Posts tagged video
BlackBerry Developer Group Balkan recent held a BlackBerry 10 Jam in Belgrade complete with a VIP after party. The event, which took place at the Zira
- Movie App Extends Global Reach With International Movie Release Dates
- NOOK Color gets Android 4.2 thanks to CyanogenMod 10.1
- Okidoki Photobooks 1.1.1 on iOS-Create and Receive Real-Life Photo Books
- Sony Xperia Z press image leaks
- Asphalt 7: Heat, N.O.V.A. 3, and other great Gameloft titles now on BlackBerry PlayBook
RSS Copyright © Hottest Mobile Phone News & Reviews | PhoneInferno [Belgrade knows how to jam - Check out their BlackBerry 10 Jam video!], All Right Reserved. 2013.
Powered by Readers From RSS 2 Blog
View NASA’s on demand video, images, news, and more right from your BlackBerry smartphone
For the kid in all of us who love gazing up at the stars and marveling at the wonders that grace the night’s sky there is Space TV. Not too long ago we told you about this application for the BlackBerry PlayBook and how you could access podcasts, video, and news feeds directly from NASA right from your tablet. I’m happy to say that this wonderful application is now available for BlackBerry 10 with even more functionality thanks to the Cascades framework for better performance.
RSS Copyright © Hottest Mobile Phone News & Reviews | PhoneInferno [Get space news, video, images, and more with Space TV Plus for BlackBerry 10], All Right Reserved. 2013.
Powered by Readers From RSS 2 Blog
YouTube has posted an unexpected video on its own channel earlier today, reminding everyone that for the last eight years the purpose of the website was find the best video around.
Not many users are probably aware of this and many people have probably forgotten about the competition, but today is the last day for submitting your video and hoping for your chance of winning an MP3 player and a 0 stipend to go into your future creative endeavor. The prize will be awarded in 10 years from now, in 2013, when the site will reopen to only show the winning video.
In addition to reminding users about the contest, YouTube further explained how the winning video will be chosen by its team of dedicated engineers. Apparently every video ever uploaded to the site will be reviewed by a team of 30,000 technicians who will choose a short list for the best video on YouTube.
A final panel comprised of film critics, YouTube celebrities and prolific commentators will actually get to choose the best video and views won’t matter that much. Whether is the official Gangnam Style video that got a bazillion hits or the video of a man feeding bread to a dog that got around 40 hits, they all have an equal chance to win the top prize.
A bunch of well-known YouTube personas also appear in Google’s official video, talking about their hopes of winning the top spot on YouTube, see for yourself:
Naturally, since we have an established presence on YouTube ourselves, we surely hope that one of our videos will actually be selected as the winner. Sadly though, you won’t be able to watch our videos after today – except for the one of them in case it does win the contest – so better grab a coffee and check them all out before Google deletes them.
Note: yes, this is one of Google’s April Fools Day jokes that hit the web a day earlier and yes, we’re aware it’s a joke. No, YouTube is not going anywhere, and yes, we’ll continue to put out great videos for you to enjoy, so don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel. And yes, those are Apple iMacs in the video above whose logos have been hidden.
The post YouTube to select best video ever, shut down tomorrow for 10 years appeared first on Android Authority.
Sony has made significant progress since it bought Ericsson out of their business venture back in early 2012. But, moving into 2013, the Japanese phone manufacturer still had a lot to improve on if it wanted to tackle the “big boys” of the smartphone market.
At first blush, the Xperia Z, which we reviewed a couple of weeks back, seemed to be Sony’s flagship for 2013, and the better phone from the pair. But the Sony Xperia ZL shouldn’t be dismissed just because it’s smaller and not as sleek as its sibling.
As a matter of fact, the compact size of the Sony Xperia ZL may just be the best thing about this device. Even better, the small footprint doesn’t come at the expense of the specs and the overall experience.
If you’re looking for a video review of the Sony Xperia ZL, you might want to jump to the bottom of this article, where we give you a video tour of the smartphone. Let’s take a closer look at what the Sony Xperia ZL has to offer.
Build and design
Although Sony used roughly the same design language with both the Sony Xperia Z and the Sony Xperia ZL, there are a few notable differences.
Starting with the similarities, the Sony Xperia ZL features straight edges and angular corners to accomplish a slab-like overall feel.
The front of the smartphone is dominated by the 5-inch display, which renders three navigational on-screen buttons below the content area. Excluding the thin bezels, there’s really nothing else to look at other than Sony’s logo at the top and the uniquely designed notification LED light – instead of just a rounded pulsating light, the LED is more like a line and is a unique focal point for the Xperia ZL. Finally, the front-facing camera that rests below the navigational buttons is supposed to make video chats more natural by having users look lower on the screen – that’s what Sony posits, anyway.
The right side of the Sony Xperia ZL houses the large, silver power button in the middle, a volume rocker above the power button and a dedicated camera button for the trigger-happy shutterbug in all of us.
While the textured plastic back is not as rigid as some would like it to be, it does help with the handling of the Sony Xperia ZL, letting users operate it with just one hand. In addition to the improved grip, the texturized plastic is less likely to shatter into pieces the instant you’ve dropped the smartphone on a concrete pavement (which is usually a job best fitted for our own Darcy LaCouvee) as opposed to glass, the material that covers the back of the Sony Xperia Z.
