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So, I updated my Droid to Android 2.0.1 today. I’ll be honest that it didn’t work the way I’d hoped. When I woke up this morning (December 10th 2009) I had an alert dialog on screen telling me that an update was ready. It gave me three options: “Install Now”, “Install Later” and “More Info”. The More Info screen didn’t show me anything useful. Well, I clicked the “Later” option, figuring that when I got home tonight I’d turn on WiFi, do a packet capture on the router, and save all of the traffic (specifically including the name of the update server). Well, it kept reminding me all day at annoyingly short intervals - probably about every 10 minutes or so. Finally, when I was home and had the WiFi setup, I went to try it again and… yup… when I clicked on the “System Update” button in Settings, the only option I had was “Reboot and Install”.

So… first big bitch about the Droid… Verizon pushed out the update without my consent. I kept hitting “Later” because that was the only way to get the popup to go away. Apparently. after X times of hitting Later (and each time your only real options are Later or Now) it will download the update by itself. Once the update is downloaded, I’m assuming that it may just automatically install on the next reboot. That would be a bitch thing to do.

Anyway, the “More Info” screen, which provides (as far as I can tell) the only release notes for the update, states:

This software update includes enhancements to your DROID by Motorola. Approximate install time: 6-10 Mins. You will be unable to use your device or make emergency calls for the duration of the install. The software updates automatically, and your DROID will power off and on as part of this software update. For more information please visit: www.verizonwireless.com/droidsupport

Not too helpful. And pretty cryptic.

Immediately when the phone turned back on, the first thing I noticed is that the spin-style unlock button has been replaced with an iPhone-style slide button, and the same for the mute feature. Maybe it’s just me, but I also noticed that the on screen keyboard seems to react better to quick keypresses - perhaps they’ve enabled multitouch for this?

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find much release documentation from Google other than the API changes - no full release notes or changelog like I’d like. And not even a summary of changes that I could find.

At the VZW droid support site, I found a link to a PDF of “Why to Update” (local copy). This sheet lists the enhancements made by the update (“AP:ESD56/BP:C_01.3E.01P”, build ESD56) as:

  • OS stability is improved.
  • Battery life is improved.
  • Camera auto focus functionality is improved, and time between shots is reduced.
  • Enhancements for three-way calling.
  • Audio for incoming calls is improved.
  • When receiving a call on call waiting, the speakerphone now remains on.
  • Bluetooth functionality is improved; background echo is eliminated.
  • Improved Bluetooth phone book transfer of contacts to in-vehicle Bluetooth solutions.
  • After closing a GPS application, the GPS icon will now automatically be removed from the notification panel.
  • Users can now receive SMS and MMS messages after an EMS message is received.
  • SMS and MMS may now be sent to seven-digit addresses.
  • Google contact merging has been updated to accommodate seven-digit numbers.
  • Visual Voice Mail notices now arrive instantaneously.
  • The corporate calendar widget user interface is updated.

This tiny one-page (and very styish - looks like and in-store advertising piece) sheet obviously isn’t anything that could pass for release notes, especially from Google. It doesn’t even mention anything about the changed unlock button!

I’ll keep looking around to find a real feature summary/release notes/changelog, but here’s my running list (I’ll update) of what I’ve found:

  • Changed the unlock slider to a straight line.
  • On screen keyboard typing seems faster.
  • Photo taking is considerably faster, though it’s still painfully slow - it used to take about 10 seconds from shutter button to ready to capture next image, it’s now about 5 seconds.
  • The UI seems to be a bit more responsive overall.
  • I haven’t checked yet, but I’ve seen some forum posts about lost contacts and Facebook sync issues.

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