Samsung Galaxy Note – Detailed review

The Galaxy Note is the latest offering from Samsung’s stable. Everyone is quite excited about this device as it’s the first time a device with a screen size of 5-7” has come out with such high end specifications. I was also curious about the reception this device would get. Samsung is essentially trying to create an entirely new market and in my opinion, they have not succeeded.

Design and build quality

The Note is big if you consider it to be a phone and small if you consider it to be a tablet. It is midway and tries to take the good attributes of both types of devices. I say ‘tries’ because it is up to you to decide if it succeeds. As said previously in the un-boxing the size will catch you by surprise. Even if you have seen tons of photographs with the note next to other phones or tablets, the first reaction when you actually see it will have an exclamation mark at the end.

The screen and back button position on the Note is very S2. The Note is better looking in my opinion because it has absolutely no glossy part on the back side and the entire back is covered in a textured finish. It has the usual screen, touch sensitive buttons for ‘menu’ and ‘back’ under the screen with the home button at the center. The Note also feels better built and more solid than the S2. It has the usual volume and lock buttons on either sides of the screen and a 3.5mm headphone jack up top. I also like the fact that it is slightly thicker than the S2. The Note has a micro sd card slot although it is not hot-swappable. The main addition to the Note is the S-Pen which is a digitizer which has a button on the side. The S-Pen slots into the phone in the bottom.

Interface

The Note runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread with Samsung’s TouchWiz UI v4.0 and all the apps I tried out of the gazillion apps in the android market work very well on it. This has always been a good combo. Like any android phone, it’s very simple to setup. I got my mail, apps and contacts pushed to the phone as I put in my Gmail id. If you don’t have a Gmail id (which is almost implausible nowadays), then you can create one as you turn it on for the first time. You can also setup emails through Microsoft Exchange, hotmail or yahoo mail. Contacts can be also be synced through outlook express through the Samsung Keis software that is bundled with the phone. The Note has SNS integration like most Samsung android phones and you can sync your facebook and twitter contacts to your phone. The homescreens can now easily hold 5 icons in 1 row.

It’s quite useless for me to go on about Android 2.3 and touchwiz because most of you would already be familiar with it. So, I’ll elaborate on the stuff that makes this phone different from any other Samsung android phone.

The Screen

The Note has a 5.3” capacitive Super AMOLED HD pentile matrix type touchscreen with a 1280 x 800 resolution. The screen is just beautiful. It has good brightness, sunlight visibility, viewing angles and an reasonably high 285 pixels per inch. The pixels are not visible at a normal viewing distance.

Somehow, I found the whites slightly whiter on the Note than on the Galaxy S2. The S2 seemed to have a slightly yellowish tinge. Super AMOLED screens are loved or hated due to their high saturation levels. I really like them because they make average images look good and good images look great. The contrast ratio is theoretically infinite and in the real world, feel extremely high.

Comparing to the S2, the response during basic actions like unlocking the screen and typing on the on screen keyboard on the Note is slightly slower.

All apps look brilliant on the screen. Apps that really shined due to the bigger screen were Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, word, powerpoint and excel documents, the browser, pulse and other news readers, messaging and the video player

The S-Pen

The S-Pen is the feature that Samsung is making the most noise about. As I said earlier, its a digitizer that slots into the bottom of the phone. Its similar to the device professionals use to draw on tablets (a Wacom Digitizer). Samsung has tweaked the UI so that the stylus can be used seamlessly with the android os. The response of the stylus is very impressive and the apps react to change in pressure. For example, the harder you press the pen, the darker the lines become.

The pen also has a button on the side to effect change in response. When you long press the pen down with the button held, it takes a screenshot. This screenshot can be immediately drawn/written on with the pen and shared through email, whatsapp, facebook, twitter, Flickr and a million more networks. A left swipe with the button held acts a back command and an up swipe brings up the menu. A double tap with the button held opens up the memo app. This can be done with any app running in the background, even during a call. It was quite useful for writing down stuff during a call.

