Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Android Community

Android Community

Google launches “Play of the Day” deals with $0.49 cent apps and more

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 11:10 AM PST

Get those credit cards out because now that Google has officially renamed the Android Market to Google Play, things are about to get crazy. They’ve just launched what I can only describe as a HUGE sale on just about everything. With Play of the Day deals on music, movies, apps, and more. Offering 25 of their most popular apps for only $0.49 cents.

Oh man, so many good deals I don’t even know where to start. They’ve selected 25 apps that all are only $0.49 cents right now and include some of the biggest and best apps and games for Android like SwiftKey, Shadowgun, World of Goo, Need for Speed, Soundhound, Dead Space and more. Most of these are usually more than a dollar too. Sadly this is not all international so try your luck and hopefully everyone can enjoy these deals.

It looks like Google will also be taking a similar approach to Amazon and offering a deal everyday similar to the free song of the day with Google Music, only it will be called the Play of the Day and will feature an app for only $0.25 cents — yup just a quarter. Today’s $0.25 cent Play is Where’s My Water — one of the biggest apps for Android over the past few months.

Google’s also offering $0.25 cent songs, Double Play deals on albums and more. Seriously you need to head to Google Play right now by clicking here.

Screen Shot 2012-03-06 at 11.00.55 AM game double apps 7days

Google Play replaces Android Market as all-in-one Google Store

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 10:51 AM PST

Whoa, big news just dropped from Google today regarding the Android Market and Google’s services as a whole. Starting today, we can all say hello Google Play, RIP Android Market because the Android Market, Google Music and the Google eBookstore will all become part of Google Play. The details were just revealed and Google Play is live right now.

This is all a part of something bigger coming soon but for now is essentially a consolidation or redistribution style for everything Google has to offer. Combining all their services into one huge area accessible from your phone, tablet, or computer. Even the old market.android.com now just takes you directly to Google Play. This change not only moves everything into direct and digital sales but is starting to show more of their plans with cloud storage.

Google Play will be replacing the Android Market on devices starting today and will roll out to Android devices running older versions of the OS in the coming days as well. For now mostly everything remains the same except for the logo, name and UI refresh. They layout is similar and they haven’t introduced anything too new, yet. We expect more details and announcements will be following soon but for now enjoy some pictures, Google’s neat video, and then head to the new Google Play from the via below.

P1080899 Screen Shot 2012-03-06 at 10.26.38 AM Google_Play_Phone_Home_gallery_post google-play-icons_thumb

[via Google Play]

Temple Run officially hits Android March 27, will be free

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 09:30 AM PST

Good news this morning folks. The team at Imangi Studios has finally announced an official release date of the hugely popular game Temple Run for Android. We’ve mentioned it more than a few times before, and with huge responses and anger when it wasn’t released in February like promised. Sadly we’ll have to wait a few more weeks but it’ll be here soon enough.

For some unknown reason this game has achieved a huge level of success being the top free and grossing app for iOS in January and passing over 40 million downloads. The wait for this game to hit Android has been a long one but I can happy say that Android will be running from Monkeys and enjoying Temple Run come March 27th and it will be completely free.

Here is what Co-founder Keith Sheperd had to say:

We are excited to finally share the Android release date with our fans who have been so enthusiastic and supportive of Temple Run. By expanding to more mobile devices, we hope to provide the same addictive and fast-paced gameplay to an entirely new group of players.

So that’s it guys. No more rumors or suggestions of a February 9th launch or whatever the rumor was that had everyone up in arms. This comes from Imangi Studios themselves and remember, if you see Temple Run in the Android Market before March 27th most likely it’s a fake as we’ve seen a few of those the past couple of weeks.

Who’s excited for Temple Run on Android? I know I am!

