Google's Project Ara might be the very definition of a geek pipe dream: an idea that makes a lot of sense, but isn't quite possible with current technology, being made real with applied engineering and creativity. Even with Motorola being sold to Lenovo, the Ara modular phone project is still full speed ahead at the Googleplex under the new ATAP team. Dave Hakkens of Phonebloks, who presented a very similar concept back in September, was recently given a tour of ATAP's progress.
If you're interested in Samsung's new oversized Note PRO or Tab PRO 12.2 devices, it's more than likely because you want to get more done on that beautiful and massive 12.2-inch display. In order to make that happen, you'll need a little bit more than just the tablet, and Logitech has already released a keyboard for the job: the Logitech PRO keyboard/case.
At $130 (plus the $750-850 for the tablet), however, you have to ask yourself at what point you stop wanting a tablet and start wanting a laptop or some sort of hybrid/convertible device.
Motorola Mobility held a Q&A session at Mobile World Congress today, and while there wasn't much in the way of spectacle to coincide with the event, there were quite a few substantive announcements. For starters, the company is working on a watch that will be available some time this year. This won't be the first thing Motorola's tried to strap onto our wrists, but the company says style and battery life are two things it intends to address, and it would prefer to create a piece of jewelry rather than ugly tech.
ARM still dominates mobile devices more than two years after Intel started making chips suitable for Android phones and tablets. The company is taking another swing at it in 2014 with the newly announced Merrifield and Moorefield chips. These processors pack updated GPUs, new 64-bit architecture, and an efficient 22nm manufacturing process.
The Merrifield chips are now officially known as the Z34xx family. According to benchmarks produced by Intel, the dual-core Z3480 processor is capable of besting the Snapdragon 800 and Apple A7.
You've probably read by now that Nokia's making Android phones. Sort of. And I'm sure there are all sorts of analysts, experts, and other people trying to scream at you collectively that this means something. Nokia's changing directions. Nokia's making Android a backup if the Microsoft merger doesn't go through. Nokia's Android is going to finally end Google's dominance in the world of cheap smartphones!
Let's leave all that aside, because those are frankly annoying and pointless conversations to have.
We've been trying to keep our heads up about the Lenovo-Motorola deal, but let's be honest: news like this is not encouraging. A Wall Street Journal report claims that Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside, whom many had credited with the company's impressive new product lines in 2013, is leaving for Dropbox. Woodside began working for Motorola after more than ten years at Google, succeeding Sanjay Jha after Google acquired the company.
The Wall Street Journal cites three anonymous sources in its detailed report, but Google confirmed the news shortly thereafter.
Mobile news hounds, you'd better start getting the popcorn ready - Mobile World Congress starts in just over two weeks. Following Samsung's confirmation of their Unpacked event, Motorola has also scheduled a press event for the Barcelona trade show on Tuesday, February 25th.
Then again, maybe popcorn won't be necessary. According to Pocket-Lint, Motorola will have no major announcements to make at the event, which probably means no new mobile hardware at Mobile World Congress.
Sony is continuing to mimic Motorola by adding its apps and services to Google Play. This time it's the new Xperia Transfer Mobile app, which seems a lot like Motorola Migrate. Who knows... maybe Sony is going to sell itself to Lenovo any day now.