Tag Archives: Verizon

Motorola Droid 2 Global Getting a Bug Fixing Software Update!

Motorola and Verizon have started rolling out a new software update for the Droid 2 Global. The update does not bring Ice Cream Sandwich or any other major enhancements, which quite a few Droid 2 owners would have been hoping for. The update simply fixes some bugs and loopholes, and improves the memory management on the handset.

Below is the full change-log of the update -:

Device Features

  • Device is enabled with the Wireless Alerting System.
  • A Google Security Patch has been added to improve security level.
  • Fixed issue where the device may power ON without user interaction.
  • Adjusted camera settings will be saved, even after the device is powered down.
  • Resolved possible device resets while playing music.
  • Reduced Out of Memory errors.

Email, Messaging, and Data

  • Improved ability to access and receive Gmail messages when the Mobile Hotspot is turned on.
  • Addressed error that replicated thumbnails in message threads.

Applications & Widget

  • WAV files can be played from Visual Voice Mail.
  • Purchased ringtones are now able to be downloaded, saved and used where appropriate.
As it is evident from the change-log above, the update barely brings anything new. However, it is definitely nice to see Motorola and Verizon taking the effort and indulging resources in fixing bugs and security loopholes in old and forgotten Android handsets, albeit quite a months late.

Motorola Droid X Gets a Software Update

It looks like Motorola has not yet forgotten the Droid X! The company will soon start rolling out a new software update for the handset, which squashes some serious bugs and improves the browser security as well. Other serious bugs like the device getting reset while playing music, fewer out of memory errors, improved stability of Music player, improved 3G Mobile Hotspot data connectivity have also been fixed.

The update with the version number 4.5.621 mainly fixes bugs that were introduced in the last software update for the handset, which was released nearly 8 months ago. Yeah, it took Motorola 8 months to roll out another software update to fix the bugs it introduced in the last software update.

Below is the full change-log of the update -:

The update is not yet live, but should go live in the next few days. The update will be rolled out via OTA, and users can manually check for the update by going into Settings -> About Phone -> System Updates -> Download.

Samsung Continuum Gets Android 2.2 FroYo Update! Yes, FROYO!

Samsung Continuum users, here is some good news for you! Samsung and Verizon have started rolling out the Android 2.2 FroYo update for the handset, proving that they have not forgotten that they ever released this disastrous handset! Yes, it’s the FroYo update and not Gingerbread or Ice Cream Sandwich update. Android 2.2 FroYo update after nearly 2 years since the OS was announced by Google. Talk about fragmentation!

As expected, the change-log of the update is massive and apart from adding new features, it also fixes some bugs and installs more bloatware on your phone. Since the update is pretty big and contains a lot of changes, it is being rolled out in two parts by Verizon. The EB01 software update will prepare the phone for the FroYo update, while the EC09 update installs the FroYo update, and enhances some of the existing features.

Below is the full change-log of the update -:

If Continuum owners are expecting that their handset might even get the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update, then frankly you people are expecting too much. On one hand, I must say I am impressed by Samsung and Verizon that they updated the Continuum to Froyo, which probably no one cares about now. On the other hand, the Continuum should be getting the Gingerbread update right now. The handset’s hardware is perfectly capable of running Gingerbread, like its single-screened sibling, Fascinate.

iPhone Represented 55% of Verizon’s 4Q 2011 Smartphone Sales

Android owners, is this headline surprising to you? How can one smartphone be dominating in smartphone sales? Shocker indeed. Today, Verizon revealed its quarterly earnings for the fourth quarter of 2011, and during the call, they revealed that they sold 7.7 million smartphones. Shockingly, 4.2 million of which were iPhones. Remember, this is a phone that lacks 4G and only comes in one model, while Android phones come in all sizes and specifications. These numbers go to show that the iPhone on all carriers is clearly making a dent in Android sales and marketshare.

Verizon also reported that smartphones now account for 44% of the company’s postpaid customer phone base, which is up from 39% in the previous quarter. However, this strong growth in smartphones significantly reduced the carrier’s margins last quarter as the carrier is absorbing the costly upfront subsidies paid to manufacturers for the devices. . The carrier plans to recover these costs over the length of customers’ contracts, making it willing to take short term hits to profitability to lock in smartphone customers on profitable service contracts.

Apple will report its total number of iPhone sales for the holiday quarter at 2 PM PST this afternoon.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 Headed To Verizon!

Samsung had announced the Galaxy Tab 7.7 quite a few months ago for the International market. Today, the company has outed the same model for the Verizon’s network.

