smartphones

Sony is calling its new smartphone, launched at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, a ‘super phone’, winding the clock back to the time of super models, super cars and when the Japanese group ruled the high-end electronics market. Daniel Thomas, telecoms correspondent, says the device is grown-up but far from revolutionary.

Research in Motion is set to unveil another disappointing set of quarterly results on Thursday. There’s the bad news. Anything happier to report?

Well, there’s the launch of a new BlackBerry 10 smartphone coming soon, which the company hopes will stem its falling market share in the US and UK. But the Canadian group is also looking to exploit other regions with strong growth prospects – particularly in Africa.

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The HTC skydivers ad really was a bad idea. The Taiwanese phonemaker is falling to earth pretty quickly, posting third-quarter revenues that are slightly more than half what they were in the same period in 2011. Third-quarter profits fell nearly 80 percent – from T$18.7bn in 2011 to T$3.9bn ($133m) this year.

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These are not happy days for Apple in China. The iconic American brand, outpaced by Samsung in its appeal among Chinese consumers since last year, is now also losing out to other smartphone competitors.

According to IDC, Apple’s share of the Chinese smartphone market by shipments fell by nearly half to 10 per cent in the second quarter from three months earlier. The company came fourth in a ranking topped by Samsung and Lenovo, the Chinese company that is also the world’s second-largest PC vendor.

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Tech news from around the web:

Google is profiting from illegal advertisements on its search engine, even though it takes them down, alleged a report published on the BBC website on Tuesday. Read more

Nokia Lumia 710

Microsoft is set to give a concerted push to its smartphone software this week as it kicks off its latest attempt to claw back lost ground from Apple and Google.

Despite rising anticipation on Wall Street, however, the software company is not ready to take the wraps off a new version of Windows, according to a person familiar with its plans. Windows 8, expected to be launched this year, is designed to work with touchscreen tablets as well as PCs.

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by Daniel Thomas, Telecoms Correspondent

Just one per cent of subscribers consume half of all downloaded data with the latest devices from Apple in particular fuelling demand for bandwidth-hungry mobile content. Read more

Joseph Menn

Apple had a bad week in its multi-front patent war, capped by the real possibility of an iPhone and iPad import ban in GermanyRead more

Tech news from around the web:

China has overtaken the US as the world’s biggest smartphone market by volume in the third quarter, Reuters reports. According to research company Strategy Analytics, smartphone shipments grew 58% to reach 23.9m units in China during the quarter, while US shipments fell 7% from the second quarter to reach 23.3m devices. Read more

HTC has had an amazing run as it grew from anonymity to one of the top Android phonemakers. This has been reflected in its shipments, which have been record-breaking for the Taiwanese company for each of the last six quarters.

But is that run about to end, amid intensifying competition and a weak global economy? HTC said on Monday that it expects fourth-quarter shipments, and revenues, to be down slightly from the third quarter. Read more