Tomorrow, at 2:00 PM PST, I'll be hosting a chat on LetsTalk's Facebook page. Ill be taking questions about phones, plans, apps, CES, and can even help Facebook fans pick the best phone for them. If there's something you want to know about mobile, but didn't know who to ask stop by and ask me on Facebook at 2:00 PM PST this Friday.
|Topics:||Somethin' To Talk About||Cell phone plans||Smart phones||CES|
At CES, Verizon announced a few additions to its DROID family of smartphones. Among them was the DROID RAZR MAXX by Motorola, a relatively thin (8.9mm) DROID with long battery life (so it should easily last a full day before needing a charge). Theres also Smart Actions that can be turned on and created to optimize battery life even longer. The Android 2.3.5 (it will be upgraded to 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich) smartphone sports a dual-core 1.2GHz processor, a rear-facing 8megapixel camera with flash, front-facing 1.3-megapixel camera that can record 720p HD video, and a micro-HDMI port so video captured on the phone can be easily viewed on an HDTV. The DROID MAXX by Motorola will be available with Verizon service this week.
|Topics:||Motorola||Verizon Wireless||Smart phones||Android|
Whenever I go to tradeshows, such as CES and CTIA, I like to put different technology to the test. This year I brought the MotoACTV with me. I had a couple of reasons for choosing this device. First, we are seeing more fitness-centric tech hitting the market from watch-like devices to smartphone apps such as Endomondo. Second, I wanted a device that worked with a cell phone. At shows, I typically have four active cell phones with me and theres little time available for digging through a bag to find the one receiving a text message. Finally, I really wanted to know just how far I walk during an average day at a tradeshow in Las Vegas. The MOTOACTV did all of this and more.
Since I was taking the MOTOACTV with me this year, I had to become familiar with the device before I left, which meant calibrating it on a treadmill/stationary bike and doing some light workouts. Its actually quite easy to setup, just attach the MOTOACTV to a computer via the included microUSB-to-USB cable, install the MotoCast desktop software, and sync. Youll also be prompted to enter information such as height, weight, and age. The benefit of the MotoCast software is that it also works with Motorola Android phones and essentially lets you sync music, photos, and other information from your computer with the phone. If you dont want to sync music, there are some workout-centric songs preloaded on the device. Once its all setup its worthwhile to head over to the MOTOACTV website where you can set fitness goals, schedule workouts, and even get a training program if your planning on doing something like running a 5K. Too bad theres no training plan for attending CES.
The fitness features are great, but the intriguing feature for me is the cell phone tie-in. In addition to a few other active Android phones, I took along a DROID RAZR to the show and synced it with the MOTOACTV via Bluetooth. To be clear, the device will sync with other Android handsets, however, it does a bit more when it syncs with a smartphone that supports the MOTOACTV app. Once synced, I was able to get alerts from my phone on the MOTOACTV. Plus, if I had a Bluetooth headset connected I could have taken calls, as well. (Read more)
|Topics:||Motorola||Verizon Wireless||Smart phones||Accessories|
First up, we got a chance to checkout the Spectrum at CES. That phone is fast thanks to the 1.5GHz dual-core processor and 4G LTE connectivity. The data connection can be shared with up to 10 WiFi-enabled devices via the Mobile HotSpot feature. It also has a vibrant and bright display, which will come in handy when using the included SmartMovie HD app for creating and editing videos on the phone. The cell phone is currently running the latest Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS, but will be upgradeable to 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The phone also sports a rear-facing 8-megapixel camera and front-facing 1.3-megapixel camera. Overall, the LG Spectrum is a high-end Android smartphone thats loaded with entertainment-centric features.
The BlackBerry Curve isnt a 4G LTE phone, but it can be use around the globe. Its also running the latest BlackBerry 7 OS, sports a 5-megapixel camera with a flash, and the companys trademark tactile QWERTY keyboard making it an ideal business companion.
|Topics:||Verizon Wireless||BlackBerry||Smart phones||LG|
For many who purchase a tablet especially a model with at least a 10-inch screen the idea of using it to view videos is especially appealing. The trick is finding the right case or accessory to make that an easy experience. The ArtStation Pro iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tablet docks might be just the solution. The tablet clicks into place and the tablet can be rotated for viewing in horizontal or vertical mode. Once attached, the included remote control can be used to manage things like Power, Volume, Play, Next, and Previous. For those who use the tablet for some work or to check e-mail it will also work with a paired Bluetooth keyboard. Prices for the stand start at about $150.
