We have known about Toshiba’s plans to launch tablet computers for a long time. There were reports about the company’s work on a SmartPad tablet PC last month. The device was expected to feature a multitouch display along with comprehensive multimedia features.
There is now word about a new Android 2.2 tablet named Toshiba Folio 100. The device is learned to have a 10.1-inches multitouch display with 1024×600 pixel resolution, an NVIDIA Tegra 2 chip, 16GB storage space with SDHC card support for 32GB, support for Adobe Flash, 3G, Wi-Fi b/g/n and Bluetooth. The device is expected to be equipped with a battery that will offer close to 7 hours of power backup.
The features sound interesting though there are no details available on the price and availability. However, it does sound similar to the Smartpad that was announced last month and it will be interesting to hear more from the company about the new device.
Flipkart, a popular Indian eCommerce portal, appears to have got hold of some interesting specs for Samsung Galaxy Tape, aka Tab – the company’s upcoming Android tablet computer. There are no pictures to back up the claim that this is the very same device. But if the specs are anything to go by, it looks pretty close. So this is the claim – a 7″ display with 1024×600 pixel Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen resolution, a 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A8 processor, 16GB storage expandable up to 32GB, a front-facing camera with video calling feature and support for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and USB.
The launch date and price of this Android 2.2 device has not been put up and so I am actually skeptical if the retailer is going to get this device in the near term at all. Nevertheless, this is what we are talking about – a demo unit being tested in the wild.
Adobe has pulled out the beta out of their Flash 10.1 for Mobile devices making the public version of the multimedia platform now available for download from the Android market. The new update will allow any user with a handset running Android 2.2 to upgrade to the latest version.
But before you get all excited, here’s the disclaimer. The update is at present being made visible only to Nexus One owners. But in all probability, users of other handsets must also start seeing the update option becoming available on their handsets.
If you are wondering where to go looking for it, Adobe Flash 10.1 is available in APK format – that’s the Android app format. You can install these apps from Android market using Apps Installer.
You may have not yet heard about this upcoming Android phone from HTC called the HTC Bee. But details about its specifications and features just got leaked. From what we know this is going to be an Android 2.2 FroYo handset that will feature the characteristic HTC Sense UI version 1.6.
Specs on the phone include a Qualcomm MSM7625 chipset, a 528MHz processor, a RAM with 384MB capacity and a ROM with 512MB capacity. The device will be equipped with a 3.2-inches QVGA display with resolution of 240×320 pixels. With a battery capacity of 1300mAh, you can’t really expect extraordinary power backup. Nevertheless, with other features like a 5-megapixel camera with flash, I’m sure a lot of customers are going to give this unit a second look.
Everything depends on the price though and once we get to hear about it, and the launch date, we can make an educated guess of how successful this one could turn out to be.
There was a lot of hype (well, not a lot, but still) surrouding Google’s mobile event scheduled for August 12. Since Google had mentioned “a couple of cool features“, we guessed there were two and that those could be a video calling feature a-la FaceTime as well as a device locator feature like ‘Find my iPhone’.
Alas, it turned out be neither and instead, Google has launched a new ‘Voice Actions‘ feature for Android 2.2 and above. This feature will allow users to navigate to various apps by simply talking to the phone. So next time you want to send a text message to your dad, just speak out ‘Send text to Dad’ and your Android phone will send the message to your contact named ‘Dad’. On similar lines, you may launch songs, voice calls, websites, find directions,etc. simply by speaking to your phone.
Is this cool? Maybe. But is it useful? I doubt. For one thing, such voice based applications have been tried in the past as well and one major trouble is in these applications understanding the semantics of what the user wants. The user is going to try the app as long as the novelty exists but is soon going to get tired of the software’s inability.
Even if Google had in fact ironed out these issues, another major issue to deal with is privacy. Users really do not want the world to know who they want to message to, or what website to visit. With features like ‘Recent contacts’, ‘drop down address bar’,etc. available on most phones today, navigating is not really a difficult proposition and most users love to do it the conventional way. The only area where this may be really useful is in the GPS application while the user may be comfortable speaking the location out.
What are your views? Do you think this is going to be something revolutionary?
Of course, you cannot compare a smartphone with a tablet PC. But then, when you are only comparing one aspect that is common in the devices – browser speed in this case, I think it is pretty fair and relevant.
I just came across this interesting video that is quite revealing. As you can see, the Samsung Galaxy S loads websites significantly quicker than the iPad. As is noted in the video, the Galaxy is running Android 2.2 while the iPad is assumed to be running the latest iPad OS.