The textured plastic back of the Xperia ZL features a flappy cover at the bottom that can be removed to expose the microSD and micro SIM slots. The cover is attached to the body by a single piece of plastic, and since it doesn’t feel especially durable, it does require a bit of extra attention when access to the slots is needed.
While the Sony Xperia ZL lacks the waterproofing of the Sony Xperia Z, it does compensate with a much more compact form factor. In fact, the Sony Xperia ZL is the most compact 5-inch smartphone officially announced thus far.
The Sony Xperia ZL measures 131.6 x 69.3 x 9.8 mm (5.18 x 2.73 x 0.39 in) and weighs 151 g (5.33 oz). While thicker than most flagship smartphones, the Xperia ZL is the 5-incher that’s probably the easiest to use with just one hand (the number one issue with smartphones that use displays of this size).
Sony has equipped the Xperia ZL with a 5-inch TFT capacitive panel that works at a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels, with a 441 PPI density. As far as we can tell, this is the exact same display that Sony has used on the Xperia Z.
As it was to be expected judging by the spec sheet, sharpness is on par with that offered by the displays of other 5-inch Android smartphones. However, sharpness is not all that makes a great smartphone display.
Both through direct observation, and based on more formal tests, it’s clear that the display on the Sony Xperia ZL suffers from a few issues that are also seen on its bigger twin. First, although not a deal breaker to most smartphone users, is the problem of limited viewing angles. Then there’s the issue of lower contrast levels, when compared to other devices, as well as the less accurate color reproduction.
The Bravia image processing chip, a component that Sony has always touted in its marketing materials, may improve the viewing experience in some scenarios, but also oversaturate colors under certain conditions.
Overall, the Sony Xperia ZL has a good display, one that will satisfy all but the most pretentious users.
Hardware and performance
CPU, GPU, and RAM
As far as performance is concerned, you’ll have a tough time finding a faster smartphone on the market right now, although there are a few devices that are close enough to call it a draw.
Today’s top smartphones (unless you managed to buy an HTC One) are powered by the same SoC as the Xperia ZL, the Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro, which includes a 1.5 GHz quad-core Krait CPU and an Adreno 320 GPU. The ZL has 2GB of RAM memory.
As you would expect, benchmarks but also real life usage suggest that the Sony Xperia ZL is at the top of the performance charts, along other phones based on the S4 Pro, such as the Xperia Z, the HTC Droid DNA or the Nexus 4.
Sure, there are a few upcoming devices what will feature faster processors (the Galaxy S4 and the HTC One are just two examples), but those devices are not yet available for purchase in most markets. And I’ll assure you that, by the time those smartphones become widely available, some manufacturer will announce an even faster smartphone. That’s the way technology evolves these days. The processor package in the Xperia ZL might be getting on a bit, but that doesn’t mean it won’t give you a really great experience nonetheless.
Internal storage, camera, and battery
The Xperia ZL comes with 16GB of internal storage and can work with microSD cards of up to 64GB, which is perfect for those with an ever growing need of storage space.
The primary camera features a 13MP Sony Exmor RS sensor that produces some of the nicest pictures taken with a smartphone. Sony’s proprietary camera app is also a welcomed addition, as it features a couple of software tweaks such as Sony’s Superior Auto system (a software tool that can automatically adjust the settings depending on the environment) and Sweeping Panorama.
Here are a couple of sample shots taken with Sony’s Xperia ZL primary camera:
Sony engineers have decided to place the secondary 2MP camera at the bottom right side of the front of the phone, a decision that’s supposedly based on the fact that most people look down to their phones while in a video call.
The 2370 non-removable battery will get you through the day with moderate use, although there is nothing spectacular to report about it. During our tests, after a full charge, the Sony Xperia ZL has turned off after 5 and a half hours of HD video playback.
One key difference between the Xperia ZL and its bigger twin is the inclusion of an IR blaster. This is an emerging piece of tech appearing on more devices – it provides the ability for users to utilize their phones as remote controls for multiple devices. You can use the Xperia Zl, then, as a universal remote that controls your television, stereo system, or even a cable set-top box. It is certainly a neat and unique addition, though its functionality depends on the remote control application that is covered later.
The Sony Xperia ZL runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with Sony’s proprietary Xperia UI overlaid on top. As with all custom manufacturer UIs for Android, the design is a matter of personal preference. The Xperia UI allows for some basic customization of your homescreens, although if that’s not enough for you, you can always install a custom launcher from the Play Store and get a totally different visual experience.
As far as extending the functionality of the Android OS, the Sony Xperia UI is not doing anything that we would call impressive, although the array of media-centered apps that Sony has included in the package do provide some nice features.
Another software tweak that’s worth mentioning about the Xperia UI is that, when low on battery, the phone can enter Stamina mode, which supresses the mobile data connection while the screen is turned off. There are a bunch of apps in the Google Play Store that have the exact same functionality, but Stamina mode is still a welcomed out-of-the-box feature.
