02
Jan
2011-12-27 15h35_21

If your new year's resolution is to kill more time playing games on your Android device (that's mine, anyway), then Gameloft is all ready to give you the hookup beginning on December 29th, when all of their games will be dropped down to mere $0.99 in the Market. The one exclusion to this deal is Modern Combat 3 - it will, however, go on sale for one day (though they didn't mention the price).

31
Dec
htc-thunderbolt-official

2011 was a great year for Android - Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was announced. The Galaxy Nexus was released. A whole truckload of Android tablets came out. The first 4G LTE smartphones appeared. But there were some significant speed bumps as well. Here are, in no particular order, the five things in the world of Android in the last year that really got our hopes up, but ended up being a little disappointing.

31
Dec
hardware_vs_software_buttons

This is the latest in our Weekend Poll series. For last week's, see Did You Get An Android Device For The Holidays?

In tablets, having buttons on-screen rather than built into the body is standard operating procedure. On phones, however, there's really only one that eschews physical buttons for software, and that's the Galaxy Nexus. Still fuzzy on what I mean? Take a look at the comparison shot below, lifted from our review of the Galaxy Nexus:

hardware_vs_software_buttons

On the left, the Galaxy Nexus, with its three software buttons displayed on-screen.

30
Dec
1323159175_f2209

Adding to the ever-growing list of knockoff devices found overseas, Nexian (an Indonesian mobile phone manufacturer) brings us the Android Magic A893 – a device that looks awfully similar to the iPhone, but which packs Android 2.2 Froyo and rings in at IDR 1,599,000 (about $175 USD). To get a better idea of the device's eerily familiar form factor, check out this unboxing video:

And here are the device's (less than magical) specs:

  • Android 2.2 Froyo
  • WCDMA 2100MHz and GSM 900/1800 MHz compatibility
  • HSPA/EDGE/GPRS
  • 3.5" HVGA multitouch display
  • VGA front shooter and 2MP rear camera
  • Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Bluetooth
  • FM Radio
  • 3.5G Connectivity
  • 8GB Internal memory

2011-12-29 13.48.24 (2)

To the Magic's credit, the inclusion of interchangeable back plates is a nice touch, and the fact that the device (allegedly) has a capacitive display may put this device slightly above other knockoffs you may have seen.

30
Dec
image

Just after expanding Nightly support to Samsung's Epic 4G and a slew of LG handsets, the CyanogenMod team has brought nightlies to a handful of Xperia devices, including Coconut (the Xperia Live with Walkman), Iyokan (the Xperia Pro), and Satsuma (the Xperia Active).

image image image

In a Google+ post earlier today, CyanogenMod announced that CM7 support had arrived for multiple new devices, throwing out a special hint to Xperia users.

30
Dec
Droid-4-Front

What do you get when you take a Droid Bionic, slap a keyboard on it, and give it the bloat (physically - not bloatware) treatment? The Droid 4! This phone was originally said to be like the "Droid RAZR with a keyboard," but we see nothing RAZR about this behemoth. We'll start off gently - but brace yourself, it gets pretty ugly.

Update: Just realized that this is a dummy unit (not sure how I overlooked that the first time around), so that means it may not the exact size of the actual Droid 4.

30
Dec
taco-c-
Last Updated: June 5th, 2012

Our own Justin Case has been collaborating with Reid Holland (erishasnobattery) on TacoRoot – a tool that should root just about any HTC smartphone – for some time now, and with the recent additions to HTC’s official unlocking tool, they’ve decided to release it.

At the moment, it’s quite gnarly – it’s only a temporary root for now, and there are various issues with it (see below). That said, it’s incredibly useful for downgrading phones like the myTouch 4G, which can’t be unlocked or rooted with the most recent version of their software.

30
Dec
vzlogo

Earlier this week, Verizon announced that it would start charging customers a $2 fee for paying their bill with a debit card either online or over the phone. Naturally, this caused a huge uproar among customers -- sure, it's only a couple bucks, but it's the principal of the thing. Charging customer to pay their bill?  The very idea doesn't make sense. It's just whack.

So, after enormous customer backlash, guess what Verizon did?

30
Dec
boot-image-bootloader

In a continued effort to unlock bootloaders everywhere using their online tool, HTC has added several exciting entries to the "supported devices" list. Perhaps the most notable of the new entries are the Droid Incredible 2 and HTC Thunderbolt. Officially, HTC's online unlock tool is compatible with all devices launched after September 2011, but the new additions reflect an effort to add compatibility for older devices.

Update: HTC just added the Incredible S to the mix.

30
Dec
htc-evo-design-4g


EVO Design 4G owners, rejoice - HTC has just released the kernel source code for your device. This means that devs can grab the code, take it to the lab and start hacking away to make this device as lean and mean as possible. Overclocking, among other mods, is just one of the things that generally results in source code modification, so keep your eyes peeled for these improved kernels to start pouring out on popular development forums.

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