HTC Dream set to launch in Singapore and Australia

Buyers in Singapore and Australia will soon have the opportunity to pick up their first Android-based smartphone, in the shape of the HTC Dream.  The Dream is sold in several markets by T-Mobile as the G1, and will launch on Singaporean carrier Singtel and Australian carrier Optus with all of the handset's usual features. That means a 3.2-inch capacitive touchscreen running at 320 x 480 resolution, a five-row QWERTY keyboard plus trackball navigation, 3G and WiFi connectivity, and a 3.2-megapixel autofocus camera.  The Dream will also have access to the Android Market, for third-party software and media downloads, together with one-touch access to Google search, Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps & Calendar. Availability on either network is yet to be announced, but Optus have revealed their handset pricing and plan details.  The carrier will be charging between AU$3 and AU$51 per month for the Dream, depending on which plan you select; plans range from AU$59 to AU$129 per month, with both 12- and 24-month contracts available. [via SlashGear]

Google Latitude location-sharing app hitting Android

Google have released Google Latitude, an update to their Mobile Maps app which adds the ability to share your location with other users, track friends' movements and trigger calls, emails and IM conversations with them directly from Latitude's user interface.  Available for Android devices now, G1 users in the US will be receiving Maps v3.0 in a system update soon. Since using GPS in this way can be a contentious issue, Google have given Latitude users the ability to restrict location information on a contact-by-contact basis; alternatively it will let you enter a false position manually.  Results are shown either on a map or in a list, from which individual people can be contacted without having to exit Latitude and go into your phonebook.  Right now, the app works in 27 countries; there's also an iGoogle plugin available for desktop use. Since not everybody uses a T-Mobile G1, Latitude is also available for most Windows Mobile 5.0 and above devices, most Symbian S60 handsets, and most color BlackBerry smartphones.  Versions for the iPhone, iPod touch and many Sony Ericsson handsets will apparently be available soon. [gallery] [via TechCrunch]

G1 gets Voice-Controlled Search with RC-33 update

Google have added voice-controlled searching to the T-Mobile G1, part of the new feature set introduced in the latest firmware update.  The widget has been integrated into both the Android browser and the home screen search bar, in the form of a new microphone icon. Tapping the icon brings up a "Speak now" prompt, at which point you can search for multi-word terms.  If the app doesn't correctly recognize your voice, you can also choose the arrow to the right of the search box and see a drop-down list of other suggested interpretations.  The Google Android team claim to be working on refining the recognition algorithms for future updates. The functionality also works within the Android browser, and can be accessed by choosing Menu > Search and tapping the microphone icon.  Unfortunately the new functionality is currently only available in the US, with the RC-33 firmware rolling out over this coming week.  Have you tried voice-controlled searching on the G1?  Impressed or disappointed?  [gallery]

ING Wegwijzer ATM locater app uses Augmented Reality

Bank ING have announced a free app for Android-based handsets, which helps users locate their nearest ATM.  The software, ING Wegwijzer ("ING Signpost"), takes advantage not only of the T-Mobile G1's GPS functionality but also its digital compass, presenting directions to the closest cash-machine overlaid onto a real-time view of their surroundings. It's similar in concept to Lastminute's nru app, which highlights activities such as galleries, cinemas, bars and restaurants.  Both apps offer a form of augmented-reality, where internet data is combined with real-time information from around the user; by holding the G1 up as if taking a photo and then turning around, the software keeps the information positioned appropriately.  Another example is the Wikitude AR Travel Guide, also available for the G1. Unfortunately the service is only available in the Netherlands at present, meaning those outside the country will have a long walk to whichever ATM the app flags up.  Still, it's great to see a well-known company pick up on Android's capabilities and promote software for it, something we'll hopefully see even more of in other regions. [gallery] [via Springwise]

G1 Not Carrier Switch-Worthy?

According to Q4 earnings reports, T-Mobile has reported just 621,000 new customers for the final 3 months of 2008, a 35 percent drop in new subscribers from the same period in 2007. That brings T-Mobile's total subscriber base to an estimated 32.8 million users.

Android Cupcake gets Video Demo

More and more developers are getting their hands on Cupcake, the non-official next-gen build  of Android, as Google seemingly relax their grip on the software.  After we saw screenshots late last week, now it's time for some video: a walkthrough of firmware 1.5. In it, the new portrait-orientation keyboard is demonstrated - meaning that owners of devices like the T-Mobile G1 wouldn't have to slide out the hardware QWERTY in order to type a message - together with the new notepad application.  There's also some screentime for the two new apps, both presumed to be demo rather than full-release candidates, and the Global Time app which shows which parts of the earth are currently in sunlight. Less eye-catching, but arguably more useful, are the Live Folders - which can be set to auto-refresh on your desktop, with "All Contacts", "Contacts with phone number", and "Starred Contacts" currently supported - and the new emoticon support for both SMS messages and IM chats.  Google have also thrown in a lot of multi-region language support. Nothing, for the most part, that we haven't seen before, but if you've been desperately watching the still images to see if they start moving, the clip below is for you.  If, more excitingly, you'd like to try Cupcake out for yourself, check out this tutorial. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfsvXJUVlY0[/youtube]

Multitouch hack for T-Mobile G1: Video Demo

While the hardware of the T-Mobile G1 can support multitouch, and the users certainly could deal with it, neither HTC nor Google themselves gave the smartphone the ability to recognize more than one simultaneous touch.  Now that's all changed, thanks to coder Luke Hutchison, who has put together a multitouch hack for the G1.  As you can see in the video demo, the hack adds pinch & spread zooming to the G1's browser, together with maps support, replacing the usual zoom controls. Right now this is more a proof-of-concept than anything else, though it's usable, and needs OpenGL acceleration support and kinetic scrolling (where the page continues scrolling after you "flick" it) before it will go as smoothly as multitouch on the Apple iPhone is.  Installation is not for the faint-hearted, either, requiring a reflash of the G1's hardware and the potential risk of bricking your smartphone. If you're brave, the full instructions are here.  The hacked apps - Browser and MapViewer - also include accelerometer-linked screen rotation, so you can use them in landscape mode without needing to flick out the keyboard.  There's also a photo browser with multitouch support. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZEshnuQcno[/youtube] [Thanks Simon!]

All T-Mobile Retail Outlets to Get G1

Are you a resident of T-Mobile's still-fairly-limited 3G coverage area? If so, you've been the only ones getting your hands on the G1 from an actual store...up until now. Word has it that tomorrow, January 24th, all T-mobile retail outlets across the country will begin selling the T-Mobile G1 with Google to customers directly in-store.

Truphone Anywhere ‘VoIP’ app for Android launches

Truphone have announced a version of their Truphone Anywhere client for the T-Mobile G1.  The app, a free download from the Android Market, is available in the US, UK and, in preparation for the G1's release in Germany come March 2009, in German.  As well as free VoIP calls over WiFi between Truphone users, the service claims to offer lower-cost international calls.
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