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Android gains bug update as more phones are tipped

Dec 7, 2009 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive

Google's Android project has posted a bugfix update that fixes the Droid's cameraphone problems, says eWEEK Meanwhile, Android is not so popular in Europe, says an IDC report, and rumors are flying about new Android phones, including HTC's QWERTY-enabled Espresso, plus the La Jolla flip-phone and iDEN-focused Opus One from Motorola, says eWEEK.

Google's Android project posted a 2.0.1 update to Android that fixes problems with the Droid by Motorola's camera, says a story by Nathan Eddy in our sister publication, eWEEK. The update to Android 2.0, which is currently pre-installed exclusively on the Droid (pictured below, right), should improve the performance of the phone's camera, specifically with its auto-focus capability, says the story.

The update is also said to improve voice reception, and includes several other bug fixes and behavior changes. The latter include new application resource selection based on API level, plus changes to some Bluetooth-related parameters, according to Eddy.

In addition to Android 2.0.1, the Android team is releasing a minor update to SDK Tools, now in Revision 4, which applies bug fixes in the SDK Manager. Also provided is a Revision 2 update to the Android 1.6 SDK component, which offers fixes including several supporting compatibility mode for applications that don't support multiple screen sizes, says the story.

Ce qui est un Androide?

Verizon's Droid in particular, and Android phones in general appear to be selling well in the U.S., leading eWEEK's Nicholas Kolakowski to opine that Android could soon kill off Windows Mobile, which he sees as being most vulnerable to the new OS competitor (see link at end of story). In Western Europe, however, Android phones have been slow to catch on, according to an IDC report.

Android market share grew from 4.2 percent in the second quarter to 5.4 percent in the third quarter in Western Europe, a growth rate that was lower than expected and much lower than in the U.S., says a story by Clint Boulton in eWEEK. According to IDC analyst Francisco Jeronimo, however, the chief reason for the relatively slow growth is simply ignorance of the platform, says the story.

While not noted in the story, a number of Android models from HTC, Samsung, and others are available in Europe. The Droid is not, however, and no other single Android phone appears to have captured the fancy of Europeans. Nokia may be hoping that its Maemo Linux-based N900 will play that role instead among the Nokia faithful in Europe, and Vodafone and Samsung have high hopes for their LiMo (Linux Mobile) based 360 H1.

IDC was also said to have reported that the Western European mobile phone market in general rose for the first time in the last 15 months, growing five percent year-on-year in Q3, with about 46.8 million phones shipped. Jeronimo suggested that with many new Android models coming out in Europe, the uptick in mobile spending there could mean Android could catch on there as well.

More Android rumors: HTC's Expresso and Mot's Opus One and La Jolla

In the same story, Boulton also rounds up a recent rash of Android phone rumors. According to the story, one DigiTimes report has HTC unveiling its first Android phone with a QWERTY keyboard since its original G1 (for T-Mobile). The HTC Espresso, which appears to be the heir to the HTC Hero, will emerge from the twilight at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in February, says the story.

Meanwhile, Motorola is expected to release its first Android handset based on its iDEN (Integrated Digital Enhanced Network) technology, according to the BoyGeniusReport. iDEN offers nationwide and international two-way radio, packet data for Internet access, two-way e-mail and text messaging, and wireless modem capabilities. The story had no further information on the "Opus One" phone, which is pictured at right. The BoyGeniusReport also claims that Motorola is prepping its first Android flip-phone — the budget-conscious "La Jolla."

Boulton rounds up all these rumors, and also notes that TMONews is reporting that the rumored, Google-branded "Google Phone" will launch from T-Mobile in the first two weeks of January. The phone, which could prove controversial, especially among Android handset vendors and carriers, is said to be code-named "Passion."

Availability

The Android project blog about the Android 2.0.1 release may be found here, and the eWEEK story on the release should be here.

The eWEEK opinion piece on the impact of Android on Windows Mobile may be found here.

The eWEEK story on European Android sales and various Android phone rumors, with links to source sites, may be found here. The BoyGeniusReport stories on the Motorola Opus One may be found here, and their story on the La Jolla should be here.


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