Items tagged with Phone

“Can you hear me now? Good.” These days, it’s uncommon for us to leave our houses without our smartphones. They’ve become an indispensable tool that we use to communicate, conduct business and “veg out” in our downtime. About the only thing worse than venturing out into the world without our smartphone by our side is actually having our smartphones and staring at a “low battery” warning. However, researchers from the University of Washington are looking to make batteries a thing of the past when it comes to mobile phones. The team has developed a phone that uses “almost zero power” according to associate professor Shyam Gollakota, who co-authored a paper which detailed the breakthrough. So how... Read more...
Bold. That’s the word that comes to mind when we consider Amazon’s Fire Phone. In a world where precious little has happened in the smartphone space over the past few years, at least in terms of groundbreaking innovation, Amazon’s entrance provides all the spark you need to sit up and pay attention. These days, a major OEM doesn’t just enter the smartphone space. Apple and Samsung have dominated market share and profits for years, squeezing BlackBerry out almost entirely and putting HTC on life support. Nokia, meanwhile, is stutter-stepping as Microsoft begins a massive series of layoffs that’ll no doubt impact the future of Lumia going forward. So what’s Amazon,... Read more...
We've heard rumblings of this happening for some time, and it looks like the fire has finally been properly lit: the European Union is one step closer to passing a law that would mandate a single, universal charger for mobile device sin order to "reduce waste, costs, and hassle for users." It's a move that we certainly applaud, and we wish it would've happened years ago. The "common charger" for all phones would essentially stop fragmentation in one area of the physical make-up of phones. The law would also impact car-door openers and modems, and the rules are being developed as to keep pace with form factor innovation and not hinder creativity on that front. The draft law was approved by 550... Read more...
HTC's quarterly earnings just rolled in, and they are pretty far from the modern definition of "rosey." But, that's not exactly a surprise given the firm's stuggles in recent quarters. There are multiple schools of thought when it comes to the idea of getting HTC back on track; the company makes outstanding hardware that's generally well-reviewed, but they just can't seem to shake the 800-pound gorilla known as Samsung when it comes to mindshare (and in turn, market share). Now, according to a Bloomberg report, Microsoft is knocking on HTC's door with a nugget of hope: it wants to add Windows Phone to HTC's Android-based phones "at little or not cost." HTC was a prior Windows Phone partner, and... Read more...
Free phones are everywhere, really. For years now, downmarket handsets have been given away for $0.00 with a new two-year agreement, as a means to milk customers for subscription fees while enticing them with a gratis handset. Even smartphones, if aged enough, can fall to that magical free price point, but this is different. A new report suggests that Amazon could be building a high-end phone that it would give away for free. Of course, Amazon is unique in the technology industry. It barely turns a profit, yet its stock price is crushing it, customers love it, and it's expanding like crazy. Amazon has tried unconventional pricing methods before, most recently with its ad-supported Kindle sales.... Read more...
Apple's Find my iPhone has been a very useful feature for those who frequently misplace their gadgets. Or, for those who just enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing that Apple has a piece of technology dedicated to securing a lost phone. Android and iOS have been going back and forth battling over feature inclusions for some time now, and it looks like Google's the follower in this case. The company just introduced the Android Device Manager, which as you may suspect, will help Android users track down lost devices in a similar manner. If you ended up dropping your phone between those couch cushions, Android Device Manager lets you quickly ring your phone at maximum volume so you can... Read more...
Phablet? Tablet? Phone? Perhaps the designation doesn't even matter any longer. With phones like the Note 8.0 and Note II blurring the edges of what's too large to make a phone call, Huawei is introducing a mondo phone of its own. The MediaPad 7 Vogue is a 7" device, sized up similarly to the Nexus 7, but it offers a voice radio as well as a data radio. It's built from an aluminum unibody frame and features a quad-core 1.2GHz processor CPU and 16-core GPU, a 3G modem, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, and a 4100mAh battery. It measures 9.5mm thick and weighs 335 grams, and the display offers a 1024 x 600 native resolution. It ships with Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean), and also includes a micro-USB port, Bluetooth... Read more...
