We just met with Corning during CES in Las Vegas to check out its new Gorilla Glass 2 panels for smartphones and tablets. The new glass is 20% thinner than before, but just as strong and scratch resistant as the original Gorilla Glass. The thinner build will surely help manufacturers make smaller and lighter smartphones. We stayed to watch a pressure test, images of which are in the gallery below, and were impressed with the strength of the glass. Corning said that it’s already shipping the new panels to phone manufacturers and that we will see smartphones on the market soon with the new glass. We were also told that Gorilla Glass 2 will be used in new Windows-powered computers later this year. Be sure to check out our gallery below.
Research In Motion didn’t unveil any new devices at the Consumer Electronics Show this year, but the Waterloo, Ontario-based vendor still managed to appease fans with a preview of its first major PlayBook OS update that will finally be released some time next month. We spent a good amount of time putting the OS 2.0 through the paces and while there are still some kinks to iron out — we had apps crash on us a number of times — we absolutely walked away impressed. Check out our hands-on photos in the gallery below and hit the break for our impressions.
Imagination Technologies announced at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday that the company’s next-generation PowerVR Series6 GPU core family will offer 20 times more performance over the current generation. Apple is a major shareholder in the company, and have used its chips in the iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and the Apple TV. The PowerVR G6200 and G6400 GPU are the first in the Power VR Series6 GPU family and stand as a new benchmark for achieving high performance with low power consumption. The Series6 GPU will provide “ultra-realistic gaming” and enable more complex applications, while delivering 20 times or more of the performance of current GPU cores through an architecture that is five times more efficient than previous generations. “Based on our experience in shipping hundreds of millions of GPU cores, plus extensive market and customer feedback, we have been able to set a new standard in GPU architecture, particularly in the areas of power, bandwidth and efficiency — the key metrics by which GPUs are now judged,” said Imagination Chief Executive Hossein Yassaie. “We are confident that with the Rogue architecture we have a very clear technology advantage and an exceptional roadmap for the PowerVR Series6 family which our partners can depend on.” While there hasn’t been any indications about Apple’s next-generation mobile processor, the rumored “A6″ chip that could appear in the iPad 3 may feature Imagination’s Series6 GPUs. Apple’s next-generation iPad is rumored to be announced and ship in March. More →
Motorola is known for the company’s rapid refresh rate on smartphones and tablets. Last fall, the DROID Bionic was released, two months later the DROID RAZR was released, and this week the DROID RAZR MAXX and DROID 4 were announced. Motorola has flooded the Android market with more releases than almost any other manufacturer, however things are about to change. During a roundtable event at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday, Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha announced that the company plans to release fewer new models this year, in an effort to focus on its marketing dollars. Jha noted that it was the Bionic’s delays that caused the product’s debut to be so close to the RAZR. Additionally, he said the company plans to pursue fewer new ideas in an effort to make more things stick. With the release of Motorola’s Bionic and ATRIX came the Lapdock, a feature to add a full keyboard and larger screen to your smartphone. Unfortunately, the dock was pricey and didn’t perform as consumers had hoped. Although it has yet to become a commercial success, Jha believe in the Lapdock feature and hopes to continue it in the future. Let’s just hope you don’t have to buy a new dock for each Motorola phone they release. More →
Viewsonic announced another addition to the company’s ViewPad tablet line at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday, the ViewPad E70. The 7-inch tablet runs Google’s latest operating system, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and features a 1GHz single-core processor, 4GB of storage, HDMI-out, and a front facing camera. While the specs may not outshine the competition, the $170 price tag absolutely has our attention. The ViewPad E70 is slated to be available late in the first quarter of this year. Full press release is after the break. More →
This month, DeviceFidelity and Spring Card Systems announced moneto, a new independent NFC payment solution. The service delivers NFC capabilities to any Android device with a microSD card. The card contains an NFC radio and antenna that are encrypted together to deliver MasterCard PayPass technology to any Android smartphone. Additionally, moneto has created a unique iPhone case to deliver the service to iOS users as well. The moneto case is currently available for $80, which includes $10.00 of pre-loaded funds. The Android microSD card is expected to be available within two to three weeks, and will sell for $30. All you have to do to use it, is insert the card, attach a small NFC sticker to the inside of your battery case — it helps with the NFC signal — and you’re on your way to credit card-less mobile payments. Read on for the full press release. More →
Polaroid shocked the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday when the company announced a new camera powered by Android. The Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera is a 3.2-inch device, and it features a whopping 16-megapixel camera capable of 3x optical zoom on a 36-108mm lens. When connected to Wi-Fi, users can instantly upload their images to social networking sites and will also even have access to the Android Market. No specific release date or price has been announced, however Polaroid has said the SC1630 Smart Camera will land sometime this year. Read on for the company’s press release. More →
MakerBot announced their brand new personal 3D printer, the Replicator, at CES yesterday and we just had a chance to see it up close and in person. What do we think? Well, let’s just say that we want one of them, and fast. For starters, the unit comes preassembled from MakerBot, but it also features a larger printing footprint so you can print even bigger designs. There’s also the option of using two different colors of plastic to print two-color objects — you can also choose from either ABS plastic or a more eco-friendly variant. While the printing footprint is larger, the unit itself isn’t that big, and it’s reasonably quiet. In fact, it seems more quiet than the previous models MakerBot offered. It starts at $1,749.99 and goes up to $1,999.99 if you’d like the dual extrusion option. Check out our gallery to see the unit for yourself.
