We were just waiting for Apple to make 5G mainstream. The iPhone 12 was launched onto a market where the other side of the coin, Android, is already offering a wide range of devices that support the new fast network standard. In fact, for quite some years now the major brands in the industry – Samsung, Huawei, and so on – have been selling 5G versions of their phones or even presenting new 5G-only lineups, like OnePlus is doing. To make a long story short, only Apple was missing, and surely the first iPhone 5G will represent a big leap forward for this technology, which so far has been talked about mainly for its alleged health risk and surreal conspiracy theories – after all, those who do not have a short memory will remember that this happens with every new technology, especially with the “invisible” ones. It’s also true that right now the practical applications of 5G on a phone, apart from downloading wetransfer files more quickly, aren’t worth the almost messianic wait we have faced in recent years for the launch of the new super-fast network.
Enough of the 5G hype – what have smartphones got up their sleeves? Nowadays people talk less about them, but foldable devices keep evolving. “Whenever a new design is launched, with new technology, consumers perceive it as revolutionary. Consumers think it’s fun and new. But the most important thing is the next lineup, the next device because they have to continue to appeal to the consumers and satisfy better usability” explained to Domus Jun-Yong Song, the designer who played a central role in the design of Samsung’s foldable devices. We can predict that once the wow effect of the great launches of Motorola and Samsung wears off and foldable phones become mainstream, we will probably start talking about them – whether they’re Apple or not. The second generation of foldable phones, of which we are starting to catch some glimpses now with Samsung’s Fold2 and the new Motorola Razr, is more mature, although it remains within the limited circle of the few companies that have embraced this very particular form since its beginnings – let’s add Huawei to the list.
While foldable phones remain a dream for the future, a survey carried out by Hoda on the occasion of the launch of the new, very solid P Smart 2021 by Huawei shows the real needs of users – for half of Italians the most important criterion when buying a new smartphone is its battery life. And we doubt that it is much different in the rest of the world. So, OnePlus and Oppo, both owned by BKK Electronics, perhaps can’t boast a foldable smartphone in their catalogs, but they prefer to focus on interesting new dual battery technologies that allow to fully recharge the phone in less than an hour. This will be especially useful when the pandemic is over, one thinks. In the meantime, however, the fear of not having a working phone is very much there, and also has a name – ‘nomophobia’, short for ‘no mobile phobia’.
The smartphone world is a turbulent one, a universe made of dozens of often similar models, in which the innovative aspect has not been blowing our minds for quite some years now. Perhaps the era of magic is over, but the transformations aren’t yet. In the future, if Apple’s MagSafe turns out to be a winning intuition, we can expect to see more and more phones in which, after the headphone jack, also the charging port will disappear. And also more and more augmented reality, thanks to the integration of LiDAR sensors in cameras, which make it more reliable and pave the way for bringing smart glasses into the consumer market – this time supported by an ecosystem of applications that will prevent them from ending up just like the Google Glasses.
Recently added: Huawei Mate 40, Xiaomi Mi 10T Lite, and Motorola RAZR 5G.
All reviews are based on free samples offered by the companies. Thanks to the press offices and publicists for the availability.