Samsung has added some apps to complement the S-Pen on the note. S-Memo is a memo application which works quite well. As you finish writing or drawing on one page, you can add pages to the same memo which is quite nice. S-Planner is a calendar app that works well with the stylus. The pen can also be used as a replacement for the on screen keyboard which is in my opinion, a waste of time. It’s ok the first time but when the novelty wears off, you will find yourself typing way faster on the on screen keyboard.

Precision editing can also be done on the note with the S-Pen. Cutting and pasting on and from images can be done nicely without any errors.

Telephony

There have been some complaints on forums regarding the call quality on this phone. I had absolutely no problems. The call clarity was crystal clear and it had very good signal reception. It is a bit weird to hold the phone during a call because of its size. More than once, I was holding it too high so I could not hear anything. I didn’t get any complaints from people on the other side even though I tested it in an environment with very high ambient noise. This is not a problem once you get used to it. The phone book is usual android stuff so I’m not going to elaborate on that. Certain changes have been made on the Note that might be overlooked. For example, due to the width of the screen, it might be difficult to use the on screen slider to answer a call. What Samsung have done is they have changed the slider to a circle that appears on the left side. All you need to do is slide your finger from that circle to a bigger diameter concentric circle that appears as you touch the screen. Unlocking the phone also requires the same action.

Camera

The camera is the same 8MP autofocus piece with flash as the S2 which is not a bad thing. The S2 has a very good camera and so does the note. The note has the edge because of the bigger screen and higher no of pixels as I seemed to have a better idea of what I was shooting and whether it was properly focussed or not. Somehow, the photos came out better. The camera has all the basic functions like smile shots, face detection, spot metering, ISO change ability, GPS tagging and so on. The Note can also shoot videos at [email protected] The videos came out very vivid and true. There is also a front facing camera for video calls and self portraits.

 On Screen Keyboard

The on screen keyboard is what most people will be using so here’s how that works. I do not use the stock on screen keyboard on my S2 as I don’t think it works well. If you prefer to use Swype, that’s available too. I use Swiftkey, so i tried to install it on the Note and it said I need to install the tablet version of swiftkey. So I did and it was very slow, the response was quite bad. I did find a good replacement in the Go keyboard with the tablet plugin. With the GO keyboard, typing emails were a breeze. I have to mention here that I still preferred the S2 with regard to the on screen keybaord because the response is slightly faster for rapid double handed typing. It could be that I was too used to the S2. Single handed typing on the Note for me was a big No. It was impossible because of the massive width of the device. If you predominantly type using just one thumb, then you will most likely find this phone very ungainly.

Browser

The browser is the most awesome part of the device. The portion of a web page that can be viewed is great because of its screen size. It has been modified to make better use of the bigger screen. It supports multiple tabs and renders web pages very quickly. None of that checkerboard stuff here. You will mostly be limited only by your network. The browser also has full flash support. You could buy this phone for the browser and still be happy with your purchase.

Voice Command

The Voice command app powered by Vlingo which is also in the S2 is slightly modified for this device. It has a few more functions and you don’t have to say “Hi Galaxy”. It can be configured to start responding to any command. In my opinion, voice command is always a waste of time. All of us try hopelessly to change our accent and the way we say things to make it work to no avail. It is still a pointless exercise.

Music, video player and others

The Music player is almost unchanged compared to the S2. The Note has the same Yamaha audio chip as the S2 which was/is a step down compared to original Samsung Galaxy S. If you are an audio nut, you will not be that happy. The music quality is only ordinary with headphones. I used my own headphones and cannot comment on the stock ones because I didn’t use them. The speakers are also not that loud. The video player is also slightly changed to take advantage of the bigger screen. Big thumbnails of the videos make it a very pleasant experience. Unlike previous phones, one can also play music or videos stored in particular folders.

The GPS on this phone is awesome. The Note has a barometer to calculate altitudes in order to get a faster GPS lock. From what I could understand, gingerbread does not have the necessary API’s to get this to work. But for whatever reason, the Note gets GPS lock extremely fast. I got a lock under 10 seconds inside a building. It has the usual google maps. Bear in mind, voice navigation is not available through google in India, yet.

