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Google ICS List - Ice Cream Sandwich Compatibility, Part 2!

clock March 6, 2012 00:03 by author Jeremy

For those savvy in the ways of the smartphone, an upgrade to Google's Ice Cream Sandwich OS (4.0) is like an early Christmas treat (pun intended). We previously posted a list of phones that would get the new operating system; since then, Verizon and Motorola have updated the list on their end, and we figured you might want to know. Check out the bolded items for the latest additions.

 

 

Samsung
Phones:

  • Galaxy S II
  • Galaxy Note
  • Nexus S

Tablets:

  • Galaxy Tab 7 Plus
  • Galaxy Tab 7.7
  • Galaxy Tab 8.9
  • Galaxy Tab 10.1

 

HTC
Phones:

  • Amaze 4G
  • DROID Incredible 2
  • Evo 3D
  • Evo Design 4G
  • Rezound
  • Rhyme
  • Sensation
  • Sensation XL
  • Sensation XE
  • ThunderBolt
  • Vivid

 

Motorola
Phones:

  • Admiral
  • Atrix 2
  • Atrix 4G MB860
  • DROID 3
  • DROID 4
  • DROID BIONIC
  • DROID RAZR
  • DROID RAZR MAXX
  • DROID X2
  • Electrify
  • MOTOLUXE / XT615 / XT685 (Asia Pacific/China)
  • MILESTONE X2
  • MT870 (China)
  • MT917 (China)
  • Photon 4G
  • Pro+
  • RAZR
  • XT605 (Latin America)
  • XT882 (China)
  • XT928 (China)

Tablets:

  • Xoom
  • Xoom 2
  • DROID XYBOARD 8.2
  • DROID XYBOARD 10.1

 

Sony Ericsson
Phones:

  • Xperia Active
  • Xperia Arc
  • Xperia Arc S
  • Xperia PLAY
  • Xperia Neo
  • Xperia Neo V
  • Xperia Mini
  • Xperia Mini Pro
  • Xperia Pro
  • Xperia Ray
  • Live with Walkman

 

LG
Phones:

  • Optimus 2X
  • Optimus 3D
  • Optimus Black
  • Spectrum

 

Asus
Phones:

  • Asus Padfone

Tablets:

  • Eee Pad Transformer
  • Transformer Prime

 

Other
Phones:

  • Meizu M9
  • Meixu MX


Google I/O 2011

clock May 11, 2011 01:11 by author Jeremy

Google's I/O event was held today, impressing the world with the fresh updates and new implementations they've got up their sleeves.

To start off, Google announced that Android 3.1 would be released to Verizon Xoom customers starting today. The update will include customizable widgets, and will allow users to have their device act as a "host" for other devices: for example, connecting a digital camera to your tablet will allow you to import all of your photos, while connecting USB devices like an XBox 360 controller will let you play specific games using the remote. By summer, Android 3.1 will be getting another update to include Google TV, which will have its own section in the Android Market as well.

Speaking of new Android versions, Google's released the official name (but not software number) of their next OS: Ice Cream Sandwich (seen above). They're hoping that this will be the universal OS applied to all devices, including your phone and tablet. While not officially stated, general word amongst fan-droids is that this should help battle fragmentation.

Also new to Android versions: Google has struck a deal with a large list of carriers and OEM's to make sure that all phones released will receive updates for a minimum period of 18 months. While this doesn't explain how often the updates will occur, it's still a start in the right direction. One of Apple's main strengths over Android phones was their stability brought through regular updates; meanwhile, Android owners struggle to get minor fixes corrected within just a few months. See the picture below for just a few of the major OEMs and carriers involved.

Google's also announced two new software services (though this first one was pretty much all but "officially" confirmed): Music Beta and instant movie streaming. Music beta will hold up to 20,000 songs in the cloud and is free (for now - very important note there). Like iTunes and many other media players, you can create playlists, see lists of recently played and play counts, and even offers "Instant Mix" (like iTunes' Genius). Also, once playlists are made, they'll be available on each Android device you own - no need for wires anymore).

Instant movie streaming will have varied pricing, starting at $1.99 for regular movies and $4.99 for HD selections. Upon renting a movie, you have 30 days to start it; once started, you have 24 hours to finish. The real question is how this will play out against other major movie streaming cmopanies such as Netflix.

Music Beta is available now for everyone to tinker with (remember, it's only free while in Beta). The movie streaming app will come with the Honeycomb 3.1 update and will hit phones "in a few weeks" (2.2 and above required, though).

