Keep your seat belt fastened for Tuesday's tech news roundup:
FAA may change in-flight gadget rules
There may be no need to turn off electronics during a flight takeoff, Android users could see software updates soon, and a low-cost box arrives for Google TV.
by Bridget Carey
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The Federal Aviation Administration has formed a committee to reconsider its policy on when electronics can be turned on during a flight. But this does not include making a cellphone call, so no worries about noisy neighbors. This group will look into how (or if) today's smartphones and tablets interfere with communication and instruments, and perhaps future electronics could have some new certification standard that marks it as safe for use during a flight.
Android users might have to thank the Apple vs. Samsung trial for speeding up OS updates. Since it was older Android versions that were found to infringe on Apple patents, a simple OS update could help devices avoid future legal problems. That means phones with Android 2.3 Gingerbread could be on a fast-track to get upgraded to Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or 4.1 (Jelly Bean). It's an idea being bounced around tech blogs like 9to5Google, but there's no confirmation that this could happen. Google may just send out a downloadable patch to change a few features, rather than a full OS upgrade.
Microsoft's Surface tablet won't be the only hot Windows tablet in town. Sources say Sony will be showing off a sleek hybrid tablet this week called the Vaio Duo 11, which has a slide-out keyboard. In addition, a leaked image from Pocketnow shows it has a stylus pen.
Twitter will no longeridentify which app was used to send a tweet. For example, you may have seen a tweet saying it was sent via the web or sent with HootSuite. But Twitter rather not give outside apps any credit. It's a shame, since that info was pretty insightful; it revealed whether that person was using a phone, a scheduling app or some program that auto retweets.
There's a new Google TV box hitting the market. The small set-top box is called Pulse, made by Chinese hardware maker Hisense. It'll be $99 dollars goes on sale in November.
If you have trouble waking up, this Android app could do the trick. Sleep If U Can is an app that forces you to take a photo of something in your home to turn off the alarm. The photo must match up with a photo you previously loaded. You would most likely set it to be a photo of your coffee pot or the bathroom sink. But there is a snooze button, so it's not completely evil.