The ASUS man himself, Jonney Shih has within the last few hours unveiled the "next-generation Transformer tablet" at AsiaD. It's the same one that Steve teased just a few hours ago. Jonney however, confirmed everything we need to know.
The Transformer 2 has been dubbed "Transformer Prime", it will sport NVIDIA's Tegra 3 SoC which is a qu ad-core processor, a 10-inch display, mini-HDMI, a 14.5-hour battery, an SD card slot and a top lid that looks pretty much identical to ASUS' new Zenbook line of products. The Transformer was a thickish tablet (I own one myself) but this Transformer Prime is just 8.3mm thick!
Apple have really stumbled with the iPhone 4S launch, yesterday I reported about the various screen issues, and today we have an issue with Siri. Siri, by default, can be activated even if the iPhone 4S is passcode locked. This is great if you are the one wanting to use it, but what if you leave the phone unattended, or, lose the phone altogether?
Anyone who gained access to your Siri-sporting iPhone 4S could take a look at your upcoming calendar appointments and know your every move over the upcoming days, weeks, months and it also gives access to send e-mails or text messages. Thankfully, there are limitations. While the iPhone 4S is passcode locked, you can't launch any apps, you can't send e-mail or text messages to anyone not on your contact list.
Reports coming out of the United Daily News believe that Samsung and AU Optronics have sent 7.85-inch screen samples to Apple for consideration in future products, the rumored iPad mini. Rumors of a smaller iPad have made their way around the Internet a few times now, and are once again doing so. Steve Jobs was against the idea of a 7-inch tablet, being quoted in an earnings call last year that Apple won't make a 7-inch tablet because the screen is too small to express the software.
Jobs believed that developers wouldn't be happy writing app code to accommodate varying screen sizes in the same product line (what about consumers?). Now that new CEO Tim Cook is directing the Apple ship, this could change. An iPad mini would be even more portable than the current offerings as well as costing just a portion of the price, allowing Apple to gain more market share at an even lower price point.
It would also be great competition for Amazon's 7-inch Kindle Fire, as well as the varying GALAXY Tab devices from super-competitor and main threat, Samsung. Apple is expected to unveil the iPad 3 sometime in early 2012 based on the 9.7-inch display. Rumors have again fueled on the iPad 3, with most (including myself) expected it to sport a resolution of 2044x1536.
Our latest poll had over 2,600 people who answered, what is the Are you going to buy an Apple iPhone 4S smartphone?
One thing is pretty clear - most TweakTown readers are not fans of Apple's new iPhone 4S. At least, they don't intend on buying one of these new smartphones.
Only 10% said they are going to buy an iPhone 4S, with a massive 57% saying they will not.
We're still waiting on a confirmed date of launch for the next-gen ASUS Eee Pad Transformer, said to be anytime between now and the end of November. However, ASUS has just provided a short 22 second video showing it off briefly for the first time and it sure is looking mighty schmick, especially when compared to the first Transformer.
What we've heard about the ASUS Transformer 2 in more recent reports is that it will sport NVIDIA's upcoming quad core Tegra 3 SoC. The video confirms rumour of the brushed metal finish and you can see it looks MUCH thinner than the first gen model; similar to ASUS' recently launched Zenbook lineup. Other things we can ascertain from the brief video is a new camera with single LED flash and of course the return of the keyboard dock, which also looks to have undergone several tweaks to better suit this sleek and sexy tablet.
Motorola have unveiled the RAZR successor, sporting Android, 4G LTE, a 1.2GHz dual-core chip and is constructed from Kevar, is a nice piece of kit. The new RAZR is only 7.1mm thick, making it the thinnest of its kind.
It also sports 1GB of RAM, 16GB of on-board storage, 12.5 hours of talk time, a 1800 mAh battery, 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 4.3-inch qHD Super AMOLED display with strengthened Gorilla Glass, a steel core and Kevlar fiber, which makes it both strong and lightweight.
