Friday, October 30, 2009

In HTC News

If I were HTC I’d be none-too-thrilled that the little ol’ Motorola DROID is getting all the Verizon love. The carrier has yet to officially confirm the Droid Eris’ existence to be exact. Images and specs of the Droid Eris, which is said to launch on Verizon the same day as the DROID, have been sprouting all over the blogsphere today. The Eris will come loaded with a 5-megapixel camera and Wi-Fi capabilities.

HTC has also confirmed it’s currently working on the Sense UI’s compatibility with the Android 2.0 (éclair) update for the Sprint’s Hero, but gave no indication as to when the update would be made available. The HTC Eris is the same device as the Hero (aside from reviews stating the Eris is “lighter, slimmer and faster” than the Hero). It only stands to reason that Verizon’s Eris would get the update along with Sprint’s Hero. That would make the Droid Eris a pretty sweet deal for a mere $99!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Verizon Droid Saga

We all know that Verizon Wireless is sinking some major Benjamin’s into the launch of the highly anticipated Motorola DROID, including an interactive Times Square experience among other things. Formerly known as the Sholes, the Motorola DROID is quite drool-worthy – especially for an Android device. I learned today that Droid isn’t just a device from Verizon Wireless, but the name of Verizon’s entire Android line. In laymen’s terms, DROID = phone; Droid = brand. Still confusing? Stick with me as I try to explain.

We first saw the HTC ‘Desire’ or ‘Hero’ in the hands of Google CEO Eric Schmidt at the Verizon/Android announcement. This HTC Sense UI running device, which is now being referred to as the HTC Droid Eris, will launch alongside the Motorola DROID on Nov. 6. You might be asking yourself, “Why didn’t Verizon officially announce the Eris with the DROID?” Obviously this device is far inferior to the DROID as it runs the outdated Android 1.5, but Verizon is making up for that with a $99 ticket price. This is an aggressive move for Verizon as Sprint is offering the HTC Hero for $179.99. It’s nice to see Verizon is making a range of Android devices available for customers with varied budgets.

Looking into the future I’d say it is smart for Verizon to build an Android brand under the Droid name, as it easily identifies a device no matter the manufacturer as both an Android and a Verizon device. Speaking from the present with all the hub-bub over the Motorola DROID and confusion concerning code-names for specific devices that are individual to each carrier, I’d say it’s downright confusing.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Today Belongs to BlackBerry

It’s not like this news comes as a surprise, but it’s nice to hear Verizon Wireless made the new BlackBerry Storm2’s arrival official. This Wednesday, Oct. 28 you can stop by your neighborhood Verizon store to pick up the device for $179.99 with the standard 2-year contract

inPulse to ship February 2010
This Bluetooth driven "smartwatch" will bring your incoming calls, emails, text messages, etc. to your wrist via a 1.3-inch OLED display. Bad news this watch is incapable of outgoing communication, but the 007 device has a microUSB port and rechargeable battery (last about 3 days) and a vibrating motor to indicate BlackBerry phone action! I think my favorite perk of the watch would be intercepting incoming caller information and deciding whether or not I would like to get up and walk to the other room to answer my phone. Some call it lazy but I call it technology. The inPulse can be pre-ordered now for $149 and slated for a February ship date.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Nokia N900 release pushed back to November

Nokia’s N900 was expected to debut this month, but according to Peter Schneider, head of Maemo marketing, the N900 will “start shipping during November 2009.” Although this means you will have to wait a little longer to get your hot-little-hands on Nokia’s latest superphone, I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing. It seems that a lot of manufacturers took note of the 2008 Verizon Blackberry Storm catastrophe and now err on the side of caution in an effort to not rush the release of a new device. According to Schneider, Nokia lent out 300 pre-production units to the community – and being a company that claims to value the importance of feedback, I think it is safe to assume there was some cleaning up to be done before the N900 makes its way to the masses. For more Nokia N900 information, hop on over to Engadget.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

