Archives for

Sony Honami

Leaked Sony Xperia Z1 Press Release Shows New, Confirms Final Specs and Features

A couple of hours ago, an official Sony Xperia Z1 introduction press release leaked and was published by the folks at Xperiablog.  The press release is the final sign of a device that has dominated the rumors sections of blogs globally will be coming in just a few hours.  Sony has plans to fully unveil the Xperia Z1 Honami phablet tomorrow and the press release highlights some of the most anticipated features although there is nothing new really, almost everything has been rumored before.  This doesn’t mean there’s no new info though, if you are looking forward to buying the Honami or are just a curious fanatic, there are a few bits of new information about the device.

Sony Xperia Z1 Leaked Press Release

The specs

As a recap, let’s go over the specs of Sony’s next flagship smartphone: it comes with a 5 inch full HD 1080 x 1980 pixels resolution TFT screen with a Triluminous display as well as Sony’s X-Reality, just like the Xperia Ultra.  Like its predecessor the Xperia Z, the Xperia Z1 will be water resistant, only that it is rated higher at IP55/IP58 unlike Xperia Z’s IP55/IP57.

Sony Xperia Z1 Honami will have a 2.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor with Adreno 330 graphics and will have 2 GB of RAM to complement it, not 3 GB as many rumors had indicated awhile back.  The press release indicates that Sony will be launching a Sony Xperia Z1 with 16 GB of internal memory with a microSD card slot but it did not mention whether there will be an 8 GB or 32 GB version of the device.

The smartphone also boasts of a 20 megapixels rear camera with an Exmor RS CMOS image sensor, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and a 3,000 mAh battery.  The handset will be available in black, white and purple colors and it will hit the shelves globally within the month (yes, during September).  A leaked promotional copy earlier showed that Sony intends to give free Sony Smartwatches to those who pre-order the Z1 in the UK, we hope the promotion will come this far though.

What do you think of the Sony Xperia Z1?  Have you checked out the images here.

Source: XperiaBlog

Clear Pictures of Sony Xperia Z1 (Honami) Leaked

Eagerly awaiting Sony’s launch of their much anticipated high end smartphone the Xperia Z1?  Launch is barely a week away, but it seems that this is the time when all the leaks about the device popup all over the internet.  If you are eagerly waiting for September 6th t0 11th when the Honami or Xperia Z1 is expected to launch, then we can ease that with newly leaked images that reveal almost everything there is to see on the device when it comes to design and build.  Although so many images of the Xperia Z1 have leaked over the past couple of months, these are the first legitimate clear (non-blurred) images of this high end device (click images to expand).

These images were published by a Chinese website 365dian.com but the folks at Xperia Blog did us a favor re-publishing them.  Although the images are from a dummy model, they are the clearest and most accurate images of the upcoming smartphone (or phablet if that’s what you want it to be).  I should also point out that these are the first images that actually peg the model name and number Xperia Z1 on the device we previously knew – and still do – as Sony Honami.

 

Core specs

If you haven’t been following the rumors about the Xperia Z1 that have been doing rounds on the internet, you will find this section useful.  Here is a brief summary of the core specs and features the Xperia Z1 is expected to launch with next week.  Note that these specs and features are compiled from many rumors and could or could not be true.

Device Name: Sony Xperia Z1 (Honami).

Processor: 2.3 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 with Adreno 330 graphics.

Operating System: Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean.

Display: 5 inch 1920 x 1080 Full HD Triluminos multitouch screen.

Memory: 16GB internal storage with microSD card support.

Cameras: 20.7 megapixels f/2.3 with 4K video recording rear and 2 megapixels with 1080p video recording front with a physical shutter button.

Build: 144 x 73.9 x 8.3mm; IP 55/58 standard water-proof and shock, dust and shatter resistant; dragontrail tempered front glass, carbon fiber frame and a Corning Gorilla Glass 3 at the back.

Connectivity and others: NFC, LTE, Bluetooth 4.0 and WiFi b/g/n/a and ac; Support for MHL and Miracast; Dual (Stereo) Speakers and IR Blaster/Remote.

Battery: 3100 mAh with STAMINA mode

Original Colors: White, Black and Purple.

Based on the hardware specs and features we are already privy to, the Xperia Z1 is a very powerful device that will certainly be a formidable challenge to current market leaders including Samsung’s Galaxy S4, HTC’s One and soon-to-come HTC One Max and LG’s G just to name a few.  Sony is expected to unveil the Honami or Sony Xperia Z1, the successor to Xperia Z, during the IFA in Berlin, Germany between September 6th and 11th.

Source: 365dian.com and Xperia Blog

IFA 2013 Preview: Galaxy Note 3, Xperia Z1, HTC One Max, Smartwatches, Madness

Who said there’s no more room for innovation in the mobile technology arena? The hell there isn’t! You just wait and see what’s coming at this year’s IFA.

