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5 years ago

Qualcomm all about LTE now

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Qualcomm all about LTE now

Qualcomm wants to stay ahead of the game or at least with the changing times and as a result they have decided to cancel development of Ultra Mobile Broadband products and focus on LTE instead. Long Term Evolution will be playing a major part in the way we use our mobile devices in the future to feed our internet needs. Big guns like AT&T and Verizon have already joined the club.

Sampling for the new multi-mode chips are already in action meaning we might see some devices, if not the network itseof, in 2009. Slap these new chips in some hot devices coupled with a 20 Meg connection and you have yourself one powerful combination. The future looks bright for our mobile devices and with WiMAX coming in, we might just have broadband speeds on our mobiles sooner than we thought. Great job Qualcomm. Guess this means that it's time to start agitating for 5G, innit?

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5 years ago

Alltel Touch Pro dropping this week

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Alltel Touch Pro dropping this week

We'd originally put out a BOLO on the Alltel Touch Pro for Nov. 14 or so. Obviously that's passed. Now we're being told to look for it this Thursday, Nov. 20.

Still no official word on pricing, though we'd previously been told around $300. But it could well be more, given that Verizon, which as we all know has swallowed up Alltel, reportedly will sell its Touch Pro for $350.

Update: OK, the Alltel Touch Pro's now available for pre-sale at Best Buy for a whopping $999. That better be a typo. Other pricing is as follows:

  • Two-Year Price: $379.99, with a $100.00 mail-in rebate, resulting in a final price of $279.99
  • One-Year Price: $439.99
  • Non-Contract Price: $599.99
  • Prepaid Price: Not available for prepaid

More pics after the jump.

And thanks, Brandon, for the heads up!

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5 years ago

Xperia X1a makes an appearance at the FCC

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Xperia X1a makes an appearance at the FCC

We've already mentioned that the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1a (or the SEX1a as Malatesta's taken to calling it) is available for pre-order at Best Buy for the low, low price of $1 million $800 (albeit unlocked).

Now we bring mention of the X1a's romp through the Federal Communications Commission [via Engadget Mobile], including some obligatory FCC-style candid external and internal shots. (Warning: pdf links.)

So head on over to the FCC site if you're wanting to take a look at just what makes this guy tick. And then try to figure out how you can justify that much money for the thing.

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5 years ago

Adobe to Demo Flash Player 10 on WM

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Adobe to Demo Flash Player 10 on WM

We already know that the next version of Internet Explorer, “6 on 6,” is pretty ho-hum except for this little tidbit: Flash Lite support. That means many flash videos will work just fine and that pleases us. Doesn't make Adobe happy enough, though, as they're planning on demoing Flash Player 10 on Windows Mobile today. That's the full flash there, kiddos. Of course, Adobe may also feel that their hand is forced -- they can't let Silverlight get the jump on 'em.

It's a testament to the power, flexibility, and openness of Windows Mobile that Adobe is able just go ahead and do this thing. That ought to be something you could take for granted, but of course if we're talking about Flash and Mobile the ongoing iPhone drama is always in the background. According to Adobe, “it is really up to Apple” to allow them to ship a Flash Player for the platform.

We'll be talking a bit more about this open vs. closed issue when it's our turn with the iPhone for the Smartphone Round Robin

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5 years ago

Net Neutrality Advocates Part of new U.S. Administration (Hooray!)

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So while we don't get too much into politics and general telecommunications news, the issue of "Network Neutrality" is highly relevant for all you WMExperts out there. And make no mistake about it: we here at WME strongly advocate the "dump pipe" model for mobile internet access.

Net Neutrality, for those who aren't in the know, is basically what we have now: your ISP cannot dictate what computer, software, OS you use to access the Internet and they cannot arbitrarily control network speeds, giving primacy to their own content while shafting their competitors (although Bittorent has thrown a wrench into this i.e. "traffic shaping").

However all is not well, as many ISPs (AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner and even Sprint/XOHM) are either advocating or flat out implementing restrictions on how you can use the internet. This is what many in the industry (Amazon.com, Microsoft, Google, Intel, Skype, Yahoo, etc.) all fear, as it takes the choice away from the consumer and gives the power to the ISPs. Those against net-neutrality are even getting bills passed in their favor to benefit their interests. Yikes.

(Still unsure of what is at stake and what all of this means? Click here to get a primer.)

Good news though: President-elect Obama has appointed two net neutrality advocates to their FCC review team (they guide the President on pertinent FCC issues). While this doesn't guarantee a positive outcome in this debate, it sure feels a lot better.

