Are Sony onto something with a waterproof phone?

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As phone manufacturers desperately search for that USP occasionally one comes along that is worth a second look.
Today’s smartphone users are religious with their preference and making them change is only usually by something fundamental, price or a killer feature?

How many Android users bestow the virtues of their chosen platform, while the Apple fan’s are often quite smug, although deep down they feel trapped as there just isn’t a viable alternative for them, or so they think. Let’s face it once you buy an app or 2 we are all trapped to some degree.

While Apple are iOS, Samsung largely Android and Nokia are the face of Windows making someone move brands is a challenging affair, but far more possible cross the android eco-system. At least moving from Samsung to HTC does not mean you have to buy ALL your apps again!

So when yet another device running Android shows up sporting slightly different credentials we all, especially the Droider’s sit up and take notice

Queue the Sony Xperia Z and it’s USP, (drum roll) it is waterproof!

With a spec much like all the others, 5” Screen, SnapDragon quad core CPU, 13mp camera, NFC one could copy and paste these features from the vast array of devices available, except the piece de resistance… a waterproof coating

Now the science bit

Sony reckon one in 10 has dropped their phone down the toilet and with this if you do, simply rinse it off under the tap, perhaps a drop of disinfectant may be a good idea, but that may invalidate the warranty.

There are even waterproof headphones coming soon, wow this is pretty cool stuff, check your email and listen to music in the bath or swimming pool to, is there any end to where we can use our devices now?

Typical Sony! reports are build quality is excellent and the device feels good in the hand, the only complaint in the numerous reports I read were that the ports and sockets have to be covered to maintain the its waterproof’ness, a tad fiddly perhaps.

Well done Sony, good USP.

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Samsung unveils its new Powerhouse

SGS4

Late on March 14th in New York Samsung launched its next generation Galaxy, the S4. By all accounts no expense was spared at this flashy affair.

So initial looks then, dare I say it disappointing, but with that said how different can a rectangular smartphone  actually be? it looks like a Note II.

This thing is quite frankly packed to the virtual eye balls with technology, in fact some say Samsung have “Featuritis”  if the game was purely tech bling, they would win hands down.

With a 5″ 1920X1080 Screen, up slightly on the S3’s 4.8″ a 13MP rear and 2MP front facing camera, and a “sort of” 8 core CPU you can’t fail to behold all that hardware.

The 8 core CPU is clever, it’s basically 4 powerful cores that have less-powerful shadow cores. These less powerful siblings step in when the power is not needed, and use less power, generate less heat etc, therefore increasing battery life, how ingenious.

Things start to get useful when you look at all the sensors they have crammed in, on top of the usual there are geomagnetic and proximity sensors, gyroscope, accelerometers and even temperature, humidity and barometer sensors, this device is now aware of its environment as well as location and orientation.

Also announced was the eye-tracking software, that auto scrolls pages when your eyes reach the end of a page, health monitoring abilities using Samsungs “S” Health app, later to include the ability to monitor blood pressure and sugar levels, are you impressed yet?

It will be available in the UK on April 24th no prices are available yet but it has to be a pretty penny with that amount of tech!

So what do we think the rivals will do in response? NFC in a smart watch from Apple maybe?

All this started me wondering… a personal device that is used for communications (of all types) used to pay for goods via NFC, take pictures find your way and even light up the keyhole of your front door late at night, not that exciting in 2013?  Add to that the ability to track your eyes, blood pressure and how about be able to detect your health condition, even alert you if something serious could be wrong, your eyes can tell a lot about you.

Also, imagine something happens, your heart beat is irregular, your device knows categorically it is in your pocket as is able to detect that without doubt! It then calls the emergency services and shares your location, activates the speaker phone and camera? not that far away I would suggest.

In the meantime, respect to Samsung.

You get my Message?

20130312-234116.jpgImagine for a moment this scenario, you want to call your friend on the phone but then you notice their number starts with 07 and you can only call 06 on your phone! Crazy??
With instant messaging its the norm. Yes we are actually going backwards with technology, creating islands is the best way to explain it, just hope YOUR friends are on the same island as you.

In recent years we have been SMS messaging regardless, and suddenly we have ended in a right muddle. I will iMessage you? No I can’t your on Android, OK I will get WhatsApp instead, ah but I have an iPad and it not available there, only on iPhone. You got Kik or MessageMe? Shall we use that? No because one of our group has a blackberry, that uses BBM, you get the message? (no pun intended :))

Right, back to SMS then! but we pay extra for that and if we sent a picture then we really get stung by our friendly carriers. How on earth have we ended up here?

So what are we to do then? Searching for the nirvana …. iMessage, KIK, Skype, WhatsApp, GoogleChat, BBM, MessageMe, Facebook messenger.

The answer is Skype, its available on pretty much everything including PSP and nothing else goes this far.

It’s still a right pain having to either ask someone what they are using or to tell them to download and install an app, we need cross platform connectivity.

I remember when we didn’t have interconnects on SMS between the carriers, this is the same and this time there is no carrier revenues that could drive it to happen!

I like WhatsApp, why can’t we have an iPad version? So annoying!

Oh well a minor annoyance in the grand scale of things I suppose.

Mobile World Congress 2013 comes to a close

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This year was the biggest ever with 72,000 people attending, that must be one of the most attended tech conferences in the world?

  • HP announced their first tablet running on Android, remember WebOS
  • Huawei showcase the worlds fastest smartphone
  • Nokia launch a £13 phone with colour screen, FM Radio and a torch
  • Samsung announced an 8″ tablet and a date for S4 launch in NYC
  • Ubuntu mobile touch OS adds to the long line of platforms
  • Asus Padfone infinity is a phone that socks into a tablet, well a screen really
  • Big phones are the order of the day, 5inches and above and the 8″ Note from Samsung
  • 7″ Asus Phonepad can be used as a phone, reminds me of the Nokia NGage
  • Hardware has peaked? It’s now about the software, well it’s the differentiator, well we will see when Samsung unveil the S4 in NYC on the 14th April.

    Nokia is back! the most talked about brand at MWC, and Lumia Is reported as being bigger than Windows Phone, I would agree with that.