IFA 2013

First held way back in 1924 (!), the Consumer Electronics trade fair will officially debut its newest edition on September 6 and wrap up five days later. Over 200, 000 visitors and exhibitors are to take Berlin, Germany by storm this year and the spotlight should be, as usual, on the big Android kahunas, including Samsung, Sony, HTC and LG.

And boy, do those four have their share of aces up their sleeves, most of which have been making the rumor rounds for weeks or even months. Many surprises are to be expected as well and, while technically we’re still ten days away from the event’s official kick-off, most exhibitors will look to jump the gun and unveil their fall-winter bombs earlier.

How early? Let’s just say we expect the Android world to look very differently come September 4. But enough with the jibber-jabber and let’s get down to the facts. These are the rumored scene-stealers of IFA 2013:

Samsung

The Koreans are notorious for using IFA’s pre-show dates to hold glamorous “Unpacked” events in Berlin and this year won’t be an exception to the rule. Quite on the contrary, as Sammy is tipped to introduce several new gadgets to the world on September 4.

Samsung Unpacked

The Galaxy Note 3 is the definite number one on the list, but with a familiar plastic design, less than stellar camera and a 5.7-inch display that some consider small (we live in a crazy world, eh?), the Note 3 will have its work cut out for him (her?) in fending off Sony and HTC’s threats.

Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy Gear, the company’s first smartwatch, is anticipated with much excitement by self-proclaimed visionaries, who seem to think wearable technology is the future. I for one don’t agree, but I’ll certainly be keeping an eye on the Gear, tipped to come with a 2.5-inch touchscreen, dual-core CPU, Bluetooth 4.0 and gesture support.

samsung-galaxy-gear

As far as slates are concerned, a Galaxy Note 10.1 follow-up could be due, even if no tipster or leaker has mentioned anything like that of late, plus a kid-friendly 7-inch Galaxy Tab and maybe even a GTab 10.1 Plus with a Full HD screen and octa-core processor.

Sony

If Samsung disappoints, Sony could rise to the occasion and deliver, with the Xperia Z1 (aka Honami) phone and a SmartWatch 2 (that’s right, the Japanese already have an Android-compatible wristwatch, albeit one that no one knows exists).

Sony IFA

The Xperia Z1 is expected to become official on September 4 (Note 3, beware) and Sony has so much trust in this thing that they are putting everything they have into it. Snapdragon 800 CPU, 2 GB of RAM, Full HD Triluminos display, 20 MP camera with G Lens, water protection, you name it, the Z1 will sport it.

Sony Xperia Z1

But wait, there’s more, as we could also be seeing a “Mini” version of the Z1 presented during or before IFA. This little guy will sport a 4 or 4.5-inch display, but other than that it’s expected to be just as groundbreaking as big brother, unlike Samsung’s GS4 Mini or HTC’s One Mini.

HTC

It’s not like the Taiwanese to conduct a subtle, almost shy hype-boosting campaign on the eve of a big launch, but sadly for them the One Max looks like it has nothing against Sony’s Xperia Z1. And Samsung is Samsung, so you know people will expect greatness from them.

HTC-One-Mini-HTC-One-Max

But I’m here to tell you that the One Max is not to be overlooked, at least if you dig jumbo-sized phones. After all, what could be cooler than an HTC One with the same breathtakingly solid aluminum build, plus a speed boost and screen size upgrade?

LG

Unlike the competition, LG has chosen to showcase the G2 ages before IFA, at the risk of losing the spotlight once the Berlin event will be underway. Then again, the Koreans look like they have one secret (well, not so secret anymore) weapon saved for September too – the G Pad 8.3.

lg-g-pad-g2

Confirmed already courtesy of a video teaser, the slate is tipped to sport a 1,920 x 1,200 pixels resolution panel, plus pack quad-core Snapdragon 600 heat under the hood. The price tag? Unknown, which is why it’s still hard to say if this will be a Nexus 7 killer or a DOA slate like many others before it.

The others – Asus, Acer, Alcatel, Lenovo, HP, Huawei, ZTE

One swallow does not a summer make and four exhibitors do not a spectacular tech expo make. But fret not, as any of the seven above mentioned names could steal the thunder or at least part of it from the top dogs.

Asus is waiting for the perfect moment to intro the PadFone Mini, MemoFone HD 5 phones and MemoPad HD 8 tablet, while Acer has a Tegra 4-powered slate and a brilliant flagship phone called Liquid S2 in the pipeline.

Acer-Liquid-S2

Alcatel will likely look to uncover the already leaked One Touch Scribe Pro and One Touch Idol Mini, Lenovo is almost certainly working on a sort of K900 rehash with Snapdragon 800 power, HP is hunting for tablet glory with the Slate 8 Pro, Huawei has recently introduced an octa-core processor that could find its way inside smartphones this year and finally ZTE has to build some buzz around the U988S, which is the world’s first Tegra 4 phone, but also an incredibly cheap handheld.

