10-megapixel camera phones, or more, HD video on your mobi and even speech recognition GPS technology ... these were amongst the bold promises being made by LG at a London gathering this week.
The phone manufacturer invited a select few journalists to have a chat about converging technology – focusing on its new KC910 mobile phone – which, as well as having an 8-megapixel camera, also offers a whole host of image and video editing tools, Dolby sound and DivX compatibility.
But the roundtable event also gave Pocket-lint a chance to quiz execs from LG, Dolby and DivX as to what we can expect in the phones of the future, and it seems next year could see a whole host of developments.
On the camera phone front – the emergence of three 8-megapixel models has caused all kinds of excitement amongst phone fans, and doom and gloom amongst digital compact camera manufacturers.
And quite rightly so, said Jeremy Newing, LG’s UK head of marketing who claimed that there is no reason why camera phones could not take over from point and shoot cameras.
Indeed – the megapixel race that we saw amongst camera makers is now being battled out between mobile manufacturers, and, said John Barton, LG UK’s sales and marketing director, he’s already seen camera phone offering megapixel counts in the double digits.
The KC910 also has up to 16x digital zoom, provided by Schneider Kreuznach, but no optical zoom however, there were hints that this might change.
The new relationship with DivX, which sees the Renoir bundled with software for converting files into DivX files for viewing on the phone, could also be a sign of things to come.
When we asked about the possibility of HD video recording in mobile phones – after all this seems to be the next big thing in digital cameras – again – it was a case of watch this space.
Andy Glasson from DivX explained that the company is already working on the H.264 encoding and decoding technology that could make this possible.
Moving onto music, the KC910 is the first global launch to feature special dedicated technology from Dolby to make the sound better from the phone, whether from its speaker or when you are listening through headphones.
Jonathan Jowitt from Dolby told us that this is the first device of many: "This is the start of many products we hope, and we also hope to be working with LG for a long time to come".
Sticking with music – way back in February, with not many fireworks, LG announced its own mobile music downloads service called MusicStation Max.
It’s all been a bit quiet since, even as both Nokia and Sony Ericsson have launched Comes With Music and PlayNow, but LG may be up to something.
John Barton said that the time was not yet right for the company: "You can’t go to each individual label and do a deal, and then only offer your customers the music of the labels that sign up. You need an aggregator. For the KF700, we created MusicStation Max with Omnifone, which we can see being popular in the Scandinavian markets". He added, however: "For the rest of the world – watch this space".
And so what else can we expect from LG? Developers may finally see LG opening up its software for third party applications, and the clever bods in the R&D department are also, apparently, working on technology to stop us getting smeary fingers prints over our nice, shiny, LG touchscreens.
Let’s hope it’s not just a cloth in the box.