Android Blog For All Things Android 2012-12-17T11:34:52Z http://www.androidblog.com.au/feed/atom/ WordPress Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Google’s Galaxy Nexus Is Finally Official]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2390 2011-10-24T13:45:10Z 2011-10-19T11:30:33Z Google's Galaxy Nexus by SamsungThe wait is finally over as Google and Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Nexus (not Nexus Prime as most people thought it would be called) today in Hong Kong.

The Galaxy Nexus is the first phone to come with the latest Android operating system ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’ as well as a plethora of delicious features including a giant 4.65-inch HD touchscreen (720 x 1280), 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB RAM, 16 or 32 GB of internal storage, NFC chip for wireless payments and mighty 1750 mAh battery. Network-wise there’ll be support for HSPA+ while an LTE version will be available depending on region.

The Galaxy Nexus is expected to be available across major global markets in November but outright/unlocked pricing has not yet been announced. There’s also yet to be any mention of an Australian release date but with the strong Aussie dollar there’s no doubt many will be looking to take advantage of that and grab one outright from an International online retailer.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
  • Screen type: 4.65-inch Super AMOLED touchscreen
  • Screen resolution: 720 x 1280 pixels
  • Processor: Dual-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A9 CPU, TI OMAP 4460 chipset
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • Internal memory: 16 or 32 GB flash memory
  • Expandable memory: None
  • Camera/s: 5 megapixel rear, 1.3 megapixel front, LED flash and 1080p video recording
  • Location services: A-GPS and digital compass
  • Radio: FM radio with RDS
  • Sensors: NFC support, accelerometer, barometer, proximity and three-axis gyroscope
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g/n), DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
    – 3.0 with A2DP
    – microUSB 2.0
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Networks:
    – 2G: 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz
    – 3G: 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 MHz
    – LTE (region specific)
  • Dimensions: 135.5 x 67.9 x 8.9 mm
  • Weight: 135 g
  • Battery: Li-Ion 1750 mAh
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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Motorola Xoom Tablet Officially Unveiled]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2318 2011-01-15T05:39:08Z 2011-01-15T05:36:05Z Motorola XoomAt the 2011 CES in Las Vegas Motorola officially unveiled the Xoom tablet. The impressively spec’d tablet took the show by storm and was also voted Best of Show by CNET.

The Motorola Xoom is the first device to debut with Android 3.0 Honeycomb, Google’s first version of Android to cater for tablets. Other notable features include a 10.1-inch screen, dual-core 1 GHz processor, 1 GB RAM, 32 GB on board storage, 5-megapixel camera with 720p video recording and 4G LTE support which will be available after an update in Q2. Battery life on the device is rated to be capable of supporting 10 hours of video playback.

The Xoom will be available in Q1 on contract through Verizon in the U.S. So far only a CDMA version has been announced although a GSM version of the device is likely to follow shortly after. Official pricing details are not yet available although Hantec in the UK did have the device listed for pre-order on their website for £719.99 (including 20% VAT) but this appears to have since been removed.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 3.0 (Honeycomb)
  • Screen type: 10.1-inch capacitive TFT touchscreen
  • Screen resolution: 1280 x 800
  • Processor: 1 GHz NVIDIA Tegra 2 Dual Core
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • Internal memory: 32 GB flash memory
  • Expandable memory: microSDHC card slot supporting up to 32 GB (not included)
  • Camera/s: 5 megapixel main, 2 megapixel secondary, dual LED flash, auto focus and 720p video recording
  • Location services: Simultaneous GPS and digital compass
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, magnetometer, barometer, gyroscope and ambient light sensor
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g/n)
    – Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR + HID
    – microUSB 2.0
    – HDMI 1.4
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Supported audio: AAC, AAC+, AMR NB, AMR WB, MP3, XMF
  • Supported video: H.263, H.264, MPEG4
  • Networks:
    – CDMA: 1900/2100 MHz
    – Data: cdmaOne, CDMA2000 1xRTT, CDMA2000 1xEV-DO Rel. 0, CDMA2000 1xEV-DO Rev A
  • Dimensions: 249.1 x 167.8 x 12.9 mm
  • Weight: 730 g
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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Creative ZiiO 7-inch Android Tablet Launches]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2254 2010-12-20T16:10:42Z 2010-12-20T13:05:24Z Creative ZiiO 7-inch Android TabletCreative have recently launched the 7-inch ZiiO tablet along with a 10-inch model both running Android 2.1. The devices target the lower to mid end of the tablet market with the 7-inch model having comparable specifications to the Augen Gentouch78 and Telstra’s T-Touch Tab.

