Friday, 1 June 2012

Android Community

Android Community

HTC One XXL concept phone is drool-worthy

Posted: 01 Jun 2012 10:08 AM PDT

We’ve heard rumors of HTC’s answer to the Galaxy Note, i.e. the latest entry in the “phablet” for factor, for a while. And while the One X is a beast of a phone, we couldn’t help but wonder how it might change if it were made to be more like the pachyderm’s proffered smartphone. Thankfully someone with a lot more talent than any of us actually put his dreaming aside to create the HTC One XXL, a concept device that uses HTC’s One family principles for a Galaxy Note killer.

The most important element of this plus-sized smartphone is the screen, a 5.4-inch monster that outdoes the Galaxy Note in both size (by a tiny fraction) and resolution (with a full HD 1080p panel). It also uses an IPS display. Note that these screen specs are pretty similar to LG’s recently revealed panel. Designer Hasan Kaymak kept HTC’s Sense 4.0 user interface, but stretched it out a little for the extra dimensions, the same way that TouchWiz does on the Note. He’s also added a capacitive swipe gesture just for kicks.

Since this is just a concept, other specs like an Nvidia penta-core processor, a huge 2750mAh battery and a MicroSD card slot aren’t overly important. The thinness in particular (it looks like around 6.8mm) seems impossible with the high-end specs on display. But any HTC fans who have found themselves wavering in favor of the Galaxy Note or LG Optimus Vu are surely drooling at the possibilities. We’re sure HTC will enter the phablet arena eventually, and we can only hope that their real-life offering is half as exciting as the XXL concept.

HTC_One_XXL_concept_1 HTC_One_XXL_concept_2 HTC_One_XXL_concept_3 HTC_One_XXL_concept_4 HTC_One_XXL_concept_5 HTC_One_XXL_concept_6

[via Concept Phones]

Carmageddon revs up for Android

Posted: 01 Jun 2012 09:06 AM PDT

Twisted Metal? Tame. Crazy Taxi? Kid’s stuff. For the true connoisseur (or alternately Android bloggers looking to relive their ten-year-old gamer fantasies) Carmageddon is the cream of the crop. And thankfully, Stainless Games is bringing the much-loved and often-loathed game to Android smartphones and tablets later this year. We recommend a tailored selection of death metal to get you in the mood until then.

For the uninitiated, Carmageddon came out in 1997 as a hybrid of racing, combat, and hyperbole. Based on classic B-movies like Death Race, the object is to get through the sprawling cityscape while destroying you opponents with obstacles, power-ups, and good old-fashioned physics. There was a major controversy surrounding the original game, because it featured pedestrians that could be killed (which seems to have been retrained in this port) but the last fifteen years has seen a lot worse in the world of gaming. We’ll just leave all mention of S&M nun assassins out of this story, shall we?

The game itself is a direct port of the original Carmageddon, so beyond a few high-resolution textures and a new interface, it’s not exactly pushing modern hardware. At least  you shouldn’t need the latest high-end devices to play it. There will be a few additions, though, like a nifty side-swipe map and instant replays. The iOS version is planned for the summer, with Android following.

[via Phandroid]

Oracle’s Android patent and copyright claims dismissed

Posted: 01 Jun 2012 08:17 AM PDT

The saga of Oracle vs Google appears to be over. The judge in the long-running trial to determine the validity of Oracle’s copyright and patent claims on the Android platform has declared that APIs cannot be copyrighted, effectively clearing Google of all wrongdoing. The honorable Judge William Alsup declared that anyone can write code to carry out functions identical to APIs. The story isn’t quite over (Oracle could appeal the decision), but it might as well be.

The judge appears to be as tired of the rampant patent litigation in the past few years as we are. Alsup notes that "we should not yield to the temptation to find copyrightability merely to reward an investment made in a body of intellectual property.” Claims on short names and nine lines of code were dismissed on other grounds. With the jury deciding that Google didn’t infringe on Oracle’s (formerly Sun’s) patents, the case is pretty much dead in the water, and it’s extremely unlikely that Google will have to pay any sort of remuneration.

