It’s taken a long time for Nokia’s MeeGo-packing N9 to make its way into our top secret labs (the N9 moniker was first applied to early E7 prototypes), but it’s here in our dirty little hands, at last, and it’s glorious — well, as glorious as a stillborn product can be, anyway. The N9 is the latest and greatest in a long line of quirky, interesting, yet ultimately flawed touchscreen experiments from Nokia that includes the Hildon-sporting 7710, a series of Maemo-based “internet tablets” (770, N800, N810, N900) and most recently, the N950 MeeGo handset for developers. What makes the N9 special is that it represents Nokia’s last flagship phone as an independent player. MeeGo is already dead, and future high-end devices from the manufacturer will run Windows Phone and use Microsoft’s services. So, is this the company’s final bittersweet hurray? Did MeeGo ever stand a chance against Android, iOS and Mango? In its attempt to stay relevant, is Nokia throwing out the baby with the bathwater? Most importantly, how does the N9 fare in today’s merciless dual-core world? Find out after the break.
It’s summer, which means the usual deluge of Android handsets is upon us. The Motorola Photon 4G is Sprint’s latest specimen, and follows hot on the heels of HTC’s somewhat disappointing EVO 3D. Like its stablemate, it’s a proper superphone with a dual-core processor, large qHD display, and of course, WiMAX. Instead of trying to wow us with a gimmicky 3D camera, it differentiates itself by being Sprint’s first global phone with WiMAX, and as such supports CDMA / EV-DO for North America along with GSM / HSPA for the rest of the world. Motorola further spices things up with a dash of WebTop functionality, something it first introduced on the Atrix 4G. So, is the Photon just the smartphone flavor du jour, or does it stand out from the seasonal crowd? How does it compare to the EVO 3D and the other Android flagships? Hit the break for our full review.
In the event you got lulled into a groovy seat dance by that most excellent muzak above, let us repeat – this app does not protect your lockscreen. That said, Visidon’s Applock will prevent the privacy-adverse from messing with your personally curated app collection. Have a nosy significant lover? No sweat — snap a pick with your front-facing cam, enable the face-lock in your settings, and those sexts are as good as blocked. It’s far from foolproof, however, as some comments indicate an extended bit of facial-wriggling tricks the app into unlock mode. Oh well, you’re so vain, you’ll probably think this Android market link is for you — don’t you?
It wasn’t that long ago that we were jonesing for a Nexus One on Verizon. What HTC gave us instead was the Droid Incredible, with the same 1GHz Snapdragon CPU and gorgeous 3.7-inch AMOLED display — not to mention a better camera (8 megapixel vs. five), 8GB of built-in flash storage, an optical trackpad, HTC’s Sense UI on top of Eclair, and a dash of funky industrial design. The Incredible was an impressive phone with a lovely camera, marred only by questionable battery life and lack of supply, forcing HTC to build a Super LCD-equipped model to satisfy demand. Judging by the popularity of the Incredible, it came as no surprise that following HTC’s announcement at MWC, the Incredible S eventually became Verizon’s Droid Incredible 2. With a 4-inch Super LCD display, global CDMA / GSM radio, front-facing camera, updated internals (including 768 MB of RAM), trick capacitive buttons, and a Froyo-flavored serving of Sense, the Incredible 2 seems like a worthy successor to last year’s Incredible. Does it live up to our expectations or is it just another fish in the crowded sea of Android? Does it significantly improve upon the original formula or is it merely a refresh? Hit the break for our review.
Okay, so a dual-core, large-screened HTC phone isn’t quite the unique event it was this time last week, but that shouldn’t preclude the Pyramid from vying for our gadget lust. Today, a picture of its front end has made its way to GSM Arena, where a careful analysis of it side by side with a Desire HD confirms the same 4.3-inch screen size, but a likely resolution bump all the way up to qHD (or 960 x 540). A 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm chip and a 4.3-inch qHD display are the two crowning features on HTC’s EVO 3D, so this looks to be its brother for another carrier. One last note of import is the home icon you see below the blurred-out applications menu — that’s stock Android fare right there. It doesn’t necessarily mean the Pyramid will ship with stock Android, but we can dream, can’t we?
It’s only been six months since Samsung launched its highly successful Galaxy S assault upon the US market with a series of carrier customized phones: the Vibrant and Captivate GSM twins for T-Mobile and AT&T, the WiMAX-rocking Epic 4G for Sprint and the Fascinate for Verizon. More derivatives arrived later, with the Mesmerize, Continuum, Nexus S, and LTE-equipped Galaxy Indulge. Still the Vibrant was the first, and the closest in appearance to the original Galaxy S, losing the front-facing camera, but gaining a search button. Unfortunately, Samsung was slow to upgrade early devices like the Vibrant beyond Eclair, and to fix the well-documented AGPS problems. As such, the release of the Samsung Galaxy S 4G for T-Mobile — basically an updated Vibrant with HSPA+, a front-facing camera, a bronze battery cover, Froyo out of the gate, but no dedicated internal flash storage — is bittersweet. While beneficial to those who waited, it’s a slap in the face to those who purchased the Vibrant. But is it a worthy upgrade? How does it fit into T-Mobile’s high-end Android lineup? Read on for our full review after the break.