Archive | 3:24 pm

MSI rolls out Core i3-based CX640, CR640 laptops

19 Apr

MSI’s already had a fairly productive month when it comes to new laptops tech gadgets, but it’s not done quite yet — the company has now also rolled out its new 15.6-inch CX640 and CR640 models, which each boast what MSI calls a “clutter free design,” as well as some budget-friendly prices. As for specs, both pack an Intel Core i3-2310M processor, 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive (not to mention two USB 3.0 ports), while the silver CX640 upgrades things from the basic integrated Intel HD 3000 graphics on the black CR640 model to NVIDIA’s GeForce GT 520M with Optimus technology. Sound like the mid-range laptop you’ve been waiting for? Then you can grab your choice of the CR640 or CX640 tech gadgets today for $630 or $680.

Source from Engadget

Creative Zii 0 7in x 10in

19 Apr

The key to Creative’s Zii0 7in and 10in electronic gadgets , which will ship with Android 2.1 with the promise of an upgrade to 2.2 “early in 2011″, is that they play to the company’s strengths. The Pure Android audio app is nicely put together, with a Bluetooth device manager directly within for linking to external speakers. For even greater control head to Creative’s X-Fi Crystallizer and Expand enhancements.

Its apt-X codec allows for high-quality audio streaming, and it works: when Creative demoed the device to us, we discovered that the sound streamed to some tiny ZiiSound T6 5.1 speakers packed a punch. As did the poor souls working within 100 yards of our demo room. The 7in device’s TFT screen has an 800×480 resolution, increasing to 1,024×600 on the 10in device, and both were reasonably bright. The big sticking point will inevitably be the resistive technology. Yes, we’d prefer capacitive; yes, we’d prefer multitouch; but it isn’t a disaster. That said, tasks that require a lot of swiping and dragging may soon start to grate, and the fixed buttons at the foot of the screen were also a little unresponsive.

The hardware doesn’t have the solid feel of the Samsung Galaxy Tab electronic gadgets, but neither of the Zii0s feels cheap. There’s a front-facing camera and accelerometer, plus a card slot to expand the capacity for big music and video collections-SD on the 10in and microSD on the 7in. There’s no 3G, and the Zii0 doesn’t support the official Android Market. Creative wants you to head to the ZiiStore. Suffice to say, our hopes aren’t high.

If s good to see Creative attempting to transfer what it knows best – sound quality – to tablets. But what really appeals about the Zii0 range is its price. The 7in model costs only £200 inc VAT for 8GB and £220 for 16GB. The 10in Zii0 is barely dearer, at £2 SO and £270 for 8GB and 16GB respectively. Archos could have a serious rival on its hands.

ASUS works Sandy Bridge magic on thin-and-light U31E, U31SD, and U36SD

19 Apr

It appears that ASUS is finally ready to show its line of thin-and-light machines some Sandy Bridge love. Swedish site Technytt claims to have the exclusive scoop on a trio of laptops — the U31SD, U31E, and U36SD — that will find their way to retail channels in late May. The U31SD electronic gadgets are already showing up on the ASUS site, with the option of either a Core i5 2410M or Core i3 2310M , and a choice of Intel integrated graphics or a 1GB GeForce GT 520M card. All three 13.3-inch machines will reportedly have similar specs, though the U31E will supposedly lack a discrete graphics option. The U31SD tips the scales at a perfectly portable 3.9 pounds and it’s safe to assume the U36SD electronic gadgets will match up size-wise with the svelte U36JG, which is just 0.75-inches thick and weighs 3.5 pounds. There’s no official word from ASUS regarding price or availability .

Source from Engadget

Sony Ericsson’s MW600 Stereo Bluetooth Headset, and a Radio too

19 Apr

Sony Ericsson introduces the MW600 Stereo Bluetooth Headset with both amazing sound quality and a built in FM Radio. You can access FM radio stations directly from the headset. It is quick and easy to tune in your favorite stations with the new integrated FM, which also features RDS to display radio station information like the artist and song names.

So, play music wirelessly from your compatible phone through the headset and premium earbuds, or enjoy using Bluetooth for your handsfree calling needs, answer calls, control your volume, redial, end calls and more, all wirelessly. Finally you can enjoy being free from long twisting headphone cables.

Premium earbuds are included with the tech gadgets to enjoy a comfortable fit for calls and FM listening. The earbuds are also detachable and include a 3.5mm connector so can use them on your other devices.

