This week saw highs and lows for news relating to the next version of Google Android and a flagship phone to feature the new mobile platform. Samsung and Google had planned to hold an event at next week’s CTIA trade show, where presumably both the operating system and a high-end Nexus Prime smartphone would debut. With the passing of Steve Jobs, both companies decided to postpone the event for a later date.
If the rumors hold true, the handset will have a 4.65-inch curved touchscreen display with 1280×720 resolution and be powered by a speedy dual-core chip. The specifications generally make sense to me as the Nexus line of Google phones is meant to be a reference design to illustrate the advanced in the software. While I generally don’t place much stock in leaked videos, the one that surfaced this week appears to be the real deal based on the look of the phone and user interface.
We’ll have to wait for the official unveiling of Ice Cream Sandwich and the Nexus Prime, but in the meantime, most Android phone owners can now play Minecraft on the go. The popular indie game with retro-graphics originally debuted for the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, but this week became available for all Android phones. There’s a free demo version in the Android Market and a paid version that costs $6.99. Having played Minecraft on the desktop, I find that the mobile experience is fairly good port, even if it’s not as elaborate as the computer-based edition.
This week may have been bigger for iOS than Android, given Apple’s launch of iCloud, iOS 5 and the new iPhone 4S. Why mention these in a column devoted to Android? Because there’s room for both successful platforms, for one. More to the point, I left iOS for Android some 22 months ago.