BlackBerry 10 coming to all four major U.S. carriers

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Jan 132013
 
RIM BlackBerry

A number of Canadian carriers have now announced that they will carry BlackBerry 10 devices when they launch. The same happened this week in the U.S. where all four major carriers made similar announcements. First, a report by Reuters indicated that AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon would all carry the upcoming devices. Then came confirmation from Sprint that it would also offer at least one device in 2013.

At least two carrier executives expressed cautious optimism about their upcoming launches and the devices themselves:

  • T-Mobile USA CEO John Legere: “We’re extremely optimistic that it’s going to be a successful product and our business customers are extremely interested in it.”
  • Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam: “We’re hopeful its going to be a good device,” adding, “We’ll carry it.”

AT&T Chief Marketing Officer David Christopher confirmed that they would support the platform and handset executive Jeff Bradley added, “It’s logical to expect our current (BlackBerry) customers will have the best BlackBerry devices to choose from in the future.”

For its part, Sprint only indicated that it “plans to bring BlackBerry 10 to our customers later this year. We will share more details soon.”

Research In Motion is now working with more than 150 carriers across the world and many have now confirmed that they will offer BlackBerry 10 smartphones shortly after their launch.

Read more: Reuters and BGR

Software update for Nokia Lumia 920 and 820 rolling out in Canada and US

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Dec 192012
 

Nokia Lumia 920Nokia today announced that it has begun to push out a software update that brings a number of enhancements to the Nokia Lumia 920 at Rogers here in Canada and the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 at AT&T in the United States. The update (Software Version 1232.5951.1249.0001) offers the following:

  • Enhancements in Messaging
  • More efficient and reliable Bluetooth connectivity
  • More efficient and reliable start-up sequence
  • Enhancements in imaging performance and battery management
  • Additional platform updates and enhancements

Your device should soon alert you that an update is available. To check manually, select Settings -> Phone Update -> Check For Updates. The update process should take about 30 minutes.

Nokia is also “working with Microsoft and our operator partners” to push out updates for other Lumia devices updates in early February 2013.

Read more: Nokia

1080p display LG E940 for AT&T surfaces on benchmark website

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Dec 102012
 

Remember LG’s rumoured 1080p HD F240K smartphone that surfaced last month. It now appears that a variant may be headed to North American shores as well. The LG E940 has been spotted on the GLBenchmark website. As usual, little is revealed but there are the usual few details that can be gleaned. Among them is the parameter, android.os.Build.PRODUCT, which reads as geefhd_att_us, suggesting that the LG E940 is headed to AT&T.

GLBenchmark results for LG E940

Other details revealed by the test results indicate that the LG E940 will run Android 4.1.2 (although that could still change by the time it is announced) and sport a Full HD (1920×1080) display. While there is no size for the display, we can expect it to be no less than 5-inch like other smartphones sporting a 1080p display. It will also come with an Adreno 320 GPU, suggesting a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro SoC.

With plenty of carrier announcements normally taking place at CES, could we see the LG E940 announced then? With AT&T set to carry it, we could also see it make its way north of the border – Canada needs a smartphone with a 5-inch 1080p display.

Read more: GLBenchmark

Nokia Lumia 920 and Nokia Lumia 820 begin shipping

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Oct 302012
 

Nokia Lumia 920Nokia yesterday confirmed that both the Nokia Lumia 920 and the Nokia Lumia 820 have begun shipping. Both will be available in France and the UK this week but the honour of first carrier to offer the Lumia 920 looks to be going to Rogers. The Canadian carrier yesterday announced that it would begin selling the Lumia 920 today in “select stores,” starting at CA$99.99 with a three-year contract.

“After seeing the enthusiastic response to the incredible innovation in the Nokia Lumia 920 and Nokia Lumia 820, we’re eager for people to start experiencing the phones for themselves,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president, Nokia Smart Devices. “We are focusing our efforts on working with partners who recognize the value of that innovation, and who are committed to helping Lumia and the Windows Phone platform break through in key markets around the world.”

Nokia’s new Lumia devices will launch in the U.S. in November although specific dates are still not available. AT&T will launch the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820. Verizon will offer the Nokia Lumia 822 while T-Mobile will offer the Lumia 810.

Pricing and exact availability will be announced by individual carriers.

Update: Rogers has also confirmed that it shipped “a limited supply of Nokia Lumia 920 smartphones in black” to some customers who reserved one through its Rogers Reservation System.

