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Mobile Miscellany: week of May 13th, 2013

Zachary Lutz

If you didn't get enough mobile news during the week, not to worry, because we've opened the firehose for the truly hardcore. This week brought a new handset from Sony to the US and UK, updates to Nokia Creative Suite and three new (and very inexpensive) smartphones from Blu Products. These stories and more await after the break. So buy the ticket and take the ride as we explore all that's happening in the mobile world for this week of May 13th, 2013.

Sony Xperia L available for pre-order in US, purchase in the UK

Mobile Miscellany week of May 13th, 2013

Following the Xperia P, Sony has put the Xperia L up for pre-order in the US. The smartphone is available for $349.99 unlocked, and carries an estimated ship date of May 23rd. The Xperia L is capable of 21 Mbps HSPA+ for both AT&T and T-Mobile, which includes support for the 850, 1700, 1900 and 2100MHz bands. The phone includes a 4.3-inch, 854 x 480 display, a 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4, an 8MP camera, 8GB of expandable storage and Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean). Similarly, the Xperia L is now available for purchase from Clove in the UK, where you can snag it for £228 outright. [Xperia Blog, Unwired View]

Nokia updates Creative Studio for Windows Phone 8

Mobile Miscellany week of May 13th, 2013

Nokia's photo editing app, Creative Studio, was updated this week to version 5.0, which introduces two new sections called Play and Blur. Within the Play component, you'll Color Pop and Collage. If you've ever seen the black and white photos with just a dash of color, that's what Color Pop is about, while Collage is a bit more self-explanatory. As for Blur, you'll find a tool called Focus Object that's designed to bring a sense of movement to the subject of a photo, along with a new Radial Tilt + Shift feature, which creates the illusion that you're looking at a scene of miniatures. [Nokia Conversations]

Blu Products updates Studio lineup

Mobile Miscellany week of May 13th, 2013

If the idea of a 5-inch smartphone that costs $149 outright is appealing to you, then you're probably going to like what Blu Products is about. This week, the company introduced three new smartphones, each which feature large displays, low prices, dual-SIM functionality, 4GB of expandable storage and Android 4.1. First up is the Studio 5.0, which includes a 5-inch, WVGA display, a 1GHz dual-core MT6577 a 5MP camera and 512MB of RAM. From there, the company steps it up with the Studio 5.0 S, which includes a qHD IPS display, a 1.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Play, an 8MP camera and 1GB of RAM, which is available for $209. Lastly, you'll find the Studio 5.3 S, which bumps up the display size to 5.3 inches (but keeps the qHD resolution), which can be snagged for $229. [Android Police]

Other random tidbits

  • T-Mobile announced that it plans to aggressively expand the footprint of MetroPCS over the next six quarters. In the near-term, it's said that MetroPCS will soon arrive in 15 new markets. [FierceWireless]
  • The Samsung Galaxy S III with LTE was spotted for delivery to T-Mobile stores. Looks like the carrier might actually be going through with it... [TmoNews]
  • Verizon Wireless announced changes to its prepaid plans that'll provide better value to customers with data plans. In addition to unlimited voice and SMS, customers will now benefit from 2GB of data usage on the $60 plan, which is up from a rather paltry 500MB. Likewise, Verizon has bumped its $70 prepaid plan to include 4GB of data usage, which doubles the previous 2GB limit. [FierceWireless]
  • Skype is now available for the BlackBerry Z10, which was previously only supported by the Q10. [CrackBerry]
  • Subscribers of Wind Mobile can now snag the Galaxy S 4, which is available from the carrier for $699 outright or $399 on the WindTab. [MobileSyrup]
  • The Vodafone Smart III went up for sale in the UK for £95 outright. The phone includes a 4-inch, WVGA display, a 1GHz CPU, a 5-megapixel camera, 4GB of expandable storage and Android 4.1. [Pocket-lint]
  • Telefonica and Samsung inked a carrier billing agreement that'll give Telefonica subscribers the ability to buy content from within Samsung apps and subsequently charge the purchases to their phone bill. [TechCrunch]
  • TuneIn Radio for Android was updated with the ability to purchase currently playing songs from within Google Play. [Android Police]
  • Cellcom, a regional mobile provider that provides service to customers throughout Wisconsin and Michigan, announced that it'll bring the Galaxy S 4 into its lineup later this summer.
  • The Galaxy S III is now available for purchase from Straight Talk for $439.99 outright. The phone holds the distinction as the MVNO's first and only LTE smartphone, which is said to use the Sprint network. [Android Police]

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[Mobile Miscellany photo credit: Thristian / Flickr]

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