Friday, August 31, 2007

Nokia's big day

Nokia shot to center stage of cell phone land today by unveiling a gallery of new handsets and services at an event in London. We can't get across the pond to cover the news in person (though we did get a very short preview of the handsets last week), but we'll bring you the highlights here. Be sure to click through to read more details on each announcement. Or if you prefer pretty pictures, take a gander at our slide show.

North America finally will get its own version of the powerful Nokia N95. Though it looks just like the existing N95, it adds a few extras, such as more RAM and longer battery life. It also offers 3G support for North American networks. Welcome also to a new N95 with a whopping 8GB of internal memory.

There are two new editions of the Nokia N81. Nokia showed off an 8GB model and a version that can accept microSD cards up to 4GB. Both will offer high-end features and will support Nokia's newly launched Ovi Internet brand, where you can download songs from the new Nokia Music Store and games from the company's new N-Gage service.

Speaking of which, the Nokia Music Store will offer millions of tracks from a variety of music sources. You'll be able to browse for music, buy a song directly over the air to your phone, or add a song to a wish list for a later download.

The Music Store will be available through the Ovi brand of Internet services, which is also the focal point for reviving Nokia's unsuccessful N-Gage brand. But instead of bringing us another awkward N-Gage device, Nokia is developing a new N-Gage gaming platform. You'll be able to browse through a wide selection of game titles, download free trials, and purchase games directly from Nokia. The service will also offer community portal for playing games with friends, or even strangers.

Finally, Nokia also introduced two new Xpress Music devices. The 5310 and 5610 offer the nifty, high-end multimedia features you've come to expect from the Xpress music line. The 5310 has a slim candy bar design, while the 5610 is a slider phone.

All phones and services should be available beginning in the fourth quarter of this year. We don't have specific North American availability information, but we'll pass on the details as soon as they come. And you can bet that we'll have full reviews of the phones as soon as we can get our hands on them.


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Nokia 5610 XpressMusic mobile phone

Nokia has announced three new handsets today at its Nokia: Go Play event in London. Pocket-lint was invited to have a first hand look at the new models. So will these be the handsets we all crave in the coming months or ones that fade into the background? We get playing to find out.

The Nokia 5610 XpressMusic phone is the company's music slider, and like the Nokia 5310, also announced at the same event, sits beneath the company's multimedia N series handsets.

Packing 3G connectivity, the Series 40 interface and a bump in digital camera specs from 2 as found in the 5310 to 3 megapixels, the idea behind the phone seems to offer music with a little extra.

The package makes sense and in our brief play was easy to use performing well.

Central to the design is a slider switch that sits beneath the 2.2-inch bright and crisp QVGA screen and above the menu keys on the top half of the slider.

The idea is that you slide the switch from side to side to access the next screen in a very similar way to how the HTC Touch and Apple's iPhone works, but without the touchscreen.

It's like the poor man's alternative and no doubt anyone down the pub with either in a couple of months time with make sure you know it.

According to Nokia the new interface is all about allowing the user the chance to see other features of the phone they might not be aware of, while at the same time being keen to point out that the interface is as easy to use as ever.

Playing on this further, the phone has a quick application launch button that allows you to scroll through applications, like you do with alt-tab on a PC, quickly from the home screen. You can also type in a URL straight from the home page without having to visit the browser first - a nice touch.

As for that music focus, the phone supports up to 4Gb microSD cards via its expandable memory slot, enough for around 3000 tracks and like the 5310 it's got dedicated music buttons, although not as clearly marked.

There is also an FM radio and stereo Bluetooth to complete the package.

Built quality on the units that we played on came across as a bit on the plastic side, especially the keypad although it was easy to use and well spaced out making texting easy to do. Strangely the build quality wasn't as good as the cheaper 5310 model also launched at the same event.

However real music fans, will be disappointed, as the 5610 isn't one of the new handsets capable of accessing Nokia's new dedicated music download store also launched at the same event.

Because the 5610 uses the Series 40 operating system rather than Series 60, it won't be able to benefit from the Ovi feature set and that means no maps, no games and no music.

Users will be able to "sideload" music bought from the Nokia Music Store via their PC, however they won't be able to download them directly to the phone.

It's a strange omission considering the company is now supposedly all about "Music".


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Nokia 6131i With Near Field Communication Technology

Big deal, right? It's just another flip phone with a rather standard set of features? Wrong! The Nokia 6131i is pretty darn special, because it is the world's first business mobile phone integrated with Near Field Communication technology.

