LG

The rumors are true, folks. There's actually a Windows Phone here at the IFA conference in Berlin, Germany. It's the LG Optimus 7, aka the GW910 aka the Panther. It's not a full production unit just yet, and it was on hand really to show off DLNA media sharing -- which lets you wirelessly pipe video, photos and the like from your phone to your TV. Photos and video after the break.

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22

WP7: What are the carriers up to?

Windows Phone 7 is, likely, just over a month away from hitting the store shelves in Europe and just over two months away from seeing the light of day in the States . We've seen manufacturer devices, app development, and (obviously) development of the OS itself over the past several months.

The one thing we haven't seen much from is the wireless providers. Who's getting what and how much is going to cost us when it gets there? While the "how much" is well in the shadows right now, we do have some idea on the "who" with respect to wireless providers. Here's how we see it breaking down.

AT&T: Billed as one of the "premiere launch partners", AT&T appears to be in a position to offer the largest selection of Windows Phone 7 devices. We've heard rumors of HTC (T8788 or HD7?), Samsung (Cetus), and LG (C900 and GW910) devices headed to AT&T. Our count shows as many as four Windows Phone 7 devices hitting AT&T's shelves this Fall.  Unless something changes over the next two months, AT&T will be at the forefront of Windows Phone 7.

T-Mobile: We are confident that T-Mobile will have a Windows Phone 7 device on the shelf at some point and the HTC Schubert has been quietly rumored to be that device. 

Verizon: Verizon and Microsoft may not be on good speaking terms these days after the KIN adventure. Rumors are that Verizon is simply not interested in Windows Phone 7 and a leaked "end of life" report has Verizon removing any existing Windows Phones from their line-up by March of 2011. Coupled with the signs that Verizon doesn't have any Windows Phones on their2010/2011 product road map, we won't be shocked if Verizon shifts their smartphone focus from Windows Phones to Android or Blackberry.

Sprint:  Listed as a launch partner when Windows Phone 7 was announced back in February (but that was a non-binding agreement), Sprint could go either way with Windows Phone 7.  They could keep everything under wraps and surprise everyone with a Windows Phone 7 or simply taking a "wait and see" approach (as they did with Android). Fared Adib, Sprint's Vice President of Product Development did say back in February, "Sprint and Microsoft have had a 15-year-plus relationship together. And we believe that the Windows Phone 7 Series will continue that relationship into a new decade." Our guess, Sprint will let Microsoft work out the kinks with Windows Phone 7 and eventually have a Windows Phone 7 device in their line up.  Maybe the Dell Streak Lightning?

Granted all this is speculation and the carriers still have plenty of time to throw in a few twists before Windows Phone 7 hits the shelves. 

We still have the nagging questions of "when will the carriers get these phones?" and "how much will they cost?". The OS was just released to manufacturers and best guess is still seeing mid-to-early November for availability. Pricing points are still anyone's guess. 

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As if yesterday's LG E900 pics, video and debunked 1.3GHz CPU story wasn't enough, this morning we have the same treatment for the upcoming (and U.S. bound) LG E900.

The device sports a slightly smaller 3.2" screen, features a 1GHz Snapdragon and has all the other hardware requirements we expect from our Windows Phone 7 devices.

The only other cool info that comes from the translated article is that the device is mostly metal, betraying its mostly plastic look. Because of this, the device evidently feels quite nice, giving it some heft. Although plastic is lighter, the consensus seems to be that metal feels better and we agree.

Check out the Android.com.pl for more shots of the device and if you're really hard up for media, you can watch the spectacularly boring video of it...booting.

[Thanks for everyone who sent this in]

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One of the hopeful rumors today is focusing around the LG E900 (seen last week), that sleek keyboardless Windows Phone 7 device probably headed for European markets.

The word is that it is running a 1.3GHz QSD8650A Snapdragon CPU, which of course would be a first and not too unexpected as Qualcomm is gearing up to launch a few new CPUs this Fall/Winter. It also features the obvious 3.7" screen, 

The bad news is, at least according to WMPU, that due to an goof in Google Translation, it may actually be just a 1GHz CPU, not the coveted 1.3GHz version.

