The Mobile World Congress 2015 was held last March 2 – 5, 2015 at Barcelona, Spain. The tech world welcomed new and exciting devices. Here are the most notable and top announcements during the event:
1. The Samsung S6 and S6 Edge
Adopting a new design philosophy, which was stemmed from the Samsung Galaxy Alpha, Samsung released its newest flagship phone, the S6 and a variation of it, the S6 Edge in their Samsung Unpacked Event held during the MWC 2015. The new S6 series is a departure from the previous series, switching from an all-plastic shell to a dual-glass design enhanced with a metal frame.
The Samsung Galaxy S6 packs a 5.1″ Super AMOLED screen with Quad HD resolution resulting into the amazing 577 ppi density. It is protected by the latest Corning Gorilla Glass 4.
Unlike the Galaxy Note Edge, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge has the display glass bent on both sides of the phone. The 5.1″ Super AMOLED display also utilizes at Quad HD resolution of 2,560 x 1,440 pixels. It is protected by a curved Corning Gorilla Glass 4.
Usually, Samsung utilizes a Snapdragon chipset and the company’s own Exynos chipset when they release a flagship phone, as they have previously done with the Galaxy S5. This time around, the company chose not to opt for the Snapdragon 810 chip, probably due to the overheating issues. Both the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are powered by the company’s Exynos 7420, built on a 14nm process and thus more energy-efficient and producing less heat compared to 20nm Snapdragon 810.
The Exynos 7420 chip packs quite the same processor to the Snapdragon 810 – an octa-core 64-bit CPU with four Cortex-A57 cores ticking at 2.1GHz and four Cortex-A53 clocked at 1.5GHz. The Exynos 7420 chip uses a Mali-T760 GPU and comes bundled with 3GB LPDDR4 of RAM.
For more on both devices’ specifications, click here.
In a report in the International Business Times, the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge has been awarded the “Best New Handset, Tablet or Device” by the GSM Association at the MWC 2015 event in Barcelona. The award is usually given to the best new device unveiled during the event, every year. Previously, in the MWC 2014 event, the Samsung Gear Fit was the recipient of the said recognition.
In a post at Samsung Tomorrow, Samsung’s Official Blog, JK Shin, president and head of IT & Mobile Communications Division at Samsung Electronics said, “With the Galaxy S6 edge, we sought to blend technology and design in a way the world has never seen before. We are honored that the GSMA agree that these are our most elegant and powerful devices so far.”
2. HTC One M9 and HTC Grip smart band
HTC also announced their flagship smartphone the HTC One M9. Contrary to previous reports, the M9 was announced alone and the much rumored One M9 Plus was absent from the event.
HTC One M9 comes with refined design with less part count, dual anodization, and scratch-resistant coating and sapphire glass on the camera lens. Although it looks a lot like the One (M8), the new One M9 design is more minimalistic. It has a single-part front bezel, new placement for the Power/Lock key, an improved volume rocker, and brand new color options including Gold on Silver, Gunmetal Grey and Gold on Gold.
HTC One M9 is equipped with a 5″ 1080p display – the same one from One (M8), a Super LCD3, with minor improvements on the technology and color rendering. The highlight of the front are the traditional BoomSound stereo speakers improved further by Dolby Sound technology.
The One M9 is powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 platform: an octa-core 64-bit processor with four Cortex-A57 cores at 2.0GHz and four Cortex-A53 working at 1.5GHz. The new Adreno 430 powers the graphics, with 3GB of RAM.
HTC has dropped the dual-camera technology they have previously utilized in the One (M8) in favor of a Toshiba-made 20MP sensor with a 1/2.3″ sensor size. One M9 comes with a 20MP BSI camera on the back with F/2.2 aperture and dual-LED dual-tone flash. The front selfie camera uses a 4MP UltraPixel sensor, similar to the one equipped on the backs of HTC One (M7) and One (M8), but without auto focus.
Check out HTC’s flagship smartphone specs here.
Also unveiled by the Taiwanese company is their new wearable, dubbed as the HTC Grip, a smart band with a built-in GPS, built in a collaboration with Under Armour. HTC made it clear that the smart band is not for casual training, the Grip is aimed at fitness enthusiast and pro athletes.
GSMArena has posted in their blog the HTC Grip’s uses and specifications. HTC’s smart band is in direct competition with the Microsoft Band, another GPS-equipped smart band. It will cost $199 when it launches in Spring and will be available in Deep Teal/Lime color options.
3. Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet
The Japanese company skipped this years MWC 2015 in announcing its newest flagship mobile device, the rumored Sony Xperia Z4, opting to hold such event separately. But it sure made up for it with the Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet. The Z4 is Sony’s newest high-end tablet, successor of the Xperia Z2 Tablet.
The Z4 Tablet comes with a 10.1″ IPS display of 2560 x 1600 pixels resolution, which results into a nice pixel density of 300ppi. The display is enhanced by Sony’s Triluminos technology and X-Reality Mobile engine. It is is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 chip, which packs an octa-core 64-bit processor with four Cortex-A57 cores clocked at 2.0GHz and four Cortex-A53 working at 1.5GHz. GPU graphics is Adreno 430 with 3GB of RAM onboard.
The highlights of the Xperia Z4 Tablet include the elegant design with a metal frame, durable glass and amazingly thin 6.1mm profile. Just like Sony’s flagship smartphones, the Z4 Tablet is IP68-certified, which translates in to a dust-tight shell and waterproof design with endurance for up to 30 minutes into 1.5m deep fresh water. More on its specifications here.
4. Huawei Watch
Joining the likes of the Moto 360 and the LG Watch Urbane, Chinese technology company Huawei takes a shot in the wearable market with its very own Huawei Watch.
Combining LG Watch Urbane’s perfect circular shape and Moto 360’s thin bezels, the Android Wear Huawei Watch is made with a sapphire crystal beating Apple in employing such protection to it’s wearable device. Below it is a 1.4″ round AMOLED display, making it one of the smallest of the current generation. The screen has 400 x 400 resolution, sharper than both the LG and the Moto which is at 286ppi.
Color options include Gold/Brown Leather, Silver and Black, the last two have a metal mesh band of matching color. Other options are a Black leather strap and a traditional Gold colored stainless steel wristband. The bands are standard 18mm, which can be easily swapped out.
The Huawei Watch has a built-in heart rate monitor and comes with Huawei-made software for health tracking. The watch also supports Google Fit and Jawbone. An accompanying smartphone app with the ability to integrate with third-party wearables will be made available.
Check out Huawei Watch’s specifications here.
5. Microsoft Lumia 640 and 640 XL
Microsoft chose to skip out in unveiling a flagship device opting to wait and presumably release it in conjunction with the upcoming unified Windows 10 OS. Instead, the Redmond company released the Lumia 640 and it’s larger brother, the Lumia 640 XL, both mid-range devices running Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1 OS, with the intention of being upgraded to Windows 10 once it is available.
The Lumia 640 packs a 5″ IPS display with 720p resolution (294ppi). The display enjoys Gorilla Glass 3 protection. It is powered by a Snapdragon 400 chipset (quad-core Cortex-A7 at 1.2GHz) with 1GB of RAM. There’s also 8GB of storage, expandable with up to 128GB microSD cards.
The camera has been upgraded with an 8MP shooter and a 1MP selfie camera. The main camera shoots 1080p video at 30fps, while the front camera manages 720p. A LED flash was also equipped, unlike previous models.
The phone will be available in single and dual-SIM versions, plus 3G and LTE versions. Also, a dual-SIM LTE version will be made available. Microsoft Lumia 640 will be available in April and will come in a variety of colors, including Cyan, Orange, Black and White.
Joining the ranks of Windows Phone 8.1 devices is the Microsoft Lumia 640 XL, a phablet device with a 5.7″ screen. The screen is an IPS LCD with 720p resolution (259ppi) with ClearBlack tech and Gorilla Glass 3 protection. The camera got a premium upgrade courtesy of Zeiss f/2.0 lens in front of a 13MP 1/3″ sensor also equipped with a LED flash. Lumia 640 XL also has a proper selfie camera with a wide-angle 24mm lens and 5MP sensor. Both cameras record 1080p video.
6. Blackberry Leap
Blackberry introduced a new touch enabled smartphone, after its much talked about Blackberry Classic which was a QWERTY-enabled device, the Blackberry Leap.
The Leap is a budget-minded mid-range offering and sports a 5″ HD display resulting in a pixel density of 294ppi. Under the hood of the BlackBerry Leap, an outdated Snapdragon S4 Plus chip with a 1.5GHz dual-core Krait CPU is equipped with 2GB of RAM. Internal storage is 16GB expandable with a microSD card can take additional 128GB.
The Blackberry Leap is equipped with an 8MP auto-focus camera with LED flash. It can record 1080p videos at 30fps and has a 5x digital zoom. The Leap runs BlackBerry 10.3.1 out of the box. Check out the Canadian company’s promo video of the phone below.
Blackberry Leap’s full specifications here.
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