LG and Samsung have had to live with each other as cornerstones of the South Korean economy, but that uncomfortable balance might just have been knocked off-kilter through an escalating legal battle. Samsung has filed for an injunction against LG for supposedly coercing 11 Samsung researchers (already indicted in July) into leaking the secrets behind its OLED screens, including 18 pieces of technology and 21 related documents. The accuser wants 1 billion won (about $879,771) in compensation for every piece of technology that might have slipped out. Suffice it to say that LG isn't happy with being labeled as a thief -- it notes that LG screens use white OLEDs instead of Samsung's RGB technique, reducing its incentive to swipe anything Samsung makes. LG even contends that Samsung is just trying to hide its embarrassment at losing OLED TV demo units that were headed to IFA 2012. Without a clear resolution in sight, there's every indication the legal dispute could become very ugly.
Nokia's imaging chief Damian Dinning has released a paper explaining the "second phase" of PureView technology that's included in the new Lumia 920. Charged with improving low-light photography and eliminating camera shake, the experimental 808 handset was developed with a 41-megapixel sensor that oversampled images down to 5-megapixels. However, such equipment is bulky and expensive, so it changed tack for its second crack at the whip, which you can find out about if you join us after the break.
Both arriving in a fanfare of primary colors and big screens, we've already taken a look at the spec sheet breakdown, but how does the Lumia 920 compare to its predecessor in the looks department? In a battle of polycarbonate matte and gloss, we put them both into an Engadget editor's outstretched hands and let the photography do the talking.
So the big buzz of the day's just passed, but now's the time to focus on the lesser details of Nokia's big Windows Phone 8 / Lumia presser: the accessories. Revealed during the presentation today, the Lumia 920 and 820 both incorporate Qi tech for wireless charging (albeit, optionally in the latter's case), a perk that will let users choose from the company's own stylish, soap-bar like dock, Fatboy pillow or an NFC-equipped charging stand. All three function exactly as advertised -- put the phone on top and it starts charging right away. The basic dock is the same sort of plastic that now graces the outside of the Lumia line. It's simple, slightly shiny and comes in a variety of hues. The Pillow is broad, flat and not exactly comfortable. The charging element sits right in the middle and is surrounded by beanbag-like cushions on all sides save for the top -- we wouldn't advise putting it under your head to go to sleep.
The most interesting peripheral is definitely the charging stand. It's the least cumbersome of the charging options and it's got a neat trick up its sleeve. An NFC chip embedded in its base can be used to tell a Lumia to launch an app when you place it in the dock. So, you could easily put a 920 down, keep it charged and automatically open your music player or alarm clock. You can see the NFC trick in action in a video after the break.
If you like your audio interfaces with added "on-the-go," then the new Forte from Focusrite might be worthy of your attention. The two-input four-output device has two remote control preamps with 24-bit 192kHz analog / digital converters. If you are worried that the pocket-friendly form means less space for meters etc, fear not, as an OLED display with on-screen buttons provides visual feedback, along with control over levels and even some software (DAW) parameters. There's a breakout cable included, and dedicated control software (PC and Mac) so even your devices with XLR connections will get a look in, while the aluminum casing should hold it all together nicely -- not to mention make it look pretty. How much you ask? That'd be £399 / $600 when it lands in stores in October. Promo video after the break.
SanDisk has built itself a decent reputation in the SSD game, and a cheap cache-only drive is a logical addition to its line. Unlike regular SSD or hybrid upgrades, you don't have to transfer your system to the new drive -- the 2.5-inch, 32GB add-on simply hooks up to a spare SATA III port alongside your spinning storage and then you run SanDisk's ExpressCache software to do the rest. The program, which is currently Windows 7-only, monitors which files you access most frequently and then automatically caches them on the SSD, promising up to 12x faster application launches and also faster boot times compared to your HDD working on its lonesome. Importantly, the ReadyCache works with multiple hard drives too, rather than just boosting your primary drive -- a feature that SanDisk claims gives it a one-up over most other caching solutions. The list price is $100 but Amazon has it up right now for $55.
Everyone who regularly deals with cold winters knows the pain of using a smartphone in January -- you're usually forced to take your gloves off and risk frostbite if that call just can't wait. Nokia's new Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 phones bring in a Synaptics ClearPad Series 3 sensor whose responsiveness will keep those hands toasty. Super Sensitive Touch, as Nokia calls it, lets the capacitive surface react to more than just direct skin contact: it can recognize input through gloves, as well as from those with long fingernails. You'll want to spring for the Lumia 920 if you envision updating Twitter during a sunny skiing trip, however. On top of that extra-large 1,280 x 768 resolution, the 920's PureMotion HD+ display is reportedly about 25 percent brighter than its next-best rival. We're looking forward to a real field test -- not to mention preserving all the feeling in our fingers.
In the last HTC Frequencies media summit, the company didn't shy away from the possibility of exploring different color options for its flagship devices, but never did we expect it to come out with such a simple yet eye-catching combination of black and white on the same body. Courtesy of Frequencies II today, what we're looking at here is an HTC One X (on AT&T) with a bit of love from fashion label Cushnie et Ochs: the design simply consists of a two-part chassis instead of a unibody shell, so we could just about feel the seam along the center of the backside. Other than that, this is a surprisingly attractive device, especially with the preloaded wallpaper that matches the shell colors -- we like the effect of it moving along horizontally as we swipe between home screens. There's no word yet on availability, but keen fashionists should see this pop up at Milk Studios during the New York Fashion Week in a few days.
Update: Bad news, folks: we've just had confirmation from HTC that this funky phone will not be available for purchase. Only certain celebrities will receive one as a gift.
There's a stack of different plugs, cables and connectors aimed at piping sound into your iPad, but when studio-stalwart Focusrite makes one, we pay attention. The iTrack Solo is a two channel interface compatible with the iPad, as well as your Mac or PC, offering mobile recording all the way up to 24-bit / 96kHz. The onboard preamp is the same as used in the brand's flagship Liquid Saffire 56 interface, and there's phantom power for microphones. As well as the mic-in there's a quarter-inch input for guitars etc., as well as a chunky volume control for monitoring. Front "halo" indicators change from green to red if your recording levels go too high, and the aluminum casing should prevent it from getting damaged at the bottom of any gig bag. Once you've created a masterpiece in Garageband (or other recording app), you can use the line-level phono outputs to run it through your sound system of choice. Sound like something you can get down to? You'll be able to get your hands on the iTrack Solo starting next month, and it'll set you back $160 at your local dealer -- in the meantime, you can jam on the PR after the break.
Curious about how Nokia's new second-tier handset matches up against its predecessor? Well, we certainly are. That's why we've compiled a list of key specifications and stacked the Lumia 820 side-by-side with the 800 -- so we can see how Redmond's newest mobile OS has liberated Finland's finest design minds.