AT&T has hired Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch to advise it on the sale of as much as $8 billion in assets in an effort to gain the government’s approval of its planned T-Mobile acquisition. According to The Wall Street Journal, AT&T will try to sell off its network assets in an attempt water down its market power, but most of of the assets could actually be T-Mobile’s holdings. “As we said on the day we announced the merger with T-Mobile USA, we anticipate there will be some divestitures, as we have had in past mergers, but any speculation about the amount of divestitures is premature,” an AT&T spokesperson told The Journal. On Monday, the Federal Communications Commission pumped the brakes on the merger when it announced that it will roll in AT&T’s planned acquisition of Qualcomm’s FLOTV spectrum into its overall decision on the T-Mobile purchase. AT&T has said that the acquisition is on schedule for approval in March of next year.
You thought we’d be done after three devices? Not a chance. Following week one of Qualcomm and BGR’s Snapdragon giveaway, we’re back with three more awesome devices to send out to three lucky BGR readers absolutely free of charge. Last week’s handsets fell into Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon System 1 category, and this week’s devices are powered by beefed up System 2 chipsets, which offer up to 1.4GHz of processing power, an Adreno 205 GPU, stereoscopic 3D support and plenty more. In store for week two winners is a brand new HTC EVO View 4G tablet (Sprint), one HTC Inspire 4G (AT&T) and one Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY (Verizon Wireless). Here’s how to enter:
- Leave a comment below explaining why you want to win — be sure to use your real email address, Twitter account or Facebook account when commenting so we can contact you if you win
- Follow @BGR on Twitter and retweet this post
Readers may enter this portion of the giveaway up to twice, once by commenting beneath this post and once by following @BGR on Twitter and retweeting this post. Readers who enter week two of the giveaway are still eligible to enter week three. The second leg of our three-week giveaway will run from now through 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on August 16th, and then the last leg will begin on August 17th. The giveaway is open to legal residents of the United States only, and you must be at least 18-years-old to enter. No purchase is necessary, and all devices and shipping costs will be free to contest winners. Winners will be selected randomly, contacted directly by BGR staff, and devices will be paired with winners at random. Phone service is not included.
UPDATE: The AT&T device available to win is the HTC Inspire 4G, not the Samsung Infuse 4G as originally stated.
The Federal Communications Commission announced on Monday that it will review AT&T’s planned $1.925 billion acquisition of Qualcomm’s FLO TV lower 700MHz frequency band at the same time that it reviews the carrier’s T-Mobile USA merger. AT&T announced its intentions to buy spectrum from Qualcomm in December of last year and said it planned to deploy the spectrum as “supplemental downlink” while it built out its 4G network. That acquisition was originally expected to close during the second half of this year, but the FCC clearly has some concerns on the matter. AT&T said the FCC and Department of Justice are on schedule to approve the T-Mobile deal in March 2012, however this could be a ding to AT&T’s 4G network plans if it was relying on having the Qualcomm deal approved by now. The FCC’s statement follows below. More →
Non-Apple tablet shipments are expected to grow as much as 134% year-on-year in 2012, DigiTimes reported on Monday. That’s larger than the 55% shipment boost Apple’s iPad is expected to see next year. Android will be the catalyst for the growth; analysts predict that 19-20 million Android tablets will ship this year and that a far greater 44-45 million will ship during 2012 thanks to the introduction of Ice Cream Sandwich. The tablets will likely be powered by new chips from NVIDIA, Qualcomm, and Texas Instruments. Apple is expected to ship 35-36 million iPad tablets this year and analysts project that it will move as many as 54-55 million next year. Those figures sound about right to us. In its fiscal third-quarter earnings statement Apple announced that it had sold 9.25 million iPads during the quarter. More →
