HTC Desire HD, Desire Z, Desire and Incredible S to receive Android 2.3 Gingerbread update in Q2 2011

Good news for all the current and future HTC owners who are eagerly waiting the official Gingerbread update for their device. HTC is said to be working on releasing it for the HTC Desire HD, HTC Desire Z, Desire and HTC Incredible S in Q2 2011.

“We are excited to announce that the HTC Desire HD, Desire Z, Desire and Incredible S will receive the Gingerbread update in Q2.”

The wording of the news isn’t really clear and I’m not even sure if it’s the original Desire or the upcoming Desire S which is going to get the Android 2.3 OTA update. It would definitely suck if the HTC Desire didn’t get it given the fact that it’s essentially an HTC branded Google Nexus One. On the other hand I would be surprised if the upcoming HTC Desire S didn’t receive the update either. An official statement from HTC is definitely need to clarify the situation (like a press release..).

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One more Samsung Galaxy S II hands on video

You may have noticed that it’s a relatively slow news weekend here (yeah I’m not feeling like posting every single bit of WP7 related rumor / chatter lately..) so I decided to dig into my Mobile World Congress stash and post a second Samsung Galaxy S II hands on video for your viewing pleasure. There’s definitely nothing amazing in there ‘just all everything that came out of MWC this year unfortunately) but if you are still craving for some Exynos 4210 action just hit the break to check it out.

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Sony Ericsson Xperia Play Preview: hands on video and gameplay

Wondering what’s inside Sony Ericsson’s first PlayStation Certified handset? Just check out the full software and hardware specifications here. Now let me give you my first hands on impression of the Xperia Play after playing with it for a couple of minutes earlier this week. The build quality seemed to be relatively solid but a bit too much plasticy or my taste and the two L and R trigger button on the top of the device really felt cheap because of this. The 4 inch FWVGA (854×480) screen looks really nice thought and had good viewing angles for an LCD (I’m guessing that it’s the same as on the Sony Xperia Arc (hands-on video coming soon..) and similar to the SLCD found on HTC’s latest devices (but Sony Ericsson loves to called this Bravia something.. marketing..you know..).

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Sony Ericsson Xperia Play specifications

As you probably already know by now the much anticipated PSP Phone aka the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play was officially unveiled a few days ago in Barcelona during Mobile World Congress. But what is inside the first PlayStation Certified handset? Just hit the break to check out the exhaustive list of features and hardware specifications of the device. You can then go and check out my hands on preview and video here.

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Samsung Galaxy S II Preview, hardware specifications and hands on video

Let’s just start by saying that Samsung’s Unpacked Keynote was one of the most boring a useless keynote I have ever attended. Thankfully for the company the products being unveiled vast overshadowed the lackluster presentation: not a single live demo, tons and tons of useless PR talk and even more PR talk (to make things worst the whole thing start one hour late and nobody ever told the audience what was going on). But let’s forget about this and concentrated on one of the most powerful handled device ever created: The Samsung Galaxy S II. So what’s so specially about it? Well, to put it simply: the hardware hardware specifications are just insane:

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Sony Ericsson Xperia Play officially unveiled in Super Bowl ad

Sony Ericsson has finally officially unveiled the Xperia Play (also known as the PSP phone) in a TV commercial which just aired during the Super Bowl. The Android device is going to be officially announced on February 13th in Barcelona just ahead of Mobile World Congress and I’ll be there to cover the event. As you probably already know the Xperia play will feature a Qualcomm MSM8255 SoC with the Adreno 205 GPU and be the first device to be compatible with PlayStation certified games. Checkout the cool and creepy TV ad after the break:

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Early Sony Ericsson PSP PlayStation Phone Xperia Play Review

IT168 posted an extensive review of the upcoming Sony Ericsson PlayStation Phone aka Xperia Play aka Zeus Z1 today. Beware that this is based on a non-retail version of the product so things can change between now and when the device finally launches. The phone features an MSM8255 SoC which includes the Adreno 205 GPU so the performance should be on par with the HTC Desire HD and it’s US cousins the HTC Thunderbolt and HTC Inspire 4G but only 512Mb of Rom and 512MB of Ram ‘the device runs Android 2.3). The phone also features a 4 inch 854×480 screen, 1500Mah battery and 5Mpix camera with LED flash. So as you can see there’s nothing to fancy here besides the sliding gamepad. Seeral benchmarks have been done but you won’t learn anything new there (performance is as expected). Check out some videos after the break:

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Sony Ericsson Sony Ericsson PlayStation Zeus Z1 / Xperia Play phone in the wild again

