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RED sneak peaks
RED has provided a few sneak peeks of its upcoming Digital Still and Motion Camera (DSMC) systems, EPIC and Scarlet, along with the new Pro series of lenses. The EPIC and Scarlet "brains" can be configured with a wide variety of options and accessories, each built upon the Mysterium-X and Mysterium Monstro sensors capable of resolutions well beyond standard 1080p HD.
Cisco intros Wi-fi routers
Cisco on Thursday announced the release of a trio of new 802.11n Wi-Fi networking products, with the WET610N Ethernet Bridge, and WRT400N and WRT320N routers. All operate on both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies. The WET610N provides the faster wireless link to devices that only have an Ethernet port, such as the Xbox 360 or some network media hubs. It prioritizes data packets for smooth video delivery that nearly eliminates dropped frames due to interference Cisco claims.
OCZ outs netbook, 1TB SSD
Memory maker OCZ has jumped into the netbook business with its Neutrino portable PC, which it demonstrated at the CeBIT show in Germany on Wednesday. The Neutrino sports a 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 CPU sitting on Intel's 945GSE mainboard and sports a 10-inch LED-backlit screen with 1024x600 resolution. Up to 2GB of RAM will be supported; 2.5-inch hard drives with up to 250GB are optional, including OCZ's own 250GB SSD drive. More interestingly, the netbook will be part of OCZ's DIY program, meaning owners can upgrade its memory or hard drive without voiding the warranty.
Sony PSP vs. iPhone
The iPhone is not a significant threat to the success of the PlayStation Portable, claims Sony's Ray Maguire. The managing director for Sony Computer Entertainment UK, Maguire notes that the company is already releasing the sort of casual "snacking" games for the PSP that typically flood the cellphone industry, and by extension the iTunes App Store. Many of the titles at the App Store are simple puzzle or action games, and often clones of famous titles such as Tetris or Space Invaders.
Apple holds ASPs
Apple has so far avoided the "permanent and structural" collapse of overall PC average selling prices and subsequent decline in revenue, according to TBR analyst Ezra Gottheil. The trend is explained by the ongoing economic recession and the gaining popularity of low-priced netbooks. Combining numbers from Apple, Dell, HP and Lenovo, the analyst saw a 13 percent drop in average selling price (ASP) and an 18 percent decline in PC revenue just in the fourth quarter of 2008.
A-Data 512GB SSD at CeBIT
At the ongoing CeBIT show in Germany, Taiwan's A-Data showed off a 2.5-inch, 512GB solid state drive (SSD), the XPG. A-Data says the 512GB XPG is capable of reading data at 230MBps while write speeds are as high as 160MBps, though these have to be verified in real-world testing. The drive features a standard SATA II interface.
Cricket adds r211 to range
Wireless provider Cricket on Thursday announced that the Samsung SCH-r211 handset is now shipping. The candybar is a basic phone with support for the carrier's Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) network, with mobile web access and support for downloadable content such as ringtones, wallpapers and access to Cricket Games and Apps. The phone is also capable of sending and receiving text messages.
Diaper Dash released
PlayFirst has released Diaper Dash, the newest sequel in its game series based on Diner Dash. In the new game, players help Wilson, a day-care volunteer, develop and maintain a nursery, juggling multiple time-sensitive tasks. The babies of DinerTown require feeding, playtime and cleaning; should players manage the tasks, their businesses will eventually grow.
Panasonic prices leaked
HD Guru on Thursday revealed unannounced pricing for the Panasonic 2009 TV line-up, including the flagship 1-inch thick 54-inch Z1 plasma. The panel of the Z1 uses the company's Neo PDP technology and gives the set a 40,000:1 contrast ratio along with low energy consumption. The TV achieves its thin profile thanks to a separate HDMI receiver that sends signals to the display wirelessly. The TC-P54Z1 is due to ship this June, priced at $6,000.