The last two announcements really drove Google's point home - quite literally, too. Android at Home is one of them, which will allow your Android devices to control large appliances and devices throughout the house. This includes dishwashers, thermostats, even lamps. Google realizes that these machines won't have wifi or USB docks, so they're accepting developers to come work with them to make this a relaity. They've already started working on a few examples, such as controlling lights with your tablet.

The other announcement is one welcoming everyone to test and create for ADK, Google's new hardware design. It currently incorporates USB integration, but hopefully will include Bluetooth later. With the ADK, users will be able to control any number of products with their Android devices, assuming it gets a big enough kick-start from hardware designers and developers. At I/O, Google's example was a wooden labyrinth which was controlled by a Xoom via USB.

All in all, lots of exciting things at I/O today. Probably the most famous of these was the promised updates to phones from carriers/OEMs. We've still yet to hear what software number Ice Cream Sandwich OS will be, but we're sure it'll come out in due time. For now, we have Music Beta, instant movie streaming, and soon Google TV to hold us off.

Source/Pictures: engadget.com



Lights! Camera! ...Atrix!

clock March 7, 2011 23:05 by author Jeremy

I'm normally not one to have the latest gadgets, best technology, or shiniest toys, but after seeing the Motorola Atrix at CES with its Laptop Dock and HD Dock, I just couldn't resist. I went ahead and pre-ordered one and got it the day before its official release. After two weeks of playing with it, I'm still amazed at the service the phone brings.

General Info:

What I received was in no means an understatement to what everyone has said about the phone: this thing is wicked fast. With amazing video and sound quality, the Motorola Atrix can load videos and maps in seconds, assuming you're connected wirelessly to the internet.

One of the best parts, I think, is switching between apps. This seemingly nonexistent transition occurs just like in any other smartphone: with the tap of a button or the swipe of a finger. But once you do it, any video you were watching, any facebook status you were updating, or any picture you were taking, suddenly halts and switches to whatever you aimed to do next. Pauses to load screens are minimal, if there are any at all.

This is, of course, on an Android phone with Motoblur. There are customizable widgets and gadgets and whatchamaroos everywhere, and it's up to you on how you want to make your home screens look. You can drop your icons like it's hot (yeah, I went there) throughout seven different screens, allowing one to neatly bypass the alphabetic menu of apps. This is the first time I've had an Android phone before; I was an iPhone wielder previously, and we didn't have this "customizable icon" and "widget-sprees" that you young'uns have.

The best way to determine processing speed? By gaming, of course. The Atrix was nice enough to come with a demo of Need For Speed: Shift. Playing the game was just about as smooth as playing on a console at home: no lag, no bumps, no freezing. I suggest not drinking a cup of coffee beforehand though, as the phone will pick up even the slightest shakes of a hand while you drive.

Sound/Audio:

The sound is just on par with the visuals. Phone calls aren't strained, and I didn't find myself once jamming my phone into my ear thinking it would help hear the other end better - and be honest, you know you've done the same thing before. The speaker on the bottom backside of the phone packs quite a punch, too: whether it's used as a speakerphone or just listening to music, everything comes out loud and clear. Speaking of music, there are pre-set Equalizer settings that you can tinker with. Listening to music on Pandora basically had my phone vibrating, and it wasn't even on a high bass setting at the time.

Camera:

Quality? Definitely not bad. The Atrix came equipped with a 5-megapixel camera that can shoot HD video as well. You can customize your shots too, ranging from things such as sepia tones or landscape view. It may not be a digital camera replacement, but it definitely holds its own against other camera-phones. The best part, in my opinion, was the front-facing camera. This added piece of hardware is becoming very popular in today's gadgets, and with due reason. Thankfully, the Atrix did not disappoint consumers here.

 

Props to you if you can read that bottom line - I wrote so small that I couldn't even read it normally!

Apps:

The Motorola Atrix comes packed with a bunch of extra apps that I, personally, wouldn't use: Blockbuster, Latitude, and YellowPagesMobile, just to name a few. Removable? Some, but not all, which means that I (and possibly you) will have a few useless apps sitting around eating precious space.

Speaking of apps, the Atrix comes with the "Webtop" app, which is what the Atrix relies on when connected to one of its many docks. You can still make phone calls, send text messages, and reply to emails. Which leads us to the...

 

Laptop Dock:

Ah, the infamous Motorola Laptop Dock, one of several accessories that helped drive the Atrix to such popularity. There have been quite a number of negative reviews on the Atrix Laptop Dock, and after tinkering with it for a while, I can see why. Even on a wireless network, loading times are somewhat slow. Granted, the Atrix still doesn't compare to an actual desktop with their fancy videocards and such. Consumers should keep in mind that the visuals on the Laptop Dock are still being powered by your phone; essentially, you're just looking at your phone through a bigger screen.

