MWC 2009: Universal chargers for all mobile phones by 2012 (except Apple)


When Duncan was writing up his “Five Announcements that won’t be made at MWC” feature, we had a bit of a laugh at the idea of the mobile phone companies introducing a universal charger. If there had been a number six, it would have made the list.

So, fortunately, we don’t have to look like idiots now that the GSM association has announced that that’s exactly what all the manufacturers are going to do. My mind immediately jumps to a box of cables in my flat and rejoices.

The new charges, which should come as standard with all handsets by 2012…

MWC 2009: the LG GD900 tasty transparent treat


You can bet that the LG GD900 doesn’t have the kind of features to make many consider it the next handset to buy, but I reckon there’s a good portion of punters that’ll just think that transparent keypad sex on Li-ion – me included.

I have a terrible sense of foreboding that the new feature will be placcy as hell rather than the stylish, sturdy material that it appears to be but I’ve got to offer LG a round of applause for

MWC 2009: All the stories as they happen


I’m going to let you into a secret, I’m not in Barcelona, neither is Duncan. In fact, none of us are but then that just means there’s no sangria hangovers or bellies full of chorizo to slow us down.

Instead, we’re scouring the web for rumours and writing up the releases from the discomfort of our own desks to bring you all things Mobile World Congress 2009 the minute it breaks, and as promised…

MWC 2009: LG's G910 "Touch Watch" and Arena phones get official


Wow, things move fast from prototype to production these days. The LG GD-910 that we saw at CES is now the LG G910 Watch Phone, and due for release later this year.

It’s got a 1.4″ touchscreen face, HSDPA, and video calling capabilities. There’s also a text-to-speech engine for reading out texts to a bluetooth headset, and voice recognition stuff too. For maximum geekiness, precede every voice command with “Computer:”.

As well as the Touch Watch, there’s also the Arena, previously written about here. We were promised specs and a release date, and by jove, we’ve got them. Or most of them, anyway.


There’s a 3″ touchscreen, running at WVGA resolution. It supposrts DivX and Xvid codecs. It can record DVD-resolution video, and video at up to 120fps for super-slo-mo playback. There’s 8GB of internal memory, and that can be expanded by another 32GB of MicroSD action.

There’s an immensely joyful 3.5mm headphone socket, and the aforementioned HSDPA, GPS and Wi-Fi. There’s a 5-megapixel camera, too, and geotagging for photos. There’s a tonne of inbuilt Google apps, too. All this is packed into a 105.9 x 55.3 x 11.95mm shell.

What’s missing? Well, I’d like a flip-out QWERTY keyboard, and maybe an upgrade on that camera, but beyond that, I can’t think of too much. The Arena seems like a very capable handset. I hope that it delivers on its promise, but I don’t think it’s topping the N97 in my “can’t wait for” phone list. How about you?

MWC 2009: HTC shows off Touch Pro 2 and Touch Diamond 2


This is the HTC Touch Pro 2, newly announced by HTC in Barcelona. HTC claims that it delivers “the most powerful productivity experience available on a mobile phone”, and who are we to argue? Let’s talk specs.

The phone has a 3.6″ touchscreen at WVGA resolution, Windows Mobile 6.1, 512MB of memory (but with a microSD card slot), HSDPA, GPS, Bluetooth, a 3.2-megapixel camera, Wi-Fi, FM radio and a five-row QWERTY keyboard. Phew.

Conspicuously missing when compared to rival phones are a 3.5mm headphone jack, decent operating system (Android, Android, Android), 5-megapixel camera and more internal memory. When put against the N97, this phone doesn’t really stand up too well.


Then there’s the Touch Diamond 2. It’s rather similar to the Touch Pro 2, but doesn’t have the QWERTY keyboard and has a slightly smaller touchscreen at 3.2″. It does have a slightly nicer 5-megapixel camera, though.

Other than that it’s mostly identical. Same WVGA resolution, Windows Mobile 6.1, 512MB of memory (with microSD card slot), HSDPA, GPS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and FM radio. Still no 3.5mm headphone jack.

Both are arriving this year, with the Diamond “Touch”-ing (sorry) down in Q2 and the Pro showing up in early summer. No pricing info yet. Personally speaking, I’d rather plump for the QWERTY over the 5-megapixel camera. How about you? Which is your favourite of the two? Let us know in the comments.

MWC 2009: Nokia takes the wraps off the 6710 Navigator and 6720 Classic


This is the Nokia 6710 Navigator, newly announced at MWC 2009 in Barcelona. It’s almost more of a satnav than a handset, because it’s packed with all sorts of mapping technology.

It comes with ‘drive and walk’ navigation, as well as full regional maps, a dedicated navigator button on the front of the phone, a touch area for zooming in and out, and a large display tuned to daylight viewing conditions.

Maps with Ovi will allow users to plan a journey on their PC and then sync it with their device, and the inclusion of a compass will mean that you won’t get lost when you fly south for the winter. In the box comes a car holder, and there’s also a car-mounted speakerphone available.


As for the 6720 Classic, it’s got noise cancellation and a curved design that Nokia claims will significantly improve call quality. Good battery life, “high-speed” internet, which I’m presuming means HSDPA, and TV-out capability.

No more specs than that yet, I’m afraid, but we do have prices and release dates.The 6720 Classic will show up in Q2 at an estimated price of €245 (£220) and the 6710 Navigator will appear shortly after in Q3 for not much more – just €300 (£270).

MWC 2009: Nokia unboxes the E55 and E75 – two new QWERTY mobiles for business people


The big selling point about the E55 and E75 is, according to Nokia, that both phones come pre-installed with the company’s new email front end and Nokia Messaging. Both applications allow business people to do business better and quicker.

That deal will be clinched, thanks to the efficient E75!

Nokia tells us the E75 is an upgrade of the (spirit of the) famed Nokia 9300 Communicator, keeping its slide-out QWERTY keyboard and focus on email and messaging. The new email client supports HTML mails, better sorting options and expandable views, as if the lack of that has previously been a deal-breaker…

MWC 2009: Nokia Launching "Ovi Store" in May, its attempt at capturing your loyalty and money


You’re NOTHING in the tech world without your own, personalised, branded store through which you sell things to children without troublesome “retail” taking a slice of the cash.

That’s the realisation that has dawned within the corporate mind of Nokia, which has today announced its Ovi Store – an application based around “connecting content providers with consumers,” which, we think, means an easier way to flog Rihanna and Beyonce ring tones to the youth demographic…

MWC 2009: Sony Ericsson announces new W995 Walkman phone


Just a few days after the fairly basic W395 Walkman phone comes the much feature-laden W995 Walkman phone from Sony Ericsson.

Forget the lacklustre 2-megapixel camera straight away, for this baby comes with an 8.1-megapixel camera (very important, that ‘point one’) with up to 16x digital zoom. Granted, digital zoom — especially on a mobile phone — isn’t much to get excited about (how much grain do you want on that picture of your best mate’s left nostril hair anyway?) and there’s no mention of optical zoom in the preliminary specs, but you do at least get auto focus, face detection, flash, image and video stabilisation, video recording (rate unknown) and video light.

OK, enough on the decent enough camera. This is a Walkman phone, after all, so what about the audio? Well, Sony is debuting its new Media Go application on the W995, letting you “effortlessly and automatically” transfer audio, pics and vids between phone and computer. Yep, something proprietary but then of course you can say the same about iTunes…