Posted by Alex Perryman on Sep 04, 2013
The run-up to the IFA consumer electronics show, (running in Berlin from 6-11th September), inevitably sees a rush of companies looking to declare a ‘world first’ in electronic consumer devices.
This year’s novelty appears to be the release of a series of devices capable of recording video in the new 4K format, most prominently in the new Acer Liquid S2 and LG’s G-Pad.
Generating a minimum of 24 frames per second at 4K’s standard definition of 3840 × 2160 pixels is no mean feat. The new Snapdragon 800, used in both the Liquid S2 and the G-Pad, clocks-in at a hefty 6249 floating point operations per second at up to 2.3GHz on a reference tablet.
We’re unlikely to see the Snapdragon on full-tilt in most mobile devices, (the S2, for example, is running at 2.2GHz). However, in this region of processing grunt, together a 600MHz Hexagon DSP and some blisteringly fast LPDDR3 memory, (theoretically capable of clocking in at 12.8GB/sec), means that the Snapdragon 800 can eat the concept of 4K for lunch and still have time to image at up to 55MP, (21MP stereoscopically).…
Posted by Darren Willsher on Aug 29, 2013
Today sees the launch, in London at least, of 4G services from Vodafone and O2, finally catching up with EE, which launched what feels like an eternity ago.
This is the end of what’s been a fairly complicated and drawn out affair, with all sides complaining about the other and the last few months have seen some interesting manoeuvring as they try and tempt consumers across to the more expensive plans.
While the 4G service from EE has been impressive, the number of people switching over hasn’t quite hit the level it was hoping for. So after spending lord only knows how much on new infrastructure, Vodafone and O2 have been working on some clever bundles to get people to switch.
The good folks at Pocket Lint have put together a solid post looking at the different options and costs here, but what’s clear is that the offer of high-speed data isn’t enough to get people to pay the extra.…
Posted by Darren Willsher on Jul 10, 2013
If you’ve been in London recently then you may have spotted some adverts on the tube about the 4G mobile network and the digital switchover. Yesterday Ofcom also released a statement announcing that it has decided to allow mobile phone operators to use their existing 2G and 3G radio spectrum for superfast 4G mobile broadband in the future.
This is all on top of a stack of media attention on the 4G network and the race between the different UK operators to get their networks live.
What makes this particularly interesting is how it’s taken a very technical subject and dragged it into the mainstream public eye. Normally if you started talking about the challenges of 800MHz versus 2100 and the propagation characteristics of either, well you’ve probably already gone cross eyed.
However this is now something people are paying more attention to. I’m not suggesting your gran has suddenly become an expert on mobile network optimisation, but those with a casual interest in tech are now reading about the 4G auction and the different frequency bands and starting to appreciate the differences.…
Posted by David Marsden on Jun 13, 2013
I’ve blogged previously both on the question of innovation and on the need for standardisation. A solid and widely adopted technology gives a perfect platform for innovative new technologies to be developed quickly and easily –a standard provides this base.
The established installed base of billions of Bluetooth devices in the market is one such platform. I blogged earlier this year about the relative pace of wireless innovation, and significant hardware innovations provide the foundation for more rapid innovations, which might be in software. But equally, the flood of innovations might come from the hardware systems or end products designed around the core technology.
For over 10 years I worked with CSR, the very successful British company that made Bluetooth work in a type of integrated chip technology called CMOS, which others said couldn’t be used for a wireless radio.…
Posted by David Marsden on May 17, 2013
In his report on the new Nokia 925 handset earlier this week, the BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones highlighted that wireless charging has been removed from the new Nokia 925 – though this feature will be available via an add-on cover. The logic was that this was to make the phone slimmer. If wireless charging was deemed to be a must-have feature in modern smartphones, then I would argue that dropping support in exchange for just a couple of millimetres might have been a bigger issue.
Also known as inductive charging, the advantages of wireless charging simply in terms of convenience are obvious; no fiddling around with plugging power cables into the handset. Industry leading mobile tech giant Qualcomm is putting its weight behind the initiative and is particularly keen to address one of the barriers to its wider adoption: wireless charging is still only possible when the device is placed on a mains powered charging pad.…