More Dell Android Information Surfaces

Images of a prototype and basic specs for Dell’s Android device codenamed “Streak” have leaked onto the blogsphere, and this handset looks to be mammoth…in size, that is. Of course nothing is official as of yet, but the Streak has a whopping 5-inch WVGA 800 x 480 capacitive touchscreen – not exactly pocketable but attractive nonetheless. A front-facing camera on the bottom edge and the abnormally large screen points towards video conferencing capabilities. The Streak also comes equipped with a 5-megapixel camera with dual-LED flash, a 1,300mAh battery, and will run Android 2.0 (a.k.a Éclair). Dell is said to be testing prototypes on U.S. 3G networks. The phone looks sleek and could have a lot of potential, but will the size hold it back?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Motorola 'Calgary' Android device

Two Motorola Android devices will launch this quarter on the Verizon Wireless open network. It seems a device codenamed Calgary slipped out to Boy Genius Report complete with images. This will be a low-end device when it comes to smartphones. As you can see this device is not nearly as sleek or impressive as the Droid but is said to be a solid device running MOTOBLUR. The Calgary comes with a full QWERTY keyboard, 3-megapixel camera, GPS, WiFi and a 3.5mm headphone jack. In short, if you want an Android device but aren’t keen on all those fancy bells and whistles of the sleeker smartphones making their way onto Sprint and Verizon then the Motorola Calgary just might be for you.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Uncovering the DROID

This must be a sign of good things to come for the smartphone (especially the Android) industry – but is it knock-the-iPhone-off-its-pedestal good? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Boy Genius Report and Tech Crunch are both posting mini previews of the “DROID” formerly known as the Motorola Sholes. Motorola, Google and Verizon are all three said to have had a hand in the design of the latest Android device set to hit Verizon on Oct. 30. BGR reportedly had a hands-on moment with the DROID and said in a recent blog post that the device is “the Android device to beat, easily the most impressive…even in its non-final form [it’s] the most impressive phone we’ve used since the iPhone. It’s positively amazing.” Those are some pretty strong words of acclimation. While this phone might very well be impressive, it should be interesting to see how the device will fare on Verizon’s open network. In any case, it looks a lot better than the Motorola CLIQ.

So far we’ve been told that the device is running Android 2.0 and a killer Texas Instruments OMAP3430 processor (same chip as Palm Pre), has a super-slim slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and a huge, impressive capacitive touchscreen. Hopefully we’ll get some solid specs soon, but as of right now we’ll have to settle for the colorful commercials Verizon is pumping out.

Friday, October 16, 2009

T-Mobile's Motorola CLIQ gets reviewed

There are so many reviews over T-Mobile’s latest Android offering, the Motorola CLIQ, we thought it only fitting to do a little summary as well. Before we talk reviews, let’s talk specs:

- Android 1.5 Operating System
- Slide out QWERTY & virtual keyboard
- 320 x 480 HVGA Capacitive touchscreen
- Standalone GPS w/ internal antenna
- 5-megapixel camera with autofocus and geo-tagging
- 3.5mm headset jack
- MOTOBLUR syncs contacts, posts, messages, photos and much more – from sources such as Facebook, Twitter, Gmail and email.
- Removable 2GB MicroSD card, supports up to 32GB.

Build & Design:
Although the CLIQ is rather bulky in size, Boy Genius Report and ZDNet believe the high-quality materials and substantial build more than made up for it. Oddly enough Gizmodo says “the phone feels cheap,” so this seems to be a pretty subjective topic. The CLIQ’s keyboard is made of large round dome-like plastic keys which some might find a little off-putting. When it comes to the camera, the 5-megapixel camera performs pretty well – that is unless you’re trying to take a close-up. The CLIQ’s battery had trouble making it through the day – not unlikely for an Android device, especially one with cloud connectivity. The boys over at Engadget expressed the touchscreen was rather resistive, causing multiple mistakes and suggested it might be easier to just use the QWERTY. Another downside is the CLIQ isn’t running the latest Android platform yet.

