The Android Line Up For 2012

With the end of the Mobile World Congress everyone has something to show, there is a lot software vendors there but its where all the big mobile players show off their new phones and the line up for Android looks very enticing. I don’t really need a new phone since my Galaxy Nexus is a fantastic phone but damn these phones have amazing specs and look hawt.

HTC One X

As usual HTC come out with powerful machines, they were the powerhouse of Android when it first came out and still come with some impressive hardware. The main issue I had with HTC is that they had too many phones, I didn’t know what was good or bad from them and it seems they learned that lesson so they came up with the HTC One line up, only three phones and the One X is the powerhouse of the bunch. Also I was a huge fan of the HTC Sense User Interface since initially it made things so much smoother with Android 1.6 but over the past two years it has gotten a bit bloated and not simple as it used to be and they are planning to fix it with the new line up which is excellent.

  • CPU Speed 1.5 GHz, quad core
  • Android 4.0 with HTC Sense 4
  • Total storage : 32 GB RAM:1 GB
  • HSPA/WCDMA:Europe/Asia: 850/900/1900//2100 MHz
  • GSM/GPRS/EDGE:850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • Sensors: Gyro sensor,G-Sensor, Digital compass,Proximity sensor, Ambient light sensor
  • NFC3
  • Bluetooth with aptX® enabled (Bluetooth® 4.0)
  • Wi-Fi®: IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n
  • micro-USB 2.0 (5-pin) port with mobile high-definition video link (MHL) for USB or HDMI connection (Special cable required for HDMI connection.)
  • Camera with ImageSense – 8 megapixel camera with auto focus, smart LED flash, and BSI sensor (for better low-light captures), F2.0 aperture and 28mm lens, 1080p HD video recording

Sony Xperia S

Sony do know how to design their phones and in this one it seems they got it right. The one part they always do an amazing job with is their cameras, they seem to be the best possible cameras out of all the phones but you never know what to expect. But the design of this phone looks very clean cut, and I had the last Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc, it was a fantastic phone so I’m looking forward to their next line up, but I would wait until they ship with Android 4.0, I wouldn’t want it with Gingerbread since I have been using Ice Cream Sandwich and it is a fantastic operating system.

  • Android OS, v2.3 (Gingerbread) (Upgrade to Android 4, Ice Cream Sandwich, planned in Quarter 2 2012)
  • Qualcomm MSM8260 Snapdragon
  • Dual-core 1.5 GHz
  • 4.3”, 1280×720 pixels 16 million colours TFTDisplay
  • Reality display with Mobile BRAVIA® Engine
  • 12.1 megapixel camera with LED flash and Auto focus / Sony’s Exmor™ R for mobile CMOS sensor
  • Front-facing camera (1.3 megapixel, 720p)
  • HD video recording (1080p)
  • Talk time (up to) 8 hours 30 minutes / Standby time (up to) 420 hours
  • Internal phone storage: 1 to 1.5GB / RAM: 1GB / Flash memory: 32GB eMMC
  • Networks: GSM GPRS/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900 / UMTS HSPA 850, 900, 1900, 2100Colors: Black / White

Samsung Galaxy S III

No specifications have been released by Samsung yet for this phone, but it seems it might have a Quadcore chip and all the bells and whistles to make it one very powerful phone. The S II surprised the market and Android became synonmous with the S II, even people who didn’t know what Android is they know its Samsung Galaxy SII, so now with the SIII I’m expecting it to be top of the line. At this point they are expecting some news in March and a release date set for July.

Interesting HTC Phones

HTCSensation

HTC Sensation comes with a fresh serving of Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but it’s all about the HTC Sense UI version 3.0 with a touch of refinement and functionality straight from the lock screen, the power house from HTC. You can choose between a number of lock screen options such as weather updates, quick access to apps and a handful of clock widgets. A 1.2GHz Qualcomm dual-core chipset supports the nice 3D-like transitions in the menu, all carrying resemblance to the ones on the HTC Flyer tablet. The phone is the first with a contoured glass 4.3-inch display meaning that your Super LCD screen is set back slightly to avoid scratches. The resolution is qHD (540×960) with an aspect ratio of 16:9. On the back you have an 8MP camera with dual-LED flash with “instant capture,” meaning little to no lag between pictures. The camera is also capable of recording video at 30fps in full HD (1080p) resolution.

