Mobile World Congress Stories February 22, 2016

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As part of its Mobile World Congress announcements this week, Acer today announced the Acer Liquid Jade 2, the latest in the company’s lineup of flagship Liquid Jade branded smartphones.

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Like just about every Android device manufacturer this week, Lenovo is showing off its latest at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and today officially unveiled its new lineup of TAB3 tablets.

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 21, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-02-21 at 1.35.36 PM At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, HTC today has unveiled four new mid-range Android devices. Three of the devices carry the company’s mid-range Desire branding, while the fourth is a global version of the One X9, which was previously available only in Asia.

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Not more than a couple days after saying that his fans “criticized [themselves] out of any leaks for a while,” (in reference to hateful comments about the LG G5) Evan Blass is on fire once again. Now, he has shared images of a mysterious Sony “Xperia PP10” smartphone (he says that might not be its launch name), as well as Moto Hint-like accessory called the Sony Smart Ear…

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 15, 2016

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When looking at the landscape of Android flagship smartphones, I rarely find it easy to pinpoint a single manufacturer that, in one way or another, has consistently been able to meaningfully innovate one year after the other. More often than not, the OEMs have a go at things that are then removed the following year, or that in some way fail to broadly introduce a proper trend, like for instance the first attempts at fingerprint sensors or stereoscopic cameras…

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Mobile World Congress Stories January 12, 2016

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Mobile World Congress is still more than a month away, but that’s not keeping LG from sending out invitations to its upcoming press event in Barcelona. The company’s keynote is scheduled for February 21st, according to the invite, at 14:00 local time. Beyond that, though, there’s not much to learn here. The invite shows what looks to be a jack-in-the-box along with the slogan “Play begins.”… expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories August 19, 2015

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The security-focused Blackphone 2, announced at Mobile World Congress back in March, is now available for pre-order, shipping sometime next month. With the company now focused on bulk sales to enterprise rather than to consumers, the webpage doesn’t reveal pricing, which likely depends on volume. The existing model came in at $629.

While Android wouldn’t necessarily be the obvious starting point for a smartphone whose selling-point is privacy, the company says that the combination of its Android-based Silent OS and own-brand apps ensures that data is secured and communications are encrypted …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories March 31, 2015

Huawei’s profits climb by a third to $46B, expects 20% revenue rise this year

Huawei, the second largest telecoms manufacturer in the world, saw its profits rise 33% last year, reports Reuters.

Global revenue rose 21 percent from a year ago to 288.2 billion yuan ($46.51 billion) in 2014 for Huawei and is expected to jump another 20 percent this year, the Shenzhen-based company said.

The growth has been mostly driven by LTE expansion within China, its home market being responsible for the bulk of its sales.

The company announced an Android Wear smartwatch at Mobile World Congress earlier this month (where we got a hands-on). No pricing was given, though the company has denied suggestions that it would be as high as $1000.

Image credit: Forbes Conrad/Bloomberg

Mobile World Congress Stories March 9, 2015

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There’s definitely nothing completely conclusive about this, but the upcoming HTC One M9 flagship showed up on online retailer B&H’s website (via PhoneArena), sporting a price tag of $649 and an “available for purchase” date of Wednesday, March 25th. Since earlier this morning, both of these tidbits have been stripped from the page, and replaced with “Price not available yet” and “Coming soon” placeholders… expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories March 4, 2015

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A couple reports out of Korea today highlight some of LG’s plans for the relatively near future, including a statement (via Korea Times) from the company’s mobile chief Cho Jun-ho suggesting that the upcoming LG G4 is going to be “radically different” than its predecessor. The device will reportedly feature a “metal-mixtured” body and sport the company’s LG UX 4.0, which Cho says will be announced sometime before the new phone.

Also, LG also reportedly has a completely new device series in the works (via Korea Herald), featuring more powerful specs than the current top-of-the-line G series… expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories March 3, 2015

Androidify characters are back again in Google’s ‘Selfie Slam’ ad (Video)

It’s only been a couple weeks since the last time Google shared an Androidify ad, but now the company is back this week with yet another basketball-themed advertisement. As we noted yesterday, Google has been heavily pushing the “Be together. Not the same.” mantra at Mobile World Congress, and now that continues with a quick and cute ad uploaded on the official day one (yesterday) of the conference.

