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Android 2.0 SDK Released, Google Maps Navigation Announced 121

Posted by Soulskill
from the android-will-find-a-way-home dept.
stoolpigeon writes "The Android 2.0 SDK is now available from Google. This puts to bed concerns about Google not releasing the SDK or perhaps being in some kind of exclusivity deal with Verizon around 2.0. The release notes give a nice overview of what is there. Those who already have the SDK can grab the updated tools as SDK components; everyone else will pick up everything when downloading the new SDK." Relatedly, reader riffzifnab reports that Google has also announced Google Maps Navigation, a GPS application for Android 2.0 that takes voice input and integrates with internet searches and Street View.
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Android 2.0 SDK Released, Google Maps Navigation Announced

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  • by elcid73 (599126) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:28PM (#29898773) Homepage

    Search on your radius and end point destinations are not very useful- on your route is great feature to have (gas stations, rest stops etc)

    • by manekineko2 (1052430) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:33PM (#29898855)

      I'm really excited to have a GPS (someday, I'm not on Android yet, though hopefully Google will eventually release this to other platforms) that integrates satellite view and street view like Google Maps Navigation does.

      Only downside (and it's a big one) is that I doubt Google will ever let you download the whole maps database for caching to your device. I love the freedom of having maps to everywhere I could conceivably ever want to drive already preloaded onto my GPS. Of course, I imagine with the satellite images and street view images that the size of the map database could be a few orders of magnitude larger than with traditional GPS databases.

      • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:53PM (#29899135) Journal
        I'd be modestly surprised if they were to do it for free(whoever they buy the map data from would want money for an offline offering, and Google's ability to wring adsense out of offline users would be pretty limited); but I don't see any particular strategic or philosophical reason why google wouldn't, at some point, kick out an offline offering as a paid thing.

        In the case of Gmail, google eventually offered POP3/IMAP, even though they'd presumably rather have people using their webapp. Presumably, they wanted to appeal to a die-hard "local client only" group and were confident that the ease of their web interface would keep most users on that side.

        For GPS map data, I'd suspect that a similar situation would exist. There is a subset of the market that simply will not bite without local maps, even if they only rely on local maps part of the time. Google presumably wants their business(if only because people who haven't just spent $200 on a GPS are more likely to buy a nicer phone). At the same time, though, there are plenty of things, both obvious and subtle, that google can do to make a connected GPS experience much more convenient and pleasant than a pure local one.

        My guess would be that Google will, eventually, either put out their own local map offering at a price more or less dictated by what their data provider charges or make it possible for 3rd party local GPS map apps to integrate with the google GPS UI. This will be largely to appease the people who think that offline use is essential, it won't mean any sort of major push into disconnected devices. For connected devices, they'll continue to do more or less what they do now, as well as offering the layer of connected features on top of offline material when the offline capable device is actually online.
        • by elcid73 (599126)

          Since they do a good job at analyzing the route from A to B, it seems logical that the app should be able to cache maps along the route of a direction

          Also, seems possible to get a map of cell coverage to overlay it on the route and do heaving caching for areas that have no/spotty coverage.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Sparr0 (451780)

            There are already PDA map applications that pre-download google maps at multiple zoom levels along your planned route.

            http://fragostech.com/MaemoMapper/ [fragostech.com]

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              There are already PDA map applications that pre-download google maps at multiple zoom levels along your planned route.

              Doesn't that violate Google's terms of service? You are not allowed direct access to tiles on Google's servers so far as I know.

              Certainly possible with map tiles from openstreetmap.org [slashdot.org] though.

              • Well, technically these kind of applications don't violate the TOS because all they do is display google maps in a server window and then they take the locally cached tiles.

                There's also an iPhone app for jailbroken devices which uses cached google maps tiles for offline use with the normal maps application. It's really quite handy but not the most practical method (it requires desktop software to download the tiles and to create a database which must then be uploaded through ssh to the iPhone)

                • Hmm. As I read their terms they are quite clear on this - you are not allowed to cache tiles except temporarily, and in limited amounts, and also you're not allowed to let people use them outside the web service.

