I have to admit: as a newly-former starving college student, it's hard for me to see the same sort of value in a $400 tablet that I see in a $200 smartphone or a $600 laptop (or even a $300 netbook). During my month or so with the O.G. Galaxy Tab, I found the tablet to be more of a complement than a replacement - though certainly the new crop of tablets with docks and keyboards has pushed them closer to laptops than ever before.
It looks like Sammy has been working hard to bring Gingerbread to all of the Galaxy S devices, as an official build for the Epic 4G leaked over at SamFirmware this morning. Much like the recent Captivate Gingerbread leak, this is an early build, but judging by current reports, it seems to be pretty solid.
Just like this leak, you must flash this via Odin. Here's a quick example of the process:
If you're ready to give it a shot, head over to XDA for download.
I've been thinking about writing this editorial for some time now. And today, with the announcement of Panasonic's upcoming Toughbook Android tablet, I finally decided to go for it. The point this article is trying to make may not be abundantly clear in the title, so let me see if I can get it across as a question: Is it just me, or are there a suspiciously large number of companies in or planning to enter the Android tablet market?
It sounds like a silly question to ask. And to a degree, it's not exactly a hugely relevant question, either. Who really cares how many companies are trying to get into the tablet market?
This is the first part of the roundup, which features games only. Apps will come in a separate post soon.
Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here:
Today's roundup is sponsored by Gameview Studios and their game Tap Fish.
It has been several weeks since Nvidia first dropped the news that Galaxy On Fire 2 was coming to Tegra devices, and now it's finally here. Galaxy On Fire 2 THD takes mobile gaming to a whole new level with its amazing details and rich gameplay, offering a massive galaxy for its playground. Here are some of the main features:
- A huge galaxy with over 20 solar systems and beautifully rendered planets
- 100 unique 3D space stations and more than 30 customizable space ships
- Unique reputation and diplomacy system
- Story-based, mission-based and free gameplay
- Complex trading system with over 170 different commodities of all kinds
- High quality visuals and music, full voice acting (English) and 3D sound
- Action Freeze™: 3D screenshot tool to save screenshots from any perspective and upload them to Facebook™
- OpenFeint integration of leader boards, achievements and saved games
- Supports up to full native 1280 x 800 pixels resolution
- Heavily optimized to utilize the eight-core rendering power of Tegra’s GeForce GPU for console-gaming quality on mobile devices
- All meshes re-created from scratch as if they were to be used for a proper console game
- New details added to the design of each of the over 30 spaceships and 100 space stations
- Carefully re-painted space background images and planets at 2048 x 2048 pixels resolution to ensure crystal clear game experience even on 10 inch tablets
- Four times higher texture sizes on all in-game textures and four times higher polygon count on its spaceships, space stations, jump gates and asteroids compared to standard tablet versions
- Sophisticated OpenGL ES 2.0 specular and displacement shaders on all in-game assets
You can get Galaxy On Fire 2 THD free in the Android Market right now - but there's a catch.
While the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 has a slew of positive features, that doesn't void it of its shortcomings. Among those downfalls is the lack of a dedicated USB port, which seems to be a big deal with a lot of people. Never fear, though - Samsung has come to the rescue with a USB adapter so you can take full advantage of the USB host support in Android 3.1. The USB adapter plugs into the Tab's proprietary 30-pin connecter, so it will add a bit of bulk to the supermodel-slim tablet. Of course, this shouldn't be a huge deal because it's, you know, removable.
HTC and Sprint's EVO 3D, the first three-dimensional handset in the US, won't be available in stores for eight more days - but the early reviews have already started flooding in. And I'll tell you this: they're pretty mixed. Some reviewers, such as LaptopMag's Mark Spoonauer, wholeheartedly enjoyed the device, even going so far as to give it an Editors' Choice award. Others, however, weren't nearly as fond of the phone - Gizmodo, upfront as always, called it "only suitable for shooting yourself in the face." Ouch.
Then again, you can't summarize the successor to one of the most successful Android phones ever in just two sentences; for the full scoop, let's take a quick look at five of the best EVO 3D reviews on the net.
CrunchGear is reporting that the Italian site HDblog has received exclusive details on Samsung's least-publicized new tablet product: the Galaxy Tab Seven (aka, the Galaxy Tab 2). The Seven will be the successor to the wildly unpopular Galaxy Tab, which debuted last fall to almost universally poor reviews (though our own Aaron Gingrich thoroughly enjoyed it). The Galaxy Tab was the first major-manufacturer Android tablet, and it seems based on the new tablet's specifications, Samsung learned a lot from the Tab's less-than-successful run.
Unfortunately, it looks as though they failed to learn from the Tab's biggest failing - the OS.
It's been quite some time since we first heard rumblings of the PlayStation phone. The concept - a high-end Android phone mashed together with familiar PlayStation controls - seemed like one that could revolutionize gaming on Android. In theory, this device could have done just that.
Unfortunately, in a world where dual core devices are becoming more and more the norm, the Xperia Play's single-core Snapdragon processor (as fast as it is) is already incompatible with some high-end games, such as those optimized for Tegra 2 devices. And it's hard to justify purchasing the phone when the rest of the device has taken a backseat to the all-important gamepad.
The guys over at Samfirmware have gotten their hands on an official build of Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread for the European variant of the Samsung Galaxy S GT-i9000. The build date on this is June 3rd, so it's relatively new - but there's no word on whether this is a finalized build or not.