March 09, 2006

Samsung's Newest "I Want Toy:" The SGH i310

Samsung has announced its new phone, the i310.  Boasting an 8GB embedded hard drive, the phone operates on Windows 5.0 for Smartphone, and also has Video Recording & Messaging, a 2 megapixel digital camera with flash, MP3, dual speakers, Bluetooth technology, USB 2.0, voice recognition, document viewer, and TV-out, among other features.  It is being shown to the public at CeBIT with general availability in Europe during the second half of this year. There is no official pricing guidance as the company indicated it would most likely be dependant upon the mobile contract of the customer.

With the latest in mobile listening technology and up to 4GB hard drive space devoted to music, those who enjoy listening to their tunes on their phone will have about 2000 songs to choose from.  However, this swanky little unit is more than just Samsung’s answer to the iPod.  It also takes movies and pictures and downloads documents from your PC.  And oh yeah, it can make phone calls, too. So another androgynous techno gizmo makes it on the scene.

True mobility continues to get one step closer every year, and the technology to combine all platforms into one seems to be rapidly becoming a reality and will likely be market-driven.  There is a scene in the newest version of the movie Freaky Friday, in which part of the mother’s get-ready-for-the-office morning routine consists of her unplugging about 4 different platforms from their respective chargers and piling them in her purse.  That level of organization seems to be beyond the average person that we’ve met; and as the public loses patience with multiple units, we most likely will be looking for a single platform that can do everything we need it to do.  

Samsung’s SGH i310 is a step in that direction.  Of course, once every application is combined into one mobile platform, then a person’s identity will most likely be compromised when, immediately after downloading all of their pertinent information, they promptly lose the unit. And then again, the sheer demands for all the different kinds of activities we engage these devices in tends to dictate ever more powerful, and larger, form factors, which in turn leads to more miniaturization and the cycle repeats itself. While this is not quite as crazy as the clothing embedded PDAs we have seen demonstrated in shows past, the device still begs the question of how many different ways can it be used and abused. Nevertheless, not that long ago 8GB was unheard of on a laptop, much less a phone. And this new phone has more computing ability than that elderly laptop. Stay tuned…we will be looking back on this in the future laughing on how small the drive on that oversized phone was anyway.

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