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1 year ago

Sony Mobile CEO Says Company Committed to Smartphones

Hiroki Totoki, the President and CEO of Sony Mobile, said the company has no plans to exit the smartphone business. Totoki covered a wide range of topics during an interview with Arabian Business. He said the firm is working hard to turn its smartphone business around. By the end of 2016, Sony expects to reduce headcount by 20% and operating expenses by 30% to streamline the business and the product portfolio. Totoki said smartphones remain a vital part of the company. "Smartphones are completely connected to other devices, also connected to people's lives — deeply.

And the opportunity for diversification is huge. We're heading to the IoT era and have to produce a number of new categories of products in this world, otherwise we could meizu mx5 phone lose out on a very important business domain. In that sense we will never ever sell or exit from the current mobile business." Totoki said the company plans to respond to fierce competition from Chinese companies by developing new technologies to help its products stand out. Sony will also pay attention to providing a better experience through the software of its devices, too. Sony recently announced the Z3v for Verizon Wireless and the similar Z3+ for other markets.

1 year ago

Instagram to Improve Photo Resolution to 1080 Pixels

Instagram has confirmed that it will increase image resolution from 640 by 640 pixels to 1080 by 1080 pixels. Instagram's images have measured 640 pixels since launch. When the photo-sharing service first arrived, 640 pixels was appropriate based on screen and camera capabilities. Now that smartphones and tablets meizu m1 note review boast screen resolutions up to quad HD and cameras capturing 21-megapixels, the 640-pixel resolution was deemed inadequate. Instagram said the Android and iOS apps are being updated to upload 1080p images slowly, but would not say when all users will be able to see the higher-resolution imagery. The news was first reported by The Verge and later confirmed by CNET.

1 year ago

LG Lancet is a low-cost Windows Phone

The Lancet doesn't aspire to be much and that's just fine. LG crafted a simple, straight-forward phone that breaks a bit with the designs the Korean company uses for its high-end and specialty handsets. meizu m1 note review The Lancet is a black-and-blue block with clean lines and conservative styling. There's nothing about it that stands out as unique other than, perhaps, its size.

Compact handsets are a rare breed these days. The bulk of phones have screens measuring 5 inches or more, which make for large footprints. The Lancet has a 4.5-inch screen and this let LG keep the phone's dimensions in check. The Lancet is significantly smaller than many of today's most popular phones, which should make it appealing to those who prefer something that can easily be managed in a single hand.

The front and back halves of the phone have juxtaposed materials, something we see quite often on today's smartphones. The front is all glossy and reflective, while the back is matte and muted. The glass surface of the front almost blends seamlessly into a black plastic rim holding it in place. The glossy and matte surfaces meet along the side edges and form a contrasting seam.

1 year ago

T-Mobile today kicked off a new program called Jump On Demand

T-Mobile today kicked off a new program called Jump On Demand, which will allow people to upgrade their phone for free up to three times per year. The Jump On Demand program builds on Uncarrier 2.0, which introduced the idea of early phone upgrades with Jump. Now customers can trade in their phone as many as three times per 12 months for a new handset at no additional cost as long as they continue to make the monthly phone payments. T-Mobile said customers can walk out of the store with no money out-of-pocket with Jump On Demand, though customers with poor credit may have to make a downpayment on their device.

The monthly pricing for Jump On Demand will be about the same as before -- the price of the phone divided by 24. Jump On Demand does not carry the extra $10 monthly fee that's part of the original Jump program. Phone trade-ins will have to be in good working order to be accepted for a new handset. T-Mobile said only a few flagship devices are eligible for the program: Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, LG G4, and Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, and Note 4.oppo mobile Customers already enrolled in the Jump program can transition to Jump On Demand the next time they upgrade (as long as the balance of their current phone is paid off) and will no longer have to pay the $10 fee. Customers who join Jump On Demand and make 18 payments on their phone without upgrading will have the option of making one final payment to own the device or trade the device in. Customers can choose to pay the balance of their handset at any time. As part of the launch, T-Mobile is offering the 16GB iPhone 6 for $15 per month with Jump On Demand as long as an old phone is traded in at the same time. Jump On Demand will be available in T-Mobile stores beginning June 28.

1 year ago

T-Mobile Cutting HSPA+ from Its AWS Spectrum

T-Mobile is more aggressively transitioning its HSPA+/UMTS service from its 1700 MHz AWS-1 spectrum to its 1900 MHz PCS spectrum. Moving HSPA+ service to 1900 MHz clears up more room in the 1700 MHz band for LTE. "We're continually upgrading our network and have finished building our PCS UMTS network that provides a better LTE experience for all our customers," said T-Mobile to FierceWireless. "Over the next year, all of our AWS UMTS meizu m1 review customers will also have access to 4G LTE on the PCS UMTS network." T-Mobile started this process in September 2012, but needed to get its LTE network up and running before it could push forward in earnest. T-Mobile's LTE network now operates in the AWS band as well as in the 700 MHz A Block and 1900 MHz PCS bands. T-Mobile will be shuttering HSPA+ service on AWS on a market-by-by-market basis. Customers should not notice any service interruptions, as most T-Mobile handsets support LTE and HSPA+ in a variety of bands.

