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Honeycomb upgrade enhances apps management

Posted: 22 Jul 2011     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Honeycomb  Android 3.2  HDTV display 

Google Inc.'s mobile platform for tablets, Android 3.2, also called Honeycomb gets an upgraded version that improves smartphone apps management and supports various displays of different mobile devices.

The updated Honeycomb provides a zoom feature to let users enlarge the size of a smartphone app on a tablet display. The new version also gives developers better tools to change how apps appear on tablets that typically range from small devices with 480 x 800 pixel resolutions to 10in displays supporting 800 x 1280 pixels, Google said.

At present, Android 3.2 at supports 213dpi resolutions for 720-progressive HDTV displays. It also lets apps access media directly from SD cards, a feature that could drive the attach rates of SD readers.

Motorola is reportedly already offering Android 3.2 upgrades for its Xoom tablets on a limited basis. Huawei announced it would support Android 3.2 on a seven-inch tablet it has yet to ship. Acer, Asus, Samsung and Toshiba are also believed to be testing the software.

According to the company, it will not release an open source version for OEMs of Android for tablets until Q4. The so-called Ice Cream Sandwich release will merge what are today separate code bases for smartphones, tablets and Google TV systems. OEMs complained earlier this year that Google is only sharing the Android tablet software with a select number of OEMs to control the quality of the user experience in shipping devices.

The new release aimed at app developers brings to ten the number of versions of Android that Google has shipped in less than three years. At Google I/O in May, the company announced an alliance of more than a dozen partners that will define a standard plan for upgrading Android devices. The new Honeycomb is available as a download for software developers and includes libraries, system image and emulators.

- Rick Merritt
  EE Times

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