HTC Hero Euro-spec and Android 2.1 (Eclair) get some video action.

Android 2.1 is one of the most anticipated Android updates yet. For HTC Hero users even more so as they’re currently stuck at the now old as dirt 1.5/Cupcake edition making 2.1 all the more sweeter. The video above shows an HTC Hero Euro-model packing Android 2.1 w/ Sense UI. It looks hot and performs well. There’s only a few areas where some lag is noticeable. Though at this point in the game, lag shouldn’t be non-existent. But I’ll take what I can get for now. Watch the vid and leave your thoughts in the box inside. Just in case: There’s a heavy amount of techno music. I don’t mind it and actually find it catchy. Others will find it causes them to vomit organs. To each his own…

Android Forums

Android 2.1 Hero ROM w/ HTC Sense UI leaked.

android-21

So you’ve been lusting over Sense UI playing nice with the upcoming Android 2.1 update these last couple of days. Pictures are indeed worth a thousand words yet somehow, we are left wanting more. Understandable. And so you shall receive. HTC Hero owners who are starting to twitch due to the now ancient Android 1.5 build they’re currently running can — if they have the hacking chops — download a freshly leaked Android 2.1 ROM, complete with Sense UI wrapped all around. I could go on but you just want your hands on that ROM…and now! Am I right? Go ahead:

Engadget > XDA Forums

{Image Source

Maimed soldier regains speech ability thanks to technology/gadget

Being so focused and self indulged on gadgets can lead us at times become so focused on cool yet insignificant things when the bigger picture of life is concerned. Like many other nerds, I live for each and every gadget release whether it be a new laptop, phone, media player etc. But technology can be used not just to entertain but to help live as well. In those circumstances, some of the greatest examples of forward thinking in technology can be seen.

Ben Parkinson, 25, was seriously injured while on duty in Iraq. His injuries aren’t a simple scrape, cut, and bruse. Poor Ben racked up enough injuries for many people. Over all, he’s lost both his legs, paralyzed his left arm and suffered 37 other injuries in mine blast in Afghanistan. A true hero. One of the side effects of so much trauma is brain damage. That of which claimed Ben’s ability to speak. It seemed as if Ben would continue on through life without ever murmuring another sound. But thanks to Toby Churchhill’s Lightwriter SL40, Ben can again share his thoughts and ideas with those around him.

Ben had used previous versions of the Lightwriter though this new version will allow much more efficient communication. It’s interesting to see technology employed so that it actually enriches the lives of humans in ways that are different from the normal “lust” based uses. Know what I mean? The full story is truly worth reading and goes to show that gadgets aren’t just “toys”.

Gizmo Watch > Daily Mail

OTA Android updates MIA on Sprint.

sprint-logo

One of the greatest things about modern, mobile operating systems is the ability to download updates OTA (Over the air). While the iPhone requires you to tether up (hey, 200+ meg downloads on a mobile device via cellular network is gag inducing) and RIM + carriers haven’t really taken advantage of said feature in their current crop of Berries, that leaves WebOS and Android as the lone OTA updaters. Alas, it appears those rockin’ the open dev OS on Sprint will have to tether up a bit longer as commentary between Android and Me and Sprint’s David Owen. David goes on to say:

Likely to be a wired update (due to size) but you will be able to do online at sprint.com.

This statement was in regards to any Android 1.6 or 2.0 updates coming to the Sprint Hero. Sadly, his statement alone doesn’t give us any real sure footing as to a 1.6 or 2.0 update for Sprint. Though we can all assume that it will happen at some point or another. They can’t stay at 1.5 and expect people to be kosher with that. But we’ve seen stranger things…

Let’s get with the times guys and finally embrace this whole wireless update thing ok?

Androinica

HTC Magic ROM upgrade brings Sense UI onboard.

HTC Magic owners lusting after the eye candy and graphical supremacy that is the Sense UI can now make use of an updated Magic ROM via HTC’s support site. Besides including the Sense UI, this updated ROM, version ” 3.03.715.4″, comes complete with Android 1.5 Cupcake. Not quite as exciting as 1.6 (Donut), though better than nothing at least.

Talk of HTC Magic’s getting the Sense UI have been discussed before as has the lack of T-Mobile/Google branded MyTouch 3G’s from receiving this same update due to licensing issues. Anyone care to risk their unit to see if they can manage to squeeze it in?