Hopefully this will set a precedent. With hundreds of thousands possibly lost in legal fees for a null gain, Oracle’s patent trolling has been costly and time-consuming for all involved. (Alsup noted himself that Oracle’s case was overblown.) With wide doubt cast upon the validity of software patents in general and the wild litigation in the technology world in particular, let’s hope that we can put this ugly chapter in tech history behind us soon.

[via SlashGear]

Baidu-branded custom ROM available for Nexus S

Posted: 01 Jun 2012 07:00 AM PDT

For the uninitiated, Baidu is sometimes considered the “Chinese Google”, starting with a powerful (and relentlessly censored) search engine and expanding into things like email, maps and even mobile services. Now the company has taken it one step further, releasing a complete ROM for the Nexus S, replacing all of Google’s services with their own. It’s kind of like some of the Bing-branded Android phones Verizon has released, only creepier.

Users can download the ROM now and follow the instructions to flash their phones, giving them integrated access to things like Wangpan (“Baidu Drive”), Xiangce (Picasa) and the standard suite of maps, music, calendar, et cetera. Baidu says that it will update its ROM every two weeks and issue OTA updates, though there’s no news on when or iff this service will extend to other devices. The ROM is part of their new Cloud OS initiative.

Since Google officially left the Chinese market after spats with the People’s Republic over censorship, Android itself hasn’t stopped its dominating march in the world’s most populous nation. While the percentage of smartphone users in China lags behind other industrialized nations, there’s still a market of tens of millions of potential customers, growing all the time. Android’s open-source nature allows for even the smallest of manufacturers to take advantage of the latest software, but it also allows for the extreme manufacturer and carrier customization that’s been a thorn in the side of the platform for years.

[via The Next Web]

Samsung’s Galaxy S line sells 50 million worldwide

Posted: 01 Jun 2012 06:38 AM PDT

If there’s any doubt that Samsung is the current king of Android smartphones (and smartphones in general, as a matter of fact) let it be put to rest here. The company has issued a statement that its Galaxy S and Galaxy S II phones have reached the hands of more than 50 million distributors worldwide. Combine that with an estimated 10 million pre-orders for the brand new Galaxy S III, and you’ve got what is easily the best-selling line of Android phones ever.

Even assuming rather slow sales since the 300 million figure Google touted in February, that gives the Galaxy S and Galaxy S II the enviable stat of being one out of every six (conservative) or one out of every eight (liberal) estimated Android devices on the planet, including tablets and other Samsung phones. Though not stated in the press release, we can assume that Samsung is including the variants of phones in their figures, like the various US carrier versions and slight upgrades like the Galaxy S II LTE.

The split is heavily weighted towards the new Galaxy S II, with 28 million sales in a single year. In just under two years the original Galaxy S has sold 24 million worldwide. The Galaxy line’s biggest mobile member, the Galaxy Note, is sitting pretty with 5 million sales as of about two months ago. With even more excitement for the Galaxy S III, who knows what these figures will look like in another year – HTC, Moto and LG, consider yourselves duly warned.

[via SlashGear]

Sony shows Xperia go and acro S specs in new videos

Posted: 31 May 2012 06:40 PM PDT

Those of you looking forward to Sony’s pair of water-resistant smartphones get a bit of a treat today, as the company is showing off its new Xperia go and Xperia acro S in new videos.  For those of you who live and breathe specs, they’ve embedded all the relevant details for each phone in the separate videos – you don’t even need any of this here boring text, just scroll down a little.

The Xperia acro S is the star of the show, since it’s basically an Xperia S with added dust-proof and water-proof capabilities. From its 4.3-inch 720p screen to its 1.5Ghz dual-core processor, it’s the Xperia S’s tougher brother through and through. Other features include HDMI out, a 12-megapixel rear camera and 720p camera on the front, NFC, and 16GB of storage. Best of all, it’ll launch with Ice Cream Sandwich.

