The latest member to join the Droid smartphone family is the Droid DNA by HTC and it’s the most powerful one yet. Right off the bat you’ll notice its 5-inch, true 1080p HD super LCD 3 display (440 pixels per inch) with Corning Gorilla Glass 2 protection. It’s powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, specifically a quad-core 1.5GHz CPU that’s paired with a high-performance GPU. Android’s latest and greatest Jelly Bean operating system comes preinstalled along with HTC Sense 4+. The backside camera specs go like this: 8-megapixel f/2.0 28mm wide-angle lens, 5-level automatic flash, backside illuminated sensor (BSI), superfast autofocus, 1080p HD video capture. The 2.1-megapixel front-facing camera features f/2.0 88-degree ultra-wide angle lens and also captures full HD video. Beats Audio is on board, as is “a unique, 2.55-volt, built-in headset amplifier and dedicated amp for the external rear-speaker to help boost the audio signal to deliver crystal clear sound with less distortion, even at maximum volume.” WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, and NFC are here as well. It is 4G LTE capable. It packs a 2,020mAh battery. And as far as measurements go, the DNA is 9.73mm thick and weighs 4.86 ounces.
The Droid DNA is arguably the best and most powerful handset Verizon Wireless offers today. Well, technically it releases Wednesday, November 21st, but you can preorder it now if you like. Sign a new two-year contract and it’s yours for a reasonable $199.99. PR after the break. (Click here for more…)
Following Nokia’s Lumia 920 and Lumia 820, HTC unveiled their Windows Phone 8 flagship device, Windows Phone 8X and a budget-friendly mid-range model, Windows Phone 8S.
The 8X sports a 4.3-inch (1280 x 720) Super LCD 2 display with Gorilla Glass 2 protection with a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 processor with 1GB RAM, 16GB of storage, a rear-facing 8 megapixel camera featuring a CMOS sensor with backside illumination, an f/2.0 aperture, 28mm lens, and a dedicated imaging chip, and a front-facing 2.1 megapixel camera with an f/2.0 aperture and 88 degree ultra-wide angle. Both cameras can shoot 1080p video. NFC, Beats Audio, a 1,800mAh Li-ion battery, and LTE support are built-in. The 8X will come in a variety of colors including California Blue, Graphite Black, Flame Red, and Limelight Yellow when it ships this November. AT&T and T-Mobile have confirmed they will carry HTC’s flagship WP8 device at that time.
And then there’s the mid-ranger, the 8S. This model packs a 4-inch WVGA LCD screen with Gorilla Glass, a dual-core 1GHz Snapdragon S4 processor with 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage with microSD expandability, and there’s a 5 megapixel camera ’round back with support for 720p video recording but you won’t find a front-facing shooter here. A slightly less powerful 1,700 mAh battery gives the thing juice. The 8S will also ship this November in following hues: Domino, Fiesta Red, Atlantic Blue, and High-Rise Gray.
When release dates, pricing, and exact carrier support become apparent, you will be notified. Over and out.
Get ready for a mouthful. The Droid Incredible 4G LTE by HTC is now available on Verizon Wireless. Phew! Now, spec time. The latest Droid sports a 4-inch (960×540) super LCD qHD display and is powered by a 1.2 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor. An eight megapixel rear-facing camera comes complete with autofocus, LED flash, BSI, f/2.2 and 28mm lens, and a front-facing camera enables video chat. As its name indicates, this Droid takes advantage of Verizon’s speedy 4G data and it can act as a mobile hotspot and share its 4G LTE connection with up to 10 Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is on board, as is the latest version of HTC’s customizable skin Sense 4. You can order one direct from VZW for a cool $149.99 after a $50 rebate once you sign the dotted line for a new two-year contract. Look in the gallery below to view the handset at various angles. PR, per usual, is after the break; and so is a video!