Moto A455 press photos
On Wednesday, press photos of a new Motorola handset, the A455, have been released. Also referred to as the Rush 2, the QWERTY slider was first heard of back in December and is evidently going to show up at Verizon. No official specs are known about the phone, though the photos do show that features of the CDMA/EVDO network phone will include access to navigation services, a Bluetooth connection and a camera with unspecified specs.
Samsung Instinct Mini Leak
Samsung's rumored Instinct Mini has been spotted today in photos from a member of SprintUsers' forums. The device, destined for Sprint, appears to support recent leaks and shows a slightly smaller design with a much more rounded body. While few technical details have escaped with the leak, the images show the same customized interface as for the older, larger original and show a camera.
Multiwinia reaches Macs
Ambrosia has announced the release of a Mac port of Multiwinia, originally developed by Introversion for Windows. The game, a sequel to Darwinia, is a real-time strategy title in which players control armies of stick men within a Tron-like computer environment. Whereas Darwinia was focused on a single-player campaign however, Multiwinia concentrates on multiplayer modes supporting up to three human or AI opponents.
Reggie Ashworth has released AppDelete 2.2, an update to the application removal utility. The latest version provides a redesigned interface, while the program has been further optimized Mac OS X Leopard. The search options have been refined and improved, allowing users to look for invisible associated items. The program will automatically activate when an app has been placed in the trash, and a new option can be used to force empty the trash for items that are difficult to remove.
Eee PCs to get Qualcomm
ASUS is considering using a Qualcomm platform for its future Eee PC models, the company's general Eee PC manager, Samson Hu, said recently. Although the company has no current mass production plans and will not abandon the current Intel Atom-based notebooks anytime soon, it's likely to use the semiconductor firm's Snapdragon chipset, which has integrated 3G data network capabilities, a GPS sensor and HD video playback in addition to a notebook-class processor.
Nokia 4G Phones in 2010
A roadmap presented late yesterday by Nokia senior technology marketing manager James Harper confirms that the phone maker plans to be one of the first phone manufacturers with shipping 4G devices using the Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard. In pledging Nokia to using the technology, Harper confirmed to GigaOM and others in attendance that the company will launch 4G hardware starting in 2010 and also predicts that notebooks and other such devices will also get support for the faster cellular data, which is topping 60Mbps in real-world tests.
17-inch MBP video errors
Some buyers of the recent 17-inch unibody MacBook Pro have been experiencing a severe graphics error, discussion at Apple's support forums suggests. The error manifests mainly in the form of green lines, though these can be accompanied by speckles. It also appears to be independent of a specific application, though it is thought to be more likely to occur during intense functions such as gaming.
Samsung EcoGreen F2EG
Samsung on Thursday announced the 1.5TB EcoGreen F2EG hard disk. The 1.5TB version is the first from the F2EG family and uses the company's Eco-Triangle technology to reduce power, heat and noise via a design that cuts down the amount of moving components. The low-platter count of the drive, which splits the storage over three 500GB platters, also means less wasted energy use versus four- and five-platter drives. Versions with 500GB and 1TB of space will also cut down on power.
Ballmer on Win Mobile 6 5
Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer delivered a partial surprise at his company's Public Sector CIO Summit yesterday through remarks that his company's upcoming Windows Mobile 6.5 wasn't an intended part of the company's cellphone OS roadmap. Although the executive still considers 6.5 important, he noted the update is "not the full release [Microsoft] wanted" in 2009 and implied that it was filling in for possible delays that have put Windows Mobile 7's launch a year later, in 2010. Ballmer added that 6.5 is likely to fall short in some key, though unspecified, areas.
Mac Restart, Schmierzettel
EasyFrame 2.3 ($15) is a simple utility for quickly creating basic frames around images. The application comes with a built-in library of frames and also allows users to build their own or download additional frames from the web. Version 2.3 has added a Photo Browser to make image selection easier and has also rearranged some menu items to be more consistent with other applications. [Download - 6.4MB]
Samsung Q1EX-71G UMPC
Samsung has recently introduced the newest UMPC for sale in the US, the Q1EX-71G, which sports a 7-inch touchscreen with 1024x600 resolution. Its unique feature is a switch in its core CPU: instead of earlier Intel A100 parts or an Atom, processing power comes from a 1.2GHz VIA Nano U2500 ultra-low voltage processor as well as 2GB of RAM. The 1.8-inch 60GB hard drive ships with Windows' XP Tablet edition operating system.