One last piece of software worth mentioning is the inclusion of a remote control application. Using the aforementioned IR blaster, users can open up the Remote Control app and add from a pretty incredible list of devices in order to find the one they use. This all ranges from DVD players to cable set-top boxes to televisions. While definitely pretty handy, the built-in presets for various devices may likely work flawlessly for only newer devices. Testing on an older Vizio flat screen TV yielded only some of the buttons functional, even after using all the different remote types. Manual set up is possible, however, so if it doesn’t work for you, that may be the way to go.
When you draw the line, the Sony Xperia ZL is a great Android smartphone that delivers the best performance on the market, the most compact form factor on a smartphone with a 5-inch display, and a decent camera. Moreover, the design and build quality could prove superior to the Xperia Z, even though the ZL doens’t offer protection against water and dust.
The display however, while still a decent one, is not the best around, and that may turn off some potential customers.
What do you make of the Sony Xperia ZL? Drop us a comment in the section below and share your thoughts!
Mike Andrici and Bogdan Petrovan contributed to this review.
NVIDIA has been doing an admirable job keeping gamers abreast on its upcoming gaming console, Project Shield. Every week or so, the chip maker demos various graphics-intensive games running on the Shield to try and convince buyers that the console will be worth the hype.
The latest title that has been given the Project Shield treatment is a game that started its life on the Nintendo Wii, but finally found its way to Google Play last week – The Conduit HD. It’s a fast-paced FPS featuring stellar graphics and advanced physics.
With the Tegra 3 version already impressive as it is, how does the game run on the new console? From the explanation, the Project Shield-optimized version will come with enhanced polygon counts and lighting, more special effects, and better textures. Having all those physical buttons and controls certainly help make for a more enjoyable gaming experience as well.
If you’re curious, press play on the live demo video that we’ve embedded above.
The Project Shield, which is equipped with a Tegra 4 mobile processor, will only be launched this September – no thanks to the delay in the manufacturing process of the Cortex A15-based CPU.
What do you think of the demo? Planning to set aside some cash to get the Project Shield?
The post NVIDIA shows off The Conduit HD running on the Tegra 4-powered Project Shield [video] appeared first on Android Authority.
Tel Aviv, Israel – DSStudios today is pleased to announce the release of Harlem Shake Yourself! 1.0, its new entertainment app for iPhone and iPod touch. Just like the Christmas smash-hit app “ElfYourself by Officemax,” Harlem Shake Yourself! lets you produce a crazy Harlem Shake dance without getting up from your couch. Simply choose a picture from your Facebook photos, camera roll or snap one yourself. Then crop and adjust the picture and generate one of the funniest dance videos of your friends and family doing the Harlem Shake! Its free, its fun, so get it now!
* Pick Photos from Camera Roll and Facebook
* Photo-Taking Functionality
* Produces Harlem Shake Dance Video
* Save Video or Share to Facebook or Email
The Harlem Shake is a viral dance meme that hit the scene in early February 2013. The meme was started by vlogger Filthy Frank and quickly spread like wild-fire through the internet, with thousands of videos being uploaded to Youtube and with the top videos getting over 50,000,000 views and counting!
The Harlem Shake dance typically involves one person dancing in a helmet or mask for 15 seconds, while the people around him seem to be unaware of the person dancing. Then when the beat drops at the 15 second mark, the video is normally “jump cut” and in the next scene everyone is dancing like crazy, often dressed up in hilarious costumes. Typical Harlem Shake videos last 30 seconds.
With Harlem Shake Yourself! you can quickly and easily make your family and friends dance the Harlem Shake in seconds… Watch their reaction as they fall down laughing hysterically!
The Harlem Shake Yourself app is fun and Free. Choose any combination of photos and produce funny dance videos in seconds. We will be updating the application frequently and providing support should any bugs be found. Feel free to share and syndicate the videos any way you like. Tell your friends about the app today!
* iPhone 3GS, 4, 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch
* Requires iOS 5.0 or later
* 23.9 MB
Pricing and Availability:
Harlem Shake Yourself! 1.0 is Free and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Entertainment category.
DSStudios is an app development company, specializing in iOS, BlackBerry and Windows Phone app production. Copyright (C) 2013 DSStudios. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other trademarks and registered trademarks may be the property of their respective owners.
RSS Copyright © Hottest Mobile Phone News & Reviews | PhoneInferno [Harlem Shake Yourself! - Create Your Own Shake Video In Seconds], All Right Reserved. 2013.
Powered by Readers From RSS 2 Blog
To drum up the interest for the One, delayed in most markets, HTC is kicking marketing into high gear, with new ads and music video appearances.
HTC is having problems bringing its 2013 flagship to market, with the One being delayed in most markets until late April. That’s a massive problem for the ailing phone maker, given the impending arrival of the One’s biggest competitor, the Samsung Galaxy S4. HTC can’t even dream to compete with Samsung when it comes to marketing budgets, so it has to make the most of the slight time advantage it still has over the Galaxy S4.
While HTC can’t afford to fill ad breaks with its commercials or plaster the world with billboards like its Korean competitor can, the Taiwanese outfit has begun releasing promotional videos centered on the One’s biggest selling points.
We’ve already seen two promos showing off the One’s Flipboard-like BlinkFeed homescreen replacement, and now HTC unveiled a commercial for BoomSound (the marketing name of the One’s stereo sound setup). The ad will air in Germany, one of the few markets where the HTC One will start selling as soon as next week.
