I spent the last few years flying all over the place and have lots of airline miles so I decided to go a bit crazy and fly out to New York for the day to cover the T-Mobile Google Android announcement taking place here this morning. I plan to post updates to this post throughout the event (assuming I can get connectivity) and afterwards as I hope to get some hands-on time with the device.
Smartphones and Cell Phones
Matthew Miller provides you with news, commentary and in-depth reviews of the latest in mobile phones sporting iOS, Android, and Windows.
Matthew Miller started using mobile devices in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since. He is a co-host, with ZDNet's Kevin Tofel, of the MobileTechRoundup podcast and an author of three Wiley Companion series books. Matthew started using mobile devices with a US Robotics Pilot 1000 and has owned more than 200 different devices running Palm, Linux, Symbian, Newton, BlackBerry, iOS, Android, webOS, Windows Mobile, and Windows Phone operating systems. His current collection includes a Nokia Lumia 830, Apple iPhone 6 Plus, BlackBerry Passport, Sony Xperia Z3, Microsoft Surface Pro 3, and many more, along with tons of accessories and classic devices like the Apple Newton MessagePad 2100 and Sony CLIE UX50. Matthew can be found on various discussion forums under the user name of "palmsolo".
It has been over 2 months since I wrote up my first impressions of the Nokia E71. At that time I was getting flooded with review and purchased devices such as the Palm Treo Pro, Samsung OMNIA, Touch Diamond, Treo 800w, MWg Zinc II, iPhone 3G and loads of applications with iPhone 2.0, Touch Diamond updates, and the iPAQ 910. Most of those devices are gone now, but the one that keeps earning the honor of carrying my AT&T SIM card is the Nokia E71. The fantastic hardware, valuable notifications on the standby screen, outstanding 3rd party application support, and form factor keep it in my pocket most of the time.
My T-Mobile SIM is living in my BlackBerry Curve and it is tough to get away from the excellent QWERTY keyboard and support for 3rd party applications (TwitterBerry, Facebook, Windows Live Messenger, Gmail) and email that I find quite valuable. We have seen rumors, news, and photos of the BlackBerry Bold and Storm and I have to admit I was a bit confused about whether the Javelin was just another name for the Bold since they look very similar in photos and I didn't dive into the details. CrackBerry posted a detailed first look at the Javelin and starts off with some Javelin history that I found particularly helpful.
Sascha Segan posted a new article today detailing some very interesting thoughts on the HTC manufactured Dream Android device that is being announced tomorrow by T-Mobile in New York. He discusses something that James, Kevin, and I talked about on MobileTechRoundup show #142 where the lines are blurred between smartphones and feature phones and Sascha stated that there will no longer be a label of "feature phones" in the future and phones will just be considered to have lower end and higher end operating systems. Once LG and Samsung come to market with their Android devices in 2009, then we will see if Android is the real deal.
One aspect of the Apple iPhone that I can't stand is the lack of quickly viewable notifications and I am actually very surprised that Apple doesn't have a better system in place on the device. Then again, I think the notification system for most mobile operating systems can be improved. On the iPhone, the notifications appear for a few seconds and then disappear. You then see a notification indicator on the text messages, email, and phone icons, but you have to go into each application and sometimes you may not even have that application on the visible "home screen". According to MacRumors Apple has filed a patent application for a cool new notification screen. It is a bit strange that a patent would be needed for something like this that even basic feature phones already use in some manner.
At the beginning of this week HTC announced three new Touch Windows Mobile devices. There is now a video of the HTC Touch HD up on YouTube, inserted below, that shows it in action in comparison to the Samsung OMNIA and iPhone 3G. As pointed out by Ryan Block on the latest episode of the GDGT podcast, the dimensions of the HTC Touch HD are EXACTLY the same as the iPhone 3G and this can't just be a coincidence.
I usually have a pretty good idea of the rumors surrounding mobile devices, but I was caught completely by surprise with the news of the Nokia E72 and E75 that was posted over at Symbian Freak today. The E72 is the first Nokia device to have a slide-out QWERTY keyboard much like several Windows Mobile devices (Touch Pro, HTC Vox, and new HTC S740) while the E75 looks like an upgrade to the E71.
Palm just posted their Q1 FY09 results on their investor relations site and they continue to experience challenges in the mobile space. TreoCentral has a post comparing the numbers from last quarter and they show that the loss was less and the revenue more this quarter so there is a slight positive sign there. Palm is hosting a conference call on the results and will probably talk about the continued success of the Centro and the newly released Treo 800w that should be coming soon to Verizon.
While it remains to be seen whether or not the Seinfeld/Gates Microsoft ads are effective, funny, or stupid, mobile phone companies are getting quite creative with their advertising and I have to say I am liking what I am seeing. Sony Ericsson kicked off their recent Johnny X video promotion for the SE XPERIA X1 launch. Today we see the launch of the new Nokia Legends campaign that I personally think is very cool.
I am a podcast addict and listen to podcasts more than anything on my mobile devices. One of my favorite shows, other than our own MobileTechRoundup of course, is The Cell Phone Junkie. I was honored to be invited by Mickey Papillon to appear on their rather new "unlocked" show and you can now listen to Mickey, Joey, and myself on TCPJ Unlocked Show #4.
It took me several years before I finally decided to add a BlackBerry device to my permanent mobile arsenal and my fairly recent T-Mobile Sunset-colored Curve has been performing pretty well. I never thought too much about 3rd party application support for the BlackBerry, but I am finding there are actually lots of cool applications and utilities to let you do even more with the device. Three of the latest applications from Electric Pocket that I have had a few weeks to play with are Ringo, PhoneFace Speed Dialer, and Flipside.
It has been a few months since I wrote about the Celio REDFLY Mobile Companion device, but I just wanted to let you know that Celio Corp continues to add support for more and more Windows Mobile devices, while also working with partners to enhance the end-user experience. I purchased one of these unit and actually use it on my daily commute a few times a week. Today, Celio posted a press release announcing support for Mobile Virtualization and Remote Access functionality.
I've been covering everything related to mobile tech over on the ZDNet Mobile Gadgeteer blog, including mobile phones, Tablet PCs, netbooks, digital media players, portable gaming devices, and more. In an attempt to provide a bit more focus, I am now splitting that blog into two blogs with this new one focused solely on news, review, and commentary of mobile phones, accessories, and software. In addition to the smartphone devices (Apple, Palm, Windows Mobile, S60, BlackBerry, and Google Android) I will also start including some higher end feature phone coverage here as well. Please let me know what interests you and what you would like to see covered in future posts, including any software or hardware you would like to see me evaluate and review. Thank you very much for your support on the Mobile Gadgeteer these last two+ years and I look forward to writing on this new blog and keeping you informed.
The best of ZDNet, delivered
- 1 Best 10 smartphones at the close of 2014
- 2 Six Clicks: Useful things you can do with the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 S Pen
- 3 BlackBerry Passport review: World's best QWERTY in a uniquely functional form factor
- 4 Best unlocked smartphones (February 2014)
- 5 Samsung Galaxy Note Edge review: Stroke of genius in a black slab world