This device seems to be all about the custom MOTOBLUR skin built over the Android platform. This software attempts to let you communicate seamlessly across all desired social media platforms. When you first turn on your device you’re prompted to set up your MOTOBLUR account. The next thing that happens is MOTOBLUR sinks ALL of your contact, and there is no way to stop this from happening. That’s right, every time you follow a stranger on twitter (that you would never need to contact via phone, or any other communication tool outside of twitter) they are synced into your contacts. The good news is there is a contact bar that allows you to sort through your contacts via source (i.e.; Facebook, Twitter, etc.). Also, the contacts application displays things like birthdays, recent status update, profile picture, email address, and phone number. Said to be a little overwhelming at times, the vast amount of BLUR branded widgets allow you to sustain connectivity 24/7. The interface is said to be very easy to customize. For more on the CLIQ’s widgets and UI check out the video below.

So there’s been a mix of reviews, and it really comes down to each individual. If you use your smartphone mainly for social media and texting, this device would be perfect for you. Chris Ziegler from Boy Genius Report said he would recommend the CLIQ over the G1, but overall it felt like a test-bed for another Motorola Android with great potential. In either case, I think the Motorola CLIQ is a step in the right direction, both for Android devices and Motorola.

Click here to get full reviews:
Boy Genius Review
PC World

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Acer announces its first Android device

Acer announced its first non-Windows Mobile smartphone today and it looks like it will be a monster. The new Acer Liquid will run on the Android 1.6 platform (aka Donut) powered by Qualcomm’s 1GHz Snapdragon processor. This sleek device has a large HD capacitive touchscreen as well as a 5-megapixel camera with autofocus and geo-tagging. Acer says the Liquid will come equipped with an enhanced user interface, and it seems as though Acer might market the Liquid as a social networker’s go-to gadget with automatic Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Picasa and Flickr integration. There weren’t any details about a release date, price or carrier support, but it looks like we have a race between HTC and Acer for the first Android device sporting the snappy Snapdragon.
[photo credit: Engadget]

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Want a free iPhone 3G S with a year subscription of Privus Mobile?

Privus Mobile is giving away an iPhone 3G S with a year subscription of its iPrivus Caller Name Lookup service. The winner will be drawn at random and is open to U.S. and Canadian residents (excluding Quebec). All you have to do is go to the Privus Mobile Web site and fill out the form with your correct contact information – the winner will be notified via email so if you use a fake one and Privus Mobile can’t contact you, obviously you can’t win. You must be 18 years or older and the limit is one entry per person. You have until Nov. 27 to enter, but why dilly-dally? Here are the Top 10 reasons to enter this season’s contest:

10.) You’re tired of getting prank-called on your dumbphone.

9.) You bought the iPhone 3G right before the 3G S came to AT&T, and you’re still a
little bitter that you don’t have video capability.

8.) You’re dying to be able to make a ringtone out of your favorite iTunes songs.

7.) While Little Timmy is sitting by the Christmas tree thanking his grandmother for the socks and underwear with a fake smile plastered across his face, you’re on the receiving end of a genuinely excited “thank you” after your grandson opens his new iPhone 3G S that you won from Privus Mobile.

6.) You get a tinge of jealousy every time you see Apple’s “We’ve got an app for that,” commercial.

5.) You want to impress your co-workers by looking up unknown numbers for them with your iPrivus-loaded iPhone.

4.) You’re ready to catch that pesky Harry Sasquatch in action!

3.) You’re still tapping away at a first-generation iPhone on the AT&T’s Edge network.

2.) You’re anxious to see if your old iPhone really blends.

