The bad news: it’s €899. Subsidized. On contract. Seriously. Orange has finally made LG’s highly anticipated GD910 Watch Phone official, confirming it will be the phone’s exclusive carrier in Europe. The sleek 3G touchscreen handset wristset is available immediately in France and the aforementioned price is tied to “an Origami star, first, jet or Origami plus package (12 or 24-month contract).” Unsurprisingly, no contract-free pricing is listed. We’re really interested to see where this thing goes to be honest. Here’s our conundrum: If you have €899 (about $1,300) to spend on a phone, you should already be rocking a pretty solid watch, no? Not necessarily anything too crazy per se, but a solid timepiece that you probably spent at least a few grand on. In fact, odds are good you have several nice watches to choose from each morning. Now you’re going to replace them with a Watch Phone? One that you have to wear each and every day — because it’s your phone — unless you swap the SIM constantly? Sorry guys, we’re just not seeing it. If you are seeing it however, and you think $1,300 on contract is a fair price, it’s time to pack up your things and move across the pond as we can’t imagine that this little guy is going to make it to the US any time soon — FCC approval or not.
Ready to get your NAM on, Nokia fans? Nokia’s first crack at an 8 megapixel beast is reportedly touching down stateside on August 22nd, which is just over 2 weeks away. But wait, there’s more good news in store for all you Symbian fans out there. It turns out the launch price of the N86 8MP may be lower than the current pre-order price — $59 lower, in fact. Yup, it’s looking like $499 will get you in the door when this little guy hits Flagship store shelves and NokiaUSA.com three Saturdays from now. No word on pricing from resellers yet but expect it to come in a bit lower than Nokia USA’s offering. And then there’s Amazon, which has been undercutting nearly everyone in the phone biz lately. In other words, waiting a few weeks on your purchase will likely serve you well.
In the immortal words of Johnny 5… “Does not compute.” Back when WildCharge first came out on the scene, the ambitious company definitely made some waves. Yes, its charging pad accessory looked a bit odd, but cell phone manufacturers were sure to jump on board and crank out some WildCharge-ready handsets because the product was just so damn cool! Right? Right? Not so much. Here we are several years later and the company has yet to produce the breakthrough wireless charging solution we were all hoping for. This latest effort, the WildCharge PowerDisc, is probably the most inexplicable solution yet. It involves carrying around a small disc on a loop along with a connector cable that joins the disc with your portable device. You then place the disc on the WildCharge pad and viola! You’re charging. In other words, they’ve taken one part — a charger — and replaced it with four parts: the PowerDisc, the connector cable, the charging pad and the adapter that connects the pad to a wall outlet. Riiiiiight. The bottom line it that people just don’t want it. They don’t want the strange eye sore that is a WildCharge skin, they don’t want a hideous WildCharge universal adapter and, if we were betting folks, we would wager that people don’t want a wired wireless charger either. It really is a shame — if OEMs had jumped on board we could have had cool wireless charging products like the Touchstone a long, long time ago. Instead, we have a PowerDisc.
Sorry Walmart, it looks like your time in the sun was over before it began — at least as far as the BlackBerry Curve 8520 is concerned. Not really of course, since Walmart presents the handset to an entirely new range of consumers across the country, but you know what we mean. We spilled the beans on 8520 pricing from Walton’s legacy ages ago and it has been the talk of the town ever since. Fast forward to launch day however, and we find that Amazon has swooped in to smash Walmart’s $49 price all over the floor. How does 1¢ on contract without ever having to leave your couch sound? Yeah, we thought so.
Ahhhhh marketing agencies. Buy your clients dinner at the right restaurant and you can convince them to do almost anything. Case in point: The Mister Cartoon-branded Samsung r450 on its way to MetroPCS. On the back of marketing firm SA Studios Global, Samsung and MetroPCS have teamed with famed tattoo artist Mark Machado a.k.a. Mister Cartoon to release a limited edition SCH-r450. The handset will feature tattoo-centric wallpapers, ringtones and animations beneath a re-colored case complete with Mister Cartoon-designed graphics on the battery cover. We hope you’re ready to pounce on this bad boy, MetroPCS fans — only 30,010 of these gems will be assembled, with the first 10 to be signed by Mister Cartoon and auctioned off for charity.
Mr. Blurrycam is back and this time around he’s brought an extra special treat along with him. Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to Motorola’s savior. Maybe. We showed you renders of this bad boy and dished some specs yesterday, and now that the flood gates are open it’ll probably keep pouring. To refresh your memory, the Shules sports Android, a 3.7-inch touchscreen display, a full QWERTY keypad, a 5 megapixel camera and plenty more. Of course the actual handset isn’t quite as sexy as the renders but bear in mind, this is an early proto so plenty has already happened since it was assembled. Hopefully. Excited, Verizon fans?
Motorola is in the midst of a climb back into relevance and, quite surprisingly, it seems to be making more progress than had been projected. Are you sitting down? Motorola just reported its Q2 2009 earnings and… It’s in the black! That’s right people, Moto managed to eek out a $26 million profit albeit on the back of major cost cutting efforts including the reduction of its workforce by around 7,000 jobs. Mobile Devices remains Moto’s weakest link, having posted $1.8 billion in sales and an operating loss of $253 million. In the same quarter in 2008 however, Mobile lost $346 million so at least we’re moving in the right direction — though the turnaround can be attributed entirely to cost cutting as handset shipments were down almost 50 percent to 14.8 million. So what exactly is going to right this sinking ship? We’re not really sure, though Moto did confirm it would release its first two Android-powered handsets with US carrier partners in the second half of this year. While the company didn’t go into specifics, both should be out by the holiday season this year. We love the affordable Morrison on T-Mobile and the Sholes is definitely going to knock some socks off, but we need to see a hell of a lot more out of Moto ASAP because slow and steady isn’t winning any races these days.
Everyone is waiting for Motorola to finally start dealing a few Android-powered handsets and it looks like we’re now a big step closer to seeing one of its first offerings. Hardly the most interesting Moto/Android phone we’ve been privy to, the Morrison is shaping up to be a budget-friendly Android phone aimed at the younger, message-hungry tweenish demo. Apparently this little guy’s guts are sound as the FCC has just cleared it for takeoff, though we still don’t know when Moto will finally push it out. Known specs include quad-band GSM, tri-band 3G (including AWS/1700MHz for T-Mobile), a camera with video capture support, stereo Bluetooth, multimedia player and voice control. We’ve already commented on how much we love the color scheme but even that likely won’t be enough to hold our attention for more than a few hours at best. We’re not worried though, and you shouldn’t be either — trust, Moto has some sexy Android kit coming down the pipe in the near future.