The i8910 – the day after

Now that the orgasmic explosion of excitement is over (ok, this is a lie; I’m still pretty excited), what do all the various features and functions of the i8910 mean?

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The Samsung i8910 – It is mine

Holy crap holy crap holy holy crap holy crap crap!

It’s confirmed. It’s all confirmed.

Excuse me a moment while I cool down and compose myself.  This is like porn for me.

(Five minutes pass.)

OK, ok…I think I’m ready.  First off, let me introduce you to the Samsung i8910, in the flesh.  Yesterday’s rumors proved 100% accurate, which I must say is a bit of a rarity.  Usually with rumors one or two things are either off or completely wrong, which leads to disappointment and general sad panda-ness when the “real” device is actually unveiled either in additional spy shots or officially.

But this time it all proved true—and I could not be happier.

Let’s go through the specs that, thanks to the shots, are now fact:

  • S60 5th Edition with touch
  • GPS
  • WiFi with DLNA
  • 8 MP camera (3264×2448 )
  • HDMI-out
  • High Definition video recording (1280×720), plus D1 (720×480), VGA (640×480) and QVGA (320×240)
  • DivX support
  • UPDATE: 3.5mm jack (according to text)
  • UPDATE: Capacitive (glass) screen (according to text)
  • UPDATE: AMOLED (Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diod) display

What is still unknown is the processor (though it must be very powerful to even be able to handle 720p video recording and playback—possibly an OMAP 3430 or similar chip) and the screen size.  S60 5.0 is known to be capable of at least nHD (640×360) resolution, so the i8910 is at least that or possibly higher (it’s currently rumored at WVGA, 800×480).

I haven’t been this impressed with a phone in a very long while.  There have been exciting phones, yes—the first slew of 8MP phones were some, but the feeling faded rather quickly—but this is the first phone to completely knock it out of the park.  More often than not, phones don’t deliver everything; there’s always give and take.  You want an 8MP camera?  You’re not getting a touchscreen.  You want 8MP and a touchscreen?  You’re not getting WiFi and it’s not going to be a smartphone.  You want WiFi and a smartphone?  Well, it won’t be 8MP, buddy.  This is the first phone to incorporate literally every 2009-spec feature and then some.  The ONLY thing this phone doesn’t have—and it’s due to the sheer apparent thinness of the device—is a Xenon flash.  MWC may reveal more awesome phones, but I doubt many will be as good as this one, and I can’t believe any will be better.  At least, not this early in the year.

UPDATE: In addition to everything else, it also apparently has a capacitive screen (think iPhone) which is AMOLED (which saves a ton on battery life).  INSANE.

More drool-worthy pictures after the break.

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My predictions for MWC 2009

On a personal note, I wish it was still referred to as 3GSM.  Sounds a lot cooler than MWC.  Especially when you learn what “MWC” stands for–“Mobile World Congress.”  Sounds like white people in suits.  Sounds like no fun.

Anyway, last year’s “MWC’ was pretty good.  Not great, but good.  It saw the intro of Sony Ericsson’s Xperia X1, which in my opinion stole the show, even though it is only a mediocre device, spec-wise, and ended up being released like a bajillion years later.  It also saw the announcement of Nokia’s N96, which is a disgrace to the Nseries brand.  But, hey.

This year looks like it’s going to be amazing.  Knock your socks off awesome.

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3G in Omaha

My last 3G in Omaha post is probably the most popular on the whole friggin’ blog, and I’m comforted that some people are as dorky as I am.

Unfortunately, it’s also the one I didn’t update when the switch was actually flipped.

So, it shall come as no surprise to anyone that 3G/HSDPA is now deployed in Omaha and has been for over a month.  There were delays, stops, forks in the road, and probably a few murders, but it all got figured out in the end.

For the record, HSDPA in Omaha is deployed ONLY on the 1900 Mhz band, as is 2G EDGE.  There is no 850 Mhz in Omaha to speak of, though that doesn’t mean they’ll someday augment the current network with some 850.  Of course, by the time they do, we’ll have 4G LTE and no one will care.

