This year’s CES has seen the unveiling of a bunch of upcoming mobile phones from Sony Ericsson, Motorola, Nokia and others. Many reports and reviews seem to have been drooled all over the new models (perhaps that’s that they’re all supposed to do), although I’d think they are overly hyped. They are interesting, no doubt; But earth-shattering, no.
Take for example, Sony Ericsson’s Z555, W760, and W350. I won’t begin to talk about HSDPA, albm art, 3.2 megapixel cameras, etc… because those are so “yester-year” technology by now. What’s interesting, perhaps, is the W760’s shake control to control music playback. (Probably this can eventually be accomplished through software on the N95 8GB, amongst other Nokia phones, because of the already built-in accelerometer). Cool, like gesture control on the Z555 (already on W380) where you can wave to silence a call or snooze the alarm.
Motorola will roll out the Z10, Rokr E8, W230 and W270. The Z10, which uses UIQ, is being billed the “pocket-sized mobile film studio”. The E8 features “ModeShift” which transforms the phone into a music player (I don’t know why a transformation is needed… what’s wrong with the phone being the music player at the same time?). The E8 boasts automatic volume control in noisy environments, like what some bluetooth headsets already do. It’s keypad is a nice flat slab of glass with raised dots and vibrating feedback to guide your fingers.
Samsung announced their Armani phone, a luxury phone much like LG’s Prada phone and Nokia’s Vertu line. Nothing fascinating in terms of technical specs.
Wistron, a Chinese design house, showed off their GW4 smartphone which they said will be running Google’s Android operating system.
Finally, Nokia announced the North American version of the N95 8GB. Nothing interesting for us, since we already have had the model last year.
I’ve not seen any mention of Apple’s iPhone. They’re probably holding out for Macworld Expo.
I don’t know about you, but it seems there’s really nothing really spectacular happening. Maybe 2008 will the year to focus on aesthetics, usability and other soft factors. Things like hidden OLED screens, hand gesticulation, etc. Or maybe we will see more interesting phones in the upcoming 3GSM and CTIA events.