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Intel has added two new quad-core Intel Xeon processors to its lineup for general availability. The Xeon X5365 is the industry's first 3.0GHz quad-core processor, and boasts a front-side bus (FSB) speed of 1333MHz, drawing 120 watts. This chip was first made available in Apple's Mac Pro four months ago, but is now available to other manufacturers. The Xeon L5335 is a power conservative sibling running at 2.0GHz and also sporting a 1333MHz FSB but drawing only 50 watts. Both processors are "drop-in" compatible with select existing Intel server platforms. Intel's initial benchmarks for the X5365 show it claiming the new speed throne relative to Xeon predecessors. Using the SPECint_rate_base2006 benchmark, which measures integer throughput, a Fujitsu-Siemens PRIMERGY RX300 S3 server based on the quad-core Intel Xeon Processor X5365 scored 98.9. Using the SPECjbb 2005 benchmark, a Dell PowerEdge 1950 server based on the also based on the X5365 posted a score of 238,472 business operations per second.
Atree on Monday upped the ante on electronic dictionaries with the UM10. Small enough to fit in a pocket courtesy of a 3-inch screen, the display still has a 480x272 screen large enough for the company's 100,000-word English/Korean dictionary as well as reading Office documents or displaying photos. But media playback is a specialty, Atree says; the fold-up device handles MPEG-4 and WMV video clips alongside MP3, WMA, and OGG audio. DMB tuning is also available in Korea for digital TV broadcasts while FM radio is accessible almost everywhere.
An as-yet unlaunched music site is aligning itself in a partnership designed to undermine the likes of Apple's iTunes Store, reports say. Called gBox, the startup is partnering itself with Universal Music, which has omitted Apple from the group of companies in its trial of DRM-free music. gBox will likewise offer DRM-free tracks from Universal, priced at 99 cents, the same cost as DRM-encoded tracks at the iTunes Store. Apple sells its DRM-free songs at an average price of $1.29.
MySpace today announced a deal with Rogers Wireless to offer MySpace Mobile, making the GSM carrier the first to offer the service in Canada. The Rogers edition gives subscribers most of the same options as they would have on a desktop, allowing them to update their blog, comments, or profile; they can equally send or receive friend requests and check either public bulletins from friends or their own private e-mail.
Yamaha this afternoon refreshed its Digital Sound Projector line for home theater enthusiasts without the space for hardware surround setups. Each new model refines the company's spatializing technique to widen the overall sound field and lets users personalize the surround effect beyond the default 5.1-channel Dolby Surround and DTS processing methods. Two new models also add two HDMI inputs and one output for routing audio to an HDTV, with the mid-range YSP-3000 relaying video unchanged and the top YSP-4000 upscaling analog video to either 720p or 1080i.
Sidestepping a public announcement, Google has informed customers individually of its decision to stop its paid video services later this week. In its mass e-mail, the company has explained that "to improve all Google services," download-to-own and download-to-rent videos purchased through Google Video will become unavailable as of August 15th. In addition to stopping new purchases, this will disable videos already bought in the past. To compensate Google is providing refunds, plus a $2 bonus to be spent at Google Checkout within the next 60 days.
Budget camera maker DXG today launched the DXG-572V for starter videographers. The camera records NTSC-resolution video in an MPEG-4 format easily used for uploading clips to YouTube or social networking sites; rather than rely on DV tapes or DVDs, the camera stores memory on either its built-in 32MB of flash or on removable SD cards up to 2GB in size. It also doubles as a basic still camera, DXG claims; though zoom is strictly digital, the sensor shoots true 5.13-megapixel images without the interpolation often used by entry cameras. The device further doubles as a voice recorder for short memos.
The Japanese division of AMD has made an unexpected processor announcement. While promoting an upcoming, 3GHz Phenom processor, the company also took the time to promote a new Athlon CPU, the Athlon 64 X2 Black Edition. Shipped in a box of its namesake color, the unit is essentially a 6400+ clocked at 3.2GHz, with the added benefit of supporting unbuffered, 800MHz DDR2 RAM. The chip should ship to Japan August 20th at a cost equivalent to $240; no mention has been made of a North American release, but it is uncharacteristic of AMD to limit processors to individual countries. [via Akihabara News]
HTC is developing a new mid-range smartphone that should offer some advanced features despite a simple design, according to an FCC filing. The S640, nicknamed the Iris, will include a 2.4-inch LCD similar to the Dash or other fixed-keyboard smartphones and will go without a touchscreen. The US government documents also confirm earlier claims that the device will ship with both 802.11g Wi-Fi and a stand-alone GPS receiver for routefinding without requiring a subscription service. HTC will also reportedly include a 2-megapixel camera, a direct mini-USB connection for sideloading data, and mobile broadband over EVDO.
Blue Raven on Monday introduced the Maestro 1070, a new premium speaker dock for iPods, iPhones, and other devices. The 70-watt system shares the same box-like shape as Apple's iPod Hi-Fi speakers but hopes to offer comparable quality at a lower price. A central 5-inch subwoofer and two three-inch satellites separate bass from high and mid-range sounds while still providing enough power to fill a room. The system charges and docks any iPod while it plays, but unlike the Apple device also includes a video-out jack for displaying photos or videos on a TV.
