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Highlights from the MWC

Highlights from the MWC

First day highlights from the MWC are being talked about all over the internet and news channels today and here at OnRecycle we want to get in on the action. Talk of all manner of gadgets has been flying around; from some weird and wonderful new releases like virtual teachers, to the launch of old school handsets like the new Nokia 105, which feel like a blast from the past.

Anyone who is anyone in the technology world has descended upon Barcelona this week to soak up all that the 1,500 exhibitors who are taking part in the annual event have to offer. Some of the main events so far include the release of four new Nokia handsets, the new Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet and Huawei’s new Android Ascend P2 which has been dubbed the ‘fastest’ smartphone in the world.

This pint sized blog is going to take you through the big events of the Congress so far and will remain your summer-upper throughout, you lucky thing.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0

Revealed yesterday on the first day of the Mobile World Congress, Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 8.0 is slightly bigger and more detailed than Apple’s mini iPad at 189ppi. It comes with 2GB of RAM and runs on Android’s Jelly Bean 4.1.2. The exterior of this new baby is very similar to the Note II; it comes with the same plastic casing and chrome edges but its size and gravitas are really a step beyond its baby brother; at 7.95mm thick, 8.3 x 5.4” in diameter, weighing in at 338grams and with a 8” display. These dimensions mean it is big enough to be tablet-like and yet light enough to be held in one hand and make phone calls on. However uncool this might look - it's possible, and that's good to know.

It comes with 16 or 32GB of storage and has a microSD slot for all you content devourers out there. It also comes with an S Pen, which mean this neat little slice of technology can also be used as a modern day alternative to the traditional pen and paper. A simply spiffing addition. Another rather scrummy feature is the split screen mode, which enables users to multi-task, running 2 apps at once - obviously a tablet for all the ladies out there. Its reading mode is also great for those of you who are into your eBooks but would rather not invest in a Kindle.

According to research firm IDC Samsung was the world’s most successful smart device manufacturer in the last quarter of 2012 making up 21.1% of all shipments. But this is mainly due to its smartphones; in the tablet sector it came second with 15.1% of the market share compared to Apple’s whopping great 43.6%.

"The Note 8 marks Samsung's relentless charge to grab a slice of the tablet market from Apple, but also to defend itself from the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7," Ben Wood, head of research at CCS Insight, said.

"I think there's a diminishing window of opportunity because Amazon and Google are playing by different rules - they are effectively willing to sell their hardware virtually at cost and then make money through content sales, whereas Samsung is a hardware manufacturer selling something for a margin.

"It's very difficult for consumers to tell the difference between these products - but what does make Samsung stand out is the fact that they are prepared to carpet bomb marketing with an eye-watering budget, which effectively marginalises some of the other companies trying to get into the tablet space."

The Galaxy Note 8.0 is being made available in Europe, Asia and a limited number of other countries in the April-to-June period, although there are as yet no details on pricing.

The Korean firm have some catching up to do in this sector; and let’s hope the Note 8.0 helps them along the way. We think it looks fab!

Huawei Ascend P2

The Chinese smartphone makers have labelled their new phone – which is available in black or white - the ‘fastest’ phone available due to its LTE Cat 4 Chip which – in theory – means 4G download speeds of up to 150megabits per second. Yar – we’re not totally sure what that means, either, but it sounds pretty impressive.

That might just be where the amazing features of this new handset end, sadly. Soz to be harsh but this little prawn cracker runs on the now out-dated Android 4.1 while it’s 4.7” Gorilla Glass display is 315ppi which is a lower resolution than the recent models from LG, HTC and Nokia.

Its battery is a plus point, though; it is a larger than average 2420mAh and is said to consume 20% less power due to its display technology (and possibly it’s below par display quality!) It does also have a rather interesting feature called the Magic Touch which works in the same way as Nokia’s Lumia range, allowing you to still work the touchscreen even while wearing gloves. Its 13megapixel camera is also nothing to sniff at.

But this is where we kinda dry up. This new smartphone really isn’t much to write home about. It’ll do the job but isn’t going to blow anyone’s socks off, we don’t think.

According to IDC, Huawei accounted for 10.8million smartphone shipments in the last quarter making it the world’s 3rd biggest vendor, which is pretty impressive. But despite this its market share was only 4.3% (just goes to show how much Apple and Samsung dominate, right!?). The company quite rightly describes itself as ‘a brand in the making’.

Although nothing about this new handset has really floored us, something tells me that this smartphone maker is one to look out for: after all, we do have a rumoured Chinese Smartphone Invasion on the cards.

If you do fancy the new Note, or want to give the Ascend P2 a go then don’t forget you can recycle your old mobile with us here at OnRecycle; it’ll help fund your new buy and will also help the environment in a big way. Remember to ‘like’ us on Facebook, too if you’re happy with the service or like our blogs.