Googling Google: Android 1.5 Update Postponed, Google News Outage
Article by George Norman
On 19 May 2009
There are two pieces of news from the Google camp, and unfortunately both of them are bad. The first piece of bad news is that the Android 1.5, codename Cupcake update, the one that T-Mobile officially announced it would be rolled out to US customers last week, has been postponed until early June. The second piece of bad news is that following last week’s outage, the Mountain View search engine giant was hit by another outage, which affected Google News.

Starting with the Android 1.5 update, here is what T-Mobile had to say: "We’d like to provide an update on the rollout of Android 1.5 for T-Mobile G1 customers. We are working diligently to get Android 1.5 out as soon as possible, while aiming to ensure a consistent, positive experience for our customers. We’re finalizing the build this week to ensure optimal functionality and smooth delivery. Therefore, the rollout schedule has been reset by approximately a week, and we expect all G1 customers will have the update by early June. Your device will notify you when the update is available. Thank you for your patience and understanding."

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The 44MB Cupcake update, which has already been distributed to UK customers over the air, comes with the following improvements:
- On-screen soft keyboard with: portrait and landscape support, 3rd party keyboards support, user dictionary (for custom words).
- Home screen with: Widgets (analog clock, calendar, music player, picture frame, and search) and Live folders.
- Camera & Gallery to include video recording and video playback for supported formats.
- Bluetooth to support for stereo Bluetooth, auto-pairing, and an enhanced handsfree experience.
- Browser will feature: copy and paste, search, user-selectable text-encoding, UI changes (tabbed bookmarks/history/most-visited screen and unified Go and Search box).
- Contacts with: user picture for Favorites, events in call log display specific date and time stamp, access contacts from a call event log with a single touch.
- Linux kernel 2.6.27
- SIM Application Toolkit 1.0
- Google apps with: upload support for YouTube and Picasa, batch actions for Gmail messages (archive, delete, and label), and the option to view Google Talk friends' status in Contacts, SMS, MMS, Gmail, and Email applications.
- Accelerometer-based application rotations.

Moving on to the other bad piece of news, some of you might remember that numerous Google services were hit by an outage at the end of last week ( details here ). This week debuted with more problems for Google – this time its automated news aggregator, Google News, was hit by an outage that lasted for about one and a half hours. Users that attempted to access Google News on Monday, at approximately 8:30 AM EDT, were presented with the following error message: “503 Server Error. Please try again in 30 seconds.” The users that managed to access Google News found that it did not properly display pages; upon clicking on various links they too encountered the 503 Server Error message. Normal service was resumed at about 10:00AM EDT.

On the upside, Google News recently celebrated its 7th anniversary and to commemorate the occasion the development team made a few enhancements to the service (details here).



Tags: Google, Google News, Android 1.5, T-Mobile, Cupcake
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
You can follow him on Google+, Facebook or Twitter

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