Considering Windows Mobile users are literally at the cutting edge of mobile technology--we're arguably the most open and unrestricted of the iPhone/Android/RIM crowd--this issue of net neutrality is what drives our community, resulting in a trickle down effect for everyone else. Bringing things back to mobile -- the line between your broadband pipe for your desktop and your mobile internet is inevitably going to blur in the future, so it's going to apply. Even if we're wrong on that prediction, more restrictions on your desktop would likely make it easier to add restrictions to mobile broadband.

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5 years ago

Announcing the Smartphone Round Robin!

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Announcing the Smartphone Round Robin!

(Instead of giving you a roundup of last week's news, today I'm excited to give you a glimpse into the news you're going to see at our Smartphone Experts sites over the next two months! -- Dieter)

We are pleased to announce the Smartphone Round Robin!. Each year the editors of the Smartphone Experts family of sites literally trade their phones to see what life is like on the "other side." What you're going to see over the course of the next two months is each of our five SPE Community Editors reviewing smartphones that they're not used to using. Each editor has a checklist of "Must-Dos" that ensure they're getting the full experience with each smartphone. It's quite a ride.

Read on for more on the Smartphone Round Robin and for details on how you can win one of five Smartphone Prize Packs!

More importantly for you, at the end of the Smartphone Round Robin we will be giving away five smartphones -- one from each site! All you need to do to qualify is post a response to any official Round Robin thread in our forums or comment on a Round Robin blog post (with a valid email address). Be sure to check out the Full contest rules for more information. Huge thanks go out to our Round Robin Sponsors: Palm, Celio (makers of the Redfly), Case-Mate, and Smartphone Outlet. Here's what you can win:

So don't just sit back and watch -- participate! You can check out a full list of all of the latest Blog posts and Forum posts on our Smartphone Round Robin Updates Page. There are chances to chat and win right now as our editors have already started asking questions in our forums. Finally, if you're an RSS user, you can track the whole event from our RSS Feed or even get daily email updates.

So head on into our forums and help us out this week and every week through the end of the year -- there's no better way to both spread the word about your favorite Smartphone or to learn more about what those other smartphones are all about. Or heck, we'll kick things off here too, this is an official Round Robin post, comment here for your chance to win an HTC Fuze!

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5 years ago

Samsung Saga Gets Official on Verizon

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Samsung Saga Gets Official on Verizon

Verizon has officially announced the Samsung Saga, after long months of rumors about the i770/Saga. Specs are just what we'd expected: namely it's a Windows Mobile 6.1 Pro device with a 320x320 touchscreen (2.55“), front-facing QWERTY, WiFi, Bluetooth, 2MP camera, a 1300 mAh battery, and a SIM card slot for EDGE access around the world. Go on an read the press release if you have doubts. They also tossed in Opera Mobile (we're not sure on the version yet) and the same sort of Samsung touches we saw on the Epxi. Yes, that includes the optical mouse, which we're guessing is pretty much going to be standard on Samsung WinMo devices for the foreseeable future, for good or ill. Mostly ill.

You can pick it up online right now for $199 after rebates, or wait until December 1st to grab it in a brick and mortar store.

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5 years ago

Messenger Applications: Bringing Everything Under One Roof

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5 years ago

WMExperts Takes On the BlackBerry Bold

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5 years ago

Treo Pro Case Round up. Part Two: Vertical Cases

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In Part One of this three part series I reviewed horizontal cases for the Treo Pro. Now we move to vertical cases for the Pro. Which style of case is best is purely subjective, often changing from individual to individual. While the horizontal case rides higher on the hip, the vertical case extends below the belt line. Some find this to be uncomfortable while others prefer the narrower width.

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5 years ago

Verizon Touch Pro: Different (and Slower?) Than Sprint's Version

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Apologies for the two-post-in-a-row on the Verizon Touch Pro, but BGR's recent leak and some reports, conversations, and investigations here at WMExperts lead us to a disappointing conclusion: It's looking more and more likely that the Verizon Touch Pro could to be slower and less powerful than the Sprint Touch Pro.

We're going to go a little slowly here because we haven't seen the Verizon Touch Pro in person so we can't be definitive. What we'll do is build the case that the Verizon Touch Pro isn't identical to the Sprint version, which isn't the standard modus operandi for these sorts of things, then we'll get into the performance issues.

In other words, there's a lot to dig through here. Join us after the break.

