Best of CTIA Wireless 2011

By on March 24, 2011 at 10:36 AM.

Best of CTIA Wireless 2011

Mickey Mouse and pals stepped aside this week in sunny Orlando, Florida to make way for the latest and greatest gear wireless companies had to offer. After a killer Consumer Electronics Show in January and an action-packed Mobile World Congress in February, we wondered if our favorite brands had enough juice left in the tank for CTIA Wireless 2011 this week. While there weren’t quite as many announcements as in other shows this year, we definitely saw some exciting new devices showcased by companies like Sprint, HTC, Samsung and more. Hit the break for a rundown of all the biggest announcements from this year’s show. More →

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Sprint’s Kyocera Echo hands-on! [video]

By on March 23, 2011 at 8:00 PM.

Sprint’s Kyocera Echo hands-on! [video]

We stopped by Kyocera’s CTIA booth to get a second tour of the dual-screen Echo from Sprint. The device, which will be available on April 17th for $199.99 with a 2-year agreement, really does have some innovative features. Applications and games that are optimized for the echo can leverage the second screen to display an enormous, thumb-friendly keyboard, provide more on-screen information, and enhance game-play. Kyocera assured us that the hinge on the device is ready for battle, and should stand up to most of the use and abuse inflicted by teens and tweens — the two main groups the phone will be marketed towards. The hinge itself was a bit finicky when we handled the device, however. Hit the break for more, including a video, and don’t forget to check out our Kyocera Echo photo gallery.

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Hands on with Sprint’s HTC EVO 3D, again [video]

By on March 23, 2011 at 12:35 PM.

Hands on with Sprint’s HTC EVO 3D, again [video]

Building on our coverage of the HTC EVO 3D from yesterday, we have a supplementary video that we would like to submit as evidence. While we weren’t allowed to navigate the device’s beta operating system with our own hands, an HTC representative was more than willing to give us a quick tour of the new features. The new lock screen, new homescreen layout, and general specifications of the phone are all covered in the clip. We tried to get HTC to comment on the expected battery life and capacity of the EVO 3D, but company reps just wouldn’t budge. Hit the jump to check out the hands-on video.

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Hands on with Sprint’s Nexus S 4G

By on March 23, 2011 at 7:21 AM.

Hands on with Sprint’s Nexus S 4G

If you’ve seen one Nexus S, you’ve seen em’ all. That’s all that can really be said about the freshly announced Nexus S 4G from Sprint. The very same handset that was released on T-Mobile several months ago has made its way to Sprint, with the only addition being — obviously — a WiMAX radio. The device runs Gingerbread (Android 2.3.4) and has the same light-weight, compact design of the pure-Google handset we all know and love. The svelte smartphone was floating around the Pepcom media event show-floor and, thanks to the fact that the event took place on the “garden level,” it couldn’t soak up any of those sweet, sweet 4G radio waves. Regardless, we snapped a few images for you to take a peek at. Enjoy!

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LG unveils inductive Wireless Charging Pad to combat Powermat

By on March 23, 2011 at 3:50 AM.

LG unveils inductive Wireless Charging Pad to combat Powermat

LG on Tuesday announced a new inductive charging system at the CTIA Wireless 2011 show. Like the Powermat, LG’s Wireless Charging Pad is a flat mat that plugs into any standard power outlet. Compatible LG handsets can then be placed on top of the pad, and the device will charge them without the need to connect any wires. Other similar inductive charging solutions currently on the market require users to attach accessories or a special battery packs to their handsets in order to function. LG, however, will build inductive coils into the battery doors on its devices, thus affording cord-free charging without the need for any third-party accessories. LG’s first Wireless Charging Pad, the WCP-700, will launch next month for $69.99, though LG has not yet detailed which handsets will be compatible with the device. Hit the break for the full press release. More →

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AT&T Acer Iconia Tab A501 hands-on!

By on March 22, 2011 at 6:36 PM.

