All together now: finally! After several broken promises and recalled updates, Samsung's just announced that Android 2.2 FroYo will be available through a "brand new version of Kies" (that's Samsung's software upgrade system) early in November for Galaxy S owners in the UK, while "all operator versions" are "expected" to be available by the end of November (hopefully that includes the "operator versions" of the Galaxy S that Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile are currently carrying here in the States). One could complain that it's about four months late, and that's likely due to the evils of custom UIs - but then again, it's better late than never, right?
We have good news and bad news for Samsung Galaxy S owners. The good: the Froyo update source code released a few days ago is now officially being rolled out by Samsung. The bad news: they're starting with the Nordic countries... then "gradually" moving across Europe, Asia, North America, Africa, and everyone else.
The word "gradually" isn't exactly encouraging, and neither is the fact that North America is towards the end of the list. Still, the news alone should be enough to brighten the day of a whole bunch of people.
[Source: Samsung via Engadget]
Full press release:
Samsung GALAXY S Offers New Android 2.2 Upgrade
New platform upgrade provides enhanced experience on the go
SEOUL, Korea – October 18, 2010 – Samsung Electronics Co.
Who thinks strictly black and gray phones are gloomy and boring? I do and, thankfully, so does Best Buy. A few months ago, the retailer announced an exclusive white EVO 4G, and today we got word of not 1 but 2 more white Android phones arriving on October 24: Verizon's Samsung Fascinate and AT&T's slightly outdated Sony Ericsson Xperia X10. While the exact pricing on either of these is unknown, you can head over to Best Buy today and reserve the device of your dreams with a $50 deposit. Unfortunately, there's no word on whether other outlets will be receiving these handsets - all we have to work with is the picture below.
Recently, I got ahold of Verizon's Samsung Fascinate and shot the following video review (and yes, I have a capacitive stylus - start getting jealous):
For a quick refresher, here, once again, are the specs of the Fascinate:
- 1GHz Hummingbird processor
- Android 2.1 (Eclair)
- 5MP camera wih LED flash
- 4" Super Amoled capacitive multitouch (5 point) screen
- 2GB internal memory
- Bluetooth 3.0 (with stereo output)
- 3.5mm Headphone Jack
- Supports HD (720p) video recording
Here are those pictures I promised. They look pretty good:
One other thing I didn't really get to touch on in the video that I really wish I had shown you is the media playing on this phone.
If there's one man with an inside line in the mobile industry, it's mobile-review.com's Editor-in-Chief Eldar Murtazin. This guy has a network of informants rivalling any national security agency you'd care to name.
The latest subject of his (occasionally spurious) tweeting is Samsung's family of Super-AMOLED phones, namely the Wave and Galaxy S. Eldar seems to have some insight into the production and stock of S-AMOLED panels, leading him to think that neither of the two aforementioned phones are in production anymore because of S-AMOLED scarcity.
Murtazin goes on to indicate that the Galaxy S line does not have an immediate replacement in the pipeline (dash our hopes), and that all current stock of Samsung's stunning new screen tech has been sold to Apple for a product release in 2011.
While not nearly as big a deal as the Froyo rollout for the Droid X, Verizon is also releasing an update for the Samsung Fascinate today. Doesn't look like users will receive a notification for the update quite yet, so to get it you'll need to check for it manually.
Instant notification of Visual Voice Mail messages on your messaging bar.
Improved syncing between your phone and email accounts.
Prompt notification when switching to Airplane mode.
Faster switching to 3G services from 1x.
Easily search your phone during calls.
Improved Enterprise Exchange password alerts.
No Service audio alert removed.
There will also be support for a few new devices- Acer Liquid, HTC Wildfire and Samsung Vibrant. My eye is also on the new HTC phones that are about to get released like the G2.
It looks like their doors are still open to new devs and currently unsupported devices, as well - to quote Cyanogen once more:
Samsung has released the source for the Fascinate, roughly a week after the phone was released. As usual, any bits that are special to Sammy aren't included in the release, but there should still be enough material in there to get tinkering. As I've said before, the layperson doesn't really benefit from the release, but modders can get down and dirty with the code to tweak things just the way they'd like - and hopefully, make those changes public so that others can get in on the action as well.
"Ergo, you can now produce modifications to your mobile device, vis-à-vis the fundamental programming found within its hardware."
Once again, a note on navigating the Samsung Open Source Release Center: click on Mobile (near the top), then scroll down to SCH-i500 - that's the Fascinate.
Wow, what a day today for Verizon's Samsung Fascinate! When it was introduced for $199 on a contract, Verizon threw in a 2-for-1 deal, making the price $99.99 if you buy 2.
Shortly after, Wirefly and Amazon Wireless both dropped the price to $99.99, making it a great deal for those who need only 1 Fascinate.
Today, the price war got serious. Really serious.
Looks like both Wirefly and Amazon Wireless are up to their old, price-slashing tricks again. This time their sights rested on the brand new Samsung Fascinate for Verizon Wireless.
The new $99.99 deal, offered by both sites, is a 50% discount off carrier subsidized price of $199.99.
While the BOGO (buy-one-get-one-free) deal offered by Verizon itself technically averages out to about the same price, if you just need 1 Fascinate, Amazon Wireless or Wirefly are the way to go. With no gimmicks, mail in rebates, or TAXES (that's right, neither of the two charge you tax), you can get the Fascinate for about half the green you would part with at a Verizon store.