Here’s the ad:

And here’s the last Androidify ad, also with a basketball theme:

Mobile World Congress Stories March 2, 2015

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Google made its Mobile World Congress presence clearly known this morning in the form of a Sundar Pichai interview (which included some really interesting tidbits), but that’s not the extent of the company’s involvement this year. The Mountain View, California company is very much pushing its “Be together. Not the same.” mantra at MWC in many of ways (like they did at CES 2015 with the pins), and those Androidify characters are popping up left and right…

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As was expected (thanks to an advertisement spotted in the Barcelona Airport), Huawei came out this year at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain to announce its first entry into the Android Wear race: the Huawei Watch.

A first impression of the device might quickly lead you to believe that this is one of the most—if not the most—attractive Android Wear devices to launch, and based on what Huawei’s shown us, this thing might just be worthy of such a judgment…

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Sony this morning announced their latest entry into the tablet market with a super-slim device called the Xperia Z4 Tablet, as well as an update to the mid-range Xperia M smartphone series, the Xperia M4. The former claims to be the world’s slimmest 10-inch tablet, packs a 2K-resolution display, and has the Snapdragon 810 (the chip in many of this year’s flagship smartphones) built inside. The Xperia M4 is a “no compromises” smartphone that packs waterproofing with some decent spec bumps.

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Google SVP Sundar Pichai sat down with Bloomberg’s Brad Stone at the Mobile World Congress today in Barcelona, Spain, and as happens often, he had some pretty interesting things to say. Among other topics, the Chrome and Android lead at Google talked about the company’s goals for improving the world’s Internet connectivity through various projects (including the company’s MVNO plans), Google’s further mobile payment ambitions with Android Pay, how Android will tie into virtual reality, and more… expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories March 1, 2015

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Samsung today has officially unveiled the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge at its event in Barcelona during Mobile World Congress. The devices feature a new design as well as all sorts of updated specifications under the hood. Gone is the classic all-plastic look and feel and in is a mixture of glass and metal.

Check out our hands-on and comparison video below:

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idol3Alcatel has just taken the wraps off of its new Idol 3 series of budget smartphones, as well as its Hero 2+ flagship. The Idol 3 series consists of two variants, one that comes in at 4.7-inches and another at 5.5-inches. The 4.7-inch Idol 3 is powered by a quad-core CPU clocked at 1.2GHz paired with Android 5.0 Lollipop and a 13MP rear-facing camera. The battery comes in at 2000mAh, while the screen packs a 1280×720 resolution.

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Samsung is expected to unveil the 0ft-rumored Galaxy S6 in just a little bit during its 2015 Unpacked event at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The device has been the subject of speculation for months now, with the company expected to totally refresh the design of the phone with either an all-metal or all-glass deign. The Galaxy S6 is expected to also expected to come in an Edge variant, as well, with a display similar to that on the Galaxy Note Edge.

You can watch Samsung unveil it’s latest flagship from the comfort of your own home with the live stream above and stay tuned for continued coverage of Mobile World Congress.

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One of the worst-kept tech secrets in recent memory, the HTC One M9 was finally announced today on stage by CEO Peter Chou at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. None of the specs were much of a surprise though the 20 megapixel sapphire camera and new configurable DotView cover will make some headlines. Under the hood is Qualcom’s new flagship 810 processor which HTC calls the fastest mobile processor in the world.

As for the appearance, I’m not sure I’m a fan of the Dual-Tone finish tweeted below but that beats the Pink version of the M9 IMHO.

Me? I’ll skip the Sense 7 and will take a GPE if/when it comes out thank you very much.