Moreover, the HTC One stars in a music video from the Dubai-based electronic duo Hollaphonic. Check it out below.
What do you think about HTC’s ads and promos? Do they work?
Unlike the mocking and comical undertones that most Samsung’s mobile commercials seem to have, Google has adopted a different strategy when it comes to promoting its Nexus line of devices, one that revolves around family values.
The latest Nexus 10 commercial doesn’t stray too far from the above, but it does add a surprise mix to the formula, a cute baby. We’re not giving away all the details, but the ad features a couple who is expecting and is contemplating on whether to name the baby boy Alfie or Kevin.
Where does the Nexus 10 fit in all this? In case you’ve forgotten, the N10 can be set up to be used by multiple users. Although the couple only has one tablet, the ad shows how each user can have his or her home screens, and how the tab can be shared easily amongst the two as they prepare for the arrival of the baby.
Simply put, we like the new commercial. Are you curious about the name that they chose? Want to see the N10’s multi-account feature in action? Press play on the embedded video.
The post Google’s Nexus 10 commercial touts its multiple user feature [video] appeared first on Android Authority.
With the dawning of the Xperia Z, Sony hopes to crack the top list of smartphone manufacturers. For the most part, we think that it is the right step and the Z is definitely one of the most excelling devices that we have had the pleasure of handling. With its sleek rectangular flat form factor and wonderful specs within, Sony’s flagship phone is just short of spectacular, settling for pretty darn amazing instead. It deserves to be in the top 5 and in this upcoming year of 5 inch, 1080p displays on smartphones, it should be able to keep up and hold its own.
Despite Sony’s popularity in other parts of the world, its Xperia line hasn’t really taken hold in the West. While the Z is hopefully the change to that story, it might be fair enough to say that its newest phone a crossroads for Sony. So we are going to compare it to a couple other cornerstones of the smartphone market – devices that were turning points for ther own respective companies. The heaviest hitters and current incumbents in the game right now? That’s easy – the Samsung Galaxy S3 and Apple’s iPhone 5.
Even four months can feel like a lifetime in technology, and these two devices might feel ancient in light of all the new phones coming out, but they are not only still relevant but are continuing to hold their ground. The Galaxy S3 is Samsung’s best selling phone and the iPhone 5 is the continuation of Apple’s (albeit waning) dominance, especially in the West. So how does the Xperia Z’s page turning release compare to the same instances in Samsung and Apple? We take a look in this comparison.
Okay, so we are dealing with three different phones here, so this will keep things relatively simple. In each specific category, I will list off the various aspects of the specific device and give the opinion in the verdict. We’re looking at how these phones are all different, but also what they meant to their respective companies in their time. To that end, we have to remember that these all feel (and are, to some extent) like flashbacks to an entirely different era of smartphone technology.
Sony Xperia Z
There’s no getting around it – this is the biggest phone in the entire bunch. With that 5 inch 1080p screen, it has to have a larger form factor to hold all that display goodness. Aside from all that, black slate look takes hold all around the phone, looking like a thin black brick. At 7.9mm, this phone comes in second for thickness. The rectangular shape lends itself to a look that we honestly don’t find as often in mobile devices anymore, adding to its appeal. A tempered glass encases the entire phone on all sides, all kept together by a skeleton of polyamide.
As for the button layouts, the protruding silver power button and volume rockers are all found on the right side about halfway down the phone, quite literally where one’s thumb would land. All of the ports on this phone are covered by a piece of plastic material, which helps in one of the Xperia Z’s unique features – water resistance. One undeniable fact about the Xperia Z – all of that glass covering the black body makes fingerprints look like beacons – this is a phone that requires a thorough wipe down more often than its competitors, that is for sure.
Samsung Galaxy S3
As the phone that arguably brought Android into the incredibly large mainstream spotlight, the Galaxy S3 brought with it the seemingly ubiquitous design that many phones have since adopted. The rounded body lacks the kind of rigidity that the Xperia Z touts, and sports a smaller, 4.8 inch screen in its body. As a result, the entire phone is a little smaller and is more in line with the multitudes of phones that made its size the standard (though that will change this year, it seems).
Samsung has made the entire plastic body their signature, as it has made it onto basically all phones since the S3. Gorilla Glass covers the front panel, though the back panel has a feature that many phones have been lacking lately – it’s removeable. This allows access to the battery and SD card, but that part comes later. The button layout is, again, signature Samsung – power button on the right where the thumb lands and the volume buttons opposite it. One tactile face button serves as home, flanked by menu and back keys.
Apple iPhone 5
This is obviously the smallest phone of the bunch, as Apple took a stand against large screens and instead kept the same width of the iPhone 4 in its display. The screen is only 4 inches and thus lends itself to a smaller form that is the most grippable. Like a mixture of the Xperia Z and Galaxy S3, this is a rectangular phone that sports rigidity until the rounded corners.
This is not the glass encased iPhone 4, as the 5 instead takes to aluminum for its backing and is two tone – silver and white or grey and black, depending on the model you choose. The button layout is signature Apple, with the power button found on the top, volume rocker and silence toggle on the left and finally the trademark home button below the screen on the face. The other main change that the iPhone 5 brought was a new, rather controversial, charging port. While adapters can be used to make this phone work with past accessories, not too many people were very happy with this change.