I think we can all agree there are a lot of exciting things on this list and beware, these are only the devices that we know are coming. Who knows what other shockers might be in store.

Two New Leaked Images Reveal Sony Xperia Z1 Colors and Metal Frame

As more and more details of Sony Honami Xperia Z1 smartphone leak, we are getting a clearer picture of what device the company has made and we could even conclude what place in the market the smartphone cum phablet is going to take.  Just a few days ago, a photo of the Xperia Z1 leaked revealing a lot about the design of the device.  Earlier today, two more images of the high end smartphones found their way to the internet and we can finally ascertain, if the images are legitimate, that the Sony Xperia Z1 or Honami will be available in at least 3 colors – Black, White and Purple – and that it has a metal frame inside it.

The two new images of the device published on GSMInsider and they reveal a metal frame that shows all the covers and connectors of the device, which is waterproof just like its predecessor the Sony Xperia Z.  If you are keen, you will also notice that the three colors the Sony Xperia Z1 will come in are the same exact colors the Sony Xperia Z is available in.  What does this mean?

What we can say now is that the same amazing build of the Sony Xperia Z is coming to the Z1.  Alleged press render of the device leaked earlier today, revealing a device that is almost identical in shape and build to the Sony Xperia Z – except that although it will be slightly bigger, it will also be slightly thinner than the Xperia Z.  The leaked metal chassis that first appeared on a Taiwanese Supplier website proves that the Xperia Z1 has keys and slots for the power button, the volume rocker keys, a physical camera button as well as a microSD card slot right on the metal frame.  The site goes ahead to note that the keys and slots on the metal frame all have waterproof layers.

With the leakage of the Honami’s press render, what else can we expect to know about the phone during its launch?  As a summary, we already know that the Xperia Z1 will come with a 20.7 megapixels rear camera with Exmor RS and Sony G Lens, a 2.2 GHz quad-core Qualcomm snapdragon 800 processor, 2 GB of RAM, a 5 inch full HD display and 32 GB internal memory.  Sony is expected to launch the Xperia Z1 on September 4th during the 2013 IFA event in Berlin Germany.

Sources: eTrade Supply via GSMInsider

New Sony Xperia Z1 press photo leaked

sony-xperia-z1

sony-xperia-z1

The Sony Xperia Z1 (previously Honami) has had so many leaks it is almost pointless to hold an event, with any tech enthusiast who has followed the news knowing all about the insides, the camera, design and name.

This new leak shows some press images of a black, white and purple version of the Sony Xperia Z1. These are the common colours from Sony and the phone looks almost identical to the Xperia Z, the current flagship device.

One notable difference is the camera, the lens is noticeably larger than the one on the Xperia Z and Sony has moved it further into the corner of the device. The flash on the Xperia Z1 is a little different too, leaks suggest Sony will add a Xenon flash to the Xperia Z1.

The power button is a little smaller from what we can tell from the render, one early tester has said the power button is a little harder to press than it is on the Xperia Z. It seems odd that Sony would add a smaller button though, unless they found the Xperia Z button a little too large for some users.

On the press render it shows the apparent date of release, September 5. This is the day Sony has its press event at IFA, followed by Samsung and other recognised manufacturers attending the event to reveal some new products.

There is no news on when this device will be officially released and also no idea where it is coming. EE recently retweeted a teaser photo by Sony, possibly pointing at a UK release on the 4G service.

Source: digi-wo

Sony Xperia Z1 or i1 gets teased on Twitter

Sony Xperia Z1 or i1

The Sony Xperia Z1 or i1 appears to have been recently teased by the Sony Xperia Twitter account. The teaser shows a close-up photo of the power button of the device that Sony claims is something that everyone has been talking about. It goes on to say that it will be coming soon. The teaser ends with the hashtag #bestofSony, hinting that the device in the photo is their most impressive offering, and potentially their upcoming flagship handset. No other details were given by Sony on Twitter regarding the device.

Sony Xperia Z1 or i1
Sony Xperia Z1 or i1

At this point, we are still unsure about what the company will be calling the device when it finally launches. Both the Sony Xperia Z1 and Xperia i1 names have appeared in the rumor mill as the alleged official names of the device that had been codenamed the Honami.

The Sony Xperia Z1 or i1 is expected to feature a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot for expansion, a 5-inch 1080p HD Triluminous screen with Sony’s X-Reality engine, and a slim form factor. One of the handset’s highlights is its purportedly powerful camera: a 20 MP shooter with G Lens, special software, and a capability of capturing videos in 4K quality. It is expected that Sony’s inclusion of this camera will allow it to compete better against the camera-oriented smartphones that are hitting the market lately, as well as flagship smartphones which boast of superb image quality.

