Oct 12 AT 1:14 PM Taylor Wimberly 52 Comments

Android rumor report: Eclair, 4G, INQ, and more

Last week we attended CTIA and the MotoDev Summit where we had the chance to speak with tons of industry insiders. I tried my hardest to dig up some new Android info and was able to uncover a few interesting tidbits. Read along for the latest Android rumors.

Sprint 4G handsets

I was speaking with a Sprint developer and I asked him how committed was Sprint to Android. He casually said “Our first 4G phone will be Android.” I didn’t specifically ask him about 4G handsets, so I thought it was odd that he offered up this information.

Samsung has been rumored to be working on a 4G device for Sprint, so maybe that will end up coming true. Sprint just lit up a dozen new 4G markets last week (including my hometown Corpus Christi) and they are expected to have a 4G handset sometime in 2010.

Eclair (Android 2.0)

We had widely expected that Android 2.0 would ship this year on Motorola’s secret phone headed to Verizon. Motorola did not announce the device last week, which made me wonder about the status of Android 2.0.

I spoke with a high level executive from Samsung who was extremely knowledgeable about Android development. When I mentioned Android 2.0 shipping this year, he looked at me kind of weird and snickered. He told me not to expect Android 2.0 until Q2 2010.

We did see some Android devices running Eclair, but they appeared far from finished. No one else was talking about Android 2.0 so I’m starting to doubt a 2009 release. (I will explore the Moto/Eclair issues further in a post later today)

INQ Mobile

We have known for awhile now that INQ Mobile would be producing an Android smartphone in 2010. I bumped into an INQ head employee and quizzed him on the new handset. He provided no specific details on the hardware, but did mention some other interesting info.

The INQ smartphone should appear on a major United States carrier in 2010. INQ will provide a highly customized UI for Android. I believe his exact words were, “We are going to pimp out Android!” Expect the device to be heavily integrated with social networks Spotify, Facebook, and Skype.

LG Android

LG recently announced their first Android phone (GW-620), but don’t expect it to show up in the United States. Instead we should see a new Android device from LG that is targeted for a major US carrier. I was told it could be awhile before LG makes the announcement. Look for more information at the next CTIA show in March, 2010.

TomTom Android

We have previously reported that TomTom might be working on an Android app, but it could be awhile before it sees the light of day. A TomTom employee said they had received many requests for their product on different smartphone platforms, but iPhone is the focus right now. From what I could gather nothing is in the works at the moment and TomTom will continue to gauge the community interest.

Google Maps 4.0

I asked every maps and GPS company I came across about the possibility of Google releasing their own navigation software. Most people had no idea what I was talking about so maybe it is time to lay this rumor to bed.

I still believe it is a natural evolution for Google Maps on mobile to provide spoken turn-by-turn directions, but it would certainly turn the GPS industry upside down. Google services are already integrated into many GPS products, so I guess Google is not ready to upset those companies by releasing their own navigation service.

Have a juicy Android rumor to report? Tip us on news.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • http://danglinginvective.blogspot.com Mark

    We will not see spoken turn-by-turn directions on google maps because it violates the terms of service that big G has with the map providers. I assume it’s because the map publishers have business relationships with the GPS manufacturers.

  • lila

    Aww i was hoping the google maps 4.0 rumor was true..

  • hr

    What is supposed to be added to 2.0?

    Is it that big of a rehaul that it takes 6 months?

  • http://codeshogun.com lordhong

    so the VZW ceo holding a Sholes (w/ Schimdt holding HTC Desire) but it’s not running Eclair?

  • Izzyd

    The Andriod 2.0 info posted above is completely wrong. The contact at Samsung does not have or get access to it at this time. There are 2 stages of development and 2.0 is currently in private with the teamed partner Google has working on it which is currently Moto/VZW. The public release of 2.0 will not be until in 2010 that i will agree with tho

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      That would make sense. I have heard Moto has an exclusive on 2.0 so they could still release it this year before any other handset maker. I’m starting to have my doubts though.

