For a very brief moment, PC World UK was displaying a pre-order advert for the Wi-Fi Motorola XOOM — complete with pricing — on its website. What’s the bottom line, you ask? £449.99 (that’s around $730USD at today’s exchange rate); the XOOM being hawked by Verizon Wireless currently retails at $799. The Wi-Fi only XOOM has the same specs as the tablet currently being sold here in the States, sans a cellular radio. Hopefully, when this second XOOM leaps across the pond, it will be priced for slightly less than $730. What do you think an appropriate price for the Wi-Fi XOOM is? More →
The day hath cometh. The world’s first Honeycomb (Android 3.0) tablet has officially hit the streets and is ready for purchase. You can run to your local retailer and pick yourself up a shiny, new XOOM for $599 with a signed two-year contract or $799 contract free. Interested parties can read our thoughts on the Moto’s first tablet here, and if you go and pick one up for yourself… be sure to swing back by and let us know what you think! Happy XOOM’ing. More →
Motorola definitely hasn’t won over the hearts and minds of the most hardcore Android tinkerers — thanks in large part to the company’s locked-down hardware and software. But Moto is showing signs of life. In a recent tweet, Motorola quipped that:
The XOOM will have an unlockable/relockable bootloader that will enable developers to access hardware for development
Not a bad starting point, and certainly a great way to get developers excited about the world’s first Android 3.0 tablet. Now… who do we talk to about custom ROMs? More →
Could all the recent hoopla stirred up by Apple’s decision to enforce its existing App Store subscription policies be much ado about nothing? Earlier this month, Apple announced that its new App Store subscription service became available to all publishers. In a related note prior to that announcement, Apple noted that it would begin cracking down on content providers who had been skirting a rule stipulating all apps providing links to Web-based content purchases must also make the same content available using Apple’s in-app purchase mechanism — therefor forcing them to cough up Apple’s 30% cut. As a result, developers were enraged. Apple’s typically unclear wording left each developer guessing as to whether or not it might be affected by the policy. Some publicly jumped to conclusions while others went further still and announced that they would abandon iOS all together. One developer recently decided to email Apple CEO Steve Jobs and inquire about the matter, however, and claims to have received a response. Both emails are found after the break. More →
At this year’s Mobile World Congress, Motorola gave both journalists and consumers their first opportunity to touch, feel, and experience its soon-to-be-launched tablet, the XOOM. Sure, we’ve gone hands-on with Motorola’s tasty Honeycomb tablet before, but today we got to spend a bit more time with the sleek slate. We sat down with our friends from Moto and got a chance to shoot some video, take some pictures, tap on the tablet, and ask questions. We couldn’t get the electronics manufacturer to comment on pricing, or pin them down on an exact release date, but we did get enough hands-on time to give you an idea of exactly what the XOOM is about. Hit the jump to check out the video, photo gallery, and to read our thoughts! More →
Again, if you followed our live blog of Samsung’s “Unpacked: Part I” event, you may have noticed that the Galaxy S II got the lion’s share of attention. We literally got bombarded with an hour and twenty minutes of the Gally II and a ten minute how-do-you-do on the Galaxy Tab 10.1. Regardless, we went ahead and put our greasy, little, jet-lagged fingers all over one the the new Tab demo units that was available and are ready to report back to you.
The device looks extremely slick. High gloss front, textured black backing, and svelte dimensions. It looks just as nice as , if not a little nicer than, the Motorla XOOM. The device has a 10.1-inch screen with 1280 x 800 pixel resolution, 8 megapixel rear-facing camera capable of HD recording, 2 megapixel front-facing camera, and beefy Tegra 2 processor. We do have to admit, it was pretty hard to get a gauge on just how fast the device was, as Android 3.0 just doesn’t seem like it’s quite done yet. The refresh rate of the screen when panning and zooming were superb, but when you shifted the device from portrait to landscape — or vice versa — the screen would kind of blink and take a second to properly orient and size itself. Again, we’re sure this is because Honeycomb isn’t exactly street legal yet, but it is hard to call this one a winner without some final software to hammer on. For us, the 10-inch form factor really is the right size for a tablet — we know some of you like the 7-inch blueprint, but the 10-inch screen feels right for the web — so we’re glad to see the Android tablet makers jumping into this space. No word on when you can get yourself one of these little monsters or how much it will set you back. Until then, hit up our gallery and let us know what you think!
