Top Ten Mobile Phone News Stories of the Week

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Enjoy our round-up of ten mobile phone related news stories you may have missed including two pieces of news about the rumoured HTC M7, Amazon’s new virtual currency and LG’s MWC 2013 plans.

1. The HTC M7 May Have Ultrapixels Instead of Megapixels

In the first of two HTC M7 stories we’ll share with you this week, we’re going to look at a rumour the firm will be fitting a high-tech camera to the new phone, which will abandon the megapixel in favour of the ultrapixel. At the moment it isn’t clear whether this is just a marketing term, but the report does say the camera will use a clever stacked lens system for superior image quality. HTC’s PureView challenger, perhaps?

2. Even Bigger LG Optimus Pro Leaked

The LG Optimus G Pro was announced a few weeks ago, but LG disappointed international fans by only providing the phone with a release date only in Japan. Now a variation of the phone has been leaked, and this time it’s expected to be released in Korea. The new Optimus G Pro increases the screen size to 5.5-inches and retains the same 1080p resolution, plus it packs in a larger 3140mAh battery. Still no word on a release elsewhere though.

3. ZTE Blade 3 Smartphone Released

The third generation ZTE Blade handset has been released. Unsurprisingly named the ZTE Blade 3, it’s available for around £80 on pay as you go and features a 4-inch touchscreen with a 480 x 800 pixel resolution, a 1GHz single core processor and a 5 megapixel camera. Google Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is its operating system.

4. HTC M7 Spotted in French Ad

We’re expecting the HTC M7 to arrive on February 19, but a French retailer has jumped the gun by publishing a spec list, a picture and even a price for the new flagship phone. The spec is the same as previous leaks – a 4.7-inch, 1080p screen, a 13 megapixel camera and Android with HTC Sense 5.0 – while the price is €650, or £555. It also shows the phone will go on sale 8 March.

5. Amazon Introduces Amazon Coins Virtual Currency

Amazon has announced Amazon Coins, a virtual currency which will be used inside its Android Appstore as an alternative to credit cards. The system will be introduced in May, initially only in the U.S., and the conversion rate will be one Amazon Coin to one US cent. Amazon will give away, “Tens of millions” of Amazon Coins when the currency is launched to get customers used to paying with them. There’s no word when or if they’ll make it to the UK.

6. LG Continues to Tease its MWC Announcements

LG has already published a pretty picture of a neatly wrapped present to tease us about its forthcoming announcements, and now it has released an equally cryptic video concerning Mobile World Congress 2013. As usual with this type of marketing, it says almost nothing, but does promise, “A breakthrough will be made” at the show. You can watch it below.

7. Android 4.1 Jelly Bean Comes to the Motorola Razr i

Motorola has announced the Razr i should be getting an update to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean very soon. Make sure you check System Update in the About Phone menu, and look forward to the benefits of Project Butter (for extra smoothness), Google Now and lots of performance tweaks from the most up-to-date version of Google’s operating system.

8. Try BlackBerry 10 On Your iPhone and Android

If you’re interested in BlackBerry 10 and would like to see a cool demo of it running on your existing phone, then BlackBerry has come up with an ingenious way of making this possible. It has teamed up with augmented reality app Blippar, which you should install on your iPhone or Android device, then visit the website bbtakeover.me, activate the camera and let it do its thing. While the demo may not give the best idea of what it’s like to use BB10, it’s good fun and the augmented reality bit looks cool, so give it a try.

9. HTC Gives Away Free PlayStation Games

If you own an HTC smartphone running HTC Sense 4 or above, plus you have installed the PlayStation Mobile for Android app, then you can download a free PlayStation certified game every Wednesday until the end of February. HTC gained PlayStation certification a while ago, but has never exploited it, so it’s good to see them finally doing something interesting.

10. Acer’s Liquid C1 Hides an Intel Atom Processor

Acer will spearhead its assault on emerging markets in Asia with the budget Liquid C1, which uses one of the first Intel Atom Z2420 Lexington processors, which is specifically aimed at emerging markets and low-cost smartphones. The Liquid C1 has a 4.2-inch screen, an 8 megapixel camera, 4GB of storage and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

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