Runtastic just got pretty cool with it’s latest update. First of all if you aren’t familiar with Runtastic, it uses GPS to map your fitness activities like running, biking, and walking. It tracks your progress with things like distance, speed, calories, and more. It’s a lot like Google’s My Tracks. Now My Tracks recently updated with the ability to play back your activities through Google Earth and now Runtastic added something similar called Earth View. In addition, the Pro version has a new Auto Pause feature, which automatically detects when you pause. Hit the break for the demo video.
Not sure how many of you own the LG Nitro HD, but AT&T just reported that it will get the Ice Cream Sandwich update on July 31st. In addition users will also have access to LG’s new Optimus 3.0 UI, which allows users to unlock the phone by swiping anywhere on the screen, using your own photos as icons or shortcut images, and the addition of a “Download” category in the menu for easier organization.
Hit the break for the changelog.
Lets face it, all this legal news has gotten way out of control and I was over it months ago, but I have to admit, it’s starting to get interesting again. With Samsung and Apple set to battle it out next week, we’ve seen trial briefs from both Samsung and Apple, but as part of Samsung’s trial brief there was a mention about Sony and this quote:
For good measure, Apple seeks to exclude Samsung from the market, based on its complaints that Samsung has used the very same public domain design concepts that Apple borrowed from other competitors, including Sony, to develop the iPhone. Apple‘s own internal documents show this. In February 2006, before the claimed iPhone design was conceived of, Apple executive Tony Fadell circulated a news article that contained an interview of a Sony designer to Steve Jobs, Jonathan Ive and others. In the article, the Sony designer discussed Sony portable electronic device designs that lacked “excessive ornamentation” such as buttons, fit in the hand, were “square with a screen” and had “corners [which] have been rounded out.”
In 2006 two Sony product designers, Takashi Ashida and Yujin Morisawa, were interviewed by BusinessWeek. They were asked about design philosophies and how or if the iPod influenced their own designs for their new Walkman player. This very article was circulated internally to Apple executives and of course Steve Jobs saw it. Supposedly he ordered Apple designer Shin Nishibori to come up with a similar looking device.
Within the next few months, the Wi-FI Alliance will launch the Miracast wireless display certification program. It enables devices such as televisions, phones, tablets, and computer monitors to share their displays wirelessly. According to NVIDIA, they are not only supporting it, they are embracing it. This means that eventually devices that have NVIDIA (ie Tegra 3) chips will not only be able to share photos and stream HD movies to the big screen, but will also be able to play any game on their mobile device via the big screen, all without wires. Pair it with a wireless controller and you have the perfect gaming system. We probably won’t see any devices hit the market till late this year or early 2013, but for a sneak peak on how it works, check out the video after the break. This is one area where Android is playing catch up with Apple.
Remember last week when we told you that UK judge Colin Birss ordered Apple to post on their UK website that Samsung didn’t copy the iPad? I knew it had to be too good to be true because just like that Apple was granted a stay. Apple was not only supposed to post this on their website for a period of six months, but also had to advertise it in British newspapers and magazines. Apple argued that they didn’t want to advertise for Samsung and the stay was granted.
What does this mean? Well it doesn’t mean that Apple is out of the water, but they won’t have to do anything till at least October when the appeal will be heard. I will be shocked if Judge Colin Birss’ earlier decision holds up, but am hopeful.
Everyone is looking for something to put fear into people and the latest is NFC. Security researcher Charlie Miller recently showed flaws in the way Android (and MeeGo) handles NFC. He designed an NFC tag that was able to execute malicious code on a device. Obviously this tag could be place anywhere like a point-of-sale terminal.
The issue is not NFC in general, but more of the software implementation. The Android Beam specification allows NFC to automatically launch the web browser which allows for a wide range of web-based exploits. A lot of the browser bugs that were in older versions of Android have been fixed, but early Ice Cream Sandwich builds still have a lot of security holes related to the WebKit-based stock browser. A simple fix to this would be a pop up notifying the user that NFC is trying to open the browser and to either give or deny permission.
Older Android phones are still an issue in that Miller was able to hijack the application daemon that controls NFC functions in Android 2.3, in a sense bypassing the browser. Thankfully there really isn’t too many devices on Android 2.3 that have NFC. Miller used a Nexus S to demonstrate.
