Virgin Mobile gets its first Android device as Car Home app gets an update

by Kristen Nicole

Plenty of new device news for Android fans, as the week starts with a new MyTouch for T-Mobile users, while Virgin Mobile users get their first Android device—the Samsung Intercept.

The latest MyTouch device is the second in its line, looking a lot more like current Android devices. A 1Ghz Snapdragon processor makes the MyTouch faster than the recently launched T-Mobile G2, and has support for video chat and WiFi voice calling.  The MyTouch also sports Froyo 2.2, customized by HTC and T-Mobile. You’ll get a home screen full of social networking apps and information widgets, not too different from other HTC phone experiences.

The Samsung Intercept introduces Android devices to Virgin Mobile, looping the mobile service provider into a growing industry of devices and related apps.  It has a 3.2” touchscreen, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, a 3.2 megapixel camera, and Android 2.1.  The specs are dismal compared to other new Android devices, but the intro phone still has a lot to offer.  Expect the Intercept in stores by mid-October.

Tablet woes

While many manufacturers are racing to develop Android devices, LG is pulling back on its efforts.  The company said Android Froyo 2.2 is not ready for tablet development, and halted the development of its own tablet.  This is a setback for LG, which recently lost its CEO, and is falling behind its competitors in Android products. This news also reflects the many obstacles manufacturers have with the Android OS.

Car Home app updates

Android 2.2 on smartphones, however, is having better luck.  The Car Home app Google included with the OS now has a stand-alone app, available in the Android Market. The custom home screen now has specific  features for personalizing shortcuts, as well as the ability to be paired with a specific Bluetooth device. Google made a similar move with its Gmail app, offering it as a stand-alone mobile tool as well.