The long wait appears to be over as BlackBerry’s first foray into the touchscreen world has begun with the BlackBerry Storm. First off, the device looks like a serious contender for Mobile of The Year. It is sleek, shiny and the screen just pops out at you in both portrait and a stunning landscape mode that BlackBerry lovers have been waiting 9 years to see. Its got anything and everything a smart phone should have and more except of course for WiFi which seems odd and out of place nowadays, I mean even the lacking G1 has wireless capabilities. The highlights are as follows:
3 MegaPixel Camera that supports both still and video
GPS with BlackBerry Maps
Corporate Data Access
1 GB internal memory with support for microSD
MMS (hint hint Apple)
High resolution 480 x 360 pixel color display
On screen keyboard: portrait SureType® and Multi-tap, QWERTY landscape
Microsoft Exchange Support
- UMTS/HSPA: 2100 MHz
- North America: 850 MHz GSM®/GPRS networks
- North America: 1900MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Europe/Asia Pacific: 1800MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Europe/Asia Pacific: 900MHz GSM/GPRS networks
- Dual-Band: 800/1900 MHz CDMA/Ev-DO networks
It touts a revolutionary tactile response with a technology they call SurePress, it feels like you are touching real keys and a real keyboard eliminating one of the biggest complaints with touch screen devices. The only real draw back I see is that it is being sold on the Verizon network which isn’t GSM now is it? Not sure the reason Research In Motion went this route but my guess it was cold hard cash as opposed to common sense. Luckily its a quad band phone that can do just about every network and data system outside of Sprint. The tough part of the equation is if you want this thing unlocked for your worldly GSM network get out the Amex card and be prepared to pay upwards of a thousand, yes bones or clams or whatever you call them.
This is the device that could put BlackBerry into the mainstream but with a price like that it just might be pricing itself out of the game before the national anthem is even sung. That’s not to say its not an impressive smartphone but anything over the $500 range isn’t going to get many takers in the economic landscape we now find ourselves in. Lets hope soon there after its hits T-Mobile or AT&T with a large subsidy that puts it in the $300 2 year contract range sometime after the holidays.
Verison has announced a launch of November 21st and a price of $199 with a 2 year contract after a $50 rebate
As of today it has launched in the U.K. on Vodafone and is free with a 2 year contract and a £29.79 per month rate plan.
The long wait for the new look in Blackberry’s ended this week with the launch of the BlackBerry Bold aka the 9000 via AT&T Mobile.
$399.99 upfront with a $100 rebate for new activations via AT&T.
$249.99 upfront with a $100 rebate for new activations through Amazon.
If this seems a little pricey, it is. To buy it outright is $645.00 and for that price I could get a couple of Eee Pc’s. The reason I think its somewhat overpriced is that the thing costs $169 to build which is a 300% markup. This is surprising considering Rim seems to have made a reputation by making somewhat affordable devices. I guess the final say in all this will be the sales figures and if the buzz of this device is any indication than it should continue to fill the coffers of the Canadian companies piggy banks.
In what has becoming obvious to everyone outside of the most fervent Apple fans, the iPod is in a serious decline in terms of both sales and stature. The fact that the mobile phone is replacing the stand-alone MP3 player is starting to sink in to the makers of such devices and to the consumer as well. It makes no sense to carry around two devices when a phone can now do the job of both in a smaller and cheaper package.
The need to spend $200+ on a device that has limited audio and video capabilities is becoming obsolete. The iPhone has contributed to this fact and in the end could lead to the demise of Apple’s most profitable business and this is why the upcoming Apple launch party will have both slashed prices and new iPod designs in hopes of drumming up excitement for what is essentially the sinking ship of technology. The only real purpose of an iPod in the near future will be for use in a car, at least until hard drives become standard features of the audio package.
I can only assume some people will disagree with this assessment but consider that mobile phones have equal to better sound quality, large storage capacities in addition to hot swappable media, prolonged battery life, advanced GUI, superior optics, HD video capabilities, small form factors, OLED displays, gaming capabilities, video conferencing, high speed data connections and on and on and on. Not to mention the huge price discounts for a contract you already had in the first place.
Of course this will be a gradual decline and not an overnight collapse but does Apple really think that any of the 10+ million iPhone users will ever purchase an iPod again? Every iPhone purchase will mean one less potential iPod sale and competing with yourself isn’t the most ideal business model.
