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ZTE Olympia Phablet for T-Mobile appears Online Phone Reviews

ZTE is a brand that hasn t really made its mark in the Unites States, as the devices aren t the easiest to get from a carrier. That s putting it mildly. T-Mobile is hoping to change that, and we ve just gotten our first look at the phablet dubbed the ZTE Olympia.

Yesterday a photo of an unnamed ZTE phablet hit the web via @evleaks 1 , saying that the device was undergoing testing at T-Mobile. Next to nothing was known about the mini slate, but what a difference a day makes. Today we got the scoop on the device, and confirmed the codename Olympia along with a few specs.

TmoNews 2 confirmed the Olympia (Z970) moniker and found out the phablet will have an 8MP rear camera to go along with a 0.9MP front-facing snapper. The screen is 6-inches, but the resolution is unknown, and the same goes for the processor, internal storage, and RAM. The battery is fixed, and the device was running Android 4.4.2.

We have no idea when the ZTE Olympia will arrive on T-Mobile or if it will receive a name change before it hits the streets. Until we learn more, we re assuming it will be a mid-range phablet with the now standard Snapdragon 400 and 1GB of RAM combo. That said, benchmarking software was not allowed on the device, so maybe ZTE and T-Mob will surprise us with something a little faster.

Would a mid-range ZTE phablet on T-Mobile interest you if the price is right?

References ^ @evleaks (evleaks.at) ^ TmoNews (www.tmonews.com) Continue reading

BlackBerry restructures, battles mobile phone ecosystem with Z3 …

BY EMEKA AGINAMTo regain its lead position in the smart phone ecosystem, the Canadian mobile phone maker is restructuring for growth and profitability. Just last week, the global smart phone maker introduced into the Nigerian market, BlackBerry Z3 , a product that is within the reach of an average Nigerian BlackBerry Territory Director, East, West, Central and Southern Africa, Mr Charles Asinugo, who spoke to Technology Journalists during the introduction of the new product in Lagos said with optimism that the Canadian smart phone maker was restructuring to regain its lead position in the competitive smart phone market. He said that the introduction of the device was part of the company s restructuring mechanism to regain market lead in the smart phone ecosystem.

The BlackBerry Z3 extends the BlackBerry 10 platform to a new generation of customers in Nigeria at an attractive price point and offers them more ways to securely communicate, collaborate and be productive with an experience built on reliable, secure communications. The device features a stylish design with a 5 touch display, an unrivalled messaging and typing experience, exceptional battery life, is equipped with BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.2.1 and is Android app compatible , he explained. The core strength of BlackBerry is its security.

Our devices will continue to come down in price but it does not mean that they are of low quality. The Nigerian market is one of the strategic markets of BlackBerry and we hope it will help us bring BlackBerry to profitability. We are back to regain the market of smart phone he explained.

He explained that the new device was built with inbuilt battery, hence making the battery life last as long as the phone would. It offers them more ways to securely communicate, collaborate and be productive with an experience built on reliable, secure, communication, he said. He further informed that the company will unveil into the smart phone ecosystem BlackBerry Passport in September and BlackBerry Classic in November this year respectively.

Key features: BlackBerry hub The ever present BlackBerry Hub lets you access all your work and personal email, BBM, text messages, social media updates and notifications in one place, with the ability to peek into the BlackBerry Hub from anywhere, so you re always only one swipe away from what matters to you. The Hub can be customized to identify priority messages and to filter the message list by various criteria that you can then activate with a simple pinch gesture. BBM BBM on the BlackBerry Z3 includes all the latest features of the popular mobile social network.

You get BBM voice and video chatting with Screen Share and support for BlackBerry Natural Sound, letting you hear nuances and variations in tone in a BBM Voice chat, and making the conversation sound like you re in the same room. BlackBerry keyboard The BlackBerry Keyboard learns what words you use and how you use them, then offers them up to you so you can type faster and more accurately. It gives you the best typing experience on a touchscreen, complete with multi-language support that lets you type in up to 3 different languages at the same time.

Apps Through BlackBerry world customers can access applications that leverage the powerful features of the BlackBerry 10 OS. The BlackBerry Z3 is also Androi App Compatible which means that customers can enjoy some of their favourite Android apps on the BlackBerry Z3. Time shift & story maker The BlackBerry Z3 s astonishing Time Shift camera feature lets you capture a group shot where everyone is smiling with their eyes wide open.

You can also use Story Maker to bring a collection of photos and videos together, along with music and effects, to produce an HD movie that you can instantly share on YouTube. BlackBerry 10 browser The BlackBerry 10 browser sets the industry benchmark for HTML5 performance on smartphones, and is incredibly fast, with fluid and responsive scrolling and zooming. The browser includes many advanced features, supports multiple tabs, lets you browse sites privately, includes a reader mode, and integrates with the platform for easily sharing content.

You can even save web pages for later viewing. Instant previews & reply now Be more timely and responsive with Instant Previews that bring BBM, SMS and email message to you no matter what you are doing on your BlackBerry Z3. Fast, easy sharing The BlackBerry Z3 learns how you share and who you share with, helping you reduce the number of steps and amount of time it takes to get your files, photos, or documents to where they need to go.

