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For those who have been waiting, the LG Optimus L7 is now available from Rogers and Fido. First, Fido put the L7 up on their website for free on a 3 year term, or just $300 outright. Rogers followed up by making it officially available as well, but for $0.01 on a 3 year term, or $274.99 contract-free.

The LG Optimus L7 features a 4.3" (480 x 800) Gorilla Glass touch screen display, and is powered by a 1 GHz processor and 512 MB of RAM. It contains 2 GB of internal storage, as well as a microSD slot for up to 32 GB of extra storage. It also features a 5 MP camera with LED flash and runs on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

For such an affordable price, you can't go wrong with the LG Optimus L7. Be sure to check out Fido or Rogers websites for upgrade and purchase options.


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The last few months have been filled with rumours, but it's now confirmed that the Samsung Galaxy S III will be coming to Canada on June 20th. Samsung, along with most carriers, have officially confirmed they will be releasing it, along with the official specifications of the device. To go along with that exciting news, Telus and Rogers have officially released some pricing details, and leaked information reveals some Bell and Virgin Mobile price points.

As many Canadians suspected, we will not be getting the same quad-core version that was recently released in Europe, but rather, the power and speed of a Snapdragon S4 Dual Core 1.5 GHz processor and 2 GB of RAM. It comes in two versions, one with LTE for the major carriers and their subsidiaries (Rogers, Bell, Telus, Virgin Mobile, Sasktel), and a non-LTE version for the other carriers including WIND Mobile, Videotron, and Mobilicity. The LTE version will be available in 16 GB or 32 GB models, however all carriers won?t necessarily offer both. The non-LTE version will be available in only a 16 GB version for now, however both devices also have a micro SD slot capable of an additional 32 GB of expandable memory. The Galaxy S III also features a 4.8" (1280?720 or 306ppi) HD Super AMOLED Gorilla Glass touch screen display, an 8 MP rear-facing camera with LED Flash and 1080p HD video recording as well as a secondary front-facing 1.9 MP camera capable of 720p recording. Also confirmed, but expected, the handset runs on the latest version of Android OS v4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich with Samsungs own TouchWiz UI with Motion UX.

As for pricing, the following information has been made available either officially, or via information leaked online:

Rogers - $149.99 on 3 year term for 16 GB model
Telus - $159.99 on 3 year term for 16 GB model, $679.99 outright. $209.99 on 3 year term for 32 GB model, $749.99 outright.
Bell - $599.95 outright for 16 GB model, $649.95 outright for 32 GB model
Virgin Mobile - $599.99 outright for 16 GB model, $649.99 outright for 32 GB model

Unfortunately pricing for the other confirmed carriers is currently unavailable, however Mobilicity is offering a $100 credit (paid out over 10 months) for those who pre-order before June 15th. Regardless, if you?re interested in picking up a Samsung Galaxy S III, you?ll have many options to choose from on June 20th!


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A couple weeks back, we let you know that Bell was going to be launching a new entry-level Android handset, the Samsung Galaxy Gio. The Gio has a 3.2" (320x480) touchscreen display, and a 3.15MP camera with QVGA video capture, and is powered by an 800MHz processor. It runs on Android 2.2 Froyo with TouchWiz, and offers up Wi-Fi (b/g/n, hotspot), bluetooth, and GPS.

No word on pricing as of yet, but according to leaked internal documents, the Gio is set to launch on Thursday, August 4th.


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Bell has been launching plenty of handsets lately, but it looks like they don't plan on stopping anytime soon. According to screenshots leaked online, the Nokia C2-01 will be exclusively available from Bell. It is a basic S40 handset that features a 2" (240x320) display, along with a 3.2MP camera and FM radio. The device can be expanded up to 16GB via microSD card for those looking for extra room for music, etc. No word on pricing, but this affordable Nokia handset is set to launch on July 14th.


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It looks like Rogers is preparing to launch a new entry-level Nokia handset, the X2-01. The X2 is an affordable device that comes with a full QWERTY keyboard, and runs on Symbian OS S40. It features a 2.4" (320x240) display, and a VGA camera, and can hold up to 8GB via microSD card. No word yet on exactly when it will be made available, or what the pricing will look like, but it should certainly be on the lower end when it comes to cost. It's also possible that the device is destined for Rogers' Prepaid line-up, but only time will tell!


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Videotron has finally launched the Nokia C7-00, which was originally expected to launch in late April or so. The C7 runs on Symbian^3 OS, and features a 3.5" (360x640) AMOLED touchscreen display, along with an 8MP camera with dual-LED flash and 720p HD video recording. It's powered by a 680MHz processor, and comes with 256MB of RAM, 1GB of ROM, and 8GB of internal storage space, expandable via microSD. Connectivity options for the C7-00 include Wi-Fi (b, g, n), bluetooth 3.0, and GPS. It also has TV-out functionality and an FM radio transmitter.