The messaging app on this phone gets an ipad like view in landscape mode. A preview of the message is displayed on the left and the full message is displayed on the right side of the screen. Other than this function, the messaging app is like any other android Samsung phone.

The Note also has the new Gtalk app with video chat support and it works brilliantly due to the massive screen.

Battery Life

Android phones (and now iPhones) have always had and continue to have bad battery life. Well, this is 1 phone that has a much better battery life than what most of us have come to expect from android phones. I was pleasantly surprised. Never has an android phone lasted me through one full day with 3G ON the whole time. I go through 2 full charges on my S2 sometimes in 1 day usually turning it on around 7AM to around 1AM the next day. This is the only phone I did not have to charge during the day. This is due to a massive 2500mAh battery. Even though it has to power a massive screen, I got more than 4hrs of display time and was able to use it through the whole day with 3G ON the entire time. My usual usage consists of calls, emails, whatsapp, videos, facebook, twitter, news readers, messaging, Gtalk, light camera use and maps

For people who like numbers

Conclusion

This device will have extreme reactions. You will either love it or hate it. In my opinion, this is more a tablet that can make calls than a phone with a tablet like screen. I like the S-Pen but in a day of normal use, I used it for 2 minutes. Samsung has tried to market it such that it does not eat into the S2’s market. I don’t think this is working. Most people are comparing the S2 to the Note and picking one, which now seems to be the Note.

If you are contemplating buying the Note, try and use it for at least 10 minutes before parting with your hard earned money. I do not think it makes a good phone but it makes an awesome pocketable tablet. In my opinion, the note would suit people who don’t make or receive that many calls and their device is used more for media consumption (reading, watching videos, etc). It would also be a good choice for people on the lookout for a second phone and use another phone for calls.

To sum it up

Positives

  • Value for money
  • Huge Screen
  • Definitely Pocketable
  • S pen
  • Browser
  • GPS performance
  • Battery life
  • Camera performance
  • Build quality
  • Super fast processor

Negatives

  • Massive
  • Awkward to hold during phone calls
  • Screen response – I felt that the on screen keyboard and screen response was slightly slower than the Galaxy S2
  • Average audio performance (both loudspeaker and headphones)
  • One handed usage almost impossible

For more information about the Galaxy Note, check out Samsung’s microsite.

Motorola Resurrects the Razr.. As a Droid

It’s been almost 7 years since Motorola launched the first Razr. Eventually, the Razr and all it’s variants went on to sell over 130 Million units. Of course, the first Razr wasn’t really feature packed. It had a VGA cam, some (precious little) internal memory, and of course, looked awesome! And it was expensive! Well, Motorola has resurrected the Razr name, except it’s now a Droid. Get it? Cyborg? No? Alright, let’s move on.

The new Razr is a beautiful looking, super thin beast, that is right now a Verizon only device (although Motorola say it will soon be available worldwide, and I don’t doubt that one bit).

Here’re some of the specs:

  • Display: 4.3″ qHD (960×540) Super Amoled Display (the only Super Amoled qHD one so far)
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz TI OMAP 4430 Dual Core Processor
  • Memory: 1GB RAM,16GB Internal Storage, Micro SD expandable
  • Camera: 8MP Rear Cam with LED Flash, 1.3MP Front Facing Camera, 1080p Video Recording @ 30fps
And all that AND an 1800 mAh battery, in a frame that’s 7.1 mm thin (at it’s thinnest point). Oh wait, here’s the best bit. The front is Gorilla Glass, yeah, it has to be right? The back? It’s Kevlar! AND, it has Diamond Cut Aluminium accents (whatever that means, I just read Diamond Cut and I started drooling.. Oh and the Kevlar too).  As of now, it’s running Android 2.3.5 (Gingerbread), but hey, I sure hope it get’s updated to Ice Cream Sandwich.

Is it the rise of the Razr (again)? What do you guys think? Let us know in the comments below. Or catch us on twitter.