Set for launch in China ( Xiamen, Guangzhou and Beijing), the Nokia 6131i can use its Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to make, as you can probably guess, close-range data transfers. This can be used for beaming media files, making secure mobile payments, or whatever else you're little heart can dream of. NFC operates at 13.56MHz, beaming 1s and 0s over at rates as high as 424kbps. The communication between compatible devices is said to be intuitive, simple, and safe.

In order to initiate the connection, simply wave or touch the two items together (they must be within 4cm of one another). After that, communication can continue through Bluetooth or WiFi as well.


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

LG Viewty 5 MP Touchscreen Camera Phone Launched

LG has unveiled its latest professional-level featured camera handset, called the LG Viewty. The sleek touchscreen mobile phone is also known as LG KU990.

The first feature-oriented handset sports 5.1 megapixel camera, manual focus and image stabilizer, 3-inch touch screen with the engine of Mobile XD. It has the combination of amazing functionality and style. Viewty has the ability to click high-quality images.

This is not it, the camera phone offers ultimate editing features that allow the consumer to modify or enhance the photographs of their choice. It also comes with HSDPA-enhanced 3G broadband data capabilities.

Dr. Skott Ahn, CEO of LG Mobile, comments “This is a very exciting time for us. The LG Black Label Series and our collaboration with PRADA have cemented our position as an innovator in design and style. With the launch of the new LG Viewty we are now also proving our commitment to technical enhancement and look forward to taking the feature phone category by storm.”

Moreover, KU990 mobile phone provides the world’s first 120 fps video recording feature. Users can also connect their camera mobile phone to YouTube through just-one-click. This helps the owner to share their videos with others on Internet.

The LG Viewty will hit UK stores later this year. LG is planning to reveal the KU990 during IFA 2007 in Berlin on August 31, 2007.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

LG Chocolate VX8550 mobile phone

The LG Chocolate VX8550, available in the US from Verizon for $250 - £125 - with a two-year contract, eschews a button-oriented navigational ring for a navigational wheel. We found the LG VX8550's wheel a mixed blessing. It simplifies navigation in some menus, but makes it more onerous in others. Sometimes it's easier to press the wheel like a four-way button to navigate up/down and left/right. The top half of the LG Chocolate VX8550 slides upward to reveal the phone's keypad. LG has added an extra row of buttons at the top of the keypad, for send, camera, and end/power. To use the phone for functions such as playing music, though, you have to push up the slider first so you can power the phone up. The LG VX8550's standard 3.5mm headphone jack is a welcome feature; and a new microSD card slot, protected by a sturdy cover, can handle 4GB high-capacity cards. Otherwise, much remains the same in the LG Chocolate VX8550 as it was in previous LG Chocolate phones. A 240x320-pixel, 11-line display with 262,000 colours; a 1.9GHz CDMA PCS, 800-MHz CDMA (Digital Dual-Band) radio; high-speed EvDO support; a surprisingly capable 1.3Mp camera/camcorder with serious shutter lag; and stereo Bluetooth. The phone supports web-based email and instant messaging. The LG VX8550 sounded clear in our informal tests, even under windy conditions on a local street corner. The LG Chocolate VX8550's four capacitive touch buttons include a dedicated speakerphone, which the first Chocolate lacked. Audio sounded clear in our informal tests. In our formal talk-time battery tests, the LG Chocolate VX8550 lasted five hours, 12 minutes - nearly twice as long as the first LG Chocolate. On the back of the LG Chocolate VX8550, you'll find its speakers. Sliding the phone upward reveals its 1.3Mp camera and camcorder. In the US, the included V Cast Music service charges $1.99 and up for music downloads from Verizon. You'll also get charged for airtime minutes for the download, unless you step up to the VPak music and video service, at $15 per month. As yet there's no word on when the LG Chocolate VX8550 will launch in the UK.


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Nokia 6120 classic

Nokia could be causing a bit of a problem for itself in that its mid range consumer focussed phones are often very, very good, while its higher end more expensive ones can be a bit iffy.
Sometimes there are exceptions. I wasn't a fan of the low-to-mid range 7373, but in recent months the 3110 classic and the 6300 have both shown themselves to be lovely little mobiles. Meanwhile, two of its flagship handsets; the N76 and the N95 have both left me rather nonplussed.

