Market research and analysis firm Canalys on Wednesday released its global country-level smartphone market share data for the first quarter of 2011. According to the firm’s report, Android continued to dominate the worldwide smartphone market as global shipments grew to 37.5 million units, giving Google’s mobile OS a market-leading 35% share of smartphone sales in the quarter. Nokia’s market share fell dramatically year-over-year from 39% in the first quarter of 2010 to just 24% last quarter, according to the report, and Apple’s share grew to 19%. Though the smartphone market outgrew Nokia at an alarming pace, the Finnish company did manage to increase shipments 13% year-over-year to 24.2 million units last quarter. Global smartphone shipments grew 83% from 55.2 million units in the first quarter of 2010 to 101 million units in the same quarter this year. The Asia Pacific region showed the most growth over the first quarter last year — 98% — while first-quarter smartphone shipments in the U.S. grew 85% from 13.3 million in 2010 to 24.7 million units in 2011. Hit the break for the full press release. More →
During the BlackBerry World Keynote in Orlando this morning, Research In Motion announced that it is working with foursquare to include support for the social-network in an upcoming version of BlackBerry Messenger. Users will be able to share their location information as their BBM status, but RIM execs didn’t go into much detail on how check-ins will work or just how feature rich the implementation will be. The native foursquare client, for example, allows users to find nearby deals, compete with friends for check-in points, and more. RIM did not say when the client would make its debut, although we suspect it will be around the launch of its BlackBerry 7 powered Bold 9900, which will occur later this summer. More →
We’re here in Orlando at RIM’s BlackBerry World developer event and have scored some more hands-on time with the recently announced BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930… and we’re pretty impressed with what we see so far. The Bold 9900 felt light in the hand, but definitely had a premium feel thanks to its thin form factor and metal accents around the body — it’s also the thinnest BlackBerry to date. The new BlackBerry 7 operating system was very snappy and we didn’t experience any lag when bouncing around the new OS, likely thanks to the 1.2GHz processor under its hood. The keyboard reminds us a lot of the original BlackBerry Bold 9000, and the form factor is more akin to that phone than the handset it is replacing, the 9700. The industrial design of the phone is solid, but we do wish RIM would venture away from a form factor that’s feeling pretty stale. We’ll need to spend more time with BlackBerry 7, but superficially it looks nearly identical to BlackBerry 6 — which could be a positive or negative depending on your viewpoint. We’re excited to see what RIM does with the built-in NFC technology, and the faster processor should definitely open the flood gates to more robust applications in the future. We’ve assembled a gallery of photos for your scrutiny. Have a look and let us know what you think of RIM’s latest creation.
LG’s about to get its MeeGo on. Next month, the Korean phone manufacturer is set to debut a prototype device during the MeeGo Conference in San Francisco from May 23rd to May 25th. Details leaked by MeeGo Experts have revealed that LG has a special session up its sleeves during which it plans to show off “multiple” LG branded devices running the OS created by Intel and Nokia. LG will also discuss its future plans for the platform, including its developments for MeeGo powered tablets, smartphones, and in-car entertainment systems. We wouldn’t be surprised to see this leak pan out, given that Nokia has decided to focus its efforts on Windows Phone devices, and that LG, ZTE, and China Mobile have all recently decided to work towards creating MeeGo smartphones. More →
Today, AT&T released BlackBerry 6 to the Bold 9700 and Curve 3G handsets. The update brings both the Bold and Curve up to Research In Motion’s latest operating system — which sports an overhauled user interface and improved performance. Those interested in getting the latest and greatest code on their AT&T device can visit AT&T’s BlackBerry software update page to download the latest bits. Enjoy.
Looking for the newest Android 2.1 device? Neither are we. That’s why it’s no surprise Sony Ericsson quietly launched the Walkman W8. It’s the first Android device to sport the firm’s “Walkman” moniker, which should imply it has more music-centric services, but we’re not seeing anything extraordinary in its spec sheet. It’s loaded with the Walkman music player software, although that’s nothing to call home about. The phone sports a 3-inch touchscreen display with a low 480 x 320 resolution and it also has a 3.2-megapixel camera, an FM radio, and 128MB of RAM. The Walkman W8 will make its debut in Asia in three colors, blue, red, and orange. Our jaws will hit the floor if this ever hit the U.S. marketing running its current OS.
