NEC and Panasonic form mobile phone development joint venture

“NEC, Matsushita, and Panasonic Mobile Communications say they have signed a memorandum of understanding, and will establish a joint venture devoted to mobile phones. The as-yet-unnamed venture will launch in October, and offer contract mobile phone handset development, including software, and silicon known as “large-scale integrations” (LSIs), the companies say.NEC says it has collaborated with Panasonic on mobile phone technology since 2001. For example, along with DoCoMo, the partners in 2004 created a common Linux middleware platform subsequently used in three generations of NEC and Panasonic phones for DoCoMo’s 3G “FOMA” (freedom of mobile access) network.The new venture will offer 3.5G and 3.9G mobile handset development services on a contract basis, according to the companies. The venture’s handsets will be based on a common platform, including middleware, applications, and hardware, for “greater efficiency and less duplication of effort.”As reported earlier, the venture will be capitalized at 100 million yen (about $850,000), with equal ownership between NEC and Panasonic. NEC will supply the venture’s president, while Panasonic will lend the effort a vice-president. Two board members will also be appointed, from unnamed companies. NEC and Panasonic say the venture will create synergies between NEC’s communications and computing expertise, and Panasonic’s consumer electronics and audio-visual product experience. The venture will be based in Yokohama City, and employ 140. It is expected to launch in early October. Phones bearing the brand names “NEC” and “Panasonic” will continue to be planned, manufactured, and sold by NEC and Panasonic, the companies say. NEC says it employs more than 150,000 people worldwide and had net sales of approximately $41 billion in the fiscal year that ended March 31, 2006.” via

Picture Porter Elite: a digital photo album with HDD and card reader

“Digital Foci has announced the shipments start of a compact digital photo album Picture Porter Elite, which was unveiled early in 2006. The device is equipped with a 3.6” LCD, 40 or 80 GB HDD and a card-reader for CF I, II, MD, MMC, SD, MS, MS PRO (xD, RS-MMC, miniSD, MS Duo and MS PRO Duo via adapter).It is meant to view video, digital photos and play music. It’s possible to magnify, rotate photos, view EXIF info and histograms and create slideshows. You can plug it to the TV set (it can record programs) and print photos directly (PictBridge technology). With the built-in microphone the Picture Porter Elite can be used as a voice recorder.The device is fed via a Li-Ion battery, which ensures up to 4 hours of video playback or 12 hours of music playback. The Picture Porter Elite will become available early in August. The recommended price makes up $499 (for the junior version).” via

Smart mobile device market growth remains steady at 55%

Reading, UK – Tuesday, 25 July 2006For immediate release Worldwide shipments of smart mobile devices rise 55% year-on-year in Q2 2006 Handheld segment plummets 33%, overtaken by wireless handhelds for the first time Smart phone shipments increase by 75% compared to one year ago Nokia retains overall market lead, Motorola leapfrogs RIM, Sharp, Palm to take second Symbian leads in OS share, with 67%, a year-on-year rise, but a sequential fall Microsoft in second with share at 15%, ahead of RIM on 6%Highlights from the Canalys Q2 2006 worldwide smart mobile device research The latest research from Canalys highlights the continuing shift from handhelds to converged devices. Overall year-on-year market growth of all smart mobile devices was largely unchanged from the previous two quarters at 55%, but converged device shipments (smart phones and wireless handhelds) rose 73%, while handhelds continued to slide, down 33% compared to the same period one year ago. Smart mobile device market share table Sharp posted the highest growth among the top five vendors, with shipments of more than a million Symbian FOMA smart phones in Japan during the quarter. “Symbian has performed well in what many find a difficult market to crack,” said Canalys analyst Nick Spencer, “Q2 saw it break the 10 million cumulative shipment barrier there, thanks to significant volumes from not only Sharp, but also vendors such as Fujitsu, Mitsubishi and Sony Ericsson.” Another vendor reaching a significant milestone in Q2 was second-placed, and second-fastest growing, Motorola, its position achieved primarily from shipments of more than a million Linux-based smart phones in China in the quarter, but helped also by the initial shipments of the long-awaited ‘Q’ Windows Mobile smart phone in the US as well as its continuing sales of Symbian/UIQ devices. “Motorola set itself some pretty ambitious targets for the Q,” added Spencer, “And it has done a good job on the supply side in its first quarter, especially when you consider the problems it has had bringing such devices to market in the past. But it now needs the kind of user pull that will sustain high shipment levels over the longer term. With RIM and Palm regularly shipping more than a million devices per quarter each, the stamina of the competition, and user acceptance of their devices, should not be underestimated.” All these vendors remain some way behind market leader Nokia, which shipped over 9 million Symbian smart phones during the quarter, a year-on-year rise of 35%. Canalys estimates that more than 95% of these were S60 models, which have recently branched out from their consumer-oriented, keypad-centric designs to include enterprise-focused models such as the keyboard-based E61. It is evident from these figures that converged devices have taken over from their standalone predecessors. To further illustrate this, Canalys estimates that Palm’s Treo smart phone shipments grew as a proportion of its total units sold to 58%, up from 41% a year earlier. Palm still leads the handheld segment, ahead of HP, Dell and Mio Technology, and actually increased its share in that category by 4% year-on-year, but total market shipments of handhelds fell 33% from over 2 million in Q2 2005, to just 1.4 million last quarter – the biggest percentage fall on record. “The handheld market in North America has been in decline for a while now, but it was a 42% year-on-year fall in EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa) that really hurt the numbers this quarter,” added Canalys principal analyst and director Chris Jones. “The GPS navigation demand that has served device vendors so well in Europe over the past couple of years has undergone a huge transformation. Dedicated portable navigation devices have the lion’s share now, and we are starting to see smart phones make an impact here too for certain types of user. The navigation sector is a superb example of how quickly a market, and the fortunes of the players in that market, can change.” Jones will be keynoting the Canalys Navigation Forum in Geneva in September, a unique event that will bring the vendors, channel partners, the media and the finance community together to discuss how the market will develop over the next few years. More information… Canalys Navigation Forum 2006 About the Smart Mobile Device Analysis Worldwide service The shipment estimates discussed in this release come from the market-leading Canalys Smart Mobile Device Analysis Worldwide service. Canalys’ smart mobile device product segmentation and definitions are used by vendors the world over to provide a consistent view of the total market for handhelds, wireless handhelds and smart phones. Clients receive quarterly market updates, regular reports, trends presentations and forecasts, and direct access to Canalys analysts. Canalys also offers services looking specifically at the rapidly growing markets for mobile navigation and mobile e-mail. More information…

Software features of Symbian S40 3d Edition

 Nintendo DS Opera Browser Review“You can use number sequences and voice commands for fast navigation. Recognition is available only for several preset functions; however no special training and voice tag recording are required. Just pronounce the name of a desired item and the device will bring it up. In general voice recognition is speaker independent, and the same goes for the phonebook. Although, when applied in the contact list, this function is not as simple for names uncustomary in Europe, for instance Finnish ones (however, it could seem there would be no problems). No issues appear when dealing with usual English names, which are recognized in a split second. However my name made the device think for some time, and only on rare occasions it offered me a correct result. Sometimes while listening to the recorded tag, you will surely smile, since the phone tends to mangle ordinary names in a very hilarious way. On frequent voice dialing usage you will see how the handset evolves, i.e. the recognition quality steadily increases. Nevertheless they are some drawbacks as well: considerable amount of errors when having a lengthy contacts list or mixed languages. The settings contain the option for changing recognition language regardless of active interface language.” Lean more here: