HTC Desire C of Fido Fido htc

HTC Desire C of Rogers Rogers htc

HTC Desire C of Sasktel Sasktel htc

HTC Desire C of Virgin Mobile Virgin Mobile htc

HTC One X of Telus Telus htc

Nokia Lumia 610 of Koodo Koodo nokia

LG Optimus L5 of Bell Bell lg

Tags : nice



Just under a month ago, Rogers launched the Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY, the world's first PlayStation certified mobile device. The PLAY runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread, and has an impressive range of features. It has a 4" (480x854) touchscreen display, and is powered by a 1GHz processor, along with 512MB of RAM. It has a 5MP camera along with a VGA front facing camera for video calling. Sony Ericsson has included their custom UI/launcher TimeScape, which has changed dramatically since the X10 line-up. The most unique feature is its PlayStation style game pad, which can be used for a variety of PLAY optimized games including PS1 Classics. So, how does the PLAY hold up as a smartphone and for gaming?

Beginning with the hardware, the PLAY is very nicely designed. It is a little bit thick compared to most current devices, but that is expected with the full game pad hidden under the screen. It has 3.5mm headset and microUSB ports on the left edge, while the right edge holds the volume and shoulder keys. Even though the casing is made of plastic, it feels relatively sturdy and durable, and the sliding mechanism is surprisingly solid. When you slide out the game pad, the PLAY really starts to shine, bringing that familiar PlayStation feel to your phone. The device fits fairly well in your hands when slid open, but might take a little bit of getting used to. The touchpads meant for use where joysticks or analog sticks would normally come into play, are a nice addition to the controls, though very strange to use at first. Like most gamers know, any new controller design takes some time to get completely accustomed to, and the PLAY's game pad is no exception. Still, it really brought a new element to mobile gaming, one previously found only in devices like the PSP or Nintendo DS. After using the Xperia PLAY, games on touchscreen-only devices seem weak and difficult to play, so beware when trying out your friend's new PLAY.




rogers-Sony-Ericsson-Xperia-PLAY.jpg
The games themselves are entertaining, and the PLAY comes with 6 full version titles built-in: NFL 11, Star Battalion HD, Bruce Lee Dragon Warrior, Crash Bandicoot, Fifa 10, and Tetris. There are 5 more PS1 games available for purchase in Market for $5.75 USD each, and about 50 other PLAY optimized games and apps. Crash Bandicoot ran well and gives a great idea of what PS1 games will be like on the device. The sports games (Madden NFL 11 and FIFA 10) are great fun, and far more complex than you might think, and the other games were just as entertaining and immersive. Unfortunately Tetris didn't make use of the slide-out controls, but it is a simple enough game that the touchscreen is fine.




rogers-xperia-play-crash-bandicoot.jpg
As a smartphone alone, the PLAY runs just as well as most current Android handsets. OS 2.3 Gingerbread performs well, and TimeScape doesn't seem to have as strong of an impact on performance as with the X10. The application tray features custom sorting, and there are a variety of widgets pre-installed. There are media widgets that include music controls, shortcuts, and a scrolling image/video wheel. There are also a couple of clock widgets available, all of which can be used on any of the 5 home screens.

Other parts of the device that are worth mentioning include the display and camera. The display isn't very bright when turned all the way up, though it can get you by. To those who normally enjoy very bright and crisp displays like super AMOLED equipped devices may be let down however. The Camera is of decent quality, coming in at 5MP with an LED flash. It actually handles close-up shots very well, though mid and long range photos are of average quality. It can also record video at WVGA resolution, and surprisingly doesn't capture at 720p. Videos recorded with the PLAY are also average, looking great on your mobile screen but mediocre on larger displays.




rogers-xperia-play-ecran.jpg
Lastly, battery life. The PLAY surprisingly held up very well, lasting longer than many devices in the current market. Even while gaming for a few hours, the battery indicator only dropped a sliver. Unfortunately it still doesn't compare to the life of the BlackBerry Bold 9700 or a few other devices, but considering its large screen and game pad, does very well.