Here’s the promo video of the Motorla Droid Razr followed by the full Press Release:

Motorola Mobility Unveils the New Motorola RAZR™: Impossibly Thin Meets Head-turning Innovation

With an ultra-thin, lightweight design and mind-blowing features, Motorola RAZR is about to make heads turn

LIBERTYVILLE, Ill. – Oct. 18, 2011 – Say hello to the jaw-dropping new Motorola RAZR, brought to you by Motorola Mobility, Inc. (NYSE: MMI). Impossibly thin at 7.1 millimeters with sexy curves to boot, this beauty will be available in North America, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Middle East and Africa starting this November. Boasting a gorgeous sculpted glass face, diamond-cut aluminum accents and a hyper-vibrant 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Advanced display for incredibly vivid images. Motorola RAZR also sports KEVLAR® fiber (yes, that KEVLAR) and Corning®Gorilla® Glass to help the screen stand up to scratches and scrapes. In fact, every part of Motorola RAZR is protected by a splash-guard coating – even the electrical boards inside. This work of art is a force to be reckoned with.

If that’s not enough, pop the hood and find a dual-core 1.2 GHz processor with an impressive 1GB of RAM, all powered by Android 2.3.5. You’ll fly through tasks up to two times faster than single-core processor phones. Stream or download music and photos from your home or work computer with the easy-to-use MOTOCAST app1. Watch movies on a screen that sports a wider range of colors than most LCD HDTVs. And for that inspiring filmmaker in you, use the 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with 1080p video capture for crisp, clear, cinematic-quality images.

“Motorola RAZR is an iconic brand, and one that originally revolutionized the mobile device industry by turning a functional necessity into an object of desire,” said Sanjay Jha, chairman and CEO, Motorola Mobility. “Now we’ve done it again with a head-turning, ultra-thin smartphone that offers users breathtaking speed, innovative apps and revolutionary accessories.”

Close to Home, Wherever You Go
Your favorite music playlists, from classic rock to heavy metal. Pics of every vacation, from road trip to romantic getaway. With Motorola RAZR it’s all at your fingertips, all the time. With the free preloaded MotoCast app, you can stream content from your computer straight to your pocket (or purse) so your personal content is always within reach. Whether you’re across the street or across the country, you can rock your playlists or breeze through photos instantly – without hogging your device’s memory. And, because you don’t have to upload to a third-party site, you’re saving time while gaining peace of mind. That’s right – your files stay safe because they stay with you.

Life Has Never Looked Better
“Super AMOLED Advanced display technology.” It sounds futuristic because it is. Whether you stream or download your movies, hyper-vibrant colors make watching flicks on-the-go just as thrilling as watching at home on your HDTV. And zero motion-blur keeps the action smooth, so you can focus on the story, not the screen. Capture the excitement of your own life with the 8-megapixel rear camera and 1080p HD video recording, or chat with a friend using the front-facing HD video camera. No need for clunky, expensive camera equipment.

Work Smart. Not Hard.
Featuring government-grade encryption for protecting your email, contacts and calendar, this device has been deemed “Business Ready” by Motorola’s enterprise experts. Even your strict IT manager will be impressed. Hassle factor? Zero. Plus, Motorola RAZR is equipped with the Motorola Smart Actions app that lets you automate everyday tasks and enable better battery life. Smart Actions can turn down the ringer when you step into work, change the Bluetooth and GPS settings when you get home to save battery, or send a text to someone if you miss their call. It’s the simple things in life that make all the difference.

Accessories Unlock a World of Experiences
Motorola RAZR is powerful on its own, but when combined with Motorola’s accessories (sold separately), you unleash a world of possibilities. Use the new Motorola Lapdock 500 Pro or Lapdock 100 to let loose Motorola’s revolutionary webtop application, giving you the power to edit documents and browse the Web with a desktop-class Firefox® browser – all while powering the device. Or, plug your Motorola RAZR into the HD Dock or HD Station to connect to your HDTV, speakers and other productivity peripherals for large-screen entertainment. And now, you can control your content, browse the web, and use your Android apps from the comfort of your couch with the Smart Controller. The built in touch-pad lets you zoom, pinch and rotate content just like a touchscreen. Best of all, no more running for your phone when a call comes in, you can make and take calls while your phone is docked. You can also connect a navigation dock for GPS and directions, battery pack for extra life, Bluetooth®-enabled keyboard for efficient typing, and the elegantly designed, almost-invisible Motorola ELITE SLIVER headset for discrete, hands-free talking. You’ll have the brains, brawn and beauty to make the impossible possible.

