The Motorola Xoom Family Edition is finally getting the update to Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich. The update started rolling out in the U.S. a couple days ago and has now made its way through all of the devices we own. This update previously hit the European version of the Family Edition Xoom early last month.
If you haven’t already received the update to your Xoom then you can manually check for the update via “settings -> about tablet -> system updates”. You will get a popup there asking if you want to check and of course you will tap “Check Now”. Once it finds the update be patient as the update is around 130MB and can take a few minutes depending on your WiFi speed. Once completed you will then be asked if you want to install the update, go ahead but at this point you can walk away for a while because it will take a good fifteen minutes to complete.
If you want to see the process before updating or are having issues with the update and want to see what it should look like then watch the video below. The video does however speed through the long waits so expect a longer wait time for your installation to complete.
Users of the Motorola Droid Bionic on the Verizon Network are finally able to get the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update. The update comes after a year of waiting and wondering but has started the process of pushing out yesterday October 19th. We have already had a few Droid Bionic users report they have received the over the air update and that it came in at around 368MB.
Easy smooth multitasking – You will notice this in the incredible reduction in the time it takes switching between apps.
Face Unlock – new feature that has a very low usage rate although a fun feature to have just the same.
Battery improvements – battery optimization seems to be a key feature in all Android updates although with the Droid Bionic already being a great device on battery this should prove beneficial.
Direct Access Lock – users can now unlock their device directly to their text message, camera app, keypad or unlock screen. This is by far the one improvement that most will find the most useful and those that like to get the camera out quickly now have no reason to complain.
Enhanced Notification bar – Swipe to dismiss functionality of the new notification bar is a feature that many devices have and makes for a much easier experience. Also there are many visual changes you will notice.
Home screen folders – it’s now easier to create folders on your home screen by simply dragging an icon over another to create a folder.
As always when updating your Droid Bionic be sure to have at least a 50% charge and connect to WiFi to be sure the process is not interrupted Again the download is 368MB so be patient as it could take a bit to get down. If you want to check for the update manually all you need to do is go to “settings -> about phone -> system updates”. If you see the popup “update available” then your good to go otherwise just try again later.
There have been more than one source mention the announcement of an update to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to Android version 4.1 at the end of this month. Google I/O will be June 27th and this is when we are expected to hear more on the update.
What we do know about Google I/O is that this is when the Nexus Tablet is to be unveiled and possibly released as soon as early July. The Google Nexus tablet will be a 7 inch powerhouse said to hold NVIDIA’s KAI quad-core processor and price out at $200. With Kindle Fire sales down this may all but halt Amazon’s sales of the once popular 7 inch tablet.
As we get more information on the release of Android 4.1 and the Nexus tablet we will be sure to let you know.
Sony promised that most of their 2011 Android devices would be getting the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update this year and it seems they are making good on this promise. The two devices that are now getting the update to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich are the Sony Xperia Arc and Sony’s Xperia Neo. Both devices will still be on Kernel version 2.6.32. These will likely be the last devices to get the upgrade from Sony with any new device coming with it out of the box.
The update brings many UI improvements and all of the features that we have grown to love in Android 4.0. Sony will be updating these devices as needed from ICS to newer builds of the same OS for bug fixes and such.
There are many reasons why you would want your Android device running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich but we have narrowed it down to the top 5. While many devices are getting the Android 4.0 update pushed to the device this year, if your not getting it you may want to upgrade. Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich has been out for some time now and a selling feature for most new devices is the fact that they are running the newest Android OS. Below are the main 5 reasons that you will want and maybe even need Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on your Android device.
Android 4.0 Task Management:
The task management features alone in Android 4.0 ICS is a great reason to want the update as this is a weakness in most Android devices and the number one drain on battery life. Beside the home button in ICS there is a button that looks like two windows overlapping. When you click the button you will get a list of windows that will show you whats running. You can either swipe your finger across the ones you want to close to remove it from memory or tap something that you want to re-open. This is incredibly helpful when you are having an issue with an app being able to close it quickly and re-open it without having to go through settings to find it.
