Anybody catch the Mets game Tuesday night? Were any of you at the Mets game Tuesday night? Well, Android Central reader Christopher (aka Jet300 in the forums)was one of the announced 24,619 at Citi Field in Queens (the Mets won 5-4, for those keeping score at home) and lets us know that the Motorola Droid Bionic was all over the darn place.
The ad you see above was on a wall behind some Plexiglass, advertising the stadium's own Verizon hangout (it's on Field Level, if you want to swing by). And, sure enough, there's everybody's favorite over-hyped phone, with Mr. Met, to boot.
If flinging birds at pigs is starting to get a little repetitive, London web developer Tamlyn has lain the basic premise for your very own army of Android powered robot tanks. Using an existing RC powered tank, everything but the drive assembly and power supply was removed and replaced with an Android phone and an inexpensive IOIO (pronounced yo-yo) board to control the circuitry remotely -- yes, you drive this tank via the Internet.
Using any web browser, you can send steering commands to an Android phone running Tamlyn's home-brew application. The signals are then sent out via the phone's USB port, interpreted by the IOIO board circuitry, and power is applied to drive the tank in the direction you told it to go. He has the response time cut down to 30 milliseconds on Wifi, but feels that he may see issues with network latency when he tests on a 3G connection.
What I find most interesting, is Tamlyn's statement about how easy he found it to write Android apps. This just so happens to be his first Android application, and he has this to say:
This is my first Android project but thankfully the Android SDK and documentation are outstanding. With the help of a few tutorials I went from Hello World to a simple app that accepted HTTP connections in just a few hours.
That's a far cry from some of the horror stories we hear about Android being to hard to program for, and while this application is just a simple webserver, that fact that an Android programming novice found it so easy to make says a lot.
While I don't think anyone would be able to storm the gates of evil Castle Cupertino with these tanks, it sure looks like a fun way to play with the dog. Check the video after the break, and read the rest at the source link.
If you're in the market for a nice entry-level Android device, you can now go pick up the Samsung Galaxy Gio at either Virgin Mobile Canada or Bell. Priced at just $149 outright at Virgin or $249 outright at Bell (or $0 and $29.95 respectively on 3 year contracts), the Gio features an 800 MHz processor, a 3.2 inch touchscreen, 3mp camera, and runs on OS 2.3. You can also use the Gio as a wifi hotspot for up to eight devices! Sounds like a deal to me.
Six months in the making, Koh describes how they were asked to turn T-Mobile's existing myTouch moniker into an upscale flagship name using the best components available at the time. The goal was to evolve into a premium device, without losing the recognition consumers had with the myTouch series of phones. It was important to keep the same feel and identity as the myTouch 3G Slide, then T-Mobile's current myTouch offering, while including changes that T-Mobile executives wanted -- like the large metal battery cover.
Koh goes into detail about how he and his team tackled things like the signature three-element earpiece grill, as well as the physical buttons and optical trackpad. He also talks about the goals designing the docking stations with a minimal elegance that allows the device, and it's screen, to remain the focal point. If you're any type of design student, or just appreciate a beautiful piece of hardware and all the work that goes along with it, it's another must-read.
Update: The blog post referenced here has been made private; image and links removed by request.
Update 2: We've re-edited this post to better reflect that Koh was a part of the team that designed the myTouch 4G, and that he was not solely responsible for it.
Forget the fact we're still waiting for the current Samsung Galaxy S II variations to arrive in the U.S. for a second and feast your eyes on the Samsung Galaxy S II Celox that comes fully loaded with LTE. Sounds awesome, right? Not so much, you see -- the LTE-loaded in this case is for 800/1800/2600 MHz making it only capable in Europe, Asia or Australia.
In order to get it working for Verizon it would require the 700MHz band. For the most part, specs are the same as the current Samsung Galaxy S II and we're not saying this device won't show up in North America eventually but for now -- it's not showing signs of that.
If you had to pick one of the most influential smartphones of the past year or so, there's little doubt the HTC EVO 4G would be high up on the list, if not atop it. It was the first 4.3-inch smartphone. The first 4G smartphone. And it it brought with it that sense of style that is a trademark for HTC.
Donn Koh was a designer with San Francisco-based One & Co. from November 2008 to May 2010. This was the design firm that gained notoriety with the Windows Mobile HTC Diamond and was later purchased by the Taiwanese manufacturer. Koh was the lead designer on the EVO 4G and has done a beautiful job breaking down the design of the device, which he says took a good 12 months from start to finish.
Koh tells of the team working directly with HTC's engineers, and of the challenges faced in combining large components while keeping it relatively (and deceptively) thin. In particular, Koh said, the EVO 4G's 8MP camera component, and how its design was incorporated into future HTC phones. Writes Koh:
While it was a requirement to highlight this key feature, it shouldn’t feel unnaturally big or loud. To create this balance, I needed to find an aesthetic solution that would somewhat mask the component size, and one that would look honest and purposefully ‘camera-like.’
This led to a spherical design that partially protrudes the outer surface of the phone. It created an interesting and iconic character akin to an eyeball sitting in a socket. I liked that it had the notion of the phone as a housing for powerful, intelligent, internal components.
