• amazon,  android,  apps,  google

    PopCap Plants vs. Zombies Free in Amazon Android App Store

    Amazon.com is offering PopCap’s zombie shooter, Plants vs. Zombies for Google Android devices free today only.

    Normally, $2.99, Amazon is giving away copies for Plants vs. Zombies for people who sign up for their new AppStore for Android.  To get started, you need to enter your phone’s telephone number or email address from the Amazon.com website.  You will receive a new text message or email with the link to download and install the Appstore for Android application on your device and then you can download the game.

    Plants vs. Zombies is a fun game in which you plant flowers and other forms of vegetation to prevent the zombie horde from making it inside your house.  I’m not exactly what you call a zombie or horror film fan, but don’t let the name of this app scare you away.  The plants and zombies that show up through out the game are loads of cartoon-y fun.

    A word of caution before you go hog wild downloading and installing applications on your Droid smartphone.  To install the Appstore for Android application, you must first turn on the ability to install applications for other sources than the Google Android Market.  While this step is not dangerous in and of itself, it does require that you be more vigilant about what software you install on your device because you are turning of a feature that Google perceived to be a security concern; if it the security is to address customer lock-in to the Android Market.

    For more details and to download Plants vs. Zombies, head over to Appstore for Amazon website.

  • android,  google,  maps

    Google Updates Maps for Android

     Today, Google released Maps 5.5.0 for Android powered smartphones.

    According the Android Market web page for Maps, there are only three things included in the update.  They are:

    • Check in and check out directly from Place pages.
    • Change your Latitude work and home addresses.
    • See the redesigned transit station pages.

    I find myself using the Maps application, and the Navigation feature, a lot more than I though I would when I was issued a Motorola Droid Pro for work.

    For more details, check the Android Market.

  • android,  google,  motorola,  rumors,  verizon

    Rumor: Motorola Droid 3 Coming to Verizon in June

    The next version of Motorola’s insanely popular Droid smartphone, the Droid 3, is rumored to touchdown on Verizon in June.

    If the picture is accurate, we can see that just like the Droid 2, the d-pad is gone because of the 4-inch, 960 x 540 qHD display.  The Droid 3 is also rumored to have an 8MP digital camera, and will not include an LTE cellular radio.  (iPhone fans feel the collective pain from Droid fans.)

    [Via BGR.com…]

  • android,  apple,  blackberry,  google,  ipad,  touchpad,  web os,  windows

    Forget the iPad! The HP TouchPad Will Be the #1+ Tablet!

    Chalk this one to drinking too much marketing Kool-Aid(tm), but Eric Cador, HP’s senior VP of Personal Systems Group in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, said that the HP TouchPad, powered by webOS 3.0, will surpass all of the tablets on the market today; including the Apple iPad.

    Mr. Cador, in an interview with The Telegraph, stated:

    “In the PC world, with fewer ways of differentiating HP’s products from our competitors, we became number one. In the tablet world, we’re going to become better than number one. We call it number one plus.”

    Are you kidding me?!  I think that it is going to take a little more than HP willing that their new TouchPad will beat out the growing number of tablet devices in the market running Google’s Android, Windows 7, RIM’s QNX, and, well, Apple’s iOS powered iPad 2.

    Don’t get me wrong.  I’m sure webOS 3.0 and the TouchPad are going to be a great platform, but with webOS hovering around 3% market share in the smartphone OS category, HP is facing a long hard up hill battle.

    [Via AllThingsD.com…]

  • android,  games,  google,  hp,  ios,  ipad,  iphone,  palm,  touch,  web os

    Angry Birds Rio Updated With Beach Volley Levels

    Rivio’s Angry Birds Rio has been updated to include the 30 new Beach Volley levels.

    The update is available now for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.  Angry Birds Rio for iPhone/iPod touch is $.99; the Angry Birds Rio HD edition for iPad is $2.99.  The upgrade with the new levels is free to all existing Angry Birds Rio customers.

    Angry Birds Rio, like other versions of the Angry Birds franchise, includes Game Center achievements and new hidden fruits to find.  Once you have completed episode one, Blu and Jewel will be added to your avian arsenal. 

    Rovio has also released a free edition of Angry Birds Rio which features three levels per episode.

    Google Android and HP webOS users, unfortunately, still have to wait for Rovio to release the Beach Volley update.

