iPhone 5 Pre-Order Starts Today

Today’s mobile news roundup features: the kick off for iPhone 5 pre-orders; Motorola’s plans to recall Android devices in Germany; Sprint’s $99 Galaxy phone; and signal jammers to prevent road accidents.

Pre-order your iPhone 5 now

Apple launched the iPhone 5 last Wednesday and it’s been receiving mixed reactions.  Some are pleased with it saying it’s quite an innovative device, but some say it’s just a bigger iPhone, nothing special.

But if you’re interested in the iPhone 5, you can pre-order the device now at the Apple Store or check with AT&T, Sprint or Verizon, available for shipping in two weeks.  If you want the thrill of falling in line for hours, you can head to your local Apple Retail Store on September 21 to get your iPhone 5.  Doors open at 8:00 AM.

German court orders Motorola to recall Android devices for patent infringement

Judge Peter Guntz found Motorola Mobility guilty of infringing Apple’s “overscroll bounce” technology that bounces the page back up when a user gets to the end of the page.  The court ordered Motorola to recall Android smartphones and tablets that infringe the technology in Germany.  The recall will not be implemented immediately as Apple still has to pay a bond and name specific Motorola products to be banned.

This is just another chapter in the battle between Motorola and Apple.  Motorola previously won a case against Apple where in the iPhone maker had to disable the “push delivery” of e-mail to iPhones and iPads in Germany as that feature infringed Motorola’s patent.

Sprint’s $99 Galaxy smartphone

Earlier this week AT&T announced that they’ll be introducing the LG Escape on Sunday, September 16, at the low price of $50 (with a two-year contract).  And Sprint wasn’t just going to let the day go to AT&T, so they’ll be releasing the “powerful yet affordable” Samsung Galaxy Victory 4G LTE on September 16.  The device costs $99 (after $50 mail-in rebate) with a two-year contract.  The Galaxy Victory runs on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and features a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 4-inch display, 4G LTE support, a 5MP rear camera, a 1.3MP front-facing camera and NFC.

Signal jammers to prevent accidents

We can’t deny the fact that a lot of road accidents are linked to using mobile devices while driving, talking on the phone, texting, etc.  It accounts for 20 percent of fatal road accidents worldwide annually, and half of that are on Indian highways.  So Abdul Shabeer, doctoral scholar at Anna University of Technology, Coimbatore, and his colleagues R.S.D. Wahidabanu and H. Abdul Zubar, came up with a plan to jam signals of mobile phones used by truckers.  The signal jammer would work every time the trucker turns on the ignition.  It works by receiving radiation emitted by the phone and it can detect whether the signal is coming from the driver of the truck or the passenger so the only one whose signal will be jammed will the driver’s device.

“Lorry and heavy vehicle operators seldom keep their mobile phones switched off during such trips, but the distracting nature of the device, especially dialling a number, talking on the phone or just holding a phone while driving can be an immediate hazard on roads,” Shabeer told IANS from Chennai.

This might just be one of the things we need to keep our roads safe.  Even if people deny it, mobile devices slows a person’s reaction time and distract drivers.  So by disabling the distraction, drivers will be focused.