                  10. License Restrictions. Except as expressly permitted under the Terms, or unless you have received prior written authorization from Google (or, as applicable, from the provider of particular Content), Google's licenses above are subject to your adherence to all of the restrictions below. Except as explicitly permitted in Section 7 or the Maps APIs Documentation, you must not (nor may you permit anyone else to):
                  10.3 pre-fetch, cache, or store any Content, except that you may store limited amounts of Content for the purpose of improving the performance of your Maps API Implementation if you do so temporarily, securely, and in a manner that does not permit use of the Content outside of the Service;

                  • by xappax (876447)
                    That's a very official sounding restriction, but has it ever been tested in court? Because it seems pretty absurd to think you can tell users "you can download our data, but if you don't delete it again right away, it's illegal".
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Google is already using their own map data (at least for US). They dropped TeleAtlas recently and NAVTEQ a year ago. In any case, they are well positioned to be a strong competitors to traditional navigation companies as well as cellphone manufacturers (NOKIA).

          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by BrokenHalo (565198)
            Google is already using their own map data (at least for US).

            I don't know where Google Maps gets its data for Australia, but when I recently tried a GPS device "powered" by Whereis [whereis.com], I found the latter sadly inferior. All it was able to accomplish was a latitude/longitude reference in many locations where Google Maps offers a reasonably complete map. Fortunately the device was on loan, so it wasn't the result of an expensive mistake.
        • My guess would be that Google will, eventually, either put out their own local map offering at a price more or less dictated by what their data provider charges...

          I'm not sure what you mean by "data provider," but Google recently started gathering their own map data, so they can price that however they like.

          As for distribution of a local mapping service, I imagine they'd just put a paid app in the Android market.

        • For Gmail, I'm sure they would rather have you use the web app. But don't assume POP/IMAP access is a loser for them. They are still mining your data stream.

        • I'd be modestly surprised if they were to do it for free(whoever they buy the map data from would want money for an offline offering, and Google's ability to wring adsense out of offline users would be pretty limited); but I don't see any particular strategic or philosophical reason why google wouldn't, at some point, kick out an offline offering as a paid thing.

          I can think of a good reason to keep it free - the huge dataset you build from users. Think about it. Google gets

          Free testing and trouble reporting on the ap and data

          Usage data that can be packaged and sold - popular routes, searches for things along the route,etc.

          User familiarity with an ap that can also be packaged for commercial use and sale; especially since a phone allows two way data communication and messaging at a relatively low cost. They could also roll out notebook/netbook/tablet versions as w

      • by goaliemn (19761) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:54PM (#29899143) Homepage

        It will download the data along your route, so you're good if you loose connectivity while going to your destination.

        Its not the entire google database, but its a nice start.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          always up-to-date maps, sounds good for free product. If enough people are using it (it will), they could even "see" traffic congestion in streets (average speed) and influence route planning for other people in real time.
      • Mgmaps has supported locally stored google (and other vendors) maps for years. Works on (almost?) any phone that lets you install java applications. There are tools to automatically download selected areas at whatever zoom levels you want to.

        Last time I tried, Google didn't mind spidering the maps, but they'd ban you if you went for the satellite data. I believe the download programs have good proxy support to circumvent this, though.

      • I'm not trolling. If my opinion strikes you as outrageously wrong, please educate me instead of modding me.

        +1 Informative.

    • by six11 (579)

      Another nice thing about GPS (well, potentially big-brotherish) is that it might be able to learn patterns in where people go and factor that in to route-based search.

      I live in North Bergen county, across the Hudson from NYC. When I search for something near where I live, "local" search engines give me tons of hits in Manhattan (radius, as you say), which might be near as the crow flies, but the problem is that I'm not a crow. It would be better if it gave me results that are closer from a travel-time persp

  • by MarkWatson (189759) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:29PM (#29898791) Homepage

    Many years ago, I did to J2ME projects for customers. I have played with the iPhone dev tools, but don't really like the platform or the constraints of the AppStore.

