Weekly Review - 21st February

Mobile world congress in Barcelona dominated the headlines this week, where a fair majority of this year's new mobile phones were announced. One Mobile Ring attended the event and published a wide range of items, from news stories to a hands-on walk throughs to detailed video demonstrations of those very handsets.

One Mobile Ring started the week with publishing a hands on walk through of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, in which we had taken stock of during the previous week. Sony Ericsson unveiled at MWC a trio of new Android phones, where we published hands on images of the Sony Ericsson neo and Sony Ericsson pro. At the Sony Ericsson press event we captured on video the SE Xperia Play and Xperia Arc in video demonstrations solely for OMR. Samsung also delivered three new mobile devices at MWC, where Nokia brought out their Windows Phone 7 handset concept photos and we published and hands on walk through of the Samsung Galaxy S II, first in pictures and then in video. LG announced two mobile devices at Mobile World Congress, with One Mobile Ring delivering the LG Optimus 3D in a walk through in pictures, along with the LG Optimus Pad in a hands on video through.

Earlier on in the week, we published a hands on walk through of the HTC Desire S, which we took stock of during the previous week whilst we also produced a video walk through of the LG Optimus 3D. INQ Cloud Touch received the hands on treatment in pictures and on video, where HTC launched six new devices. We aired hands on pictures of the HTC Incredible S and tablet Flyer, along with a walk through video and images of the Acer Iconia Smart handset.

Midweek, One Mobile Ring brought out a hands on video walk through of the HTC Incredible S, whilst Windows Phone 7 is now being updated next month and the Motorola Xoom tablet received a hands on walk through, on video. ZTE unveiled their flagship mobile phone and the HTC Flyer was seen in a hands on walk through on film.

Towards the end of the week, Qualcomm's Quad core CPUs are coming to mobile phones whilst the HTC Desire S was caught on film by OMR. Huawei's new range of products tipped up in Barcelona, where the Motorola Atrix was captured in a video walk through and the HP Pre 3 saw a hands on walk through in pictures.

At the end of the week, Google got its just desserts, whilst we published the HP TouchPad hands on walk through in images and video. Motorola announced they are bringing the American Droid Pro to England, whilst the BlackBerry Playbook was caught on video by OMR. Alcatel launched new range of phones and we published our initial thoughts review of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play.

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The biggest news story of the week came from Sony Ericsson unveiling their PlayStation ‘Xperia Play' mobile phone, along with the Xperia neo and pro.

The Xperia Play is the world's first PlayStation certified smartphone, with a fast processor and dedicated slide-out game controls which will be backed by leading game publishers with a number of top titles being available at launch.

SE's Play hardware specifications have been officially confirmed after much speculation and rumour. The phone will arrive with a 4-inch 480×853 FWVGA capacitive touch screen, whilst being powered by a 1Ghz CPU with an embedded Adreno GPU graphics processor that's capable of 60 frames per second. The mobile also has a 5.1 megapixel camera with flash, whilst running from Android ‘Gingerbread' 2.3 with just over five and a half hours of game play from a single charge.

SE's Xperia Play unique gaming ability comes from the gaming controls, which slides-out vertically from the phone and in much the same way as many handsets have their Qwerty keyboard's slide-out; such as the Xperia X10 Mini Pro. These controls are a digital D pad, with two analogue touch pads, two shoulder buttons and the four familiar PlayStation icons which all provide the gaming functionality.

The other two handsets that were announced by Sony Ericsson are the Xperia pro, with its slide out Qwerty keyboard and Xperia neo - both of which are mid-range handsets and arrive at the end of Q1 and Q2, respectively.

The Xperia neo will tip up running Android 2.3 with a 3.7-inch 854x480 FWVGA capacitive touchscreen, with the same reality display and mobile BRAVIA engine as their Arc phone that was announced at Las Vegas' CES event. The mobile comes with an 8.1 megapixel camera, which is backed by the Exmor R mobile sensor for better image capture in poor light, with a miniHDMI port for playback on a compatible screen.

Sony Ericsson's Xperia pro arrives with all of the same features and abilities as the neo, only with a slide-out Qwerty keyboard and appears to be the X10 Mini Pro's bigger brother. There is a new feature under the guise of Type & Send, which eliminates the need to open a dedicated app for each type of message and the smart keyboard triggers predictive messaging when opened up for use.

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The second most significant news item was when Samsung brought out three new mobile devices at MWC, the Samsung Galaxy S II, the Tab 10.1 and Bada 578.

The best-selling Android handset from the South Korean company has born a sequel, with the GT-I9100 Galaxy S II. The phone has a similar look to the original phone, only with a larger screen and thinner 8.9mm body with a great deal more under the hood than just different aesthetics.

The 10 million plus best-selling Galaxy S replacement now runs from a dual-core processor, with Android ‘Gingerbread' 2.3 and a 4.27-inch 480x800 WVGA Super AMOLED Plus screen.

The 1Ghz dual-core beefiness of the handset also comes with an advanced HSPA+ 21 wireless network, with the individual cores being powerful enough to deliver good multi-tasking and 3D hardware abilities.

Samsung has also added to the Galaxy Tab range with an increased screen size to 10.1-inches, with the first Tab only reaching the less than lofty heights of 7-inches. The Galaxy P710 Tab 10.1 will boast a 1Ghz dual-core processor, whilst running from the upcoming Android ‘Honeycomb' 3.0 OS.

