Saturday, March 6, 2010

Android This Week: Apple vs. HTC and Gesture Search

Android (s goog) news this week was dominated by Apple — in the form of a lawsuit Cupertino (s aapl) filed against Android phone maker HTC alleging that it infringes on 20 patents that Apple holds “related to the iPhone’s user interface, underlying architecture and hardware.” The move is clearly a shot at Google as Android is at the heart of all of the HTC phones named in the suit. I believe Apple is also running scared ahead of the Chrome OS release due out later this year.

In the meantime, I had a chance to do a full review of Motorola’s (s mot) latest Android phone, the Devour. The Devour is one of the heaviest smartphones I’ve tried, with a sleek industrial design that’s pleasing to the eye. It runs Android 1.6, not the latest and greatest version of the OS, but it handles it without any laggy performance. And of course, it comes  with the social networking aggregating MotoBlur technology.

And it is now possible to search for information stored on Android phones by writing on the screen using just a fingertip, with Gesture Search. A Gesture Search icon sits at the bottom of the Android screen; once tapped, the user simply starts spelling the desired search term on the screen, one letter at a time. Gesture Search will search all information on the phone, including music and contacts. It learns as it is used so frequently accessed information on the phone will appear at the top of results for searches.


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