Here's something you don't see everyday: a smartphone that's sourced "ethically." With all of the hubbub surrounding Foxconn, sweatshop labor and questionable working conditions for the people producing the electronics we buy on a regular basis, Fairphone is hoping to do for phones what has already been done in the world of diamond mining and coffee trading. Based in the Netherlands, Fairphone began around three years ago as a means to produce a phone that was free of conflict minerals, and it has since evolved into an actual hardware start-up. And as of this month, they're opening up pre-orders to those who would love to put their money up in support of such a cause. The company needs 5,000... Read more...
If we're being totally honest, we all knew at some point a company would eventually release a mobile phone aimed at the 4-year-old demographic, right? Kids keep busy schedules these days, juggling weekend play dates and grueling hours at pre-school with visits to grandma's house. What happens if there's an emergency, like spilled milk or what appears to be a life-threatening boo-boo from falling off the jungle gym? Suddenly a mobile phone for kids doesn't seem so silly, does it? Okay, so maybe there's no way to dance around the fact that no 4-year-old kid needs a mobile device, but doggone it, if they happen to live in the U.K., they can get one anyway. It's called the 1stFone and it's made by... Read more...
You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone that could convince us the landline industry is a growing one. By and large, people are turning to mobile phones (and mobile phones alone) for their calling needs, but that's not stopping wireline providers like AT&T from continuing to milk whatever is left. Verizon actually tried something similar with the ill-fated Hub a few years ago, and now AT&T is introducing the Wireless Home Phone in order to give its customers another option for at-home calling. It's a no-commitment phone with a prepaid service option, which allows AT&T mobile users to complete calls from their existing home phone handset using the AT&T wireless network instead of... Read more...
These days, it's not tough to find a case for your smartphone. In fact, the world is overrun with them. But try finding an official LEGO case -- it's not an easy as you may think. But for fans of those popular building bricks, Belkin has some great news. The accessory company has just announced a licensing deal with the LEGO Group, which will allow Belkin to produce a new line of cases inspired by those bricks. Starting in spring 2013, Belkin will launch a variety of smartphone cases incorporating Belkin's quality product design with LEGOs. The initial line will obviously focus on iOS products (iPhone and iPod touch, namely), but other platforms will be included in the future. And yes, if you're... Read more...
Google knows all about dealing with regulations. The company seems to be up against various governments all the time, mostly over privacy issues revolving around cookies, Street View, or just how much Google knows about you. The company also had to deal with a fair amount of red tape when setting up its Fiber initiative in Kansas City, MO and Kansas City, KS. But according to a new report from the region, things could've been much stickier had it gone for a triple-play bundle. Right now, those in the the two cities can grab a fiber-based TV and Internet package from Google. Pricing is outstanding, and speed / quality is insane. Those two cities are the envy of the Internet nation right now. But... Read more...
The first Windows Phone 8 handsets are trickling out, and for those anxious to see what Microsoft has been cooking up in terms of Skype integration, now's your turn. Microsoft has today released a Skype Preview for WP8 (version 2.0). According to the company, this Preview build will give users "all of the Skype basics in the new, modern design along with many of the new features such as integration with the People Hub and a combined contact list with buddies from Windows Live Messenger. Additionally, you'll start receiving some call and message notifications - even when the app is closed and in the background." You can get started by downloading the program from the Windows Phone Store, but Microsoft... Read more...
Our mobile devices can enrich our lives, but it goes without saying that caveats can still creep up, ranging in effect from a minor annoyance to a borderline meltdown. One such scenario, I can relay from experience. You're standing in line at a super-market, your phone begins ringing - which for some reason is louder than usual. You fiddle around with it frantically, and either the UI or the phone itself lags, totally inundated with your rapid button-pushes. All the while, you manage to stress yourself out while annoying everyone around you. In my particular experience, I had to resort to pulling the battery out - something not possible on all devices. I'm sure I'm not alone with that experience,... Read more...
Well, that's not good. As if Research in Motion really needed any more bad news, the BlackBerry handset maker is now dealing with a massive $147.2 million verdict. Late in the week, a NorCal jury directed RIM to cough up the aforementioned sum in order to settle up in a patent lawsuit. The suit was brought by Mformation Technologies, and the litigation was involving a "remote management system for wireless devices." There's really never a good time to hear that you owe someone nearly $150m, but it's super, super poor timing for RIM. The company's stock has sank like a stone in recent months, and recently they announced that it'd be 2013 before a BlackBerry 10 device would ship. Based on the verdict,... Read more...
