One of the disappointing aspects of the Dell Streak is that it initially comes with Android 1.6. (The most disappointing aspect is that those of us outside Europe still can't get one.) Even though Dell has promised that the upgrade to Froyo will come quickly, those who have become familiar with 2.1 have a difficult time going back.
Dell has announced however, that it be upgrading to 2.1 early next month to satisfy customers until they are able to roll out 2.2. The Streak is much improved with 2.1, as Engadget recently demonstrated.
First off, the camera will be capable of capturing 720p video, which is a very welcome improvement. Secondly, the default keyboard on the device is greatly improved. From the time testers were able to try out the Streak, the on-screen keyboard has been one of the biggest annoyances. Dell has removed the numpad and caps lock keys, which has improved the experience dramatically. Multi-touch is still missing, which would be a nice feature, but we can't get everything at once.
One of my favorite apps on the Nexus One has been the Gallery app, which integrates with Picasa. With 2.1, the Dell Streak will now use that as the default app for pictures. I think it's one of the best integrated features of Android and it's too bad when OEMs or carriers replace it with something else. Streak owners will be happy to know that they can enjoy seamless Picasa integration.
Another feature that will come with Eclair is pinch and zoom with Google Maps, which is a nifty improvement.
Android 2.1 will bring other improvements as well; to see those, visit the link at the end. It's a great sign that Dell is committed to their device and seems to be listening to its customer base. Let's hope that continues to be the way they handle their Android handsets in the future. [Engadget]