Samsung seems to have gotten the hang of updating phones besides the major flagships. While it's still coming about nine months after the release of Jelly Bean and nearly six months after the release of the handset, the Galaxy Stellar will be upgraded to 4.1 "soon", according to these Verizon support docs. The OTA will bring the much-beloved Google Now as well as expandable notifications and all the other goodies of the newest tasty treat.
Motorola, through its Feedback Network, has indicated that it is readying a "new Jelly Bean software release" for the Droid RAZR and RAZR MAXX on Verizon, asking participants – as usual – to test the waters before the release is made final. We know that the RAZR/MAXX duo are set to get a 4.1 update in "Q1 2013" from Motorola's own update schedule, so the following email (sent to members of Moto's feedback network) is a good sign that things are on track.
It took them the better part of two years, but HP is finally ready to get back in the consumer tablet game, this time backing Android. Their first tablet will be the Slate 7, a small model that's light on price and even lighter on surprises. Roughly comparable to the Galaxy Tab 2 7.0, the 1024x600 FFS+ LCD screen sits on top of a 1.6Ghz dual-core A9 processor, 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of MicroSD-expandable storage.
Samsung just unveiled the Galaxy Note 8.0, but they won't be satisfied until there's no stone unturned for Mobile World Congress. In a disappointingly dry press release the company debuted the Samsung HomeSync, an Android-powered set top box that combines Google TV features and a home media server. Major bullet points include a full terabyte of storage, WiFi and Ethernet access, and an interface powered by Jelly Bean (presumably 4.1) with full access to the Google Play Store.
DashClock is definitely the flavor of the week. Developers are falling all over themselves to build extensions for this multi-talented clock widget, and here's an interesting one. Whether you use DashClock on your lock screen or home screen, the new DashClock Facebook Extension could save you all kinds of frustration.
This app is simple – it displays your unread messages and notification count on the DashClock widget so you don't have to pop open the Facebook app as often.
Notifications have been one of the areas that Android has excelled in since day one. In Jelly Bean, that feature got a boost with the ability to expand a one-line entry, turning it into what is essentially a widget. Quickly happens to be one of the neatest uses we've seen of this new feature. This app creates a persistent notification in your shade that can be expanded to reveal an app launcher.
Samsung recently starting updating its aging-but-not-dead flagship phone from yesteryear (OK, technically it was the year before that, but yesteryesteryear isn't a thing) to Jelly Bean. And when Samsung updates things, you know what that means, right? Source code. Because a new version of Android brings with it a new kernel. And Android modders want new source to go along with that new kernel. So Samsung delivered, as always.
This go around, it's uploaded the kernel source for the Galaxy S II i9100, as well as Bell Canada's variant, the i9100M BMC.
The Android Open Kang Project ROM developers are taking longer and longer in between updates, but when they post one, it doesn't disappoint. The third official Jelly Bean 4.2 release includes support for the Acer Iconia Tab A510, the international Galaxy Note II LTE, and T-Mobile's Galaxy S II. (Owners of the international Galaxy S II and the Texas Instruments i9100G variant: check AOKP's website tomorrow for an updated version.) There's also a lot of new features in the build, most of them centered around the user interface.
It's that time again! We get another glimpse at what the platform distribution numbers are like for Android. If you've been following along, you'll notice there aren't many changes: Gingerbread is still the biggest slice of the pie, Ice Cream Sandwich is second, and the two major versions of Jelly Bean together make up the third largest. 2.3 is down to 45.4% from 47.4% a month ago. That 2% difference seems to have gone overwhelmingly to Jelly Bean which went up to 13.6% from 10% a month ago.
In Samsung's continuing quest to conquer every single niche in the smartphone world, they've got two new entries on the low end. The Galaxy Young and Galaxy Fame are positively tiny compared to most of the other Galaxy phones, and based on their specifications, will probably be quite cheap when they hit the market. The Young is slightly lower on the totem pole than the Fame, but fortunately, both use Jelly Bean 4.1.