The Sony Ericsson PlayStation Phone aka Zeus Z1 aka Xperia Play has once again shown its face in the wild today. As you can see in the pictures the Xperia & PlayStation branding is now plastered on the device which could mean that what we are seeing here is probably final hardware. There’s still no word on when it will officially be announced but It’s either going to be at this week’s CES or next month’s MWC. More picture after the break:

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Hands On video of the upcoming Android Music Player application

The stock Android Music Player application that was briefly shown during Google I/O back in May has just been leaked to the Internet a few hours ago so I decided to shoot a quick hands-on video to show you how it looks like. First you should remember that this is no final code at all and the many features are broken or seem to be missing (especially the wireless syncing/streaming features). I’m guessing that the application was developed by the Cooliris guys who also did the stock Picture gallery application for Google more than a year ago. So I don’t really see how people are claiming that this is how the Android 3.0 / Honeycomb UI may look like… Anyway check out the video of the app running on the Samsung Galaxy S after the break (I also quickly compared it to WP7′s Zune player on the Omnia 7):

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Sony Ericsson PlayStation Zeus Z1 / Xperia Play phone hitting stores in April ?

According to Pocket-Lint’s “sources” the highly anticipated Sony Ericsson Xperia Play (seems to be the latest rumored name) is going to be announced during Mobile World Congress in February and hit carriers an retail stores in April. It still remains to be seen a single PlayStation handset with its own  Android Sony branded Marketplace will be a success against the Apple iOS devices and Windows Phone 7′s Xbox Live integration. You can see the device in action here and here.

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Google Nexus One to get Gingerbread Android 2.3 in a couple of weeks

Google Nexus One owners will apparently have to wait a couple more weeks before Gingerbread aka Android 2.3 is pushed out to their device according to Google. There’s obviously nothing stopping the impatient ones to installed one of the freshly baked Gingerbread ROMs found on XDA (like on the Galaxy S and HTC HD2) but my opinion is that a few more days to wait is the price to pay for something stable and rock solid. So just chill and have some nice holidays.

Android 2.3 Gingerbread for the Samsung Galaxy S and HTC HD2 already out in the wild

It didn’t take long for the XDA boys to port Android 2.3 aka Gingerbread on the Samsung Galaxy S and also the HTC HD2. Don’t get to excited yet thought because those are still early preview builds that can’t really be used because of missing features and bugs. In the case of the Samsung Galaxy S the ROM is based on the Nexus S kernel:

Which filesystem ?
This early preview runs on Ext4. no RFS at all, the kernel don’t support RFS.
Does everything work ?
Nope, but I must admit I didn’t expect such a result.
Don’t work: GPS / Voice / Wifi / some Buttons / camera
Work: everything else: like sound, GL acceleration etc
Will it work ?
I think most of it will work after countless hours spent on it.
Is it flashable with Odin ?
That’s a good idea , i think i’ll do that tomorrow.

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Android 2.3 Gingerbread source code available

Google has just made available the source code of Android 2.3 aka gingerbread on its Android Open Source Project website so that partners and ISVs can now download it and start working on the latest version of the OS. Rom cookers can also start baking new Gingerbread new Roms for their favorite devices too. Other Than that there isn’t much to say given that this is primarily aimed and OEMs and developers. Don’t forge to download the latest version of GoogleMaps 5 thought because it’s uper awesome.

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Why did Google cripple the Google Nexus S ?

Sometimes I just can’t figure out why big companies (well mainly Microsoft lately) do stupid things. This week, it’s Google’s turn to take the cake with the Google Nexus S. As you probably already know, the Nexus S is nothing more than a Google branded Samsung Galaxy S with an added NFC chip and 16GB of on-board NAND flash memory. So what’s the big deal? Well the geniuses in Mountain View decided to strip the device from one of the Galaxy S’s best feature: 720P video capture (you can check out several Galaxy S HD samples and comparisons videos I shot in my YouTube Channel here). When the device’s specifications were first announced a few days ago I thought that maybe there was a typo and things were going to be corrected but unfortunately it turned out to be true and the Nexus S can only shoot videos at a max resolution of 720×480. Can anybody tell me why Google would do this? Seriously? The hardware can shoot 720P video with a 12Mbps bit-rate without breaking a sweat so what’s up with that? There’s nothing logical behind this decision. Everybody’s making a big fuss about the lack of micro-sd slot (so Google is now ”copying” Microsoft and Apple, right? ;) ) but strangely I’m not seeing  lot of drama about the crippling of the camera. All in all I don’t see why anybody should get a Nexus S instead of one of the Galaxy S variant currently on the market (besides the need for the currently useless NFC chip). I’m sure that Samsung will release an Android 2.3 rom later next year anyway (or you can count on xda-devs for that…).

