Taking a look back at seven days of news and headlines across the world of Android, this week’s Android Circuit includes Samsung confirming Galaxy S22 problems, leaked Pixel Fold details, slow updates for Pixel 6 Pro, Xiaomi 12 Pro review, foldables’ market share grows, McLaren F1 goes Android, and the Google I/O puzzles begin.
Android Circuit is here to remind you of a few of the many things that have happened around Android in the last week (and you can find the weekly Apple news digest here).
Samsung Confirms Galaxy S22 Performance Issues
Samsung has confirmed a number of issues with the Galaxy S22 platform. Samsung Electronics vice chairman and co-CEO Han Hong-hee has apologised for choices made in Samsung’s GOS software that throttled app performance, but crucially did not restrict benchmarking apps:
““We were unable to properly consider our consumers’ needs,” Han was quoted as saying while bowing deeply in apology at a shareholder meeting. The GOS was designed to optimize the phone’s performance considering the diverse characteristics of gamers,” Han reportedly added. “The device’s consistent performance is crucial when enjoying high-end games so we limited the performance of CPU and GPU to the appropriate levels to minimize overheating while maintaining consistency.”
Can You Afford The Fold?
Whether it is called the Pixel Fold, the Pixel Notepad, or the Pixel Keith, Google is reportedly starting production on its foldable Pixel device. This would be Google’s first Pixel device, which will likely be used to demonstrate Google’s proficiency in folding and split-screen devices around the Android 12L variant. The big question is, of course,
“Google is trying its best to keep the Pixel Notepad affordable. The company has reportedly set a target price of $1,399, but it remains to be seen if can hit that price. In addition to the price, the tipster also reveals that Google is planning to start the mass production of Pixel fold in the third quarter of 2022. Google is trying its best to keep the Pixel Notepad affordable. The company has reportedly set a target price of $1,399, but it remains to be seen if can hit that price. In addition to the price, the tipster also reveals that Google is planning to start the mass production of Pixel fold in the third quarter of 2022.”
The Pixel’s Slow Update Problem
Google’s Pixel line pitches itself as the definitive view of what Google believes an Android phone should be, but that view is being diluted with the Pixel’s various updates, that arrive late and generate countless complaints from users who move up to the latest software. Now the latest update has been delayed:
“The last three updates for the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro have been delayed, and that amounts to every regularly scheduled update for the pair so far. Now I personally don’t mind too much waiting an extra week or couple of weeks to get updated. My own opinion aside, this simply isn’t good enough. Especially given how much value is placed upon the software experience offered by Pixel smartphones.”
Reviewing The Xiaomi 12 Pro
This week saw the Xiaomi 12 series of handsets receive their global launch following a successful release in China. Xiaomi has worked hard to bring a strong premium-styled feature set to a competitive price, with the Xiaomi 12 Pro priced at $999, and the Xiaomi 12 at $749:
“With the Xiaomi 12 Pro I keep coming back to the word understated. There’s some great technology in this phone… from the bright and vivid screen, through the impressive battery charging times, to the fast camera settings, the 12 Pro has a lot of potential. With a relatively angular design that has enough curves to let everything feel smooth, the 12 Pro typifies a feeling of taking care of business… nothing flashy, no bells and whistles on the outside, just a push to bring a well-featured premium phone to market at a competitive price.”
Rise Of The Foldables Continue
A new report from Omdia on the market for foldable phones points to a rising interest in the form factor during 2021, with Samsung’s Galaxy Flip 3 taking the lions share of the 9 million sales:
“Interestingly, the tracking company reported that Huawei was the second biggest foldable OEM in 2021, with 900,000 units shipped last year. Omdia also noted that Xiaomi’s China-only Mix Fold launched last year but didn’t meet sales expectations. Nevertheless, Xiaomi is tipped to offer a Mix Fold 2 later this year. Finally, Omdia said that Chinese OEMs will likely limit their foldable phones to China this year too. That would be disappointing if true, as it means global users won’t have much in the way of quality choices aside from Samsung in 2022.”
Go… Go… Go!
This week saw McLaren’s Formula 1 team announce a sponsorship with Google. This will see the Android logo feature prominently, while the new LED equipped wheels will glow with the Google Chrome logo throughout the season:
“…McLaren will use “5G-enabled Android devices and Chrome browser across its operations during practice sessions, qualifying and races to support the drivers and team, with the goal of improving on-track performance.” In a statement, [McLaren CEO Zak] Brown said “By integrating platforms like Android and Chrome across our operations, our team will be better supported to focus on driving performance. We’re looking forward to an exciting partnership that spans across Formula 1 and Extreme E.”
With Google’s developer focused I/O event taking place, the puzzles and clues to the event have started. No quote on this one, you’re on your own.
Android Circuit rounds up the news from the Android world every weekend here on Forbes. Don’t forget to follow me so you don’t miss any coverage in the future, and of course read the sister column in Apple Loop! Last week’s Android Circuit can be found here, and if you have any news and links you’d like to see featured in Android Circuit, get in touch!