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Weekly Review – June 17th

The week began with One Mobile Ring reporting the BlackBerry PlayBook will arrive a day early, where instant messaging has come to Nokia phones, Orange launched a Spanish branded handset and we published an intro to our Tough mobile phones feature.

Earlier on in the week, a new version of Swype arrived, where the Motorola Atrix is to go on sale SIM free and the LG Optimus 3D phone has been delayed.

Midweek, Google updated mobile search, Vodafone got a big ego, whilst HTC dropped Android ‘Gingerbread’ 2.3 only to reverse its decision a day later, where HD calling has come to Three.

Later on in the week, Virgin Mobile flipped for Alcatel, Karaoke came to Shazam and we published the review and testing of the Motorola Defy, whilst HP Palm Pre 3 cost and shipping date was leaked.


The biggest story of the week came from HTC, who first announced Android ‘Gingerbread’ 2.3 won’t be rolled out to their former flagship Desire handset and then reversed its decision and WILL now be deploying the Gingerbread platform.

HTC announced from their HTC UK Facebook account a message that reads – ‘Our engineering teams have been working hard for the past few months to find a way to bring Gingerbread to the HTC Desire without compromising the HTC Sense experience you’ve come to expect from our phones.’

The message goes on to state: ‘However, we’re sorry to announce that we’ve been forced to accept there isn’t enough memory to allow us both to bring Gingerbread and keep the HTC Sense experience on the HTC Desire. We’re sincerely sorry for the disappointment that this news may bring to some of you’.

A new message was posted a day later by HTC, that simply reads ‘Contrary to what we said earlier, we are going to bring Gingerbread to HTC Desire‘.

The previous piece of news caused some controversy, with mobile phone networks such as Three reportedly stating back in May that HTC Desire handsets on their network would be seeing the update to Android ‘Gingerbread’ 2.3 in June.

Three posted a message on Twitter to respond to HTC’s news, in a message from their @ThreeUK account that reads: ‘Unfortunately, due to hardware constraints, HTC won’t be able to bring Gingerbread to HTC Desire. Apologies to any Desire users who have…’


The next most significant piece was listing the once Orange exclusive Motorola dual-core Atrix handset, SIM free and unlocked for £489.99.

The formerly Orange only Motorola Mobility Atrix mobile phone will soon be available outside of the network, with its two 1Ghz processors and ability to be used as laptop

Motorola’s Atrix arrives running the Android ‘Froyo’ 2.2 OS, with a new Moto application called webtop that is able to run a full version of Firefox - complete with Flash support.

The new Moto mobile has been designed with a view to be used to create and edit media and documents, with an optional multimedia and laptop dock that enables access to a larger 11.6-inch screen, keyboard and keypad. has announced the Motorola Atrix will be shipping at the start of August at the cost of £489.99, where both parts of Everything Everywhere are still stocking the handsets free on selected contracts.


The third largest news item came from Clove, who announced the LG Optimus 3D has been delayed, where they were due to receive handsets at the start of the June.

Clove has unveiled in a blog post on their website the world’s first 3D mobile phone will now arrive on July 13th, which has had a knock on effect elsewhere as both Amazon and have moved their delivery dates in line with this news.

Lucky Goldstar’s Optimus 3D is a mobile phone that’s capable of showing 3D images and video without the need for any special glasses, in addition to being able to capture them with its twin lens camera.

The 3D mobile has a 4.3-inch WVGA capacitive touch screen, which displays all the 3D material sans 3D glasses where the LG 3D screens do need those visual accessories.

Its dual lens 5 megapixel camera captures and records those 3D images up to 720P on video, although 1080p filming is possible in just 2D.


The following most significant story was One Mobile Ring testing and reviewing the Motorola Defy tough phone, which can be seen here.


The fifth biggest piece was when Three brought out news of high definition voice calling on their network, in addition to handsets that can benefit from the technology.

HD calling offers up clearer and more distinct audible conversation quality, as the technology filters out the background noise heard in the call to make it easier to hear the person on the other end.

Three has stated that hundreds of thousands of these high definition voice calls are now being made across their network every month, from HD voice enabled mobile phones.

The service launched earlier this year and at no extra cost to the end user, along with seamlessly being introduced and unbeknownst to the handset owner.

There are currently six handsets in Three’s arsenal that arrive HD voice enabled, where most other devices are expected to support the technology by the end of this autumn as existing handsets already have the hardware for HD voice inside of them.


