It was only a couple of days ago that HTC announced its next generation super phone the HTC Sensation.
The phone packs a dual-core processor, 768MB of RAM and runs on Android 2.3 Gingerbread with the latest version of Sense (v3.0) running on top of it.
Yesterday, HTC made it clear via their Twitter account that none of the current generation phones like the Desire HD, Inspire 4G, Thunderbolt will get Sense v3.0. However, they will get some of the features of the latest version of Sense.
Nevertheless, one of the awesome developers over at XDA forums, 911sniper, has already managed to bring Sense v3.0 to the Desire HD. His custom ROM is based on the HTC Sensation RUU, which leaked yesterday on the Internet.
As of now, the ROM is in early stages with most of the stuffs including Camera, and other features of the phone not working. However, I am pretty sure the developer will be able to fix most of the issues within a couple of weeks.
HTC Desire HD should head over to this thread for more information. HTC Inspire 4G, Thunderbolt and EVO 4G owners need to be a bit patient, before the HTC Sensation ROM gets ported for their handset.
The Amazon Appstore for Android opened with controversies over the name and is running smoothly. Though, the app store is not developer-friendly and raises serious concerns over the amount of control Amazon has over the store. Amazon rigidly dictates the pricing of apps on its app store. This has upset the IGDA as it is not in the developer’s best interest.
Amazon has laid out in a clause that it will pay developers either 20 percent of the list price or 70 percent of the purchase price. Either way, Amazon is going to choose the lower of the two while paying. What is alarming here, is the discounted price Amazon wants to offer. According to another clause, if an app sells at a discounted price somewhere else, Amazon wants to lower the price of that app to that discounted price permanently. This marks an end to any weekend bonus you have been running.
Amazon is making one wrong move after another in its competition with the Apple Appstore. The IGDA expressed their concern over a letter to Amazon. It has written,
Amazon dictates that developers cannot set their list price above the lowest list price available or previously available on any Similar Service.In other words, if you want to sell your content anywhere else, you cannot prevent Amazon from slashing the price of your game by setting a high list price. And if you ever conduct even a temporary price promotion in another market, you must permanently lower your list price in Amazon’s market.
There are numerous such claims that are listed by Dean Takahashi on this page.
Motorola released its highly anticipated tablet the Motorola XOOM at the end of February. All the reviews of the device stated that the product was rushed to the market.
The XOOM has a pretty decent spec sheet which includes a Tegra 2 chipset, couple of cameras, an array of sensors, free upgrade to 4G LTE and an non-functional microSD card slot.
Even though the Xoom is available in various storage capacities including 16GB and 32GB, a microSD card slot is always useful. Motorola and Google say that the microSD card on the Xoom will be functional sometime in future, after an OS update.
Now, a team of developers Tiamat over at XDA-Developers have released a custom kernel for the Xoom, which enables the microSD card slot. All Motorola Xoom owners need to do is to flash this custom kernel on their tablet, and insert a microSD card in the slot!
The custom kernel also brings support for tun.ko and cifs.ko, along with a modded ramdisk for USB Host support.
Xoom owners can head over to this thread for more information.
When it comes to Android phones, some are quite easy to unlock and mod, while some are quite a tough nut to crack. Thanks to the enterprising hackers at XDA and other forums, we have been able to hack into and mod most Android smartphones.
Rarely though has any manufacturer officially supported bootloader unlocking for its phones. Today, Sony Ericsson has launched its new bootloader unlocking website for its new Xperia phones powered by Android. Currently, it supports only 4 phones – Xperia Arc, Xperia Play, Xperia Pro and Xperia Neo.
If you have a SIM unlocked phone, you can now unlock its bootloader to install and load custom ROMs easily. The bootloader unlock process is quite simple and involves just a few steps. Sony Ericsson does state though, that unlocking the bootloader may void the warranty of the phone.
To unlock the bootloader of your Xperia Arc / Play / Pro / Neo, you just need to enter your name and email address and the first 14 digits of your phone’s IMEI number. You will get an unlock key which you can then use to unlock the boot loader on your phone.
You can check out the complete instructions here –
Sony Ericsson Unlock Bootloader Instructions
via Sony Ericsson
Back at CES 2011, HTC and Verizon announced their first ever 4G LTE capable phone the Thunderbolt.
At that time, the Thunderbolt was advertised to come with a new Skype version, which would allow users to do video calls. However, due to some reasons the Thunderbolt did not ship with Skype pre-installed.
Even Skype did not release an updated version of their app on the Android Market, which supported video calls. In fact, Verizon removed all the advertisements from the Internet, which stated that the Thunderbolt will come with video-chatting capabilities via Skype.
Now, the awesomely awesome folks over at Droid-Life have somehow managed to get their hands on a leaked Skype APK, which allows Thunderbolt owners to make video calls!
Sadly, this APK file works only on the HTC Thunderbolt. I tried to install this file on my Samsung Galaxy S, but the app simply refused to install.
Thunderbolt owners can download the Skype APK file from here.
The only country where the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S 2 had been announced was the UK. According to Samsung UK, the Galaxy S 2 will be launched there on May 1.
Today, at the Samsung SWA Forum 2011 in New Delhi, India, the company informally announced the launch dates for the Galaxy S 2 in India. It will be launched in May, with a price tag close to Rs 30,000, likely higher. Samsung representatives hinted that the Galaxy S 2 will be launched in the range of Rs 30,000 to 35,000. The exact pricing hasn’t been revealed yet.