1.) You really want the fastest selling smartphone of all time as well as a year subscription of Mobile Caller ID…for FREE!
Most people think they have Caller ID on their mobile phone, but the caller’s name is never displayed unless it is already saved into your contacts. Privus Mobile provides true Caller ID to the world’s most popular smartphone operating systems including Windows Mobile, Symbian S60, BlackBerry and Android OS as well as Apple’s iPhone. Want to give Privus Mobile a try? While you’re on the site entering the contest, check and see if your phone is on the site! Happy call-screening!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Privus Mobile for Windows Mobile gets free upgrade

Good news cometh for all of my Windows Mobile compadres. Privus Mobile released a free upgrade to its Windows Mobile Caller ID application enabling caller name lookup in addition to its enhanced Caller ID services. How many times has a friend or co-worker received a call from an unknown number and asked you, “Do you know who this is?” I don’t know about you but I wouldn’t even be able to call my own mother if her number wasn’t programmed into my phone. Now you can be the hero with Privus Mobile’s update! Once you’ve installed the update simply open the Privus Mobile application and input the unknown number as your friend reads it off…and presto! You’ve saved the day by identifying the unknown caller.

The update is free for all those who are currently subscribed to Privus Mobile, and if you haven’t experienced Privus Mobile yet you can download the updated version through Privus Mobile’s mobile site at or any of the numerous app dealers. Privus Mobile is available on BlackBerry, Symbian and Android devices as well as iPrivus for iPhones. You can also follow this link to set up your phone for a free 10-day trial. Don’t forget to tell us what you think!

Friday, October 9, 2009

HTC HD headed the the U.S. Q1 2010

I have to admit, I’ve had a little Europe envy creep up every time I read another rave review of the HTC Leo (a.k.a. HD 2), and with plenty of reason. Just take a look at these specs:

  • 4.3-inch 480x800 WVGA resolution touchscreen
  • Windows Mobile 6.5 Professional
  • HTC’s Sense UI
  • Standalone GPS
  • 5-megapixel auto focus camera with 2x LED flash
  • 3.5 mm headphone jack
  • microSD card slot with SDHC support
    [click here for full specs via Slash Gear]

According to Phone Area, HTC CEO Peter Chou reportedly put out a January stateside launch. When prodded, an HTC spokesperson said, “I should be fired it I can’t sell this device in the U.S..” Well there we have it folks, the HTC HD 2 should be arriving here Q1 2010. Which lucky carrier do you think we get the device?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

AT&T and T-Mobile set to get the BlackBerry Bold 2?

According to reports from Engadget and Phone Arena, it’s possible AT&T’s exclusivity with the BlackBerry Bold is coming to an end. Word is T-Mobile and AT&T will both announce the BlackBerry 9700 Bold 2 on Oct. 21 – making the Bold 2 T-Mobile’s first 3G BlackBerry device. There isn’t much change on the second go ‘round for this device. The 9700 has a trackpad in place of the staple BlackBerry trackball, an upgraded 3.2-megapixel camera, improved screen resolution and, potentially, gets early dibs on the 5.0 OS that should be coming out for the original Bold later this year. Maybe AT&T decided to let go of the Bold exclusivity to free up some more money to keep the iPhone? Either way, how many of you AT&T and T-Mobile users out there have got your eye on the Bold 2?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sprint and Samsung announce the Samsung Moment Android device

Today Sprint added Android device numero dos to its lineup with the announcement of the Samsung Moment. This Android device should please touchscreen and QWERTY keyboard fans alike as it has a 3.2-inch AMOLEAD touchscreen and a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. The Moment is powered by a monster 800MHz processor which should help the device smoothly run your Android applications of choice as well as the various Sprint services offered such as SprintTV, Sprint Navigation and NFL Mobile Live. The Moment allows you to use a 3.5mm headphone jack to enjoy all of your multimedia, and while you’re at it you can take a MySpace-style picture of yourself with its 3.2-megapixel camera. Samsung included Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS with the Moment and it can all be yours for $179.99 after a $100 mail-in-rebate and standard 2-year contract. If you’re excited about the Samsung Moment you can preorder it now on Sprint’s Web site or you can wait until Nov. 1 to pick it up in stores.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Verizon and Google make Android relationship official