So there you have it folks. Is this the next big scare? I would assume Google will make software fixes accordingly, but the bottomline is that for anyone to exploit your phone (or tablet) with this method, they have to be really close to you.
Google just introduced “Handwrite” which is another way for you to enter search terms. You already have the ability to use your keyboard and voice, but now you can write it with your finger.
I just tried it and it works very well. It even supports 27 different languages. Hit the break for instructions and a demo video
A lot of information is coming out as we lead up to next week’s case involving Samsung and Apple. Yesterday we showed you some excerpts from Samsung’s trial brief that say they were working on their designs before the iPhone was even introduced and that Apple would not have sold a single iPhone if it weren’t for Samsung patents.
Today brings more news, but this time it’s from Apple’s trial brief. Apple says that Google warned Samsung that their products looked very similar to Apple’s. Hit the break for more details.
Motorola just officially announced the Photon Q 4G LTE for Sprint, but didn’t offer a release date. This one will be similar but better than the DROID 4 on Verizon Wireless. The slide-out QWERTY keyboard looks to be the same as the DROID 4, but the specs are beefed up a little. For starters, it will most likely have the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core clocked at 1.5GHz, and the display will feature their new ColorBoost technology. Let’s also not forget that the Photon Q will also have Ice Cream Sandwich on board and will come with the same UI that’s found on the Atrix HD. This will also be Motorola’s first LTE phone for Sprint.
- 4.3-inch ColorBoost display (assuming qHD – 960 x 540)
- 1.5 GHz dual-core processor (assuming the Snapdragon S4)
- 1GB of RAM
- 8MP rear camera with 1080p video capture
- Front-facing HD camera
- micro HDMI with mirroring
- Sprint ID, offering an innovative way to personalize an Android smartphone with apps, widgets, ringtones and more all, in a single download
They said they would announce pricing and availability within the next few weeks so stay tuned.
Full press release after the break:
Well it’s about time HTC. The kernel source for the AT&T One X was just released so developers can now use it in their custom ROMs for better stability. Right now most of you don’t have to do anything unless you’re a developer. If you aren’t, sit back and relax as the developers get to work to make things a lot smoother for you.
Google promised that the Nexus Q was compatible with Android 2.3.3 and higher, but every since Google I/O, it only worked for Jelly Bean devices. Google finally updated the app to support these older devices so everyone on Ice Cream Sandwich and Gingerbread (2.3.3+) can now control the Nexus Q. In addition Google updated YouTube which brings Nexus Q support to older Android devices plus the ability to turn your phone into a remote to play videos on other devices. Last but not least, they updated Play Movies & TV for faster downloading and a playback fix for some LG devices. Hit the break for download links
Remember last year’s Facebook phone, the HTC ChaCha (the Status in the U.S.)? Probably not since barely anyone bought one. I couldn’t imagine HTC would try it again, but according to Bloomberg Facebook and HTC are working together and will release it sometime in 2013. Facebook wanted to release it by the end of this year, but HTC needed more time to work on other products.
For this time around, Facebook is developing a modified operating system. Although Android was never mentioned in the article, we can only assume this will be based on Android and be a completely forked version similar to what Amazon has done with the Kindle Fire.
Google already released a couple of short “how to” videos for the Nexus 7, and it looks like this is becoming a daily thing. Today’s video is on Google Apps. These are the apps that are in the Google folder that’s in the dock. They quickly cover Chrome, Gmail, Maps, and YouTube. Again, these videos are not for you hardcores, it’s for those that are new to the world of Android. Hit the break to watch this latest installment, but if you want to check out the other two tutorials, click here and here.
With its recent FCC certification and leaked renders, it’s only a matter of time till we see the second edition of the Spectrum on Verizon Wireless. It’s now in the Verizon CelleBrite system (VS-930) so it’s just that much closer. The Spectrum 2 will sport a 4.7-inch True IPS 720p (1280 x 720) display, a 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4, 1GB of RAM, and 8MP rear camera. We still don’t have a release date, but we will let you know as soon as more details are leaked.
Google I/O 2012 was definitely one to remember as all Google I/O events were. Google put together a highlights video showcasing the entire 3 day event, and it’s only 3 minutes and 41 seconds long. Everything is covered like Jelly Bean, the Nexus 7, the Nexus Q, Chrome, Google Glass, and I think there was some skydiving if I remember correctly. Of course if you missed any news, you can always hit up our Google I/O coverage. Hit the break to watch.