MediaTek gets a lot of flak—and, at least in part, it's deserved—but the company's products occupy a necessary niche. After pretty much every ARM chipset manufacturer excluding Qualcomm pulled out of the smartphone race in the early 10's, MediaTek was left to fill the entry-level void, and it has. The fact that its chipsets typically end up in lower-end devices means we're especially excited for today's news, as the company is launching the Helio A series destined for low to mid-range hardware, starting with the A22.
HMD can't seem to stop making new Nokia phones and after the 3, 5, 6, 7, and 8, today we go to the lower end of the market with the new Nokia 2. Though the specs are pretty much the bare minimum, the recently leaked Nokia 2 has its own appeal not the least of which is HMD's commitment to a pure Android experience and fast updates.
There are plenty of great choices for web browsers on Android, but if you have a cheaper (or older) device, you may find the top picks unsatisfactory. For example, Chrome can slow down quite a bit on low-end phones and tablets, and Firefox isn't much different.
Luckily, there are several browsers designed to be as fast as possible, squeezing every bit of performance out of whatever they're running on. For this post, we'll be taking a look at three of them and comparing their performance and features.
Even though the company has started to slack on fast updates, Motorola is still very good at creating budget devices. The recent Moto G5 and G5 Plus, the latest devices in Motorola's mid-range lineup, have received great reviews. Now it looks like Motorola is getting ready to make its cheapest Android phones yet, the Moto C and Moto C Plus.
You may be wondering, "What about the Moto E? Isn't that supposed to be Motorola's super cheap device?" Well, yes, and the next model may have passed through the FCC recently. But the C and C Plus are even less powerful than the current Moto E. As in, Motorola is scraping the bottom of the barrel here.
LG likes to keep a large, rolling selection of mid-range and low-end phones available for a variety of customers, and today it's revealing two more. The K8 LTE and K5 are both 5-inch phones with a focus on style over substance thanks to somewhat low specifications, but they should do well enough if they're launched at the right price. Unfortunately the press release doesn't say how much the phones will cost, but the K8 will sell in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, and Russia, while the K5 will be limited to Europe, Russia, and Latin America. Both should be available to purchase later this week in some markets.
Unlike Samsung and LG, HTC doesn't seem to be ready to reveal its next flagship, the One (M10), at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week. But the company's portfolio doesn't stop at the One lineup. There's the Desire range as well, and one of its impending models is codenamed A16 and pictured in the leaked photo above, courtesy of Evan Blass (@evleaks). There are six color variants including plain black and white, and starry / sparkly black, white, red, and navy. Or at least that's the way my eyes see it.
But don't let that code confuse you into thinking this is an A-series smartphone, like the One A9.
Android One is an exciting program. Inexpensive devices with standard hardware running stock Android, with lightning-fast updates straight from Google - what's not to like? But according to a report this weekend, Android One hasn't been as successful in its premiere market as Google would have liked. The Financial Times, in an interview with Google's managing director for India and Southwest Asia, reports that big changes are coming to the series. First up: even cheaper Android-powered phones.
When One launched in India last year, the first set of phones were sold at around the 5000 Rupee mark - somewhere in the $80 range in USD.
LG G Stylo is not the name of South Korea's first robot hairdresser. Nope, it's a low-end LG phone designed around a big screen, a stylus, and not a whole lot else. The name, according to LG's press release, is a pun on both "stylus" and "stylish." Feel free to spend a minute or two letting that marketing decision sink in.
Ostensibly a sequel to the G3 Stylus, the G Stylo is probably the phone that circulated as the G4 in those rumors a few months back. One look at the spec sheet is enough to kill that notion: it's a 5.7-inch phone with a 720p screen, a Snapdragon 410 processor, and 1.5GB of RAM.
With the Galaxy Tab A, Samsung is giving its budget tablet line-up a touch of class. This is no dinky Tab 4. This 4:3 slate has a metal chassis! And now it's coming to the US. On May 1st, Americans will be able to buy the device from the likes of Amazon, Best Buy, and HH Gregg.
Unfortunately, the specs remain pretty underwhelming. Sure, we can make do with a 1.2GHz Cortex-A53 processor, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of internal storage. The 5MP camera may not be all that great, but whatever, it's a tablet. But a 1024 by 768 screen resolution...
We've already seen how the new Moto E looks, but now Motorola has made things official. The 2nd generation low-cost handset is available now in the US for $149.99 with LTE. A $119.99 3G-only option is coming soon. Note, the version you can get today is the GSM model, not the one coming from Verizon.
Here's what has changed since 2014. This year's handset comes powered by a 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 410 processor, up from last year's Snapdragon 200 (edit: the 3G model will remain with the 200). The 4.3-inch 540 by 960 display has made the jump up to a 4.5 inches, reducing the ppi from 256 to 245.