When a mobile network sells you a phone with a costly contract, it makes sure that switching providers won't be easy. Handsets have traditionally been locked to the carrier who sold it, and you have to jump through hoops to get it unlocked. From December next year, this practice will no longer be permitted in the UK as regulator Ofcom is banning the sale of locked phones by network operators. Read More
Things are going from bad to worse for Huawei. In the wake of the US Government executive order that restricts US companies from doing business with the Chinese tech company, the repercussions are mounting. Huawei and Honor phones could lose Google services and access to future Android updates and HiSilicon's Kirin chips are also under threat. Now, two major UK carriers have dropped Huawei from their 5G launch plans. Read More
This year’s MWC is all about folding phones and 5G connectivity, and Xiaomi just threw its hat in the ring with the announcement of its first 5G smartphone: the Mi Mix 3 5G. As the name implies, this is simply the Mi Mix 3 but with an upgraded Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor and X50 5G modem.
First shown off in China in December, the 5G version of the Mi Mix 3 carries the same ceramic body and aluminum frame, magnetic slider with the front-facing camera and sensors accessible once you slide the display down, 960fps slow-motion video, and Google Assistant button as its namesake. Read More
The Pixel 2 was one of the first smartphones with eSIM — a feature that allows devices to connect to cellular networks without inserting a physical SIM card. The Pixel 2 and 3 both have eSIM, but it's only used for Google Fi. That will soon change, as multiple carriers are working to support the feature. Read More
Space exploration is a tricky business, especially when it comes to maintaining a strong signal to planet Earth. NASA maintains an array of communication facilities worldwide just to download data from deep-space probes. Future interplanetary missions involving multiple landers and rovers need a way to all talk to each other that doesn't involve radio, and that's where Vodafone and Nokia come in. Read More
RCS is designed as the (eventual) successor to SMS and MMS, but it's a bit of a mess right now. Several carriers have their own implementations of the standard, often incompatible with each other. Google's Jibe RCS Cloud is quickly gaining ground, but there's still only one US carrier supporting it - Sprint. Now Samsung has announced its own RCS cloud. Read More
Google has allowed paying for Play Store purchases through your phone carrier's bill for a while now, but it's not available on all carriers. Vodafone in Portugal just started supporting Play Store carrier billing, becoming the first carrier in the country to do so. In fact, the Google Play support page for Portugal hasn't even been updated yet. Read More
The G5 has just been announced by LG in Barcelona prior to the start of Mobile World Congress. During the press conference, LG didn't clarify the price, availability countries, or dates of its new quirky modular flagship, but the details are starting to surface right now.
In the US, Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint said they plan to carry the LG G5. We're still waiting on an official confirmation from T-Mobile, but it will likely offer the phone as well. Read More
The BlackBerry Priv is the sole option for Android users looking for a high-end phone with a physical keyboard. But, here in the States, the phone is currently only available on AT&T. Want the Priv? You need that carrier. Network not good in your area? Tough.
Except, that's about to change. BlackBerry announced at CES that the phone will soon come to the other big three carriers. T-Mobile will get the phone on January 26th. Sprint and Verizon will presumably get the device at some point after.
In BlackBerry's home country of Canada, Rogers, Bell, and Telus are all already supported. Read More
Vodafone UK announced its own Wi-Fi Calling service earlier this month, but support remains extremely limited. As of right now, the only devices listed are the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. Fortunately that's about to change, though not by much. Android compatibility is coming in the form of the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. Read More