A few months ago I wrote "Stock Android Isn't Perfect," an article where I turned my usual harsh UX critique on stock Android, instead of just picking on TouchWiz and Sense all the time in my reviews. The article went over pretty well, and even got a few responses from Googlers! I didn't cover everything that was wrong with Android, though, and there have been a bunch of updates since the original article, so it's about time I wrote a sequel.
In a somewhat disappointing turn of events, Adobe has just announced (following their disappearance from the Play Store) an end to development for all their touch apps on Android except Photoshop Touch (Ideas is still alive for iOS users), meaning Adobe has essentially killed their Kuler, Ideas, Debut, Proto, and Collage apps for Android.
In a post to the Creative Cloud Team Blog, Adobe explains that while some of their efforts in "exploring how the creative process can be augmented and enhanced on touch devices" have been successful, others "have been less so." It is for that reason the team is ceasing active development for the apps.
Sprint and T-Mobile might have beaten the big boys to the punch, but now it's AT&T's turn to get its Galaxy S III updated to (almost) the latest and greatest version of Android. The 4.1.1 update has started showing up for users of the AT&T Galaxy S III (that's the SGH-i747) in the Samsung Kies update and sync software.
Update 12/4/2012: AT&T just announced the update, and it looks like it will indeed be coming only via Kies.
The race for the most feature-rich and useful cloud storage tool is in full swing, with Dropbox, Drive, SkyDrive, and Box getting enhancements what seems like daily. If you're a fan of the latter service from that list, then a heaping helping of new features just got piled up on you plate. And it looks delicious.
For starters, you can now view documents inline, which is a huge benefit for those who use Box primarily for document storage and sharing.
When Motorola announced a few months back that it was not going to update most of its 2011 Android devices to Jelly Bean, owners were understandably upset. Moto attempted to calm the masses by offering a $100 trade-in credit. Now the details have been finalized and the program is looking much less appealing than everyone had hoped.
Eligible devices are the Droid 3, Droid X2, Admiral, Atrix 2, Atrix 4G, Cliq2, Electrify, Photon 4G, XPRT, Titanium, and Triumph.
Ah, the poor LG Spectrum. Soon after it was released with mediocre Gingerbread-based software the Samsung Galaxy S III showed up to rain on LG's parade. Well, the Spectrum is getting a big update to Android 4.0.4 that should make owners much happier. Watch out, though. It clocks in at a whopping 384MB.
Many of the new features will be familiar to users of ICS on other devices, but some of it is part of LG's Android skin.
The dedicated Android community has a way of tracking down OTA update files almost before the rollout begins. This is again the case for the newest Android 4.1.2 update for some variants of the unlocked Nexus S. Waiting for updates is for chumps, so get your Nexus S in hand, and proceed with caution.
To use this update file, your Nexus S has to meet the following conditions:
If you've ever used CyanogenMod, then you already know it comes bundled with ROM Manager. That's the case for one reason: so users can quickly and easily pull updates to the ROM. However, this presents a problem of sorts. CyanogenMod is completely open source, but ROM Manager isn't.
A new update for Asus' middle-range Android tablet is rolling out at this very moment. Users on XDA are reporting getting the update notification, but it appears to be a little fickle with rooted devices. The abbreviated changelog claims this is a simple stability enhancement.
Update: This build is now available as a full ROM over at ASUS' TF300 Downloads.
To get the software on a rooted device, it is recommended that you take a few steps before applying the update.
If you listen to SiriusXM on your Android device, the newest iteration of the application should be of interest. While the update brings the normal bug fixes and enhancements, it also packs two new useful features: access to On Demand radio and offline caching for select shows. iOS users saw this update back in early August, so it's good to see these features make their way to Android.