Verdict: Xperia Z
While the Samsung Galaxy S3 is one of the cornerstone Android devices that got pretty much everything right, it is a design that has been tried and true but has become a little old. The S3 definitely shows its age after Samsung put the plastic look in basically every following device. I’m not the only one that desires a change, so hopefully the Galaxy S4 makes that happen. The iPhone 5 is admittedly a beautifully designed device with its aluminum casing, though the smaller screen will soon become less relevant. In my opinion, the Xperia Z takes this one because it brings a design that very few phones (if any) sport – that rectangular, rigid design is honestly just a joy to behold and it deserves to be seen and noticed.
Sony Xperia Z
The Xperia Z’s flatness does make it great the handle, as the flat sides make it easy to grip. Despite there being some need for hand gymnastics, the good sense to make the button layout easy to reach (you don’t even really have to try) helps a whole lot. There is going to be a learning curve with a phone as large as this, but rest assured that there is little fear of this phone slipping from your grasp.
Samsung Galaxy S3
With the 4.8 inch screen, this is the middle ground in this triple threat. The hand can comfortably grip the entire phone and the hand gymnastics should be natural for pretty much everyone by this time. This is the form factor that we have come to know best – the power button is easily accessible and the volume rockers or power button don’t need much fuss to reach. There is a reason that so many phones have taken on this design that Samsung made so popular – it does work quite well.
Apple iPhone 5
Finally we have the iPhone, the smallest of the bunch. You can basically grip the entire phone in the palm of your hand and there are virtually no stretches required to reach any part of the phone. Even the power button at the top is reachable without having to move the phone in your hand any which way. Compared to the original iPhone 4, this phone is just a little taller and is the same width. This made the phone rather accessible for past users and anyone who is looking for a smaller alternative certainly has this device in their list.
Verdict: Samsung Galaxy S3
Like I said before, this is the form factor that is the standard. The sad part about the iPhone 5 is that its size feels foreign for anyone that has used any device with a larger screen. Once you get used to the larger form factors, anything smaller just feels weird. As such, I have the easiest time with the Galaxy S3. The Xperia Z is an incredible phone all around and is a beacon for the future, but 5 inch screens are still slowly making their presence known – 2013 might be the year of the bigger device, but it’s only March.
Sony Xperia Z
We start with the biggest screen, with the highest resolution and the most pixels per inch. The TFT screen on the Xperia Z is a 5 inch screen that very well may soon rule the world, and it sports the 1080p resolution one would expect from it. As such, everything lives large on the Z’s screen and looks pretty darn wonderful. A great refresh rate makes it look like a tiny Bravia TV and the high pixel density at 441ppi puts it among the sharpest displays out there right now.
As mentioned in my in-depth review, the screen did have its share of problems. Not only does Sony choose black and grey tones for most of its UI, which doesn’t really flatter the display, the colors are actually a bit washed out and lack vibrancy no matter how you are looking at it. The best experience is dead straight on, but move the phone at any which angle and you’ll see how the display washes everything out the farther you get. This is, by far, a problem that a vast majority of users will be able to look past without much difficulty, but it is a gripe nonetheless. It’s still a fun display, and all media benefits from the larger size.
Samsung Galaxy S3
The Super AMOLED display is something you either love or hate, though it seems to garner more praise than anything else. It isn’t unfounded – at 720p, this 4.8 inch screen is far from outdated and still displays media and content pretty darn well. There is a low 306ppi pixel density here that is noticeable when you compare sharpness to other behemoth screens. This isn’t too much of a problem with consumers, as has been proved, because it is still one of the most common and celebrated displays of its time.
Samsung managed to capture the vibrancy and crisp colors that Sony missed in the Xperia Z. TouchWiz is already a very colorful user interface, but on this screen colors burst forth from the screen and punch you in the face. I guess there is somewhat of a trade off here because the Galaxy S3 screen, at its highest brightness, is dimmer than the other two phones in this comparison (something pictures and videos are unable to reproduce). Nonetheless, this is a vibrant and great display that makes you wonder what Samsung could do with a larger, 1080p display.
Apple iPhone 5
And finally we have the LED IPS display found on the iPhone 5. It’s a fact we can’t get around – this is a small screen. 4 inches in this phone is consistently being dwarfed by basically all big Android releases. It also has the lowest resolution at 1136×640, though it works just fine for a phone this size. The 326ppi pixel density is what Apple dubbed ‘Retina’ for the iPhone 5, and it does its job quite well. The display is enjoyable, though anyone looking forward to 5 inch screens will undoubtedly squint and wonder how they lived with screens this small.
The color reproduction is about as good Apple has ever been able to put in its phones – definitely has more vibrancy than the Xperia Z but is perhaps right on par with the Galaxy S3. It is Apple’s greatest display on a smartphone, and if they finally ever do decide to make bigger screens, then the Android brethren might have to be on their guard.
Verdict: Sony Xperia Z
Call it great marketing, but my recent time with 5 inch, 1080p display phones has made the whole new system make sense. I used to scoff at the prospect of larger displays with resolutions that haven’t even been tapped enough to matter, but even blown up to meet the size, everything just looked darn good. I have to give this one to the Xperia Z because its screen is the future – 1080p done perfectly by whichever manufacturer will be incredible. The Xperia Z is unfortunately short of perfection because of its lackluster color vibrancy, but it is still the most enjoyable time.
