Google just announced that they've updated the Android SDK to 2.0.1 and will update all Android 2.0 devices (just the DROID for now) to Android 2.0.1 by the end of the year. It's a minor update in both name and form and has been expected for quite some time now. The 2.0.1 update will supposedly fix bugs and other glorious things, which is always a good thing. Supposedly, the OTA update that will hit the DROID will also include DROID-specific issues such as improving the camera's autofocus (much needed) and voice reception (was it even an issue?). We'll definitely let you guys know when the update is rolling out.
Now, uh, when can we officially get Android 2.0 (or 2.0.1 or 2.1) on other Android devices?
The Motorola Sholes Tablet that popped up a few days ago has reared its (rather ugly) head again. The Sholes Tablet is actually looking less like a tablet and more like just a smartphone but any way you spin it, that odd bump on the lower right corner is unshapely and just plain weird. Considering the hard angles and clean lines of the DROID, it's rather odd that Motorola would build such an awkwardly designed phone. And why is the order of the Android Buttons on the Sholes Tablet not consistent with the DROID? For reference, the DROID buttons go Back, Menu, Home, Search.
In any case, the Sholes Tablet might just hit China as the XT701 with Android 2.1, a 3.7-inch screen, FM Radio, HDMI port, and 5 megapixel camera. Unless the design gets cleaned up, we're thinking it's best to not release in the States to protect the good DROID name.
What do you guys think? Do you prefer the kinder, gentler DROID to this Sholes Tablet? Or is it just regular old DROID all the way?
Snuggled deep in the leaked Android 2.1 ROM are codenames of future HTC Android devices. Since HTC has been such a huge proponent for Android (since the G1 days!), it's not really surprising to see so many devices listed. If this report is true, we're probably in for some stellar Android devices in the near future (the DROID can't stay on top forever). Some of the names have been brought into the real world already such as the Dream, Hero, Sapphire, and Desire, while others have been spotted before like the Dragon/Passion & Memphis.
Here's the rest:
Just by codenames alone (foolish, we know) we're going to say 'Incredible' and 'Legend' better be amazing devices. Or maybe it can be the 'Huangshan' which is actually a beautiful mountainside in China. Who knows. What do you guys think of the codenames? Any bets on which one will be the best?
Though it isn't quite as beautiful as a complete 'buy one, get one free' deal, it's pretty darn close. Verizon has confirmed that from Friday, December 4th to Monday, December 7th, users who buy a Motorola DROID or HTC DROID Eris will be eligible to receive a free DROID Eris (with rate plan, of course). The DROID Eris, which has plenty of fans, is a wonderful phone that packs the HTC Sense UI that extends Android and makes it oh so droolworthy.
There's also word floating around that if you have bought a DROID or DROID Eris in the past 30 days (from Verizon, presumably), you'll be able to cash in on the deal as well. Check your local store and tell us how it goes!
One of the more common complaints about the Motorola Droid is that its design may be a little too industrial. Chad from The iPhone Blog likens it to an HP calculator. To each his own. But for those of you pining for a softer Droid may one day wrap your hands around this little beauty.
From a Chinese site [by way of BGR] we see what appears to be (at least at face value) a Droid-type front bezel with rounded corners and 3.8-inch screen. Also on hand are an 8-megapixel camera with flash and an 800MHz processor.
Other than that, we know very little. Not even if it would follow in the Droid line. But needless to say, we're gonna be thinking about this one for a good long while now. There's a shot of the back after the jump.
Verizon is continuing its DROID ad onslaught with this latest spot that claims that the DROID is not a princess but a robot, "a phone that trades hairdo's for can do". It seems to us that Verizon is embracing the hard angles and industrial design and strategically positioning the DROID for the male market. The Princess Phones of the world (which looks strikingly like the iPhone) need not apply because they're clueless devices.
We love all the DROID commercials but don't they seem a little propaganda-ish with the quick cuts, ominous voice, and heavy graphics? Or is that the point? What do you guys think of the new spot?
BGR is hearing that Verizon might spur an Android phone buying frenzy with one of their infamous Buy One Get One Free promotions (aka BOGO). The Motorola DROID & HTC DROID Eris will both be available under the promotion and if true, should help Verizon move even more units. The fun all supposedly starts on December 4th so we'll continue to keep a lookout and see if it happens.
Will you buy a Motorola DROID or HTC DROID Eris if it's buy one get one free?
Behold, the mythical (or not, we guess) Motorola Sholes. Our Mandarin Chinese is pretty darn bad, but the picture about speaks a thousand words: That's an HDMI port looking back at us. Tack on the 3.7-inch touchscreen (at WGVA resolution), a 3.5mm headphone jack, and 8MP camera with xenon flash, Android 2.0, TI OMAP 3430 (Cortex A8) processor, and so on and so forth. Any reason why we should spend our holidays pining for this one? [Mobile 1 via BGR]
If you have a HTC Hero, and have been insanely jealous about Android 2.0 not being available for said HTC Hero, and can't wait for HTC to update said HTC Hero with said Android 2.0, fear not, you can get Android 2.1 on your HTC Hero today. Yeah, who needs Android 2.0 when you can get 2.1, right?