If you're looking to pick up the C7-00 from Videotron, it is now available for $89.95 reduced price, or $439.95 contract-free.


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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.




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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.




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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.




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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.


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Staples wasn't previously known for being a major retailer when it comes to mobile products, but they are certainly stepping up their game with the recent popularization of tablets. First they launched the BlackBerry PlayBook, right along with the carriers and other department stores to carry it. Now, they have updated their inventory to include two Android tablets, the Acer Iconia 10" tablet, and the Asus Eee Pad Transformer. They are also offering a Windows 7 tablet, also an Acer Iconia 10" model

The Android-powered Acer Iconia runs Gingerbread 3.0, and is powered by a dual-core 1GHz processor. It has a 10.1" (1280x800) touchscreen display, and features a 5MP rear-facing camera, and a 2MP front-facing secondary camera. It has a microHDMI port, and comes with 32GB of internal memory, along with a microSD card slot and connectivity options including Wi-Fi and bluetooth. The Android Acer Iconia 10" tablet is available for ordering now from Staples for $499.99. Unfortunately it's currently marked as an "Extended Delivery Product", meaning it will take 1-2 weeks for delivery. Additionally, it isn't available in-store as of yet, but should be coming to retail locations soon.

There is also a Windows 7 based Acer Iconia tablet available through the retailer, which features a 10.1" LED-backlit touchscreen display, and 2GB of RAM. It has a dual-core 1GHz AMD processor, and comes with 32GB of internal storage. The Windows 7 Iconia has two 1.3MP cameras (one in the front, one in the back), and features Wi-Fi and bluetooth connectivity. It comes with 2 USB 2.0 ports, and an HDMI port for wired connectivity as well. One of the best things about the Windows 7 Iconia tablet is that it comes with a full QWERTY keyboard dock, making typing significantly easier on the go. The dock also includes an additional USB port, and an Ethernet port for faster wired internet connectivity when at home. The Windows 7 Acer Iconia tablet is available from Staples now, though is also an "Extended Delivery Product". Orders will be shipped within 1-2 weeks and the device is not yet available at retail locations.

The last tablet on the list of recent additions to Staples line-up is the Asus Eee Pad Transformer, which is available in 16GB or 32GB versions. It has a 10.1" (1280x800) touchscreen display, and is powered by a dual-core 1GHz processor and 1GB of RAM. It runs on Android 3.0 Honeycomb, and has a 5MP camera, in addition to a 2MP front-facing secondary camera. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi and bluetooth, and it has a microHDMI port, in addition to a microUSB, full USB 2.0, and microSD card slot. The Asus Eee Transformer is available under the same conditions as the previous two tablets, with expected delivery taking 1-2 weeks. It isn't available in retail locations either, but will hopefully be added to store shelves soon. One of the major features of the Asus Eee Transformer is the attachable dock, which not only gives users a full QWERTY keyboard, but significant extension in battery life. No word on when this additional accessory will be made available, but it shouldn't take too long!


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We just let you know that Rogers launched the LG Optimus Pad, a high-end Android powered tablet. It looks like they've also gone ahead and launched an entry-level Android handset from the same manufacturer, the LG Phoenix.

The LG Phoenix runs on Android 2.2 Froyo and features a 3.2" (320x480) touchscreen display, along with a 3.2MP camera. It supports Wi-Fi (including hotspot) connectivity, in addition to bluetooth and GPS, and supports up to 32GB of memory via microSD cards. The LG Phoenix is officially available now from Rogers for $29.99 on a 3 year contract, or $249.99 outright.


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At Google I/O last week, a variety of announcements came our way regarding Android. Ice Cream Sandwich, Movie Rentals, and more were announced. One of the other items unveiled at the event was Honeycomb OS 3.1, the next update in the tablet-specific OS. Included in the update are a variety of new featurs, including resizable widgets, USB accessory support, and more.

Unfortunately, like with most events of this type in the U.S., Canada wasn't really discussed a whole lot. U.S. Motorola XOOM owners began seeing the update shortly after the announcement, while there has been no sign of it north of the border. Finally, Motorola Canada came forward on Facebook and declared that the update is coming soon. No specific dates were provided, but they did say:

"Some of the feature upgrades include basic external SD card support for general SD file and media access, expanded support for USB-connected accessories, additional Bluetooth support and Picture Transfer Protocol to enable easier transfer of photo files to your PC."

Certainly great news for Canadian XOOM owners!


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