Live here at Mobile World Congress, we just got word from Eric Schmidt that the next version of Android will combine the feature set of Honeycomb and Gingerbread. Schmidt didn't give any details on naming (we've heard both Ice Cream and Ice Cream Sandwhich), but it'll definitely be the "I" version of Android. Looks like some of our favorite Honeycomb features will be making their way to phones.
Eric Schmidt just announced that Google is currently working on a video editing app called Android Movie Studio. The video editor will be availabe for Android tablets running Honeycomb. You can expect that the big G will incorporate YouTube integration from the get-go.
More to come soon, as we are still in the Google keynote.
HTC has confirmed via Twitter that its new Incredible S will run Android 2.2 out of the box, but will receive an update to version 2.4 shortly after launch. The Desire S and Wildfire S, however, will run 2.4 when they're released. HTC has also committed to a Honeycomb update for the Flyer in Q2.
This discrepancy is most likely down to release timing -- the Incredible S launches next month, whereas the Desire S and Wildfire S are slated for release during the second quarter of the year.
As Eric Schmidt mentioned in his keynote address at Mobile World Congress, the Android Market now has over 150,000 applications. The number of apps has tripled over the past nine months, and grown by a full third since last fall. They're getting better as well -- I think we all have noticed applications of a much higher quality appearing, as well as cross platform apps and games from the bigger developers.
It's a testament to Android's extremely fast growth, and we don't expect it to slow any time soon.
We all were a little surprised when HTC showed off the Flyer (see our hands-on here) and it wasn't running Honeycomb. It looks like they aim to fix this situation in the second quarter with an OS update according to their official Facebook account. We reached out to HTC for confirmation, and we were told:
"I can confirm that we are working to bring a Honeycomb update to Flyer in short order – however, I don’t have any specific information on what the timing may be."
We'll have to see if that second-quarter window pans out. But either way, it's pretty sweet that we do have word from HTC that Honeycomb will be coming to the Flyer!
Cincinnati Bell now offers the Samsung Galaxy S, which is a fantastic offering from the regional carrier. If you're on Cincinnati Bell and want the Galaxy S, you can get it for $279 with a 2-year contract or $399 no-contract.
One other interesting note is that the device is shipping with Android 2.2 (Froyo), which most of the main carriers can't claim. This remains a great option for someone looking for a solid Android device that doesn't have many carrier modifications. [Cincinnati Bell] Thanks Josh!
No more. With the announcement of the HTC Wildfire S, you basically have the same phone with its 3.2-inch screen, 600MHz processor and 512MB of ROM/RAM and slap newer software and a better screen onto it. You now have a 320x480 screen resolution -- the bare minimum for any size screen.
Otherwise, it's a nice little entry level smartphone. Check out our hands-on video and pics after the break.
We have been hearing so many different rumors about the release date for the highly anticipated HTC Thunderbolt, the latest being February 24th.
This morning, however, Peter Chou, the CEO of HTC, said that it will be shipping this week. We're all just awaiting an official date from Verizon.
In the meantime, a teaser ad has popped up on their YouTube channel that shows the Thunderbolt as "coming soon." What this means is anyone's guess, but expect it sooner rather than later. Check out the teaser after the break. [YouTube]
For anyone lamenting the fact that most of the Android tablets announced recently look alike (ahem, yours truly), HTC has brought something different to the game with the Flyer.
The form factor is familiar -- a 7-inch diagonal touchscreen -- but that's about it. First there's the aluminum unibody shell -- a single piece of metal that keeps things strong and light, about the same as a paperback book.
The HTC Sense user interface has been ramped up even more and looks beautiful an extremely fluid, thanks to a 1.5 GHz processor. It has 3D-like effects and really sucks you into the device. Movies played with ease, and the UI animations were as good as we've ever seen from HTC.
It's not running Honeycomb, and that's interesting. All of the Honeycomb tablets we've seen thus far are running what appears to be a stock UI. The Flyer with Sense, of course, is all HTC. Will it get a Honeycomb version at some point? Just have to see.
The Scribe pen stylus wasn't quite as gimmicky as we might have first though. It feels just a bit odd to be talking about a stylus in 2011, but HTC's obviously put a lot of thought into it.
