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Smartphone shipments estimated to reach 1.7 billion in 2017, led by Android

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Smartphone shipments to reach 1.7 billion in 2017

Market research firm Ovum estimates that smartphone shipments will continue to grow and reach 1.7 billion units in 2017. The company cites increased demand from emerging markets, alongside the growth of Android, which will fuel ballooning handset shipments. “Android will dominate the smartphone market over the next five years,” said Adam Leach, principal analyst at Ovum. “While Apple has defined the smartphone market since it introduced the iPhone in 2007, we’re now seeing a sharp rise in the shipment volumes of Android, signaling its appeal to leading handset manufacturers.” Android-powered handsets accounted for 44% of the smartphone market in 2011, a significant increase from 17% in 2010. The firm estimates Android’s share will reach 48% in 2017 and Apple’s iOS will account for 27% of the smartphone market, an increase from 23% in 2011. “Although it will remain behind Android in terms of shipment volumes, Apple will continue to be a key player and innovator in the smartphone market over the forecast period,” said Leach. “We expect Microsoft, despite its slow start, to have established Windows Phone as a relevant smartphone platform by 2017.” Ovum’s press release follows below.

Ovum expects smartphone shipments to reach 1.7 billion in 2017 and Android to dominate as OS

London, 3 May 2012. Smartphones will outperform the overall market for mobile phones, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24.9% for the period 2011–17 to reach 1.7 billion units, according to Ovum. Predictions show Android as the dominant operating system over the next five years as handset vendors rush to make it their primary smartphone platform.

In its latest forecast*, the leading telecoms analyst house reveals global annual mobile phone shipments will grow at a CAGR of 6.3% between 2011 and 2017, driven primarily by demand from emerging markets where connection growth will continue to fuel handset shipments. New shipments in developed markets, such as North America and Western Europe, will be almost entirely made up of smartphones, while feature phones will continue to play a small role in emerging markets in 2017.

“Android will dominate the smartphone market over the next five years,” said Adam Leach, principal analyst at Ovum. “While Apple has defined the smartphone market since it introduced the iPhone in 2007, we’re now seeing a sharp rise in the shipment volumes of Android, signaling its appeal to leading handset manufacturers.”

Smartphones based on Android accounted for 44% of the smartphone market in 2011, significantly up from 17% in 2010. However, its share will reach 48% in 2017, as Android-based smartphones are expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.8% over the forecast period. Apple’s iOS will be the second most widely deployed software platform in 2017, accounting for 27% of the smartphone market, a slight increase on the 23% share of the market it reported in 2011. Sitting some way behind the Android/iOS duopoly will be the remaining smartphone players.

“Although it will remain behind Android in terms of shipment volumes, Apple will continue to be a key player and innovator in the smartphone market over the forecast period,” says Leach. “We expect Microsoft, despite its slow start, to have established Windows Phone as a relevant smartphone platform by 2017.”

The Windows Phone platform, with the assistance of Nokia, will account for 13% of the smartphone market in 2017. Despite losing significant market share since its high point in 2009, RIM’s BlackBerry platform will still represent 10% of the market in 2017.

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Motorola MOTOACTV now likes Ice Cream Sandwich, to its nutritionists dismay

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

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Motorola is pushing out an update for the MOTOACTV that’ll improve the dinky machine’s calibration with heart rate monitors and improved media selection. Golfers who plumped for the tailored edition of the unit will find links-friendly features like better score tallies and longer-distance club suggestions. The concomitant mobile app also gets a bump to make the unit compatible with Ice Cream Sandwich handsets — although we’d suggest avoiding too many sugary snacks if you’re off for a run.

Motorola MOTOACTV now likes Ice Cream Sandwich, to its nutritionists dismay originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 02 May 2012 05:31:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink Android Police  |  sourceGoogle Play, Motorola, (2)  | Email this | Comments

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Huawei looks to ship 60 million smartphones this year

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

Huawei, the world’s sixth largest mobile phone vendor, said on Wednesday that it expects to ship more than 100 million mobile phones in 2012, including 60 million smartphones, Reuters reported. The Chinese company sold a total of 55 million handsets, including 20 million smartphones, in 2011 and is now looking to increase its global market share with a focus on key markets. “We plan to target China, the United States, western Europe and Japan as key markets,” said Shao Yang, chief marketing officer of Huawei Device. The executive also said he expects consumer device sales to reach $30 billion in five years, up from $7 billion, becoming as large as its telecommunications equipment business. “This means that by that time, the revenue will be comparable to our telecom equipment business,” Shao said. “We feel the room for growth for devices is much bigger than the telecom carrier sector.”