It should come as no surprise Thanks to numerous rumors that have been flying around the blogsphere for quite some time now) that Verizon and Google sat down this morning at a joint press conference to announce its partnership. Verizon representatives said the new agreement with Google will “come to fruition within the next few weeks as Verizon Wireless introduces Android-based handsets.” Really? According to Engadget Mobile, Verizon and Google representatives where seen holding the HTC Hero and Motorola Sholes at the press-conference. Why not just announce it? In either case, Android devices will be on Verizon before you know it.

[image source: Engadget Mobile]

Monday, October 5, 2009

Windows Marketplace for Mobile now live

Windows Marketplace for Mobile is now open and available to all those who a) have purchased the AT&T HTC Pure, which was early out of the gates, or b) have somehow managed to get Windows Mobile 6.5 onto their existing Windows Mobile device. In either case, the marketplace is open and ready for business with a whopping 34 applications, many of which are fetching a pretty high price tag compared to the mobile app store staple 99 cents.

For all of those who have Windows Mobile 6.0 or 6.1 and have no plans to update your devices anytime soon, Windows Marketplace should be available for your personal enjoyment sometime next month. Microsoft will officially unveil Windows Mobile 6.5, Windows Marketplace and MyPhone tomorrow at the first annual consumer products open house.

In other mobile marketplace news, MobiHand's on-device Windows Mobile application store now makes it possible to browse, purchase and downloads apps straight to your device. Privus Mobile can be found on MobiHand so be sure to check that out while you're browsing MobiHand. Not familiar with Privus Mobile? Try a free, 10-day trial here.

Friday, October 2, 2009

AT&T receives HTC Pure shipments

We just read over at Engadget Mobile that shipments of the HTC Pure (AT&T’s branded version of the Touch Diamond2) have made their way to AT&T stores. There has been no official word on pricing, but several reports speculate about a $149.99 price point after a $50 mail-in rebate and 2-year contract. Microsoft initially mentioned the carrier would be a global launch partner for Windows Mobile 6.5 so we’re assuming this business-friendly device will be AT&T’s first Windows Mobile 6.5 device. Anyone interested in the Pure or would you rather have the Imagio or Touch Pro2?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Verizon announces Windows Mobile 6.5 equipped HTC Imagio

If you’re on the Verizon network and would like to get a Windows Mobile 6.5 device but aren’t so keen on the Touch Pro2, you’re in luck. Today the network announced the HTC Imagio which will arrive equipped and ready with Windows Mobile 6.5. The Imagio is a pretty solid smartphone by all standards with 3G and Wi-Fi capabilities, a 3.6-inch high resolution touch display, 5-megapixel auto-focus camera and MediaFLO live TV. This device even has a kickstand for optimal hands-free media viewing pleasure! The Imagio will be available Oct. 6 (the same day Windows Mobile 6.5 debuts) for $199 after mail-in rebate and a 2-year contract. If you're in the middle of a Privus Mobile contract but would like to switch over to a Windows Mobile 6.5 device, never fear. You can simply download the application onto your new phone using your previous registration code and you're good to go! Not familiar with Privus Mobile? Click here to download a free trial now!

October 6 also happens to be the start of Microsoft’s first consumer products open house event for invited members of the press and analysts in New York City. The event will showcase Microsoft’s new My Phone or “Skybox” service for storing and accessing mobile-phone information (much like Apple’s Mobile Me) as well as the new Windows Marketplace for Mobile. After losing around 9 percent of its mobile operating system market share in the second quarter of 2009, I’m sure the folks over at Microsoft are hoping this will breathe some new life into Microsoft’s mobile devices.