Processor

We've confirmed via Hobbes' review that the Sprint Touch Pro sports the Qualcomm MSM7501a proc clocked at 528MHz.

According to BGR's leaked documents and what we've seen elsewhere, the Verizon Touch Pro has the MSM7500A clocked at 528MHz. You can read up a bit on the MSM chip series in our Insider Interview, but for now, the only functional different that we know of between the MSM7501a and the MSM7500a is that the MSM7501a is the special version of the MSM7500a that was developed to help get around all those Broadcomm patent problems we've been tracking over the course of the year. Even though the import ban has been vacated (for now), it's a safe bet to say that the Verizon Touch Pro was in development well before that happened and nobody wanted to take a chance. So Verizon could have gone with the MSM7201a like the Sprint version, but it looks like they went with the MSM7500a for whatever reason. They can do that, it turns out, because Verizon agreed to pay Broadcomm the blood money licensing fee to import the chips in question.

Finally, we're confident in saying that, despite earlier reports, the Verizon Touch Pro will be clocked in at 528MHz.

Got all that? Bottom line: the Verizon Touch Pro has the MSM7500a and it's clocked at 528MHz. Which is one part of building the case that the Verizon Touch Pro is not identical to the Sprint version.

Keyboard and Body

If that doesn't convince you that the two aren't identical, how about your lying eyes? Here's an image of the Verizon Touch Pro courtesy of Phone Arena:

Count the keys there, 5 tall by 10 wide, minus your spacebar taking up two to get 49 keys. Here's the Sprint Touch Pro courtesy of Hobbes' Sprint Touch Pro Gallery:

5 tall by 12 wide, minus extra spaces taken up by shift and space, brings up up to 57 keys. Add in the fact that we've got a square body compared to Sprint's rounded body and, well, we have what appear to be fundamentally different devices.

Memory

Finally, there are the reports of differing memory. We have pretty much confirmed that the Verizon Touch Pro has 192mb RAM and 512 of ROM compared to the Sprint Touch Pro's 288/512. While 192mb should be plenty, when you throw TouchFLO into the mix things get a bit dicier. Still, that's not enough for us to say that the Verizon Touch Pro will be slower.

In all, we have different processors, different keyboards, different bodies, and different memory. The Verizon Touch Pro is not the same thing as the Sprint Touch Pro, rebranded for Verizon. Finally, there's the grainycam video of the Verizon Touch Pro.

Performance

Now, finally, we get to the nut of what we wanted to say here: we've received a couple hands-on reports that claim that the Verizon Touch Pro feels slower than the Sprint Touch Pro. Now, these things are very subjective and likely based on fleeting interactions, but there it is. We also see a forum post by 8notime PDAPhoneHome that adds to the pile:

I got to play with a Verizon Pro today and am said to report that they crippled it quite a bit. It uses a Qualcomm 7500 Processor & has 192 Mb of RAM. It was not as responsive to finger swipes/presses and really lagged in rotating the screen when you opened the keyboard.

It is also taller and very square.

The TF3D is a horrible shade of grey with red highlighted icons.

Why Verizon and/or HTC decided to make an entirely different model for Verizon than they did for Sprint (or, alternatively, a different model for Sprint than they did for Verizon, depending on which went into development first) is beyond our ability to explain. These sorts of strategic decisions are better made by people who actually work for these companies and understand the internals better than we. Perhaps it's related to Verizon's agreement with Broadcomm, perhaps it's something else.

We also can't say for sure that either the processor or the smaller amount of RAM accounts for these reports of slower performance. Performance on Windows Mobile devices is dependent on way too many factors -- from ROM Build to clock speed to installed software to, as we say, the phases of the moon -- for us to say that the Verizon Touch Pro is “crippled.”

All we will say is that we're going to have to watch this thing closely on its November 24th release. It's not a safe assumption that it will look, act, or perform exactly like its Sprint or AT&T cousins, it will have to stand on its own.

Update: Oh yeah, one last bit. We expect the Verizon Touch Pro to have GPS, we also expect it will be locked to VZW Navigator and not available to other apps like Live Search or Google Maps. We're less sure on that one, so cross your fingers.

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5 years ago

Touch Pro to Hit Verizon Nov 24th, Stores Dec 1st?

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Looks like Verizon will join Sprint and AT&T in offering HTC's latest and greatest, the Touch Pro. Engadget Mobile snagged the internal document detailing a November 24th launch and December 1st store-availability. The price will be steep at $350 after all the mail-in rebates and a 2 year contract.

