MWC 2012: First phones to emerge

Smartphone bonanza as LG, HTC, Sony, Samsung and others reveal wares
Darren Allan

February 27, 2012

This year’s Mobile World Congress has just kicked off, so you can expect a deluge of new smartphones being announced this week.

And here are the first handsets to get unveiled at MWC 2012.

LG has officially revealed its Optimus 4X HD, although we’d already had a sneak preview of this, one of many quad-core smartphones to be hitting the shelves this year.

The 4X HD has a quad-core chip clocked at 1.5GHz, no less, not far off the power of many laptops, along with a capacious 4.7 inch display.

The Tegra 3 processor’s design means it has a “companion” single core, which can be used for simple tasks, with the quad-core only switched on when needed (to save battery life).

HTC is putting its hopes into a new range of smartphones called the One series. The company has been ailing recently, and after initial success with the likes of the Desire, has fallen well behind the likes of Samsung and Apple.

The One X is similar to LG’s offering in that it has the same 1.5GHz quad-core processor, along with a 4.7 inch screen. However, HTC is also promising better audio – with Beats technology – and a quick snapping camera which is comparable to a proper digital camera.

The design looks smart, too, although the price of this high-end model is likely to be something of a stinger. The One S is the next model down, with a slightly lesser spec including a dual-core processor, and then the One V is the budget offering with a single core 1GHz processor and 3.7 inch screen.

Orange has already said it will carry the HTC One X and S phones launching in the second quarter of this year.

HTC’s fortunes are riding on these smartphones, although they certainly look tasty enough.

However, not only will they be up against the yet to be revealed Samsung Galaxy S III and iPhone 5 this year, but also competition from new manufacturers on the scene.

For example, Huawei has announced its Ascend D at MWC, a 1.5GHz quad-core handset with a 4.5 inch screen and 8 megapixel camera. They might aim to undercut the likes of HTC and LG, perhaps.

Sony (minus Ericsson) also has its Xperia range (S, P and U models) which we’ve already covered in the last couple of weeks. The Xperia S goes with a dual-core 1.5GHz, not quad-core, but boasts a 12 megapixel camera which should be interesting to compare to HTC’s effort.

Orange has announced its Santa Clara phone, which will run Android Gingerbread but using an Intel processor. The handset will sport a 4 inch display and 8 megapixel camera, with pricing targeted at the mid-range.

ViewSonic has unveiled the ViewPhone 4e, 4s and 5e, dual-sim phones aimed at business users with screen sizes ranging from 3.5 to 5 inches.

As for Samsung, the S III might not be available to show off yet, but the company has revealed a new full 10 inch tablet version of the Note (which is currently a 5 inch smartphone/mini-tablet device).

There’s also the Samsung Galaxy Beam, an Android phone with a 1GHz dual-core processor that has a 5 megapixel camera and built-in mini-projector, a novel idea.

We’ll keep bringing you the latest from MWC over the rest of this week (the show runs through until Thursday).






 

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