IFA 2013: What to expect
Tomorrow, Berlin will be transformed into the most awesome place on the globe. Or at least that's how hardcore tech enthusiasts will surely look at it. That's because the annual Internationale Funkausstellung event, or IFA, as we call it with a hint of excitement in our voice, will take place in the German capital.
It is an event where both major and not-so-major electronics manufacturers show off their latest and greatest gadgets. And we're not talking only about washing machines and digital alarm clocks. At IFA, there is no shortage of mobile devices on display, including smartphones and tablets of all shapes and sizes. In fact, many companies choose to unveil their newest products during the expo, which is why the tech media is keeping a close eye on the event.
But what smartphones and tablets might we see during IFA 2013? Well, that's a tricky question as not a whole lot is known until the very beginning of the event. Nevertheless, we can make some predictions based on all the evidence and leaks that have piled up so far.
We're already in Berlin getting ready for a huge day tomorrow. Samsung is expected to unveil its Galaxy Note III, and Sony will bring the Xperia Z1 aka Honami. And that's just the beginning - take a look at all the new devices we expect to see right below, and stay tuned!
Samsung will unveil the Galaxy Note III at IFA 2013 and it isn't even being too secretive about it. The company has an "Unpacked" event scheduled for September 4 – a date we must "note", as the invitation says. However, there is one more device that Samsung is said to be working on, namely the Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch, which we've been hearing rumors about for months. The gadget will be announced at the September 4 event, as a Samsung executive confirmed a few days ago.
We know, we know – you're all waiting for Sony to finally announce its long-rumored Honami smartphone along with a "mini" version of it. Well, we aren't sure about the "mini", but the Honami will surely make a splash, as a teaser video confirmed recently. It will be called the Sony Xperia Z1, if rumors are to be believed, and will pack an awesome camera, pretty screen, and a fast processor tucked inside a water-resistant body. In addition,, Sony might demonstrate its interchangeable lens camera attachments, or shed some light on a new hybrid laptop/tablet device.
HTC is working on at least two new Android smartphones, the more exciting of them being the so-called HTC One Max. The device is more or less a physically bigger HTC One look-alike, with a screen of about 6 inches and Snapdragon 800 SoC. The other smartphone is a mid-range Android 4.3 handset known as the HTC Zara (most likely just a codename). While we don't know if any of these Android smartphones will be on display during IFA 2013, HTC might take advantage of the hype surrounding the show and make at least one of them official.
LG has a new Android tablet somewhere in its labs – a high-end 8.3-inch slate known as the LG G Pad. According to insiders, the device will be announced during IFA 2013, and we do trust them since the LG G Pad has already been teased by the company itself. We must also mention that rumors about an LG Vu III are also making the rounds, but the phablet isn't likely to be on display since it may be targeted primarily at the Korean market. What we're a bit more likely to see, on the other hand, is the LG Optimus L9 II smartphone, which leaked again just a few days ago.
In 2012, ASUS had mostly Windows-based gear to show off at IFA, but this year there might be a bit more variety at the company's booth. ASUS is already working on more than a few Android devices, and we won't be surprised if they get announced during the expo. These include an ASUS PadFone mini and a MeMOFone HD 5, both of which have their specs shrouded in mystery, as well as a Tegra 4 tablet with a super-high resolution display and a possible successor to the ASUS PadFone Infinity. Sounds exciting, doesn't it?
While Nokia is said to be working on at least seven new Windows-based devices, perhaps none of them will be made official during IFA 2013. Or at least the most exciting one among them won't attend – Nokia's 6-inch handset codenamed Bandit. The device, which will rank among the largest smartphones once it is official, is to be announced in late September instead, according to recent reports. It is expected to be the first Windows Phone 8 smartphone to come with a quad-core processor and a 1080p display.
Alcatel isn't among the most popular smartphone manufacturers, but its portfolio of Android handset has been steadily increasing over the past months. Now it looks like a couple of new devices are to be added, the more exciting of them being the Alcatel One Touch Scribe Pro. It is a cheap, large-screened Android smartphone powered by a quad-core processor and equipped with a stylus. Along with it, Alcatel may launch the One Touch Idol mini – a modest mid-range Android handset with pocket-friendly proportions.
A new HP tablet was spotted at the FCC – the Omni10 – and if the device is meant to see the light of day, then an IFA 2013 announcement seems quite probable. We don't know much about it at this time, but it is shaping up as a 10-inch slate running Windows 8. Along with it, the company might announce an HP Slate 8 Pro, which is believed to be an 8-inch Android tablet sporting a high-resolution display and an NVIDIA Tegra 4 chip.
The tablets made by Archos have never been that exciting as they are most often than not targeted at the budget-conscious audience. However, there is one peculiar tablet made by the company – the Archos GamePad – which is an Android slate with hardware gaming controls. Its first iteration was somewhat flawed, so let's hope that the upcoming second generation GamePad would be better.