There's been a wide range of coverage this month on ZDNet Mobile News, from the recently announced Fire phone from Amazon to some new Windows 8 hybrid tablets. We've opined about the myth of the optimal tablet size and shared how to deal with that. All in all it's been a busy month and those interested in the mobile space should find lots of interesting things in the recap.
The Big Guys — Apple, Microsoft, Google, Samsung, and Amazon
— Things have seemed a bit stiff and unsure at Apple events since the passing of Steve Jobs. The WWDC keynote indicates that Apple is back, and fun things are about to happen.
— Microsoft came under some heat from Windows customers when it released Office for iPad before a touch-friendly version for Windows. That heat should escalate with word that an Android version will also beat the much-needed Windows version.
— Apple’s acquisition of Beats Audio was only announced a few days ago, and they're already in the local Apple store in numbers.
— A report out of South Korea says Samsung is going to release a mobile device with a folding screen. The device supposedly unfolds from smartphone size to a small tablet form. Intriguing as it sounds, it’s not something buyers are likely to want.
— Amazon has excited the technorati this week with the unveiling of its Fire phone. It’s based on the Fire OS used on the Kindle Fire HDX tablet. This is a good move as Fire is better than Android for the majority of consumers.
Good gadgets and apps and how to use them
— If you are one of the millions of tablet owners or plan to give one as a gift, don't miss these good accessories to get the most use out of it.
— Early on, Amazon integrated the ability to read PDF documents on Kindle, including an easy way to send them to Kindle devices and apps. Some who use Kindle technology don't know about or forget about this ability.
— The problem with mobile devices has always been that the size of the display determines how portable they are. You can’t have a large screen on a small device. That situation raises its ugly head for many looking for the perfect device.
— There are not as many apps for the Kindle Fire HDX as there are for Android tablets but these are some good ones. They should work on most Android tablets, too.
Hardware coverage and reviews
— The latest tablets from Amazon are each good in their own right. Which one to choose often comes down to size so we pit them head-to-head to help you decide which is better for you.
— Lenovo has updated the ThinkPad Tablet 2, and the ThinkPad 10 may be the best Windows tablet.
— Windows 8 supports several form factors and this hybrid from Acer can morph into most of them.
— Sony unveiled the smallest laptop with a good keyboard ever produced in 2009. The Vaio P wasn't without its problems due to the small size, and it was saddled with Windows Vista. This little laptop with today's hardware, Windows 8.1, and a touch screen would be rather nice.