Mobile
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4/24/2009
07:29 PM
Marin Perez
Marin Perez
Commentary
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Mobile Roundup

This week has been packed with financial results from all the major tech companies, and AT&T, Samsung and Apple look like the big winners on the mobile phone side so far. But with all the earnings reports, a few interesting tidbits may have slipped by you, and I'll walk through them after the jump.

This week has been packed with financial results from all the major tech companies, and AT&T, Samsung and Apple look like the big winners on the mobile phone side so far. But with all the earnings reports, a few interesting tidbits may have slipped by you, and I'll walk through them after the jump.Ericsson: "You Need Cash Sony Ericsson? I Got You"

Remember those reports that Ericsson may want out of the mobile phone venture Sony Ericsson? Well, that's all bupkis, according to executives from Ericsson. In fact, they said they're ready to pump some cash into the company if necessary.

"In the situation they are in today it is a natural measure to take that we plan for this so that we have the readiness if it were necessary," said CEO Carl-Henric Svanberg, of the possibility of injecting cash into the phone business.

The company said Sony Ericsson is vital to its overall business because it enables them to keep in touch with the end user and offer an end-to-end telecom solution. While this does make strategic sense, part of me thinks Sony Ericsson would be better off it was just incorporated into Sony. The cell phone maker is in the midst of a rough patch, and I think it needs more than handsets like the Idou to help it make a comeback.

It's going to need one iconic high-end device to go along with its rock-solid mid-level phones to gain market share, and that's right under their noses: a PlayStation Portable Phone. Designed well, this handset could help it fight off Apple from becoming king of mobile 3D gaming, as well as expand the company's market share. Executives reportedly designed a device, but it was blocked due to bureaucratic corporate nonsense between Sony and Sony Ericsson. Hopefully, these problems could be solved with a Sony Ericsson that's well-integrated into the larger company.

Palm Pre In The Wild

It looks like one of the lucky spies over at EverythingPre.com got their hands on some photos of the Palm Pre in wild, and it looks like it will definitely have a YouTube app. While that's not a revolutionary announcement, seeing a Pre out and about means we may finally be closer to being release.

It seems like forever since this bad boy was first introduced at CES in January, and Sprint is still clinging to their "first half 2009" release window. I know that phone freaks like me are salivating to get their hands on it and see how good webOS is (I'll likely have to pay my third early-termination fee in three years to get one), but I have to wonder if it's a mistake to not get it out sooner. Most of the buzz after CES was in the tech press and in the Twitter set, but there are signs that most mainstream consumers don't even know what the heck it is. The company needs the Pre to be a hit outside niche circles, and if it's as good as it looks, the word-of-mouth buzz should make sure that can happen.

But the longer it takes to get out, the more momentum it loses I think. We all know Apple will likely have a new iPhone this summer, and there will be a slate of new BlackBerrys, and HTC smartphones. Will smartphone buyers continue to wait for the Pre? We'll see how it plays out over the next few months.

Skyfire For BlackBerry

The geniuses over at the have gotten their hands on an early model of the Skyfire browser for BlackBerry. This third-party browser uses server side technology to send full Web pages, including Flash and Ajax, to smartphones, and the above pic was taken from a BlackBerry accessing the always-wonderful Hulu.

The report said the BlackBerry version is still in the alpha phase and is being used by a small crew of beta testers. The software was described as "already being the best BlackBerry browser ever." This is great news for all you CrackBerry fans because the on-deck browser leaves a lot to be desired. Sure, the Bold and the Storm are leaps and bounds better than previous versions, but there are still far too many JavaScript errors and out and out crashes for my liking. Opera Mini is also a solid choice, but it won't let me watch The Family Guy on the go. No word on when this will go into an official beta, but I'll keep my eye on it.

Wrap Up

Next week should be fun, as Verizon Wireless and Motorola report their earnings, and I'm going to get some interesting news briefing as well. In the meanwhile, feel free to drop me a line or send me a tweet on Twitter.

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