Check out our first look video and pics after the break.
Faebook's Mark Zuckerberg made a recorded video appearance this morning at HTC's press conference and reiterated a point that needs to be reiterated yet again.
There is no single "Facebook phone."
Instead, he said, there will be "dozens" of Android phones that have a deeper integration with Facebook, including the recently announced HTC Salsa and ChaCha, and other phones like the INQ Cloud Touch.
So, no, there's no single Facebook phone. And nor should there be.
One Facebook phone isn't cool. You know what's cool? Two HTC phones that aren't technically "Facebook phones" in the sense that everybody means but instead have a special Facebook button on like a beauty mark on their lower-right chins.
Or something. The ChaCha looks like the more interesting phone to us, sporting a full QWERTY keyboard and a small 2.6 inch screen that makes it look like a very well-designed successor to the very-well-designed HTC Snap. The slightly angled design also looks good and we're warming up to the 4-way arrow keys they decided to include on that keyboard - text selection will probably need all the help it can get at that screen size.
There's also the HTC Salsa, which is a small slate device with a 3.4 inch screen. It's honestly a pretty unassuming device, but sometimes small sizes (and presumably small prices) can equal big successes. We'll see.
Back to that Facebook button. It's context-aware, so if you're looking at something on your phone that you can share, it will glow. Photos, web pages, music, location - all can be shared. It will launch a special Facebook app and finally work with Facebook messaging too - HTC says it's all part of an entirely new 'Sense experience,' but we can't quite say how it'll work because, as you noticed in the title, HTC has these little guys under glass and no-touching allowed.
Go on and take a gander at a few more shots after the break.
Several major UK carriers have already chimed in with official tweets detailing when HTC's latestbatch of Android smartphones will be launching on their networks.
According to the carriers' official Twitter accounts, Three and O2 will be getting the HTC Desire S. Orange and Vodafone will both be carrying the Desire S, Wildfire S and ChaCha when they're released in the second quarter of the year.
So far the only network to confirm that it'll be ranging the HTC Flyer tablet is Three, though the carrier made no mention of any exclusivity deal in its press release.
Huawei has officially announced two new Android devices -- the IDEOS X3 smartphone and the IDEOS S7 Slim tablet. Neither device was a big secret, but Huawei held their press conference at MWC today and made them both official.
The IDEOS X3 is an entry level phone, with a 3.2 inch HVGA display, a 3.2 MP camera, running Android 2.3. It's also touted as the thinnest 3.2 inch device on the market, but no dimensions were given. Expect the device in the spring of 2011, with an initial launch on Softbank Mobile in Japan.
The IDEOS S7 Slim is a 7 inch tablet with a 480 x 800 pixel resolution, running Froyo. Not much is known and full specs haven't been released, but when we saw it at IFA 2010 (see our hands on) we saw 256 MB of RAM and a Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU.
We'll reserve any judgment without some more hands-on time, but these both look like devices geared towards the budget minded consumer. And that's never a bad thing. The full press release, and a picture of the IDEOS S7 Slim is after the break.
Your loyal HTC Droid Incredible just got itself a nice little spec bump here at Mobile World Congress 2011. The HTC Incredible S now packs a 4-inch, WVGA Super LCD display, rear 8-mp camera with HD capabilities flanked by two LED flashes, a front-facing camera, 1GHz Qualcomm processor, and 768mb of RAM, all powered by a 1450mAh battery. One clever bit they added: when you rotate the phone, the capacitive buttons (which are just a display anyway) also rotate. Add in the new Sense experience on top of Android 2.3.2 and, yeah, like we said, it's a totally respectable bump.
They hardware we grabbed onto at the booth was pre-production but felt like an Incredible: big, solid, and not shy about adding a little thickness to get that contoured back. Pricing, availability - unknown. What we do know is that you can get some photos after the break and video is uploading.
As the HTC announcements are still on-going on, HTC has slowly been pushing videos to their Youtube account for everyone to get a better look at their upcoming devices. Currently posted you will find the HTC Salsa, Desire S , Wildfire S and the Flyer all featured in their own videos. The HTC Salsa is of course above, you'll find the Desire S, Wildfire S and Flyer right after the break. [YouTube]
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