Apple unveils Watch and iPhones, big and bigger, at San Francisco keynote

“Can’t innovate any more, my ass,” joked Apple’s Phil Schiller last year as he unveiled the latest generation Mac Pro. After accusations of the company stagnating and failing to put out a revolutionary product since 2010’s iPad sparked the post-PC revolution, Apple’s share price tumbled despite record sales figures.

Though targeted at the likes of video professionals rather than you or I, the ‘trash can’ Mac Pro was a sign of bright things to come. With a unique construction designed to save power, space and noise, the desktop workhorse (and Schiller’s comment) appeared to perfectly represent Tim Cook’s all-new Apple. They were going to innovate. They wouldn’t be afraid to have some fun. They were going to strike back.

Along came September 9th and Cook graced the stage at San Francisco’s Flint Center, bringing with him a pair of new iPhones and the long-awaited Apple Watch. All are clear responses to the likes of Samsung and Motorola, though is the catch-up effort enough to restore Apple to the head of the pack? Continue reading →

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Samsung wraps Galaxy Note 3 round a tree to create the Galaxy Round, a concave phablet

Galaxy Round Bottom CurveWe’ve long been aware of the emergence of curved and flexible display technologies, with the threat of companies actually implementing them being exactly that – a threat. Now, Samsung has actually crossed the proverbial line with the Galaxy Round, a phablet that’s set to hit SK Telecom in South Korea as soon as this week. What is it, you ask? The best way to describe things is by saying it’s a Note 3 that got into a fight and ended up far from deflated, with a crazy concave curve running across the screen from left to right. Aside from the reduced battery capacity (3200mAh -> 2800mAh), absence of S Pen and Wacom digitizer and reduced mass (now at 154g, probably due to the missing components) this thing is just a glorified and insane Note 3, and lucky Koreans will be able to step into a curvy future with the Luxury Brown model for just $1000. You really do get what you pay for.

Galaxy Round Top Curve

Source Samsung Tomorrow
Via AnandTech

LG confirms Vu 3, a square Galaxy phablet in disguise

LG Vu 3

The original Vu (and the Intuition, European Vu (with Tegra), Vu 2 and whatever else you want to call it) was stupid. With a horrible 4:3 aspect ratio that only makes sense on tablets and computers from the early 90’s, trying to use it was impossible. Even if your thumb could cope with the yoga involved to operate the thing, you’d remember that there’s not a single adequate Android device with a 4:3 aspect ratio and, of course, the apps would behave accordingly. That kind of ‘minor issue’ doesn’t ever stop LG, though, as the Vu 3 is official now with a 5.2″ 1280 x 960 IPS display and some other things that don’t matter whatsoever because that screen, now larger and more awkward than ever before, is now even more stupid. Also, it looks just like a mutilated Galaxy S III which, looking at the G2’s Galaxy S4-esque aesthetic, seems to be LG’s ‘thing’ now.

Source LG
Via Engadget

Signs of the third Vu-pocalypse appear as LG prepares to resurrect the square phablet

Optimus Vu

Remember LG’s ridiculous Optimus Vu, the 5″ phablet with a 4:3 1024 x 768 display? Or its international variant, which was one of the few devices to call itself a phone and carry a Tegra 3 processor? Or Verizon’s variant, dubbed Intuition, which could only muster a review score of 4.4 from The Verge? Or the Vu II, which took the original device and bumped the internal hardware up to appropriate levels for a 2012 flagship?

There’s a reason nobody (except me) remembers these things. It’s because they were horrible. And yet, LG just doesn’t know when to stop. Continue reading →

Japanese carrier NTT DoCoMo announces Pro version of LG Optimus G with 5″ 1080p display

LG Optimus G Pro NTT DoCoMo

In unveiling its DoCoMo NEXT line of smartphones and tablets for 2013, Japanese carrier NTT DoCoMo has confirmed the impending release of an enlarged version of the LG Optimus G, the phone that served as the basis for the Nexus 4. The Optimus G Pro trades a 4.7″ 1280 x 720 panel for one of 1920 x 1080 over 5 inches, but that appears to be the only major difference, as both Pro and ‘Amateur’ models feature quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro chips powering a skinned version of Android 4.1. The 3000mAh battery is the largest in DoCoMo’s new smartphone line, and a 13.2MP BSI CMOS sensor can be found on the rear. Along with the usual array of Japan-specific features such as One-Seg TV broadcasting, the Optimus G Pro will also support LTE, NFC and WiFi tethering for up to 8 devices, while a microSD slot will allow for up to 64GB of expansion. The phone is said to be hitting NTT DoCoMo in April although, as with the Sony Xperia Tablet Z, it remains unlikely that this phone will ever be seen beyond Japanese shores.

NTT DoCoMo 2013 Spring Collection

Via Android Police
Source NTT DoCoMo

Samsung expands phablet range with mid-range Galaxy Grand

Samsung Galaxy Grand

While we may remain cynical about phone/tablet hybrids such as Samsung’s Galaxy Note and LG’s Optimus Vu, sales reports suggest that consumers are embracing them with open arms. As such, it comes as no surprise that Samsung has announced a new phablet model pitched at the mid-range market. Running TouchWiz-encrusted Android 4.1.2, the Galaxy Grand sports the usual array of Samsung-only features such as Direct Call, Popup Video and S Voice, all powered by an as-yet unspecified 1.2GHz dual-core processor. Sharing many design elements with the S III and Note II, the Grand also features a 5″ display with an 800 x 480 display, producing a less-than-average 187ppi. It also has 8GB of on-board storage that can be increased by 64GB with a microSD card and a 2100mAh removable battery, alongside an 8MP rear camera and 2MP front camera.

If the Galaxy Grand sounds like your cup of tea, you will be able to pick it up in either single-SIM (GT-I9080) or dual-SIM (GT-I9082) versions, although pricing and release information has not yet been confirmed. What has been confirmed, however, is that the dual-SIM model will launch first, although we expect to hear further information at CES in Las Vegas next month.

Samsung Galaxy Grans Specifications

Source Samsung Tomorrow
Via The Verge

Craigslist user creates hilarious infographic to sell his Galaxy Note

A Craigslist user from Toronto has a Galaxy Note that he wants to sell, and in order to stand out from the crowd he has created a hilarious (and Note-sized) infographic. While some of the language used is a little strong, the ad appears effective and confidently conveys the size of the phone that single-handedly launched the phablet market.

Interested? The phone’s still for sale, so head over to Craigslist to get a piece of the action.

Via Android Central / @SparklngCyanide
Source Craigslist