Marshmallow is now on 18.7% of Android devices, Galaxy S8 may get an early launch, and is Samsung working on a proprietary audio jack?
In today's news, Samsung may accelerate its launch window for the Galaxy S8. If you like model numbers as much as me, there's an interesting story waiting for you regarding the naming convention for the S8. Also, China has started recalling 1,858 Note 7 units that were sent out to customers as part of a "testing scheme" before the official release. In news that makes no sense whatsoever, Samsung is rumored to be working on a proprietary audio jack to replace the 3.5mm port (Hey Samsung, put those engineering resources to work on updates for the Galaxy A5 and A7).
Meanwhile, Marshmallow is steadily gaining ground, and is now on 18.7% of all active Android devices. Xiaomi is finally launching its first Mi Ecosystem product in India on September 21 (our take: Hugo Barra has had enough of India's pollution), Sony has started rolling out Marshmallow to the mid-range Xperia C4, and we may get to see the Xperia XZ in pink. Here's the latest Android news from around the web.
Amazon Echo and Echo Dot launching in the UK + Germany
Pre-orders go live today for the smart speaker. Echo will arrive September 28, Echo Dot will follow on October 20. Both will benefit from Amazon's conversational Alexa AI, and a wide range of supported services, including British favorites like Just Eat and Sky Sports. More
Samsung Galaxy S8 might launch sooner than expected
A new report from SamMobile points to model numbers SM-G950 and SM-G955 for the two GS8s, both of which are rumored to have curved screens. The Korean firm is purportedly skipping past "940," as the number four is considered unlucky in some Asian cultures. Meanwhile the Korea Herald quotes one local analyst who believes the fallout from the Note 7 recall will result in Samsung moving the GS8's release forward. More
China recalls some Note 7s, bans use in-flight
1,858 Galaxy Note 7s sold through a Samsung website "as part of a testing scheme" before September 1 have been recalled by China's quality watchdog, reports Reuters. There's no suggestion of a broader recall of Note 7s in China, where a different battery supplier was used, and thus phones are reportedly not affected by the battery issue that's making some Notes catch fire. The Chinese civil aviation authority will also ban the use and charging of Note 7s onboard flights, as well as its carriage in checked baggage. More
Xiaomi is launching the Mi Air Purifier 2 in India on Sep. 21
Xiaomi is finally launching its Mi Ecosystem products in India. The first product to debut in the country is the Mi Air Purifier 2, a smart air purifier that costs just $104. More
Crazy rumor says Samsung could ditch 3.5mm jack for a proprietary port
With the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus leading a jack-free existence, Samsung may be considering a similar move. Citing supply chain sources Digital Music News says that Samsung is mulling a shift to a proprietary jack that the company will license to other Android phone makers.
Samsung's proprietary jack would be designed with all Android manufacturers in mind, with easy and cost-free (or extremely low-cost) licensing to encourage adoption. [...] Using the numbers game, Samsung and its army of Android allies hope that headphone manufacturers will prioritize their proprietary jack first, leaving Apple deprived of newer, more interesting models.
It doesn't make much sense for Samsung to waste engineering resources in designing an all-new proprietary format. For this one, we'll believe it when we see it.
Marshmallow is now installed on 18.7% of all Android devices
The latest Android distribution numbers are out, and they show Marshmallow occupying an 18.7% share of the Android market. That number is up from 15.2% in August, and 13.3% in July. Android 4.4 KitKat is still in the lead with a 27.7% install base, with Android 5.1 Lollipop coming in second at 21.9%. We'll likely see Nougat make its debut in next month's numbers.
Leak suggests LeEco Pro 3 will have 8GB RAM, 256GB storage
A leak out of China suggests LeEco will offer 8GB of RAM and 256GB storage in its upcoming Pro 3. Other details include a 5.7-inch QHD screen, Snapdragon 821 SoC, 13MP dual camera and a 16MP front shooter. We'll know more on September 21.
Marshmallow finally hitting the Sony Xperia C4
Sony has started rolling out the Marshmallow update to the Xperia C4 (E5303, E5306) and C4 Dual (E5333, E5343). The updated firmware version is 27.3.A.0.122 for the former and 27.3.B.0.122 for the latter. Xperia Blog notes that the E5353 and E5363 variants of the phone will pick up the update shortly.
Pink Xperia XZ incoming
The Xperia XZ is available in three color variants — Mineral Black, Platinum, and Forest Blue — and it looks like Sony is mulling a pink color option. As has been the case in the past, the pink color variant will be sold in limited territories. Read our Xperia XZ review for more on the handset.
OnePlus 2 is getting VoLTE support in India
OnePlus has announced that it will roll out VoLTE to the OnePlus 2 via an upcoming OTA update next quarter. The OnePlus 3 has VoLTE out of the box, and the update will make last year's phone compatible with Reliance Jio. The company has also confirmed that the OnePlus One and OnePlus X will not pick up VoLTE support, and is directing users to install the Jio4GVoice app.