When I reviewed the First, I realized it was much, much more than just a Facebook experience device. Sure, it's sporting Home out of the box, flashes a Facebook logo during the boot process, and is adorned with that same logo on the back, but it's not just about Facebook. This little diamond in the rough is running stock Android 4.1.2 beneath Facebook Home, so you're quite literally three (or so) taps away from a Nexus-like experience.
Facebook phone. Those two words in that order have been repeated over and over again for the last couple of years, simply as rumors for the longest time. Then the HTC Status hit the scene with an integrated Facebook button – still, Zuckerberg himself claimed that it wasn't Facebook's phone.
Many months later, the rumor mill started whirring once again about an alleged phone designed just for Facebook. This time, for some reason, the rumors held more water.
As we all know, Facebook had an announcement earlier this week. The most pervasive social media outlet on the planet announced Facebook Home – a product that essentially amounts to a highly integrated launcher for your Android phone. It also announced the HTC First, a phone optimized for Home, offering a fully Facebook-ed experience.
The launcher is actually pretty nice – features like the unfortunately-named Chat Heads are almost enough to sell this writer on the idea of making an Android hamburger out of a phone, with Facebook Home serving as the top bun (or maybe the lettuce).
It's been over four months since Google officially announced Android 4.2 and slightly less time since the initial round of new Nexus devices running it went up for order. Much like the gunshot that kicks off the 100-meter tortoise race, that launch signaled the silent contest to see which manufacturer could get out a non-Nexus update first. Today, we have our winner: ASUS, with a shiny new version of Jelly Bean for the Transformer Pad (TF300T).
We'll do our best to stay away from spoilers for the newly-released Die Hard movie (Happy Valentine's Day!), but the companion endless-runner game Fox just released to the Play Store isn't doing us any favors on that front. The app—which is somewhat shadily referred to as simply "Die Hard", trading on the name of greater movies—takes inspiration from titles like Temple Run. Just, not enough inspiration. (Note: some screenshots are very slightly spoiler-y, so if you're still planning on seeing the movie and you're a purist, you might want to wait to hit up the source link.)
One of the first things you'll notice about this game versus other endless runner titles is that it's in landscape mode.
After more than a month of unofficial CyanogenMod builds, the HTC Holiday (also known as the Vivid, Raider, or Velocity) has joined the ranks of devices with official CM support, receiving its first weekly CM10 build earlier today. It's not yet clear when or if the Holiday's build cycle will transition to a nightly schedule.
At the time of writing, the build's known issues involve Bluetooth Audio skipping, hardware video playback, tethering, and the inability to record video in 1080p.
In a post to Google+ today, it was announced that Cricket's Samsung Galaxy SIII (otherwise known as d2cri) had received its first official CM 10.1 nightly, meaning Cricket-connected SIII users can enjoy the Android 4.2-based ROM with all the tweaks and features CyanogenMod fans have come to expect. Those who have followed the Cricket GSIII's progress toward an official nightly build will also be happy to learn that the device's camera woes have reportedly been solved.
Earlier this week, Ron gave us an interesting look at what codenames came before Android 1.5, Cupcake (spoiler: 1.1 was "petit four," and 1.0 didn't have any codename at all). It's hard not to read the post without taking a nostalgic walk down memory lane, isn't it? I still remember heading into my local T-Mobile store to play with the G1 when it launched.
Intel has been conspicuously absent from the mobile arms race in recent years but 2012 is the year the company changes all that. After a significant showing at CES this year, Intel has now teamed up with Orange to deliver San Diego. No, not the city, and get used to making the distinction. The San Diego is Europe's first Intel-powered Android phone.
The 4.03" device will be powered by the 1.6GHz Intel Atom Z2460, and run on an HSPA+ network.