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printed November 21, 2014
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CTIA Wireless 2003

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The really big news from Audiovox is that they are expanding into GSM phones. A series of three GSM camera phones made by Sharp were detailed, although only the first model - the GS-200 - was on display. I covered the GS-200 a while back - it's very similar to the GX-10 in the UK.

The next model is the GS-300, which will have a 240 x 320 pixel main display, color external display, Java, 350K pixel camera, and video capture. The GS-400 has the same specs, but adds quad-band GSM, a megapixel camera, SD card expansion slot, and 40-chord polyphonic ringtones.

The new Siemens lineup, in order from high-end to low-end: SX1, SL56, S56, M56, C56, CT56, and A56. Interesting factoid: you might notice some parallels with the model naming of a certain brand of luxury cars...

The SL56 (left) and M56 (right) are the American versions of the SL55 and M55 announced last week at CeBIT.

The new Panasonic X70 next to the GU87 that was just released by AT&T Wireless. A version of X70 is also slated for the U.S. in Q4. The X70 is about 20% smaller than the GU87.

A closed view of the same two phones. The G50 and G60 (announced with the X70 at CeBIT) are not planned to be released in the U.S.

The Bingo wireless gaming device reference design from TTPCom. The navigation control has 8-way action, and also turns as a jog dial. This is one of only two working units in the world (the other was at CeBIT). As a reference design, it's more of a concept than a final product, although it does work, and the games look good. No major manufacturers or carriers have signed on to offer the device yet, although discussions are underway.

The Bingo has gaming keys on the top like many video game controllers, and supports multiple simultaneous key presses, so you can, for example, turn left while also braking in a racing game. Bingo games are developed in C++, and can be ported from platforms such as Game Boy Advance in as little as two days.

A camera is integrated in the back, as well as the speaker and microphone for using the device as a phone.

The device has a good shape and feel. The final version will require fewer internal components, and thus be thinner. The gaming engine that powers the Bingo has already been deployed for embedded games in some phones in Asia, and has been receiving good reviews.

The retro-cool Sony Ericsson booth, which is actually in the shape of a giant "se"

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