The next most significant news came when listed the latest Palm Pre mobile phone in the Hewlett-Packard Pre 3, with an arrival date of July 8th and a price attached of £349.99 SIM free and unlocked.

The HP Pre 3 was unveiled back in February, along with their webOS based tablet HP TouchPad and the much smaller Veer handset.

The Pre 3 arrives with one of the largest Qwerty keyboards seen on any previous Pre phone, with a familiar gesture area that accompanied the older Palm mobiles. The phone has a 3.58-inch 480×800 WVGA touch screen, with 16GB of storage, a 1.4Ghz Snapgragon CPU and 5 megapixel camera that’s capable of HD video recording.

HP’s Pre 3 will be the second Palm device to go on sale under the Hewlett-Packard brand name, as their TouchPad product hits the shelves a week beforehand.


The seventh largest story was Carphone Warehouse unveiling it will be selling the BlackBerry PlayBook one day earlier, than other’s selling the Research In Motion tablet device.

RIM’s PlayBook is due to arrive Thursday June 16th, where Carphone Warehouse will be offering the BlackBerry PlayBook at London’s Oxford Street store in Selfridges, from 9.30am on Wednesday 15th June.

This is in addition to their stores in London Westfield, Manchester Trafford, Bluewater and Bristol Cribbs.

The BlackBerry tablet arrives with a 7-inch LCD WSVGA capacitive touch screen, capable of multi-touch whilst running the new BlackBerry Tablet OS with the ability to run Android apps. It’s powered by a 1Ghz dual-core processor with 1GB of RAM, along with a rear 5 megapixel camera and a front 3MP variant with a microHDMI and microUSB port, WIFI and Bluetooth support.

Carphone Warehouse will be retailing the BlackBerry 16GB PlayBook from £399, a 32 GB model from £479 and the 64 GB variation from £559.


The following most significant piece came from Nokia, who brought out IM for Nokia, which allows for instant messaging between different mobile phones and various different IM clients.

IM for Nokia offers threaded instant messaging, back and forth between friends, colleagues and family members from Nokia handsets and without breaking into the text message bundle for the phone.

The text chat software can be used to communicate with Ovi Chat accounts, in addition to Google Talk, Windows Live Message, Yahoo Messenger and even MySpace IM.

The Finnish messaging solution can transverse all these various and different ways of staying in touch, as if only one method or network was being used. It is even possible to add status updates and view other people’s statuses too, in the same way as Facebook.

IM for Nokia is soon to be pre-installed on new handsets, whilst also being now available for Symbian S60 5th Edition platforms and Symbian^3, along with earlier Series 40 phones under the name of Nokia Chat.


The penultimate piece of news was Shazam buying the company Tunezze, which synchronises lyrics to music and now features in the Shazam application.

Shazam has made its first corporate acquisition with the Silicon Valley based lyrical software company, whose feature set has immediately appeared with Shazam LyricPlay.

This capability comes to the paid for Encore application, with viewable real-time lyric synchronisation to music being played – for that added Karaoke element to the software.

Shazam has now built up a database of song lyrics to compliment this feature, which contains 25,000 of the most popular songs identified by the app and grows each day.

Shazam LyricPlay works by tagging a song and then tapping the new LyricPlay icon when it appears, followed by turning the device horizontally to watch the lyrics scroll, jump, pop or slide in real-time on the iPhone or iPod Touch.


Lastly, Google announced it has brought out improvements surrounding searching on mobile phones, with a focus on minimising text entry for better results.

Google has seen searching on handsets increase over the past two years, to reach five times that of beforehand; this is a rate close to that of the early days of desktop Google search.

Google has added new shortcuts for the most frequently searched categories, with icons at the base of the mobile Google homepage. These shortcuts are the likes of restaurants, coffee shops and bars. ‘More’ opens up more selections, from categories such as like shopping, cash points, petrol stations and all without entering any text.

The second feature also makes it easier to perform more complicated searches, by building up longer queries and in a simple way too.

Google has now added suggested phrases to the search box, where these are used to build up searched for items piece by piece.


Originally published at

Rob has worked in the affiliate industry for many years with large publishers, and previously worked as a journalist on titles such as Wired, PC Magazine, ITProPortal, The Register, The Inquirer, Pocket-Lint, Mobile Industry Review, Know Your Mobile and The Gadget Show.