Headlines

4 years ago

Samsung actively testing GPS fix (erm, 'optimization') for Galaxy S phones

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Samsung Galaxy S gps fix

You know that Samsung Captivate ROM that's floating around (and that we just wrote about)? This might what's going on: We've all been aware of the GPS issues plaguing the Captivate and Vibrant, namely that it just plain didn't work well unless you tweaked a bunch of settings. But Samsung's Carla Saavedra unleashed the above on Twitter, saying that indeed a fix is on the way. So all of you folks out there who feared Sammy wasn't listening, well, fear no more. [Twitter via Everything Android] Thanks, Chris

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4 years ago

New ROM available for the Samsung Captivate

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Captivate gps lock -- indoors

There is a new ROM available for the Samsung Captivate, and many users say it fixes some of the bugs that have been a sore spot since launch.  Before we talk about the bug fixes -- this is not pushing out from AT&T, and we haven't had a chance to try it yet, we've been a bit busy. You'll need to download the ROM from samsung-firmwares.com, which is an unofficial support site. 

Now that that dirty business is behind us, here's what the folks who have had a chance to try it out are saying:

Pros:

  • Media Scanning is quicker
  • Quadrant scores are a bit higher
  • GPS lock seems to happen faster
  • QuickOffice is included (though you can find it in the AT&T section of the Market on your Captivate
  • Prompt for action when plugging in USB cable is now enabled by default
  • Added YouTube HQ button

Cons:

  • USB tethering removed
  • No HSUPA
  • The "go into flight mode and turn on wifi" Market workaround removed

You can get all the info and download at the source link, and see a video of some quick GPS lock (while indoors!) after the break. [xda-developers]

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4 years ago

Google pulls Pro-Nazi themes from Market

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Google is usually thought to have a hands-off approach to the Android Market. But we have seen a couple cases to the contrary, and there are rules that must be followed. They have typically only pulled apps that might endanger user privacy or information. However, that seems to have changed with Engadget's revelation that a Nazi theme app would turn up with a casual search using "Jewish." Between the time Engadget posted their article and I went on the Market to confirm, the app seems to have been pulled. I was able to find another pro-Nazi theme by the same developer (which seems to run off pumping out random theme apps) but only after a search for "nazi"(as seen above). 

I am typically a staunch supporter of Voltaire's views on free speech:

"Monsieur l'abbé, I detest what you write, but I would give my life to make it possible for you to continue to write."

That said, I am glad that the app was removed. With a mostly "open market," we get benefits and negatives. This is one of the times where a negative rears its ugly head. Engadget has much more very thoughtful analysis of the whole situation, and I would encourage you to check it out. [Engadget

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4 years ago

From the Forums -- Epic up for pre-sale from Best Buy, Radio Shack

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For those of you who would rather get your Epic 4G from places other than Sprint stores, good news comes from the forums: The phone is now up for pre-sale from Best Buy and Radio Shack. The Samsung Galaxy S variant is set to go on sale on 31 Aug for $250 on 2-year contract. [Android Central Forums]

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4 years ago

Dell Streak now available in U.S., see Android 2.1 leaked abroad

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Those of us in the U.S. can finally pick up a 5-inch Dell Streak and shake our heads in amazement while we use a brand-new device with Android 1.6. Meanwhile, overseas, an early Euro has leaked onto the interwebs. Streak Smart has gotten their hands on the leaked update file, and has nothing but love for it. If you happen to be a lucky over-seas user with the phone, hit up the links for instructions for downloading and installing the update, along with many more pictures. [MoDaCo forums via Streak Smart]

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4 years ago

Another Android spotted on TV, this time on Top Chef

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MyTouch 3G on Top Chef

Android devices have been grabbing the spotlight lately, popping up in TV shows of all genres. Entourage has given Johnny Drama and Ari Gold a Nexus One to use as they conquer Hollywood, while the HTC Evo has been capturing surgical procedures on "The Closer."

Now, the myTouch 3G has popped up in the Bravo show "Top Chef." As Android's popularity increases, we're likely to see many more devices hit Hollywood, so let us know if you see one! (Thanks, David!)

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4 years ago

Sprint's pricing of the Epic 4G -- did they miss the 'sweet spot?'

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Epic 4G

By now everybody's heard that the Sprint Epic 4G will be available for sale August 31, for $249.99 on contract after the usual rebates.  Compare this to the Evo 4G (and most other 'top tier' Android smartphones as well) pricing at $199.99 after the same rebates, and on the same contract.  Quite a few seem to think that Sprint dropped the ball as far as pricing is concerned, and that the extra 50 clams will scare buyers off. 

Turns out that the guys and gals in the Epic 4G forums have already set up a poll about this very subject.  Have strong feelings one way or the other on this?  Hit the forums and let your voice be heard! [Android Central Epic 4G forums]

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4 years ago

Droid 2 feature: The panoramic picture

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Droid 2 panoramic picture
(Click this picture to open in full resolution in a new window)

Taking panoramic pictures isn't unique to the Motorola Droid 2. But Motorola's way of doing it deserves mention. (Click here for our Droid 2 camera test.) The above picture was taken with the Droid 2, and it's dirt simple. You set the phone to panoramic mode and press the shutter button, which starts the process. The phone tells you how much to move to take the next picture, and beeps when you're in the right position, which is helpful when the sun's in your eyes. Press the shutter button again when you've got what you want. The phone then stitches everything together into what you see here.

