Your phone’s manufacturer will probably be late in shipping security updates for your Android phone, and your carrier will probably delay those still further. The ACLU wants the Federal Trade Commission to take action; I think the ultimate remedy has to be getting the carriers out of the phone-procurement business. Who’s with me?
My report for USA Today about the oversized phones grabbing much of the attention at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona. They’re not the kind of phone I want to own, but I’m trying to understand why somebody might want one—and what leads manufacturers to compete on screen size.
I thought doing a census of the installed OS versions on current Android smartphones—so as to put a number on my frequent whining about late software updates—would make for a quick post for Discovery News. Wrong: The carriers’ own sites offer little guidance, and it took a few rounds with their PR types to pin down which models ship with which releases and have which updates available.
My first post for The Atlantic’s Atlantic Cities site: a look at the weirdly one-sided directions yielded up by Android’s new Google Now app. I know that only .8 % of the active Android user base is in a position to use Google Now, but if you’re among that elect few: How often are you turning to this software for help getting around town?
It’s only taken close to two years, but I’ve finally found an Android tablet I can recommend without a series of asterisks. This piece for Discovery News notes the excellence of the Nexus 7’s hardware but calls out some weak spots with its app selection.
I’m not quite feeling the love for this phone that many of my contemporaries are—too many departures from standard Android that don’t make sense, too many neat features turned off by default and difficult to discover. And Samsung’s software keyboard is genuinely annoying.
Wrap-up of Google’s I/O 2012 consumer-focused introductions: Android Jelly Bean, the Nexus 7 tablet, the Nexus Q media player, Google+ Events and Google Docs offline mode—with first-impressions reports on the 7 and the Q. (Hint: I’m a lot more optimistic about the prospects for one of those devices.)