When I first got my 16GB Nexus 7, it was fast. Probably faster than any other Android device I'd ever used. Everything was fluid, apps launched quickly, and transitioning between open applications was the best experience that I'd ever had on Android.
I was in love.
Then, a couple weeks ago, it inexplicably started to lag. A lot. I had just installed a test build of Horn, so I assumed that had something to do with it and uninstalled the game.
It's almost become trite to hear that Google has bought another company that deals in photo editing software. Yet, here we are again. Today, Vic Gundotra announced on Google+ that Nik Software, creators of the impressive Snapseed app that we saw demoed at CES this year, will be joining the Mountain View team.
While there's no indication yet just which Google product will see the benefit of this new talent, it can only mean good news.
On September 6, Amazon announced three new Kindles: a 6" non-Android model called the Paperwhite (with or without 3G), the 7" Kindle Fire HD (16 and 32GB), and an 8.9" Kindle Fire HD (16 or 32GB), while updating the hardware and dropping the price of the original Fire to $160.
So, you were thinking about picking up a Kindle Fire HD, rooting it, and throwing a ROM on it for an impressive $200 tablet? Turns out that idea may not work out as well as we initially thought: both the Kindle Fire HD and the second gen KF have locked bootloaders. Bummer.
This may not mean that custom ROMs are impossible on these devices, only that it's more improbable.
For those who may not know, the bootloader is responsible for checking the firmware's signature before a device boots.
While many people are patiently waiting for the Note II to hit the streets, the CM team has been working to bring the latest Android build to the original Note variants. CM10 has actually been available for the AT&T Note for a few days now, but the first nightly for the international variant just showed up.
Definition: A "nightly" is a bleeding edge release that is built on a daily basis, usually at night after a full day's worth of new code has been committed.
We already know that the Galaxy Note II will be making its way to Big Red eventually, and we assumed it would look identical to the international version. And it basically does, according to some leaked images that showed up today. Only, it has Verizon branding in places that no phone should ever have carrier branding of any kind: on the home button. I really hope this is a test design.
Last night, we reported on some pretty strange rumors concerning an Acer product launch set to take place Thursday in Shanghai. The rumor was that Google had put its foot down over Acer's announcement of an Aliyun-powered smartphone, and threatened to "terminate all android-related cooperation" with the Taiwanese manufacturer should it proceed with the CloudMobile A800's introduction.
In case you missed the story, Aliyun is an OS developed by Alibaba Group, China's largest Internet firm by transactions.
The DROID RAZR M just landed on Verizon yesterday for $99. A little while later, it dropped to $80 on Wirefly. Now, you can get both the white and black versions from Amazon Wireless for just $50 with a new two-year agreement (proof that you should never order anything directly from the carrier, especially on launch day). If you're already a Verizon customer, you can still get this solid mid-ranger for $70, which is $10 cheaper than anywhere else.
If you haven't already bought a Nexus 7, you're missing out. It's easily the best Android tablet on the market, bar none. For today only, you can score a 16GB Nexus 7 with official case and free shipping for $250. While the price isn't any different than the 16GB version directly from the Play Store, at least you're getting some freebies out of the deal - roughly a $30(ish) value.
One notable thing about this deal is that you have the choice of either a gray or blue case, the latter of which hasn't even arrived in the Play Store yet.
In case you forgot, we thought we'd give you a heads-up that Amazon's new Kindle Fire HD is officially available today - if you want the 7-inch, 16GB version. It's packing a 1.2GHz dual-core TI OMAP4460 processor, a 1280x800 display with advanced anti-glare tech, and a set of stereo speakers that really do blow away any other slate on the market. For a more complete look at the HD 7, check out our hands-on (with a comparison to the Nexus 7), and our original announcement post.