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Android 2.2 (Froyo) OS Update

I got a notice on my Motorola Android phone the other day, telling me that the Android OS 2.2 (Froyo) update was ready for download. I backed up my Android, disconnected the USB cord from my pc, and started the update.

Android 2.2 OS Update
Home Screens for both Android 2.1 and Android 2.2

The first noticeable change is on the Home screen. The Home screen now has dedicated shortcuts for Phone, Launcher, and Browser. On either side of the Shortcuts are Home Screen tabs, which make switching between the five different panels and knowing which one you're viewing a breeze.

The Browser has been enhanced using a new rendering engine, V8, which enables faster loading of JavaScript heavy pages. The ability to play Flash videos is apparently on its way.

The Camera and Gallery got a makeover too. There are now onscreen buttons for controlling zoom, flash, focus, exposure, white balance, and geo-tagging. The Camcorder now uses the LED flash to record video in low light or at night.

A new feature is the ability to tether the 3G connection using the USB cable. On some Android models, like the Nexus One, you can also create a portable WlFi hotspot. There may be additional fees for these services, so it's best to contact your service provider for more details.

The support for Exchange has also been upgraded. Remote wipe, Auto-discovery, and improved security are just a few of the changes.

There are changes under the hood too. Using Dalvik JIT, performance has been increased up 2x-5x for CPU heavy code. And Kernel Memory Management Boost improved memory reclaim performance by 20% for faster switching between applications.

Note:
I did have a couple of issues with existing applications on my phone. One I had to remove completely. Another, DejaOffice, had to be reinstalled, as it had an updated version for this platform (Android 2.2).

Update 8/20/2010: I recently had my Bluetooth headset die, and since writing this article have replaced it. I am happy to report that the voice-enabled dialing feature in this update does work.

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