Motorola releasing 20-30 Android phones in 2010

CNET Asia had a chance to talk with Motorola’s Asia Pacific VP of Mobile Devices Spiro Nikolapoulos and has found out  more about the company’s plans.  Nikolapoulos stated that Moto is expecting to put out between 20 to 30 Android phones in 2010 on the global market.

IBM Plans to Release Lotus Notes App for Android

Apparently IBM finally recognizes Google's Android OS as a viable platform, good enough to create a Lotus Notes app for it. Windows Mobile, iPhone and Nokia's Symbian S60 handsets already have their own version of IBM's Lotus Notes Traveler. According to ZDNet UK, IBM announced at its Lotusphere conference in Florida that they will release a secure Lotus Notes client for Android devices. The app will be free to download, but you'll have to buy the Lotus Domino server software in order for the app to work. The mail, calendar and contacts app will run on handsets with Android 2.0 and higher (sorry Android 1.6 and 1.5 users), and will be the second major secure email platform outed for Google's free mobile OS. Back in December 2009, Good Technology launched an email client that isolates and encrypts sensitive data on Android-powered phones. So far there's no word from IBM on the specific features of Lotus Notes Traveler for Google's open-sourced mobile OS or when the Android email app will be made available. Will you get it when it comes out? Let us know in the comments.

Android 1.6 Donut finally hits Archos 5 Internet Tablet

Archos have again released the Android 1.6 Donut firmware update for their Archos 5 Internet Tablet.  This marks the second attempt for the company, who briefly released an update back in December 2009 before promptly yanking it over a "major issue" with the web browser. The update brings with it all of the non-cellular improvements we're used to seeing in Android 1.6: a new Quick Search feature and improved power management are likely the two biggest draws for Archos 5 owners.  However there's also improvements in media file support, a new version of the ThinkFree Mobile documents viewer, and better UPnP support over WiFi.  There's a full changelog here. [via Twitter]

SKT to Launch 13 Android-based Handsets in 2010

As we already know, SK Telecom announced their first Android 2.0 smartphone, the MOTOROI in South Korea just a few days ago. But they also want to introduce more Android-powered handsets in 2010 to the Korean market, 13 of them to be exact. SK Telecom is already the largest mobile carrier in South Korea, but rival KT launched the iPhone since November 28th with over 240,000 units sold since then. So now, according to Ha Sung-min president of SK Telecom's mobile network operator unit, they will go all out with Google's free mobile OS.
SK Telecom will sell over 2 million smartphones in the local market by the end of this year by focusing on models based on Google's Android operating system. We will have 25 smartphone line-ups in 2013, or 40 percent of our total handset offerings, mostly equipped with the Google OS. It's clear that SK Telecom will drive Android phones as consumers have greater preferences for phones providing a high accessibility toward Web-surfing and other multimedia contents. In that perception, Google's mobile services are qualified.
So as you can see, Korean people also demand more Android-based smartphones, and SK Telecom plans to oblige. If only the Chinese government listen to their people's demands too, and didn't push Google out of their country.

HTC Bravo spotted in wild; headed to T-Mobile?

One of the first live images of the HTC Bravo that we've seen has emerged, showing the upcoming 1GHz Snapdragon Android smartphone running the HTC Sense UI.  Discovered over at Omio, the word over there is that the Bravo will hit T-Mobile. That's interesting, because the Bravo - which may not be the final production name - has largely the same specifications as the Google Nexus One, also available on T-Mobile in the USA: a 3.7-inch capacitive touchscreen, HSDPA/HSUPA, WiFi and a 5-megapixel autofocus camera.  The biggest difference looks set to be the GUI - Sense on the Bravo versus pure Android on the Nexus One - and the newer handset's optical trackpad that replaces the older phone's trackball.

Gigabyte’s First Android Phone Spotted

Last week we told you that Gigabyte Technology and AboCom Systems were negotiating with Vibo Telecom to produce an Android-based smartphone. Apparently they already have one ready to be release on the Russian market as early as next month. As we mentioned before, Gigabyte Technology has been successful with their GSmart series running Windows Mobile, but now they - as many other manufacturers - want to jump on the Android bandwagon. Their first Android-powered phone doesn’t have a name yet, but as you can see on the image above, it will be one of the GSmart series handsets. According to Mobile-review, the new handset runs Android 1.6, measures 103 x 54 x 13.4 millimeters, and it comes with a trackball, G-Sensor, and 3.5 mm audio jack. The price is rumored to be around 9000 rubles (€214 or $303) which isn't bad, unfortunately the device comes with such a small display compared to other Android handsets in the market. More Specs for Gigabyte’s first Android: • EDGE / GPRS / GSM 900/1800 MHz • Processor: Qualcomm ESM7225 528 MHz • Memory: 256 MB RAM / ROM 512 MB • Screen: 2.8 "QVGA • Built-in GPS / AGPS • Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g • Bluetooth 2.0 • Memory card: microSD • Connector microUSB (Charging / Active Sync) • Battery 1500 mAh • Camera 2.0 megapixel with autofocus