The Xperia go (which will be called the Xperia advance when it launches in the US) is decidedly more low-end, with a 3.5-inch 480×320 screen, 1Ghz dual-core processor and a five megapixel camera. This one gets even more stringent water proof certification and 8GB of storage, but it’ll have to settle for Gingerbread until Sony’s promised update.Both phones are schedules to go on sale in the third quarter.

[via PocketDroid]

AOKP adding swiping widgets to Galaxy Nexus navbar

Posted: 31 May 2012 03:43 PM PDT

We’ve got to hand it to the Android Open Kang Project: when it comes to taking advantage of the Galaxy Nexus, no one’s going faster or harder. The custom ROM team has one of the most comprehensive modifications to the Galaxy Nexus‘ nearly unique soft navigation buttons out there already, with custom shortcuts, icons, colors and widgets. Their next trick is to add multiple widgets to a single icon, allowing users to quickly and easily adjust settings and playback from just about any app.

It works like this: you assign multiple widgets to a single navigation bar icon. When you’re done, tap the icon and the first widget shows up, popping into a UI Z-layer just above your current app. You can then swipe through a handful of widgets, no matter what they are. This isn’t ideal for a full-screen widget or smaller switches (which would be better placed in the status bar) but it’s perfect if you regularly use multiple music players, or want to embed dozens of quick links. Observe:

This feature is still a work in progress, but it should be included in either the next build of AOKP (build 38) or the one after that. The AOKP team hasn’t gone more than a couple of weeks between major builds yet, and they’re due for a new milestone sometime soon as well. We’ve made no secret of our appreciation of AOKP here on Android Community – check out our post from earlier this week on some of the things that Google should “borrow” from custom ROMs for the main Android source tree.

[via Droid-Life]

N.O.V.A. 3 by Gameloft available now – takes up 2GB

Posted: 31 May 2012 03:41 PM PDT

Who’s ready for some Crysis meets Halo for your Android phones and tablets? We’ve been patiently awaiting this brand new game from Gameloft and expect it to be everything the first two were, and better. Gameloft has just silently launched N.O.V.A 3 for Android, available right this minute for the pricey $6.99 on the Google Play Store.

The game has tons of promise, and so does its graphics. According to Gameloft the game requires 2GB of “free memory” to be installed. Basically what they mean is you must have at least 2GB of free storage on your phone or micro-SD card, not memory. With a game that large you can only guess one thing — awesome graphics and long load times. I have a feeling it will all be worth it too.

With impressive graphics, awesome gameplay, and Halo-like multiplayer (and jetpacks) this could be the best shooter for Android this year. Here’s what you can expect.

- Fight in 10 immersive levels across the galaxy, from a war-torn Earth to a frozen Volterite City
- Multiple weapons and powers: Run, shoot, drive vehicles, and pilot a mech to defeat hordes of enemies.
- Join 12-player battles in 6 multiplayer modes (Capture the Point, Free-for-All, Capture the Flag, etc.) on 6 different maps.
- For the first time, multiple allies can jump inside the same vehicle and spread destruction on the battlefield.
- Discover the new FPS benchmark for graphics and gameplay (real-time shadow & lights, particle system, ragdoll physics, etc.)

The game sounds pretty impressive and that is why you have an expensive $6.99 price tag for a mobile game. Having such great graphics, and 6 huge multiplayer maps all available is a big deal — at least Gameloft thinks so.

In other news the game appears to support most phones and tablets currently available. I see full support for most devices other than a few odd ones here and there so most users should be able to enjoy the game. Give it a try and let us know what you think.

nova unnamed4 unnamed3 unnamed2 unnamed1 unnamed

– Thanks Yogesh

Pandora Radio updated with support for “Upcoming Android OS”

Posted: 31 May 2012 02:53 PM PDT

If you’re like us and like to take small little hints and over exaggerate them, then we have something you’ll like today. The folks from Pandora Radio have just updated their popular music streaming app for Android only the change log had a small line that has us confused, and excited. Check it out after the break.