The new Tab will arrive with a 10.1-inch 1280x800 WXGA TFT LCD screen display, with a rear facing 8 megapixel camera that is also capable of full HD - all of which is a big step up from the 1024x600 resolution and 5 MP camera of the current Tab.

Samsung's Wave 578 arrives with the much hyped near field communication (NFC) built in, with a 3.2-inch WQVGA LCD screen, a 3.2 megapixel camera and version 1.1 of Bada running on the device with the Samsung TouchWiz UI.

The Samsung Galaxy S II is due around the March time frame, where the Wave 578 will be rolled out in May and the Tab 10.1 is due out later in the year.

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The third biggest news piece came when LG announcing the world's first 3D mobile phone in the LG Optimus 3D, along with their Android tablet offering with the LG Optimus Pad.

The Optimus 3D brings to the company's arsenal a mobile phone that is capable of showing 3D images and video without the need for any glasses, in addition to being able to capture them with its twin lens camera.

LG's Optimus 3D tips up with a dual-core 1Ghz OMAP4 processor, which is backed by dual-channel and dual-memory architecture that enhances the overall performance of the mobile.

The 3D mobile has a 4.3-inch WVGA capacitive touch screen, which displays all the 3D material and sans 3D glasses where the LG 3D screens do need those visual accessories. The dual lens 5 megapixel camera captures and records those 3D images up to 720P on video, although 1080p filming is possible in just 2D. All of this is displayable through the microHDMI port to a compatible screen, or uploadable to YouTube's own 3D channel.

The LG Optimus Pad was first announced at Las Vegas' CES, under the guise of the T-Mobile G Tablet where this 8.9-inch touch screen device is now set to be unbranded and available to all and sundry.

LG's Optimus Pad is a tablet device that is also powered by dual core, only this time around it's a 1Ghz Nvida Tegra 2 processor behind the device. The Pad we saw was running from the upcoming Android ‘Homeycomb' 3.0 OS, which is specifically geared up for tablet devices.

The 8.9-inch screen has a 1280x768 resolution and 15:9 aspect ratio for displaying video, whilst the Optimus Pad has full 1080p video decoding for decent HD playback.

No arrival dates or costs have been set yet for the LG Optimus Pad, but the Optimus 3D will be available in Q2 and with Android ‘Foyo' 2.2 where Android ‘Gingerbread' 2.3 will be provided later.

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The fourth significant story we covered this week was HTC brining out six Android mobile devices at MWC in Barcelona.

These included their inaugural HTC Flyer tablet and the large screened Incredible S. This is along with the HTC Desire S sequel phone and another successor to the original Wildfire, the Wildfire S - with two budget handsets in the HTC CahCha and Salsa.

The HTC Flyer is their first tablet computer, which runs from a 7-inch 1024x600 TFT screen, with a 1.5GHz processor and a 5 megapixel camera, 32GB of internal storage and Android with the HTC Sense overlay to that very OS.

HTC's Incredible S is a 4-inch 480x800 touch screen mobile phone, with a 1GHz CPU, 1.1GB of storage and an 8 MP camera with a dual flash LED, whilst running from Android, along with the HTC Sense UI on top of that platform.

The Desire S that One Mobile Ring took stock of last week arrives with a 3.7-inch 480x800 touch screen, with Qualcomm's new 1GHz Snapdragon MSM8255 processor, 1.1 GB of internal storage, a 5 megapixel camera and also running from an undisclosed version of Android, with the HTC Sense overlay.

HTC's update to the budget model Wildfire, will be known as the Wildfire S and is one of the smallest handsets in their arsenal at 10.13cm long and 5.94cm wide. This mobile phone will ship with a 3.2-inch 320x480 touch screen, a 600MHz CPU, only 512MB of internal storage and a 5 MP camera with a flash, along with Android and the HTC Sense UI.

The HTC ChaCha is a Qwerty keyboard budget BlackBerry-esque phone, with a 2.6-inch 480x320 touch screen, a 600MHz processor, 512MB of internal storage, a 5 Megapixel camera and Android with the HTC Sense overlay.

Lastly, HTC's Salsa is a 3.4-inch 480x320 touch screen handset, with 600MHz and 512MB of storage, a 5 megapixel camera with flash, whilst running from Android with the HTC Sense UI. This mobile, along with the ChaCha, is geared up for social networking with ‘one touch' access to Facebook - where a dedicated button has been provided on the phone

The HTC Incredible S, Desire S and Wildfire S will be available between April and June this year, although no prices have been attached as yet and we'll be reporting on the networks carrying these handsets at a later date.

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The fifth largest news item came from Microsoft unveiling in Barcelona what will be coming next to Windows Phone 7, along with the arrival date of March for the first major update.

Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer outlined the next stage of their mobile phone operating system, which includes amongst others Twitter integration where the much sought after cut and paste feature will be arriving in March.

The March update will bring much better stability to the OS, with the new ability for copying text from one place to another - which was left off the initial roll out to the platform - despite being a feature of their other operating systems.

MS stated that during the second half of this year multitasking will be a part of Windows Phone 7, in addition to their latest web browsing software Internet Explorer ‘IE9' coming to the platform and Twittering statuses being enveloped into the People Hub.

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Originally published at OneMobileRing.com

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