AT&T Acer Iconia Tab A501 hands-on!

Lurking in the corner of an AT&T media meet-and-greet, we spotted the recently announced Acer Iconia Tab A501 tablet. Set to launch in Q2 of 2011, the Iconia tablet is an Android 2.2 device with an NVIDIA Tegra 2 1GHz dual-core processor, a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera and an HDMI-out port capable of 1080p video playback. The device has a weight comparable to the XOOM and G-Slate (feels a tad bit heavier) and has a form factor that lends itself to the portrait orientation. The unmodified Froyo operating system that the tablet we handled was running was a bit quirky to say the least, and we experienced lags while scrolling through basic menus and attempting to utilize the tablet’s multitouch capabilities. AT&T did tell us that the software version we got to demo was not final, so hopefully these wrinkles are all ironed out in the coming months. Pricing has yet to be disclosed, so we’ll wait to pass final judgement on the Iconia. In the meantime, be sure to check out our gallery!

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Hands on with AT&T’s LG Thrill 4G [video]

By on March 22, 2011 at 4:32 PM.

Hands on with AT&T’s LG Thrill 4G [video]

We knew if we looked long enough and hard enough we would find it! In spite of the handset’s absence from both the official AT&T and LG booths at CTIA, we found the company’s latest 4G offering hanging out at a media meet and greet just moments ago. We were not allowed to really poke and prod the Thrill all that much — it was running an international version of LG’s 3D-optimized, Android operating system — but we did get to handle the device a bit and snap some stills for you to scrutinize. The 3D experience the Thrill provides, which AT&T seems very proud of, really is nice. The stereoscopic display emits a bright and clear picture in both 2D and 3D modes and the handset will be optimized for 3D gaming — we saw a short demo of a 3D golf game and were told it will ship with the YouTube 3D app. As far as the overall feel of the device is concerned: the Thrill really is extremely sturdy — if you’ve been lucky enough to fondle the Optimus 3D they are nearly identical. A little disappointing that the device will ship with Froyo (Android 2.2), but A&T assures us that it will be upgraded to Gingerbread (Android 2.3) shortly after launch. The device will hit AT&T store shelves sometime this summer when, hopefully, it will have its 4G situation worked out. Hit up the gallery below to see the device for yourself and make sure to click through the read link to see a video demo provided by an AT&T representative.

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Sprint announces HTC EVO View 4G tablet

By on March 22, 2011 at 1:54 PM.

Sprint announces HTC EVO View 4G tablet

On Tuesday at the CTIA Wireless tradeshow in Orlando, Florida, Sprint announced that it will carry a 4G WiMAX version of the HTC Flyer tablet, dubbed the EVO View 4G. The EVO View 4G has a 7-inch 1024 x 600-pixel capacitive touchscreen display, an aluminum uni-body design and a 4,000 mAh battery. It comes with a few unique software features developed by HTC, including HTC Scribe — a note taking application that can be used with an optional pen — and HTC’s Sense user interface on top of Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Other features include a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera for video calling, an HDMI-out port and DLNA support for wireless sharing of multimedia content to other DLNA-certified devices. Sprint has not yet provided launch details or pricing for the EVO View 4G. Hit the jump for the full press release and stay tuned for our hands-on. More →

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Sprint unveils HTC EVO 3D smartphone

By on March 22, 2011 at 1:52 PM.

Sprint unveils HTC EVO 3D smartphone

As was expected, Sprint officially unveiled the HTC EVO 3D during its press conference at the CTIA tradeshow in Orlando Tuesday. The EVO 3D is an Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) smartphone with a 4.3-inch qHD 960 x 450-pixel autostereoscopic 3D display. Under its hood, the smartphone is powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm 8660 processor and it packs 1GB of RAM, a 1730 mAh battery and 4GB of internal storage that can be expanded to a total of 40GB using a microSD card. HTC also added a dedicated camera button, a feature we’ve long wished for, and it offers dual 5-megapixel rear cameras for shooting 3D video or 720p HD video. There’s also a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera for Qik video chat. An external HDMI-out port will allow users to display 1080p video or 720p 3D content on an HDTV. At launch, the EVO 3D will sport Blockbuster 3D and YouTube 3D apps for viewing 3D content on its screen, which does not require 3D glasses. Pricing details are not yet available but the HTC EVO 3D will launch this summer. Hit the jump for the full press release.