Windows XP Professional will have been on sale for so long that the software will run out of product activation keys without an update, Microsoft's official system builder blog has revealed. As the Professional edition has had its lifecycle extended to the end of January 2009 -- over seven years after its initial October 2001 release -- the software developers have found that the existing keys would not cover sales until the end of the period, requiring a fix for new customers to use the software. Known as Service Pack 2c, the update will be mandatory for computer makers by September as future PCs might not be able to install XP as soon as this fall, Microsoft says.
Apple and console maker Nintendo may be on an unintentional collision course, according to a new media report. The latter is attempting to patent a tilt sensitivity sensor for its DS handheld, which would give the device control similar to the stationary Wii; this technology is said to be similar, however, to the accelerometer in the iPhone, which is used to sense when the view should be rotated between portrait and widescreen ratios. Apple has yet to make any comments regarding Nintendo's initiatives.
Mikegyver Computer and Tech (MCT) has developed a Magsafe vehicle charging adapter for Apple's MacBook and MacBook Pro that allows owners to charge their laptops on-the-go. The accessory supports charging Apple's Intel-based notebooks in cars, boats, on airplanes, and around the house without the need to waste energy or money on an inverter -- a device that turns DC (direct current) into AC (alternating current) to offer a standard 110-volt wall plug that can charge laptops using their own bundled AC adapters. MCT's cord features a MagSafe connector on one end and a DC connector that works with the "N2" tip accessory which ships with the Kensington 120-watt Notebook AC/DC Power Adapter. The cord also works with iGo's Juice70, allowing MacBook owners to use a single power adapter for numerous devices. Kensington's 120-watt adapter is priced at $140, while iGo's Juice70 is available for $120. MCT also offers a package bundling the Kensington adapter with its modified MagSafe adapter for $210, according to one ZDNet blogger.
Monster Cable has grown its iSlimCharger series with the iSlimCharger for the iPod shuffle. The device is only three quarters the size of the already small Apple player but adapts the jukebox to any USB port, allowing it to charge and sync without the relative bulk of the proprietary dock. Unique to Monster's charger is a brace that uses the gap created by the built-in clip to prevent the adapter from coming loose. Availability of the miniaturized iSlimCharger is unknown but is expected to arrive soon. Monster has priced the connector at $15.
Without any formal introduction, Philips has slipped out its new GoGear SA3385 jukebox. Expanding the amount of flash storage from 4GB to 8GB, the player appears to share the same features as the reference SA3300 and gives more space for MPEG-4, SMV, and WMV videos on the 2.4-inch LCD as well as up to 2,000 MP3 or WMA songs. FM radio tuning and photo viewing are also onboard. Battery life is similar at 20 hours of pure audio and 4 hours of 320x240 video.
Sling Media has quietly announced a private beta of SlingPlayer for Symbian, a new version of the mobile TV streaming app. The new version lets any Series 60 phone with either 3G (HSDPA/UMTS) or Wi-Fi watch and control the feed sourced from a Slingbox at home, allowing phones primarily from Nokia to catch video that might otherwise have been missed. The Symbian version should be feature-equivalent with previous versions for Palm and Windows Mobile devices.
XM Satellite Radio today stepped up its Xpress receivers with the XpressRC. Improving on the formula of the earlier XpressR, the RC shares the same split screen that allows browsing channels without losing track of what's currently playing. A new color screen, however, both offers much sharper output as well as richer visuals for station IDs and backgrounds. The color version also adds a full, one-hour memory buffer to catch shows missed during work or to replay a segment on the road.
IOGEAR on Monday introduced the MiniView Micro PS/2, the latest of its KVM switches for two-PC setups. The switch allows either computer to share a DVI-equipped LCD up to 1600x1200 resolution as well as PS/2 keyboards and mice. Audio is also sent through the switch independently from other inputs; this lets users host and play music on one computer while they work another, IOGEAR says. Regardless of the setup, the footprint is minimal thanks to an in-line design and a breakout controller that prevents the KVM from consuming too much space on a desk. The use of PS/2 ports lets the MiniView support both most Windows systems as well as Sun's Solaris-based workstations. It should be available today for $160.
iRiver this morning took the wraps off the NV, an all-in-one device meant equally for in-car use and on foot. Mounted on a dash, the NV provides GPS navigation with 3D views and picture-in-picture for using media functions without disrupting navigation. The GPS receiver is also used in tandem with a 1.3-megapixel camera for geotagging images. Music, video, and photos are playable from SD cards, including DVD-quality clips in MPEG-4 or XviD formats; the NV includes dual SD slots so these clips won't interrupt map functions. When this isn't available, DMB mobile TV tuning lets users watch digital broadcasts in iRiver's native Korea on a large 7-inch screen.
AT&T today announced the launch of the LG Trax. In addition to the touch-sensitive external music controls and support for up to 4GB of AAC, MP3, or WMA tracks that give the phone its name, the shipping version of the handset takes advantage of its 3G-level HSDPA Internet access to hook into multiple online AT&T media services. The Trax is the latest phone to support MP3 downloads from eMusic Mobile or live Internet streaming of XM radio; the handset can also handle video streaming through AT&T's Cellular Video service or one-way video calls through Video Share.
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