Samsung has had the advantage when it comes with Google's Ice Cream Sandwich/Android 4.0 OS, but it doesn't mean that other smartphone manufacturers have been left out of the race. HTC have released an official statement to confirm that its looking at Google's latest OS, and combing through its new features and functionality.
HTC say that they're figuring out how to make it happen without forcing sacrifices to the usability and performance of each HTC product. Whatever HTC cook up, it'll be good to see how they integrate their amazing Sense UI with the new Ice Cream Sandwich UI. HTC are careful not to commit to the new Android, and it has not given any particular timeframe or roadmap. The full statement is shown below:
We are excited about the latest update for Android, Ice Cream Sandwich, and are currently reviewing its features and functionality to determine our upgrade plans. Our goal for Android updates is to give every customer an improved user experience, which means balancing each phone's unique hardware, HTC Sense experience and the Android kernel. While our goal is to upgrade as many of our recent devices as possible, we are committed to maintaining every phone's performance and usability first. Please stay tuned for more updates on specific device upgrade plans.
Another juicy rumor has hit the tubes, this time it was from the Dell World conference last week, where CEO Michael Dell reiterated his support for the upcoming Microsoft Windows 8 operating system as a tablet platform. He stated that Dell would release a "wide range of products around Windows 8's release".
Then we have a report from DigiTimes that claims the company's first tablet devices sporting Windows 8 could arrive in Q3 2012, possibly during the back-to-school season. The report also claims that HP will be amongst the first manufacturers to launch Windows 8-based tablets. HP has previously stated that although it discontinued webOS devices, it wasn't ready to leave the tablet market altogether.
Why the change to focus on alternative tablet platforms, instead of Android? It has to do with the market saturation and the pricing war triggered by Amazon's Kindle Fire. Sources also point blame at Motorola's "family edition" Xoom, which will sell at Best Buy for $379.
ASUS and Acer will still offer Android-based devices aimed at consumers, where Lenovo will use Android, but for their business-use ThinkPad tablets, they'll be using Windows 8 for its business-orientated tablets going into the future.
Not only do Apple have most (if not all?) of their manufacturing done in China, but it appears that China is now Apple's second-largest market, where they accounted for 16-percent of Apple's sales during the last quarter, with $4.5 billion in revenue, a year-over-year increase of a whopping 270-percent.
In comparison to fiscal 2009, China accounted for just a measly 2-percent of Apple revenue. Now, "the sky is the limit" says Apple CEO, Tim Cook. Cook also revealed that Brazil was up 118-percent year-over-year, Russia looks "promising" and the Middle East is, according to Tim, a "significant opportunity".
Keep in mind though, that Apple is not launching as full an assault in other countries as in China, Cook noted. Apple's approach in China is virtually the same as the US: six retail stores, 200 approved resellers, an online store and of course, advertising.
Around the world, Apple has 40,000 iPad point of sales, 50,000 for the iPod and 120,000 for the iPhone. Apple CFO, Peter Oppenheimer says that Apple plan to open 40 new stores in fiscal 2012, with over 75-percent of them outside the US.
Early adopters, and theres a lot of them (over 4 million reported) may be experiencing issues with their latest Apple-branded magical toy, the iPhone 4S. There is an open discussion on Apple's discussion forum where iPhone 4S owners are reporting issues they are having with their iPhone 4S' display.
The majority of complains are that the iPhone 4S has a yellow tint, especially noticeable when compared and placed next to an iPhone 4. There are other complaints too, with people saying they're experiencing color washouts and contrast in the same discussion thread.
This is the same issue that was experienced on the iPhone 4 when it was first released. The problem with the iPhone 4 display is that the smartphone shipped so quickly after it was built that screens continued to show signs of a yellow adhesive used during manufacturing. Eventually, the yellow residue from the adhesive disappeared leaving a normal looking display.
The Samsung and Google co-event to launch both the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Google's Android 4.0/Ice Cream Sandwich mobile OS has just happened and with it, brings a slew of news for Samsung/Google fans.
