Sprint gains control of Clearwire

by Winston Gordon on
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Sprint officially holds the controlling interest in Clearwire after buying out a shareholder pushing their stake in Clearwire from 48.1% to 50.8%. Clearwire and Sprint were both struggling financially but this move was made possible by Softbank acquiring Sprint on Monday. Sprint and Clearwire have done this dance before, but now that they have support from Softbank and a little more financial support it will be interesting to see what these companies are able to do in the future.

Source: Reuters

Softbank Formally Announces Acquisition Of Sprint Nextel

by Roy Alugbue on
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As Softbank’s deep pockets have suddenly opened up a new challenger to Verizon & AT&T, it’s only natural for Sprint & Softbank to make an official statement confirming the major news. In a press release unveiled this morning, Softbank announced it will acquire Sprint Nextel for a whopping $20.1 billion ($12.1 billion in cash consideration & $8 billion in capital). The major highlight of this is the deal is the fact this will give Softbank a 70% stake of Sprint and 30% ownership, effectively giving it full control over the Now Network. The hope of this deal is Softbank will effectively give Sprint a better platform to use in rolling out not just its LTE network, but an LTE network with a significantly better structure than its competitors. Here’s Sprint CEO Dan Heese:

 

“This is a transformative transaction for Sprint that creates immediate value for our stockholders, while providing an opportunity to participate in the future growth of a stronger, better capitalized Sprint going forward. Our management team is excited to work with SoftBank to learn from their successful deployment of LTE in Japan as we build out our advanced LTE network, improve the customer experience and continue the turnaround of our operations.”

 

Of course all of this will be pending regulatory approval– so hopefully we won’t see some sort of mishap like we’d seen before. Hit the break for the full presser.

» Read the rest

Panasonic announces the Eluga smartphone for Europe, P-04D and 102P for Japan

by Robert Nazarian on
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A few months ago Panasonic made it clear they wanted to sell smartphones outside of Japan, and shortly after, a water/dust proof device was revealed for this spring. Panasonic just made it official with the unveiling of the Eluga (pictured above) for Europe.

Panasonic also just announced the P-04D for NTT DoCoMo and 102P for Softbank which are both the same device as the Eluga, but is also the same device as the P-05D Disney Phone for NTT DoCoMo we showed you a couple of weeks ago. The only difference (other than colors) we know of is the Eluga gets NFC while the Japanese models get the Felica chip. All models should be available in March.

The big news is they’re going to be only 7.8mm thick and weigh 103 grams. To achieve this, Panasonic is putting in a 1150mAh battery, which is pretty small based on today’s standards.

Hit the break for a pic of the P-04D and full specs

» Read the rest

Panasonic Lumix Phone 101p – Joining Softbank’s stable

by Jim Farmer on
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Softbank just keeps tacking on more Androids to its fall/winter line-up. Yesterday we told you about their Dell Streak Pro 101DL, and now we bring you news of the Lumix Phone 101p. This phone, manufactured by Panasonic, is meant to really combine a phone and digital camera, more so then just adding a camera to a phone. From the picture it looks like they succeeded. That’s a 13.2MP CMOS Lumix sensor with “Mobile Venus Engine.” Of course, it’s a solid phone as well. Check out these specs:

  • Android 2.3
  • 4-inch QHD LCD screen with 960×540 resolution
  • waterproof body (IPX5/7)
  • TI OMAP4430 dual-core CPU (1GHz)
  • compatible with SoftBank’s “Ultra Speed” high-speed data communication service (max. 21Mbps)
  • microSDHC card slot
  • IEEE802.11b/g/n Wifi
  • Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
  • infrared connection
  • e-wallet function
  • digital TV tuner
  • W-CDMA, GSM
  • size: 64×123×9.8mm weight: 128g

No word yet on pricing or the possibility of international sale. Did I mention it also comes in pink.

