Nov 18th, 2013

Last week, Motorola started notifying users about a new soak test for an upgrade that would be headed to handsets shortly. There was no indication as to what this upgrade could be, with the big camera fixing update having already been issued to folks across many different carriers. Well, we finally have a pretty good idea of what it is — it’s KitKat!

Motorola Moto X DSC00695

The latest information from Motorola’s feedback forums confirm as much. It’s interesting to note that this is for the Verizon version of the Moto X, which is pretty unreal: Big Red folks are usually always late to the party when it comes to major OS upgrades.

That the Moto X beat out the Nexus 4 and the Google Play Experience Galaxy S4 and HTC One is also noteworthy, though it’s imperative to remember that this is only a soak test. While Motorola didn’t expressly state that the rollout would happen today, they did say that folks should be seeing the OTA come in “very soon.”

With the release notes up and the subsection for the soak test created, we wouldn’t be surprised if Moto X users were enjoying a break before the sun went down tonight. We’ll be on the lookout for its arrival in the moments to come. Be sure to read on for the full release notes (which doesn’t really have many surprises other than official support for Square).

  • Android™ 4.4, KitKat®: Android 4.4, KitKat, is the latest release of the Android platform. KitKat includes enhancements such as restyled status and navigation bars, a new full-screen mode, color emoji support, improved closed captioning support, stronger security, smarter power use, and more tools and capabilities for better app development.
  • Phone dialer: Improved the phone app with the ability to look up contacts directly from the dial pad, see and tap frequent contacts, and search your corporate directory easily.
  • Camera – Focus and exposure: Enhanced the “touch to focus” option with a new circular, on screen control that can be dragged by your finger around the viewfinder to adjust a photo’s focus and exposure.
  • Gallery – Photo editing: Added new photo editing options to the Gallery app including new filter effects, draw on your photos, advanced cropping, and adjustments to color, exposure, contrast and more.
  • Hangouts – SMS/MMS support: Incorporated a new version of Google Hangouts that supports integrated SMS/MMS messaging. Hangouts can be set as the default SMS app under Settings > Wireless > Default SMS app.
  • Touchless Control – “Find my phone”: Added a new “Find my phone” command to Touchless Control. Just say “OK, Google Now—find my phone” and your Moto X will ring loudly to let you know where it’s hiding when you’ve misplaced it nearby.
  • NFC – Host card emulation: Enhanced support for NFC Host Card Emulation (HCE), to improve experiences such as contactless payments, loyalty plans, transit passes, card access and more. [Editor’s note: this means we can use Google Now for tap-to-pay!]
  • Accessory support: Added support for Square credit card reader
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