Headlines

4 years ago

Froyo Feature: New and improved gmail

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[YouTube link]

What's Android without gmail, right? And in Android 2.2, the gmail app has gotten even better, fixing some of our biggest complaints and bringing better account switching, e-mail notification and attachment handling. Check it out.

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4 years ago

Motorola Droid 2 spotted in Verizon's system

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droid2

For all you Droid owners out there who passed up on the Droid Incredible in hopes that Verizon would be releasing the Droid 2 soon after, an inkling of hope has appeared. Above you see a pic of the Motorola A955, the Droid 2, in Verizon's inventory system. We saw a peek of what the keyboard may look like this afternoon, and maybe, just maybe, this thing's closer to release than anybody thinks. [via Droid Life]

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4 years ago

Is this the Droid 2 keyboard? (And is it any better?)

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Motorola Droid keyboard

You guys know how much I hate headlines with question marks, but that's pretty much where we stand on the above photo. Above you see the Motorola Droid keyboard at top, and what purportedly is the Droid 2 keyboard beneath it. The perspective's a tad off, but the keys look to be noticeably bigger (and they damn well better be if the leftmost keys -- tab, ALT lock, shift/caps lock and ALT -- are going to be that huge). Also of  note is that the golden D-pad has given way to four arrow keys and an OK button.

This likely would be an improvement -- we won't really know until it's (a) real and (b) in our hands. But, really, just about anything would be an improvement over the current Droid keyboard. [Howard Fourms via Engadget]

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4 years ago

Boost Mobile Motorola i1 costs $349.99; coming to Sprint over next few weeks

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The Boost Mobile Motorola i1 popped up on Best Buy recently and it looks like it'll be priced a bit higher than any of us wanted and/or expected: $349.99. On one hand, the Motorola i1 is a pre-paid device that comes with no commitments or contracts. Not to mention that you could use Boost Mobile's $50/month all inclusive plan to save even more money down the road. But for a device that is decidedly mid-level--3.1-inch screen, Android 1.5, etc--it's tough to pay that initial premium when better Android devices can be had for half the price.

Meanwhile, it the i1 now appears slated for Sprint release starting June 6 with direct shipping, and everywhere else on July 11. It still isn't likely to do much for most consumers. But for the iDEN crowd, well, chop the price down to $149 and things get interesting. Leave it at $349 and the i1 stays in a niche market. [bestbuy via engadget]

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4 years ago

Skype's Verizon exclusivity waning, app coming to Android Market

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Skype

A Skype PR rep confirmed to SkatterTech today that an Android app is coming to the Android Market, never mind that it's currently exclusive to Verizon. In an e-mail, the rep wrote:

"We will be bringing a direct to consumer app to the Android marketplace later this year. This application will be available for all consumers globally to download regardless of carriers. (i.e. similar to how we offer the iPhone app today)."

None too soon, and it might get even better, as this Skype "consumer app" (as opposed to ...?) may feature video chat -- though the rep backed off that claim, apparently. Either way, it's another reason to avoid last-minute surprise fees from other video chat apps that you thought were going to be free. [SkatterTech] Thanks, Jeremy.

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4 years ago

Where Motorola stands on Android updates

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Just to ease your fears or maybe tease you even more, Motorola has just updated their official Android update page and timeframes are thankfully getting a little more specific. Leading the way, of course, is the Droid which has completed its Android 2.1 update and the Milestone which is currently rolling out its own update in different parts of the world. Compared to the previous update, the Backflip now has Android 2.1 planned for Q3 and the Cliq and Cliq XT has 2.1 planned for Q2. Unfortunately the Devour's upgrade is still "under evaluation". It's very nice of Motorola to keep us updated on their Android 2.1 plans but we wonder if they've heard that Android 2.2 Froyo is out and about now.. [Motorola]

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4 years ago

How to get your paid apps back in Froyo

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Android Market Paid apps in Froyo

Good news for you folks running Froyo who are sorely missing your favorite paid applications from the new and improved Android Market. A fix has actually been around at XDA Developers for a couple of days, and it's as simple as pushing over a new build.prop file that spoofs the Market into thinking you're running an older version of Android (Eclair really is ancient, ya know?) while keeping your Froyo goodness intact. There's really not too much hackery involved, though you'll likely want to run a nandroid backup first, just in case. And if you somehow have Froyo but still have no idea what we're talking about, better to just leave this one alone. [XDA Developers]

Note: Make sure the file you push back to your phone is, in fact, named build.prop and not something else.

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4 years ago

Android Central Podcast Episode 14

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Audio-only stream below

Phil and Jerry spill everything they've learned about Android 2.2 Froyo, Phil's time with the Evo 4G and still find time for a bunch of your voicemails and e-mails. Listen in!

