Archive for the ‘Android’ Category
At a quick glance, without any background information, your eyes might tell you that the HTC Thunderbolt is little more than a Verizon remake of Sprint’s EVO 4G and AT&T’s Inspire 4G. After all — like its contemporaries — the Thunderbolt features a spacious 4.3-inch WVGA display, 8 megapixel camera, and dual-LED flash. In reality, though, the Thunderbolt is something more: from the Inspire, it borrows a better, crisper display with a wider viewing angle and a newer-generation (though still single-core) Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. From the EVO 4G, meanwhile, it borrows a cool integrated kickstand and the addition of a second “4G” radio, making this a spec Frankenstein of sorts — the best of both worlds. Of course, instead of Sprint’s WiMAX for that 4G radio, the Thunderbolt grants you access to Verizon’s LTE network — a network so fresh, it still has that new-network smell. There’s a lot of horsepower here.
In other words, the Thunderbolt has a very real opportunity to be the finest 4.3-inch device HTC has ever made — for the moment, anyway. Let’s see how it fares.
Gallery: HTC Thunderbolt review
If you’ve been following these here pages closely, you’ll know that a little device named the Nexus S 4G is coming to Sprint’s network, with the expectation being that it’ll be announced at CTIA early next week. Fueling our previous info on the matter, we’ve now gotten ahold of an image purporting to be the logo that Sprint and Google will be using to represent their new WiMAX-equipped collaboration. That can be found after the break, but what you’re really eager to learn more about is that image of a Motorola Xoom with a Now Network logo on it, right? Well, it comes from the same source, whose record of revealing Sprint pre-release hardware (and not getting fired) is quite exemplary, so we’re willing to credit it as the real deal. We’ve no launch dates or pricing details to share as yet, but it’s not unreasonable to expect Sprint will be disclosing all that juicy info during its extra-long CTIA presser. And if not, we’ll keep tracking down these leaks and get it to you anyway!
Arctic Spas shows off hot tub-controlling iPhone app, waterproof iPhone case sold separately (video)
Frankly, a few things in life are just too hard. Taxes being one of them, and moving from one’s spot in a hot tub to adjust the temperature and / or jet pressure being another. In a bid to solve issue number two, Arctic Spas has shoved out an iOS app (Android and BlackBerry are inbound) that interfaces with a WiFi module on some of the company’s hot tubs. Once loaded up, owners can control temperature and jets with a simple touch, though we hear that loads of steam and moist fingers aren’t exactly great for consumer electronics. Either way, you’ve got a video to entice you down below.
Today, Adobe Flash 10.2 will hit the Android Market for devices running Froyo, Gingerbread and Honeycomb, and by now you’re probably familiar with what it brings — increased performance for dual-core smartphones running Android 2.2 and Android 2.3, and the promise of seriously sped-up Flash content and better battery life for Android 3.0 tablets (not to mention Flash, period). Well, we’ve already spent a full day with the latest build of Flash 10.2 for Android and quizzed the company thoroughly about the release, and there are a couple surprises in store.
First off, you don’t absolutely need a dual-core phone to take advantage of Flash 10.2 — Adobe VP Danny Winokur told us, and we confirmed in testing, that there are slight performance improvements on earlier devices too. With our trusty Droid 2’s 1Ghz OMAP3 chip, we saw a slight but noticeable boost in framerate when playing a YouTube trailer at 480p, which admittedly only took took that particular video from “unwatchable” to merely “fairly jerky.” With the Tegra 2-toting Motorola Xoom, however, 480p videos ran perfectly smooth, even as the tablet had trouble rendering 720p content as anything but a series of images. However, Adobe says even that will change soon, as this beta release doesn’t take advantage of full hardware acceleration — it’s actually turned off right now. Though the Tegra 2 is natively decoding video, Adobe told us that hardware rendering and compositing will be added in a subsequent release, and when they are it “will bring 720p playback to a really smooth, enjoyable level.” We also noticed that phone temperatures seemed slightly cooler with Flash 10.2, which suggests better battery life. The other work-in-progress is Flash integration into Google’s Honeycomb browser, which presently has trouble detecting finger taps when Flash isn’t played full screen, but which will — Adobe hopes — play exactly the same inside and outside the browser when work on Flash 10.2 is complete. Sounds promising, no? Then why not download it yourself this evening and give it a go?
The Carphone Warehouse, known under the brand name of Phone House across Europe, has revealed its future pricing for a quartet of Android Honeycomb tablets in the latest version of its device catalog. The 7-inch Acer Iconia A100 scoops the prize for being most affordable with a €349 sticker, while the 10-inch Xoom’s €699 price is confirmed and the 8.9-inch Optimus Pad gets its lowest pricing yet, at a still unaffordable €849. The Eee Pad on display here isn’t explicitly named, but we suspect it to be the 10.1-inch Transformer, packing a dual-core Tegra 2 and running version 3.0 of Android — just like all the others in this group. Oddly enough, these are all detailed in the March version of the document, but unless we’re sorely mistaken, none of these tablets has yet reached the stage of general availability in Europe. Well, at least it lets us know how much each one will cost when they do eventually hit retail.
[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]