LCD vs IPS vs AMOLED: HTC One X, S and LG Optimus 4X screens compared

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 08:55 AM PST

There’s some downright fantastic screen technology out there today, and nearly all of it is making its way into brand new smartphones. To get an up close and personal look at some of themore high-end options, German site BestBoyz took a look at the screens on the HTC One X, HTC One S and the LG Optimus 4X HD under a 400-power microscope. You can see the individual pixel shells whose color combinations make up the image. Fist, the HTC One X:

Unlike its smaller brother, the One X uses a Super LCD2 panel made by Samsung. This uses the traditional red-green-blue cell method, combining the primary light colors to create individual shades. HTC told the source that while the quality of Super LCD2 approaches that of IPS and in fact uses much of the same technology, they can’t call it “IPS” for trademark reasons. The screen on the HTC One X is a full 1280×720 panel measuring 4.7 inches diagonally.

The LG Optimus 4X HD uses a screen that’s the same size and density as the One X, but uses a more conventional IPS (in-plane switching) LCD panel provided by LG itself. LG calls it a “True HD IPS”. As you can see, the LG screen has a somewhat “colder” light, with the green cells aparently washed out under the microscope. In our experience, LG’s IPS displays tend to be very, very accurate as far as color goes (note the warm quality of the One X panel) but considerably less bright than standard LCD or AMOLED displays.

Speaking of which, above is the AMOLED (active-matrix organic light-emitting diode) screen from the HTC One S. The One S has a 4.3-inch screen (probably supplied by Samsung) with a resolution of 940×560. This gives it about 20% less pixel density than the One X or the Optimus 4X HD. In addition, the Pentile screen matrix construction means that each green sub-pixel shares a red and blue sub-pixel with another green sub-pixel, making the absolute pixel density considerably lower than a traditional LCD screen. Many users compain abou this loss in definition, but others prefer the brighter and generally more saturated colors on AMOLED.

There you go, screen junkies – let us know what you think of the three screens in the comments section.

[Thanks to Kote for the tip!]

Harris RF-3590 tablet brings Android to the front lines

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 08:28 AM PST

Harris isn’t a name you’ll see often on Android Community – it’s a communication contractor that works on various government and armed forces projects. But their new RF-3590 tablet is surely an eye-catching machine, especially if you happen to be an active-duty soldier or marine. The Honeycomb tablet is specifically designed to withstand the harsh environments of war, with a huge shock-absorbing frame around a 7-inch screen. Mil-spec construction makes it practically waterproof and dustproof, though it may or may not stop a bullet.

This isn’t some cheap OEM with extra padding, either: The RF-3590 is running full Honeycomb on a dual-core 1.5Ghz processor, with 8-megapixel cameras on both the front and the back. Specialized software allows commanders to indicate the position of enemy troops and friendlies on a GPS map, making the tablet intended for use during combat. As far as we know, this is the first tablet of any kind intended for that purpose.

The screen is a bit cramped at 1024×600, the most common resolution for 7-inchers. But I doubt that someone who’s trading bullets with terrorists will have time to stop and count the pixels. There’s no word on pricing or date, not that it’s likely to become available to civilians, anyway. Check with your quartermaster in a few months, servicemen and women – and please resist the urge to install Angry Birds.

[via Talk Android]

We heard you like apps: AIDE builds Android apps on Android

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 07:51 AM PST

There’s a lot of tools out there to help aspiring developers get started on a new Android app, not the least of which is the newly-resurrected App Inventor from MIT. Now would-be app makers have a new option, specially suited to those whose skills or inclination tend towards Java: AIDE. The free app stands for “Android Integrated Design Environment”, and is a full-fledged Java IDE contained within an Android app.

Speaking basically, AIDE is a series of pre-compiled code sections combined with a text editor, compiler and tester. Putt all those functions together and you get A contained system for editing and creating Android apps. You can even compile the APK files right on your phone, literally crating an app with another app. This sort of thing happens all the time with more season desktop operating systems, but to my knowledge, it’s a first on a mobile platform.