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Welcome back, ‘Facebook phone’

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

Along with an iPhone nano and an iPad mini, rumors of a “Facebook phone” have repeatedly piqued interest as they come and go. The first round of reports surfaced in 2010, but was shot down when Facebook denied that it was working on its own smartphone with hardware and software partner HTC. The handsets that were thought to be Facebook phones ended up being unveiled the following month as the HTC Chacha and HTC Salsa, but consumers weren’t terribly interested in mid-range Android phones with a dedicated Facebook sharing button. Rumors resurfaced this past November before dissipating as quickly as they came, but now — whether or not consumers are actually interested in the possibility of a Facebook-branded smartphone — talk of a Facebook phone has returned once again.

Citing unnamed industry sources, DigiTimes on Wednesday reported that Facebook and HTC are jointly developing a smartphone. The device will be a “customized smartphone” presumably based on Android, and it will launch in the third quarter this year at the earliest.

The report draws a number of comparisons between the secret Facebook phone project and HTC’s previous efforts with Google on the Nexus One, suggesting that because Samsung has taken over as Google’s Nexus partner, HTC is looking elsewhere for branded Android projects. DigiTimes also claims that Samsung has likely been tasked with building the next Nexus phone, though no additional details were made available.

The Facebook phone currently under development is said to have a “platform exclusive to Facebook,” enabling deep integration of Facebook services and providing a variety of custom functionality. How the device might handle private user data is unclear.

Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Microsoft cuts pre-Mango holdouts, Zune desktop software off from WP7 app purchases

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Microsoft cuts pre-Mango holdouts, Zune desktop software off from WP7 app purchases

Microsoft’s Windows Phone team is making a few changes to how users are able to acquire apps on their devices but luckily, they probably won’t affect most of you. Starting today, users can no longer get apps from the Zune desktop software (the app store will remain for the Zune HD, as shown above), so they’ll need to browse via the website or directly on their phones, which Microsoft says the majority of users were already doing. The other change is that in the next few weeks, any users who have not upgraded their handsets to Windows Phone 7.5 Mango will no longer be able to download, update or review apps. Since the update is available for all Windows Phones (Android, we’re mostly talking about you) this shouldn’t be too much of a problem, and any laggards will regain their access after upgrading. On a final note, the developer blog mentions the software needed for hardware partners to create phones for Bahrain, Israel, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, UAE and Vietnam and that there will be more news on these storefronts “in the weeks ahead.” With these moves, the squad has culled any reason to open a heavy memory hungry desktop program just to install some new apps from a PC (iTunes, we’re completely talking about you) and devs can write off supporting users still running on old platforms guilt-free. All that in one day? We bet they didn’t even have to use their AK — those old zune:// links however, will be missed.

Microsoft cuts pre-Mango holdouts, Zune desktop software off from WP7 app purchases originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 24 Apr 2012 20:55:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceWindows Phone Blog, Windows Phone Developer Blog  | Email this | Comments

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Nokia releases Browser 2.0 update for Series 40 handsets with improved speed, multitasking in tow

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Nokia releases Browser 2.0 update for Series 40 handsets with improved speed, multitasking in tow

Nokia announced earlier today the release of Browser 2.0 for its Series 40 devices, which of course includes the colorful Asha lineup. The update promises an overall speedier and easier browsing experience, this in large part due to the application condensing data by up to 90 percent. In addition to these enhancements, there’s also a novel Download Manager in the refresh, giving users the ability to choose where they’d like to save content without leaving the app. Also included in the update is a new multitasking-while-browsing feature (finally!), as well as a social-sharing bit that lets you push out page URLs to sites like Twitter, Facebook, Sina Weibo and RenRen. Browser 2.0 will be native on future Series 40s, but for now those whom already own a small chunk of the 1.5 billion can grab the goods from the Nokia Store or wait for the OTA package to hit your device.

Nokia releases Browser 2.0 update for Series 40 handsets with improved speed, multitasking in tow originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 23 Apr 2012 20:26:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink MobileBurn  |  sourceNokia  | Email this | Comments

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Verizon plans big Windows Phone push for the holidays

Friday, April 20th, 2012

Verizon Wireless chief financial officer Fran Shammo said the company is looking to market a third mobile platform to help develop a strong competitor to Apple and Google. That operating system will be Microsoft’s upcoming Windows Phone 8. “We’re really looking at the Windows Phone 8.0 platform because that’s a differentiator. We’re working with Microsoft on it,” Shammo said in an interview with Reuters following the company’s earnings call on Thursday. The carrier expects to have Windows Phone 8-powered handsets in time for the 2012 holiday shopping season. The executive suggested that Verizon could play a similar role in helping Microsoft’s platform to grow as it did with Google’s Android OS.

