Well, after some rumors that the HTC Merge might never arrive, it seems the mysterious but often-seen slider device will be coming stateside sooner rather than later. An official HTC press release for the company's first Android CDMA world-phone popped up only minutes ago:
The HTC Merge™ Smartphone Brings Android™ and HTC Sense™ to HTC's First CDMA Android World Phone
BELLEVUE, Wash., Feb. 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- HTC Corp., a global designer of smartphones, today announced that the new HTC Merge smartphone will be made available through multiple North American carriers beginning in spring 2011.
Well, another day, another HTC Thunderbolt rumor. Today's addition to the Thunder-rumor-dome is a little different, but don't worry - it's still pretty upsetting. A new Best Buy Ad has shown up with an advertised price of $299 for Verizon's debut 4G handset. Yuck. The Android Police team already thought $249 was a little steep, but $300 for a phone based on a platform that's been around more than 4 months worldwide?
The good folks over at iFixit gave the Motorola XOOM a teardown this morning, and aside from the ridiculous 57 screws holding it together, it has been deemed pretty tinker-friendly, scoring an 8/10 on the repairability meter.
One interesting piece of information did emerge during the XOOM's disrobing, though - in regard to its much-touched LTE upgradeability. The teardown's author noted that the XOOM ships with a dummy mini-PCI board, presumably holding the 4G LTE radio's slot.
This one's for you, developers: XDA user adub007just posted a full Motorola XOOM system dump. What new and unprecedented goodies does it contain? That remains to be seen... feel free to download the 112MB (183MB when unpacked) file and start digging for yourself.
Turns out yesterday's update to the Android 3.0 SDK introduced more than just finalized APIs - the folks over at Android Central have discovered seven completely new wallpapers as well as two higher-res versions of existing ones in the final SDK's Launcher2.apk.
At 1920x1280, the images are just the right size for showing off your Honeycomb love on any of your devices. If they catch your eye, be sure to grab them for yourself using the download link below.
Sure, the first part of that title might sound like a Steve Jobs quote, but Motorola's latest tweet merits the expression:
That's right - unlike almost all other Motorola devices in recent memory, the XOOM will ship with an unlocked (or at least "unlockable/relockable") bootloader. That means modders will be free to create custom ROMs and kernels for the tablet - not as surprising as it would be were the XOOM not a flagship Google device, but still very reassuring.
OK, so unboxings aren't exactly the most exciting videos on the web, but when they involve a certain tablet called the "Motorola XOOM," they're definitely worth a look. Such is Wirefly's latest creation:
Items of note:
Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) - boot times seem really fast
10.1-inch 16:10 display - larger than an iPad
1GHz dual-core Tegra 2 processor
32GB of internal storage
2MP front camera
5MP rear camera capable of recording 720p HD video
Interestingly, the video mentions a slot for a 4G SIM card, which is odd since Verizon and Motorola say the XOOM will require a hardware software upgrade to connect to LTE.
Thanks to Droid Life, you can now sift through that clumsy collection of instructions you never would have read otherwise. Nonetheless, go ahead and download the guide if you so desire; we didn't discover anything previously unknown during our preliminary reading, but who knows - something new and exciting could be contained within!
Want Netflix on your current Android device? Too bad - as LG and Qualcomm told Engadget, the Netflix app will not be available on existing Android hardware (at least not officially).
Apparently, future Qualcomm CPUs will include additional DRM libraries that no current smartphone processor has, making the decision slightly more understandable (though still extremely disappointing). There's still no word on exactly what processors will support Netflix, but we do know that the LG Revolution will be compatible with it - meaning that the app works with single-core chips.
It's hardly a surprise, but it's welcome news nonetheless: Sony Ericsson just announced the Xperia Play, also known as the PlayStation Phone. We're still waiting for the full specs on this PlayStation certified device, so be sure to check back here soon for all the official details!
Update: The Play will run Android 2.3 Gingerbread at launch, and will be compatible with 50 games, including such titles as Assassin's Creed, Guitar Hero, Dead Space, and Reckless Racing.