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Old 04-10-2012, 10:01 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by Spectre-7 View Post
Cool, thanks for the opinions! Surprised to hear about the battery life, though. I thought that was one of the places where the Fire was getting high marks. Interesting.
I guess battery life is all relative and we don't have much of a reference point. She compares the battery life of the kindle to my iphone which I in turn compare to my old non-smart phone so both seem crappy by comparison.
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:14 PM   #42
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I guess battery life is all relative and we don't have much of a reference point. She compares the battery life of the kindle to my iphone which I in turn compare to my old non-smart phone so both seem crappy by comparison.
My new note is weird in that regard... 14 hours talk time, 3 days standby or like 4 hours of browsing! Screen is such a giant power sinkm
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:17 PM   #43
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I ended up ordering a Transformer Prime with the docking station thing.
You should have totally bought my old Transformer. It's amazing, like new and cheap.
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:19 PM   #44
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My new note is weird in that regard... 14 hours talk time, 3 days standby or like 4 hours of browsing! Screen is such a giant power sinkm
I'm learning that Samsung's panels seem to come at the cost of being shamelessly battery intensive. My Nexus S is lucky to last through the day.
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:01 PM   #45
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Interesting that you're both having battery issues. One of the theoretical advantages of OLED technology was supposed to be improved energy efficiency over LCDs, but that's partly contingent on what's being displayed. Since each element of an OLED is self-lighting, the screen's power consumption will depend on the brightness of each individual pixel, so you should see some improvement by switching to darker wallpapers and night-style themes that feature black backgrounds with light text.

Honestly, that's one of the things I find so sexy about the Galaxy Tab 7.7. Engadget's battery run-down test (looping a movie, with LTE on) ran for 12:42, about 2 hours longer than an iPad 2. But AMOLED is sadly not in my budget range.
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:44 AM   #46
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I ended up ordering a Transformer Prime with the docking station thing.
Definitely happy with mine, almost a complete laptop/netbook substitute... waiting to find some good dev softwware to make my transition complete
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:57 PM   #47
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Reviews started popping up for the Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) today, and I'm seeing pretty much what I expected. Performance is a little lower than the Tab 7.0 Plus, its camera is worse (big whoop), and it has half the storage (8GB vs. 16GB), but they're otherwise very, very similar. The biggest difference? The Tab 2 (7.0) will release on April 22nd for $250, which places it as a premium, ICS-equipped competitor to the Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet.

I honestly didn't think Samsung would get the price that low. Color me impressed, though I'm still more interested in the Plus (Exynos!).

Reviews:

Engadget

Quote:
At almost half the price of the similar-looking Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus, the Tab 2 performs gracefully, comes with ample storage space to harbor your vast trove of media, and generally makes Google's latest software more accessible. Still, despite its reliable performance, it seems to us that Samsung didn't do enough to effectively overpower the allure of the Kindle Fire's tidy ecosystem. Without access to a well-curated content library, the Tab 2 (7.0) doesn't really stand out amid an ever deepening line of Android 4.0 devices, and it will have to work that much harder to win the hearts of consumers looking for a 7-inch tablet (or just a really inexpensive one). All that said, you'll be hard-pressed to find a better ICS tablet at this price. So if that newly minted OS is what your wallet's angling for, go ahead: take the plunge and call this media-minded slate your own. Had Samsung chopped off an extra $50 and put this on even ground with the Kindle Fire, though, it might have had an even clearer winner on its hands.
The Verge

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It took Samsung a while, but the company seems to have finally figured out the secret to a successful tablet: don't compete with the iPad. The Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 competes instead with the Kindle Fire and the Nook Tablet, and unless you're a heavy reader or love the particular interfaces of those two tablets, the Tab 2 is probably a better buy right now. Ice Cream Sandwich is an excellent tablet operating system, and though it hasn't solved the app problem though the Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet are in the same boat phone apps do look a little better on a 7-inch display than blown up to 10 inches. The Tab 2 is more powerful than either the Kindle Fire or the Nook Tablet, and because it runs a fuller version of Android it's a more capable device if you're interested in more than just reading. If Samsung would add the Galaxy Tab 7.7's Super AMOLED Plus display, this would be an absolutely killer tablet, but even as is it's as good a slate as you'll find for $250.
Samsung also announced that the Tab 2 (7.0)'s big brother, the Tab 2 10.1, will be available May 13th for $399. If their previous releases are any indication, these prices may drop fairly quickly, as well.
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:29 AM   #48
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...and there won't be any post-release support.
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taint = slippery slope

