Developers have packaged the lengthy and cumbersome HTC Thunderbolt root process into an easy to use application that runs from your computer. You get the same root, using the same methods, without the work and potential for user error. There are a few caveats though -- you'll need to be using Windows, have a Tbolt with a firmware version lower than version 1.12.605.9, and there's the potential for a bug that will force you to head to IRC for a fix.
Not much feedback about this one yet, but we've set up a discussion thread in the Thunderbolt hacking forums, so if you have taken the plunge, thinking about taking it, or just have questions there's a place to do it. This certainly looks like some nice work, hats off to dbzfanatic for the program! [XDA Developers] Thanks everyone who sent this in!
If you happened to check out our hands-on with the Sprint HTC Evo 3D you would have heard mention of the microUSB to HDMI output that allows for photo, video and audio output. If you're lucky enough to have an MHL enabled TV it should also charge while displaying whatever it is you want it to. Oddly enough, that information was left off of the official announcement but is really one of the finer additions to the Sprint HTC Evo 3D.
While it is awesome to see the port finally being mentioned it is only to fair to note that this really isn't the first time it has come up on devices. Initially, it was mentioned to of have been enabled on U.S. released Samsung Galaxy S devices such as T-Mobile’s Samsung Vibrant and AT&T’s Samsung Captivate but it needed Froyo in order to work. Samsung later confirmed this as not being accurate despite them having made available the microUSB to HDMI cables on the Samsung site, which were quickly removed.
Although the history of the port seems a little confusing, one thing for certain is that its appearance on the Sprint HTC Evo 3D signals that it is now ready for market use. Hopefully, this time around we'll start to see a lot more devices making use of it. We'd be remiss if we neglected to note that Samsung once again has their name in the mix here as well. The Samsung Galaxy S II is also noted to be MHL enabled, something that went rather unnoticed across most media outlets.
Apple has tried (and failed) to let us know that if we don't have an iPhone we can't pay for our coffee, we don't have books in our pockets, we don't have an application store, and we don't have a tiny magical box filled with unicorn tears. OK, maybe they didn't say that last one. Android fan and filmmaker mmace decided that rather than shake his head like the rest of us slackers, he would rebut, and I think he's done quite the job! He also wants to urge everyone to join the fun and make their own video showing just what we do have when we're toting an Android phone. Now get the cameras out and get to work! Thanks, John!
Update: The new version of this begs for a second look. With a voiceover, this went from great, to incredible. Very nice work, my hats off to all involved.
The HTC Thunderbolt is Verizon’s first 4G LTE device. This, combined with the 4.3-inch display, have us eager to know how long the battery will/can last. Aside from the speed, battery life is easily the most talked about aspect of the device, for better or worse.
The best way to gauge battery life is from a variety of users, and we have an excellent thread in our HTC Thunderbolt forums stickied.
Here are some quick tips from users that have improved battery life:
The preloaded Blockbuster app is set to scan info automatically by default. Users who have disabled this through settings in the app have reported a very positive effect on battery life
Turning off Friendstream (deleting the widgets)
Changing the display settings. Often times when looking at battery use (Settings->About Phone->Battery Use), display is the main culprit. It’s a beautiful screen, but even turning the settings to Auto-Brightness can help things.
These are just three examples of tips and tricks for better battery life. For more or to add some of your own, check out our thread, Happy Bolting!
Next up from CTIA is Viewdle, which brings a cool little addition to your Android camera. It's facial recognition, tied into Facebook, all via a little augmented reality. Point, shoot, and it recognizes faces (after you teach it who's who), then automatically tag photos for Facebook. It's pretty slick actually. Check out the video above, and there's more at Viewdle's site. [Viewdle]
The Nexus S is a fantastic device, but users found themselves often missing the blinking notifications found on the Nexus One. Rest assured Nexus S owners, because our friends over at XDA have brought Backlight Notifications to your device thanks to a custom kernel. Please find a video of the notifications after the break.
This is amazing news and a testament to how hardworking the development community is. For the download, head over to XDA. Note: There are some users reporting that they have experienced issues with the kernel, so follow the thread and whether it's working or not, give feedback to the developer. [XDA] [XDA thread]
Slacker, Inc. has announced that users will now have access to ESPN audio on their Android smartphones. With both a dedicated station and the ability to include hourly ESPN SportsCenter headline content into any Slacker Music station, users can make their own custom Slacker channel a little sportier.