HTCChaCha

HTC ChaCha is one the coolest Qwerty phones for Android yet. Its very smooth looking, I like the design of it, its more business like and it still has the functionality of a touch screen. It is an Android 2.3.3 (Gingerbread) running smartphone with Facebook button for instant access to the social network. It has QWERTY keyboard, 2.6″ touchscreen, 5MP rear camera, 0.3MP front camera, Wi-Fi, GPS, and Bluetooth. The perfect on the go phone, quick connectivity and light use.

ATT Buys Out T-Mobile

ATTTMobile

The two biggest mobile GSM providers in the US are T-Mobile and AT&T, and now AT&T is buying out T-Mobile USA for $39 Billion, part cash and part stock. AT&T want to increase its revenues and customer base with this buy out and this is one way to jump ahead. This is interesting news since they both took different routes to develop their technology and customer offering, but this buyout is shocking to say the least. I have always been against AT&T and their policies, and I preferred T-Mobile over AT&T but now they are going to be under one umbrella once this buyout is allowed by regulators. Then the big two will be AT&T & Verizon, and they will have a control of prices, and it will be interesting to see the pricing and packages they have in mind. I just hope they increase their speeds overall and connect their network so it wont be a sporadic network with spotty coverage.

Link: Yahoo

Google Nexus One – The Review

The Great

  • Android 2.1 is more refined, works smoothly
  • Amazing 3.7inch OLED Screen
  • Powerful CPU, the Nexus One is a fast phone
  • Excellent quality sound
  • Fantastic 5.1 Megapixel Camera
  • Interaction with all Google Services (Gmail, Latitude, Google Voice, Google Reader, Picasa, and others) is fantastic, its smooth and updates right away.

The Good

  • Android Market Applications have built up over the past year and a bit, even though some need some more refining before hitting the market
  • Very Good Quality Build
  • Smooth design, and relatively thin, fits nicely in your hands but I keep hearing that it doesn’t take kindly to drops
  • Decent phone signal

The Crap:

  • Battery doesn’t even last the whole day, it makes it 75% through the day I use the phone a lot
  • No Multitouch
  • No Arabic Support, expecting it soon
  • Speaker is ridiculously low and the ringer speaker is on the low side too, but you can hear the ringer clearly, I still have to get used to the new ringer
  • Slow charging Battery

Overall

I think they have made great progress with all the Google Phones and I am enjoying using it. So much you can do with the data and configure this phone, this phone is for people who really like customizing how their phone works and how it presents the data to you. The interaction between all the programs with data being downloaded to the phone is very fast and smooth, I have 3G switched off and its still very smooth. The best part is surfing online with Flash working perfectly, it presents websites very well and smooth. All this information can be customized, the home screen can be customized, I like how much you can tweak it and move things around, the different widgets, and how easy it is to get to the settings page and tweak it.

Zain APN Settings:

The Arrival of the Nexus One


I ordered the phone after seeing the post on Uptill1, I wasn’t keen on it right away but after reading the specs I decided to jump onboard to the Android platform. Also because my Sony Ericsson phone now hangs whenever it feels like and lets me access my contacts when it feels like, so its time for a change.

I really like the clean packaging of the box, you open it up and see the phone as it has been in all the blurry images. The Nexus One is a lot bigger then I expected, its just as big as the iPhone but a lot thinner which is nice, compared to the Blackberry 8900 Curve its thing but tall.

Now the process begins to transfer the contacts to Android platform, and I know you get really tied up with your Gmail account because of this. Now I have to figure out a solution to transfer 800+ contacts from my old Sony Ericsson phone to my Nexus One, I have a feeling it will not be a pleasurable experience. You would think that after all this time someone would come up with a software to transfer contacts without any mistakes that you may face, and I know that outlook process is a bit on the retarded side, it doesn’t take all the information of your contacts, if one contact has more then two to three numbers assume a few of the details will be disappearing, overall its going to be annoying. Other then that I am really looking forward to trying this phone it got a lot of good reviews, and what criticism it did get it doesn’t bother me.