Pros: This is going to be redundant, but...bigger screen. The phone easily connects to the Laptop Dock, and it's quite quick to boot up. Anything you were previously doing on your phone will be immediately launched on the Laptop Dock, transitioning them seamlessly. The Laptop Dock will also let you do a few things your phone can't do just yet: for example, watching hulu videos. For some reason, Hulu doesn't work on Android just yet, but it'll definitely let you watch it on Atrix's Laptop Dock. It also has Microsoft Office on it, allowing the work-oriented businesspeople to bring their spreadsheets and documents just about anywhere on this sleek device.

Cons: Quite expensive. Even with the $100 discount and the $100 rebate (assuming you bought the Motorola Atrix + Laptop Dock bundle for $500), you're looking at $300 for what is basically a netbook that can't function without the phone. Some say you're better off purchasing a tablet since it can do more, but that's up to you. For $300 though, I'd expect the Laptop Dock to have a bit more "kick" in it. It just seemed somewhat slow, laggy, and delayed. To top it all off, there's the fact that you need to pay a little extra each month for the tethering service that's required for the Laptop Dock.

Overall:

I like the phone, and it definitely gets the job done, whatever the job may be: phone calls, video calls, app-gaming, taking pictures and video, music management, or a social media outlet. The processing speed gets top-notch points, and I only wish I could say the same for the Laptop Dock.



Motorola Atrix Release Date - March 6, with Feb. 13 Pre-Order

clock February 4, 2011 00:25 by author Jeremy

That's right, you read that correctly - the phone that everyone's been buzzing about since CES finally has a release date. And pricing, too!

The total cost is $200, but that's just for the phone itself (and a two-year agreement, of course). However, for $600 (with a $100 mail-in-rebate), you can get the phone and the Laptop Dock; by itself, the Laptop Dock can be bought later for $500. Also, be sure you can afford to pay for it monthly - having the bundle means adding on the extra cost of Data Pro smartphone data plan and the tethering add-on. Ouch.

Also available is the HD Multimedia Dock, which comes with a Bluetooth keyboard, Bluetooth mouse, and remote control. All yours for $190.

Plus, U-Verse customers can download TV shows to their Atrix, and watch it straight from their phone (or connected device). Any non-U-Verse customer who owns an Atrix can still watch live TV from their Atrix U-Verse TV application, available for $10/month.

I know this all sounds costly, but that's the price for having media available anytime, anywhere. I know I'll be getting one. :)

Source: prnewswire.com

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Motorola Unveils the Atrix 4G

clock January 6, 2011 00:20 by author Jeremy

Of all that's happened at CES and AT&T's Developer Summit so far, one particular bit caught my attention: the Motorola Atrix. Perhaps it's because my iPhone 3G is starting to resemble a dumbphone instead of a smartphone (thanks to the number of times I've dropped it - at least you know it's durable!), or perhaps it's the specs of the Atrix. Either way, I'm hooked.

So what's so special about this phone, you ask? Let's take a look at the pictures that the lovely engadget crew attained during the press event (thanks engadget!):

...abuh? Did that screen just say dual-core processor? Let's throw on top of that, the fact that this device apparently comes with 1 GB of ram (double-take: ...abuh?), and a 1930mAh battery (triple-take: ...abuh?!). This thing is probably going to run better than my laptop.

"Today we are partnering to create a brand new category for consumers. We think it's a new paradigm for mobile," said Sanjay Jha, Motorola's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, just minutes before showing the crowd the new "webtop" and "laptop dock".

Webtop is an application on the phone that allows for full internet (including tabs!), keyboard, and mouse usage; when paired with the Laptop Dock (which comes at a thin size of 13.9mm), you can use its keyboard and gain a bigger screen. The phone is connected to the back of the Laptop Dock.

And in case the Laptop Dock attachment is too much for you, the HD Dock is a smaller unit that looks like it can be plugged into a computer monitor.

As nifty as this phone is, there's no official release date as of yet. Motorola is scheduled to have another press event at CES, so perhaps more details will be posted then. But for now, just know that this thing is a powerhouse.

UPDATE: AT&T has posted the Atrix 4G on their website! Click for details. Full specs shown!

    - Up to 48 GB of memory

    - Front-facing 5 megapixel camera

    - Fingerprint recognition

Source: engadget at AT&T Developer's Summit

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