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Sony Ericsson Zeus Z1 PlayStation phone shown on video again running 3D benchmark

The mysterious Sony Ericsson Zeus Z1 PlayStation phone just popped up in a new video tonight. This time we can watch it running the Qualcomm Neocore 3D Benchmark and post a relatively low score. But don’t really pay attention to this thought. As we have already seen a previous pictures and videos the prototype device is running either Android 2.2 or Android 2.3. Unfortunately the version of Neocore being used in the video is an older version (you can see 1-9-09 the upper right corner), the current version, which is officially Froyo compatible and available in the Android Market is numbered 1-9-22 so this is probably why you are seeing such a low score. Another thing is that the it’s also being run in 480×800 landscape mode (thus not rendering the same thing) so we can’t really compare it to devices running in regular portrait mode. anyway,check out the video after the break.
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Google Nexus S hands-on videos

Google’s latest and greatest, the Google Nexus S was officially unveiled last night and it didn’t take long before we saw the device in action. The fist video below is a demonstration of the NFC feature of the device and Android 2.3.The second video is a quick tour of the device. So what’s the big deal? Well not much IMO.The Nexus S is just a Google branded Samsung Galaxy S with 16GB of intetnal NAND memory and an NFC chip but wiouth a Micro-sd slot and no 720P video capture (according to the official specs).

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Google Nexus S officially launched: Full specifications and videos

Google has officially announced and released the Google Nexus S a few minutes ago alongside Android 2.3 (the DEvice will be availalbe on T-Mobile on December 16th). So what can you expect from this device? Well as it was previouslyrumored the Nexus S is basically a Google Branded Samsung Galaxy S with NFC support added, a weird curved Contour Display display and with Android 2.3 pre-installed on it. The Countour display is apparently a Super AMOLED panel with a curved glass on top (this is how it looks like to me). According to the official specs the Nexus S doesn’t support 720P HD video capture but I guess (hope) that this is a typo and there’s no micro-sd slot to expand the 16GB of internal flash….Anyway check out the full specs below followed by a presentation video:

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Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS announced and SDK released

 

Google has finally officially introduced Android 2.3 aka Gingerbread today. The new version of the leading smartphone OS packs a lot of new features that you will see highlighted in a video after the break but here’s a list of all the new Gingerbread features:

- UI refinements for simplicity and speed
- Faster, more intuitive text input
- One-touch word selection and copy/paste
- Improved power management
- Control over applications
- New ways of communicating, organizing:
1) Internet calling
2) Near-field communications (NFC support)
- Downloads management

- Improved Performances
- Native input and sensor events
- Gyroscope and other new sensors, for improved 3D motion processing
- Open API for native audio
- Native graphics management
- Native access to Activity lifecycle, window management
- Native access to assets, storage
- Robust native development environment

- Mixable audio effects

- Support for new media formats
- Access to multiple cameras

New Platform Technologies

Media Framework

  • New media framework fully replaces OpenCore, maintaining all previouscodec/container support for encoding and decoding.
  • Integrated support for the VP8 open video compression format and the WebMopen container format
  • Adds AAC encoding and AMR wideband encoding

Linux Kernel

  • Upgraded to 2.6.35

Networking

  • SIP stack, configurable by device manufacturer
  • Support for Near Field Communications (NFC), configurable by device manufacturer
  • Updated BlueZ stack

Dalvik runtime

  • Dalvik VM:
    • Concurrent garbage collector (target sub-3ms pauses)
    • Adds further JIT (code-generation) optimizations
    • Improved code verification
    • StrictMode debugging, for identifying performance and memory issues
  • Core libraries:
    • Expanded I18N support (full worldwide encodings, more locales)
    • Faster Formatter and number formatting. For example, float formatting is 2.5x faster.
    • HTTP responses are gzipped by default. XML and JSON API response sizes may be reduced by 60% or more.
    • New collections and utilities APIs
    • Improved network APIs
    • Improved file read and write controls
    • Updated JDBC
  • Updates from upstream projects:
    • OpenSSL 1.0.0a
    • BouncyCastle 1.45
    • ICU 4.4
    • zlib 1.2.5

Continue reading Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS announced and SDK released →

Sony Ericsson Zeus Z1 Playstation Phone shown on video

The previously leaked Sony Ericsson PlayStation Phone also known as the Sony Ericsson Zeus / Z1 has just made an appearnce on YouTube a few hours ago. The device looks indentical to the latest pictures we saw and apprently runs Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and I’m guessing that it will be officially unveiled during Mobile World Congress in February. Check out the first video after the break:

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