In a statement that sounds all too familiar, Apple CEO Steve Jobs said: “We can sit by and watch competitors steal our patented inventions, or we can do something about it. We’ve decided to do something about it. We think competition is healthy, but competitors should create their own original technology, not steal ours.” Reminiscent of its current battle with Nokia, Apple will fight this one out concurrently in the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) and in U.S. District Court in Delaware.
Case in point is HTC’s highly regarded HD2 touchscreen smartphone. A nice little device with a 1GHz Qualcomm processor, a high resolution capacitive touch display, and a five megapixel camera. But, the HD2 has five buttons--Windows Phone 7 says three and no more. No Windows Phone 7 for the HD2!
It is suspected, perhaps, that the HD2 fails in some other ways as well. It’s hard to say, exactly, because the Microsoft hasn’t made public the hardware requirements for Windows Phone 7. That’s expected to happen this month at the MIX developer conference in Las Vegas. Whatever the case, any legacy hardware that doesn’t meet these requirements is going to be left behind.
What little solace Windows Mobile 6.5 users have is that Microsoft says it won’t abandon them. An upgrade, to version 6.5.3, is expected before rebranding to Windows Phone Classic. And Windows Phone Classic will stick around for the “budget-minded smartphone buyer”.
If it makes sense for laptop makers to think small, it also makes sense for smartphone makers to think big. Such appears the case with High Tech Computer (HTC), the world’s largest manufacturer of Android and Windows Mobile smartphones. Rumor has it HTC may be branching up into tablets and netbooks.
It appears that HTC has been busy working on technologies for applications used in smartphones, and piecing together an app store--not to use now, but sometime in the future. Peter Chou, CEO of HTC, confirmed HTC’s activities in comments made at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Chou added there’s nothing ready yet, and HTC isn’t certain what it will do with the apps or the app store, if it does anything at all.
Chou also said that HTC has been actively designing tablets and netbooks, but he cautions this doesn’t mean HTC intends to go to market. Said Chou: “We will design, we will study, we will research, but that doesn't mean we will do it.” Chou noted if HTC does get into the tablet/netbook markets it will do so with a partner.
The Nexus One's sleek design seems to scream quality from almost every angle, but if you still need some convincing you should check out Google's Nexus One video series documenting the design and testing process. The videos break down how the OLED screen works, why 3D acceleration is so important, and perhaps most interesting of all, how hard it is to actually destroy it.
The third video in the series dubbed simply as "testing" shows the phone being pressed, dropped, smashed, crushed, and mauled so horribly that its border line gadget abuse. Either way it should certainly give those who own, or are thinking about purchasing the Nexus One the warm and fuzzy feeling that it has been built to last.
Click the jump to check out the video, its pretty impressive. If you baby your gadgets as much as I do however, it might make you squirm a bit.
With all the buzz around tablets this year, it seemed natural that HTC would get into the game. Just as more details were starting to leak out, someone decided they were getting a bit ahead of themselves, and the project has been suspended. Rumor had it that one of the proposed tablets would be running Google’s Chrome OS. HTC is said to have built several functional prototypes based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon chip.
It seems likely that HTC thought it was more prudent to see how the tablet landscape looks after a certain Cupertino tech company has their say. HTC has stated their intention to "[focus] their efforts on a new generation of mobile phones". This probably means Android and Windows Mobile 7. Maybe after the dust settles, HTC will see an opening in the market. However, the longer they wait, the more crowded the field will be.
AT&T finally seems ready to admit that this whole Android thing isn’t just a flash in the pan. The carrier that brought you the iPhone will be launching five Android phones in the first half of 2010. The announcement was a bit short on details, but there were some clues as to which handsets to expect.
AT&T plans to offer a Motorola handset with a “unique form factor”. This can only be the Moto Backflip we told you about recently. This phone is “blessed” with an awkward looking reverse clamshell design and a lack of Google apps (in the prerelease version at least). The announcement also said Dell’s first smartphone would be coming to the network. That clearly means a version of the Mini 3i with US 3G bands.
The remaining phones are to be HTC devices. No details on what these might be. Knowing HTC’s penchant for repackaging the same hardware, these phones could end up being variations of the Hero. We may see some of the phones spied in the leaked roadmap from a few weeks back. Any AT&T customers planning to buy into the Android craze?
With over 50 new Android phones poised to hit the market next year its hard to ignore the reality that the platform is picking up not just in popularity, but in variety as well. Some argue the open approach is Androids greatest strength, while iPhone loyalists would have you believe the lack of a singular vision is its biggest weakness. Either way, Google has been able to sit back and observe the changes in the market since the G1 first launched, and the company finally has an answer for even the purist among us, meet the Nexus One. Sporting a speedy Snapdragon processor running on Android 2.1, it also features a 5.0 MP camera, and two microphones to assist in noise cancellation. The hardware itself will be manufactured by HTC, but the phone was designed, and will be sold by Google itself as an unlocked carrier independent device.
The Nexus One represents a pretty significant game changer not just for the wireless industry, but for a multi billion-dollar company that has never sold a single piece of consumer hardware in its history. With so many high profile handsets on the market already Google will need to compete not just with iPhone’s, Blackberry’s, and other Androids, but with the media perception that they are nothing more than a software company. Failure to hit a homerun on their first attempt could end up doing little more than alienating competing companies who just recently adopted Android, and now find themselves in a head to head battle with the OS maker itself.
Leaked Photos on Twitter and a January 2010 release date are pretty convincing evidence of the phones existence, but Google has yet to come out formally to confirm or deny the exact specs. I hate to drag out a tired old metaphor, but is the iPhone killer finally here?
We always take leaked information with a healthy grain of salt, though in this case, it's worth noting that HTC's leaked 2009 lineup turned out to largely true. It's déjà vu for HTC all over again, as the company's 2010 lineup has been leaked to the web.
There are 10 new smartphones in all, with both Windows Mobile and Android devices broken up into four categories: Design / Lifestyle, Social, Performance, and Productivity. And naturally it's the Performance category that's going to draw the attention from power users. According to the roadmap, only one smartphone will fall under this designation. The 'Bravo,' as it's being called, will support DivX playback and 720p video capture through a 5MP AF cam with flash. It will also boast a 3.7-inch AMOLED display and Qualcomm Snapdragon chip racing along at 1GHz. Look for this one to ship sometime in April.
What's interesting about the list is that HTC has seemingly positioned all of its upcoming WinMo devices under the Productivity heading, while Android roams freely about the other categories.
View detailed specs of all 10 upcoming smartphones here.
Where is half of the world's mobile data bandwidth disappearing? The avaricious Apple iPhone is devouring more than half of the global mobile data bandwidth, according to a new report published by mobile advertising company AdMob. The report details the mobile internet usage trend during the month of October. This is the first time that the iPhone's share of the global mobile internet traffic has gone past 50 percent. It stood at 43 percent at the end of September.
The iPhone is almost performing out of its skin when it comes to hogging mobile data bandwidth. This is because its share of the global smartphone market is just a third of its contribution to the world's mobile internet traffic. Symbian smartphones came in a distant second in October with a 25% share, down 4% from the previous month. While RIM and Blackberry smartphones lost a bit of their share, Android's share rose to 11% during the month.
Though nobody expected Windows Mobile 6.5 to break any ground, it even failed to fulfill whatever few expectations people may have had. It is hard to imagine Windows Mobile 6.5 spurring handset shipments. However, HTC CEO Peter Chou claims there is strong demand for the company’s Windows Mobile 6.5-based HTC HD2 smartphone.