Tag: android 4.4

By December 6, 2013 Read More →

More Samsung Devices to get KitKat?

samsung-androidMany manufacturers have already been making announcements about the availability of Android 4.4 KitKat for their current range of devices with updates expected from HTC, LG and Samsung over the coming weeks for flagship devices.

However, Android 4.4 KitKat was designed to be much more optimised than the previous versions of the OS and is capable of running on devices with a lower specification with slower CPU’s and as little as 512MB RAM being possible. But there have yet to be any announcements from any of the manufacturers regarding the possibility of offering an Android 4.4 update to older models.

But that could be set to change if the information that SamMobile have managed to get their hands on. They have apparently managed to secure some internal documentation from Samsung that suggest that many Samsung smartphones are ‘under investigation’ for upgrade to 4.4 KitKat.

These devices include the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini, S3 Mini, Ace 3, Galaxy S, Galaxy Core, Galaxy Fame and Galaxy Fresh.

At this stage there’s obviously no guarantee that any of these devices will see such an OS update but it IS good to see that it is at least being looked in to and there is a further hope that if Samsung do release updates for older models then the likes of HTC, LG and others will be almost forced to follow suit.

 

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By November 13, 2013 Read More →

Nexus 7 gets KitKat

Nexus 7 gets KitKatWith the obvious success of the Nexus 5, Google is managing to get Android 4.4 KitKat in to the hands of more users.

That’s left many existing Android users wondering when their devices will have a KitKat update available. Several manufacturers have already made announcements and we know, for example, that HTC are going to have updates out later this month.

If you have a Nexus 7 though, you are definitely in luck! The Nexus 7 (both the 2012 and 2013 versions) and Nexus 10 will be getting the update imminently, although it’ll be exclusive to the Wi-Fi only models for now.

I’m checking for updates on my Nexus 7 ever 5 minutes!

Google have also announced that the Nexus 4 will get the update to KitKat soon too.

 

By November 3, 2013 Read More →

What is in KitKat?

What exactly is in KitKatIt looks like the new 4.4 KitKat version is the most significant upgrade for Android in a quite some time. It includes a massive array of new features.

Here’s a quick breakdown of many of the features:

  • Now supports lower-end devices and can run on just 512MB of RAM.
  • It will now have a new launcher.
  • Translucent system UI styling.
  • Enhanced notification access.
  • Includes faster multi-tasking.
  • More advanced caller ID.
  • new white/gray color scheme and fonts.
  • There is a new sensor batching technology. This is meant to cut down on sensor power consumption by grouping and prioritizing requests. Google claims it is now 25% more accurate, and can ask back for clarification.
  • It will now have wireless printing functionality.
  • Includes support for IR Blasters natively. It is limited to sending functions only for now. It can’t learn or receive yet. This is probably just a feature that is in progress since it is mostly not very useful yet.
  • Native screen recording and can output in MP4 format.
  • Now supports Moto X-style “OK Google” voice commands. For now this only will work with the Nexus 5. Supposedly this feature is hardware dependent, although Google hasn’t shared what is required.
  • Bluetooth devices will now be able to control the system volume directly instead of having to adjust two different volumes.
  • There is a new lock screen which includes a camera shortcut. You can also rearrange your homescreen.
  • Built-in Chromecast support.
  • Chrome web view.
  • Full-screen wallpapers with preview.
  • HDR+ photography.
  • Location in Quick Settings.
  • Low-power audio playback.
  • Music and movie-seeking from lock screen.
  • The NFC payment system doesn’t require using the secure element anymore. It uses a software based emulation work around. Because of this, carriers can no longer use this as an excuse to not support Google’s NFC payment functions.

Even at that, there is more. Little tweeks and drops of oil to make things run better. Google have put together a pretty terrific package and from what I can gather, here is a list of a few device that will see 4.4 arriving:

HTC phones to get Android 4.4

  • HTC One – sometime in 90 days
  • HTC One mini – sometime in 90 days
  • HTC One max – sometime in 90 days
  • HTC One Google Play Edition – sometime in 15 days

Nexus Devices to get Android 4.4

  • Nexus 4 – “the coming weeks”
  • Nexus 7 – “the coming weeks”
  • Nexus 10 – “the coming weeks”

Samsung Devices to get Android 4.4

  • Galaxy S4 - ”in due course” end of 2013 or early 2014
  • Galaxy Note 3 - ”in due course” end of 2013 or early 2014

Sony Devices to get Android 4.4

  • Xperia Z
  • Xperia Z1

Others Devices to get Android 4.4

  • LG G2 – “soon”

Annoying, despite the promise that KitKat will run nicely on low end devices Google have dropped the Galaxy Nexus from the update schedule.