We just received confirmation that RadioShack has begun accepting pre-orders for RIM’s upcoming BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. You can reserve yours for now $499, and RadioShack says it will be available starting on April 19th. The PlayBook sports a 7-inch touchscreen display with 1024 x 600-pixel resolution. It’s powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor, runs RIM’s sleek new QNX operating system designed for tablets, has 1GB of RAM, and offers both a rear-facing 5-megapixel camera and a 3-megapixel forward-facing camera for video chat. We’ve had plenty of hands-on time with the PlayBook and are excited by the concept, but we’ll take a much deeper dive once we review the device. If you love what you’ve seen so far, however, feel free to hit the jump for a link to RadioShack’s pre-order page. More →
AllThingsD had a chance to sit down with Microsoft VP Joe Belfiore to discuss the new Windows Phone 7 “Mango” update, which the Redmond-based firm is discussing during the MIX 11 conference in Las Vegas today. Belfiore confirmed that Mango will offer a new browsing experience using Internet Explorer 9, and noted that it will have integrated Twitter features. Similarly, Mango will allow users to run multiple programs at the same time – complete with background audio support. That means you could theoretically stream music from Slacker Radio while firing off an email. Microsoft will also allow developers to tap into a phone’s gyroscope and camera, which it hopes will help spur more augmented reality applications. Speaking of apps, Belfiore confirmed that Layar, Skype, Spotify, and Angry Birds, are on their way to the Windows Marketplace. Belfiore confirmed that Mango will launch this fall. More →
While most manufacturers are trying to find the sweet spot for tablets in the 7-inch to 10-inch range, Lenovo’s thinking bigger. The firm’s senior marketing specialist, Wiliam Cai, said that his company is working on a new 23-inch tablet designed for the home — with a focus similar to that of an all-in-one desktop — that could land later this year. “We think that there is potential for a 23-inch tablet,” Cai told TechRadar. “We’d have to take care of battery life and we are working to get the weight down.” Cai said such a device could be moved around the house, and possibly be used as a TV or with a full keyboard. That sounds more like a connected TV than a tablet to us, but we’re excited to see where Lenovo takes this idea. It’s unclear what sort of operating system Lenovo has in mind, but we’re guessing it’ll probably run Windows 7. More →
Microsoft will hold a Professional Developers Conference (PDC) event from September 13th through September 16th, Steven Sinofsky, Microsoft’s Windows Chief, said Tuesday. According to Business Insider, Microsoft may introduce its latest Windows 8 operating system during the event — an OS that will cater better to touchscreen tablets and lower powered processors. A September introduction could mean that Microsoft is gearing up for a launch sometime next year, a time frame that’s in line with earlier rumors. Microsoft may already be shipping the operating system to some of its OEM partners, and some reports have suggested that the Redmond-based company will show off early tablet designs in June. The report remains a rumor, however, as Microsoft has not gone on the record to say when it will lift the curtain on Windows 8. More →
Nokia recently said that its Symbian operating system is no longer open source. The Finnish firm is continuing to provide source code to Japanese OEMs and its small developer community in an alternative “open and direct” model. “Consistent with this, the Nokia Symbian License is an alternative license which provides an access to Nokia’s additional Symbian development for parties which collaborate with Nokia on the Symbian platform,” Nokia stated. The Symbian Foundation opened up the Symbian source code in February 2010, and in November of last year Nokia and the Symbian Foundation announced that Nokia would take full control of the OS in March 2011. More →
According to a new research report issued by Gartner on Thursday, Android smartphones will account for 49.2% of the smartphone market by the end of 2012. Android is expected to have a 38.5% grip on the global operating system market by the end of 2011, surpassing Symbian — which is expected to have a 19.2% share — for the first time. iOS is expected to be the second most popular operating system in 2011 with a 19.4% share of the market, followed by RIM (13.4%) and Microsoft (5.6%). Global smartphone sales are expected to reach 468 million units by the end of this year, a 57.7% jump over 2010. Gartner also believes that Android is responsible for helping to drive the price of smartphones down. “As vendors delivering Android-based devices continue to fight for market share, price will decrease to further benefit consumers”, said Roberta Cozza, a principle analyst with Gartner. “Android’s position at the high end of the market will remain strong, but its greatest volume opportunity in the longer term will be in the mid- to low-cost smartphones, above all in emerging markets. By 2015, 67 percent of all open OS devices will have an average selling price of $300 or below, proving that smartphones have been finally truly democratized.” Hit the jump for the full release, which includes Gartner’s predictions for iOS, BlackBerry OS, and Windows Phone. More →
ComScore has released its latest report on the U.S. smartphone market, and it suggests that Apple’s share of the U.S. OEM market is growing, while Android is continuing to dominate the U.S. operating system market. Samsung remains the top mobile OEM in the United States with a 24.8% marketshare, up 0.3 percentage points from the period prior. It’s followed by LG (20.9%, no change), Motorola (16.1 percent, down .9 percentage points), RIM (8.6 percent, down .2 percentage points), and Apple (7.5%, up .9 percentage points). Given the dominance by Samsung, LG, and Motorola, it comes as no surprise that Android now has a 33% grip on the U.S. smartphone operating system market — that’s up 7 percentage points from the last report. RIM’s BlackBerry OS dropped 4.6 percentage points to a 28.9% share of the market. It’s followed by Apple’s iOS (25.2%), Microsoft’s Windows Phone (7.7%), and Palm’s webOS (2.8%). The report also found that 68.7% of mobile users use their phone for text messaging. Hit the jump for the full release. More →