Gingerbread is official

Well, today was the day. after numerous rumors and speculations, and with perfect timing with the Dive Into Mobile conference, Google announces the release of Android 2.3, aka "Gingerbread".

However, the release is a bit disappointing  from a feature-stack stand point. the main highlights are:

1. Better gaming development platform. this includes faster garbage collection and deeper API to native components of android.
2. Multimedia: the support of the new video formats VP8 and WebM (Google proprietary) as well as the addition of some audio effects settings.
3. Communication: the OS now comes with a built-in NFC (Near Field communication) API - which will probably come useful mainly in the mobile payment realm and VoIP API (which developers can use to make phone calls apps).

Of course, as every OS upgrade, Gingerbread also comes with few UI changes. if you're a Nexus-One owner and downloaded the latest YouTube app, you already have a sense of the new UI.

But probably the most exciting news today, is the vehicle Google chose to deliver this upgrade. I'm talking, of course, about the most anticipating Nexus S

This time Google chose Samsung as the manufacturer (the Nexus-One, the predecessor, made by HTC).
This one comes with bigger screen (4''), better display (Super Amoled with contour display) and a front facing camera.
The pricing is exactly the same as the rolled-out price of the Nexus-One. $199 with a T-Mobile contract, and a $529 unlocked.

I'm already in love....


Some people (with me) are waiting the android 2.2 for HTC Wildfire and Google announces Android 2.3 for other devices. Why is taking so long for an update?