Itching to know what Epic 4G accessories will be available at launch? A look at the latest Sprint Playbook (that internal document that might as well be posted on its website) gives us a pretty good look. Screen protectors, a smattering of cases, media dock and battery chargers should all be on hand. Standard fare, to be sure, but it's nice to see that some of the official Samsung accessories announced the other day will be on hand.
We get another look at pricing -- $499 outright (which actually isn't bad at all), and $249 after contract and rebate. We already knew that, but it's nice to reiterate that you'll actually be spending $350 up front. Also interesting in the Playbook is that apparently you'll be forced to activate the phone when it's purchased, even if you buy it at the full unsubsidized price. No "cold phone purchases," it says. (Is that SOP?)
You can check out the whole thing at the source link. [SDX Developers] Thanks, Numus.
Probably the No. 1 question we get day after day is "When will the Droid Incredible get Android 2.2." (The No. 2 question, strangely, is "What should I have for lunch?") Mashable says it has it on good authority that Verizon peeps already are walking around with Froyo on their phones (and if you do, you know where to send those pics, right?) and that the update will push out beginning Aug. 18.
Now, we certainly hope that's the case. But so far, Froyo OTAs haven't exactly had the best track record. (Exhibits A, B). And if this one ends up falling through, we'll likely line up outside the Mashable offices with you, pitchforks in hand. [Mashable] Thanks to everyone who sent this in.
Phil, Jerry and Mickey are back for the launch of the Motorola Droid 2, a slew of Android 2.2 updates, the announcement of a half-dozen Android phones (no lie), plus your e-mails and voicemails. Listen in!
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
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:
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
USB tethering removed
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]
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]
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]
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!)
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.
(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.
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]
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]
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]
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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