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Around SPE - 2 Nov 08

Sun Nov 2, 2008 - 6:22 PM EST - By Dieter Bohn


This week's Around SPE is sponsored by the Android Central Store, where you can find a full complement of accessories for the T-Mobile G1 including headset adapters, body skins, and screen protectors.

What's the big news in the Smartphone world this week? It's a mix, really. Android's looking like a viable platform to more and more people, there are a ton of Windows Mobile devices on the way, and both and the iPhone Blog are running contests that ought to spark your interest. Read on!

Android Central

Android Central is still enamored with the G1, so we followed up our full review of Android with a look at the Android Market App Store. We're excited to see that said App Store should soon be populated with quality games from EA, not to mention complete Exchange support for push email and PIM info.

Of course, like the rest of the Android-watching-web-world, we noticed that some folks were touting that they'd successfully unlocked a T-Mobile G1. Yeah, we did that a week earlier than anybody else did and we got AT&T's data working just peachily as well, thanks. We'd be more bitter, but the fact that you can grab a G1 at Walmart has our head spinning so fast we ain't got time to mope.

CrackBerry Nation is abuzz with new BlackBerry releases. After months and months and months and months of waiting, the BlackBerry Bold will finally be available from AT&T this Tuesday! Storm fever is still going strong, with launch parties taking place and release dates getting near. You can now pre-order a Storm from Vodafone, and things are still looking on track for the Storm to be out on Verizon by Black Friday. The Pearl Flip is making its rounds too: T-Mobile is now offering it in Red (in addition to the Black model they launched with) and it's starting to pop up in Rogers stores (in both black and pink) with November 4th availability everywhere.

Phase 1 of the The What Would You Do for a BlackBerry Storm? Contest was a huge success, with over 3,000 crazy CrackBerry addicts entering their What Would You Dos. Judging for that is going on as we speak (should be complete by Monday night).. with the top ten soon-to-be Storm winners to be contacted on Tuesday. Next step - they'll have to carry out their To Dos on video!

And the long-waited CrackBerry Book is nearing it's eBook launch date (print copy to follow in a couple weeks)... Featuring real life tales of BlackBerry Addiction gone too far and effective strategies to help get your use under control, this will be a must read for the BlackBerry Addict (expect your signifcant other to pick you up a copy!). Keep your eyes peeled for it to surface later this week!

The iPhone Blog

iPhone Live! -- our new podcast which will alternate with Phone Different and make us all nice and weekly -- is now archived and available in the iPhone blog's usual feed. Join Dieter, Brian, Chad, and Rene, for a discussion of iPhone 2.2, GPS, Turn-by-Turn Navigation, and a Q&A from our live chat audience.

...You'll also be interested in the beginning of our Ultimate Accessory Pack Give Away Contest!

Big week for Apps as well, as TiPb interviews PCalc's James Thomson for a look behind the marketing and money of the App Store. New release Google Earth also goes App vs. App against veteran Earthscape, and we take a look at why Apple may have denied browser rival Opera Mini a place on the iPhone.


Over at TreoCentral, we found via WMExperts about another clue telling us that the Treo Pro is on its way to Sprint. And we found out that the Treo 750 has disappeared from AT&T's website, and you can only get it from Palm in the unlocked variety.

We read that John Hartnett, Palm's SVP of Global Markets, is leaving the company in November for undisclosed reasons. This comes on the heels of Palm hiring Simon Lloyd as Senior Director, EMEA Marketing, to try and win some ground in the European market as Palm wants to make a comeback against the BlackBerry and iPhone in brand stakes. And speaking of markets, how about the stock market, in which Palm's stock teetered at low records (hitting $2.70) on Tuesday.

Brian has written a review of the Celio Redfly, which makes a great mobile companion for the Palm Treo Pro. If you haven't bought the Redfly as of this writing, you still have a chance to grab it for $199.95 in the TreoCentral Store.


WMExperts is buckling down for a deluge of new Windows Mobile releases in the coming weeks, although we did manage to get out of the gate early with first review of the Touch Pro on Sprint. We're expecting the AT&T version of that device, AKA the Fuze, to arrive on Monday and for the Verizon version to be pretty much identical Sprint's.

Mostly, though, we focused on the wider launch of Microsoft's Live Mesh service, which is a great cloud-sync application that works on Windows, Mac, and of course, Windows Mobile. Be sure to check out our early walkthrough.

Not enough for you? Well, we did confirm the rumor that we also were the first to report, namely that the Treo Pro will hit Sprint. WM devices on Sprint also finally joined the MMS crowd and, well, there's a mystery version of Windows Mobile that we're waiting on as well.

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