Palm Pre and O2 get officially exclusive

Daniel Sung Mobile phones Leave a Comment

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This morning heralds the news we’ve known about since last week that O2 and its Telefonica buddies across Europe have snaffled up the Palm Pre as an exclusive. The much, much awaited smartypantsphone will come to the UK, Spain, Ireland and Germany first when “the device is launched in Europe in time for the winter holidays” according to the press release, which doesn’t make it sound like we’ll be getting a look at the Pre any time soon.

In the mean time, if you want to sign your life away to all things Palm then register your e-mail address, bank details and retinal eye patterns here. If instead you’d like to get annoyed at O2 for taking all the decent handsets, then you can go here.

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Updated: How much would you pay for an iPhone 3GS?

Daniel Sung iPhone 2 Comments

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The iPhone 3GS is a great phone. Even the most hardened of anti-Applers would have to admit it. The latest upgrade may not have been the most dramatic of changes but it’s filled all the gaps that prevented previous incarnations from being a perfect phone.

Now, we all know they’re expensive. Personally, I baulk at the idea of paying for any handset if I’m signing up for an 18-month contract but shelling out for an iPhone seems to be a fact of life. So, if a PAYG 8GB iPhone 3G costs you £342.50, a 16GB 3GS is £440.40 and the 32GB version works out as £538.30; how much do you think it would cost to purchase an official un-hacked, unlocked 32GB iPhone 3GS that’s good to go on any network?

Get a figure in your head. Got it? Ok, now hit the “continue reading” button.

Well, if you said £899.99 then give yourself a big pat on the back. Then think about just how excessive that extra £360 is. That’s £360 for a slight software tweak. On the plus side, it does include delivery.

Thanks to Leon for that spot.

Buy it here

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SHINY PREVIEW VIDEO: HTC Hero with HTC Sense

Daniel Sung Mobile phones, Previews 1 Comment

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HTC pulled out all the stops today for their gala launch of the HTC Hero Android phone and HTC Sense secondary OS. They even got out the smoke machines.

The handset seems to have just about everything you could want, except a flash – no idea why smartphone manufacturers keep leaving that out – and. essentially. it’s got all the same internal build as the Magic. But you can read about these things forever, so take a closer look here…

The outsides are all very well and good. I did feel it was a little underpowered and laggy with a slightly dead touchscreen but I’ll wait for a review for the final words on that. What I feel this handset’s going to live and die by, though, is the HTC Sense Android toupee.

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It looked fantastic in the demonstration and everything the HTC product designers said made perfect sense. The idea of integrating all of your communictions from each contact looked excellent and the degree of customisation looks beyond anything offered so far.

The trouble is that when I got the Hero into my hands it just seemed a little overcomplicated and rather ruined one of the beauties of Android which is its relative simplicity and ease of use. Now, bear in mind this was only a three minute play, so I’ll give you more on that when I’ve had the chance of a proper review.

I’ll get some more vid up of the Sense as soon as I can but, for now, you can take HTC CEO Peter Chou’s word for it. Chou like.

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HTC

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The Samsung Jet screams onto the scene at 800MHz speeds

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The Samsung Jet is going to seem like a silly name at the other end of your 18-month contract but, as of today, it’s the fastest handset available in the world right. The impressive 800MHz processor is at the heart of its creed, backed up by the Samsung Dolphin browser, an improved TouchWiz 2.0 interface and support for just about every kind of file and feature you could shake a stick at.

There’s a 5-megapixel camera with double LED flash, autofocus, smile shot, face detection, blink detection and armpit detection. (One of these is not true). But best of all is the undoubtedly stunning 3.1″ AMOLED display with the kind of resolution that makes my CRT weep. It’s WVGA, so that’ll be somewhere slightly beyond 800 x 480. Oh, and it’s touchscreen too, but you knew that, right?

It does support 3G and Wi-Fi, it does have a 3.5mm jack, in fact there’s very little it doesn’t do. It’s perfectly happy working with all your DRMed music files and the other usual audio standards – MP3, AAC, AAC+, eAAC+ and WMA. On the video side, it’ll play DivX, Xvid, WMV, MPEG4, H.263 and H.264 formats. You’ll be able to record your own at a healthy 30fps too.

You’ll be able to beam all the sounds straight to your ears with Bluetooth 2.1, you can link it up and charge via microUSB (praise the lord) and you’ve got both mircoSD and 2GB of onboard storage to play with – or what we call in the business “enough”.

The most intriguing part of the package for me, though, is the Dolphin browser. Samsung has got some serious competition in the shape of Opera Mini and, well, Opera Mini really but they’re talking the talk with this software addition.

It’s got a built-in ad blocker, offers multiple downloads and you can have five pages open at any one time. They’ve also got around the multitouch barrier with one finger zooming, Interesting to see how well that works.

The whole package measures a really quite neat 108.8 X 53.5 X 11.9 mm with perhaps the only question mark for me the 1,100 mAh battery. It’s often hard to say how well it preforms because of the nature of the processor and how effiicient a piece of engineering the whole handset is, but all I know is that that’s less than all the super smart phones I compared the other day and even less than the G1 which’ll barely get you through a single day of proper use.

That said, I’m pleased to say that I’m liking what Samsung’s come up with; the fastest handset in the East and West, at least until Toshiba gets its act together.

Samsung Jet

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GALLERY: LG Viewty II aka Smart specs and pics

Daniel Sung Gallery, Mobile phones Leave a Comment

Pictures and specs of the LG Viewty II have been announced on LG’s euroblog and, fortunately, the folks over at Electric Pig have both keen eyes and a decent knowledge of German.

The handset, which looks to be an exclusive to Orange from June, will be known as the LG Viewty Smart – or the LG GC900 if you prefer the robotic way of life – and, if you’d like a closer look at it and a few inside bits and pieces on the specs, then I suggest you click the image below to begin the tour…

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LG Viewty II out in June on Orange

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Word has just landed that the LG Viewty II will hit the UK in June. The news trickled through Orange that the 8-megapixel snapping, 3-inch WVGA touchscreen device was to get a Q2 release and it’s since been refined as just two months’ time.

The original Viewty, which is still available, is one the most successful handsets to come out of the company quickly pushing their way up the mobile phone ladder and this handset with its 32GB storage and 3D LG Arena-like interface could be their next big push in the mould of the Chocolate, the Cookie and the first Viewty itself.

No word on price or network exclusivity as yet but expect news soon as the companies involved look to settle the talk.

LG Viewty

(via Electric Pig)

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SHINY PREVIEW: Toshiba TG01 snapdragon smartphone

Daniel Sung Mobile phones, Video Reviews 3 Comments

You’ve read the specs, now see it in action. This, tech heads and gentlemen, is the Toshiba GT01 touchscreen smartphone that is poised to knock the socks off one and all when it hits the shelves this summer. Yes, it’s got a decent camera; yes, it records video; yes, it had Bluetooth and yes…

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