      • Izzyd

        I wouldn’t doubt it to much. I’ve seen it already. So unless something goes crazy at the last min as they are still fixing things it will be out sooner then you think on 1 device at least.

      • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

        I’d say it would be pretty messed up if Motorola has an “exclusive” on the next version of Android.

        • Izzyd

          I totally disagree with that idea. It is a win for Moto to get the ball moving forward again finally. It is a win for VZW to get into the Andriod game with newest latest and great version of Andriod. And it works perfectly for Google to get in with VZW seeing as they are the biggest carrier in the US.

          • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

            It’s a loss for the rest of the Android community.

          • Pieter

            it’s not necessarily a loss for the android community. by drawing in vzw with this exclusive eclair, google creates a HUGE developer community for android. thats why it didnt bother me when the mytouch was released so shortly after the g1 (it seemed to upset a lot of shallow minded people). more/better phones = more/better developers. EVERYBODY WINS.

  • Donovan

    AndroidandMe you guys are way too gullible.. what in the world would make you think samsung knows a damn thing about what motorola is working on with such a secretive phone?

    Dont let this post scare you folks, the phone is comming with 2.0. Period.

    Izzy confirmed it as well as several other dev. at HoFo..

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      I know more than I can report without getting someone in trouble.

    • Silentnoiz

      He merely reported on what a Samsung rep said. What in the world would make u think that equates to being gullible? :D

      • Donovan

        this little part “so I’m starting to doubt a 2009 release” which makes others doubt, which in fact they shouldnt because it will have 2.0 get it? lol

    • Daniel

      I find it intriguing how you call them gullible and counter their claims with another seemingly unverifiable rumor.

      • Donovan

        hey im just calling it how it is, you want to call my info a rumor go for it, but it is what it is and this phone will have 2.0 and will be out by Oct 30th.. wait and see mofo

        • Daniel

          “you want to call my info a rumor go for it, but it is what it is”

          Without proof… yes, it is a rumor, like it or not. Rumors are not necessarily lies, but if you can’t prove it is true, you shouldn’t expect people to blindly believe anonymous commenters.

  • Donovan

    From HoFo, this expains it pretty good.

    Originally Posted by RonDutt
    There are different development groups and branches of the 2.0 Android tree. The main one is the Google branch, which is (I believe) what Moto/Verizon are working on. This can be released today if needed…it’s a fully working product (its essentially 1.5 with CDMA and other features from 1.6 and 2.0). This is the private 2.0 tree–only available to Google and it’s partners.

    The public 2.0 tree is what most other companies use (like iNQ mobile)…this won’t be available to the public until it’s 100% finished and finalized. 1.6 is already shipping on devices or have already shipped, but the 1.6 code for development is just now being available for others to work with and develop from. You have understand that with something like Android, there is a public and a private sector. Google makes available the private/early code to all of its close partners to develop with so theres an exclusivity with new devices. After X days/weeks/months, the private code is pushed into the public repositories for all to develop with.

    • Sohip

      Isn’t samsung considered from the private sector too? since they are one of Google partners since the beginning.

      • Izzyd

        depends on the project, and this one they were not part of needless to say.

  • matty

    is any news coming for std? my contract is up now… and i’m pulling the trigger in the next two weeks before our wedding… im getting tired of waiting… first android phone on verizon wins at this point for me… this is getting re-god-damn-diculus

    • Izzyd

      not yet but it is coming very very soon.

      However 2 wks will not be enough time to get an Andriod device for VZW tho, that I will tell ya, and about all I can say without causing issues.

      • digitalbusker

        How about 3? :)

        • Izzyd

          As I said I can’t say without causing issues, but 2wks is not enough time. So all I can say is take that for what it is worth.

          • matty

            great… sadly we are getting new phones… i really want to stick with verizon for the great coverage… but the soon-to-be wife wants new phones… and she loves the iphone… i convinced her to wait (expecting an announcement last week) for android… iphone here i come :td: boo… i guess its time to start reading up on jail breaking…

          • Donovan

            lol it’ll be out Oct 30th, ill say it for him..

