Headlines

4 years ago

Desire HD system dump confirms Vodafone release

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Vodaphone logo from Desire HD

Vodaphone has already said via Twitter that it will be carrying the HTC Desire HD, and there's a ton of speculation about other carriers and SIM unlocked versions. But the system dump leaked out today from dealer75 at XDA Developers is clearly Vodaphone-branded.  Digging through the system dump we see the last frame of the boot sequence is the Vodaphone logo. 

We're still digging through the files, seeing new goodies like an HTC Data Strip widget that appears to be a set of quick switches for 3G and WiFi radios, and well as a roaming indicator widget.  Look for your favorite Sense ROM developer to have a boatload of new toys for you soon. [XDA Developers]

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4 years ago

Another Droid X Froyo update leaks out

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 Droid X leaked OTA

Yeah, we're still waiting on Android 2.2 for the Motorola Droid X. But for those of you who are rooted and don't mind a little hackery, another leaked OTA (see our hands-on with the first) has appeared at My Droid World. You need to be rooted to get this guy to install, and you're going to have to use Koush's bootstrapper. And now would be a good time to remind about the warning Motorola issued after the previous leaked Froyo build -- mainly that if you do this, don't expect help from Moto if a newer OTA actually gets pushed out. But you knew that already, right? Check out the full instructions at the source. [My Droid World via Android Central Forums]

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4 years ago

Here's your Verizon Fascinate Google search fix (update with even more fixed)

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Google Search on the Verizon Fascinate

Here's how to put Google search back on the Verizon Fascinate, and it takes just a third-party launcher and a single download. It's simple as can be and doesn't require root, and it adds one piece of functionality we were missing from our previous fix: You'll get native Google search and voice search back.

Here are your instructions:

  • Download the Enhanced Google Search provider apk from the second post of this forum thread.
  • Place the file on your SD card, and install it through your favorite file manager.
  • In a third-party launcher (like ADW or Launcher Pro), put the Google search widget back on your home screen, if you like. It'll work now. Same goes for the search button. Again, you have to use a third-party launcher.

You'll still need to download Google Maps from the market if you haven't already. And while the phone's physical search button (or capacitive, we know) will now work with Google, holding it to initiate a voice search still routs through Bing. So we're about 90 percent there. (Update: See below)

Otherwise, we're talking no root, no muss, no fuss, and no waiting for Verizon to "fix" this when it eventually releases Android 2.2.  I love it!  [Android Central forums] Big thanks to namebrandon and Cory!

Update: As Cory demonstrates in the video after the break, you can get the search button to work for voice search. Here's how he did it. You're going to have to be rooted. (Sorry, but that's how it is, get instructions for that here.) Go to /system/app and rename I500_BingSearchAndroid_07152010.apk to I500_BingSearchAndroid_07152010.old. You may need to reboot. But after that, it should work.

Update 2: Added more video of it in action after the break.

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4 years ago

From the Forums: First custom Droid 2 ROM now available

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Droid 2 epic ROM

The Motorola Droid 2 now has a custom ROM available.  Epic Unleashed 1.1 (don't be confused by the name, this ROM is only for the Droid 2) brings more to the table than many thought would be possible because of the locking down that Big Red and Moto attempted on the phone -- being deodexed, with some of the carrier extras removed, helpful shell scripts added, and a customized build.prop.  That's developer speak for faster with nice features, and we all can understand that.

You can check it out in the developers threads right here in our forums.  And if you're sporting a rooted Droid 2, you gotta check it out! [Android Central forums] Thanks, Matt!

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4 years ago

Motorola i1 -- Sprint/Nextel's push-to-talk Android phone

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Motorola i1

The Motorola i1 is neither big, nor bad, but it certainly fills a niche that many believe is dying off -- push-to-talk on the IDEN network.  Applications and services from other carriers try to replicate it, but if you've ever used an actual "chirp" phone (either because you wanted to or otherwise) you know it's not the same.  Those who need PTT service on their phone now have an Android choice, so let's have a look and see if it would be a wise choice to make after the break.

