GeekWire Radio: Fire phone, iPhone 6 and Microsoft’s smartwatch, with Essex Porter and Andru Edwards

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KIRO 7’s Essex Porter and GearLive’s Andru Edwards. (Erynn Rose photo)

We get a glimpse of the future this week on the GeekWire radio show, talking about Amazon’s newly released Fire phone, the widely rumored iPhone 6, and Microsoft’s unannounced smartwatch — with some Windows Phone thrown in for good measure.

Joining me in the studio are Andru Edwards, editor of the GearLive tech news site, who extends his record as our most frequent recurring guest; and Essex Porter, a longtime reporter for KIRO 7 Eyewitness News in Seattle who happens to be one of the most loyal Windows Phone users I’ve ever met. Essex has interviewed me in the past for stories, and I’ve always wanted to turn the tables on him and find out more about his preference for Microsoft devices.

Listen to the show via the audio player below or this MP3 file. Continue reading for links to the topics we discuss.

We kick things off with a discussion of Amazon’s Fire phone, released this week. In my testing of the device, I had a hard time adjusting to some of the high-tech navigational tricks and 3D effects built into the interface, but liked the potential of the Firefly feature for scanning products and everyday objects. Check out our full review of the device, and also see what happened when we took the Fire phone to our local Fred Meyer.

Essex, who also brought his Surface 2 with him to the studio, explains how he gave up his iPhone for a Windows Phone, and never looked back. He’s a fan of the Microsoft interface, including the Live Tiles that let users pin their contacts to the home screen. He uses an HTC 8X running Windows Phone 8 and is looking forward to upgrading to Windows Phone 8.1, which includes features such as Microsoft’s Cortana virtual assistant.

Andru also bought a couple of interesting items to the studio — two non-working mockups of the iPhone 6, including the supersized ‘phablet’-style version that Apple is rumored to be working on. As he explains, these were created based on leaked specs for Apple’s next-gen phones, to provide a sense for how the devices would feel in the hand. Here’s a full video from GearLive, showing what the mockups are like.

We also talk about Andru’s chance encounter with someone wearing a prototype Microsoft smartwatch, providing a sneak peek of the Redmond company’s expected entry into wearable technology later this year.

App of the Week: Moju is a cheap and fun approximation of the Fire phone’s Dynamic Perspective feature.

Name that Tech Tune: Do you know which smartphone boots up with this sound? Send your answer to [email protected] for a chance to win a pair of tickets to GeekWire Sounders Day, plus John Rossman’s book, The Amazon Way.

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