Yesterday, we shared detailed mockups of what we believe to be a UI in testing that will likely come alongside a new release of Android. This UI basically seems to be a replacement for the existing Google Experience Launcher - and it is differenty. As we all know, change tends to spark controversy, and this story sparked like a Fox body Mustang riding on rims down the highway at 60MPH full of illegal fireworks and cheap power strips.
A growing number of sources are corroborating our initial report on a project known as Android Silver - a premium retail and branding effort orchestrated by Google to encourage manufacturers and consumers alike to get on board with handsets certified by Google as meeting certain criteria.
We know, for example, that one of the goals of this program is pinning down the Android software experience: Silver devices would be required to run the latest version of Android with little to no modification of the software experience (a la Motorola, for example).
With more and more smartphones featuring water resistance as standard, particularly Samsung's Galaxy S5, it seems like weatherproofing may be on the uptrend in the smartphone world. It's easy to see why - countless phones are lost to moisture-related incidents, whether it be a pool, toilet, or washing machine. Building phones designed to withstand the elements only makes sense, as nearly ever-present companions in our daily lives, our phones are bound to end up exposed to some less than electronic-friendly conditions during their lifetime.
It's the Googliest time of the year again - I/O is on the horizon. Registration closed as of yesterday (Friday), and I/O 2014 brought a whole new system in to deal with the demand for tickets: a lottery.
While it may seem a bit odd to some to have to be randomly selected for the right to spend $900 (or $300 for students / faculty) to go to a developer (and designer!) conference, Google I/O registration has sold out in minutes in previous years - even after Google has raised the cost of attendance substantially.
I've got a Gear 2 Fit review unit here, and I have to say, that curved OLED display is downright striking. This may be the most fashionable... thing Samsung's ever produced. How useful is it? Well, you'll have to wait for our review on that one.
This weekend's poll's an easy one - Cyanogen Inc's got a new logo, and you'll see it just below.
It's a decidedly more industrial, formal look than their old logo, which features the now-basically-defunct mascot Cid. It also doesn't exactly look like a software company's logo to me - more like a biohazard waste disposal consortium. It just doesn't seem like a good fit. Then again, it's just a logo, and it's a pretty opinion-based discussion, so, let's get subjective - vote in the poll below and let us know what you think of the new branding.
The new One boasts a slightly larger display than last year's model, and HTC new dual camera setup allows you to get a sort of knockoff-Lytro experience with your photos. The much-loved BoomSound speakers are making a return, as is the bulk of the original One's styling, apart from some slick new finishes.
While some would call it an inevitable eventuality, others were taken a bit aback when Google teased a wearable SDK at SXSW a couple weeks back, and later announced Android Wear. For those of you playing at home, Google has created no fewer than five variants of the Android OS tuned to a specific piece or style of hardware to date - Google TV, Chromecast (which does indeed run Android), Google Glass, Nexus Q, and now Android Wear.
While we didn't report on the story ourselves, Amazon's decision to raise the price of its Prime membership service by $20 (to $100 a year) has hard corners of the internet up in arms, albeit over something no one really needs in the first place.
If you're not in one of the countries where Prime is available (I was surprised to learn that it is, in fact, available outside the US), you may not be familiar with the service.
The Galaxy S5 is but a short month away from release, and at this point, it seems like we know most of what makes it special at this point - both from the hardware and software ends of the spectrum. There are still some things we'd like to know - what the wireless charging situation is, for example - but there is otherwise plentiful information out there on the web about Samsung's latest and greatest Galaxy.