In his pre-release hands-on and review of the Motorola Droid Bionic, Joe the Insider also gave us a peek at some web browser benchmarks. These numbers aren't the end-all be-all of real world performance, but they do show how the hardware and the software handle things like sprites and math functions while rendering what you see in the web browser window. And the Bionic looks like it does a fine job handling it's business. Compared to a fully stock Android 2.3.4 build on the Nexus One (it's not even rooted!), the Bionic beats the score hands down, even while running out of the box stock with all the Blur bells and whistles.
We should expect this based on the new hardware, but it sure is nice to see it in handy picture form. Be sure to read Joe's thread and get the full details.
Hope you're not sick of the Motorola Droid Bionic yet. Because yet another video has popped up in our forums. This one, from bworley50, also shows us the retail box, if you're into that sort of thing. Plus there's a quick run through the UI to the About screen. Check it out, and hit the link below to ask your questions.
Google has just released the latest set of Android version numbers, and the overall trend of legacy version numbers dropping continues. There's no drastic changes, but a quick look at the chart above lets us see that numbers for Donut and Cupcake are now in the "also ran" category with each under two percent, and Eclair is steadily dropping compared to last month. Froyo (Android 2.2) still leads the pack with over 50 percent of all devices using the Android Market running it, but we see a nice boost in the number of phones running gingerbread, with numbers for Android 2.3 climbing over six percentage points. With Gingerbread updates rolling out or in the works for the Dinc, Droid 2, Droid X, and more, we expect another significant increase next month.
Interestingly, Honeycomb growth seems to have stalled with a measly 0.1 percent increase since August. It looks like most folks buying into the Android eco-system today prefer it on their smartphones. We expect that number will change this holiday season.
Ready to try your hand at winning a Motorola Droid Bionic, and another "machine" to control with it? To make it even better, how about using a fancy Augmented Reality app to assist in the nationwide scavenger hunt? Yeah, now we have your attention.
The Droid Bionic ARena scavenger hint kicks off Sep. 4, with a chance to win one of 16 Motorola Droid Bionic smartphones, coupled with an HDTV, an Intel laptop, A Motorola Xoom, or a video streaming enabled Quadcopter to pair it to. Four folks will win each day, and the winners will be announced when the whole thing gets wrapped up on Sep. 8. It's free to play (of course), and it looks pretty interesting -- install the Android app, collect a randomly dropped render of a prize, and each one you grab is an entry in the drawing for the prize. See the Droid Does site for the full details. We've got a pic of the UI in action as well as the download link after the break.
Here we go again, folks. Yet another Motorola Droid Bionic review (of the pre-release nature) is under way in our Droid Bionic forums. And along with some great info, Joe the Insider's given a few of the clearest hands-on pics we've seen thus far.
As for Joe's thoughts on the DB? In his own words:
Initial thoughts. The phone is extremely light and is actually pretty thin. The battery is 1730 mah and is pretty big. The screen is contoured on the edges, and it comes with a 16GB microSD card. Power button is in a awkward spot though. It's on the left shoulder of the phone. It's a pretty big phone as well, its along the lines of the charge.
Start up is ridiculously fast, sound is surprisingly good. The back is plastic like the D3. The camera problem that was widely talked about this the D3 is a NON factor. It boots up right away with no lag. The Pentile screen looks a little different, but to be honest I love the Pentile screen.
The glass on the screen is very nice. It's hard to explain, but it compliments the actually screen. I want to stress that there is NO redraw. If you're not familiar with what that is, the D3 has an issue where after closing a app that's pretty heavy on RAM or it would have to load all apps and widgets on the screen and it would take about 5 secs before it finished and was extremely annoying.
And that's just the beginning. Hit the link below for more.
Sprint has an update, GWK15F, posted on their site while folks in Canada on Rogers and Fido are also seeing an update marked as being GRK39C. Mysteriously missing though is anyone getting updates on a T-Mobile or AT&T Nexus S. The update is said to correct a voice search bug, but at the same time, its been confirmed to also break WiFi and USB tethering across all devices which have thus far received the update.
All rather strange, really. If you get the update notification however, you may wish to consider putting it off until some more info is gathered up about what, exactly is going on with it. That said; if you got the update then by all means -- let us know in the Android Central forums so we can get some clarification happening for others.
