Motorola Roadster Review [In-Car Bluetooth Speakerphone]

Here we have a rather odd device that we're surprised wasn't brought to the market in earnest many moons ago. This is the Motorola Roadster (as it's called in the USA) Bluetooth In-Car Speakerphone. This device works by itself if you're just interested in listening to the radio or connected to your Android device. Just think of all the possibilities you'll have in using your Android device in the car with absolutely no touches to activate all the love you've grown to need between stops.

Twitter lets third party clients out of the penalty box

Third party Twitter client users can rejoice. Twitter's Help Center is reporting that TwiDroyd and Uber Social for Blackberry (aka UberTwitter) are now back in business. Having made sufficient changes to the way they handle user Twitter feeds in order to correct the policy violations that grounded a handful of Uber Twiter clients last Friday, UberMedia's Twitter Clients now have access to the core Twitter API and can start giving access to Twitter feeds immediately. As we reported last Friday, both UberMedia (with Twitter clients including UberTwitter, Echofon, and others) and TwiDroyd, were suspended for policy violations pertaining to using Twitter feeds to maximize monetary gain.

Samsung Epic 4G to get some Froyo today

There's now word directly from Samsung that Epic 4G users will finally have the Android 2.2 (Froyo) update they were promised last September. Known as build EB13, the update, will be delivered over-the-air (OTA) and should get to all Epic 4G users by released to all users by week's end. Not only will Epic 4G users enjoy a new flavor of Android, but they will also get additional features that include ability to install apps on external storage, Flash Player 10.1, improved Bluetooth support including voice dialing, and GPS improvements and improved OS performance in general. But the great irony is, with Epic 4G users already complaining about not having vs. 2.3 (Gingerbread) and with Honeycomb's hybrid OS on the horizon, could this be a case of too little too late?

HTC ThunderBolt Rooftop Ad Released

Oh man the ThunderBolt has such big potential for amazing commercials that we're surprised there haven't been more of them. This is the first commercial we've seen post-MWC 2011 (isn't it funny that conventions have become our holiday markers?) Have a look at it below and let us know if it pumps you up to the level that tiny announcements about its release date and pricing do. Then, just for kicks, tell us if you actually know how fast and nice the phone is, or if you're just super excited because clearly ThunderBolt is the greatest name for a phone since BlackBerry.

HTC Inspire 4G Review

One of the most gigantic phones we've ever had the pleasure of trying to hold with one hand, this is the HTC Inspire 4G. This phone is available through AT&T and will soon be running on its full HSPA+ network, currently rolling hard on Android 2.2 Froyo on a 4.84 x 2.68 x 0.46 inch piece of candybar hardware. This is a phone with such a gigantic screen and speedy insides that the rest of the situation is minimalistic to the max - barely a physical button to be seen!

US Cellular offers buy one get five deal on Android

U.S. Cellular has announced a family sized buy one, get up to five free, deal on Android handsets and messaging phones. Customers who sign up for a two year US Cellular agreement and purchase a Samsung Mesermize (aka Galaxy S) for $99.99 can get up to five LG Optimus U smartphones free or one Samsung Messager Touch for $29.99 and get up to five Samsung Profiles for free. To sweeten the deal (as if it wasn't sweet enough), US Cellular is also offering a $100 Smartphone activation credit for every new line. There's even more benefit if customers add either their Primary Plus Plan or Belief Plan which offers phone upgrades after 18 months.
“These amazing deals are great for customers who want devices to fit their family’s wide variety of needs and lifestyles,” said Alan D. Ferber, executive vice president of operations for U.S. Cellular. “Busy parents will love how the cutting-edge Android-powered smartphones help them stay productive, and kids can stay entertained and connected with friends on the go. Many of our customers prefer texting over talking, so we also wanted to delight them with great deals on our messaging phones.”

Honeycomb gets ported to the HTC Desire

As we all know, the beauty of the Android system is that it's open source. That not only breeds a myriad of handsets powered by it, but since there's no big bad developer looking to sue for playing with the source code, it also means some pretty slick home-brew solutions to breathe new life in handsets that are starting to show their age. Witness this cool porting of Android 3 (Honeycomb) to the HTC Desire. No, it's not an amalgam of Ice Cream and Honeycomb, it's an early full on Honeycomb build. And it actually works ... sort of.

Xeta concept phone boosts specs for Honeycomb

It's called the Xeta, and it's a simple, yet elegant concept phone created by designer Frank Tobias for Sony Ericsson. On it's face, it may look like just another Android phone. But looks are deceiving. Check out what may be under the hood. Designed to run the very tablet centric Android 3.0 Honeycomb, the Xeta is to be powered by a 2Ghz dual core CPU running the Sony Mobile Bravia Engine. Which is plenty of power to support a massive 4.2 inch multitouch display that nearly covers the entire phone. Layout wise, the Xeta looks to sport three buttons including a center square that suspiciously looks like a "cut and paste" of an Apple mobile device power button.

Hanvon HPad A112 tablet/ereader revealed

A new Android-based ereader has been promised for CeBIT 2011 next month, the Hanvon HPad A112. Expected to launch in the second half of the year, priced at around €399 ($545), the A112 has a 7-inch 800 x 600 touchscreen and runs Android 2.2 Froyo. It appears to be a new version of the HPad A116 shown at CES 2011 last month. Inside there's a 720MHz ARM11 processor paired with 2GB of internal storage and a microSD slot. Although it's being billed as an ereader, it's most definitely a tablet cross-over: there's WiFi and Bluetooth, options for GPS and 3G, and a rear-facing 3-megapixel camera (along with a front-facing camera for video calls) USB and HDMI round out the main specs, with the 3,300mAh battery tipped for around eight hours of reading (though we're guessing significantly less browsing and media playback. The whole thing is 10.8mm thick with a magnesium alloy frame and a brushed stainless steel shell, and Hanvon has even thrown in their own custom handwriting recognition. [via The Digital Reader]

Android 2.3 vs 2.4: Two Bites at Gingerbread

Google's naming convention was supposed to make differentiating Android releases easier, but Gingerbread seems to have come out half-baked. Launching alongside the Nexus S, still the only phone to officially run Android 2.3, it's now confirmed that Android 2.4 will not only be arriving imminently, but also bear the name Gingerbread. As rumored earlier in the year, that has meant a delay in non-Google Gingerbread handsets. At the time, it was suggested that Google was trying to keep the field clear for the Nexus S, maintaining the Samsung's flagship status for as long as possible until dual-core phones arrived, but it now seems that the delay has been to give Android engineers time to bring 2.4 up to speed. Android Community spoke with HTC in a pre-MWC 2011 briefing, and the company confirmed that its new range would arrive with Android 2.4 rather than 2.3. The exact differences weren't specified - HTC described them as having "no impact on the user" and being mainly bugfixes - but we've also heard that 2.4 addresses the compatibility of apps that have been written for dual-core devices (such as Android 3.0 Honeycomb tablets on chipsets like Tegra 2) running on single-core handsets like the Nexus S. Where that leaves devices like the Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc - which the company insisted would launch with 2.3, but which has been spotted running what was listed as 2.4 - is unclear. Android 2.4-based handsets have proved rare when it comes to in-the-wild sightings, with HTC's prototypes in Barcelona last week actually running 2.3.2. The company has said the first of its Gingerbread phones will arrive in early Q2, aka April 2011, at which point we'd expect the Nexus S - and perhaps the Nexus One - to get an Android 2.4 update as well.