Firefox for Android has come a long way since the project hatched as "Fennec" many months ago - there is no doubt about that. What started as a bloated, slow, and buggy pile of crap (really, it was bad), is now one of the greatest browsers Android has to offer (add-ons ftw!). Don't get me wrong - it's still lacking quite a few features - notably, Flash support, faster font redraw on zooming, better startup times, etc., but Mozilla knows this and is working hard on the next version - 5.0.
Yesterday, in the Federal Court for the Northern District of California, Apple filed its response to a counterclaim (filed by Amazon) in its ongoing suit over Amazon's use of the word "Appstore" in its new Android... app store (what else am I supposed to call it, Apple? An app acquisition service?)
The counterclaim contained one of the single greatest premises for a trademark lawsuit I have ever seen (not that I've seen that many):
You love pizza, right? And we all know you love Android... but now you can have some sort of socially acceptable ménage à trois with the two. If you interpreted that sentence as "Pizza Hut dropped an official app in the Android Market," then you are totally right!
With the official app you can order from the full Pizza Hut menu on the go, take advantage of special coupons and deals, and keep a quick list of all of your favorites for those I-need-to-get-pizza-right-now moments.
While browsing some new arrivals this afternoon, I noticed that Qik, one of the large players in the mobile video chat business, today released an app called Qik for Samsung, clearly targeted at users of Samsung Android devices. Qik has been releasing apps customized to certain classes of devices, or even individual ones, for as long as I can remember, starting with the EVO 4G last year, so seeing yet another variant doesn't surprise me (see Qik for Sprint, Qik for T-Mobile, and Qik for Atrix).
Basically, it gives you, the developer, access to any of Samsung's line of Android devices for remote testing of applications and other such developer-y things via your web browser and the Java plugin. Basic members of the developer portal receive 10 "credits" of testing time per day - or 150 minutes.
Are you ready for some Plants vs. Zombies? We know you've been waiting for it (I certainly have). Just a little bit longer: Plants vs. Zombies will be available on the Amazon App Store starting late this month (presumably May 30 or 31) for the low, low price of free. The app will be free on its debut-day (May 30), then for 2 weeks will be exclusively available on the Amazon App Store, in a deal similar to that which Rovio had with Amazon upon the release of Angry Birds Rio.
Users of Synology branded NAS (network attached storage) boxes have been pleading with the company for a long time to add Android support for direct file management to the existing suite of apps - DS Audio, DS Photo+, and DS Cam. While having apps dedicated to remotely playing music, looking at pictures, and monitoring cameras is great, the primary functionality one would naturally want from a pile of hard drives attached to the network is, well, file management.
When he covered the official release of the Netflix app earlier today, Cameron said, "If your device didn’t make the cut, though, I wouldn’t sweat it too hard – you know how resourceful the Android community can be." Well, the app hasn't even been out for a day yet, and already there's a way to get it running on non-supported devices. The only caveat is that you must be rooted.
A new update for Adobe Flash is now available in the Android Marketplace, bringing the version up to 10.3.
The update brings a number of features and fixes to Flash on Android, including fixing some issues with the Samsung Galaxy S, where certain video resolutions wouldn't show up. It also fixes crashing issues with the HTC EVO, along with optimization for OMAP 4 Cortex-A9 processors. The rest of the fixes can be found in the official changelog quoted below.
Beginning and experienced developers will appreciate the latest altruistic move by the core Android team member Roman Nurik who, now that the Google I/O conference is over, revealed the full sources for the I/O 2011 Android app for everyone to see.
If you haven't used the app yet, I am here to tell you that it's an Android masterpiece, in both UI/UX (user interface/usability) and coding paradigms. The app utilizes the new Fragments API heavily, so the source should provide plenty of implementation guidelines for those just picking it up.