This is a must-read if you're at all curious about what goes into smartphone design, and it should make you appreciate that little wonder in your hand that much more.
Update: The blog post referenced here has been made private; image and links removed by request.
Sadly, it isn't the infamous playground of the rich and famous, but their latest Android device to be released sometime this weekend on Orange UK.
The Monte Carlo was first seen during MWC in Barcelona earlier this year, in its other guise as the ZTE Skate. As with the San Francisco, it will come pre-loaded with goodies from Orange such as HD voice (as seen on the Xperia Arc) and a whole host of their own apps.
Squarely aimed at the lower end of the market, the follow on to the San Francisco packs a 4.3" screen, 800mhz processor, 5MP camera and comes fresh out of the box running Gingerbread. We're also looking at the latest 2.3.4 version, and all this for £149 ($242) off contract.
Hopefully we'll be getting one soon to have a proper look at, but in the meantime take a look at the video after the break.
After having been spotted in a few leaks before now, the Samsung Admire has finally hit MetroPCS in official form and will arrive on the scene just in time for back to school.
"The Samsung Admire is the latest device in our growing Android smartphone lineup and delivers the right set of features at the right price for students as they head back to school. And the best part is that customers will continue to save money year-round with MetroPCS' affordable, unlimited service plans," said Tom Keys, president and COO, MetroPCS"
Those features are of course the 800MHz processor, 3.2MP camera , Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS all wrapped up in some TouchWiz UI. Still no pricing details revealed or an exact launch date but as noted before, we can't see this one going for more then $150. Full press release is beyond the break.
Looks like Sprint's got quite the mouthful coming to its stable in the coming months, according to a leak received by Engadget. The U.S. carrier's version (previously codenamed "Within") of the Samsung Galaxy S II will go by Epic 4G Touch, or Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch, if you're man enough for it.
Right then, another Monday is now passing and we've got quite a few things lined up for the rest of the week for you all. Make sure you stick with us to keep up to date on all things Android be it here, on the blogs -- or in the Android Central forums:
We've seen the Droid Bionic leaked out in a handful of blurry pics, topless shots, and even the FCC gave us a little teaser. But today we see a couple that give a good look at the phone without the eyestrain. If you look past Katy Perry, and the task killer this tester is running, you'll see the 4.3-inch qHD display at work, as well as some LTE action going on in the status bar. GottaBeMobile also has a nice pic showing off the back of the phone, as well as a few standard blurry shots of the profile -- you'll wanna visit the source link to check those out.
Pictures are nice, and we all love seeing them, but what everyone really wants is a date -- even a blurry one.
Specs have yet to leak out, but this phone could be a slightly lesser version of the popular HTC Sensation, which could appeal to a lot of people. A cheaper phone perhaps that offers solid specs would be widely adopted in my opinion. Of course nothing is official or even leaked out at this point, so we'll have to be content with the photo. When something does pop up about the Ruby though, we'll make sure to let you know as soon as it does.
It appears that another new phone has reached the hands of testers, as shots of the Samsung Hercules -- now officially unofficially T-Mobile's Galaxy S II variant -- are cropping up across the web. We're still in the dark about most of the specs, we've heard things like a Qualcomm processor and 4.5-inch screen (which would be a departure from the rest of the Galaxy S II line), but we do get a pretty good look at the exterior of the new device. These new pics have the Hercules looking a lot like the Samsung Nexus S in the overall body design, as the optical trackpad single button we see on the international versions is gone, and the rear of the phone has the familiar reverse chin. Looking through the other pictures (check the source links) we also see a front facing camera, an 8MP rear camera, capacitive buttons, a SAMOLED display (we'd bet on that being SAMOLED plus), and a 4G icon. The two biggest questions -- will it really be dropping the Samsung Exynos processor in favor of the Qualcomm, and the release date, are still unanswered. For now, we'll just enjoy the pictures.
If you're the sort who actually reads user manuals (and we know there are a few of you out there), a draft version of the Motorola Droid Bionic user guide has been publicly revealed by the FCC. Flipping through it, we don't see too much we didn't expect -- note the microHDMI port along with confirmation of a 4.3-inch qHD display.
Curious, though, is the inclusion of a section on the World Phone GSM capabilities. Last time we checked, the Droid Bionic was to be an LTE data smartphone. And while both use SIM cards, we've yet to see a dual LTE/GSM device. And that would be different from the specs Motorola briefly outed and later pulled, and from the FCC's own testing here. And it definitely looks like other pages in this draft guide are borrowed from other devices.
So is it really a CDMA/LTE/GSM smartphone with a dual-core processor and qHD display? We're skeptical at this point. But, damn, that'd be one sweet -- and power-hungry -- device.
Not that we haven't seen the long-overdue revamped Motorola Droid Bionic about 16different ways now, but a handful of documents at the FCC unsealed today give us yet another look at the upcoming Verizon smartphone.
In addition to more exterior shots, we get a look at the internals of the phone we've come to know by its Targa codename. And, surprise, surprise, it looks like a smartphone on the inside.
And if you're really looking for the nerdy details, the FCC's also unsealed its testing photos for the Droid Bionic. Interesting stuff, actually. Now if only we had an official release date.
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