The Droid Bionic has finally hit the shelves! Aaron got his demo unit and quickly posted an unboxing, first impressions article, and a video to show off the Bionic's 1080p HD video capture capabilities. All in all, the Bionic seems to be one of the best devices on the market. That's the good news we covered in this week's PhoneDog Live. The bad news is that Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 was banned in Germany which could mean trouble for Samsung if further lawsuits are filed by Apple. From one lawsuit to another, we also discussed Sprint's suit to have the AT&T/T-Mobile merger blocked. This will probably have little effect on the outcome of this deal, but it shows how vehemently Sprint is working to make sure it doesn't happen. We discussed a few reasons why Sprint is so upset by this deal. Could it be that Sprint wants to buy T-Mobile?
We heard surprising reports that Microsoft might actually announce a Windows 8 tablet at its Build conference and even hand some out to bloggers. These reports can't be verified just yet, but we discussed if a Windows 8 tablet would be successful or not. Lastly, we have one more possible launch date for the iPhone 5 and we talked about whether or not is is a mistake for Apple to skip some key features like 4G. We finished with a live open Q&A. Check out the show notes below and enjoy the podcast!
Finally! After months and months of speculation, cancellations, redesigns, and leaked photos the Droid Bionic has been announced. The last device I remember being this hyped up was the HTC Thunderbolt. That device was not quite as spectacular as you would have guessed based on the anticipation for it, but the Droid Bionic will certainly live up to the hype. Featuring a dual-core processor, 4G LTE, a giant qHD display, Android 2.3, and a camera capable of capturing 1080p HD video the Bionic is easily one of the best superphones on the market and should shortly become the best phone on Verizon.
In Aaron's First Impressions article, he mentioned that it is slightly bulky thanks to the LTE radio inside, but it's not as thick as he predicted from seeing pictures. In fact, it is Verizon's thinnest LTE device. Aaron also posted a video captured with the Bionic and I have to say that both audio and video quality are excellent. Aaron said still images are not up to par with other cameras, but further testing will provide more details on that.
The Bionic is on the pricey side, at $299 on contract, but if you've got the dough, I would recommend checking it out or you can watch Aaron's full review and see what he thought of it.
Everyone has a different opinion on whether or not Apple had the right to sue Samsung over the design of the Tab 10.1, but the only opinion that matters is that of the courts. Interestingly, the judge made the point that the court feel that Apple's "minimalistic design" isn't the only way to make a tablet and that "other designs are possible."
It's obvious that this lawsuit is about sales and not just principles. After all, why didn't Apple go after Motorola, Lenovo, Acer, Asus, or any of the other tablet makers who feature the same design? Samsung's Galaxy Tab has gained the most popularity and has had more success than other manufacturers' tablets. Not only that, but Samsung is a major retailer in the mobile space. Winning this lawsuit sends a message. The question is What kind of message does it send? How far will Apple have to go before it starts to lose respect in the eyes of consumers? Have they already gone too far?
This lawsuit will probably not have much effect on the final outcome, but it shows how angry Sprint is about the merger. Sprint is enjoying playing the Hero Card by supposedly sticking up for consumers, but that can't be their only motive. It never is in business. If Sprint were in AT&T's shoes, it would have done exactly the same thing AT&T is trying to do right now. In fact, Sprint did. Sprint was interested in purchasing T-Mobile before AT&T stepped in. This merger would make sense because Sprint is planning on switching to an LTE network. So, it would appear that Sprint is simply jealous that AT&T may have a chance at the deal Sprint wanted.
The problem that Microsoft will face is their viewpoint on what a tablet is and what a PC is. Microsoft sees tablets as PCs and PCs as potential tablets. Steve Ballmer said of tablets and PCs, "I think there will exist a general purpose device that does everything you want because I don't think the whole world [is] going to be able to afford five devices per person [a desktop, a tablet, a laptop, an MP3 player, etc.]. I think the PC as we know it will continue to morph form factor."
Because Microsoft has this point of view, they will feel the need to cram everything that's in a laptop or desktop into a tablet and that's just not going to work. Well, it may work but it won't sell very well. It's not that Microsoft isn't capable of building a great tablet, it's that they have the wrong idea of what a great tablet is.
As a note, I said during the show that Windows 8 will be for phones, tablets and desktop PCs. I misspoke. It appears that Windows 8 is for tablet, desktop, and laptop PCs and Microsoft will keep a separate OS for phones.
How much longer can Apple put off adding key features to its phone and simply rely on the name in order to sell devices? If the iPhone is not a 4G device as several rumors have said, if it doesn't have a larger display, if Apple doesn't at some point add features like true multi-tasking and more customization will some people opt to buy another device that does have those features? Is it a mistake for Apple to not add 4G connectivity to the iPhone 5? It's a wait-and-see game at this point, but with other superphones coming out every other month, could the end of the iPhone's reign be near?
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