April 2012


Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 (7-inch display) running Ice Cream Sandwich arrived

My Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 running Ice Cream Sandwich (Android OS 4.0) arrived. Look for a review and thoughts about tablets with smaller-than-10-inch displays in BYTE soon.

Android

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TweetCaster Pro for Android crashing like mad on my Honeycomb tablet. Switched to freshly updated Twitter for Android 3.2.0


I like TweetCaster Pro for Android ($1.99 in the Amazon App Store and $4.99 in Google Play) a lot. In fact, it has been the default Twitter client on Android phones and tablets that I use. Unfortunately, however, it has been crashing nearly everytime I open in on a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Honeycomb 3.2) in the past few days. It crashes so often that I deleted my account settings in the app and switched back to the recently updated Twitter app. The Twitter for Android 3.2.0 update provides the following enhancements.

  1. Updated design and improved relevance of Discover stories
  2. Activity in Discover tab shows who your connections follow, updates to their lists, and which Tweets they retweet and favorite
  3. Spelling suggestions and related searches in search results
  4. Username autocomplete in search
  5. New push notifications for when your Tweets have been retweeted, favorited, or when you have new followers
  6. New languages: Traditional Chinese, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Polish, Hungarian, Thai

Android

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LinkedIn app upgrade adds iPad support

I’m not a big LinkedIn user. However, if you are and have an iPad, the LinkedIn for iOS 5.0.0 update is just the thing for you. In addition to working with the iPad’s larger display, the update also provides a New calendar feature lets you see LinkedIn profile information for people you’re meeting with.

You can learn more about the updated app in this LinkedIn blog entry.

Introducing LinkedIn for iPad

iPad

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Google Docs app became Google Drive on Android. Widget disappeared. Rate going up 600%?

Google finally announced its Google Drive product that competes with Dropbox, Box, Microsoft SkyDrive and other cloud storage products. One of the effects of this launch is that the Google Docs for Android app was updated and renamed Google Drive. Installing the updated and renamed app on my Android tablet resulted in its widget disappearing from my home screen. This was remedied by installing the updated widget. But, it would have been nice if Google had done that for me during the update.
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Android

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Samsung announces Android Ice Cream Sandwich updates 6 month after OS release

I realize that most people don’t care when or if their Android phone or tablet gets a major OS upgrade. But, I do and have been annoyed by how long it takes vendors to get upgrades out the door. Android 4.x (Ice Cream Sandwich), for example, was released on October 19, 2011 – 6 months ago. The first ICS device, the Galaxy Nexus, was released a month later (Nov. 14, 2011). However, Samsung is only now announcing the list of their devices that will eventually get ICS upgrades. These upgrades aren’t actually available. But, there is the hope that upgrades will be available soon.

While carriers are sometimes the cause of these delays, why is it that Samsung’s WiFi-only tablets have not been upgraded yet? My guess is it is because of the no-value TouchWiz graphical layer Samsung lays over Android’s native interface. If vendors would stop fussing with their ugly and generally useless GUI overlays (with the exception of the screen capture utility Samsung adds with TouchWiz), I bet these upgrades would be available a lot faster.

So vendors, dump TouchWiz, TouchSense, Blur and all those other GUI overlays. They add little or nothing and keep desired new features and bug fixes out of your customers’ grasp.

Android

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Apps updated for my iPhone or iPad in the past week: 51




Fifty-one (51) apps were updated for my iPhone or iPad in the past week. Here’s a summary of the updates that I found interesting.
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iPad
iPhone

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