The speeds are…good.  Not great.  I’m certainly having a blast surfing the ‘Net on 3G, but it’s not as ZOMG SUPR AMAZIN like I was expecting.  Indeed, on my Nokia N95 and N82, both of which are limited to EDGE in the States, my browsing experience is only minimally worse than on my AT&T-branded Nokia 6650 with HSDPA 850/1900.  That said, I’m glad it’s here and am happy to take advantage of it.  The only significant difference in speed seems to be sending and receiving email.

The thing that sucks now is that I need to be more picky when I get new phones.  Before, my only requirement was quadband GSM.  Now, I require that and at least dualband 850/1900 HSDPA.  Nokia does a good job getting NAM versions of their Nseries line, so I think I’ll be safe.

But just as I say that…

…Something else comes along to blow away my ideas.

I was set on the N85 just a few hours ago, but information has surfaced that makes me wonder otherwise.

One of the great cell phone resources I have is a Russian site called Mobile-Review.  The owner has inside information into a lot of companies and loves to drop hints about upcoming devices in his reviews.  Well, in his review of the N85 (and the N79 that was also announced today), he said that there will be about 7 new S60 devices from Nokia presented in February (at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona), and that two of them will essentially turn the market on its head.

Several things are known about Nokia now: They’re working on an 8MP phone.  Several companies including Sony Ericsson, LG, and Samsung have announced 8 MP phones, and each are pretty impressive, so it’s only a matter of time before Nokia shows them how it’s done.

Two: They’re working on a touchscreen flagship.  Their current touch phone they are about to unveil—the XpressMusic/Media 5800 “Tube” (which was showcased in The Dark Knight)—is a mid-end phone for the masses, though it has high-end specs like WLAN, GPS, etc.  There is a second touch phone in the works that will be “flagship” status, which means, in other words, armed to the teeth.  The 5800’s screen resolution is already known to be 640×360, and apparently the flagship touch device is to be even denser.  It’s speculated further that the touch flagship and the 8MP phone are actually one in the same, and I tend to agree.

A rendering of the 5800 Tube, based on live spypics.

A rendering of the 5800 "Tube," based on live spypics.

Three: On the business side, there is a device floating around called the “E77,” which apparently has a touchscreen and a side-sliding keyboard.  It’s supposed to be far superior to even the third-generation iPhone that will likely make an appearance next summer.

The touch flagship and this “E77” are the likely candidates for being unveiled in February and subsequently released in the summer sometime (or before).

As much as I like the N85, I did just get the N82, which I LOVE, and don’t really want to part with it anytime soon.  And I’d much rather wait even upwards of a year to get my hands on an 8MP touchscreen Nokia flagship rather than get a phone that is only marginally better than what I have.  The N85, as awesome as it sounds, would realistically only be an incremental upgrade, whereas this device to be unveiled in February would be more than deserving of my money.

So, there we go.  Waiting it shall be.

Realistically, what I expect the touchscreen flagship to have is a 5-8 MP autofocus CZ camera with face detection and dual-LED flash, video recording at either the standard 640×480 or possibly bumped up to 720×480, WLAN, Bluetooth, screen resolution of at least 640×360 but possibly increased to even 960×540 (apparently some S60 Touch phones will exceed the densest Windows Mobile screens), AM-OLED screen, FM radio/FM transmitter, 3.5 mm jack, microUSB with charging, and all the other bells and whistles common on a high-end Nokia.

You all are going to shoot me, but…

…I’m seriously thinking about selling my N82 in about two to three months. Nope, guess not.  See above post.

*Dodges the tomatoes

Through a site called ImportGSM.com, I can sell back any phone for “fair market value,” and since my N82 is NEW, for all intents and purposes, I expect I could recoup almost all of my money.

You can either choose to receive a check in the mail, or a coupon on a new phone.