Vizio announced the company’s support for Google TV with two new set-top boxes at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday. The Vizio VAP430 Stream Player picks right up where the Logitech Revue left off, and will turn any TV into a smart TV. Vizio’s second set-top box adds a Blu-ray player to the mix and looks to compete with Sony’s new Blu-ray Google TV device. The Vizio VBR430 is labeled as “one of the most advanced 3D Blu-ray players on the market,” with access to the web, apps, and the ability to play the latest Blu-ray 3D movies. Both devices include a touchpad universal remote with a QWERTY keyboard, giving consumers an easy way to navigate everything Google TV has to offer. As with Vizio’s other CES products, shipping dates and pricing will be announced at a later date. More details are available after the break. More →
T-Mobile just announced the expansion of the company’s 4G network and unveiled the Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G. The device features a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S3 processor and will be the third smartphone to take advantage of the carrier’s 4G HSPA+ 42 network. The handset is expected to be available later this year, with additional details set to be revealed closer to its release. T-Mobile has doubled the speed of its 4G HSPA+ network in 12 additional markets, offering faster HSPA+ 42 to 184 million Americans in 175 total markets. Additionally, the company’s HSPA+ 21 network has been expanded to nine additional markets, now covering 217 markets across the country. Lastly, the carrier also announced the new IP-based Bobsled group messaging app, which allows users to communicate for free across various devices, countries, and mobile carriers. Read on for the list of new cities.
Motorola joined Intel on stage at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday, with the two companies announcing a major agreement. Motorola and Intel have entered into a multi-year, multi-device strategic partnership to incorporate Intel chips into Motorola’s Android tablets and smartphones. The first Intel-based smartphones will go through carrier validation this summer, with launch shortly after that. Read on for the press release. More →
Lenovo and Intel took the stage at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday to announce the world’s first Intel-based smartphone, the Lenovo K800. The device features a 4.5-inch HD 720p display and is heading first to China’s Unicom network during the second quarter of this year. Additionally, the K800 sports a 1.6GHz Intel processor and an 8-megapixel rear camera. Lenovo hasn’t announced when or even if the device will be available stateside.
Sony came to this year’s Consumer Electronics Show with a pair of new Xperia smartphones and while they definitely look and feel like older devices in the company’s Xperia lineup in terms of design identity, they were much smoother than older Xperia models. The dual-core 1.5GHz processor in the Xperia S clearly plays a big role in speeding up Sony’s UI, and the 4.3-inch 720p Reality Display produces deep blacks and vivid colors. The UI itself is still one of our least favorite Android interfaces though, and the handset itself feels a bit light. The Xperia S also packs dual HD video cameras — a 12-megapixel camera on the back records 1080p HD video and the front facing camera supports 720p video chats — and the handset is PlayStation certified, giving it solid gaming capabilities without the added bulk of a dedicated controller as was the case with the Xperia Play. Pricing could make or break the Xperia S, but Sony hasn’t yet announced availability details. Check out our hands-on images of the Xperia S in the gallery below.