Hello, my name is Jonathan, and I was a BlackBerry addict. Forget having every BlackBerry the company released, including different variants of models that didn’t ever appear in the U.S., like the BlackBerry 8707g. Forget being one of the first people to discover BlackBerry Messenger and convert family and friends to the service, even though it was probably the slowest thing ever to run on a BlackBerry 7290. Forget getting a bunch of celebrities to attend the BlackBerry 8700 launch party in New York City just so I would be one of the first people outside of RIM to have an 8700. I even once paid to have a BlackBerry 8700 forged out of solid white gold, which barely functioned since gold doesn’t play nice with antenna (an early lesson on wireless communications — maybe the first real antennagate?). I had a dedicated BlackBerry Enterprise Server for over four years — I was so in. Read on for more. More →
We already gave you rundowns of the all new BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Torch 9810 smartphones, and we also spent time with the BlackBerry Torch 9850/9860 tonight up in Toronto. We picked up this full-touchscreen device with the fear that it could be as miserable as the Storm was, but we were pleasantly surprised. The large screen is very responsive and the 1.2GHz processor has enough power to make every movement through BlackBerry OS 7 feel snappy. The web browser loaded pages quickly and the virtual keyboard was very easy to type on; it’s an absolute pleasure compared to RIM’s “award-winning” SurePress, and it definitely improves upon the Storm 2’s display as well. We were also very impressed at how thin and light the phone is, but it’s not so light that it feels cheap. BlackBerry OS 7 itself isn’t revolutionary, though, so hopefully we see some better apps for BlackBerry smartphones now that there’s some hardware muscle to back it all up. AT&T has already announced that it will be carrying the device later this year, so all we can do in the meantime is wait. For now, have a look at the rest of the photos in our hands-on gallery below.
Three torches, two form factors, one goal: silence the critics. Research In Motion on Wednesday unveiled three new additions to the popular Torch family, the Torch 9810, the Torch 9850 and the Torch 9860. The latter two handsets are GSM and CDMA variants of the same device, a full touchscreen smartphone that hopes to pick up where the Storm series left off. Launching later this month with AT&T, the Torch 9810 is a touchscreen smartphone with a QWERTY slider that one-ups the original Torch in nearly every area. Both phones carry the new BlackBerry 7 operating system — no, not QNX, we’re afraid — on top of big, bright displays and solid hardware. RIM noted that in combination with the already-announced Bold 9900, these smartphones will launch on more than 225 carriers around the world. “This is the largest global launch of BlackBerry smartphones in our history,” said RIM Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis in a statement. “The BlackBerry solution offers a best-in-class mobile communications experience that customers love and we think they will be thrilled by the faster performance, enhanced browsing and richer multimedia delivered by these powerful new BlackBerry Bold and BlackBerry Torch smartphones.” The new Torches and the Bold 9900 will begin rolling out later this month. RIM’s full press release follows below. More →
AT&T announced early Wednesday morning that it will offer three new BlackBerry smartphones this year. It will first launch the 4G HSPA+ capable BlackBerry Torch 9810 in August. AT&T promises to then launch the 4G BlackBerry Bold 9900 later this year, as well as the full-touchscreen BlackBerry Torch 9860. The BlackBerry Torch 9810 packs a 1.2GHz processor, a dual-microphone, a 640 x 480-pixel display, 8GB of storage, 768MB of RAM, HSPA+ support, a digital compass and a 5-megapixel camera capable of recording 720p HD video. It’s unclear at this point what pricing will be unfortunately, and AT&T didn’t provide branded images or a complete spec list for either of the other two BlackBerry devices it announced. Thankfully, we’ve already shown you exclusive leaked images of the Torch 9860 and we published a hands-on look at the Bold 9900 back in May. We also have a feeling we’ll be getting up-close and personal with these new devices again very soon. In the meantime, read on for AT&T’s full press release. More →
Ahead of an official announcement expected on Tuesday, Verizon Wireless let slip a promotional video starring its upcoming flagship BlackBerry smartphone, the BlackBerry Bold 9930. First revealed exclusively here on BGR, this next-generation Bold smartphone is the handset BlackBerry fans have been clamoring for. It features a sharp 2.8-inch touchscreen above the famous full QWERTY that RIM’s phones are known for. While the Torch was the first BlackBerry device to pair a touchscreen and a full QWERTY, the keyboard was no match for the one found on RIM’s Curve and Bold smartphones. Thankfully, the 9930 sports the best of both worlds and although we’re far more interested in seeing what QNX-powered devices RIM has in the works, the Bold 9930 will certainly help tide over legions of BlackBerry fans while they await RIM’s next bushel of Berries. An official Verizon Wireless video showing off the new Bold 9930 follows below. More →
Taiwan-based TPK Holdings Ltd. has been awarded a contract from Apple to supply between 70% and 80% of the touch panels for its upcoming fifth-generation iPhone, Taiwan Economic News reports. Referring to the next-generation smartphone as the “iPhone 4S,” the publication cites unnamed industry insiders with the report. TPK holdings is currently the world’s largest touch panel maker by volume, and is said to be the only manufacturer able to meet Apple’s steep quantity demands while maintaining consistent quality. TPK Holdings is already Apple’s top touch panel supplier and the unparalleled quality of Apple’s current touch experience makes the retention of its current No. 1 supplier a logical move. The Taiwan-based component manufacturer also supplies touch panels to HTC, Amazon and Barnes & Noble, among others. Apple is expected to launch its fifth-generation iPhone handset this fall. More →
