–T-Mobile, the fourth largest mobile operator in the U.S., will not be left behind in the CES 4G cavalcade. It may still be holding off from LTE in the U.S. (not so for its parent in Germany), but it will nevertheless upgrade its “4G” HSPA network. The top speed will now be 42 megabits per second (in the most optimized of conditions), which it says makes it compatible with LTE players out there like Verizon. Among the devices T-Mobile will be carrying are LG’s new Android Honeycomb tablet, the G-Slate, and the Dell Streak 7 (pictured). [Release]
— Samsung launches a WiFi-only version of the Galaxy Tab, adds CBS (NYSE: CBS) as its first content provider for its Media Hub. In a showy press conference that was largely dominated by Samsung’s home entertainment and connected TV business lines — think Dreamworks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg talking up how TV “means” Samsung to everyone — some mobile news, too. The company launched a new WiFi-only version of the Galaxy Tab, putting it in closer product line with the likes of Apples iPad and the many other WiFi-only devices we’re seeing launched this week.
Samsung also gave some updates to its Media Hub effort, another example of the content management tools that we’re seeing a lot more from the CE players, as a way of further differentiating themselves from each other. Broadcaster CBS was named as Samsung’s first content partner for this effort, and will put several — although not all, initially — of its biggest shows onto the platform. Content from the Media Hub is accessible from all of Samsung’s connected devices, not just the mobile range. [Release]
— Hulu comes to Android. This was almost a by-product of Samsung’s press conference. Jason Kilar, the CEO of Hulu, joined Samsung on the stage to talk all things content, and mentioned for the first time that Hulu Plus subscribers will be able to access Hulu via mobile devices running Android 2.2 or higher. This service will go live in the coming months. [Blog post from director of product, Rich Wong]
— MobiTV is coming to the iPad. Tablets may well be the natural home for wireless TV viewing so this one isn’t much of a shocker. The MobiNOW iPad app is the company’s first tablet application — although it’s probably not the last. It will offer access to live streams of Fox News, PBS, the Discovery Channel, A&E, and others, as well as hundreds of hours of VOD content. [iTunes link]
— Scanbuy barcodes increase: Mobile barcode specialist Scanbuy announced that its barcode scanning increased 160-fold in 2010, doubling since last September. Its latest trend report also found that UPC scanning outpaced 2D codes — reflecting the rise of app-equipped smartphones — and as expected the days after Thanksgiving and Christmas were the largest scan days of all. Top features included coupons, prices and nutritional info. [Full report]
— Panasonic and Oberon bring 3D technology: Oberon, the casual games company, has teamed up with Panasonic to bring a dedicated I-playTV channel on specific Panasonic HDTVs. The new service will feature top franchises from I-play’s library of hit casual games such as Dream Day Wedding, Bubble Town, Paradise Quest and more.