Vodafone

Vodafone HTC Magic video unboxing!

Move over G1 - the HTC Magic has landed, and it's every bit the slick, sleek Android smartphone we've been secretly wishing for.  HTC and Vodafone delivered the Magic over to us this morning, and we've promptly unboxed the whole thing on video for your viewing-pleasure. Of course, since the HTC Magic comes preloaded with Android OS 1.5 "Cupcake", which we know only a limited number of you have had access to, we couldn't resist the opportunity to boot up the Magic and take a quick look at its video capture and on-screen keyboard.  These are just snapshot looks, remember; we'll have plenty more video demos with the HTC Magic over the next few days. First impressions are very positive; the Magic feels much better in the hand than the G1, slim and light, and the 3.2-inch capacitive touchscreen is bright and responsive.  As ever, we're open to suggestions about what you'd like to know, so leave your requests in the comments and we'll try to answer them in our full review.  Until then, enjoy the unboxing video! [vms cef6730f9fd03c8125ca] [gallery]

Android Community Week in Review: Week 18 2009

After weeks of relative silence from mainstream Android hardware, the past seven days has seen two headline devices reach us.  The HTC Magic launched in Europe, the second Android smartphone to hit the market, while Samsung announced their first Android handset in the shape of the I7500. There's not much we didn't already know about the HTC Magic, but buyers finally have the chance to pick one up on Vodafone Spain at least and, from this weekend, Vodafone UK.  We've got all the details here, plus a video unboxing here. As for the I7500, Samsung have taken their long history in cellphones and piped Android into a slick touchscreen body.  Unlike the HTC handsets' rather half-hearted cameras, there's the promise of a 5-megapixel snapper, and the whole thing is just 11.9mm thick.  Check out the live images and video demo for the full details. Motorola's first devices running Android were also tipped; no official announcement so far, but word is that the hardware QWERTY handsets will reach Verizon Wireless sometime later this year.  Finally, software made a splash this week, as Android OS 1.5 "Cupcake" finally reached devices.  It brings with it features like an on-screen QWERTY keyboard and direct YouTube uploads, but also its own fair share of controversy as developers blame Vodafone Europe for rushing the launch and not giving them enough time with the official release. [vms f5bb252d13f5f431e4bb]

Vodafone HTC Magic gets video unboxing

Vodafone Germany surprised us all with a sneaky early launch of the HTC Magic this week, and the first handsets are being delivered.  Our friend Sascha is one of the first to get his hands on the Magic, and he put together an unboxing video of the new Android smartphone. Unlike the white Magic handsets that we've seen the most of in the run up to the launch, Sascha's HTC is black and it certainly suits that color.  While in the image above the keys look to be white, in actual fact they're just silver and are reflecting the overhead lighting. Aside from the HTC Magic itself, Vodafone bundle a slip-case (which "feels a little cheap"), a USB cable, power supply and a wired stereo headset.  More information on the handset itself in the video below, and you can check out our previous coverage on the Magic for more details. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B5ha1UABflw[/youtube]

HTC Magic launches on Vodafone Spain

Vodafone Spain have released the HTC Magic, beating their UK counterpart to launch.  The Magic is available now through the carrier's online store, and will be in retail stores from next week, priced between €19 ($25) and €199 $262) depending on tariff.  An all-inclusive internet plan, priced at €12 ($16) per month, is mandatory. Both black and white versions of the Magic will be on offer, each with a 3.2-inch QVGA touchscreen, GPS, HSPA and WiFi b/g.  The Magic also has Bluetooth 2.0, a 3.2-megapixel camera and 500MB of onboard storage, together with supporting up to 8GB microSD memory cards.  As with other Android devices, the Magic has the Google suite of applications, including access to the Android Market, GMail and a full internet browser.  More details on tariffs and pricing at the official Vodafone Spain blog; more on the HTC Magic here. [Thanks Tony!]