The MW600 tech gadgets offer a hands-free experience that is terrific for anyone who wants to stay connected to music and calls on the go… like if you’re on a run, at the gym, or on your way to work. The new headset features a crystal clear OLED display that displays the incoming phone number, FM radio with RDS and easy access controls. You can also wirelessly connect to two devices at the same time or use a different headset.

Verizon To Launch LTE MiFi On April 21st

19 Apr

We’ve had a bit of a crush on the MiFi ever since these things were brand new. Back then, the concept was pretty much unheard of: flip the switch on a little pocket-friendly box, and said box would turn into an on-the-go, cellular-network-powered WiFi router for you and a handful of friends. The idea is a bit less novel now that just about any iPhone electronic gadgets or recent Android phone can do something along the same lines, but we’re still fans.

Come April 21st, Verizon and Novatel will be launching their next MiFi (pictured above, apparently rendered on the planet of Tatooine. Anyone who gets that reference is my friend.) The big bullet point for this one? 4G support. Poke that switch, and up to 5 electronic gadgets can be surfin’ the Internets over Verizon’s 4G network in no time flat.. It’ll set you back $100 on a 2-year contract (and after a $50 mailer), or $270 without one. Then the data plan will set you back an extra $50 a month, at least.

What do you think: with electronic gadgets like the Thunderbolt replicating these features, is there still room for standalone devices like the MiFi?

Source from MobileCrunch

Apple Says Samsung “Chose To Copy” iPhone and iPad, Sues Them

19 Apr

Wowza. Think that Samsung’s Galaxy phones or Galaxy Tabs tech gadgets are a little bit too much like the iPhone and iPad? Apple agrees. So much so, in fact, that they’re taking Samsung to court over it.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple has just filed a suit against Samsung on the following basis:

“Rather than innovate and develop its own technology and a unique Samsung style for its smart phone products and computer tablets, Samsung chose to copy Apple’s technology, user interface and innovative style in these infringing products”

So, what does Apple want out of all of this? A bit of everything: an injunction (potentially preventing Samsung from manufacturing more Galaxy tech gadgets until the case is settled), damages (read: money), and, perhaps most importantly, being able to legally say “Yeah, Samsung totally copied us.”

The timeline, for those wondering: Apple’s first iPhone was released in 2007. By the time the second iPhone was released in 2008, the series was already quite clearly a hit. In 2010, Samsung released the Galaxy S — which, while Android-powered, was running a custom user-interface (TouchWiz) that certainly does bear a stronger resemblance to iOS than the stock Android skin does. In April of 2010, Apple released the original iPad; Samsung’s Galaxy Tab was announced in September of that year.

It’ll be incredibly interesting to watch how this case goes, as it sets a rather important precedent. We’re moving beyond enforcing patents on specific ideas here, and into the realm of simply shouting “Hey, they copied us!” when competition starts to heat up. While Apple certainly made the idea of displaying a grid of icons on a slab of glass popular, it’s not a novel one. Once that idea has been done once, there are only so many unique ways to do it.

Also interesting: Samsung makes part of the iPhone and the iPad tech gadgets. Samsung has supplied the processors for Apple’s mobile devices from the very beginning, from the S5L8900 in the original iPhone to the A5 in the iPad 2.

Source from MobileCrunch

RIM, Caught Between Work And Whimsy, Has Lost Its Way

19 Apr

I’ve been using the Blackberry Playbook since Friday and I find it to be a unique and very usable device. The obvious problems aside – no native email client, poor browsing, wonky Flash support – it’s clear that RIM took lots of care to produce a device that would appeal to their core audience of crackberriers. Even the ill-advised Blackberry Bridge makes a certain kind of sense. Why? Because the removal of all points of security failure from the tablet gives the folks in IT a reason to OK the device on their networks. The same can’t be said of any of the other tablets, iOS and Android electronic gadgets included. In fact, without the Bridge the Playbook is a simple and compelling media consumption device.

But Blackberry is now trying to survive a period marked by a rapid and permanent change in smartphone usage. Back when Blackberries were pagers, the best a business user on the road could hope for was a fax sent to a hotel room. A few short years later and Blackberry ruled the mobile messaging space. Their email product and messenger allowed countless people to remain connected everywhere, at all times, an accomplishment that brought about a sea change in the way we interact online. The Blackberry is a unique artifact that defined how a generation lived and worked. Blackberries made it OK to be always on call, much to our own detriment.

Then came the Sidekick. That phone, and its successors, changed how a generation played. Email and messaging on a phone quickly became de rigueur and, ultimately, a non-feature.

So now Blackberry’s most significant feature – email – is no longer very interesting. The squat, keyboard-centric devices are competing against devices of all shapes and sizes and Blackberry is losing.