Try saying that ten times fast. HTC and Verizon have announced the next smartphone in the Droid Incredible line: the Droid Incredible 4G LTE. You want specs? You’ve got ‘em. The new Incredible features a 4-inch super LCD qHD display, an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus, LED flash, and HD video capability, a front-facing camera for vid chat, and a 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor. The smartphone also serves as a Mobile Hotspot that can share its 4G LTE connection with up to ten Wi-Fi-enabled devices, you can throw in a 32 GB microSD memory card for additional storage, and it packs a 1,700 mAh Li-ion ion removable battery. It runs the latest and greatest version of Google’s Android OS, 4.0 aka Ice Cream Sandwich and it comes with HTC’s acclaimed customizable skin Sense 4. And if somehow you missed it in the device’s insanely wordy name, this Incredible takes advantage of VZW’s speedy and far-reaching 4G LTE network. A price point and firm release date have yet to be determined, but Big Red promises the Droid will land on shelves “in the coming weeks.” PR, per usual, waits after the break.
Microsoft is heating up the competition by introducing two new 4G LTE enhanced phones for its Windows Phone collection. The HTC Titan II and the Nokia Lumia 900 are in fact the first 4G LTE smartphones to run Microsoft’s latest Windows Phone iteration “Mango.” Let’s start with the Titan II. Besides packing the 4G chip, the new Titan features a giant 4.7-inch super LCD capacitive touchscreen and an impressive 16 megapixel camera with a wide-angle lens, autofocus, and dual LED flash. The rear camera also supports 720p HD video recording, and a 1.3 megapixel front-facing one allows for video chat. Inside you’ll also find a single-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon processor and a 1,730mAh battery.
Nokia’s Lumia 900 is the bigger brother to the Lumia 710, the latter of which is the first smartphone to come out of Microsoft’s strategic alliance with the Finnish handset maker. (The Lumia 710 is now available to buy on T-Mobile for $50 on contract.) The 900 sports a larger 4.3-inch (800 x 480) AMOLED ClearBlack display, a 1.4GHz single-core processor, 512MB of RAM, Carl Zeiss-branded eight megapixel camera with large aperture (F2.2) and wide angle focal length (28mm) and LED flash that supports 720p HD video capture. Around the front you’ll find a camera also boasting a large aperture (F2.4) and a wide angle lens. Inside the polycarbonate body lies a sealed 1,830mAh battery. When it becomes available, the 900 will come in two flavors: cyan and matte black.
Microsoft’s first 4G LTE Mango phones are coming exclusively to AT&T later this year. Images below, PR and video after the break.
In May Microsoft previewed the first major upgrade to its rejuvenated mobile OS. Mango will bring multitasking, IE9, and deeper social network integration, among other things, to Windows Phone 7 devices. This fall, AT&T intends to upgrade their entire WP7 portfolio to Mango. Nice! But there’s more. In a press release (in full after the break), Ma Bell also announced three brand new handsets that will ship with Mango on board in Q4. The new and improved Samsung Focus S features a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 1.4GHz processor, a rear facing 8 megapixel camera and a front facing 1.3 megapixel, ”4G”-capable speeds, and a thin profile at 8.55 millimeters. The Focus Flash downgrades things a bit and packs a smaller 3.7-inch Super AMOLED screen, a 5 megapixel camera with front facing camera, but it keeps the speedy 1.4 GHz processor. And finally the large-and-in-charge HTC Titan features a 4.7-inch display, 1.5 GHz processor, and 8 megapixel camera with dual LED flash. Pricing and exact available will have to wait.
Update: Microsoft shows off a bunch of Mango’s new features in dramatic video fashion after the break.
The month of May is a big one for Big Red. Shortly after introducing the 4G-powered Droid Charge in late April, Verizon Wireless is adding three more intriguing smartphones to its arsenal. First up is the long-awaited successor to the Droid X, the appropriately titled Droid X2. This Droid packs a giant 4.3-inch scratch-resistant and anti-reflective qHD display and a speedy dual-core 1GHz processor–this is the first VZW phone to carry such a chip. Other specs include an eight megapixel camera with autofocus and HD video capture (a front-facing cam is noticeably absent here), HDMI output, and mobile hotspot capabilities with up to five WiFi-enabled devices. The X2 will come preloaded with Android 2.2, and the carrier promises an upgrade to 2.3 is coming soon. It lands on Verizon this Thursday the 26th of May at the usual $199.99 price point under a new two-year contract.
