Hoorah! My Samsung Epic 4G is finally updated to Android 2.2.1 or Froyo. With one missed deadline after another, I’ve been waiting for the update for a while. I am particularly happy to have the Bluetooth improvements, Adobe Flash 10.1 support, USB tethering, ability to store apps to SD Card, and a few others. I was hoping to see something about TV Out but I haven’t been able to find any other sources noting its availability.
Following is the release for all the information in this update and after that, I have a list of some of the top Android apps I’m using on my phone.
Android Froyo 2.2 Information For The Epic 4G Release
Please see below for a list of changes found on the Android 2.2 Froyo Upgrade for the SPH-d700 (Epic 4G) Also, you may click here to additional information.
* Home Screen:
o New Home screen tips widget assists new users on how to configure the home screen with shortcuts and widgets and how to make use of multiple home screens.
o And if your zoom in with two-finger in the home screen, all panels are shown in one screen and the end user can remove the panel and/or add. The max panel number is 7.
o The Phone, applications launcher, contacts and messaging now have dedicated shortcuts on the Home screen, making it easy to access them from any of the 7 home screen panels.
* Exchange Support
o Improved security with the addition of numeric pin or alpha-numeric password options to unlock device. Exchange administrators can enforce password policy across devices.
o Remote wipe: Exchange administrators can remotely reset the device to factory defaults to secure data in case device is lost or stolen.
o Auto-discovery: you just need to know your user-name and password to easily set up and sync an Exchange account (available for Exchange 2007 and higher).
o Global Address Lists look-up is now available in the Email application, enabling users to auto-complete recipient names from the directory.
o Camera/Camcorder is provided Self timer function.
o Thumbnail image is displayed in preview right bottom screen.
* Portable Hotspot
o Wireless Modem has been changed to Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot.
o Clients that can connect to the hotspot at the same time has been increased from 1 to 5.
o Managing Devices and Battery Management has been added.
* USB Tethering
o By connecting USB cable, the phone can now be used as a modem
* Improved Performance
o Dalvik Performance Boost: 2x-5x performance speedup for CPU-heavy code over Android 2.1 with Dalvik JIT.
o The graph to the right shows the performance speedup from Android 2.1 to Android 2.2 using various benchmark tests. For example, LinPack is now more than 5 times faster.
o Kernel Memory Management Boost: Improved memory reclaim by up to 20x, which results in faster app switching and smoother performance on memory-constrained devices.
* Device Policy Manager
o New device policy management APIs allow developers to write “device administrator” applications that can control security features on the device, such as the minimum password strength, data wipe, and so on. Users can select the administrators that are enabled on their devices.
* GMS Updates
o GoogleQuickSearchBox, GenieWidget(News and Weather ) are newly added.
* Data Backup
o Apps can participate in data backup and restore, to ensure that users maintain their data after performing a factory reset or when switching devices.
* Flash Player
o Device supports Flash Player 10.1
* Lock Screen
o New lock screen mode for entering a numeric pin or alphanumeric password
* Application On External Storage
o Ability to store and run non-forward locked apps on the SD card
* Media Framework
o New media framework (Stagefright) that supports local file playback and HTTP progressive streaming
* Kernel Upgrade
o SDIO scheduling and BT improvements
Mostly because the update wiped my phone out and the Android Market forgot every non-paid app I had, I’m reflecting on which apps I’ll be putting back on my phone. I also love finding great, new apps, so feel free to post your suggestions in the comments section.
WordPress for Android – It helps me write what you’re reading right now. WordPress app that allows you to write and publish posts, moderate comments, and view stats.
Square – Accept credit cards through a little free reader on your phone at good rates. Great for freelance work.
LogMeIn Ignition – Amazing ability to control your LogMeIn PCs from a small screen and with no mouse
Jorte – A calendar app with the look and feel of an organized paper calendar
Dolphin Browser HD – A pretty slick, tab-centric browser
On Air (Wifi Disk) – Use WiFi to access your phone’s storage from an FTP client on a PC. It works great if you don’t have your USB cable on you.
TeslaLED – Turn your phone into a flashlight with this app. It turns on the Epic’s LED flash, giving you a brighter light than those that just turn the screen to white. The Epic won’t do this app’s advanced strobe light or morse code but there is a duration timer and you can switch to a black screen so you’re not blinded.
