At this year's Google I/O, a developer-focused conference in which Google has lately been announcing news about Android, we got an encouraging glimpse at Android's future, in both tablets and smartphones. The announcements were both immediately gratifying and solid in the long-term--for most Android users, there are new toys to play with right now. And in the long term, Android looks healthier than ever. Here are the highlights, and why they're important.
Why are we reviewing an SD card? Usually, SD cards are just there--these days, high-capacity cards are dirt-cheap and nearly disposable. They're essential, but in the same way shoelaces are essential--you replace them when you need to, but you don't give them a lot of thought. Eye-Fi's new Direct Mode for its X2 line of SD cards, though, is different.
The remote control for these fun devices isn't under the couch
By Caitlin KearneyPosted 04.12.2011 at 2:41 pm 0 Comments
The toy department just got its game on with technology that transforms your smartphone into a remote control. This switch means you'll be able to guide helicopters into smoother swoops and swirls and to play augmented-reality games with friends.
Some 45 million Americans have a ready-made, near-universal remote control in their pockets. We already use smartphones to turn up home stereos, scroll through iTunes playlists, and pause Apple TVs. The devices' built-in radios, such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, can also control toys.
The next version of Samsung's blockbuster Galaxy S Android lineup, sensibly named the Galaxy S II, is shaping up to be a very impressive platform. That newest innovation we've seen from Samsung, via Android Community, is a change from the now-standard, Apple-pioneered "pinch-to-zoom" interface. Instead of pinching, you simply move the phone forwards and backwards to zoom in or out.
Today at the CTIA conference in Orlando, HTC and Sprint announced the new HTC Evo 3D, which will be one of the first 3-D-capable smartphones in the country, just following the LG Thrill 4G on AT&T. These phones are both big, powerful Android phones, with an interesting twist of glasses-free 3-D displays.
White-hat hackers (that's the good, helpful kind) Michael Gough and Ian Robertson have created an Android app that's capable of breaking into the very popular cardkey-type door locks with a single click. It's not foolproof, since it requires some information about each cardkey system that not everyone will have, but it's still pretty amazing/uncomfortable.
The app (which is not in the Android Market, so don't even bother looking for it) is called Caribou, and relies on a vulnerability in these sorts of security systems that allows them to be unlocked remotely. It's actually a surprisingly lo-fi sort of app: You have to input the IP address of the system you're trying to hack, and then the app will perform a brute force attack (basically trying every single possible combination) until it lands on the correct one. Then the app will unlock the door for 30 seconds while you scoot inside the not-so-secure door.
By John HerrmanPosted 03.10.2011 at 11:02 am 0 Comments
Android phones have surpassed iPhones as the market’s fastest-growing handheld devices. Users have found that phones and tablets with google’s software are powerful, easy to operate and to a far greater degree than other mobile platforms—highly customizable. Here are a few tricks and hacks to make your Android phone or tablet look, act, and perform exactly the way you want it to.
We've been anxiously awaiting the Motorola Xoom's arrival ever since we groped it at CES. The first dual-core tablet! The first tablet to use Android's tablet-only Honeycomb OS! The first Android tablet that doesn't immediately make us think "look at that giant phone"! And, yeah, the first legitimate iPad competitor, period. What we found was a great tablet--not a "promising" product, but a tablet that is seriously fast, fun to use, well-designed, and very pretty (when was the last time you heard "pretty" applied to an Android device?).
Sharp-eyed Android-using PopSci fans may have already noticed that our reader app, previously only on iOS, is now available on Android. We're excited to offer this fast, easy and free way to stay up to date on all the PopSci.com action to our friendly Androids. Hope you enjoy! Grab it here in the Market.
The HTC Inspire 4G is part of a new effort on AT&T's part to pad out their lineup with some top-flight smartphones, a smart move now that the iPhone is no longer exclusively theirs. What's especially notable about the Inspire is that it's AT&T's first "4G" phone, running on an HSPA+ network that AT&T promises will deliver super-fast speeds--but what AT&T isn't rushing to tell you is that you probably won't see those speeds yet, even with a 4G phone like the Inspire. All over AT&T's website is an asterisk after mentions of 4G, leading to a note saying that 4G is "available in limited areas." Take that seriously, folks. No one knows where those "limited areas" actually are, and if AT&T does, it's not telling.