Like the idea for a stand, but dont have a tablet? Theres also a similar option thats a bit more compact and works with a smartphone or even a Kindle. The MobiAir is a speaker that can be connected via Bluetooth or via the 3.5mm headset jack that can also be used to charge the device. Prices start at about $70.
With cell phones performing more tasks, more and more people are finding that they need a permanent spot for them in the car especially in light of all the laws banning use of a cell phone while driving. Griffin showed off a product that could do the trick, the WindowSeat 3 Handsfree. Once the product is mounted to a windshield or dashboard, users can securely place their smartphone in the 3-point mounting bracket and then adjust it in place so that it can be seen at the right angle (think: turning it into a better position to see driving directions from a map on the phone.) The accessory works with a plethora of smartphones since it is so adjustable, though you likely will not be moving the WindowSeat 3 Handsfree accessory between multiple cars. It also comes with an auxillary audio cable so you can connect the phone to the car stereos Aux-in jack and use the built-in microphone for handsfree calling.
|Topics:||Driving laws||BlackBerry||Smart phones||Accessories|
|Android||Apple||CES||Windows Phone 7|
One of the trends in the mobile space at this years CES was a move towards more affordable smartphones. Case in point is the Pantech Burst that will be available in either ruby red or titanium with AT&T service for under $50 with a new two-year contract on January 22nd. The Android smartphone features a 1.2GHz processor, 4-inch Super AMOLED touchscreen, rear-facing 5-megapixel camera and front-facing 2-megapixel camera, and will work on AT&Ts 4G LTE data network. The cell phone also has a friendly user interface and shortcuts to access popular features from the lock screen.
|Topics:||AT&T Wireless||Smart phones||Android||CES|
During CES, MetroPCS announced it would be adding the 4G LTE compatible Samsung Galaxy Attain 4G and the LG Connect 4G to its line-up. The Samsung Galaxy Attain 4G will run the Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS, sport a 1GHz processor, a 3-megapixel rear-facing camera and 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 3.5-inch display. Users will be able to use Google Talk to make video calls. While the LG Connect 4G is a bit more high-end featuring a 1.2GHz dual-core processor and 4-inch touchscreen display featuring Corning Gorilla Glass Screen Protector making it durable. It will also run Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS, but the phones 5-megapixel camera will be able to record 720pHD video. Music lovers will appreciate that the LG Connect 4G will also come pre-loaded with Rhapsody Unlimited Music service. Both phones will require one of the companys smartphone plans.
In addition to the tons of products announced at CES, also on display are new technologies in the work. Over the past couple of years, weve seen a proliferation of devices such as PowerMat that let users place a phone on a surface and get a wireless charge. Those products typically need another part to get the charge, such as a special battery pack or cable connection. At the show we saw something a bit more advanced from eCoupled. It uses the same idea of having a special surface for charging, however the phone or battery-operated device doesnt need an attachment as shown below in the see through purse. When the purse with the cell phone in it is placed on the charging surface it locates the cell phone and starts charging the battery. No additional parts needed on the phone.
At a press conference at CES, Nokia unveiled the Nokia Lumia 900, which will work with AT&Ts 4G LTE network. As is the case with the previous Lumia models, the 900 has the unibody build so theres no visible seems on the phones adding up to a sleek design. The smartphone also features an 8-megapixel camera featuring Carl Zeiss optics and a front-facing 1-megapixel camera. The Lumia 900 is running the latest version of Windows Phone 7 (Mango) OS and has a host of Nokia apps included on the phone. Get a closer look at the Lumia 900 in the video below.
|Topics:||Nokia||AT&T Wireless||Smart phones||CES|
|Windows Phone 7||Industry Tradeshows|
Building on the thin design of the DROID RAZR, Motorola and Verizon announced the DROID RAZR MAXX. Its thin like its predecessor and also has an integrated battery (so its not removable). The smartphone will run Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread OS when it becomes available in the coming weeks, but will be updated to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Get a closer look at the RAZR MAXX in the video below.
In other RAZR related news, Motorola showed off the DROID RAZR in a new color: purple. That version will be available with Verizon service. Additionally, the DROID RAZR will be receiving the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS.
|Topics:||Motorola||Verizon Wireless||Smart phones||Android|