After numerous nightly and monthly builds, CyanogenMod 10 is finally ready for its stable release. The custom ROM is already available to download for the Samsung Galaxy S II LTE, LG Optimus Black, and the Samsung Galaxy S III (both Verizon and Sprint models).
As part of a statement on the general state of software updates at Motorola, VP of Product Management Punit Soni has revealed that a new early update testing program will be unveiled, known as Test Drive.
We know it’s important for many of you to get the latest Android software upgrades onto your phones as quickly as possible. With that in mind, we’re also introducing Test Drive, a new program that will allow consumers to take our major software upgrades for a trial run and provide valuable feedback before we launch the upgrade publicly. Starting with Android 4.2, the next iteration of Jelly Bean, we will release a preview of our software to a few hundred consumers that sign up for Test Drive. More details on how to sign-up and participate will be announced on the blog soon.
Sony announced today on it's official Sony Mobile Developer blog that the Xperia S "experimental AOSP support" project, first announced by JBQ back in August, is no more. It was an interesting idea, to be sure - a non-Nexus device that would be supported both with the help of members of the Google developer community, as well as AOSP maintainer JBQ, on the AOSP main branch.
The project did see some success, too - Android was booting, and according to Sony, Wi-Fi and sensors were up and running.
After Google's release of "experimental" binaries for Sprint's Galaxy Nexus variant, Jean-Baptiste Queru (Chief Android Release Engineer) confirmed that the binaries represented not full AOSP support, but the "taking down [of] many hurdles that were preventing [AOSP support]," citing bugs in the network stack as one of the issues yet to be addressed.
Less than one month later, it would appear that those issues have been sorted, as Google today published the toroplus' factory image for the first time.
Following the ATRIX HD, the recently announced Electrify M destined for U.S. Cellular is Motorola's newest member of the bootloader unlock program. The Electrify M is basically the RAZR M with minor visual tweaks but, unlike its Verizon sibling, won't come in a separate, more expensive developer-friendly flavor. Instead, like the Photon Q on Sprint and the RAZR i/HD outside of U.S., it's unlockable out of the box.
An unlocked bootloader means Electrify M owners will have full blessing of US Cellular and Motorola to customize software on their devices and flash custom ROMs, in exchange for losing the warranty, of course (in case there is any confusion, Motorola specifies: "Once you get the unlock code, your device is no longer covered by the Motorola warranty; in other words, please don't blame us if things go wrong, even if they appear unrelated to unlocking the bootloader.").
It never rains, but it pours. Yesterday Samsung posted the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean source code for both new Galaxy Tab models and the AT&T Galaxy Note II. Today they're keeping the open source train rolling with the first available code for the new Galaxy S III Mini, the flagship model's 4-inch brother-from-another-mother. The 4.1 code is available now from Samsung's developer website.
If you're wondering why the GSIII Mini needs separate code from the standard Galaxy S III, remember that it's actually quite a different beast under the hood.
Welcome to the newer, friendlier Motorola, where every would-be Android modder is catered to. After creating developer editions of both the new Droid RAZR M and Droid RAZR HD for Verizon (the first from the manufacturer-carrier combo since the XOOM) Google's new acquisition is spreading the love to AT&T. The company announced the ATRIX HD Developer Edition, complete with unlockable bootloader, via its Twitter account today. There's currently no price or date available, beyond the fact that it will be available soon.
Now that we've seen Samsung's Galaxy Note II go up for grabs at T-Mo, Sprint, and US Cellular, it's time we began expecting to see Samsung drop kernel source code for the carriers' respective variants. That's just what Sammy has done, recently releasing the open source kernel files for SGH-T889, SCH-R950_USC, SPH-L900_SPR, and a bonus device – AT&T's Galaxy Rugby Pro, lovingly called SGH-I547_ATT.
The Galaxy Nexus variant on Sprint might actually have a chance of being officially supported by Google in AOSP after all, which would be a big step in the right direction for carrier-branded Nexus devices.
If you remember, neither Verizon's nor Sprint's Galaxy Nexus was supported by the Android Open Source Project at launch, with the Verizon's version joining the program over half a year after its release. Even though the Nexus S 4G is fully supported, Sprint's GNex variant remained absent from the Nexus Binaries page and was therefore completely unsupported by the Android team.
Update 2: The Android Developers blog has just posted on this, nearly a month later, officially (and finally) announcing the addition of India to the list of supported merchant countries, meaning Indian developers can now sell their apps and games on the Play Store. See the original story for more information.
Update: India has since vanished from the list of support countries for merchants. We've reached out to Google to shed some light on the situation, but for now, it appears merchant support for India has been put on hold.