In the smartphone game, it's Apple, then Samsung pulling in the profits. And then, there's HTC. The company has long since been at the head of the mobile pack in terms of hardware design, and even its Sense user interface has improved dramatically over time. And now, the company will be moving forward with a new leader in North America. Former AT&T executive Mike Woodward has been picked to be HTC's new President of North America, starting immediately. The role, which is responsible for HTC's sales, marketing and operations for the United States and Canada, reports to Jason Mackenzie, the president of global sales and marketing at HTC. HTC's strategy has been questioned a bit in recent months.... Read more...
Wondering who all is winning the smartphone sprint right about now? There's a survey for that. ABI Research has just published its latest figures on the matter, showing that although smartphone shipments grew 41% year-over-year to 144.6 million as of the quarter ending March 2012, many smartphone OEMs are not enjoying the benefits of a rapidly expanding market. Samsung and Apple captured 55% of global smartphone shipments in 1Q'2012 and over 90% of the market's profits. In other words, if you aren't Samsung or Apple, is it even worth being in this market? That's something that we're sure the executives at LG, HTC and Samsung are pondering. Of the top ten smartphone OEMs, only Samsung and Sony... Read more...
This is pretty crazy. But it's so crazy, that it just might work. While Apple shirts from the opening of new Apple Stores are tough to come by (and in turn, nice to have for an eBay turnaround), Microsoft really hasn't gone down that same path. But why not now? Metro's user interface is just gorgeous, so why not showcase some of Windows' newness on a new line of clothing? Now you can. The Windows Team has started up a CafePress section where you can grab clothes, magnets, stickers and other nifty gifts with "I HEART WINDOWS PHONE" plastered across them... in graphical form, no less. It's actually a fairly awesome corporate splash, and one of the few we'd consider wearing. What about you? Have... Read more...
Is Facebook going to finally make a smartphone? It's apparently in the cards once more. Rumors flared years back that a "Facebook phone" was en route, and some suggested that HTC's Status was a watered-down version of that dream. But now that Facebook is a public company, with billions to work with an ambitions that are running high, why not try again? According to a New York Times report, Facebook could be trying to match the smartphone giants with a phone of its own. Reportedly, Facebook has hired a few folks who touched the iPhone at one point or another over at Apple, and if all goes to plan, it could release the phone as early as next year. "Half a dozen" former Apple employees now work... Read more...
There’s a new Xperia phone coming from Sony, the Xperia sola, and it comes packing some interesting features. Most notably, the Xperia sola features “floating touch”, which allows users to navigate the Web browser by hovering a digit about the screen as opposed to actually touching it, creating a sort of cursor-like experience. A physical tap is akin to clicking a link. Sony stated in the press release that it will continue to evolve as new use cases are discovered and devs add to and improve the technology. The phone also sports NFC Xperia SmartTags, little dog tag-like devices that can be set up to perform certain commands such as turning WiFi or launching certain apps, and... Read more...
Sony took the wraps off of two new phones at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the Xperia U and Xperia P. As reported by GSM Arena, the brushed unibody aluminum P features a 4-inch screen (540x960) with special technology for visibilty in sunlight, NFC capabilities, an 8MP camera that shoots 1080p HD video, and runs on a NovaThor U8500 processor. Image credit: GSM Arena The Xperia U looks to be a little more “blingy”, possibly to appeal to the kiddos, with a transparent band at the bottom of the device that changes color. Otherwise, it has a 1GHz processor, 3.5-inch (480x854) screen, 5MP camera (720p HD video), and Sony’s xLOUD technology. The U and P join the Xperia S in... Read more...
Samsung clearly has a good thing going with their Galaxy line of phones and tablets, so why slow down the fun? Prior to Mobile World Congress, the company is introducing two new handsets in the Galaxy line: the Galaxy Ace 2 and the Galaxy Mini 2. Te Ace 2 offers HSPA 14.4 connectivity, 4GB of internal storage, a 1,500mAh battery as well as enhanced Samsung Hubs and ChatON services. There's a 3.8" HVGA display, Android 2.3, an 800MHz dual-core CPU, 5MP camera (VGA front cam), a 3.5mm headphone jack, GPS, Bluetooth 3.0, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi, and a digital compass. The Mini 2 packs an 11.9mm thick casing, a 3.27" HVGA touchpanel, 1,300mAh battery, 4GB of storage, an 800MHz CPU, Android 2.3 as well as... Read more...
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