Rumors and hints at Google's next release of Android have been spilling out for months, but today we've got some evidence that Android 4.3 may be real and nearing completion. SamMobile got their hands on what's purported to be a pre-release build of the upcoming version of Jelly Bean (yes, it's still Jelly Bean), apparently intended for the brand-new Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition, which hasn't even started shipping itself. The ROM was swiftly ported to the generic LTE version of the Galaxy S4 (GT-i9505) that currently serves as the de facto standard for US carriers.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Google is working on a few things. They are, according to the world's most infamous tipster "People Familiar With The Matter," working on an Android-powered video game console. And a smart watch. And a new Nexus Q. And the possibility of Android-powered appliances (like refrigerators). And Laptops. And, oh yeah, low-cost phones for developing markets.
Typically we avoid reporting on too-good-to-be-true rumors, but today's alleged revelation is a real whopper.
I have to admit, if you were to tell me one year ago today that devices like the Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play edition would exist as things, I'd call you a liar. And I'd probably secretly hope that they did exist, too. These handsets, or really, the idea behind them, have been the enduring dream of almost every Android enthusiast from the early days of MOTOBLUR and TouchWiz.
Now that the various sizes of the Galaxy Tab 3 are on the brink of release, it's time for Samsung to update a few of its older tablets... to Android 4.1.2. Commence grumbling about the sad state of the manufacturer/carrier update system. AT&T's LTE version of the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 (SGH-I497) is next on the list - since the tablet launched on AT&T's network back in November with a 4.0 operating system that was only a year out of date, it's almost fitting that the 4.1 update is coming almost exactly a year after Jelly Bean was introduced on the Nexus 7.
There's been a lot of speculation about just how Nexus-like the Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play edition phones will be, particularly from a technical / software update standpoint. Now, we have some relatively concrete information that sheds light on these issues.
First and foremost, Google will not directly handle software updates for Google Play edition devices. This has been reported as true, false, and generally disputed quite a lot in the lead-up to the launch.
As Android users and enthusiasts, we sometimes find ourselves curious about the continuously evolving interfaces in Google's ecosystem. Over the years, there have been a number of changes to the Play Store, once known as the Android Market, but we've never had the pleasure of learning how some of the big design elements came to be. This week, Nick Butcher and Roman Nurik of Android Design in Action invited a couple members of the Android design team, Marco Paglia and Owen Otto, to share details about their process.
When the flagship Xperia Z launched with Android 4.1, Sony promised that an update to the latest version was coming. Now they're making good: XperiaGuide reports that the Jelly Bean 4.2.2 rollout started yesterday, for at least some users of generic phones (C6603) in Spain and Hong Kong. The updated software needs to be flashed via Sony's PC Companion software. The new build is labeled 10.3.A.0.423, exactly the same as the update that started for the Xperia ZL four days earlier.
Andru, PowerbyGen's hit device charger based on our favorite robot, is unquestionably the most adorable adapter you'll ever see. Since his debut last year, Andru has been joined by white and dark versions and international accessories.
Today, PowerbyGen has expanded the family with Andra, a "more graceful" alternative to "her hunkier companions."
If you're familiar with Andru, you already know what you'll be getting with Andra: a pink version of the charger, with pose-able arms, a stand, and light-up eyes.
We know Blackberry isn't the most popular name around here, but it is a name that continues to pop up at some interesting times. Developers, in particular, may remember when the company - then known as RIM - launched Playbook OS 2.0 with the ability to run specially packaged apps developed for Android 2.3.3. Since that time, events and promotions have been run to encourage developers to bring their apps to the platform, but the aging requirement to target Gingerbread has become a burden.
Samsung has a thing with cameras lately, it seems, and putting Android on them. Or attaching a phone to them. Eventually, I expect we will see the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Camera, the world's first stylus tablet with a full-frame DSLR attached to the back. Until then, though, we may have to settle for the Galaxy NX - the spiritual successor to Samsung's not-exactly-lauded Galaxy Camera. Behold its [alleged] massiveness.