Samsung is holding an event on October 11 that could be used as the unveiling for Google's Ice Cream Sandwich Android OS. Not only will Samsung executives be attending, but AllThingsD are reporting that Android chief himself, Andy Rubin, could be making an appearance at the event. The event is taking place in San Diego and features Samsung Mobile's standard "unpacked" name, but notes that it is the "Google Edition".
The obvious conclusion from this would be that we'll see the new version of Android shown off, and with Samsung doing the best in the market out of all Android smartphone makers, this would just make perfect sense. Ice Cream Sandwich is set to unify the phone and tablet versions of Android into a super-powerful, take-on-the-world mobile OS.
Samsung are set to launch their 8.9-inch, Honeycomb-powered tablet on October 2. The Galaxy Tab 8.9 is skinnier than the iPad 2 and weighs in at just 470g. It sports an 8.9-inch Gorilla Glass screen, powered with a 1280x800 WXGA display. It also packs an NVIDIA Tegra 250 1GHz dual-core processor, a 3-megapixel front-facing camera, 2-megapixel rear-facing camera and plays back 1080p video while recording in 720p.
Connectivity wise, it has USB, Wi-Fi, HSPA+ (21Mbps) and Bluetooth 3.0. Storage we have 16, 32 or 64GB as well as sporting a microSD slot if you want some extra space. The versions hitting the shelves next week will be the Wi-Fi-only models, $469 and $569 for the 16 and 32GB models respectively. No word on a UK release as of yet, with the US leading the way.
Apple has sent out invitations to the media to attend the iPhone 5 introduction on October 4. All it says is "Let's Talk iPhone", it shows app icons that reflect the date, the 10AM Pacific start time, its location at Apple's 1 Infinite Loop headquarters, and the phone focus. It's presumed, although not official, that the permanent CEO Tim Cook will lead the event. The iPhone 5's design could still go two ways, a total redesign with a larger screen and a thinner body, or the conservative route with an "iPhone 4S"-type model.
But, we should still see a dual-core A5 processor, an 8-megapixel camera, and quite possibly, 64GB of storage and a dual-mode CDMA/GSM chip. We should also see finished version of iOS 5 at the show, with Android-like notification bar and improved lock screen, true independence from a computer and cloud syncing through iCloud and iTunes Match. On top of this, Twitter integration, reminders and an improved camera app.
Windows Phone 7.5 aka Mango has began rolling out to phones across the world. This is just the start and the ramp up of delivery will increase gradually, with Microsoft hoping to make the update to most customers within 4 weeks. Today Microsoft roll Windows Phone 7.5 out to more than 98 percent of existing Windows Phone customers. This is a simultaneous, coordinated, global update that cuts across carriers, phone models and countries.
Mango won't make it to everyone right away and Microsoft are doing this to contain quality issues. Microsoft aren't just delivering a new operating system, but also new software supplied by individual handset makers. This "firmware" is necessary so your phone and apps work with all Mango features. So the update is not just a one-size-fits-all, but a tweaked update to each and every phone.
It's about time. Facebook for iPad is set to launch on October 4 at the iPhone 5 launch event according to Mashable. In addition, Facebook is also expected to launch a revamped version of its iPhone app that may unveil an HTML5-based mobile app marketplace. The Facebook iPad app has been the source of many news bits across the world this year and caused that much stir that even former Facebook engineer Jeff Verkoeyen left Facebook to work at Google partially because Facebook had been sitting on the completed app since May.
Why the delay? This stems from a combination of timing and a strained relationship with Apple. It is no secret that the two companies have been at each others necks previously, with examples such as Facebook pulling the plug on Facebook Connect in Ping because Apple didn't give Facebook any warning about the feature, which took a chunk out of bandwidth on Facebook's side.
The 7.7-inch, Android-powered tablet from Samsung, the Galaxy Tab 7.7 has hit the FCC for approval goodness. It's named the GT-P6810, and has shown off its sexy little tablet behind at the FCC. The version shown below seems to be the 16GB Wi-Fi-only model as there are no mentions of wireless bands. What shores it'll be washing up on is the question, and whether the Apple lawsuits will stop sales of this thing is another worry. But, it's a 7.7-inch tablet, so that should [hopefully] not be an issue.
The Samsung Galaxy S II launched in April and since then have sold 10 million units. It's not near the iPhone numbers which are sitting at 20 million units (oh btw, thats in Q2 alone!) but impressive nonetheless. Five million Galaxy S II units have been sold since July, which is impressive in itself. This means that in eight weeks the Galaxy S II sales have doubled. Keep in mind that the sales haven't even made a dent in the US.
