Under T-Mobile’s new setup, subscribers can purchase handsets by making a relatively small up-front payment and then paying the remaining cost of the phone over the following 24 months. For example, Apple’s iPhone 5 costs $99 down followed by 24 monthly payments of $20. While customers do not need to sign a standard contract committing them to T-Mobile’s wireless service for two years, they do have to sign an agreement taking responsibility for full equipment costs.
via T-Mobile No-contract Advertising: WA Court Orders Retraction | BGR.
Charging $(24×20) + $99 = $579 for an IPhone when you can get a decent tablet with a bigger screen and similar features for under $200 is ridiculous. It amazes me how people will complain when gas goes up a nickel a gallon but don’t think twice about over paying for cell phones by hundreds of dollars.
Projections from the Yankee Group, a Boston-based analytics firm, highlight the potential: the number of smartphones in use is projected to double from 1.5 billion in 2013 to nearly 3 billion in 2017. Most of those 1.5 billion new adoptions will be in the developing world, and the vast majority will be lower-end Android phones. Facebook also wants to capture the attention of those who haven’t yet gotten access to the Internet—and will likely first do so on a mobile device.
via Facebook “Home” Is Next Step in Facebook’s Developing World Strategy | MIT Technology Review.
So what can you do about all this the next time you’re ready to upgrade phones? The alarming answer is not much. According to Reiber, all of our volunteers did the right thing. They used the software tools available to restore each phone to its factory settings. But that didn’t matter. The data is still there, if you have the means to recover it. In fact, Reiber says there’s only one surefire way to make sure someone isn’t going to come along behind you and scarf up your old bits: Take a hammer to it.
via Break Out a Hammer: You’ll Never Believe the Data ‘Wiped’ Smartphones Store | Gadget Lab | Wired.com.
Another reason not to use your mobile gadget for storing any sensitive information. Here’s a link to MPE+ Mobile Phone Forensics mentioned in the article. Here’s a sample of their features:
PHYSICAL IMAGING OF ANDROID DEVICES
MPE+ enables physical imaging of Android devices. MPE+ features built in rooting functions that allows the physical analysis of any partition on an Android device. No need to pay for additional “rooting” suites.
For example, if the user of an e-reader or smartphone wants to share a book or picture with someone else, that person’s phone will transmit an audible signal that can be received and decoded by other devices within earshot. The decoded signal contains information (such as a URL) allowing the receiving device to download the shared content from a remote server.
via ‘Bezos Beep’ could replace the smartphone bump for mobile content sharing – GeekWire.
LOL. Someone reinvented the 300 baud modem.
For readers here I think this is a great primer for what the state of things looks like if you’re not paying super close attention to smartphone cameras, and also the imaging chain at a high level on a mobile device.
Some figures are from of the incredibly useful (never leaves my side in book form or PDF form) Field Guide to Geometrical Optics by John Greivenkamp, a few other are my own or from OmniVision or Wikipedia. I’ve put the slides into a gallery and gone through them pretty much individually, but if you want the PDF version, you can find it here.
via AnandTech – Understanding Camera Optics & Smartphone Camera Trends, A Presentation by Brian Klug.
First, let’s talk small. At just 3.5 inches, the iPhone 4 (and earlier) is relatively small compared to most higher-end phones on the market, yet it’s immensely popular. (Technically, the iPhone 5 has a 4-inch screen, but it’s just longer–not wider–so that doesn’t really count.) Apparently, then, that’s a good baseline for an acceptable screen size for a large swathe of the mobile market.
via Smartphone Screen Real Estate: How Big Is Big Enough? – HotHardware.
Created by a startup called ProtoGeo, Moves is free and currently available only for the iPhone (the company plans to release an Android version but hasn’t said when). The app’s precision and power consumption need work, but I’m convinced its simplicity represents the future of self-tracking.
via Review: An App Called Moves Logs Every Step You Take—No Extra Effort or Hardware Required | MIT Technology Review.
Running Android 4.1 with a custom Huawei user interface, the phone is dust- and water-resistant, as was demonstrated on stage when Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s consumer business group, poured water over the phone’s screen with no apparent problem. He also dropped it on stage, on purpose, to demonstrate toughness.
via Huawei shows off phone with monster 6.1-inch screen – Huawei Technologies, CES, mobile – PC World Australia.
“We believe it’s not enough just to put the radios together and put them in software. To get the most powerful, flexible, dynamic system, you want to tie all the video and photo processing together with the radio processing,” says Michael Doerr, the company’s founder and chief technology officer. “And we have a unique processor that can do that, but it’s a question of getting to the right performance and power trade-off.”
via A Reprogrammable Processor from Coherent Logix Could Handle All Radio, Video, and Photo Processing on a Smartphone or Tablet | MIT Technology Review.
The rapid growth of the Chinese smartphone market means that it is set to top the U.S. iOS and Android install base next year. According to a research report by Flurry released last month, China currently has 167 million iOS or Android devices, compared to 181 million in the U.S.
via China Says It Now Has 1.104B Mobile Users, While Mobile Communications Revenue Totaled $116.26B Over First 11 Months of 2012 | TechCrunch.