According to IDC, RIM shipped approximately 48.8 million units worldwide, followed closely by the Apple’s 47 million. To put this into perspective, Nokia sold 453.0 million phone electronic gadgets (not smartphones in particular, but total units) and Samsung sold 280.2 million (same caveat). To put it further into perspective, Apple has only been selling iPhones since 2007 while RIM has been selling phones since 1999. RIM’s smartphone market share is down from 34% to 29% in North America. And even newer contender, Android, is also taking its toll, though tracking it and its effects isn’t as straightforward.

When RIM CEO Mike Lazaridis flaked in a BBC interview, you could see a CEO at wit’s end. His product is, at best, a strong but uninteresting runner in a crowded race. Rather than outpacing the competition, however, RIM is barely keeping in stride. His claim that the phone is popular with “businesses, leaders, celebrities, consumers, and teenagers” is, in one sense, true. But any phone manufacturer can claim the same thing and be perfectly right. There are so many phones sold daily that RIM’s products are now a drop in the mobile bucket.

RIM is the next Nokia: an iconic company laid low by an unwillingness to adapt its products. It’s not pretty to see this happening to what is certainly a classic and influential device but even the Playbook, as unique as it is, won’t change customers’ perceptions of RIM. Claim all the brand loyalty you want here, but consumers have so much choice on so many fronts that even statistically RIM won’t be able to outsell their competitors. As Nokia learned far too late, it doesn’t make any sense to cling to old paradigms and rely on old strengths.

Do I want RIM to go away? Absolutely not. They produce excellent products. I love the interface and the design. However, when their most interesting device, the Playbook electronic gadgetsa, refuses to play to the simple needs of the general consumer and maintains a dedication to a shrinking business fleet base, it’s time to rethink RIM’s place in the mobile ecosystem. It is my honest fear that RIM, like so many companies before it, will find that ecosystem more and more hostile to their unique product.

Source from CrunchGear

CrunchDeals: 8GB iPod Touch For $185 Shipped

19 Apr

Quick! You’ve got three and a half hours (as of my writing this) to pick up a new iPod touch tech gadgets at this solid price — $185 is $45 off the normal $230. 8GB isn’t a lot of space, to be sure, but for a dedicated streaming music and app machine, this is a great deal. Head over to eBay’s daily deal page to pick one up.

Source from CrunchGear

MSI GeForce GTS 450 Cyclone

19 Apr

It’s not so long ago that the first graphics card touting NVidia’s GTS 450, the Asus GTS 450 TOP, passed through the TechRadar labs. When first checking it out, we were impressed but hoped for a price tag a little closer to the £100 mark. Well, someone was listening, because MSI’s overclocked GTS 450 Cyclone is almost bang on our proposed target.

It runs at 67MHz above stock speed for a card of this ilk, with a healthy 434MHz boost to the memory speed, but the main feature is the wide windmill-like cooler. It’s whisper quiet and drops the temperature down to just 27C when idle. The card itself is small and requires just a single six-pin power connector, and is more or less price comparative with AMD’s HD5770 tech gadgets.

The MSI GeForce 450 Cyclone is a healthy step up from a vanilla GTS 450 in terms of performance, and is excellent value. Even with completely maxed out settings, it got every game we tried on it running at a playable speed at the key full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 barring Just Cause2.

Regardless of fans and overclocks, the basic GeForce GTS 450 is still just about half of a GeForce 460 with a higher clock speed and a narrower memory bandwidth. Given that stock versions of the 768MB version of the GeForce GTX 460 are available for just £125, that extra £20 is well spent.

The GTS 450 tech gadgets have the advantage over the GTX 460 of being smaller and requiring less power, which makes it a strong candidate for an SLI set-up, but it can’t really compete in benchmarks.

It is, however, now pitched directly up against the HD 5750 in pricing terms thanks to the on-going NVidia/AMD graphics card price wars. And that is a card the GTS 450 happily beats into submission in any benchmark you throw at it.

It delivers top performance for a card costing just a bit over £100 and hammers the price-comparative HD 5750 on all counts. It’s also quiet, small and only requires one power connector, making it a flexible option for SLI oranHTPC.

But as big an improvement as it is over the stock GTS 450 tech gadgets though, you don’t have to spend much more to get a clearly superior card like the GTX 460 768MB. It’s hard not to believe that won’t have more longevity and be better value in the long run.

T-Mobile Sidekick 4G (purple) Reviews

19 Apr

The good: The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G impresses with the addition of a touch screen and the Android operating system. The handheld also offers enhanced messaging features, great call quality, and a good camera.