Let’s breeze through handset #2. We already know all about the Xperia Play, aka the “PlayStation Phone.” The phone released earlier this spring internationally, and come May 26 the PlayStation Certified Android 2.3-powered device will be available for US consumers for $199.99. It will come preloaded with seven game titles including Madden NFL 11, Bruce Lee Dragon Warrior, Asphalt 6: Adrenaline, The Sims 3, Star Battalion, Crash Bandicoot, and Tetris. Available for preorder today. Read all about Sony Ericsson’s gaming-oriented phone right here.
So many firsts for Verizon, let’s recap: The Charge became the inaugural device to bring 4G speeds to the Droid brand, the Droid X2 is the carrier’s first dual-core phone, and Verizon is the first US carrier to offer the Xperia Play. And now there’s this: later this month HTC’s Trophy drops on Big Red to become the first Windows Phone 7 device to run on the nation’s largest network. Want specs? Got ‘em. The ruggedly designed Trophy features a 3.8-inch screen, 1 GHz Snapdragon processor, five megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash that captures 720p HD video, 16 GB onboard storage, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, and SRS WOW HD surround sound built in. The world phone’s loaded with Microsoft’s Metro-infused OS and HTC’s customizable Hub. On sale May 26 for $149.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate and if you climb aboard Verizon’s ‘waves for 2 years, of course.
A new day, a new Droid. A little over a year after its original incarnation, the Incredible gets an upgrade. So what does the sequel bring to the table? It packs Qualcomm’s latest 1GHz Snapdragon processor, a 4-inch super LCD display (the original featured a 3.7-inch screen), eight megapixel with dual LED flash capable of 720p HD video capture, 1.3-megapixel front facing camera (a new addition!), and it runs Android 2.2 with the latest version of HTC Sense. The world phone can act as a 3G Mobile Hotspot that can connect up to five Wi-Fi-enabled devices. Unfortunately the Incredible 2 does not support Verizon’s new 4G LTE network. 3G’ll have to do. 200 bucks is the fee (with a new 2-year contract, of course), and it goes on sale the 28th of this month–that’s tomorrow! Full PR after the break.
HTC manufactures dozens of aesthetically-charged handsets powered by Android and their acceptable skin HTC Sense. The Thunderbolt, however, is a standout. In just two days it will officially release and become Verizon Wireless’ first 4G LTE device on the market. VZW says that customers can expect download speeds of 5 to 12 Mbps and upload speeds of 2 to 5 Mbps in the 4G Mobile Broadband coverage area (check to see if you’re covered here). So if you’re not near a WiFi signal data speeds will be blistering fast (when compared to current 3G speeds, that is). Other specs include: 4.3″ WVGA display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 8 megapixel rear facing camera with HD (720p) video recording, 1.3 megapixel front facing camera with video chat capability, 8GB of onboard memory and a pre-installed 32 GB microSD card, and around the back there’s a built-in kickstand. Additionally, the device can act as a Mobile Hotspot and can share its 4G connection with up to eight WiFi-enabled devices (a 2GB monthly cap is in effect). Note that after Verizon’s grace period ends on May 15 you’re required to pay an additional $20/month on top of your current phone bill to enable hotspot functionality. The handset is preloaded with Android 2.2 (Froyo) and HTC’s latest version of Sense (v2.0).
The HTC Thunderbolt lands on Verizon Wireless on March 17 and will cost $249.99 after signing a new two-year contract. Order from Verizon or Best Buy. According to the official press release (which is sitting after the break), the phone will launch with an unlimited 4G LTE data plan costing the standard $29.99/month. Like the other wireless carriers, Verizon will eventually transition its 4G data plan into tiered (read: data capped) options but for now it looks like Thunderbolt owners will have the freedom to go wild with their crazy fast speeds.
Update: HTC has put together a promo video featuring the Thunderbolt and its bold design. Check it after the break.
