One of the biggest thorns in Android's side so far has been lack of Bluetooth voice dialing. (These are phones, after all.) For those of you on-the-go who need to safely use the phone features without touching it you now have the option in Android 2.2.
Once your device is paired and connected, a press of the action key brings up what you see above. You're greeted by a female robotic voice who also repeats your instructions. Seems fairly accurate (as accurate as my Blackberry or Pre), and worked well with both a Motorola MOTOROKR S305 set and a Jawbone Icon in my testing. Shout out Froyo-ers -- does your headset work, and how's your Bluetooth experience on 2.2?
The Motorola i1 is actually a rather decent phone for those in the iDEN market -- it packs a 5-megapixel camera, gorilla glass screen, and is Military Spec 810F certified for blowing rain, dust, shock, vibration, temperature extremes, low pressure, salt fog, humidity and solar radiation. Now that's a spec list for you. The i1 also comes preloaded with Opera Mini 5 (and the native browser too) and Swype, so in all, a pretty decent option for those looking for a rugged handset. [via southernlinc and MobileCrunch]
All our friends across the pond, as well as any expatriates living in our neck of the woods have a new application to check out. Heck, even us yanks could do well with a little English culture added to our lives. The London Evening Standard and Handmark have joined together and now the popular tabloid style London daily paper can be read right from your Android device.
Hit the break for the full press release, as well as a few screenshots. Now if you'll pardon me, it's time for tea here in Appalachia.
That's right, we're not nearly done with the Google IO cover. Here we have the LG Ally, a mid-level Android phone that's going for $99 after rebate with Verizon. In and of itself, it's not a bad little phone. But when you consider that you can get another horizontal slider on Verizon -- what's it called? Oh, yeah, the Motorola Droid -- for next to nothing these days, it's kind of a tough sell.
The keyboard itself wasn't bad, but the overall experience (and we take this with a slight grain of salt given that who knows how many people used this thing before us) was a bit sluggish and, again, just not as quick as the Droid.
Likely in anticipation of the upcoming T-Mobile myTouch 3G Slide launch, the original myTouch is now available for free from T-Mobile (with new two-year contract). Remember, the myTouch 3G started off as the second Android device ever and turned into T-Mobile's flagship Android device (it still gets tons of commercials!)--it was definitely a solid phone from Android's previous generation. But with the myTouch 3G Slide besting the myTouch 3G in every way, it was due for a huge price cut. If you really want a myTouch, we'd wait until June 2nd for the myTouch 3G Slide. It doesn't make sense to invest in the previous generation anymore, even if it is for free. [t-mobile via tmonews]
When the Nexus One first came out, there was some question about wireless N. Mainly why didn't it work. N1 users who were rooted and running Cyanogen Mod started seeing some 802.11n goodness last month, but now it's official. Wireless N support is included in Froyo. You probably won't notice much speed difference (at least I didn't) as even the Snapdragon processor can only process so much information. But the increase in signal strength and range is awesome -- especially for spending a Sunday morning out on the deck reading the news with a pot of coffee and a cigar. I used to have to depend on Sprint 3G and my Hero to do that, but Froyo lets me bring the N1 out for some fresh air and to join the party.
(Thanks, John (and Google)! Find a cool new feature in Froyo and want to tell the world about it? E-mail us here and we'll make you famous!)
Location based services have become very popular, as we all know. Gowalla, one of the more common applications, started as an iPhone application, and since their Android development has began the application has come a long way. Gowalla 2.0 was just released, and let's take a look at it after the break.
Another of the very cool features we saw during the Android 2.2. Froyo announcement at Google IO was the "Chrome to Phone" extension, available for Google's Chrome browser. In a nutshell, it sends a web page from your desktop or laptop browser to your phone, in just a matter of seconds. Here's how you do it:
To send a page, just click the "Chrome to Phone" icon on the Chrome browser.
It's stupidly simple, and we're already tweaking this some to send files and what not to Froyo in just a matter of clicks.
Oh, you want more? OK. How about a Firefox extension? Sure thing. Snag it here. Then just right-click on a page to send it to your phone. Check out the Chrome to Home project homepage if you want to know more, and check out our video of it in action after the break.
(Thanks, Jerry! Find a cool new feature in Froyo and want to tell the world about it? E-mail us here and we'll make you famous!)
OMG! The Motorola Droid's getting the Android 2.2 Froyo update "in the near future." Which makes sense, because we don't have it at the moment, and we can't get it in the past. So the future makes sense, right? As for the "near future?" Heh. We've heard that before, right? Here's the actual quote from Moto:
“We’re excited to see Google’s news of the next version of the Android operating system and look forward to integrating it on our Android-based devices as it’s made available to the open source community.”
While I can’t comment on specifics, we do expect DROID by Motorola users will receive Android 2.2 as a software upgrade in the near future.”
Thanks, everybody, for blowing up our inbox over this. And not to be a Debby Downer (though technically its in our job description), but this doesn't tell us anything we didn't already know. Yes, it's coming. No, we don't know when. [via Slashgear]
Yes you read it correctly :) The Sprint Evo 4G appears to have been rooted, before its officially released. Android developer Matt Mastracci at his blog grack.com has some pictures to show us, and by the looks of things the HTC EVO 4G has been rooted. This is excellent news, and the development community should quickly grow for this beast.
Sorry Incredible users, looks like this one won't work for you. But have no fear, the right people are hard at work.
Follow the jump to see a few more pics and blurrycam video of the results. You can bet we're keeping a watchful eye on this one. Stay tuned. [grack.com]
For those of you who worry about locking down your phone -- just in case it gets lost or stolen or your wife likes to check up on your calling and browsing habits -- you now have a couple of new options in Android 2.2 Froyo.
The old pattern unlock is still there, and works as before. But new are the option for a numerical PIN unlock, or a password unlock. the PIN and password unlocks have to use at least four characters. Of course, using more than that will help keep your dirty secrets away from prying eyes for a little while longer. Check out the screen shots after the break.
(Thanks, Preston! Find a cool new feature in Froyo and want to tell the world about it? E-mail us here and we'll make you famous!)
Internet tethering -- over USB and as a wireless hotspot -- is one of the bigger features built into Android 2.2 Froyo. And it's stupidly easy to set up and use. Just dive into the main wireless settings, tap the appropriate button, and connect your computer.
Check out the video after the break as we walk through the process and do a couple of very basic speed tests.
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