  • Upgrade instructions here **You will need to have valid serial numbers in order to download the update from the support site. Maybe that’s how they’ll lock out MyTouch 3G/Google branded device users…

Slashphone > mobile01

HTC Hero teams up with Spotify.

UK music lovers and Android hopefuls have quite the treat coming to them by way of Three, HTC, and Spotify. While here in the states, we have yet to be able to partake of this wonderful streaming service, Spotify, European users are diving in like none other.

**A quick refresher in case you don’t know the awesomeness that is Spotify — Spofitfy allows users to stream practically any song over WiFi/3G as well as cache playlists on the device for times when you don’t have data coverage.

Now, getting back on topic, Spotify has signed a new deal with UK cell provider “Three”. The new deal is simply awesome. You take Spotify, an awesome music streaming and offline music service and tie it into a contract with Three all ported through an HTC Hero, the the best second best (the Moto Sholes is now numero uno) Android device available, giving you a match made in digital heaven. The contract as I’m sure you’d all love to know includes the following pricing scheme:

  • £99 up front
  • £35 a monthly subscription
  • 750 minutes of cross network minutes
  • Unlimited texts, data and free Three to Three calls
  • (2) FULL years of Spotify Premium access via your phone, PC, or Mac

All I can see from the information above is a deal. Don’t you? Psh, looking at what I get for just a washington short of $100/month on AT&T for a single line with 450 minutes, unlimited text, and unlimited data makes me want to cry. Looking past the higher initial cost of hardware in European markets, their plans can be quite amazing as you can see. It’s times like these that make me yearn for a relocation to lands across the sea. Am I alone?

Three hasn’t announced the HTC Hero bundle w/ Spotify features yet. But it is coming so don’t fret. In the meantime, you can sign up right here when the bundle does become available. Waiting games are such a bittersweet affair are they not?

If the HTC Hero isn’t quite your thing, Spotify has also announced that other ways of connecting with their Premium service via many more devices is coming soon. Stay tuned!

Electric Pig
Spotify

Sprint HTC Hero “Google Experience” models support EV-DO Rev A. Non-Google units stuck at Rev 0? [Update]

**Update: All is well in the world again. According to HTC, the problem is actually a rouge text display problem “claiming” to be merely Rev 0 when in fact the phone can actually be in Rev A mode. Whew, crisis adverted. Happy surfing.

Well this would certainly be scandalous. It appears that a bit of strangeness is running around the Android world as of the last couple of days with Sprint’s HTC Hero officially being released. The problem appears to be centered around said devices manufacture date and support for either EV-DO Rev-0 or A. The word around various Android forums is if your Sprint Hero DOES NOT have the “Google Experience” plastered across it’s backside, your phone is stuck at Rev 0 while the *theoretically* newer Hero’s WITH “Google Experience” wordage have EV-DO Rev A support instead of the slower 0. Now, the differences between Rev 0 and A when download speeds are concerned aren’t anything to get worked up about. However, when upload speeds are concerned, well, that is something to get hot and bothered over as being limited to Rev 0 can certainly be seen as a “bad deal”.

To get to the bottom of the mystery, finding out the required information is rather simple. First, flip your phone over. Do you or don’t you see “Google Experience” on the back of your Sprint Hero? Next, do the following:

  • To check your units manufactured date:

    1. Open Dialer
    2. enter: ##786#
    3. Scroll down to “Manufacturer’s Date”
  • To Check which whether you have EV-DO Rev 0 or A:
    1. Navigate to: Settings > About Phone > Status > Mobile Network Type

For those who are curious or needing a baseline to compare to, Android Central’s in-house Sprint Hero has the following info:

Born on: 4/9/2009 (Sept. 4, 2009) — EV-DO Rev. 0.

Many will note that the HTC customized devices such as those running the Sense UI wouldn’t have Google branding because of various red tape and licensing issues. Units popping up with Google branding are strange to say the least as no comment or announcement has been made thus far as to why newly manufactured Hero’s are coming with said branding. Even more strange and potentially angering are reports that users owning Google branded Hero’s are seeing EV-DO Rev A support on their phones. Obvoius early adopters or those unlucky enough to get an un-Googled phone complete with yesterday’s EV-DO Rev 0 are going to be a bit peeved ultimately creating a slew of consumer returns to claim the coveted Google branded phones with their faster Rev A support.