    The Android plugins for Eclipse really make this a nice "coders platform." I expect to see more web portals to provide customized rich clients (perhaps for free) to make for easier mobile access. ANyway, getting more into the Android platform has been on my short list for a while.

    BTW, a little off topic, but the rumors are that Google is going to open an app store for Google Wave plugins. Nice addition to an app store for Android aps.

  • by Jedi74 (173908) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:36PM (#29898895) Homepage

    A game of hide-and-go-seek will never be the same =)

  • by SoupGuru (723634) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:39PM (#29898935)
    I can use my new-every-two starting tomorrow. I've been eying the Droid for a while now and I think I can wait another week to get it.

    It's looking like a mighty nice phone.

    This GPS stuff is really cool and I'm wondering how a $300 stand-alone GPS unit can compete with it.
    • by elcid73 (599126)

      Offline (no data) access is the only real motivator right now- plus bottlenecks, if not of hardware (running your music, GPS, phone, etc) then certainly of UI. Managing your music while using it's GPS might not be effecient, but certainly manageable. ...although I don't disagree with you, it's more compelling then a stand alone unit (have have both, and use my iphone more than my gps)

    • by LWATCDR (28044)

      If it requires a data network then that is how a stand-alone GPS unit beats it.
      Every cell phone has dead areas or areas where you will be on roaming or where you may not get data. When you do you don't get navigation anymore and that sucks.
      I love my cell phone navigation system but I keep a $99 Nuvi in the car as a backup.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Zerth (26112)

        You just need somebody to port GPSdrive or one of the other linux GPS programs and precache the maps along your route.

        I don't have a linux-based phone, but I've done that on my EEE for all the regions in nearby that have crappy signal.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by virtualXTC (609488)
          This has already been done in the AndNav1 project [andnav.org]. Unfortunately, due to licensing terms google forced them to stop development. Now they are useing open street map instead.
      • by LWATCDR (28044)

        I am hopping that Google will open up all there mapping data. They should have a large amount of data from their Street View project so let us hope they make available to everyone.
        I would love to see a good FOSS GPS nav program so I can build a good Linux Car Computer.

    • by Hadlock (143607)

      Once you've used google maps (not even the full Navigation app) on your cell phone, it's hard to justify $100+ for a stand alone unit. Google street view being integrated into google maps is invaluable in the urban core area of cities, where you're trying to find a tiny shop tucked away on a street. I think the standalone GPS market is about to implode as all this gets ported to cell phones which have roughly the same sized screens. You'd have to get a data plan for your GPS unit to compete with what you al

      • by elcid73 (599126) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @01:11PM (#29899373) Homepage

        Their only saving grace are those that try to precariously do 10 million things on their phone while driving- flipping back and forth from music player, to phone, to GPS to...heaven forbid, text messaging, all that requires UI navigation- then reseting back to GPS functions. I think stand alone makers are fighting a losing battle, but they can bank a little bit on the notion of dedicated functions in automobiles.... ie, driving/moving user interfaces are NOT the place to converge functionalities and abstract them with menus and navigation. Dedicated UIs have a reasonable place in autos.

        • by ajs (35943)

          Their only saving grace are those that try to precariously do 10 million things on their phone while driving- flipping back and forth from music player, to phone, to GPS to...heaven forbid, text messaging, all that requires UI navigation

          Well, Google Navigation is voice-controlled, and presumably Android already has a number of voice-controlled features (I notice that a key word "navigate" was used before each voice command in the demo video), so I expect you'll see a lot of drivers talking to thin air in their cars, even when not making a phone call.

          "Navigate to west coast office. Shuffle play playlist, Bach. Text Judy, I'm going to be late. Call Robert."

          All of that is fairly easy to build into a simple voice-recognition command structure

          • by elcid73 (599126)

            True, and I agree with you, but the devil's in the details- like when you're texting Judy that you're going to be late and you miss your offramp exit.

            But yes, voice, gesture, control etc are all very viable answers to my original concerns

            • by ajs (35943)

              True, and I agree with you, but the devil's in the details- like when you're texting Judy that you're going to be late and you miss your offramp exit.