Android Community Week in Review: Week 17 2009

As we wait for the HTC Magic to land, with what's expected to be a May 5th launch on Vodafone UK, this week has been all about alternative devices from the standard Android smartphone. We kicked off with a video demo of a hacked-together Android netbook, only to find the real thing - or at least the promise of it - in the shape of the Skytone Alpha 680 later. Based on an ARM11 processor, the Alpha 680's specs might have trouble blowing the skin off of custard, but it's enough to run Android "fairly well" including some YouTube viewing. In fact the only real disappointment could be the price: early rumors led us to believe that Skytone were aiming for $100 sticker, a figure new information from the company's co-founder has proved inaccurate. The Alpha 680 will actually come in at around $250, with Skytone's target audience being emerging markets. If you'd rather a more pocketable device, and don't mind giving up the QWERTY keyboard, then Routon's P730 and P760 might fill a niche. The compact MIDs are currently seeing distributors, with the promise of Android to sweeten the deal. Finally, what's tipped as Samsung's first Android handset, the I7500, has broken cover. Bearing an AMOLED touchscreen and the usual UMTS/GPS/WiFi connectivity of Android handsets we've seen already, the I7500 is apparently headed to O2 Germany in June.

Vodafone HTC Magic landing May 5th from free

Vodafone UK have put the HTC Magic up for pre-order, with the touchscreen Android smartphone available from free depending on contract.  Launched back at Mobile World Congress in February, the Magic is HTC's second Android device after the T-Mobile G1 (aka the HTC Dream). According to Vodafone, the first deliveries of the Android handset should arrive on May 5th.  The Magic had been expected to launch on May 1st, itself a delay from the originally slated April release.  Monthly contracts costing £35 ($51) upward (over 18 months) get a free Magic; the cheapest contract is £15 ($22), with the phone then priced at £293.62 ($428). The HTC Magic has a 3.2-inch capacitive touchscreen, 3.2-megapixel camera, GPS, HSDPA and WiFi.  Our hands-on video is below, and for the full gallery check out our MWC coverage. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEOspvaOmbk[/youtube]

Vodafone UK HTC Magic launching May 1st

Contrary to initial reports (and Vodafone UK's own website), the HTC Magic is set to launch in the UK on May 1st.  The handset, announced back at Mobile World Congress in February, will be the second Android device to go on sale. According to the report, the HTC Magic will be free providing the buyer signs up to a £25 contract or higher.  There's no detail on specific price-plans, but we're assuming an unlimited data package will be pushed. The HTC Magic has the same 3.2-megapixel camera, capacitive touchscreen and HSDPA/GPS as the T-Mobile G1.  However it lacks a hardware QWERTY keyboard, instead having a new on-screen keyboard.

Android Community Week In Review: Week 10 2009

Big Android news this week was HTC's recently announced Magic handset getting official release windows on Vodafone UK and Orange France. Running Google's Android, the Magic will offer 3G internet, GPS, a slimmer form [than the current G1], and an on-screen keyboard for typing. Release dates are March 15th for Orange France and sometime in April for Vodafone UK. In case you're wanting to keep closer tabs on this bleak global economic state, Google has released an official app for Android to help you do just that. Google Finance is available in the Android Market now for the very appropriate price of $0.00, but only to users in the US. The software has limited stock market support (for now), though the major US indices are covered in near-real time. More companies are looking at Android as a new and powerful mobile OS for their upcoming devices. Acer has been surrounded by talks and comments regarding the possibility of Android powering their two forthcoming handsets. No concrete answer was given when asked directly if Android was the choice, but an OS other than Windows Mobile was said to definitely be in the cards. Still needing some feature bumps since its original debut in 2006, Road's S101 HandyPC is rumored to have switched gears from a Linux distro to Android as its OS of choice. Yuhua have also followed up their design of General Mobile's DLST1 handset with the Xphone-SDK concept. While only a concept at this point, the phone is limited to EDGE connectivity. Considering Android's dependence on 'cloud' computing, this may pose a problem with potential slow-downs. Potentially ground-shaking news is Android's perceived ability to give Apple's OS X Touch (iPhone) a run for its money by 2012. Industry analysts are predicting that current economic conditions paired with Android's non-commitment to a particular carrier or handset manufacturer will give it the extra boost it needs to catch up with Apple. Also considered was the fact that Smart phones have outsold notebook PCs for the first time ever, possibly signaling more powerful mobile platforms providing the majority of functionality that people need away from their desks. While OS X Touch is somewhat limited in its ability to multitask, Android can accomplish multiple things at once. This could also draw mobile professionals with the need to get more work done while on the go.

