Watch my video of Windows Phone 7 filmed last february featuring a demonstration of the OS by Windows Phone 7 product manager Erik Helgerson. Smart phones are the new PC, the fastest growing consumer electronics segment, within a year or two, more smart phones will be sold worldwide each year than PCs and Laptops. This is why Microsoft is trying very hard to bring this new smart phone OS, based on Windows CE 7, they seem to be even suing Android manufacturers like Motorola for not using it.
The imminent release of the $300 Logitech Revue that runs Google TV OS, basically Android for set-top-boxes, uses exclusively an Intel CE4100 for now. One of the reasons for that may be 1080p@60fps h264 high profile high bitrate support (possibly, Intel muscling for some HW decoder exclusivity?). What I am wondering, is, how soon will the Google TV OS be announced to run on the next generation ARM Cortex A9 processors to be sold cheaper than intel? My guess is Google will announce ARM Powered Google TV partners early next year, once Google TV OS 1.0 is open sourced and released for free for anyone to use, after the initial launch exclusivity with Intel, Sony and Logitech and as initial interest for the platform increases.
Until then, ARM Powered “Smart TV” solutions are all over the market in set-top-boxes, media streamers, built-into modern Blu-ray players and HDTVs as you can see in solutions I recently filmed from Philips, LG, Samsung and Panasonic.
The full Google Marketplace with Gmail, Google Maps now works on Archos new range of Android Internet Tablets, it has been made available as a one-click installation file with the name “gApps4Archos.apk” in the ArchosFans forum by a forum user. In this video of the Archos 43 Internet Tablet, I also feature demonstrations of Skype (these Android tablets can be a perfect as cheap VOIP devices!), Bluetooth speakers, 720p MKV high bitrate video playback with DTS audio and a couple of action packed 3D games on the HDMI output.
Here’s a reminder of the new Archos Android Tablets that this Google Marketplace gApps4Archos.apk installation file works with:
Archos 28 Internet Tablet, 4GB, 2.8″ resistive screen: $99 (2.29x cheaper than iPod Touch!) (available next week) Archos 32 Internet Tablet, 8GB, 3.2″ resistive screen, VGA camcorder, composite tv-out: $149 (available since a couple of weeks at certain online resellers like Amazon.com) Archos 43 Internet Tablet, 16GB, 4.3″ resistive screen, HD camcorder, HDMI output: $199 (3x cheaper than Droid X!) (available next week) Archos 70 Internet Tablet, 16GB, 7″ capacitive screen, front-facing webcam for video-chat, HDMI output: $275 (2.5x cheaper than Samsung Galaxy Tab!) 250GB version for $349 (available next week) Archos 101 Internet Tablet, 8GB, 10.1″ capacitive screen, front-facing webcam for video-chat, HDMI output: $299 ($200 cheaper than iPad!) 16GB version for $349 (available next week)
Watch my grandmother use this new touch screen Sony e-reader. It’s a product that is suitable for people like her, who like to read lots, who may enjoy having access to all the worlds books electronically on this thin and light device. In this review, after having barely used the device before, she tries to navigate through the menus, open some PDF files, make fonts larger (to not need glasses) and she even does a drawing.
Sony’s new infrared based touch screen technology is quite awesome, great for UI navigations and for making annotations, provides touch on e-ink without taking away any of the Pearl e-ink’s screens visibility. Too bad though that this PRS-650 doesn’t come with at least WiFi nor with a 3G option, would have made the touch screen more useful if it could interact with web apps and web contents. I want Chrome-to-phone like Chrome-to-eink functionality where a one click in the web browser on my Laptop or Android device, should beam that article over to my Connected e-reader’s reading queue. And then I want annotations to become more useful and collaborative. 10 people working on the same text should be able to wirelessly share annotations in real-time. When I annotate a text, it should automatically be attached as comments to any site using Sidewiki or some other such web annotation standards to interoperate with websites existing commenting systems (post scribbled annotations as comments!). A bluetooth or USB keyboard and a built-in kickstand should provide a setup for full speed text entry.
Nice to see the low cost Android phones reaching pre-paid providers in the USA and around the world. Huawei is delivering this Android 2.2 compatible 3.5″ capacitive Android smartphone to US based pre-paid carrier Cricket. It’s contract-free but it’s probably still locked to only work on Cricket’s network.
Google TV is being launched based on Intel CE4100, Logitech has an event later today. I can’t wait to see reports from it. Sony has their event unveiling their Google TV devices on October 12th, that will be fun too.
Google product manager on Google TV, Rishi Chandra said following:
We do believe that this is the similar transformation that happened with the phone, with the introduction of the Smartphone, now it’s going to happen with the TV, this is the introduction of the Smart TV.
Look forward to Logitech’s Google TV products to be unveiled later today. Logitech plans to sell at least half a million units in the next three months. Of course, obviously, I can’t wait for Google TV to be compatible with ARM Cortex A9 processors that have full 1080p 60fps support and HDMI pass-through overlay graphics support as well.
I believe Google TV is very important because it is the software that finally makes it possible to easily bring on-demand web video and features into the living room of not just HTPC/mediastreamer geeks but for everyone. People’s 5 hours daily TV watching is going to be disrupted for the better.
Samsung already sold 5 million Galaxy S Android smart phones since its June 1st release. Only 4 months since Galaxy S release, and with the imminent release of cheaper Android smartphones such as the Samsung Intercept, the daily rate at which Samsung is selling Android phones may soon overtake Apple’s iPhone. I believe it could be possible that Samsung will be selling more Android smartphones per day than Apple will be selling of iPhones by the end of this year.
Samsung Mobile Display plans to spend 2.5 trillion South Korean won (US$2.1 billion) to set up the next-generation production facility. The plant, situated in Tang Jung in the southern part of Seoul, primarily will be used to manufacture three-inch panels used for mobile phones.
It works on 3G and WiFi worldwide except in the USA (for some telco policy reasons, in the USA, it only works on 3G with Verizon).
Even though Skype is a proprietary VOIP platform, this is a big deal. It working smoothly on 3G as well as WiFi means this can help popularize VOIP on Android devices. Sure, Skype kind of worked with Truphone, Nimbuzz, Fring on Android previously, but Skype did sometimes block those third party apps from accessing its proprietary network. And sure there are open SIP based apps for Android like Sipdroid. Anyways, this is cool and awesome. I’m looking forward for Google Voice to be released internationally as well. More VOIP on Android may bring about cheaper Android devices that don’t even come with voice/sms packages anymore but which can do everything on Data networks only, and not even with compulsory 2-year subscription plans. You can download it to your Android device at http://skype.com/m/ or in the Google Marketplace.