Android Phones, Info and Apps

TAG | Android

Oct/11

30

Syncing Android with iTunes

Syncing your iTunes playlist with your Android device may have been considered somewhat of a painful process in the past, and as with many painful processes of the past… there’s an app for that: iSyncr!

iSYNCR

Figure 1: iSyncr layout

Along with apploximately 4.5 million others I bought into the iPod dream during its 4th generation back in 2005. In fact this bad boy still pumps out the tunes when required, albeit with the aid of a new hard drive and new battery. Naturally my desktop was installed with iTunes for the purpose of feeding this 60GB beast with a fair share of bopping beats. Since then iTunes has become my first preference music player around the house.

But it’s fair to say that the portable music landscape has changed since the heady days of the mid aughties. Smartphones with intergrated music players have now become the weapon of choice for the purpose of eardrum abuse. This presents somewhat of a conundrum for us ‘smart’ Android users. If that conundrum formed itself into a question it would present itslef a little like this: ‘How do I Sync my iTunes playlist with my Android device?’

The answer is iSyncr. An android application form the guys at JRT Studio which allows you to easily sync selected playlists from your iTunes library with your android mobile device. This app is extremely useful if you have started using your smartphone as a music player and wish to update the music on a regular basis. Also if you wish to limit the memory your music takes up on your device, a regular playlist sync will keep your music selection fresh.

Figure 2: iSyncer setup.

Here at Android Mobiles we found this app to be user friendly and the initial set-up is a breeze. Once the app is installed you will need to connect your device to a PC (as an external drive) and select which iTunes playlists you wish to have synced to the android device. After this initial and painless setup you are free to start syncing your existing iTunes playlists to your android device. Some of the neat features included with the paid version of this application include:

  • Ability to sync your ratings between iTunes and android device.
  • Sync songs downloaded to your android device back onto your PC.
  • Inclusion of album artwork with your synced music.

Another neat add-on is iSyncr Wi-Fi which allows wireless syncing with your playlists through your wireless LAN.

A free Lite version of iSyncr is available, but with limitations to its functionality. The lite version limitations include:

  • Each playlist can only include 20 songs.
  • Separate playlists must be synced one at a time.
  • Playcount syncing for smart playlists not included.

This is an easy to use application which solves an annoying problem. If you regularly update the music selection on your android device this application will be of great benefit.

At Android Mobiles we love to see simple applications which are reliable, easy to use and solve an annoying problem. Well done to the guys at JRT studio, keep up the good work.

Daniel

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It has been observed that at this point in time, android is on track to achieve 50% of the mobile market share in the coming few months of 2011. Now, the big question is, will competitors be able to stop android from achieving it?
In the US smart phone market, Android has been a success story this year and it is increasing with the rate of 1.7 points a month according to a survey. Basically, this means that an open handset community will capture smart phone handset market by 50% till the end of this year.


With the growth of android, even smart phone market is also expanding with the similar rates in recent past. According to a survey, 3.7 million users bought a smart phone in the month of Feb. This number was at 3 million and 2.1 million in March and April respectively this year. According to this survey, the number should have hit 2.2 millions in May and it actually did. Now, if we assume that a market shall get an average of 2.2 million users in coming the months, the graph of android is going in such a way that it will hit the range of 50% by this coming December.
For the raw figures, survey results showed that by December this year, the number of smart phone users will grow to 90 million and out of this, 45 million will be the users using Android platform based phones. Just imagine that number! 45 million users in a month means we are going to go through an Android revolution very very soon.

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According to the latest analysis, Android operating system from Google now dominates 36 percent of smart phone mobile market in US which is far better than iOS which dominates 26 percent of the market and the third one is Blackberry from RIM with 23% of the market share.

The report of the latest analysis also describes that the battle of U.S. smart phone dominancy is at the stalemate stage with the number being same since past three months for Android and iOS. Just that the free fall of RIM has come to halt at 23% and Windows mobiles are having their share of 10%.

Further to this analysis, it is also mentioned that Android has also beat iOS in terms of data usage from mobiles, on monthly basis. Average data usage from an Android phone user is at 582 MB which is 90 MB more than what user of an iOS uses in a month. An average application download time for an iPhone user is 30 days which is marginally bit less for Android phone user. For Windows phone users, the average data consumption number comes at 317 MB every month and 63% of the users download an application each month.

However, iPhone leads its way in the market when it comes to video streaming and music download as 46 percent iPhone users regularly download music against 43 percent users for Android phone owners. But blackberry is at the opposite side of these results as an average data download ratio stands only at 127 MB in a month.