The new Sony handset will break cover on September 4th, before the 2013 IFA event in Berlin, Germany. Along with the flagship smartphone, Sony may unveil camera lenses that could be attached to the Sony Xperia Z1 or i1, as well as other Android or iOS handsets, to allow them to take better pictures.

via phandroid

Sony Xperia Z1 tester not impressed with early unit

sony-xperia-z1

One user who has grabbed an early review unit of the Sony Xperia Z1 (previously Honami) has said it is not that impressive and even the camera does not bring a “wow factor” surprisingly.

The Xperia Z1’s main feature is the 20MP camera, with a G Lens, Xenon flash, large optical zoom and f/2.4 aperture, it is set to try its salt against the Nokia Lumia 1020, Galaxy S4 Zoom and other smartphones with powerful cameras.

The tester said he just did see the “wow factor” in the camera, this is questionable, as we cannot see how a 20MP shooter from a company that has been in the camera business for over a decade can screw up this feature. The user did say it could be early firmware holding the camera back.

Display-wise, the Xperia Z1 apparently trails against the Xperia Z Ultra, the mammoth smartphone Sony just released. The user says the colours seem more flushed on the Xperia Z1 and the screen brightness removes a lot of colour and density on images.

Nothing was said about the design or UI, we believe Sony will add Android 4.3 or Android 4.2.2 on the Xperia Z1 with the BRAVIA, the same as they have with the Xperia Z and Z Ultra.

It could all be early firmware Sony will work on until IFA and we hope this device actually has a great camera, considering it is the main selling point.

Source

Rumor: Sony Looking to Unveil Five New Phones at IFA, Including 4.8-Incher with Full HD Screen

If you can’t beat them, join them. That appears to be Sony’s smartphone marketing strategy in a nutshell these days, although not in the sense that the Japanese are looking to partner with Samsung in any way.

Sony

Instead, they’re more or less trying to narrow the gap against the undisputed heavyweight Android champ by offering an equally as strong and diverse smartphone line-up. In fact, I have a feeling that the Xperia family might even get richer than Sammy’s Galaxy soon enough.

Take next month’s IFA. Sony has been rumored to bring a new flagship to light during the trade show for as long as we can remember, but now we have some suppositions that the Honami will not visit beautiful Berlin by itself. Not even close.

There could be four, count’em, four chaperons for the 5-incher, starting with a “Mini” version that might be the compact super-Android that we’ve waited so long for.

Next up, there’s a 4.8-incher carrying the model number “C670x”. This fellow has last been in the rumor mix way back in March, but it might well be worth the wait. Basically, we’re dealing here, if “tipsters” are to be trusted, with an improved but more compact version of the Xperia Z and ZL.

Sony-Honami-Mini

Beneath the hood, the C670x is tipped to pack a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor, while the comfortably sized but not humongous screen is to boast a Full HD resolution. Other features are to include 2 GB RAM, microSD support, a 13 MP rear cam and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. Not too shabby for what’s technically not a spearhead, eh?

The C430x and C360x look far less exciting on paper, though chances are the prices will be just right to make them hits. The former is said to be a kind of Xperia P successor (likely to be marketed as Xperia W) with a 4-inch 720p LCD panel, dual-core 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 CPU, 1.5 GB RAM, 8 MP main snapper and 2,100 mAh battery. Pretty wicked mid-ranger, am I right?

Finally, the C360x, like the C670x, has inconspicuously dropped off our radar a while ago (in November 2012, to be specific) and is rumored to come with a 720p panel (probably smaller than 4-inch), dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor and 1 GB of RAM in tow. Again, not bad for the mid-end sector, I reckon.

Now all we have to do is wait a couple of weeks or so and see exactly what cards Sony will put on the table and what if any will be left up the sleeve. Any guesses?

Via [RB Men]

More Sony Honami images leaked, reconfirming 20MP camera

sony-honami

sony-honami

The Sony Honami is set to be one of the hottest devices at IFA next month, but until then we only have the daily specs, photos and leaked internal report updates to keep the hype up on the new camera-phone from Sony.

This new leak shows the Sony Honami in a few different snaps, showing the size of the device, the 20MP beast camera and the gorgeous 1080p display set to arrive on the smartphone.

The exact camera spec is 20.7MP and it will come with 1/2.3-inch sensor with G Lens and f/2.4 aperture. It is set to be an iconic camera-phone, to take on the Nokia Lumia 1020 in performance, stabilisation and just incredible photos.

Luckily for Sony, they are not tied down to Windows Phone and users will be able to post their high-definition shots to Instagram and all other photo sharing platforms. The Sony Honami may also be capable of capturing 4K video, a truly remarkable feat considering we were wowed by 1080p video a year ago.

We expect to see the Sony Honami at IFA on September 6 a few hours before the big Samsung event. The Sony Honami is placed in a category of its own, not part of the Xperia line and will be priced similar to other flagship models, hopefully not $299 in the US.

