The death of Google's phone store was a bit of a shock when was announced back in May. Well, OK. It was a shock to those of us who know and love the Nexus One. But that's a lot of what the problem was. Most normal people aren't going to buy a phone sight unseen. And the virtual lack of advertising (and what advertising there was was purely virtual in the form of Google ads) certainly didn't help matters.
“The idea a year and a half ago was to do the Nexus One to try to move the phone platform hardware business forward. It clearly did. It was so successful, we didn't have to do a second one. We would view that as positive but people criticised us heavily for that. I called up the board and said: 'Ok, it worked. Congratulations - we're stopping.' We like that flexibility, we think that flexibility is characteristic of nimbleness at our scale."
OK, so while the store might not have been successful, the hardware was, meant only to spur further innovation? Maybe. Remember that the Nexus One is manufactured by HTC, which is hardly a newcomer to the space. Whether the Nexus One inspired future devices such as the Droid Incredible (HTC), Droid X (Motorola) and Galaxy S line (Samsung) remains to be seen, especially as all were announced within six months or so of each other.
Another pretty good line in the interview, and you can choose whether to believe it, came from Schmidt saying that Google's not really in some bare-knuckle boxing match with Apple in the Mobile space.
"We don't have a plan to beat Apple, that's not how we operate," Schmidt says. "We're trying to do something different than Apple and the good news is that Apple is making that very easy."
Qualcomm (the company that builds processors used in many Android phones) has released an open source 2D/3D Linux kernel driver for the OpenGL ES GPU core on the Snapdragon processor. In non-geek language, this means that part of the code that runs the Adreno GPU on the Snapdragon is now open, and ready for Android developers to start hacking. The user space portion hasn't been released (soon Qualcomm?) so it's not all wine and roses, but every little bit counts. I'm certain that the Android development community will find this a valuable tool to squeeze more performance out of things, so this is great news for all of us rocking a Snapdragon powered phone -- like the Incredible, Evo, or Nexus One.
Ubergeeks and kernel hackers can find the code in this Git tree. Let the syncing and compiling begin! [Slashdot]
If you’re an Android lover that frequents the internet, then chances are you’ve seen the side-splitting Evo vs iPhone 4 video that’s been circulating around the web the past couple days. It’s basically an uproarious confrontation of an Evo user trying to convince an iPhone-drone to switch over to Android, and what makes it so funny is the actual validity of the profane comments between the two.
The Android community rejoiced in laugher, while others – mostly Apple users – didn’t find it so funny. Among that group of people who couldn’t find the humor inside it was the author’s employer – Best Buy. Originally asked to resign, he refused and was put on indefinite suspension awaiting a decision by Best Buy’s human resources department. Ouch. Since we don't take things quite so seriously, let's take another look at the video -- and its successor -- after the break. Standard "NSFW-Potty mouth" applies here. [via TechCrunch]
Froyo madness never ends. It seems that a new Android 2.2 OTA update is being pushed out for both AT&T and T-Mobile Nexus Ones today. We don't have a lot of detail yet (we haven't even taken time to load it -- wanted to get the word out ASAP), but supposedly this addresses some security concerns. It's another very small update (900k) and if you can't wait for it to come OTA you can grab the update direct from Google HERE. Install it just like the others, and remember you have to be using a stock recovery.
As soon as we know more, or have a link to a version for non-stock users, we'll sing out. [Handy-FAQ.de (in German), XDA Developers]
If you’re a Yahoo! user, you’ve probably been wondering when they would release their own official software for your Android phone. Well, folks, the time has come. Yahoo! today introduced both a Yahoo! Mail, and Yahoo! Messenger application that are now available on the market, and it won’t cost you a dime. Also, if you live inside the U.S., you can also download a free Yahoo! search widget for your desktop – just be sure you’re running Éclair or higher for that. Be sure to check after the break for further details on these new apps, as well as QR codes to download. [via Yahoo!]
As for Pogue, he's not completely convinced Swype is the second coming of on-screen keyboards, though he does write that "there's a lot of brilliance in Swype." And his gripes are completely reasonable (lack of open availability, swiping from one end of the keyboard to another for short words). And that's cool. One user's perfect keyboard is another's speed bump. (For what it's worth, I'm on board now, though it took a little while.) Give his column a read and see if you agree. [NYT]
What about you guys? Who all's come over to the Swype way of life?
How’s your aim? Everybody’s favorite chicken-slinging game is on its way to the Android market sometime this summer. Basically, it’s a test of physics, as the point of the game is to determine the correct angle which to catapult chickens into the air and free the incarcerated pigs to earn points. The cool thing is that there are five different kinds of chickens you can slingshot, and each have their own different strengths and weaknesses – so it’s more than just hurling a projectile in the right direction. It comes with 105 levels which should keep you busy for hours. Oh, and the fact that it’s only going to cost 99 cents is pretty nice too, so don't forget to check out the video after the break. [Rovia via Mobility Digest]
Just a reminder, folks, that you can pre-order the T-Mobile Vibrant -- its version of the Galaxy S -- starting today at Radio Shack. Fork over $199 (along with two years of your contract life), and your Vibrant will be shipped out on July 21. And if you order before July 18, you'll get a $50 gift card from Radio Shack. Not a bad deal, indeed. [Radio Shack]
See here! If you have a hankering for some square Android action on T-Mobile, the upcoming Motorola Charm (aka the Basil) appears to be going for $149.99 after contract, or thereabouts. (If you check out the Behold II on TMo's website, it's actually being sold for free now, take this however you want.)
Also listed is the Samsung Supersonic, which may well be the Vibrant version of the Galaxy S and is listed at $499 on the top end, and either $249 or $199 after contract. (Any T-Mo people wanna clear that up for us?)
Either way, pricing hasn't been officially announced yet, so we could see things change. And the $199 price is the sweet spot these days. Let's hope we get some launch dates soon. [via TMo News]
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