It's a pretty sweet deal and is a no-brainer. For another version of this same picture taken with the Droid X, ease on past the break.

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4 years ago

Droid 2 gets torn down; insides look familiar, too

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Droid 2 teardown

Whenever a new phone rolls out, one of the first things that gets done (after the hands on video of course) is tearing it apart.  The Droid 2 was no exception, and the guys over at ifixit have done the deed.  A couple things of note they discovered:

  • The Droid 2 has the same battery as the OG Droid, but Motorola says it should last 49 percent longer
  • The 5 MP camera on the Droid 2 shoots at 30 fps, versus 24 fps for the OG Droid
  • The Droid 2  has the same TFT LCD display as the OG Droid
  • I'm going to quote this one, because it's a biggie. "After de-routing the ribbon cable through the slider mechanism, the keyboard can be easily removed from the back of the slider bracket. We believe that you can transplant a Droid 2 keyboard into your old Droid (they look identical internally), but we haven't performed complete compatibility testing yet."

Looks like the Deuce is turning out to be a more significant upgrade from it's predecessor that we all thought.  If the Faster processor and Froyo doesn't seal the deal, maybe the little details do it for you.  [ifixit]

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4 years ago

HTC launching something Sept. 15 -- place your bets now

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HTC London event

So smartphone manufacturer HTC has an event planned for Sept. 15 in London, eh? Maybe they just want to hang out with a few of their closes friends, or, more likely, we'll get to see some new hardware! Our money's on the Desire HD and Vision, a couple of names that have been floating around in various places -- Vodafone Germany, for one, plus an early hands-on video. (Plus, Eurodroid points out the smokey image above sure looks like the Desire HD.)

Or, it could be some Windows Phone 7 hardware. Or both. Who knows. Place your bets now, folks. [via Gizmodo]

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4 years ago

Oracle taking Google to court over Java patents

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Oracle v Google

Oracle has filed a lawsuit against Google, claiming that the Android operating system infringes on its own software patents.  Oracle spokeswoman Karen Tillman says in an official statement, "In developing Android, Google knowingly, directly and repeatedly infringed Oracle's Java-related intellectual property. This lawsuit seeks appropriate remedies for their infringement."  Google has issued no statement, saying that they had not yet been served.

And I say, in a very unofficial statement, "A large portion of Java is covered under the GPLv2, and it's very likely that the Dalvik virtual machine was built from the ground up using none of Sun's existing technology."  This will probably turn out to be just another drawn-out court battle, with no clear winner, and lots of money being spent on both sides.  We will just have to wait to see what a judge or other elected official has to say on the matter.  Google must be doing something right with Android -- it certainly has become a popular target.  I'm certainly not a lawyer, and never even played one on TV, but for those who are, the complaint is after the break.  [AP via MSNBC]

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4 years ago

Droid 2 benchmark tests

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Droid 2 benchmark tests

Here you go, folks, a slew of benchmark tests with the Motorola Droid 2. We're doing this batch with a quorum of Android 2.2 devices -- the original Droid, the Droid 2, the Nexus One and the Evo 4G.

One pretty major caveat, however, is that the Linpack test doesn't appear to be working properly with the Droid and Droid 2, both of which use TI OMAP processors. The Nexus One and Evo 4G are scored just fine. You'll see what we mean, and if someone wants to explain things to us, we'll be at the bar. Video after the break.

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4 years ago

Must-have applications for your Motorola Droid 2

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droid2

Whether stepping foot into the Android Market for the first time, or just looking for something new to use on your brand new Motorola Droid 2, we've got you covered. The Market is loaded with applications, the variety is insane, and the selection is just plain wild. Searching can be a bit overwhelming at times, so lets take a look at some good foundational applications to get you on your way. Be sure to also check out our review section which we are rapidly filling with software reviews.

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4 years ago

Verizon confirms the Droid (OG) to get a second OTA -- to bring Adobe Flash

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Verizon confrims another OTA

Enter Chapter 3 of the on-again, off-again saga that is the Motorola Droid Froyo update -- Verizon has sent out an e-mail to it's business customers that says FRG01B is only the first step of a two part update, with part two bringing Adobe Flash support to the father of all modern Android phones.  Will this be the mythical FRG22?  Will this fully enable JIT?  Will Gilligan and company ever get off the island?  We just don't know.  But when we do, we'll tell ya.  [Phandroid]

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4 years ago

Dell Blaze gets outed

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Dell Blaze

What's small, made by Dell, runs Cupcake (Android 1.5) and lives on a fuzzy pink rug?  Why, the Dell Blaze, of course! (Pink rug not included).  It's the newest Android device in the works by Dell, and it looks to be their "entry-level, featurephone-market-stealer™."  Not a lot is known about it just yet, but there's a slew of pics at the source link to check out. 

I have to question this choice by Dell.  I'm all for entry/mid level Android phones, but why on earth is anyone still developing hardware on ancient versions of Android?  And considering Dell's release track record, who knows what version of the OS we'll be on by the time this rolls around? [AndroidSpin]

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