Enjoy our round-up of ten mobile phone related news stories you may have missed including 4G moving another step closer to launch, a new Nokia Lumia phone and a real-time voice translator app premiers in Japan.
1. 4G Airwaves Are All Clear
Ofcom has confirmed that the 800MHz frequency range is now clear of analogue TV signals, so it’s free for networks to start using for their 4G signals instead. Of course, this won’t happen tomorrow, but it’s another essential stage that had to be completed before the spectrum auctions could go ahead in early 2013.
2. Samsung Galaxy Premier Leaked
Yet another Samsung Galaxy phone will be making an appearance soon. Named the Galaxy Premier, it runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and has a dual-core, 1.5GHz processor, a 4.65-inch screen, an 8 megapixel camera and a chassis that measures just 8.8mm thick. There’s no release date just yet, and you should remember the specs are still only rumours.
3. Nokia Launches Lumia 510
Set for release in developing markets, the Lumia 510 is a Windows Phone 7.5 device with a 4-inch screen, a 5 megapixel camera and 4GB of internal storage. It’s designed to sit in-between Nokia’s basic Symbian smartphones and the new Windows Phone 8 devices. It’s out in India and China in November, at a quoted price of $199, or £123.
4. Real-time Translator App Demonstrated
Japanese network NTT Docomo has demonstrated an app named Hanashite Hon’yaku, where conversations between two people who don’t speak the same language are translated through both voice and text. It’s based on Android and uses the network’s cloud servers to process the translation. It currently converts Japanese to English, Mandarin and Korean, but other languages will be added in the future.
5. New Windows Phone Store Figures
A new report shows that Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store now contains 125,000 apps, although over the last few months, the rate of new apps being added has dropped. This is surprising given the impending release of Windows Phone 8, but the rate should increase after the Software Development Kit comes out, which could be during Microsoft’s 29 October event.
6. Concept Smartphone with E-Ink Screen.
If you own a Kindle or other type of eReader, you’ll already know how great E-Ink screens are, especially concerning their performance in direct sunlight, and ability to make the battery last. Onyx International has decided that such a screen would work well on a smartphone, and have created the prototype device you can see in the video below. The handset runs a modified version of Android, and the battery should provide a week’s worth of use before a recharge.
7. New Samsung La Fleur Phones and Tablet Leaked
Samsung’s La Fleur phones are designed for girls, and therefore come in pretty colours and flowery designs. Samsung will be adding several new phones to the range, based on the Galaxy Ace Duos, the Galaxy Ace 2 and the Galaxy S Duos – plus a La Fleur tablet created from the Galaxy Tab 2. No release date has been given yet, nor has any indication if they’ll be launched here in the UK.
8. Apple Updates iBooks
One of the only applications discussed during Apple’s iPad Mini event was iBooks, which has been updated to version 3.0. It brings iCloud support, so books are synced with all your devices, a new gesture for scrolling through text, free updates to bring new chapters or other improvements, plus social networking integration. It’s available for free in the App Store now.
9. Nexus 10 Manual Leaked
An instruction manual has been leaked, supposedly for the Nexus 10 tablet, a rumoured device that could launch during Google’s 29 October event. It doesn’t give much away aside from the presence of an HDMI-out port, but does give us a look at the design. As the name suggests, the Nexus 10′s screen should measure 10-inches, and could have an incredible resolution of 2560 x 1600.
10. China Sees Huge 3G Adoption
China has seen a massive increase in people joining its 3G mobile network. It’s still quite new there, having started in 2009, but last year there were 100 million subscribers, an impressive number. This year, it’s 202.6 million, more than doubling in just 12 months, and up from 176 million in July.