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Pentax tonight aggressively tackled the starter DSLR field with an overhaul for its least expensive K series camera. Now using the Japanese naming scheme, the K-x becomes the least expensive DSLR ever to shoot video and records 720p at 24 frames per second. Compared to the K2000 it replaces, it also gets a much improved 12-megapixel CMOS sensor (up from a 10-megapixel CCD) that takes in more light and has a dramatically larger ISO range that normally sits between 200 and 6,400 but can extend to 100 and 12,800 with an override.
HP has introduced several new wireless-connected standalone displays, the DreamScreen 100 and DreamScreen 130. Both products are similar to digital photo frames, but with additional connectivity to services such as Snapfish, Facebook and Pandora. The interface is also capable of presenting weather forecasts, calendar information and a digital or analog clock.
Toshiba has debuted a new line of hard drives, the MK5056GSY series, that expands the company's notebook offerings to included a 7200RPM model with 500GB capacity. The drives are claimed to transfer data at 1,255Mb/s, a 23 percent improvement over the earlier versions.
(Updated with ETA) NAVIGON has expanded its MobileNavigator iPhone app to include an option for the company's Traffic Live feature. The system is claimed to optimize routes based on real-time traffic information and historic data. Real-time data is taken from over one million drivers, including commercial vehicles and regular drivers, to determine congested areas that should be avoided.
Palm may be ready to launch WebOS 1.2 on the Pre as early as next week, an unnamed source told PreCentral. The company is also expected to debut its new app portal on September 24th, which would fit with the previously announced time-frame.
Sony's rumored 250GB PlayStation 3 gained more traction again today with a leak showing a box for the system. The pack seen by Engadget shows both the upgraded capacity for the slim PS3 and the presence of the high-profile sequel Uncharted 2 in the package. The bundle suggests Sony is mirroring the strategy it took with the 160GB PS3 until it was phased out, which tied that system to the original Uncharted for a higher $499 price.
Cable provider Comcast on Wednesday announced it would offer its subscribers a service that would allow them to view TV shows on their cellphones. The shows will be delivered via a wireless Internet service, which would require Comcast to provide a voice service and compete with the likes of AT&T and Verizon. Comcast has recently rolled out WiMAX wireless Internet services in certain large US cities under a joint venture with Clearwire.
Zengobi has released v6.0 of its flagship application, Curio, a notetaking, mind-mapping and task management utility. Version 6 integrates native tables that contain text, images, web links and documents, while displaying associated flags and checkmarks. The update also features a figure stencil cache that stores commonly-used figures, including grouped ones.
The first Apple Store in Winnipeg, Manitoba is set to launch at 10AM this Saturday, Apple has announced. The shop is located inside of the Polo Park Shopping Centre at 1485 Portage Avenue, on the intersection with St. James Street. Regular Monday-to-Friday hours are 10AM to 9PM; Saturday hours are 9:30AM to 6PM, and on Sunday, the shop is open from just 12 to 6PM.
A leaked video reveals that the upcoming HTC Leo handset may sport a 4.3-inch multi-touch capacitive touchscreen. The news would theoretically make it the first Windows Mobile device to support multi-touch as all Windows Mobile releases to date, including the upcoming 6.5, only officially support resistive (pressure-based) touchscreens that aren't capable of the feature. A few glimpses of the interface in the video reveal that the Leo does indeed have Windows Mobile 6.5 with HTC's TouchFLO interface on top.
Apple's latest iPhone, the 3GS, ranks almost squarely in the middle of smartphones in terms of radiation output, a non-profit activist organization says. The Environmental Working Group notes that according to compiled data, the 3GS produces approximately 1.19W/kg of radiation. The figure is substantially lower than the worst-case examples, the T-Mobile myTouch 3G and the Kyocera Jax S1300, which each produce 1.55W/kg.
Dan Brown's latest book, The Lost Symbol, has sold more copies from Amazon as an e-book than a hardcover, according to Kindle Nation Daily. The trend may not continue for much longer, as the Kindle edition was released this morning and the ranking is updated hourly. The hardcover version, however, has been available to pre-order for several weeks.
