World Android Round Up: UK Hero Update – Baidu vs Google – Xperia X8 – Galaxy S Sparkling Sales


A Hero's Tale
We reported yesterday on how UK HTC Hero users were using Facebook to voice their anger and hurt at having been left out in the cold when it came to the 2.1 update. Hot on the heels of our report and probably inspired by it, Orange announced that the update was going live today and judging by comments on Geoff Mansfield's Facebook protest group, part one has already started landing on handsets.

UK Android Sales Skyrocket
At the beginning of this year Android had 3% of the UK (mobile contract) market. Today that stands at 14% and does not take into account the number of PAYG handsets which are extremely popular in the UK. Three quarters of British mobiles are now smartphones and in terms of numbers alone Android sales have risen by 350% in the last six months.


Are You Feeling Rucky?
According to search engine analysers like infospace the number of searches from mobile devices is fast catching up on those entered into static devices. No wonder then that Chinese search giant Baidu think it should be their search box appearing prominently on the home page of Android smartphones. To be fair, the vast majority of the People's Republic's 1.4 billion citizens prefer Baidu over Google.

Xperia Lite
As its name suggests, Sony Ericsson Xperia X8 is not quite the machine that its sister the X10 is. Popping up on O2 UK's 'Coming Soon' page, it has a CPU that flies at just 600Mhz, as opposed to the 1Ghz heights of the X10. But comparing specs, like the 3.2 vs 8.2Mp cameras, is to miss the point – what Sony Ericsson and Android offer is a choice, something you will never get with another certain fruit based smartphone.


Night Skies Sparkle in Seoul
There are two billion galaxies in our universe according to German supercomputer JUGENE. That must be why Samsung decided to give their most popular handset an astronomical name –  to match its sales figures.

When their Galaxy S sold half a million units in the US, people were, quite rightly, impressed. Imagine then how chuffed the boys and girls at Samsung must be then, to have shifted just as many units in South Korea where the population is only a sixth of that of the United States.

Incidentally, did you know that the Hanja word samsung, translates as three stars? I'd give them five.