Wednesday, March 04, 2009

T-Mobile brings $50 unlimited voice plan to rest of America

Well, that "trial" didn't last long at all, now did it? Just days after teeing up a $50 unlimited voice plan in the great city of San Francisco, T-Mobile USA has reportedly taken said plan nationwide. Users are already buzzing about the widespread availability, though it should be noted that the same "loyalty requirements" from the San Fran pilot are still in effect for the rest of the nation. In other words, you have to have been a T-Mob subscriber for at least 22 months and have been in good standing the whole time. Oh, and being cute probably helps.

Sony Ericsson's W595 Cosmopolitan Edition makes poor substitute for actual flora

You know that a handset is getting close to overstaying its welcome when the special editions start knocking on the door, but Sony Ericssons's W595 slider has only been around for a few months, so we're going to cut it some slack this time around. The so-called Cosmopolitan Edition adds a floral theme in white and red, but it doesn't stop there -- you've also got a floral charm, a custom UI skin, and five, count 'em, five pre-loaded music tracks. No word on pricing, but you can expect to see it around Western Europe at some point this month.

Nokia aiming for DRM-free implementation of Comes With Music

Make no mistake -- there's no need to wait for Nokia and its partner studios to implement a DRM-free version of Comes With Music to enjoy your subscription tracks on any device you want, but at least the handset maker -- along with those in control of the jams -- are working towards a legal way to strip your downloads of that pesky rights management stuff. According to an article on the matter from Singapore today, Adam Mirabella, director of Global Digital Music Retail at Nokia, had this to say: "We have dialogs going with all of our partners and Digital Rights Management-free (DRM-free) is also on the roadmap for the future integration of Comes With Music." No further details were spilled, but we'd say that's clear cut enough to get one's hopes up. Just don't bank on this going down anytime soon -- you should know there's lots of red tape to cut before those CmW tunes are freed of their shackles.

[Thanks, Masa]

Is this Motorola's Android-powered Touch ZINE HD?

Better shots and rumored specs have emerged of that mysterious Moto slate we saw a few days back, and if this all checks out, it's pretty much exactly what Motorola needs to be doing to earn the gadget-loving world's respect and admiration right now -- but there are a few holes in the story that have us concerned. First off, it's alleged that this monster is going to be called the Touch ZINE HD, and considering the phone's uncanny resemblance to HTC's Touch HD, the name seems a little too close for comfort. Secondly, it's said that it'll do 1080p video playback via HDMI, but the collection of leaked images shows the phone connected to a composite RCA cable, which isn't gonna cut it for 1080p -- and we're not buying that the display itself is going to be capable of that kind of resolution. That all being said, let's suspend reality for just a moment and enjoy this list of monstrous specs: Android, Tegra, 5 megapixel cam with HD video, and 16GB of onboard storage. Moto, let's put it this way: if this isn't real, can whatever it is you're working on right this second and do precisely this instead.

Meizu looking to CDMA and China-centric 3G with M8 successor

We've barely had time to digest the fact that real, actual, honest-to-goodness Meizu M8s are now available at the odd retail outlet around the globe, and Meizu's famously colorful CEO is already spouting off about a successor. Talk about a buzzkill, eh? Jack Wong made an off-the-cuff remark in a forum post today about the M9 in two flavors -- M9c for CDMA networks and M9t for China's 3G TD-SCDMA networks -- but beyond that, he's said nothing about specs or availability. Odds are, we can expect a good 18-24 months of teasers, missed launches, and brushes with vaporware status before either model actually launches, so if you had your heart set on an M8, seriously, don't feel bad about taking the plunge.