Not only is Android a great open platform that very well may be the future of smartphones. Not only does Android intertwine Google's Services so well. Android can now open garage doors. I mean it's an obvious conclusion right? Android and a Garage Door Opener goes about as good as Android and Gmail or Android and the Market.
All jokes aside, Brad Fitzpatrick is the one who hacked Android into doing the simple garage door opening task. The G1 uses Wi-Fi to fire up an HTTP request to his home server which in turn tells the garage door to open. Neat huh? Leave your keys and garage door at home folks, the G1 can do it all. Even better, in true Android fashion Brad released the source code.
What's next? What task would be ridiculous to see Android and the G1 do?
Yesterday at an Adobe MAX Event, Andy Rubin was on hand doing a demonstration -- a demonstration about flash on Android. During his keynote, he showed off Flash on the G1, which was a combined team effort from Google and Adobe. This is great news considering the Flash Saga that the iPhone faced (and still faces) and hopefully we can get Flash on Android to experience the "full web".
To quote Andy Rubin:
"We are excited to be working alongside Adobe to bring Flash technology to Android, Adobe Flash is crucial to a rich Internet and content experience on mobile devices and we are thrilled that Google will be one of the first companies along with the Open Handset Alliance to bring Flash technology to the smartphone market."
We at Android Central are happy to see that Android is fulfilling its promise and potential while hitting very few roadblocks and/or obstacles. The Android platform will continue to succeed especially if Apple and the iPhone continue to stick to their unwavering ways.
The driver for the touchscreen apparently had some code commented out -- RyeBrye and folks were able to re-enable some of the commented out code and then, voila, multitouch. What do we think? First, whoa. Second, the bigger issue is that if the G1 is capable of multitouch, then why no multitouch in Android? Logic points back to patenting issues with Apple. But more interestingly, could we begin to see unofficial multitouch usage? Obviously apps would need to be programmed to accommodate such gestures but boy, it'd sure be cool.
And the 2nd Annual SPE Smartphone Round Robin begins! We at Android Central have given up our beloved G1 in favor of the other smartphones in the SPE Network. Though we've only had the T-Mobile G1 for a month, we're already missing the plethora of input options, Android Market, and that nifty slide mechanism. Hopefully we can survive.
The first device we're going to be reviewing? The iPhone 3G. The iPhone 3G and the G1 have been linked with one another ever since people began whispering about a Google Phone and rightly so. They are the most exciting smartphone platforms because they offer a fresh start: there's no deadweight of history or dated processes that hold them back.
But behind the comparisons and their similarities lies completely different philosophies in building a smartphone platform. Aside from the great features that they both have (superb touch screen, great web broswer, an application store, etc.) the two platforms really couldn't be more different.
So with that brief bit of history between the two devices, we're jumping into a quick look at the iPhone with a video! To give you a bit of a preview: I absolutely love multi touch. love the form factor. love the ease of use. My gripes? Well, you'll have to stay tuned the rest of the week to read my full review!
This is an Official Round Robin Contest Post, Comment To Win a T-Mobile G1! -- Details Here
Robin O'Kelly, Head of Corporate Affairs over at T-Mobile, recently gave OMIO an interview about the creation of the G1 in cooperation with HTC. It is an interesting interview in that O'Kelly responds to a question about competing with Apple's App Store, discusses the iPhone a bit, and anticipation of future T-Mobile Android phones (a G2, perhaps?) and speculation of when competitors may be offering Android handsets of their own. Give it a read here!
Are you a fan of Guitar Hero? In case you haven't heard of the company Tapulous, they are the developers of several iPhone apps, including the popular Tap Tap Revenge. Already a free download for the iPhone, Tap Tap Revenge could come to the Android platform if the demand is high enough. A Tapulous developer is quoted as saying, "if there is a lot of demand for it, you never know..." - sounds a bit luke-warm, but the fact they mention it as a possibility is promising.
Tap Tap Revenge is a bit like Guitar Hero for the mobile platform - numerous songs from popular artists are available requiring accurate rhythmic tapping on your mobile device (currently the iPhone) to score points. The regular version is free, but iPhone users can buy a Nine Inch Nails version of the game as well. Maybe if Android users clamor for it loud enough, Tapulous will bring some Tap Tap Revenge goodness to Android! Who wants it?
Already available for other mobile platforms like Windows Mobile and iPhone, WeatherBug is now available as a free download for Android. WeatherBug integrates with Google Maps for pinpoint accuracy of local weather patterns, including severe weather warnings sent to the user from the WeatherBug online service. Not only can a user view local weather patterns, but WeatherBug can be customized to view weather conditions for other locations. Check out the WeatherBug site here and download for your Android phone and give it a try!
(Instead of giving you a roundup of last week's news, today I'm excited to give you a glimpse into the news you're going to see at our Smartphone Experts sites over the next two months! -- Dieter)
We are pleased to announce the Smartphone Round Robin!. Each year the editors of the Smartphone Experts family of sites literally trade their phones to see what life is like on the "other side." What you're going to see over the course of the next two months is each of our five SPE Community Editors reviewing smartphones that they're not used to using. Each editor has a checklist of "Must-Dos" that ensure they're getting the full experience with each smartphone. It's quite a ride.