It’s not quite as simple as the App Inventor: you’ll need basic Java skills to create anything more complicated than a test app. For those who need it, AIDE is compatible with the Eclipse IDE, and it admirably adjusts its interface for smartphones and tablets. Amazingly, the developers are giving away the app for free. Download it form the  Android Market here.

Acer Iconia Tab A510 gets an Olympic edition

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 07:29 AM PST

It’s that time of the quadannual cycle again. With the 2012 Summer Olympics in London getting closer and closer, the endorsements and marketing are going to start ramping up any day now. Acer seems to be getting an early start: they’ve unveiled the Iconia Tab A510 Olympic Edition at CeBIT in Germany. There’s nothing extraordinary about the Android tablet: it’s got the same specs and internals as the as-yet unreleased standard version, with a spiffy Olympic rings logo and a silver-on-black color scheme.

Under the hood, the A510 is still a pretty impressive tablet: it runs on the Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core architecture with a full gigabyte of RAM. The 10-inch screen uses the standard 1280×800 resolution, and there’s 16GB-32GB of on-board storage. Ice Cream Sandwich will be running when the A510 hits retail shelves later this month, but there’s no telling when the Iconia Tab A511 with its additional HSPA+ radio will become available.

Acer says that the A510 Olympic Games Edition will be available in the UK in time for the games themselves in late summer, but they didn’t say whether or not it would hit international markets. Acer’s not the only one capitalizing on the spirit of international goodwill: rumors indicate that Samsung is planning on launching the Galaxy S III with an Olympic tie-in.

Verizon’s DROID Fighter leaked for April 12th release date

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 06:58 AM PST

We’re still in the dark on what exactly the DROID Fighter is. All we really know is that it’s coming to Verizon (thanks to the DROID moniker) and that it’s probably made by Motorola, HTC or Samsung, as all the previous DROIDs have been. The most we’ve seen of it thus far is a listing in internal Verizon documents, but today, we know a little more. The DROID Fighter appears to be scheduled for release on April 12th.

We know that it isn’t the LG Cayman, leaked alongside the Fighter for a March 29th release (though we don’t know a lot about that one, either). And it isn’t the next Incredible or the rumored cheaper Galaxy Nexus, as those have both been leaked for still more dates on Verizon. Given that it has the DROID name and we haven’t seen hide nor hair of it, it’s either a mid-range phone without much exciting, or Verizon’s getting a lot better about keeping their upcoming phones under wraps.

So, place your bets, ladies and gentlemen: is the Fighter a battery-extended version of the DROID 4, a la the DROID RAZR MAXX? Could it be one of Samsung’s innumerable international models with a more local flair, like the Galaxy S Advance? Perhaps it’s one of the HTC One phones shown off at Mobile World Congress, with a red-tinted makeover? Step up and lay down your money: the windows close in five weeks.

[via Droid-Life]

Ice Cream Sandwich posts small gains in February

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 06:20 AM PST

Any long-time Android observer knows how this goes: a new version of the operating system is painfully slow to germinate with the public. Such is the case with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which now accounts for 1.6% of all Android devices across its three published versions. That’s about a 60% growth from just a month ago, but still only accounts for about 4.5 million phones and tablets, given Google’s MWC report of 300 million total Android devices.

Gingerbread remains the most popular Android version out there, with a whopping 62% of all devices. (That’s around 180 million phones running Android 2.3, with a few tablets like the Kindle Fire thrown in.) It’s posted about a 5% total gain since last month. Froyo is still hanging in there with 25.3%, Eclair comes in a distant third with 6.6%, and Honeycomb shrank ever so slightly to 3.3%, probably due to Ice Cream Sandwich upgrades for the Motorola XOOM and Asus Eee Pad Transformer.

If the slow adoption of ICS is discouraging for you, take heart in our Mobile World Congress 2012 coverage. Almost all the manufacturers showed off their latest and greatest running Android 4.0, with notable entries from HTC, Asus and Huawei, who showed nothing else. Most major manufacturers have committed to upgrades for late 2011 phones (even if some are taking their sweet time about it – we’re looking at you, Motorola). And of course, if you just can’t wait, there’s always the rooting option.


