Posts by Stephen Schenck

Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits Read more about Stephen Schenck!

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    Smartphones with 64-bit SoCs are already here, and someday they'll almost certainly outnumber phones built around 32-bit components. But between now and then there's a huge gap, and it's one that manufacturers have been slow to cross. Apple may have its 64-bit SoCs in full swing, but companies like Qualcomm have been taking their time; the firm announced basic 64-bit chips last year, and even some higher-end ones this year, but we've yet to see them make their way into phones (at least, finished models). Now a newly leaked roadmap attempts to spell out what's next for the company, ...

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    Less than a month ago, some old rumors popped back up: HTC would supposedly release a version of its One M8 running Windows Phone. We heard the same thing about the One M7, and that never happened, and here we were four months removed from the One M8's launch, with talk that this cross-platform push could still be happening. But over the following days the “well wouldn't that be neat” idea quickly picked up momentum, and between the announcement of an August 19 HTC event and the discovery of evidence pointing to just such a WP One M8 getting ready for Verizon, this really looked like ...

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    Going back quite a while now, well into last year, we've been hearing about the idea of Google expanding its subscription music services beyond Play Music All Access to bring a subscription component to YouTube. It looked like it might arrive as YouTube Music Pass, and Google's even played on our awareness of that name to mess with the community a little, but we still had plenty of questions about just how it might work. Now the picture of this service might finally be coming together, as new leaks arrive arm-in-arm with a new name: YouTube Music Key. Remember those signs pointing to ...

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    Palm's webOS – at least the webOS we knew and loved - is dead. Sure, LG's picked up the platform for use in its smart TVs, and aspects the OS have lived on as they inspired devs working on current mobile platforms, but we're never going to see another Pre, Veer, or Pixi. But while webOS itself may be fading into the background, the minds behind it continue to contribute to this industry, and we just got word of a couple big webOS names finding a new home with a smartwatch manufacturer, with Pebble hiring both Itai Vonshak and Liron Damir. Vonshak and Damir both moved to LG after HP ...

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    Tomorrow is August 19, which means that HTC's next press event is nearly upon us. While the company hasn't out and confirmed what it will be announcing, nor does the event invitation itself hint at the product to expect, a number of signs have been pointing to the company revealing a Windows Phone-running version of its Android One M8. The latest bit of circumstantial evidence turns up at this late hour, with the release of an image showing off some in-store Verizon promotional material for a WP8 One M8. We spot a couple things of interest here. First is that name, and there's no HTC One ...

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    In its not-subtle-at-all press event invite from last week, Motorola all but confirmed that a new Moto G is on the way. Sure, based on the rumors and evidence that had been piling up, that sounded pretty likely anyway, but finally this was starting to feel official. But even even if the Moto G2 does take the stage on September 4 to introduce itself to the world, what will it look like? One of the more prominent rumors to attach itself to the Moto G2's story has been that of a larger display, moving up to five inches, and today we get a look at what just might be that screen itself, with a ...

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    LG introduced the world to its Android Wear-powered G Watch back in March, right around the same time the platform itself and Motorola's Moto 360 debuted. In the months that have followed, the G Watch has gone up for sale (joined by Samsung and its Gear Live), while we anxiously await for the 360 to join it. But now that Motorola's offering seems to nearly be ready for release, LG could already be thinking about a second-gen Android Wear model, as rumors suggest that the company could introduce a G Watch 2 at IFA next month. The idea of a little over five months between G Watch launches ...

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    Last week came and went without a new opportunity to win anything as part of our ongoing Pocketnow summer of giveaways. After the weeks of handing out phones, invite codes, and accessories, we needed a brief reprieve to catch our breath. And we know, it's not fall yet, so we aim to keep this party going for just a little while longer. Today we've got a very special contest to announce, as we partner with GSM Nation and Fight for the Future to award one lucky reader a privacy-centric Blackphone. Has all this recent talk about the Blackphone and smartphone privacy in general had you feeling ...

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    Late last week brought us a couple interesting developments in the Moto 360's slow march to retail availability. We had that invite to Motorola's September 4 event, with a graphic of a round watch that sure seemed to be a Moto 360 reference to us, and then that news that Google was finally getting ready to send out long overdue Moto 360s to Google I/O attendees – and between the two of them, we started feeling more confident that the 360 could go up for sale in early September, rather than much later in the month. Over the weekend we picked up some new evidence towards this “360 is ...

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    Who's got the best smartphone camera around? Are you in awe of the iPhone's imaging capabilities? Has HTC made an UltraPixel convert out of you? Or are you clinging on to your Lumia 1020 until the day arrives when anything else even starts coming close to its pixel-dense sensor? The European Imaging and Sound Association just handed out its latest batch of honors and the winner of its European Smartphone Camera 2014-2015 award might not be the first model that comes to mind, but it's still one that seems quite deserving: the Galaxy K zoom. “But that's more camera than smartphone,” you ...

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    "Hey where's my Pocketnow contest this week?" What, you thought just because we're in the midst of this summer of giveaways that meant having something running every single week? Wait - that's is what we're supposed to be doing? Ah, nerts. OK, well while we were planning to have our next giveaway start a couple days back, we had to put that one on ice for just a little bit, and it will finally kick-off this coming Monday (so don't forget to check back then). But to hold you over, we've still got some existing stuff that's still running, so this is as good a time as any to remind you of one ...

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    If you were harboring any doubt that Motorola was about to deliver a new Moto X, the September 4 event invite we saw go out earlier this week, with its clear image of an “X” handset, should have succeeded in convincing you. But even if this hardware really is about to go public in just under three weeks, how will it arrive? We've been looking at a smattering of leaks over the summer so far that have attempted to reveal the phone's design to us, but inconsistencies and just a general lack of faith that what we were seeing really was the X+1 have left us without the strongest sense of ...

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    Earlier this week, Samsung introduced the Galaxy Alpha with a bit of a design departure from the rest of the Galaxy pack, giving the phone a handsome chamfered metal edge. But is this a one-off look, the start of a new branch for Samsung's design language for select models, or is this the direction all its phones will soon be headed? A report out of China concerning the use of metal in smartphones suggests that this look could become a fixture for future Samsung phones, including the Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S6. Now, we've already seen at least some images purporting to show a Note 4 with ...

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    Following the release of a flagship smartphone, we're all too used to seeing a manufacturer release a number of spin-offs that have a bad habit of failing to live up to their potential - “mini” phones that make too many compromises when it comes to specs, and such. That's what made HTC's launch of the One E8 a couple months back so interesting: sure, it lost the One M8's metal, trading that in for a plastic body, but it still performed just like its namesake, and even switching materials, kept the same general design. Really, the biggest limiting factors for the One E8, at least so ...

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    Just a little earlier this week we were thinking about USB cables, and specifically, ones that could be inserted into a device regardless of their orientation: double-sided connectors, just like Apple introduced with its Lightning cable a couple years back. That new USB interface will ultimately arrive as part of the USB 3.1 Type-C spec, but with the details only just now going official, it's still going to be a while before we see anything like that on our phones. Now a new leak suggests that Apple could beat the rest of the industry to the punch, and may release a new Lightning cable for ...

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