This Week On The TechCrunch Droidcast: We Give Thanks To BBM, Custom ROMs, And… Yoga?

Holiday weeks tend to be a little quiet, but there’s always something going on in the world of Android to dig into. This time around, though, Darrell and I roped in MobileSyrup’s Daniel Bader and our very own Natasha Lomas to liven things up before it goes quiet for a few days. And I daresay we pulled it off nicely.

Oh, but you want details. We four jolly bloggers couldn’t help but dig into BlackBerry’s curious new BBM preloading deal with Android device OEMs, and it wasn’t long at all before Dan and I shifted the conversation to the joys and tribulations of loading some custom ROMs on your smartphone (for the record, he’s a fan of Paranoid Android). Throw in some kooky startup ideas and some even more outlandish funding offers, and you’ve got this week’s show in a nutshell.

We’re not exactly the sappiest people you’ll ever meet, but we even had ourselves something approaching a heartwarming moment. Despite the fact that I’m the only one of the four who’s actually celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow, I made everyone sit in a make-believe circle and share what they’re thankful for. Guess who went the classy route and chose something alcoholic? (Hint: it was Darrell.)

We invite you to enjoy weekly Android podcasts every Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. Eastern and 2:30 p.m. Pacific (generally speaking), in addition to our weekly Gadgets podcast at 3 p.m. Eastern and noon Pacific on Fridays. Subscribe to the TechCrunch Droidcast in iTunes, too, if that’s your fancy.

Intro music by Kris Keyser.

Direct download available here.


TechCrunch » Android

Gift Guide: Lenovo Yoga 13

Gift Guide 2012 | Lenovo's IdeaPad Yoga Lives Up to It's Name

When Lenovo first announced the Yoga in October nobody knew what to think. A laptop that folks fold over to turn into a big tablet? With Windows 8? Meh. However, after some extensive usage I’ve come away thinking that the Yoga might be the coolest Win8 laptop I’ve used. And at $ 999 for the entry-level model I’m willing to recommend it to folks who are looking for a little something different in a touchscreen device.

The laptop has a Core i7 ULV processor, a 1600×900 16:9 screen resolution, Intel HD 4000 Graphics, up to 256GB SSD storage and up to 8GB of RAM. The model we tried was snappy, speedy and quite a bit of fun. While I think the folding feature is kind of a gimmick, the screen is surprisingly responsive in both modes and well worth a look.

You’re not going to be able to buy a single device without Windows 8 this season so I’d recommend getting something good and holding onto it for a while. This may just do the trick.

Product Page

TechCrunch » Gadgets