Sunday, October 21, 2012

Details emerge about Google's Oct. 29 Android event

On Thursday, Google announced an Oct. 29 Android event, and on Sunday, details of the event had already leaked.

Of course, nothing is certain until the event, but the source seemed assured in his details. In fact, the event seems one that - as opposed to Apple's iPad mini event which is coming on Oct. 23 - is not keenly targeted, but will have a number of announcements combined.

First, as expected, Google will launch the LG Nexus 4, its latest Nexus device. The smartphone will feature a quad-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm APQ8064 Snapdragon processor, 4.7-inch 1,280 x 768 display, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera (and 1.3-megapixel front-facing snapper) and a 2100mAh battery.

TNW's specs for the Nexus 4 differ somewhat from earlier reports, which said the device would only come with 8GB of storage. The LG Nexus 4 will also be powered by Google’s new Android 4.2 software, which has been previously referred to as "Key Lime Pie," but which TNW's sources say will retain Jelly Bean branding.

[Note: this would be a first, where an upgraded Android version has not seen its own dessert name, so we're not so keen on this part of the report.]

Next, Google will announce some changes to the Nexus 7 line-up, but ones that had already been expected. Not only will a new 32GB variant of the hot-selling Android tablet be released, but Google will also unveil a second 32GB Nexus 7, one that includes HSPA+ (faux 4G) connectivity as well as the wi-fi already available on current Nexus 7 devices.

In addition, Google will expand the Nexus tablet line, to include a 10-inch version which may - or may not - be called the Nexus 10 tablet. The tablet is codenamed internally as "Manta," and will also run Google's new Android 4.2 operating system,

The tablet will venture into Retina territory, with a offer a 2,560 x 1,600-pixel (16:10) resolution, offering 300 pixels-per-inch (PPI), which is greater than the new iPad’s 264 PPI.

Android 4.2 will feature some changes, including something called "Content in the center." This new feature will allow end users to access Play Store content from a widget.

It hardly sounds earth-shattering, nor does the update to the panoramic camera settings to support both horizontal and vertical movement by default, similar to iOS 6. Consider it a feature-matching change, rather than something revolutionary.

On the other hand, the "Tablet Sharing" feature is a definite move in the right direction. Tablet Sharing allows users to switch between user accounts on a tablet, each with their own email and apps (and we assume document storage). Indeed, it provides the same sort of user-switching functionality that consumers and enterprise users are used to seeing on desktop platforms.

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