The DROID by Motorola is now Rooted

Been the hottest Android handset on the planet at this moment, the DROID by Motorola was bound to get rooted sooner rather than later. And guess what, it has happened. We have word from simms22 in our forums, about this good news. Before anything, let's be clear that, if you decide to go on and root your Android device, you take some risks on doing so. Like always, be very careful and have a back-up plan, just in case. And remember that you do this at your own risk. Below you will find the instructions on how to proceed:
Download the zip file and rename it . Rename it to "update.zip" and copy to your sdcard . Power off your DROID and then power it back on again, at the same time hold down the X key . When you see the "/!\" symbol, press both vol+ and camera and and a menu will appear allowing you to install the update.zip file . Once installed you will be able to run "su" from your adb shell.
To find the zip file and everything else, including advice, that you'll need to go ahead with rooting your DROID, you need to click on our androidcommunity forums link here. If you have already done it, give us a shout and let us know how you like it. [Thanks to simms22]

The Android-based Acer Liquid A1 is Now on Sale in the UK

Finally, the first Android-based Acer smartphones, named "Liquid A1", went up for sale in the United Kingdom as of yesterday. We already knew about retailer Clove taking orders for the Acer Liquid A1 since mid-November. But there's also another retailer selling this phone too. So now there are actually 2 retailers selling the first Acer Android smartphone in the UK; Expansys and Clove. Expansys is offering it for £339.99 ($554) including taxes, while Clove is selling the same device for a lower price; £328.90 ($536), not much, but is still cheaper, and that's always good. Now, the last time we heard from Clove on this Acer phone, they had a Qualcomm 8250 1GHz processor on the features list, but now, they have it with the same Snapdragon processor at only 768Mhz. This might have something to do with the capacity of the battery (1350mAh). And unfortunately, the Acer Liquid A1 will run Android Donut (1.6) instead of the Eclair (2.0).

eGether public beta launches: new social media hub

If there's one thing Android Community proves, it's the importance of social networks and how useful they can be for sharing information. We've just launched a new, collaborative social portal intended to bring together consumers, members of the press, PR professionals and analysts, and make sharing news and projects more straightforward. It's called eGether. eGether takes the best elements of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube and combines them into a straightforward, immediate social hub. The central concept is of status updates and pitches: the former are short news blasts and photos, whereas the latter are longer pieces that can include image and video content (either hosted on eGether or on YouTube), documents and hyperlinks. Unlike Facebook there's no need for users to friend each other in order to get access to pitches, and the character limits are more generous than Twitter to make sure you have the space you need to make your elevator pitch. We've got big plans for the evolution of eGether, and we'd love to hear your feedback. Signing up is free and straightforward and we've been working hard to make the interface as usable as possible. Check out the video demo below for more information. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dN6r5qu5UhE[/youtube]

The Shack Selling the Archos 5 Internet Tablet 8GB for $249.99

Last time we heard something about the Archos 5 MID, someone had done a hack to gain access to the Android Market to get Google Apps like GMail, Talk, Maps, and more. And now pocketables has found it at RadioShack, it's been sold for $249.99. Apparently, the Archos 5 is an exclusive at The Shack for now, and they are offering it as "a media and GPS solution." According to their website, you can "access the Internet, media and TV with the customizable Archos 5 Internet tablet. It has a modifiable interface that you can personalize with applications that reflect your taste and needs. And, it will help you get around with a built-in GPS device with maps of cities in 3D." You can watch digital TV, record programs and make scheduled recordings, just like a personal DVR, which some people call PVRs actually. There's also a way to get recorded shows on larger TVs via an HDMI connection. And of course you can also use it to surf the Web with WiFi or 3.5G technology.

Pogoplug Android App Available on the Android Market

Pogoplug sells the Pogoplug Drive, which is just like using a drive that is directly connected to your computer and is compatible with Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X. And they want you to know that there is a Pogoplug Android app available now on the Android Market. This might be good to all of you that already own a Pogoplug, I personally don't have one, so I cannot comment on this one. But for those of you that will get this, let us know if it is useful and if you like it. Also have in mind that there is a little caveat to this on Pogoplug's website:
Minor note: The upcoming media filtering features of the Pogoplug V2 software and firmware show their faces in this new Android app, but will not be functional until the official V2 release that is expected mid-month.