[It all hinges on the 'A' in QSD8650A--with an 'A' it is the 1.3Ghz revision; without it is the regular 1Ghz. In the original Polish text, it is just QSD8650, so 1GHz.]

Either way, we're sure we'll like it, but alas it doesn't have the same headline making umph. We can actually see this going either way, so we'll just wait for LG to tell us but we're leaning with 1GHz.

Finally, some new, almost higher quality videos are out which can be found below for your viewing pleasure. And check out the source, Android.com.pl for more close up shots.

[Andoid.com.pl via WMPU]

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In the Bluetooth SIG documents on the LG C900, they have listed as around September 28th as the release date for said device. If you remember, LG said the same thing back in July too.

Since today is a slow news day on Windows Phone 7, many sites are posting this story from Phone Arena, which while interesting, really doesn't say anything new. But we have a feeling that regular folk are construing this to mean somewhere an LG C900 will be available at the end of September to actually purchase.

So far we know

The launch of Windows Phone 7 will be a coordinated effort and we can't see AT&T or LG jumping the gun on Microsoft. However, there is no reason to doubt that the LG C900 will be ready to launch at the end of September, nor do we doubt HTC and Samsung will also have their hardware near finalized at that time either.  All of this should be obvious as we are at the tale-end of the WP7 pre-launch.

In other words, Bluetooth SIG + LG ≠ internal-carrier release plans. So some perspective: First week of October = Microsoft unveiling Windows Phone 7, with devices becoming available soon after; November release dates for the U.S.

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Just a few days after images of the C900 from LG showed up, a video has appeared with what is supposedly the E900.

The difference here is the E900 has no slider keyboard and in turn, seems quite thin.

Both the E900 and C900 dovetail nicely with what LG has said their plans were: sliding keyboard for the U.S. market (AT&T), black-slab for Europe.

Other than a 3.7 inch screen, not much is known about the hardware.

Only downside with this leak is the video was shot on a cell phone, so the quality is less than stellar.

Check the video tour after the break!

[via MobileTechWorld]

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Pfffttt...Although LG has been boasting big about Microsoft and Windows Mobile/Phone for...well a few years now, not much has come of it. (See last week)

As it turns out, LG reportedly plans to launch 20 phones this year, with 15 of those being Android devices, the remaining five for Windows Phone 7.

He said that 4.2 million phones will be Android-based, while 1.8 million will use Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system, the executive said.

"We can't exactly predict the market. But one thing clear is LG is heavily betting on Google’s Android operating system. The number of Android phones will be more than earlier expected," an LG spokesman said.

Hmmm, lets see if this ratio balances out in 18 months?

Okay, I guess we shouldn't be too shocked. Android is selling like hotcakes, Windows Phone 7 is...well, untested at this point. LG needs to make money so they're going to follow that trail as any wise company would do.

But we get it LG: you love us and Android, someday you'll leave her because we're really the best, but you don't want to lose the house. So for now we'll play the part of the mistress. Hmmmph

Finally, it is still worth noting that LG plans to have five WP7 devices--so far we've only seen one, the Panther GW910.

[The Korea Times via TamsPPC]

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LG had some interesting things to say, at least according to 'What Hi-Fi?'

First, we get more confirmation of a Europe-first launch, where LG says they'll have their 3.8" device based on the Optimus-line (previously seen to be running Android, looky here) ready to go, ahead of Samsung and HTC. This device will presumably be lacking a hard-keyboard.

The next bit is that in the U.S., we'll be getting the version with the keyboard, like above (Panther/GW910), in November. We're guessing AT&T for that one, but wouldn't mind a Sprint model to kick around.

Finally, LG is either trying to make Microsoft look good or they really believe in Windows Phone 7, as they supposedly told Korean reporters that

 ... it expects WP7 to outperform the two rival smartphone operating systems

The rivals being of course Android and the iPhone (don't you love how Blackberry is not even mentioned anymore?). Sounds good to us.

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Of course everyone knows LG is named as a launch partner with Microsoft for Windows Phone 7, their 'Panther' has been seen everywhere and LG has been trying to enter the Windows Phone/U.S. market more significantly as of late. But whether we'd actually see a WP7 LG device this year in the U.S. was a question, up untill now. (Another example: Asus--no U.S. presence, yet).

