Feature phones – remember them? We're pretty sure Sony Ericsson does, as it's made plenty of them over the years.
And it's clearly not stopping now, either – despite all the talk about lining up its efforts almost exclusively behind smartphones. It's just unveiled two new faces to its feature phone line-up via Facebook that are set to launch over the next few months, and neatly tie together a couple of other SE rumours we've been talking about lately.Click here to read more...
Companies like Apple tend to file patents thick and fast to protect potential innovations, but we've just spotted one over on Geeky Gadgets that could be a real drawcard to future iPhones, iPads and the like. It describes a way of directing the light beams from the display in a specific direction, effectively allowing you to keep what's on screen very much for your eyes only.
For our money it's the best Android smartphone we've seen so far, and now Vodafone has taken the number of UK networks selling the Samsung Galaxy S II on contract to three.
The red-topped provider joins Three and O2 in offering the dual-core superphone on contract deals, leaving just Everything Everywhere sidekicks Orange and T-Mobile as the only two networks still languishing in Coming Soon Land.Click here to read more...
There seems to be an odd battle to the bottom going on right now over in the US between the Motorola Xoom and BlackBerry PlayBook, both of which have taken a real pasting in the press from various quarters. The latest story, reports Slashgear, is that one retailer reckons the PlayBook has missed internal sales targets by as much as 90%, and that returns are “much higher” than for the Xoom, a story which – naturally – RIM dismisses completely.
Thought clamshell phones were one of yesterday's fads? Time will tell. Sharp has just launched its Aquos 007SH clamshell smartphone over in Japan, MobileCrunch reports, which claims the honour of being the first ever Android clamshell handset. The first of many? We have our doubts.
Big phones with big screens are all the rage these days, but that wasn't always the case. BGR reports that Google has been given the green light to purchase a bunch of patents off defunct Israeli outfit Modu, a firm that came up with a tiny mobile phone concept in 2008 that could be placed inside a variety of larger sleeves. No sign yet as to what Google's interest might be, but Android engineers will no doubt be poring over the patents with beady eyes before too long.
The goodness that is Google Maps used to be something you had to access through a dedicated app, but according to Android Community, that's now changed. After seeing just how many people were using the service from mobile devices, the big G has decided to simplify the process and Maps is now accessible directly from any mobile browser.
Android's tablet and smartphone strains are going to have to agree to disagree until Ice Cream Sandwich comes along later in the year to bring them back together.
But it turns out Google has actually tucked away Gingerbread's interface inside Honeycomb, and to switch one to the other requires nothing more than a simple tweak to a system file.Click here to read more...
Nokia's debut Windows Phone 7 smartphones look set to come packing ST-Ericsson processors when they land later this year, an exec on the board of the chip-maker has claimed.
Speaking to Forbes, STMicroelectronics CEO Carlo Bozotti – who also sits on the ST-Ericsson board – reckons Nokia has given the company the nod as one of its two chip suppliers of choice for its WinPho offerings.Click here to read more...
Oh look, someone's coming out with a new Android tablet. Cos we haven't had one of those in a while, have we? This time it's Fujitsu, and it's a 7in affair, DigiTimes tells us. It'll come packing a nice refreshing blend of Android Honeycomb and... oh, why bother?
We really seem to have been waiting forever for the LG Optimus 3D. The more, ahem, optimistic predictions said end of April, then we had it on good authority that we were looking at end of May. Things have now moved forward a little, with news that Everything Everywhere partners Orange and T-Mobile have put up Coming Soon pages for the lesser-spotted 3D handset. But without even the hint of an actual predicted launch date, we're pretty sure that May will be long behind us before the Optimus 3D actually arrives, especially with not a word about it on the other networks' sites.
A couple of weeks ago we revealed news that Sony Ericsson was cooking up the Xperia Mini Pro, a pint-sized Android handset with a QWERTY keyboard tucked away underneath. At the time we reckoned it was set to land sometime in the third quarter, but O2 has just slapped up a Coming Soon page claiming a launch date of just next month. We can but only hope.
There's nothing quite like pure speed, and for the latest in blistering smartphone performance we give you the perfectly named Pantech Vega Racer with its 1.5GHz dual-core processor. It sounds like an Italian supercar, or a Korean knock-off of one anyway, and that's exactly where this high-speed Android phone has been announced. For more on this superfast superphone, point your browsers at Engadget.
Whoever said BlackBerry users weren't hip with the latest trends? Certainly not us, not with the announcement from RIM that Twitter 2.0 for BlackBerry OS has graduated from beta and is now a fully fledged app. Head over to the BlackBerry App World for all the details.
We've just finished reviewing the Dell Venue Pro smartphone, and now we're hearing confirmation that a 10in tablet big brother called the Dell Streak Pro is on its way next month. According to Geeky Gadgets, the bigger-screened alternative to the current Dell Streak 7 will feature the usual Honeycomb / Tegra 2 / dual cameras combo we've become so familiar with recently. The news confirms an anonymous roadmap tip-off last month suggesting pretty much the same thing.
We've said from the start there were no signs that the HTC Evo 3D will find its way to the UK, so naturally we're now hearing that just the opposite may in fact be true. PocketNow reports that Vodafone is being lined up to carry the handset, with a launch pencilled in for July 11. The catch is it'll be landing without the all-important 3D part.
And so the NFC juggernaut inches a little further forward: mobile provider O2 has announced a new range of partners for its mobile payments services, and says it is “committed to launching a mobile wallet service during the second half of 2011”.
The platform will provide the latest evolution in the payment services offered by the network, and looks likely to include support for NFC payments on smartphones with the technology on board.Click here to read more...
Interesting story over on the Financial Times site: EU regulators have ruled this week that location information collected by smartphones should be classed as personal data, which given Android and iOS' recent track record on the matter could lead to some interesting debates ahead about just what data phones are legally entitled to store without getting into legal hot water.
Look, it's actually not a bad idea, but we can't help but feeling Nokia is setting itself up for some serious abuse with its latest initiative.
It's called on inventors, self-styled or otherwise, to submit ideas and suggestions for how its mobile phones or services can be improved. The name of the project? Invent with Nokia, of course.Click here to read more...