For the past few years at the CTIA show, CNET has chosen our favorite products, and here in Orlando, Florida, we're glad to do it again. Products are selected on a variety of factors including design, features, and innovation in three main categories: best cell phone, best smart phone, and best cell phone accessory.
Sometimes our picks become
Coolest cell phone:
Samsung and Sprint hit CTIA in full force when they announced the U.S. version of the the day before the show began. The Upstage earns points not only because it's completely innovative but also because it's actually a decent phone too. The unique dual-sided design successfully integrates a cell phone and an MP3 player into one device. You can listen to music, watch streaming video, take pictures, and yes, you can make calls too. It has its quirks to be sure and it's not for the gadget-phobic, but on the whole it's a sleek, satisfying device with admirable performance. Just be advised that during your first couple sessions, a dose of patience is needed. Again, it's not perfect, but it's a very positive step in a new direction. Indeed, it just makes us excited for the next-generation model. For a full report on the Upstage, read our
Coolest smart phone:
To be perfectly honest, stole a lot of thunder from CTIA 2007 when it came to introducing new smart phones. The event in Spain saw the debut of the HTC Vox, Motorola Q q9, three new Nokia E series phones, and much more. So what did that leave for CTIA? Well, not much. But that's not a bad thing since many of the companies announced plans to bring these models to the United States, including what we think was the coolest smart phone: the . OK, we know the Advantage is more than just a smart phone, but we have to reward it for its innovation.The portable gadget features an 8GB hard drive, Windows Mobile 6 Professional Edition, a 5-inch VGA touch screen, and a magnetically connected full QWERTY keyboard. In addition, it's stacked with all the wireless connections you'd ever want (quad-band (GSM 850/900/1800/1900; GPRS/EDGE; 3G (UMTS/HSDPA), Bluetooth 2.0, and Wi-Fi. We're really looking forward to checking out this device when it's released in the summer. Also worth a mention is the much-coveted and now U.S.-bound .
Coolest cell phone accessory:
The is our pick of favorite accessory due to one simple factor: it fits a lot of features in one tiny package. The lightweight 0.38-ounce Bluetooth headset is stylish and compact, with a lot of brainpower inside its petite form. Some of the more interesting features include a battery status indicator, a headset location buzzer, a missed call indicator, and even a "hot-dialing" button that lets you call up to three of your favorite contacts. As for sound quality, the S-800 also has a dual-microphone system that cancels out background noise. We look forward to reviewing the headset first-hand later this year.
We have to admit we were impressed with Kyoccera's offerings this year.That's not to say the company hasn't done good work before, but at this year's CTIA it struck a brave new path. Of the five phones it introduced in Orlando, a couple featured completely new stylish designs that stood out from the cell phone crowd. And while some of the new handsets are indeed thin, Kyocera is not blindly chasing the thin phone crowd with another