As part of their announcement of the Sony Xperia Z1 today, Sony took some time to show off a couple new accessories for smartphones. The Cyber-shot QX10 and QX100 attachable lenses take the form of a lens, but are really a complete camera that can be attached to a smartphone via a special bracket that quickly clips on an off. The QX100 comes with a 20.2 MP Exmor 1-inch sensor, a Carl Zeiss lens with 3.6x zoom capability, and Sony’s BIONZ image processing software. The QX10 is an 18.2 MP device with a Sony G Lens that can zoom in 10x and has built-in Optical SteadyShot. The devices will sell for approximately $500 and $250 respectively. Read more
After seeing less-than-promising numbers in Q3 2013, ASUS will be looking to jump into the Chromebook market as soon as the fourth quarter in an effort to gain back some of its notebook sales (which are currently sinking).
It’s a bit of a desperation move by the company, but hey— if they think it’s going to get them back to the sales numbers they were experiencing before, then all the power to them. Hopefully ASUS can bring some excitement back to the Chromebook brand, which has seemingly faltered a bit since its initial announcement. No news on how many Chromebooks the company will be creating, or on any of the specs we can expect to see.
Ever had a question about a device on Google Play and couldn’t seem to find answers? Then you’ll be happy to know that they’re adding a live chat feature for questions on device purchasing. Before this, the only options to get help were to call support or email them— this new option will most definitely make the process more efficient by eliminating waiting time and allowing you to take care of business without leaving the computer screen.
The chat feature is surprisingly very similar to the layout of Hangouts, which is definitely refreshing and a change in the way of doing things. When your chat is over, the entire conversation will be found in your Gmail inbox— if you don’t want the whole thing recorded in your chat history, however, there is an option to go “off the record.” Read more
If you were to talk about an insane amount of specs all crammed into one device, the Ativ Q would definitely be part of that list. Today Samsung announced their Ativ Q device and it sure packs a wallop. The Ativ Q is essentially a dual-booting device that can run both Windows and Android and sports a 13.3″ screen with a resolution of, wait for it, 3200 x 1800! To make things even better, it also has what I deem as some sort of convertible mode that changes it to a tablet mode, laptop mode, and an odd mode where it’s floating on top of the keyboard.
Google revealed on their official blog today that they have reached agreement with several retailers to start carrying Chromebooks on their retail shelves. The devices have been available at Best Buy locations and through Amazon.com. Probably the biggest outlet added to the list is Walmart, which will carry a $199 Acer version of the Chromebook in 2,800 locations throughout the U.S. Read more
Amazon has been working on making its Kindle Fire lineup available all over the globe, and today they’re continuing on the warpath by releasing the Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ in Canadian markets, although with a slight caveat. Due to licensing restrictions, these Kindle Fire models will not have access to Amazon’s instant streaming service. That’s a pretty big thing to drop considering how hard Amazon pushes its movie and TV show rentals, but a half-tablet is is better than no tablet, so to speak.
The specs haven’t changed on the devices otherwise, so if you thought this was good device before, now is your chance to pick one up.
Remember that monster phablet from Sony, the Xperia ZU? If you’re in the market for devices that big, we’ve got some more details on a release date and the hardware behind the ZU. According to Taiwanese site ePrice, Sony will make the Xperia ZU official on June 25th, which fortunately isn’t too far off. ePrice also listed some specs for the device, including that massive 6.4-inch, 1080p screen. The ZU will be one of the first devices to run Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 CPU, clocked at 2.2 GHz, and will also feature 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot, an 8 MP rear camera, and a 3,000 mAh battery. Compared to phones of similar size, that battery isn’t particularly large, (the Galaxy Note II has a 3,100 mAh battery, for reference) but hopefully some extreme software optimization from Sony and Qualcomm’s latest monster processor will keep battery life as a positive for the device.
As soon as June 25th rolls around, we’ll keep you up to date on Sony’s official announcement.
This week at Computex 2013 Intel unveiled their next-gen processor for mobile devices in the form of Atom micro-architecture, codenamed Silvermont. Intel recently demonstrated their new SoC in their new Bay Trail-T reference platform— a 10-inch, 2560 by 1440 tablet, weighing in at 611 grams and is about as thick as the 4th generation iPad. The device boots both Windows 8 and Android 4.2.2— this is good news, because it means that Intel is planning to enter the Android tablet market. Battery life and performance specs haven’t been released yet but Intel has promised that both will be good.
Android’s got a pretty steady grip on the market right now, and it doesn’t seem like it’s going away anytime soon. Canalys, a marketing research firm, has recent reports backing up that statement, and the statistics may even be a little bit scary.
By 2017, Android is expected to hit 1 billion phone shipments— annually. And this is all with Android expected to lose 0.6% of its market share, standing tall at a total of 67.1%. Right now, Android ships 470 million phones annually, so that figure is expected to more than double. Oh, and one more thing— this is only counting phones, and not tablets, or any other type of device Google launches four years from now running Android.
Windows Phone is expected to take a pretty solid chunk of the market too, as it is expected to see 400% growth between now and 2017. Check out the full presser after the break. Read more
The event that Asus began promoting about a month ago with its series of video trailers is now available to watch in its entirety. Asus made use of the “We Transform” mantra as expected, and unveiled some pretty interesting products including the Transformer Pad Infinity, Fonepad Note, MeMoPad HD7, MeMoPad FHD 10 and Transformer Book Trio. Check out the full video after the break. Read more