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Etisalat & du

du_etisalat

Lots of people have had experience with Etisalat in one way or another, and Etisalat owns a large chunk of Du so its pretty much the same company but its pretty odd how their coverage is slightly different. Everyone knows that Etisalat is one of the most rigid networks to have, they aren’t cheap, they really work hard to block your content, and they aren’t the best service.

The funny is that as we were approaching Dubai my Blackberry started dinging, I thought it was off and we were still 7000 feet in the air. I look at the phone and I was receiving the bbms, emails, and smses. I look at the network provider and I was connected to Du, all the way until the plane landed.

Now this is what I face every time I’m in Dubai:

With Etisalat:

  • I can make local and international phone calls with out an issue on a normal phone
  • When I connect using my Blackberry, I can’t get any BB service or msgs but the phone works normally

With Du:

  • With my normal phone I can make local calls but when I try to make international calls I always get Network Busy, calls don’t go through
  • With the Blackberry all the services work and I can make local and international calls

No matter what I did this always seems to be the case with these networks. Same situation that I mentioned in Bahrain with Batelco & Zain.

Phone Replacement

I have had my SE T700 for about a year and a half now, I update the firmware but the phone has pretty much gone into crashing spiral. If I call a number that isn’t stored it rings but the screen hangs, and if I go into sms it takes a minute or two to load up, it has its moods when it wants to work. I have to admit though that it has survived some pretty damaging falls and lasted a while but I need a replacement.

I was thinking for a while not to take a chance get a completely different phone but I’m a bit put off:

Garmin G60 – Linux based Garmin phone with simple functionality and Garmin map functions.

I’m not getting it because of the horrible reviews that it has gotten as it seems to have issues.

HTC Hero – I have always wanted to try an Android phone and the HTC UI is appealing but I’m very hesitant.

I’m avoiding all Windows phones at all costs, I took that road a long while back and I refuse to do that because of the hell that I went through with their crappy products and even their new Windows Mobile OS is crap. So after all that I’m left to go back to Sony Ericsson phones even though I think they are great phones and do the job as phones.

(iPhone is not an option, I would break it in one day)

Zain/MTC Roaming Blackout

For some reason I still refer to them as MTC, and I don’t think I will be changing that anytime soon. I have been out of Kuwait for the last few days. Saturday night for about 6 hours nobody in Kuwait could call my Kuwait mobile and I couldn’t call anyone it was really strange. I thought they disconnected my phone because I was roaming and my bill went sky high, but it was only for about 5 days by then, didn’t think it could be so high that they would disconnect it. Even without the blackout the roaming signal was pretty bad, it was really hard to get through sometimes.

The Sanctuary

This is probably one of the best products for a tech junkie, I have a ton of wires all over the place just to charge all the gadgets. A storage solution which solves your everyday need. You can place 99% of all your gadgets in one are with your keys and wallet while it gets charged, you don’t have to have so many wires for all your gadgets. This can work in the kitchen, bedroom, desk or anywhere you want to organize. It works with 120 or 220 volts, and with that one unit it can provide power to all the items below. This really would solve a lot of my problems, the only thing is that I would want it a little bigger, that would really be cool.

Brands Supported: Apple, Audiovox, Belkin, Benq, Blackberry, Creative, Dell, Dopod, Garmin, Grundig, Helio, HP, HTC, I-Mate, Jabra, Krome, Kyocera, LG, Logitech, Mio, Motorola, Netgear, Nokia, O2, Palm , Qtek, Samsung, Sanyo, Sony, Sony Ericsson, Tomtom, Toshiba, Ubiquio

Price: $130
Link: BlueLounge

Headset Fines

So the police have something new and useless to add to their fines such as using your phone while your driving. I don’t mind this law at all, since I have been using bluetooth for over 6 years now, before even Sony merged with Ericsson. They can’t seem to fix our lights, at least install sensor traffic light systems, stream line our fine payment process, fix our roads, or fix the 777 hotline so that someone answers the damn phone.

Just for everyone’s information, the police can fine you directly and indirectly, so it is up to the discretion of the police officer. If they see you talking, all they need is your plate number, car make, and color. So they can fine you if you are moving or if they stop you. I wonder how long this is going to last.

On another note, headset sales has gone through the roof, so much so that there is a current shortage in Kuwait for almost every kind of headset.