The LG G3 Stylus is, frankly, LG's attempt to hit Samsung below the [pricing] belt for consumers in the market for a Note 4. The G3 Stylus, though, is a hell of lot cheaper, and for good reason: it's not a very impressive device. With a 5.5" qHD display and a quad-core Snapdragon 400 paired with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage, the G3 Stylus panders shamelessly to a price point, down to the capacitive rubber-tipped stylus that feels supremely disposable.
Lenovo is an up-and-coming player in the Android world, having taken the Chinese smartphone market by storm in the last couple of years. Now that it owns Motorola, we'll likely be hearing the Lenovo name even more often over here in the US as the company seeks to expand the presence of its Android portfolio across the world.
This is probably especially true of tablets, which Lenovo has consistently been creating for a number of years now, and an area where Motorola has generally fallen flat.
If you've been watching the tablet space lately, you've probably noticed Qualcomm isn't exactly winning the processor wars: Intel, Samsung, and NVIDIA have been slowly clawing back market share in a segment where cellular radios just aren't as important. The biggest gains have undoubtedly come for Intel, who have been extremely aggressive in pricing their mobile chipsets low and, allegedly, providing superior sell-through and promotional services for retailers and OEMs, something Qualcomm and NVIDIA simply don't have much experience with, and budget chipmakers like MediaTek and RockChip can't afford.
Huawei isn't a household name in America, and it's really not even one throughout Europe at this point, either. However, in China and much of southeast Asia, Huawei has been a rapidly emerging dominant force in the smartphone industry, and consistently tried to differentiate its products in the marketplace through engineering know-how. While this hasn't alwaysworked out, especially in America, Huawei is without a doubt one of the most advanced smartphone OEMs out there.
For its first foray into the nascent Android Wear platform, ASUS created the ZenWatch. It aims to be the more fashionable and appealing alternative to the other square watches from LG and Samsung, and I think it largely accomplishes that.
Whether you prefer a square smart watch to a round one is a matter of personal opinion, but there's little denying that ASUS has made probably the most compelling square smart watch of the current Android Wear generation.
We had a chance to take a few minutes with Sony's latest and greatest in Berlin earlier today, and I have to say: we left impressed. While the company's smartphones have had basically zero market penetration in the US (aside from on T-Mobile), the Z1 and Z2 were both fine flagship devices when stacked up against their contemporary competitors.
The Z3 isn't a big upgrade over the Z2, for sure, but it does have a few noteworthy refinements.
LG says it has been working on the G Watch R for two years. Whether this is true or not, the manufacturer now positions the original G Watch as a "reference device," which makes sense given their partnership with Google on the product and its speedy release after Google I/O. At any rate, the G Watch R is positioned as a product more in keeping with LG's design philosophy and the key elements the company (and more specifically its designers) believe make a good, compelling smart watch.
The last Ascend Mate from Huawei was an interesting device with an affordable price point, but you had to make some sacrifices to get comfortable with that sweet phablet-y goodness. It was only 720p, had an older processor, and the storage was lacking. The newly announced Ascend Mate7 is a big phone with many fewer sacrifices.
The specs are a lot more presentable this time around. Here's what we've got to work with.
Mountain climbing! Off-road biking! Skiing! Climbing trees! All of these activities are simply too extreme for your current smartphone, or so Cat (nee Caterpillar, the bulldozer people) would have you believe. Their latest Android-powered rugged phone is the S50, announced today at IFA in Berlin and boasting mid-range specs with a body that looks like it's designed to shrug off shrapnel. It's the follow-up to Cat's B15, a phone durable enough to survive an encounter with a front-end loader.
So far Samsung's "Active" mini-series has exactly two devices, the Galaxy S4 Active and the Galaxy S5 Active. (Three, if you count Sprint's S5 Sport variant.) At IFA 2014, the company is expanding its ruggedized horizons into the tablet world with the Galaxy Tab Active, an 8-inch device with the same IP67 water and dust protection, plus a chunky body that can resist drops of up to 1.2 meters (four feet).