Samsung Galaxy S III to be announced in first half of 2012 but not at MWC

It has been a while since I posted any Android related news here so there you have it: According to an official Samsung statement the hotly anticipated Samsung Galaxy SIII will be announced in the first half of 2012 closer to its retail launch and not during MWC later this month unlike it’s predecessor the Galaxy S III which was announced there and released nearly 6 months later.

“Samsung is looking forward to introducing and demonstrating exciting new mobile products at Mobile World Congress 2012. The successor to the Galaxy S2 smartphone will be unveiled at a separate Samsung-hosted event in the first half of the year, closer to commercial availability of the product.”

I would also like to point out that I unfortunately won’t be able to go to MWC this year because of my full time job (unless something changes between now and then..).

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Why Android is laggy compared to Windows Phone 7 and iOS

I just came across the best in-depth explanation regarding the well known UI performance issues that Android exhibits even on really high-end devices compared to modest hardware running Windows Phone 7 or iOS. The lengthy post was written down by Andrew Munn (in response to Google’s Dianne Hackborn’s earlier post about GPU HW accel in Android here) who was an intern on Android team (and who is interning on the Windows Phone Team at Microsoft next month). There are a couple of errors in his description of the way iOS handles the UI thread so keep that in mind when reading him. Other than that it’s a fairly accurate view of why Android is and most probably will never be ass efficient as iOS and Windows phone when rendering UIs simply because of early design choices when the framework was created. Throwing more processing power seems to be the only solution so far (plus the addition of HW acceleration in so parts of the OS in Honeycomb and ICS).

There are three main causes:

- The UI rendering isn’t done in a separate dedicated high priority thread but in the main thread with normal priority instead
- GC (Garbage Colector) / Timing issues.
- Lack of Hardware acceleration in the vast majority of the OS and the way UI rendering is handled: “On iOS, each UI view is rendered separately and stored in memory, so many animations only require the GPU to recomposite UI views. GPUs are extremely good at this. Unfortunately, on Android, the UI hierarchy is flattened before rendering, so animations require every animating section of the screen to be redrawn.”

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HTC announces first wave of phones that will receive Ice Cream Sandwich

HTC has just unveiled the name of the phones included in the first wave of Ice Cream Sandwich update roll out. The handsets listed below will receive the ICS Android 4.0 in early 2012:

- HTC Sensation
- HTC Sensation XL
- HTC Sensation XE
- HTC Rezound
- HTC EVO 3D
- HTC EVO Design 4G
- HTC Amaze 4G

You will also note that they are all based on the MSM826X platform.

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