Heroes and Has-Beens of Mobile Tech

Heroes & Has-Beens v2

As the guy who posts your daily news round-ups here on the forums even I have noticed that the same sites tend to show up over and over again. This is no accident — if I find consistently good content from a place or person then I’ll generally keep coming back for more.

Unfortunately, just like phones and their operating systems, today’s hero could well be tomorrow’s zero. With this in mind, I will now list my notable sources for all things mobile, present and past. Have a look through what’s below and see if you agree.

Blogs

Hero: The Verge

The Verge in 2013 reminds me a lot of WIRED magazine in the mid-to-late 1990s. Both set a high bar for tech-related content, and both have successfully transcended that genre — covering not just tech, but the culture around it as well.

Has-Been: IntoMobile

I had IntoMobile bookmarked for exactly two reasons: Simon Sage and, to a lesser extent, Stefan Constantinescu. Simon’s writing is as epic as his height; don’t believe me? Check out the review of BlackBerry 10 that he wrote earlier this year. As for Stefan, his writing runs the gamut from incredibly insightful to incredibly ignorant.

Anyway, with both of them gone IntoMobile seems very much like a me-too tech blog. Bookmark deleted.

Honourable Mention: Mobile Syrup

A lifeline for Canadian phone fans, just like these forums. Early device leaks were Mobile Syrup’s first claim to fame; it remains a must-read source for this country’s industry news.

Podcasts

Hero: Android App Addicts

I defy¬† you to listen to any episode of AAA and not get excited about Android. These mostly-mid-western hosts have an infectious enthusiasm for the apps they cover. This podcast also has an excellent pedigree in the form of one Mr. Stephen McLaughlin from Droid Nation — which I’ll get to in just a sec.

Has-Been: All About Symbian

This one’s pretty obvious, right? Back in the day I had great fun listening to Steve Litchfield, Rafe Blandford and Ewan Spence talk about the latest and greatest from everyone’s favourite Finnish phone maker. Those days are clearly gone — and come to think of it, Rafe did have a tendency to drone on a bit.

Honourable Mention: Droid Nation

Now defunct, Droid Nation is still an invaluable resource for a deeper understanding of Android rooting and ROMing. Don’t let the absence of show notes dissuade you — Jonathan Nadeau, co-host and maintainer of that site, is blind.

My fingers are crossed in the hopes that Droid Nation will live on in a new podcast called Mobile Dynasty. With two episodes already published things are looking good…

YouTube

Hero: Marques Brownlee

There is again a fairly strong Android bias in the videos produced and hosted by Marques Brownlee, which suits me just fine. His stuff is slick, informative and edited to the perfect length. No wonder he’s working with The Verge now.

Has-Been: Steve Litchfield

Yes, that Steve Litchfield… While I applaud his mandate to shoot videos about smartphones on a smartphone, the results don’t compare well at all with other YouTubers using proper gear.

And those simulated pub shots taken in his living room? That shit’s just embarrassing.

Twitter

Hero: Peter Nowak

Canadian tech writer Peter Nowak showed up on my radar during the “Fair for Canada” debacle last summer. In addition to being published in major newspapers he continues to post on his personal blog, and has proven to be an important ally in the fight against this country’s mobile status quo.

Has-Been: Mark Goldberg

Mr. Goldberg popped up on my Twitter feed at around the same time. He calls himself a telecommunications consultant, but from what I’ve read he seems more like an industry apologist. On Twitter he spends about half of his time telling us that the Big Three carriers are doing everything right, and the other half trying to discredit the likes of Nowak and Dr. Michael Geist.

If you ask me he’s less of a has-been and more of a never-was…

Clearly, all of this is very subjective and doesn’t even begin to address some of the other places where I gather news — Flipboard, random tweeted links, etc. If you’ve your own favourite source for mobile-related news and analysis and you want me to know about it, post it up below!

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