Apparently, this and Nyan Droid are both part of a new screensaver feature Google called "Android Dreams" that was disabled by them before Ice Cream Sandwich was released (presumably because it wasn't ready for prime time yet). Here is a picture of the re-enabled feature in CM9, courtesy of Steve Kondik who stopped by our G+ post.
We're not sure whether what you're about to see is yet another Easter egg in Ice Cream Sandwich (remember the Nyan Droid?) or the next amazing launcher that will do your dishes and fly you into space, but it turns out the stock ICS launcher actually has another launcher buried inside.
In a recent "Competitive Comparison" graphic, Verizon has labeled Samsung's Galaxy Nexus as having "No OEM Customization," ostensibly as a selling point against the competition.
It's interesting that Verizon would go so far in labeling the Nexus' UI as such, but it may hint that VZW is at least vaguely aware that some consumers prefer a stock experience, and consider it a strong enough selling point that it should be included in a comparison chart. It's also likely that Verizon simply wanted to accurately describe each device's UI, but I find it odd that they included "Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich" twice in the same column, just to make clear that there are no custom overlays to be found on the Nexus.
Nobody is really sure what it means at the moment, but we definitely know the ad showing the Verizon Galaxy Nexus for $199.99 is real. As in, It's not fake since it's showing up on Android sites across the web (we've spotted it here at AP, at Phandroid, and DroidForums to name a few). These ads are run by NetShelter, which is a premium advertising network that deals directly with carriers and manufacturers and does not mess around - we know them all too well.
Clicking Learn More goes to this page that doesn't list the Galaxy Nexus, so either someone pressed the Launch button a bit too early or the ad was scheduled ahead of time and someone forgot to postpone it due to all the recent delays.
There's been quite a stir caused in the past few days about a mysterious volume bug which surfaced on the Galaxy Nexus. The bug began drawing attention over at XDA's forums, where several users reported ostensibly random muting, and erratic response from the Nexus' volume rocker.
It was quickly discovered that the issue seemed to have something to do with the use of 2G signal, specifically the use of a 900 MHz frequency used by many European carriers. The bug could also be replicated using other phones situated near the Galaxy Nexus, leading to concerns that perhaps the bug was hardware-related.
Not in the mood to wait around for Verizon to finally decide to put a firm release date on the Galaxy Nexus' head? Tied to one of the other carriers? If your answer to either of those questions was affirmative (and if you have three-quarters of a grand lying around), you'll be delighted to know that Expansys just put up a page from which customers can purchase the I9250 GSM variant of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
At $750, it won't come cheap, but as this is an "intermational" handset (Expansys' "be first" motto apparently means it doesn't dedicate much time to proofreading), you'll be able to use it on both AT&T and T-Mobile.
One of the most prominent new features on the Galaxy Nexus, and Ice Cream Sandwich, is that the soft-keys are displayed right on the screen. While the notion is a sound one, there will always be those who miss some of the legacy features left behind. In this case, those would be the Menu and Search keys, stalwarts of Android's interface paradigm since its release with the G1. What was once four buttons - Home, Menu, Back, Search* - has been whittled down to just Home and Back, along with the introduction of the new multitasking-purposed App Switcher button. This combination was seen previously in Android 3.0 Honeycomb, but is about to encounter widespread use on upcoming phones**.
Update: Things have gone from "Looks like a weird software bug" to "Damn, this could well be a serious hardware issue". As some users had been suggesting, the problem does indeed link to use of 2G. However, it turns out that the issue can be replicated by the use of 2G even on another, proximate phone. As you can see in the video demonstration by kongzs7 below, the volume rocker keys' sensors are set off even when the phone is only at the bootloader.
This absolves Android 4.0 from blame, and suggests either an issue with the internal hardware, or possibly the firmware of the device, both significantly more problematic to sort out.
So, it turns out that the Galaxy Nexus doesn't support USB mass storage (UMS), which happened to come as a shock to many users. Anyone who owns a XOOM, Nexus S, Galaxy Tab 10.1, or any device lacking a SD Card slot is familiar this setup, though, as all of the aforementioned device work similarly to the Galaxy Nexus - using MTP instead of UMS.
When one Redditor pointed out the fact that the GN doesn't support UMS, Android Engineer Dan Morrill was quick to jump in and explain the details. What resulted was an impromptu Q&A session with Mr. Morrill, who was cool enough to hang out and answer several questions about the GN, UMS, and why Google chose to do things this way.
The Galaxy Nexus, aka the biggest tease in the world of mobile this year, is so close that we can almost feel the Verizon variant in our grabby little hands, but alas, it's not out just yet. Google wanted to send us a reminder today, just in case we've forgotten (yeah, right) in the form of a new Galaxy Nexus commercial and ten accompanying how-to videos.
Their message: "Simple. Beautiful. Beyond Smart," and that's exactly the way we like it. I do have a few things that came to mind to point out:
When it was confirmed that the Galaxy Nexus doesn't have Gorilla Glass, it was as if the entire world into some sort of I'm going to scratch the hell out of it hysteria. It turns out that all the kerfuffle was for nothing, as one Galaxy Nexus owner decided to put that big beautiful screen to the test.
I admit, it was a little painful to watch, but the end result was nothing less than spectacular. It turns out that Gorilla Glass isn't the only durable glass available for smartphones after all.
Now, do you feel better about the durability and scratch-resistance of the GN's screen?