By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Waterloo, Canada – BlackBerry executive chairman and CEO John Chen slammed T-Mobile for launching a promotion urging BlackBerry users to switch to a competing smartphone.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.
Bellevue, Wash. – HTC America launched new post-sales programs and services under the HTC Advantage banner to help turn around its shrinking market share.
Under the program, users of HTC One family phones get a free cracked-screen replacement during the first six months of ownership, additional 25GB to 50GB of free Google Drive online storage of any file, and speedy Android OS updates for two years after a phone’s launch date.
Eligible phones are the HTC One, HTC One Max and HTC One Mini.
Dallas – Samsung will bring the Android KitKat OS to multiple Galaxy smartphones and tablets starting today and continuing through the coming months, the company announced.
U.S.-market Galaxy devices slated to get the Android 4.4.2 update include select carrier variants of the Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note II, Galaxy S 4, Galaxy S4 Mini, Galaxy S 4 Active, Galaxy S4 Zoom, Galaxy S III, Galaxy S III Mini, Galaxy Mega, Galaxy Light, Galaxy Note 8.0, Galaxy Tab 3, Galaxy Note 10.1 and the Galaxy Note 10.1 - 2014 Edition.
Availability varies by carrier and product.
Seoul, South Korea – LG unveiled its third-generation L series of mid-tier Android smartphones, upgrading the hardware specs compared to its predecessors and bringing the Android 4.4 OS to the series.
The OS makes the three phones in the L Series III stand out in the mid-tier segment, LG said.
The phones also include the first L-series model with quad-core processor, and all three sport bigger screens than their predecessors.
All feature HSPA+ cellular data technology but no 4G LTE. Two models feature HSPA+21Mbps.
Bedminster, N.J. – Verizon Wireless is responding to recent aggressive pricing moves by rivals AT&T and T-Mobile.
The carrier launched More Everything plans to add more data, more Cloud storage, and unlimited international messaging to the carrier’s unlimited talk and messaging plans with shared data.
Starting today, existing Share Everything subscribers will be moved automatically to More Everything plans, which will also be available to all new customers, including small-business customers
San Diego – Verizon Wireless will offer its first Nokia Lumia Windows 8 smartphone with quad-core CPU , and the carrier will offer it on an exclusive basis.
The global-ready Lumia Icon with 2.2GHz quad-core processor will be available starting Feb. 20 in Verizon stores, Verizon’s online store, and indirect channels for $199 with new two-year contract. In Verizon stores, it’s also eligible for the Verizon Edge upgrade program.
Seoul, South Korea – LG unveiled its premium G Pro 2 smartphone, which improves performance over the current G Pro by such means as boosting screen size to 5.9 inches from 5.5 inches and stepping up CPU speed to quad-core 2.26GHz from quad-core 1.7GHz.
The new model also adds such features as 120 fps HD video recording, 4K Ultra HD recording and 3GB RAM, up from 2GB. Like before, it has a FullHD 1,920 by 1080 display.
Overland Park, Kan. — Sprint’s high wireless churn rates and shrinking share of gross subscriber additions won’t begin to improve until the second half of the year when the company’s disruptive network upgrades get closer to completion in more markets, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse.
New York — Nokia will market a smartphone that uses a modified version of the Android OS to target emerging markets with low-cost smartphones, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Nokia also markets higher-priced smartphones based on the Windows Phone OS.
The new phone received the blessing of Microsoft, which developed the Windows Phone OS and is purchasing Nokia’s cellphone business to boost Windows Phone sales.
Los Angeles — MVNO FreedomPop reduced the price of unlimited cellular voice and text service with 500MB of 3G and 4G data to as little as $4.58/month.
The company continues to offer a free cellphone service, launched last October, with 200 voice minutes, 500 texts and 500MB of data. The company also offers low-cost plans for additional voice and data usage.
Three new plans replace a $9.99/month plan that also offered unlimited voice and text and 500MB of data.