Verizon Galaxy Nexus users, you finally have the Android 4.0.4 OTA update coming your way. You were one of the first to own a Galaxy Nexus (see our detailed review) and experience Ice Cream Sandwich, and yet now you're one of the last to receive updates (after GSM and Sprint LTE). Yup, the previous update, ICL53F, was in... December of last year. I know how bitter it makes you, and I don't really have excuses on Verizon's behalf, so let's just get down to business.
Sometimes confirmations come from the strangest of sources.
Earlier this month a device with the model number SCH-I535 appeared in a NenaMark benchmark test. The device was using the Qualcomm Adreno 225 GPU and was Verizon branded. We suggested that the US version of the Galaxy SIII was likely to use the Snapdragon S4 chip, and the benchmark appears to confirm this theory.
Update: In response to the rather vocal outcries of many of its subscribers on the web, Verizon has clarified what will happen to 3G/4G data plans explicitly. The takeaway is this: anyone purchasing a smartphone from this summer forward on subsidy pricing will be pushed into tiered/shared data. If you choose not to buy a smartphone on subsidy, you can keep your unlimited plan if you choose to.
This means if you renew your 2-year agreement, from this summer forward, on any line by buying a "discounted" phone, you lose unlimited.
This is the sort of quasi-rumor (it's fairly detailed and comes from the Wall Street Journal, so we're inclined to trust it) that makes me happy to be an Android fan.
According to the WSJ, Google is in cahoots with up to five device manufacturers to provide early access to the next iteration of the Android OS (Jelly Bean, we assume) so it can have an entire "portfolio" of Nexus devices ready by Thanksgiving - that's late November for those without turkey day.
While Big Red may not be getting an HTC One series device just yet, the finally official Incredible 4G is actually very close. Announced yesterday just in time for CTIA, the Incredible 4G, along with most of its specs, was leaked by Android Police back in early April and briefly showed up two weeks later at DroidDoes.com. Yesterday, Verizon threw together a nice unofficial shindig for the press where we could finally check out the Incredible 4G in person.
It's finally here, the DROID Incredible 4G LTE, that phone you might have sort of been a little curious about at some point, but probably weren't because it isn't nearly as good looking as the real HTC One phones. But hey, it has a removable battery, Verizon's ever-expanding 4G LTE network, and a Snapdragon S4 processor that hopefully won't devour juice like the Cookie Monster at an all-you-can-eat Nestle Toll House buffet.
If you've been following the Galaxy S III news today, you know it has a banging new Exynos 4 quad-core processor that absolutely obliterates benchmarks. The problem is that the Exynos 4 platform is quite old at this point (for a mobile chipset), and was never designed to support LTE. That's why devices like the Galaxy S II Skyrocket don't use an Exynos chip. Devices with Exynos 4 chips that do, like the Galaxy Tab 7.7 LTE, use an external one - adding thickness and increasing power consumption.
Update 4/23/12: This update is now rolling out OTA (thanks, Kristopher and others).
It's been a bit of a disappointing ride for the Droid RAZR and its beefier brother over the last few weeks - first, we were told that the ICS update was to start rolling out on April 4th, but that didn't happen. Instead, Moto was going to start a soak test of a new enhancement build, but...
You can always count on the Android ROM development community to extend a device's relevance in the tech world. Take the OG Galaxy Tab for example - this little guy was the first Android tablet to hit the scene (running a phone-specific version of the OS, no less). It has been around for about a year and a half now, and there's no hope that it will ever officially be updated to anything past Gingerbread.
It's the third-ish week of the month, so you know what time is: time for new Verizon LTE markets. This month, Big Red decided to go big by activating LTE in 27 new markets on April 19th. Not only that, but it's expanding current LTE coverage in 44 additional markets. Without further ado, here's that monstrous list:
- Auburn and Tuscaloosa, AL
- Pine Bluff, Siloam Springs, and Van Buren, AR
- Brunswick, LaGrange, and Macron/Warner Robins, GA
- Peoria, IL
- Kokomo/Logansport and Marion, IN
- Salisbury, MD
- Cattaraugus/Allegany, NY
- Sandusky, OH
- Ardmore and Ponca City, OK
- Salem/Albany/Corvallis, OR
- Pierre, SD
- Big Springs and Tyler, TX
- Phoenix and Tucson, AZ
- Bakersfield, Fresno, Modesto, Sacramento, Salinas/Monterey, San Diego, San Francisco, San Luis Obispo and Stockton, CA
- Colorado Springs and Fort Collins/Loveland, CO
- Sarasota/Bradenton, FL
- Boise/Nampa, ID
- Carbondale/Marion and Rockford, IL
- Fort Wayne and Indianapolis, IN
- Des Moines, IA
- Boston and Worcester, MA
- Detroit, MI