Android 4.0′s Camera App:
The stock camera app has been greatly improved from Android 2.3 to Ice Cream Sadnwich even though hardware may not change on the device. Your camera with Android 4.0 is almost instant without the horrible lag that you may get with your previous OS. You can keep tapping and taking pictures without waiting and having to actually get the perfect picture. Your Android 4.0 camera is as professional as you can get with a phone.
Android 4.0 Notifications:
While the notification system hasn’t changed much on the new Android OS it has been improved. Instead of having to go though notifications or clear them all you can swipe the ones away that you no longer need or want to show. You remove the risk of missing the X on devices that actually have it by swiping instead of tapping. This may not seem like a great improvement but once you use the new way of swiping you will love it and wonder how you got by without it in earlier versions of Android.
Android 4.0 Brings Unified Applications:
With previous versions of Android if you have a phone and a tablet you would need different versions of the same application for each device. Now you can have the same version running on both devices while still having them work well on both devices and in pretty much the same way. While the number of Android 4.0 applications are still low developers have moved their focus to the new OS and we are bound to see them increase in numbers very quickly.
Android 4.0 has Chrome Browser Support:
We have all wondered why Android being a Google powerhouse has never had the Chrome browser but now with Android 4.0 you can have it. The Chrome browser doesn’t come pre-installed although you can at least now install it if you want it and in fact we recommend it. While the stock Android browser seems to work very well Chrome is by far the best available right now with flawless multi-tabbed browsing. As with many other Android 4.0 features you can easily see all of the open tabs and swipe away all of the tabs that you no longer want open. We recommend downloading Chrome as soon as you get Android 4.0.
Again there are many improvements to the Android OS with Ice Cream Sandwich although those listed above are the most useful improvements in our opinion. There are also those features that we didn’t mention here that many of you may love like the Face unlock features and Android Beam although they are still being worked on as at release they seem a bit buggy. Let us know if we missed anything that you feel should be included in our list for the benefit of those reading this article.
Sony has posted a list of their devices that will be getting the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich updates and the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play is not on the list. Sony had previously planned on the device getting the update but have decided not to push it to the device after all.
“In regards to Xperia PLAY, after extensive in house testing with our developer teams and working with our partners, we have concluded that a consistent and stable experience, particularly with gaming, cannot be guaranteed for this smartphone on Ice Cream Sandwich – therefore, we will not make the Android 4.0 upgrade available for Xperia PLAY.
This decision was also verified when we received similar feedback from the developer community; both experienced developers and advanced users, along with game content providers following our ICS beta ROM for unlocked Xperia PLAY smartphones.”
I would have assumed with the lower end Sony Android phones getting the update to Android 4.0 that the Xperia Play would be a shoe in. Sorry to everyone with the Xperia Play it’s certainly not fair. While the official update wont hit the device you can still always root and ROM.
Starting today HTC and T-mobile have started rolling out the Android 4.0.3 update to the HTC Sensation 4G bringing it to software version 3.32.531.14710RD. This has been a long awaited update to the popular device and should prove to be a great improvement to the device.
System bar enhancements to easily view recent apps.
Lock screen actions including pull down notifications and adjust volume while device is locked.
Data usage controls.
Home screen folders
Improved battery life
Note: HTC Sensation 4G will be required to add Wi-Fi Mobile Hotspot feature in order to use the service after completing this update.
Improved text input and spell checking
Improved menu structure
If you haven’t already received the OTA (over the air) update you can manually install the update to your HTC Sensation 4G. To manually update go to “Settings -> About Phone -> HTC Software Updates -> Check Now”. Let us know how you like the update on your now new feeling HTC Sensation 4G.
If you have a Nook Color and don’t want to install Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich over the stock ROM then you can install CM9 on an SD Card and run ICS from that. The instructions to install CyanogenMod 9 on an SD card is a very simple process, does not require root, and sows not effect the Nook Color stock ROM.
