20
May
settings - about phone - thumbnail
Last Updated: June 5th, 2012

There has been a lot of speculation about the features of Android 2.2, codenamed “Frozen Yogurt” or “Froyo” for short. I have been fortunate enough to have had plenty of time to work with a 2.2 device, using it as my day-to-day smartphone.

Now that Froyo has been announced at Google IO, lifting the embargo on the non-disclosure agreement of what Android 2.2 brings to the general public, we are bringing you some notes on the new features I have been taking for granted for the past few weeks.

Quick update from the Android Blog: "Android 2.2 will be here soon, and some devices will get the update in the coming weeks." More official notes can be found here.

Features Announced At Google IO

  • Just-in-Time compiler confirmed
  • Microsoft Exchange integration including auto-discovery and remote wipe
  • New services just as data backup APIs for carriers to move your data from one device to another
  • Tethering announced for Wifi and USB, shown in demo, pokes fun at iPad; no word on whether carriers can disable it
  • 2x-3x performance boost in the Browser, new Javascript engine is SO much faster
  • Optimizations for using the camera, orientation (accelerometers) within the browser
  • Speech control and recognition is so much smoother, including Mandarin and Japanese, including speech recognition to make phone calls
  • Real-time language translation
  • Announced support for Flash Player 10.1 Public Beta and AIR developer pre-release, showed Flash working on Nickelodeon
  • New ways to work with apps:
    • Finding new apps (app search)
    • Searching data within apps (showed Mint.com app search)
    • Installing to SD memory with a “Move to SD card” button within the Application Info screen, demoed Need for Speed game
    • Update All and Auto-Update confirmed
    • Bug reporting, can view stack trace online
  • Sneak peak of new Android Marketplace, because demo user is logged in, you can view your installed apps and over-the-air app sync
  • New Marketplace feature: over-the-air music sync, a web-based iTunes competitor?
  • Sync your Android device with your iTunes library to live-stream your music to your device via Simplify Media

This following part of the write-up is based on a developer release of Android 2.2 Froyo and doesn't include some of the features announced at Google I/O, listed above.

It looks like some features were not disclosed at the conference, such as the color trackball and car dock enhancements.

New Feature: Speed

As we previously reported, Froyo got quite a speed boost, which is due to the Just-In-Time compiler. I’ve benchmarked the Nexus One as high as 39-and-change MFLOPS since our original post. Another benchmark I’ve been able to determine though: boot time is much faster. I clocked the Froyo-based Nexus One from first logo sequence through network connection in 72 seconds. My Android 2.1 Nexus One took over 120 seconds (two minutes) to fully boot and be ready for use. Similar apps are installed on both devices to keep this benchmark fair.

New Feature: Adobe Flash Support

This has been covered by Adobe and several other sites. Adobe has even gone to the trouble of compiling several mobile-friendly sites for major devices such as the Nexus One, Palm Pre and Motorola Droid which will lead users to web sites utilizing Flash. It’s uncertain yet when Flash 10.1 will be fully released; speculation is June 2010.

New Feature: “Update All”

The one feature on my Nexus One with Android 2.1, that I missed from my brief time using an iPhone, was the ability to launch an update process on several apps at one time. 4 taps per app to update them was time-consuming and frustrating. I am happy to say that Android 2.2 makes this functionality a reality, and here are the screenshots taken from my Nexus One:

Showing off the new "Update all" button Alerting you that, really, you should double-check permissions Shows a single download notification showing how many apps are being downloaded

From the screenshots above, we can see the new “Update all” button at the bottom of the Downloads panel of the Android Market. It’s important to note that the button only appears if you have multiple apps that do not need a *manual* update like the Bible reader which requires a permission change.

The second screenshot shows you an alert dialog which says:

Permissions changed

Permissions have changed for 1 of 7 apps with updates available.

Press OK to update 6 apps with no permission changes.

Please open remaining apps from the Downloads list to approve new permissions and start update.

OK / Cancel

Tapping the OK button begins the download process, as seen in the third screenshot. Once the apps have started downloading, you can exit the Market and multitask. If  you pull down the Notification bar at the top of the screen, you can get an update of which apps are still downloading, as seen in the fourth screenshot.

If several apps have permission changes, you will only see the “Update all” button if multiple apps need an update that do NOT have permission changes to review:

manual app updates

New Feature: Auto-Update Apps

Froyo also includes the means to let the user flag individual apps for auto-updates, provided that the permissions of the app do not change.

auto-update on an app you already have installed auto-update on a new app

New Feature: USB and Wifi Tethering

This has already been covered here at AndroidPolice.com. Android 2.2 will allow a device to act as a WiFi Hotspot, and also allow USB tethering to a computer to provide a single device with Internet access. I was unable to determine how many devices could connect to the hotspot, and the developer version of Android 2.2 only had ‘Open’ wifi working; the only option for encrypted wifi was WPA2-SPK and was not working properly.

New Feature: Colored Trackball

Though custom ROM builds such as Cyanogen have been doing this for a while, this is neat eye candy. This feature, of course, applies to the Nexus One, but other devices may gain some new comparable feature. While new Email and SMS notifications still cause the trackball to glow white, installing Twidroid showed a neat new feature: a BLUE trackball when a new tweet was downloaded -- talk about color/brand tie-in!

Twidroid makes the trackball glow blue Another blue trackbal photo

There does not seem to be any means to let the user customize the trackball color within the operating system.

