Settings

The settings page has undergone a few changes since v2.1; we now have a separate page for Display settings. The Wireless & network settings page has been updated with the new USB tethering and Wireless Hotspot option. Froyo also supports toggling Data roaming to save you from those pesky roaming charges. Google has finally added a native task manager under the Applications page for those dire times when every megabyte counts. With the way that Android (and now iOS) multitask, it can help save battery life if you manually quit apps that you aren't using or planning to switch back to.

Another nifty feature lets you back up application data on Google’s servers, so the next time you reset your phone, your app data is preserved. Ultimately this is the next step in the evolution of cloud integration. We're pretty close to not really having to worry about setting up a new phone, just give it your account names and passwords and almost everything is pulled from the cloud. Google is trying to avoid the pitfalls of the PC experience, one of which was having to deal with the headaches of a reinstall.

Developers have also been given the option to allow their apps to be moved from the internal storage to the SD card. A welcome change given that internal Flash is limited while SD cards are effectively unlimited. The caveat, however, is that this is a developer enabled feature only; so all apps don’t automatically support it.

Finally, the screen lock feature has added support for using a PIN or a password for those who find the abstruse patterns hard to remember. For those who demand the simpler iOS experience, it looks like Google is trying to offer more of that as an option on Android.

UI Tweaks

With Froyo, Google has paid special attention to try and have a consistent UI across the OS. While parts of the OS may still seem like an aberration (read: Settings, Dialer), Google has updated the Messaging and Google Talk interface with black text on white background, just like the Gmail app.

The Car Home screen has been refreshed with a more traditional square button layout that’s much easier to navigate. (Note: Device orientation works at a system level as opposed to the app level. So you have to enable automatic orientation under Display settings for landscape modes to work in apps like Car Home).

The dialer app now supports sorting contacts by first name or last name and it lets your choose the order of display (First name, last name or vice versa).

Finally, the call log has been updated to group together multiple calls from the same user, which can then be expanded to access individual call records. Another cool feature is when you connect the phone to a computer via USB; a friendly droid shows up with instructions about USB storage. Again, most of these enhancements aren’t earth shattering, but they’re a nice touch and create a much more holistic and non-ambiguous interface that users will certainly appreciate.

The Home Screen Application Specific Updates
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  • Zirconium - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    Nope, dguy6789 is right. If it takes you 10 seconds to complete something that only takes me 5, then I am 100% faster than you, not 50%. Think of it like this: you and I are running a race (in this case, Android 2.1 and 2.2 are racing to complete a task). If I finish in half the time as you, then I am running twice as fast, or 100% faster. According to the numbers posted, Android 2.2 is about 140% faster on BenchmarkPi and 155% faster on SunSpider.

    Is it just me, or is it sad that I have to explain basic math on a tech site?
    Reply
  • Saumitra - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    That's right, I just saw the spreadsheet I had with the numbers and noticed an error in the formula! Let me update that ASAP! Reply
  • hughlle - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    haha, i'm just tired and confused. i'm sat here thinking that if something is 100% faster, that it is not though a 100% performance increase. just ignore me today haha Reply
  • cleric7x9 - Thursday, June 24, 2010 - link

    Actually, since you are using the word "faster" as a qualifier, you begin with the slower (higher) value. Therefore, 5, in relation to 10, is 50% slower, or in other words, 100% faster.

    Is it just me, or is it sad that I have to explain basic math on a tech site?
    Reply
  • djc263 - Thursday, June 24, 2010 - link

    Actually you aren't using math skills anymore. English language skills interpret objects and comparative language. You admitted the math skills were correct, while disagreeing that he had identified the object of the comparative phrase. Reply
  • ekerazha - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    The fact that Android lacks WPA-Enterprise support (auth through certificates) and a decent proxy support, makes it unusable with "advanced" network infrastructures therefore useless for many people. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    http://pboos.ch/wordpress/2009/04/android-using-wp...
    Requires some work, but there you go. :)
    Reply
  • ekerazha - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    It's hackish and the phone must be rooted, so it's not an acceptable solution. Reply
  • fepple - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    I thought the Nexus one update was official? I remember seeing links to the ROM on a google.com domain? Also I thought I saw instructions for installing it with the standard (locked) boot loader?

    One thing I've noticed is my GPS seems to pick up a signal way when I turn it on than 2.1. Also I grabbed a radio update at the same time, which gives me loads better 3G - but I think thats cause I put a crappy update on before :)
    Reply
  • Spoelie - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    I'm not convinced it was the best choice to standardize on "black text on white background". This makes sense if most devices are TFT with poor blacks, poor viewing angles, high brightness and constant power consumption - but aren't most new devices AMOLED? On those screens, a white screen consumes a lot more power than a black screen, and you don't have any contrast problems. It would make sense to invert the colors on those devices. Why not make it switchable?

    Or a make it switchable?
    Reply

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