The Creative ZiiO 7-inch features a resistive touchscreen with a resolution of 800 x 480, ZiiLABS ZMS-08 processor (clock speed unknown), 512 MB of RAM, 8 GB or 16 GB of internal storage, a microSD slot (supporting cards up to 32 GB) a front-facing VGA camera and 720p video output capabilities. The device doesn’t have the Android Market installed which is a big shame but Creative do have their own ZiiStore installed for access to additional apps.

The 7-inch ZiiO is priced at AUD$299.95 for the 8 GB model or AUD$329.95 for the 16 GB model from Creative’s online store which ships direct from Singapore. Free shipping is currently offered for Australian and New Zealand customers on purchases over $129 making the tablets a little more attractive.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 2.1
  • Screen type: 7-inch resistive TFT touchscreen
  • Screen resolution: 480 x 800 (WVGA)
  • Processor: ZiiLABS ZMS-08 processor (clock speed unknown)
  • RAM: 512 MB
  • Internal memory: 8 GB or 16 GB flash memory
  • Expandable memory: microSD slot supporting cards up to 32 GB (not included)
  • Camera: Front-facing VGA camera
  • Sensors: Accelerometer
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g)
    – Bluetooth 2.1 with apt-X and A2DP
    – Mini-USB
    – HDMI port
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Supported audio: MP3, AAC, WMA9, FLAC, OGG, MIDI, WAV, Audible Format
  • Supported video: H.264, MPEG4, WMV9, MOV, AVI, MKV
  • Dimensions: 207.4 x 133 x 13.7 mm
  • Weight: 400 g
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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Google Nexus S Officially Unveiled]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2180 2011-10-19T10:12:10Z 2010-12-09T04:31:53Z Google Nexus SGoogle has officially unveiled the Nexus S, the spiritual successor to the Nexus One via the Official Google Blog. Unlike the Nexus One which was made by HTC, the Nexus S is from Samsung.

Specifications wise the Nexus S is similar to the Samsung Galaxy S. Apart from the obvious cosmetic differences the Nexus S has a few notable features of its own including a 4-inch Contour Display which is supposedly a first of its kind in a smartphone, Near Field Communications (NFC) so the phone can be used to make payments much like some of the newer credit cards, a three-axis gyroscope for added control in gaming and an anti-fingerprint coating on the display. The Nexus S will also be the first phone to run the latest version of the Android OS, 2.3 aka Gingerbread.

One unusual thing about the Nexus S is that it doesn’t have a microSD card slot which is commonplace in Android phones. I guess Google and Samsung don’t see this as a big deal since the phone does come with 16GB of internal memory. No doubt there will be some who won’t be happy with this omission though, especially those who like to load their phones with music and full length films.

The Nexus S is scheduled for release in the U.S. on 16 December and will be available unlocked or with a T-Mobile service plan through Best Buy. In the UK the phone will be available after 20 December through Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy. Unfortunately, there is no word yet as to when the phone will land in Australia.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
  • Screen type: 4-inch Super AMOLED curved glass Contour Display with anti-fingerprint coating
  • Screen resolution: 480 x 800 (WVGA)
  • Processor: 1 GHz Cortex A8 (Hummingbird)
  • RAM: 512 MB
  • Internal memory: 16 GB iNAND flash memory
  • Expandable memory: none
  • Camera: Back-facing 5 megapixel camera with flash, 720p video recording and front-facing VGA camera
  • Location services: A-GPS and digital compass
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor and three-axis gyroscope
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g/n)
    – Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
    – microUSB 2.0
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
    – Near Field Communication (NFC)
  • Supported audio: MP3, AAC, eAAC, AAC+, AMR
  • Supported video: H.263, H.264, MPEG-4
  • Battery: Li-Ion 1500mAh
  • Networks:
    – GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
    – UMTS/HSPA: 900/2100/1700 MHz (a Next G compatible 850 MHz version has not yet been announced)
  • Dimensions: 63 x 123.9 x 10.88 mm
  • Weight: 129 g
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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Google Maps Navigation Arrives In Australia]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2112 2010-11-23T00:43:43Z 2010-11-22T15:21:17Z Nexus One with Google Maps Navigation for AustraliaAfter a long wait Google Maps Navigation has finally arrived in Australia and New Zealand. This app alone will no doubt make a lot more people in Australia consider Android for their next phone.