Top Seven Android Smartphones With The Most Gigantic Batteries. Bonus: Five Future Contenders

Many smartphone manufacturers claim that battery life is not so important for most users. Which couldn’t be further from the truth. I mean, how can you even enjoy a “superphone” when you have to remember to plug it in every evening and, even if you do, there are no insurances it won’t run out on you at the worst possible time?

smartphone battery

We’ve all been there. We let the HD screens, quad-core processors and LTE speeds fool us, we cough up 700 bucks on what’s basically a tiny computer and we end up with a gizmo that starts out capable of holding its own for a measly 10 hours between charges, then drops to eight hours, then before you know it it’s down to six hours.

How long are we going to accept that? I say no more. It’s time to let them know they have to step it up in the battery department. How? Simple, we’ll just buy one of the handful of phones that actually pack decent tickers nowadays.

Here are the top seven choices, selected only based on how ginormous their batteries are.

android battery

Quick disclaimer: Big batteries don’t automatically translate into long lasting phones, so be sure to check out reviews and autonomy tests before going for one of the below. Also, keep in mind that we haven’t taken into consideration devices that are not yet official or can’t be scored in the US at least off-contract. Now, let the games begin:

7. Sony Xperia Z Ultra

Battery size: 3,050 mAh

Type: Non-removable

Claimed autonomy: Up to 16 hours in talk time; 820 h stand-by

Sony Xperia Z Ultra

Availability: Unreleased in subsidized form, hard to find unlocked, but available via Negri Electronics for $699.50 (HSPA+ version)

Other strong suits: Quad-core Snapdragon 800 CPU; 6.5 mm thickness; 2 GB RAM; Android 4.2 Jelly Bean; resistance to water and dust; microSD support; 6.4-inch Full HD screen.

6. Samsung Galaxy Note 2

3,100 mAh battery, removable, rated at 16 hours in talk time, 890 h stand-by

Galaxy-Note-2-battery

Available with Verizon, AT&T and Sprint contracts starting at $50 through Amazon; also available in factory unlocked version for $494 and with T-Mobile for $0 upfront, plus 24 monthly payments of $24 each

Other strong points: 5.5-inch Super AMOLED screen; S Pen support; 16, 32 and 64 GB storage options; microSD support; 2 GB RAM

5. LG Optimus G Pro

3,140 mAh removable battery, rated at 21 hours autonomy in talk time, 550 hours in stand-by

LG_Optimus_G_Pro

Available with AT&T contracts for $59.99 via Amazon, $599.99 outright. Also available through GSM Nation for $549 in unlocked flavor.

Other strengths: 5.5-inch Full HD IPS Plus panel; Quad-core Snapdragon 600 processor; 2 GB RAM; microSD support; 13 MP rear camera.

4. Motorola Droid Razr Maxx and Razr Maxx HD

3,300 mAh non-removable batteries, rated at 21 and 380 hours and 32 and 372 hours respectively

Droid Razr Maxx currently out of stock with retailers such as Amazon or Best Buy; only available via websites like eBay for $370 and up off-contract

droid-razr-maxx-hd

Razr Maxx HD available with Verizon contracts for $99.99 via Amazon

Other strong suits: Razr Maxx – thin profile; microSD support

Razr Maxx HD – Kevlar coating; splash resistant chassis; microSD support; 720p Super AMOLED panel.

3. Motorola Droid Maxx (new version)

3,500 mAh non-removable battery, rated at up to 48 and 600 hours of autonomy

droid-maxx-battery

Not yet released, available for pre-orders for $199.99 with two-year Verizon contracts via Wirefly

Other strong points: Large 5-inch 720p display; custom-made Motorola X8 processor based on Snapdragon S4 Pro; 2 GB RAM; 32 GB internal storage; 10 MP rear camera; optimized software (according to official claims); Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.

2. Lenovo P780

4,000 mAh non-removable battery, rated at up to 45 and 840 hours autonomy

Lenovo-P780

Unavailable with US contracts and unlikely to be ever picked up by a major carrier, the P780 can be found at a number of third-party Amazon sellers for $340 and up sans contracts.

Other strong suits: Low price (see above); Android 4.2 Jelly Bean; large 5-inch 720p display; microSD support

1. Huawei Ascend Mate

4,050 mAh non-removable battery, rated at up to 32 and 216 hours of life between charges

Huawei-Ascend-Mate

Also unavailable with US contracts (now and for all eternity), the Ascend Mate can be found unlocked on Amazon for prices starting at $450.

Other upsides: 6.1-inch 720p display; Quad-core 1.5 GHz CPU; 2 GB RAM; microSD support; Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

More to come

Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Expected out in late September or early October with 3,450 mAh battery, 5.7-inch Full HD screen, 2 GB RAM and Android 4.3 Jelly Bean.