Today, at a scheduled press conference, Google, Inc. provided the world with additional details about its Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) mobile operating system. From a new notification bar area, to a new graphics engine, along with several new APIs, it is very obvious that Google and its team of engineers have put in a ridiculous amount of time and effort into this tablet optimized version of Android. Andy Rubin and host of others gave demos of a fluid eReader, the music player, a redesigned and intuitive digital camera interface, Google Maps, and a host of other applications. A rebroadcast of the event will be live on Google’s Android YouTube site in the coming hours. In the mean time… we’ll continue to update this post with any new information provided. We’ve also setup a gallery of Android 3.0 screen shots to hold you over. Enjoy!
Warning: DigiTimes report being cited, approach with caution. Now that we have that out of the way… the Taiwanese blog is reporting that HTC will launch an Android 2.3 tablet device, code named Flyer, in March — ahead of the BlackBerry PlayBook and Motorola Xoom. The publication notes that users will be able to upgrade the device to Android 3.0 after it is officially released by Google. The report cites “handset component suppliers” and goes on to say that “HTC is expected to launch the two other tablets in June running on Android 3.0.” We’re not sure how much water this report holds, but one thing is a certainty… HTC isn’t going to be sitting on the tablet sidelines forever. More →
If you’re not rocking a dual-core Android tablet, you can breath a sigh of relief. Earlier this week, the Internet was aflutter with rumors that Google’s tablet-optimized, Android-build — Honeycomb (Android 3.0) — would require, at minimum, a dual-core processor. Google’s very own Dan Morrill has taken to Twitter to kindly dispel the aforementioned myth. “Random note: there’s no hard minimum processor requirement for Honeycomb,” reads the tweet. “Trust me, if there were I’d know.” So there you have it. More →
Google just dropped this bomb of a video on its Android YouTube page, and it is the first real look of the Android 3.0 operating system, known as Honeycomb. From the video we can see that Honeycomb is indeed only for tablets and not for smartphones due to the usage of the “Entire for Tablets” phrase. Google Talk video calling is a go, but the biggest change is obviously the redone user interface which has carried over Gingerbread’s darker, more polished and professional looking changes into what looks to be a very sophisticated tablet experience. Oh, and yes, there is built in video calling through Google Talk. Video after the break! More →
According to a report filed by PCMag today, Google’s soon-to-be-released, tablet-optimized Android iteration –Honeycomb — will require some serious processing power. The blog cites the managing director of Korea’s Enspert consumer electronics firm, Bobby Cha, and writes that, “Google’s new [...] tablet OS will require a dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor to run properly.” Mr. Cha went on to note that Honeycomb may also require 1,280 x 720 screen resolution, but should run on tablets with displays measuring at least 7-inches on the diagonal. Presumably, single-core Android tablets already in the market (e.g. Samsung’s Galaxy Tab) would be unable to run the tablet-centric offering. Mr. Cha, who admitted his company is currently working on Froyo, Gingerbread, as well as Honeycomb devices, states that Honeycomb will be shipped to manufacturers “towards the end of January.” More →
In a brief report summarizing the tablet plans of ECS, Asustek, and MSI, Taiwanese blog DigiTimes matter of factly published the release date of Google’s tablet-optimized version of its Android operating system, Honeycomb (3.0). As the post reads:
On the other hand, MSI is set to display its 10-inch Wintel-based tablet PC [at CES] as well as engineering samples of its ARM-based Google Android model. MSI is also prepared to sell an Nvidia Tegra 2-based model in April or May after Google releases Android 3.0 in March.
The publication’s statement should — as always — be taken with a grain of salt, as no specific (or vague) sources were cited in the report. One thing is certain, if OEMs begin announcing Android 3.0 tablets in January at CES, and we have to wait until March to get our hands on them, we’re not going to be happy. More →
A lot of people are thinking it, but former Google employee, Gmail creator, and FriendFeed founder Paul Buchheit has come right out and said it. On his FriendFeed page, Mr. Buchheit has levied some harsh judgements on Google’s netbook-centric Chrome OS. Here are just a few of his thoughts:
Prediction: Chrome OS will be killed next year (or “merged” with Android).
I was thinking, “is this too obvious to even state?”, but then I see people taking Chrome OS seriously, and Google is even shipping devices for some reason.
Chrome OS has no purpose that isn’t better served by Android (perhaps with a few mods to support a non-touch display).
It is still unclear how Android and Chrome OS will peacefully co-exist after the tablet-optimized Android 3.0 comes out in 2011, what the genesis of Chrome OS looks like, and what the public will gravitate towards. We’re interested to hear your thoughts concerning the Chrome OS vs. Android debate. What do you think? Too similar? Or is Google one step ahead of the technology pundits?
[Via TechCrunch] More →