What was once the most interesting technology all-round has contoured into being just a tradition, but product makers all over the world have not left unattended an occasion to brag about their products, and this year, at CES 2013, a great range of smartphones were introduced.
Until the moment, weâ€™ve been quite on track with the latest unveilings, and after seeing nVidia mastering the art of gaming, our attention has been shifted to a segment not so popular at CES, but one thatâ€™s been celebrated accordingly this year.
Worthy smartphones presented at CES this year
The Las Vegas event has opened just yesterday and already more than a few names may be seen as innovating. The list populated below is sworn to be updated by our loyal staff, so until the event is concluded, make sure you check from time to time and see the new wonders of the mobile world â€“ they will be our food and soul until MWC.
The first phone introduced today is also the only weapon AT&T introduced in this young season, and although it does not surprise us from the technical innovation part, it certainly does with its price. In a few words, the Pantech Discover can be described as a low-budget phone, which comes with a 4.8-inch wide TFT display capable of HD resolution, a fast 1.5 GHz dual-core processor and a 12.6 MP back-shooter. Paring those last-year wonders with an adequate battery and microSD possibilities, makes the Pantech Discover a very good choice, especially at that $50 price tag.
In a rather surprising move, Vizio took the decision of launching its first two smartphones in China. Unnamed at the moment, the two products come in different sizes (5 and 4.7 inch wide) and both pack rather impressive specifications. The strategy of Vizio is to attack both high-end and budget segments of the market, by releasing two phones targeted for each.
The larger, and more impressive choice, has a high quality LCD display that can render content under a 1920 x 1080 resolution, a rear camera capable of shooting 8-megapixel pictures, 2GB of RAM and a dual-core CPU that can take the load. On the other side, the less impressive model has a lower-resolution screen, the same camera sensor but a more modest CPU and RAM quantity. Both models will be powered by Android 4.1 and will not be sold in USA.
Sony: Xperia Z and ZL
Sony has embedded its top notch technology and the years of experience when building the Sony Xperia Z, a phone which impresses in more than several chapters. Besides having a slim and powerful design, with a machined power button as the only physical undulation, this is the first design to embed the new Exmor RS camera sensor, which can take Full HD videos. Besides the powerful camera, the Sony Xperia Z comes with a high-quality 5-inch wide display that has a 443 PPI pixel density, an LTE antenna and a fast, quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, clocked at 1.5 GHz.
Sony bet big this year on the 5-inch wide factor, with the Xperia ZL being the second model launched under this size. In other technical aspects, the ZL is pretty much identical with its brother showcased up-top, but differs in matters of design. For instance, it lacks the glossy back and the water resilient properties, but itâ€™s also a bit thicker to help downgrade the price (which has yet to be mentioned).
Alcatel: One Touch Scribe and Idol
Although I havenâ€™t heard about Alcatel since I was a little boy, it seems that the French manufacturer is back in business this year, thanks to a successful release of two sparking smartphones.
The Alcatel One Touch Scribe is the first on the line to target bigger names of the market, such as the Galaxy Note II, by embedding a true quality 5-inch wide IPS display of good resolutions, 1GB of RAM and Android 4.1.2 as the main platform. Moreover, a stylus and a 1.2 GHz quad-core SoC make it a budget version for those who cannot afford a Samsung.
The second product, called the Idol, is a budget phone that does not improve in performance or benchmark sheets, but when it comes to sheer design, it is more than a wonder. The body of this phone shapes a 8.15 mm profile, managing to weight only 110 grams. The Idol has a dual core processor, a large 4.7-inch qHD display and it will be sold in China this month.
Huawei: the King of the Ball
Although the game is early, Huawei has seized the moment and took over a scene that was very dry in smartphone appearances. While most companies hold their creations for Barcelona, Huawei seems to have plenty coming, and yesterday in Las Vegas no less than three models were mentioned.
Huawei Ascend W1
The Ascend W1 is Huaweiâ€™s first Windows Phone 8 device, which aims to prove that the company is not all about Android. Under a tidy, candy-bar shaped body, Huawei has conceived a 1.2 GHz dual-core SnapDragon S4 paired with 512MB of RAM, and a 4-inch wide display with a good resolution. Unlike Nokia, Huawei has resorted to keep the stock Windows Phone 8 experience and serve it unmodified.
Huawei Ascend D2
The Huawei Ascend D2 can be considered a performance freak from every possible aspect and, without question, a beautiful surprise for all of us. Even though itâ€™s packing a large capacity battery and a blazing fast quad-core processor, the most innovating aspects can be seen in the camera and display segment, where the Ascend D2 integrates a 13-megapixel sensor and a resolution crisp enough to count 443 PPI of pixel density.
The Huawei Mate is a monster beast of phone, which holds a 6.1-inch monster screen with a 73% usable surface as the main point of attraction, if we were to consider the 1.8 GHz clocked quad-core processor. On top of all things, the Mate comes with a large 4,050 mAh battery and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean to sweeten the audience like no other. All of these and a wide range of software additions, such as true windows and fast multitasking will make you wonder who Lumia 920 truly is.
ZTE Grand S
Chinese companies are becoming more and more important in the world of smartphones. If, a few years ago, the names ZTE and Huawei were synonyms with network equipments, nowadays, they have become a serious threat for other major names. ZTE Grand S is the flagship smartphone for the Chinese company. It has a generous 5 inch display, and is only 6.9 mm thin, which makes it the slimmest 5 incher right now. The display has a resolution ofÂ 400ppi and is made out of Corning Gorilla Glass.
It has a 13 MP camera and aÂ Snapdragon S4 1.7 GHz quad-core processor and it is also 4G-enabled. The phone also has aÂ 1,780mAh battery, 2GB of RAM, a microSD card slot, and Dolby Digital surround sound. No pricing is yet available
Radu Tyrsina contributed to this post