BlackBerry 9630 leaked
Research in Motion's Niagara smartphone has been revealed as the BlackBerry 9630, according to an alleged leak. If confirmed the phone should be only the second 9000-series BlackBerry to enter production, following the Bold. The 9630 is said to be a CDMA device, and a cosmetic hybrid of the Bold and the Curve 8900. While using the flattened keys of the Bold, the size, borders and display of the 9630 are closer in nature to the 8900.
VMware Fusion vs Parallels
MacTech has released a benchmark study of virtual machines on the Mac, comparing Parallels Desktop with VMware Fusion 2.0.1. The tests were run on four different systems including the white MacBook, unibody MacBook Pro, iMac and Mac Pro. The white MacBook was equipped with 2GB of RAM with a 2.1GHz Core 2 Duo processor, while the unibody Pro contained 4GB of RAM and a 2.53GHz chip. The iMac ran at 2.66GHz with 2GB of RAM, while the Mac Pro utilized 4GB of RAM and an eight-core 2.8GHz CPU. Over 2,500 tests were completed with Windows XP and Vista virtualizations, gauging factors like file and network IQ, footprint, application launch and 3D and HD graphics.
ComicZeal, Betty Crocker
Mathemagics ($3) is an application that can help a user learn to quickly calculate math problems in their head. Mathemagics includes 15 different math tricks that can help one multiply, divide or square numbers quicker than the time it takes to use a calculator. Each math trick is accompanied by a lesson and then practice questions that progressively get more difficult.
Palm Pre Delayed Rumor
Palm's flagship Pre may be delayed at least within the company. A claimed design engineer source speaking to TinyComb says the phone is "officially" delayed but doesn't say whether this will involve any delays in the public launch schedule. Palm has always remained conservative with its release schedule and has said only that it plans to launch the phone in the first half of the year, though informal leaks have hinted a possible June release.
BenQ intros Joybook S57
BenQ on Wednesday announced the release of the new Joybook S57, a media-centric notebook with a 15.6-inch, LED-backlit screen capable of a greater-than-720p (1366x768) resolution. The high-spec screen, which also has a relatively quick 8ms response time, plays movies at their native 16:9 ratio. The system is also taxed only lightly when playing HD video from the optional Blu-ray combo drive thanks to hardware decoding on an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4650 graphics chipset, which also brings mid-range gaming to the notebook.
Beatles Rock Band Hardware
EA today formally unveiled The Beatles: Rock Band, the first purely digital title of any type to include the British rock group's music. The game will move through a chronology of the Beatles' songs and is now known to be launching alongside a new set of custom instruments based on those preferred by each of the four core band members. Which instruments will be included aren't known but may include a replica of John Lennon's Epiphone Casino (pictured) used from 1966 onwards.
OWC 17-inch MBP RAM
Other World Computing has released two new memory upgrades for Apple's 17-inch unibody MacBook Pro, the 8GB DDR3 Memory Upgrade Kit and the 4GB DDR3 Memory Upgrade Kit. Said to be offered at a cost lower than factory-installed upgrades, the 8GB kit consists of two matched 4GB memory modules; the 4GB option consists of a single module. In addition, both modules are RoHS compliant and come with a lifetime replacement warranty.
Palm Treo Pro at Alltel
Alltel today claimed a small victory on Thursday with the official launch of its version of the Palm Treo Pro. Beating the Sprint edition by over a week, Alltel's model is now the first Windows Mobile device to use Internet Explorer Mobile 6 and should provide much more representative views of websites, including through Flash and Silverlight support. The carrier doesn't mention any network-specific features, however, beyond supporting faster 3G over EVDO Revision A.
