iPad (4th Gen) Outruns The iPhone 5 In An Early Benchmark, Listed With 1.4GHz Dual-Core CPU, 1GB Of RAM


The new new iPad hits stores Friday, but an early Geekbench benchmark reveals some interesting details. Apparently, at least per this one-off report, the 4th generation iPad uses a dual-core ARMv7 CPU with 1GB of RAM. Not surprisingly, this results in benchmark scores better than those earned by the iPhone 5.

The iPad (4th gen) and iPhone 5 seem to share the same amount of RAM; the CPU configuration is slightly different between Apple’s two flagship devices. The iPhone 5 uses an ARMv6 CPU running at 1.3GHz, which is better suited for a smartphone-type device. Although it’s not clear at this point which ARMv7 is inside the iPad (4th gen), the benchmarks speak for themselves: it’s more powerful.

The latest iPad thoroughly trumps the previously called New iPad, which runs a dual-core A5X running at 1GHz. The 3rd generation iPad scored 791 in Geekbench where the 4th generation earned a 1757, besting the iPhone 5′s 1571 score. Since the iPad mini uses a dual-core A5 of unknown clock speed, its score will likely be around that of the 3rd generation iPad.

[via SlashGear]

TechCrunch » Gadgets

Kantar: Apple iPhone 5 Slows Android’s Growth In U.S., U.K. — But Android Continues To Expand Marketshare Across Europe, To 67.1%


Apple’s iPhone 5 only launched towards the end of last month but first week sales of Apple’s latest superphone slowed Android’s growth in Cupertino’s two biggest markets: the U.S. and U.K. during the 12 weeks ending September 30, 2012, according to figures put out today by Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, the WPP-owned market analysts.

Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, noted in a statement: “While this latest data set only includes one week of iPhone 5 sales, we can see that in markets with a large number of existing Apple customers, sales have already seen a significant boost. We expect this momentum to be fully realised in the next set of results.”

In the U.S. iOS boosted its share to 35.7 percent, up from 21.5 percent on the year ago period — up 14.2 percentage points — while Android’s share dropped 8.9 percentage points over the period, falling from 66.4 percent in the year-ago period to 57.5 percent this year. Android, it should be noted, remains by far the dominant OS.

The U.S. figures also record a drop of 4.8 percentage points for RIM, down to just 2.1 percent — a smaller share than even Microsoft’s Windows Phone OS commanded (it had a 2.9 percent share, up 0.2 of a percentage point).

In the U.K. Kantar’s figures show iOS boosting its share by 9.9 percentage points — up from 18.1 percent in the year ago period to 28 percent this year. Over the same period Android’s share grew by a smaller amount, up from 53.4 percent last year to 58.2 percent this year — a rise of 4.8 percentage points.

In the U.K. the figures also record a very big drop for RIM, with the BlackBerry maker dropping 12 percentage points to shrink to just 8.8 percent marketshare. Microsoft’s Windows Phone OS showed some growth — with a 2.2 percentage point rise to reach 4.2 percent marketshare.

Despite the iPhone 5′s impact in the U.K., across Europe as a whole, Kantar’s figures show Android continuing to gain marketshare — recording a 16.2 percentage point increase for the OS, rising from 50.9 percent in the year ago period to reach 67.1 percent this year.

Over the same period iOS’s share dropped to 16.5 percent, down from 17.3 percent last year.

TechCrunch » android

Why Wireless Charging In The Nexus 4? Why Now?


Google likes to skate to where the puck might be next game. They were first in the U.S. with a viable NFC payments solution (that isn’t very popular) and they’ve been at the forefront of AR with Glass (which is too expensive for the average consumer) and now they’re one of the first to market with a wireless charging solution for the Nexus 4.

Wireless charging has been far too slow on the uptake, but that’s to be expected. Beyond a very few very specific situations, the technology is slow, and in the case of Google’s Qi-based solution, the device has to be statically placed at a certain position on the charging pad. The Qi standard has some ways around that particularly onerous requirement – if you have to stick it in a certain place, why not just plug in a cable – but to complain about it is to miss the point.

Every port, dock, and transformer requires resources and real estate. Apple reduced the 30-pin port not because it wanted to piss off the millions of iPod dock owners out there. In order to reduce size and footprint they had to abandon the arguably huge 30-pin solution for the arguably more elegant Lightning port.

Imagine, then, what could happen if there were no ports at all? The headphone jack could free up a few millimeters in thickness and the wireless charging solution could save an additional bit of electronics. It’s not much, but it adds up.

I find it quite odd that Google is actually backing a standard other than Qi with Starbucks but I suspect, in the Powermat case, this is more a question of branding and cash payouts than anything else. I’ve found Powermat to be surprisingly shortsighted and inelegant over the past few years and it’s obviously not Duracell’s wish to completely move away from battery sales so I’m loath to trust them to be a good partner in the wireless power world.