Sony Xperia Z
Obviously this is the most advanced of the bunch, sporting the 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro processor that has been at the top of all the benchmark lists (though that should be changing soon). The tried-and-true Adreno 320 is this phone’s graphics powerhouse, and as a result, gaming is a blast on the Xperia Z. 2GB of RAM is included for multitasking and it works as well as it should.
Benchmarks are really just numbers but these numbers are pretty amazing. This is, to date, the only phone I have personally seen break the 20000 mark on AnTuTu Benchmark. That’s definitely impressive but you feel the performance in practice as the phone flies through its elements. Even if the Snapdragon S4 Pro might fade in the coming months, it still keeps up. Below is the Xperia Z’s score on Geekbench 2, which is the benchmark test I could use on all three devices simultaneously.
Samsung Galaxy S3
Yes, we want all of the best all the time from our phones, but we forget that specifications and often created to withstand at least an extended amount of time. That is the case with the Galaxy S3, which sports the Exynos Cortex A9 processor clocked out at 1.4GHz. It was the most powerful phone processor package of its time, though that has since been blown away. The Mali 400MP lent itself to really good graphics and 1GB was available for multitasking, making this phone very advanced for its time nearly 8 months ago.
No matter how much we might want the latest, greatest, and fastest in our phones, most consumers are still looking at the Galaxy S3 as a fast daily warrior. The general consumer, which Samsung did a great job of reaching in the past year, will still get a great experience in this phone – and that helps keep it relevant.
Apple iPhone 5
Apple makes its own SoCs and thus the iPhone 5 has the custom built dual core 1.2 A6 processor backed by PowerVR SGX 543MP3 graphics and 1GB of RAM. It is a package that powers some of the best that the App Store has to offer, even if it is empirically the least powerful performer in this bunch. Apple is very good at manufacturing lasting devices and the iPhone is definitely an example of that – despite the onslaught of great performers in the Android market, the iPhone remains about as good as it was when released.
You can say that optimization is key here, but that is true for software, as well. With such a controlled ecosystem for apps, Apple can help ensure that much of its app market is put together as perfectly as possible for its systems. All of this put together definitely makes the iPhone seem like it keeps up with the rest – for the most part, it actually is.
Verdict: Sony Xperia Z
With the highest numbers and the performance-in-practice to show for it, did you really think I would pick either of the others? I am a firm believer that previously released specifications can still make the general consumer happy and if that all fits into what they want, then they shouldn’t feel the need to be bleeding edge. The Galaxy S3 and iPhone 5 are available for that very assertion. But personally, if I have to pick one of these three, I pick the most powerful of the bunch – the Xperia Z.
Sony Xperia Z
It is here that we will look at what the phones offer in terms of extra bits – the Xperia Z, then, is one of the few top tier phones that actually provides for expandable memory. It seems to be one of the most hotly contested portions of any review; no matter what, the inclusion (or lack) of expandable memory or replaceable batteries garners some sort of big response.
Though a SD card slot is available, there is no way of getting to the battery in the Xperia Z. So, that is about half of what the people want, but it’s more than what most phones can say they do. Aside from all this, NFC and the usual bevy of GPS, Bluetooth, and Wifi are available, as to be expected on Android devices these days.
Samsung Galaxy S3
I can’t really say it enough – while we might be getting a little tired of the Galaxy S3 and are eagerly awaiting the coming of the S4, this original iteration of an incredibly popular line of Android phones did get a lot (if not, everything) right. The sheer fact that a removable cover is available already makes it clear that the S3 includes those two big aspects people want, and yes, the S3’s memory is thus expandable and the battery is replaceable.
NFC might not have been as big of a feature back when the S3 was released – and it’s arguably still not as big as some hope it to be – but it was nonetheless available for the marketable S-Beam technology. Otherwise, all the usual features are available here.
I mention NFC in the Android devices because it actually isn’t available in the iPhone. For whatever reason, it was not put into the 5 and is thus a minus in their camp. On top of all that, you also aren’t able to open up the phone in any which way so the battery remains fixed and the memory has no chance of being expandable.
Verdict: Samsung Galaxy S3
You want to be able to replace your battery and expand your memory? Well, the Galaxy S3 does have both of those features among a myriad of other great features, so for sheer ability, it does get the point here.
Software and OS
Here’s where it can get sticky – all three of these handsets sport different looking and in some ways different functioning software. What this will come down to is how useful and how easy to use they are.
Sony Xperia Z
With Jelly Bean 4.1, the Xperia Z has some of the latest offerings from Google – most notably, Google Now. Aside from that, however, Sony has seen fit to make their user interface pretty easy on the eyes by keeping things simple. The black and grey tones might turn some away but it is all very reminiscent of the well received design of Ice Cream Sandwich. All these darker tones take on blue colored hues that can actually be changed in the customization window with different themes.
A power widget helps make the most used features of the phone easily accessible, while the inclusion of Small Apps brings quick tools for the power multitasker. It is a sleek looking operating system that does well to bring some updated Google applications to the table wrapped up in a great looking (albeit somewhat derivative) interface with some Sony-esque uniqueness sprinkled on top.
