T-Mobile G2x owners, get ready, because an Android 2.3 Gingerbread update is on its way to your devices. In fact, you may have already seen the update hit your smartphones by now--if not, don't fret, the OTA rollout will hit yours soon. Expect improved battery life, and improvements with the front-facing camera, among other bug fixes.
The Status is a small Android 2.3-based smartphone with a horizontal 480-by-320, 2.6-inch touch screen and a keyboard on the front. Its most important feature, though, is the dedicated Facebook logo button near the bottom of the phone. You can press the button to immediately share what you're doing or where you are, whether you're sharing a photo you just took, an interesting Web page, or a status update.
Facebook chat, which is missing from many phone versions of Facebook, is plumbed in here, and a home-screen widget shows if your friends are available. When you get a call, the caller's Facebook status pops up on the screen.
This is also a full-fledged Android phone, of course, with the latest version of HTC's Sense UI, which is widely considered to be the most thoughtful of the manufacturer Android software extensions. For example, you can jump immediately to popular apps from the lock screen by dragging a ring over the app's icon, an HTC-exclusive feature.
Our Deal of the Day today with focuses on an 82% discount on the Motorola Droid X2. Seriously, this is a newly-released dual-core Android device selling at just $89.99 with shipping included. How could we not post this?:
On the heels of yesterday's heady HTC Sensation 4G announcement, T-Mobile announced Thursday that it is coming out with its second Android 2.3, aka Gingerbread, device this month, the Samsung Exhibit 4G.
Not only does it cost half the price of the HTC Sensation, it actually runs on 4G speed, which T-Mobile defines as HSPA+ 21. The Sensation, meanwhile, is stuck on HSPA+ 14.4.
For a modest $79.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate and two-year contract, the Samsung Exhibit 4G comes with a 1-GHz processor, touch screen keyboard, 3-megapixel rear-facing camera, front-facing photo camera with pre-installed video chat, Flash-supported Web browsing, microSD slot, and best of all, theoretical speeds of 21 Mbps. Or perhaps this is the best part: the phone also comes pre-loaded with Bejeweled 2, Hasbro's Scrabble, and Doodle Jump.
The Exhibit comes in black or violet, and is expected to hit stores sometime in June, T-Mobile said.
The Deal of the Day today features the newly-released Xperia Play Android smartphone from Sony Ericcson. This is the first Playstation-certified mobile phone (which is why many have dubbed it the Playstation Phone) which is awesome in itself, but what's even better is the price. You end up saving $400 on the Xperia Play full price, and $100 off the two-year contract price as well. This is the best price we've seen for the Xperia Play. If you're looking for a great Android device that also doubles as what pretty much amounts to a PSP, this is your phone. Aside from playing Playstation games, this is one of the new devices that's running Android 2.3 Gingerbread out of the box. Other specs include a Snapdragon II 1GHz CPU with Adreno 205 GPU, 5MP camera w/ autofocus & LED flash on back (VGA front-facing), 8GB microSD card pre-installed (up to 32GB supported), stereo sound, support for multi-player gaming, and more:
In response to impatient customer questions on the Motorola Support forum, an employee responded that the company "cannot provide exact dates."
"I can say that the Droid X update is currently scheduled to be released before the end of the second quarter of this year or sooner. The other updates are currently scheduled to be released before the end of the third quarter or sooner."
"The above estimates are dependant on Verizon approving the OTA (over the air) updates," the spokesperson continued.
The finest Android phone we've seen so far, the Samsung Galaxy S II isn't just a competitor to the current iPhone. It competes with the next iPhone. The Galaxy S II is the fastest Android device we've ever tested, with the best screen, the best camera, and the latest version of Android software. It's a pity that few people in the U.S. will buy it, because it's only available unlocked, with no carrier subsidies, for $799. That's simply too high a price in a nation where people are used to buying top-of-the-line smartphones for $199. Click on through for our full review of the Galaxy S II.
Verizon customers now have two 4G Android smartphones to choose from: the HTC Thunderbolt, and the $299.99 Samsung Droid Charge, which is Samsung's first LTE device, and first officially designated Droid device for Verizon. The two cell phones are pretty similar, but not identical. While the HTC Thunderbolt retains a slight edge, you'll be thrilled with either device.
Barnes & Noble is readying an updated e-reader, the company revealed in a recent Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
"In a meeting with investor analysts on May 4, 2011, Barnes & Noble ... indicated it expects to make an announcement on May 24, 2011 regarding the launch of a new eReader device," the notice said.
The company provided no other details about what the updated e-reader might entail. The last major Nook upgrade was the Nook Color (pictured above,) which started shipping in November. The Android-based device includes a 7-inch touch screen and access to more than 2 million titles, as well as an extra-wide viewing angle intended for sharing. The screen boasts 1,024-by-600 resolution and 169 pixels per inch. It comes with 8GB of storage, expandable up to 32GB with a microSD card.
In late April, Barnes & Noble pushed out a major software update to the Nook Color, which included its own app store, an email client, the ability to play Flash video, and enhanced books. It also added support for Android 2.2 "Froyo" and Adobe Flash video.
At this week's BlackBerry World trade show, everyone expected the top headliner to be the company's just-released PlayBook tablet and its new software offerings. As it turned out, the gadget ended up taking second spot to a surprise guest: Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer.
Ballmer came out during RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis' keynote yesterday morning to announce a partnership that would bring Microsoft's Bing search engine to BlackBerries. Search is a big deal in mobile devices, so it's fitting that a heavy hitter from Microsoft came to give its blessing, but many took the appearance of the CEO as a clear sign of bigger things to come.
Does RIM know what it's in for, though? There's considerable doubt over whether the company's strategy and platforms can be successful over the next couple of years. If they're not, Microsoft could end up owning RIM.
"Will Microsoft buy RIM? That is a possibility and a fast track for Microsoft to gain a foothold in the mobile hardware business," says Harry Wang, director of mobile research at Parks Associates. "RIM's market capitalization is only $25 billion and Microsoft has $48 billion in cash. If RIM's value drops to $15 billion, it will become an attractive target for Microsoft. Maybe Steve Ballmer was planting that seed during his keynote appearance at Blackberry World."
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