Overall, the Xperia PLAY is a great device. It is a full-featured Android smartphone and really makes mobile gaming possible. Kudos to Sony Ericsson for producing a great, and very unique device! Hopefully they continue to create great handsets that stand-out and bring a new element to smartphones.

The Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY is available from Rogers for $99.99 on a 3 year term or $549.99 contract free.


sony-ericsson-xperia-play.jpg



rogers android mobile wireless canada sony ericsson xperia play playstation certified psp game pad controls review touchscreen camera megapixel video capture timescape gingerbread




While it's exciting to see new smartphones launch, it's always nice to see the Prepaid users get a bit of attention as well. Rogers isn't ignoring their prepaid line-up, and has recently added the Nokia E5 to their list available devices. Coming in at $159.99, the E5 features a 2.36" (320x240) display and full QWERTY keyboard, and runs on Symbian OS S60 v9.3. It has a 5MP camera with LED flash and VGA video capture, and supports bluetooth and GPS connectivity. If you're looking for an affordable device on a prepaid account, the Nokia E5 could make a great choice.


rogers-nokia-e5.jpg



rogers prepaid pay as you go release launch mobile wireless canada nokia e5 symbian qwerty keyboard display camera megapixel led flash video pricing vga bluetooth gps connectiv




According to a recent release from Sasktel, they aren't just expanding their current 21Mbps network, but also working to launch a 42Mbps 4G network in Regina and Saskatoon this summer. No word yet on which devices might be available offering support for that speed, but it will likely start with a mobile internet stick.

Along with that announcement, Sasktel stated that by the end of 2011, their coverage will be available to 98% of Saskatchewan's population. It is already at 96%, according to the carrier.

It's certainly nice to see network upgrades and announcements, but one can't help but wonder their status regarding LTE deployment. With Bell and Rogers racing to launch their true 4G networks in a few major cities, we can only assume that's the future.


sasktel mobile canada wireless saskatchewan hspa 4g dual channel 42mbps network carrier regina saskatoon internet stick data support population lte upgrade announcement coverage




We recently let you know that Fido was getting set to launch the BlackBerry Curve 9300, and today they've done just that. The Curve 3G is now available for $30 on a 3 year term, or $400 contract-free. The 9300 has a 2.4" (320x240) display, full QWERTY keyboard, and runs on BlackBerry OS 6. It features a 2MP camera, and offers Wi-Fi, bluetooth, and GPS connectivity.

While the Curve 9300 isn't the most exciting device in today's mobile market, it is nice to see Fido giving customers more options!


fido-blackberry-curve-9300.jpg



fido blackberry curve 9300 3g launch release canada mobile wireless available term contract outright pricing qwerty keyboard display os 6 camera megapixel wifi bluetooth gps




There has been some great competition happening in Canada to win over consumers considering a tablet. Android is doing especially well when it comes to Google's open-source platform, with a nice range of devices to choose from. LG, who have been fairly quiet in the mobile scene lately, have actually been hard at work on some new hardware.

Rogers and LG seem to have partnered up, and are expected to be launching the LG Optimus Pad in mid-May. The Optimus Pad has an 8.9" (768x1280) 3D LCD touchscreen display, and two rear-facing 5MP cameras with LED flash and capable of recording 1080p HD video, or 720p 3D video. It also comes with a secondary 2MP front-facing camera, and is powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor. Running on Android 3.0 Honeycomb at launch, the LG Optimus Pad features HSPA, Wi-Fi, bluetooth, and an HDMI port to easily view content on your TV.

