Yesterday I posted up an article on HTC’s statement saying that the HTC Desire will not be receiving an upgrade to Gingerbread.  However, earlier today they changed their minds and have created a new post which says:

Contrary to what we said earlier, we are going to bring Gingerbread to HTC Desire

This is great news for everyone, all though of course they’ve not published any estimated release dates yet!

Thanks to reader WeeJockey for noticing this!

Bad news for all folks that have been eagerly waiting for news of the Gingerbread (2.3) update for the HTC Desire.  Unfortunately HTC announced earlier today on their UK Facebook page that the HTC Desire will in fact not be receiving the long-awaited update to the latest version of the Android OS.

Our engineering teams have been working hard for the past few months to find a way to bring Gingerbread to the HTC Desire without compromising the HTC Sense experience you’ve come to expect from our phones. However, we’re sorry to announce that we’ve been forced to accept there isn’t enough memory to allow us both to bring Gingerbread and keep the HTC Sense experience on the HTC Desire. We’re sincerely sorry for the disappointment that this news may bring to some of you.

The reasoning might not appear to be most convincing to some users, especially considering that a number of 2.3 Sense ports for the Desire are already available on XDA, however it’s a shame for users who aren’t familiar or confident in rooting their phone and are forced to stick with the current installed version of Android on their HTC Desire.

I guess the biggest let down is the fact that at the start of this year HTC actually stated that the Desire WOULD be getting the Gingerbread update and got many of us impatiently waiting for June to arrive and bring us our ginger flavoured treat.

It’s a shame that the only real update HTC were able to provide Desire owners was Froyo, and that was only 2 months after the phone release date.  Sad day for Desire owners, but I know plenty (including myself) are happy to use their phone as it is and will continue to use it for the foreseeable future.

Gingerbread Hits AOSP

Gingerbread is the latest version of Android (version 2.3).  It’s currently unknown whether or not the HTC Desire will be getting it.  However, the good news is that the source code for it has just been released on AOSP (Android Original Source Project), which means that it’s available for developers to download, tweak and compile for use on devices.  We can expect custom ROMs to start being released over this weekend for the Desire from talented developers such as AdamG and RichardTrip who you can find in the Desire Development section of XDA-Developers.

Kindle For Android Version 2 Released

This morning users with the Kindle application will have received a new update in the Android Market for this application.  The new update brings a series of new features, 2 of my favourites being scrolling through pages using the volume keys, and having the store accessible within the app instead of opening a new browser window.  The full list of changes is as follows:

  1. Newspapers and Magazine
  2. Zoom into images
  3. Integrated store
  4. Share progress via Social Networks
  5. Application now installable to SD Card
  6. Bug fixes
  7. I’ve noticed a Grid view, which I’m pretty certain wasn’t in the previous version

Need for Speed Shift Now in the Market

EA games has just released their Need for Speed Shift game into the Market.  The official description being:

THINK FAST! DRIVE FASTER! OPTIMIZED FOR ANDROID™! Drive 20 awesome cars including the BMW M3 GT2, Lamborghini Gallardo, and Pagani Zonda. Features 18 tracks in 3 stunning locations, Quick Race and Career Modes, 3 difficulty settings, and physics-based accelerated 3D graphics.

I guess they’re a little late as the latest console version is Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (also available on iPhone), but any 3D game being added to the Android Market is welcome by me.

If you want it, here’s the QR code for you to download it from the Market:

PlayStation Application for Android Coming Soon

Unfortunately, it won’t let you play PlayStation games on it, but it’s still useful in the sense that you can access your PlayStation Network (PSN) account to see your friends statuses, learn about new games and share news via social networks.  Whilst that doesn’t sound like a lot, we’re promised lots of new features to come.  You read more about it on the Official PlayStation Blog

Changes to the Android Market

The past few weeks have introduced several new changes to the Android Market, most of which you’ve already noticed but here’s a summary in case you haven’t:

