in the same direction, it looks like Verizon customers might soon have as many Android phone options as Android early adopter T-Mobile. Who could have predicted that?
Looks like we might not have to wait all the way until September 15th to get a few details on the already expected Android tablet. The Archos 5, officially pictured above, will be offered in multiple storage capacities and rumored varying pricing:
$294 for 16GB SSD
$370 for 32GB SSD
$320 for 160GB HDD
$420 for a 500GB HDD
The Archos 5 is also expected to be offered with a $130 docking station that'll presumably offer HD output and expected to include DVR capabilities. Who's excited for this Archos 5 Android Tablet?
We probably will never sniff the Dell Mini 3i aka dellphone here in the states because it rocks TD-SCDMA, which is China-only and runs the Android-based Ophone OS, which is also China-only. Why these decisions were made is beyond us but we're still interested in the progress of a dellphone so it's worthwhile to take a look at the latest leaked pictures.
In our opinion, the Dell Mini 3i hardware looks very much like the Palm Pre--it has a very nature-ish, pebble-like shape. Software side, the Ophone OS looks to borrow heavily from the iPhone with huge, press-able icons. We're actually pretty impressed with the hardware, which just drives us more crazy.
Can anyone from Dell explain why this isn't coming to the US?
The Samsung Galaxy Lite, a phone we've taken an interest to since it popped up earlier this month, has reportedly been pictured and detailed. The Samsung Galaxy Lite will have 3G, Wi-Fi, and will even include a trackball (absent on the Samsung Galaxy). There are reports suggesting that this might be a Google Experience, "with Google"-type phone (not sure if that's a good thing these days though).
We expect the Samsung Galaxy Lite to be offered as a low-end, highly-affordable type device, a market for Android that's largely been untapped. It'll be interesting to see how the Samsung Galaxy Lite and the HTC Click compete against one another in the future. How do you guys feel about the Samsung Galaxy Lite?
Now this was unexpected. Word on the street (aka 8080.net) is that the phone pictured above is actually Sprint's version of the HTC Hero. It's not that sharp edged, big chin version of the Hero we've grown to love but rather a softer, more curvacious version. The flush hardware buttons are positively slick but we're not sure if we like the two-toned front face. At least the Sprint HTC Hero looks like it'll fit better in the pocket. And for some reason, it just looks like a Sprint phone doesn't it?
We're not sure which version of the HTC Hero we like better (if there are different versions) but since they both run HTC Sense and everything inside is the same, it really doesn't matter to us. If this really is the Sprint HTC Hero, we won't miss the chin one bit.
What do you guys think? Which HTC Hero is best? Sprint or everyone else's.
Not this again. China Mobile has ruined another potentially good phone. The LG GW880 is LG's first Android device, and though we were once eager to see what LG was cooking with Android, the GW880 is another WiFi-less device that runs China Mobile's Ophone. Which is pretty much code for saying we'll never sniff this Android phone. Yeah, lame.
The LG GW880 specs packs a 3.5-inch WVGA touchscreen with 256MB RAM, 512 MB ROM, GPS, 5MP Camera with autofocus and flash, and a front facing camera for video.
Hit the read link to see more pictures of this China-only Android phone.
It might just be us, but we've always thought Android Market looked a little too 'beta' for our tastes. We love the simplicity it offers but have been itching for a redesign for quite some time now. But worry no more, because a Motorola Sholes User has leaked what looks like a fresh new Android Market and we like what we see.
In the new design, there are clear options to show the Top Paid, Top Free, and Just In applications. There's also a new search icon in the top right corner. Overall, Android Market remains the same, it's just that key points of the UI have been brought to the forefront (and in a much cleaner way). Instead of being buried in menus, everything looks to be much more intuitive.
We like it, what about you guys? Are you happy with the current design of Android Market?
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