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Google Cloud Print adds FedEx, Canon to remote printing roster, throws Android users a PDF bone

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

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Chrome users are in store for a bundle of printing perks today courtesy of a recent update to Google Cloud Print. In addition to wirelessly sending documents to nearby printers, Mountain View’s now adding FedEx to the drop down destination list, granting users the ability to obtain retrieval codes for use at any of that shipping service’s locations across the U.S. The remote printing feature has also gained an additional device partner, enlisting Canon into the ranks of participating companies, occupied by the likes of Epson, Kodak and HP. And as an extra bonus for the Android faithful, handsets and tablets sporting the search giant’s Ice Cream Sandwich OS will now be able to receive and display transmitted docs as PDFs, although you’ll need to install the beta version of the company’s mobile browser to take advantage of this seamless integration. Open OS, meet the closed-off cloud.

Google Cloud Print adds FedEx, Canon to remote printing roster, throws Android users a PDF bone originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 18 Apr 2012 19:28:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceGoogle Chrome Blog  | Email this | Comments

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Samsung Galaxy Beam crosses paths with FCC, sports 3G connectivity for AT&T

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

Samsung Galaxy Beam crosses paths with FCC, sports 3G connectivity for AT&T

The FCC comes across many smartphones in its daily routine, but it’s hardly an everyday occurrence for one of those handsets to rock a miniature projector. That’s the claim to fame of the Samsung Galaxy Beam, which just made its way through the regulatory body with full 3G support for AT&T’s 1900MHz and 850MHz bands. We were first introduced to this updated version of the original Galaxy Beam at Mobile World Congress, and for a quick refresher, the Android 2.3 device packs a dual-core 1GHz CPU, 768MB of RAM, a 4-inch WVGA display and a projector that’ll toss 50-inch imagery onto the wall. Naturally, whether AT&T chooses to sell the smartphone is another consideration entirely, but this certification will keep users in proper standing with the feds, and that’s a good thing.

Samsung Galaxy Beam crosses paths with FCC, sports 3G connectivity for AT&T originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 18 Apr 2012 07:57:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceFCC  | Email this | Comments

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Sprint website hints at Samsung Galaxy Note for the Now Network

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012
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Well, color us tickled, but upon our recent visit to Sprint’s website, we found a curious, unbranded device that looks awfully similar to Samsung’s Galaxy Note. Might this fantastic phablet be the next big thing to hit the Now Network, or is it merely the whim of a careless graphic designer? Only time will tell, but with Sprint’s recent push for LTE handsets, it seems unlikely that — if this phone were to arrive — it’d feature Samsung’s mighty Exynos processor that we love so dearly.

Sprint website hints at Samsung Galaxy Note for the Now Network originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 10 Apr 2012 17:44:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink TechnoBuffalo  |  sourceSprint  | Email this | Comments

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Instagram for Android update adds support for tablets, WiFi handsets and SD card installs

Friday, April 6th, 2012
Instagram for Android update adds support for tablets, WiFi handsets and SD card installs

It’s only been three days since Instagram launched on Android and the only thing that seems to match the influx of new users is the pace at which the company is pushing out updates to enhance support and tweak a few glitches. The latest one to hit today (1.0.3) promises expanded support for tablets and WiFi handsets, app installation on the SD card for storage-limited users and fixing an audio mute bug during capture. If you haven’t delved into its photo sharing and filter features already, check out our hands-on to see how this highly anticipated app has made the transition to Android, or just hit the source link below and install it yourself.

Instagram for Android update adds support for tablets, WiFi handsets and SD card installs originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 06 Apr 2012 19:56:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceGoogle Play, Instagram Help  | Email this | Comments

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WhatsApp founder says he doesn’t want to hurt carriers, much

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012
WhatsApp founder says he doesn't want to hurt carriers, much

Given how much the world has already noticed that instant messaging can be cheaper than SMS, it’s surprising to see the founder of WhatsApp trying to persuade carriers that he’s actually doing them a favor. In an interview with Reuters, Brian Acton said that his messaging service is “facilitating a broad movement to data plans,” from which carriers “stand to benefit quite substantially.” While it’s certainly true that smartphones and data plans make nice margins for operators, Acton’s thesis also slithers around some slightly inconvenient evidence. According to analysts at Ovum, carriers lost $13.9 billion in SMS revenues last year, and are set to lose another $23 billion this year. All the while, WhatsApp’s traffic is growing rapidly, with total messages doubling from one billion in October 2011 to two billion in February. With data costs falling around the world, and with platforms like WhatsApp running on lower-priced handsets (such as those running Nokia S40), it’s the consumer, not the carrier, who ought to be charmed.

