20
Oct
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It looks like Amazon's Gold Box and Woot! have paired up to offer a discount on the Motorola Xoom today. If you hurry, you can grab a factory refurbished, 32GB Xoom for just $339.99 (with free shipping), which is about $15 less than the last deal we saw from Woot! on the original Honeycomb tablet.

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The deal will only be available until 12AM PDT tomorrow, so if you've been waiting for your chance to get a Xoom on the cheap, head over to Amazon and take advantage of the discount before time runs out.

20
Oct
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Since last night's announcement, there has been a lot of speculation surrounding the Galaxy Nexus. One of the most mysterious features of Samsung's latest Nexus device is its onboard barometer. Many have been questioning why Samsung would include a barometer in the Nexus' sleek chassis, citing possibilities from more accurate weather prediction to simple altitude detection (which is partially true).

In a Google+ post today, Android Engineer Dan Morrill gave us the scoop on what the barometer is actually for, and it's more interesting than you might think.

19
Oct
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Let's get the preliminary question off the plate first: who is Matias Duarte? Well for one thing, he oversaw the designing of a few small projects such as webOS, Sidekick OS, and Helio (the little carrier that could... be bought out). And, oh yeah, he also played a large part in Honeycomb's development.

Yesterday he sat down with Joshua Topolsky of This is my Next (soon to be The Verge) to discuss the "philosophy" of Android and, more specifically, Ice Cream Sandwich.

19
Oct
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Since I'm seeing questions inquiring about Android 4.0's source code drop every 5 minutes here and there, I thought it would be a good idea to point out this blurb in a recent post by an Android engineer Dan Morrill, aka morrildl:

  • To reiterate, these servers contain only the ‘gingerbread’ and ‘master’ branches from the old AOSP servers. We plan to release the source for the recently-announced Ice Cream Sandwich soon, once it’s available on devices.
  • 19
    Oct
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    The ASUS Eee Pad Transformer is, if nothing else, a unique breed of tablet, conveniently offering the functionality of a netbook at your whim, with the addition of a handy keyboard dock. It is, no doubt, a capable piece of hardware, but (in my opinion) it seems a bit awkward and bulky. Of course, upon its release, speculation about its successor began almost immediately. Several months later, ASUS has released a teaser video that gives us a few hints about the next Transformer.

    19
    Oct
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    We've been hearing rumors of the Droid RAZR for some time now, and it's finally official. Like previously suggested, this is a super-thin, ultra-light powerhouse of a device, with some pretty impressive features tucked away under its sleek, stainless steel frame:

    • 4.3-inch qHD Super AMOLED display
    • 1.2GHz dual-core processor
    • 1GB RAM
    • 8MP rear shooter, front facing camera
    • 16GB built-in storage, 16GB microSD card
    • Android 2.3.5
    • 7.1mm thin, 127 grams
    • 1800mAh battery
    • Made with Kevlar fiber
    • Gorilla Glass
    • Motorola Splash Guard
    • Webtop cabpable
    • 4G LTE
    • Bluetooth 4.0

    Update 10/19/11: Two official videos of the RAZR:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9Sz3Cn101Y

    wm_217755 wm_217756

    The Droid RAZR packs some new software features, as well, like Motorola Smart Actions, a Tasker or Locale-like automation system that can toggle radios, adjust brightness, clock speed, and more, all of which are user definable and will activate given a certain situation.

    19
    Oct
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    It looks like the HP Touchpad isn't the only tablet to have a bounty placed on its head - Kindle Fire Forum is now offering a substantial reward to the first person who's able to provide a reliable, reversible root method, or either a Honeycomb or Ice Cream Sandwich port for Amazon's Android tablet.

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    The forum is offering a prize of $200 for a root method, and a whopping $800 for a "Basic" Honeycomb or ICS port.

    19
    Oct
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    It seems that these days, Samsung must constantly be on alert for new entries in the ever-growing list of patent disputes with Apple. Sensing this, Samsung's Mobile President, Shin Jong-kyun (who we heard from at last night's presentation) took a moment to stress the fact that the Galaxy Nexus was designed with patents in mind - specifically, it was designed to avoid trouble with Apple. While it is a rectangular device with a touch screen, not much else seems to put it in danger.

    19
    Oct
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    After yesterday's absolutely insane phone announcement-bomb, HTC and Sprint have subtly unveiled the EVO Design 4G. If you're looking for an upper mid-range device that won't break the bank, the Design 4G has your number, as it's packing decent, but not (yet) outdated hardware:

    • 4-inch qHD display
    • 1.2Ghz single-core Snapdragon processor
    • 5MP rear shooter with HD video capture (720p), 1.3MP ffc
    • Android 2.3.5 with Sense
    • WiMax

    EVO-Design-600x532

    Sure, it doesn't compare to the recently announced Motorola Droid RAZR or the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, but at $200 cheaper it definitely has its appeal.

    19
    Oct

    Just six days after The CyanogenMod (CM) team released the first alpha build for the TouchPad, they're back with alpha 2. Despite being bumped up a version, it's still an alpha, meaning there are many things that can (and likely will) go wrong. Still, it looks like they've made quite a few improvements with the update:

    Changelog:
    (AKA things we hope we fixed)

    * Plugging headphones in should now shut off speaker volume
    * Battery drain issues have been (partially) addressed
    * More apps now available in market (thanks to Flemmard)
    * Temporarily removed suspect fsck_msdos to fix random folder deletion on media/sdcard.

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