Dutch retailer Nedgame has informed its customers that it will not stock Sony's upcoming PSP Go portable gaming system. The nine-store chain says it doesn't agree with Sony's sales strategy of only offering downloadable games, giving the manufactures a monopoly on game sales, as the PSP Go lacks a UMD drive. Another reason for Nedgame's decision is the high cost of the device compared to the existing PSP-3000, as it costs the equivalent of $365 to the PSP-3000's $248.
QPAD on Wednesday announced the upcoming release of its first high-end gaming mouse, the QPAD |5K. Its gaming-grade laser sensor has up to 5,040 counts per inch (CPI) resolution and can process 10.8 megapixels per second. The mouse is capable of 150 inches per second speed and 30G of acceleration. As with most gaming mice, there are five customizable buttons out of a total of seven.
Leap Wireless, the company behind Cricket's cellphone services, on Wednesday announced it will soon offer two new, all-inclusive nationwide Cricket monthly plans that for the first time include taxes and other fees as part of the actual price. A $40 per month plan will include unlimited minutes throughout the continental US, access to the provider's premium extended calling area and both domestic and international text and picture messaging. A $45 plan adds 'unlimited' mobile web access and directory assistance.
European Commission antitrust regulators are involved in low-level, exploratory talks with Microsoft and Yahoo regarding their search engine deal, according to a Wednesday report. The informal discussions are not yet at a level that would challenge the union, but could lead to a formal review of possible anti-competitive factors in the deal, like Microsoft and Yahoo are facing from US regulators.
Apple stock prices have risen sharply within the last 24 hours, a shift attributed to a Tuesday episode of the CNBC TV show Mad Money. Shares climbed 1.6 percent between Tuesday close and Wednesday morning, leaving Apple's stock price at $178. By 12:25PM on Wednesday shares were priced at $182.72, Apple's best opening since August 2008, a month before the onset of a global economic recession. As of approximately 3:12PM on Wednesday, shares had settled down to $182.16.
Microsoft today released its XNA Game Studio 3.1 Zune Extensions for its recently launched Zune HD. The add-on for XNA Game Studio 3.1 allows for the development of software applications for the device, an example of which can be seen in a video below. It also brings new Touch and Accelerometer APIs to the Zune HD's XNA Framework.
The BlackBerry Tour is suffering from a widespread defect that could seriously impact Research in Motion's bottom line, an analyst cautioned on Wednesday. The trackball on the smartphone is reported as clogging so quickly that it requires users to frequently clean it to keep it working; as most don't or aren't aware of it, a very high number of owners end up returning the Tour to the carrier. As many as 50 percent of all Sprint's Tours are being returned, while Verizon is "angry" enough that it's telling stores to expect a shift in support to Motorola's upcoming smartphone based on Android.
Quickly following the recently confirmed Modern Warfare 2 Xbox 360 bundle comes word of a Halo 3: ODST hardware bundle for a European release. This bundle will include a black, 120GB Xbox 360 Elite and matching controller, along with Halo 3: ODST, Halo 3 and access to the online-only Halo: Reach beta.
Rental chain Blockbuster Video will close between 810 and 960 stores by the end of 2010, an SEC filing reveals. While putting a significant number of people out of work, and closing off some markets, the move is expected to add another $50 to $60 million to annual earnings before expenses like taxes and interest. The company has over 7,000 stores worldwide at present, scattered across Asia, Europe, the US and Australia.
VIA has recently released its NetNote Turnkey Systems, which are netbook PCs ranging in size from 10.2 to 12.1 inches. Unlike mostnetbooks, however, the NetNotes are said to be capable of flawless 1080p HD video playback thanks to hardware video decoding in the VX855 graphics chipset. The actual CPUs can come from VIA's C7-M ULV or Nano families. The C7-Ms are the simpler processors and can be had with clock speeds that range from 1GHz to 1.6GHz. They consume between 3.5W and 8W of power.
