Pour one out for the Xperia Z series. It's served Sony well since 2013, going through a relatively rapid five generations in under three years, plus offshoots like the massive Xperia Z Ultra, the diminutive Xperia Z Compact and its well-regarded descendants, and even a tablet or two. But all things must pass away, and so it is with the Z moniker. Probably. There won't be an Xperia Z6 at any rate, at least according to the statement that the company gave to XperiaBlog.
You won't have to fumble around with remembering the year with the newest Moto X. Or should I say, Moto Xs. This time the company is introducing multiple versions, and each has a name that sets it apart from the crowd. One Moto X has style. Moto X Style.
The Moto X Style is an updated version of the 2014 Moto X, the device we expected from Motorola. The screen makes a predictable jump up to a 5.7-inch quad-HD display. It also makes the leap to a less predictable 21MP camera on the back of the device. A 5MP one resides on the front.
Thanks to the fanatical culture that's grown up around mobile technology, we haven't been truly surprised by a new device in years. Even LG knows this: the company has been slowly revealing its upcoming G4 flagship, piece by pedantic piece, in the weeks leading up to the April 28th launch event. Last night an LG "micro site" was briefly published and removed, and it leaves very little of the G4 to the imagination.
Chinese manufacturer Meizu has unveiled its latest flagship device, the MX4. It's a high-end, 5.36-inch phone that spares no expense in some components, but seems to go a little down market in others. The 4th-generation MX4 will be available later this month in China starting at 1800 Yuan (about $290) for the 16GB version, with the 32GB and 64GB versions going for 2000 and 2400 Yuan, respectively. eBay and other official import shops are pre-selling the 16GB model for $449.99.
It would be hard to deny that the MX4 is inspired by a certain i-Product, but then, Meizu has never been shy about their Apple aspirations.
Xiaomi has been making waves in the expanding Chinese smartphone market thanks to solid hardware and customized Android software. The company's 4th-generation flagship, the Mi 4, looks like a definite step up. While the 5-inch 1080p screen matches the Mi3, the design is... well, let's call a spade a spade, shall we? It's a big iPhone. Between the segmented metal band, the specifically rounded corners, and the edge-mounted speakers, it's pretty clear that Xiaomi was going for a particular look.
Inside the phone is an impressive collection of specs: Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM, 13MP rear camera with an impressive 8MP front-facing cam, and a big 3,080mAh battery.
LG didn't do much of a job keeping the flagship G3 under wraps - pretty much every detail has been leaked in some capacity before today. But the press event in London made it official and laid the phone bare for all to see. LG's headliner for 2014 bests headliners from both Samsung and HTC with a 5.5", 2560x1440 screen boasting a DPI of 538. Unfortunately the oh-so-shiny case is only "metallic" (read: plastic), and not true metal like the HTC One family.
The phone's camera is also given a boost, not in megapixels, but in focusing power. The G3's camera has the same 13 megapixel resolution and optical image stabilization as previous models, but a tiny infrared laser module next to the rear camera will allow for more accurate autofocus in "a fraction of the time" required by conventional smartphone lenses.
After months of leaks, with early looks coming in forms ranging from a single Sense 6 screenshot to a fourteen-minute hands-on video in German, we've feared that HTC would have little new left to unveil on the Big Day. That remains to be seen. Now at a simultaneous launch event held in London and New York City this morning, the company has finally formally introduced its new 2014 flagship.
The HTC One M8's screen has jumped to 5-inches (up from 4.7-inches), but it retains its 1920 x 1080 resolution, dropping the PPI down to 440 (down from 469). We also see the expected virtual navigation keys, replacing the capacitive keys that previous resided down by the logo.
It's not exactly news that HTC will be updating its flagship phone for 2014, but more and more leaks seem to indicate that we can expect a phone that looks a lot like the current HTC One. Yet another leaked photo, this time from M Helal on Google+, shows what looks like a One with the dual cameras and a dual flash module that we've seen on a previous leak. The casing is a bit glossier than the current model, and the front view seems to confirm that HTC will switch to virtual navigation buttons.
Helal has specs to share as well: a 4.7-inch 1080p screen, a Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 5 megapixel front camera.
It's no secret that some of the biggest mobile hardware gets announced at Mobile World Congress, fast approaching at the end of February. So it's about this time of year that we expect to start seeing major leaks from OEMs. Queue XperiaBlog, hot on the trail of the next Sony devices as usual. Today they've published an absolutely massive gallery of screenshots from an upcoming Sony phone, codenamed "Sirius" and running Android 4.4.2.
According to an earlier leak on XperiaBlog (which we can't confirm), the D6503 Sirius will use a Snapdragon 800 (MSM8974AB) processor, 3GB of RAM, and a 5.2-inch 1080p screen.
The conferences put on by AllThingsD tend to be a bit sedate - Walt Mossberg gets on stage with some Very Important People and picks their brain in front of a live audience. Not so with tonight's interview of Motorola CEO Dennis Woodside and Research & Development head Regina Dugan. At the D11 stage, Woodside let loose with a flurry of information about the company's plans for the remainder of the year, starting with the much-rumored X Phone. Yup, it's real, and according to the interview, the "hero device" will be released by October 2013.
Woodside went on to say that the "Moto X" would be made in a Texas facility currently used to create Nokia phones, presumably through an OEM hardware partner.