Nexus One Unboxing by Ninjas with Swords

Yes, we know the Google Nexus One has been the shiny star of several unboxing stories since December of last year. But believe me when I say this is not just any unboxing, it is actually by far one of the best I’ve ever seen in my life. We all know how deep emotions run through us when we are about to get our hands on a brand new gadget. Apparently, that is the case with these three ninjas. As you will see on the stop-action video - which by the way was sponsored by Google - below, three tiny ninjas fight over the Google Nexus One phone after unboxing it. Unboxing is just a mild word, these tiny ninjas actually destroyed the box where the Android handset was. Next, they begin to reveal some of the accessories and the smartphone itself. But don't let me spoil the fun, just watch the clip and let us know what you think about it. [youtube][/youtube]

HTC Magic with QWERTY keyboard tipped [Update: T-Mobile myTouch Slide?]

In the second HTC Magic (aka T-Mobile myTouch 3G) rumor of the day, HTC are tipped to be readying a version of the handset with a QWERTY hardware keyboard.  Signs of the new smartphone were found in a new user agent profile file, seemingly for a device with the same specifications as the original Magic but with the addition of a physical keyboard. Also curious is the name on that user agent profile.  While HTC are listed as the handset manufacturer, the file itself seemingly comes from Google (at least going by the copyright details at the very top).  That's led to some speculation that this could be the business-focussed Nexus device Google tipped earlier this month. While we've already seen what's rumored to be the Motorola Shadow, another QWERTY handset, potentially giving Google a choice of "best of breed" Android devices it could include in its store.  Adding more confusion to the mixture, there's no sign of such a phone on the leaked 2010 HTC roadmap. [via CellPassion - thanks Andy!] Update: TMoNews are saying that an Android device known as the T-Mobile myTouch Slide (aka myTouch 2) is tipped to arrive on May 17th.  That's believed to be the successor to the original myTouch 3G, and add a slide-out QWERTY keyboard together with black, red or white casings. [via The Unlockr]

T-Mobile myTouch 3G to get 3.5mm headphone socket

If you've been eyeing up the T-Mobile myTouch 3G but have been held back by headphone-related frustration, never fear.  According to BGR the US carrier is preparing to launch a mildly tweaked version of the myTouch 3G with a 3.5mm headphone socket. We say "mildly tweaked" as so far that's all the changes that are known about.  Still, it answers a common criticism of the smartphone, which so far has required owners to either use the bundled HTC wired headset or plug in a headset adapter (that uses the ExtUSB port HTC have fitted to the phone). The tipster reckons that the updated T-Mobile myTouch 3G v1.2 will land on February 10th; no word on pricing.  It's still a reasonable device, but we're not sure we wouldn't pick other, faster Android handsets over it.

Nexus One 3G settings fix?

A simple fix could address multiple complaints about Google's Nexus One smartphone and its patchy 3G performance.  According to Kevin Tofel at jkOnTheRun, setting his smartphone to automatically choose its preferred carrier caused it to instantly hop on board T-Mobile's 3G network.
"In “Settings,” I went to “Wireless & networks.” Look for the “Mobile Networks” option at the bottom of this listing. The next screen has a “Network Operators” section — tap it. Your Nexus One will search for compatible GSM networks in the area. Once it’s complete, you’ll see the choices, which will consist of T-Mobile and/or AT&T. You’ll also see a choice to Select Automatically — tap it and your phone should say “Registered on network.” That’s it. That’s all I did and I immediately saw the phone jump from EDGE to T-Mobile’s fast 3G network."
Previously Kevin had been stuck with EDGE connectivity, despite other handsets (with similar support for the T-Mobile 3G bands as the Nexus One has) being able to pull in high-speed 3G downloads and uploads while in the exact same location.  Even after rebooting, the Nexus One now automatically locks onto the T-Mobile 3G network. It's unclear what the explanation for this fix is, though it seems that somewhere in the setup or firmware of the Nexus One the handset has been instructed to prioritize EDGE connectivity over 3G.  It's possible that this is to ensure broader connectivity overall - though at a lower speed - but so far Google and T-Mobile are yet to comment.  Nexus One owners, let us know if this works for you!
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