We're coming at you this like live from the Mobile Nations/GeekBeat/Purch stage in South Hall at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Which we mentioned because that's why it's crazy and loud and awesome and really just a heck of a lot of fun this week.
We wrap up the best of what we've seen here at CES 2015, brining along Phil, Alex, Andrew, Myriam Joire and Russell Holly.
The YotaPhone 2 is coming to a U.S. operator, Matthew Kelly, Managing Director, Americas, told GeekBeat.TV's Cali Lewis and our own Phil Nickinson this afternoon live from the CES Live stage here in Las Vegas. Kelley couldn't say the specific operator, only that it is "one of the big four." (The big four being Sprint, Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile.) It previously was announced that the phone would be available in North America, but carrier support would be a big feather in the fledgling company's cap.
The YotaPhone 2 — which sports a traditional AMOLED display on one side of the phone and a low-power, (nearly) always-on e-ink display on the back — has been one of the bigger hits of this year's CES show, thanks to those dual faces.
Additionally, the YotaPhone 2 will be coming to a Canadian carrier in 2015 as well. The specific carrier wasn't named.
Huawei's latest device, the Honor 6 Plus, has been available for a few weeks now (in limited markets) but here at CES 2015 we've actually had an opportunity to get our hands on it. The Honor 6 Plus is a step above the Honor 6, and comes in at the equivalent of about $320 unlocked. It packs a metal and glass body, 5.5-inch 1080p display, quad-core processor and 3GB of RAM. But that's not necessarily the most impressive part — it also has dual 8MP cameras that are capable of some neat tricks, too.
Android TV and PC games streamed to your living room
Right at the beginning of CES 2015 Razer, known primarily for its PC gaming products, launched its first Android TV device. The Forge TV is headed our way in Q1 for $99 on its own or $149 as part of a bundle with a game controller.
We stopped by the Razer booth to check it out, and one thing becomes pretty clear almost immediately. It's likely this is the Android TV box you're going to want to buy,
An absolutely addictive one-touch action game, Crossy Road, has made the jump onto the Google Play Store after being exclusively on iOS and the Amazon Appstore. Very simply, you have to get the chicken to cross the road so he can get to the other side. The catch is that there is no other side, and you're just dodging traffic, speeding trains, torrential rapids, and hungry eagles for as long as possible before meeting an inevitable and grisly demise.
Alcatel has announced today that it is launching its own e-commerce channel to sell unlocked phones and tablets directly to consumers, breaking away from its traditional model of selling via carriers. The new store expansion to the U.S. follows a launch in Europe in November of 2014, and an expansion to Canada will be coming at some point in Q1 2015.
Toshiba has announced full-sized 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB SD memory cards that can shoot thumbnails over to your Android device for a quick preview simply by tapping your device to your camera. 16 thumbnails and available remaining space are shown through the dedicated Memory Card Preview App, though you'll still need to pop the SD card into a computer to get full access to the pictures. As neat as the mash-up of SD and NFC may be, Toshiba announced a Wi-Fi-enabled SD card that sounds decidedly more useful.
Streaming live television from your home to wherever you are has always been a cool idea, and there's basically only one big name in this particular corner of the world. Slingbox has been the go-to for this technology for quite a while today, and at CES this year we got a chance to ask them why that is. Ultimately, it comes down to supporting the users where they want to watch content, as explained by Sling Media CMO Mark Vena. The ability to deliver whatever content the user wants on whatever device they currently have on them at the time is what makes having a Slingbox more valuable to many of their users. Additionally, the new content suggestion tools built in to the Slingbox apps makes it so users have extra reasons to stick around and watch things from YouTube or even other channels with similar content.
It also doesn't hurt that the new Slingbox M1 comes in at $150, which is a significant price drop from some of their previous offerings. But hey, whatever lets us watch the game wherever we are, right?
While it feels like the big thing at CES this year is letting your smartphone act as the center of your connected world, the folks at Olympus are perfectly happy having their cameras do all the heavy lifting. Many Olympus cameras come with WiFi onboard now, and with that comes the opportunity to use your phone to help with photography. The Olympus Share app lets you use your phone as a remote, but you can also pull the photo straight to your phone and edit whatever shot you have just taken. It's an ideal setup for those who are interested in that instant share from a smartphone, but still want to shoot with a more capable camera.
It also doesn't hurt to take a look at how nice the new OM-D E-M1 looks, especially when you know you can use your phone to play with whatever you shoot immediately after.
The folks at Orbotix have made quite the name for themselves in the smartphone controlled toy world. Their first creation, Sphero, offers a uniquely entertaining experience with a technically impressive robot that has developed a fascinating third party software library. To follow up the curious little robot ball, Orbotix released Ollie. This robot is a little more like an RC car in how you drive it around, but with only a pair of treads and a contained pill shape it's still got a unique look to it. To make things more interesting, Orbotix has released a special edition "Darkside" version of Ollie, and after rolling this little guy around CES for a few days, and so far there's a lot to like.
Once updated, you'll need to sign into your YouTube account from the RE app. Video will flow from the RE to your phone, and from there to YouTube. (We'll have to see how long the RE's battery will hold out, though.
AT&T's no contract subsidiary Cricket Wireless will begin offering the Deezer streaming music service to its wireless phone customers starting on January 31. It will be the first time that Deezer will be available to US mobile phone users.
Samsung's not done launching mobiles this week. After launching the Galaxy E5 and E7 in India, the manufacturer has now announced the latest in the Galaxy Grand series, the Galaxy Grand Max, in South Korea. There's another device on offer as well in the form of the Galaxy A7, which is making its official debut in Malaysia.
TalkTalk has acquired both Blinkbox, the movie streaming and rental business, and Tesco Broadband from the UK supermarket. The cross-platform on-demand service that Blinkbox offers customers in the UK will put TalkTalk in a strengthened position against competitors, as well as bolster its own range of content.
Sprint today released preliminary results from the third fiscal quarter of 2014, showing the company acquiring almost 1 million new subscribers. Reported growth was driven by the strongest postpaid gross additions in three years, painting a positive picture for the US network.
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