Phonenews has the launch date and price set the same. They're pegging the RAM (though they list it as ROM) at 192MB, which is the only difference we can see, spec-wise, from the Sprint model. It seems a little odd to us that HTC would make two different CDMA versions of the Touch Pro, but that's the latest info out there right now. The processor is not “crippled,” as we told you before, hopefully this 192mb spec will turn out to be false as well.

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5 years ago

PSA: HTC's ExtUSB Works with Regular MiniUSB

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Now that the Sprint Touch Diamond, Sprint Touch Pro, and HTC Fuze on AT&T are out, we have a quick Public Service Announcement that may strike some as unnecessary and others as essential. These devices (and others including the T-Mobile G1) have a port that HTC calls “ExtUSB,” which stands for “Extended USB.” It's a special kind of MiniUSB port that happens to have some extra pins in there for audio-out and (in some cases) video out.

Here's the PDA: Standard MiniUSB cables and chargers work just fine with ExtUSB, even though it doesn't look like it when you look at the port on the phone. We've been getting reports from people that these plugs sure don't look compatible and we don't blame them, because it's true that they don't necessarily look it. But they are, just plug that MiniUSB in and away you go charging or syncing.

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5 years ago

HTC MAX 4G Announced: WiMAX, GSM, 480x800, Russian-Only

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Remeber that T8290 that leaked out last month? We don't blame ya if you don't -- it's a device that is slated only for the Russian Market. Still and all, it's a very interesting device as it's the first real Windows Mobile Smartphone we're aware of that packs WiMAX. HTC has announced it will be available on November 26th and, well, you should be jealous.

The MAX 4G sports GSM and EDGE, sure, but it also does WiMAX and VOIP on the Scartel (aka Yota) network. It also sports a massive 480x800 screen, video on demand, WiFi, an accelerometer, 2 cameras, FM Radio, and a 1500mAh battery to power the whole thing. The entire package fits into 113.5mm X 63.1mm X 13.9mm, which makes it a very tall and thick beast, (we've thown a sizeeasy comparison after the break), but nevertheless a powerful one.

Get your full specs and press release after the break. Hey Sprint: we'd love to see this on XOHM. Just saying.

Specs

  • Processor: Qualcomm® ESM7206A™ 528 MHz
  • Platform: Windows Mobile® 6.1 Professional
  • Memory: ROM: 256MB / RAM: 288MB / Flash: 8 GB
  • Dimensions: 113.5mm X 63.1mm X 13.9mm
  • Weight: 151 grams (with battery)
  • Display: 3.8-inch TFT-LCD flat touch-sensitive screen with 480 x 800 WVGA resolution
  • Network: Tri-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE:900/1800/1900 MHz Yota Mobile WiMAX 2,5-2.7 GHz
  • Device Control: TouchFLO™ 3D
  • GPS: Inbuilt GPS
  • Connections: VoIP, Wi-Fi®: IEEE 802.11 b/g, Bluetooth® 2.0 with EDR, HTC ExtUSB™
  • Main camera: High-resolution with autofocus
  • Second: VGA-camera
  • Additional: Motion G-sensor (automatically rotating picture), Proximity sensor (saving energy while talking due to the switching the display off), FM-radio
  • Audio: Ring tone formats:AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, AMR-NB, AMR-WB, QCP, MP3, WMA, WAV, 40 polyphonic and standard MIDI format 0 and 1 (SMF)/SP MIDI
  • Battery: Li-Pol, 1500 mAh
  • Talk time: GSM: up to 420 minutes, VoIP: up to 230 minutes
  • Standby time: GSM: up to 350 hours, VoIP: up to 50 hours
  • AC Adapter: Voltage range/frequency: 100 ~ 240V AC, 50/60 Hz, DC output: 5V and 1A

Press Release

SCARTEL AND HTC LAUNCH WORLD’S FIRST INTEGRATED GSM/WIMAX HANDSET

Designed and Optimized for the Russian market, HTC MAX 4Gä Will Be Available in Russia on November 26th

Moscow, Russia – November 12, 2008 – Scartel (brand Yota), Russian provider of Mobile WiMAX, and HTC Corporation, a global leader in mobile phone innovation and design, today announced the HTC MAX 4G, the world’s first integrated GSM/WiMAX handset. Supported by a broad range of services based on Yota’s Mobile WiMAX network,   the HTC MAX 4G delivers a rich multimedia and high quality telephony experience in a sleek and powerful touch screen handset. 