Light Crafts has released Aurora Quick Fix, a basic photo editing application with sharing capabilities. An image selector tool allows users to view the results of various other tools, including Relight, Retouch and Punch. The program also includes a Crop and Straighten tool, and export options for websites such as Flickr, Facebook and Picasa. Users can organize photo collections before uploading.
Super Talent on Wednesday announced the upcoming release of its new RAIDDrive series of multi-disk solid state drives. Available in three distinct families, all RAIDDrives push 4GBps bandwidth and have 1.4GBps sequential transfer speeds thanks to their sitting in a PCI Express card slot instead of on the SATA bus. Write speeds top out at 1.2GBps, and the entire array has 1GB of cache to streamline traffic.
Validating earlier observations, Apple has announced that the Augusta, Georgia Apple Store will open on September 19th, at 10AM. The outlet is based in the Augusta Mall Promenade, found at 3450 Wrightsboro Road. Store hours run from 10AM to 9PM between Monday and Saturday, and 12PM to 6PM on Sunday.
The upcoming Windows Marketplace for Mobile will let Microsoft remotely delete apps from Windows Mobile phones without the user's consent, the company said in a presentation as part of its Tech∑Ed New Zealand conference. In the event an app is approved but later pulled, Microsoft will automatically wipe the app from every phone that had previously downloaded the app. It's not clear if Microsoft will also automatically refund paid downloads.
Adobe has announced a deal to buy Omniture, a web analytics company, in an acquisition valued at $1.8 billion in cash. The price stems from Adobe's agreement to pay $21.50 per share, 45 percent more than Omniture's average closing price for the last 30 days. In return, Omniture is set to become a unit within Adobe, and the defunct company's CEO will become a senior VP in charge of a new division.
T-Mobile upgraded its budget media phones on Wednesday by bringing in the 5130 XpressMusic. Coming very close to the reference version, the candybar design centers on its dedicated media control strip along the side and its inclusion of a 3.5mm headphone jack. A 2-megapixel camera, FM radio, stereo Bluetooth and EDGE-based Internet access are part of the design.
The unofficial iPhone Dev Team says it has released a new version of PwnageTool, v3.1. The software jailbreaks various Apple handhelds, allowing owners to install unofficial apps, or unlock an iPhone in particular for use with unsupported carriers. The update is designed to circumvent blocks created by Apple's iPhone 3.1 firmware, released just last week.
Seagate pushed its external drive technology today by launching its first cradle for network-attached storage as well as capacity boosts for its more portable 2.5-inch external drives. The DockStar cradles a FreeAgent Go drive and links it over Ethernet to share its storage with the local network It's moreover one of the first third-party devices to have Pogoplug support and lets users download files from anywhere through a web browser.
Apple is likely to release new iMacs and MacBooks "in the next several weeks," claims Wedge Partners. In particular the firm's analysts say they envision an iMac with a "thinner, organic design," including "smoothed or rounded edges." Any changes to the MacBook are "likely to be limited," according to the firm. This could be because Apple announced redesigned MacBook Pros as recently as June.
Sony on Wednesday unveiled a new Walkman line that appears tailored to compete with and beat the new iPod nano in terms of sheer features. The A840 is not only the first Sony player to be almost as thin as its Apple counterpart, at 0.28 inches thick, but has an even larger 2.8-inch display that uses OLED. The swap gives it better color reproduction than the iPod's LCD and supplies a long 29 hours of music playback, or nine hours of video.
ARM this morning said it as developed a 2GHz, dual-core version of its Cortex-A9 architecture. The new design is intended to be built on a newer 40 nanometer (nm) manufacturing process and so achieves the added speed without consuming much if any extra power versus slower parts; ARM estimates just 0.25W per CPU. The design is pitched as ideal for particularly fast home devices that still need either to fit into tight spaces or to use little energy.