When Microsoft unleashed its sleek, new mobile OS unto the world back in October 2010, it did so only on GSM carriers in the U.S. including AT&T and T-Mobile. Come next month, Windows Phone 7 will finally become available on a CDMA network. No, not Verizon, I’m talking about Sprint, the “Now Network.” The handset is dubbed the Arrive, it’s built by HTC, and here are its specs: 3.6-inch WVGA capacitive multitouch display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5MP camera with flash, autofocus, and digital zoom capable of 720p HD recording, 16GB of internal memory, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, and of course a sliding full QWERTY keyboard with a tilt-up display. Oh and get this–the Arrive will be the first phone to ship with the upcoming WP7 update that brings copy-and-paste functionality to the OS. You can pick up the Arrive on March 20 for $199.99 (after $100 mail-in rebate) if you sign a new two-year contract with Sprint. Get a closer look at the sexy slider in the gallery below, and jump after the break for the official PR. Verizon Wireless customers will have to wait another day to experience “Glance and Go” goodness.
[Via Engadget](Click here for more…)
Windows Phone 7: 10 devices, 4 launch hardware partners, 60 mobile carriers in over 30 countries worldwide; coming 10/21 in Europe & Asia, early November in U.S.
Today Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer took the stage in New York City to reveal the final details surrounding the launch of Windows Phone 7. Microsoft first unveiled their new cell phone operating system in February at Mobile World Congress; next they spotlighted developer support at MIX’10; and most recently they detailed Xbox Live integration. All there was left to do is reveal launch harware and mobile operator partners and device release dates and pricing. And that’s exactly what went down today in NYC.
Let’s start with the Windows Phone 7 launch hardware partners and the actual devices you might potentially pick up come this holiday season. Samsung, LG, HTC, and Dell are collectively bringing ten new devices that will run WP7. The Samsung Focus (codenamed Cetus) features a 4-inch (480×800) Super AMOLED display, 1GHz processor, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, and 8GB of onboard storage with microSD expansion up to 32GB. It’s the thinnest WP7 launch device measuring at 9.9mm (or .3 inches) thin. It will launch exclusively with AT&T in the U.S. The Samsung Omnia 7 features the same 4-inch (480×800) Super AMOLED display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, and 8GB of onboard storage. It will launch with Orange (France and UK), SFR (France), Movistar (Spain), and Deutsch Telekom on November 8. The LG Quantum (or Optimus 7Q outside the U.S.) features a 3.5 inch (480×800) display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, 8GB of onboard storage, a slideout QWERTY keyboard, and it comes preloaded with PlayTo, an app that allows users to wirelessly stream content to DLNA-enabled devices. It will launch exclusively with AT&T in the U.S. and with Telstra in Australia. The LG Optimus 7 features a 3.8 inch (480×800) LCD display, 1GHz processor, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, and 16GB of onboard storage. It will launch with Telus (Canada), América Móvil (Mexico), Movistar (Spain), Vodafone (Germany, Italy, Spain and UK), and SingTel (Singapore).
HTC is launching five WP7-powered devices. The HTC HD7 features a 4.3 inch (480×800) display (it’s the WP7 launch device with the largest display), 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 576MB of RAM, 5 megapixel autofocus camera with dual LED flash (supports HD 720p video recording), 16GB of onboard memory, built-in kickstand, and it comes preloaded with Netflix, Slacker, T-Mobile Family Room (a note-taking sharing app), and a T-Mobile TV entertainment app. It will launch exclusively with T-Mobile in the U.S. in mid-November and with O2 (UK, Germany, Ireland), Movistar (Spain), SingTel (Singapore), Telstra (Australia), and Bouygues Telecom (France) on October 21. The HTC 7 Surround features a 3.8 inch (480×800) display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 576MB of RAM, 5 megapixel autofocus camera with LED flash (supports HD 720p video recording), built-in kickstand, and 8GB of onboard storage. What makes this device standout from all the others is the slideout speaker that features Dolby Mobile and SRS Surround Sound technologies. It will launch exclusively with AT&T in the U.S. and with Telus in Canada. The HTC 7 Pro will be the first WP7 CDMA device and will launch exclusively with Sprint in the first half of 2011. It features a 3.6 inch (400×800) display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 576MB of RAM, 5 megapixel autofocus camera with LED flash (supports HD 720p video recording), 16GB of onboard storage, and a slideout QWERTY keyboard. Update: The 7 Pro will arrive in Europe “early next year.” The HTC 7 Mozart and HTC 7 Trophy are two WP7 handsets that will not (initially, at least) not make it to the U.S. market. They both feature a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 576MB of RAM, 8GB of built-in storage, and HD 720p video recording. Here’s where they differ. The Mozart features a sleek aluminum unibody construction with a 3.7-inch (480×800) display and 8 megapixel camera with a Xenon flash. The Trophy, on the other hand, features a slightly larger 3.8 inch (480×800) display and a slightly lesser 5 megapixel camera with LED flash. The Mozart with launch with Orange (France and UK), Deutsche Telekom (Germany), Telstra (Australia) and the Trophy will launch with Vodafone (Australia, Germany, Spain and UK) and SFR (France).