Huge gallery and hands-on video below. We’ll have more HTC updates as they happen. expand full story

Watch the HTC One M9 ‘Utopia in Progress’ event here (Livestream)

The HTC One M9 is set to be announced today at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. We’re just moments away from the event kicking off, so tune in below for the latest straight from HTC…

Mobile World Congress Stories February 27, 2015

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A pupported Sprint promo image for Samsung’s Galaxy S6, set to be revealed on Sunday evening, was posted to a Reddit thread. The main thread link is to a Sprint pre-registration page, but a claimed Sprint employee posted the above image.

The images appear in line with earlier claimed leaks, but it’s of course not uncommon for fake images to be based on earlier ones. As Gizmodo notes, there is also inconsistent use of upper/lower case for ‘Edge’ in the image, suggesting it should be viewed with some caution …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 23, 2015

HTC teases ‘bigger boom’ for upcoming HTC One M9

The teases keep rolling in as HTC, Samsung, and others compete for the spotlight this week going into the Mobile World Congress. We’ve already seen several HTC One M9 leaks from @upleaks, including the device’s purported specs and another today that revealed the device’s three color variations. Now the HTC Ireland Twitter account has come out with a video that looks to be teasing the device’s speakers.

Not long ago a system dump of the device revealed the apps that will be packed with HTC’s Sense 7, making it clear that software-wise, the next HTC One isn’t going to be much of a departure from its predecessor. The below tease tells us that we’re six days away from the announcement of the device, but a recent tweet from the Taiwanese company’s UK Twitter account originally revealed that the “new HTC One” will be announced March 1st.

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Purported HTC One M9 renders <a href="http://9to5google.com/2015/01/28/evleaks-htc-one-hima-render-m9/">via Evleaks</a>

The next HTC One is right around the corner, but more and more details continue to stream out as the device’s March 1st reveal date gets closer. Most recently, a system dump of the software shipping on the HTC One M9—codenamed “Hima”—leaked out, giving us an idea of what HTC’s Sense 7 software is going to look like (spoiler: not much different than Sense 6). Today, the same source of that information has come out to share the color variants of the device.

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 22, 2015

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In T-Moble’s new “Six Appeal” microsite, they throw out the above image which plainly shows the Galaxy S 6 profile with its curved display beaming out some magenta. March 1st is the day of announcement but something tells me we’ll hear more before then.

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 16, 2015

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According to a new report from the Korea Times, LG has decided not to release its expected G4 flagship at Mobile World Congress next month. Instead, the company plans to release it on its own during April. Last year, the G3 was released on May 27th, but LG is believed to still anticipate releasing its successor before that day this year.

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 11, 2015

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Bloomberg is reporting that the Samsung Galaxy S6 will be released in two versions, one of them with a wraparound screen similar to the Note Edge but curving around both left and right sides of the display.

Samsung Electronics Co. plans to release two new versions of its top-tier Galaxy smartphone next month, including a model with a display covering three sides, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter […] The second model to be unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in Spain will only have a front-facing display.

Earlier claimed renders had also suggested a curved screen, though with some confusion about whether the wraparound would be on only one side, like the Edge, or both sides as now claimed by Bloomberg …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 2, 2015

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Update 2: Samsung has now officially sent out the above invitations.

Update: It appears the invitations, while possibly real, haven’t yet been officially released by Samsung.

Samsung has apparently let out some invites to its first “Unpacked” event of the year, this one happening next month at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The event, as noted on the invite, is apparently scheduled for March 1st. The invite first appeared via Vietnamese site tinhte.vn.

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Mobile World Congress Stories January 28, 2015

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A new image, courtesy of none other than Evan Blass (@evleaks) himself, has leaked this morning showing what looks to be two variants of the upcoming “Hima” HTC One (M9) flagship. While they sport a similar physical build, the larger one includes a hardware home button while the smaller of the two does not. Interestingly, this render is a bit different than anything we’ve seen leaked thus far, straying just a bit in design from the current generation hardware…

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Mobile World Congress Stories January 21, 2015

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It’s definitely not unexpected by any stretch of the imagination, but Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S6 has been tipped to be introduced at the 2015 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain (via Chosunilbo). The smartphone is shaping up to be the most technically powerful smartphone Samsung has ever made, and it looks like it’s going to be fundamentally different in many ways than every other Galaxy S phone that has preceded it.

