All About Android 179
Guest: Russell Holly
Topic: Android One, Android Silver, Android Apps on Chrome, Nexus TV, impressions of the Moto 360, and Google Voice's merging into Hangouts, and more!
Recorded: September 16 2014
All About Android 179: Everything is Connected
- Numbers time!
- Developers are still facing around 12% of users running Gingerbread and Froyo. Otherwise, 9.6% on ICS, and the remaining 78.3% are on JB and KK combined (KK is 24.5% one year after it was announced, 11 months after it launched.)
- Android One, Google's effort to bring Android smartphones to the "next five billion" users currently not using smartphones, launched yesterday in India, with Micromax, Spice and Karbonn all selling their own models.
- 4.5" display
- 1GB RAM
- 5mp RFC
- 2MP FFC
- 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek processor
- FM radio
- Expanded Hindi language support, local publications in Google Play Newstand, YouTube offline viewing capabilities, and They are expected to sell for around $105 (6399 rupees). Receives updates for up to 2 years.
- Some local carriers are also subtracting certain data uses from customers monthly allotment (ie updates from Google, and 200MB of Google Play downloads)
- Some other random notes from an interview with Sundar Pichai on NDTV: Android Version L will support 6 more Indian languages, Android One will eventually expand to cover midrange devices (<$350), Google payments news is coming in a few
- Google reveals the first ultra-cheap Android One smartphones
- NDTV's Vikram Chandra sat down with Android chief Sundar Pichai for an exclusive interview
- "Micromax is just a rebranded Chinese phone as the same phone is sold in other countries with a different brand name. Spice and Carbon are the same way too. The reliability of these phones have always been suspect due to not so great after sales support.
- Srinivas Kilaru on G+"
- Android Silver was to be at one time, according to rumors, a replacement to the Google Nexus program. Later a Google rep refuted that.
- According to the rumors, Android Silver was essentially a program that would market and legitimize Android as a premium brand in carrier stores and elsewhere, backed by Google officially, with devices that had an unskinned OS with free, premium setup help in-store. According to The Information, Nikesh Arora's departure from Google in July of this year meant that this program is now put on hold as he was the one championing the program. And reception for the program among partners wasn't strong, likely because of the requirements involved.
Greetings Jason, Gina, Ron, and Russell! You briefly mentioned it on last week's show about how Apple Pay decided to adopt NFC for their payment standard. What do you think this means for Google Wallet? Obviously that means many more stores will support NFC payments and both Wallet and Apple Pay can be widely adopted. Do you think Google will finally put a marketing push behind Wallet and get more adopters. Many people forget that with Kit Kat Android no longer uses the secure element for NFC payments meaning just about any android phone with Kit Kat can use NFC payments, even though most android users are unaware. This is important to me because like many others I am fully ready to embrace the NFC payment Era and already have a number of stores I visit in my town that support NFC. I have even left my wallet at home a few times on accident and conveniently just had lunch at places I know had NFC. Thanks for the great show!
Kyle from Jacksonville
- Apparently, we missed some interesting hardware news when all the Apple stuff was taking place. Dell announced the Dell Venue 8 7840. Thinnest tablet ever made, at 6mm thick, beating Sony's Xperia Z2 (6.4mm), 8.4" OLED at 2560x1600 (likely the same as the Galaxy Tab S), tiny bezel, FOUR cameras aka Intel RealSense tablet for lytro-style controls after a picture is taken (refocus image, adjust aperture settings, etc). Quad-core 2.33GHz Intel Atom Z3580 processor, 32GB storage, microSD, available for the holidays, price unknown.
- The ADT-1 started appearing on people's doorsteps last week unannounced, for those that signed up for more information shortly after Google IO concluded. The Information reports that the ADT-1 Developer Kit was once expected to become the Nexus TV, in an effort to champion Android TV for the living room in the same way that Google's Nexus devices champion Android on smartphones and tablets. When the Nexus TV product failed, it became the ADT-1 development kit that everyone is receiving. This does NOT mean anything negative about Android TV as a platform. Just that we aren't likely to see a Nexus TV reference device anytime soon.
- Moto 360 impressions
I just listened to your discussion of Motorola's newly announced earpiece, the Moto Hint. Like most of the tech press, you saw it as an expensive Bluetooth headset with some Google Now integration and weren't too excited.
As a PhD student studying hearing loss, I'm as excited about the Moto Hint as Ron was about Google Glass (well, almost). The Hint isn't just a Bluetooth headset, it's also a ""personal sound amplification product,"" or PSAP. This is a new FDA category of hearing assistance devices that are threatening the core of the hearing care industry. The Hint has a microphone and amplifier that helps you hear your surroundings in addition to Bluetooth. I don't know about the Hint, but many PSAPs have adaptive, directional microphones that cut out background noise and focus on the person you are talking to, a feature that's useful for everyone in a noisy store or classroom, for example.
Until this year, PSAP devices, like the Etymotic Bean, have been direct-to-consumer alternatives to a hearing aid for people who can't or won't buy a pair of hearing aids for upwards of $3000. In 2014, PSAPs with Bluetooth, like the Moto Hint, began to pop up on crowd-funding sites. These are small companies no one has ever heard of, but one has over $10 million in venture funding including $5 million from Foxconn. Now that a tech giant like Motorola is in the PSAP game, the hearing aid industry is teetering on the edge of a major disruption. What hip 50 year old with a smartphone and a little trouble hearing her younger coworkers in a crowded conference hall is going to opt for a hearing aid when she can buy a Moto Hint for $150?
I'm excited about the Hint because it represents a tidal change in my field, but also because it marks a bigger change in how we use technology when we aren't staring at a screen. The smartwatch is the current focus of our wearable attention right now, but get ready for more devices like the Hint that can augment our senses, memory, cognitive capacity, and even physical abilities. So far I haven't heard anyone say it, but the word that should be associated with ""wearable"" is ""bionic.""
OK, thanks for reading. Back to work on my dissertation.
Cheers, Eric Hoover
- Google Voice finally merges into Hangouts! Google Voice users can now activate Voice features in Hangouts to bring voicemails and their hilarious transcripts, as well as Voice SMS into the Hangouts experience natively.
- Also, Google rolled out a new app, Hangouts Dialer. This does what iOS has had for a while in that it turns your Google Voice account into a true VoIP solution.
- Android Central warns not to remove the long abandoned Google Voice app quite yet as doing so means, that any calls you make via your stock dialer will no longer mask themselves as being made via your Google Voice number. Hopefully that will be built into Hangouts sometime soon. Then we can forget this whole Google Voice app thing ever existed in the first place.
- Hangouts Dialer
- Google Divorces Hangouts From Google+, No G+ Account Needed for Mulit-Way Calls
- Why you shouldn't delete the Google Voice app just yet
- Google Play Services 6.1
- Google Play Services is update to 6.1 and its perhaps not the most exciting update, but regardless here's what's in tow:
- Developers working on making their apps Google Fit capable can now do so on any Android device with Play Services 6.1 and not limited to Android Version L Preview devices.
- Drive Android API has an improved file picker that brings with it some material design splashes, and better conflict resolution of local and server-side files.
- Enhanced Ecommerce analytics expands to allow for tracking of product impressions.
- Last Week's Poll
- Gina - KittenTaxi (FREE/IAP)
- Russell - Confide (FREE)
- Jason - 123D Catch (FREE)
- This Week's Poll
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