Samsung Galaxy S3
Touchwiz is one of the most colorful user interfaces in the Android ecosystem, with its bright and loud icons and generally bubbly design. It is by no means lacking in function, however, as there is plenty to use in the interface. As is becoming more and more ubiquitous, the power widget in the notification dropdown helps the user easily toggle different aspects of the phone’s features. If you have updated your S3 recently, you should have access to Google Now with Jelly Bean 4.1 installed. And compared to the UI in the Xperia Z, it is far from stock Android.
One feature that deserves mention here is the Multi-Window. Samsung took multitasking to another level by allowing a split screen functionality that puts two different apps on the same plane cut by an adjustable field in the middle. It can quite useful for people who want to watch videos while responding to e-mails or texting or browsing the web, and it was pretty unique at the time of release. Though it might not make complete sense on a smaller screen, imagine what a 5 inch screen at 1080p resolution could to with the feature.
Apple iPhone 5
And then we have iOS, which is the trademark user interface found only on Apple’s smartphones. As one of the first advanced interfaces for smartphones, it did its lion’s share of innovation and set an example for all other operating systems. Unfortunately, despite the changes that have been made since its inception, the interface largely looks the same – no app drawer, all apps are icons on the homescreens that can be organized primarily through the usage of folders, and only in the last couple iterations did Apple finally put in a notification dropdown.
I do have to give Apple props for keeping iOS about as seamless as it possibly can be. While the iPhone might not have the best specifications, the operating system still has smooth transitions and usually continues to operate as well as it does out of the box. There is a lot of control going into how all the old and new elements play together and it seems to work out really well. It is also a pretty dead simple operating system that helps the tech-illiterate move into the 21st century. Not to say that Android isn’t accessible, either, but it doesn’t get any easier than “when in doubt, press home.”
Verdict: Sony Xperia Z
This is probably one of the most subjective categories here. Honestly, I have never really been a fan of the iOS interface. Not only has it pretty much stayed the same throughout the years, the rounded bubbly buttons and the lack of widgets keeps me from getting anymore usage from the homescreens than launching applications. While TouchWiz has quite a few great bells and whistles, it’s just too loud for me. Ultimately, the simplicity that Sony chose for the Xperia Z takes my point here. It is easy on the eyes and brings just enough from all aspects of the Android experience to remain simplistic and functional at the same time.
Sony Xperia Z
And finally, we have the cameras. As I have personally been learning with smartphone cameras as of late, the count of megapixels is only one part of the story. Sure, having great big photos might be great but if the reproduction isn’t up to par, then what good are they? The Xperia Z has the most megapixels of the bunch at 13; and for the most part, they are all put to good use. In this adequate lighting, the color reproduction yielded a cooler tone in the overall picture – something the user will decide is proper or not.
The camera does have HDR and panorama modes, as well, but other than that the Superior Auto helps ensure that your frame is given the right settings for proper exposure. It seems to generally do the job quite well.
Samsung Galaxy S3
The 8 megapixel shooter found on the Galaxy S3 was given a fair amount of praise in its time, even prompting Samsung to give one to YouTube creator Freddie Wong to create an action film using its video capabilities. The photos that you get from the Galaxy S3 are pretty good, and their color reproduction actually looks much like the Xperia Z in this instance. The general tone is still on the cooler side.
All options are pretty standard on the S3’s camera – there is HDR and panorama, but because this and the Xperia Z are only on Jelly Bean 4.1, there is no Photo Sphere.
And here is where personal preference takes hold – the iPhone has one of the most celebrated mobile cameras ever, as it has been used to film even full length independent films and the pictures populated the once non-Android Instragram exclusively. Those who want some control over their photos and videos will be turned off by the lack of options – you don’t get to change the size of the picture, it is always set to 4:3, for example – but the quality that comes out of the iPhone’s optics is pretty damn great.
People generally prefer warmer tones in color schemes, and perhaps that is where the iPhone gets the advantage. While picture details are pretty great in all devices, the iPhone opts for a much, much warmer tone than the other two in this comparison. To some, this is much better.
Verdict: Apple iPhone 5
And admittedly, I have to agree with that notion. The iPhone camera, when put up against the rest, does result in a more pleasing look. I really don’t like that I can’t change many settings in the built-in camera app, but as a photographer, I would prefer to have the iPhone compared to the Galaxy S3 and Xperia Z because it produces the most usable pictures. Apple has been and should be commended for their optics on their phones – Android (and smartphones in general) are getting better and better in the camera department, so I think the playing field should be evened out in due time.
And so, there you have it. A look at three of the biggest phones in the smartphone ecosystem right now. As the phone that will hopefully propel Sony into the top tier smartphone market, the Xperia Z has a lot riding on its shoulders. And, for the most part, we believe that it succeeds in what it sets out to do. So, as a turning point in a manufacturer’s life, we wanted to look back devices that set out to be what the Xperia Z is to Sony.
The Xperia Z might have walked away with the most points in this edition of VS, but there is a whole other level that we can’t forget in this triple threat comparison. What you have here is an example of how awesome the world of tech is today – three phones in three different sizes that have three different ways of fulfilling the same purposes. If having choice is paramount in your mind, you have three of the absolute best phones in the market staring you in the face here. Isn’t that great?
