One of the more interesting features of the HTC Flyer is its use of a digital pen, but up until now there has been little talk of its availability. The Digital Pen allows you to write on basically anything you see on the Flyer, including web pages or input boxes, using HTC Scribe technology. I think that there was speculation that the Flyer would come with the digital pen, but that doesn't appear to be the case.
If tiny smartphones that pack a punch are your thing, then today is your lucky day. Sony Ericsson just officially announced the new Xperia Mini and Xperia Mini Pro, which are both essentially the same phone, except the latter has a full slide out QWERTY. The new line succeeds last year's X10 Mini and X10 Mini Pro, but drops the X10 monicker and heavily beefs up the specs. Here are the details:
- 3 Inch 320x480 display
- 1GHz Snapdragon processor
- 320MB internal storage (ouch), SD Card slot with 2GB card included
- 5MP rear camera with 720p video capture and face detection
- Sony BRAVIA engine
- Android 2.3
While the pair may not be the hottest thing to hit the streets lately, they definitely have the whole smallest-HD-smartphone thing going for them.
It has been about a month since we first mentioned that car rental company Zipcar was working on an Android app, and the first beta has now arrived. With this app you'll be able to find and rent a car directly from your Android device, but that's not all - it will also allow you to lock/unlock the doors and honk the horn. That last part may seem like a bit of a novelty, but you have to admit that it's still pretty rad.
If you were a billion dollar company that had a smartphone design laying around that didn't do so well, what would you do with it? Motorola's going with "rebrand it and release it on a different network" with the "new" XPRT that's set to hit Sprint in June. The global-ready XPRT is basically a rebranded DROID Pro, as it has near identical specs:
- 3.1 Inch display
- 1GHz Processor
- Global Ready
- Mobile Hotspot with support for up to 5 devices
- 5MP Rear Camera
- Android 2.2 with Motoblur
The XPRT is geared towards business users, and it's the first Android handset on the Now Network to sport enterprise-class security and data encryption.
One neat feature of BlackBerrys is that when you put the phone in its case, the screen automatically shuts off. The effect is only part novelty; after all, by shutting the screen off sooner, you're saving battery (although in all honesty, it's doubtful you're saving that much battery). Developer Fahrbot Mobile has devised a solution for Android that "uses a combination of sensors to control the sleep state and screen lock of any device...
Analyst Egle Mikalajunaite of research2guidance has modeled the growth of the Android Market and Apple App Store, and based on his predictions, the former will overtake the latter in August of this year. While we're generally pretty weary of these sort of predictions, the short-term nature certainly makes this much more plausible.
The graph largely speaks for itself, but there's a bit more to be said in terms of specific numbers.
PowerAMP, hands down the best music player in the Android Market, was updated today to include a couple of long-sought features, most notably true gapless playback and crossfading between tracks. Gapless playback is pure joy for people who listen to a lot of mixtapes broken down into individual songs, and crossfading is the icing on the cake, preferred by many music lovers.
Other notable additions include .cue file support, a silence remover, backing up and restoring settings into the cloud (finally someone's implementing this functionality available ever since Froyo!), and a host of bug fixes.
Last week, I went for a nice vacation in the Caribbean and because of that, there was no Best Apps issue at all. Instead, I've rolled 2 weeks' worth of stuff into this week aaaaaaand because it's turned out so long, I am splitting it up into multiple posts (apps are coming soon after this, most likely tomorrow).
I'm going to be really honest about this one: I had no idea that anyone still uses LiveJournal. Much to my surprise, though, it has been going strong all this time - it's even ranked #71 in the world according to Alexa. After realizing that tidbit of information, it's not surprising at all that there is now an official LiveJournal App for Android.
For a mobile blogging app, I must say that this one seems quite feature rich: you can post new journal entries and photos, create polls, edit entries, create drafts, and manage settings.
I remember when I first saw Plants vs. Zombies. I believe it was before I had an Android phone (*gasp*) and, even though it originated on the desktop, a friend of mine showed it to me on his iPhone. Once I got my OG Droid, it was one of the first games that I searched for in the Market, but of course it was irritatingly absent. So I waited... and waited...