I, for one, am glad that Google pushes things forward with these little technical tricks. They’re usually the first to the party but showing up early only counts for so much. They need to put cash into partnerships with points of sale in the case of NFC and some sort of public charging solution for Nexus users in order to convince the rest of the world that wireless charging is actually cool. Then they’ll really be creating a brave new world built mostly in Mountain View rather than Cupertino.

TechCrunch » Gadgets

The LG Nexus 4 Gets Official: 4.7″ Screen, 8 Or 16GB of Storage, And Android 4.2 Starting At $299 Unlocked


Google finally introduced its latest Nexus Android reference phone to the world (meaning the device that gets major OS updates first, and the one that’s guaranteed to receive all of them first, untouched by individual OEM bloatware). LG takes its turn at a Nexus device this time around, delivering the Nexus 4, an Android 4.2-powered handset with a 4.7-inch 1280×768 display, 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, an 8MP rear-facing camera and 8 or 16GB of internal storage.

It has 2 GB of RAM, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, NFC and Bluetooth built in. But it’s an HSPA+ phone, not LTE, which could be a major disappointment. Specs-wise at least, the Nexus 4 is on par with many Android OEM flagship devices released recently. That said, the primary appeal of any Nexus device is always the fact that it carries vanilla Android (and 4.2 offers multiple user accounts  improved camera features, Miracast TV mirroring, and more), unmarred by third-party modifications or applications, and that it’s much more likely to be updated to the next version of Android than other, non-Nexus smartphones, so despite any spec sheet shortcomings, it’ll likely have its fair share of fans choosing it over competing hardware.

LG looks to have used the Optimus G as the basis for the Nexus 4, but significant differences to the physical design, including rounded edges and a screen with slightly curved class, the hallmark of the Nexus line of handsets. One key advantage to the Nexus 4′s physical design is the inclusion of wireless induction charging, which was leaked earlier but is still a fairly exciting inclusion as a default hardware feature, and something that definitely helps the Nexus 4 stand apart from the Optimus G.

The LG Nexus 4 will hit store shelves November 13, launching unlocked for $ 299 and $ 349 for 8GB and 16GB respectively. There’s also a 16GB T-Mobile version at launch on contract for $ 199 with a 2-year term. It’s definitely not a surprise, given the number of leaks that preceded this announcement, but is this the new Nexus phone you were hoping for?

TechCrunch » android

Hands-On With LG And Google’s First Smartphone Collaboration, The Nexus 4


After having seen its mug plastered all over the internet in the days leading up to its release, actually playing with LG and Google’s new Nexus 4 seemed a bit anti-climactic. I mean, when you’ve seen a device like that cracked open and posed for your pleasure, it felt like there wasn’t much I didn’t already know about the thing.

Oh how wrong I was.

The first thing I noticed when I picked up the Nexus 4 is how remarkably sturdy it feels. Despite being an LG device, the Nexus 4 doesn’t really feel like one — it’s far more solid and slab-like than the plasticky handsets that the company has churned out in the past. This may sound weird, but I once I picked it up and got a feeling for its heft, I couldn’t resist the urge to tap the thing on the table a few times just to see how it held up (the answer: quite nicely).

Turning the thing over reveals the funky patterned finish that we’ve seen before, and it catches and reflects light in some interesting ways. To be honest, it seems a bit too flashy for a Nexus device (previous Nexus phones were largely free of visual flair), but that’s just me picking nits. I get the feeling that Nexus aficionados will either love or hate the way the Nexus 4 looks, and for now I’m caught right in the middle.

Speaking of looks, the Nexus 4 (as you’ve probably already heard) runs Android 4.2, which doesn’t stray too far from the aesthetic seen in Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean. You can check out a more detailed list of tweaks and additions here, but one change in particular threw me for a bit of a loop — the app launcher now sports five columns of apps instead of the customary four.

Meanwhile, the Nexus 4’s display represents a big step forward from the one seen in its predecessor. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Galaxy Nexus to bits, but the Pentile sub-pixel configuration meant icons and text didn’t appear as smooth as I would’ve liked. Thankfully, the Nexus 4’s 4.7-inch 720p IPS panel rendered colors brightly and accurately, but I think my eyes have grown accustomed to the way colors pop on AMOLED panels.

That’s all well and good, but how does the thing run? Well, it’s always tough to judge a phone’s performance after only playing with it for a few moments, but the whole thing — from swiping through pages of widgets and apps to scrolling through long lists of emails — was as snappy as you would expect from a top-tier Nexus handset. Of course, we’ve got LG’s Optimus G to thank for that since both devices share the same 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor and 2GB of RAM. To trot out a well-worn Android cliche, the experience was downright buttery, and I’m looking forward to really putting this thing through its paces.

I’ll refrain from making sweeping judgments for now, but the Nexus 4 managed to make a strong impression during the few brief moments we shared together. Expect a deeper dive into Google’s newest Nexus phone later this week after I’ve had some serious playtime, but in the meantime enjoy the rest of these photos.

TechCrunch » Gadgets