A bit of new kit from Motorola is available today in the United States. First up is the Motorola Atrix 2. That's the obvious ssequel to the original Atrix 4G (read our full review). It's been nipped, it's been tucked, it's a bit faster, and it's probably got Atrix fans who bought the first version in February a bit riled up. Oh, and it's available for $99 on contract.
Then there's the Motorola Xoom Family Edition. It's a lot (if not exactly) like the original Xoom. Same 10.1-inch display, NVIDIA Tegra 2 internals, 5MP camera. And it's got a slew of apps preloaded, included, including the kid-friendly Zoodles, Quickoffice, Asphalt 6 and SIM City Deluxe. It's going for an entirely reasonable $379 at Best Buy.
We don't normally worry about the really low-end Android tablets floating around out there, because they always seem to disappoint. We had to make an exception when we heard about the X10 AirPad, though. X10 is a company many of us know -- they've been around forever since 1978 and have sold many a gadget to many a gadget-lover. And since the AirPad checks in at under $200, we figured it might be the one.
Gingerbread and a 7-inch form factor doesn't get enough love anyway -- right? hit the break, and have a look at a video review, some pics, and all the details.
We have seen the Motorola Xoom Family Edition a time or two already, and today Motorola has made it official, and it will be an exclusive to Best Buy. The tablet is aimed at being a kids media tablet by day, but still being able to keep up once the kids go to bed with the professional stuff that needs to get done. The tablet brings quite a few features in tow with it, such as
Runs on Android 3.1, built specifically for tablets
1GHz dual-core processor for lightning-fast responsiveness
10.1” HS IPS HD screen display with capacitive multi-touch
5MP back camera with flash, with 720p video webcam
Preloaded with almost $40 worth of applications, plus Zoodles™, the award-winning Kid Mode application
Preloaded with MotoPack by Motorola XOOM (App Downloader by Motorola)
·Preloaded with Quickoffice™ Pro HD for seamless productivity at work
Preloaded with MotoPrint – the application that allows you to print straight from the Web browser
Preloaded with fun games like Asphalt 6 from Gameloft and SIM City Deluxe
16GB built-in memory
Battery lasts up to 10 hours for video playback and Web browsing
Access to more than 250,000 apps in Android Market™
The device will be available in store as well as online starting Oct. 16 for a limited-time price of $379. So will you be picking one up for the family?
Microsoft and Quanta Computer have signed (what we presume is a giant stack of legal papers) an agreement that protects and licenses Quanta by providing "broad coverage under Microsoft's patent portfolio for Quanta’s tablets, smartphones and other consumer devices running the Android or Chrome Platform". The full details of the agreement haven't been disclosed, and likely never will be, but it's another deal where Microsoft will earn money on the back of software using the Linux kernel.
Quanta Computer probably isn't a name you recognize, but there's a good chance you're using some of their products. They build hardware to spec for other companies -- including the Amazon Kindle Fire. This, and the addition of Chrome OS to the mix makes this a dangerous precedent. Microsoft has long considered open source software, and the Linux kernel in particular, a thorn in their side and have used creative ways to try to stop the distribution of products using the technology. Let's have a look at the history a bit after the break.
According to the New York Times, Google executives have claimed that they will be opening a Google Music MP3 store in the coming weeks. Likely to be connected to the current Google Music Beta offering, the service would compete with Apple and Amazon to allow users to purchase and store music files in the cloud. (Cue the lawsuits in 3, 2...). While Google officially declined to comment to the Times, as did any of the Music labels, the idea makes perfect sense. We know Google wanted to get content agreements for music, and after publicly criticizing the music industry Google decided to follow the route taken by Amazon and offer users storage for their own files. In addition, the songs that are offered for free on the existing service certainly aren't royalty-free, so some arrangements have to be already standing. If the rumor is true, this may be something we hear about on Oct. 19 at the Ice Cream Sandwich event. We'll keep you posted if anything further develops.
While on the Google Quarterly earnings call, Google CEO Larry Page let slip a little bit of his enthusiasm for Ice Cream Sandwich. With words like "You won’t believe what we have managed to do in this release", "I'm super excited", and "incredible" being thrown around, it's easy to see he's pumped about the ICS release. We are, as well, and I'm sure a good many of you guys are, too. Oct. 19 can't come soon enough!
Google has now taken the covers off their latest Google Translate update and it's a big one. In an effort to help bring down language barriers, Google Translate has brought speech-to-speech translations for 14 languages to Android.
We began with just English and Spanish, but today we’re expanding to 14 languages, adding Brazilian Portuguese, Czech, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Polish, Russian and Turkish.
To help with speech translations, Google Translate now also allows you to correct entries before sending them off for translations. Now when you speak, fluffy bunny with a mouth full of marshmallows and it turns out to be "funny money" you'll be able to correct it to ensure correct translation.
Translated text gets a tweak as well, you can now pich-to-zoom on text to view it better as well enter unrecognized words to your personal dictionary. The update is now live in the Android Market, you'll find the download past the break for you all.
The Google and Samsung event that was planned for CTIA on Oct. 11 -- the one everyone is sure would have been the Ice Cream Sandwich announcement -- has been rescheduled to Oct. 19 at 9:30 AM in Hong Kong. With today's email, there is no doubt that this one is all about Ice Cream Sandwich. While conspiracy theories and rumors abound, the official word was that the event was postponed out of respect for Steve jobs, who passed last week.
We're still looking forward to any announcements, and you can bet many an Android fan (including yours truly) will be glued to the live stream next Wednesday.
The long-awaited day has come, many of you searched, and hunted and well probably some other bad stuff to get your hands on the HP Touchpad during the fire sale in hopes of it getting an Android port. We have been teased a number of times with various videos of the progress, but now you -- yes you -- can get your grubby little hands on an Alpha release of CM7 for the HP Touchpad. Keep in mind, there will be bugs, probably a bunch of them, and things aren't going to work, but if you don't want to wait any longer, start downloading, reading and installing now!