Well, you can guess which I want.

That’s right: Today Nokia announced the Nokia N85, which is probably the most revolutionary phone they’ve announced since the N95 two-plus years ago.

The N85 is being billed as the N95 replacement/true successor, rather than the N96. The N96 is more than 1.5 times as much money, and is simply too bulky and unoriginal for “average” people to purchase.

The N85, on the other hand, combines many brand-new technologies. It has an FM transmitter, which allows you to broadcast music on an FM band and pick it up in your car or on a stereo. VERY cool. It is also the first Nokia phone to have triband HSDPA, which means GLOBAL roaming in both the US and Europe on 3G frequencies. Awesome. It also has an AM-OLED screen, which is a brand-new technology that doesn’t require a backlight. Backlights are the main battery drains on a phone (except for making calls), and the AM-OLED display removes this, thus boosting the battery life tremendously. That, and it has a 1200 mAh battery—the largest in an Nseries phone. It also has S60 FP2, which has pretty transitions and other eye candy. The N85’s D-pad also doubles as a scroll wheel, similar to an iPod.  Not to mention, it’s both smaller and thinner than the N82.

It’s also set for immediate release—well, close to immediate. October, I think.

I am amazed by the phone. I love my N82 to pieces, but this phone brings something new to the table, and I’m very interested. If I were unable to trade in phones and recoup money, I would never consider it, but the prospect of slashing possibly $400 off the initial $650 price tag is very appealing to me. If I wait a little longer, that price is surely to drop.

Dunno. I’m tempted. I admit it’s an odd move even for me, but this phone is something special.

Good news for Windows/toast fans

Last night while I was up until midnight reading Ctrl+Alt+Del, this would have been very handy.  I’m taking about, of course, the idea of slipping a piece of bread into my computer and having it cook into toast in a matter of minutes, after which I would have consumed it and continued reading.

That is now a reality with the CrazyPC Bay Toaster which is important and cool enough to receive a mention in today’s newspaper.

The logic here is that many people have empty bays in their computers, or a floppy drive they don’t need, so the only logical alternative is to replace this dead space with a toaster.

Don’t worry: there is a crumb catcher so that bread pieces don’t fall into the computer and ignite it. AND there’s a heating duct to prevent the computer from overheating and THEN igniting.  AND there’s a Mac version coming soon for you losers.

Breakfast is served.

It’s gonna be mine

I placed a preorder on Spore just a few minutes ago at GameStop.  I haven’t preordered anything in a long time, but I figure Spore is worth it.  I’ve waited three years for this game and I’m not going to drive all around town wasting gas, looking for it on the 8th.

That game is going to kick some major tail.

Is it wrong to be in love with a battery?

Well, I don’t care, because I am.

My Nokia N82’s battery is AMAZING.  Absolutely great.  Today, I’ve used WLAN, checked e-mail, used Bluetooth, checked Websites, placed calls, sent texts, listened to music, listened to the FM radio, taken pictures, used the Xenon flash…possibly more.  So far, no bars have been depleted from the battery.

That doesn’t mean the battery is at 100%; that’s impossible.  It’s just that the battery hasn’t gone down enough for one of the seven bars on the main screen to disappear.

I got pretty good battery life out of my N95 even though stereotypically it was supposed to get bad battery life.  So since The N82 has a larger battery, this bodes VERY well.  I am extremely happy.

To get better battery life out of your electronic devices, it’s important not to over-charge them.  In other words, don’t leave them plugged in over night.  After a while, the battery will wear down and not perform as well.  It won’t happen after a week of over-charging, and the change may not be very noticible, but it will happen.

That’s another reason why Nokia is so awesome—when the battery is done charging, the phone gives a very audible BEEP to let you know it’s done.  As such, I don’t charge my phones over night so I can listen for the beep.

LED vs Xenon…FIGHT!

The winner is clear, as I knew it would be.

In the fight between an LED flash and a Xenon flash, there is no contest.

