The original Android Honeycomb tablet, the Motorola Xoom, is set to get another update in September, from Honeycomb 3.1 to 3.2.
Over in the states, the Motorola Xoom has already received the Android 3.2 update, but we in blighty aren’t too far behind. Motorola has announced that the update will be released next month, in September. A more precise date hasn’t been detailed, but unless Moto completely misses the mark we shouldn’t have much more than a month to wait.
Android 3.2 is a relatively minor update, but will sort out some of the minor niggles that currently make using an Android tablet a less slick experience than iPad users enjoy. Our favourite new feature is the compatibility zoom mode, which lets you view apps as they would be seen on a smarpthone screen, but scaled-up using pixel doubling. This is the method Apple uses to get iPhone apps working on an iPad, and will stop non-optimised apps from looking eerily empty on your Xoom.
The second star feature of Android 3.2 is improved SD card support. Media files stored on an SD card will be able to be loaded directly into third-party apps, which should improve the usability of media players – removing the need to navigate to the SD memory manually.
The new scaling mode is good news for gamers
Other improvements in Android 3.2 are less significant, but are collectively what Android Honeycomb needs most – optimisations. They will hopefully lead to fewer crashes and snappier all-round performance.
Google just recently announced its purchase of Motorola Mobility, Motorola Inc’s mobile division, but as yet it doesn’t seem as though this will affect releases like this update. Google CEO Larry Page said the aim of the buy-out is to “supercharge the entire Android ecosystem for the benefit of consumers”. So fingers crossed that’ll mean Motorola Xoom owners will benefit too, rather than being left to fester as the attention moves onto the Motorola Xoom 2 or Google Nexus Tablet.
via The Inquirer