[via techcrunch]

Dell Streak Pro 101DL coming to Softbank January 2012

by Jim Farmer on
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Count this as one more phone to be added to Softbank’s fall/winter lineup; the Dell Streak Pro 101DL. This looks to be another higher end device with specs including:

  • Android 2.3
  • 4.3-inch super AMOLED screen with 540×960 QHD resolution (Gorilla Glass)
  • 8MP CMOS camera
  • 1.3MP sub camera
  • 1.5GHz dual-core MSM8260 CPU
  • SyncUp compatible
  • Dell Stage 2.0 pre-installed
  • Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
  • IEEE802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
  • GPS
  • microSDHC card slot
  • W-CDMA, GSM
  • size: 65×126×10.3mm, weight: 140g

Expect this one on shelves sometime in January 2012. Price is still yet to be dermined.

[via TechCrunch]

Sharp Aquos SH8298U 3D for SoftBank Japan

by Jim Farmer on
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Sharp is adding another glasses-free 3D phone to their stable, the Aquos SH8298U. This Aquos will sport Qualcomm’ Snapdragon MSM8255, a processor clocking in at 1.4GHz. Also onboard is an Adreno 205 GPU, 512MB RAM, 2GB of internal storage, a 4.2 inch qHD glasses-free 3D display, dual 8MP cameras on the back (for 3D content), a 1240mAh battery, and lastly Android 2.3 Gingerbread.

Pick it up from SoftBank in your choice of red or white.

[via pocketnow]

WIN of the day – Hello Kitty Android super-phone

by Jim Farmer on
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Softbank, the mobile carrier in Japan surprised us yesterday with the announcement of a Yahoo phone running Google’s Android OS; yeah, strange. Things just get weirder. Today the Japanese carrier brings us the Hello Kitty branded Aquos. For this special Hello Kitty edition, owners will have the privilege to enjoy Kitty themed menus, screens, icons, mail, calculator, alarm clock, and more. Although the phone is heavily branded with Hello Kitty, there is a Snoopy theme as well. While it may be cute and glamorous, don’t be fooled. The Aquos is a beast. Aside from being the world’s first Android flip phone, you’ll find that the Aquos has

  • Gingerbread 2.3
  • 1Ghz 2nd gen Snapdragon processor
  • 16MP camera with 1280×720 HD video recording
  • IEEE 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.0+EDR
  • GPS
  • Micro HDMI
  • microSD/SDHC slot (shipped with a 2GB card inside)
  • waterproof body
  • digital TV tuner
  • digital wallet function (Felica/RFID)
  • infrared port
  • Blu-ray recorder connectivity

Ladies, many of you commented on our previous article about the HTC Bliss with outcries for pocket powerhouse, so I look forward to reading your comments in response to this device. Guys if you think you’re too cool to rock a Hello Kitty phone, it’s also available in plain blue.

[via Engadget]

Sharp’s Android 2.3 “Yahoo Phone” To Be Released In Japan Next Month

by Justin Routhier on
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In a country that ranks Yahoo as its number one website, it seems to make good sense to create a “Yahoo Phone” doesn’t it? After all, designing android devices around customer’s favorite websites seems to be all the rage since we began seeing the HTC Status earlier this summer. Sharp is manufacturing the phone and it will be released next month under the mobile provider Softbank, the country’s third biggest carrier and whose majority shareholder happens to be Yahoo Japan.

Its many features include the Android 2.3 OS, a 4-inch LCD with qHD resolution (960 x 540), an 8MP CMOS camera, Bluetooth 3.0, Wi-Fi, a micro SDHC slot, a digital TV tuner, an e-wallet function and even infrared communications. The device will most likely come pre-installed with such Yahoo Japan services as Yahoo Japan Home, Yahoo Japan Auctions and Yahoo Loco. To sweeten the deal a little more, Softbank subscribers will become Yahoo Japan premium members for two years at no cost (a $9 value) and users can earn additional Yahoo Shopping points during that time also.

With plenty of solid corporate backing and a population chock full of Yahoo-using consumers, it seems like a no-brainer to me. What do you think? Leave us a comment below.

[via tc]

Myriad to develop MMS app for Softbank Android devices

by Jesse Bauer on
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Softbank HTC Desire

Softbank wants to put out an app on Android called “S!Mail” for their launch of “Softbank Mail”. Softbank has chosen Myriad Group to develop this MMS service, specifically for Android 2.2 OS.

This deal marks a shift for Myriad and their growth in the Android Market. You can read the official Press release below.

Read More…

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