The N95, while close to perfection, is beat out in the camera department by the N82.  Low-light conditions were not the N95’s friend, as they were either too dark, blurry, or both.

The N82, with its Xenon gas flash, eliminates any problems related to darkenss, night, or anything relating with or pertaining to black (DAMN I did it again! 😛 ).

Following the jump will reveal the true difference between the two flashes.

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New toy to play with

My black Nokia N82 arrived this morning while I was at work.

I haven’t put in the battery or turned it on, but I am still SUPREMELY impressed.  I don’t know if it’s the color or what, but the phone is just downright sexy. Pictures really don’t do it justice (especially since I haven’t taken off the protective plastic).

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Phones galore in Vegas

My original plan in Vegas, at some point, was to find the Nokia Experience Center at the Fashion Show Mall.  It has since left, but I was pleasantly surprised by some of the other things available.

The first encounter was at the Caesar’s Palace Forum Shops.

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A turning point?

I just read a report that kind of pains me yet has me excited at the same time.  Apparently, Sony Ericsson isn’t doing too well.  According to a very reliable online source (a guy who gets basically every prototype unit from every company several months before release), all of SEs phones from now to at least April 2009 aren’t cutting the mustard.

In the last quarter, SE has fallen from fourth to fifth largest phone manufacturer, losing out to LG of all companies.  Kind of embarrassing.

They also just barely broke even in the finances.  That means no profit.  But they’re not in the hole…yet.

According to the source—whose Web site is here—SE is in a serious rut as of late and doesn’t have any signs of getting out.  Even the C905, a phone I was looking forward to possibly getting, will probably fall victim.

It’s too bad, really.  I like SE, but I agree that they seem to be on the wrong track and no one seems to know exactly what the problem is.  Part of the problem, I think, is SE’s insistence on the “advantages and disadvantages” system of phone building.  They have Walkmans and Cyber-shots, and they don’t like the features of either to mix.  That means crappy cameras on the Walkmans and sub-par music players on the Cyber-shots.  For power users like me who demand high-tech perfection in everything, this is kind of frustrating (moreso since SE has said one of the reasons for the financial issues is lack of high-end phones).  The Cyber-shots have the edge, technologically, but are too expensive for a lot of people, so they don’t sell as much.  (And their camera quality has steadily gone down hill in the past few years, and SE, which was the undisputed camera phone king, has lost to Nokia for the past two years.)

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Pure advertising genius

Since I’m a Public Relations/Advertising major, I have a certain interest in company logos.  Without going in to too much detail, I LOVE Sony Ericsson’s logo the best because it is simply a stroke of genius.

The cool thing about their logo is the fact that while it looks cool by itself, the letters “S” and “E” are actually embedded into the logo itself.  Not many people notice this, probably, but whoever came up with the design deserves to have it recognized because like I said, it is simply brilliant.

One of the things I learned in my adverttising class last year was that a memorable logo is very important, and I think SE nailed that one on the head.  It’s certainly the most creative of all the major phone manufactureres.

How perceptive I am

I’ve had my Sony Vaio laptop for more than a year, and up until now, I’ve never noticed that it has something very very cool in it.

The computer is DLNA certified, which means that it’s compatible with other devices that offer DLNA.

One such other device is the upcoming Sony Ericsson C905.

What is DLNA?  Essentially, via WLAN, it will allow me to share photos, music and other media from the phone to the computer.  So, I could snap a ton of photos while on vacation, activate the DLNA service, and show my recently-taken photos on the laptop’s 19″ screen (as opposed to the C905’s 2.4″ screen) wirelessly without uploading anything.

This could have been really helpful when I was in Colorado Springs visiting my grandparents since my mom wanted me to show my photos, and I didn’t bring my N95’s TV-Out cable.  With the C905, none of that would be necessary and I’m already ready to go.

Brilliant.  I could not be happier that, unbeknownst to me all this time, my laptop is pretty much awesome.