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the LG Optimus (GT540) [#io2010]

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[YouTube link]

And here's a look at the LG Optimus -- aka the GT540 -- which we previously toyed with at CES in January. Nothing's really changed since then. Same 3-inch HVGA touchscreen (no keyboard on this one), same Android 1.6, same 3.1-megapixel camera. We know LG's capable of making some above-average devices -- we've just yet to see any here in the states.

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4 years ago

Android Quick App - Sirius XM satellite radio

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Sirius XM Satellte Radio for Android

Finally, for those of us waiting patiently for Sirius XM to bring satellite radio to Android, our day has come. The same satellite radio you've come to know and love in your car (it's a life-saver) and on your desktop is now available on your Android phone.

For those of you new to satellite radio, it's a subscription server that has channel after channel of music as well as sports, entertainment, family and heath, comedy, news, pure talk radio, religion -- just about anything and everything you could think of.

The app itself is easy to use and hangs out in your notification tray, so you can access it easily while you're off doing other things. About our only complaint is that it doesn't work in landscape mode, and the app itself is named "Online," which makes it tricky to find in your app drawer at first.

The Sirius XM app itself is free (download the app directly from Sirius here), but the service itself has a monthly fee (there are a number of packages available), though you can try it for 30 days free. More at SiriusXM.com, and more screen shots after the break. Thanks, Jay!

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4 years ago

Froyo Feature: Screen brightness widget

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Android 2.2. Froyo screen brightness widget

The power widget you see here isn't really new in Android 2.2, but it's been tweaked for Froyo. The screen brightness selector now includes an auto brightness setting (using the ambient light sensor) in addition to the three static settings (low, medium and high). It's a nice little addition for those of us who prefer to let the phone determine the screen brightness.

(Thanks, Philip! Find a cool new feature in Froyo and want to tell the world about it? E-mail us here and we'll make you famous!)

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4 years ago

The rumors are true: Qik video chat will cost extra on the Evo 4G

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Qik video chat fee

Time to get the pitchforks out, people. We slept on it in hopes it was all a nightmare, but the ugly rumor that began yesterday (first by Android Guys and later confirmed by Engadget) is true: Video chat on Qik on the Evo 4G is going to cost an extra $4.99 a month, payable by Paypal.

It's more than a little suspect that this wasn't mentioned -- ever -- during Sprint's Evo 4G launch party in New York, nor did any of the Qik folks there drop the bomb, and here we are just a week from launch. The good news is that there's already one free alternative in Fring, and Skype may be bringing video chat as well in the form of a "consumer app" (outside the bounds of its exclusivity with Verizon) later this year. [Android Guys, Engadget]

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4 years ago

Samsung Behold II gets updated to Donut (Android 1.6), but the sweets stop there

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Samsung Behold II no eclair for you

The Samsung Behold II is finally getting updated from cupcake (Android 1.5), but it's not exactly what you'd expect.  It's a big drawn out mess of pulled youtube videos, supposed broken promises, random forum posts, and even threat of some sort of legal action. Thankfully the good folks over at Phone Scoop reached out for the official word from Samsung and Kim Titus, the Director of PR for Samsung Telecommunications America, let them know that the Behold II will indeed be updated, but only to Donut (Android 1.6).

According to Samsung, the Behold II is not upgradable beyond Android 1.6.  To sweeten the blow a little bit, Samsung says they will also offer the Swype keyboard, an improved media player, improved bluetooth capabilities, and the Android core apps (the apps like Gmail, Maps, or Talk) would be getting an upgrade.  We don't like it any more than you do, but this is how legacies are built.  [Phone Scoop]

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4 years ago

Hands-on with Fring video calling on the Sprint HTC Evo 4G

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[YouTube link]

It's a brave new world with the addition of video chat on the Sprint HTC Evo 4G. And what better way to break in Fring's new free video calling service than with one of our deepest darkest competitors dear friends in this Android world. In the video above, we chat it up with Taylor from Android and Me -- both of us on the Evo 4G. It wasn't the smoothest connection in the world -- though I was on WiFi and Taylor's in a 4G town -- but it's video calling, and we're glad to see it.

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4 years ago

Facebook releases SDK for Android

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Have you ever wanted to share your new Doodle Jump high score with all your friends only to realize that the game lacked the ability to publish your score to Facebook? The Official Facebook SDK for Android developers was released today, allowing communication between native Android apps and the Facebook social network. One feature that the Android edition of the SDK has that the iPhones version lacks is the Graph API that was displayed at Facebook’s f8 developer’s conference last month. The Android SDK also includes the latest installment of OAuth authentication, version 2.0, which enables the user to publish stories to Facebook via Feed forms.

With more than 100 million people accessing Facebook on their mobile phones every month, this SDK will give Android developers even more room to develop and explore. When it comes down to it, it’s the developers that define where an SDK goes and what it’s ultimately capable of and with Android being one of the fastest growing mobile platforms, it's apparent that there's nowhere but up. [Facebook]

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