              But yes, voice, gesture, control etc are all very viable answers to my original concerns

              Of course, there's always added risk when you introduce new distractions into a car, but I was responding to your original point, not a more general discussion of in-card distraction.

              • by elcid73 (599126)

                The original intention of my post *was* UI overhead in the context of in car distractions.

        • by metamatic (202216)

          I think stand alone makers are fighting a losing battle, but they can bank a little bit on the notion of dedicated functions in automobiles.

          There's also a niche for handheld GPS units. Mine is waterproof, will easily withstand being dropped onto rocks, and will run for several days on a set of AA cells. These are useful features if you're actually going out into the wilds of nature.

          Of course, that's a pretty small niche compared to the total set of people who might want some sort of GPS capability.

          • by Hadlock (143607)

            Absolutely. Garmin has the boating market locked down. It's a market with gold-plated margins, but it's a relatively small market.

        • by InakaBoyJoe (687694) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @04:26PM (#29902157)

          In Japan, phones have been capable of turn-by-turn navigation [navitime.co.jp] for a long time. When those apps first came out, there was a lot of speculation about whether mobile phone navi would kill the standalone / built-in navigation market. The car navi folks rushed to add mobile data connectivity, so they could download the latest maps and service info [g-book.com] to compete with the "live" services offered by the mobile phones. Accessories for mounting your phone in the car in a visible position also became available.

          In the end, both devices are co-existing in the market and very few people use the phone as the primary navigation device. Reasons are: (1) Inconvenience of having to launch the app, mount the phone in the car (or kill your phone's battery), and the fact that you can't use your phone. (2) Screen size. Unlike the tiny screens on North American GPS navi units, almost all units in Japan have a 5" or 7" screen. (3) The fact that most cars already have it built in anyway.

          So I predict that in North America, the GPS navi units will evolve to: (1) Larger screens, (2) Data connectivity for live updates, and (3) More specialized features and improved service quality. The competition will be good. But the standalone / built-in navi devices won't just disappear.

          • by elcid73 (599126)

            That's how I think it will play out as well. That's some good insight there Lou- consider that my +1 mod

          • by Rich0 (548339)

            I tend to agree with a lot of your points - a specialized device will generally give a better experience than a general-purpose device. However, a LOT of people will stop buying specialized devices when the general-purpose device is "good enough." I didn't replace my mp3 player the last time it broke because while android isn't nearly as capable as Rockbox, it is "good enough" and is one less thing to carry around.

            Another thing to consider is that Japan is not a typical market where GPS units are concerne

    • by alen (225700)

      the iphone GPS apps are 1.2GB of data that gets installed to your iphone. they install all the maps and other data in case you lose your signal while driving

  • Not releasing? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Aladrin (926209) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:48PM (#29899049)

    "This puts to bed concerns about Google not releasing the SDK" - There should be a warning on this link: Warning, text does not refer to linked information.

    Seriously. The 'concerns' were that Google hadn't released it -yet-, not that they weren't going to release it. There is only a month until some of the new devices come out with SDK 2.0 and devs were concerned they wouldn't have enough time to fix any bugs in their apps. Since other SDKs have come out -way- ahead of time, I'm sure Google was doing their best here and just had some issues.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by stoolpigeon (454276) *

      This line from the article, "There is some speculation that Google has made an Android 2.0 exclusivity agreement of some kind with Verizon." seemed to me to imply that the sdk was not coming out because Verizon would have exclusive rights to 2.0. This seems to be supported by the fact that they now note the release of the sdk immediately after that line in the article.

      I bumped across that article while reading comments yesterday in the Maemo vs. Android thread [slashdot.org].

      • by Aladrin (926209)

        For an OS that has been touted as 'Open Source', that's a ridiculous assumption. Both the assumption that created the speculation, and the assumption that it would mean the SDK wasn't going to be released.

        Programmers can't write apps for it if the SDK isn't released, and the OS would be crap if it didn't have the ability to add third-party apps to it.