Ematic has released an Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablet for $219, it may be mid range but based on price and features its a tough on to beat. The Ematic Android tablet named the eGlide XL Pro 2 is in line with the ereaders but is a full featured tablet with specifications that are very hard to beat one of which simply being the 10-inch display.
Ematic eGlide XL Pro 2 Android 4.0 Tablet Features:
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (out of the box)
1 Ghz Processor
400 mhz GPU
We aren’t sure of many more features at this point although they are in a partnership with Kobo for delivery of books and the tablet is on sale at Wal-Mart stores already. We have no idea on Google features or if Google Play even comes on the device although as soon as we get a chance to hold on to one we will let everyone know.
An upgrade to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was promised by Meizu’s CEO Jack Wong back almost 6 months ago in November. It looks like he has finally released a date for the Ice Cream Sandwich update for the MX and M9 smartphones of June. The Meizu MX and Meizu M9 will not be getting the Ice Cream Sandwich update that most other phones get as it will be skinned with Meizu’s own Flyme OS version 1.0. Their Flyme OS is supposed to improve Google’s default Android 4.0 features with a more refined logical interface, backup and sync data functions, and cloud storage.
Official Press Release About Flyme OS 1.0 for the Meizu MX and M9:
HONG KONG – April 24, 2012 – MEIZU today officially announces that the MEIZU MX and M9 smartphones will be upgraded to Flyme OS 1.0 (based on Android 4.0) in June 2012. This announcement indicates that MEIZU’s entire current range of smartphones will be brought into the Android 4.0 era, reflecting MEIZU’s unyielding commitment towards its old users.
MEIZU’s Flyme OS offers a powerful range of features and user-friendliness together with a simple and elegant design, receiving praise from users both at home and abroad. It is the result of MEIZU’s focus on user experience since the start. Combining all the best elements from past products and iterations, Flyme OS 1.0 provides a superior user experience.
Flyme OS 1.0 will offer a slew of advantages over the native Android 4.0 system. The user experience will be more logical; interactions more streamlined and pre-installed apps more comprehensive. Under the hood, Flyme OS 1.0 offers backup and sync, lost phone locating, as well as a new cloud services such as personal file storage. In Mainland China, MEIZU’s Music Online music streaming app will have its entire library upgraded to lossless audio formats.
Customers with the MEIZU MX and M9 will be able to upgrade to Flyme 1.0 via an OTA (over the air) push directly on their phones, or by downloading the firmware upgrade from the official MEIZU website in June this year.
MEIZU MX comes with an Exynos dual-core A9 processor and a high resolution 4-inch 292 PPI display with the world’s most naturally beautiful ASV display technology, giving users the ultimate visual experience. It also comes with an 8 megapixel backside illuminated (BSI) camera with a lens aperture of f/2.2, capable of taking great photos even in low light conditions.
As China’s first flagship smartphone, the MEIZU M9 was released in early 2011 with a 1 GHz CPU, 3.5-inch 960×640 resolution ASV display and a 5 megapixel camera to much fanfare in China and beyond.
The MEIZU MX 16GB retails for ¥2399 CNY in Mainland China and $2599 HKD in Hong Kong, while the MEIZU M9 sells for 1699 yuan in Mainland China.
While HTC Amaze owners just got their hands on a perm S-Off tool a few days ago there is already something else to get excited about. The Official Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update was leaked on XDA and can already be flashed if your interested. Keep in mind before flashing to the leaked Official ICS update on your Amaze 4G that its not yet rooted. This being said we will go ahead and assume there will be a root for the build very shortly.
We haven’t heard when the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update Officially push to T-Mobile HTC Amaze 4G owners although with a fully functional build already available we will go ahead and say very soon.
NOTE: Using this leak to install Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on your HTC Amaze does not require root or S-Off as its an Official update file. Follow the instructions below to update.