T-Mobile G-Slate gets $100 earlybird discount

It's said that good things come to those who wait. Well, sometimes it pays to jump in early. T-Mobile is offering a $100 discount on a two year contract when users purchase the LG G-Slate and data plan before April 27th. But there's a catch.

Samsung Fascinate users report Froyo update problems and solutions

Samsung Fascinate users are complaining of errors after receiving the OTA update of OS 2.2 Froyo. The error message that users are receiving is "UPDATE FAILED or INCOMPLETE. reason: IP_PREVIOUS_UPDATE_FAILED" and appears to be affecting users with a Fascinate that is either rooted, has a previous update that failed to complete, or has a corrupted system directory. Users have tried everything from a hard reset to removing the battery with no help in clearing the error. But thanks to a smart Fascinate user, there's a workaround.

Android joins the Army with prototype

The power of the Android platform is now part of the Arsenal of Democracy. Reports are that the US Army has developed a prototype for a military grade Android smartphone to be carried by soldiers on the battlefield. The prototype is known as the "Joint Battle Command Platform" (JBCP) and is being developed by MITRE. An SDK known as the Mobile Handheld Computing Environment is also in the works for App developers.

Android to get $100 million startup fund

An investment firm in Silicon Valley has announced the creation of a $100 million dollar start up fund for Android territory. The firm, DCM, has identified Android as the hottest thing in the tech world right now and has earmarked on average between $500,000 and $4 million in products that will shape the Android ecosystem from the "A-fund" to help select robot-focused start-ups get up and running. The firm stated that Android's rapid rise around the world, particularly in Asia, was what prompted creation of the fund that they hope will enable developers capitalize on it. DCM believes that Android will continue to dominate in Japan, China and Taiwan and that's where a lot of the money is focused. DCM has offices in both Tokyo and Beijing.

Android tracks users too [Report]

Fresh on the heals of controversy that Apple's iPhone 4 OS collects location data on users, a recent report shows that Google's Android system performs the same spying functions. Security experts have found that the Android OS collects location based data every few seconds and transmits it to Google several times an hour. In addition to a user's location, the Android OS also catalogs a user's name, signal strength of nearby hotspots, and the phone's unique identifier. The idea is to triangulate a user's location in proximity to local WiFi networks in order to push location based advertising.

Google fined $5m for Linux patent infringement: Is Android next?

Google has been fined $5m after a Texas court found the company guilty of infringing a Linux kernel patent, in a move that experts believe could significantly hamper open-source software's growth. The fallout of the case, filed by Bedrock Computer Technologies, could see users of Android eventually chased for licensing fees, reports the BBC. The specific patent infringement actually refers to Google's server farm and the Linux kernel used there; the patent itself covers "methods and apparatus for information storage and retrieval using a hashing technique with external chaining and on-the-fly removal of expired data." Bedrock also accused Softlayer Technologies, CitiWare Technology Solutions, Yahoo!, MySpace, Amazon.com, PayPal, Match.com, AOL and the CME Group of similar infringement. However, FOSS Patents suggests, the repercussions could see Android the next key target. "Google might have to modify the Linux kernel it distributes with Android in order to remove the infringing code" patent activist Florian Mueller suggests, "because otherwise there's always the risk of contributory infringement should any app make use of that portion of the Linux kernel." [via Mobileburn]

HTC Sensation 4G pre-interest page goes live

HTC may not be publicly confirming the rumored June 8 release of the HTC Sensation 4G on T-Mobile USA, but it has thrown up a sign-up page for those wanting more information. The tri-tone smartphone has a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, HSPA+ connectivity and a 4.3-inch qHD display. There's also an 8-megapixel camera on the back with autofocus and a dual-LED flash. HTC has reworked the camera app to minimize start-up lag, so that there's less chance of missing impromptu shots. Meanwhile the Sensation will debut HTC Sense 3.0, the latest version of the company's interface, complete with a new homescreen launcher. We've more on the HTC Sensation in our hands-on report from the launch of the European version, identical bar the radios. Meanwhile for all the specs, check out HTC's product page. [Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

T-Mobile Sidekick 4G root already discovered

The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G has only been on sale since Wednesday, but that hasn't slowed down the rooting masters at xda-developers. They've already come up with a root for the messaging-centric smartphone, opening the door to custom ROMs and other juicy hacks. The root is the handiwork of "josby", but according to other xda members there are several ways to hack the Sidekick 4G. Next up is stripping away some of the preinstalled apps T-Mobile load onto the handset, which may give it an extra turn of speed. We found the Sidekick to be something of a unique proposition among Android devices, doing a darn good job of following in the footsteps of its unusual predecessors and differentiating itself for a pretty specific market. More on the Sidekick 4G in the full Android Community review. [Thanks Kenny!]
1) enable debug USB mode on your phone 2) install Samsung drivers for the phone - right now Samsung's site seems to not have a choice for the Sidekick 4G's model (SGH-T839), but I grabbed the drivers for the Vibrant (at www .samsung.com/us/support/downloads/SGH-T959ZKDTMB) and they worked. 3) get adb shell working on your PC (Google it) 4) download the rageagainstthecage-arm5.bin and Superuser packages from the links in this page: wiki.cyanogenmod.com/index.php?title=HTC_Hero_%28CDMA%29:_Full_Update_G uide (be sure to unzip the files into the directory where your adb.exe program is unless you've put it in your path) 5) reboot your phone and plug it in 6) adb push rageagainstthecage-arm5.bin /data/local/tmp 7) adb shell 8) cd /data/local/tmp 9) chmod 755 rageagainstthecage-arm5.bin 10) ./rageagainstthecage-arm5.bin 11) wait until you get booted back out to your DOS command prompt 12) adb kill-server 13) adb start-server 14) adb shell 15) you should now be at a # prompt. The first few times I tried, I wasn't - I was at $. Doing this from a fresh boot seemed to be the trick. Reboot your phone and try again if you're getting a $. 16) mount -o remount,rw /dev/block/stl9 /system 17) exit 18) adb push su /system/xbin 19) adb shell chmod 4755 /system/xbin/su 20) adb push Superuser.apk /system/app 21) adb shell mount -o remount,ro /dev/block/stl9 /system 22) exit 23) reboot the phone then run an app that requests root, such as Root Explorer, to verify

Facebook updates Android app with fixes for bugs and new feature

Social networking is one of the things that a huge number of web users enjoy when they are on their computer. If you are like me you probably find yourself sitting somewhere with nothing much to do and end up firing up Facebook or another social network to see if your pals are as bored as you are. If you are a big fan of the Facebook app for your Android smartphone there is an update for the app now available.

US Army developing Android network

A number of things that consumers take for granted today were derived from things that the military needed or wanted. One very common example is GPS that we all take for granted today. The military is now taking that develop things, then turn them to civilian use, and reversing the whole trend with a new Android powered network that it is working on. The US Army is hard at work on an Android-based smartphone framework for tactical operations.