Updates on Android - end 2010

Quite a few people I know are looking to buy the latest android phones or tablets. Question is, what  to pick up? For me, the dilemma is that both Android enabled hardware and software are still in flux, and in the process of getting upgraded. I would advise anyone who wants to spend big bucks (Rs. 25000 or more) to wait a bit, if they can.

It appears from this PC World article that Android 3.0 (codenamed Gingerbread) will be a fantastic update. It will be faster, offer better integration with Google, feature an improved user interface and utilise more powerful hardware. It appears to make little sense then to invest in devices like Sony Xperia and Dell Streak which are still running only Android 1.6. Take a look at the chart below from the androphones site, which demonstrates that not only is 70% of the market on the latest two versions of Android, but a huge chunk are already on 2.2 (Froyo) which is the latest stable update.

And what is in store on the hardware front? This post on Smartphonebenchmarks site talks about the new Adreno 205 GPU which will power new HTC phones including the Desire HD (soon to be launched in India). Testing shows the new GPU to offer faster speeds than the earlier Adreno 200, which was used in phones like HTC Evo, Droid Incredible and Nexus One. If that's not enough for you, it is likely that HTC will debut a few phones with Qualcomm Dual Core Mobile chipsets in 2010 or early 2001l. And Motorola's new T2 will feature NVidia Tegra 2 dual core chipset as well.

So basically this means that we should wait for more phones with the new processors! Unless you opt for Samsung Wave or Samsung Galaxy S - Samsung's own Hummingbird processor running on both phones is still faster than anything else on the mobile planet - though the Touch Wiz interface of Samsung does not do full justice to the speeds.

So right now the killer Android phone is still a thing of the future. Sometimes writing this blog can be both funny and frustrating. What I raved about just a few months ago, is already obsolete, and what I  recommend, is not yet in the market. I'm so tempted to just crawl back to my Symbian S60 powered Nokia handset and wait for the dust and heat of the OS wars to settle down.

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