Hooray! The Dialed In gang is back together again with Senior Editor Kent German back from his month-long sabbatical, just in time for the next iPhone. On this week's episode, we make some predictions of what we might see at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference and we discuss AT&T's new data plans. Plus, Motorola announces a new Android phone with a twist, and we take a look at Garmin's latest smartphone. Is it a flop like the last one? Tune in and find out.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) … Read more
We've already heard so much about the Motorola Flipout that at this point, the official announcement just seems like an informality, but here it is, Moto's newest Android phone.
Similar to the Nokia Twist, the Flipout sports a square design that twists open to reveal a full QWERTY keyboard. With its fun design and such hip colors choices as Licorice, Fairway Green, Raspberry Crush, Brilliant Blue, Poppy Red, Saffron, and White, the smartphone most definitely aims for a younger crowd and includes a new version of Motoblur software.
The Motorblur enhancements include:
The ability to filter the Happenings … Read more
As many of you know, the HTC Evo 4G goes on sale June 4 at Sprint stores and other retailers nationwide, including Best Buy and Wal-Mart. There's a lot of excitement and anticipation for the nation's first 4G phone and rightfully so, but it's hard to tell whether there will be huge lines, but RadioShack isn't taking any chances.
The electronics retailer said Wednesday that it will open its doors as early as 6 a.m. at some of its retail locations to help preorder customers activate and set up their phones. In addition, if you … Read more
We knew it was just a matter of time, but thankfully we didn't have to wait too long for Verizon to announce that it will join Sprint in offering the RIM BlackBerry Bold 9650.
The carrier revealed Wednesday that the Wi-Fi-enabled Bold will be available for purchase online starting June 3 and in stores June 10 for $149.99 with a two-year contract and after a $100 mail-in rebate (that's $50 less than Sprint's model if you're keeping track). Much like the Sprint version, it is a world phone and supports international 3G bands.
In addition, … Read more
AT&T has announced a new set of data plans, starting Monday, for smartphones and tablets (read: iPads) that appear to come cheaper than current plans.
Although the changes might leave some people scratching their heads, I see more to like than dislike--such as iPhone tethering.
Tethering, which allows a laptop to connect to the Internet via a phone's 3G connection, will be available with the new data plans as soon as Apple releases iPhone OS 4 this summer, AT&T said in its Wednesday announcement. Tethering will cost an extra $20 and won't work with … Read more
AT&T looks like it is ready to be taken seriously when it comes to Android. A recent string of leaks indicate that a rather powerful Samsung handset is right around the corner, ready to battle the likes of the Droid Incredible.
The latest phone to surface, the Samsung i897 is rumored to be running Android 2.1 and powered by a Snapdragon 1GHz processor. In fact, almost every hardware detail from the i897 matches up to the Samsung Galaxy S.
The iPhone is No. 1 in customer satisfaction, says a new ChangeWave survey, but Motorola also has its share of happy Droid users.
Among the 1,009 smartphone owners interviewed by research firm ChangeWave, results released this week found that 77 percent of all Apple iPhone owners said they're very satisfied with their phones. Motorola came in second, with 64 percent of its smartphone users who expressed high satisfaction with their phones.
In comparison, 51 percent of HTC owners and 46 percent of RIM Blackberry buyers said they're very satisfied with their smartphones.
Among specific models, Apple fans who own the newest iPhone 3GS models were more satisfied than those who still use the older 3G. And Motorola can thank the Droid for its high level of customer satisfaction--69 percent of Droid users said they're very satisfied with their phones, while only 50 percent of those who own other Motorola phones said the same.
Of course, we know that iPhone satisfaction varies a lot between rural and urban areas and by geographic location. But ChangeWave spokesman Paul Carton says the customers surveyed were a representative sampling geographically of the U.S. and Canada. Most of those surveyed were U.S. residents, he said.
Looking at HTC's customers, 68 percent of the HTC Hero owners expressed a high degree of satisfaction, compared with 50 percent of those using a Droid Eris and 38 of those with an HTC Touch. ChangeWave was running its survey just when HTC's Droid Incredible hit the market, so it couldn't provide feedback on that new model. But the research firm promised to do a follow-up survey of Droid Incredible owners.
ChangeWave also asked about the mobile operating systems running on smartphones.… Read more
Motorola is counting on Verizon to use its marketing prowess to help the handset maker stage a smartphone recovery, and the wireless carrier has promised to do just that, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Motorola has worked out a deal with Verizon Wireless to make sure some of its new smartphones for Verizon will get a heavy promotion by the carrier, says the Journal.
As Motorola has struggled to turn a profit, its co-CEO Sanjay Jha has bet the farm on Verizon Wireless and the Droid to help turn the tide of its sluggish handset business. But the Android … Read more
We've got some good news and bad news for Samsung Behold II owners. We'll start with the good first: you're getting an update to Android 1.6. The bad? You won't be getting anything beyond Android 1.6.
Samsung dropped the bomb late Thursday evening via its Twitter account, and its official statement reads:
Samsung Mobile and T-Mobile USA are planning to update the Behold II to Android 1.6 which provides access to Google Maps Navigation, Google Voice Search capability and quick search box for Android.
The update will also supply additional benefits including Swype, … Read more
Pop quiz: Which one is the true tablet? Apple iPad, JooJoo, Dell Streak, or HP Slate?
If you guessed any of them you're right. Or you're wrong. Because the answer seems to depend on whom you ask.
The tablet category is heating up lately. IDC expects more than 7 million tablets to ship by the end of the year and more than 46 million units to ship by 2014. That is in large part due to the success of Apple's iPad, which has flown off store shelves since its introduction in April. Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Asus, Fuijtsu, Acer, Archos, and many others have also flocked to the the decidedly gray area that tablets occupy between a smartphone and notebook.
Perhaps because the category is new, the definition of "tablet" seems sort of up for grabs, depending on who is defining it. Size, features, and specifications are the traditional way of breaking down consumer electronics and PC categories, but the few products currently for sale or coming soon are blurring those lines.
We take a crack at dampening some of the confusion around the latest crop of consumer tablets. (For a complete list of tablets, see the guide put together by CNET's Donald Bell.)
What makes a tablet a tablet? Traditionally the categories of mobile computing devices break down in terms of size: smartphones have 3- to 5-inch screens, MIDs (mobile Internet devices) range between 5 and 7 inches, and tablets are between 7 and 10 inches.
But the feature set, or what the device can do, is the other half of the equation. According to Gartner, a true tablet is any slate over 5 inches running a full operating system like Windows, Mac OS X, or Linux.
IDC breaks the devices down into media tablets and tablet PCs. A tablet PC has an x86 processor, runs a desktop OS, and has a screen size anywhere from 5 inches to 21 inches. Despite what it may look like, "A tablet PC is a PC," said Richard Shim, IDC analyst. "There's no real limit to them."
These are generally the traditional idea of a tablet, the kind that look like a laptop with a screen that twists that you can close and write on with a stylus, like the Dell Latitude XT or the Asus Eee PC T91.
"A media tablet we're defining as ARM-based, running a smaller OS (non-Windows)," he said. "The screen sizes are between 7 and 12 inches." ARM is a type of low-power processor typically used in mobile devices, whereas x86 processors are used in more robust applications where power consumption isn't as much of an issue.
How do the current crop of tablets compare? There's a pretty big range in IDC's and Gartner's definitions if you compare the features of a few of the recently announced or released tablets intended for consumer use.… Read more