Samsung reaches into the low end with 2.8-inch Galaxy Pocket

Posted: 06 Mar 2012 05:57 AM PST

Ever wonder what smooshing Android into something the size of a traditional “feature” phone would look like? Gaze upon the Galaxy Pocket, and wonder no more. Samsung’s latest budget smartphone features a tiny 2.8-inch screen running (almost surprisingly) Android 2.3 Gingerbread and TouchWiz. The unlocked international phone doesn’t have a price or release date yet, but Samsung says that it’ll be available in the UK sometime later this year.

The screen is QVGA, or 320×240 – certainly not great, but at least as good as some slightly larger 3.2-inch phones, like the ignominious Samsung Dart. Surprisingly, the Galaxy Pocket includes an 832mhz CPU – positively screaming for a budget phone. Just 3GB of storage is included, but you can add your own via the empty MicroSD card slot. Camera options are limited to a single 2 megapixel shooter on the back, with no front-facing camera.

While the Galaxy Pocket has the standard WiFi and Bluetooth connections, its wireless data is limited to HSPA – in other words, basic 3G speeds are as good as it gets. This one might be good for parents who don’t trust their teenagers with an expensive Galaxy S II, or someone who makes calls exclusively and only occasionally needs to check their email or the odd website. (Hey, those people are out there!) By our count, this gives Samsung no fewer than ten screen sizes to choose from in Android smartphones alone.

Sony XPERIA devices control cars on man-made Reckless Racing track

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 10:34 PM PST

I’m sure you’ve heard of the popular racing game Reckless Racing by Pixelbite, but have you ever seen it played in real life? That answer should be a solid “No”, because XPERIA Studio has reproduced a Reckless Racing track for the first time. They’ve rigged an XPERIA Play and XPERIA S to control a couple of actual cars around a dirt racetrack. The creator of the game’s main challenge was trying “to create an interface that someone can actually drive the car with, in a similar manner to the way that they drive the game”.

They literally brought this game to life, and it worked out flawlessly. Sure, they managed to crash the cars into a few cones here and there, but overall it worked out extremely well. This was demonstrated on XPERIA phones exclusively, but it would undoubtedly work on many other Android devices. I’m sure the co-founder of Pixelbite, Martin Noriander, hadn’t a clue that this game would be taken to such a level.

So what games would you all like to see brought to life by an Android device? This is similar to Reckless Racing is great, but how about taking it to the air with AirAttack HD? Lets assume they’ve got an unlimited budget, as renting a couple of planes would cost a pretty penny.

[via Talk Android]

GSM Motorola Droid 3 arrives at the FCC

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 08:24 PM PST

Soon after the original Motorola Droid, we saw the Motorola Milestone – an international version of the device. The trend continued with the Droid 2/Milestone 2, and folks overseas have undoubtedly be waiting for their Milestone 3. Now, a GSM Motorola Droid 3 (XT682) has hit the FCC, but isn’t said to be headed overseas just yet, rather to AT&T instead.

In the FCC filing, this GSM version supports 850/1900 bands as well as WCDMA bands II and V. These are the same bands used by AT&T, but doesn’t mean AT&T will launch the device. It’s just possible for them to. It’s odd to see the Droid 3 making a GSM appearance at all when you think about it; the Droid 4 has been out for a while, and the Droid 3 was released around 8 months ago. It may not seem that long, but in 8 months the standard for Android has increased tenfold.

This filing from the FCC makes its release makes it look like we’ll definitely see this Droid 3 variant, but it’s just too early to tell where. When more information leaks on this release, we’ll be the first to let you know. But until then, expect this old QWERTY to arrive soon; if the release is prolonged too long, it will look ancient next to the many quad-core phones that are to be released soon.