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Live from Sprint’s CTIA press event!

By on March 22, 2011 at 1:05 PM.

Live from Sprint’s CTIA press event!

Here we are again, at another CTIA Wireless conference and Sprint press event. The nation’s third largest wireless carrier set the industry on fire last year with the announcement of the HTC EVO 4G, and they are expected to introduce big things this year as well. Dan Hesse and company are backstage putting the final touches on their presentations right now — we’re getting our nimble fingers ready to bring you the news as it happens. Hit the jump to follow our live coverage and don’t forget to refresh the page for all the latest updates! More →

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Sprint CEO Dan Hesse says AT&T, T-Mobile deal will ‘stifle innovation’

By on March 22, 2011 at 12:46 PM.

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse says AT&T, T-Mobile deal will ‘stifle innovation’

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse on Tuesday shared strong opinions surrounding AT&T’s recent announcement that it plans to acquire T-Mobile USA from Europe’s Deutsche Telekom. Speaking on Tuesday morning at the CTIA Wireless 2011 convention, Hesse said AT&T’s plans to acquire T-Mobile will hurt customers. He also said that if approved by regulators, the deal would leave two big players — AT&T and Verizon Wireless — in control of 79% of the U.S. wireless market. “I do have concerns that it would stifle innovation and too much power would be in the hands of two,” Hesse said during a roundtable discussion. His comments were met with applause from the audience. Hesse added that Sprint will appeal to Congress in an effort to halt the merger. AT&T Mobility boss Ralph de la Vega defended the deal on Tuesday, saying it would address the spectrum shortage the U.S. is currently facing, and would bring mobile broadband service to more people. Verizon Wireless CEO Daniel Mead, who was in attendance at the roundtable discussion, seemed less concerned with the potential merger. “We’re observing what’s going on,” Mead noted. “We’re not going to get distracted by this.” More →

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 Honeycomb tablet hands-on!

By on March 22, 2011 at 11:00 AM.

Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 Honeycomb tablet hands-on!

We met up with Samsung during the CTIA Wireless trade show in Orlando to get up close and personal with the Galaxy Tab 8.9, Samsung’s new Android tablet that fills the space between its current 10-inch and 7-inch models. We certainly think Samsung hit the sweet spot with this one. The Galaxy Tab 8.9 is just 8.6mm thick, and it felt amazing — it’s much more sleek in the hand than the original chunkier 7-inch Galaxy Tab. Under its hood, the Galaxy Tab 8.9 has a 1GHz dual-core processor just like the 10-inch model. Demo devices weren’t powering up when we played with them, though, so we tested the Galaxy Tab 8.9’s fresh new user interface on a Galaxy Tab 10.1 and we definitely have some thoughts on the new UI to share. Hit the jump for more hands-on thoughts and don’t forget to check out our photo gallery.

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Live from Samsung’s Mobile Unpacked event!

By on March 22, 2011 at 10:48 AM.

Live from Samsung’s Mobile Unpacked event!

Good morning from Samsung’s CTIA 2011 Mobile Unpacked event. The company has not been shy about throwing its “78910” event tagline around, so we think we know what we’re getting ourselves into.  We’re expecting to see a new, 8.9-inch, Galaxy Tab tablet officially welcomed into the Samsung portfolio. We’re also hoping to get a U.S. release date for the Galaxy Tab 10.1, which was announced last month at Mobile World Congress. Will there be any surprises? A new 7-inch Galaxy Tab? Galaxy S II Mini? Hit the jump to follow our live coverage. More →

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