The ESPN channel on Slacker brings coverage of all major sporting events, both regional and national, as well as content from ESPN programming -- including Mike & Mike in the Morning, SportsCenter, The Herd with Colin Cowherd and more. What may be the coolest aspect of this news is that users can use Slackers content search and filtering to create a station that brings them only the sports news they want to their already personalized stations. If you're a Slacker user, and a sports junkie, you need to have a look. The full press release and a download link are after the break.
Update: Slacker, Inc. has contacted us to let everyone know this is coming shortly and is not available today.
The HTC Merge is no mystery to us, we have seen it at the FCC, we have gone hands on a time or two, and well, it's finally made its way to a carrier. The device has landed itself on Alltel for the pricing of $124.99 on new contract, which seems to be quite reasonable for this Android 2.2 device powered by a 800MHz processor. The preorder starts on March 28, so if you are an Alltel customer, be sure to keep your eyes on their site and place the order once available. [Alltel] More in the HTC Merge forums.
Back at CES Verizon had announced that they had already rolled out their initial 39 cities, and were expanding to 49 more, with plans to hit more then 140 cities by year end. Today, at CTIA Verizon announced that they will be adding 59 more markets to the existing ones, bringing them one step closer to their goal for the year. This news is bound to make many Verizon users happy, as they anxiously await 4G in their areas to take full advantage of new devices like the HTC Thunderbolt. Hit the break for a full list of covered cities, and the newly announced cities. [Verizon]
If you have been looking for an option to have your voicemail in text form, and have no interest or desire to change over to Google Voice, Yap has come to your rescue. This application will allow users to quickly at a glance read their voicemails in text form, instead of having to dial in and listen to the message. Some key features of this application include:
Quickly Read Voicemail Messages: Yap Voicemail lets users glance at their Android phones to quickly preview messages and determine whether they require immediate attention. In addition, users are able to check their voice message in situations like business meetings or loud settings where listening to messages is not practical.
Find Important Messages Quickly: Instead of listening to each message until finding that critical piece of information, Yap Voicemail lets users type in a few keywords that describe what they are searching. Yap Voicemail displays transcriptions of all of the voice messages that match.
Reply Using Email and Text Messages: Just because someone called and left a message doesn’t mean a return phone call is required. Thanks to reply functionality that is integrated with Android’s native SMS and email, Yap Voicemail lets users conveniently and quickly respond to voicemail messages via a text message or email.
If you have been looking for a great way to get your voicemail in a text format, you will not want to delay any further and head into the Android market and pick up Yap Voicemail. Download links after the break.
Hear ye, hear ye all developer types: HTC today has released the kernel source code for a trio of smartphones. They are the Incredible S, and updates to the myTouch 3G Slide and Wildfire. For the vast majority of us this doesn't mean much -- you can't just download this and update your phone or anything. But for those in the custom ROM game, it's a gold mine. [HTC Developer Center]
During our hands-on with the new HTC devices, there was one phone sitting on the table, staring at us the whole time. And staring at some of us harder than others. And that phone was none other than the HTC Merge. And being the good employee that I am -- that and the fact that I've already crawled all over the thing many moons ago -- it was time to give up the Merge to the man himself, Dieter Bohn. Namaste.
Ahhhhh. So apparently the Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9-incher that we took a look at this morning was the European one an early prototype. The real U.S. version is just as sexy, and maybe even more so, even though they wouldn't let us turn it on. It's mostly the same hardware, except for the back cover. The textured grille has been swapped out for a matte finish, and it's noticeable easier to hang onto, which is good. But otherwise, we're pretty much looking at the same thing. More pictures of the 8.9- and 10.1-inch Galaxy Tabs are after the break.
For all intents and purposes, it's an HTC Flyer, same as we saw unveiled a month ago at Mobile World Congress. The advantage here, of course, is that you're not beholden to a carrier for a two year contract. On the other hand, you have to rely on having a Wifi signal, but for many of us that's not a problem.
Still no word on when it'll be available, other than "this spring," and they're not budging on how much they'll be selling it for. So stay tuned.
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