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Android is an operating system for mobile devices owned by Google Inc. It was purchased by Google from its original creator Android Inc. in 2005. The Android operating system is the globally best-selling Smartphone software. Android has a large team of developers working to create new and advanced applications for its users to improve its functionality and to give it an edge over other Smart phones. Currently Android has over 200,000 applications available for its users. Google runs an online application store for Android where all these applications can be found and downloaded to users’ individual phones.

The most development in the Android application has been Google’s announcement to launch the Google Wallet. This official announcement was made on the 26th May 2011. Google Wallet is a new application for Android which will allow you to make payments through your Android phone. This will be done in collaboration with financial groups. The application is expected to release very soon. It is exactly what it sounds like, using your phone as a wallet. You’ll be able to purchase items using your Android phone instead of your wallet or your credit card. Not only that, it will also allow you to save money.
Google Wallet has been designed for your convenience. It will eventually take over the place of your leather wallet and hold all your cards in it. Since Google Wallet is not a real wallet but a mobile application, it can do much more than the regular wallet; hold thousands of payment cards, Google offers and loyalty cards without the bulk. It’s not long before even your keys will be synced to your Android phone as well.

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color android app
I’m really excited about this new android app from Bill Nguyen, it’s basically an app that allows you to take photos or videos and share them on a social network…. thats nothing new I hear you say…. whats different about Color is that it’s location based, meaning when you upload the photos/videos to the cloud the content automatically gets shared with people within 100 feet of your location…. cool or crazy you decide!!!

It’s whats called an elastic network, people are continually leaving or joining your network based on their proximity to your location. Color also ranks your friendship with these people, so the more you use the app around the same people the higher up your friendship rank goes and vice a versa.

Ok step it up a gear… imagine Color being used in a crowded area such as a concert, festival, a bar or a well known tourist attraction like Times Square… you are gonna be continually connected to friends and strangers all taking pictures or even videos of the same things but from different angles, sort of an augmented reality, see a concert stage in real time from various peoples points of view, you are basically looking through the eyes of a stranger!

Color I hope will explode to the main stream and it looks like it will, after getting $41 million in funding, $25 million of that coming from the ever adventurous Sequoia Capital.

Color is available for iPhone and Android, download it here Color.com

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Today at the Florida Educational Technology Conference Brainchild, a maker of hand-held learning devices, introduced their Android tablet Kineo – the first educational Android tablet in the world. Brainchild say that the tablet is specifically created for use of teachers and their students for use in the teaching process, without having the teachers to check constantly whether the students are doing the tasks or texting. The modified Android OS lets you open only websites, pre-programmed by the administrator or the teacher. The messaging capabilities have also been disabled.

Kineo features a 7-inch super heavy-duty touch screen rated to handle 500,000 impressions, running at resolution of 800×480 pixels display, 800MHz processor, 2GB internal memory (no word if SD card slot will be available or not), Wi-Fi, HDMI out (a good idea so the teacher could show the content of their device to everyone via a projector) and last but not least – 4500mAh battery, that promises  to keep Kineo running for up to 10-12 hours. Unfortunally, there is no word on OS version and the third party software, preinstalled on the tablet.

“Learning devices need to enhance instruction, not be a distraction. With over 15 years of experience in developing handhelds and software for schools, we know how to make a tablet device suited to a teacher’s needs for individualized instruction.” says Jeff Cameron, president of Brainchild.

The orders will be taken from starting today for the first shipment in March. The price of Kineo is 299.99$

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Dec/10

22

NEC to join the Android world

There is not much time until CES and there are rumors from numerous companies about the and interesting products. Surely, the most interesting part of CES would be the tablets, but I’m pretty sure that we will all be surprised by some interesting handset as well. And talking about Android, the Japanese manufacturer NEC, most famous with its consumer electronics, will present several new Android-based devices – Dual-screen Cloud Communicator Tablet, Single-screen Cloud Communicator Tablet, and a Personal Products’ Mobile Notebook.

The company promise to show on their booth the following products:

NEC Dual Screen Cloud Communicator Tablet:

  • Android powered tablet with two 7-inch touch screens
  • Wifi/3G/Bluetooth enabled
  • Multi-tasking, with the ability to run different programs on each LCD screen – an industry first
  • Stylus pen for easy input

NEC Single Screen Cloud Communicator Tablet:

  • Android powered, single touch screen
  • Wifi/3G/Bluetooth enabled
  • Camera and SD-card equipped
  • Slim, lightweight design
  • Stylus pen for easy input

NEC Personal Products’ Mobile Notebook, which will be Android powered, no additional information is present so far.

