Nokia The Most Talked About Brand on Opening Night at Mobile World Congress

Nokia 8 Sirocco

Mobile World Congress last week was a fantastic event for Nokia.  Not only did they announce five new phones, but according to Twitter Marketing UK, they were the most talked about brand on the first full night of the event.  Everyone assumed that Samsung would take this honor, especially given they launched their new flagship phones, the Galaxy S9 and S9+, the night prior.  But Nokia stole the limelight for a few reasons.

First, Nokia is a brand that people know and love.  Sure, you can same the same thing about Samsung today but chances are, most of you reading this post, started life with a Nokia device or have had one at some point in your mobile life.  That is not necessarily the case with Samsung.

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Nokia 6 Coming to The United States in May

Nokia 6 (2018)

When the new lineup of Nokia phones were announced this week at Mobile World Congress, one of the key questions was which one of the devices would make it to the United States.  Initially, the answer was none of them.  HMD Global, the parent company of Nokia, indicated that while the US market was on their roadmap, it wasn’t in the plans for this year.

That now has seemed to change slightly.  CNet, who originally published an article stating no phones were coming to the US, has updated their post after clarifying it with Nokia.  Now it appears that at least the revamped Nokia 6 will be coming to the country in May.

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The Asus ZenFone 5Z Blatantly Copies The iPhone X – Notch and All

Asus ZenFone 5Z

Another flagship phone was announced today at Mobile World Congress and stop me if you have seen it before – because if you’ve seen an iPhone X, you’ve essentially seen the Asus ZenFone 5Z.

The latest flagship in a trio of phones announced today by Asus is as blatant a copy of the Apple flagship as you will find but that may not be all that bad.  THe ZenFone 5Z isn’t a cheap knock-off.  It is a flagship with flagship specs.  The 6.2″ FullHD IPS display renders at 1080 x 2246 pixels and is a 18.5:9 ratio.  That gives you a very comfortable ~402 ppi density.  It is powered by the Snapdragon 845 SoC which is coupled with the Adreno 630 GPU.  It has 4GB of RAM and comes standard with 64GB of storage which can be expanded thanks to the MicroSD slot.  Battery wise, you have a 3300mAh battery.

 

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 700 Series – A More Budget Friendly 800 Series SoC

Qualcomm Snapdragon

While the focus at Mobile World Congress tends to be on new phones, that doesn’t mean that component manufactures aren’t there and making their own announcements.  Qualcomm is a good example with their announcement of the new Snapdragon 700 System-on-Chip (SoC) processors.

The best way to think of the new 700 series is that it brings all the best bits from the more expensive 800 series while giving a more budget friendly price like the 600 series.   The new series will have the Spectra image processing of the 800 series as well as the AI engine.  It will feature Quick Charge 4.0, Bluetooth 5.0 and, according to Qualcomm, will be 30% more power efficient over the 600 series.

 

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Google Announces The First Beta of Their New Cross Platform Mobile SDK Flutter

Flutter Logo

Today at Mobile World Congress, Google introduced Flutter, their new cross platform mobile SDK.  The new development tool will allow for developers to create native UI frameworks for both Android and iOS that are native to each platform.

The beauty of Flutter is that it comes packing its own rendering engine and framework which, in essence, bypasses the native UI frameworks in both platforms.  This is not something new for developers, especially game developers who have used different rendering engines.  This allows for significant performance increases (particularly on Android).  When you compile the app with the available Android and iOS SDKs, you get the appropriate app & framework for the respective platform.

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ZTE Tempo GO The Latest Android Go Phone Under $80

ZTE Tempo Go

The latest Android Go series phone has been announced at Mobile World Congress, the ZTE Tempo GO.  The Tempo Go is a 5″ FWVGA display device that has all of the basics covered for one of these low cost devices running Android Oreo.  Better yet, ZTE has priced it at just $79.99.

As for specs, the display renders at 480×854 and the phone is powered by the Snapdragon 210 quad-core SoC.  It has 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage but that storage can be expanded by an additional 32GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  Powering all of this is a 2200mAh battery that is recharged via the MicroUSB port.

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Actions for Google Assistant Adds New Languages and Android App Integration Improvements

Google Assistant Logo

Today at Mobile World Congress, Google has announced the expansion of the languages supported by Actions for Google Assistant, the SDK that allows developers to leverage Assistant in their apps and solutions.  The new languages, which go live today, include:

  • Hindi
  • Thai
  • Indonesian
  • Danish
  • Norwegian
  • Swedish
  • Dutch

These languages join English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Russian which are already supported.  The new languages are fully supported in development tools too, like DialogFlow and, of course, the Actions SDK itself.

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The Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact Announced at Mobile World Congress

Xperia XZ2

Today at Mobile World Congress, Sony announced the much anticipated Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact.  The two new devices mark a significant departure in Sony’s previous phone designs with far smaller bezels and 18:9 ratio displays.

Internally, the two devices are virtually identical.  They are powered by the Snapdragon 845 SoC, have 4GB of RAM and have 64GB of storage built-in.  That storage can be expanded up to 400GB thanks to the MicroSD card slot.  Both have a 19MP f/2.0 rear camera that can shoot an incredible 960 fps slow motion video, and a 5MP f/2.2 selfie camera on the front.

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