For the unknown, the Galaxy Tab 7.7 comes with a 7.7-inch Super-AMOLED Plus screen with WXGA (1280×800) resolution. This is technically the biggest Super-AMOLED Plus screen Samsung is currently able to produce. Internally, the Tab 7.7 is powered by a blazing fast 1.4GHz Exynos 4210 SoC, an ARM Mali-400 MP GPU, which is arguably one of the fastest SoCs used in Android devices. All the usual stuffs like 1GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, SD card slot, a 3MP rear camera with an LED flash, a 2MP front camera, 1080p HD video playback and recording capability, LTE support and a slim-waistline of 7.9mm.

Sadly, the Tab 7.7 will come with Android 3.2 Honeycomb along with Sammy’s TouchWIZ UI running on top of it. Since the tablet will be heading to Verizon, the carrier will make sure to install as much bloatware on the handset possible, and will price it insanely high as well.

Verizon and LG Unveil The LG Spectrum; Sports a 4.5-inch True HD IPS Display

LG and Verizon have just announced the company’s second phone with LTE capability to hit the United States biggest carrier, the Spectrum.

The Spectrum comes with a massive 4.5-inch True HD IPS display with a whopping 720p (1280×720) resolution screen, with a eye-popping 329pixels-per-inch Unlike the Galaxy Nexus 720p HD PenTile display, the IPS display on the Spectrum has a RGB pixel arrangement. Internally, the handset packs in a 1.5GHz S3 processor from Qualcomm and an Adreno 220 GPU. There is also 1GB of RAM, 4GB of internal memory and an microSD card slot with 16GB microSD card pre-installed.

The Spectrum also has all the other usual features like GPS with A-GPS, 4G LTE, Bluetooth 3.0, a 1.3MP front-facing camera, and the usual bunch of sensors. At the back of the Spectrum is an 8MP camera aided by an LED flash, and a 1.3MP camera in the front for video calling. Like all other high-end Droid handsets, the Spectrum is also capable of shooting videos in Full HD (1080p) resolution.

The handset is powered by a 1830mAh battery, and will also come with an extended 3000mAh battery at its launch. Sadly, the Spectrum will come with Android 2.3 Gingerbread and will get the Ice Cream Sandwich later on. However, looking at LG’s history, I don’t think the Spectrum will get the update anytime before late Q2 of 2012.

The Spectrum will hit Verizon’s 4G network on January 19th, and should cost $299 on a two-year contract.

Verizon Wireless, Windows Phone, LTE and Microsoft’s Mobile Strategy Problem

verizon_4g_lte

Verizon Wireless Chief Marketing Officer, Marni Walden,  while speaking to CNET, said that Windows Phone needs to support LTE in order to compete. She said that they have communicated to Microsoft that LTE is critical for Verizon Wireless and that they need to see a timeline, if Microsoft expects them to continue to represent Windows Phone.

Ouch! This is the first time Verizon Wireless has come out and pointed at a specific problem they have in carrying more Windows Phone devices. Currently, the only Windows Phone they carry is the HTC Trophy, which is a first generation device, released a few months after the OS supported CDMA. There have been no announcements about a Mango device coming to Verizon Wireless.

The stakes are high for Microsoft (and related, for Nokia especially, in its return to the US market). Verizon Wireless is the largest mobile network in the US at 107.7 million subscribers. At the same time, due to AT&T’s initial exclusivity on the iPhone in the US, Verizon ended up becoming an Android champion. They started a huge marketing campaign around their trademark Droidand became a close partner of Google. Meanwhile, iPhone is now also available on Verizon network and as a result they now have arguably the best portfolio of smartphones in the US. Windows Phone clearly has an uphill battle to get the carrier’s attention. Getting cut out of Verizon Wireless will take half the addressable US market away from Microsoft.

In a lot of ways, what Verizon Wireless is asking makes sense. On one hand, they carry the juggernaut that is the iPhone, and on the other hand, they have a slew of Android devices which come in various form factors, with a variety of hardware differentiators and at all kinds of price points. Their marketing message for some time and definitely for the holiday season is their network which is the only one with real4G (LTE). For the typical (high-end) smartphone price of $200 with a 2-year contract, they cannot offer a 3G Windows Phone when most Android devices are 4G-enabled. Also of course, 4G data plans do offer additional revenue to Verizon Wireless.

Like it or not, Microsoft is going to have to compete with Android from a sales and marketing strategy perspective, rather than the iPhone. There is no single Windows Phonelike the iPhone or even the Nexus line of Android phones. Windows Phone is a licensed OS and as a result, there are going to be multiple OEMs making similar phones and multiple carriers carrying them. In order to differentiate, and in this case in order to even participate, Microsoft and its partners will be forced to play the speeds-and-feeds game and keep bumping up the phone features. This is somewhat the opposite of how Microsoft has set up Windows Phone with its strict chassis specification and also how they have set their update schedule to be one big update a year interspersed with smaller updates in between.