  • Izzyd

    @Matty you just need to convince her to relax a tad bit longer. Makes no sense IMO to go to a network you don’t want to be on just because of a phone they sell. And even at that what is a few wks longer anyways it is not like we are talking months or anything. IMO forget the iPhone this thing will be a beast hardware wise compared to the iPhone anyways. Plus you’ll have many more options and not be restricted to AT&T’s garbage network, let alone having Apple over your shoulder. And god forbid when you need a replacement battery you’ll have no phone. But that is Apple for ya.

  • matty

    yeah… i guess your right… but its not up to me sadly… she pays for the cell phones… ill try and convince her to hold put… our phones are super old… and she sees all our friends with their flashy blackberries and iphones and is jealous

    • Donovan

      tell her if she wants to be the one making them jealous she will wait til the 30th of this month.. lol

  • Pieter

    @matt
    do yourself a favor and install itunes, quicktime, and safari on your and your fiances computer. now, for the next week you are ONLY allowed to use this software. if your fiance is not convinced that apple is the anti-Christ after this week of torture, then you could go ahead and buy the iphones.

    • Pieter

      i guess if you have time you could always go for week 2 and install foobar2000 (with the ipod plugin…since i know you have an ipod), vlc (or GOM player), and chrome (or opera, or firefox). there would be no argument…

  • matty

    hahaha i guess im just a little ticked off that we know so much about the std and they are still keeping mum on it… i just want a date… i mean why not… im beginning to think there might be problems with components or something…

    • Donovan

      no sir, its part of a big plan.. just wait it out or you and your wife will be the sorry ones..

      • matty

        … and you know this because??? i mean this has been sitting on the horizon for quite some time… what other reason could there be other then a problem? and i dont think im alone here… last week was full of disappointment with the lack of announcements…

        • Donovan

          I knew before last week that they werent going to say anything about it, its rumored to be this week for some kind of announcement but well see. The phone has 2.0 and will be available on Oct 30th, i know this because of insiders. If you want to doubt me go ahead but im just telling you what will happen.

          • Pieter

            nah donovan, i think you are wrong. and if you are right, the std is going to have an upsetting lack of sales. this world we live in is all about marketing, and there hasn’t been said a word about the std.

            the insiders could very well just be impostors. i did it once, as did many other people: “cupcake is starting to roll out the end of this week, starting in southern california and working it’s way up to maine.” caught them hook, line, and sinker, two months before cupcake rolled out.

            BUT, matt, i would recommend you keep stalling for as long as possible. you know the wonders of android. an official announcement is due soon.

          • Blindmind3

            donovan is correct. I also know insiders and I handled the phone. It will have Eclair. I know there is no reason to believe Donovan and I, but you shall see soon enough.

  • http://www.consumergrantreport.com/ Daniel

    I find it intriguing how you call them gullible and counter their claims with another seemingly unverifiable rumor.
    BTW I love your blog!

  • Donovan

    @Pieter

    i understand what your saying and how you feel, except i know one of them in person that agrees with the developer that said this initially. Its ok, when this phone pops up on Oct 30th with 2.0 you can email me a cookie.. lol

    • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

      If what you are saying is true… This phone on 2.0 is going to be really awesome when half of the applications don’t work and none use any of the features added in 2.0 because developers have no access to any information whatsoever about it.

      • Donovan

        yes because google and verizon would of never thought about that.. lol

        some may not work at first.. but thats fixable, and the 2.0 code will be released the same day as the phone is released, that was confirmed this morning at http://mobilebytes.wordpress.com/2009/10/13/eclair-code-drops/

        im not too worried, by the time i get used to this phone im sure there will be an OTA update or 2..

        • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

          If Google keeps giving developers no time to get things working for new versions of the OS, I think there are going to be a lot of developers who simply drop Android development altogether. And I would hardly call a three sentence post on a blog to be “confirmation” haha. Will wait and see but I won’t hold my breath.

  • matty

    alright… well im getting married on the 31st… and new phones were going to be a present to each other… so we will be waiting till the 30th to see what comes down the pike… i hope your right and they are just botching the marketing on this seemingly amazing phone… if your right ill send you that cookie :D

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