The last few weeks just may have been this year’s most significant when it comes to smartphone announcements. Earlier this month, after much anticipation, Apple fans were finally handed news of the next generation iPhone which turned out to be a smaller change than what all expected but should have known – the iPhone 4S is basically the iPhone 4 running iOS 5, Siri and slight boosts in hardware. In the Android world, two flagship smartphones were announced which had Android lovers waiting with bated breath; these of course were the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and the child of the newish Google and Motorola marriage, the Motorola RAZR.
The image above is taken from Samsung’s first commercial video for the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S II smartphone. We’ve posted the clip below so you can see how the little girl mistakes the little clown fish swimming on her (or sadly her parent’s) Samsung Galaxy S II as a real fishy. Concerned for its welfare, she tenderly plonks the phone in the goldfish bowl so it can ‘be happy’ again. The point of the video, of course, is to emphasize the vivid and clear display of the Samsung Galaxy S II‘s Super AMOLED Plus display. We know a lot of you out there who are keen to own this device are a lot smarter, but just in case you haven’t noticed yet, there is a disclaimer on the video saying that the Samsung Galaxy S II is in fact, NOT waterproof.
Nokia, which makes roughly four out of every 10 mobile phones sold, has been losing out in the market for phones that can access the internet, send emails and download third-party applications, to products such as the Apple iPhone and BlackBerry Storm. The Android software platform, meanwhile, has been gaining ground with over half a dozen handsets expected to be available by the end of the year.
The smartphone segment is critical as it is the only part of the mobile phone market which is growing. Cash-strapped consumers are either holding on to their existing phones and opting for cheaper SIM-only deals or “trading up” to more advanced gadgets such as the iPhone.
Opting to use Android, an “open source” platform that any software developer can access, is a reversal of the company’s previous strategy in mobile phone software.
A year ago, Nokia bought out the partners in its Symbian mobile software joint venture and announced plans to make its products free of charge to other manufacturers in an attempt to see off the threat posed by Android and the iPhone.
But the response to the opening of Symbian has been relatively muted. By contrast, users of the iPhone have already downloaded over a billion applications in just nine months and Android has attracted a host of developers offering their “widgets”, or applications, to consumers through the Android Marketplace.
There has also been speculation that Nokia is looking to extend its smartphone range as a result of its recent deal to collaborate with chip giant Intel. Nokia however denied the rumors. Through a spokesman, Nokia responded, “Absolutely no truth to this whatsoever, everyone knows that Symbian is our preferred platform for advanced mobile devices.”
Let us wait and see the next chapter of this story. There is no smoke if there is no fire. The Nokia World Conference will be on September. Let us all speculate and be patient.
For all the potential Android app developers out there, your time has come – Google has announced the launch of the new Android Dev Phone 1. The handset is the same HTC Dream that’s being sold through T-Mobile as the G1, except that as its name implies, this one’s meant for the developers and hence, unlocked.
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