Updated Feature: Friendlier USB Connectivity

While this may not be earth-shattering, Froyo has added some friendlier screens within the OS which new users may appreciate.

Dare to compare: Android 2.1:

USB connectivity on Android 2.1

And on Froyo:

usb 1 usb 2

The first photo gives you a friendlier message about USB connectivity, and a second screen with an Android mascot of a different color with a warning to ‘eject’ the device from your computer first.

It’s important to note that the user still has to manually pull down the Notification bar and tap the icon to connect via USB.

Updated Feature: Car Docking

Froyo updated the layout of the Car Home app when the Nexus One is placed in the Google Car Dock. The Android 2.1 screen looked like this:

Android 2.1 car dock

And the new Froyo screen looks like this:

android 2.2 car dock

Main changes:

  • The Directions button is the same as the View Map button from 2.1, and you can access Navigation from within the Google Maps app that gets launched.
  • Added a Music icon
  • Added a Phone icon
  • Removed the text search icon
  • Modified the Home button with an Exit Car Mode button

Other changes I noted was that once you exit Car Home mode, tapping the Home button on the Nexus One does not return you to Car Home mode, it keeps you at the basic Android desktop; you need to manually restart the Car Home application.

It was also a nice surprise to see that while in the Google Car Dock, the main Android Desktop is also rotated, something that 2.1 was not capable of.

2.2 desktop rotates when in car dock
  • Marcos

    My question is: I have a Samsung Galaxy; could I update Android for version 2.2?

  • Joe

    I'm blown away that all they are doing is "announcing" 2.2 (which we already knew they would do and pretty much already knew what it included) and NOT actually release it today. Can someone actually tell me what the point of that is? Gonna be a lot of ticked of N1 owners today.

    • Al

      It's a developer preview/unveiling. The point is to show off the biggest and newest features.

      I can understand Nexus 1 owners (myself included) being eager for FroYo, but some seem as if they need it or something terrible will happen to them. Just have a look at some of the threads on xda.

    • afeatheredsnake

      It is released. I just installed it!! DROID X

  • ppedulla

    does it improve overall wifi issues - I had the phone for a bit and noticed it could not hold a wifi connection to save its life?

    • maxy

      Me too - since I got the 2.2 upgrade it can NOT hold a wifi connection to save its life.. help!

  • http://twitter.com/aaronhutchinson Aaron

    One question. Nexus One- WHEN?

  • dukezone

    Aaaawwwww no FM radio :-/ but all the rest is joy!

  • franco

    will g1 get 2.2?

  • Android

    RightToLeft languges support?

  • http://None.com Dean

    Ian,
    When is the Motorola Droid and Nexus One getting the update???

  • Patrick

    will the samsung I5700 spica get 2.2?

  • Sam

    Check it Out Guys :- Android 2.2 Running On Htc Hero GSM Version

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_Bir6OldNM

  • f0rky

    Awesome, but will the SSL cert issues be resolved?

    When will we get more crypher's and a better default cacerts.bks without having to root our phones?

  • amit

    no way. where is the radioFm??
    they promise!!!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      They never promised FM radio.

  • DanielR

    So have they added proxy support yet?

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Nope.

  • Bryan

    All that cool stuff, but will I be able to accept a meeting invitation!!!!

  • David

    I don't know what is wrong with your N1, article author, but my phone boots in 48-53 seconds (tested 3 times) flat for full network connectivity on 2.1. Sounds like you need to remove some of your startup-hog apps.

  • comercy

    How about muti-touch problem in Nexus One?Is it fixed in the froyo?

  • unzim

    What about call screen? long names shown? is it possible to show last name first?

  • kurkosdr

    FAIL... Yes, that's right, fail.

    Everybody plus dog waited to see the rumored universal upgrade feature, which would allow developers and users to have a common reference base, but eventually nothing happened.

    Yes, the new 2.2 has the ability to turn the phone into a wifi hotspot, order pizzas online and other stuff like that.

    But if something is not done to solve the upgrade problem, so that we don't have rusty 1.6 phones still lurking around (and so that developers won't have to backport apps to 1.6), then Android is losing one of it's advantages over iphone. Long story short, Android is turning from an OS to a software library phone makers are free to loot.

    PS: Is it just me, or is Google is behaving a little Apple-ish lately?? It wouldn't be a surprise to me if the admitted they purposely don't ship a universal upgrade feature, as not to anger HTC from the lost sales this would cause (if everybody just upgrades their old htc's, there would be less incentive to buy new)

  • Jeferson

    More new stuff:
    - a market widget;
    - now we have 2 landscape positions :D

  • MAK

    Any proxy settings option included in Froyo 2.2 version.For Wi-fi and Browser.

  • mason

    Will their be more than three homescreens on droid?

  • Micro-Wise

    The 2.2 is all well and good, but I come from the BB world and I want direct USB syncing of Outlook??? or I'll be forced to go back to my Storm... yes I've tried after market bandaids and they're more trouble than there worth...

  • Bose John

    Even with the new update there is no proxysetting option for WiFi. Making it stand behind the Phones of even 2005. This was a long awaited feature and sad to see google never bothered to add it in 2.2 also

  • peter

    hey i need a help, ever since i installed android 2.2 in my HTC wildfire A 3333 by default browser seems to be mulfunctional can someone help me to fix this problem?

  • peter

    hey i need a help, ever since i installed android 2.2 in my HTC wildfire A 3333 my default browser seems to be mulfunctional can someone help me to fix this problem?

Quantcast