Android Ice Cream Sandwich shown at Google IO
Google in the many announcements it gave at its first Google I/O keynote gave its very first look at the next version of Android, Ice Cream Sandwich. The OS is designed primarily to bring Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) features to phones, smaller tablets, and other devices. For most, that will bring the more visual multitasking, the "holographic" interface and new launcher, and the dynamic menu bar.
Android Ice Cream Sandwich identified by engineer
Google's first post-3.0 (Honeycomb) release of Android was given a formal name this weekend after an e-mail from Android engineer Romain Guy. A response to an outstanding bug promised that it would be fixed "in Ice Cream Sandwich." The name had surfaced in rumors, but until the Droid-Life copy had just been named Ice Cream by Google or nothing at all.
Rubin rejects Android fragmentation lockdown claim
Google VP of Engineering and Android lead Andy Rubin in a post late Wednesday vocally denied claims that his company was cracking down on fragmentation in the mobile OS. He insisted Google didn't "believe in a 'one size fits all' solution" and that phone or tablet designers were still free to customize much of the OS. Hardware partners thought of quality and consistency as "top priorities" and, supposedly, anti-fragmentation policies had been in place since the Open Handset Alliance and Android were kicked off in 2007.
HTC Pyramid still rumored with Android 3
The same leak on Tuesday that showed the HTC Ignite and Prime also showed what could be the first official render of the Pyramid. The all-touch phone would keep much of the styling of a phone like the Mozart or Desire HD but thinner and more efficient with its space. XDA.cn still insisted it would run the tablet-oriented Android 3.0 platform and carry a 1.2GHz (likely dual-core) processor along with a new 540x960, 4.3-inch screen.
Fragments API reaches Android phone apps
Google later on Thursday posted a new version of its Fragments API targeted at earlier platforms. The new version will let app developers write apps for platforms as old as Android 1.6 while still letting their interface elements scale up to tablet size for Android 3.0. Developers can roll the programming interface directly into a given app so that it's ready to load immediately.
Google confirms Ice Cream to use Android 3 layer
Android engineering director Dave Burke in a chat today confirmed that the version of Android for phones beyond 2.4, Ice Cream, will bring many Android 3.0 elements to phones. The OS should carry over the holographic look as well as the top action bar, which brings context-specific actions and will replace many of the press-and-hold commands. Burke told Phone Scoop that the bottom bar likely wouldn't carry over; no reason was given, but space constraints could be a factor.
Motorola Droid X sequel to use Bionic's Blur UI
Motorola's sequel to the Droid X has been spotted and detailed ahead of release. Commonly thought of as the X2 or by its Daytona codename, the phone is cosmetically very similar to the original Droid X, including the 3G-only cellular data and eight-megapixel camera. It should upgrade to the same dual-core Tegra 2 chip and 540x960 screen as the Droid Bionic, however, and was seen on The Mobi Zone using the same new Blur interface.
Android 2.4 may keep phones and tablets fragmented
Google may be planning to keep Android 2 and 3 segregated in a long-term split of the platform, according to a ViewSonic source on Monday. The 2.4 update, once thought to be called Ice Cream, is now said to be a continuation of Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) that would simply add backwards compatibility for dual-core apps on single-core phones. Ice Cream, Pocket-lint heard, should be Android 3.1 and would keep the two apart in features and the interface.
Feature set remains unclear
Shortly after Google held a special event focusing on the tablet optimizations in Android 3.0 'Honeycomb,' additional details surrounding a smartphone variant of the mobile OS have emerged. The latest information suggests the search giant has started creating a smartphone build, GRI17, that is referred to by the code-name 'Ice Cream,' sources have told Phandroid.
Android Ice Cream narrowed down to June or July
Google's next major Android revision, Ice Cream, was said on Monday to be unveiled in June or July. The new version would be unveiled in time for the annual Google I/O developer conference in May and ship a day later. Sources for Pocket-lint didn't have their own details of what Ice Cream would involve.
Dell Opus One may take Streak dual-core
Dell may upgrade the Streak in a way that could address the Android tablet's limitations in large fashion, a leak from a presentation attendee claimed today. Along with mentions of new Streak colors reportedly came word of the Opus One, which would have a five-inch screen but possibly upgrade to a 1280x800 or similar resolution screen that would address complaints of having no advantage over a smartphone. It would also move to a much faster 1.2GHz dual-core chip, StreakSmart heard, and most likely the dual-core Snapdragon promised at the same speed.
Android 4 gets Ice Cream codename
Although Android 3.0 still hasn't been announced, ARM president Tudor Brown revealed the very earliest detail of 4.0 in a talk published late Friday. The future OS would be codenamed Ice Cream and would follow after 3.0, known as Gingerbread, as well as an interim release known as Honeycomb. Google has always named its Android releases after desserts.