Archive for October, 2010
Microsoft just officially launched its new Windows Phone 7 operating system. CEO Steve Ballmer showcased 10 phones that will go on sale in 30 countries soon– October 21 in Europe and Asia and November 8 in the U.S.
HTC showed off its 7 Mozart (3.7″ slate), 7 Surround (3.8″ slide-out speaker), Pro 7 (3.6″ slider), 7 Trophy (3.8″ slate), and HD7 (4.3″ slate). LG has the Optimus 7 (3.8″ slate) and Quantum (3.5″ slider). Dell showed its Venue Pro (4.1″ AMOLED vertical slider), and Samsung trotted out the Focus (4″ Super AMOLED slate) and Omnia 7 (4″ Super AMOLED slate).
All are powered by Qualcomm’s (aging but still speedy) QSD8250 1 GHz Snapdragon CPU, with 8-16 GB of fixed memory and 5-8 MP cameras (with LED or Xenon flash). None appears to have HDMI output or a front-facing camera.
More info at Engadget.
GM has officially introduced the Chevy Volt, its much-hyped electric vehicle. The $41,000 (before $7,500 federal subsidy and local incentives) sedan can travel a rated 25-50 miles on battery power alone and then uses an onboard gasoline engine as a generator to charge the batteries for a full range of over 300 miles.
Motor Trend and others have discovered, however, that the car’s gas engine, which GM has for over 3 years portrayed as simply a range-extending generator that charges the batteries when depleted, is actually connected to the wheels (to drive the car at high speeds). The engine, along with the two drive motors, feeds into a planetary gear set—very similar to how the Toyota Prius has worked for over a decade. So the Volt is more like a plug-in hybrid with a bigger battery and different programming than a “real” EV like the Nissan Leaf (or REVA).
The problem is that GM explicitly refers to the Volt as “purely electrically driven” and “not a hybrid” and even went so far as to say that there is “no direct mechanical linkage from the engine, through the drive unit to the wheels,” which is not true.
A set of leaked photos depict T-Mobile USA’s version of HTC’s upcoming Windows Phone 7 handset, the HD7 (codenamed HTC Schubert). As we detailed earlier, this is basically a WP7 version of HTC’s earlier, Windows Mobile 6.5-powered HD2.
Like the HD2, the HD7 has a 4.3″ WVGA LCD screen, Qualcomm Snapdragon QSD8250 (1 GHz) processor, 576 MB of RAM, and a 5.0 MP camera with autofocus and dual LED flash. The HD7 adds a kickstand, camera button, and more powerful (stereo) speakers, and whereas the HD2 has 1 GB ROM + MicroSD slot (up to 32 GB cards), the T-Mobile HD7 has 512 MB ROM and fixed 16 GB flash. That’s double what the European HD7 is rumored to ship with (8 GB).
The (international) HD7′s dimensions/weight are 122 x 68 x 11.2 mm / 162g, so compared to the T-Mobile HD2 (122 x 67 x 11 mm / 157g), it’s roughly the same size. The T-Mobile HD7 may be slightly taller– no exact dimensions yet. Pricing will likely be the standard $199 (on 2 year contract)– we should get final confirmation at Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 launch in just a few hours.