Weekly News Round-Up: What You May Have Missed in the World of Android

A big week in the race for President of the United States. The first Presidential Debates happened in Denver. There will be three more, including one between Vice President Joe Biden, and Paul Ryan. You can read this post for some ways to watch or listen on your Android device. In other news:

  • Google settled a lengthy court battle with publishers over its book-scanning project. Hopefully, this will open doors to more e-books and fully-digitized electronic works. I can only believe that the battle closed because of my well-reasoned, and well-argued post on electronic books.
  • Google Motorola Mobility purchased facial recognition software maker, Viewdle, which hopefully will lead to multi-user accounts on Android devices. Although both Android 4.0 and Android 4.1 have facial unlock software, neither is that good, at least good enough to trust for security. Maybe the Viewdle acquisition will spice that up.
  • If you’re really looking to supercharge your Android device, you might want to look no further than the recently released Pimp My ROM, ROM. I’m not exactly sure what ROM does, or doesn’t do, but from the looks of it, there’s a lot to do with your Android device. Note though, experimenting with ROMs can lead to big trouble with your device.
  • Futurelawyer highlighted this post, which discusses some of the ways that Apple’s fight with Google hurts consumers. The post is interesting in the fact that it present an enlightening view: Apple hates Google so much it’s willing to ruin users’ experiences to spite Google.
  • Samsung may have an opportunity to overturn, or at least mitigate, the verdict against it. This week, Samsung filed what looks like (I haven’t checked PACER) a  JNOV or motion for a new trial, which cites juror misconduct and bias for an improper verdict. Apparently, jury foreman Velvin Hogan didn’t disclose he’d been sued by Seagate, a former employer for defaulting on a company loan. Interesting, but I doubt it’s enough to get the verdict tossed.
  • Here’s a good how-to on upgrading your Galaxy Nexus to Android 4.1. I love Jelly Bean, ever since my Asus Transformer Infinity tablet got the upgrade this week. Again, for newbies, this might be out of your league, so get your grandkid to perform the upgrade. Yup, I just referred to you as old. P.S., doing this can also toast your phone, so be careful.
  • Speaking of Jelly Bean hacks, if you’re brave enough and you own a Samsung Galaxy S III, you might try installing the Android 4.1 leak. I wouldn’t, at least not quite yet, but you can. Otherwise, you can wait for the official update, which all carriers confirm is “coming soon.” Me, I’m waiting to upgrade Mrs. The Droid Lawyer’; at least for now. I might get itchy to have her try some of the luxurious Jelly Bean features.
  • If you’re debating between waiting for the iPad Mini, or an Android tablet, why don’t you check out these tablets that are available now? I’m confident you’ll love at least one of them, and you’ll find you can do everything with an Android device that you can with the iPad. I’m particularly fond of the Nexus 7.
  • The good news for Android users everywhere is that over 25% of you are now on Android 4.0 or greater. The bad news for the other 75% is that you haven’t experienced the awesome power of Ice Cream Sandwich or Jelly Bean. Considering the sheer number of total Android devices, 25% isn’t bad at all. However, I think it’s time for everyone to tell themselves or their significant other that you need a new Android 4.x+ phone or tablet. Tell them The Droid Lawyer said you deserve an upgrade.
  • And finally, Apple users, don’t kid yourself about the total fiasco that is Apple Maps. Even Apple CEO Tim Cook apologized for the mishap with the Maps app. I had a colleague try to tell me that “Maps is perfectly okay.” Then he admitted he uses Google Maps (google.com/maps) to get the location. Here’s a video to prove how spotty the Maps Padawan is compared to its Google Jedi Master.

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Jeff Taylor

I’m just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I’m also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.