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*All opinions expressed here are that of my own (unless expressly stated otherwise) & do not reflect those of any organizations or networks that I am a part of or affiliated with.
(So as of this month I will be writing for an online tech blog run by Etisalat...will also be blogging a slightly different version of the articles for my readers - would love to hear thoughts. Essentially it's a roundup of whats new in the tech world. The original post is here)
It’s about Gadgets
Look around you for one minute. Every single person within any given radius will be clutching their favourite gadget – our world is rapidly becoming gadget-centric. Chances are you are reading these very words off a gadget. Welcome to ‘It’s about Gadgets” – the best place for you to know what’s hot, what’s new and what’s cool in the gadget world. Once a month – we’ll round up the gadget news of the month, so you are NEVER out of the loop. So let’s get with it.
Making headlines: Samsung vs Apple
Everyone is talking about it, everyone has an opinion on it, and it has even reached the stage where gadget enthusiasts need to make a final stand – who’s side are you on? But what is really going on?
Essentially Apple sued Samsung, claiming that the Korean company had borrowed many features off the American giants and thus violated several intellectual property laws. The courts agreed and ordered Samsung to pay $1.05 billion in damages. And no, they did not do so in the form of 30 trucks filled with 50 cent coins.
Apple may have won the battle – stating that this was about ‘values’ and not about ‘patents and money’, but the war is far from over. Samsung sent out their own pointed press release asking the world whether it was fair that one company should be given ‘a monopoly over rectangles with rounded edges’.
Regardless – now the playing field for smartphones has forever changed and much hangs on September 20th where injunction on the Samsung smartphones found to have infringed Apples design and their sales will be decided.
In the meantime, ladies and gentleman – we suggest you start making a collection of potential in danger devices – it could become obsolete!
What’s hot and new?
In the market for something new? Here are the latest, hottest devices that have us drooling.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
After making a splash in Europe and Asia – Samsung’s latest toy is now officially worldwide, following a spectacular launch in New York mid-August. The 10.1 inch Note is all set to rival the Ipad, possibly adding further fuel to the Apple vs Samsung war.
Running on Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich with a splash of TouchWiz on top on the powerful Exynos 4 Quad SoC, the gadget takes things to the next level - featuring 1.4GHz quad-core CPU with 2GB of RAM. Even better – its available in 16GB or 32GB Wi-Fi and 3G variations, expandable via the microSD card slot and comes preloaded with apps like Adobe Photoshop Touch and Adobe Ideas, S Memo and S Note, which tie in beautifully with the included S Pen.
With Samsung promising us a Jelly Bean update for the Note very soon, and reviews praising it’ multitasking ability – this number could be the must have gadget for all designers and illustrators out there!
LG Optimus L3 Dual Launch
Rivalling theGalaxy Y DuosandGalaxy Ace Duos, LG Optimus L3 Dual has made an entrance into the Indian market through the online retailer flipkart.com.
The L3 has some pretty decent features, including a 3MP camera, 800 MHz processor, 384MB of RAM, and 1 GB of internal memory all running on a 1500 mAh battery. The OS will be Android 2.3 Gingerbread – with doubts that it will be considered for an Ice Cream Sandwich update.
Not much of a change from its single sim predecessor – the Dual however has great potential to rival Samsung’s similar devices and perhaps provide a little ripple in the dual sim phone market.
Ativ S – Samsung’s Window’s Phone 8
A few steps ahead of Nokia, the Ativ S is the first hone to feature the Window’s Phone 8 and features a slim design, a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display, and a 1.5GHz dual-core processor as well as compatibility for HSPA+42.
Not stopping there, Ativ s also has a rear-facing 8-megapixel camera with autofocus and an LED flash, and a 1.9-megapixel front-facing camera.
Samsung has also added a very large 2,300mAh battery that should promise longer life, and 1GB of RAM. It'll come in 16GB and 32GB storage versions, and will feature a host of Samsung apps, like the Music Hub and the Media Hub for the U.S. market.
Creating Buzz: Acer announces ICS-powered Liquid Gallant and Gallant Duo
Days before IFA 2012, Acer generated a little bit of additional excitement by announcing its line-up, minus the standard press conference however.
Two new handsets – both running on the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, make their foray into the gadget world – identical, save for the fact that the Duo also comes with dual-SIM and standby support.
With anticipation of a price tag that is unlikely to burn a hole in one’s pocket – the Acer Gallant smartphones feature 4.3-inch qHD LCD displays and are based on the low-cost MediaTek MT6575 platform with a single-core 1GHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor, 1GB RAM and PowerVR SGX531 GPU.
In addition it includes a 5MP snapper with LED flash, 4GB internal storage expandable via a microSD slot, Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth 3.0 and 3G with HSPA support, giving the phone enough edge to satisfy even some of the fussier customers. Available in Ceramic White and Gentle Black, the version is expected to hit stores sometime this month. and are expected to launch in September. There is no info on the pricing just yet, but chances are their price tags will be easy to swallow.
Who’s making money? Q2 Mobile phone sales
We’re all waiting for smartphones to become a dominant breed – and the time seems some time off as they only account for one-third of all phone sales, and phone sales falling 2.3% compared to the same time last year.
Samsung had a great quarter selling over half of all the Android phones this quarter and the Galaxy S III becoming the bestselling droid in that quarter. Apple hasn’t had the same luck – sales fell 12.6% from Q1, but this is only to be expected with the impending iPhone 5 launch.
Symbian has suffered with their market share dropping 16.2 percentage points in a year and Blackberry following suit with a 6.5 percentage loss. Microsoft isn’t happy either, the Windows Phone 7 taking only 2.7% of the market.
Nokia is still managing to fight the good fight – they are the second biggest phone vendor in the world, Samsung taking first place -
Where the gadget-citements at iPhone 5 Launch
With rumours flying left, right, centre and all over – the iPhone 5 is one of the most eagerly anticipated device launches of 2012, Apples first since Jobs’s death, The exact launch date is unknown, with 12th September and 21st September being popular guesses, There are also rumours of an iPad mini being launched in October.
The rumours are getting more contradictory by the minute, with claims of a longer battery life, smaller sim, bigger screen, seems like we won’t even know what is true and what isn’t until Apple decides to tell us.
Microsoft Nokia Press Conference
September 5th will be a day to mark in your calendars as Nokia and Microsoft gatherer at Nokia World to unveil the Lumia devices running on Windows Phone 8. This will tie in directly with the unveiling of the latest version of Microsoft’s mobile OS that was unveiled in June. With the disappointment that followed the Windows Phone 7 – the 8 has much to prove.
If confidence is a measure of ability in this case, then we could finally see a true rival from Nokia for the Android and iPhones that have thus far been dominating the smartphone market.