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Mobile World Congress Stories January 19, 2015

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Bloomberg on Monday reported that Taiwanese handset maker HTC will unveil its flagship One M9 smartphone and first smartwatch in March. HTC is widely expected to announce the new products at Mobile World Congress as part of its press event scheduled for March 1st. expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories January 16, 2015

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Rumors have been swirling for a long time about what HTC might have planned for us this year, and while the Taiwanese company isn’t telling us just yet, they’re at least giving us some kind of idea of when exactly they’ll be making some big announcements. To no one’s surprise, HTC is today sending out invites for a press event being held at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this upcoming March.

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Mobile World Congress Stories March 3, 2014

Samsung shows Galaxy S5 teaser ad during the Oscars, though record-breaking tweet likely worth more [Video]

Don’t expect to learn anything new from it, as it’s just a teaser, but you can watch above the 30-second TV ad for the Samsung Galaxy S5 shown during the Oscars. The ad was clearly put together especially for the event, with an awards theme.

Samsung was one of the main sponsors of the award ceremony, but it was a tweeted photo taken by Ellen DeGeneres on a Galaxy Note 3 that probably generated the more valuable publicity for the company, with over 2.5M retweets.

Samsung announced its new flagship handset at Mobile World Congress last month. The water-resistant phone has a 5.1-inch full HD display, 2.5GHz quad-core processor, 16MP main camera, heart-rate sensor and fingerprint scanner. Samsung has said that the phone will be on sale “by April.”

Mobile World Congress Stories February 26, 2014

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Sundar Pichai at D: All Things Digital conference

Despite widespread reporting that Google bid and failed to purchase WhatsApp ahead of Facebook’s $19 billion acquisition of the messaging platform company, Google SVP Sundar Pichai went on the record during a panel discussion at Mobile World Congress to put that claim to bed, The Telegraph reports.

“Whatsapp was definitely an exciting product,” he said. “We never made an offer to acquire them. Press reports to the contrary are simply untrue.”

The source of the reports that Google attempted to pick up WhatsApp for $10 billion source back to a report by Fortune citing “two separate sources” claiming Google had previously underbid Facebook. expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 25, 2014

Motorola working on a smartwatch for 2014, SVP says

During a panel discuss during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today, Motorola senior vice president Rick Osterloh revealed the hardware company is working on a smartwatch with plans to ship later this year, CNET reports.

Osterloh didn’t reveal much more in terms of specifics about what Motorola’s offering will present, but did hint that its smartwatch would consider fashion in its presentation:

“Right now, there are non wearable products you actually want to wear, and it’s because they’re all extremely ugly,” Osterloh said at an event at Mobile World Congress on Tuesday.

Google, which recently announced a deal to unpack Motorola onto Lenovo in a multibillion dollar deal, is also reportedly working on its own smartwatch offering through a partnership with LG.

While Motorola offered no specifics on when to expect its smartwatch aside from later this year according to CNET, Google is expected to reveal its smartwatch next month before it’s launch in June at Google I/O.

 

Mobile World Congress Stories February 24, 2014

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At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, SanDisk has just announced a new accessory that will make many Android users very happy. The company has unveiled the world’s first ever 128GB microSD card. More specifically, the card uses the microSDXC standard, meaning that it works with devices only that are compatible with XC, not just the lower-end HC.

SanDisk does note, however, that the card is “designed for Android” and will be fully compatible with many Android devices. In addition to this new 128GB card, SanDisk will also be updating its “Memory Zone” app for Android, which allows users to easily and access files stored on microSD cards. The app also allows users to back up content to it and free-up internal device memory. A new “OptiMem” will automatically transfer older photos on a device to external memory.

The availability of 128GB microSD cards also signals that we could soon start seeing Android devices with 128GB of internal storage. This would be a big upgrade, especially when the operating system on many devices takes up more than 6GB of space.