[via Wireless Goodness]

Android Market app size limit pushed to 4GB from 50MB

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 08:02 PM PST

Prior to now, Android applications have been limited to 50MB, and developers have had to trim down their work to fit that criteria. The new maximum application size of 4GB doesn’t necessarily mean the size of the APK will be increased, but rather the Android Market will host the application’s expansion files. This will help the Google keep a closer eye on when a user completely finishes the download of a large application to properly start the refund period.

Most of us have experienced a long in-game download like Gameloft’s Asphalt 6, and then realized the refund period has already passed. In the Android Market, these expansion files are added to the 50MB size of your application so users know how much space the app will ‘really’ take up. There’s nothing worse than downloading an application just to find out you’ve run out of storage when downloading in-game content.

Most newer devices should download expansion files automatically, but for older ones it downloads them when you first run the application. The sooner developers take advantage of this extra space on the Android Market the better, because installation via its servers are very fast opposed to some others. Google has included some ‘Helpful Resources’ on their Android Developers blog for developers aspiring to implement these expansion files into their applications, so be sure to take a look.

[via Android Developers Blog]

Android Community Evening Wrap-Up: March 5, 2012

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 07:32 PM PST

We hope everyone started off the their work week well, and even though you may have been busy – we’re here with the daily wrap-up to make sure you didn’t miss anything. Early this morning, word got out that “Key Lime Pie” may be the next version of Android OS, after “Jelly Bean”. Bear in mind, this is still a rumor at this point, and the information comes straight from a tip over at The Verge. Another rumor that followed, is that ASUS could be the manufacturer for the Google Play or ‘Nexus’ tablet. We had known Google was preparing a “tablet of the highest quality” for some time now, but that’s pretty much it.

A tip suggests the Samsung Galaxy S II will see Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) on March 15. This tip was based on a post by the localized Samsung office that was since deleted. Another device that should see an update to ICS soon is the HTC Vivid. It will also acquire Beats Audio and of course HTC’s modified UI, Sense 4.0. We are to see this in the coming weeks, so hopefully sooner rather than later.

The camera from ICS has come to the Android Market, but we ask you to think twice before downloading it. It’s not uploaded by Google, and unless you have Android 4.0 – it’s not going to be fully functional. To top it off, it also has ads built in. What the developer has done is repackaged the application straight from ICS source, and added it to the market. It won’t be long before someone else uploads a full featured Android 4.0 camera app, and free of ads.

And finally, check out OverSkreen Browser; a desktop-like browsing alternative for Android tablets. It allows users to open pages in new independently sizable windows. It’s available today for $1.49 as an introductory price, but will jump up to $2.99 starting tomorrow. So if this seems like the kind of browser you’ve been waiting for, read the reviews and then give it a chance.

Samsung Galaxy Note in Pink still coming soon, spotted at CeBIT

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 05:26 PM PST

The Samsung Galaxy Note is quite popular right now, especially now that AT&T has launched their own 4G LTE version of the 5.3″ phablet device. Before launching on AT&T we saw some leaked renders of a Note dressed up in Pink and heard it was coming soon. Today at CeBIT Samsung has confirmed that rumor and the folks at Engadget received some hands-on with the all new Pink Galaxy Note.

The Pink Galaxy Note is obviously aimed at the female crowd but I have a feeling a few guys would love to rock out with the pink version too. With the same textured rear cover as the blue version on AT&T it sure looks nice. Over in Germany at the Annual CeBIT show Samsung has unveiled it although they’re still being light on details regarding a release date.

Apparently all we are hearing is that it should be available before May — so within the next few months. Would have been perfect for Valentines Day but too late now. The specs will all remain the same with that awesome 5.3″ display and S-Pen for all the writing and drawing one would ever need. Most likely it will only launch dressed in Pink in European countries and the international version but you never know, AT&T might just steal the idea. Check out our full review below if the Note still interests you.