Read more: Nokia and Rogers RedBoard

Windows Phone 8 pre-orders to start on October 21st?

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Oct 092012
 

Microsoft Windows PhoneAt least one U.S. carrier is set to begin to take Windows Phone 8 pre-orders as early as October 21st. The Verge has learned that AT&T will start taking pre-orders for its range of Windows Phone 8 devices on that date. The pre-orders could also extend to new Windows RT devices such as the Asus Vivo Tab RT.

It’s not clear when AT&T will begin to ship pre-orders. Many Windows Phone 8 devices are not expected to hit the street until early to mid-November.

So far, we know that that AT&T will offer the Nokia Lumia 920 (as a U.S. exclusive) and the Windows PHone 8X by HTC.

It remains to be seen if Canadian carriers (and other U.S. carriers) will also start taking pre-orders on October 21st.

Microsoft will officially launch Windows 8 on October 26th and Windows Phone 8 on October 29th.

Read more: The Verge

HTC One VX, HTC One X+, and Windows Phone 8X by HTC headed to AT&T

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Oct 032012
 

Shortly after HTC unveiled the HTC One X+, AT&T announced that it would be its exclusive U.S. carrier. It also announced that it would offer the HTC One VX, billed as “ideal for those looking for an affordable Android smartphone and a premium experience.” AT&T also confirmed that it will offer the Windows Phone 8X by HTC in November.

“We have a long tradition of offering the best of HTC’s world-class products,” said Jeff Bradley, senior vice president – Devices and Developer Services, AT&T. “A quad-core One X+, the awesome One VX and the exciting Windows Phone 8X by HTC mean that our customers will have the best selection of HTC smartphones this season.”

HTC One VXHTC One VX specifications:

  • Processor: 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 MSM 8930
  • Operating system: Google Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and HTC Sense 4
  • Cellular connectivity: LTE, HSPA+/HSPA/UMTS, GSM/GPRS/EDGE
  • Other connectivity: GPS/A-GPS, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC
  • Display: 4.5-inch qHD (540×960) Super LCD 2
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Storage: 8GB onboard and microSD cards up to 32GB
  • Rear-facing camera: 5MP with LED flash, f/2.0 aperture
  • Front-facing camera: VGA
  • Connectors: 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Battery: Non-removable 1,800mAh
  • Dimensions / weight: 133.5 x 67.5 x 9.19 millimeters / 124.7 grams

The HTC One VX will be upgraded to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean but no timeline was given.

Specific availability and pricing details were not announced.

Read more: CNET

RIM BlackBerry 10 L-Series detailed specifications revealed?

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Sep 302012
 

Along with a number of recent pictures of the upcoming BlackBerry 10 L-Series, a leak has given us alleged detailed specifications. Three L-Series models are planned to support different markets. The oft-rumoured BlackBerry 10 London (R072) will be the world version while the Laguna (R069) and Lisbon (R070) are planned for the Canada and U.S. markets. More specifically, the Lisbon is headed to undisclosed Canadian carriers and AT&T and the Laguna to Verizon.

Rumoured BlackBerry 10 L-Series specifications:

  • Processor (London): TI OMAP4 + ST-E MS730
  • Processor (Lisbon/Laguna): Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8960
  • Operating system: Superphone / QNX OS (better known as RIM BlackBerry 10)
  • Cellular connectivity (London): HSPA+/HSPA/EDGE
  • Cellular connectivity (Lisbon): LTE/HSPA/EDGE
  • Cellular connectivity (Laguna): LTE/CDMA/UMTS/EDGE
  • Other connectivity (London): A-GPS/GPS, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1, DLNA, NFC
  • Other connectivity (Lisbon): A-GPS/GPS, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi (dual-band), Bluetooth 2.1, DLNA, NFC
  • Display: 4.2-inch HD (1280×720)
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Storage: 16GB onboard and microSD cards
  • Rear-facing camera: 8MP with 1080p video capture
  • Front-facing camera: 2MP
  • Connectors: Micro-USB, micro-HDMI
  • Battery: 1,800mAh
  • Dimensions / weight: 130 x 65.6 x 9 millimeters

Rumoured RIM BlackBerry L-Serries London specifications

The specifications line up quite well with earlier details but there a few odd details. The operating system is referred to as “Superphone/QNX OS” rather than BlackBerry 10. And despite the Qualcomm MSM8960 SoC sporting Bluetooth 4.0, version 2.1 is listed here. It could well be that these slides are quite old or early draft versions. They could also be fakes.