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Old 04-12-2012, 07:47 AM   #49
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You should have totally bought my old Transformer. It's amazing, like new and cheap.
Unfortunately, X, I'm pretty sure you don't count as a registered vendor for my federally-funded workplace.

I'm getting it as a testbed. We already have iPads certified and rolled out, but I hate Apple (and I expect so might some of the scientific staff), so I managed to make an argument that I should get an Android tab to test.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:34 PM   #50
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...and there won't be any post-release support.
Fair enough. I wouldn't be surprised at one or two minor point releases for the new devices, but expect extensive lag (or complete silence) whenever the next major Android iteration (Jellybean?) hits. I don't really worry about it much because tablets seem more akin to appliances than to personal computers for me -- they have whatever software they ship with, and when I start getting hungry for an update, I'll probably want to switch to a custom ROM or a new piece of hardware anyway. I could easily see how that wouldn't work for a lot of people, though.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:38 PM   #51
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Google needs to stop leaving os updates at the mercy of hardware developers.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:47 PM   #52
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It'd be nice, but the open question is how exactly to accomplish that. They already use the Google apps and the Play Market as leverage to ensure that certain hardware and software features are included, which is why you don't see either on parts shipped by Coby, Archos, or any of the other budget OEMs (although you can usually work around it once you have the tablet in hand). They've tried to use newer versions of their apps as incentive, but no one honestly seems to give much of a shit.

I suppose Google could require the OEMs to ship strict vanilla Android, which would mean G would need to do all of the driver development and testing themselves, but I don't really see any of the manufacturers cheering at that prospect. They like being able to customize their individual versions of Android, and if Google tightens the reins too much, they start jumping ship to alternative operating systems.

The rumored Nexus Tablet could potentially help if it becomes popular. It would (theoretically) get updates faster, which should put pressure on the other OEMs to keep pace if they want to stay competitive. There have also been rumors that Google will offer it through their own web-store with lower, subsidized prices, and word has it that other tablets will be made available there under similar terms. I think it makes a lot of sense for Google to require some kind of software-update schedule in order to participate.

Actually, I strongly suspect Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) will be the other tablet available on launch, with its price marked down to $200. Just a guess...

There's another fairly traditional way to go about it though, and I'm surprised Google hasn't tried it: sort out the developer tools (APIs, emulator, etc.), start an incubator program, and invest some real money in making sure there are premium, high-quality apps that require ICS. Back these apps with a national ad campaign, and the other manufacturers suddenly have a nice toasty fire crackling under their asses.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:59 PM   #53
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You do it the same way every other os does it: by creating an open standard and bringing hardware support under the purview of the os team instead of ignoring it and leaving it to oems to sort out.

Its not like ARM isn't basically standard already, you just need solid standards for radio and video.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:59 PM   #54
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I thought the reason the market isn't on the budget devices is that while the base Android OS is open source, Android including proprietary software like the market you have to license.
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Old 04-13-2012, 04:32 PM   #55
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You do it the same way every other os does it: by creating an open standard and bringing hardware support under the purview of the os team instead of ignoring it and leaving it to oems to sort out.

Its not like ARM isn't basically standard already, you just need solid standards for radio and video.
I don't think that's precisely how every OS works, though. In the Windows world, there are published standards but every single chip-provider is on the line for their own drivers, and OEMs still sort out a large amount of it; on Mac, the OS supports such a limited range of hardware that it's essentially a non-issue; on Linux, it's a diverse world of reverse engineering teams, Windows drivers run through wrappers, and the occasional manufacturer-provided binary blob.

