The season is almost over, but Amazon’s Appstore has MLB ’11 for free today only. If you want to catch the home stretch of the season, make sure to get in on this deal. Only the devices belo will be able to stream video… Read more
This upcoming device on Sprint is a slightly-modified Droid Pro with what looks like a much nicer keyboard and Sprint features such as a push to talk button. Other notables on this Blackberry to Android transition device are 3.1-inch display, 5 megapixel camera and a light touching of Motorola Blur mixed Santorum-style with Sprint’s own ID overlay.
For those Crackberry addicts that are looking for some Android methadone on Sprint, here you go! Read more
Verizon has just announced the Pantech Breakout 4G LTE, which is available available right now. The Breakout is available for $99 on two-year contract, making for the first low-cost 4G LTE to hit the market. The specs are nothing spectacular, but pretty good for $99 combined with LTE. The phone features a 1 GHz processor, 512 MB of RAM, microSD support with an 8 GB card included, a 4-inch 480×800 display, Gingerbread, 5-megapixel rear-shooter, and VGA front-facing shooter.
Of course the elephant in the room is that you can get just about any high end Android LTE phone at Amazon for almost free with a two year plan.
A couple more shots after the break:
Update: The original source of the images is now saying these are fake.
What you see above is every telecom exec’s nightmare. Google is stepping up the mobile phone value chain once again and making its own SIMs. But it isn’t as drastic as it may seem.
Google Employees in Spain are getting a surprise SIM card with their Nexus S phones these days. What you see above and below is Google’s own SIM card which allows the ‘sorta search monopolist’ to become a MVNO in Spain. While Google doesn’t own its own towers or infrastructure (it buys bulk data from the local telecoms – in this case Telefonica, Vodafone, etc.), the move allows Google to control more of the phone experience. For instance, it can pay one price for bulk data rather than on a per phone basis. It can also dictate which carriers the phones pull in data from based on quality of service or price. Roaming internationally can also be controlled and owned as well.
We’ve heard Spain is first but more European locals will start seeing these soon. MVNOs have gone the way of the Dodo in the US with Sprint buying Virgin and Boost and others departing the market. Perhaps if these do well for employees in Spain, Google will consider bringing back the MVNO to the US for not only its employees, but also Android customers.
Will the telecoms continue to allow Google to climb up the value-chain like this unabated? via Spanish forums. More images below, including a picture of a phone on the “Google_Es” Network:
Apple’s embattled iPhone has had tough time competing against the legions of Android handsets that have flooded the market. That shouldn’t come as a surprise: Carriers are promoting inexpensive Android devices left and right and they are literally everywhere. But how satisfied Android and iPhone users are with their handsets? According to a study of 515 smartphone owners conducted by USB Research (via GigaOM), iPhone is “sticky” like no other phone, with an average retention rate of 89 percent.
It is falling rapidly for other vendors, though, and the next nearest hardware is HTC with a retention rate of 39 percent and 28 percent for Samsung. Android phones in general are at 55 percent. Nokia and Research in Motion are sinking really fast. The former saw its retention rate drop from 42 percent in March 2010 to just 24 percent and the latter dropped from 62 percent to 33 percent.
The survey may not be terribly accurate due to a small sample size, but it helps understand market trends. People are obviously happy with their iPhones and a large portion of users will happily stay within the Apple ecosystem. USB concludes:
Demand for iPhone, iPad and MacBook Pro remains robust, with a leading ecosystem that creates sticky demand.
Truth be told, Android’s low stickiness could be due to its users being more comfortable changing handset manufacturers. Another interesting nugget that bodes well for Apple: Nearly one-third (31 percent) of polled Android users have plans to switch to an iOS device in the future. Also important, more than half the smartphone switchers are in the market for an iPhone while only one in ten iPhone users plan on defecting to other platforms.
Cross-posted on 9to5Mac.com.
A seven-inch Amazon tablet priced at $250 or less will compete against inexpensive Android tablets such as Lenovo’s $199 IdeaPad A1 (pictured above) or the $249 Nook color
Amazon is reportedly launching its inaugural Android tablet in the fourth quarter of this year. If the back office chatter is true, the online retailer will first out a seven-incher followed by a larger form-factor device(s) early next year. The latest news has the seven-inch Kindle Tablet costing $250 or less. However, market sources polled by DigiTimes warn of a lack of differentiation between Amazon’s dedicated Kindle e-readers and a seven-inch Android tablet:
Market observers are showing concerns as to how Amazon will differentiate its e-book reader market from that of its tablet while making profits for both after the company’s launch of the 7-inch tablet in fourth-quarter 2011. [...] The sources also pointed out that Amazon may run a risk by releasing a 7-inch tablet when 10-inch models have mostly outperformed 7-inch competition over the past six months.
Shipping estimates have been revised and now call for a million units by the end of this month, “but the sources remain skeptical whether Amazon can meet its shipment goal of four million units in 2011″.
Now, about that differentiation comment. TechCrunch’s MG Siegler who saw prototypes described a seven-inch device without cameras. He said the screen used is a regular LCD as opposed to a color display utilizing electronic ink technology many people have been hoping for.
The fact Amazon could be marketing this thing under the Kindle moniker won’t help either, if true. On the flipside, there’s no reason as to why an Amazon-branded Android tablet tied to their all-encompassing cloud and shopping services would ever be confused with a family of dedicated and inexpensive Kindle e-readers.