Read more: RapidBerry (Source: N4BB)

Rumour: Nokia to launch Lumia 920 on November 2nd

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Sep 072012
 

Nokia Lumia 920Two separate reports suggest that Nokia will launch the Nokia Lumia 920, its Windows Phone 8 flagship smartphone, in November.

According to The Verge, Nokia is already working with AT&T to complete the necessary certification for the U.S. launch of the Lumia 920. Their current schedule puts the launch at November 2nd. Aside from completing the testing, Nokia is still waiting on Microsoft to deliver the final version of Windows Phone 8. The mobile OS is scheduled to hit its Release to Manufacturing (RTM) milestone next week.

Citing sources at European telecom operators, Reuters also suggests that the Nokia Lumia 920 launch will happen in November but does not give a precise date. It suggests that the launch will be staggered with smaller European countries to follow larger ones in the second half of the month.

It remains to be seen if Canada will also feature in Nokia’s launch plans for November.

Microsoft will reportedly officially launch Windows Phone 8 on October 29th with devices set to launch shortly afterwards.

Read more: The Verge and Reuters

HTC confirms Android 4.1 Jelly Bean upgrades for some HTC One devices

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Jul 202012
 

HTCOn the heels of Australia’s Telstra effectively confirming that HTC would upgrade its HTC One lineup to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, HTC has issued a statement confirming that nearly the entire HTC One lineup will be upgraded:

“We know HTC fans are excited to get their hands on Google’s latest version of Android. At this point in time, we can confirm that we have plans to upgrade our HTC One X, HTC One XL and HTC One S to Jelly Bean. Please stay tuned for more updates regarding device upgrades, timing and other details about HTC and Jelly Bean.”

Lacking from the list is the HTC One V. It remains to be seen if HTC is still evaluating that upgrade or has already decided not to offer it.

Engadget has also confirmed that the AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Rogers Wireless versions of both the HTC One X and One S will also receive the upgrade. There is no word on updates for other Canadian carriers but I suspect that they will also see the upgrade.

There is no word yet on whether HTC will also offer the update to older devices.

Read more: Engadget

AT&T now selling Nokia Lumia 900 for US$49.99

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Jul 152012
 

Nokia Lumia 900The Nokia Lumia 900, AT&T’s flagship Windows Phone device, has received its first price cut in the U.S. AT&T is now offering its flagship Windows Phone device for US$49.99, half of what it was selling for since its launch about three months ago. Nokia spokesman Keith Nowak called the move part of the company’s “ongoing lifecycle management, which is jointly done between Nokia and carrier customers.” He added that it is not unusual for a price cut to happen at this time in a smartphone’s life cycle.

The Nokia Lumia 900 has met with good reviews overall but has had difficulty translating that into strong sales. The situation was not helped when Microsoft announced that current devices, including the Lumia 900, would not be upgraded to the upcoming Windows Phone 8 but would instead be upgraded to Windows Phone 7.8.

Rogers Wireless is already offering the Nokia Lumia 900 for CA$29.99 with a three-year contract here in Canada. When it launched in April, the price was CA$99.99, again with a three-year contract.

Read more: AT&T (Source: Reuters)

Nokia 808 PureView coming to U.S.

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Jun 182012
 

Nokia 808 PureViewAs expected, Nokia today announced that it will launch the Nokia 808 PureView smartphone in the United States. Nokia had originally indicated that it had no plans to bring the Symbian-powered device to North America but it appears that “consumer interest” has helped change its mind. It will be sold unlocked through Amazon.com.

The highlight of the Nokia 808 PureView is its 41MP camera sensor with Carl Zeiss optics. By default, it captures 5MP images that promise reduced noise and improved image quality due to the oversampling used. It also supports HD 1080p video recording and playback with 4X lossless zoom.

Specification-wise, it appears to be the same device that it announced back at MWC 2012. Nokia notes that it will work with a compatible SIM card from AT&T. You could also use it with a T-Mobile SIM but only at 2G speeds due to the radio configuration.

Amazon.com will offer the Nokia 808 PureView unlocked and unsubsidized for US$699. Pre-orders will begin later this week. Nokia has also set up a page where you can register to be notified when the Nokia PureView 808 goes on sale.

