Android Weekly Roundup: Stop (spending so much) , Drop (those prices), and Pushback!
Some people still don’t look at dogs and wolves in the same light, thinking that domestication has made substantial differences between the two breeds. As I write this, my Pit Bull/ Black Lab mix is currently sleeping on my legs, something we wouldn’t associate with a wild animal. However, there are times when wolves will act like our furry canine companions. One such incident of this recently occurred in Canada, as a gentleman on a motorcycle discovered a grey wolf in full pursuit of him and his chopper. The wolf never ended up catching up to the guy as he was able to speed up and get away. Still, the man believes the Canis lupus was merely pursuing the bike and not out to attack him.
Similarly, a lot of Android consoles that are springing up share many similar characteristics. But a new challenger, the Unu, looks to do more than just be another Android gaming console. This device, which appears to hook up to your TV via HDMI, is a tablet that takes full advantage of the Google Play store, and hopes to turn your TV into a Smart TV of sorts. The device has 8GB of on board room, but has expandable SD card memory. The Media edition of the device comes with a docking station and a bluetooth keyboard. For an additional $50, users can upgrade to the gaming edition which comes with a controller. The device is set to launch this August, but no precise date has been given.
In Android gaming consoles that we know of already and have discussed extensively, there’s also been some big news this week. The Nvidia Shield, the handheld Android gaming console put out by Nvidia, got both a price drop and an official release date. Costing $350 previously, the device has now been lowered in price to $300. This will also affect any pre-orders, which means more money in your wallet. The device drops in your hands and retailers on June 27, just less than a week away!
We’ve also gotten some more details about the OUYA, which sets to release on the 25th of June as well. Speaking at E3, CEO Julie Uhrman stated that there have been changes to the UI, improvements in the Ouya controller, and a firmware update schedule of about one every three weeks, still not breaking Sony’s record of once every time you turn your PS3 on. Uhrman states that based on feedback from the early shipped units, drastic improvements have been made to the OUYA console. No word though if early backers will be sent new consoles.
However, not all is sunshine and lollipops in the ever growing jungle of Android consoles. The GameStick, manufactured by PlayJam, appears to be pushed back significantly in its launch date. Citing the difficulties the Ouya had with its early release models, PlayJam has decided to wait until the devices are good and ready to ship to early backers. Those who contributed to their Kickstarter should expect to receive their devices in mid August, with the GameStick to hit the open market sometime after that. While it is good that PlayJam is waiting until the devices’ UI, which has been the most problematic feature of the device, is complete, this may raise concerns to Kickstarter backers who were promised devices this summer.
Recently, we had reported that AMD is looking to throw their hat into the ring of developing Android processors. That news apparently has inspired another challenger to enter the ring of Android hardware components. Intel, who has been instrumental in developing processors for Windows PCs for years, has listed a job opening for an Android Program Manager to manage the development of their Core chips for Android, code named Broadwell. The listing also makes it sound as though Intel wishes to continue development for the Android OS for quite some time to come. While this doesn’t spell the end for Windows, it does open up some amazing possibilities of competing processors working on the Android OS, hopefully making way for future awesome Android devices and processors that could make mobile gaming even more console like.
Finally, we should also make mention of a huge sale going on within the Google Play store. A huge thank you to DroidGamers for coming up with a comprehensive list of all of these sales still going on as of the date this wrapup prints. These sales, which sees some great games slashing prices to 50% off includes Final Fantasy III, Worms 2: Armageddon, Rayman Jungle Run, Aralon: Sword and Shadow and many others. We don’t know when this sale will end, so act quickly to get your hands on some great Android gaming titles for even cheaper than they already are!
There’s also some other great games coming to Android devices soon for you to check out!