In an age where mobile device components seem to grow by leaps and bounds every few months, it’s pretty remarkable that a pioneer in the space still manages to find itself among the top chipmakers in the world. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chip was the first 1GHz mobile device processor to hit the market when the LG eXpo launched in December 2009, and it kicked off a gigahertz craze that has gained steam ever since. Today, Qualcomm is still a leader in the space and the company on Wednesday revealed the rebranding of its Snapdragon chipsets. Snapdragon chips now fall into one of four series: Snapdragon System 1 (65nm, up to 1.2GHz CPU, Adreno 200 GPU, up to 3G HSPA), Snapdragon System 2 (45nm, up to 1.4GHz CPU, Adreno 205 GPU, HSPA+, 1024 x 768 display, 720p recording, Dolby 5.1, stereoscopic 3D), Snapdragon System 3 (45nm, up to 1.5GHz dual-core CPU, Adreno 220 GPU, HSPA+, 1440 x 900 display, 1080p recording, Dolby 5.1, stereoscopic 3D) and Snapdragon System 4 (28nm, up to 2.5GHz quad-core CPU, up to quad-core Adreno GPU, HSPA+, LTE). System 4 Snapdragon chipsets won’t hit the market until next year, but Systems 1 through 3 can currently be found in 125 commercially available devices. So what might be an appropriate way for Qualcomm to celebrate the new rebranding? Team up with BGR to give away nine different smartphones and tablets, of course! Read on for all the details. More →
Qualcomm announced that it has purchased gesture recognition technology from GestureTek on Monday. “Applications processors are enabling a range of new ways for consumers to interface with their home entertainment and mobile devices,” said Qualcomm executive vice president and group president Steve Mollenkopf. “Our acquisition of key technology and assets from GestureTek will strengthen Qualcomm’s smartphone product portfolio and enable our customers to launch products with new and compelling user experiences.” The company said that it plans to build GestureTek’s gesture recognition technology into its current and future Snapdragon processors. The tech will allow manufacturers to create mobile devices with interactive user interfaces based on “natural human gestures.” The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Read on for the full press release. More →
Qualcomm said it expects to ship between 120 million and 125 million chips during the quarter ending in September, a figure that is lower than the 130 million units MLM Partners LLC analyst Tero Kuittinen expected the company to move. The lower projection hit Qualcomm in late trading on Tuesday when its stock price fell 3.8%. Qualcomm blamed the lower than expected forecast on a weak European economy and said that consumers there aren’t buying new phones as quickly. “Chip units for autumn are light,” Qualcomm chief financial officer Bill Keitel said during a conference call. “The blame likely lies in Europe. European inventory correction now seems to be a fact instead of a theory. We reduced a bit our forecast for how many new CDMA-based units would sell into Europe. The situation demands that we still be cautious.” The company also noted that it hopes to begin working with manufacturers to build its Snapdragon processor into tablets. That chip is mostly used in smartphones now and manufacturers such as Samsung and Motorola have instead used NVIDIA’s dual-core Tegra 2 chip to power Android tablets. More →
Sprint dropped the price of its Nexus S 4G smartphone to $99.99 on Friday. The Google-branded smartphone originally made its debut on Sprint on May 8th for $199.99. The Nexus S 4G offers a “pure Google” experience and runs the latest Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) operating system. It also sports a 4-inch AMOLED display, a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 16GB of internal memory and support for Sprint’s 4G WiMAX network. If you’re looking for a solid device that’s going to be constantly updated with the freshest OS builds from Google, the Nexus S 4G is a good bet — and its new $99.99 price point just makes it a bit sweeter. More →