The 128GB SanDisk microSD card will run $199.99 when it is released. The card will be available exclusively from Amazon and BestBuy.

SM-G900F_copper GOLD_02Samsung just unveiled the fifth iteration of its Galaxy S line of smartphones at Mobile World Congress, and alongside that unveil, the company shared some sales numbers. According to Samsung CEO JK Shin, the South Korean company has sold more than 200 million Galaxy S smartphones since the line was first introduced in 2010.

While Shin didn’t break down that 200 million by each specific smartphone, we do know that Samsung crossed 40 million sales of the Galaxy S4 back in October. In December, the company announced that it had sold 10 million Galaxy Note 3 units. Another report also claimed that Samsung sold a whopping 120 million smartphones total in Q3 of 2013, more than Apple, Nokia, and LG combined.

Apple recently crossed an even bigger milestone by selling  its 700 millionth iOS device. Of course, that number also includes the iPad. Either way, it’s clear that both Apple and Samsung are neck and neck in terms of device sales. Samsung could also soon face stiffer competition from HTC when it unveils its newest flagship.

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Samsung is about to officially unveil its new flagship Galaxy S5 smartphone at Mobile World Congress and a live stream of the entire event will be available through the YouTube channel above.

On top of the S5, it’s likely Samsung will have some other product announcements and give us a look at the new Gear smartwatch. There have been plenty of rumors about what might be included in the Galaxy S5, but we’ll know for sure in less than an hour.

The live stream of the press conference is embedded above and kicks off at at 2 p.m. ET/8 p.m. Barcelona time.  expand full story

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The Sony Xperia Z2 waterproof phone with 4K video recording

Sony announced four new products at Mobile World Congress: two new Xperia phones, a matching tablet and a fitness band.

The Xperia Z2, the replacement for its Z1 waterproof phone, adds 4K video recording, SteadyShot image-stabilisation, digital noise-cancelling stereo mics and what the company describes as its ‘brightest and most vivid’ LED display. We first got wind of the 4K video capabilities last month via a screengrab of the camera app …  expand full story

Photo: ibtimes.com

Photo: ibtimes.com

Customers buying Samsung devices at Samsung retail stores will soon receive a personalized experience based on their job, hobbies and other traits, 9to5Google has learned.

This includes contextually preloading third-party apps at point of purchase. For example, banking, finance and spreadsheet apps will be targeted at people working in corporations or self-employed businessmen. Similarly, students in higher education will get office suites and note-taking apps preinstalled. Casual games are also in the pool of possible apps, particularly aimed at satisfying younger buyers.

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Mobile World Congress Stories February 20, 2014

We’ve already seen a few leaked press shots claiming to show Nokia’s much rumored Android smartphone and UI often referred to as the “Normandy” project. Today we get what appears to be the first shots of the device in the wild and better look at the device’s mix of Lumia and Asha design traits. The images above come from a thread on Coolaxap.com where leaked images of Windows devices have popped up before.

While nothing is official, recent reports said the device could debut as early as this month at the Mobile World Congress event that runs through February 27. We’ll be bringing you coverage from MWC next week and updates on Normandy as we find out more.  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 18, 2014

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We’re just a week away from Mobile World Congress kicking off in Barcelona, and while the event has been rather quiet for the past couple of years, it looks like that may change this time around. Samsung has already announced a press event for MWC, during which it will unveil its Galaxy S5 flagship. According to two new reports, however, the company also has more planned for the event.

Both USA Today and The Verge are reporting that Samsung will unveil at least one new Galaxy Gear smartwatch variant at its press event next week. The Verge report is sparse on details, simply reporting that Samsung could unveil “multiple new Galaxy Gear” models at the event.

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Photo: digitaltrends.com

Photo: digitaltrends.com

With the number of Galaxy S5 leaks in recent weeks, many are expecting we’ll get our first official glimpse of the device at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona at the end of February. While Samsung’s invites for the “Unpacked5” event did all but confirm an unveiling for MWC, today the company has flat out said that a new flagship Galaxy smartphone will be launched in the coming weeks. In a blog post announcing new LED flash components for mobile devices, Samsung said the technology will be “used in the next Galaxy smartphone, which is expected to be introduced later this month.”

