AA Weekly: top Android news of the week, July 7, 2013
This week, we’ve learned more details about the upcoming LG G2, Motorola teased the Moto X, the Galaxy S4 reached a sales milestone, HTC broke the hearts of One S users, and we got some interesting news about the Android 4.3.
LG G2: tantalizing rumors
LG is expected to stage a soft launch of its new flagship in mid-July, followed three weeks later by a grand international event in New York. With weeks to go till the official debut, leaks paint an almost complete picture of the G2.
On Monday, we learned that the Snapdragon 800 processor that will power the G2 will not be a power-hungry beast, as some have feared. The processor did as good as or better than competitors when it comes to stamina, giving us hope for a new generation of long lasting super devices.
The G2 will be the world’s first device to rock 3GB of RAM, while mobile shutterbugs should rejoice knowing that an optical stabilization system would ensure great shots even in the midst of action.
Motorola, you better deliver something amazing
We’re entering hypebeast territory with the Moto X. And we can’t blame Motorola, happy to be in the spotlight after so many months of deafening silence – we just hope the device will live up to the hype. With that said, we’re really excited about the Moto X.
On July 3, Moto ran a full page ad in major US newspapers, announcing the world that “the first phone designed, engineered and assembled in the USA” is coming. The ad and a signup page that went live this week claim that customers will be able to design the Moto X themselves.
However, don’t get too excited about it – if a leak from Wednesday is to be believed, Motorola idea of “designing” means picking the colors of the case, choosing a custom text for engraving, and uploading a custom wallpaper. Cool, but we hoped for more.
Samsung sold 20 million Galaxy S4s, but that’s not enough for analysts
Talk about high expectations – despite ruling the mobile industry, selling one of every two smartphones in Europe and raking in enough money to fund a small country, Samsung isn’t doing too well in the stock market.
This week, CEO JK Shin told Korean media that Samsung sold 20 million Galaxy S4 units in about sixty days, an impressive achievement that casts doubt on various negative reports that emerged over the last month.
Still, when the Korean tech giant announced its earnings guidance for Q2 2013 on Friday, analysts were not impressed, in spite of record profits. The truth is no one in the mobile industry is doing very well these days, for a variety of reasons that we discuss here.
Android 4.3 rumors and predictions
Last week, an Android 4.3 build leaked online, giving Android pundits a chance to look at what’s new, before Google makes it official. A teardown revealed that Google has been working to make Android notifications smarter, with a focus on making wearable devices such as Glass more easily controllable from a smartphone.
On Tuesday, an alleged insider revealed that Google plans to make most stock Android core apps available on the Play Store, thus making it easier than ever to obtain a stock-like experience even on unrooted devices running TouchWiz, Sense, or other manufacturer overlays. One example may be the new camera app.
Speaking of which, Chainfire, the noted Android developer, has already rooted the Android 4.3 build that leaked last week.
HTC breaks the hearts of One S users
The One S was one of the flagships that HTC launched in early 2012. It didn’t feature the best specifications, but it was, and still is, an excellent device. So you can imagine the disappointment and frustration of One S users, when HTC announced that the phone won’t be joining the One in the Sense 5/Android 4.2 club. The news is especially vexing because the company promised a timely update to Sense 5 for the One S, just a few months back.
Petitions rarely help accomplish their goals, but that hasn’t stopped One S users from starting one asking HTC to keep its promise and update the phone to the latest version of Android. As of this writing, the petition still needs more than 900 signatures, so if you’re a One S user itching to do something about HTC’s cruel rejection, head over here and sign away.
What’s your take?
In your opinion, what were the most important news this week, and why?