NEC Home Gateway Solution:

  • ADSL2+/802.11n/USB2.0/DECT enabled
  • IGMPv2 Proxy & Snooping/VoIP
  • Media Control & Serving/Printer & File Sharing
  • TR069 and OSGi enable services & configurations to be carried out remotely

NEC BIGLOBE’s “andronavi”:

  • Android application marketplace
  • Japanese content including Manga, Japan related photography, etc.

All of the products will be exhibited at both Pepcom Digital Experience on Jan. 5 and CES 2011 from Jan. 6-9 in Las Vegas.

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Dec/10

14

Android Market gets updated

android-market-update

One of the things that users dislike most about Android is the Android Market. The almost lacking organization, the limited number of countries, from which application can be bought, the numerous applications that no one uses or that are on one and the same framework, just using different theme (for example a puzzle game by one and the same developer, split into tens of application about Disney characters, hot chicks, movie stars and so on) or some test applications, just showing “Hello World” on the screen, that some developers upload. All this lack of moderation or control really pisses off the users, but it seems that the things are changing.

First changes were some weeks ago, when Google has extended the list of countries, from which users can buy and sell their applications. Then the market itself was changed a bit, putting the comments in a separate tab, then adding a “Related” applications tab, together with the ability to automatically update an application when such exists.  But that’s not all. The Market is getting a new update these days with many new features (for some of which the developers were warned some weeks ago).

The changes are as follow:

  • The details page for every app will now utilize and display the app’s “Promotional Graphic” assets at the top.
  • Users will be able to filter applications by content rating – All, Pre-Teen, Teen and Mature
  • Reduce of the purchase refund window to 15 minutes.
  • Increase of the maximum size for .apk files to 50MB, from the current 25MB.
  • Market will support filtering based on screen sizes and densities, as well as on GL texture compression formats. Filtering is based on <compatible-screens> and <uses-gl-texture> elements in an app’s manifest. (this is mostly for the developers)
  • New dynamic categories will be created – wallpapers and widgets and all applications that have a widget will be added to them.

In addition, the user interface of the market is changed as well, adding more curves and stylish transition between promoted apps.

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We are used to see or hear that Android has been integrated in various kinds of devices. Today, there is news that Android has been integrated in … a landline phone – iDECT iHomePhone 2000. But don’t get annoyed or confused by the “i” in at the beginning of the name, this is not an Apple product and I’m sure no one could even think of an Apple product running on Android. The “i” is just part of the name of the product.

iDECT iHomePhone is an ordinary cordless landline phone, running on Android, featuring a 2.8-inch resistive touchscreen display running at resolution of 320×240 pixels. It will also have 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi support and microSD card slot. All the standard Android functions are present, too – Internet Browser, mp3 player, picture gallery, video/YouTube player, alarm clock, radio, e-mail and so on. The only think that iDECK iHomePhone will not support is Android Market, but after all, this is an ordinary landline phone.

Using the DECT technology, the phone guarantees that wherever in the house you are, you will be able to make and receive phone calls. Moreover, iDECT has a 14-minute digital answering machine, hands-free speakerphone and is capable to store up to 300 contacts in its memory.  iDECT iHomePhone will be sold in Europe for 99 Euroes.

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Oct/10

24

Rumors about Samsung Galaxy S2

For some months rumors about the new Galaxy S mobile phone – Samsung I9200 are going around the web. But now these rumors seem more and more real because there are leaked pictures and specifications. If the specifications are true, this will be one monster handset.

The leaked specifications of the Galaxy S2, which is not yet confirmed by anyone official, are:

  • 4,3-inch Super AMOLED 2 display running at  resolution of 1280x720px and 340dpi (this will definitely blow my mind – it will probably be the best display ever)
  • 2GHz processor (twice more than the current high-end phones or maybe Samsung are going to use Tegra2?)
  • 1GB RAM, 4GB ROM and up to 32GB storage via microSD card
  • 8MP camera capable of recording HD video recording
  • Bluetooth 3.0, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, A-GPS
  • Accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor and all other types of sensors available in most Android devices on the market
  • Running on Android 3.0 OS

The handset is expected to hit the markets in Q1 2011. I don’t know if these specifications are real or not, but everyone else – HTC, Motorola have announced their future devices for the early 2011 but Samsung remains silent. This makes me think that they are preparing something big and specifications like this may be really present in the upcoming Samsung handsets. Stay in touch for more news about the upcoming Android devices.

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