Sony Honami

Also due in October with 3,000 – 3,200 mAh ticker, 5-inch 1,080p display and 20 MP rear camera.

Sony-Honami

Changhong Z9

Though it’s to be manufactured by an obscure brand and is likely to remain China-exclusive, the Z9 is worth a quick mention, since rumor has it its battery will be a record-breaking 5,000 mAh unit.

HTC One Max

Leaked a number of times already, the One Max is tipped to see daylight by October with a 5.9-inch Full HD screen and 3,300 mAh battery.

HTC-One-Mini-HTC-One-Max

Oppo Find 7

This is another phone that might never make its way to American shores, but chances are Oppo will sell it with international shipping by the end of the year. Still mostly covered in mystery, the giant could pack a 4,000 mAh battery.

There you have it folks, seven superphones that are pretty super as far as battery life is concerned and five potential stars of the future. It’s not exactly ideal, but it’s definitely a start and we can all contribute to the progress of smartphone batteries if we give these big guys all our attention. Are you in or are you out?

Snapdragon 800 Smartphone Roundup: What’s Out There, What’s Yet To Come

Despite what Motorola or Google might try to make you think, the spec war is still very much on in the smartphone world and cold, objective numbers will continue to be more important than subjective “user experience” for many.

Snapdragon

Like it or not, Big G, Moto, but an extra two cores or a higher clock speed on a phone’s processor will boost sales numbers so much more than the possibility of combining a red front and purple back all while adding your own signature on a device’s body.

Likewise, regular Joes passionate about technology will always go for the handheld with the higher-res display, the more RAM or on-board storage, no matter if they actually need the extra memory or pixels. It’s just the way we’re built.

On that note, don’t be surprised if devices powered by any other processor than Qualcomm’s spectacular quad-core Snapdragon 800 will simply be ignored in a month or two. Everybody wants Snapdragon 800 power, from smartphone OEMs to simple tech aficionados, so let’s see exactly what awaits on the horizon.

Snapdragon 800 – why so serious?

Before actually rounding up the existent and soon to be unveiled gadgets running on Snapdragon 800, how about we see what the big deal is after all? Why is there so much buzz and hype surrounding this platform? Is it so much better than the others or is the excitement the result of a very crafty marketing campaign?

Qualcomm-snapdragon-800

While Qualcomm’s ability to market the heck out of its CPUs is hard to dispute of late, I’d like to once again appeal to cold, objective numbers to prove a point. For instance, let’s take the latest AnTuTu benchmarks of phones like Sony’s Xperia Z Ultra, Samsung’s Galaxy S4 LTE-A or Galaxy Note 3.

Sure, synthetic benchmarks can often be confusing and AnTuTu has proven to be especially unreliable recently, but it can’t be a coincidence that Snapdragon 800-powered devices are almost always scoring results 25, 30 or even 40% better than gadgets running on Snapdragon 600. And keep in mind, the 600 is no pushover itself, being the cream of the crop until not long ago.

Snapdragon-800-Antutu

At the same time, the 800 has proven to go surprisingly easy on battery life, all while being accompanied by an Adreno 330 GPU that’s superior in every way to Snapdragon 600’s Adreno 320. I rest my case.

What’s out there?

Given the CPU is official ever since early January, it’s a little disappointing to see it’s still virtually impossible to score one single phone packing Snapdragon 800 heat. Then again, we must remember Qualcomm warned us from the get-go that devices using the processor were only going to become official in H2 2013.

Without further ado, I give you the only two official Snapdragon 800 phones:

Samsung Galaxy S4 LTE-A

Exclusively available in Korea, this big guy is already up for grabs, but in many ways it’s not a representative of the next generation of top-notch phones, resembling the original Galaxy S4 way too much. Not that that’s such a bad thing. But we all want moar.

GALAXY_S4_LTE-A

Sony Xperia Z Ultra

This monster is a whole different kettle of fish, but sadly it will only be up for sale starting next month. Aside from the five-star SoC, the Z Ultra also stands out with a ginormous 6.4-inch Full HD screen, an incredibly slim 6.5 mm profile, water and dust resistance and a whopping 3,050 mAh battery.

Sony Xperia Z Ultra

In short, it’s the ultimate wet dream of tech fans that aren’t worried how silly they look when holding a 6.4-inch “phone” next to their ears.

What’s yet to come?

With Nvidia’s Tegra 4 too slow and pricey to gain a foothold, everybody wants a piece of the Snapdragon 800 pie. And I do mean everybody, from Samsung to Sony, from HTC to LG and from Lenovo to Xiaomi. Even Nokia.

It thus becomes Mission: Impossible 5 to catch the media’s attention, even though we have a number of OEMs that are doing a terrific job in boosting buzz. There’s LG, whose G2 is expected to make a formal debut tomorrow with a very unique design, 5.2-inch display, 2 or 3 GB of RAM and microSD support.

