Biggest complaint we hear about Android? The number of OS versions spread out over the vast number of devices, and the painful wait for updates. We're currently running the gamut from Android 1.5 -- even on new phones like the Motorola i1 -- to Android 2.1, currently on the Nexus One and a handful of Milestones.
But what if that were to finally go away? Engadget says it has on good authority that Google's going to do something about that with the FroYo and Gingerbread releases of Android. And it'll do so by moving some of the core apps out of the ROM and into the Android Market. That's already been done with Google Maps. And it makes sense. Move apps like Maps, Googles and Gesture Search -- to name a few -- into the Market, and the onus no longer is on manufacturers and carriers to test, update and approve them all over again just to push out a ROM update.
Engadget also points to a second track, in that the Android OS development may start to slow as it reaches maturity. Again, makes sense, and it'll make life easier on everybody if we're not seeing major releases come month after month.
One of the sticking points of using the Desire ROM with HTC Sense on the Nexus One was that, at least for a while, the camera wasn't fully functional. That's been fixed, and now you can do one better and run the Desire's camera software -- which has a few more features than the stock Nexus One camera software -- without having to load the entire Desire ROM along with Sense.
It's a basic update from MoDaCo -- just download it to the root of your microSD card, reboot into recovery and apply the zip file. That simple, and it's working at the full 5 megapixels. A few more screen shots after the break. [MoDaCo]
The Verizon Nexus One rumors are running rampant this morning. Piling onto the (likely fake) screen shot of the google.com/phone page showing the Verizon version actually for sale, there's now video showing mostly the same thing. The chatter's a little different however, and the URL appears to match up with the real thing. So have at it in the comments.
Another tasty morsels for this Monday morning: Jkontherun says to expect the N1 in April with "something that the versions on other U.S. carriers lack." Flash 10.1? A better touchscreen? Trackball swapped out for the Desire's trackpad? Your guess is as good as ours.
Update: We've now had a couple people tell us the hold-up for the Verizon Nexus One has been because Skype wasn't playing nicely with Android 2.1. Plausible?
Just like the title suggests, with Search Anything you can Yahoo, Google, Bing, Twitter, Youtube and Wikipedia. Simply by adding the first initial of your preferred search engine (example Y for Yahoo, B for Bing etc.)
Without a keyword it's default search is Google. Eight searches per page, they are all linked to your browser. This app is found in the Android Market and costs $0.99. [Market link]
Here's a look at the HTC Evo 4G, straight from Sprint's official playbook. Nothing earth-shattering there, though our tipster tells us that Best Buy is currently being briefed on the Evo 4G and that we should see presales start in May, in the form of a gift card that will later be redeemed for the phone itself. If that all pans out, it means don't look for the phone for another month and a half or so.
Of course, this is all highly unofficial and subject to change, so ... [Thanks, anon!]
How dominant was Android last week at CTIA? As you can see in the picture above, it drove our pal CrackBerry Kevin to violence. Indeed, our favorite operating system was front and center in Las Vegas last week, with a few major device announcements, and more great software on tap. After the break, we recap what we saw, and what's still ahead.
Here's one more from our CTIA pile -- the Kyocera Zio M6000. It's got Android 1.6 running atop a Qualcomm MSM7627 processor, a 3.5-inch LCD touchscreen at 480x800, full H.264 playback, a 1130mAh battery, WiFi and aGPS, and a 3.2 megapixel camera. It's being billed as one of the lightest Android smartphones out there at 3.7 ounces, and Kyocera compared its build to that of the Nexus One. Don't know if we'd go that far, but it's certainly positioning itself as a sleek Android phone at the lower end of the price scale. More pics and video after the break.
We don't usually put too much stock in what one of those carrier customer service robots (aka "live chat representatives" or some dude on the other side of the planet) tells us, but what the heck. We're feeling optimistic this week. Jon tipped us that he was told to expect the Nexus One to be available for Sprint "around the latter part of April. Whether that actually ends up being the case? Place your bets now. Thanks, Jon!
You crazy kids can have your newfangled openGL 3D games -- I'm going back to 1985 to play some Oregon Trail and shoot me some squirrel. We sat down with developer Gameloft for a few minutes at CTIA and gave it a spin. Check it out after the break.