Links from Tuesday's episode of Loaded:Google and China comment on their agreement regarding search filtering Intel and the FTC have apparently reached an agreement regarding antitrust accusations against Intel A new online privacy bill is to be introduced this week The HP Slate may be renamed the HP PalmPad Motorola and Sprint introduce the i1, the first Nextel push-to-talk phone that runs Google's Android operating system The Kickbee will let baby tweet from the womb with every kick
Monday, I spent the better part of an afternoon with the Streak, Dell's ambitious foray into the world of Android tablets. It was an illuminating experience, with plenty of takeaways--both good and bad.
With its release in the U.K. over a month ago, chances are, you're already aware of what the Streak has to offer. Apart from its larger dimensions, the Streak's tech specs read like typical high-end smart phone. There's built-in 3G and Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), along with Bluetooth 2.1 support. The 800x480 resolution screen uses capacitive touch technology, supports multi-touch and is helped along by a fast 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. You get microSIM memory expansion (16GB included), and a removable/replaceable battery. There's both a speaker and microphone designed for voice calls, as well as a 5 megapixel camera that includes auto-focus and flash. And if that weren't enough, Dell threw in a VGA resolution front facing camera, enabling video chat and self-portrait antics.
Now take all of those specs, super-size it with a 5-inch screen, and you've got the Dell Streak. It's a giant smart phone and a scrawny tablet all rolled into one. It's awkward, it's fun, it's a freak of nature, it's your new best friend, it's a paradox wrapped in an enigma. In all seriousness, we're still a little conflicted over whether to recommend this superphone/microtablet--partly because of its unique size, but mostly because we haven't been given all the facts.
At the time of this writing there are still a few big unknowns regarding the Streak's U.S. release. Dell was kind enough to provide us with an evaluation unit, but remained tight lipped when it comes to the product's official release date, pricing, or possible partnerships or subsidies from national carriers. The last we heard in June, the Streak was due out near the end of July, priced around $500 when ordered directly from Dell.com--which doesn't strike us as screaming deal. Priced more aggressively using standard carrier contracts and subsidies, the Streak becomes less of a pint-sized stab at the Apple iPad, and more of an evolutionary step in the arena of Android superphones. We expect more news on the Streak's pricing and availability near the end of the week. Until then, let me walk you through the highs and lows of my afternoon with the Streak, and save our formal CNET review for later.
Since I posted an article about the features I wanted to see in the next-generation iPhone, I've received several e-mails from readers calling me out for not including a larger screen as one of the 20 feature upgrades. Most readers were polite but mildly indignant. Here's what two Texans wrote me--Larry from Austin and Mike from Houston:
Larry: You didn't mention at all a larger display or screen! You may not want a bigger display, but I do and I am sure there are lots of others too. Why can't Apple come out at least w/a slightly larger screen, i.e. 3.7" or 4"? The HTC Google/Nexus Phone has a 3.7" screen but yet the phone is still basically the same size as the iPhone. The new Samsung Galaxy S phones that are hitting all four U.S. major networks this month and the next month have 4" screens but yet the phones themselves are pretty much the same size [as the iPhone 4]...
Mike: What, a bigger screen didn't make the top 20??!?!?!? That's the main reason I didn't buy the iPhone 4. Yes, my eyes are getting bad so I need the bigger screen...and every new phone coming out now has at least 4" screens...Droid X, Samsung Galaxy S, EVO. I tried out the EVO for 2 weeks and loved it...unfortunately I have 5 people on my AT&T account. Tough to switch.
Of course, they want everything bigger in Texas (or at least they say everything is bigger there), but I gotta say, I haven't experienced a desire to inflate my iPhone's screen size. That said, these e-mails got me thinking more about smartphone screens and I reread CNET editor Eric Franklin's article that tests and compares the screen performance of the iPhone 4, the HTC Evo, and the Motorola Droid. In his shootout, he gave the nod to the iPhone 4; the Evo came in a close second, and the Droid followed up in third. However, Franklin focused more on image quality and less with the actual size of the screen.