Because high-quality smartphone cameras require a wider FOV (Field of View) angle for better picture quality, Samsung’s new reflector-integrated flash LEDs are designed to enable a great deal of flexibility by providing a wide FOV within a small space through the integration of a light source,  a lead frame, and a reflector with its own optics and diffusion features.

Of course Samsung has a long line of Galaxy devices that it could possibly be referring to, but there’s a good chance we’ll see the new flagship S5 on Monday Feb. 24. The event will be live streamed at youtube.com/samsungmobile and we’ll be bringing you live coverage as new products get announced.  expand full story

Ahead of its scheduled announcement at Mobile World Congress on Monday, Nokia is teasing what we expect to be its first venture into Android handsets.

What has been codenamed Normandy, an Android variant with a Windows Phone-like user interface seen on Nokia’s recent smartphones, is being branded as Nokia X according to information shared by evleaks and mirrored by Nokia’s promo (seen above).

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The fingerprint sensor is said to be embedded in the home button

The fingerprint sensor is said to be embedded in the home button

SamMobile is reporting that the Samsung Galaxy S5 will have a fingerprint sensor which will both unlock the phone and allow automated website logins. We’re expecting to see the S5 officially announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on 24th February, though it may not go on sale until March or April.

It had earlier been rumored that the S5 would have iris recognition, but a KGI Research document pointed instead to a fingerprint sensor, which SamMobile claims to be able to confirm via sources inside Samsung.

We are finally confirming that Samsung’s upcoming flagship device, the Galaxy S5, will be equipped with a fingerprint sensor […]

Samsung hasn’t opted for on-screen buttons and is still using physical buttons, like it has been using in the past on all of its flagship devices. The sensor itself works in a swipe manner, which means that you would need to swipe the entire pad of your finger, from base to tip, across the home key to register your fingerprint properly …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 12, 2014

LG teaser image confirms February 24 unveiling for LG G2 Mini

There have been a lot of rumors in recent weeks about an LG G2 mini coming in the near future, and today what appears to be an official teaser image from LG confirmed the device will finally get official on February 24. The image (above) was posted to the company’s Facebook page with only the tagline “Experience the MINI. Mobile World Congress” and the Feb. 24 date mentioned above. It’s clear a mini version of LG’s flagship G2 is on the way, but we still don’t have any solid details on specs or availability of the device. We still don’t know if the rumors of a 4.7-inch display will pan out (the original G2 has a 5.2-inch display), but we’ll be bringing you all the official details on specs and availability when announced later this month at Mobile World Congress.

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Samsung looks set to launch at least two different versions of the Galaxy S5, its replacement for the current range-topping S4, code-named Prime and Standard – and it appears possible that Sprint will be getting the lower-spec version.

The two versions first showed up in benchmarks by AnTuTu, showing a Prime model labelled US Cellular and a lower-spec Standard model labelled Europe …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 11, 2014

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Samsung has updated its blog with what appear to be nine new-look icons, each with a superscript 5 hinting at the possibility of an earlier-than-expected first look at the Galaxy S5 at the company’s Unpacked event at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on 24th February. Samsung had previously suggested that the S5 would be launched “by April.”

It’s possible that Samsung could officially announce the Galaxy S5 on the 24th but not make it available for sale until April …  expand full story

Mobile World Congress Stories February 10, 2014

normandyNokia could finally show off those Android-based “Normandy” smartphones we’ve been seeing surface lately. The company will debut its rumored fork of Android later this month at Mobile World Congress, according to The Wall Street JournalThe event kicks off in two weeks in Barcelona, Spain, and runs through February 27th.

Nokia, whose devices and services division was acquired by Microsoft last fall, had been working on the Android phones ahead of the acquisition, WSJ says. Nokia has been the primary handset maker for Windows Phone OS-based smartphones since dropping its own OS years ago, and even its Android fork borrows heavily from the signature Windows Phone design as seen in recent leaks. expand full story

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