Read more: Nokia

AT&T to launch Sony Xperia ion on launch June 24th

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Jun 142012
 

Sony Xperia ionFirst announced at CES 2012, the Sony Xperia ion, its first LTE device, will make its U.S. debut with AT&T on June 24th.

Sony Xperia Ion specifications:

  • Processor: 1.5GHz dual-core
  • Operating system: Google Android 2.3
  • Cellular connectivity: Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, tri-band UMTS/HSPA, LTE
  • Other connectivity: A-GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, DLNA
  • Display: 4.6-inch HD (1280×720)
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Storage: 16GB onboard
  • Rear-facing camera: 12MP with 1080p video capture
  • Front-facing camera: 1.3MP with 720p video capture
  • Connectors: 3.5mm audio jack
  • Dimensions / weight: 132.0×68.0×10.6 millimeters / 144 grams
  • Other: PlayStation Certified

AT&T will offer the Sony Xperia ion for US$99.99 with a two-year contract.

Read more: AT&T Wireless

ASUS confirms Google tablet and Transformer Pad Infinity to launch in late June?

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Jun 102012
 

ASUSWhile this is not quite the same as an official company press release, an ASUS representative allegedly told Android Authority during Computex that the long rumoured Google tablet will launch at the end of the month. It just so happens that Google I/O is scheduled for June 27th to the 29th.

While the representative shared little else except to promise that “it will be awesome,” past rumours have suggested that the Google ASUS Nexus 7 will be powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor and Android 4.1 (which may be none other than Jelly Bean). It will also come with a 7-inch HD (1280×768) display. Pricing is expected to fall in or around the US$200 mark.

The same representative added that the ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity (TF700T) will also launch at the end of the month. Both a Wi-Fi-only and an LTE model will be available with the latter to be offered by AT&T in the U.S. Pricing around the US$499 mark was mentioned but it’s not clear to which model this applies.

Lastly, the ASUS PadFone could make its North American debut with AT&T. ASUS has apparently been met with a lukewarm carrier response, possibly because this device does not require tethering for which carriers often charge extra.

Read more: Android Authority (Source: Mobile Syrup)

Motorola ATRIX 3 for AT&T revealed?

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Jun 092012
 

The Motorola Dinara appears to have surfaced again. Once rumoured to be a successor to the DROID Bionic, it now appears headed to AT&T possibly as the ATRIX 3. The Verge also obtained an alleged photo of the device.

Rumoured Motorola Dinara

The Dinara is believed to be none other than a variant of the Motorola XT928 which was released in China last year. Unlike the XT928, it is expected to be powered by Android 4.0 with Motorola’s MotoBlur interface. It should come with LTE connectivity and a 720p HD display. Like the Galaxy Nexus, it will sport on-screen buttons.

An AT&T launch date of July 26th for the Motorola Dinara could be in the cards based on the date on the screen in the picture.

Read more: The Verge

NVIDIA Icera 410 modem chipset certified for AT&T LTE network

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May 242012
 

NVIDIAThe lack of LTE support for quad-core processors has resulted in manufacturers launching dual-core processor LTE variants along with quad-core processor non-LTE models. The HTC One X and upcoming Samsung Galaxy S III are prime examples of this trend. That could soon change with the announcement that NVIDIA’s Icera 410 LTE data modem chipset has been certified for operation on AT&T’s 4G LTE network.

“Validation with AT&T is an achievement that paves the way for NVIDIA Icera-powered LTE devices on the AT&T network through this year and next,” said Stan Boland, senior vice president of Mobile Communications at NVIDIA.

NVIDIA acquired Icera primarily to add its radios to its Tegra chipsets. The news today hopefully suggests that this work is progressing well and that we will soon see devices that support both quad-core processors and LTE connectivity. The announcement limited itself to “tablets and clamshell devices” with smartphones conspicuously absent. Hopefully these are not far behind.

No timelines were given as to when we could see devices equipped with the Icera 410, whether tablets and clamshell devices or smartphones, launch with AT&T and other LTE carriers. The mention of clamshell devices hints at such a device coming soon (perhaps a Sony Tablet P successor?).

The NVIDIA Icera 410 modem offers LTE performance at category 2 data rates (up to 50Mbps) as well as 4G HSPA+, 3G and 2G compatibility.

Read more: NVIDIA