Just a few weeks separated from its beta launch in the Android Market, the new Dolphin Mini browser has grown out of beta status and officially entered the Android Market, V1.0. Along with the release comes several new features and bug fixes, including a new data backup and restore feature.
New backup and restore feature
Refined UI and toolbox design
New bookmarks label
New flash plugin and updated flash settings
New address bar "quick options" by long pressing address bar
Dolphin Browser mini has quickly become one of our favorite browsers of choice, so be sure to check out this official release in the Market and let us know what you think in the comments section. [via Dolphin Browser Blog]
Engadget scored a lengthy interview with Matias Duarte, Google's Director of User Experience and the man behind much of the UI direction of Android 2.3 Gingerbread and 3.0 Honeycomb.
In one his first interviews since joining Google, Duarte talks about his time at rival Palm, as well as key Gingerbread and Honeycomb design decisions made over the past seven months. Duarte also discusses the future of Android on phones and tablets. He stops short of confirming that Honeycomb itself will be heading to Android phones, but says that the design decisions seen in Honeycomb are "absolutely the future of Android." This in itself is great news, and something that should have everyone excited about Android in 2011.
If you're interested in the future direction of Android, and the thought that goes into designing the platform and its UI then this interview is definitely worth a look. Check it out for yourself after the jump. [Engadget]
Nvidia is really proud of the Tegra 2, and for good reason. It is the first dual-core processor to be powering mobile devices and had a huge coming out party at CES this year. It looks poised to become the default processor for Gingerbread tablets as well. The biggest benefactor of much of that power will be games, and Nvidia isn't going to let Google handle things on their own. As such, the company will be launching "TegraZone", an app store for games that require the increased graphical performance of the Tegra 2.
There are also a couple key advantages for game developers to use TegraZone over the Android Market including doing away with the 50MB app size limit and offering a more curated and premium catalogue -- game devs won't have to worry about competing with lower-quality games. Nvidia claims 5-10 launch titles and is actively courting Gameloft, whose refusal to list their games on the Android Market has become somewhat famous. As for release date, we only get a cruel "coming soon". [Nvidia]
It appears as though Verizon has a lot more changes then we would have ever predicted coming down the pipeline to start out 2011. First the flood of new LTE devices at CES, then the unknown press conference scheduled for next week, then they changed the upgrade policy for two-year contracts, and now they plan to change their return policy to 14 days instead of 30 days. This change is slated to happen on the 16th of this month and no direct communication has been given as to why the change. Be sure to stay tuned for any further information we receive, and hopefully some official communication from Verizon to better understand the changes.
It is puzzling why the Mesmerize will take so long to get the update as Samsung has already pushed out the Galaxy S Froyo update code to carriers for testing. Still, at least Android users on U.S. Cellular have some official word now. [Facebook] Thanks to Greg for the tip!
Toshiba is looking to get into the Android tablet space in a big way. And by big, we mean 10.1 inches, with Honeycomb (once it's actually available). We sat down with Toshiba at CES in Las Vegas for a walkthrough with the unnamed prototype.
The software was defintely not finished, running Froyo (and with hiccups). But it was the hardware we were really interested in. Join us after the break for a good look.
We can tell that you want all of these things. Heck, you probably want to know that there's also a 4" version floating around at CES that we may try to track down later. We're comfortable with Viewsonic pushing out lower-end tablets and we want you to be too, so go on and watch some videos and photos of Viewpads after the break
When they say "Droid Does" they really mean it, and we have yet to see a limit be put on that. We have seen devices launch into space, devices take pictures of the lunar eclipse, and now we have seen a device save someones life. From reports, it appears as though a valet driver had his HTC Incredible in his inside pocket of his jacket when shots were fired at him, but they hit his device instead. The shot hit the battery of the device, which actually prevented the shot from penetrating any further, thus saving his life. Do you think that pretty glass iPhone4 could have saved anyone's life? Just another reason why, Droid Does. Video is after the break for you all. [wsbtv via AP]
A week or so ago we warned everyone about the Geinimi trojan that's been spotted in the wilds of the Orient. The threat level itself hasn't increased (as far as we know) if you aren't poking around Chinese Android fansites and downloading slightly questionable programs, so there's no need to ring the alarm and circle the wagons just yet. Lookout has torn down the trojan itself and gives a great overview of what it does, and how it does it. This isn't a primer to teach yourself trojan writing, it's standard practice among security firms to show how things are done and help find ways to prevent it in the future. First, here's exactly what this trojan can do:
Read and collect SMS messages
Send and delete selected SMS messages
Pull all contact information and send it to a remote server (number, name, the time they were last contacted)
Place a phone call
Silently download files
Launch a web browser with a specific URL
Yikes. Remember, this is so far a pretty isolated incident, and this isn't in any apps you can get from the Android Market. In fact, so far it looks like it's confined to "warez" files, so it mirrors what you find on the internet when downloading questionable files for your computer. Our advice -- stick to applications from someone you trust, and if you have a need to download random applications (we have to do it here all the time to check them out) find a method to scan them for malicious code.
Lookout breaks the code itself down, if your a developer or just curious be sure to have a look. It's pretty sophisticated and a shame that the developer(s) don't put their effort into something a bit more productive. Check the source link for all the details, including a .pdf file with a complete code breakdown. [Lookout] Thanks Cerena!
Yesterday 4G LTE was all over the place at the Verizon press conference, many new devices, which is awesome, but how awesome is it without network expansion to allow these to run. Verizon has announced that they are expanding their network across the country, from Alabama to Wisconsin, including various areas of Florida, one specific area being Pensacola. [hooray for Phil!] In addition to Pensacola they will be expanding to Tallahassee, Gainesville, Lakeland-Winter Haven and Sarasota/Bradenton for you Florida folks, and generally blanketing US metro areas one by one.
Hit the break for a list of cities that will be covered before the end of 2011, and the latest Verizon Wireless press release. [Verizon]
Although LG and T-Mobile have given us an early preview of the G-Slate at CES 2011, it still has to pass on through the FCC before we ever get to see it put to market. The above image appears to be the G-Slates FCC filing. As we know, it'll be able to run on T-Mobile's AWS frequency and will be loaded up with Honeycomb goodness. Hopefully, it now being in the FCC hands means we'll not have to wait all that long to put it in ours. [Engadget]
If you haven't noticed from the homepage already there certainly isn't a lack of Android related news coming from this years CES event. While Phil and Dieter have been splitting the press events, Cory and myself have scoured the floor looking for all things Android while the team continues to deliver all the great news to you. We all know there has been a lot, and you probably missed some of it, so lets take a look back at some of what we have brought you, and if you are looking for an easy way to keep track of all the news, or want to go back and read it again, click here.
Samsung has announced that they are working up two new Google TV devices -- a set top companion box, and a Blu-ray player to compliment their smart TV offerings. Samsung has embraced Android and Google in a big way with their Galaxy S line, and seeing them start work on Google TV devices is great news. Once the content agreements are worked out, a big push from Samsung could make Google TV the "next big thing". Many of us (myself included) want to embrace Google TV, but don't have the desire to be the early adopter. This will help push the platform forward in a big way.
We're on the floor at CES, and will try to get some more info and maybe even a demo. Press release after the jump. [Google TV blog, Samsung]
Here's another gem that's not coming anywhere near the United States. The Motorola XT800+ features a custom UI atop Android 2.2.1 -- and dual SIM cards. So you can use one for voice and one for data. It's got a stylish leather backing, and gold-plated accents, a 1GHz processor and 5MP camera.
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