announcement

In just over a month, we’re heading back to CES, the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. But this year, we’re not just going…we’re going big!

The Mobile Nations family is once again teaming up with our friends at Geek Beat and together we're going to be putting on #CESLIVE. We have some awesome booth space in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center, where we'll be setup and streaming live during tradeshow floor hours throughout the week of CES. CES Live will complement our standard coverage with plenty of interviews and product demos live from our stage.

Traditionally, each of the Mobile Nations sites do their own thing, but this year we’re pulling together as a team. Or a dysfunctional family reunion. Which ever. The fact is, between us and Geek Beat (with John P and Cali Lewis), we’re going to show you the best of the best at CES, just like you were there. Granted, Windows Phone news tends to be a little slow, but if it’s there, we’ll bring it.

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Huawei have made the Ascend W2 UMTS version official - giving consumers in the smartphone market yet another option when deciding on which smartphone to purchase. According to the below press release the device should be available now in China (but has already been listed at retailers) - with roll outs later this month to Russia and the Netherlands, and further markets to follow in due course. 

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Nokia never ceases to innovate. That's the mind-set for the majority of it customers and also the company, who has taken to Twitter to unveil an event happening on October 22nd.

What makes this date so special? Nokia cancelled a New York event for this month, which was to announce the Lumia 1520, a 6-inch Windows Phone and also a Windows 8 RT Tablet. There's not much to go on regarding location, but there are some subtle hints in the image, we're sure.

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Join us for the Windows Phone Central Live Blog of Nokia's announcement.

We're live in New York City with Nokia, front and center, ready to bring you the latest on their ever changing lineup, including the expected announcement of the Lumia 1020 with a 41MP camera phone.

Join us after the break for the live stream, our live blog and your comment room! You won't want to miss it! The event starts at 11 AM ET.

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We’ve heard that T-Mobile is scheduled to finally launch the thin and light Nokia Lumia 925 on July 17th and now that seems to be the case. T-Mobile has just sent out press invites, including one for Windows Phone Central, for their “boldest moves yet” campaign, taking place in Manhattan on July 10th--one week prior to the launch.

Since that’s a plural “moves” in there, we imagine that Nokia will be one of a few featured devices and services for the day, meaning some Android phones could be on hand as well.

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As E3 winds down, an exciting week is still upon us. Nokia just sent out press invites, including one to your favorite Windows Phone site (that’d be this one, folks) for July 11th at 11am.

The focus of the event (yes, we intended that pun):  If we had to bet our life on it, it would be Nokia’s EOS for AT&T, which is expected to punch with a 41MP camera and the latest iteration of the Windows Phone 8 OS.

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Mobile Nations launches Talk Mobile 2013!

We’ve teased it for weeks but now it’s time to unveil what all that ‘TM13’ business was that was such a big secret. TM13 stands for Talk Mobile 2013 and it’s our new program that will elevate the discussion of mobile beyond just platforms and who is better than whom.

The event is based off of our Round Robin program, which we did years ago. That event involved all of the head editors trading phones for a week and then reviewing the experience. While fun, that was a 2008 thing and this is 2013: all the platforms have basically caught up to each other and have become outstanding options. No longer does one dominate the conversation and neither will it here.

Talk Mobile isn't a one day event. It's a discussion that will carry on across Windows Phone Central, CrackBerry, Android Central, and iMore for the next several months. We've picked 10 important topics in mobile and cooked up a whopping 50 Talk Mobile features that we'll be publishing across the sites that are going to spark a lot of conversation.

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The Lumia 920T for China Mobile

We’ve seen a lot of the Lumia 920T in the last few weeks as the Chinese variant was getting ready for its debut. Now word has it that China Mobile has officially announced the device for a November launch, ahead of the mid December timeframe originally hinted at just a few weeks ago. Rumor has it that China Mobile (and probably Nokia) want to beat the iPhone 5 to market and to be honest we can’t blame them.

The Lumia 920T is essentially the same as the current Lumia 920 but features some different radios to work with China Mobile’s network, including TD-SCDMA ( 3G), GSM (2G) and TD-LTE (4G). Not too shabby. One thing is for certain: having the Lumia 920T on such a large network (655 million subscribers) is a very good thing for Nokia.