HP updated its Pre3 website with changes that suggest the company has swapped out the phone’s single-core processor for a dual-core chip. The site now includes a 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon chip in the phone’s spec sheet, as opposed to the original 1.4GHz Scorpion CPU that was originally listed. In June the Pre3 began popping up on U.K. retail websites with a July 8th launch date, but that day has come and gone and the Pre3 has yet to make an appearance. Perhaps the processor tweak has been responsible for the delay, but that’s not yet clear. Additionally, it doesn’t appear that the company has tweaked any of the phone’s other specifications. The Pre3 passed through the FCC in May and it is expected to launch on Verizon Wireless in the U.S. Unfortunately, we’re still not sure when the device will actually hit store shelves. More →
Images of a new HTC phone that’s currently being dubbed “Eternity” have apparently been leaked online. Reportedly it will land as one of the first Windows Phone Mango devices, which are set to begin launching this fall. Reportedly, the Eternity will be powered by a 1.5GHz Qualcomm processor and will come equipped with a 4.7-inch AMOLED display — a monster of a screen. Rumor has it there’s also an 8-megapixel camera, HDMI-out, 16GB of onboard storage, a 1.3-megapixel camera for video chats, 512MB of RAM, and a 1,650 mAh battery. The form factor reminds us of the HTC EVO 4G, the Inspire 4G, and the HD7, which are starting to feel a bit stale. There’s no word on when the Eternity will make its debut, but as we said earlier, we have a hunch it could be sometime this fall. More →
If you’ve been waiting for HP’s highly anticipated TouchPad tablet, the company just sweetened the deal a bit more for you. HP recently announced that anyone who purchases the 32GB TouchPad before July 31st will get a $50 mail-in rebate off of the purchase price. The catch? You’ll have to prove that you already own a Palm Pre, Pre Plus, Pixi, or Pixi Plus smartphone. The TouchPad offers a 9.7-inch display, NFC capabilities for unique interactions with HP webOS phones, and a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. It’s available in two capacities, 16GB ($499.99) and 32GB ($599.99). AT&T will offer a 3G version of the device later this summer, but pricing and an exact launch date have not been detailed. More →
Sprint’s CEO Dan Hesse has been a staunch opponent to AT&T’s planned $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile. He has already proclaimed that the merger would “stifle innovation” in the U.S. wireless market, and now he’s stepping up his game. “Clearly, purely, we want to win and block the merger,” Hesse told Bloomberg in a recent interview. Reportedly, the CEO is working with 18 state regulators to stop the deal, and has even been speaking to CEOs of large U.S. tech firms to get others to speak out against the acquisition. Hesse says he wants the best for the entire industry, not just for Sprint. “The industry just won’t be as innovative and as dynamic as it has been,” he said. “It’ll gum up the works when everything has to go through these two big tollbooths, one that’s called AT&T and one that’s called Verizon.” AT&T’s CEO, Randall Stephenson, has argued the opposite. Stephenson says the merger will improve reliability on his network and will result in net job growth. Despite AT&T’s backing from major industry players such as Facebook, Microsoft, and Qualcomm, Hesse isn’t giving up. “An underdog is not thinking about the point spread; they’re thinking about winning the game,” Hesse said. “We can win this.” More →
T-Mobile and HTC officially took the wraps off of the new myTouch 4G Slide on Tuesday, an Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) handset. As its name implies, the myTouch 4G Slide offers support for T-Mobile’s HSPA+ 4G network. We recently sat down with HTC for a preview of the phone before its launch, and the manufacturer said it spent a great deal of time tweaking the camera software so that the myTouch 4G Slide would offer the best photo performance of any phone HTC has launched. It has improved low-light performance, should have zero shutter lag, and more. We also appreciated the solid design of the myTouch 4G Slide during our demo, and liked that the keyboard was comfortable and didn’t add too much bulk to the phone when it was stored away. The phone runs HTC’s brand new Sense interface on top of a dual-core 1.2Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, so everything was fluid and fast, too. The myTouch 4G Slide is equipped with a 3.7-inch WVGA display, 8-megapixel camera with 1080p video recording, has support for SWYPE, has Netflix software pre-installed, and more. T-Mobile has not announced a price just yet, but the myTouch 4G Slide will be available in July in khaki and black. Read on for the full press release. More →