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4 years ago

Unrevoked 3.2 available, now works with Froyo [update: It's been pulled]

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Unrevoked 3.2

The unrevoked team has announced that version 3.2 is now available for download, and support for Froyo has been added.  This brings the list of devices supported by the flashing tool to:

  • Sprint EVO 4G (HTC Supersonic)
  • Droid Incredible (HTC Incredible)
  • HTC Desire GSM
  • HTC Desire CDMA (HTC BravoC)
  • HTC Aria
  • Droid Eris (HTC DesireC)
  • HTC Wildfire (HTC Buzz)

In addition, users of the Sprint Evo 4G, Droid Incredible, and the CDMA Desire (US Cellular version) can now unlock their NAND and root using the tool.  People using other modern HTC devices not listed above are encouraged to contact the unrevoked team.  Be sure to read the directions carefully, and happy hacking! [unrevoked] Thanks Mike for the tip!

Update: The unlock tool has been temporarily pulled. Says the Unrevoked team: "We're seeing some strange problems with Unrevoked 3.2, so we've pulled the release for a bit. Please hold on! Don't worry if you've already run 3.2 - you are rooted and everything is OK. It's just a problem for users while running it."

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4 years ago

Motorola Charm -- hands on with T-Mobile's tiny messenger

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Motorola Charm

That little bitty phone you see in that big meaty paw is the new Motorola Charm from T-Mobile.  The form factor is a first for Android, and one many of us (myself included) have been looking forward to.  While it may not be running the latest and greatest hardware, and many would say that MotoBlur hinders it, I'm going to go forward and be optomistic about what it can, and does bring to the table.

Under the hood the Charm betrays it's tiny outsides.  Android 2.1 (with MotoBlur), a 600 MHz OMAP processor, 512 MB of ROM and RAM, and all the connectivity you'd expect -- Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, and a 1700/2100 GSM radio for T-Mobile 3G.  The real sore spot is the screen.  At 2.8 inches,, and 320x240 resolution, you might have trouble using this as you would a 'standard' Android phone.  The rear mounted track pad (TrackBack) and full qwerty help out.  A lot.  I'll be sure to put it to the test for a bit and we'll see just how it measures up after.  For now, enjoy the video after the break.

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4 years ago

Verizon Fascinate ringtones, wallpapers available

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Samsung Fascinate

A new device means new goodies, and this time we don't have to wait for the Samsung Fascinate to launch before we get a peek at it's innards.  We have the full system dump for you hackery types, as well as a bevy of new wallpapers and system sounds for the rest of us to enjoy:

Now all that's missing is a unit in our hands.  Big props to our mystery man for this Android treasure trove!  [Android Central Forums

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4 years ago

Toshiba Folio 100 Hands-On

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 Toshiba Folio 100

We took a gander at Toshiba's Folio 100 today and here's the main takeaway: sucker be huge. It has a 10.1" screen and a fairly reasonable bezel around it - though the resolution on that screen is still only 1024x600, same as the 7" Galaxy Tab. The whole thing is hard plastic with a small texture to the back and felt fine despite being what we suspect is still pre-production hardware. It weighs in at 1.7 pounds and is carry-able, sure, but it's such a large, wide screen that this is pretty much a sit-down device only. The battery died on us pretty quickly - at 1020mAh it's probably difficult to get through an entire day of IFA fondling. Toshiba claims 7 hours of battery life. 

The HDMI-out and USB-host (yay!) ports are hidden underneath a port cover. There's 16gigs on board and it's expandable via a standard, large SD card slot. Combine that full-sized SD card slot, the USB Host port, and the HDMI-out and we're thinking this is a business-focused device that has aspirations of being a professional photographer's bestest friend ever.

We were looking at at build of Android 2.2 that didn't look quite optimized for the big screen and definitely isn't final build ("TOSHIBA_FOLIO_AND_A 2.2 3.0004 for IFA test-keys" is a pretty good hint there), but we did find it to be responsive and quick - for the most part. There was the occasional lag and jaggy transition, due to that early build moreso than the Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, which should be the definition of fast. We would definitely like to see the final build on this - we bet that the included Opera Mobile browser will simply fly.

$540 in "late October" for the WiFi only version is what they quoted us in the booth, with the 3G version coming next year. Catch more photos after the break!