Now before we dig into the specifics, the app did receive a sizable update that is worth taking a look at — it’s just getting overshadowed by the 3rd line in the “what’s new” list. Along with multiple bug fixes, performance enhancements, a fancy sign in screen and better settings options you also have new widgets with the latest from Pandora. A good update all around. Here’s the change log:

- New greatly expanded settings including ability to change email and password and numerous other settings
- New greatly improved sign-up and registration screens including better error handling
- Compatibility support for upcoming Android OS
- Audio now always pauses when unplugging headphones
- Widget bug fixes
- Removed Android “change network state” permission
- Fixed out of memory bug in station list
- Bug fixes and stability enhancements

Puzzle me confused on that one in bold. They’ve already updated it with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich support, so what could this be? Jelly Bean? Key Lime Pie? Or maybe they just mean they’ve added compatibility support for devices that will soon be upgraded. Only the word upcoming (as in not yet here) has us all confused and a little excited.

With rumors of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean coming along with Google’s Nexus 7-inch tablet we have to wonder if they know something we don’t — and just spilled the info in a very small way. You be the judge. We are just waiting for Google I/O to roll around hoping that Google hands out this rumored tablet. Get the latest Pandora radio update below.

Pandora Radio Play Store Link

[via Droid-Life]

Facebook for Android updated with performance fixes – still slow

Posted: 31 May 2012 02:05 PM PDT

The boys from Facebook are back today, pushing out a quick incremental update for Android that appears to fix multiple bugs and even improve performance. We’ve seen and heard the “improve performance” comment in the past so decided to quickly update and give it a try.

Facebook didn’t reveal much about the update, so it must have been rather small. The “what’s new” area only states “improved performance and various bug fixes.” Pretty vague change log for something as huge as Facebook. Either it really was that small of an update or they didn’t do enough to warrant saying so. I was hoping for a larger change log myself.

Looking through the comments (which are always brutal and critical of Facebook) it doesn’t look like performance has been improved in the slightest. I don’t know about you guys but I rarely use Facebook and when I do, I’m not all that impressed with the mobile version. They could learn a thing or two from Google’s latest Google+ app. Can we really blame Facebook for having a slow app when it comes do data? They do have like 1 billion users or so now. Just a thought.

[via Play Store]

Sony Smartwatch update brings bug fixes and always-on clock

Posted: 31 May 2012 01:47 PM PDT

Remember Sony’s Smartwatch? Well the little device that could is getting a huge update today from the folks at Sony that should bring a host of new features, as well as fix tons of bugs with the Android-powered smartwatch. This isn’t quite that Pebble Watch we’ve been keeping an eye on, but the update is worth a quick look.

In a different direction than most Android updates, the update is available via an app on the Google Play Store. The watch should prompt users for the update, as should the Android app and you’ll be on your way in no time.

The new version 1.2.33 for the smartwatch brings a new always-on option for the clock (since it needs to be on for you to see the time) as well as tons of bug fixes. We are hearing they’ve improved the look and performance of the music and weather applications, and even added support for the Endomondo Sports tracker.

Be sure to check out our Sony Xperia Smartwatch Review, or head to the source link below for additional details.

[via Sony Blog]

Samsung releases Galaxy S III source code

Posted: 31 May 2012 12:49 PM PDT

Now that the Samsung Galaxy S III has launched in more than 28 countries Samsung has decided it’s time to release the source code, and developers can’t thank them enough. This is how it’s supposed to be done folks. Today Samsung has released the full source code for the GT-i9300 (SGSIII) and it’s available for download now.

All you developers that have the Galaxy S III, as well as those that don’t will want to jump over the Samsung’s open source repository by clicking here. You’ll be able to quickly get the source code and then dive knee deep in goodness and start developing. I can smell CyanogenMod 9 already.