The good folks of xda-developers (who else!) have leaked the Android 2.1 ROM and anyone with a HTC Hero can download and explore the beauty that is Android 2.x. The installation process seems manageable but of course, the risk your HTC Hero ends up as an expensive paperweight always exists, so backing up everything would be a smart idea. The Android 2.1 ROM isn't an official release but it does come complete with HTC Sense UI.
Be sure to let us know how it works out for you in the comments!
We honestly don't know how to feel towards the Dell Mini 3i Android Phone aka the Dellphone. On one hand, we feel like it's an exciting device considering the hardware looks great in most angles, it has a friendly UI, and is made by one of the biggest PC manufacturers around. On the other, we feel like the Mini 3i (and 3iX) is destined to fail--Dell seems to be purposely stacking the odds against the Mini 3i.
How so? Well, it looks like the Brazilian bound Dell Mini 3iX won't come pre-loaded with Android Market, instead users will have to scrounge for apps and download directly from the source themselves. In this day and age of App Markets and App Stores, that just sounds so...troublesome. Maybe the carrier wants to load their own app store? Either way, it's backwards and we don't like it.
So though we still want a Dellphone to hit the states, we'd much rather prefer one with Android Market. What do you guys think? Anyone understand the move?
We're getting reports that the Motorola CLIQ is receiving an OTA software update as we speak. It's still stuck on Android 1.5 (not 1.6, 2.0, or 2.1) but it looks to solve a lot of problems that have plagued CLIQ owners. The firmware fix will address battery life, improve touchscreen response, improve bluetooth pairing, and much more. The whole update weighs in at 8 MB so if you get the update, you should probably do it.
Check your System Update on your CLIQ to see if you have the update! And be sure to tell us how your CLIQ is working after!
It looks like that Google Phone that was real and coming early next year has now become a certainty. According to Gizmodo, a trusted source has tipped them off that is adding even more intrigue to the perpetual Google Phone rumor and of course, brings more questions. The Google Phone will differ from your run-of-the-mill Android Handsets (which even the DROID will be grouped with) because it runs a different version of Android that has yet to be seen on Google-branded hardware.
Prototypes of the Google Phone is expected to hit Google's Headquarters in the next few weeks. The prototypes will run the new version of Android, Flan or maybe even a version beyond that. And the juiciest tidbit of all? That the Android we know and love may not be the 'real' Android. We're assuming that means the 'real' Android will be available on the Google Phone.
If you want to wear your phone allegiance on your sleeve, it looks like you literally can. Verizon is reportedly sending out the shirt above to some customers who have purchased the DROID. We were completely unaware that Verizon was giving out shirts to turn folks into walking advertisements but hey, a $100 million dollar ad campaign is so much more than just commercials and print ads.
If anyone has details on how to get one of these Droid Does T-Shirts, please let us know in the comments. Is it really from Verizon? Or is it some fanatic DROID lover screen printing his affection? In any case, how do we get one?
In the mean time we have to ask, would you wear one?
Google has just announced the winners of the Android Developer Challenge 2 (or ADC2) that'll surely bring a lot of great applications to the limelight. They've announced three winners in each of the ten categories and three overall winners. Cash prizes were given out to the winners and we're hoping that developer challenges like these will continue to spur Android app development.
The three overall winners were SweetDreams, What the Doodle!?, and WaveSecure. SweetDreams is an app that allows you to change phone settings to avoid late night calls. You can also conserve battery by having SweetDreams automatically shut off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, etc. What the Doodle!? is a real time online multiplayer game where one player draws out a given phrase and others try to guess it. And finally, WaveSecure is a security solution that protects your device, data and privacy.
The full list of winners is available after the break and more information on all the winning applications can be found here.
We know that the Motorola DROID is fully capable of multitouch gestures but because of reasons beyond our control, it's no where to be found in the apps. Luckily, if you're thirsting to multitouch your DROID, you can hit Android Market and download the Dolphin Browser which has been recently updated to support multitouch gestures.
We used the Dolphin Browser for a moment and found that it doesn't really do itself any justice on the DROID's high resolution screen (it looks fuzzy) and has a icon similar to Firefox. Other than those quips though, the multitouch implementation is promising and the power beneath the browser looks to be great. There's cool features that allow users to easily share links to social networks, follow daily trends, subscribe the page to Google Reader, save a link to read later, and much, much more.
We suggest you download the Dolphin Browser on Android Market to see if it can replace the regular Android Browser in your daily use.
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