Instead of having customers focus on the elegance of the OS and its ability to run well even on previous generation hardware, Microsoft is being forced by Verizon Wireless to play the Android game and keep focusing on specification numbers. Something will have to give because Microsoft simply cannot afford to get left out of the Verizon Wireless footprint. Perhaps more chassis specifications? More aggressive updates to the OS? Maybe we will see a more aggressive schedule after the first round of Nokia devices come into the market and the platform gains a reasonable installed base? Any/all of this better happen because Verizon Wireless customers deserve the choice of Windows Phone Smile

Motorola and Verizon Unveil The Droid Xyboard Tablets; U.S Version Of The XOOM 2

Motorola and Verizon just announced the Droid Xyboard tablets, which are basically the U.S version of the recently unveiled XOOM 2 and the XOOM 2 Media Edition.

Droid_Xyboard

The 10.1-inch XOOM 2 will be known as the Droid Xyboard 10.1, while its smaller variant, the XOOM 2 Media Edition will be known as the Droid Xyboard 8.2. Both the tablets are powered by the old and under-powered Nvidia’s Tegra 2 processor and come with 1GB of RAM on-board. The Xyboard tablets sport a IPS display panel for an improved image quality. Other than this, both the tablets have a 5MP camera with Auto-Focus and LED flash at their back, and a 1.3MP HD camera in the front.

Unlike the bulky proportions of the original XOOM, the Droid Xyboard tablets are slimmer and lighter. Outside, the tablets are made with magnesium-reinforced material along with aluminum housing. The tablets will also come with Dijit, an app which will double their tablets as a universal remote. They will also support Verizon’s blazing fast 4G LTE network. Oh, both the Xyboards also support GSM networks but the capability has been turned off by Motorola and Verizon at the firmware level.

The 10.1-inch and the 8.2-inch Xyboard will come with Android 3.2 Honeycomb on-board, but will get the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update sometime early next year. Both the tablets will hit the Verizon retail stores sometime this month. The 16GB 10.1-inch Xyboard will cost $529.99, while the 32GB and 64GB variants will cost $629.99 and $729.99, respectively. The smaller 8.2-inch Xyboard will be available for $429.99 and $529.99 for the 16GB and 32GB variants. These prices include a two-year contract with Verizon as well. No wonder the iPad dominates the tablet market. Until these Android manufacturers price their tablets properly, there is no way they can sell them in large numbers.

Verizon and Motorola, you guys seriously did not get a better name for these tablets other than Xyboard? Seriously?

Verizon’s Droid Charge Android 2.3 Gingerbread Update Rolling Out Now

Droid Charge owners, here is some good news for you. Verizon and Samsung have finally  started rolling out the Android 2.3 Gingerbread update for your handset.

The Gingerbread update for the Charge will bring the usual Gingerbread goodies like a Download Manager app, Power Management details, Improved copy and paste functionality, enhanced security like SD card and device encryption and much more. The change-log from Verizon also states that Charge owners should see an improvement in the camera, GPS, web browser, HDMI output and the audio output of the handset. Most importantly, Charge owners will notice an immense improvement in the performance and the stability of the handset.

The full change-log of the update can be found here. The update is a whopping 119MB in size, so make sure you are downloading the update via Wi-Fi and not via that ultra-blazing 4G LTE network of Verizon.

The Droid Charge gets the Gingerbread just after a year Google announced Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Good job Samsung and especially Verizon! Charge owners, don’t expect some Ice Cream Sandwich love for your handset,

HTC Rhyme Gets A Software Update Filled With Security Patches

HTC and Verizon have started rolling out a new software update for the Rhyme. For the unknown, the Rhyme is being marketed as an Android phone for female Droid lovers. The Rhyme is a mid-range Android phone, and is powered by a 1Ghz single-core Snapdragon processor, and packs in 768MB of RAM.

The new software update for the Rhyme carries the build number 1.26.605.11, and does not bring any major changes enhancements or changes. The update mainly includes security patches, to fix some of the loopholes found in HTC’s Android phones a couple of weeks ago. The update is around 9MB in size, and will also update the inbuilt Twitter app to support its new API.

The software update is already being rolled out to existing Rhyme owners, and they should be automatically notified when the update hits their phone.

Other HTC handset owners like the EVO 3D, Amaze 4G, EVO 4G, and various Sensation variants should also expect to get a software update for their phone soon. Like the software update for the Rhyme, the update for these phones will also not include any changes or enhancements, but will fix a couple of major security flaw found in HTC’s Android phone recently.