No word on pricing as of yet, but apparently this new LG tablet will be a Rogers exclusive. With an expected launch date of May 10th, we should be hearing more about the Optimus Pad in the near-future and will keep you in the loop!


rogers-lg-optimus-pad.jpg



rogers lg optimus pad 3d tablet mobile canada wireless camera dual megaoixel stereoscopic recording hd 1080p 720p may coming soon launch 3d lcd dual core wifi gps bluetooth 3g




KOODO Mobile has launched a new Unlimited Incoming Plus Combo plan for $35/monthly, which offers unlimited incoming calls, unlimited evenings and weekends starting at 5pm, unlimited text and picture messaging, local family calling, call display, and up to 150 anytime minutes. This new offer is only available for a limited time, so those who are interested will have to get in touch with KOODO by May 31st of this year. Nice to see carriers stepping up the competition with unlimited offerings, hopefully it continues!


koodo.jpg



koodo mobile offer launch release canada wireless network unlimited incoming plan price package monthly evenings weekends 5pm text picture messaging local family calling anytime




Great news for those with Fido or considering them for their mobile services, they have recently launched two new entry-level handsets - The Nokia C1 and LG Neon 2. Additionally, they have also released the white version of the LG Gossip, adding to the variety of devices available in their line-up.

The Nokia C1 is a very basic bar-style phone that features a 1.8" (128x160) display, bluetooth connectivity, and a VGA camera. The C1 supports up to 32GB of memory using a microSD card, along with FM radio connectivity. The LG Neon 2 features a 3" (240x400) touchscreen display, 2MP camera with video capture capabilities, and connectivity options including FM radio and bluetooth. The Neon 2 can be expanded up to 8GB via microSD card for those who want extra storage for their media.

Last on the list is the LG Gossip in white, which has all of the same features and specifications but comes in a nice white variety. All of these devices are available now from Fido, and all are $0 on a new 2-year term, though contract-free pricing varies from handset to handset. The Nokia C1 comes in at $50 contract-free, while the LG Neon 2 is set at $150 outright, and the LG Gossip in white is priced $90 without a term.


fido-nokia-c1.jpg



fido-lg-neon-2.jpg



fido-lg-gossip-gw300.png



fido mobile canada wireless entry level handset device nokia c1 lg neon 2 gossip bar display bluetooth connectivity vga camera memory microsd fm radio touchscreen storage white




Sasktel has recently introduced the red variation of the BlackBerry Torch 9800, a nice colour arriving just in time for the holidays. The red version comes in at the same price as the standard black version, which is $180 on a 3 year term, or $665 contract-free. The Torch is possibly RIM's most popular device right now, featuring an impressively responsive touchscreen, slide-out full QWERTY keyboard, and BlackBerry OS 6 featuring a new UI and WebKit browser.


bell-blackberry-torch-9800-red.jpg



sasktel blackberry rim mobile wireless research in motion torch 9800 slider red available launch holidays term contract outright popular device handset touchscreen os 6 webkit




Videotron has recently launched the Android powered Motorola Spice, which features a 3" (240x320) touch screen display, slide out QWERTY keyboard, and a 3MP camera. Running Android 2.1 Eclair at launch, the Spice supports Wi-Fi connectivity, and can be expanded up to 32GB via microSD card. The Motorola Spice is available now from Videotron for $59.95 reduced price, or $279.95 contract-free. It's nice to see Videotron expanding their device line-up so regularly!


videotron-motorola-spice.jpg



videotron android motorola spice eclair 2.1 touchscreen display qwerty sliding keyboard megapixel camera wifi connectivity microsd memory card reduced price contract outright exp




Mobilicity has recently placed more of a focus on distribution channels, adding two more companies to their list of agreements intended to get their products and services out to more people. Both HMV, and 50 Zellers locations will now carry Mobilicity products and services, which is a nice variety of partners when taking their recent 7-eleven deal into consideration as well. Apparently Zellers locations in Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, and Ottawa are already set-up, while HMV locations in Toronto and Ottawa are setting up throughout the holiday season.


mobilicity-logo.jpg



mobilicity mobile wireless canada zellers hmv agreement products services handset devices phone 7eleven toronto vancouver edmonton ottawa ontario alberta bc british columbia holid