DROID by Motorola Getting a Mandatory System Update

While the HTC Eris users are waiting on their needed update, which might make its way to these devices until early 2010 to either Android 2.0 or 2.1. The Motorola DROID is getting a mandatory system update of its own. Apparently, Verizon Wireless is calling this over the air (OTA) update, a software version AP:ESD56/BP:C_01.3E.01P, for your DROID by Motorola . So, as you can see, no Android 2.1 just yet, but that doesn't mean you won't be getting it sometime next year. For now, take a look at the following enhancements that you will be getting on your Droid by Motorla: * OS stability is improved. * Battery life is improved. * Camera auto focus functionality is improved, and time between shots is reduced. * Enhancements for three-way calling. * Audio for incoming calls is improved. * When receiving a call on call waiting, the speakerphone now remains on. * Bluetooth® functionality is improved; background echo is eliminated. * Improved Bluetooth phone book transfer of contacts to in-vehicle Bluetooth solutions. * After closing a GPS application, the GPS icon will now automatically be removed from the notification panel. * Users can now receive SMS and MMS messages after an EMS message is received. * SMS and MMS may now be sent to seven-digit addresses. * Google® contact merging has been updated to accommodate seven-digit numbers. * Visual Voice Mail notices now arrive instantaneously. * The corporate calendar widget user interface is updated. [Via Verizon Support]

HTC Bravo 1GHz Android Confirmed on the Leaked HTC 2010 Roadmap

Thanks to the folks over at xda-developers, we now know that there are indeed more Android phones coming from HTC. As you might remember, there were some clues on the upcoming devices from HTC on the recently leaked Android 2.1 ROM that we saw running on an HTC Hero. Some of the devices that will run Google's free Mobile OS are, the Legend, Salsa (With QWERTY keyboard), Bravo (not the Passion and/or Dragon), Tide and the Buzz. Out of all this upcoming phones, the Android-based HTC Bravo is the one giving us something great to talk about. Apparently, it will pack the same 1GHz Snapdragon processor as the HTC HD2, and it will be able to capture HD 720p video. The Bravo will also have a nice 3.7-inch AMOLED touchscreen. SlashGear contacted HTC to comment, but unsurprisingly they did not want to confirm anything. They only said:
We cannot comment on speculation or rumour, but we’re excited about our upcoming roadmap and encourage you to watch this space.
[Via SlashGear]

Get Santa’s Voice for Your TeleNav GPS Navigator on your Phone to Guide you these Holidays

This holiday season you don't need the same old voice to guide you around when you are driving, what you need is Santa Claus. And you can get the good ol' fella to do this for just $0.99, that's right, since yesterday, you can purchase and download Santa’s voice either via your phone or via TeleNav.com. If you normally drive around using the TeleNav on your Android smartphone, then this one might be for you. Because who doesn't get tired of the same voice giving you GPS directions every single time. That's why TeleNav has come to the rescue with Santa's Voice, to give you directions. But you have to hurry, you can only download it throughout the month of December. TeleNav will donate ALL proceeds to Toys for Tots. So now you can get Santa to help guide you around this season and help children in need at the same time. To download via your phone you just launch TeleNav GPS Navigator and select “Share and More”, then select “Preferences”, go to “Navigation Audio” and select “Guide Tones”, there you need to select “Santa Claus” and voila! You ready to go. Or you can also visit TeleNav's website to download. Go to TeleNav.com and select “My TeleNav” on the top right (you’ll need your PIN number to login), go to “My Settings”, select “Device Settings” and then choose “Santa Claus”. The Santa Clause voice is only compatible with TeleNav GPS Navigator v. 5.5 and 5.8. So, if you need to find out which phones support these versions, click here. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypjH1ExWSRQ&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

HTC Droid Eris Might Receive Android 2.1 Update in Early 2010

Lets face it, as soon as we learn about the leaked Hero 2.1 Eclair ROM, we knew it was just a matter of time before we could get our hands on the official release. According to InformationWeek, the update to Android 2.0, or 2.1 for at least one version of the Hero, is coming. According to Verizon Wireless, the HTC Droid Eris will be receiving a significant system update at some point in the fist quarter of 2010. This update will boost the version of Android on the HTC Eris, to at least 2.0. But there are even better news; that the update might possibly be Android 2.1. We know that Android just had some minor updates to the SDK, and now there's word of Android 2.0 or 2.1 coming to the Eris, so hold on tight, 2010 is just around the corner. Verizon spokesperson Brenda Raney told InformationWeek, "The Droid Eris currently using Android 1.5, can and will be upgraded to newer a Android operating system software in first quarter 2010. The enhancement will allow customers to continue to enjoy the powerful HTC Sense experience while also gaining the additional benefits of Google Maps Navigation." Raney also said that, based on the timing, the Droid Eris will be updated to either Android 2.0 or 2.1.

Inside the Mind of Google: Google Visual Search for Android [Video]

As I was watching CNBC yesterday, I happened to come across a show that interested me a good deal; "Inside the Mind of Google". At first, I didn't think much of it, but been about Google, I kept on watching, but well into the show, something really caught my attention: Google Visual Search for Android. When I heard Maria Bartiromo saying “Google is working on Google Visual Search, a mobile application that lets users take a picture of a location from their Android-powered smartphone and trigger a Google search that pulls up information associated with the image." My mind just went crazy thinking of all the possibilities that this could open up. As you will see on the video below, the person testing GVS takes a picture of the Santa Monica Pier entrance and voila! The service gives him within seconds, an audio-visual narrative explaining the image. The GVS is not ready for Prime time just yet, according to Google, but it is coming to Android, and have no doubt about it. I didn't record the show, but I found part of it on youtube, enjoy. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6tT3JGV1iY&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]
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