Mobile Miscellany: week of February 27th, 2012

Not all mobile news is destined for the front page, but if you're like us and really want to know what's going on, then you've come to the right place. This past week, we've seen a major shakeup in the world of mobile payments and we were thoroughly teased by Rogers, which launched a curious pre-order promotion for the Lumia 900. These stories and more await after the break. So buy the ticket and take the ride as we explore the "best of the rest" for this week of February 27th, 2012.

Rogers offers a dark surprise with Lumia 900 pre-orders

Earlier this week, Nokia announced that Rogers would be the exclusive Canadian provider of the LTE-enabled Lumia 900. Now the carrier's capitalizing on the announcement, and to that end, it's offering a mystery gift to those who pre-order the device. For sleuths in the making, Rogers offers the following hint: there's a hero rising out of the darkness. So Batman, what's your guess? [MobileSyrup]

Huawei takes a seat on Tizen's Board of Directors

It seems that Huawei is looking to reinvent itself in more ways than one. In addition to its release of the high-end Ascend D Quad smartphone, it took a place on the Tizen Association's Board of Directors this week and has announced that it'll create devices for the nascent platform. The news coincides with the release of Tizen's beta source code and SDK, which now features an updated UI framework and web API's. [SlashGear]

Now available: Sprint TV for iPhone

Sprint's mobile TV service became available for iPhone users this week, who may now enjoy free offerings from networks such as ABC, CBS, ESPN and NBC. As the freemium service goes, those willing to pay an additional $10/month can take advantage of additional offerings from content providers that include Comedy Central, FOX News, MTV and Nickelodeon. [SprintFeed]

Dolphin Browser HD gets Sonar voice functionality

Dolphin Browser HD reached version 7.4 this week, which brought a new voice-control feature known as Sonar. Now, users may search the web, share links and navigate the browser with simple speech commands. Perhaps nicest of all, no interaction with the screen is necessary: the voice command can be initiated from within the browser with a simple shake of the phone. [GigaOM]

ZTE Fury spotted for Sprint

A new budget handset is said to be coming soon to the Now Network. Known as the ZTE Fury, it'll pack a 1GHz CPU, a 3.5-inch touchscreen and Android 2.3. Also in the mix is 4GB of internal storage and a 5MP camera. These are rather middling specs, to be sure, but perhaps the $20 price tag (after $50 mail-in rebate) will be sufficient to attract a few purchasers. [SprintFeed]

Vodafone to launch mobile payment platform in partnership with Visa

A major shakeup in the world of mobile payments came this week when Vodafone announced a partnership with Visa that'll bring NFC-based payments to the mobile carrier's large number of subscribers. The Vodafone-branded service will initially launch in Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Turkey and the UK, but will eventually spread across Vodafone's entire footprint in areas where mature payment infrastructures exist. Consumers will be able to establish prepaid accounts for their purchases, and Vodafone is also seeking partnerships with Visa's network of authorized issuers. The carrier is also looking for partners in the retail, transportation and utility sectors, each which may integrate their loyalty, promotion and payment services with the mobile wallet application. [Vodafone]