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CTIA 2009 PreviewWe're packing our bags and heading to Las Vegas for CTIA 2009. Take a look at what we're expecting--and hoping--to see there, including Skype for the iPhone, a slew of new handsets, and more hands-off demos of the Palm Pre.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:04 >> Molly Wood: Hi I'm Molly Wood executive editor at CNET.com. We are counting down to the big CTIA Wireless Show. It's happening in Las Vegas starting April 1st. It is where a lot of the cool phones are announced maybe not the Palm Pre or LG watch phone, but hopefully something cool. I am here with Kent German senior editor of CNET reviews and Maggie Reardon a senior writer for CNET news and hopefully we can take a quick look at some of the maybe devices and trends that we are a, we're looking to see. >> Kent German: Sure >> Molly Wood: Kent do you think this is gonna be like a awesome phone, awesome phone, awesome phone kind of show? >> Kent German: No I don't. I think the past, last year was sort of they had a lot of phones nothing really stood out, and then of course this year at CS not a lot. We did have the Pre, which is the big thing in the GSMA World Congress which was back in February. Had a few things, but wasn't just like 1 kind of cool thing after another, definitely different than previous years, so I don't expect a lot. >> Molly Wood: So a little bit slower device wise, but it sounds like there's a little bit more happening on the content side of things, maybe sort of more that app store ecosystem. >> Maggie Reardon: Yeah I think that the software and the whole app store phenomenon is gonna be the big thing that everybody is going to be buzzing about and talking about. Research in Motion which makes the BlackBerry is supposed to be launching its app store at, they don't call it the app store of course cause [ Laughter ] ^M00:01:14 >> Maggie Reardon: that's Apple's name. >> Molly Wood: Right, right. >> Maggie Reardon: But that's what everybody calls it. >> Molly Wood; But we all call it that. [ Laughter ] ^M00:01:18 >> Maggie Reardon: Same concept. So they're supposed to be announcing something and then pretty much everybody out there Google, Microsoft, Nokia, everybody's announced their own version of an application store and you know there's some talk that maybe, maybe Microsoft will say something about it. They announced their app store at Mobile World Congress last month. So, so we'll see. But that, that seems to be what people are going to be talking about is all of these applications. >> Molly Wood: Right that you really can't do just a phone anymore, you have to have a phone with a whole bunch of, of utility and content attached to it. >> Kent German: Sure >> Maggie Reardon: Right and today Skype came out with its application for the iPhone. So that's, that's getting a lot of buzz too and they'll be having a press conference tomorrow and they'll be showing it off at CTIA for anybody who wants to check it out. >> Molly Wood: Right. So speaking of things we're hoping to see with a lot of buzz sounds like there will be something Palm Pre related. Will there be news? >> Kent German: We don't think we're going to hear pricing or availability which of course are the 2 things that everybody is waiting for. We certainly know what it looks like. We know some of the features but don't think we're going to find a lot of specs, maybe the full list of specs. Don't think we're going to see that. We know it will be there. We don't know if we're allowed to touch it actually. Palm has told us that we can look at it, and film it, and photograph it, but apparently they're the ones that still have to actually move it with the menus and manipulate the navigation and do all of that. So, it will be there, but still not a lot of news about it from what we are expecting. >> Molly Wood: Is there a feeling that if there are even if there aren't really great devices right if there are just some good phones that have good ecosystems, good app stores attached to them that Palm might be in a little bit of trouble if they don't hurry this thing up? >> Maggie Reardon: Oh I definitely think so. >> Kent German: Sure, absolutely. >> Maggie Reardon: You know I think that the market has gotten very, very competitive and there are a lot of phones out there. I mean I really think that the one to watch is going to be Microsoft and all these Microsoft phones. You know I saw the software, the new version of the software in Barcelona and it looked pretty cool, pretty slick. I don't know if you've seen any of the new ones. >> Kent German: Yeah actually I haven't seen the newer, the newer Microsoft but I think what the problem they definitely are they are in danger of not coming out with this too quickly enough cause I understand why they did it at CS you know they have almost the entire world press there, they get a lot of coverage, it's easier, but I got the sense there the phone was not ready and they just took that chance and said let's get it out there, but now they have to come out with it, get it ready and get it out by the summer before the iPhone OS 3 comes out and before potentially new hardware version of the iPhone comes out. If it comes out after I just, I just, don't really, I'm not really confident for them at all actually. >> Molly Wood: Yeah >> Maggie Reardon: Yeah and of course there's Android phones. >> Molly Wood: Right are we hoping to see these? I mean obviously I am hoping to see some Android hardware. Have you guys heard any rumors about new phones coming out? >> Kent German: Well we're expecting that HTC might announce something and one thing that could be very probable is the HTC Magic, which is the only Android phone that we saw at Barcelona at GSMA we were expecting a lot more, only saw that one. Last week it passed through the FCC certification process and was approved for T-Mobile or support for T-Mobile's 3 G, 3 G bands which are different from AT&T's and pretty unique in this country. So that's a pretty good sign that we might see that phone come to T-Mobile and considering that it happened just a couple of days. You know FCC is a public process, they can't really hide it. So, seems probable that that might happen. >> Molly Wood: Right, so most likely that one and then hopefully some more it sounds like. >> Kent German: I'd certainly like that happen. I mean we've seen that a lot of people have been waiting for Android. We only saw 1 phone out. The G1 and you know it's fine, but Android's whole thing is we're going to be on a lot of devices. We're expecting from LG, Samsung and just nothing yet, so this would be a great time. >> Molly Wood: Right. >> Maggie Reardon: The developers I've talked to though have said that the phones aren't out yet for Android but the software is definitely getting more mature and I think that we're gonna see some interesting things once the hardware sort of catches up and we have to remember I mean, it's a 2 year development cycle for a lot of these folks. So really a lot of these people just got their hands on the software I think in the fall. Right? >> Kent German: Yeah probably. >> Maggie Reardon: So you know maybe we're being a bit optimistic hoping that we'd see a bunch of phones already, but you know certainly by the end of the year and hopefully this summer we'll be seeing more. >> Molly Wood: Well of course CNET will be covering all angles of CTIA reviews, news, and download. You will find all of that coverage at ctia.cnet.com.