And finally there’s the Dell Venue Pro. It features a 4.1-inch (480×800) AMOLED display, 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 5 megapixel camera with flash, and a portrait-designed QWERTY keyboard. It will launch exclusively with T-Mobile in the U.S.
And that’s a wrap on the hardware discussion. As you can see, all ten WP7 devices are very similar in terms of internals: the 1GHz processor, the 5 megapixel camera, the 8GB-16GB internal storage, 3.5 inch to 4.3 displays, and the handful of slideout QWERTY keyboard-equipped models. Through the end of the year, WP7 devices will be exclusive to AT&T and T-Mobile; this leaves a wide gap in the CDMA (Verizon/Sprint) playing field. By the time Q1 of 2011 rolls around, Microsoft better have deals finalized with the other mobile carriers if they truly want to compete in the competitive smartphone market. Also, hardware partners will eventually have to up their game with better and differentiating specifications and designs if they want to stay relevant. HTC is doing a fine job so far with the 7 Surround speaker design the HD7′s large 4.3 inch display. But for now, the WP7 starting lineup is quite impressive. The stars are certainly aligning for a successful launch.
In addition to revealing hardware and mobile carrier partners, Microsoft also shared some information regarding software developments. Though they weren’t specific about the exact number of launch apps for Windows Marketplace, they did show off bunch of promising apps. They include Twitter, eBay, Fandango, Netflix, Slacker, IMDb, and games such as Tetris, The Sims 3, Monopoly, Need for Speed: Undercover, and The Harvest. AT&T CEO Ralph de la Vega was on hand to show off the AT&T U-verse app. The app will be preloaded on all AT&T WP7 devices and will allow users to download and watch TV shows on the go. If you are already a U-verse subscriber at home, accessing and downloading content off the app is free. You will have the ability to manage your DVR recordings, access TV guide listings and an On Demand library. If you are not a subscriber, AT&T will offer a $9.99/month plan to watch TV on the go when WP7 launches wide in November. (Keep in mind, “live” TV is not available; you are simply downloading content to watch now or later.) In related news, AT&T has confirmed that Xbox 360 owners will have the ability to use their console as a U-verse receiver starting October 15. New subscribers can order a $99 Xbox installation kit and a technician will load the software onto the console for you; current subscribers will be forced to pay an extra $55 on top of the $99 installation kit to make the switch from set-top box to Xbox. And here’s one last software tidbit: Microsoft promises a free software update bringing copy-and-paste functionality to all WP7 devices will be pushed out in “early 2011.” Update: In a statement Microsoft confirms that public beta software will be available for Mac users to sync “select content” with their WP7 device later this year. Look after the break for the first two WP7 commercials!
Apple, Google, RIM…it’s on.
Cell phone makers respond to Jobs’ claims surrounding Antennagate [Update: Apple throws Moto's Droid X into the mix]
Last week Apple CEO Steve Jobs held a press conference to address the iPhone 4 deathgrip situation. During the presentation he spit out phrases like “phones aren’t perfect” and claimed that the antenna problem is “a challenge for the entire industry.” To provide factual evidence to back these statements, Jobs showcased videos of the iPhone 3GS, BlackBerry Bold 9700, HTC Droid Eris, and Samsung Omnia II all dropping their signal strength when gripped in a certain way. (Apple uploaded these videos to their YouTube page.) Over the course of the next few days following the press conference, RIM, HTC, Samsung, and Nokia shared their thoughts on the matter. You can be sure they did not take Apple’s “all smartphones have weak spots” accusation lightly.