Vodafone HTC Magic April UK launch confirmed

A new page on Vodafone UK's site confirms that the HTC Magic will launch at some point during April 2009.  No pricing or specific launch dates are given, nor is there any way to preorder the Magic; instead would-be buyers can register for updates. The Vodafone HTC Magic has a 3.2-megapixel camera, HSDPA, integrated GPS and a full capacitive touchscreen.  Unlike the T-Mobile G1 it lacks a hardware keyboard; instead there's a new on-screen keyboard, which we first saw at Mobile World Congress last month. The upshot of that is the newly reduced bulk.  Unlike the sizable G1, the Vodafone HTC Magic measures 117 x 55 x 14 mm, and curved edges make it feel even smaller.  You can see our video demo and gallery of the HTC Magic here. [via Droideo]

HTC Magic hands-on: Gallery and Video

You've seen the preliminary video, you've read the specs; now it's time for the motherload of HTC Magic information.  We sat down with HTC's digital communications manager, Eric Lin, to talk Android, Vodafone and all things Magic. In terms of the hardware, under the hood there's little different to the G1.  What HTC have tweaked is the software, which has made the capacitive touchscreen more responsive and the smartphone as a whole speedier.  The Android software stack itself has few differences, the most obvious being the new on-screen keyboard.  80-percent of the time the Magic is used in portrait orientation, and the keyboard won't work in landscape orientation aside from with apps - such as the browser - that force the Magic to rotate the display. There's also now native video recording and playback, rather than requiring users to add their own media software.  The former offers two quality levels, one for MMS and the other slightly higher, while the latter is integrated with the photo gallery.  As you can see from the gallery, content is organized by photos and video in general, and those shot by the Magic's own camera. Since the announced Magic handset is dual-band 3G/UMTS (900/2100MHz), I asked Eric whether HTC had any plans for a US-spec version or if their agreement with Vodafone prevented that.  According to him, the carrier exclusivity is limited to country, not global, and HTC would jump at the opportunity to adapt the Magic for the US should they be approached by one of the carriers.  We also clarified the handset's name: despite what many sites have reported, the HTC Magic is not the "G2".  HTC named the smartphone, and Vodafone decided to use that title, whereas T-Mobile chose to use their own name when they launched the G1 (hence the handset being available as the HTC Dream elsewhere). Eric also showed us a black version of the Magic, though we were not allowed to photograph or video it as it's not intended for production.  HTC decided it looked too similar to other smartphones, and wouldn't be distinctive enough.  It's a shame, as the black version looked even smaller than the white, and with its curved edges reminded us a little of the Pre. There's still no flash to accompany the 3.2-megapixel autofocus camera (which is the same as on the G1); according to Eric, that's down to HTC prioritizing the areas in which they can make the most effective improvements in the timescale available.  HTC recognize that, as a company that not long ago only dealt with enterprise hardware, they're playing catch-up on some consumer functionality such as imaging; they chose to finesse the existing hardware, particularly the white balancing, rather than introduce a flash which wouldn't be best taken advantage of. In the hand, the HTC Magic is deceptively light and, although all plastic, feels great.  It's an altogether more tactile device than the G1, in no small part because of the reduction in bulk and sleeker casing, though obviously we're yet to play with the final-production button design. Touchscreen responsiveness seems on a par with the iPhone, at least during our relatively short time with the Magic, and the reduced thickness and less pronounced "chin" angle make it more comfortable to hold than the G1. Overall, the Magic feels much more like a consumer-ready device than the T-Mobile G1 did at its launch.  That's partly down to the extra maturity of the Android platform itself, but it's also thanks to a more attractive, perhaps more considered design.  Whether it's actually consumer-ready in practice depends on the final tweaks HTC make before the Q2 launch, and how robust Google's latest updates to Android are.  We've certainly left MWC with high hopes about the HTC Magic. Video is also available in HD - click the menu in the lower right-hand corner [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEOspvaOmbk[/youtube] [gallery]
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12