Posts Tagged ‘Samsung’

Another Symbian Phone Bites the Dust

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Symbian has lost another manufacturer. Samsung has announced it will discontinue using Symbian on its phones. This follows closely on the heels of a similar announcement by Sony Ericsson. One by one Symbian is losing manufacturers, even members of the Symbian Foundation.

Symbian has been the dominant OS for a long while, but iOS and Android have been rapidly gaining ground. Gartner is predicting that Android will bump Symbian from the number one slot by 2014. Interestingly Microsoft almost falls off of the same chart. Not too many people rooting for Windows lately.

Symbian has remained popular largely due to the high volumes of cheap cell phones that run it. Some higher-end phones, like the Sony Ericsson Vivaz sport Symbian though. At this point the Vivaz is the last of the Sony Ericsson phones to offer the OS. Being a fan of the Xperia line, I am not too disappointed to know that Android is becoming a big part of Sony Ericsson’s future. Nokia is still holding on firmly, but even Nokia is showing interest in its own spin-off.

Do you have a Symbian phone? Did you just pick up a Vivaz or maybe even a Samsung recently? Hopefully you’ll get a lot of use out of it. Your next phone very well could be sporting iOS or Android.

Samsung Galaxy Tab Coming Soon to a Carrier Near You

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Not content to simply provide a phone on all the major US carriers, Samsung will soon release its new Galaxy tab across the board as well. It is scheduled to launch in time for the holidays this year.

The Galaxy Tab will launch on AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile. According to Samsung, there will be no voice capabilities on the models currently being announced. Samsung has mentioned a line of tablets coming in the future, so voice might be available eventually. Using Qik you can do video calls though with the current version. There may be a Wi-Fi-only version coming in time for the holidays as well.

Here are the specs:

  • Android 2.2
  • 1GHz Hummingbird Processor
  • 7″ WSVGA Touch-Screen
  • 3MP Rear-Facing Camera with Auto-Focus and LED Flash, 1.3MP Front-Facing Camera
  • Gyro/Accelerometer
  • 16GB or 32GB on-board memory, expandable external memory to 32GB, 512MB RAM
  • Samsung Apps/Android Market
  • Social Hub (for SMS, Email, IM, Calenders & more)
  • Flash 10.1 Support
  • Swype

At 7″, Samsung is claiming this device fits in a pant or jacket pocket. Dell offered similar capability with its 5″ Streak. I am not sure how comfortable a 7″ device would be. With all eyes on the iPad, it is interesting that Samsung went with 7″ for its first tablet. It fits exactly between the iPad and the Dell Streak. I think it would have been better to start with 9 or 10 inches. In theory a bigger one will follow soon after, so it is likely that a larger screen is on its way.

Samsung seems to be vacillating between processor descriptions. On some sites it calls the processor a Hummingbird, and on others a Cortex A8. If you were confused by the alternate listings, the Hummingbird is based on the Cortex A8 architecture.

The Galaxy Tab will be available in Europe this month, and in the US this fall. There is no word on pricing, as Samsung is letting the carriers determine and announce the price.

What do you think? Are you itching for a 7″ tablet? Let me know in the comments.

AT&T and Motorola – Friends or Foes?

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

AT&T logo

While rumors of the new Motorola Flipout for AT&T are floating around, I’ve been thinking about all the different Android devices in play now, specifically of the Motorola variety. When you hear Motorola, you likely think immediately of the Droid. Whether the original Droid, the Droid X, the Droid 2, or the Milestone, this line is arguably the best Motorola has ever produced. Why is it then, that AT&T is getting scraps?

At first glance one might assume that it is AT&T’s love affair with the iPhone that has kept Android phones at bay. This is entirely possible. There have been arguments that AT&T has intentionally offered crippled devices in order to keep sales of the iPhone going strong. At first this seemed plausible. First there was the promise of five Android phones by the first half of 2010. It failed to keep that promise. The Motorola Backflip was launched first, to muted fanfare. Nobody really liked the “unique form factor.”

Next came the Aria, which came as a surprise to a number of AT&T’s employees. The Aria is a great little phone with a major problem – it shatters with little effort. Next announced was the Dell Aero, but it went MIA for a while. The Samsung Captivate was the first sign that AT&T was starting to respect Android. The Xperia X10 further supported this notion. Dell launched the Streak and Aero on its own site, though both phones are only usable on AT&T in the US. This brings us to the Flipout.

The Flipout does what it says. It goes from a square shape to a more rectangular shape when you flip it out. If the Backflip failed to excite fans, I don’t expect much from this phone. This now makes one wonder who’s fault these lackluster Motorola phones are. Is it AT&T’s short-sightedness striking again? Is Motorola intentionally giving the B squad phones to AT&T? We’ve seen the Droid. We know what Motorola can do. The Backflip and Flipout are poor examples of a Motorola phone.

Whatever the reason, AT&T fans are still waiting for a decent Motorola phone. In the mean time they have the Captivate, Xperia X10, and Blackberry Torch to occupy their time. I’m inclined to believe that AT&T is mostly responsible for the missing Droids, but it is purely speculation at this point. I’ve stopped giving AT&T the benefit of the doubt.