Last year the buzzword at Mobile World Congress was "wearable." The fervor from that market trend still hasn't died down, but hot on its heels is "virtual reality." Despite a less than fantastic position in the smartphone space, HTC seems intent on expanding into virtual reality to compete with the likes of Microsoft, Google, Oculus Rift (and by extension, Facebook), and Samsung. Say hello to the HTC Vive... or possibly the Re Vive, depending on which HTC promo you go by.
While the entirety of Huawei's presentation at Mobile World Congress was devoted to their intriguing new wearables, today is also the public debut of their new tablet/phablet, the MediaPad X2. The 7" device has an attractive metal construction, full HD screen, and all the connectivity you'd expect out of a high-end phone.
As it appears, that is indeed an aluminum unibody that looks similar to a speakerless HTC One. At just 7.18mm, it is also incredibly thin for how large it is.
HTC's One series has kept a consistent design language since its minor re-launch in 2013, and it looks like the Taiwanese manufacturer doesn't intend to mess with a good thing. After several leaks, the One M9 (following the M8 and M7) was announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this afternoon (or morning, depending on where you're reading this).
The new Greenify v2.6 beta comes with a variety of interesting changes, including full Xposed support for Lollipop users. If you have been dragging your feet on donating to the developer, you will be happy to learn that two of the best paid features are migrating to the free version as well. While less obvious to the end user, much of the under the hood mechanism has been rewritten to improve performance and facilitate future feature additions.
Amazon recently had to remove its main application from the Play Store because it included a parallel and competing app store. It replaced it with "Amazon Shopping," which is basically the same thing minus the Amazon Appstore. This new app has received a minor facelift today that improves one of the first things you see when you launch it.
Old loading animation
New loading animation with a subtle orange bar
The pesky grey loading circle, a relic from Android's past, has finally disappeared, to be replaced by a cool, pulsating, and minimal orange loading bar.
IKEA is jumping on the wireless charging bandwagon. The world's largest furniture maker and retailer understands the demands of the modern home. In a bid to streamline your interior's design as much as possible, remove redundant elements, and get rid of the cable clutter everywhere, it has designed a collection of bedside tables, lamps, and desks, with integrated wireless charging spots.
The collection, which is designed by David Wahl, employs the most common standard, Qi. If your Android device has wireless charging built-in, like the LG G3, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, and dozens of others, chances are it uses Qi. If it doesn't, IKEA plans to make charging cases available for select smartphones, including some Samsung models.
But, in case you want further confirmation that this is what HTC will indeed unwrap later today at its MWC conference, Best Buy has let its own M9 product page go live. It's a listing for the AT&T-compatible grey variant of the phone, with 32GB of storage and priced at $649.99.
Huawei can't seem to keep its MWC goodies under wraps. Its gorgeous Huawei Watch leaked earlier thanks to two lengthy product videos, showing a Moto 360-like round watch with small steel bezels and an elegant design. But that won't be the only wearable the company is working on (and presumably announcing at MWC in a few hours). After showing up prematurely in a few public ads, the TalkBand B2 has made an appearance in none other than Huawei's own Wear application.
Huawei Wear, the companion app to the OEM's bands, has received an update. When picking out a new device to connect to, the app suggests the TalkBand B1, the ColorBand, and a yet-unannounced TalkBand B2.
Watch the video below. Watch it several times if you need to. Try to figure out what it's trying to promote. A remote and exclusive European ski resort? An auction house for classic Mercedes cars? Champagne intended only for use in questionably phallic gestures? Nope, it's Huawei's Watch. That's not a typo, it's actually called the Huawei Watch. Let's... um, watch.
The design of the Android Wear device looks more or less like the Moto 360, with its metal housing and thin bezels but without its signature "flat tire" screen cutout. The Huawei Watch also has conventional lugs (presumably making for easy watch band swaps) and a single "crown" button at the 2:00 position.