Apple is speculated to announce iOS 4 for the iPad in the next few weeks. A Brazilian website had claimed last week that this announcement could be made as early as next week when the new iPod Touch could be announced. Considering that Android 2.2 is the latest from Google, it will be interesting to see how the phone would compare in browser speed with an iPad running the latest iOS 4.
Ok, so we are finally here. Verizon’s latest Droid phone – the Motorola Droid 2 is finally available for sale online. The device is expected to go on sale in stores starting tomorrow. So if you are one of those eagerly looking to review the features and price before you head to the stores, here is what you will need.
Motorola Droid 2 is an Android OS 2.2 phone that is powered by 1GHz OMAP 3600 processor. With respect to memory, you will get a full 8GB of flash memory along with 512MB for RAM. This apart, the phone will also come with a 5-megapixel camera, a 3.7-inches capacitive touchscreen display, a sliding QWERTY keyboard, a pre-installed 8GB microSD card and a 3.5 mm headset jack. The device is powered by an 1400 mAh battery.
Rooting an Android phone has its advantages. The process will allow you to gain super user status thus allowing you to install and run applications outside the Android marketplace on your Android device. However, there are also risks to this process since it may void your warranty besides possible bricking of your device.
If you have rooted your Samsung Galaxy S i9000 and are looking for a way to unroot the device, this one-click solution will help you with the process. Please note that you will need a Windows based computer to proceed. Also, this procedure is meant for Android 2.1 Eclair and may not work if you are running Android 2.2 Froyo on your Galaxy S.
Step 2 : Click and install the .NET application on your computer
Step 3 : On your Samsung Galaxy phone, navigate to Menu -> Settings -> Applications -> USB Debugging. Here, enable the USB debugging option. You may be offered a warning message. Tap OK to proceed with the unroot process
Step 4 : Connect your Galaxy phone to the Windows computer. If the Kies software autoruns, close it. Your phone will now detect the appropriate Samsung driver and install it
Step 5 : With Galaxy connected to your computer, double click on the One-Click root file to start the unroot process. You will be shown the following window
Click on the ‘One-Click Unroot 2.1‘ option
Step 6 : The application will now take you through several lines of messages and notifications. Finally the application will complete the unrooting process for the handset.
You are done. Disconnect your phone to complete the process.
There are more than one rooting solutions available for Samsung Galaxy phones including T-Mobile Vibrant and AT&T Captivate. But if you are looking at a one-click solution for rooting your Samsung Galaxy S i9000, then here is a way out – a guide that can get your system rooted in less then five minutes.
But before you proceed, please do note the caveats – You risk losing your warranty and could also potentially brick your phone. So unless you are absolutely sure, don’t try it. The procedure is compatible with Samsung Galaxy S i9000 running either Android 2.1 or Android 2.2. (We have a number of articles covering the other Samsung Galaxy variants. Click here to check out these articles)
Once done, install the .NET application.
Step 2 : One your Galaxy S, navigate to Menu -> Settings -> Applications -> USB Debugging to enable the USB debugging option. You will be displayed a warning message. Tap OK to proceed.
Step 3 : Connect the Galaxy S to your computer. If the Kies software begins its autorun, close the application.
Step 4 : The phone will now detect the driver tools that were downloaded earlier and install them
Step 5 : Now double click and run the One click root file downloaded earlier
Step 6 : You will be prompted to choose the appropriate root tool. Click on 2.1 or 2.2 depending on the Android OS version installed on your Galaxy phone
Step 7 : The rooting process will now begin. You will be taken through a series of instructions and updates. You don’t have to do anything other than wait for the process to get completed.
The procedure is complete. You have rooted your Samsung Galaxy phone.
“Easy Root” – an easy one-click solution for users looking to root Android 2.2 on their Motorola Droid, Droid-X and Milestone has reportedly been removed from the Android Marketplace. While I have not been able to try the app out myself, the app presumably offers an easy way for non-techie users of these Android handsets to be able to root their Motorola phones. Unlike most other rooting applications, Easy Root does not require users to connect their handsets to a computer. Instead, they were required to download the $1 app from the Marketplace and tap ‘Root Me‘ to get started.
Interestingly though, it is Google and not the developer who has pulled the app from the marketplace. The reasoning is not exactly clear since rooting is now legal and hence Google – a company that extolls open source – should have no problem with letting a rooting application on their marketplace.
There are speculations though that the app may have been removed because it used Google’s open source for profit-making motives. A user on the Google support thread notes,
“I was told that the reason it was suspended is because it used googles source code and made a profit using the source code only which i actually think is against the EULA.”
While I cannot vouch for the credibility of the statements, that definitely appears to be a valid reason though. Will the developer relaunch this app as a free download? Possible. Let’s wait and watch.