The first cell phone manufacturer to counter-attack Apple’s claims was Nokia, a company Apple interestingly did not make an example of at the press conference. Though they agree with the fact that “antenna performance of a mobile device/phone may be affected with a tight grip, depending on how the device is held”, a non-direct jab at Apple comes later in the statement: ”… we prioritize antenna performance over physical design if they are ever in conflict.” Since Apple did not mention Nokia during the presentation, Nokia kindly left Apple out of their brief statement. Little did they know that Apple would post a video of the Nokia N97 Mini getting deathgripped on their YouTube site just four days later.
Now let’s hear what the other cell phone makers had to say about their honorary mention. RIM co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie start the statement off like this: “Apple’s attempt to draw RIM into Apple’s self-made debacle is unacceptable.” Other choice quotes: “Apple’s claims about RIM products appear to be deliberate attempts to distort the public’s understanding of an antenna design issue and to deflect attention from Apple’s difficult situation.” .. “One thing is for certain, RIM’s customers don’t need to use a case for their BlackBerry smartphone to maintain proper connectivity.” Yeah, they just said that.
Things cool down a bit with the reactions from HTC and Samsung. In an exclusive statement to Pocket-lint, HTC’s Eric Lin compared the Droid Eris’ complaint rate to iPhone 4′s. At the conference, Jobs said that over 0.55 percent of iPhone 4 customers called AppleCare to complain about the antenna problem to date. Lin shared that “approximately .016% of customers” feel the need to call in about Droid Eris antenna-related issues. That’s around 34x lower then Apple’s rate. Although HTC has yet to push out more formal response to the debacle, I’d say they win the point on this one. Samsung rounds things out with a terse reply saying that the Omnia II’s antenna is located at the bottom of the device, a logical ”design [that] keeps the distance between a hand and an antenna.” Look after the break for the full statements from Nokia, RIM, and Samsung.
All in all I believe that these cell phone makers are justified in responding to Apple’s “Antennagate” mess. It may be true that most smartphones have weak spots, but it was an obvious design flaw on Apple’s part to both place that spot where a hand is apt to grip the device and point out its exact position with a black strip. And to reiterate RIM’s closing words, all of these other smartphones do not require a case to function properly. Handing out free cases is a temporary fix. To remedy a hardware problem a new, better design must be conjured up. When it comes time for Apple to reevaluate the situation in September, I hope they have a more permanent fix in the works.
Update: Today (7/26) Apple posted yet another video in attempt to prove that the antenna problem affects most smartphones. This time around it’s Motorola’s Droid X, one of Verizon’s current flagship phones. Watch the bars drop from 3 to 0 after the break.
Though it helps to be an Apple fanboy (or girl), if you have a single funny bone in your body you will love this. That is all. Now enjoy!
Say hello to Droid Incredible. It joins the Motorola Droid and HTC Droid Eris on Verizon Wireless. And it packs quite the punch: it’s powered by a 1GHz Snapdragon processor, features a 3.7 inch WVGA (480×800) AMOLED capacitive touch display, its got an 8 megapixel camera with dual LED flash, and it runs Android 2.1 with the latest HTC Sense overlay. Besides that, you’ll find the usual suspects like GPS, 3G, WiFi, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. It goes on sale with VZW on April 29 for $199.99, after a $100 mail-in rebate and a 2-year agreement.
Essentially the Droid Incredible is an updated version of the Nexus One, a phone that is currently only available for T-Mobile (but it’s supposedly come to Verizon later this month). Its got the same processor but a better camera. The significant difference lies in the software. While both phones are 100% Android, the Droid Incredible’s got the HTC Sense UI built on top of it, allowing for a bit more UI customization. If you’re a VZW customer, the Droid Incredible just became the best Android phone to get; that’s of course if you don’t mind the lack of a physical keyboard. If that’s a necessity, the orignal Droid (which was recently upgraded to Android 2.1) is the one for you. Full PR after the break.
After a flurry of rumors and leaks, Google has finally stepped into the light and shared with the world the Nexus One “superphone,” a collaborative device with HTC. Let’s jump straight to the facts, shall we?