Read on for more on the Smartphone Round Robin and for details on how you can win one of five Smartphone Prize Packs!
So don't just sit back and watch -- participate! You can check out a full list of all of the latest Blog posts and Forum posts on our Smartphone Round Robin Updates Page. There are chances to chat and win right now as our editors have already started asking questions in our forums. Finally, if you're an RSS user, you can track the whole event from our RSS Feed or even get daily email updates.
So head on into our forums and help us out this week and every week through the end of the year -- there's no better way to both spread the word about your favorite Smartphone or to learn more about what those other smartphones are all about. Or heck, we'll kick things off here too, this is an official Round Robin post, comment here for your chance to win a T-Mobile G1
Our friends across the pond in the United Kingdom have been telling us that instead of a RC 29 or RC 30 update, they're getting a RC 8 update sent to them. Confused? Yeah, we were too until we realized that the RC 8 update is akin to combining the RC29 and RC30 builds. So, the RC 8 update that UK users are getting is the same update that US users received in two separate forms. We don't quite understand why Google named it as such, a basic 1.0.1 or 1.0.2 would have worked just as well, but we'll let them slide.
When the MySpace App for Android first released, we at Android Central immediately thought, "Where's the Facebook App?" And though Facebook told us that they weren't going to be making an "official" Android Facebook application, we had high hopes in the Android Community for pulling one off. Insert fBook.
fBook is made from the good guys over at Next Mobile Web. It is essentially the same as the mobile Facebook except that it includes picture uploading and push capabilities. Anyone familiar with the great iPhone web app should feel at home with fBook. Go give it a download and tell us how you feel!
TmoNews has reported that the white version of the T-Mobile G1 is expected to be released after the Thanksgiving Holiday. If you remember correctly, the much anticipated, in-heavy-demand white G1 suffered from paint chipping issues that delayed its release. Though TmoNews is conservative in its estimate, we at Android Central have been hearing that the white version won't release until 2009. Hopefully, we're wrong because the white is HAWT.
Other inventory updates include the bronze version being removed from my-tmobile because of heavy demand -- it should be available around November 24th. The black version is on back order online and customers who made orders after Nov 5th should expect their G1 to arrive before Nov 24th (fingers crossed).
Is anyone still waiting on their T-Mobile G1? Perhaps, the elusive white version?
There's a new ad for the T-Mobile G1! Okay, it's a bit old but it's a heck of a lot more effective! Titled "Shark", the new commercial is a follow-up to the original "Questions" spot. But instead of asking more questions without providing the answers, it shows ways that the G1 can uniquely answer them.
The G1's versatility is definitely shown off, using the barcode scanner, maps, and integrated search to answer everyday questions posed by everyday people. We at Android Central are definitely more excited about the "Shark" spot than the "Questions" ad.
Those with some iPhone experience may know what Loopt is, that lovable little app that enables you to spy and stalk your friends. Loopt is a social networking application coming to Android. It shows you where your friends are located graphically on a map (upper left). Just tap the photo of your friend and you will see where that friend is located. The photo on the right displays another feature of Loopt. Similar to other social networking apps, you can see where your friends are located, how far they are from you, and what they are doing (if they want you to know).
Of course, apps that take advantage of GPS features to broadcast the locations of people raise some privacy issues, but then again, you can choose to use an app like Loopt or not. If it's just about the people you know and care about, then an app like Loopt can be handy to keep in touch. You will know when a friend is close by around the lunch hour, for example. Keep an eye on the Android Market for Loopt - it should be coming soon.
Score one... er, G1... for the toddlers! Some creative developers have succeeded in rendering a sophisticated G1 into a baby's plaything. Available in the Android Market, Toddler Lock let's your child (or anyone else's child, if you dare hand over your G1) conjure up random shapes, colors and sounds on your G1's touchscreen with just some taps and swipes. This could very well be entertaining for some adults too!
Toddler Lock requires pressing three buttons simultaneously to deactivate to avoid errant data entry (or loss) while your G1 is a toddler's toy, but it can also serve as a creative and fun way to secure your data from adults unfamiliar with your 3-button combination.
Check out a video provided by Rob Jackson over at phandroid.com and then just make sure your toddler isn't teething before you hand over your G1!
We at Android Central pride ourselves for being straight shooters, if another phone has something we want, we'll admit so. For example, Visual Voicemail on the iPhone. It is certainly one of the best features about the iPhone because it makes voicemail palatable and your life a bit more cheery. Thankfully, we have a solution from the fine folks at PhoneFusion. Fusion Voicemail Plus for Android!
Fusion Voicemail Plus will visually detail the contact, number, and date/time for each voicemail in a list format. It's supposed to come out before the end of the year so be on the lookout for this fine and hopefully free program. Hopefully, it'll come with a better design layout than the one because that red/yellow/green coloring has got to go.
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