Mobile Miscellany: week of August 15, 2011

This week was packed with news on the mobile front, so it was easy to miss a few stories here and there. Here's some of the other stuff that happened in the wide world of wireless for the week of August 15, 2011:

  • Vodafone's very own budget-friendly Facebook Phone, the Vodafone 555, is now on sale. £62.50 is all it will take to get the non-touchscreen featurephone in your fingertips. [via SlashGear]

  • A spec sheet and screenshots of the Sony Ericsson Nozumi leaked this week. The handset will likely feature a 1.4GHz single-core Qualcomm S2 CPU, Adreno 205 GPU, and 4.3-inch display with 1280 x 720 resolution. Interestingly enough, the phone is rumored to require a micro SIM, much like the iPhone 4. [via XperiaBlog]

  • US Cellular launched two new Android devices for its prepaid lineup, the Samsung Gem and HTC Merge. The Gem offers a 3.2-inch WVGA display, 800MHz CPU, and Android 2.2 for $140, while the Merge is a global-capable QWERTY slider with a 3.8-inch display, Android 2.2, and more for $300. [via US Cellular]

  • Immediately following Google's acquisition of Motorola, discussion centered around the possibility of the latter company becoming the preferred OEM for Android -- a privilege that would, in theory, include designing and producing the next Nexus. Andy Rubin, the head honcho for the open-source OS, put such rumors to bed by offering more insight on the approval process for upcoming Nexus phones, and insisted that HelloMoto will continue to be treated the same as every other OEM; it will have to bid for the job just like every other company does. [via AndroidCentral]

  • The Huawei Blaze, a budget Android handset that runs on Gingerbread, may arrive in the UK as early as September. The Blaze would mark the first time we've seen the company offer a phone under its own branding in the UK. [via CNet]

  • Shocked to hear the Kyocera Echo isn't selling as well as the company had hoped? Yeah, neither are we. Nonetheless, in the hopes of sparking sales, it's started offering twelve premium games for free to the first 10,000 downloads as part of its "summer of free apps" campaign. Good luck with that. [via Electronista]

  • With all of the buzz rightfully centered around Nokia and its quest for Windows Phone dominance, how bright does Vertu's future look? If Eldar Murtazin is to believed, Espoo's luxury phone branch will also be on the receiving end of WP7 devices. The main difference with Vertu's version compared to the rest of Nokia's lineup? It'll most likely be covered with gold and diamonds. [via WMPowerUser]

  • The Samsung Galaxy Q, another name for the Gravity Smart, is now available on Rogers. The device is geared toward the lower end, so it may not be the most lustworthy letter in the Samsung Galaxy alphabet. [via MobileSyrup]