LG-G2

Then there’s Sony’s Honami, which will likely be a Z Ultra with a high-quality 20 MP rear camera (Nokia, beware) and a more compact 5-inch package. And how about Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3, which doesn’t look that groundbreaking on paper (we’re sick of plastic, Sammy), but has the GNote and Note 2 heritage to sustain its great potential?

sony_honami

Meanwhile, HTC appears to be employing a slightly more cautious hype-building strategy for the One Max after letting way too many details slip in the eve of One Mini’s unveiling. Regardless, it’s not easy to overlook what appears to be a gigantic version of the tremendously successful One, with the same winning all-aluminum design.

htc-one-max

But wait, we’re not done yet. There are also a few giants likely coming from the emerging Chinese players. You have the Lenovo K910 (or K6), a much welcomed rehash of the Intel-based K900, the extremely promising Xiaomi Mi-3 with 3 GB of RAM, plus the Oppo Find 7 that’s practically almost official with a crazy-sounding 8 MP front camera.

And don’t even get me started on Nokia’s highly anticipated upcoming phablet, which is probably the biggest threat Android has had to face outside of the iOS spectrum in ages. And that’s coming from a guy who can’t stand Windows Phone 8.

How about it, folks? Which of all these Snapdragon 800 big kahunas are you most excited about? I for one am still on the fence between the LG G2 and Sony Honami.

Motorola Moto X – A New Kind of Flagship Device or a Colossal Flop?

We were warned. Ever since the rumor bonanza began or at least pretty close to its start, numerous trustworthy “insiders” told us Motorola had “something else” in mind for the Moto X. The X was not going to be a high-end device, a spec-buster in the true sense of the word, but rather an upper mid-ranger with a different personality.

motorola-moto-x

And that’s exactly what we received yesterday. A smallish phone (by high-end standards), with a dual-core processor (modified and optimized, but still dual-core), “just” a 720p display and a battery and camera that, on paper, don’t look like much.

But also a device that strikes all the right cords in the connectivity department, that runs almost stock Android, with only a few tweaks that actually add value for a change, and a device that’s highly customizable.

Again, we were warned not to expect customizable hardware, so on that note being able to practically design your own phone, choose from a very wide palette of colors and accessories and so on and so forth is a huge step up compared with most other premium Android smartphones, which, between you and I, look too much alike.

Moto-X-2

With all that in mind, emphasizing it’s way too early to fully evaluate X’s real potential and purely on a theoretical premise, does the phone have what it takes to become a blockbuster or will it be forgotten in just a few months? Let’s weigh in its pros and cons, shall we?

The Moto X is a winner because:

  • It’s different

Different is not always better. For instance, the Moto X packs a “different” processor than its competitors, which, according to pre-release benchmarks, is not as zippy. But on the whole, this baby has the potential to stand out like no other.

moto-x-front

It has pizzazz, it’s slim, elegant but also robust and it should provide a unique user experience. Sure, right now that doesn’t mean a lot, being something that Motorola uses in its ad campaigns to boost the hype. But what if it’s true? What if everything is really tailor-made to fit the needs of actual users?

No more quad-core this, Full HD that, but instead a CPU whose speed you can feel, a warm and crisp display and a solid battery. Wouldn’t that be something?

  • MotoMaker

Since I’ve already mentioned this, I’m not going to insist too much on it. MotoMaker is the tool that you’ll use to make the Moto X your own. The combinations of colors, build materials and accessories are practically endless and Motorola promises to continuously add new ones in the near future. Do I really need to tell you why that’s so cool and why it makes the new phone special? I don’t think so.

Motorola_Moto_X

  • The specs are not bad

There were many people that went for Moto X’s throat moments after its unveiling, saying it’s not a heavyweight contender based on its specs and features. And it’s not. But, gosh darn it, it’s not an entry-level gizmo either.

The rear snapper is equipped with a more than decent 10 MP sensor and something called Clear Pixel technology that brings a lot of goodies to the table (more details here). The 4.7-inch display boasts a still winning 1,280 x 720 pixels resolution.

MotoX-camera

The battery is 2,200 mAh and should be able to run for a whopping 13 hours of talk time between charges. You get 2 GB of RAM, 4G LTE and NFC. And are you honestly telling me that’s not enough? Then you must be out of your mind.

The Moto X is a loser because:

  • It’s expensive

No, I’m not suffering from short-term memory loss. And I know I just said Moto X’s specs are or should be enough for any mobile user in their right minds. But at the same time, asking $200 with contracts for something that’s not as good as the Samsung Galaxy S4 or HTC One on paper is not right. Period.

moto-x-wood

And yeah, I get it, all those different customization options probably cost a penny or two, but what if I just want a plain, regular black Moto X? Shouldn’t I get some sort of a discount?

