Tonight while walking around ShowStoppers here in Las Vegas, I couldn’t help but to notice something out of the corner of my eye — a desktop phone running Android on it! Naturally I had to go and check it out to see what it was all about, and the things I saw were pretty impressive. Running on a 7-inch capacative touch-screen with an 800×395 resolution the ESI 250 runs a custom skin on top of Android 2.2. Now before you go ahead and complain about it running 2.2, let’s remember that it is a desktop phone meant for business users who will not be taking it off their desk.
The FCC, who has surprisingly been all up in every carriers business as of late has now spoken about Verizon’s $2 convenience fee that will go into effect as of January 15th.
Samsung will purchase Sony’s 50% share of S-LCD, a joint venture created by both companies in 2004, for $939.6 million. Both companies will continue to cooperate on the development of new LCD panel technology, however, and Sony says it hopes to “secure a flexible and steady supply” of LCD panels from Samsung moving forward. “With whole ownership of S-LCD, Samsung anticipates heightened flexibility, speed and efficiency in both panel production and business operations,” Samsung said in the statement. Samsung expects the purchase to be finalized by the end of January 2012 pending approval from regulatory authorities. The full press release follows after the break.
Cricket plans to release their first tablet package tomorrow (Dec. 16), consisting of the 16GB Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and a Crosswave Mobile Hotspot (with one months service) for $595. The Galaxy Tab has a retail of $499, and the hotspot rings up at $149.99, so in reality this isn’t a bad deal if you’re looking for cheap monthly mobile broadband access and a shiny new tablet to go with.
No cause for alarm here, folks, but your brand new Verizon Galaxy Nexus is going to get a little update once it’s activated. Bugfixes, mostly. And since you probably haven’t actually used the Verizon Galaxy Nexus without this update, you won’t really know what you were missing.
Panasonic announced Friday that it intends to expand its smartphone business into Europe in March 2012, and it hopes the move will be a stepping stone into the global smartphone market. Panasonic didn’t name its first smartphone, but did say that it features an ultra-slim form factor with a 4.3-inch qHD OLED screen. The phone is also waterproof and dust-proof, and will be manufactured in one of Panasonic’s Malaysian factories. Panasonic hopes to sell 1.5 million smartphones in Europe next year, and by 2016 the company aims to be selling 15 million phones cell phones annually, 9 million of which it expects will be smartphones. Panasonic’s full press release follows after the break.
Here’s one of those good news/bad news things: It looks like the ASUS Transformer Prime and its new quad-core Tegra 3 internals is proving to be quite popular. Too popular. So popular, in fact, that Amazon’s canceling some preorders, citing a lack of availability. Here’s the e-mail that’s going ’round:
HTC cut its fourth-quarter guidance for the second time earlier this week, sending shares of the company’s stock to their lowest point in more than a year. The Taiwan-based smartphone vendor cut revenue estimates by roughly 23% for the fourth quarter as steep competition from Samsung, Apple and other companies will seemingly make HTC’s run at the top short-lived. But pent up demand for a new iPhone and Samsung’s ongoing charge are only half of the equation according to two Citigroup analysts. HTC’s weak fourth quarter is “driven more by inferior product than by macro reasons,” analysts Kevin Chang and Jonathan Gu wrote in a research note earlier this week according to Bloomberg. “We are most surprised by the lack of visibility and by how fast things deteriorate in the smartphone business.” Chang and Gu cut their price target on HTC stock to NT$463, dropping their earlier Buy rating to Neutral.
Steve Wozniak, considered by many to be the real brains behind Apple’s early success in the desktop computer business and an all-around cool fellow, is seen leaving some mysterious Google campus building today. Word is he received a Galaxy Nexus and an Ice Cream Sandwich T-shirt from the boys and girls in Mountain View, and it looks like he’s ready to defend them from fans and press with a short right hook to the chin if need be. Woz is Woz, so we’ll know soon how much he likes his new toy. I’m betting he gives it a big nerdly thumbs-up. One more pic of the proud papa after the break.
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