“Yota was established to provide a unique set of mobile communication services to millions of people in Russia and today we have launched the first device and services to realise its full potential,” said Denis Sverdlov, General Director of Yota’s parent company, Scartel LLC (brand Yota). “We really believe that these innovative services, high-speed Internet and stylish HTC MAX 4G will completely change the communications industry, just as the introduction of cellular communications did many years ago.”  

HTC MAX 4G: A New World of Entertainment

The Yota Mobile WiMAX network offers high-speed wireless Internet access that opens a new realm of entertainment and communication possibilities. The basic Yota Home package will provide subscribers with instant access to online games, maps, messaging and file exchange applications while on the move. In addition, the high-capacity Mobile WiMAX network with traffic prioritisation algorithms, allows online films, video and TV programmes to be viewed on the large WVGA screen.

Thanks to mobile WiMAX, high-quality multimedia entertainment is no longer limited.. With Yota Video, a full video on demand (VOD) service, users can watch their favourite movies and videos from their personal Yota catalogue anytime, anywhere.

Broadcasting 14 free channels at launch and 23 channels by the end of 2008, Yota TV introduces a powerful mobile television experience. The vibrant, 3.8 inch 800x480 screen of the HTC MAX 4G can display up to nine TV channels simultaneously, allowing quick and easy channel surfing and programme selection. Thanks to the device’s TV-out capability, users can also watch content on the big screen, putting the HTC MAX 4G at the very heart of the mobile entertainment experience.

For music-lovers, Yota Music offers an extensive online music catalogue of more than 50,000 titles, including a wide range of music from both international and independent music labels. Users can choose to either play the tracks direct from the online catalogue, or download them to the HTC MAX 4G’s 8GB of onboard flash memory.

In addition, a separate catalogue of electronic books is available, so users can download, read and enjoy a broad range of books while on the move.  “The introduction of the HTC MAX 4G represents the culmination of a close partnership between HTC and Yota to develop the world’s first integrated mobile GSM/WIMAX handset,” said Peter Chou, CEO and President, HTC Corporation.  “Russia is a key strategic market for HTC and Yota’s Mobile WiMAX network sets a new global benchmark for next-generation mobile services.”  

HTC MAX 4G: Flexible Communication

The HTC MAX 4G supports GSM calls using a SIM card from any Russian network operator and when both callers are Yota subscribers, the call will automatically be routed as a VoIP call over the Yota Mobile WiMAX network. The Yota Phone service also supports more business applications, allowing users to switch between English and Russian contact records while providing functionality such as call holding, conference calling and video calling using the VGA camera on the front of the device.  

HTC MAX 4G: Unparalleled Performance With Intuitive Usability

The HTC MAX 4G was created to take full advantage of Yota’s high-speed Mobile WiMAX network without compromising style or ease of use.  The device is sleek and elegant and includes a vibrant, large 3.8 inch, 800x480 WVGA touch screen display. The HTC MAX 4G also integrates a 3.5mm headphone jack to create the best possible experience for enjoying movies, music and photos on the go. Running Windows Mobile 6.1, the HTC MAX 4G incorporates HTC’s proprietary Touch FLO 3D user interface, allowing swift and intuitive navigation to key applications such as dialling calls, listening to music, taking picture and more.  

Introduction of Yota Yap-yap

HTC MAX 4G users can now record their lives through a lens thanks to Yota’s Yap-yap service. This allows contacts to be synchronised and edited through the Web and video clips and photos can also be uploaded to www.yota.ru. Images taken with the integrated 5MP camera can also be geo-tagged using coordinates from the integrated GPS.

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5 years ago

Windows Mobile 6.5 Screenshots Surface

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Windows Mobile 6.5 Screenshots Surface

Smartphone France has scored images of what appear to be legitimate screenshots of Windows Mobile 6.5. What we're looking at here appears to be a new, sliding-panels-inspired today screen and also a pretty cool and interesting hexagon/beehive shaped shortcut screen. It's a nice change from your standard square look, though we wonder how a 5-way dpad would handle that.

The look, at least on the sliding panels portion you see at right, has a decidedly Zune-feel too it (of which we approve), and we also like that the non-selected items display information too (note the weather and the email lines).

In all, it certainly looks like 6.5 is going to give Windows Mobile some shiny, good-looking elements. It remains to be seen what sort of added functionality we'll be getting in addition to the above. Cross your fingers for that Music icon!

[via wmpoweruser]

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