Stainless 0.5 browser
Mesa Dynamics has released what it calls a "significant" update to its proprietary web browser, Stainless. The app is now being developed as a full product rather than a technology demo, and predominantly features separate processes for each tab, as in Google's Chrome software. The scheme can dramatically increase speed and memory efficiency while browsing, as well as stability.
Obama Picks Kundra as CIO
President Obama this morning officially named Vivek Kundra as the US government's federal Chief Information Officer. The decision is based on Kundra's experience as Chief Technology Officer for all of the DC government's agencies as well as a simultaneous Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Technology in Virginia. The CIO role takes on the task of overseeing the government's technology spending as well as improving its interoperability, privacy and security.
UBS on Apple inventory
Apple is doing extremely well in terms of inventory turnover, writes UBS. Reporting on comparative figures for the December quarter, the investment bank notes that Apple tended to keep inventory in stock for an average of only five days, one of the lowest figures in the industry. While a sizable inventory can be important to coping with sudden surges in demand, excessive inventory is wasteful and can exacerbate financial problems if a new product is introduced before old inventory is cleared.
Nokia fixes 5800 NAM issue
As promised earlier this week, Nokia has reportedly found a fix for the connectivity issues in certain areas affecting its 5800 XpressMusic handset with a new firmware update that is yet to be released. An unnamed source at Nokia tells NokiaBlog that a new round of firmware connects to 3G networks in Chicago and New York without any of the previously-reported problems, which in many cases saw phones in these US cities getting no 3G reception whatsoever.
LG Arena 1m Pre-orders
LG on Thursday revealed that it has already obtained 1 million pre-orders for the KM900 Arena, its new full-touch flagship. The tally comes less than a month after the Arena was introduced at Mobile World Congress in February and is enough to have prompted LG to increase the number of countries slated for the European launch this month. The Korean company acknowledges that the pre-orders are worldwide but hasn't broken them down by country or region.
BBerry App World Limits
RIM's just-unveiled BlackBerry App World will have significantly harsher restrictions on app prices and transfer rights than the iPhone's App Store, according to the developer FAQ. Where Apple allows apps that cost as little as 99 cents, RIM is setting the minimum price for a given app at $2.99. The reason for the difference isn't specified, though the move may be meant to address concerns raised by developers like Twitterrific creator Craig Hockenberry, who have warned that iPhone developers are often stifled by pressure to sell apps at the 99-cent mark.
Fliq Docs for iPhone
Mark/Space has announced the newest addition to its line of Fliq Docs for the iPhone and iPod touch. The application works with Fliq for the Mac or PC and enables users to organize, view, store, and share documents over a Wi-Fi network. In order to send a file, drag and drop any Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files, text documents, photos, music, and videos into the Macs Fliq program, then simply transfer them to the iPhone. In addition, the application helps with organization by allowing users to sort documents and files by size, date, name and type.
Blackberry App World
Research In Motion has rechristened its app portal, ditching the previous Application Center name for the title App World, while providing a few more details. The service will require one of the company's smartphones running the operating system version 4.2 or higher. The device must also have a trackball or a SurePress touchscreen, referring to the Storm.
YouTube and Universal
YouTube and the Universal Music Group are allegedly involved in discussions of a licensing agreement regarding the creation a new site for music videos and other related content. Unnamed sources told the New York Times that Google's online video service is aiming to build premium content areas to lure higher-priced advertisements, although the negotiations are ongoing and the terms have yet to be set.
GT725 gaming notebook
MSI has released the GT725, a gaming notebook featuring the ATi Radeon HD4850 GPU with 512MB of VRAM and a 2.4GHz Intel Centrino 2 processor. The device offers a 17-inch LCD screen with options for either 1920 by 1200 pixel or 1680 by 1050 pixel resolutions, along with an HDMI output for connecting to an external display or projector. The standard configuration includes 4GB of RAM, a 9-cell battery, and a 7200RPM 320GB SATA hard drive.
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