updated 02:35 pm EDT, Mon July 27, 2009
Google outs Donut update
Google has recently released the code for its Donut update for its Android operating system to software developers. Much like the earlier Cupcake, Donut will be part of the next-generation Android operating system rather than the whole system itself. Notably, the new release not only adds support for CDMA phone networks but also brings multi-touch support, a universal search function, text-to-speech, automated back-ups and a redesign for the camera application, among other changes, to the existing T-Mobile G1 and HTC Magic Android handsets.
At the same time, there will be a few new widgets that include a toggle on the home screen for quickly powering on or off functions such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and screen brightness settings.
At the same time, there will be a few new widgets that include a toggle on the home screen for quickly powering on or off functions such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and screen brightness settings. The CDMA radio support made possible by Donut will allow providers such as Sprint to offer Android handsets, as recently promised by the carrier's CEO, Dan Hesse.
Multi-touch would potentially be a breakthrough for Android devices, which so far have always had the capacitive (finger-sensitive) touchscreens necessary for multi-touch but have so far only supported single-finger commands such as tapping or flicking. Of the phones on the market, only Apple's iPhone and the Palm Pre are known to have truly complex multi-touch features. Apple's patents on the technology have normally precluded some companies from readily adopting the technique themselves. [via BGR]