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4 years ago

LG Optimus Z home and widgets running on other devices

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Optimus Z launcher

A week or so ago we looked at the LG Optimus Z, a phone that unfortunately we'll never see here in the states. While we had it, we yanked the system files out of it for a closer look.  And an enterprising xda'er named aalopez10 took the time to go through the system dump and has the home and several of the widgets working, and you can too -- without needing root.

There are still some kinks to work out, but if you have an hdpi device and want a new look, hit the source link and have at it! [xda-developers via Andronica -- files from Android Central Forums]

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4 years ago

Sprint Epic 4G review: The Samsung Galaxy S grows a keyboard

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We review the Sprint Epic 4G to find out if it's worthy of its name

Sprint Epic 4G

If you put the word "Epic" in the name of your phone, it darn well better be epic. And with the Sprint Epic 4G Android smartphone, that's mostly the case.

The Epic 4G is the latest Samsung's Galaxy S line to be released in the United States, alongside the AT&T Captivate and T-Mobile Vibrant. But the Epic stands out from its cousins in a number of ways. First, there's the addition of a 4G radio, meaning you can take advantage of Sprint's Wimax network for faster data speeds. Then there's the horizontal sliding keyboard, and a camera flash, a front-facing camera, and other bells and whistles. OK, that's a lot of differences.

But the real question is this: Is the Epic 4G epic enough (you're going to have to excuse a few puns here) to unseat the HTC Evo 4G is the phone to beat? We'll find out, after the break.

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4 years ago

AT&T's Xperia X10 hardware hands-on

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SE Xperia X10

Time to revisit an old friend, the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10.  It's not often that you'll see us review the same phone twice, but this time we're making an exception.  With the huge U.S. subscriber base of AT&T, there's a good chance at least a few of you will be picking this one up, and some recent firmware changes were made to address some of the issues we saw with the X10 the first time around.  And we love playing with new Android phones, I won't lie to you.

The physical hardware hasn't changed since we looked at the X10 before.  Still the same 1GHz Snapdragon, 4-inch LCD screen, 1 GB ROM/512 MB RAM, and a nice 8.1-megapixel camera with LED flash.  And it stills feels great in your hand -- build quality and materials are always top notch with SE products.  To top it all off, AT&T has included a great set of earbuds and mic, which you can see in the video after the break.

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4 years ago

LG Optimus Z Review

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LG Optimus Z

LG has remained a bit of an enigma in the U.S. smartphone market, never quite able to break through with a high-end device. But that doesn't mean they're not out there. Case in point: The LG Optimus Z.

We've spent a few days with the Korean version of the phone (also known as the Cyon SU950) and have learned a few things about it, about Android, and about ourselves. Let's everybody join hands, after the break.

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4 years ago

HTC Desire review (U.S. Cellular version)

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HTC Desire on U.S. Cellular

It took half a year, but, finally, the HTC Desire has come to America. Announced at Mobile World Congress in February 2010, the Desire -- codenamed the Bravo -- brought an all-new interface -- Sense -- to Android 2.1, all tucked into a phone that essentially is the Nexus One, with a few tweaks.

Come Aug. 27, the HTC Desire will be available on U.S. Cellular, with its 1GHz Snapdragon processor, Sense UI -- and the new SLCD touchscreen, which replaces the AMOLED screen that's seen shortages of late. Is it worth the wait? Find out, after the break.

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4 years ago

Motorola Droid 2 review

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A worthy successor to the phone that launched 1,000 Androids

Motorola Droid 2

Without question, the the Motorola Droid -- and Verizon's marketing blitz behind it -- is what really put the Android smartphone on the map. It's safe to say millions have been sold, and you've been hard pressed to watch an hour of television without hearing the unmistakeable call of "DROOIIIID" announcing the arrival of yet another commercial.

And now we have the Droid 2. Launched with little fanfare compared to its older brother and its cousins in the Droid line -- the HTC Droid Eris, HTC Droid Incredible and the Motorola Droid X -- the Droid 2 keeps with the look and feel of the original while adding some needed improvements.

So join us after the break as we take a closer look at the Droid 2 its place in Verizon's Droid line.

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