According to research firm DisplaySearch, revenues from touchscreen modules will hit $13.4 billion this year. Projected capacitive screens have seen the largest growth since Apple made them popular on the iPhone in 2007, and DisplaySearch expects capacitive displays to account for 70% of all touchscreen revenues this year. Capacitive display shipments are also expected to jump more than 100% year-over-year. The company said the greatest display growth was in the tablet PC industry, where 26 million touchscreen modules were shipped last year. That figure is expected to jump to 72 million units this year and to more than 100 million units in 2012. ”Touch screen penetration has rapidly increased in mobile phones, handheld games, game consoles, and tablet PC applications, which collectively will account for more than $10.5 billion in touch screen revenues this year,” said Jennifer Colegrove, PhD, vice president of emerging display technologies at DisplaySearch. “In addition, we see strong touchscreen growth over the next several years driven by demand in larger display applications such as all-in-one PCs, notebooks PCs, and consumer gaming.” Read on for the full press release. More →
BlackBerry fans on Bell won’t have to wait long for a new Torch, Bold, or Curve. TechFIBE picked up some leaked documentation that suggests the carrier will sell the new phones — which we leaked in April — in just a few months. Specifically, Bell will launch the BlackBerry Torch 9810, BlackBerry Bold 9900, and the full-touchscreen BlackBerry Torch 9860 in late August, followed by the BlackBerry Curve 9360 launch in September. BGR reported this past May that the Monaco 9850 and Monza 9860 could launch under a new “Volt” banner or the BlackBerry Torch brand, and according to this document it looks like RIM may have gone with the latter. Bell also confirms what we already knew: that the Torch 9810, Bold 9900, and Torch 9860 will all offer 1.2GHz processors, while the Curve 9360 will be powered by a slower 800MHz chip. More →
Sprint will have a busy third quarter as it preps a number of new handsets. According to Thisismynext, the carrier will launch the Samsung Epic 2, the BlackBerry Bold 9930, and a new “full touch 4G” device from Samsung. The Epic 2 will sport a 1.2GHz processor, a 4-inch display, and an 8-megapixel camera. Given Samsung’s recent introduction of the Infuse 4G on AT&T and DROID Charge on Verizon, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the Epic 2 offer the same Super AMOLED Plus display as those handsets. Sprint is expected to launch a new “full touch” Samsung “Galaxy Within” device in the quarter as well, and we’re hoping it’s the Sprint version of the Korean firm’s new ultra-high end dual-core packing Galaxy S II handset. The carrier’s also planning to introduce a global-roaming version of the BlackBerry Bold 9930, which we leaked before RIM took the wraps off of it during its annual BlackBerry World conference in March. On the same note, Sprint may introduce a new “push-to-talk BlackBerry,” but it’s unclear what the name will be. Lastly, the carrier may launch new Kyocera/Sanyo phones according to the report, although there’s no word on what those devices will offer.
The wait is over — Sprint’s brand new EVO 3D Android smartphone and EVO View 4G tablet are now available to all customers. The EVO 3D, which offers a glasses-free 4.3-inch 3D display, 4G WiMAX connectivity, a 1.2GHz processor, and the ability to record 1080p video, is available for $199.99 with a new two-year Sprint contract. We ran our review earlier this month and called it our “favorite Sprint phone, hands down.” The EVO View 4G, which we also recently reviewed, is powered by a 1.5GHz processor, has a 7-inch display, 4G WiMAX connectivity, and runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread. It’s available for $400 with the Scribe pen for a limited time. Hit the jump for the full press release from Sprint. More →
We just stormed the show floor at E3 and strong-armed a few people to get right up close and personal with Nintendo’s brand new Wii U controller. The demo game required a lot of movement on the user’s part — there was a lot of shaking involved with controlling the character on the screen — but the interaction definitely looked like nothing we’ve seen before. The large touchscreen display was bright, too, and the controls are all comfortably within reach of your thumbs. We dig the white color of the controller as well, and it absolutely looks like a substantial high-end device. Hit the gallery below to see the rest of our hands-on images!
After all of the rumors and speculation, we now finally have a name and details for Nintendo’s next-generation Wii console… the Wii U! Nintendo just announced the new Wii U at its keynote presentation from the annual E3 conference. As the rumors suggested, the Wii U controller features a 6.2-inch touchscreen centered between a d-pad and an analog stick on the left side and a second analog stick and buttons on the right side. The controller also features a microphone, stereo speakers, a camera, an accelerometer, and even a gyroscope — in fact, the controller can act as a console itself! Moreover, the controller becomes a second window into the game being played, showing different views of the current scene, plays and options in sports games, items in a players cache… the possibilities are endless. Nintendo also stated that all current Wii games will work with Wii U and the new Wii U controller. The console supports High Definition gaming, online gaming much like the solutions offered by Sony and Microsoft, and even social networking integration. Nintendo states that the goal of its Wii U console is to serve the avid gamer and casual gaming communities alike, with a single console. From the look of things, they might just be able to pull it off. The Wii U console will launch in 2012 and pricing has not yet been announced.
That’s right folks, it’s finally time to sit back and watch as Nintendo unveils the console we’ve all been waiting to see: the next-generation Wii. Nintendo’s Wii has been an absolute blockbuster for the storied Japanese gaming giant. The company has sold nearly 90 million Wii consoles to date, but sales have slowed significantly over the past few years as the Wii began to show its age. With features like full HD gaming and controllers with built-in touchscreen displays, Nintendo’s next-gen Wii 2 will be an effort to recapture the early success of the Wii… but can Nintendo manage to appeal to casual gamers and hardcore gamers with a single console? Hit the break for our live coverage of Nintendo’s E3 keynote to find out!