Wednesday, March 31, 2010

HTC Smart is now available in India.............

The HTC Smart has landed in India where it expects to make some headlines as the Taiwan based company injected its launch with a $1 million marketing campaign. Officially announced by HTC and Bharti Airtel, the budget friendly HTC Smart reportedly “marks HTC's strategic focus on India” – it's looked upon as an emerging market where huge growths are expected to happen. The HTC Smart will hopefully saturate the local market seeing that it's an inexpensive device that features a 2.8” QVGA touchscreen, HTC's own & beloved Sense UI, 3.5mm headset jack, FM Radio, 3.2-megapixel camera, and microSD card support. Even though the HTC Smart is a 3G enabled handset, Bharti Airtel does not currently have a 3G network up and running – yet. The device is expected to be available in about 30 major cities across the country through Bharti Airtel and authorized HTC dealers – it's going for the low price of 9,990 INR ($222). We'll see if HTC hits gold with their move to focus on the emerging market in India.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sony Ericsson Vivaz Review

With the announcement of the Sony Ericsson Vivaz, the company showed its determination to fight for a chunk of the market of HD video capable cell phones and that such functionality does not necessarily equate to bulky size and hefty weight. The Vivaz is the second model of the “communication entertainment” series, with the Xperia X10 being the first. To win over customers, the device does not rely only on its capable 8-megapixel camera only, but proper multimedia functionality as well.

The Sony Ericsson Vivaz is a high-end smartphone based on Symbian S60 5th Edition (also known as the Symbian^1) and the same personalized interface as the software-updated Sony Ericsson Satio. The Vivaz comes with 3.2-inch resistive screen, Wi-Fi with DLNA, HSDPA, GPS, accelerometer, FM radio, 720MHz processor and OpenGL ES 2.0 support.

What’s inside the box of the Sony Ericsson Vivaz?

• The Sony Ericsson Vivaz
• 8GB microSD card
• Stylus
• Wall charger
• microUSB cable
• Stereo headset (the Sony Ericsson HPM-60/J with 3.5mm jack)
• User guide in several languages

Monday, March 29, 2010

Samsung B3410W Review

Samsung is one of the companies with really strong position in the affordable segment of the cell phone market. Following the rising demand for devices centered on text communication, the manufacturer has recently introduced the Samsung Ch@t B3410W. We cannot call it a brand new handset, since it’s a revamped version of the Samsung B3410 (also known as the Corby Plus) that has been available for some time now. The hardware specifications of both cell phones are almost identical, with but a few differences - the Samsung Ch@t B3410W comes with a built-in Wi-Fi module and newer version of the manufacturer’s proprietary TouchWiz interface.

Unlike the members of the Corby family, the Samsung Ch@t B3410W cannot be referred to as a device with youthful design. It looks austere and the only element that lands color to the buttoned-down design of the handset is its back panel. We do like the proper build quality of the cell phone and the plastic it’s made from does not feel cheap in your hand. There are no wobbly parts and the handset feels solid, not last due to its relatively hefty weight of 114gr.

Similarly to almost all other affordable models equipped with touch-sensitive screens, the 2.6-inch display of the Samsung Ch@t B3410W utilizes resistive technology and features low native resolution of 240x320 pixels. Its sensitivity is decent, but unfortunately, the image quality is far from awesome, with thin, unsaturated colors.

The slider mechanism is quite tight, but that doesn’t mean opening/closing the full QWERTY keyboard involves extra effort or isn’t fast enough. The keyboard itself is, however, not one of the handiest we have used – its buttons are large, but feature limited travel and are just not raised enough, which makes them relatively hard to press. You will probably get used to them in time and will learn what to do in order not to make too many typing mistakes, but using the keyboard will not get enjoyable for sure.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Vodafone launch 'world's cheapest phone'

Mobile phone operator Vodafone has launched what it says is the "lowest-cost mobile phone on Earth".The Vodafone 150, unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, will sell for "below $15" (£10) and is aimed at the developing world.It will initially be launched in India, Turkey and eight African countries including Lesotho, Kenya and Ghana.The UN predicts that mobile ownership will reach 5bn in 2010, with most growth in the developing world.The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) said that demand was being driven by people using their phones to access banking and mobile health services.

Mobile phones have also become an increasingly popular way to transfer and save money in the developing world.For example, a system known as M-Pesa in Kenya, which allows people to transfer money, now has around six million customers.Vodafone estimates that there are more than 11 million customers using banking services on its networks.The Vodafone 150 is designed to bring these services to more people, the firm said.The handset allows voice calls, SMS and has built-in support for mobile payment services. A more expensive version - known as the Vodafone 250 - also has a colour screen and an FM radio, and will sell for $20.Ken Banks, founder of Frontline SMS and an expert in mobile phone use in the developing world said the $15 price tag "lowers the bar, but not by a huge amount".

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Opera for mobile phones

I've managed to get a first hand look at the Opera Mini web browser that's been in development for the iPhone. Surprisingly, I was impressed at its performance during our hands-on demonstration at CTIA 2010. The biggest thing that stood out was how quickly a web site loaded on the device – which was obviously running on EDGE speeds as opposed to 3G. Scrolling through a web page looked extremely sensitive – meaning that the slightest movement or flick would make the site scroll in the specific direction very quickly. Text is automatically fitted to the width of the screen to allow easier reading, although the zoomed out view just make text garbled looking.

There are also some other enhancements to make it stand out over some other apps like the automatic syncing of your settings and ability to search for a specific word within a page; something that's not offered on mobile Safari. Additionally, you've got all your common features like copying text and opening up multiple web pages – all are saved when you exit out of the app. Besides that, its overall impressive performance goes to show how useful the web browser can be on the smartphone. Opera has been in the game of providing the best web browser experience on mobile handsets, but their latest efforts with their iPhone app still showcases their ability in continuing to be a leader in this market. As much as everyone wishes to try out this app right now, we'll have to wait until it clears Apple's approval process before anyone can check it out.