  • android,  apple,  google,  ios

    Google Admits Android Platform Fragmentation, Vows to Address Problem

    After repeated denials from former Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Mobile VP Andy Rubin, the Internet search giant unveiled plans today to address fragmentation of the Android problem.

    Google will be pulling together a standards board of sorts, made up of OEMs and wireless carriers, with the intention of standardizing when and how Android updates would be rolled out to new and existing hardware.  The target is to have Android hardware supported with software updates for at least 18 months.

    You may recall that things got a little bit heated between Google and Apple late last year, with Apple CEO Steve Jobs lacing into the issue of Android fragmentation during the company’s October, 2010 quarterly conference call.

    “Unlike Windows, however, where most pc’s have the same user interface and run the same app, Android is very fragmented. Many Android OEMs, including the two largest, HTC and Motorola install proprietary user interfaces to differentiate themselves from the commodity Android experience. The users will have to figure it all out.” “We think Android is very, very fragmented and becoming more fragmented by the day. And as you know, Apple’s provides with the integrated model so that the user isn’t forced to be the systems integrator.” (Source: CNNMoney)

    The few mobile software developers that I’ve talked to in the past six months all cited platform fragmentation as the main reason why they were sticking with iOS application development for the time being.  Hopefully, Google can get their act together and provide more clear guidelines on the modification of the Android platform because getting OEMs and carriers to all go in the same direction is about as difficult as herding cats.

    [Via Electronista.com…]

  • android,  google,  ipad,  motorola,  sprint

    Motorola Sells 250,000 Xoom Tablets

    Motorola Mobility, the handset and tablet device making spin off company from the Motorola mother ship recently announced their Q1, 2011 financials.

    According to BGR.com, Motorola shipped something north of 250,000 Xoom Android powered tablets.  Not too bad for a device that doesn’t have a fruit logo on the back, and certainly better than the ugly sales figures that are being tossed around by analysts for RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook.

    Motorola’s press material reads:

    “The Company shipped a total of 9.3 million mobile devices, including 4.1 million smartphones and more than 250,000 Motorola XOOM™ tablets. In the first quarter of 2010, the Company shipped 8.5 million mobile devices, including 2.3 million smartphones.”

     The good news for Motorola Mobility is that they are selling more Droid devices, smartphone and tablets, than they were a year ago and is holding their own against the pack of iPad wanna be devices.

    If you are looking to pick up a Moto Xoom, Sprint announced today that they will begin selling Wi-Fi only version of the Android 3.0 Honeycomb powered tablet starting on May 8 for the “low” price of $600.

  • android,  droid,  facebook,  google

    Facebook for Android Get Updated to 1.5.2

    The Facebook client for smartphones running Google’s Android operating system got pushed up to version 1.5.2 today.

    New photo features have been included in the latest build allowing you to upload photos to your friend’s walls and groups.  Improvements to landscape mode and security are always welcome.

    Ready to update your Droid?  Tap the Android Market icon on your device to get the update, which is available now.

  • android,  android market,  app store,  apple,  google,  ios

    Google Uses Remote Kill Switch, Secures Compromised Handsets [Updated]

    According to a new report from Boy Genius Report, Google has used the remote kill switch feature in the Android operating system to kill and remove malware installed on Android phones.

    “To try and fix the problem, Google has started using a remote kill switch feature in Android to wirelessly nuke those installed apps on user’s handsets. That’s not the entire story, though, as Google is actually installing new code in the process. The new code undoes the exploit and prevents your data from being shared, and it’s kind of creepy to plainly see how much control Google has over your Android phone from afar. “

    I’m glad to see that Google is using their powers for good.  Earlier uses of the kill switch angered users, if not make them a bit paranoid that Google has a back door into their devices.  But I have to wonder, shouldn’t Google have done a better job of curating their Android Market and have prevented these apps from becoming available for download in the first place.

    Regardless of whether or not you believe the Android platform and the Android Market is any more or less “open” and the Apple iOS platform and the App Store, it is up to us, the consumer, to make sure we know and understand what software we are installing on our devices.


    ComputerWorld has posted an article covering this issue online, stating:

    “Last Wednesday, Google removed more than 50 infected apps published by three different developers from its marketplace, but didn’t trigger automatic uninstalls until several days later.”

    You can read the full article on the ComputerWorld website.
    [Via BGR.com…]