A few days ago, Motorola pushed out a special soak test of the ICS update to a number of Wi-Fi XOOM owners in the U.S. Apparently, no serious issues were found by the company's engineers, as the very same Android 4.0.3 update (IML77) is now rolling out to everyone. Well, everyone in the U.S. with a Wi-Fi XOOM that is. This makes the XOOM the 2nd mainstream tablet device to officially receive ICS, losing out only to the Transformer Prime that beat it to the punch by only a couple of days.
Head over to Settings > About > System Updates to see if the 81.9MB update is available on your XOOM, let it do its thing, and enjoy the greatest version of Android Google has ever created. Read More
Motorola recently announced two entry-level Android smartphones for the Chinese, European, and Latin American markets, the Defy Mini and the Motoluxe. Both devices are now available for pre-order on Clove, and they are expected to ship in late February/early March.
The Motoluxe is priced at £215 (£258 inc. VAT).
The Defy Mini is priced at £145.83 (£174.99 inc. VAT).
Additionally, Motorola have teamed up with UK-based construction manufacturer JCB to give the "rugged" Defy+ a makeover. The new "Defy+ JCB Edition" is similar, spec-wise, to the earlier Defy+ model, however it now comes cocooned in a "visco-elastic protective sleeve" to make it just a bit more rugged. Read More
International Trade Commission Judge Theodore Essex decided in Washington today that Motorola Mobility did not violate three of Apple's Patents, as the Cupertino tech giant had claimed. Two of the patents related to touchscreen features, including multi touch, and a device's ability to recognize various types of manual input, like sliding and pinching gestures. The third, as Bloomberg explains, "is for a way to add components without having to run an installation program or rebooting."
This case comes as one of many in a long saga of attacks on Android for alleged patent infringement, part of an effort by Apple across four continents to prove that Android copies pieces of the iPhone's functionality. Read More
Droid RAZR MAXX
Verizon Wireless and Motorola just took the wraps off the new Droid RAZR - the Droid RAZR MAXX, a familiar name we saw leaked a few weeks ago. The RAZR MAXX contains the following changes compared to the original:
- A beefier battery with an unknown at the moment capacity. What we do know is that it allows for more than 21 hours of talk time on a single charge. Update: It's 3,300 mAh.
- The MAXX is 8.99mm thin compared to the original RAZR's 7.1mm.
- The press release specifies 32GB total storage, but it's not obvious whether that means 32GB on-board or 16+16, like on the original RAZR.
Well, it's official - the "project" Xoom owners have been waiting for is an update to Ice Cream Sandwich, meant as a soak test, expected to last through the weekend. Moto has begun pushing the new software as of 9pm PST. An anonymous tipster has provided us with shots of a private section of Motorola's official XOOM support forum, which confirm that the update is going live to those lucky enough to join the test group.
As you can see, Moto has indicated that they do in fact plan on releasing this software very soon, unless "there is some extremely serious issue."
While Xoom Wi-Fi owners lucky enough to participate in Motorola's project test out Ice Cream Sandwich for the tablet that launched Honeycomb, other users can look forward to an update to Android's latest and greatest iteration any time now. Read More
Late yesterday, we got a chance to spend some time with the Motorola DROID 4 over at the Verizon booth here at CES, and we have to say - It sure seems like Motorola has done it again. The DROID 4 will likely once again set the bar for QWERTY slider phones, and thanks to the addition of 4G LTE and a snappy TI OMAP 4430 dual-core processor (the same one found in the DROID RAZR), it's also going to be the fastest DROID yet.
Of course, the biggest feature on any DROID is the keyboard, and you can rest assured, the DROID 4's does not disappoint. Read More
"More wood behind fewer arrows."
That's the phrase Larry Page used to describe Google's recent shut down of underperforming products. Stop flooding the market with crap, and focus on fewer, higher quality products. Now it seems Motorola has somehow gotten the exact same idea.
AllThingsD reports that Motorola "plans to release fewer new models this year, in an effort to concentrate its marketing dollars." I hope they are concentrating their design, polish, and update efforts too.
Motorola's release schedule since they jumped on the Android train has been absolutely insane. Their 2011 US product lineup looked something like this:
Xoom Family Edition
Droid XYBOARD 10.1
Droid XYBOARD 8.2
Now this list is in no way definitive, but it should give you an idea of the crazy incremental one upmanship Motorola has been betting on. Read More
Have you ever used the Webtop feature built into a number of Motorola's newest devices? According to CEO Sanjay Jha, not many users are actively firing up the desktop-in-a-cellphone feature - less than ten percent, to be exact. Makes sense, though, as it's basically a watered-down desktop experience, and no one really wants that.
According to Jha, Moto is aware of the issues with Webtop and wants to make it more useable. He told The Verge that the next generation of Webtop would bring more capabilities, including a new browser: Google's Chrome. In all honestly, this is probably what the company should've used in the first place, as the version of Firefox currently used by Webtop was old, slow, and outdated before it ever hit shelves. Read More
Wow - Motorola's Sanjay Jha and Intel just announced that the two companies have entered into a strategic partnership to combine forces to deliver new Medfield-based mobile devices to the US market, with actual devices finalized by this summer, and availability shortly thereafter (subject to carrier approval). This is probably the most exciting thing we've heard all day.
Motorola has had a fairly long-standing relationship with Texas Instruments (along with a couple brief collaborations with NVIDIA). The deal with Intel was said to be a multi-year agreement, suggesting that Motorola may be changing its go-to chipset and processor provider. Sanjay Jha stated we could expect specific device announcements in the coming months, and we can't wait to see what the two are going to come up with, especially now that Google will probably play a significant role in the whole process, as well. Read More
Yes, that's right - at just half an inch thick, the Droid 4 is the world's thinnest 4G LTE QWERTY Smartphone. Not only is it ridiculously thin (for a slider), but it also packs some pretty raw power under it's hood. Check out what it has to offer:
- 1.2GHz dual-core processor
- 1GB of RAM
- Android 2.3.5 (Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich upgradable)
- 4-Inch "scratch-and-scrape resistant" display
- 16GB internal memory, Up To 32 GB microSD card supported
- Full five-row QWERTY
- 8MP rear shooter with 1080p HD Video Capture
- 4G LTE Capable (duh)
Note from Cameron:
I would like to take this opportunity to put my foot in my mouth.