This could turn into a big opportunity for phone manufacturers to put further innovation into the mobile phone, including the capability to control everything from starting your car remotely, preheating your oven while your still at the grocery store to becoming a personal security device capable of tasering a would be assailant. It will become an all encompassing device that could even make your laptop obsolete, just how long this will take is anyone’s guess but it is sooner than most can imagine.
The highly anticipated Nokia N96 is now available for order in Europe via the Nokia website for a mere £535.00 or $942.09. The tech specs on this Symbian powered smart phone are a dream come true for mobile phone aficionados. There is really nothing on the market that compares to this device, it is basically a fully functioning computer with DVR and advanced Video/Phone capabilities that fits in a front shirt pocket. The iPhone 3G is so far behind the N96 that its not even fair to compare the two devices and yet I can guess which one will outsell the other by at least a tenfold margin. We all hope this is coming to the states but with all the network problems and data capping going on here its just not very practical and that’s a shame. Perhaps in a year or three we will catch up but don’t count on it.
A quick look as some of the features:
Live TV with DVR recording capabilities and instant replay functions.
A 5 MegaPixel camera which does 30FPS video and TV-Out.
Turn by turn GPS.
Browser supports both Java , Flash, RSS, PDF, and QuickOffice.
A 16 GB hard drive.
Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP stereo audio. Hi-Speed USB 2.0 connectivity.
Integrated kickstand and landscape-oriented speakers.
Digital music player – supports MP3, AAC, eAAC+, WMA, album art.
Stereo FM radio (87.5-108MHz, 76-90MHz) with support for RDS and Visual RadioT.
WLAN – IEEE802.11 g/b with UPnP support.
Video call and video sharing.
SMTP, IMAP4, POP3, MMS, SMS.
* WCDMA 2100/900 1900/850 (HSDPA) / EGSM900, GSM850/1800/1900 MHz (EGPRS)
* 2.8″ QVGA (240 x 320 pixels) LCD TFT 16 million colors
* Operating system: Symbian OS 9.3
* WCDMA HSDPA (PS max speed DL/UL= 3.6Mbps/384kbps, CS max speed 64kbps)
After almost two years of shrouded secrecy that would make even Apple jealous, the first photos of the Android Powered Google Phone have been leaked in the form of The HTC Dream. The recent partnership announcement of T-Mobile, HTC, and Google declared that The HTC Dream will be the first Android enabled phone to come to market. More specifics would be outlined in September with an anticipated October release.
While details are still hard to come by, the pictures tell us what had only been speculation. A full qwerty keyboard that slides out and a touch screen interface that seems identical to the GUI presented at eComm in March by Google Engineering Director, Steve Horowitz (video here). The other known details are that the open source mobile operating system will be on the GSM platform, will feature a touchscreen with haptic feedback, and it will have WiFi support.
Now that the cat is essentially out of the bag, hopefully HTC and T-Mobile will be forthcoming with some detailed specs and high quality photos.
While HTC kept many of their upcoming devices under wraps at their ‘World Event’ they did give some people a little face time with the new Touch Diamond which has the new version of TouchFLO 3D interface. First impressions indicate that it is sexy as hell and more than little slick. The mobile OS is Microsoft’s best to date and appears to be winning over even the harshest critics with its speed and intuitive design.
HTC is trying to get their names into the lexicon of mobile phone users in the U.S. but when you hold an event like this, it would be prudent to unleash all that you have coming up through the pipeline. HTC didn’t come through with much of anything in this regard and that’s a shame because they are finally starting to look like a company on the rise. Why cell phone manufacturers don’t control the story on all their top secret devices is beyond me. Inevitably there will be a spy shot, then rumors and a whole lot of speculation will arise about if the specs are all wrong and that the photos are photoshopped. Of course this isn’t such a bad process for mobile websites but it tends to confuse consumers.
However with the TyTN III, Mogul II, Touch Pro Dual and even the super classified phone called of all things Raphael* being launched this year it could very well be the year of HTC’s American invasion.
*Unfortunately the only spy shots of the Raphael are so blurry and out of focus they had to be shot with a SideKick so you will not be see them here out of respect of the photo advancements in the past 80 years.
First Sprint was rumored to be taken over in a not so pleasant way by a bunch of Germans aka T-Mobile and now it appears they are trying to stave off any takeover attempts by finally cementing that WiMax deal with Clearwire with cable operator Bright House Networks injecting $3.2 billion to back the venture. Even though wall street didn’t seem to approve, this will go a long way in building a nationwide Wireless HighSpeed network that wont have a cell phone contract attached. While still a risky venture this should help Sprint get the positive press that it needs so desperately.