Reliance launches 3G Android Tablet

Reliance Communications launched it’s first 3G Android Tablet (well, it’s first Android Tablet). The tablet is manufactured by ZTE, which has been pretty busy in the Android world lately.

Check out the specs:

  • 7″WVGA (800×480) Capacitive Screen
  • 3400 mAH Battery
  • 800 mHz Processor, 512 MB RAM, Memory Expandable through a Micro SD Card Slot (4GB included)
  • 2MP Rear Camera, VGA Front Facing Camera
  • Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)

While it isn’t a high end device, the pricing makes it a decent device to check out for a first time tablet user. The tablet itself is priced at INR 12,999, but you can get it with bundled 3G plans.

Check out more about the plans and offers over at the product page, here.  For INR 19,999 you can get the device and 5GB of 3G data per month free for a year.

Source: Fonearena

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 gets Gingerbread

Sony Ericsson. They make some gorogeous devices, that are let down by the user experience, and the dated OS versions left behind in the dust. Well, SE is looking to catch up with the rest of the Android manufacturers, and they said back in June that the Xperia X10 would get Gingerbread by August.

Well, it looks like somebody actually keeps to their timelines, because the update seems to be out. Phandroid reports that the update was first live in Italy, and is now available globally to all unbranded devices. All you need to do is get the SEUS software from here, and run the update.

It brings a few new things, apart from Android 2.3. It gets much deeper Facebook Integration, similar to what SE has done with the Arc, and a new app drawer.

Here’s a preview of what was supposed to come. Let us know if that’s what you get.

Source: Phandroid

KDDI Infobar A01: iida UI

Japan always get some insanely awesome gizmos, but the UI usually is something only the Japanese can love. I remember reading somewhere that the Japs love all their info available all the time right in front of their eyes, even if it looks cluttered (It was an article of why Yahoo is used more than Google in Japan, if I remember correctly). Well, they’ve taken that same thing to another level with this iida UI on the KDDI Infobar.

It reminds me of Slidescreen, except it’s more graphically oriented. Yup, it’s slidescreen meets the Windows Phone 7 Metro UI.

It’s basically an Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Device, with the usual suite of connectivity options (WiFi b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0, IR, GSM/CDMA dual Mode), a 1 Seg TV Tuner, a 3.7″ qHD (540 x 960) Capactive ASV LCD Display (that’s 300ppi BTW), 8MP A/F Cam, and of course, the iida interface. Anyways, here’s a video of the interface, followed by another one of the phone in action.

 

As always, follow us on twitter, we’re @myportableworld!

Official: Gingerbread update for Samsung’s Galaxy Series by Mid-May

Since the first Gingerbread Leak for the Galaxy S, we’ve been waiting for the official update to roll out soon. Well, Samsung might have botched the promised Mid-April roll out, but now the waiting has paid off I guess, for more than just Galaxy S users.

Samsung Just Announced that the Galaxy Series of devices; that includes the Galaxy S, Galaxy Tab, Galaxy Ace, Galaxy Fit, Galaxy Mini and the Galaxy Gio will be getting the Gingerbread Update. Well done Samsung! So now the bar has been raised for entry/mid level Android phones from other manufacturers.

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Here’s the Press Release:

Samsung Offers Android 2.3 ‘Gingerbread’ Upgrade for GALAXY S and GALAXY Tab

SEOUL–(Korea Newswire) May 16, 2011 — Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a global leader in Android™ mobile devices, today announced the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) upgrade to the Samsung GALAXY S, GALAXY Tab, and GALAXY Ace/Gio/Fit/mini, giving users enhanced performance and an improved user interface.

