White Samsung Nexus S Hands-on and Gallery, Boy Does Stock Android Feel Good

Stepping out of our Verizon realm for a second, I wanted to show everyone the newest edition to the DL lineup of phones, the white Samsung Nexus S.  While it feels really weird (like a cheating girlfriend) even holding this phone since I had to activate it on AT&T in order to get 3G and data, the point of this is to let you all know that there are still stock Google Experience devices out there and they are a breath of fresh air.  I’ve only had the device for 2 days now and haven’t been able to put it down.  It constantly brings back memories of the original DROID and all its stock goodness.  I just keep asking, “Why can’t we get this Verizon?  Why?”

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I really like HTC’s Sense, but if two devices were set in front of me and one was stock, it wouldn’t matter what that other phone was because I know that the stock phone gives me freedom and would choose it instantly.  There are rumors that the Nexus S will one day land on Verizon, but unfortunately those rumors seem to be dying off as we get closer to the summer.  There are also murmurs of carriers offering up a couple of special “developer” devices each year, but as the year goes on and we have no official word on that, it’s hard to know if that will ever happen.  With more and more manufacturers jumping on the locked-down bandwagon, we may only see one per year – phones like the one pictured above.

So instead of rambling on for pages and pages which I could easily do on this subject, I’ll instead just leave you all with a couple of questions as we like to do from time to time.  When was the last time you held a truly stock Android phone?  We’re all fans of Big Red at this site, but would you be willing to switch carriers just for a stock experience?

*Note – Just so we’re clear, I don’t want anyone to think I’m cheating on them and going blue.  The Thunderbolt and other Verizon devices are still my daily drivers.  This was a purchase for the site, so that we can bring you detailed coverage of the newest Android OS releases when they come out.  Something we’ve lacked in the past.

Pics and a quick video of the device after the break.  (more…)

Details Mag Recommends HTC Thunderbolt, Atrix 4G and Nexus S

In the March edition of Details, they recommended a bunch of phones that don’t begin with an “I” and we couldn’t help but smile at all of the Android options.  Of course, we loved seeing the Thunderbolt, but also took notice that they left out Skype and 8-device hotspot features which we know have been fueling the delay controversy lately.  Oh, and another 2-page ad showed up directly after.  Just wanted to share…

Download: Nexus S Microbes Live Wallpaper (Updated)

Our buddy Pete Alfonso, who gave everyone the first Gingerbread keyboard port is back, only this time with one of the new live wallpapers from the Nexus S.  The live paper is called Microbes and is a fun replacement for the Nexus light bar one we’ve seen so often.  It’s interactive, looks pretty and seems like a mesh between a Galaxy S paper and one from the original Nexus device.

Update:  Here is the .apk version for ALL users courtesy of @Haxzamatic!  (Download)

Download:  MicrobesLWP.zip (alt link)

Instructions:

*Rooted users only.

1.  Download the file from above and drop it on your SD card.
2.  Boot your phone into Clockwork Recovery.
3.  Choose “install zip from sdcard.”
4.  Then “choose  zip from sdcard” and find the MicrobesLWP.zip file.

*DROID X and 2 users, you will need to go into “mounts and storage” and “mount system” first.

5.  Select it, install it and enjoy!

Everyone be sure to thank Pete and follow him on Twitter!  @PeterAlfonso.  His website.

Download: Nexus S Gingerbread Live Wallpaper

Been wanting that new Nexus live wallpaper that comes with Gingerbread and the Nexus S?  You are in luck!  The amazing minds over at the XDA Forums have released it as an .apk file, but only for those of you that are rooted.  You’ll want to make a backup of your LiveWallpapers.apk file which is located in /system/app as this will replace it.  Also, Blur phone users (Droid X and 2) may have to go into “mounts and storage” and “Mount System” if you choose the update.zip method below.

Download:  update.zip or LiveWallpapers.apk

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Is the Nexus S on its Way to Verizon? (Updated)

So, maybe you didn’t hear, but the Samsung Nexus S was announced yesterday and it will indeed run Gingerbread out of the box.  Best Buy will sell it exclusively for $529 (unlocked) without a contract or for $199 on a 2-year contract through T-Mobile.  The device looks amazing, but that whole T-Mobile thing is what’s holding us back from taking the plunge and buying one.  We’d really love to see it on Verizon as we’re semi-homers, but the current model is only GSM compatible…or is a CDMA version in the works?

The crew over at AndroidGuys was sifting through the rules for the new Nexus S contest and pulled out these cleverly phrased words…

The currently available Nexus S is a GSM device and is not compatible with CDMA networks such as Verizon and Sprint.

“Currently available” lends us to believe that their are other options on the way, right?  Or am I just drinking some weird Kool-aid?  Would you ditch your device and use an upgrade on the Nexus S even if a 4G LTE device was just around the corner?

Update:  SamFirmware tweeted that their insiders have mentioned that the Nexus S might be more appealing come February.  4G LTE Verizon version maybe?  (Cheers Andrew53517!)

Update 2:  We hit up SamFirmware looking for clarification and they gave us some.  It will not be a Verizon Nexus S in February and will likely be something even better from Samsung…

So, something better?  Now we’re really interested.

Pictures of Nexus S Running Gingerbread Arrive

The Nexus S finally broke cover and made an appearance in the wild running the next version of Android aka Gingerbread.  While this is another tipster with zero camera skills, at least  some stuff is confirmed like the new grey/black notification bar and green highlights.  Other than that, we can see that the device is indeed a Samsung, will be stuck on  T-Mobile (seriously?) and has a newly squared off launcher that differs from the rounded version seen on Froyo.  And these pictures were taken just 2 days ago, so this puts us another step closer to launch.

Ton of additional pics after the break.   (more…)

Video: Eric Schmidt Shows Off Nexus S at Web 2.0 Summit

Yesterday, at the Web 2.0 Summit, Google CEO Eric Schmidt came out on stage and just so happened to have his Nexus S on him for cameras to catch a quick glimpse at.  We snagged a picture of it, but if you missed the entire rundown, you can watch the video and see it for yourself as it has been added to Youtube.  All of the good phone and Gingerbread shots happen in about the first 15 seconds, but there are some goodies on Google TV later on.  Overall, it’s worth a watch.   (more…)

Eric Schmidt Shows Off Nexus S Running Gingerbread, Mentions Release Time Frame

We posted this up immediately over at Android Life as it falls under the “general Android news” category, but wanted to make sure all of you saw it.  Google CEO Eric Schmidt was on stage at the Web 2.0 Summit and pulled out a Nexus S running Gingerbread.  He didn’t actually mention who the manufacturer was, but from the shot we grabbed above, it’s pretty obvious.

He also mentioned that Android 2.3 should be out in the “next few weeks” and that Google TV talks with the major networks are going well.