The iPhone 5 is still a wholly relevant device not because of its rabid fan base, but because it still succeeds in the market due to doing a lot right in different ways. Android is maturing at an astounding rate, and while the lines of dominance are ever changing, it is undeniably wonderful that we live in an age that we can have these giants duking it out. Who wins? Well, we do.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 will go down in history as a game changer. Perhaps not because it brought so much innovation to the Android ecosystem but more because it propelled the Android platform to astronomical heights. Samsung solidified itself as one of the biggest giants in the smartphone market and it may continue to do so with the onset of the S4. Whether or not you have grown tired of the Galaxy S3, it still continues to hold up against the rest and it will take some time before it fades into history.
And finally, the Sony Xperia Z is an example of how a large form factor can work. Its screen might have its flaws, but high resolution and great pixel density makes pretty much anything look great on it nonetheless. The high specifications should stand the test of time just as much as the internals of the Galaxy S3 are, and the sleek design will hopefully make some other manufacturers take notes. Whether or not it will be the juggernaut that the Galaxy S3 was for Samsung remains to be seen – if it does, we can all say, “called it!”
Thanks for reading and check out the video comparison above. Stay tuned – we have a ton of great things coming in the pipeline here at Android Authority.
The post Sony Xperia Z vs Samsung Galaxy S3 vs iPhone 5 [video] appeared first on Android Authority.
LG has announced that they will be bringing their truly innovative and advanced eye recognition technology to the Optimus G Pro — and future phones — soon, one that allows for a virtually hands-free video playback.
Dubbed as “Smart Video”, the feature will automatically pause a video if the phone – well, its front camera – detects that you’re getting distracted and that your eyes are wandering away from the screen. The video playback will resume once you look at the screen back.
But back to LG, Smart Video will be arriving on the Optimus G Pro as a Value Pack upgrade starting next month, but it has only been announced for the South Korean market for now. The update will also enable the phone’s Dual Camera feature, which basically lets you take pictures using both front and rear cams at the same time for a “picture-in-picture composition”.
Hit the PR below for more exciting new features heading to the Optimus G Pro.
Technology to Debut in Smart Video Feature in Optimus G Pro
SEOUL, Mar. 14, 2013 – Smart Video, a new multimedia UX feature from LG Electronics (LG), will be unveiled for the first time in the Optimus G Pro. Smart Video takes viewing videos on mobile devices to a whole new level of convenience with eye recognition that eliminates the need to manually control playback during the viewing experience.
Through the implementation of advanced eye recognition technology, Smart Video recognizes the position of the viewer’s eyes and automatically plays or stops the video without any manual input from the user. When the viewer’s eyes are no longer focused on the smartphone display, the front camera recognizes this and immediately pauses the video automatically. Once the user’s gaze returns to the smartphone, the video resumes playback from the point last viewed.
In addition to the Smart Video feature, Optimus G Pro will also be equipped with the world’s first Dual Camera function. The Dual Camera feature is an extension of the Dual Recording feature which debuted on the Optimus G Pro introduced in the Korean market last month. Dual Camera simultaneously captures photographs using both the front and back cameras for a picture-in-picture composition. Users can now be a part of the story, not just observers.
“LG is continuously innovating to offer creative ways to offer a user experience that adds value to our customers,” said Dr. Jong-seok Park, president and CEO of LG Elec-tronics Mobile Communications Company. “It’s the positive UX that will differentiate smartphones in 2013 and beyond, not only cutting-edge hardware specs.”
The Smart Video and Dual Camera features will be introduced as a part of the Value Pack upgrade which will be offered for the Optimus G Pro in the Korean market next month. These features will also be made available for some LG premium smartphones in the future.
Other features in the Value Pack upgrade include:
• Magic Remote Pad and Text Keypad via the QRemote function. These new options for QRemote work specifically with LG
Smart TVs to enhance convenience when using Optimus G Pro as a remote control for LG Smart TVs.
• The Smart LED Lighting outlining the home button of the Optimus G Pro will be upgraded so users can customize the colors
to correspond to their favorite contacts. The flashing of the LED in different colors will allow users to identify the source of
incoming calls, missed calls, unread messages and emails.
• Video Pause/Resume allows the user to stop and start in record mode for one continuous video file.
• The first Color Emoticons in an Android smartphone for more personalized text messages.
The post LG to bring eye-tracking “Smart Video” and other features to Optimus G Pro soon appeared first on Android Authority.
- Apps of the Week: Sky Gamblers, Ticket to Ride, Tweetbot, and more
- Is the Nexus dead? What the Galaxy S4 with pure Android means for Samsung and Google
- Google H840 media streamer hits the FCC to replace the Nexus Q
- Rumor: Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 coming with Intel Atom Z2560 chip inside
- Hangouts quietly gets a new update to fix tablet woes
Tag CloudAndroid bit BlackBerry Buzz com Community Cream day Digg Diigo doesn end Galaxy Gingerbread Google Hottest Ice icio isn lithium lot LTE mAh Mister Mixx mobile phone Ollie PhoneInferno RAM Reviews Samsung Sandwich ShopCrackBerry SlashGear Stumble stumble upon StumbleUpon Subscribe T-Mobile Technorati timeline use way Weight Wi