All About Android 133

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All About Android
Episode 133

Contents

All About Android 133: The Soldiers of Giants

Guest

News

Remember Phone Bloks from weeks ago? Well, Motorola is working with Phone Blox to join forces in an effort to roll out their own modular phone technology, Project Aura. Motorola has been working on Ara for about a year now. You can become an Ara Scout by signing up if you are interested in more info.
"We want to do for hardware what the Android platform has done for software: create a vibrant third-party developer ecosystem, lower the barriers to entry, increase the pace of innovation, and substantially compress development timelines."
Will this idea carry more weight not with Motorola/Google heading the charge?
Samsung's Developer Conference began yesterday, with 1300 attendees, and saw Samsung releasing 5 new SDKs for it's devices:
Smart TV SDK/Multiscreen SDK/Multiscreen Gaming SDK = Interactivity between devices and Samsung TVs
Samsung KNOX SDK = Samsung's new security layer with support for Bring Your Own Device, meant for businesses
Samsung Mobile SDK = Many TouchWiz SDKs in one neat package instead of distributed separately
Kevin wrote on GigaOm, saying that what Samsung is attempting to do here eclipses even what Amazon is doing with it's own forked Fire OS platform. What's different here?
An internal memo from Best Buy shows a 30 percent return rate for Galaxy Gear since it's launch. Why are customers so dissatisfied?
Lack of phone support
Lack of apps
Lack of support for Google apps
CNET points out that one big reason for the lack of apps is the fact that Gear debuted with 70 apps, and Samsung is sticking to the plan of seeking out apps for the platform, instead of allowing developers to CHOOSE to develop for it. In other words, invite-only. Samsung did say earlier this week that Gear will soon work with S4, S3 and "other devices." Is this watch DOA?
Wall Street Journal says production of Google's smartwatch could begin within months, and that Google has already begun talks with Asian manufacturers. This watch would be heavily influenced by Google Now. Would this see a different fate? Wouldn't Google want to manufacture in the US? Seems to be their MO these days.

Email

23:31

Google is not playing nice with Android and it is only going to get worse, much worse. Google and Android have grown massively over the recent years and its in Google's key financial interest to use Android to the best of its ability to promote its own services. When Google's own wearables finally come out this will be the nail in the coffin for third party Android manufactures that don't kowtow to using Android the Google way. Users will expect to access all of Googles services in a seamless way with wearables and its very likely a best-in-class experience will only be available on devices supporting Google's Android.

With trillions of dollars at stake we are foolish to ever think the internet and computing services will ever become free and open. Google used the industry to maneuver into a dominant position with the perception of freedom and openness all the while knowing it will be access to their services that will screw over all their partners in the end. Google, Apple and Microsoft are all becoming more like each other every development cycle and in then end one will emerge victorious and it will be called Skynet (sponsored by the NSA)

I think I need to go play outside for a while.

Cheers,

Gary :)


Hardware

32:57

LG Flex is official! Curved 720p 6" display. LG touts the display as "IMAX-like." a self-healing coating on back to smooth out nicks and scratches. South Korea in November, other markets pending.
From the press release: "The vertically curved design of the LG G Flex reduces the distance between one’s mouth to the microphone when the device is held against the ear, as traditional telephone handsets used to." The curved design also offers a more reassuring grip and fits more comfortably in one’s back pocket.
WIND Mobile went ahead and posted the pre-order page for the Nexus 5, showing off the full list of specs, again confirming what we already know. (let's face it, at this point, that's practically EVERYTHING.) After many photos were snapped, the page disappeared. Tagline: "Google Nexus 5, the smart, new phone made to capture the moments that matter." We also started to see some press renders of a WHITE version of the device (still with a black front.)And finally, images hit G+ with EXIF data showing the Nexus 5 as the camera.
Finally, Oculus VR is bringing it's Oculus Rift VR experience to Android, The plan is to have the mobile version launch with the PC version of the VR goggles. It will be lighter, and use the mobile devie's processing power. Oculus Rift was an enormously successful Kickstarter campaign that raked in 2.5 million dollars back in 2012.

Glass News

45:40

Google announced some cool plans for Glass Explorers yesterday:
First, Explorers have a one-time offer to trade up their early hardware for the revised hardware to be released in 2014.
Second, Explorers have a small window of time during which they can invite up to THREE people to get in on the Glass action. Explorers will be notified they have 14 days to select potential explorers who are: US resident, 18+ yrs, can purchase Glass (no price given), and provide a US shipping address or pickup in NY SF or LA.

Apps

52:45

A Google+ event was JUST THAT, an event about Google+ (go figure). Some Android news to get excited about:
Hangouts: getting Location sharing, animated GIF support, SMS messaging support. No word on Google Voice integration, Hangouts On Air can be scheduled AND have a watch page, automatic lighting correction.
Google+ photos and videos: Dial auto-enhancements on pics up or down, new Auto-Awesome techniques (Action ie strobe, Eraser to remove things from scenes, movie aka Zoe highlight reel with editing capabilities.)]
YouTube for Android is going to work when the screen is off. This all seems appropriate, especially considering the rumors we keep hearing about YouTube rolling out a music service. No idea when the feature will hit, but likely soon.
It's pretty easy to find ratings on the BBM Play Store page that read something like "blackberry Thank you so much Blackberry team. I was waiting this app. It's really great user friendly and smooth." So easy, in fact, that the folks at Phandroid estimate around 40% of the 5-star ratings where either bought or posted thanks to a concerted effort by someone. Blackberry has denied any wrong doing. Meanwhile, Samsung was busted for doing just this: Hiring astroturfers in Taiwan to badmouth HTC and other phone makers online, this according to Taiwan's FTC organization. Samsung has since said it has stopped the practice.

Video Mail

1:03:55

Android Arena!

1:07:45

Sponsors

Production Information

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