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SpecTech: New smartphones hit the market, Windows 8 Beta debuts

Welcome to the first day of March! Only one week left until spring break! This edition will introduce you to a ton of phones, the Windows 8 Beta, and the countdown to the iPad 3.

The Mobile World Congress event started with a bang as Nokia announced the Nokia 808 PureView; a phone unlike any other.

Although it runs the outdated Symbian OS, it makes up for it with a 41-megapixle camera! It can record full 1080p HD video, will have CD-like audio recording and use Dolby Headphone technology and Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound playback. It will be released in May.

Nokia also announced a low budget phone called the Nokia Lumia 610. It has a 3.2 inch screen, comes in a variety of colors, has a solid weight to it and will run Windows Phone 7: Tango. It will cost around $254; no carriers were announced.

Samsung announced a ridiculous amount of devices this week. The iPod Touch better watch out because the Samsung Galaxy S Wi-Fi is coming. This is a Wi-Fi only device that supports a 4.2-inch screen, Android 2.3: Gingerbread, and a 1GHz processor. It also holds a 2-megapixle camera and a VGA front camera. This device will also have free Wi-Fi calling. No price or release date was announced.

Samsung also announced the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Tablet; finally a tablet that makes sense. This 10.1-inch tablet will have a S-Pen stylus, two cameras with HD video and a 1.4GHz dual-core processor. It will run Android 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich.

The Samsung Galaxy Beam was announced with a built-in pico projector! The projector can mirror any screen that is on the phone, but this is targeted at a general audience and not for business presentations. It will have a 1GHz processor and two cameras and is expected to launch between May and June.

The Samsung Galaxy S II Blaze 4G was announced for T-Mobile. The device has a 4-inch Super AMOLED screen, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, two cameras, and of course 4G HSPA+ support. No price or release date was announced.

LG announced the LG Optimus 4X HD, a 4.7-inch smartphone with a quad-core processor. It has an 8-megapixle camera and a front camera as well. It has Near-Field Communication technology and will launch with Android 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich. There was no release date or price.

LG’s second announcement was the LG 3D Max. It will be glasses-less 3D, have a 3D camera and can run all apps in 3D. Sadly, it will launch with Android 2.3: Gingerbread; there was no word if it will be upgradable to Android 4.0.

HTC’s One X was announced with a 1.5GHz quad-core NVidia Tegra 3 processor. It will also have a 4.7-inch Super LCD 2 Gorilla Glass screen, an 8-megapixle camera and a 1.3-megapixle front camera and support Beats Audio. It will launch on AT&T’s 4G network later this year, but with only a dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor.

China based company, ZTE, announced 15 new smartphones and tablets, but the one that stood out was the ZTE Era. It boasts an NVidia Tegra 3 Quad-core 1.3GHz processor, a 4.3-inch qHD display, and will only be 7.8 millimeters thin. It will launch with Android 4.0 in the third quarter of this year, but it is unknown if it will be available in the U.S. at that time.

The ZTE Orbit will have a 4.3-inch screen, a 1GHz processor, 5-megapixle camera and NFC compatibility. It will launch with some version of Windows Phone in the second quarter of this year.

It is official, the iPad 3 reveal event will be held next Wednesday in San Francisco at 10 a.m. PST, so about 1 p.m. EST. Rumors have all pointed to better cameras, a better screen, an A6 processor and even Siri support.

Windows 8 made its beta debut and it looks amazing. This seems to mix together the desktop experience and tablet OS seamlessly. Like I reported before, the Metro screen will not have a Start button, but you are able to return to the Start screen from swiping either from the left or right. Switching to the desktop is easy and still uses the same programs from the Metro screen, but allows for better use with a mouse and keyboard. I have not been able to test out the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, but you can if you visit http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/consumer-preview. I am using a Dell desktop running Windows Vista, so if you have something like that or better, it should work for you.

Our question this week is, “What device in this article are you most excited for?” My personal choice would be the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. Email your answers to smsetser@valdosta.edu or answer on our website at vsuspectator.com.

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