FM radio The new BlackBerry Z3 includes a built-in FM radio.

You can listen to local FM stations, which does not require any network connection. Continue reading

Samsung’s new Galaxy Tab S tablets have screens that will make …

Once again, Samsung is trying to make splash with big Android tablets and this time, it s going back to basics. The South Korean electronics giant is one of the few tablet makers that didn t give up on big Android slates after the 7-inch Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 took over the market, edging out many bigger models. Now, with its new Galaxy Tab S line, Samsung forgoes the stylus from its recent Note series for something far more impressive: freakin gorgeous screens.

Sure, the Galaxy Tab S available both in a large 10.5-inch version (starting at $500) and a more portable 8.4-inch version (starting at $400) is thin, light, and powerful. But its true claim is its luscious quad-HD display, which is so crisp and clear it practically feels 3D. But is a nice screen enough to make a truly successful tablet?

Gallery: Samsung's Galaxy Tab S tablets Good: Samsung s most refined tablet yet Just as with the Galaxy S5 smartphone, it s clear that Samsung has learned a lot about refining its products with the Galaxy Tab S line. They feel great in your hand thanks to a slim design and faux-leather rear cover (something adopted from Samsung s latest phones). And even though these still sport plastic cases, the overall quality of the materials feels a bit more premium than past Samsung tablets.

Both tablets also best Apple s iPad Air and iPad Mini in several respects: They re only 6.6 millimeters thick (the iPad Air is 7.5 millimeters thick), the 10.5-inch model is slightly lighter than the iPad Air, and the 8.4-inch model is slightly lighter than the iPad Mini. Most consumers won t notice those slight advantages, but they give Samsung a few metrics to show it can outdo Apple. Really, though, the main reason anyone would want either of these Galaxy Tab S tablets is for their stunning screens.

Both models sport bright and colorful displays with a 2,560-by-1,600-pixel resolution once again, slightly better than the iPad Air s 2,048-by-1,536 screen. You d be hard-pressed to notice the actual pixel difference between the competing tablets, but it s one of many reasons why the Galaxy Tab S line s Super AMOLED screens pop a bit more than the iPad Air s. Colors are brighter the iPad s LED display, blacks are darker, and it s easier to make out fine detail in high-resolution video.

I spent a lot of time gawking at 4K videos on YouTube with the Galaxy Tab S, and even though its screen isn t anywhere near true 4K resolution, the video still looked phenomenal. In some instances especially with high-quality nature documentary footage the Galaxy Tab S screens felt practically three-dimensional. You don t need fancy 3D glasses to feel the depth between objects on the screen.

And yes, HD videos also look pretty great too. It won t be too long until other tablets feature similar screens, but for now Samsung (which also builds the display components for many competitors) remains a step above the competition. I swapped between both the 10.5-inch and 8.4-inch Galaxy Tab S in my testing and found that both had their own unique strengths.

The screen on the larger tablet is far more impressive and better-suited to binge watching video. The smaller Galaxy Tab S, meanwhile, is more convenient thanks to its paperback-like weight. While I enjoyed using both tablets, I ended up favoring the larger model because it feels truly different from other large Android tablets.

There s plenty of cheaper competition for smaller Android tablets, and I figure most consumers would rather spend around $200 on a tiny 7-inch slate rather than $400 for the slightly larger Galaxy Tab S. Both of Samsung s new tablets are powered by the company s latest mobile processor and 3 gigabytes of RAM. Samsung stripped down its Android skin so it s less intrusive (something it also implemented in the Galaxy S5), and it has fewer gimmicky features to deal with.

That speaks to the overall maturation of Android as well as Samsung s own evolution as a company. I saw around 12 hours of battery life from both tablets in my testing, which involved typical web and app use as well as loads of video streaming. Bad: Inconsistent performance, curious pricing Despite their powerful hardware, the Galaxy Tab S tablets sometimes choked on simple things like opening up complex apps, loading games, and switching between apps.

I m not sure if it s due to Samsung s software additions, or just general Android sluggishness, but it was disappointing to see in premium devices. It s also tough to tell if these tablets have any place in the existing market. As I ve mentioned, cheaper small Android tablets are far more compelling than the 8.4-inch Galaxy Tab S.

And even if you re welling to throw down near $400 for a smaller tablet, the iPad Mini with Retina Display is a strong competitor. As much as I like the 10.5-inch Galaxy Tab S, it s hard to recommend when it s exactly the same price as Apple s iPad Air. Apple has had far more time to refine its tablet hardware and ecosystem, so why would anyone want to pay the same price for less?

If Samsung actually wanted to make the Galaxy Tab S tablets competitive, it should have been far more aggressive when pricing them.

I m sure it would have been difficult to accomplish, but a Galaxy Tab S line priced at $300 for the 8.4-inch version and $400 for the 10.5-inch would have given consumers a clear reason to consider them. Continue reading

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