  • by LWATCDR (28044) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:49PM (#29899063) Homepage Journal

    I wonder how well 2.0 will run on say a G1, HTC Hero, ,Moto Clik or the Samsung Moment.
    And will updates be made available?

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      The guys at XDA seem pretty convinced that 2.0 will run on these devices no sweat. I'm pretty confident that if no OTA update happens, XDA will have my back.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Rennt (582550)

      I wonder how well 2.0 will run on say a G1, HTC Hero, ,Moto Clik or the Samsung Moment.

      Me too, everything indicates better performance than 1.6, but we don't really know yet.

      And will updates be made available?

      The freaking SOURCE CODE is made available, you don't have to wait for updates from the networks. I had 1.5 and 1.6 on my G1 before any phones running them were released - I don't expect 2.0 will be different.

      Mad props go out to Cyanogen BTW - Android's first rockstar!

  • by sab39 (10510) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:50PM (#29899069) Homepage

    The feature I've always wanted from a GPS is the ability to go to google maps on my computer, come up with a route on there, and then send it to the device. This looks like it could easily offer that ability but curiously it's not mentioned in any of the blurbs that I've seen. Anyone know if it's supported?

    • by elcid73 (599126) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @12:52PM (#29899119) Homepage

      Seems mindnumbingly simple to implement using a google account. I always email the link to myself and then pull it up on my phone.

    • by Alascom (95042)

      Now you can just use google maps as your GPS device to plan your trip.
      Its awesome.

      • by elcid73 (599126)

        What about advance features in the desktop version? For example, dragging the route in google maps desktop to avoid a certain road....can you do that via the mobile version on Android (I can't on iPhone). I like that feature

    • by DavidD_CA (750156)

      It looks like they're headed that way. In the latest update to Google Mobile Maps, you can turn on "layers". If you provide GMM with your Google login, it can pull down any layers that you've created on your PC.

      A Layer is really just a collection of places that you've identified and saved on the map. You can give each place a description, URL, etc.

      But it probably won't be long until they expand that to routes, too.

    • by rwyoder (759998)

      The feature I've always wanted from a GPS is the ability to go to google maps on my computer, come up with a route on there, and then send it to the device. This looks like it could easily offer that ability but curiously it's not mentioned in any of the blurbs that I've seen. Anyone know if it's supported?

      I've been doing this for a long time.
      The "device" is my printer.
      But that probably wasn't the answer you wanted.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by virtualXTC (609488)
      This is available via AndNav [andnav.org] and OpenStreet Maps [openstreetmap.org] via Open Route Service [openrouteservice.org]. Sadly, development for USA navigation has been slow or non-existent despite my donation to the project.
    • by akadruid (606405)

      This already exists in Google Maps. Just plan your route, click the Send To button at the top left, and select GPS. There are half a dozen supported manufacturers.

  • I'd like to "try before I buy", but I can't find any links to just the emulator.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by BOFslime (178524)

      huh?... the emulator is included with the SDK, always has been.

      • I think he was looking for a download that had just the emulator without the SDK. I don't think anyone has the emulator for any android without the SDK. Luckily, the SDK (which comes with the emulator) is FREE and it's only about 150MB.
  • Google has also announced Google Maps Navigation, a GPS application for Android 2.0 that takes voice input and integrates with internet searches and Street View.

    Since the SDK is released I can see alot of custom apps that basically listen to everything you say in a conversation.
    Imagine the phone just sitting there listening to you and your buddy's converse
    Me: "Hey man, are you hungry?"
    Friend: "Yeah totally. Haven't eaten all day."
    Me: "In the mood for sushi?"
    Android: "I know a great Sushi restaurant 3km East of here"

    And whenever you say "I'm bored" it can point you in the direction of the red light district!

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yeah, hey, great. Just what we need.

      Me: "Did you see the new Action Man movie?"
      Android: "I have local listings for Action Man."
      Friend: "Shut up, Android. Yeah, but it wasn't as cool as Explodicon II."
      Android: "I have local listings for Explodicon II."
      Me: "Shut up, Android. True. I wish I had one of those Feranzi sports cars, though."
      Android: "Feranzi dealership: 7.5 kilometers."
      Both: "Shut up, Android."