  • AT&T

If preposterously pricing the X at $200 with contracts and $575 sans pacts wasn’t enough to fill you with rage, Motorola also announced the MotoMaker was going to be made available exclusively to AT&T… at first.

Again, I get it that Moto probably has some debts to pay off to AT&T after so many years of favoring Verizon, but don’t you find it ironic (I’m trying hard to not say moronic) that, with all this marketing talk of freedom, people won’t really be free to get their Moto X as they want it?

Moto Maker

And yes, the customization tool will likely hit Verizon, Sprint and all the others in a month or two, but it may already be too late at that point. Why? Because:

  • It comes at an inopportune time

Samsung Galaxy Note 3. LG G2. Sony Xperia Honami. Apple iPhone 5S and 5C (or 6 and 5S). Maybe even Nexus 5. Those are all names of smartphones set to see daylight in 30 or 60 days from now, max. And, as much as we’d like to give Moto X’s “unique user experience” a real shot, it’s unlikely to be enough to overshadow that entire army.

LG G2

I mean, come on, the Note 3 will come with S Pen support, a 5.7-inch Full HD screen and 3 GB of RAM. Then there’s the G2, with a unique design of its own and equally as impressive specs. And what about the Honami, which rumor has it will pack a 20 MP camera in addition to a 1,080p panel and Snapdragon 800 processor?

I’m sorry, Motorola, but it’s not looking like the X will stand the test of time.  

Sony Xperia Z Successor to Come Later This Year

One of the best high end Android smartphones in the market today, Sony’s Xperia Z, though still relatively new having been announced during this year’s CES, may be getting a successor as soon as this year.

Sony Honami

Just a few weeks after the confirmation that Sony will be launching the ‘bigger and better’ Xperia Z Ultra, it seems Sony is pushing its luck by following up the hugely successful Xperia Z with Xperia Z 2.  The Xperia Z is still new to some, for instance, some networks such as Bell in Canada are still to launch the phone, yet talk of a successor is heating up.  This new rumor is courtesy Sony’s Korea CEO Kenji Sakai who hinted on the device debuting ‘later this year’ as published by Economic Daily.

Sony’s CEO did not offer any specifics as to which device will be the actual ‘Xperia Z successor’ but if you have been following on the rumors about Sony’s devices, you will be familiar with the Honami or Xperia i1.  Specifications of this phone are already doing rounds on the internet but Sony could mean that another device is in development, perhaps a slightly modified version of the Xperia Z?  In these times when almost every high end smartphone is followed up by a mini-version, there is a chance Sony will be taking this path just like HTC and Samsung.  But then, there is also talk of Sony working on a mini version of the yet-to-be-released Sony Honami.

For now though, while we wait for information on any new devices, you can check out different rumors on the upcoming Sony Phablet that is being prepared to take on Motorola X Max and Samsung’s Galaxy Note II here and here.

Source: Economic Daily via  phoneArena

Sony Honami Mini reportedly in the works

A mini version of the Sony Honami is now in the works, according to unnamed sources that informed VR-Zone. Reportedly, the compact Sony Honami will be made to compete not only against the various mini versions of flagship smartphones that are being released lately, but also against the Apple iPhone. As of the moment, the name of the allegedly upcoming handset is still unknown.

sony

The same sources reveal that the smartphone, nicknamed the “Sony Honami Mini” will come will impressive specifications that will be at par with flagship smartphones. For starters, the handset would pack a Snapdragon 800 SoC. Meanwhile, there is no information on whether the camera will be the same as the one found on the yet-unreleased Sony Honami, which is rumored to be a 20 MP snapper that can take videos with 4K or 5248 x 3936 MP resolution. However, if the Honami Mini will sport a different camera, it will still likely be impressive. As for the size of the display, the blog places it around 4- to 4.3-inches diagonally. The latest iteration of the Apple iPhone has a screen measuring 4 inches, as well.

Then there are all the mini versions of flagship handsets that are available, or on their way, to the market. Samsung has the Galaxy S4 Mini, ZTE has the Nubia Z5 Mini, and Huawei and Lenovo are also said to be preparing their own 4.3- to 4.5-inch handsets. Some of these mini handsets, like the Galaxy S4 Mini, have not received such good reviews in terms of performance, and even price. One upcoming smartphone, however, that is expected to be a game-changer, or at least one that would bring the standards higher for the mini smartphone niche is the HTC One Mini. Such smartphone is rumored to feature Android 2.2, a 1.4 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor, Adreno 305 GPU, a 4.3-inch display with a 720 x 1280 pixel resolution, and possibly a 4 MP UltraPixel camera.

If the rumors regarding the specifications are accurate, Sony’s mini Honami would be an even better device than the HTC One Mini, but at this point, all of these are still pure speculation.

Meanwhile, Sony may give consumers the first look at the Honami smartphone during IFA on September 4th.

via vr-zone