Based on my own tests I’ve found the navigation software to be very accurate. Searching and finding an address is fast and precise. The only thing I don’t like about the software is the annoying voice that provides the directions. It sounds way too high pitched and robot like for my ears. Hopefully Google changes this soon or at least provides an alternative.

Google Maps Navigation also supports voice search allowing you to spend less time physically interacting with the phone. I don’t know if it’s just me but I find the voice search feature not accurate enough to be useful. I’m sure this will improve with future updates though.

All in all Google Maps Navigation a great piece of software, even if it wasn’t free. It’s certainly going to hurt the sales of paid navigation apps such as CoPilot Live, Aura GPS Navigation and Destinator.

This latest version of Google Maps Navigation, 4.7, supports smartphones running Android 1.6 or higher. To download or update search for Google Maps in the Android Market on your phone.

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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Android 2.1 On Sony Ericsson Xperia X10]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=2070 2010-10-31T12:28:34Z 2010-10-27T15:14:17Z Sony Ericsson have just released a video about the benefits of upgrading to Android 2.1 (Eclair) on the Xperia X10. I find this a bit odd because I haven’t heard of anyone getting the official update yet. It appears that Sony Ericsson are just preparing owners for the upcoming update. After all, Xperia X10 owners have been stuck with Android 1.6 for so long they deserve a bit of a peek into what owners of other phones have been enjoying for many months.

Official reports have suggested that markets such as the UK and Australia are to get the OTA update at the end of October while others such as the U.S. will need to wait until Q4.

Top benefits of upgrading your Xperia X10 software to Android 2.1 video

Update (31 October 2010): The official Sony Ericsson product blog has posted an article advising that Xperia X10, X10 Mini, and X10 Mini Pro handsets will begin receiving the Android 2.1 ‘Eclair’ update today (Sunday). The Nordic countries will be the first to receive the update followed by other European countries starting on Monday. The roll-out will continue throughout the month of November for all other countries.

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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Dell Streak On Sale At Optus From 1 October]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=1992 2010-09-30T15:57:14Z 2010-09-30T04:34:16Z Dell Streak at OptusIn a media release last week Optus announced that they will be the first Australian carrier to offer the Dell Streak from 1 October. The announcement comes several months after the device was first released in the UK in June this year.

The Dell Steak is a mini tablet (or large phone depending on how you look at it) featuring a 5-inch TFT capacitive touchscreen, 1 GHz processor, 512 MB of RAM, 2 GB of internal memory and a microSD slot preloaded with a 16 GB card. The tablet also features a 5 megapixel rear-facing camera and a VGA front-facing camera. [view the full list of specifications]

One disappointment with the Streak is that it comes with Android 1.6 which is a shame as most Android devices are now shipping with 2.x versions of the OS. Dell have said that an upgrade to Android 2.1/2.2 is coming this year but no date has yet been given. The UK versions of the Streak received the upgrade from 1.6 to 2.1 update earlier this month. It should also be noted though that Dell have made improvements to Android 1.6 such as enabling support for pinch-to-zoom multi-touch which for the standard versions of Android wasn’t available natively until version 2.1.

Android 1.6 aside, I can’t see the Streak not doing well especially as Optus is offering it on some fairly competitive plans. Plans start on the $49 Optus Cap with $7 per month handset payments over 24 months and includes 1 GB of monthly data. I suspect most customers will opt for the next plan up which is the $59 Optus Cap with no handset repayments over 24 months. This plan comes with 2 GB of monthly data. The Streak will also be available for purchase outright at $649.

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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[HTC Desire HD (HTC Ace) Launches]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=1922 2010-09-27T13:00:04Z 2010-09-27T04:03:59Z HTC Desire HD (HTC Ace)At the same time that HTC officially announced the Desire Z they also unveiled the Desire HD (aka Ace), a high-end device powered by Android 2.2 and featuring a 4.3-inch touchscreen, 1 GHz processor, 768 MB of RAM, 1.5 GB of internal memory and an 8 megapixel camera with 720p HD video recording capability.

