Application Specific Updates

Gallery

The Gallery app now supports pinch-to-zoom gestures. When you pinch and zoom on an album, the pictures scroll across the screen giving you a preview of its contents. The order of the scrolling can be manipulated depending on how you pinch the screen. Google seems to have taken a page directly from Apple as the iPad has a similar feature in its Photos app. Although it’s a nice addition to an already well-made app, its implementation is rather awkward and leaves much to be desired.

Camera

The Camera app now has on-screen controls for focus, exposure, geo-location, white balance, flash and zoom. All the controls are orientation aware (regardless of whether automatic orientation is enabled) and change smoothly when you switch modes. Compulsive photographers who’d like to have greater control while taking pictures will find this extremely handy. I found the new controls quite useful at times, especially for those quick shots where time is of the essence.

Gmail

The Gmail app now supports fast account switching, thanks to a little button on the top right corner of the app. Google’s also (finally!) added previous and next buttons to quickly scroll through threads. The app also adds support for colored labels and allows users to cut, copy and paste text from emails. Another handy addition is the ability to install .apk files directly from emails. Thanks to these new features, the Gmail app is vastly more usable in Froyo.

Android Market

The Market app at long last added the ability to update all installed apps simultaneously. The interface has now been tweaked to have two tabs, one for the description and the other for comments.

You can also set rules to automatically update apps whenever an update is made available. It’s a great feature if you have a lot of apps installed on your phone and something that is still lacking from iOS.

YouTube

The YouTube app remains largely unchanged, except for that little HQ button that lets you toggle the video quality. While some have found the default video quality on v2.1 and v2.2 to be almost the same, but non-HQ clips seem to appear worse on Froyo.

Browser

Froyo’s browser adds the new V8 Javascript rendering engine that promises a 2x performance boost from Éclair (v2.1). I’m happy to confirm that these claims are largely true and the browser performance is absolutely stellar! The new broswer managed an amazing score of 36079 in the BrowserMark test with its closest competitor, the iPhone 3GS scoring a far 26897.

Settings & UI Tweaks Flash 10.1, Tethering & Hotspot Support
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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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