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Showing posts from December 14, 2008

Android Powered Omnia Next Year

pictures have surfaced of a version of Samsung's Omnia i900 Window Mobile Smartphone with Google's Android installed as the operating system. This makes four Android handsets in the offing for the new year - an exciting prospect.

The Samsung (I'm not aware of it being named yet) retains the touchscreen only format of the Windows Mobile version, which suggests that we'll be seeing the first Android soft input solution here as well. Will it retain its 5Mpixel camera, video recording and weird 400 x 320 screen resolution too? I suspect so, which will probably be the main reason why this takes Google's platform a big step closer to mainstream than HTC's G1 has done this far.

Vye S37 Arrives

Yes, as well as the Samsung, I now have another piece of mobile tech to look at over the festive period. This time its the Vye S37, a convertible tablet PC with 7" screen and a large battery. Thus far I've only managed to take it out of the box to establish that everything is there, so look for an in-depth review some time in the next couple of weeks.

Samsung Q1 Ultra Update

Well I promised an update to my first thoughts on the Q1 Ultra after the weekend, however a particularly nasty chest infection stopped me travelling so too many questions remained unanswered, but I will update my thoughts after a couple of weeks of ownership.

The Q1 has taken over as my primary tool in the last couple of weeks and has coped admirably with everything that's been thrown at it since. That includes all the standard things that you'd do with a laptop/tablet - note-taking to excel; Skype video to BBC iPlayer and most points in-between. That's impressive given the apparent low-spec 800 Mhz Intel processor which powers it. At the moment I'm listening to, carrying on a Skype chat and (hand)writing this post without any troubles at all.

The screen is bright - its clearly visible in direct sunlight, indoors its necessary to turn the brightness down several notches otherwise it overpowers ambient lighting and makes the key markings hard to read. All other LC…

So Long Zaurus, We Barely Knew You

Sharp has decided to finally pull the plug on the life support machine that has been keeping its Zaurus PDA alive for the last far years.

The Zaurus has been a ground-breaking device ever since its launch. First device with a concealed keyboard; first device with a VGA screen; first with a built-in hard drive... Not to mention Linux, flash RAM, etc.

Of course the Japanese focus of the device and its marketing meant that it fell behind in other areas - the absence of any wireless radios in even the latest of its iterations.

There were eventually only three official international releases of the Zaurus. The 5000/5500 which tailblazed the line through the likes of Palm and Compaq's dull peers; the 5600 which brought maturity to the line, but only made it to the US; and finally the 6000, which was the only Zaurus which came with built-in wireless, but was difficult to get hold of even in the States where it was officially available.

It was the Japan only 8x0/3x00 ranges which really will …

Japanese Mobile Phone Sales Worsen

Seems like there's just varying degrees of bad news recently, the latest coming, via Forbes, from Japan; where sales of mobile phones have continued to slide - and the rate of slide is increasing too. Having registered year on year drops around 21% in the first half of the financial year to September (but with drops of 30% in July and 48% in August).

October's figures show a continued acceleration - a 58% fall off in sales year on year. Some have characterised this as being an indication of Japan's saturated mobile market, but that seems unlikely given the country's love of new gadgets. Much more likely to indicate that the Japanese are digging in for serious recession - remember last time out Tokyo property prices collapsed by 75% - and that's very bad news for companies doing large amounts of trade there. Nokia's withdrawal from the Japanese market looks remarkably prescient now.

Yet Another Banking Con

Having endured the after-effects of some pretty major league dubious practice (I refrain from using the words criminal negligence only because I couldn't possibly afford the lawyers) and seen the global economy crushed as a result; we now start to see some more real evidence of the calibre of people who rise to the top of the modern banking world.

Bernard Madoff, former head of NASDAQ, has been arrested after admitting running a completely fraudulent hedge find, possibly since 1960, with a potential impact (to other banks initially) of around £35 billion. So that's one pillar of the banking industry exposed as a thieving, lying scumbag, how about another uncovered as super-gullible, or possible super-stupid? That would be Nicola Horlick - the UK's so-called superwoman - who not only invested as much as 10% of her employer's assets into Madoff's black hole; but also sang his praises whilst doing so...

I suppose the positive side of this 'credit crunch' is that…