The Samsung Galaxy Nexus sports a 1.2GHz dual-core OMAP4460, a 4.65-inch HD Super AMOLED display pushing 1280x720, Android 4.0/Ice Cream Sandwich, 1GB of RAM, 16/32GB on-board storage, NFC, a 5.1-megapixel rear-facing camera w/LED flash and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera. Very nice indeed. The biggest point of that is not actually hardware, but software. Google's Ice Cream Sandwich is set to be the stand-out star here.
The Galaxy Nexus also includes something different, a panorama mode for the camera, as well as Bluetooth 3.0, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n, accelerometer, compass, gyro, proximity sensor and even a bloody barometer - you know, just in case you wanted to know the current atmospheric pressure.
The leaked poster shows it will be made available in November for NTT DoCoMo, which is around the rumored US released timeframe. Radio-wise, we have an HSPA+ model, with an LTE version will "be available depending on region".
Scheduled for an imminent launch today, the first official photo of Motorola's Droid RAZR has popped up on the web ahead of the official unveiling in a matter of hours from now. The phone, codenamed Spyder runs Android 2.3 and that fancy looking, sleek casing you see in the picture is in fact made of a mixture of metal and carbon fiber.
The phone sports a qHD (960 x 540) Super AMOLED touchscreen which has been further strengthened using Gorilla Glass, while inside lurks a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1GB RAM and 4G LTE support. It has an 8MP rear-facing camera which is also capable of recording in 1080p as well as a front facing HD camera.
It's been confirmed that the Droid RAZR will be offered by Verizon in the states. We'll cover more details on that post launch folks.
Google have announced more Google Wallet merchants have gone live, but not only that, they've announced that various partners are rolling out an even better Google Wallet Experience. The partners involved in this even better rollout include American Eagle Outfitters, The Container Store, Foot Locker, Guess, Jamba Juice, Macy's, OfficeMax and Toys"R"Us. For the first time ever in the U.S., at these select stores, you can only only pay with Google Wallet, but you can redeem coupons and/or earn reward points, all with a single tap of your phone. This is what Google calls the Google Wallet SingleTap experience.
At any of these stores, you can walk in rocking your Google Wallet-capable Android handset, walk up to the counter and tap your phone to pay and save. That's it. No need to find the coupon, credit card, cash, count the cash, or anything - tap, done. Within Google Wallet lies "The Offers" tab, which has been updated to include a new "Featured Offers" section with discounts that are exclusive to Google Wallet.
Apple announced just a few hours ago that they have sold over four million units of their newly released iPhone 4S just three days after it launched on October 14. On top of this, more than 25 million customers are now iOS 5-powered, which is astonishing considering that was all in five days. More than 20 million customers have signed up for iCloud also. Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing, Philip Schiller says:
iPhone 4S is off to a great start with more than four million sold in its first weekend-the most ever for a phone and more than double the iPhone 4 launch during its first three days. iPhone 4S is a hit with customers around the world, and together with iOS 5 and iCloud, is the best iPhone ever.
Considering that more analysts thought that Apple would sell between 2 and 3 million 4S units, this is quite the achievement for Apple. Pre-orders were sitting at over 1 million in just 24 hours, so the 4 million units sold is quite good indeed. The iPhone 4S is available in both black and white, 16, 32 and 64GB sizes.
We've seen the performance analysis, benchmarks, thoughts, features and much more talk when it comes to Apple's latest and greatest; the iPhone 4S. But what about dropping them from shoulder height to see which one would break first? It may sound stupid, but there are so many people who drop their phones, whether it be accidentally, when drunk, or they're just clumsy. My wife dropped her Galaxy S II from hip height a fortnight ago, and it just scraped the side and did not break; to me, that is great workmanship from Samsung.
SquareTrade, who sell insurance for all manner of electronics, have obtained the iPhone 4S and a Galaxy S II and have done a drop test. The test consisted of dropping the phones at shoulder-height,and a face-down fall. The Galaxy S II survived both drops, where the iPhone took considerable damage even at a waist-heigh drop and its screen was completely wrecked when dropped face down on concrete.
