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T-Mobile G2x with official Gingerbread update: exclusive early look

T-Mobile G2x with official Gingerbread update: exclusive early look

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The T-Mobile G2x from LG is a fine phone that's been met with generally glowing reviews so far -- but of its few shortcomings, the fact that it launched with Froyo is perhaps the most annoying. Why would the carrier launch its most powerful device with an outdated version of Android when Gingerbread's been at retail for nearly five months now?

Well, the good news is that we "won't have to wait long" for Android 2.3. CyanogenMod nightlies just started going out this weekend -- but for the non-hackers in the crowd, an official update is around the corner, too; in fact, we've just taken delivery today of what we believe to be a near-final build of the official version that we'll be seeing over the air shortly. Let's put it through its paces, shall we?

I'll let the pictures and video do most of the talking, but here are a few points to keep in mind:

  • Quadrant clocks in at 2435, which is up from the 2100s and 2200s I was getting on 2.2.2.
  • What we've got here is Android 2.3.3, so I wouldn't expect 2.3.4 (with Google Talk-based voice and video calling) when this starts getting pushed out over the air.
  • Scrolling and touch sensitivity are definitely improved. Places where I specifically noticed this were on the lock screen (it now consistently registers my swipe on the first try) and in the app drawer, where a vertical swipe now moves the grid the number of rows I'd expect it to. I don't know whether the inertial scrolling algorithm has actually been tweaked or if the improved scrolling is simply a side-effect of higher touch sensitivity -- but either way, it's better.
  • The major features of Gingerbread are all intact: the new keyboard (Swype is still available, of course), improved text highlighting, and so on.
  • There's no Tags application. No surprise there, since the G2x doesn't support NFC.
  • The cool new system sounds that debuted on the Nexus S aren't here, which would suggest to me that they're Nexus S-specific, not Gingerbread-specific.
  • The revamped UI is in full effect, including menus, the status bar, and the dialer, plus the glowing effect when you hit the end of a list.
  • WiFi Calling functionality worked right out of the gate with no tweaks. Interestingly, it immediately started nagging me to update my 911 contact information from T-Mobile's website; I've never seen that before. There are also a couple cosmetic changes to the app that help verify this is indeed an official build, since it's unlikely that anyone other than T-Mobile would be able to produce a functional copy.
  • This build has reverted to the stock Gingerbread camera app, which is a shame -- LG's customizations in the Froyo build are actually quite nice and functional. I don't know whether it'll all be back in the final build, but I hope so.

Check out all the full gallery of screen shots and a quick video tour below -- and a special thanks to our good friend Paul O'Brien of MoDaCo for the hookup!

T-Mobile G2x with official Gingerbread update: exclusive early look