The annual Consumer Electronics Show is in full swing in Las Vegas. The first day brought a range of smartphone announcements, as well as a number of events where companies were showing off new products to journalists.
One of the stars of the show so far has been Microsoft’s Windows Phone. The Nokia Lumia 900 running the latest version of this operating system was announced, but won’t be released by AT&T for several months. Nevertheless, I was able to do a preliminary trial, and wrote my first thoughts.
Another Windows Phone that was unveiled yesterday was the HTC Titan II, which might be powerful enough to give Nokia a run for its money. Grant Hatchimonji, Brighthand‘s resident expert on Windows Phone, is writing a preview.
Don’t think Android has been missing from the show. Far from it. Multiple models running this popular operating system have been unveiled, with announcements from AT&T and Verizon, with products from Motorola, Samsung, and more. Check out our show coverage to see the latest.
And don’t miss Grant’s hands-on preview of the Huawei Ascend P1 and P1S, two slim Android-powered phones.
Samsung Smart Cameras
We’re all familiar with smartphones, but Samsung is attempting to launch a new class of the device at CES: the smart camera. This is a fresh entry into the ongoing debate “Will your phone ever replace your camera?”
One of the best parts about cameraphones is that they make it so easy too share our pictures with friends and family immediately. Samsung’s new cameras can do that too — these devices have Wi-Fi and apps that tie into the most popular social-networking services. They are take better pictures than smartphones do, especially in difficult conditions, like bad lightning or distant objects.
They don’t make phone calls so they won’t be replacing your iPhone or Droid, but they can help out people who wish their phone took better low-light images, or that their camera could talk to Facebook.
Visa NFC Initiative
NFC (Near Field Communications) is very short-range method for sharing data. Companies like Visa and Google are pushing its use as a way to turn your phone into a credit card, or even your whole wallet.
Visa reps are at CES demonstrating just how simple this is. An NFC-enabled phone is held next to a receiver, the user taps on a button to approve the transaction, and bob’s your uncle.
Only time will tell if NFC is going to catch on. One of its greatest challenges is that the system it is trying to replace, the credit card, is already very simple to use.
Parrot AR.Drone 2.0
CES is hardly all work and no play. A prime example is the AR.Drone 2.0 from Parrot. This is a very intimidating-look small helicopter that can be controlled by an iPhone, iPad, or Android device.
There’s a camera in the device, so you can steer buy looking at your smartphone’s screen… almost as if you were inside the vehicle.
The AR.Drone 2.0 isn’t out yet, and its going to be a pricey gadget, but undoubtedly very cool.
The Consumer Electronics Show is going on for several more days. Keep checking back to Brighthand for more news and hands-on previews of upcoming smartphones.
And the Site Editors from the entire TechnologyGuiide family is at this tradeshow. Be sure to visit our round-up page to learn about the latest in tablets, laptops, printers, desktops, and digital cameras.