The bad: The user interface won’t appeal to everyone. The smartphone can occasionally be sluggish.

The bottom line: The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G continues the Sidekick’s legacy as an excellent messaging device and also serves as a great entry-level smartphone.

T-Mobile Sidekick users were probably a bit stunned when it was announced that data service for the popular messaging handheld would cease on May 31. Though the interruption of service is certainly inconvenient, it doesn’t mean the end of the Sidekick–quite the opposite, actually. The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G electronic gadgets, which will be available April 20 for $99 with a two-year contract and after a $50 mail-in rebate, pumps new life into the Sidekick line with the addition of the Android operating system, a touch screen, and enhanced messaging features, among other things. As with the previous models, the Sidekick 4G won’t be for everyone, but we found a lot to like about it. Read on to find out if it’s right for you.

Design
Though Samsung has taken the reins from Sharp, the company wisely kept a lot of the design elements that made the Sidekick a Sidekick. The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G still has the landscape-oriented slab form factor and it’s about the same size (2.4 inches wide by 5 inches long by 0.6 inch thick) as the Sidekick LX 2009, but it’s a bit more streamlined since there aren’t as many gaps or protruding buttons. As a result, the phone feels smoother and slips into a pants pocket more easily.

The Sidekick 4G has a plastic construction and feels relatively lightweight but solid. We miss the soft-touch finish found on the previous Sidekick, but you do get a textured surface on back along the left and right side, making it easier to grip the device when you’re using the keyboard.

Another aspect taken from the old Sidekicks are the four navigation controls that occupy each corner of the handset. Gone are the dedicated Talk and End buttons, but you still get the home, menu, back, and jump keys. The jump key will bring up a view of your most recently used applications. There’s also an optical joystick that doubles as an OK button as well. However, it’s rather small, so we found it difficult to use for scrolling through lists.

Fortunately, you don’t have to rely on the joystick for all your navigating needs because the Sidekick 4G electronic gadgets have a 3.5-inch touch screen–a first for a Sidekick. The addition of the touch screen makes it easy to launch apps and scroll through the various home screens and menus. You can also quickly zoom in on Web pages and pictures, thanks to the pinch-to-zoom support. In general, images and text looked sharp on the 480×800-pixel display. That said, videos looked a bit murkier compared with some of today’s higher-resolution screens.

Of course, two hallmark features of all the Sidekick models were the moving screen and the keyboard. The Sidekick 4G has both, but with regard to the former, the smartphone goes more the way of the Sidekick Slide with a slider design. It’s a bit different in that you don’t need to slide the screen all the way up. Instead, with one good push, the screen pops up and sits at a slight angle. It’s a pretty smooth action, and the “pop-tilt” hinge feels quite sturdy, so we don’t have any major concerns about long-term durability.

Once open, you have access to the five-row QWERTY keyboard, and as we’ve come to expect from Sidekicks, the keyboard is excellent. There’s ample spacing between the bulbous buttons and they provide a nice tactile feedback, so we were able to type quickly and with very few mistakes. We also appreciate the presence of the number row and dedicated keys for emoticons, the @ symbol, and voice commands. You can also create shortcuts using the combination of the jump key and a letter. Some are already preset–for example, pressing the jump key and the M key will launch the music player–but you’re free to create more. If you don’t need to write a long message, the Sidekick 4G electronic gadgets also offer the Swype virtual keyboard.

Rounding out the device are a 3.5mm headphone jack, a volume rocker, and a power button on the left side (when held in portrait mode) and a Micro-USB port and camera button on the right. We found the placement of some of these buttons to be troublesome. Most notably, when trying to capture an image using the camera button, our palm would often hit the power button and thus lock the phone before we could snap the picture, which got to be quite annoying. The 5-megapixel camera lens is located on back sans flash, and you’ll find the microSD expansion slot behind the battery door.

The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G comes packaged with an AC adapter, a USB cable, a preinstalled 2GB microSD card, and reference material, and you can purchase the smartphone in either matte black or pearl magenta.

User interface and software
Recognizing the need to replace the older devices and come up with something that fits into today’s market, Microsoft and Danger made a joint decision to shut down the Danger service and transition to a new mobile platform. As a result, the T-Mobile Sidekick 4G electronic gadgets now run on the Android operating system, more specifically Android 2.2.1.

Sitting on top of Froyo is Samsung and T-Mobile’s custom Kick UX interface. It’s different from anything on other Android phones and caters more to the Sidekick’s younger target audience. You can customize the seven homescreen panels with various themes and wallpaper that are slightly flashier than most.

Source from CNET