Device Specifications and Information
Device Info
    Device Name : Galaxy Note
    Manufactuer : Samsung
    Carrier : NA
    Announced Date : September 01, 2011
    Release Date : TBA
    Also Known As :
  • Screen Size : 5.30 Inch
  • Resolution : 800x1280
  • Screen Type : Super AMOLED
Dimension & Weight
  • Height : 5.78 Inch
  • Width : 3.27 Inch
  • Depth : 0.38 Inch
  • Weight : 178 Grams
Battery & Power
    Battery Type:
  • Lithium Ion
  • Battery Capacity : 2500 mAh
  • Talk Time : NA
  • Stand By Time : 390 hours
    Android OS:
  • 2.3.x
    Audio Playback:
  • AAC
  • AMR
  • MP3
  • WAV
  • WMA
    Video Playback:
  • h.263
  • h.264 / AVC
  • MPEG-4 (MP4)
  • WMV
  • SMS
  • MMS
    CPU :
    CPU Clock Speed : 1400 Mhz
    Core : 2
    Ram : 1024 MB
    Internal Storage : 32.768 GB
    Front Facing Camera :
    Camera Resolution : 8 MP
    External Storage:
  • MicroSD
  • MicroSDHC
    Camera Features:
  • Auto focus
  • Flash
  • 1080p Video Recording
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Proximity
    QWERTY :
Cellular Network
    Network Technology:
  • GSM
    GSM Band:
  • 850
  • 900
  • 1800
  • 1900
Device Connectivity
  • 802.11b
  • 802.11g
  • 802.11n
  • Bluetooth 3.0
    Location Features:
  • Compass
    FM Radio :
    NFC :

Angry Birds Space official announcement coming March 8

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 04:27 PM PST

Who’s ready for more Angry Birds? In case you missed it a few weeks ago we uncovered some teaser videos showing that Angry Birds Space is coming March 22nd. The second teaser video wasn’t revealed until just recently and hints that it may launch with the Galaxy Note’s next update. Now teaser #3 has confirmed the official announcement will be March 8th — and probably just in time for that iPad 3 launch.

The teaser video below shows that Angry Birds Space will launch with the Galaxy Note — but it is already available internationally and in the US on AT&T. This teaser comes from Samsung Mobile instead of Rovio and hints at that “upgrade pack” instead of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update that we heard about early last month. If Samsung does update the Note and Angry Birds Space comes pre-loaded we’ll be sure to give it a try. Otherwise we are confused because my Note has no such game.

Now, on the official Angry Birds Space page teaser number 3 shows that the full announcement and all the details on the next version of this hugely popular game will be broadcast to the world on March 8th. Yup, Rovio will announce, detail, and confirm the new Angry Birds Space on March 8th at 10 AM EST (7 AM for you on the west coast) and are claiming it will be “out-of-this-world” so stay tuned to angrybirds.com/space for all the details.

Who’s excited for the new Angry Birds on March 22nd?

[via SlashGear]

Google implements global recent place searches into mobile services

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 03:13 PM PST

Never let it be said that Google rests on its laurels, even as the world’s largest search company. It’s now integrating your recent desktop searches for location-based queries into your Android phone or tablet, assuming that you’re logged into Google on the desktop and using the same credentials. So, for example, if you searched “Pike’s Perk Coffee” from your Colorado Springs hotel before leaving in the morning, it’ll probably pop up in your stock browser if you go there during the day.

There’s nothing revolutionary happening here, but Google’s position as both the leading search provider and the leading mobile OS publisher makes it possible. This could help you save a considerable amount of time, especially when traveling in an unfamiliar city. The feature is accessible from the Google.com home page by tapping the “Recent” icon (which is the same one used for Places).

On a more somber note, this feature is probably made possible by Google’s new and far-reaching privacy policy. If you’re not a fan and you deleted your browsing and search history prior to the swap-over, don’t worry, your searches won’t appear there – until you make a few more. Want to avoid having your travel plans scrutinized by Google’s servers? Log out of Gmail from your desktop browser before searching.