Pole Position has released v5.2 of its network management tool, LANrev, used to collect information about a users computer and software such as monitoring software license compliance and updating and patching software. Version 5.2 adds Mac OS X 10.6 compatibility, enabling the application to track Snow Leopard for asset inventory, theft recovery, lowering energy usage and patching the operating system. The update additionally shortens the time necessary to upgrade multiple machines to the new OS by running an imaging process in the background, saving the home directory files and OS settings.
Creaceed has introduced the latest version of its Mac scanning software for users with digital cameras, Prizmo 1.1. The update features the integration of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology, developed by ExperExchange Inc. The added OCR technology supports up to 10 different languages including English, French, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese and Swedish. In order to use the new function simply select part of a photograph, choose the text language, then just set the binarization level and decide on which file type for saving the OCR results.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.99 ( + 0.29 )
Apple to open R&D center in India
A new report says that Apple will be opening a new technology center in Hyderabad, India, helping to boost the city's growing reputation as a tech center. The facility would operate within the WaveRock facility, and create 4,500 new jobs at a cost of around $25 million. In 2015, India surpassed the $1 billion in yearly sales milestone, and Apple has recently received permission to open retail stores in the country under its own control, an exception to rules that usually block foreign ownership. http://zd.net/1SMBVu4
Google killing Picasa starting May 1
Google Photos head Anil Sabharwal confirmed in a blog post today that the search engine giant will be shutting down acquisition Picasa. Support and downloads for the desktop application will terminate on March 15 with the application continuing to work for the time being. The transition to Google Photos truly commences on May 1, with deprecation of some Picasa API calls happening shortly thereafter. Users that have Google Photos access will find their photos already migrated. A mass-download tool for users not wishing to use Google Photos will be available sometime after May 1. http://bit.ly/1SmV2KH
Rogue Amoeba Piezo updated, departing App Store
In order to continue working on audio capture tool Piezo, developer Rogue Amoeba has simultaneously updated the app to version 1.5, and announced that it will pull version 1.2.6 from the Mac App Store. Customers who own the Mac App Store version have a one-time migration process to the Rogue Amoeba-served version. The company notes that the sandboxing restriction placed on Mac App Store versions "effectively stopped our ability to upgrade Piezo in any meaningful way." [8.80MB] http://bit.ly/1PIjz7l
FCC spectrum auction will happen without Google
After throwing its hat in earlier, Google (and associated companies) has declared that it is not participating in this year's FCC spectrum auction. A company spokeswoman said of the auction that "like all those interested in improved connectivity and equitable access, we'll be following the upcoming spectrum auction closely. That said, we have not filed to participate." http://on.recode.net/1oy5LWk
iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se sold Friday after launch?
Reverting the way products are actually released by Apple after an announcement to the way it was a decade ago, reports are circulating that new products revealed at a March announcement will go on sale the Friday immediately following the unveil. Slated to appear at a conjectural Tuesday, March 15 event are a new Apple four-inch phone with more up to date internals currently referred to as the iPhone 5se, and a new iPad Air 3 model with Smart Connector and other enhancements. http://bit.ly/1o7mqiY
Lexmark prevails in toner import appeal
Printer manufacturer Lexmark has won an appeal on the third-party US resale of its printer cartridges originally destined for markets outside North America. The appeals court ruled in a 10-2 vote in favor of Lexmark's demand to stop the sale and against Impression Products, both on the toner cartridge resale matter, as well as a related matter regarding overturning the reseller's refilling one-use cartridges and selling those in the US market. The ruling has ramifications in the tech industry, as well as the pharmaceutical and medical technology markets. Impression Products promises an appeal before the supreme court. http://reut.rs/1SLVmmG
AT&T expands BOGO promo to iPhone 6s
Beginning today, new and existing AT&T customers can purchase a new iPhone 6s and get another one free when adding a second line. Over the weekend, customers must purchase two phones through AT&T Next (one can be an existing number), and add both phones to a qualified plan. AT&T notes that "after three bill cycles or less" the account will start to receive up to $650 spread out over 30 monthly bill credits to offset the cost of the installment plan for the phone. Taxes are due at time of sale. http://soc.att.com/1SLUP4k