Huawei unveiled the company’s latest Android-powered smartphone, the Ascend P1 S. The device features an incredibly slim design, measuring a mere 6.68mm — even slimmer than Motorola’s 7.1mm DROID RAZR. The device sports a 4.3-inch qHD Super AMOLED display with a 1.5GHz TI OMAP 4460 dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM. On the backside, the Ascend has an 8-megapixel camera with a dual-LED flash and a 1.3-megapixel front facing camera. Huawei also announced the Ascend P1, which packs similar features in a thicker 7.69mm profile. Both devices feature Corning’s Gorilla Glass and will run a clean version of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Pricing has not been announced, however we can expect to see both of these devices within the second quarter of 2012. Read on for Huawei’s full press release. More →
During every event and every keynote, Google touts its Android operating system’s openness and explains that with no limitations, consumer’s benefit. While Android is more open than its competitors, it is closed compared to other open-source software such as Linux. Google makes the Android operating system source code available for any company or individual to use and customize to their liking. However, Google’s mobile suite — Gmail, the Android Market, Google Maps and more — is closed sourced and not available to everyone, leading to consumer confusion when buying a no-Market Android device. Additionally, due to custom skins and fragmentation, both carriers and manufactures are damaging the Google and Android names, MarketingLand‘s Danny Sullivan writes. Almost every manufacturer includes a custom user-interface on their devices in order to stand apart from its competitors. However, these same skins that are meant to enhance a user’s experience are causing fragmentation and leaving customers with outdated devices. Read on for more. More →
Google’s chairman Eric Schmidt made comments during a press conference in mid-December that suggested his company was working on building its own Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablet. It’s entirely possible that Schmidt’s comments were taken out of context, so we’re still chalking the slate up as a rumor. If Google does in fact decide to launch a tablet, however, sources speaking to DigiTimes believe it could have an adverse affect on tablet sales for Google’s Android partners. DigiTimes’s sources said Google may deploy a newer Android 4.1 operating system on its tablets while forcing other vendors, such as Acer, Lenovo and Asus to launch devices powered by an older Android 4.0 build. As one might expect, Android 4.1 will likely offer features unavailable to Android 4.0 users, which could result in more customers favoring Google’s tablet over competing devices. Google partnered with Samsung to launch its “pure Google” Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) tablet, the Galaxy Tab 10.1, earlier this year. However, this time around it is suspected that Google will partner with Motorola, which it is currently trying to acquire for $12.5 billion. More →
Adobe announced an update to its Flash Player on Friday that provides support for Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). Prior to Friday, Flash was not officially supported by Android 4.0 on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the only device currently running Google’s latest mobile operating system. Adobe noted a few known issues with its release, including one that does not prioritize the audio during an incoming call. That means any current Flash clip will play audio before and after the call is received. In addition, the “enter” key does not work in multi-line text input fields. Those sound like minor bugs for full Flash support, though. Galaxy Nexus owners, or anyone with Ice Cream Sandwich installed on a rooted device, should be able to find the Flash app in the Android Market now. Adobe announced in November that it would cease development of its mobile Flash Player, so this could be one of the last releases we see. More →
Google on Friday announced that it has begun to push out an update that will bring Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to its Nexus S smartphone. “We’re rolling out Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich, to GSM/UMTS Nexus S devices over the coming month, starting today,” Google’s Android team wrote in a post on Google+. The Ice Cream Sandwich update is available over the air (OTA) for GSM Nexus S handsets and while the roll-out will begin today, Google indicated that it could take as long as a month to complete. The company did not indicate when Android 4.0 might become available for Sprint’s Nexus S 4G. More →
BGR has learned from a trusted source that Samsung is set to launch an 11.6-inch tablet running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich next year, and it will most likely be unveiled at Mobile World Congress in February. Even though the tablet features a larger display than Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1, we’re told that the tablet is “barely larger” due to the fact the slate will have a thinner bezel with a whopping 2560 x 1600 resolution, 11.6-inch screen with a 16:10 aspect ratio. The tablet will use a dual-core Exynos 5250 CPU clocked at 2GHz. We have also heard that Apple’s new A6 CPU will be very similar to the Samsung CPU, which is a dual-core Cortex A15 chip. Samsung’s tablet will also feature Android Beam for easy syncing of media with a Galaxy Nexus, and a special wireless docking mode for gaming on HDTVs that will help Samsung compete with Apple TV, AirPlay and more. Samsung had no comment.
The Samsung Galaxy Nexus isn’t just another Android phone, this is the standard by which all Ice Cream Sandwich phones will be judged. An example to every Android manufacturer out there, and every Android fan, this is the basic foundation of what you should expect in an Android smartphone. Is that setting the bar too high, though? The Samsung Galaxy Nexus is the third addition to Google’s Nexus family, and second built by Samsung. It offers competitive specifications, innovative hardware, and it is the first phone to show off Google’s brand new OS, Android 4.0. Can Google and Samsung make the best Android device in the world together? Is Android 4.0 just another dessert-themed mess? I break it down like Jet Li in Chinatown after the break.
If you thought, like us, that Google’s Ice Cream Sandwich operating system would still support Adobe’s mobile Flash Player, think again. It turns out the application wasn’t included on the Galaxy Nexus, the first Android 4.0 phone, and it is not available for download, either. Since Ice Cream Sandwich had been announced months before Adobe decided to pull the trigger on mobile Flash Player, some suspected that Flash support might still be included. Google commented and said that “Flash hasn’t been released for ICS yet so far as we know, Adobe will support Flash for ICS.” Adobe announced recently that it will cease development of its mobile Flash Player product, however, so it seems more likely that Adobe will work to bring AIR and HTML5-based solutions to Ice Cream Sandwich rather than Flash Player.
UPDATE: Adobe issued the following statement on the matter: “Adobe will release one more version of the Flash Player for mobile browsing, which will provide support for Android 4.0 — expected to be released before the end of this year.” More →