Welcome to the 411, my column answering all your questions about cell phones and cell phone accessories. I receive plenty of questions about these subjects via e-mail, so I figured many of you might have similar queries, too. At times, I might solicit answers from readers if I'm stumped. Send your questions and comments to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you prefer to remain anonymous, let me know in the e-mail.
If you own a Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, you're probably not too fond of the fact that it's stuck running Android 1.6. Sony Ericsson's projected Q4 release for an Android 2.1 update doesn't sit well either when other devices are already getting Android 2.2, but there might be some good news on the horizon.
Responding to one of its Twitter followers, Sony Ericsson UK said that the Android 2.1 update is due for release before the end of September, ahead of the original Q4 timeframe. The company didn't provide any further … Read more
Imagine walking into your favorite cafe and instead of waiting in line to place your order for a large iced nonfat latte and handing over your debit card, you submitted your order and authorized payment from your bank account via an application on your phone.
You can't do that now. But it's very possible that some day you will. It will be a big leap forward getting banks, credit card companies, retailers, and cell phone makers--not to mention consumers--on board with this idea. But a few companies are beginning to provide digital stepping stones to what someday could be a wallet-less future.
On Thursday, Intuit and Mophie (maker of the JuicePack battery for iPhone) will introduce the Complete Credit Card Solution, which fits over the iPhone 3G and 3GS like the JuicePack and has a credit-card reader that uses Intuit's 18-month-old GoPayment mobile payment software. It will be available as an iPhone accessory in Apple Stores.
The idea is to allow small businesses or anyone who needs to process payments that doesn't have a permanent place to plug in a cash register to be able to accept something other than cash on a device many people already have. The hope is consumers would find this more convenient than keeping cash on hand when they want to make a purchase, even from a nontraditional retailer.
While plastic and cash are still the way the vast majority of retailers do business, that could change over the next few years as smartphone usage continues to skyrocket, and more personal finance details are being taken care of online and on the phone. Hardware makers, banks, and payment processors are at least dipping a toe into the water by participating in trials or offering new ways to pay people without using plastic or cash. … Read more
CNET reviews 24 categories of tech products, but if we dropped 23 of them you might be cool with that as long as smartphones remained! Here are the top 5 most popular products on our Web site as of July 2010, all of which fit in a pocket. Poor HDTV's.
Want to just see the best of everything we've reviewed? Check out the CNET Editors' Choice list to cut right to the pantheon of right on.
The debate rages on...and on, and on about the dangers of phones and radiation. Until that is settled, here are the five smartphones that will keep you up at night wondering if you really meant it when you said you were *dying* to have one of them.
LG believes that it has what it takes to supplant the iPad as the most desired tablet on the market.
Chang Ma, LG's vice president of marketing for its mobile-devices division, told The Wall Street Journal on Thursday that his company's tablet bests Apple's offering.
"Our tablet will be better than the iPad," Ma boasted to the Journal. He acknowledged that the iPad is a fine device, but he criticized it for not letting people "do much work on it."
Last week I endured a crazy line and my own nagging doubts/consumer guilt, and pulled the trigger to buy an iPhone 4. In our CNET office, I feel like a bit of an apologist. Many fellow editors are bullish about Android, and I already owned a 3GS. My purchase couldn't be fully justified, other than via one bit of logic: the iPhone remains my most-used gadget.
New details on the Dell Thunder have cropped up on the Web.
According to Engadget, which secured two Android-based Dell Thunder prototypes, the smartphone is quite impressive. (That is, of course, if it is the device Dell plans to send to store shelves.)
The handset includes solid speakers at the bottom and uses a Micro-USB port to charge. It offers microSD support. And given the inclusion of a SIM card slot, it looks to be ready for GSM carriers. The prototypes that Engadget snagged also include an 8-megapixel camera with autofocus and an LED flash.
Engadget reported that while the … Read more
They say patience is a virtue. But it's certainly not easy, especially when you are waiting for the latest and greatest in technology.
This week I try to answer one reader's question about when he can expect to get Fios TV in his neighborhood. He's seen the fiber trucks and fliers promoting the service, and now he wants his Fios TV. But laying the fiber is only half the battle, especially in densely populated cities such as New York City where everyone lives in an apartment building.
If waiting for Fios wasn't bad enough, another reader … Read more