The Samsung Galaxy S was the most popular Android phone of 2010. The Galaxy SL is currently priced at Rs 19,500 in India. Many Android fans are eagerly awaiting the launch of the Galaxy S 2. Pricing it above Rs 30,000 will probably hurt sales. I certainly hope it is priced in the Rs 25,000 to 30,000 range, but I doubt that would be the case, given the intense demand for the successor of the Galaxy S. You can expect a small price drop though, after the initial excitement subsides.
The Samsung Galaxy S 2 comes with a 4.3 inch SuperAMOLED Plus display with a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels. It has a 1.2 GHz dual core Exynos processor and 1 GB RAM with 16 GB internal storage. It is powered by Android 2.3 Gingerbread and has an 8 MP camera with autofocus and LED flash. It also has a 1650 mAh Li-ion battery.
Check out the detailed Samsung Galaxy S 2 specifications here.
Yesterday, rumors were floating around the Internet that the Motorola has started rolling out the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update for the Droid X, via an OTA.
However, there was no concrete proof about this until now. The folks over at Droid-Life have managed to get their hands on the Gingerbread OTA update for the Droid X.
This OTA update is different from the Android 2.3 Gingerbread SBF file, which leaked at the end of last month.
Along with the latest version of the Android OS (2.3.3), Droid X owners will also be treated to a new, revamped version of MotoBLUR, along with performance improvements.
For the impatient Droid X owners, the OTA update can be downloaded from here. Users need to use a completely stock handset to flash this OTA update. Users can also downgrade to Android 2.2, if they wish to by using the required SBF file.
At the moment, it is unknown whether this OTA update is the official one, which Verizon will release to its customers. However, some Droid X owners did receive this update via OTA on their handset.
HTC have just announced their next-generation high-end smartphone the HTC Sensation.
The Sensation sports a 4.3-inch S-LCD with qHD (960×540) resolution. The front of the LCD features a contoured glass along the entire edge of the screen, unlike the Nexus S.
The handset runs on the latest version of Sense which packs a lot of new features including widgets on the lock screen and new full screen widgets with animations.
The Sensation is powered by a 1.2 GHz dual-core chip from Qualcomm and an Adreno 220 GPU along with 768MB of RAM. The back of the handset sports an 8MP camera with dual-LED flash. The handset is also capable of clicking pictures instantly’ and recording videos in 1080p resolution at 30fps with stereo sound recording.
Other usual features include D-LNA, Wi-Fi b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0, 3.5mm audio jack, GPS with A-GPS, Wi-Fi printing and HDMI-Out via MHL (Micro High-Def. Video Link).
The Sensation will also come integrated with a new service from HTC the HTC Watch. This service will allow users to download and watch movies instantly on their phone, either by purchasing them outright or by renting them. In fact, users can even continue watch the video on other HTC products e.g. the Flyer.
The HTC Sensation will run on the latest version of Android – Gingerbread – with HTCSense v3.0 running on top of it. HTC will launch the Sensation in ‘key’ markets by mid-May.
A recent research report by Gartner pointed out that Android was likely to be the most dominant mobile operating system in the next 2-3 years, and would command almost 50% of the market worldwide by 2012.
Today, Gartner released another report which says that it won’t be that dominant in the tablet space. Apple’s iOS platform (which runs on the iPad and iPad 2) will be the dominant tablet OS for years to come. The iPad and the iPad 2 are the most popular tablets yet, and despite several attempts, Android tablets haven’t been able to make much of a dent in its sales.
Even with the launch of Android Honeycomb, the prospects of Android don’t seem to be very bright. The iPad currently commands an 84% market share worldwide. By the end of 2015, its market share is expected to drop to 47% with Android grabbing most of its share.
Android currently has a 14% share which is expected to grow to almost 37%. By 2015, webOS is expected to have about 3% and QNX is expected to have almost 10% of the market.
Compared to smartphone penetration, Google is expected to grow slower in the tablet space, mainly because Google will be trying to maintain greater control on Honeycomb to offer an optimal, uniform experience across all devices.
Check out the worldwide tablet research report by Gartner.
We still don’t know when the Samsung Galaxy S 2 will be launched in the US or worldwide, but according to the latest press release by Samsung, it will be available in the UK on May 1. It will be available across all major networks and retailers.
The Galaxy S 2 is the successor to the very popular Galaxy S. It was first announced at the Mobile World Congress 2011. It comes with a 4.3 inch SuperAMOLED Plus display with a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels and a 1.2 GHz dual core Exynos processor. It comes with 1 GB RAM and 16 GB internal storage.
It is powered by Android 2.3 Gingerbread and comes with the TouchWiz UI and Swype. It also sports an 8 MP camera with autofocus and LED flash. It can also record 1080p videos at 30 FPS and also has a secondary 2 MP camera.
The Galaxy S 2 also comes with Bluetooth 3.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n with DLNA and Wi-Fi Direct. It also offers HSPA+ connectivity and A-GPS. It comes with a 1650 mAh Li-ion battery. The pricing details aren’t available yet.
Check out the detailed specifications of the Samsung Galaxy S 2 here.
Simon Stanford, Managing Director, Mobile, Samsung UK said, “From the moment it was revealed at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona there has been a huge buzz about the Galaxy S II, so we’re pleased to announce that it will be available for UK customers to buy from 1st May. Our slimmest, lightest, fastest smartphone is our first device to offer of Super AMOLED Plus screen technology, alongside the most advanced technical specifications including the latest Android OS and a dual core processor. We’re confident it’s a great package for anyone wanting a superior smartphone experience.”