Source: Sina Weibo (China Mobile), Winp.cn; Thanks, hengxiang32401, for the links!

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It has been speculated for some time now that Microsoft would hold a special press event for Windows Phone 8 to finally show off the OS and sure enough, it has come true.

On Monday, October 29th at 10AM, Microsoft will show off to the world their new mobile OS originally codenamed ‘Apollo’.

The announcement is coming just days before the first expected availability of new Windows Phone 8 devices, thought to be occurring on November 4th.

Windows Phone Central will of course be there in sunny San Francisco to cover the event and bring you all the news as it happens. Then we're off to BUILD 12 the very next day.

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Will only AT&T have the 920 in the US?

In today’s press release from AT&T making the Nokia Lumia 820 and 920 official, the word “exclusive” unfortunately was tossed in to the mix raising some red flags.

When addressing the Lumia 920 specifically it was used in this context:

“Exclusive to our customers and featuring unique innovations…the Lumia 920 will be one of the hottest phones for the holidays,”

To us that sounds like AT&T has managed to make a deal with Nokia to be the only carrier offering the flagship phone. While the Lumia 820 has been expected to go to T-Mobile and even Verizon, the 920 was always a toss up. Many people have been hoping big Red would finally get a top of the line Nokia Windows Phone. In fact, an earlier report from PhoneArena strongly suggested that to be the case.

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AT&T made the HTC 8X official today

Although HTC themselves mentioned that their new Windows Phone 8X was coming to Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T just a few weeks ago, AT&T this morning has gone ahead and made it official.

The HTC 8X features a 4.3” Super LCD2 display with Gorilla Glass, 16GB storage and a dual-core 1.5GHz CPU. To top it off it has an 8MP F2.0 rear camera and a 2.1MP front-facing camera, both using HTC’s ImageChip technology for speedy shots.

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Today HTC unveiled their new Windows Phone 8 devices, the 8X and the 8S (see our hands on). Jay Bennett and Daniel Rubino discuss both phones, whether people were impressed and what this means for the Windows Phone ecosystem. We also field some of your questions.

Listen in as we help decide which phone is the bestestHD Video after the break...

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HTC 8X and 8S both on their way to UK shores

Three UK has announced on their official blog plans to stock both HTC Windows Phones that were announced today at the manufacturer's event in New York. The HTC 8X and 8S are HTC's entries for Apollo to match Nokia's new Lumia line and the Samsung ATIV S.

Unfortunately no details have been supplied surrounding availability or pricing, but if we're to follow how AT&T will be setting bars, we wont be looking at a loan or possibility of a remortgage. EE (Everything Everywhere - Orange and T-Mobile) has taken up both the Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 to launch on its new 4G LTE network.

We'll expect more information to be published by Three on what models will be stocked, as well as colours and pricing. Now Three UK and EE have both thrown their support behind Windows Phone 8, only the likes of Vodafone and O2 remain.

Source: Three UK

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Mock battle: iPhone 5 vs Lumia 920

When the day breaks tomorrow, the tech world will be focused on one thing: Apple. Then it will turn on everything else that is mobile and ask rhetorical questions. Will we be a part of that? Well, we can’t ignore it, can we? For that though, you have our sister site iMore who have had some fairly massive (and accurate) leaks on the upcoming iPhone 5.

But we want to know, will Apple live up to the hype or will Nokia outshine them this time?

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PlayUp - The new JBL-Noka portable speaker with NFC

[Updated with new images and Nokia link]

Bloomberg BusinessWeek and Nokia’s own Chris Weber have revealed that JBL and Nokia are getting together for some new NFC-enabled mobile speakers called PlayUp.

Much like the Play360 currently on the market from Nokia, the new JBL-Nokia offerings look to improve upon their existing model of high quality portable media speakers. The device is expected to feature NFC and Bluetooth for easy connectivity and since Nokia’s new Lumia lineup will feature NFC, it makes a good pair for retail.

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Although no live recording was allowed during the Microsoft-Ballmer reveal of the now famous Surface tablets, the Redmond company has gone ahead and put it online for your viewing pleasure.

The full video chimes in just under 48 minutes, so grab yourself your favorite beverage of choice and relax as you're shown what looks to be "the next big thing" in mobile computing.

We'll save our thoughts for later tomorrow but for now let's just say we're feeling pretty good about where Microsoft is heading.