According to Forbes, LG's push into the U.S. market is still pretty limited for their non-smartphones, mobile app store, Android phones and tablets.

The one exception seems to be Windows Phone 7. Like these other bits of good news lately (mostly AT&T related), we're not sure if this means one, single LG phone on "a" carrier or multiple devices with multiple carriers. LG earlier this year tried to 'wow' people with their LG eXpo and pico-projector combo, but while critically it held its own it never made a large splash in the market (but it's still one of our favorite phones of 2010).

We actually like LG and find their Korea-launched phones to be quite compelling. or at the very least, interesting (plus their cameras are actually top-notch, looking at you HTC). Here's hoping to see some more of their offerings in 2010 State-side.

Update: PCWorld has LG on record saying they'll have their first WP7 phone out by the "end of September", which puts us right at that October time frame. They also plan to have "a few" devices by the end of the year.

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2

AT&T One Cent Sale

Need a Windows Phone cheap?  If so, AT&T is offering their Windows Phone line-up for a penny.  We have no clue how long this fire sale will last but you can pick up a Samsung Jack, HP Glisten, LG Expo or Tilt2 for one penny.  Could AT&T be making room for a rumored Windows Phone 7 launch?

The penny sale doesn't come without a hitch.  You'll have to sign up for a minimum $15 data package and a two year contract.  Still, if you're looking to upgrade that HTC Fuze or Samsung Blackjack these deals are hard to ignore.  You can check out the sale information over at AT&T's website.

Thanks goes out to Cornelius Whitaker for the tip.

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While the AT&T LG eXpo made an initial splash, mostly before it even came out, it sort of fizzled in the U.S. market, partially related to limited availability, partially limited to being overwhelmed by HTC's dominance.

Still, it's nice to know that LG hasn't forgotten about its small but dedicated user base, as they just released a new ROM update for the eXpo--v10G. While it does not deliver Windows Mobile 6.5.3 or any radical changes, it does offer some bug fixes, enhancements and other little bits noted by users:

  • Read/Receipt message delivery
  • Backup PIN usage when using the fingerprint scanner to secure the device
  • Removed MMS app; replaced w/ stock WM version
  • Better signal strength
  • Fingerprint scanner works better

People are reporting that overall it's a solid update, keeping the device running well on that 1GHz CPU. The LG Idles interface remains roughly the same and the OS doesn't seemed to have changed version numbers, but hey, at least it fixed a few things without creating any new problems, right?

Read the announcement here, read the directions and grab the .exe download here.

Bonus: If you want to go the custom ROM style, check out Dark's 'Dragonstorm' ROM v4 based on the v10g core.

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LG has announced an all-new LG Application Store with more than 3,000 applications consisting of a mixture between feature phone apps and Windows Phone apps. The good news is that the LG App Store is available in 23 countries and will expand to 33 countries by the end of the year.  The bad news is that the U.S. market isn't among them.

In the Press Release, Dr. Skott Ahn, President and CEO of LG's Mobile Communications Division said, "Today, more and more people want mobile devices that make their lives easier and more exciting through the right combination of applications. To meet this growing demand, we've put a great deal of effort into strengthening our application offerings for all types of phone owners"

While research noted in LG's press release indicates that 90% of feature phone owners in the U.S. and United Kingdom are interested in downloading application, neither of these countries are included in the initial 23 Country launch. The U.K. is included in the next group of ten countries but, again, not the U.S. 

You can find a full list of Countries having access to the LG App Store at www.lgapplication.com.

[read: engadget.com]

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LG is re-affirming its commitment to the Windows Phone 7 movement.

Ahn Seung-kwon, LG's Mobile Business Chief, stated:

"We will boost our premium lineup, LG Electronics will concentrate on developing devices that take full advantage of the Android and Windows Mobile 7 systems for the next year or two."

He explained that 10 design-focused and specification-rich smartphones will be marketed with North America and Europe targeted for these new phones.

Asked when we will see a Windows Phone 7 device, Ahn said the schedule to market a Windows Mobile 7 in the second half of the year was underway. This would put LG in line with the "by holiday 2010" statements we've heard from others on the WP7 availability.

