CES 2007 + iPhone
NFC More Phones
Although we focus on the US market, there were a bunch of phones being shown off at CES this year that aren't necessarily slated for major US release. We hate to tease you with phones you might not be able to buy here, but we also hate let pretty pictures go to waste, so this page is dedicated to shameless gadget porn of some interesting phones you can look at, but not necessarily touch.
First we have the much-hyped LG Shine:
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The phone felt great, but the mirrored surface over the display definitely made the screen harder to see.
This one is slated for European release, but will not see US shores. LG told us they are planning phones for the U.S. with similar stainless-steel casing and design, just not this model in particular. We would guess the situation is similar to the Chocolate, where the US version ended up being quite different than what the rest of the world got.
LG's arch-rival Samsung was also showing off its latest and greatest. While the Ultra Music is most definitely US-bound, we will unfortunately be deprived of the much cooler and better-designed Ultra Video:
The Ultra Video features a much larger display on the "phone side", which actually makes texting and WAP browsing usable, instead of the complete joke such functions are on the Ultra Music.
Samsung is playing some interesting games with how they announce the Ultra Music and Ultra Video. First they unveiled just the multimedia sides of each phone, waiting several weeks before then revealing the phone sides. CES saw the announcement that the Ultra Music will reach US shores, but that's not all...
Although Samsung has released photos to the press of the Ultra Video with its antenna extended, they were extremely shady about it at CES, not letting anyone extend the antenna or take photos of it. When asked on the record, executives essentially issued a "no comment" on any live mobile TV capabilities. However one Samsung rep slipped and told us that we would have to wait until next month to learn about its live TV features. Therefore we expect Samsung to announce next month at 3GSM that the Ultra Video has a DVB-H receiver, or something similar (there's not much else the antenna could be for.)
Samsung also has a surprise in store about the US version of the Ultra Music, although unfortunately we're sworn to secrecy on that.
Another very stylish phone Samsung had at its booth was the A720:
This phone was originally slated for Sprint, although we've heard mixed rumors about it possibly being cancelled. Either way, our lucky neighbors to the north in Canada will definitely be seeing this phone. If Sprint has indeed cancelled this phone, we hope they reconsider, because it is a beautiful phone.
Samsung is also working on a promotional phone for the Simpsons movie coming out later this year:
They haven't finished negotiating a carrier partner yet, so they were showing off three potential models for the promotion: one each for Cingular, Sprint, and Verizon.
Motorola was also showing off its new ROKR E6:
After the disaster that was the ROKR E1, this one is only slated for Asia, but it's still neat to look at and drool over such a slick phone. With Linux, a touch screen, and a simple monolith design, it bears a striking resemblance to the iPhone. One has to wonder if Motorola could compete with iPhone by simple jazzing up the interface and bringing something like this model to the US.
Last we have the HTC Foreseer, the device Modeo is using for their NYC trial of DVB-H service.
There's not much new to report since we covered this device last year at CTIA, but here it is in its production incarnation. Modeo hopes to compete with Qualcomm's MediaFLO, but they don't seem to have much momentum so far.
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