And ARM is only standard-ish. Most of the variants use licensed cores and fully support the instruction set, but I believe the rest of the chip is largely custom, not to mention oddballs like Qualcomm who design their own ARM-compatible SOCs from scratch. As you mentioned, there's video and radio, but also audio, various I/O (screen, touch interface, USB, HDMI, SD, IR, GPS) provided by Gorilla Grodd knows whom, and whatever else goes into the board designs. There's a lot of equipment jammed inside there, and I don't think any of it is even remotely as standardized as your desktop PC.

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I thought the reason the market isn't on the budget devices is that while the base Android OS is open source, Android including proprietary software like the market you have to license.
Basically, but as I understand it, you don't pay for the license. The license terms are essentially just requirements that your device meet certain hardware standards and includes specified Android components. As always, I could be completely off my rocker, though.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:48 AM   #56
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Archos devices now ship with the Market.
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I think it's the collective form of the noun, actually.
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taint = slippery slope

Got it. Thanks.
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Old 04-14-2012, 06:37 AM   #57
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Archos devices now ship with the Market.
Like Grown Up devices? Imagine that.
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Old 04-14-2012, 08:40 AM   #58
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Basically, but as I understand it, you don't pay for the license. The license terms are essentially just requirements that your device meet certain hardware standards and includes specified Android components. As always, I could be completely off my rocker, though.
That doesn't make sense, because a lot of the budget devices have performance way beyond what other devices with the market have.

(Example, my Kobo Vox, which I had to hack the market onto.)
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Old 04-14-2012, 11:13 AM   #59
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That doesn't make sense, because a lot of the budget devices have performance way beyond what other devices with the market have.

(Example, my Kobo Vox, which I had to hack the market onto.)
So, how are the cameras on that thing?

From the Compatibility section of the Android Open Source Project's FAQ:

Quote:
What does "compatibility" mean?
We define an "Android compatible" device as one that can run any application written by third-party developers using the Android SDK and NDK. We use this as a filter to separate devices that can participate in the Android app ecosystem, and those that cannot. Devices that are properly compatible can seek approval to use the Android trademark. Devices that are not compatible are merely derived from the Android source code and may not use the Android trademark.

In other words, compatibility is a prerequisite to participate in the Android apps ecosystem. Anyone is welcome to use the Android source code, but if the device isn't compatible, it's not considered part of the Android ecosystem.

What kinds of devices can be Android compatible?
The Android software can be ported to a lot of different kinds of devices, including some on which third-party apps won't run properly. The Android Compatibility Definition Document (CDD) spells out the specific device configurations that will be considered compatible.

For example, though the Android source code could be ported to run on a phone that doesn't have a camera, the CDD requires that in order to be compatible, all phones must have a camera. This allows developers to rely on a consistent set of capabilities when writing their apps.

Can a device have a different user interface and still be compatible?
The Android Compatibility Program focuses on whether a device can run third-party applications. The user interface components shipped with a device (such as home screen, dialer, color scheme, and so on) does not generally have much effect on third-party apps. As such, device builders are free to customize the user interface as much as they like. The Compatibility Definition Document does restrict the degree to which OEMs may alter the system user interface for areas that do impact third-party apps.
I haven't found any sources that state there's a fee for licensing the Google Play Market, but I suppose it's possible. Google's statements on the matter make it seem that the only bar for entry is compatibility, however.

Quote:
Once you've built a compatible device, you may wish to include Android Market to provide your users access to the third-party app ecosystem. Unfortunately, for a variety of legal and business reasons, we aren't able to automatically license Android Market to all compatible devices. To inquire about access about Android Market, you can contact us.
Licensing the Google Apps is done separately, and I haven't any clue what's involved. *shrug*
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:44 PM   #60
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How do you connect GalaxyTab to the PC without Kies?
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I think it's the collective form of the noun, actually.
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taint = slippery slope

Got it. Thanks.
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