The Nexus One sports a 3.7-inch AMOLED display (480×800), 1GHz Snapdragon processor, compass, GPS, accelerometer, light and proximity sensors, stereo Bluetooth, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, Wi-Fi, 3.5mm headphone jack, and an LED light source under the trackball for notifications. It also comes with two mics (one on the bottom, the other on the back) for noise cancellation purposes. It packs a 1400mAH battery that promises 5 hours of 3G browsing and 7 hours of 3G talk time. When you order the device you have the option to engrave a custom two-line message on the back, just like Apple lets you do with the iPod classic, touch, and iPhone.
For now, the Nexus One is teamed with T-Mobile and sells for $179 with a new two year contract. You also have the option to purchase it unlockedfor $529. It will work on AT&T but without their 3G service because it only supports T-Mobile’s 3G in the US. It is available today for purchase straight from Google. Big news is that it’s coming to Verizon Wireless (and Vodafone) this spring.
Obviously the Nexus One runs Google’ Android mobile OS. What’s so special about it is that it’s the first phone to run version 2.1, a much more polished version of Android 2.0. 2.1 includes live wallpapers, home screen panels, 3D photo galleries, Voice-enabled text fields, and a zippier and more handsome experience. Unfortunately like the Droid, the Nexus One software does not include multitouch, though it definitely could handle it. On a different note, Google promises that a future update will allow users to save apps on external storage devices like SD cards.
So what’s the verdict? After having read many reviews it looks like the Google-HTC Nexus One is the phone to get if you’re all about Android. It is not an iPhone killer, and Google is quick to point out that that is not the phone’s intention. Google supports a large ecosystem of different phones, and they welcome the heavy competition the iPhone brings to the table. So, if you are all for the Android OS, I’d take the Droid on VZ or the Nexus One on T-Mobile. Of course you could always wait for the latter to make its way to VZ this spring, can’t you?
We already know all about the Droid by Motorola. Now you can pick it up (or order it online) for $199.99, after a $100 rebate and under the obligatory two-year commitment. Verizon has stated that tethering (connecting your phone to your computer to gain Internet access) will be made available for Droid customers in 2010 and will add an addtional $30 to the data plan.
If that price is too steep for you VZ is giving you the option to select a similar handset with the Droid Eris by HTC. Basically it’s a rebranded Sprint Hero (also by HTC) with a few aesthetic and UI changes. Compared to its older and more sophisicated brother, the Droid Eris runs Android 1.5 (not 2.0), it does not have a physical keyboard, it packs a slower processor (528MHz Qualcomm), and its screen size and resolution is lowered. It does, however, feature a 3.2-inch capacitive display, 5 megapixel camera, WiFi, 3.5mm headphone jack, 8GB microSDHC card (with expansion up to 16GB). It will be the first Verizon phone to run HTC’s personalized user interface called HTC Sense on top of Android 1.5. You can also pick up the Droid Eris now (or order it online) for $99.99, after a $100 rebate and under a two-year agreement. Take a look at the Droid Eris in the gallery below and peek after the break for the full press release.
Here’s the bottom line: The Droid by Motorola is the next best phone on the market after the iPhone. If you are in the market for a new cell phone and you are a Verizon Wireless customer, getting the Droid is a no-brainer. If the Droid’s price and fierce looks are too much for you, saving one hundred dollars and purchasing the Droid Eris by HTC is a worthy sacrifice that can be made. All in all, the new family of Droid phones is a win for all Verizon customers and finally brings some worthy competition to the current king of smartphones, the iPhone.
Now that HTC is becoming more of a household brand with its slew of sleek cell phones coming out for AT&T (Pure, Tilt2), T-Mobile (G1, myTouch 3G), and Verizon (Touch Diamond, Imagio, O-Zone, Droid Eris?), it deserves an ad campaign to further integrate its brand image and make a name for itself in the consumer world. And you know what, it works for me. The “HTC You” campaign commercials and print ads are clean, sleek, and catchy (“You don’t need to get a phone. You need a phone that gets you”). And most important of all they get the HTC name out there and get people talking. And talk people should do–HTC, their partnerships with companies like Google, and their self-concocted Sense UI really do pay off their great, user-friendly handsets. Check out one of the commercials below, and look after the break for another one.