Additionally, thanks to Android Police, you can also get the Galaxy S III source code from the Github here. It’s good to see that Samsung has already made these tools available for developers so quickly. As the phone arrives in more users hands we can expect good things and plenty of ROM’s to appear. Stay tuned for more.

Device Specifications and Information
Device Info
    Device Name : Galaxy S III
    Manufactuer : Samsung
    Carrier : NA
    Announced Date : May 03, 2012
    Release Date : May 29, 2012
    Also Known As : The Next Galaxy, SGSIII
  • Screen Size : 4.8 Inch
  • Resolution : 720x1280
  • Screen Type : Super AMOLED HD
Dimension & Weight
  • Height : 5.37 Inch
  • Width : 2.77 Inch
  • Depth : 0.33 Inch
  • Weight : 133 Grams
Battery & Power
    Battery Type:
  • Lithium Ion
  • Battery Capacity : 2100 mAh
  • Talk Time : NA
  • Stand By Time : NA
    Android OS:
  • 4.0.x
    Audio Playback:
  • AAC
  • AAC+
  • AMR
  • MID
  • MP3
  • WAV
  • WMA
    Video Playback:
  • h.263
  • h.264 / AVC
  • MPEG-4 (MP4)
  • SMS
  • MMS
    CPU : Exynos 4 Quad
    CPU Clock Speed : 1400 Mhz
    Core : 4
    Ram : 1024 MB
    Internal Storage : 32 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
  • A2DP
  • Bluetooth 4.0
    Location Features:
  • Compass
  • GPS
  • Cellular location
  • Wi-Fi location
    FM Radio :
    NFC :

Microsoft Office for Android coming November 10 according to rumors

Posted: 31 May 2012 11:51 AM PDT

Some rumors have been floating around that Microsoft will be releasing their popular office suite for Android later this year. Most likely being called Microsoft Office Mobile. We reported on this earlier this month that it would possibly land around November but now some sources claim that to be the official time frame.

According to reports and images from The Daily, the same sources who leaked the original pictures of Micro$soft Office on the iPad, claim the suite will arrive for Android and iOS on November 10th. Their sources seem to have confirmed that Microsoft finished the app last month, and are doing final testing on multiple platforms.

The report specifically only mentions iOS and the iPad, but previous reports also suggested the app will land for Android at the same time. While this most likely won’t end up happening (sadly,) we can expect the office productivity suite to arrive for Android tablets later this year. Hopefully we learn more as time gets closer, and I have a feeling Google Docs will be pushing hard to fight back come November.

[via SlashGear]

ASUS teases possible dual boot Android and Windows 8 Transformer Pad

Posted: 31 May 2012 11:21 AM PDT

We know ASUS has been innovative when it comes to Android tablets. With the Transformer coming with a dock, and now the Padfone with a built-in Android smartphone. What if their next tablet rocked Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and Windows 8? An all-in-one, that also separates into a dual boot powerhouse tablet. Check out their latest teaser video after the break.

We saw their first video earlier this week, teasing upcoming Transformer tablets to be shown off at Computex. Today’s video has our nerd minds wandering in all sorts of different directions. The video is titled “All-in-One is No Longer In One” which basically confirms some sort of Transformer Pad whether it’s Android or Windows because it is no longer all-in-one using the optional keyboard dock from ASUS.

Then they throw us a curve-ball in there with the water drops (waterproof maybe) with both the Windows and Android logos parting ways. This is obviously a teaser and we can’t really come up with any solid conclusions. Consider this though: A Windows 8 laptop that transforms as usual into a tablet, only with the option to run Windows 8 or Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Tell me that wouldn’t be awesome. ASUS unveiled the Padfone at Computex 2011, and we have a feeling they’ll have some crazy things this year too.

We’ve seen a few dual boot tablets before, but they ran Android 2.2 FroYo or Gingerbread and weren’t that great. If we could have the latest of both platforms together — that could win me over. Thoughts?

No comments:

Post a Comment