Uh oh. Someone forgot to duck out of the camera's view at Tuesday's U.S. Galaxy S II launch event in New York City. (And you can even spot Anndrew Vacca if you know where to look.) Sammy's done a nice little recap of the shindig, recapping the highlights of the device along with the presentation itself. Check it out after the break.
Happy Friday ladies and gents! What better way to start the weekend than by winning a shiny HTC Thunderbolt in the big Waze contest? We're all winding down the day, thinking about where we'll go and what we'll do when the whistle blows at five o'clock, and chances are you'll be going out somewhere with friends or family this evening. Be sure to take Waze along for the ride -- not only for the chance to win fabulous prizes, but because it's a pretty darn useful tool for keeping up to date on traffic, speed traps, road closings, and all those other things designed to make your Friday evening a little less fun.
Grab Waze from their website or download it from the link after the break, make sure you register so the folks at Waze know how to find you if you win, and snack on some Android munchies while you're out tooling around. It's fun, easy, and can snag you one hell of a prize. Check out the Waze blog for the full details.
Stories are floating around this morning lamenting Samsung having "no plans" to release the Galaxy Tab 7.7 and Galaxy Note in the United States. Apparently we need to refresh how this works.
At European shows like IFA and Mobile World Congress, you get product announcements from the likes of Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Acer, ASUS, etc. You get some hands-on time, then we return to the U.S. and hope that one day you'll see the devices here. When the original Galaxy Tab 7 was announced at IFA in August 2010, it was done so without any specific U.S. availability (just "in coming months." Same goes for the Galaxy S II and original Galaxy Tab 10.1 at MWC 2011.
That's par for the course for these European events. Products are announced. Any U.S. availability announcements generally come later, more often than not from the U.S. carriers, which will actually sell the devices. (In the case of the original 7-inch Galaxy Tab, word came just a couple weeks later, but don't use that as a benchmark.) The U.S.-based shows are usually a little different -- you'll generally get vague timetables for American release, which are very much subject to change. (Hello, Droid Bionic.)
This is PR 101. It ain't official until it's official. So when Samsung says it has "no plans" for these latest releases, it doesn't mean you'll never see the Galaxy Note or Galaxy Tab 7.7 here in the states. It just means it currently has no plans. Or, more accurately, it hasn't announced any plans. That's all.
Good news for those of you worried about being able to root the Motorola Droid Bionic -- it's already been done. The cats at My Droid World have adapted to the Droid 3 root method to the DB, and as you can see from the image above (the # symbol is the telltale), it's a go. We'll still need some proper on-device work, but it's certainly on the way. Bottom line: Root access has been achieved.
Sitting up nights worried that Samsung might hop on the webOS bandwagon and ditch Android? There's about as much chance of that happening as there is of people properly capitalizing webOS. Samsung Electronics Co. CEO Choi Gee Sung apparently said as much this week at IFA, telling reporters "It’s not right that acquiring an operating system is becoming a fashion." The Korean manufacturer had been named as a possible licensee of webOS since late June -- long before HP officially started the knife downward.
Works for us. Samsung already makes some fine Android and Windows Phone devices, and it's got its own Bada operating system, too (which graphically looks more and more like Android every day. We really do hate to see webOS continue its downward spiral, but we're also not inclined to argue against natural selection.
Nothing sexier than a nice wireframe at week's end, we suppose. And that brings us to the Samsung SGH-i727, which has made its way through the U.S. FCC. The 850/1900 MHz bands lend credence to this possibly being an AT&T device at some point, but the i727 also is the same designation as Rogers' Samsung Galaxy S II LTE device. It's also got two bands of LTE -- 700MHz and 1700MHz, the latter being the AWS frequency that T-Mobile currently uses and that AT&T was planning on using once it merges. (The recently-announced and very overpriced HTC Jetstream Honeycomb tablet also rocks 700/AWS for LTE, for what that's worth.)
Anyhoo, don't look for this one just yet -- we're not expecting LTE smartphones on AT&T for several months, at least. But it's never too early to start wishing.
As of now, you'll find the Samsung Galaxy S II LTE listed along with Rogers LTE Rocketstick (Sierra Wireless AirCard 754S). Reservation will set you back $40 per device but that's cheaper then pre-ordering from Best Buy which typically costs you a $50 deposit.
Rogers 4G LTE is already live in Ottawa but come September 28 they will be lighting up the largest city in Canada - Toronto. Pricing for the LTE equipped devices hasn't been announced as of yet but, if you're wishing to be among the first with an LTE Samsung Galaxy S II you can now get your reservation in.
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