      • by amliebsch (724858)

        Android: (exasperated) "Sometimes I just don't understand human behavior! After all, I'm only trying to do my job as best as - POWER OFF"

      • by mgblst (80109)

        Would you like some toast?

  • by Martin Soto (21440) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @01:16PM (#29899429)

    The good news are that they seem to finally have added the long-awaited support for multi-touch. As listed in their relese notes [android.com]:

    MotionEvent can now report simultaneous-touch information for devices that support it. Up to three pointers can be tracked simultaneously.

    The bad news are that, apart from some improvements to the on-screen keyboard, the GUI doesn't seem to be making use of it at all. So, those of us hoping to impress our acquaintances by zooming web pages in and out iPhone-style will probably have to wait until 2.1...

    • um.... I could careless about multi touch, I could see a few games using it, but zooming isn't a problem with the web browser. What I want is a maps type App that auto rotates based on the compass. Is that really that hard?
    • If you build it, they will come. The API comes first, then the implementation. You'll be sure to see more developers, including Google apps (i.e. Maps), taking advantage of this API now that it's here.

    • by pwfffff (1517213)

      "So, those of us hoping to impress our acquaintances by zooming web pages in and out iPhone-style will probably have to wait until 2.1..."

      Or you could find some custom firmware that doesn't suck :)

      Been pinch-zooming since like the month after I got my phone thanks to the JF images.

    • I imagine someone will add it into one of the third-party browser apps out there. I already have it on the browser app they supply on the HTC Hero - now that the multitouch support comes as standard (rather than a HTC extension), it'll probably appear in quite a lot of apps very quickly.

      However, although multitouch is nice 'n all, Android can run on phones with resistive screens so app writers shouldn't rely on it being there.

  • And was willing to pay the premium of what, $600 USD for it unlocked. But now with so much momentum behind Android I may be looking for an Android device. Only a few months ago there was a lonely little G1 in the corner going "Look at me!" Now Android seem to be exploding. Maemo is probably more flexible and powerful but Android is beginning to amass an iPhone like library of applications.
    • Maemo is probably more flexible and powerful but Android is beginning to amass an iPhone like library of applications.

      Different devices for different purposes. Android is a cellphone OS... Maemo is a tablet OS. Both are linux, but having used both... I would say that Maemo5/N900 are a killer combination and the entire presentation is so much more complete. Just my opinion of course. Enjoy our android phone.
  • There's a lot of speculation that T-Mobile G1 owners might not get the update [androidandme.com], which would suck.

  • by ICLKennyG (899257) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @01:25PM (#29899599)
    Tough day to be Garmin or TomTom, Wall Street is surely impressed with Droid's free GPS functionality. Garmin and TomTom are each down 15%+ today! http://www.engadget.com/2009/10/28/the-game-has-changed/ [engadget.com]
    • Problem with this solution is that you need a good mobile connection all the time while you are driving. This maybe works out for the SF Area and other rural areas where UMTS/CDMA coverage is pretty good but as soon as you hit the country side, you are in for an evil surprise.
      And in fact I need my current navigational system usually for two things, navigate around in cities I do not know to well, and go to the countryside in areas unknown to me (or other countries)
      For europe you just say hickup and you are

  • However, I suspect thats just the initial reaction to the press release by Google.

    While the navigation might be great, I do not think it will be able to compete at this point in time with stand alone devices. Google navigation will still require network connectivity, and while most places have it, some do not, also, google maps on my iphone and windows mobile phones was so slow (HTC Tytn II) sometimes it said to turn right after I passed the street (for that matter the TomTom software on the winmo phone di

  • http://www.google.com/finance?q=garmin [google.com]

    But good news for consumers.

  • iPhone (Score:5, Interesting)

    by scorp1us (235526) on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @01:45PM (#29899915) Journal

    So no google maps navigation for the iPhone?

