Thursday, March 31, 2011

Google tightening the reins on Android

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Google apparently has changed its approval process for devices to use its software (that'd be Android), cracking down on the way the software is changed and how third-party partnerships will be handled, according to the folks at Bloomberg.  Now, companies that want access to the latest version of Android will need approval of the things they want to do to it. And that approval will come from none other than Andy Rubin.

Google says it is going to tighten and enforce "non-fragmentation clauses," that intend to limit things like customization of the interface, and how manufacturers can partner with other services like Facebook or Microsoft.  Bloomberg tells us that things have already gotten heated, with complaints to the U.S. Justice Department being lodged.  There's also mention that Google has tried to hold back the release of devices on Verizon because they make use of the Bing services. Hello, HTC Merge, maybe that's why you disappeared for a while.

While I'm all for keeping crappy software away from hot, new devices like the Evo 3D, I'm certain that this doesn't mean the end of manufacturer skins.  And it shouldn't -- many enjoy the extras that come with manufacturer enhanced user interfaces, and a bit of curation by Google should make for an easier upgrade path.  But I fear this is going to greatly affect the release cycle of the source code for the AOSP project, and not for the better.  We'll just have to wait and see how this develops. [Bloomberg BusinessWeek] Thanks, everyone who sent this in!

Google tightening the reins on Android posted originally by Android Central

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Xperia Play meets shipping delays in UK, Vodafone and Three bump launch to next week

Sony Ericsson's Xperia Play isn't having the best of starts in the world, having been delayed by UK carrier O2 due to "software issues," and it's now missing its targeted launch date of April 1st with two more of the local operators, Vodafone and Three. Both have today announced that, due to shipping issues, they won't be able to meet tomorrow's launch date -- leaving only Orange on track to release it on time. T-Mobile, Orange's partner in Everything Everywhere, says it'll have the Xperia Play in "mid-April." Still, the wait isn't that much longer as Three hopes to sell you a Play "early next week" and Vodafone, a bit more cautiously, is shooting for availability "as soon as possible."

Xperia Play meets shipping delays in UK, Vodafone and Three bump launch to next week originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 31 Mar 2011 11:23:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Source: http://feeds.engadget.com/~r/weblogsinc/engadget/~3/P0x4PT-LOpo/

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Nanogenerators produce electricity by squeezing your fingers together, while you dance

It's been a while since we last heard about nanogenerators -- you know, those insanely tiny fibers that could potentially be woven into your hoodie to juice up your smartphone. Dr. Zhong Lin Wang of the Georgia Institute of Technology has reported that he and his team of Einsteins constructed nanogenerators with enough energy to potentially power LCDs, LEDs and laser diodes by moving your various limbs. These micro-powerhouses -- 1 / 500 the width of a single hair strand -- are embedded with piezoelectric zinc oxide atoms and can generate electrical charges when flexed or strained. Wang and his team of researchers shoved a collection of their nanogenerators into a chip 1 / 4 the size of a stamp, stacked five of them on top of one another and can pinch the stack between their fingers to generate the output of two standard AA batteries -- around 1.5 volts. Although it's not much, we're super excited at this point in development -- imagine how convenient to charge your phone in your pocket sans the bulky battery add-ons. And that's only one application of this technology. Yea, we know.

Continue reading Nanogenerators produce electricity by squeezing your fingers together, while you dance

Nanogenerators produce electricity by squeezing your fingers together, while you dance originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 31 Mar 2011 20:23:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Source: http://www.engadget.com/2011/03/31/nanogenerators-produce-electricity-by-squeezing-your-fingers-tog/

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The Geekiest Way to Perfect Your Football Spiral [Video]

So you're at the park, and you want to impress the sunbathing supermodels lying there, watching with gaping mouths as you prepare to launch your football into the air. But your spiral—it sucks. A geekier football might help. More »


Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/YchFjehmmDI/the-geekiest-way-to-perfect-your-football-spiral

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HTC Arrive review

Though it was teased late last year -- on the same day that HTC announced its very first Windows Phone 7 devices, in fact -- the company's QWERTY-packing 7 Pro has taken its sweet time to make it to American airwaves; in the process, it's gone through a name change and picked up the first big platform update from Microsoft. The phone we now know as the Arrive is finally available from Sprint, becoming the first Windows Phone 7 device available on a CDMA network. These days, it's pretty unusual for an HTC handset -- or a handset on any American carrier, really, regardless of manufacturer -- to take this long to make it to subscribers' hands after announcement, but in this case, Sprint's hands were tied: Microsoft simply didn't support CDMA initially, which explains why both AT&T and T-Mobile have been enjoying a selection of models from Samsung, LG, Dell, and HTC alike while Sprint and Verizon have been patiently twiddling their thumbs.

The CDMA dry spell's over, though; the Arrive marks just the first of what should be several Redmond-powered phones over the course of 2011. Is it a fitting first effort? And how does it fare against the GSM models that beat it to market? Read on.

Continue reading HTC Arrive review

HTC Arrive review originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 31 Mar 2011 15:50:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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SciSpy App for iOS Lets You Practice Being a Real Ecologist [Apps]

Do you believe, deep down, that it is your hidden calling to become a masterful ecologist? SciSpy, the Science Channel's new app, lets you dabble in this field by allowing you to document the natural world around you—even if you don't go any further than your own backyard. More »


Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/o-3HLi87qf0/scispy-app-for-ios-lets-you-practice-being-a-real-ecologist

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