Let’s hear it. Did you get a Sprint HTC Hero? Did it come with/without Google branding. And finally, after are you rockin’ EV-DO Rev 0 or A? Leave a word in the comments…

Android Central

Another reason to never venture into a Sprint store: Best Buy Mobile giving you HTC Hero for $180 flat

If you’re even remotely interested in Android, chances are the HTC Hero coming to Sprint has you all in a dizzy. Hardware that received a gorgeous face lift for Sprint, an already awesome mobile OS that is only going to get better and internals that are up to the job, the HTC Hero is the hottest Android device that isn’t too far from release. While going through a pesky $100 MIR will get you down to that nice attractive $180 price point, going to any Sprint store will require you to lay down a tick under $300 for the privilege. However, the boys in blue over at Best Buy Mobile will do the dirty work for you enabling you to walk out the door $100 richer and carrying an HTC Hero without armed security chasing after you! See, not much reason to go to Sprint. But hey, if you have some sort of nostalgia or weird fixation with Sprint stores, by all means…

Mobile Crunch

HTC and Sprint come together to announce their Android based baby swaddled in plastic.

Android junkies have no doubt been following the HTC Hero — one of the most anticipated Android devices of 2009. While we, the electronically informed knew of it’s coming long ago, HTC and Sprint have officially come forward to give us all some set in stone confirmation. Starting October 11th for a rather affordable $179.99 after your typical hodge podge of various discounts, the HTC can be your one true love. As you can see from the image to the left, the Sprint version of the Hero got a rather substantial face lift which rounded and reduced the boxy chin of the original. I like it. I like it a lot. It’s very Magic-esque which by the way isn’t a bad looking phone either. The new silverish hue is also an eye please.

Now all you up and coming Sprint Hero owners need to do is pick up that leaked ROM that was floating around that dramatically improved the Sense UI’s performance. Of course, Sprint could have already gone ahead and done the dirty work for us. Anyone care to enlighten us? You know, while I haven’t really ever been a fan of Sprint, their lineup is starting to pick up. First the Pre (come on…it’s not that bad…and actually pretty cool) and now the HTC Hero seems to signal an up tick in Sprints future no?

Source: Engadget

Sense UI coming to all (Except those experiencing Google)

While eye candy and one’s gravitation towards a particular UI is completely subjective, I myself find Android to be rather attractive and hip if not a tad “kiddish” in style. Again, some will disagree with me, labeling Android in its stock form too cartoonish for their tastest. Part of Android’s open nature means vendors a free to skin the operating system until their hearts content in order to make it their own. HTC has done just that. Following their design saviness that somehow managed to make WindowsMobile barable to look at, HTC has gone ahead and given Android a newer, more sophisticated face. That much we already know. But the best part is that the HTC Hero isn’t going to be the sole body rockin’ the Sense UI much longer as plans to bring the updated UI to the masses is on track to happen this October.

There’s a couple of catches however. First, users of “Google Experience” phones (ie: T-Mobile) are out of luck as a restriction in licensing agreements limits GE users from adopting the Sense UI update. Stupid? Yes. Able to get around it? You bet! If you’re stuck with the stock look in a Google Experienced world and are ready to experience a fresh face, the xda-developers forums would be a good place to start hanging around.

Second, the free October update will only be initially available in Taiwan with no formal announcements so far on a wider, more global release. Still, xda-dveloper forums seems a likely hang out spot for those of you looking to find some Sense!

Source: BGR, Gizmodo, eprice, Engadget

HTC Hero finally faced


The HTC Hero is one of those handsets that at least in the true gadget nerds life has been talked about quite often in the last several weeks. The excitement doesn’t come from the fact that it’s an HTC phone. Nor does the Android OS bring much new to the table. The real talk of the town was/is the new UI (previously called “Rosie”…now called “sense”) that HTC has polished up and slapped on giving it a more “unique” feel. From the pictures above, they’ve managed to alter the already good looking Android into a much sleeker interface that begs you to poke and prod it with your greasy fingers. In case you forgot, the Hero features a Qualcomm MSM7200A 528 MHz processor, 512/288MB ROM/RAM, 3.2″ 320×480 HVGA TFT-LCD touch-sensitive screen, quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, dual-band HSPA/WCDMA, 5 megapixel camera, GPS/Bluetooth 2.0/WiFi b/g, and 3.5mm audio jack just to name a few. So how is this phone starting to shape up? I am mighty intrigued by this here unit and would actually consider picking one up. However, the lack of 850MHz, U.S. friendly 3G means I’ll be waiting until they hopefully *fingers crossed* bring a more patriot friendly version to our neck of the woods. Happy Drooling!

[Product Page]

Source: Engadget

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