Upcoming releases: smartphones to watch out for in 2015

Smartphone technology is developing at an exponential rate. It seems every year brings us new releases featuring technology that was unimaginable just a few years before. Industry growth has undoubtedly been helped by the fact that the smartphone OS Market is essentially a duopoly – between Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS. Developers have been able to focus on improving functionality on day to day productivity, gaming, fitness and casino apps which are so crucial to the user experience.

In fact one of the biggest changes in 2015 may may be among the least visible. Both the Play and App Stores are slowly changing their terms to accommodate gambling apps and mobile sites released by the biggest casino software providers. We can expect further changes to accommodate the functionality required by the latest social gambling games; heralded as the “next big thing” for the gaming market.

But 2015 will, of course, see major releases from several manufacturers with competing visions of what the smartphone of tomorrow is. Here we take a look at some of the most exciting upcoming handsets.

Google Project Ara

The idea of a module based phone has been mooted for several years, and was under development by Motorola prior to their sale to LG. Now Google is at the helm and Project Ara is slated for release in the first half of 2015.

Ara will essentially act as an exoskeleton to which owners can attach different functional modules like memory, processing power and camera. The idea is to allow users to build exactly the phone they want – for example sacrificing memory for a better camera.

Not only does the Ara concept look cool, it could also provide an entirely customisable handset which could be reconfigured for a huge number of tasks.

Samsung Galaxy S Edge

A follow up to the Galaxy Note Edge, which featured a curved screen on the edge, the Galaxy S Edge will boast a similar tool bar on each side, to facilitate use with either hand. Along with upgrades to memory, resolution and processing power the S Edge offers a quick and easy way to get alerts, toolbars and other notifications without unlocking your phone. The hotly anticipated handset is slated for a limited edition release later in 2015.

 LG G Flex 2

The original G Flex handset didn’t set out to compete with market leaders on features – but to prove a point; bendable technology is not only possible, it has arrived. Although its release generated significant attention the price and lack of features made it appealing only to diehard futurists.

The G Flex 2 incorporates feedback from early users with a smaller screen using a 5.5 inch POLED screen. It will also feature a lightning quick Snapdragon 810 chip with 2GB of Ram and an improved 13MP camera with laser auto focus.

 iPhone 7 (or 6S)

Apple plays its cards close to the chest, which is why we don’t know much about the upcoming new iPhone, including its name. However its very likely new models will be released around September of this year, with some analysts even predicting an earlier date.

The major rumours include that the iPhone 7 will have a “near DSLR quality” two lens 21MP camera system. Its also rumoured that Apple will start phasing out 16GB phone models and continue offering phones in a range of sizes – perhaps adding an “iPhone Mini” to the range.

 HTC One M9

HTC flagship “One” series of phones is going strong and there will likely be a new addition early this year – the HTC One M9. HTC have gone to great lengths to keep the design secret – even reportedly showing dummy devices to keep the press guessing.

However its a fair bet the M9 will feature an octo core Snapdragon 810 with 3GB of RAM, 1080p display and a 20.7MP main camera. The phone will incorporate the latest carrier technology like VoLTE, Carrier Aggression and LTE Category 6 which promises download speeds of up to 300Mbps.