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By November 3, 2013 Read More →

Android 4.4 KitKat Easter Egg video

Android 4.4 KitKat Easter EggThere has been a long tradition of including hidden messages or features in software. These hidden messages, called Easter Eggs, have featured in each version of the popular Google Android OS and with the latest release of Android 4.4 KitKat the included Easter Egg is a pretty good one.

Accessed by entering the Settings menu and clicking repeatedly on the Android Version number we’re treated to a spinning ‘K’ and then a series of tiles with logos from each of the Android versions including KitKat.

So here’s a quick video of the Android 4.4 KitKat Easter Egg in action on the Nexus 5 for a little Sunday fun.

By November 2, 2013 Read More →

Nexus 5 benchmark video

Nexus 5 benchmarkIn my Nexus 5 unboxing and hands on video yesterday, I ran a quick benchmark test on the Nexus 5 using Quadrant. As I mentioned in that video, the Nexus 5 benchmark scores seem to be a bit ‘off’ and I suspect that this is largely down to Quadrant not being updated for Android 4.4 KitKat yet, giving us some false values, although the graph seemed to be about right, the numbers were wrong.

So, further to several requests that I’ve had over the past few hours, here is the Nexus 5 running an AnTuTu benchmark. You’ll be able to see for yourself how it runs and what the final score is be watching the short video below.

The Nexus 5 is now coming along with me as my everyday phone and I’ll keep you posted on my experience with it. If you have any questions please submit them below.

By November 1, 2013 Read More →

LG Google Nexus 5 unboxing and hands-on video

LG Google Nexus 5 unboxing videoThe LG Google Nexus 5 was finally launched yesterday afternoon and went on sale here today in the UK. So far the sales have been strong and many stores have already sold out of the Nexus 5. In fact I had to try 4 different stores before I managed to find one that had stock and I got the last one they had!

So here is my Nexus 5 unboxing and hands-on video. I have to say, despite only having used it for a short time I am so far very impressed with the Nexus 5. If you follow me on Twitter you’ll know how much I love my HTC One but it may be possible that the Nexus 5 could soon see itself as my everyday phone.

In the video below I’ll show you what accessories come with the Nexus 5 and have a good look around the hardware. We’ll then have a look at what’s installed and play with a couple of applications before running that customary benchmark. There’s a strange outcome there though but you’ll have to watch the video to find out!

The LG Nexus 5 has an amazing specification for the money and in terms of sheer value beats just about everything out there at the moment.

The video is a little long so I’ve cut out a few bits to be included in another video later on.

By November 1, 2013 Read More →

HTC One to get Android 4.4 KitKat within 90 days

htc_oneWith the launch of the Android 4.4 touting Nexus 5 yesterday it was just a matter of time before questions would be asked of the manufacturers of other phones as to if and when their phones would see an update to KitKat.

HTC seem to have been the first to go on the record to talk about their update plans and Jason Mackenzie, president of HTC America has been talking to the guys at Engadget. In an interview with Engadget, Mackenzie has confirmed that The Google Play version of the HTC One will see the 4.4 update within a staggering 15 days, followed by developer and unlocked versions getting the update in 30 days. All other remaining carrier variants will then have the KitKat update available within 90 days, possibly less.

I just the past week or so HTC have released Android 4.3 and Sense 5.5 to HTC One devices and I’m already enjoying this update. No definitive news on when the HTC One Mini and HTC One Max will receive further updates and be taken to 4.4 but it certainly seems that HTC are going to take a more aggressive stance to updates going forward and I for one find this very reassuring.

At the moment there’s nothing official from HTC as to when the Global updates will be made available, but I would expect to see these also on an accelerated time-scale.

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By October 25, 2013 Read More →

Could KitKat be Android TV?

Could KitKat be Android TVWe have a new report suggesting that Google’s next OS, Android 4.4/KitKat could be designed as a bridge to facilitate Android TV and that will be its primary new focus. There have been rumours that Google plans to close down Google TV and reinvent it as Android TV. This new report seems to confirm that and also shines a light on how Google plans to introduce it.
According to these rumours, the main enhancements we will see in KitKat will be geared toward Android TV. Here’s a quote with more of the details,

Quote:

According to the industry on October 23, Google will greatly increase compatibility with TV in the next Android OS. In particular, it will improve the interface with smart devices. It seems that Google has greatly improved the user interface (UI)/user experience (UX), which have been regarded as the limitations of the existing smart TV, and the app development environment for TV. ‘Android 4.4 KitKat,’ soon to be disclosed, is most likely to be the next OS.
A number of industry insiders said “I heard Google say ‘the next OS has greatly improved its utilization in TV. In particular, there will be many changes in the interface between smart devices and the TV.”

In effect, Android 4.4 KitKat is a bridge between Android smartphones and Android TV, just like Honeycomb was the bridge between Android smartphones and Android tablets

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