WhatsApp founder says he doesn’t want to hurt carriers, much originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 04 Apr 2012 22:32:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink TheNextWeb  |  sourceReuters  | Email this | Comments

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We’re not the only ones carriers are overcharging; cell phone wiretap fees revealed

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Cell phone bills are a tough pill to swallow each month, often reaching well into the hundreds-of-dollars range for families or even individuals. Regional and prepaid carriers offer some relief, but users who need nationwide coverage and a wide variety of handsets to choose from often have no choice but to pay a premium. According to documents recently obtained and published by the American Civil Liberties Union, consumers and business users aren’t the only ones overpaying wireless carriers for service. Read on for more.

A series of documents detailing the rates each of the four major U.S. carriers charge law enforcement agencies to execute cell phone wiretaps was unearthed last month, and as Forbes reports, the rates are fairly surprising — or perhaps unsurprising, considering how much consumers and businesses pay.

According to the documents, T-Mobile charges law enforcement agencies a flat fee of $500 per “target” to execute a wiretap on a mobile phone. Sprint charges a similar $400 fee along with a daily fee of $10 capped at $2,000 for ongoing monitoring. AT&T bills law enforcement $325 per tap plus $5 per day for data monitoring and $10 per day for voice monitoring, and Verizon Wireless charges $750 per month to tap a cell phone.

Other services incur additional fees, Forbes reports. Carriers charge between $30 and $150 for access to a target’s text messages and voicemail, for example, and the companies bill between $30 and $150 per tower per hour to monitor the numbers of every user accessing a certain cell tower. To track a target’s location, carriers charge as much as $100 per day.

Both Verizon and Sprint confirmed to Forbes that the companies do not charge police in the case of emergencies. AT&T and T-Mobile declined to comment on their respective wiretap policies.

Phone line worker image via Shutterstock

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Nokia Maps Suite 2.0 rolls out to Symbian devices, breaks free from beta chains

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012
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Symbian users haven’t seen any shortage of love come their way in 2012. Just look to the 808 PureView for proof of that platform’s staying power. Now, Nokia’s doling out even more good news, dropping the beta tag from its Maps Suite 2.0 and officially rolling out that software to ^3, Anna and Belle handsets. For those unfamiliar with this bundle of location services, it’s primarily a tidy integration of Espoo’s Maps, Drive and Transport apps sewn into one, with tailored icons, enhanced UI customization, voice search and photo-tagging. Interested parties can get to downloading the currently available refresh via an OTA update on their phones now. And while you wait for that lengthy install, check out the source link below for additional shots of the packaged goods.

Nokia Maps Suite 2.0 rolls out to Symbian devices, breaks free from beta chains originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 04 Apr 2012 05:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink All About Symbian  |  sourceNokia Beta Labs  | Email this | Comments

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MeeGo gets a stay of execution? Two new Nokia MeeGo phones reportedly in the works

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop had several tough decisions to make when he came on board and replaced former chief executive Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo. Of course the biggest shift for Elop’s Nokia came in mid-February last year when the company confirmed that the burning platform had scorched MeeGo, and Nokia planned to dump its Linux-based mobile operating system for Microsoft’s Windows Phone OS. Nokia still went on to launch the N9, and it was widely believed that the handset would be the only MeeGo device from Nokia to ever see the light of day. According to a recent report, however, the Finnish vendor may have new MeeGo devices works.

Nokia currently has two entry-level MeeGo smartphones in development according to a recent report from Netbooknews.com. The site claims to have learned of the unannounced handsets “directly from Nokia’s Next Billion Group,” which is focused on bringing affordable smartphones to emerging markets. No other details surrounding the supposed devices were provided.

The move would be a curious one at best. Nokia is committed to Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform for high-end and mid-range devices, and BGR revealed exclusive details last year about a secret proprietary operating system Nokia has in development that will address emerging markets. The vendor also acquired cell phone operating system developer Smarterphone AS earlier this year in a move thought to be tied to the development of Nokia’s secret OS.

A Nokia spokesperson declined to comment.

