Enjoy our round-up of ten mobile phone related news stories you may have missed including the Nexus 5 showing up in a Google video, Android 4.3 for the Galaxy S III and S4, plus the best KitKat commercial ever made.
1. Google Nexus 5 Leaked?
When Google unveiled its new KitKat statue in front of its California offices, a video was shot of the event and “accidentally” posted on YouTube. Sharp-eyed viewers noticed a few of the onlookers were using a previously unseen Nexus phone to take pictures, and speculated it may be the Nexus 5. The video has since been made private, and Google has said nothing about it. That probably tells us all we need to know.
2. Watch Out, Here Comes… Newkia?
The former CEO of Nokia’s Asia Pacific division, Thomas Zillacus, has founded Newkia, a new company based in Singapore set to make a Nokia-inspired Android phone within the coming year. Zilliacus hopes Nokia employees who don’t want to stay on at the Microsoft-owned company will join him, as he plans to open an R&D centre in Finland. Will he succeed?
3. Official Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear Intro Video
If you missed the launch event for the new Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Gear, you may not have had a good look at the two latest Samsung devices. If that’s you, you’re in luck, as the company has posted an extensive video on its YouTube channel, showing almost everything you’d ever want to know about them both. Check it out below, provided you’ve got almost 20 minutes spare.
4. Galaxy S III and Galaxy S4 to Get Android 4.3 Update
In an effort to ensure as many people as possible have the opportunity to purchase and use a Galaxy Gear smartwatch, Samsung is hurrying to update the Galaxy S III and Galaxy S4 to Android 4.3, as the latest version of Google’s OS is essential for it to function. Apparently, the update will start appearing in October, but we’ve heard promises like that before, so are a little wary. Perhaps the importance of the update to Samsung’s sales will mean it’s a high priority this time?
5. Huawei Denies Link to BlackBerry Buyout
Following Microsoft’s purchase of Nokia, attention has turned to who may buy the equally struggling BlackBerry. Having previously been linked with buying Nokia, is Huawei considering it as a target? According to a Huawei board member, it hasn’t considered an acquisition, and wants to rely on its own abilities to make it in the mobile market. Great for Huawei, perhaps not so for BlackBerry.
6. Xiaomi Mi3 Official
Xiaomi hit the news recently due to former Google employee Hugo Barra joining the firm, and now it has announced its latest smartphone, called the Xiaomi Mi3. It has a 5-inch, 1080p screen and either the Snapdragon 800 or Tegra 4 processors, depending on which network it’s sold on. There’s also a 13-megapixel camera, 2GB of RAM, and a sleek 8.1mm chassis. There’s no indication the phone will make it out of China though.
7. Ricoh Unveils Panoramic Camera Device
Ricoh has shown off an unusual device that takes high-quality panoramic images, using two cameras at the same time. Looking not unlike a smartphone, the Theta can be used to capture wide photos, both indoor and outdoor, syncing with a mobile device to show of the final shots. We wonder about its everyday usefulness to consumers, but a demo video seems to show it being used by people like architects and interior designers. Take a look at it below.
8. Lenovo Vibe X Shown at IFA 2013
Lenovo isn’t well known for its phones outside of China, but it has still chosen the IFA show to reveal its latest device, the Vibe X. Fitted with a 1080p, 5-inch display, a 13-megapixel camera, a quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM, it’s a rival to other top-end phones from Samsung, Sony and LG. Sadly, there are no plans to bring it to Europe or the UK.
9. Panasonic Quits Smartphones
After a brief return, Panasonic left the European smartphone market – after producing hardware like the Eluga and Eluga Power – late last year, and now it has announced it has decided it has had enough of selling its own phones worldwide too, and will change to an outsourced production unit instead. This means we’ve seen the last of Panasonic branded mobile phones.
10. Toshiba Launches the Encore Tablet.
Toshiba has launched an 8-inch Windows tablet called the Encore. The screen has a 1280×800 pixel resolution, and is powered by an Intel Bay Trail processor. It runs the brand new Windows 8.1 operating system, has an 8-megapixel camera, and is due to go on sale in November.