Nice work Samsung, I love the Galaxy S II. It's a beautiful phone.
Word came out just yesterday that Amazon is preparing to hold a press event in New York City on the 28th of September for an unveiling of sorts.
The event will take place at 9am on said date, but it can only be speculated at this time as to what little trick, or tricks they have up their sleeve. The most likely purpose of the unveiling however is to officially introduce its long-awaited "Kindle" (name yet to be confirmed) Android running tablet.
There's been a number of rumours floating around about it for several months now, but we were recently given more of an idea on what to expect when TechCrunch said it managed to get hands on with it. It was said in this report that it will hit shelves in late November at $250US.
Samsung's new Galaxy Tab 8.9 is said to become available sometime today over at Best Buy, but Netbooknews has already managed to get its hands on one in Taiwan for an unboxing video and lookover.
This is the tablet Samsung is claiming to be one of the thinest in the world, measuring only 0.34-inches thick. It runs Android 3.1 Honeycomb, but is set back a bit by a rather disappointing TouchWiz interface that is said to slow down the system quite noticably.
As for the rest of the specs, it uses an 8.9-inch WXGA 1280 x 800 display, dual core 1GHz processor and has 16GB internal storage. There's a 2MP front facing camera, and 3MP autofocus rear facing camera with flash on the rear. 1080p HD video playback is said to be supported with no issues, and the other usual forms of connectivity are in place including 802.11b/g/n WiFi, USB 2.0 and Bluetooth 3.0.
Microsoft has announced that Mango, or Windows Phone 7.5 will roll out in the next week or two. Microsoft have said that Mango has been "painstakingly tuned" for every device from every manufacturer so that the update and all the new features work as planned once its pushed out to everyone. Microsoft have not given an exact date of when people can expect to receive Mango, but they will refresh the "Where's My Phone Update?" page to reflect the worldwide rollout status.
The only downside is that Mango won't be pushed to your phone over-the-air, so download the latest version of Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac, or if you're on a Windows-based machine, Zune. Mango will also need proper firmware on the device to function as designed, so Microsoft have warned users against installing unofficial or leaked copies of Windows Phone software.
The Kal-El-powered second-generation ASUS' Eee Pad Transformer has not been shy from the news lately and now the benchmarks for the "ASUS Transformer TF201" have floated up from the depths of the unknown and onto the Internet. The results have been taken down, but the magic involved in Google's cache have bought them back to life and they paint a glorious picture. When benched against the Acer Iconia Tab A500, which sports a Tegra 2 system-on-a-chip, the Transformer 2 scores 40.6 fps versus the 17 fps of the A500 in the "Egypt Standard" test in the GLBenchmark site.
Not only that, the "Offscreen 720p test" saw the Transformer 2 score 65 fps versus 21 fps which is not too bad at all. Considering that Kal-El's power consumption is meant to be lower than the Tegra 2, it offers much more performance as well as better battery life.
Kal-El has had a lot of news since it was first announced, but now NVIDIA have said it will not only arrive sometime in Q4, but it will sport a fifth core which is a "companion" core. This is built using a "special low-power silicone process" which works on tasks at a low frequency. NVIDIA calls this approach "variable symmetric multiprocessing" and it basically allows it to use this extra core for handling low overhead tasks such as e-mail syncs, social media syncs, etc.
Each core is an ARM Cortex A9 CPU that is individually enabled and disabled based on the workload or task, but all five can't run at once. The low-power 'companion' core runs at a lower voltage than the other four cores and is only used when the performance state requested by the OS/apps isn't higher than a predetermined threshold. Once the threshold is reached, the low-power core is disabled and the high-performance A9 cores take over, enabling between 1 and 4 cores as needed.
Chinese smartphone maker Meizu is set to launch its most impressive Android phone yet before the month is out which it dubs the MX.
The MX will enter the Chinese market in two versions; a dual-core and a quad-core processor model. The dual-core will include 16GB of built-in storage, whilst the quad-core will have 32GB.
Both models otherwise share the same characteristics with measurements of 121 x 63 x 10 mm and use a 4-inch (960 x 640) touchscreen. Converted pricing comes in at about $469 for the dual-core MX, and $626 for the quad-core.
Google have offered some technical help for those who are looking to get ready for the upcoming Ice Cream Sandwich release, which is due later this year. Google's Scott Main has said in a blog post:
Ice Cream Sandwich is coming, and with it, handsets will be able to install apps built on Honeycomb.