  1. Application descriptions can now be up to 4,000 characters long
  2. There’s a field for recent changes
  3. The refund time for applications is 15 minute instead of the previous 24 hours
  4. There’s a new tab for Similar applications
  5. The biggest update is a new UI for the Market, which I haven’t received myself but I’m told should be available shortly.  Here’s a preview of it on YouTube:
    <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWdex2J43Jo">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWdex2J43Jo</a>

Facebook Application Receives A New Update

As you can tell, this week’s mostly been about application updates. People on Facebook can enjoy a new update to the Facebook application which allows:

  • Chat
  • Push notifications.  This is a lot better for battery life because it means the app works in the same way as Talk or Gmail.  Instead of having to connect to the server every so often to check if there’s any new updates, Facebooks servers themselves send out an update to your phone as soon as the update becomes available.
  • Some bug fixes

Google App Inventor Beta Now Open to the Public

If you missed the previous announcement, App Inventor is a way for anyone to develop Android applications using a simple web browser based interface.

You learn more about it, and signup to start using it here

This tutorial shows you how to remove system applications that come installed on your phone, or ROM of your choice that you don’t actually want.

Notes

  1. If the ROM you are using has the Read/Write via Overlay Filesystem on then there’s no need to boot into recovery
  2. If you’ve used the S-OFF hack to enable full read/write access to your system partition then there’s no need to boot into recovery
  3. If you’re using the latest Amon RA Recovery, then you can just use the “Mounts” option to mount the system partition

Requirements

  1. A rooted phone
  2. The adb driver setup on your computer – how to

Video Tutorial

This video shows you how easy it is to do everything below!

Making the System Partition Writable

This change isn’t permanent, meaning that when you leave recovery mode your system partition will revert back to read-only.  It’s only temporarily writable so that you can get rid of those unwanted apps.

  1. Connect your Desire via USB cable
  2. Open the Command Prompt/Terminal on your computer (Start Menu > Run > Cmd)
  3. In the command prompt window type: adb reboot recovery
    Your phone should restart in recovery mode
  4. Type: adb shell
    The first character in the command prompt will change to a #
  5. Type: mount -o rw -t yaffs2 /dev/block/mtdblock3 /system
    This mounts the system partition and gives you read and write access to it

Backing Up Applications

Before you start deleting apps, I’d strongly recommend backing them up onto your computer first.  Here’s how:

  1. Type: exit
    This leaves shell mode
  2. Type: adb shell ls system/data
    You should now see a list of all the apps (.apk files) in your system folder
  3. For whichever apps you want to backup type:
    adb pull system/app/<full_name_of_app.apk> <full_name_of_app.apk>
    where <full_name_of_app.apk> is the name that was listed in step 2
  4. If you look on your computer in the directory that Command Prompt is pointing to e.g. C:/Users/Ash then you’ll see a copy of that .apk file that you just backed up

Deleting Apps

Note: PLEASE make sure you’ve backed up any applications before deleting them.
Also, be sure that you’re not deleting any important system apps like Rosie (the HTC Sense framework!).  Deleting things like Quick Office, Peep, Teeter, Facebook etc is fine.

  1. Enter shell mode again by typing: adb shell
  2. Type: cd system/app
    This takes you into the system/app folder
  3. Type: ls
    This will show you a listing of the apps (.apk files) in the folder
  4. Type: rm <full_name_of_app.apk>
    where <full_name_of_app.apk> is the name that was listed in step 2
    This deletes the application permanently from your phone
  5. If in step #3 there was a <full_name_of_app>.odex file as well as .apk then delete that too using: rm <full_name_of_app.odex>

Rebooting

Once you’re done deleting your applications you can restart your phone and if everything went well then it will start normally and you’ll find that the deleted applications no longer show up in your app drawer.

Restoring Applications

If for whatever reason you decide that you want to reinstall those system applications you backed up, you can do the following:

  1. Make your system partition writable using the steps in Making the System Partition Writable
  2. Locate the apks you backed up before deleting
  3. Type adb push <full_name_of_app.apk> system/app/<full_name_of_app.apk>
ypmount -o remount,rw -t yaffs2 /dev/block/mtdblock3 /system