1 year ago

HTC Droid DNA for Verizon Wireless

The HTC Droid DNA is aptly named. The design is the ultimate cross-breeding of all the devices HTC has released this year. It has HTC in its blood.

Unlike HTC's colorful Windows Phone designs, the DNA is an inky black slab. The all-glass front face is glossy pitch black. The back is a matte-black surface. In between are red metal bands that run down the side edges, sort of like the paint designs seen on sports cars from the 80s. Since the DNA is being sold by Verizon, it can't help but pick up some additional red accents here and there, including a circle around the camera lens, the screen lock button, and the earpiece grill. Yes, the Droid DNA even has some Verizon blood in it.

The most impressive feature of the Droid DNA is probably its size. For a device that packs a 5-inch display, it's deceptively small. HTC did a great job keeping the footprint as small as possible. In fact, oppo find 7 it is about the same size as the HTC One X, which has a smaller display. If you're worried about it pushing Galaxy Note II dimensions, don't. It is significantly smaller than the Samsung’s Note or Note II, and far more comfortable to hold and use.

1 year ago

Cricket Adds More Countries to International Calling Plans

Cricket Wireless today gave its customers more reason to call friends and family living overseas. First, Cricket added Brazil, Singapore, and Nigeria to the list of countries in its Cricket International add-on. Customers now have access to unlimited landline calls and text messages to 38 countries for $5 per month. Customers looking to send picture/video messages and call wireless numbers in those same countries can upgrade to the meizu m1 note review Cricket International Extra add-on, which costs $15 per month. Cricket today also debuted a new calling add-on specifically for Cuba. The Cricket International Cuba add-on costs $15 and provides 15 voice minutes. It can be added as a recurring feature, or used only when needed. Last, Cricket said it is offering customers who switch from another carrier a smartphone for 99 cents. The new international calling plans will be available starting June 25.

1 year ago

Hands On with the Sony Xperia Z4v for Verizon

Sony, as a company, is having a prolonged rough patch in the US phone market these days, but when they do get a phone to market here, they're often quiet gems. Sony is particularly skilled at crafting phones with premium materials and build quality. They're also good at leveraging their own Sony sensors to produce unusually powerful cameras. The Z4v replaces last year's Z3v in Verizon's lineup.

The key innovation in the design is easy to miss: it's the thin, glossy plastic band that separates each glass panel from the metal. It provides critical resiliency at the corners and edges, where a drop might damage metal or glass. The plastic also softens corners where metal might feel too sharp. Yet the clever design tricks you into feeling only metal and glass when you pick it up.

It feels premium, and solid. It feels as nice as it looks. The size is good for a modern flagship phone. A curved back would help it feel thinner, but it doesn't feel as thick as it looks. I expect most people will like the size and not mind that it's a bit thicker than Samsung's Galaxy S6.

1 year ago

Microsoft Reorganizes Execs, Stephen Elop to Leave

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has moved around some of the top executives at the company and some are leaving Microsoft. Among those headed out the door is Stephen Elop, who helmed the company's device business. Elop was the former CEO of Nokia and played a large role in selling Nokia's handset business to Microsoft. Terry Myerson will assume many of Elop's responsibilities and now leads the Windows and Devices Group, which includes Lumia, Xbox, and Surface, as well as Microsoft's core Windows products. Other departures include Mark Penn, Eric Rudder, and Krill Tatarinov. Exec Scott Guthrie is picking up some responsibilities, include Microsoft's meizu m1 review Dynamics business. Guthrie already runs Microsoft's cloud business, including OneDrive. Executive Vice President Qi Lu will continue to lead the Applications and Services Group, which is focused on reinventing productivity services for digital work. "We are aligning our engineering efforts and capabilities to deliver on our strategy and, in particular, our three core ambitions," said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. "This change will enable us to deliver better products and services that our customers love at a more rapid pace." Microsoft's fiscal year ends June 30.

1 year ago

ZTE Grand X Max+ for Cricket Wireless

The Grand X Max+ boasts appealing design aesthetics, impressive specs, and easy affordability. It takes what was good about last year's X Max and makes improvements (almost) all the way around. The X Max+ carries over the appearance of the X Max, but makes significant changes under the hood.

The X Max+ is a phablet, and a big one at that. It's about equal in size to devices such as the Nexus 6 or Lumia 1320. It measures 6.38 by 3.27 by 0.31 inches, which makes it tall and wide, but rather thin when viewed from the sides. The front and back surfaces are formed from glass and are held together by a meizu mx4 review polycarbonate frame. Some might say it resembles Sony's line of Xperia Z handsets. It's a good-looking phone. The design may be somewhat simple, but it is effective and attractive to my eyes. The materials may not be class-leading, but they are good.

I'd call the X Max+ a two-handed device. I was able to perform some tasks with just one hand, but my thumb could only reach about half the screen when I held the device normally. It doesn't have a one-handed operational mode, like Samsung's Galaxy Note 4 or LG's G3, so you'll find your other hand becomes necessary much of the time. The X Max+ doesn't fit that well into average pockets.