Main did not that although Google haven't released the software development kit for the new Android OS, developers can take steps now to help make sure that their Honeycomb apps work on smaller screens. Ice Cream Sandwich is something to get excited about, as it will be a singular OS for both smartphones, tablets, and "everything in-between" with Main being quoted:
Although Honeycomb remains tablets-only, the upcoming Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) release will support big screens, small screens, and everything in between. This is the way Android will stay from now on: the same version runs on all screen sizes.
J.P. Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz expects that two new iPhones will launch this fall, with the iPad 3 delayed into 2012. This speculations comes from conversations with industry insiders and was detailed in a note to clients, according to reports. The iPhone 5 is reported to sport a lighter, thinner form factor as well as packing a larger display and an 8-megapixel camera. It is also rumored to be both GSM and CDMA-capable, making it a "world-mode" smartphone. It is expected to not include LTE connectivity.
The second rumored phone is reportedly going to be the iPhone 4-plus and will launch alongside the iPhone 5. The iPhone 4-plus is based on the current-generation iPhone but will feature a few improvements. This handset could target the mainstream price point and focus on the China market, but it's reported to not be exclusive to that region.
The iPad 3 is said to be delayed until 2012, mostly because Apple is currently dominating the tablet market. While they're ahead, why not push further? Why wait just because you "dominate" the market. The iPhone market will only peak with Android phones coming in from left, right and centre. These lawsuits against Samsung aren't doing Apple any favours.
LG has released its new Optimus Q2 smartphone into its home market in South Korea yesterday running Android 2.3 Gingerbread and featuring a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.
The phone packs a 1.2GHz dual core processor which is believed to be a Tegra 2 chip, 5MP rear-facing camera, front VGA cam for video calls, 802.11b/g/n WiFi, WiDi Direct capability and Bluetooth. It measures in at 12.3mm thick, weighing 147 grams and uses a 4-inch (800 x 480) IPS touchscreen.
It is expected that the phone will get its European launch sometime this week.
Our Deal of the Day today is the Mwave - Join MClub Premier for $59 and Buy HP TouchPad WiFi 32GB for $239.
Offer: Though not quite as cheap as the the crazy HP clearance price a little while ago, but here's a second chance to get one. Sign up for their MClub Premier for $59.99 (gets you 2% cashback, free ground shipping, and free RMA return shipping) and you can buy a 9.7" HP TouchPad WiFi 32GB for $239. Limit 1 per customer and I'm guessing they won't have a lot of them.
Apple have put themselves in a sticky situation, attacking Samsung across the world for "patent violations", yet at the same time they rely on them to manufacture the processors inside iPhones and iPads. Rumors are flying that Apple could switch chip manufacturing to TMSC. DigiTimes quotes unnamed "industry sources", which say that Apple recently signed a foundry partnership agreement with TMSC.
The agreement will reportedly see TMSC manufacture Apple's "next-generation CPUs" base on 28 and 20nm process technologies. The next-gen CPUs might not just be the A6-based chip, but also the A6's successor. Production isn't expected to roll until 2012.
LG's upcoming smartphone, the LU6200, is looking quite good. It packs a 4.5-inch AH-IPS display running at 720p, dual-core 1.5GHz Scorpion CPU, an Adreno 220 GPU, 8-megapixel AF camera and connectivity to the U+ LTE network which supports a maximum theoretical download speed of 75Mbps. It also includes a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, 1GB of RAM, 4GB built-in storage, an 1,830mAh battery, 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth 3.0 - finally, we have DLNA, MHL, WiFi Direct and NFC.
The downside of all these specs? It's for the Korean market only. Boo. But, for our Korean-based readers, the phone is Gingerbread-packed and pre-orders start on September 26th. No word on pricing yet.
Our Deal of the Day today is the Belkin - Coupon Code for 50% off Sitewide!.
Offer: Use coupon code: FB50 for a full 50% off all in-stock products at Belkin.com! Expires 9/30/11.
We've heard enough impressive specs thrown around on HTC's still not official Vigor smartphone to gain a fair chunk of interest in what the Vigor is all about and when it's coming. A fresh couple reports help give us a better idea with one such report even including a leaked press image of the phone.
Latest word indicates the phone will feature a 4.3-inch 1820 x 720 touchscreen, 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of memory, 16GB storage, 8 megapixel rear-facing camera, 2MP front-facing camera, Beats & Audio enhancements and not forgetting the kitchen sink, LTE support too.
A separate report also gives potential signage to the phone being rebranded as the DROID Incredible HD before gracing us within the first half of October. Albeit sources are also giving indication of a possible unveiling for the "Vigor" next week - September 20th to be exact.