Gingerbread (Android 2.3.3) update now rolling out to Nexus S and Nexus One. Be patient, may take a few weeks for OTA to complete.
I know the “few weeks” line may be discouraging, but the time has finally come. Update.zip files will be hitting the web any minute now, but in the meantime how about we go over what the jump to 2.3.3 will include?
Among the usual graphical changes made to Android in Gingerbread — dark menus, status bar changes — there are four big changes being made to the Nexus family:
Nexus S full NFC support: The Nexus S has always had its NFC support held back a bit until now. With the update to 2.3.3, the NS will gain the ability to write NFC tags, and act as an NFC tag itself. The real innovation surrounding NFC is about to take off, we’ll certainly be keeping an eye on this.
Nexus S random reboots fixed: There’s not much that can be said about this one other than it’s about time.
Nexus S losing Facebook contact integration: Yes, you read that right. With the way things are managed right now, Google will be pulling the plug on Facebook contact integration on the Nexus S. In their words,
We believe it is very important that users are able to control their data. So in the over-the-air update for Nexus S, we have a small change to how Facebook contacts appear on the device. For Nexus S users who downloaded the Facebook app from Android Market, Facebook contacts will no longer appear to be integrated with the Android Contacts app. Since Facebook contacts cannot be exported from the device, the appearance of integration created a false sense of data portability. Facebook contact data will continue to appear within the Facebook app
From the way they’ve worded the rest of the comment on the situation, it doesn’t look like any other phones will be affected for now: “We are removing the special-case handling of Facebook contacts on Nexus S and future lead devices..” This could turn out to be rather interesting.
Nexus One and S gain WebM support: Google is going to be pushing their new video format hard this year, and first signs are already appearing — Android 2.3.3 contains support for WebM videos. Lots more on this to come.
Well there you have it. If you happen to own either Nexus device and land the OTA, be sure to let us know how it goes in the comments below.