Apple's iPad has enjoyed nearly no competition, until Google unveiled Honeycomb. But even that, is not enough to stop the tablet juggernaut. Google and its manufacturer partners have as of yet to announce official sales figures for Android-powered tablets, which leave everyone else to just guessing. Android developer Al Sutton has reminded everyone, with a little bit of math, we could get quite the estimate on just how many Honeycomb-powered tablets are in the wild.
What is that number? Roughly 3.4 million. This number is based on Google's latest platform versions states, a fortnightly updated breakdown of what proportion of devices use each Android version - and the official activation numbers which were announced as part of Google's financial results yesterday. Google CEO Larry Page claimed 190 million Android devices had been activated in total. THis leads us to the platform stats, with 1.8-percent of Android devices that have accessed the Android Market within the 14 day period up to October 3, 2011 were running Android 3.0, 3.1 or 3.2 (in contrast 38.2-percent are running 2.3.3 Gingerbread or higher).
With Samsung's Ice Cream Sandwich-powered Galaxy Nexus to be hopefully unveiled this week at Samsung and Google's event, Australian's are waiting patiently to see what's going on with the as of yet announced device. News has hit the Wi-Fi Alliance site that the GT-i9250M and GT-i9250T have arrived. Specification wise, we still have nothing, but it does suggest that the smartphone could be offered by both Vodafone and Telstra when it arrives.
Usually, with the latest smartphones, one of the carriers gets some form of exclusivity for either a few weeks, or permanently. But for a handset that is bound to be the biggest competitor (and potential leader) of the iPhone 4S, I'm sure both Telco's are willing to compromise.
Nokia's World event is being held in London in a little over a week, on October 26 and details are starting to play peak-a-boo with the Internet. What exactly is leaking you ask? Nokia's first Windows Phone 7 "Mango" device, which Pocketnow and GSMArena both coming across ads for the device that is carrying the moniker, Nokia 800.
Nokia's codenamed "Sea Ray" hasn't really been an icon-clad secret from Nokia, with CEO Stephen Elop showing off the device in June during a presentation. The device takes after Nokia's MeeGo-powered N9, but with a few changes. The full curved glass facade of the N9 has been replaced to accommodate three buttons, with a plastic unibody enclosure still remains.
The N9 wasn't a budget phone by any means, at 475 EUR for the 16GB model, and 534 EUR for the 64GB model, it is still priced well within the parameters of the premium market. So, if the Nokia 800 has to succeed as Nokia's first Windows Phone-powered device, the price is definitely going to be something that will be a large dot point next to the phone.
For those of you who have gotten their mits on the newly released Apple iPhone 4S, you may have noticed an option missing out of the Network Settings. Most people don't require the setting, or even probably know its there, but its there and its useful to some.
In Network Settings, "Enable 3G" is missing, which gives you the ability to manually shut off 3G data. It can be disabled for multiple purposes, such as saving as much battery life as possible, or when you're at home and don't require 3G data as your own your own Wi-Fi network.
A top Research in Motion official has apologized for the extended outage that is limiting service for many BlackBerry users worldwide. RIM still have no idea when the service will be fully restored. RIM's Chief Information Officer, Robin Bienfait, has said "You've depended on us for reliable, real-time communications, and right now we're letting you down". This was posted on RIM's website. He added:
We are taking this very seriously and have people around the world working around the clock to address this situation. We believe we understand why this happened and we are working to restore normal service levels in all markets as quickly as we can.
Apple's iPhone 4S launched today in Australia and yesterday Telstra released their plans for the hotly anticipated Apple handset. Now we have all of the plan details, monthly amounts, data caps, SMS, call plans, outright pricing, everything you need to know as an Australian iPhone 4S potential customer. If you're after an iPhone 4S and want it outright, you're looking at $799, $899 and $999 for the 16, 32 or 64GB phones, respectively.
Now, onto the plans. Optus' offerings are below, it doesn't seem too bad looking at the $79 cap which includes $900 worth of calls, 3GB of data and $0 per month for the 16 and 32GB iPhone 4S's.