Editorials

220 articles
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Updated: Oracle vs. Google: It's Not Looking Good For Android

Update: In response to the ZDNet article, it seems like Mueller may well have been incorrect about the "additional instances" of possible infringement he claims to have found. Exhibit J (linked as "6 pages of code") from Oracle's amended complaint is not addressed in the ZDNet article. We make no claims as to the validity of Oracle or Mueller's assertion; we are merely commenting on the situation.

Many people are confused about what it is Mueller is saying about copyrighted code, and it's an understandably complex topic, one I don't claim to fully comprehend. Those who offer evidence that "debunks" Mueller's additional files clearly know a lot more about code than I do.

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Editorial: The Nexus One: One Year Later

It doesn't seem like it, but just a year and a few days ago, Google made available the first handset to bear the Nexus name - and what a long way we've come since. When the Nexus One was released, there were cries of "iPhone killer" and of Google entering the handset arena in direct competition with Apple. While the latter assertion remains debatable - the first does not. The Nexus One was a near-total commercial failure next to the iPhone 3GS, and even the original Motorola DROID ate the Nexus One for breakfast in terms of sales.

But the Nexus One changed so much about Android, and the design philosophies of the phones that followed it.

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Editorial: iPhone 4 Is Coming To Verizon Wireless - Should Android Be Worried?

The big question on everyone's mind (well, at least ours) today is: How will the iPhone coming to Verizon next month change the smartphone landscape? At this point, it's anyone's guess, but Android's unabashed domination on the US's largest wireless carrier will certainly be challenged in the coming months. However, there are significant forces at work that won't exactly help the iPhone with its Verizon debut - namely, Verizon and Android. That's not to say the Verizon iPhone won't be a success, it's just a question of exactly how much of a success it will be. Here's our take.

Upgrade or Downgrade?

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Editorial: Five Things Android Tablets Will Need In Order To Succeed

Introduction

If there's one thing CES told us about the upcoming twelve months in technology, it's that 2011 will be the year of Android tablets. And with noteworthy entries such as the Motorola XOOM, ASUS' lineup, and the T-Mobile G-Slate, it looks like the tablets' quality might be just as high as their quantity - at least hardware-wise.

But what about the software? After all, isn't a device's OS what makes or breaks it? And even if the tablets are good, will consumers care? Let's take a look at the top five areas Android tablets will need to succeed in.

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Android: A Look Back To 2010, And A Look Forward To 2011

Looking Back: Andy Conquers The World (And Then Some)

What a whirlwind year for Android. Although the T-Mobile G1 - the first Android handset - dropped way back in October of 2008, it arguably took until 2010 for Android to become feasible for the mainstream. In fact, when the Nexus One was released in early January, it was widely hailed as being the first true Android competitor to the iPhone, in no small part due to the advancements made with Éclair.

From there, Android took off: Eric Schmidt announced in May that over 100,000 Android handsets were being activated daily. By June, the number was up to 160,000.

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CNN Money: Could Google Become A Carrier?

Yesterday, CNN Money posted a rather interesting piece that posed the question: could Google become "your new phone carrier?" If you're anything like me (and I hope for your sake that you're not), your first response was "Google? A carrier? #$%^ Yeah!" But as awesome as I'm sure that would be, the more I think about it, the less likely it seems.

I'm not saying it won't happen. Hell, even the author of the article (David Goldman) doesn't seem sure of the idea. The point of the article seems to be more so to point out that it's feasible, especially down the road.

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[Updated] Rant: How To Piss Everyone Off By Gaming The Android Market - Yes, I Am Talking About You, Forester/Woodman/etc

<begin rant>

This has been brewing for a while, but I've had enough. As you may know, throughout the week, I keep an eye out for any new worthy Android apps to be rounded up and published for everyone to enjoy. An important part of this search is looking through the new apps list, for which I had chosen AppBrain - specifically, this RSS feed, which lists every app entering the Android Market.

As I've looked at these new apps day by day, I started noticing something peculiar. No, it wasn't the amount of fart apps and soundboards - those, while annoying, are still legitimate applications, which, thanks to Google's openness, deserve a place in the Market just like any other app.

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Will The FCC's Net Neutrality Order Cost Smartphone Users?


In a word: yes. Wireless carriers in the US (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, etc.) have long been deeply opposed to net neutrality over their so-called "mobile broadband" networks, but today they've been given a power they have long desired to see the FCC put into writing.

If you haven't been following the net neutrality saga, you might want to find out what exactly "net neutrality" is, or what it means.

What is "net neutrality"?

It's a loaded term, to be frank. Net neutrality activists will tell you it means the complete freedom of information from corporate interference by requiring that ISPs (Internet service providers) do not give any preferential (or deferential) treatment to any information transmitted over their networks, unless it is clearly illegal or dangerous.

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Android Devs To Manufacturers and Carriers: It's Not Rooting, It's Openness

The Android dev team has generally been assumed to have a passive stance on rooting and unlocking Android devices. That is, do it if you want - we won't stop you. And there's certainly evidence abound supporting this - Google's Nexus One could be unlocked via a simple ADB (Android Device Bridge) command: fastboot oem unlock. The same is true of the Nexus S.

Of course, it only makes sense - Google doesn't want to put any unnecessary barriers between Android developers and the open source OS, especially on developer phones.

But a new post on the official Android Developers Blog shows that team Android is a little more concerned with how their operating system is being used than some of us may have previously assumed.

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Modder’s Column: How To Remap Your Android Phone’s Hardware Buttons Without Touching A Single Line Of Code

So maybe you've recently upgraded your Android phone and haven't gotten used to the new device's button alignment yet... or maybe you never use that pesky Search key and want to turn it into the camera key your EVO 4G has always wanted... or maybe you just enjoy tinkering with your phone. If you're in one of those situations, what you may be lusting after is a way to remap your phone's hardware buttons (i.e. making the Search key take on the duties of the Home key, or vise versa).

Up until now, there haven't been any user-friendly methods of doing this, at least not any that can be so greatly customized.

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