What this does for Nokia's confidence at the higher end of the consumer market and for its profit margins are not for me to speculate on here, but from the point of view of the consumer looking for a good deal and a small, friendly but highly capable Nokia handset, arguably things have never looked better.

Take the new 6120 classic for example. This is a quad-band mobile with 3G and HSDPA support, is based on the S60 platform, and comes with the cable and software you'll need to synchronise diary and contacts with a PC.

Yet it is available from free on some pretty affordable contracts - as low as £15 for 18 months on 3, for example (Orange listed it as ‘coming soon' with no pricing at the time of writing). I don't have a SIM free price from the Nokia online store at the moment, but it is likely to be relatively affordable, and is a sign that the smartphone, done Nokia style, really does come within everyday grasp.

Top that off with the following: this is a simple looking candybar mobile with no swivels, twists, or other fancy, geeky gizmos. The shiny black and sliver livery of my review sample is understated and appealing. At 89g I think it must be the lightest S60 handset I've ever come across. At 105 x 46 x 15mm it is small for the hand and pocket.

After that little lot you might expect me to end up absolutely gushing about this mobile. That isn't the case, however, and I do have some grumbles.

While the screen displays 320 x 240 pixels and 16 million colours is somewhat small for serious smartphone usage. Reading email and web browsing are both activities that benefit from a larger screen.


Monday, August 20, 2007

Samsung launches HSDPA slider phone

DUBAI — Samsung Gulf Electronics said its regional sales increase of 30 per cent during the first half of 2007 surpassed the market growth rate of 26 per cent.

Unveiling its new mobile phone — Samsung U700 — the world's slimmest HSDPA slider style phone, Sandeep Saihgal, general manager, Samsung Telecommunication Division, said the Korean brand was on track to sustain the trend for the whole of 2007.

Samsung U700, which is now available in all major electronics outlets across the Middle East and is retailed at Dh1699, comes with an advanced 3.5G HSDPA technology which allows the user to enjoy a high download speed. "The 3G technology provides a high-speed wireless mobile broadband internet access. "Due to the growing demand of 3G enabled phones, Samsung is paving its way to the forefront of HSDPA technology. We are certain that the new U700 will mark a great advancement in the HSDPA platform," said Saighal.

The new phone has a mirror-like coating surrounding the 2.2-inch LCD screen which adds a modern polished finish. The screen displays 262,000 colours with a resolution of 240x320 pixels. Its connectivity options include a USB 2.0 cabled connection and Bluetooth 2.0 wireless connection to maximise the speed of HSDPA technology.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Sony Ericsson Mobile Phones

Sony Ericsson is one of the largest mobile manufacturing companies in the world satisfying the mobile needs and requirements of millions of people globally. In the last couple of years, the company has unveiled several high end mobile phones with a plethora of features. Be it clamshells, sliders or simple candybars, Sony Ericsson have shown its worth in every segment. A big point for the growing popularity of the Sony Ericsson mobile phones is that these handsets smoothly back up as your personal music players, cameras, gaming devices, mini computer for web browsing and so on.

Sony Ericsson shot up to instant fame with its launch of K-Series range of handsets. Although the initially released K-Series phones were not that much feature rich, yet they served as a true precursor to the present day mobile scenario. Just see the latest K-Series handsets like Sony Ericsson K850i, K550i, K550im, K610i, K750i, K790i, K800i and K810i -all these phones are equipped with almost all the latest and high end features that a modern mobile phone is expected to carry.

If music calls you and you want to explore it, then there is no better tool than the Sony Ericsson mobile phones to satisfy your musical inside. Sony Ericsson proudly showcases an exquisite series of mobile handsets with stupendous musical potential in the form of swanky Walkman series. These Walkman Series phones like Sony Ericsson W580i Grey, W550i, W810i, W830i, W850i, W880i, etc. have showered the music lovers with superb musical effects. Just turn them on, you are all set to groove into the beat.

Sony Ericsson has also incorporated the revolutionary Cyber Shot camera feature in some of its K-Series mobile phones. Now you can take nine continuous snaps and then select the one that you like-isn't that a great advantage for those photo lovers. Sony Ericsson mobile phones are great in connectivity as well as other important features like memory space and web access. And the best thing is that all these phones now can be purchased online with attractive mobile phone deals like contract phone deals and pay as you go mobile phone deals. Sony Ericsson sim free mobile phones are also easily available on the web for you.