Having been teased, and then leaked, and then officially announced, LG is back on the teasing trail again for their latest flagship device. The latest trailer for the upcoming Optimus G keeps one pretty major thing back though -- any actual footage of the phone. Instead, we're promised the "first of an all new redesigned series" and that the impossible will become possible. Leaves us wondering what else we're going to see in the coming months from the Korean OEM.
So, that's all fine and dandy, but our main question remains the same. Can we have the phone already? The Optimus G is -- spec wise at least -- a monster of a phone. That quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro, 2GB of RAM, HD IPS display and 13MP camera is sending out good vibes. But, we still need to see it. Please, LG?
Everything Everywhere, which owns Orange and T-Mobile UK, is to launch its new brand at an event in London next Tuesday, Sept. 11, at an event which is also likely to bring details of EE's upcoming 4G LTE network. Today's invite mentions that the company will be showing off its "new brand and the latest innovation in network technology." That'll be EE's recently-greenlit 1800MHz 4G network, then.
It's also notable that the event takes place just 24 hours before Apple's due to unveil its iPhone 5, which is widely expected to include LTE connectivity.
We understand Orange staff have been briefed that the early stages of a 4G network switch-on will start on the 11th, though details of what exactly that entails, and which cities would be covered are unknown. Regardless, neither Orange nor Tmo currently sells 4G-capable handsets, so that's largely a moot point. For those unfamiliar with the UK mobile landscape, the country still lacks any 4G networks, so if Orange and Tmo did flip the switch next Tuesday, it'd be an historic development.
We'll be live in London on the 11th to bring you all EE's plans as they're announced.
HTC has unveiled a new mid-to-high-end smartphone for the Chinese market -- the HTC One SC. Sporting an unconventional design and China Mobile's logo around the back, the One SC include 1GHz dual-core CPU, a 4.3-inch WVGA SuperLCD display and 4GB of internal storage. On the software side, you're looking at Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and HTC's Sense 4 software layer.
From the front, it looks a little like the HTC One X, but HTC's gone to town on the back cover, incorporating a three-tone plastic and brushed metal effect, with Beats branding and a large HTC logo. HTC has previously identified China as an important market, and it looks like it's doing everything it can to build its brand in that country, including highly visible branding on the back of this new device.
The One SC will likely join the two Chinese One X variants, the One XT and One XC, at some point in the near future. Exact release dates and prices have yet to be revealed.
Verizon has continued their crazy fast expansion of 4G LTE network coverage this week with over a dozen new markets or locations. More LTE markets can only be a good thing, especially if you're one of the millions who recently picked up a Samsung Galaxy SIII (S3) on Big Red. Here's a full list of the locations that went live this week:
Communities near St. Louis, Missouri
Rochester, New York (network enhancements)
Jackson County, Michigan
Syracuse, New York (network enhancements)
Binghamton, New York (network enhancements)
Greene County, New York (network enhancements)
With this rate of growth in the Verizon 4G LTE network, it's going to be hard for AT&T to catch up -- and seemingly impossible for Sprint.
Vodafone UK is to launch a new range of service plans aimed at heavy users, dubbed Vodafone Red. The new plans, which start at £29 per month, offer unlimited calls and texts and between 1GB and 2GB of data. Vodafone Red plans come into effect from tomorrow, Sept. 7, and will be available across Voda's range of smartphones. At the entry-level, £29 per month will get you something like a Huawei Ascend G300, while those looking to take advantage of the Red plan and score a high-performance handset at the same time will be looking at up to £47 per month.
Voda's new plans represent a move in the opposite direction to competing networks T-Mobile and Three. Both rivals offer unlimited data around this price point, along with finite, though large, allowances of calls and data. It'll be interesting to see whether Brits are still interested in call-focused price plans, as subscribers are increasingly turning towards heavier mobile data usage. Nevertheless, Vodafone insists its new price plans offer the "best value ever" for its customers.
We've got more details in Vodafone's press release after the break.
It's been just one hundred days since the Samsung Galaxy S3 made its international debut in London, but already 20 million of the handsets have been sold worldwide, according to the manufacturer. In its official blog post today, Samsung notes that the S3 passed this milestone around three times as fast as last year's Galaxy S2, no doubt helped along by a streamlined U.S. launch and an aggressive marketing campaign. The S2, another big seller for the Korean manufacturer, took some ten months to reach the 20 million milestone.
Today's announcement also shows that sales of the device remain strong. It took Samsung 50 days to sell its first 10 million S3 phones, and the company says they're selling at a rate of around 200,000 per day.
As we rapidly approach the final quarter of the year, there's little doubt that the Galaxy S3 will emerge as the best-selling Android handset of the year. However, it's biggest test will come in a couple of weeks, when it's pitted against Apple's next iPhone.
Update: We've got Samsung's press release after the break.
Headset controls are something that iPhone users have taken for granted all of these years, with standardized volume up/down and play/pause buttons that work universally if the accessory is "made for iPhone". Poking around on my Galaxy Nexus running Jelly Bean and using the included Samsung earbuds, the in-line mic and button seem to work just as gracefully. Join me after the break for a quick video showing many ways the Galaxy Nexus’ headset can be used.
T-Mobile has announced today that it will be even further expanding its lineup of 42mbps HSPA+ devices with the Samsung Galaxy S Relay 4G. Following quickly behind the launch of the Galaxy Note, the Relay 4G is decidedly a much different form factor, with a 480x800 resolution 4-inch Super AMOLED screen and full QWERTY keyboard. For software, the Galaxy S Relay 4G is running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with Samsung's usual TouchWiz UI. Here are a few of the high points on the device:
1.5Ghz dual-core Snapdragon S3 processor
5MP rear and 1.3MP front cameras
1GB of RAM
T-Mobile WiFi Calling support
SAFE enterprise-ready features and capabilities
Though we think some may be getting a little burned out on iterations of the "Galaxy S" branding, this is yet another good mid-range device available on T-Mobile. Take a look after the break at the full press release.
The latest Android platform numbers have just been released on the Android Developers site, showing devices running Android 4.0 and above now making up a 22.1 percent share of the Android market. As expected, Android 2.3 Gingerbread devices still make up a majority of the market at 57.5 percent. All other versions under 2.3 now total up to a small but still noticeable 18.3 percent.
Most manufacturers have at least started pushing 4.0 updates to their handsets that launched on 2.3, and nearly all devices are coming to market with 4.0 or 4.1 on board now, which is a good sign. Seeing such a large majority of devices still on Android 2.3 and below really hurts when you know how great the experience on Android 4.0 and 4.1 is, and we can only hope that the share of devices running 4.0 and above can increase faster in the future.
You can see the full granular report of the latest Android numbers - including time series of the market, screen sizes and more - at the source link below.
A couple of hours ago we mentioned that some Sprint memos mention Jelly Bean for the Sprint Galaxy Nexus and the Nexus S 4G are coming, and we just got this tasty nugget to confirm. It's from internal Sprint system pages and tells us just the news we want to hear -- that Jelly Bean will begin rolling out Sep. 6 -- yes, that's tomorrow.
For the Galaxy Nexus the build will be FH05, and for the Nexus S 4G we're talking JRO03R. Both are versions of Android 4.1, untainted by overlays or OEM changes. If you haven't already hacked the living crap out of your Sprint Nexus device, get ready for your upgrade -- you're going to love it.
If you need some help or advice about getting ready (or rolling back to stock) be sure to head into the forums and get on the right path!
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