    Pardon me, but part of the appeal of the iPhone is it was best-of-breed Apple and Google. With the recent split, and if this continues, I see my next phone will be an Android device, and on the superior Verizon network.

    I've been an iPhone fan boy for about 3 years, but I see a lot of delicious crow coming my way.

    • Apple rejected Google Voice because it would "duplicate features that come with the iPhone". Google Latitude was rejected "in order to avoid confusion with Maps on the iPhone".

      Don't you realize how dangerously confused iPhone users might become if they have access to this free navigation program?

      • by scorp1us (235526)

        Uh, I have latitude on my iPhone, part of the google apps bundle. What I can't do is run it in the background. *grumble*grumble*

        I think its safe to say that unless Apple changes its ways they'll see mass exodus when contracts run out. I knew t was going to happen, but not this quickly.

    • The iPhone may not have this Google maps feature (which does sound really nice) but they do have TomTom - the best thing about that, potentially, is the specific dock you plug into which offers better GPS reception than the device has. No mobile device is going to have as strong a GPS receiver as a fixed powered device, and the TomTom data is all offline that you can get even in the wilds. (Not sure when the dock is due to be released, but soon).

      One of the strengths of the iPhone platform is the hardware

      • by scorp1us (235526)

        Correct me if I am wrong, but this needs no hardware integration and I don't need to sped any money on an App. The decision by Apple to restrict real navigation to TomTom is laughable, and not one I appreciate. If they don't think about the consumer first, then they will find themselves falling behind.

        Bye bye Apple!

        • Correct me if I am wrong, but this needs no hardware integration

          TomTom "needs" no hardware integration either. It supports it as an option, for people who wan to use mobile devices with the same performance as dedicated devices. This is more important than you think if you've ever tried anything that offers real-time GPS tracking in cars on a mobile device.

          and I don't need to sped any money on an App.

          That is true, but you also lack offline map access, and you have only marginally greater abilities than ot

        • Looks like Google is working on a version [eweek.com] of that same app for the iPhone...

          The thing people forget is Google benefits from the iPhone as much as Android.

    • by Smurf (7981)

      So no google maps navigation for the iPhone?

      From this CNET article: [cnet.com]

      However, Google is working with Apple on bringing it to the iPhone, and it's not ruling out licensing the software to makers of portable navigation devices used in cars throughout the world, said Gundotra, vice president of engineering at Google for mobile and developers. The process involving Apple is slightly different from the usual App Store submission process, because Maps is a built-in iPhone application, he said.

      So yes, this will come out for the iPhone, but it's not ready yet

      • by scorp1us (235526)

        Great, but it sounds like it is more Apple's artificial barriers, not a technical one of porting code.

  • by Enderandrew (866215) <enderandrew@noSPam.gmail.com> on Wednesday October 28, 2009 @02:36PM (#29900695) Homepage Journal

    Google does not control Android. Google can't singularly hold back an Android release. Google can't sign an exclusive deal where only one carrier gets an Android release.

    Android is FOSS that is owned by the Open Handset Alliance.

    Google offers various versions of Android to carriers with differing levels of Google branding, but given that the entire trunk is open to developers, AT&T has the same capability of obtaining Android code as Verizon, or any theoretical carrier.

    • Google just controls some parts of the applications delivered with any android handset, like google mail or google maps.
      And I agree with another poster before, with the recent split between apple and google, those things will likely not appear that way on the iphone, and since android phones are cheaper I guess the iPhones hayday is over now.

  • Will it finally be able to send/receive files over Bluetooth?

    • I've read that Bluetooth file transfers and phone-to-phone connections are a part of Android 2.0. It's also going to be in an upcoming release of Cyanogen's Donut-based CyanogenMod ROM.
  • Lots of stuff to be pleased with in the new SDK, but lack of half-decent audio/midi APIs still makes me angry. There was a perfectly functional javax.sound implementation back in m5 builds circa version 0.9 but Google pulled them for no apparent reason. What the hell...
  • But it makes a huge hype, anyway!

Put no trust in cryptic comments.

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