It’s been a busy week in consumer technology and the world in general but also for our podcast squadron, who didn’t really have a chance to meet up and talk tech. Chris and Xavier found half an hour on Sunday night, though, so here is a show where we sound totally unprepared and blast through the headlines like there’s no tomorrow. WARNING: The creepy voice of Chris lives on, dear listener.
For years, Nokia has known that the best way to expand market share is to saturate every corner of it with a device. After an initial launch of just two devices in late 2011, Lumia devices are now available at seemingly every price point from £99 to £499, and one of the latest devices to join the range, the Lumia 720, sits firmly in the middle of this vast expanse, priced at around £249 unlocked. It follows on from the Lumia 710, which I reviewed last year and felt was a bargain considering its low price and high quality, but the 720 faces fierce competition from a sea of Android-powered handsets including diminutive versions of the top-selling flagships from HTC and Samsung. As such, is this mid-range combination of Windows Phone 8 and Nokia’s trademark hardware design worth your attention? Read on to find out.
Remember the last time our trio of podcasters were all on the same show together? Neither do we, but today it happened. Like the reunionisation of the Wu-Tang Clan, Xavier, Henry and Chris join together to discuss copyright trolls, why Motorola should manufacture in Essex and keep the interns off Twitter, LG doing everything they can to be Samsung, synthetic burgers, Hyperloops, Samsung doing everything they can to be Samsung, Phoenix & R. Kelly, Ron Swanson’s stack of cows, Sony being Sony and more!
For the one true episode 014 of our now adolescent podcast, Xavier and Chris make up for lost time by talking about everything important since the Lumia 1020 happened. It turns out that this includes a fair bit about the 1020 itself, but our dynamic duo (sorry Henry) also trawl through news about its baby big brother, a new family of Droids from Motorola and Verizon with the Moto X launch looming later this week and HTC’s quest for profitability with One variants both big and small. Samsung, on the other hand, go full-on with the purple and Canonical decide that a crowdfunding campaign to make an Ubuntu phone with a sapphire crystal display makes perfect sense. There’s also a new BlackBerry leak if you’re into that kind of phone and Google’s new Nexus 7 and Chromecast streaming HDMI dongle thing.
Twelve. That’s a mighty large number, and it’s also the number of topics in the show notes for our return from yet another unintentional hiatus. While Henry lies in a field getting fried by the British heatwave, Xavier and Chris take cover in the depths of the night to talk about Apple’s mobile product lines and web ambitions, imminent announcements from Nokia and Motorola, new devices from Sony and HTC that are scaring Xavier’s wallet and leaked information about upcoming phablets from the Korean pairing of LG and Samsung. Chris goes on to wax lyrical about rap music while Xavier enthuses about The Last of Us while finding it horribly difficult (yet completely possible) to avoid spoilers. We also answer some user questions from Twitter, thanks to our wonderful listeners and #AskChris, which we’ve chosen to hijack.
Henry makes a triumphant return to the show after Chris and Xavier break the biggest story of the week, in that you can now subscribe to and rate us in iTunes and all other leading podcatchers! Do that now! Please! We beg you!
There’s also a bit of minor tech news to go through, such as Apple’s new iPod Touch, Googlified editions of all your favourite Android phones, diminuitive and rugged editions of your favourite Samsung Galaxy S4, white editions of your favourite LG Nexus 4 and how the Nokia EOS leaks are probably deliberate ones from Nokia. There’s also the small matter of Computex craziness from Asus, Acer, Dell and Sony to go through, before a regular culture section dissolves into hardcore critiquing of Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby.
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You probably know what the Nokia Lumia 920 is. Last year you voted it your favourite smartphone and we also gave it our design award, so it’s fair to say that it went down pretty well. Aside from the complaints about its weight (which I thought were ridiculous, frankly), the only issue that people really had was with Windows Phone and its ecosystem or lack thereof. At an event in London today, Nokia unveiled the latest addition to the range of Windows Phone 8-powered Lumias, with the 925 joining the 520, 521, 620, 720, 810, 820, 822, 920 and 928 as the new flagship for everything that’s not Verizon, but what has changed? Apart from the shell, absolutely nothing.