Specifications wise, the Desire HD should be one of the most (if not the most) powerful smartphones on the market. A combination of having the latest 1 GHz Snapdragon processor, a generous 768 MB of RAM and DLNA support for sharing media on a TV certainly places it at the front of the pack.

The HTC Desire HD will be available across major European and Asian markets from October 2010 with North America later on in the year. In Australia the phone will launch exclusively through Vodafone and Three in the coming months. Pricing and availability details have not yet been announced.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 2.2 with HTC Sense
  • Screen type: 4.3-inch S-LCD capacitive touchscreen display
  • Screen resolution: 480 x 800 (WVGA)
  • Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon QSD8255 1 GHz
  • RAM: 768 MB
  • Internal memory: 1.5 GB
  • Expandable memory: microSD slot supporting cards up to 32 GB
  • Camera: 8 megapixel, dual LED flash, auto focus and 720p video recording
  • Location services: A-GPS and digital compass
  • Radio: FM radio with RDS
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g/n), DLNA
    – Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP
    – microUSB 2.0
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Battery: Li-Ion 1230 mAh
  • Networks:
    – GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
    – UMTS/HSPA: 900/2100 MHz
  • Dimensions: 68 x 123 x 11.8 mm
  • Weight: 164 g

Watch the official video

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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[HTC Desire Z: A Desire With Slide-Out Keyboard]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=1838 2010-09-27T02:59:00Z 2010-09-22T07:26:53Z HTC Desire ZHTC officially unveiled the Desire Z in London last week, a phone very similar in design to the Desire but with a slide-out keyboard. Having a physical keyboard will appeal to those who want a large screen and don’t like typing on a virtual keyboard.

HTC have done a great job of keeping the Desire Z relatively thin at 14.16 mm (0.56″) which is only 2.26 mm thicker than the 11.9 mm (0.47″) Desire.

Specifications wise the Desire Z is not that different from the Desire apart from a slightly lower clocked 800 MHz processor (said to significantly reduce battery consumption), 1.5 GB of internal memory (up from 512 MB in the Desire) and 512 MB RAM (down from 576 MB in the Desire). A big plus is that the Desire Z gets Android 2.2 ‘Froyo’ right out of the box which will no doubt make a lot of buyers happy.

HTC have said that the Desire Z will be available across major European and Asian markets from October 2010 with the phone arriving in North America later on in the year. There has been no specific mention of Australia but expect it to come to our shores some time later this year. Pricing and carrier details have not yet been announced.

Specifications

  • OS: Android 2.2 with HTC Sense
  • Screen type: 3.7-inch S-LCD capacitive touchscreen display
  • Screen resolution: 480 x 800 (WVGA)
  • Processor: Qualcomm MSM 7230 800 MHz
  • RAM: 512 MB
  • Internal memory: 1.5 GB
  • Expandable memory: microSD slot supporting cards up to 32 GB
  • Camera: 5 megapixel, LED flash, auto focus and 720p video recording
  • Location services: A-GPS and digital compass
  • Radio: FM radio with RDS
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor
  • Connectivity:
    – WiFi (802.11 b/g/n)
    – Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP
    – microUSB 2.0
    – 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Battery: Li-Ion 1300mAh
  • Networks:
    – GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
    – UMTS/HSPA: 900/2100 MHz
  • Dimensions: 60.4 x 119 x 14.2 mm
  • Weight: 180 g
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Kham Tran http://www.androidblog.com.au/ <![CDATA[Andy The Android Amigurumi Doll]]> http://www.androidblog.com.au/?p=1760 2010-09-20T23:55:08Z 2010-09-20T12:48:04Z Andy The AndroidFor all you hardcore Android fans out there who are on the lookout for Android figurines and toys here’s something that might interest you. ‘Andy the Android’ is an amigurumi (Japanese for knitted or crocheted stuffed toy) doll made by Australian hobbyist crotcheter Xuan Nguyen. The cute little creation measures 12cm (about 4.5 inches) in length from the legs to the top of the antennas. It also contains weighted plastic pellets in the feet to help keep it upright.

For the sake of comparison the amigurumi doll is pictured next to a 3-inch Android figurine, a much sought after vinyl collectable designed and produced by Andrew Bell and Dyzplasic. Those who know about these mini figurines would know that they’re currently in short supply pretty much everywhere.

For those who’d like to own Andy the Android, the doll is up for auction on eBay. The item will only ship to a buyer in either Australia, the United States, United Kingdom, Canada or New Zealand.

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