Sonic the HedgeHog 4: Episode II – Tegra 3 hands-on

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 02:50 PM PST

Everyone’s favorite HedgeHog is back for more action here on Android. SEGA is getting set to release the second installment of Sonic 4 for Android but this time we’ll be getting some NVIDIA Tegra 3 action to go along with it. Making the gaming and graphics even better, and we’ll be seeing it sometime in April.

While we were live in Spain during Mobile World Congress SEGA and NVIDIA both announced that Episode 2 would be coming to Android, although we mentioned this back in December. Following up on the successful first episode we quickly ran over to the NVIDIA booth to get some hands-on with it. The graphics and gameplay looks awesome even though it was suffering while being mirrored to a 65″ HDTV on the wall — but it sure was fun.

With Episode II we get our Tails sidekick back and can enjoy enhanced graphics and gameplay thanks to the quad-core Tegra 3 processor in devices like the Transformer Prime and many upcoming quad-core smartphones. Playing with a wireless Logitech game controller actually gives this a console quality feeling and was extremely impressive. We snapped a few photos of the setup below, as well as an image of the on-screen graphics for an idea of what to expect.

According to SEGA the new Episode II should be available sometime in early April and we will be watching out for more details, and be sure to review it in full once humanly possible.

IMG_4972 IMG_4974 IMG_4977 IMG_4995

OverSkreen breaks the Android browser out of its full-screen cage

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 02:39 PM PST

Mobile apps are full screen, because phones have small screens. That little bit of conventional wisdom drive a lot of app design… but since 7 and 10-inch tablets are now available in droves, not to mention some very large phones as well, perhaps it shouldn’t be. That’s the thinking behind the OverSkreen Browser, which breaks out the Android browser from the binds of full-screen oppression to roam all over your tablet screen, making friends with the apps running underneath it.

The idea is pretty simple: the app launches multiple browser windows (“instances” in Android speak) that can run independently and concurrently with just about any other app. The experience is not unlike using a standard web browser on a desktop, if not quite so refined. The app works with all versions of Android 2.2 and later, though obviously it’s better suited for Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich tablets than smartphones. You can buy it for an introductory price of just $1.49, half off today only.

As you might have guessed, OverSkreen comes from the same people who made Stick It!, an Android video player along the same lines. Naturally, OverSkreen is a lot more useful: it can handle anything that the stock browser can (though Flash support is only for Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich. This seems like the perfect compliment app if you plan to do some desktop-style docked browsing.

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[via Redmond Pie]

LG Optimus Vu available now in South Korea: start saving your Won

Posted: 05 Mar 2012 01:59 PM PST

The second of a growing crop of massive smartphones is now available to purchase where you live! As long as you live in South Korea. The LG Optimus Vu and its odly square screen hits the homeland today, where eager Android fans can pick it up for a song and 999,900 won, or about nine hundred American greenbacks. Even for a country that loves its smartphones and loves home-grown LG, that’s a stagerringly expensive price, novel form factor notwithstanding.

For your won, you get a 5.0-inch IPS LCD screen with a resolution of 1024×768 – an unusual 4:3 ration on an Android phone. The rest of the device is no slouch either, with a 1.5Ghz dual-core Snapdragon processor, a gigabyte of RAM, 32GB of on-board storage, an 8MP camera and a capacitive stylus. The only sour note is Android2.3, but LG is already promising an Ice Cream Sandwich update soon. Since South Korea is one of the few international markets with a well-developed LTE network, SK+ Telecom is highlighting the faster mobile broadband speeds.

There’s been no indication of the Optimus Vu leaving Asia any time soon, but considering the high demand for the Samsung Galaxy Note, we’re pretty sure it’ll be making its presence known on the world stage soon. Considering the emphasis on LTE and LG’s good relationships in the US, both AT&T and Verizon are possibilities. Let’s hope that monster price comes down with an American price tag, or at least gets a more reasonable subsidy discount.

[via Unwired View]

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