Sunday, December 18, 2011

Google Starts Ice Cream Sandwich Rollout

Nexus S on ICS
As a proud Nexus S owner I am a fan of what Google has been able to with Android since thier acquisition back in 2005. With the release of Galaxy Nexus and the newest version of Android, I am looking forward to taste the new dessert Android has this time. Every other day I am on Google searching for some news of an over-the-air update of 2.3.x on my current phone to 4.0.x

The word is here.. Google has started rolling out the Android 4.0 (aka Ice Cream Sandwich) update to the GSM Nexus S. The update as we all know was highly anticipated since Google introduced the new Android version and its new features. The official word on the update release comes just a day after the Galaxy Nexus (world' first phone on Android 4.0) was made available in the US.
The news was available on the official 'Google Nexus' Twitter account:
Ice Cream Sandwich Update to Nexus S
The update as obvious would be over the coming month and was started on Dec 16. We are also aware that the Galaxy Nexus (latest in the Nexus line) has already got one OTA (over-the-air) update for a few bug fixes. More could be read on this here. It may be noted that this update is was versioned 4.0.2. 
The news was available on Googlel+ official account of AndroidThe version available for the GSM Nexus S will be 4.0.3. The bad news is that the CDMA Nexus S (Sprint' Nexus S 4G) will have to wait a little longer for the update as there is no official word about this version from Google, but all indications are that it won't be too long.
The update is to be made available as an OTA, so you can either manually check your phone or wait for the notification pop-up to appear. However, if your patience has run thin then you will be glad to know that the ICS ROM is available for download and install manually for those who know what they are doing (do at your own risk as you may be required to root your phone, which s not a good idea if you would like to keep the warranty on your phone intact). If you want to find out how to do that, click here to read on details. Again, please do it at your own risk.
As for the changes that you will see with this update, here is a quick look:
App upgrades
You will have some surprises with the way your phone' apps will work now. The app developer' are working to release new version of their respective apps since the release of Galaxy Nexus. Be patient and look out for these points:
  • To use Adobe Flash with Android 4.0, first update it to the latest version
  • You will need to update most of your apps to their latest version before they could work with Android 4.0
  • For connecting your phone to a Mac via USB, you will first need to install the File Transfer app on your Mac. Use this link to know how to.
Home Screens
As you are supposedly updating from Gingerbread (Android 2.3.x) to ICS (Android 4.0), there will be some changes to how the new Home screen and some functions will work. Google has set up a page for users with Tips on the new transition. Here is the link

Lock Screen
The way you answer or reject a call has changed. To answer a call, now drag the lock icon to the right. Here is more detail on this.

Swipes
Swipes are to be noted especially. Make sure you know what left-right swipes do. For example you  should be able to swipe sideways to:
  • Dismiss notifications
  • dismiss recent app thumbnails
  • navigate through you email messages in your inbox
  • check on your recent G+ notifications
Screenshots made easy
You are now able to take the screenshots from your phone without the help of any app. Press power button and the volume(down) button simultaneously. What' more is that the screenshot is saved automatically. Now just click on the screenshot icon in the notification bar and you will be able to see the screenhot that you just took. Easy!

I am sure the update would be as tasty as the Ice Cream Sandwich itself is. I too am looking for my Nexus S to receive the OTA, hopefully it will be soon enough as my patience is low on this and frankly I would not like to do rooted install of the update.
Have fun and let me know how you liked the new Android version once you have tasted it!!

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