A couple of weeks ago we spotted LG's new G Pad II 8.0, at that point announced exclusively for the company's home market of South Korea. The hardware is underwhelming at best: despite some interesting features like a full-sized USB port and a stylus, many were put off by the pokey Snapdragon 210 processor and 1.5GB of RAM. Fortunately, it looks like LG isn't going to go for the lowest common denominator with all its forthcoming tablets. The G Pad II 10.1, announced today, has a little more oomph to its hardware.
To begin with, it uses a 1920x1200 screen, which has become essentially the lowest point of entry for 10-inch tablets at this point (no matter what Samsung says).
Sony's been in the Android-powered smartwatch game for years now, but with the release of the third iteration of its straightforwardly-named "SmartWatch" line, the company is transitioning to Android Wear.
The SmartWatch 3 is an unapologetically plastic product. Rather than the usual black brick with a cheap strap, the band on Sony's watch comes in to wrap around the body of the device. This provides it with a look that sets it apart from the competition, though this also means it will probably show more wear and tear with age. Fortunately, the strap is still swappable.
Here at IFA 2014 in Berlin, Sony is announcing new entries to its Xperia smartphone line at all levels. The flagship Z series, last updated only six months ago at Mobile World Congress, has been bolstered with the Xperia Z3. This device is the tip top of Sony's line, though in terms of sheer hardware it's an evolution rather than a revolution. The 5.2-inch 1080p screen, Snapdragon 801 processor (bumped up to 2.5Ghz), and 20.7MP rear camera are similar to the last iteration, but the body is much thinner at 7.3mm. The body is also more rounded, which should help with those somewhat uncomfortable squared-off shoulders.
At this year's IFA, Asus has removed the layer of secrecy surrounding its upcoming Android Wear-powered ZenWatch. Unlike the Moto 360 or the LG G Watch R, Asus is not trying to wow us here with a circular display. The ZenWatch distinguishes itself by fitting a square screen behind a layer of curved glass and a hardware design that strives to be more than a plastic wrist computer. The watch sports a brown leather strap that's intended to add to its appeal.
The ZenWatch has a 1.63", 320x320, 278ppi display that sits behind curved Gorilla Glass 3. It's powered by a Snapdragon 400 1.2GHz processor and 512MB of RAM.
As expected, Samsung has taken the lid off the Gear VR headset at this year's IFA in Berlin. The concept behind the company's attempt at virtual reality consists of pairing a Galaxy Note 4 with a bulky head unit, using the handset to supply both the display and the power. The product comes from Samsung, but its software has been created by Oculus. An early-access beta version is set to become available for eager techies and developers later this year.
Just as the name suggests, the Innovator Edition is not intended for general consumers. Samsung wants to get this hardware into the hands of early adopters and developers so that they can get to work.
Some companies like to make a show of their appearances at big tech conferences like IFA. Some of them just like to announce everything all at once, and Lenovo is squarely in the latter category. The company's only Android addition in Berlin is the Tab S8, but thanks to an interesting collection of specs and price tag, it's worth your attention. The 8-inch tablet is a decent mid-range device on paper, but the interesting part is that Lenovo has set the suggested retail price at $199.
As you might guess, the Tab 8 uses an 8-inch screen. This will be a full 1920x1200 16:10 IPS panel - not bad, not bad at all.
It's been less than six months since Sony announced the top-of-the-line Xperia Z2 back at Mobile World Congress, but it looks like the company may be ready to release yet another iteration at IFA in Berlin. A Facebook fan page (reported by the reliable XperiaBlog) posted photos of what looks a lot like the next Xperia superphone, the Z3. A sticker on the device includes specifications, though there's no way to confirm them. Don't get too excited; it looks like a pretty tepid update.
According to the leak, the Xperia Z3 uses a Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM, 16GB of storage space plus a MicroSD card, a 5.2" 1080p screen, Sony's 20-megapixel Exmor camera sensor, and a 3100mAh battery.
IFA will take place early next month in Berlin, and a number of companies are tripping over themselves to drum up hype for their upcoming Android Wear devices. LG has teased the G Watch R, a round evolution of its first attempt from earlier this summer, a few times now. For its part, Asus also wants consumers to know that it has something on the way. Yet this competitor doesn't appear to have something circular on its mind. Nor does it appear to be entirely square. The recently released trailer doesn't reveal much, but what's there appears to be something in between.
LG wants to make sure you know that it's announcing a new watch at IFA in Berlin. In addition to the movie trailer-style teaser released on Sunday, the image below showed up on the official LG Mobile Facebook page late last night. It's undeniably the G Watch R, which sports a "completely round" screen, in contrast with some watches that are taking their sweet time to come to the retail market.
LG's image is a little murky, in a "look at our fantastic new gadget" kind of way. Here's the same image with a few brightening tools applied in Photoshop.
Ever since the reveal of Android Wear, we've been waiting for that awesome-looking Moto 360 watch with the circular screen. And waiting. And waiting. Though it looks like the release or at least the announcement might finally come next month, LG isn't missing the opportunity to get people excited for their second Android Wear device after the G Watch. Behold, LG's 30-second teaser for a watch announcement at the IFA show, which starts in Berlin in just under two weeks.
The trailer features an "R" logo, some not-so-subtle digs at the design of the Moto 360, and at the end, what appears to be an outlined render of the watch.