Mr. Number – Allows you to block calls and text from numbers. No more calls from the old lady that keeps calling me and asking for some retirement home.
Timeriffic – You probably have some sort of a routine. Use this app to program your phone to go along with it. Automatically turn your Bluetooth or wifi on/off, change the volume of your ringtones and notifications, and a few other options on a very flexible scheduling profile.
Tracker Booster – Run this in the background and your GPS will get more accurate while it’s running and improve other apps that use GPS.
GPS Toolbox – This allows you to see the detailed information your phone is getting from GPS. Fun to know and great for troubleshooting
SpeedView – Riding a train or even driving using GPS, this app can tell you your speed when you normally wouldn’t know. In case you ever end up on a bus that can’t go below 50MPH, this may save your life.
KeePassDroid – Read-only access to KeePass password databases allows you to continue security best practices on your mobile device
Dropbox / Box.net – I started off with Dropbox but I’m probably switching to Box.net as my preferred file syncing platform. It’s great for keeping my KeePass database up to date.
Barcode Scanner – Barcodes and QR Codes can be scanned and accessed with this app. QR Codes are one of the reasons I upgraded to Android from the Palm Pre.
Microsoft Tag Reader – Microsoft Tag is basically a special QR Code with some features. Nice to have on the phone in case you run across any.
Google Goggles – Does amazing things by recognizing images from your camera.
UPS Mobile – Track your UPS packages conveniently
Screenshot – This allowed me to take screenshots on my Epic pre-Froyo but now it looks like I’m going to have to Root the phone after all.
StopWatch & Timer – The basics. It can do plenty of fancy things but it’s not going to impress anybody if you can’t do the basics.
PicMe – An interesting app that allows you to view your phone’s screen over WiFi through a browser’s computer with a Java app.
Google Maps, Google Sky Map – Google products that everybody should have.
Google Translate – I speak one language, my phone… it speaks more.
Google Voice – This bridges your phone to your Google Voice account, allowing you to call out as your GV number, see transcriptions, and hear voice mails.
Lookout Mobile Security – Smartphones need an antivirus.
Evernote – Your notes in the cloud and with you everywhere.
Seesmic – I found this one to be way better than the official Twitter for Android app and it supports multiple accounts easily.
NewsRob – The best RSS feed reader app I’ve seen. It syncs with Google Reader and has a better interface than the Google Reader mobile version of the site or the recently released Google Reader app.
Pandora / Slacker Radio – Streaming music, free, all there is to it.
Audio Book Player – I finally found a good audio player for audiobooks. It automatically bookmarks a file upon closing so you can easily resume next time.
Winamp – One of the better audio player apps that I’ve seen. With updates, it keeps getting better.
Android Comic Viewer (ACV) – View .cbr or .cbz files on your smartphone. It’s not the best platform for viewing large images but this app helps even outside of comics.
Audible – The large audiobook store helps you browse and shop when you could really go for an audiobook.
TiVo Remote – Over WiFi, you can use your smartphone as a reliable TiVo Remote. It works well but won’t let you control your TiVo from the road.
C:geo – A good geocaching app.
Sound Effects by TMSoft – Searching for ‘sound effects’ in the Android market is a test of patience. This app is simple yet contains a variety of sound effects like crickets chirping, a joke rim shot, sirens, and plenty more with the ability to set individual effects as ringtones or notifications.
IMDb – The official app works better than the mobile version of the site.
Wapedia – The mobile version of Wikipedia wouldn’t load for some reason. This app is far faster anyways.
Amazon – You can shop at Amazon but the feature I like the most is being able to access my WishList.
Amazon Barcode – Search for an item on Amazon either for checking availability or comparing prices. Some people make their living off this app, buying items and reselling them on Amazon.
Angry Birds – If you haven’t heard of Angry Birds, you’ve been living under a rock.
MiniSquadron! – This game is my favorite. It’s an easy-to-control, side-view flight combat game with different territories to conquer and different planes to unlock. There’s a sequel out in the market too but the first is still my favorite.
Legends Arcana – A traditional dungeon crawler with RPG elements. Fun to burn through the game defeating bad guys and collecting money.
Overkill Lite – A side-scrolling shooter that is controlled by the motion control of the phone. It was pretty impressive to see and fun to play through the demo version.