AT&T won’t offer Android-powered handsets any time soon

via Boy Genius Report by Zach Epstein on 11/7/08

The key to Android’s success in the US will undoubtedly be carrier adoption which is still the only effective way to sell handsets in this country – just ask Nokia how its Nseries and Eseries lines are doing here. One carrier however, just isn’t going to cut it. The T-Mobile partnership was a great move for both parties involved and it was a tremendous start to Google’s mobile OS efforts here in the US. T-Mobile was all for it as it brought them hype and exclusivity and Google was all for it as, well, it let them launch a handset. Google has a long road ahead of it on its way to becoming a successful player in the US market however, and having its OS publicly rejected by two of the four major US carriers was surely not a goal. First Sprint CEO Dan Hesse made the now-famous comment that Android isn’t “good enough to put the Sprint brand on,” and now AT&T has made a similar sentiment public. AT&T Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega told The San Fransisco Chronicle that while AT&T has been looking into Android for a while, it has no plans of offering an Android-powered handset any time soon. One of the reasons given, which may have been a nice little pot-shot at Google, was that Android needs to “open up more” and offer some “non-Google” applications. Burn. For de la Vega to publicly say that Google’s open OS needs to “open up more” isn’t a good sign. Hopefully next year when the app store is a but more flushed out AT&T will sing a different tune.

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HTC announces S740, think Touch Pro’s baby brother

via Boy Genius Report by The Boy Genius on 8/26/08

HTC Touch Diamond not working out for you? We get it, you want a physical QWERTY keyboard. Oh, Touch Pro a little too big? You want something a little more simpler, huh? Starting today, HTC looks to fill that gap. They’ve just announced the HTC S740 and it features the same styling as the Touch Diamond and Touch Pro, features a slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and a numerical keyboard on the front. The only difference? It runs Windows Mobile 6.1 Standard. Here’s a run down of the specs:

  • 116.3 x 43.4 x 16.3 mm
  • GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
  • WCDMA/HSDPA: 900/2100 MHz (we’d guess there is a 850/1900MHz UMTS/HSDPA version in the works, supports HSDPA 3.6Mbps and HSDPA 7.2Mbps)
  • 2.4″ QVGA screen
  • 3.2 megapixel camera
  • Qualcomm® MSM7225, 528 MHz
  • 256MB flash ROM, 256MB RAM
  • microSD slot
  • 140g
  • 1000mAh battery
  • Wi-Fi b,g
  • aGPS
  • Bluetooth 2.0
  • FM radio

Pretty much the most feature-packed Windows Mobile Standard device, no? Enjoy the pics while we phone up our HTC ninjas — we want this thing!

Adobe Unveils Photoshop.com Mobile Beta

via Boy Genius Report by Zach Epstein on 8/26/08

If there are two things that Adobe knows like the back of its collective hand, they are photos and mobile software. We don’t know anyone young or old who doesn’t automatically say “Photoshop” when someone mentions photo editing. As for mobile software, Flash Lite currently resides on over 500 million handsets and that figure will only grow. So when Abode told us that today it would be unveiling the first beta version of its photo-centric mobile software, we can’t say we were surprised. After a demo however, we were also pretty excited. In a nutshell, the initial offering of Photoshop.com Mobile will be the third leg in a trifecta of account syncing – allowing you to capture and automatically (or manually) upload images from your mobile phone and have them sync between your mobile, Photoshop Express (online) and Photoshop Elements 7. In other words, your photos are automatically synced across mobile, cloud and desktop / laptop even as you edit and save them. Awesome! If you think that’s not a big deal, go ask Apple how it’s doing with MobileMe. From Francisco Kattan, director, Product Marketing and Developer Relations, Mobile and Device Solutions at Adobe:

With the rising popularity of camera phones and rich Flash based mobile applications, Adobe is giving consumers the ability to share their mobile photos at any time. With Photoshop.com Mobile Adobe is taking the first step to deliver on the promise of rich multi-screen experiences that seamlessly work on the desktop, in the browser and on mobile devices.

When it launches toward the end of September, Photoshop.com Mobile will be available for the following six Windows Mobile devices: Samsung Blackjack I, Samsung Blackjack II, Motorola MOTO Q 9h, MOTO Q Music 9m, Palm Treo 700 w/wx, and Palm Treo 750. More Windows Mobile handsets will be supported by year end 2008 but don’t fret if you don’t have a Windows handset. Adobe has a couple of partnerships in the works including Photoshop Express support for ShoZu that will make certain aspects of the mobile portion of their service available to hoards of additional handsets. Of course this might not offer the same rich experience as its Flash Lite-based Photoshop.com Mobile app but it will defintiely tide us over until more versions are launched. In terms of pricing, the Photoshop.com Basic account which offers 5 GB of storage is completely free while a Photoshop.com Plus membership offers more services such as templates and interactive online albums along with 20 GB of online storage for $49.99.