The GALAXY S and GALAXY Tab are Samsung’s intelligently designed smart devices with 1 GHz application processors, giving users an intuitive, immersive and integrated mobile experience.

The upgrade from Froyo 2.2 to Gingerbread 2.3 offers an even greater user experience, with features including:

· Faster Performance – Multimedia content now has a lower CPU consumption rate, while support for more powerful 3D Graphics enables an enhanced mobile gaming experience.
· Upgraded Usability – The user interface has been improved, enabling faster access and control and a more intuitive user experience. Users will also benefit from improved copy-and-paste functionality.

The Android 2.3 upgrade will start with GALAXY S in the UK and Nordic countries from mid-May, and gradually rolled out to other European markets, North America, Southeast Asia, the Middle East Asia, Africa and rest of the world according to the regional plan.

The upgrade will be available via Kies, Samsung’s device management software. Kies can be downloaded from Samsung’s corporate website (http://www.samsung.com).

Source: Engadget Mobile

Video Chat on your Android Phone

Last week, Google Announced Video Chat for Android Phones running 2.3.4 (Gingerbread). You can even use it for Voice Chat, something you needed an app like Fring or Nimbuzz to do until now. The only bad bit was the 2.3.4 part,which meant it was limited to the Nexus S as of now. The way manufacturers issue Android updates, it might take forever to get this nifty little version of Google Talk on your device. Of course, there are the good folks over at XDA Developers working round the clock to get everything set up for all kinds of Android users (and non android users too).

So here’s a little hack to get Google Voice/Video Chat working on your Gingerbread Device (whichever version you’re running). It might even work on Froyo devices.

DISCLAIMER– WE TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY IF YOU END UP BRICKING YOUR PHONE, VOIDING YOUR WARRANTY etc.

First up, ROOT USERS ONLY. If you haven’t rooted your phone, then you can’t use this. Also, it doesn’t seem to work properly on all devices. I’ve read that it works best (the way it’s supposed to) on HTC devices Running Cyanogenmod 7+. For Galaxy S devices, it supposedly does only one way video right now, and doesn’t seem to able to find the front facing Camera.

Anyways, head over to this thread over at XDA and download the file and get cracking. Let us know what your results are! AND BACK UP YOUR CURRENT GOOGLE TALK APK.

There are three ways to push this app:
  1. Using Root Explorer (Try the Super Manager App, available on the Market).
  2. Using CWM to flash the update.zip. Check here, and if that doesn’t work, try this.
  3. Using ADB, Follow the steps below;

(lines starting with # are comments)

Code:
#mount the /system partition as writeable
adb remount
#backup the old Talk app
adb shell mv /system/app/Talk.apk /system/app/Talk.apk1
#uninstall the old gtalk, I think it clears the related cached bytecode too.
adb uninstall com.google.android.talk
#copy the two new files
adb push libtalk_jni.so /system/lib/
adb push Talk2.apk /system/app

 

Mixed reports coming in so far, so let us know what you think. It should work like the video below:

 

 

 

Follow us on twitter, we’re @myportableworld.

 

Source: Google Mobile Blog, XDA

Nexus S 4G announced for Sprint

Google Announced earlier today that a new iteration of the Nexus S, which was the first device running Gingerbread (aka Android 2.3), called the Nexus S 4G will soon be available on Sprint. Apart from the usual Nexus S config (see here,minus the Radios, as it’s CDMA), it features a Wimax Radio (hence the 4G) to run on the Sprint Wimax network similar to the Evo 4G and the Epic 4G. But that’s not the best part. This is the first phone to completely integrate Google Voice! Well done Google (and Sprint of course, for letting them do that I guess).

Head over to http://www.sprint.com/nexus (which isn’t opening up btw, but you get redirected there from the Nexus S site).

 

Here’s the post from the official Google Mobile Blog:

“Introducing Nexus S 4G for Sprint

Monday, March 21, 2011 | 5:00 AM

[ad#ga-cbox-right]Recently, we introduced Nexus S from Google, the first phone to run Android 2.3, Gingerbread. In addition to the UMTS-capable Nexus S, today we’re introducing Nexus S 4G from Google, available for Sprint. Nexus S 4G is part of the Nexus line of devices which provide a pure Google experience and run the latest and greatest Android releases and Google mobile apps.