We've like what we have seen from LG recently with their Expo and Fathom. It will interesting to see what the company can do with Windows Phone 7.

[via: koreatimes.com]

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"Everything must go! Folks we are literally giving away these phones, we cannot hold on to them any longer! We need to make room for the iPhone 4 and Andro...err, Windows phone 7 devices"

That's what we think it sounds like over at AT&T right now as evidently they sent out an email to their "premier" fancy-pants customers noting that you can get some pretty solid Windows Mobile 6.5 devices for bargain rates (*with a new contract of course, they're not that desperate).

For example:

  • HP Glisten (review) for free
  • Samsung Jack (review) for free
  • HTC Tilt 2 (review) for $74.99
  • HTC Pure (review) for $39.99 (out of stock)
  • LG eXpo (review)for $69.99

A 1GHz Snapdragon device for $70? Oh LG eXpo, we hardly knew you! (-_-)

Anyways, if you need a backup device, want to stock up for the apocalypse or befuddle friends and family by giving them as gifts, head over to AT&T and get them while we still recall their names (Premier account login required).

Hey everyone, remember how like nine-months ago, these devices were the talk of the town and the Touch Pro 2 was a boarderline unicorn? Yup, those days are now over, time to move on, the unicorn is dead.

[Thanks, Mark L, for the tip!]

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10

Review: LG Fathom from Verizon Wireless

The LG Fathom has surfaced from the depths at at time when some believe the Windows Mobile Windows Phones (we really have to work on these names) have all but dried up. The Fathom offers a Snapdragon processor along with Windows Mobile 6.5.3. It's being offered through Verizon Wireless for $379 without a contract or as low as $149 with a two year commitment.

The first impression from the Fathom is positive. The build quality feels solid and the phone rests comfortably in the hand.  Beyond that, the Fathom is a little bit of a mixed bag lacking flavor in many areas.

For more on the LG Fathom, you know the drill, just ease on past the break.

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While we knew some of the details about the LG Panther (GW910), we didn't have all the little nitty-gritty bits.

Granted, this is not the sexiest phone we've ever seen, but functional? Heck yeah, it seems like it'll do quite well with our new OS. The other thing is this is not final and LG might be apt to change or modify things before launch. Of note is the 720p video recording, something which is becoming more and more the norm these days.

But currently, it's not so bad, though we're hoping to see what HTC can bring to the table. Come on guys, leak something already...

 [via TechArena]

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Looks like that LG Panther (GW910) is getting around these days. 'Innovative Singapore' received not one but two of the prototype devices to actually start developing their WP7 software. If you recall, we reported on how Windows Phone 7 devices will be going out to developers soon and sure enough, that time has come.

Not only do they show more images of the phone, but they have some of the not-yet-finalized packing and even a sample shot from the camera. Their brief hands on is repeated verbatim below.  Needless to say, developers must be getting excited at the prospect of using actual WP7 hardware. We know we can't wait.

  • This is definitely still a prototype device, and there are still quite a few rough edges to be fixed. The device OS is still being updated with new builds almost every other day.
  • Even the packaging and box is expected to be different before the final product ships. For example, the current box is not even using the correct Windows Phone 7 logo.
  • Despite it’s prototype status, the phone appears to be more or less feature complete and incredibly responsive and fast. The animations are all very smooth.
  • For the time being, you need a special build of the desktop Zune software (Dorado) to sync with the device; the current released version of desktop Zune software won’t work.
  • The camera works pretty well, and the resulting photo is sharp, as you can see below:

[via Innovative Singapore; Thanks Jonathan!]

 

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Verizon today announced the LG Fathom, a 3.2-inch horizontal slider running Windows Mobile 6.5.3. The Fathom will be available at business channels on May 27 and in stores June 3. It will cost $149.99 after the usual two-year contract and $100 mail-in rebate. Monthly plans begin at $39.99 for voice and $29.99 for unlimited data.

Other specs of note:

  • 1GHz Snapdragon processor.
  • WiFi 802.11b/g/n.
  • Bluetooth 2.1.
  • MicroSD up to 16GB.
  • 3.2MP camera.

Full presser after the break.

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