Make sure to check out our other coverage on the Surface below:

Source: Microsoft

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We have to admit, we're rather loving this speculation about what Microsoft will unveil on Monday and it finally looks like it's coming into focus.

On Monday, June 18th, Microsoft will take the wraps off of their own tablet running Windows 8 (or a variant of), confirming an earlier report.

The New York Times is now going on record as having spoken to "people with knowledge of Microsoft’s plans"  that indeed, it is a tablet of their own making. As the Times points out, this is the first time in the company's 37 year history that they are making their own computer. That's huge.

What makes the situation difficult is how Microsoft's OEM partners will react--after all, they'll be competing with their own team, so to speak. On the other hand, Google has been making "Nexus" devices for some time now--devices which set the bar for what they expect as far as quality in hardware and design. Truth be told, the Nexus line of Android phones have been some of the most popular as they are both cheaper and more stable having no 3rd party skinning.

If Microsoft heads down this path, the tablet unveiled on Monday will surely be priced very competitively and also be a "pure" device. That notion certainly appeals to us and we're betting you're going to thrilled with it as well. What's more, according to the New York Times, Microsoft is aiming this directly at the iPad making this a bold (and overdue) move.

Unfortunately, there's no word if Nokia has had a hand in this--our bet is they have not. Instead, we're expecting Nokia to show off any new tablets in September at Nokia World. For some reason, we don't think we'll be disappointed with whatever they make leaving fans a tough choice: pure Microsoft or whatever Nokia offers?

The only question we're left is what will they name it? Microsoft has a spotty history in this area and let's be honest, the name is hugely important. (Then again, we all laughed at "iPad" a few years ago). We're kind of partial to "X-Tab" but curious as to what you think they should call it...let us know in comments!

Source: The NY TImes; Thanks, Pierre V., for the tip

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Over at All Things Microsoft, Mary Jo Foley has laid out an interesting discussion linking Monday's secret Microsoft announcement, tablets and even Barnes & Noble.

First up is the tablet announcement. After the Hulu idea was shot down as was Windows Phone (we've confirmed that it's not a Windows Phone announcement, otherwise we'd be there) the rumors are now centering around an RT Tablet unveiling. Specifically a Microsoft-branded RT Tablet which is more or less the same core that Windows Phone 8 will be based off of.

The rumor comes from entertainment site The Wrap who reported:

"But an individual with knowledge of the company said that Microsoft would introduce a Microsoft-manufactured tablet at the event, marking a foray into a new hardware category that would put the company in direct competition with giant rival Apple."

Certainly a plausible idea though we won't really know until Monday as the event is very much under wraps. Should Microsoft be unveiling a branded RT tablet (RT is what powers Windows 8) it will surely make headlines for numerous reasons. Some have even speculated that Nokia would be behind such hardware but Microsoft would wear the name. We find that last bit a tad much but who knows. 

Back to Mary Jo Foley, she has suggested that the Microsoft/Barnes & Noble deal focuses heavily on Windows Phone, specifically Windows Phone 8. The information comes by way of a recent filing with the SEC on the deal which mentions "Windows Phone" 55 times in the document. That's odd only because the original agreement does not mention WP at all.

Foley then goes to suggest that 

  1. There may be a reader ala Kindle of some-type announced Monday
  2. It's based off of the Windows Phone OS, specifically Apollo

We've told you that there will be two HD resolutions for Windows Phone Apollo--720x1280 and 768x1280--both of which are very high resolutions even by today's standards for a smartphone (on a 4.5" screen, the PPI is higher than the iPhone 4S's 3.5" Retina Display). Because of that we could easily see a tablet/reader running at 768x1280 but the question is would Microsoft do that?

We're not so sure. We're confident that Monday's announcement is not anything Windows Phone related--that's from talking with Microsoft PR on the matter who would surely have us there if it were. Then again, if the OS is some hybrid of a desktop OS and the Windows Phone one (for telephony purposes) then perhaps Microsoft is pulling a quick one. A strategy by Microsoft to take on the reader market is surely plausible and the location, LA for entertainment, makes more sense.

Needless to say people's imaginations can run wild on this and we'd rather sit back and see what happens.

Source: The Wrap, All Things Microsoft

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