Personally, I really like the Evo, built-in kickstand and all, but I find that as a phone it's a tad bulky. I also think the same of the Droid and new Droid X. CNET's smartphone guru Bonnie Cha has a couple new Samsung Galaxy S models sitting on her desk--AT&T calls its Galaxy S phone the Captivate, and T-Mobile has the Vibrant--that I've played around with it a bit and like the design and agree with Larry's assessment that the phone is "basically the same size as the iPhone." In fact, it's a little scary how close the Vibrant resembles a slightly trimmer version of the iPhone 3GS.
As for specs, the Galaxy S "family" has a 4-inch Super AMOLED screen that's 800x480 pixels. The iPhone's 3.5-inch Retina Display offers a 960x640-pixel resolution. We measured the two screens and calculated that the Galaxy S's display offers 17 percent more overall screen area. Compare the 4.2-inch Evo's or 4.3-inch Droid X's screen with the iPhone's and you're looking at upwards of 20 percent.
So why are other smartphone manufacturers going bigger--and is it better?… Read more
It's another Monday on BOL, which means breaking news interjections, stumbling analysis, and hilarious Brian Tong jokes that go RIGHT over Molly's head. Turns out you can not actually search for girlfriends on Facebook using the search term, "hot girls." Unless, of course, they self-identify. Plus, a pain ray update!Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
Following in Boost Mobile's footsteps, Sprint announced on Monday that it, too, will offer the Motorola i1, starting July 25 for $149.99 with a two-year contract and after a $50 mail-in rebate through its business and Web channels. The phones will arrive in retail stores on August 8.
The i1 is the first Android device to support Nextel Direct Connect's push-to-talk service, and it also features a rugged design, a 3.1-inch HVGA touch screen, a 5-megapixel camera, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS.
If you've ever wanted to get the Nexus One, you better grab one now because Google will stop selling the Android device once its current inventory runs out.
The company made the announcement on its Nexus One blog and said it received its last shipment of Nexus Ones this week. Once those devices are sold, you will no longer be able to buy them online from Google.
That said, the Nexus One will still be available through carrier partners, including Vodafone in Europe and KT in Korea. Registered developers will also be able to purchase the phone through a … Read more
Both phones are listed as limited, with no remaining shipments from the vendor, Motorola. It is not known what the inventory levels are for either device or when they might be completely gone. This is not to say the phones won't be supported with future updates, just that they're nearing the end of their life cycle. Motorola has at least pledged Android 2.2 for the Droid, while the 2.1 update for the Devour is under evaluation. … Read more
Music services geared toward untethered listening are enjoying increasing popularity thanks to the fact that cell phones are swiftly replacing standalone MP3 players for many people. MP3tunes is one of many solutions that has cropped up as a solution for on-the-go listening. The company offers a music cloud service that lets you upload up to 2GB of music for free and access it from any Internet-connected computer as well as a variety of handheld devices.
The first step to using MP3tunes is to download the teeny, tiny LockerSync uploader tool, which lets the service analyze your library and add it … Read more
According to a few recent leaks, the Taiwanese handset maker is working on a follow up to the HTC Desire dubbed the Desire HD. The phone is said to run Android 2.2 and have a 4.3-inch touch screen, an 8-megapixel camera capable of recording HD video, 4GB internal memory, as well as the increasingly popular 1GHz Snapdragon processor.
Also according to the leaks, the phone will support XviD video playback, SRS surround sound, and … Read more
On today's show, Buzz Out Loud gets you a tiny bit high ... using a sine wave. Could it be!? Also, we continue our long slog through the Story that Wouldn't End: the iPhone 4 antenna issue. Press conference tomorrow! Also, will the Droid X self-destruct if you try to mod it? Maybe, maybe not. But it seems like the phone world is all about picking your poison these days.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more