Feature Article

August 23, 2014

Mobility TechZone Week in Review

More efficient computer processors and displays directly translates to smaller and more powerful devices. As such, mobile devices are quickly becoming a part of the landscape, as they can handle more and more tasks that were formerly reserved for desktop and laptop computers. Wireless device manufacturers are clamoring to deliver the best when it comes to both products and services for consumers. This highly competitive environment makes headlines constantly, and below are some of the top stories from the past week alone.

Sprint has recently replaced CEO Dan Hesse, who has served that position since 2007, with Marcelo Claure. Just one week into his reign as CEO, he made the announcement on Monday that the carrier had upgraded their set of shared data plans, called the Family Share Pack. These shared data plans offer more data per connection at lower costs than any of Sprint's top competitors. For $100 per month, a family of four can access up to 20 GB of data – twice as much as AT&T or Verizon offer for the same price.

Meanwhile, a recent set of leaked photos depict a reversible USB cable being used with an iPhone—hint that the iPhone 6 may ship with this feature included. The iPhone 6 is expected to release sometime in September, but the included features are still mostly up for speculation. A reversible USB would end the frustration of inserting a USB cable upside-down, as it would automatically correct its shape until it fit into the USB port.

The Energous Corporation, a wireless charging development company, announced a partnership with the Dialog semiconductor supplier earlier this week to enhance their existing WattUp products. Wireless charging is still in its infancy, with some companies using magnetic resonance to wirelessly charge devices placed on a specialized pad. WattUp distinguishes itself with a “truly wireless” functionality by charging through the air by proximity. This allows users to keep their devices on person without worrying about draining the batteries.

Finally, the transition for telecom networks using Voice over LTE (VoLTE) instead of traditional cellular channels is slowly starting to happen. Verizon even made the announcement that they planned to deliver VoLTE nationwide near the beginning of this year, and even hinted that consumers could have access to an entirely LTE phone by 2016. According to Forbes, “Considering that 3G services are almost ubiquitous in the country and LTE is quickly gaining traction, the adoption of VoLTE seems to be the natural and logical choice for carriers in their shift towards data.”

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