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Nokia reportedly footing the bill to put Lumia 900s in AT&T employee pockets

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

While the launch date has shifted several times over the past two months, BGR reported in January that the Lumia 900 would become available from AT&T at a shocking $99.99 price point — the lowest launch price for a flagship phone in recent history. The handset’s release will be accompanied by a marketing and advertising blitz aiming to familiarize the U.S. with Windows Phone, but educating the sales staff at AT&T stores and encouraging them to pitch the handset is a crucial piece of the puzzle that could lead to the device’s success. Nokia is reportedly taking things one step further — wpcentral on Friday reports that Nokia will finance a program allowing AT&T sales staff to trade in their current handsets for a brand new Lumia 900 at no cost. The program, which will see AT&T employees turn in iPhones and Android handsets for the Lumia 900, will reportedly cost Nokia as much as $25 million. BGR took a hands-on look at the AT&T’s upcoming flagship Windows Phone during the annual Consumer Electronics Show, and we described it as a gorgeous handset that improves upon the already-great Lumia 800.

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Now is the worst time ever to buy an Android phone

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Android phones have never been as impressive as they are today. They have never been as responsive, as slim or as powerful. Their displays have never been more vivid or more stunning. Their data speeds have never been as fast. Competition is now hotter than ever before in the smartphone market and consumers are reaping the benefits. At its core, each and every new smartphone that launches is an engineering feat that simply could not have existed a few short years ago. And yet as amazing as the current crop of smartphones might be, there has probably never been a worse time in Android’s brief but storied history for savvy users to buy a smartphone.

A quick glance through the smartphone catalogs of each of the four major wireless carriers in the United States reveals a terrific array of Android handsets. There is certainly no shortage of gigahertz or gigabytes, and spec sheets in general have become laundry lists of cutting-edge technology. More importantly, of course, this new breed of Google-powered phones offers performance that is far more responsive and fluid than previous generations of handsets. But as impressive as these devices are, right now is a horrible time to buy any of them.

Things are about to get a whole lot better.

For tech savvy smartphone users, committing to a two-year contract is brutal. Mobile technology moves so fast that smartphones can seem outdated just months after they launch. While this trend is bound to continue, the degree to which new generations of Android phones outdo their predecessors will always ebb and flow. Handsets have been improving at a somewhat modest pace for the past year or so, but the next crop of smartphones to hit store shelves will represent a huge leap forward rather than a few short steps.

Two leading smartphone makers, Samsung and HTC, are on the verge of launching next-generation devices that will put today’s high-end handsets to shame. HTC has already unveiled its new One-series phones, and the two high-end models it showed off at Mobile World Congress are game-changers, plain and simple.

The HTC One X is the Taiwan-based company’s flagship smartphone for the first half of 2012, and it features a 1.5GHz quad-core Tegra 3 processor, a 4.6-inch 1,280 x 720-pixel Super LCD 2 display, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera for 720p video chats, 1GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage, embedded 4G LTE and Sense 4.0 on top of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. All that technology, mind you, is squeezed into a gorgeous 9.27-millimeter-thick unibody polycarbonate case. The U.S. version of this handset will feature a dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor and 16GB of internal storage, but the impact of this “downgrade” on the user experience is negligible — the phone is still lightning fast and beyond smooth.

HTC’s One S is a mid-range smartphone, though the term “mid-range” is used very loosely in this case. The device sports a 4.3-inch qHD AMOLED display, a dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, an amazing 8-megapixel camera, 16GB of internal storage, Sense 4.0 and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, all packed within an even more slender 7.9-millimeter case made of Micro-Arc Oxidized aluminum.

While Samsung hasn’t yet unveiled its next-generation flagship smartphone, a series of exclusive BGR reports paint a fairly comprehensive picture of the Galaxy S III. To start things off, we can expect the most stunning display ever to be used on a smartphone. This high-definition, 1080p-resolution, 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display will be to smartphones what Apple’s new Retina Display is to tablets. Toss in a 1.5GHz quad-core Samsung Exynos processor, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, 4G LTE, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and a sleek ceramic case, and you’ve got one of the most remarkable mobile devices the world has ever seen.

In short, there probably hasn’t been a worse time than right now to buy a new Android phone and get locked in to a new two-year contract.

These next-generation Android phones will set a new precedent, and handsets that launch for the subsequent six to nine months will be playing catch-up. The chips within these new smartphones are faster, smaller and they consume power far more efficiently than the silicon that came before them. And while I haven’t yet had the opportunity to test the upcoming Galaxy S III, I have handled the One X and One S, and I can confidently say that they offer an end-to-end experience that is significantly better than what we see on the market today. The cameras alone, which are powered by a dedicated chip and are capable of capturing a RAW 8-megapixel image and returning to a ready state in just 0.7 seconds, are worth the wait.

These new smartphones will be slimmer, sleeker and more capable than anything on the market today, and they will still tout better battery life and more impressive performance. With HTC’s handsets ready to begin launching next month on AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, and the Galaxy S III set to be unveiled in April or May, Android fans would be wise to sit tight for now.

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