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Are iPhone 3Gs developing cracks?

via Engadget by Thomas Ricker on 7/30/08

In what appears to be an increasingly common problem, hairline cracks are beginning to form on Apple’s new iPhone 3G. While most of the cracks are reportedly affecting the white model, this is likely due to the increased visibility of the dark fracture on the white case as opposed to any differences in materials between the white and black units. At the moment, the issue seems largely cosmetic and doesn’t appear to interfere with the operation of the phone. Now bust out the magnifying glass and let us know if you’re seeing the same.

Update: Reader Darius shows off a whisker crack on his kid-glove handled black iPhone 3G with the help of some blue lighting — meow. See it after the break.

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]

Samsung launches BlackJack III — in South Korea

via Engadget Mobile by Chris Ziegler on 7/21/08

Sorry if we got your hopes up for a second there, AT&Ters; we’re still not sure if this one’s ever coming to the US, and today is most definitely not the day. Instead, the SCH-M480, which appears to be alternately known as the BlackJack III and Ultra Messaging 2, has been launched on Korea’s own SK Telecom for something in the range of 600,000 won (about $592). The Windows Mobile 6 Professional handset is a dead ringer for the i780 that’s been launched for a few months now, featuring a lovely 320 x 320 touchscreen, HSDPA, WiFi, and a 2 megapixel camera; not really a direct successor to the BlackJack II since the latter runs Standard, but we could still see a whole host of folks going for the upgrade — if it ever comes to AT&T, that is.

Separately, Boy Genius Report is claiming that AT&T will be getting its very own BlackJack III come October of this year, albeit with a 3 megapixel camera, up from the 2 megapixel sensor seen here. With these fancy new pink and blue versions of the BlackJack II, though, who the heck needs it? We kid, we kid.

[Via Pocket PC Thoughts]

Read – Ultra Messaging II
Read – US BlackJack III in October?

Number port stats suggest curious trends in iPhone 3G launch

via Engadget Mobile by Chris Ziegler on 7/22/08

Sure, Apple alleges to have flipped over a million iPhone 3Gs at this point, but what does that mean? The devil’s in the details, as always; yes, true, the first one took 74 days to reach that same milestone, but it was available in less than one-twentieth the number of countries and an even smaller fraction of carriers. Hell, the very definition of “sale” is under scrutiny here, with some suggesting that Apple’s making reference to the number of phones it’s sold to its carrier partners, not end users — a metric that would make sense from Cupertino’s perspective since Apple’s payday technically ends there.

Here’s where it gets interesting — Engadget has obtained a handful of stats regarding number ports in and out of T-Mobile USA handled by a national wholesaler. Specifically, we have data surrounding the launch of the first-gen iPhone and the iPhone 3G, and get this: of more than 1,000 ports in total, ports to AT&T represented under 40 percent of the firm’s total outflow in the days surrounding the 3G’s launch, versus nearly 70 percent the last time around. Furthermore, they took roughly the same number of inbound ports from AT&T during the same period, meaning that T-Mobile effectively lost no net ground due to the 3G’s launch. Granted, the porting stats from a single wholesaler represent just a microcosm of the big picture, but even accounting for some loss of precision when you extrapolate that data, you’re looking at a pretty significant downturn in interest from T-Mobile subscribers. We still think Apple’s probably laughing all the way to the bank either way — and iPhone 3Gs are sold out virtually everywhere right now — but you’ve got to wonder if AT&T’s not freaking out a little bit at the number of new subscribers it managed to entice, and whether its competitors are all breathing cautious sighs of relief at some surprisingly reasonably churn rates.

LG’s Chocolate 3 doesn’t melt during hands-on

via Engadget by Darren Murph on 7/11/08

Wait, Verizon actually decided it would be a good idea to make official a cellphone today? Oh yeah, that’s right — the Chocolate 3 was announced with a Sunday availability date today, but for those hoping to see the wrapper unfold a few days early, today’s your lucky day. The cats over at Laptop were able to acquire the new flip and test it out ever-so-briefly, and while initial impressions seemed rather positive, we reckon it’s the photos you’re really after. Dig into the read link for the full gallery.