This morning Facebook announced improvements to their iPhone and Android apps, as well as changes to how they handle their sign-on platform. First, the new Groups and Places features are now fully integrated into both apps, which also brings up the Android app to be on par with the iPhone one. This will allow you to take part of all those groups while on the go. Their mobile apps hadn't been updated in a while, so it's good to see the company commit themselves to the mobile space. As a side note, they did comment that Facebook had no plan to make a phone of their own, preferring to instead bring their platform to the devices that people use.
The second part of the announcement dealt with single sign-on. Mark Zuckerberg described the troubles and frustrations that entering usernames and passwords could be on a phone, and their approach to solving it. They are now providing developers with a way to integrate a single button that will log users to their services. Now, to log into any mobile site or service that supports this feature, all you'll have to do is click on the button "sign in with Facebook". No more username or password to remember. They showed the Groupon and Zynga apps which will support this feature soon, with many more on board.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab is one of the most hyped Android tablets of the season, and it's almost here. The device sports a 7-inch display and runs Android 2.2. Samsung is claiming you'll get 7 hours of battery life out of the Galaxy Tab, which isn't bad at all. Expect a front-facing camera, rear camera, and all the typical stuff you'd expect from Android (web, mail, Adobe Flash, 80,000 Android Marketplace apps.) While we've seen other Android based tablets come out this year, this is hailed as the first true iPad competitor.
The release date is this Monday, Nov 1st in the UK (that's today!), and it comes to North America later this month. Every major carrier will have it subsidized for around $400, with T-Mobile starting on Nov 10, following with Sprint on Nov 14 and then Verizon and US Cellular later on. Amazon also just added it to their listings for $699 without contract.
It's clear that this device is going to have a strong demand, it's the best tablet out there that isn't named "iPad," and with the holidays right around the corner, we're expecting this one to be a success for Samsung.
Read More | Samsung Galaxy Tab
Earlier this week Engadget came out with some exclusive pictures and various facts about what everyone is now calling the Sony Playstation Phone.However, there are many details that indicate that this can't be a so called "PSP Phone". Some of those details, like the fact that it's running Android, came out right at the front. Since the PSP isn't running on Android, that means each game would need to be converted or ported over, which seems unlikely.
Another such detail came out today, and that is the platform that this new phone seems to be using, something called "Z-System". There isn't much known about it yet, but several people have pointed to the label in one of the leaked shots, and it does seem to indicate that this is Sony's attempt at starting a new platform. Whether it will be successful is a matter of debate, but it's obvious that Sony is struggling with the mobile Playstation brand, as the PSP and PSP Go haven't exactly been runaway hits. Maybe a phone that runs ports of Playstation Portable titles on an Android device running the Z-System layer is just the kick in the pants that they need?
Read More | Engadget
Barnes & Noble just announced the nook Color, their next-generation color touchscreen nook ebook reader with 7-inch display, powered by Android. They're saying it's a cross between a tablet device and e-reader, and it'll obviously integrate with a bunch of web services and apps (it's already got Facebook and Twitter integration.) Wi-Fi (but not 3G) is built right in, and the display is impressive at 1024x600 resolution with IPS technology and supporting 16 million colors which B&N refers to as "VividView." The nook Color will ship on November 19th, and you can pre-order it now for $249.
Read More | nook Color
With more than 45 million smartphone and tablet users nationwide and ABI Research predicting that 6 billion mobile applications will be downloaded this year alone, businesses, especially those looking to reach consumers, have been frenzied about launching mobile offerings. In the past several years, much of the buzz surrounding the mobile space has been about the iPhone. With the debut of the iPhone 4 earlier this year, many businesses continue to focus their mobile strategy resources solely on this much-hyped operating system. In fact, a recent Kony Solutions survey of Fortune 500 corporations found that a staggering 85% of respondents ranked the iPhone as their top priority device for mobile support.
However, the current mobile landscape is quite fragmented - given the sheer number of handsets available to consumers - and the market isn’t necessarily dominated by the iPhone. A 2010 Gartner report estimated that the iPhone holds just 2.7% of the mobile market share. Notably, Android has surpassed Apple’s iOS, and comScore recently reported that RIM actually continues to capture the most smartphone market share (although Apple just announced that they've surpassed RIM for Q4 2010.) As such, the true market share of the iPhone doesn’t warrant the resources and strategy being dedicated solely to this device by Fortune 500 corporations, and companies in this position stand to lose more than 97% of mobile customers.
No, this has nothing to do with our Windows Phone 7 review, so don’t go selling your Google stock just yet. What we have here is a three inch limited edition vinyl collectible in the form an undead vampire Android mascot. This collectible will have a rotating head as well as movable arms, and a Halloween-themed window box. A vampire Android desktop wallpaper can also be downloaded for free to get you in the blood sucking mood this 31st. Get your hands on a dead Android this Halloween at 2pm EST.
Read More | Dead Zebra
Daily deal site Tippr has got a deal today that should have music lovers taking notice. They’re offering six months of Rhapsody Premiere for $39, which is a 35% discount. Rhapsody normally costs $10 per month, so this is a nice deal. The subscription allows you access to over 10 million songs that you can listen to whenever you’d like using the Rhapsody website, client, and apps for the iPhone, iPod touch, and Android. It’s pretty much the ability to listen to any song at any time, regardless of where you are. Not bad.
Read More | Save 35% on Rhapsody
Sony announced via their website their desire to find an engineer with “experience in mobile development, specifically Android”, as well as with a “knowledgeable experience of online gaming.” While no direct conclusions can be drawn from Sony’s optimal candidate characteristics, it is not far fetched to speculate on the possibility of Sony aiming to counter gaming services on other mobile devices, namely Xbox Live. How they will pull off this is not known, but we expect it to work similar to the upcoming Xbox Live phone integration, with possibly even more of a focus on gaming itself. All of a sudden, the wait for Android 3.0 is on.
The Samsung Epic 4G is the second phone from Sprint to take advantage of their speedier 4G service, the original being the EVO 4G. The Epic 4G is part of Samsung’s Galaxy S line of Android smartphones, although visually it’s a departure from others like the Samsung Captivate, Fascinate, and Vibrant from other carriers. You do still get the TouchWiz 3.0 interface, 1GHz Hummingbird processor, and the 4-inch Super AMOLED display. So what’s different, aside from the phone being able to access Sprint’s 4G network? Well, it’s a Galaxy S phone with a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard. So, is it worth your time—and more importantly—your money? We’ve got our full review for you, so click on through.
Today, Sprint launched the Samsung Epic 4G smartphone, their second Android phone that can tap into their 4G network. We have our hands on the device, and we’ve taken a bunch of shots to show off Samsung’s only QWERTY keyboard-sporting Galaxy S device. We know you want to get to our Epic 4G review ASAP, but do take a moment and check out the Epic 4G unboxing gallery we’ve put together to really get an idea of the look of the thing, won’t you?