02
Jul
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Last Updated: August 1st, 2012

Depending on how fanboyish you want to be you want to look at it, things are either getting better by the day, or still dismal as can be. First, the charts:

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Obviously, the good news is that in the past month, Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0+) has moved up from 7.1% to 10.9% - and considering there are hundreds of millions of devices running Android, that seemingly meager 3.8% is actually quite a few devices.

02
Jul
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One of the most starred Android issues of all time, currently #20 of 21363 from the top with 1191 stars, is the absolutely awful quality of synced contact photos (issue #3870, opened in 2009). ICS attempted to resolve the issue by bumping the quality to 256x256 pixels, but Google sync would without mercy squash it right back down to blurry pixel dirt (96x96).

To recap, there are actually a couple of issues:

  1. Contact photos set in Gmail.com are downsized to 96x96.
02
Jul
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Some users of HTC's Incredible S have received a sweet surprise today, with OTA updates to Android 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) rolling out throughout the day. Currently, the update seems to be going out to users throughout Europe, with no reports from North America just yet. The update is about 250MB, and brings the device's software up to version 4.10.405.1, with ICS running underneath Sense 3.6.

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There's no word from HTC just yet on when the OTA will begin to roll out to other users, but we'll keep an eye on the story and update pending more information.

01
Jul
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Last Updated: July 7th, 2012

This is the latest in our Weekend Poll series. For last week's, see Do You Regularly Rent Moves Through Google Play?

Jelly Bean isn't a huge evolution of Android like previous updates have been, but that's understandable given just how polished the OS has become. Still, as the company showed us on day 1 of I/O, things certainly have moved forward in quite a few ways (Ron provided a deeper look at some of them in his first Getting To Know Android 4.1 post).

01
Jul
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One of the new features that ships with Jelly Bean is Google's Sound Search widget that helps identify songs after listening to short samples. If you've ever used SoundHound or Shazam, you know exactly what this does. The difference is this widget is pre-installed on Jelly Bean, comes directly from Google, and hooks right into Google Play.

As it turns out, the widget works on ICS as well. I looked into the package and saw that compatibility goes back as far as Honeycomb, so I'm guessing it will install there too (sorry, no Gingerbread or below).

01
Jul
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Last Updated: October 3rd, 2012

After upgrading my Galaxy Nexus (GSM) to Jelly Bean last night (I know, I know, I'm a few days late), I unlocked its bootloader (the usual fastboot oem unlock) and commenced rooting, which I thought would only take a minute or two. However, after almost 2 hours of pushing, flashing, rebooting, and trying no less than 5 different root methods, I still didn't have root. Something must have changed under the hood, and no root method I was trying was working (even PaulOBrien's SuperBoot).

30
Jun
Jelly-Bean-Logo
Last Updated: August 10th, 2012

The new version of Android is out, it's real, and yours truly has a (mostly) working copy. That can only mean one thing: Getting To Know Android is back!

The title may not rhyme anymore, but it's still home to the most in-depth look at the next version of Android on the internet. That's right, the world's most OCD changelog is here to point out every polished pixel of Android 4.1: Jelly Bean.

29
Jun
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Google just dropped the full OS image for the recently announced at Google I/O Nexus 7 tablet. The image allows you to restore the tablet back to full stock Android 4.1 (build JRN84D) in case something goes wrong. This way, developers can tweak its internals without fearing a brick and users can always go back to something stable if a flash goes awry.

There are no surprises here - the Nexus 7 is a true Nexus device after all.

29
Jun
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Face Unlock, a security feature introduced with Ice Cream Sandwich, while a fun concept, proved vulnerable to trickery. Specifically, the unlock method would recognize photos of your face as if they were your real face. Another issue with Face Unlock was that it ostensibly never locked users out after numerous failed attempts.

Looking to address these issues, Google did a bit of tweaking to Jelly Bean's Face Unlock. Namely, FU now features a "Liveness check" option which, as the name suggests, makes sure you're a real, live person before unlocking your device.

29
Jun
adobe-flash-11-1-hits-the-android-market-with-support-for-android-4-0

In November, Adobe announced that it would be discontinuing its development of Flash for Android, and it looks like that day has finally arrived.

In a post on their blog, the company has explained that devices which have been certified to run Flash will still continue to do so, and updates will be made available just for those devices. Any devices that have not been certified to run Flash will be unable to install or update it from the Play Store from August 15th.

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