We co-developed Nexus S 4G with Samsung to tightly integrate hardware and software and highlight the advancements of Gingerbread. Nexus S 4G takes advantage of Sprint’s high-speed 4G data network. It features a 4” Contour Display designed to fit comfortably in the palm of your hand and along the side of your face. It also features a 1GHz Hummingbird processor, front and rear facing cameras, 16GB of internal memory, and NFC (near field communication) hardware that lets you read information from everyday objects that have NFC tags.

In addition, today we’re excited to announce that Sprint customers will soon be able to take advantage of the full set of Google Voice features without changing or porting their number.

You can find more Nexus S information and videos at google.com/nexus or follow @googlenexus on Twitter for the latest updates. Nexus S 4G can be purchased this spring online and in-store from Sprint retailers and Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile stores in the U.S.

Posted by Andy Rubin, VP of Engineering”

 

Introducing the Sony Xperia PLAY

Sony’s Xperia PLAY is the world’s first Playstation Certified smartphone. Having a dedicated gaming device that doubles as a phone is a great asset for those constantly on the move. The PLAY is powered by a Snapdragon processor with a 1Ghz CPU an embedded Adreno GPU graphics processor and comes loaded with Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and has a 4″ touch screen interface, along with dedicated gaming keys.

The Xperia PLAY seems to a be promising product, especially when it comes to filling gaps between dedicated gaming devices and smartphones.

Nokia had tried earlier with their dedicated N-Gage device and the N-Gage gaming platform, which they rolled into Ovi Store. They didn’t make much of a dent in the gaming market at that point. Sony should fare better with this with their prior experience with their PlayStation platform and the PSP hand-held gaming device. They can cross-sell this device with their existing Playstation user-base.

Some of the main Content partners at launch include:

Sony Computer Entertainment,  Digital Chocolate, Electronic Arts, Gameloft Glu Mobile, Handy Games and Namco Bandai apart from others.  So it definitely looks like the Xperia PLAY will definitely not have any shortage of high qualite gaming titles at its disposal

Specifications of the Xperia PLAY

Screen

  • 854 x 480 pixels
  • 4.0″ 16,777,216 colour TFT Memory
  • Phone memory up to 400MB
  • microSD™ (supported to 32GB)

Camera

  • 5.1 megapixel camera
  • Auto focus
  • Flash / Photo light

Networks

  • GSM/GPRS/EDGE 850/900/1800/1900
  • UMTS/HSPA 800/850/1900/2100
  • UMTS/HSPA 900/2100

Size & Weight

  • 119.0 x 62.0 x 16.0 mm
  • 175.0 gr

For more on the latest tech news follow us on twitter! We’re @MyPortableWorld

Samsung Galaxy S Gingerbread Rom Leaks

[ad#ga-cbox-left]Although Samsung took their own sweet time getting FroYo out to the Galaxy S series (with a few phones in that family still running Eclair), it looks like they won’t be as slow in deploying the update to Gingerbread (Android 2.3). Gsmarena reported that the SGS would be getting updated to Gingerbread in March. Well, it looks like an official Gingerbread rom for the SGS has leaked out and is now available for you to download and flash onto your SGS, courtesy the good folks over at Android.com.pl.

It’s signed “XWJV1” and is based on 2.3.2. Head over to XDA Developers to download and follow instructions if you want to flash it onto your device.

Note: This might be a beta version of the Gingerbread Rom, so Flash at your own risk. We are not responsible for anything. Having said that, the SGS is quite hard to brick.

The Rom hasn’t been rooted (yet), so I don’t think you can run a custom kernel just yet. Download mode seems to be working, so you can always go back to an older rom. Market doesn’t seem to be working just yet though.

Personally, I’ll be waiting for Darky or some other Rom Chef to get cooking.

UPDATE: Here’s a video walkthrough on how to install the rom.