Mobile Phone News

Info on new Motorola handsets emerges

Motorola RazrLenovo-owned mobile maker, Motorola, is set to have a big 2017 if rumours of its upcoming handset launches prove to be accurate.

Two new models known as the G5 and G5 Plus are in the pipeline, with a launch event likely to take place during MWC 2017 later this month, according to Tech Radar.

Leaked details suggest the standard G5 will feature a five inch display, a Snapdragon 625 chipset and 4GB of RAM to keep it competitive with similar Android devices. The larger G5 Plus will up the screen size to 5.5 inches but should feature similar hardware to its more compact sibling, with a bigger battery being the main difference.

In terms of pricing, the G5 should cost under £300 while the G5 Plus is pegged at around £380. Each model will make use of a native 1080p resolution, meaning there is no chance of QHD display tech being on offer.

Motorola has impressed in recent years thanks to the build quality, customisation options and cost-effectiveness of its flagship smartphones. It seems that this trend is unlikely to be altered in 2017, with even more models on the way later in the year.

Leak suggests Google will launch affordable Pixel smartphone

Google Pixel smartphoneThe first two Pixel handsets (Pixel and Pixel XL) introduced by Google were aimed at the upper end of the mobile market, giving Apple’s iPhone family an own-brand Android range to compete against. But now sources quoted by 9to5Google have claimed that a cut price Pixel device is on the horizon.

Furthermore, the less expensive phone will be offered alongside the Pixel 2, which will of course come with cutting edge hardware and an appropriately steep asking price.

The Pixel range has not enjoyed the stellar sales that Google had anticipated, with critics arguing that this is partly due to the fact that it is simply too costly for consumers to stomach. This makes the idea of bringing a budget model to the table all the more appealing, especially from a commercial perspective.

Google may have shot itself in the foot by making Android seem like the consumer-friendly, cost effective rival to iOS for over half a decade, then bringing the Pixel to market in a segment that put off its traditionally value-conscious user base.

The cheaper Pixel device is expected to be less powerful than its stable mates, but should still pack solid specs for a modern smartphone.

Samsung Reveals Cause of Galaxy Note 7 Battery Issues

Samsung Note 7The combustibility of the battery used onboard the Galaxy Note 7 became a scandal following the handset’s launch last year, but now Samsung has finally revealed exactly what led to the widely publicised fires.

Company president DJ Koh explained that the size of the cells was in part to blame, with one of Samsung’s subsidiaries manufacturing 50 per cent of these batteries. The offending units were not endowed with the correct dimensions, resulting in a higher likelihood of overheating.

Once the initial recall had been enacted, Samsung then found that there were other flaws in the manufacturing of the replacement batteries, with detailed outlining of the failures being made public for the first time.

Around four per cent of people who purchased the Note 7 have yet to return it, with Samsung and its network provider partners urging these stragglers to adhere to the mandatory global recall.

With its reputation taken down a peg or two, Samsung is now hoping that the upcoming Galaxy S8 will allow it to regain some ground and prove that this scandal was a one-off, rather than a sign of problems which are more deeply ingrained in its supply chain.

BlackBerry Mercury Will Arrive in February

BlackBerry-FoxconAn official tweet from Canadian mobile maker BlackBerry has seemingly confirmed that its next major handset, known as the Mercury, will touch down on February 25th, according to Tech Radar.

The Mercury, which is made under licence by a third party rather than designed in-house, will still feature all of the security advantages of its forebears, while also sporting a physical QWERTY keypad for fast, accurate typing.

Unlike earlier BlackBerry smartphones, the operating system of choice will be Android, opening it up to a world of apps and services that were never ported to the firm’s proprietary OS.

The February 25th launch date will coincide with the Mobile World Congress event held in Barcelona, a fact pointed out by BlackBerry in its own somewhat cryptic announcement. So there is a little under a month to wait for the Mercury’s full unveiling and subsequent release.

While BlackBerry has been able to retain a small foothold in the market, its ability to appeal to mainstream consumers has diminished significantly, meaning that there is no guarantee that this new handset will help it to regain any traction. Nevertheless, the fact that it is being launched at all should indicate that there is still some confidence in its brand.

ZTE confirms more specs for crowd-funded smartphone

ZTE HawkeyeZTE is taking a novel approach to creating the Hawkeye, a handset which has not only been designed via input from customers, but is also being funded by fans ahead of its release.

Likely to cost less than £200, the Hawkeye will nevertheless be able to compete with flagship phones. And with more information released this week, anticipation is growing as the campaign gathers momentum.

Two cameras are now set to feature on the rear of the device, one of which has a 13 megapixel sensor while the other is a 12 megapixel unit.

A Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 chipset will handle the processing requirements of the device, while a 3000mAh battery with quick charging capabilities and a USB-C input are also on the cards.

The 5.5 inch display of the Hawkeye is only endowed with a 1080p resolution, but since the rear of the phone is said to have self-adhesive qualities, it should be able to offer some intriguingly flexible mounting options.

This handset seems to opt for a mixture of mid-range and high end hardware, perhaps hinting at the areas in which most consumers would prefer to see manufacturers focus their efforts.