We can easily get caught up in the mad scramble for the latest and greatest, so it's easy to lose track of the fact that low-end smartphones also have a place in the world. For this one, we'll let you decide. Who wants a smartphone with a 3" (yes, that is three inches) 240x320 TFT display, a 3MP rear camera, an unspecified "powerful" processor and 512MB of RAM? Before you decide, I should also point out that this phone has a dedicated music button and, for some bizarre reason, the spec sheet lists a WVGA projector (9 lumens), though it seems incredibly likely that this is a mistake.
Google has once again updated the Android platform distribution numbers. The numbers, released right on schedule today, show Gingerbread still leading the pack at 56% of devices (down from 57.5% last month), with Jelly Bean crawling up the ladder to 1.8%, up from 1.2% last time.
The two most important stat changes from last month, Gingerbread and Jelly Bean, are somewhat disappointing – both shifting at a lower rate than last cycle, but promised updates and leaked devices we may or may not see in the near future will likely help those numbers along.
Amtrak, aiming to give you a "new way to take the train," released an official app to the Play Store recently.
The (logically named) Amtrak app allows passengers to plan their entire train excursion, from buying tickets (which can be displayed right on your device) to navigating to a nearby station, changing/upgrading seat selections, checking train schedules, and using an Amtrak Guest Rewards account.
"Optimized for Android," the app carries a holo-ish interface with swiping tabs, proper navigation and scrolling, and all the visual flair you may expect from an app in line with Android's design guidelines.
There may have been a bit of a false start recently, when a Sprint employee took to the community forums to announce that the rollout of Jelly Bean for the Nexus S had begun. Maybe the rep confused the Nexus S for the Galaxy Nexus, as we hadn't heard any reports that users had received the OTA for the older of the two Nexii. Today, though, Sprint has posted in its forums details on the upgrade, including a release date of today, September 11th.
Tonight, when everyone else is sleeping, the folks over at CyanogenMod are hard at work, as always. The team just announced a brand new addition to the slew of CM releases: M-Series. From now on (provided the community approves), the team will begin rolling out builds that are "a bit more stable" at the beginning of every month. Prior to this initial release of CM10-M1, the group did a "soft freeze of the codebase" in an attempt to stabilize the builds, so these should be more reliable than your average release.
You may remember Samsung's Galaxy Victory 4G LTE (formerly known as "Gogh") from some training materials we caught sight of just a few days ago. Well, while the device is still unannounced, good old Sammy has decided to drop the Victory's kernel source ahead of time for anxious developers and tweakers to get started on.
Samsung has had a good track record lately of releasing kernel source just after a device is announced, but releasing the code before we're even supposed to know about a device is pretty impressive.
Amazon, in a press release posted this morning, announced that its "#1 best-selling product," the Kindle Fire, is now sold out. The release boasts the Fire's millions of sales, noting that it managed to eat up an impressive 22% of tablet sales in the US, and added to the overall success of Amazon's digital product sales.
What makes this announcement interesting is that Amazon has a press conference scheduled for September 6th, meaning we're likely to see the latest member of the Kindle family unveiled very soon.
The LG Optimus G, the tantalizing flagship device for which LG released an teaser video last week, is finally official.
The phone, which we know to be packing a 4.7" 1280x768 display, 2GB RAM, a 1.5GHz quad-core S4 Pro processor, and a 13MP rear camera, is slated to launch in Korea next month, followed by a yet undated global release expected to start with Japan in either October or November.
The junior member of HTC's One family has yet to see great adoption in the United States, with US Cellular and Virgin being the only carriers of note to offer the HTC One V. Fellow budget carrier Cricket Wireless is finally getting their own version of the Android handset, and will be releasing it to its contract-free customers on Sunday, September 2nd. Cricket has yet to announce a price for the phone, but given its competitors' prices, I'd guess that somewhere between $100 and $200 is likely.