News Archive for 07/10/09

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New PhotoVu software supports 160GB drives

10/09, 6:05pm

PhotoVu updates software

PhotoVu has unveiled its newest digital picture frame software with a significant increase in the ability to display high resolution digital camera images, including those taken with Canon's new 21.1-megapixel EOS-1Ds Mark III. Digital picture frames serve as standalone devices that produce digital photographs on a high-resolution LCD set within a set frame. Users can display still photographs that occasionally change in sequence, and the digital frames often include a hard drive for storing massive amounts of digital pictures. PhotoVu's software update includes 160GB hard drive support for standalone play as well as automatic rotation of images for those cameras that support orientation sensor and image EXIF tagging.

Sprint teases with 'RUMOR by LG' mobile device

10/09, 5:40pm

Sprint 'RUMOR by LG'

Sprint will soon launch its own response to the iPhone with LG's newest music and messaging device: the RUMOR by LG is an affordable device designed for teens and comes in two color combinations--black/blue and white/silver. The device opens slides open to offer a full QWERTY keypad with automatic messaging mode support (also available with a press of a button). Sprint promises easy access to Facebook and other social networking sites through Sprint's Social Zone service, according to Laptop Magazine.

FCC delays, firms up rules for 700MHz auction

10/09, 4:45pm

FCC 700MHz Auction Rules

The Federal Communications Commission today solidified some of the rules for the upcoming 700MHz auction early next year, potentially deciding which companies can participate in an event which may decide the future of cellular calling or wide-area Internet services. The US regulatory body has set a $10 billion cap on the value of the entire spectrum that will be available, preventing companies from using money alone to outbid others. Small companies which make no more than $40 million will also receive a discount on their winning bid price, the organization says.

Toshiba ships bright, camera-ready projector

10/09, 4:30pm

Toshiba TLP-XC2000U

Toshiba today began selling the TLP-XC2000U, a business/educational projector that nevertheless has several distinguishing aspects. Among these is the projection itself, which shines at a bright 2,000 ANSI lumens, with a special "Eco-Mode" to extend lamp life up to 3,000 hours. The system also has a three-megapixel document camera, which is arm-mounted, and boasts 16x digital zoom and an LED light for illumination. The projector's native resolution is limited to 1024x768, but it accepts HDTV and DTV input, with signals up to 720p/1080i. Finally, pricing is relatively modest for the performance class, set at $1,099.

NVIDIA readying GeForce 8800 GT for this month?

10/09, 4:00pm

GeForce 8800 GT This Month

NVIDIA intends to head off upcoming video cards from AMD by moving up the schedule of its own mid-range hardware, claim Taiwanese graphics card makers. The company has reportedly shifted the release of its upcoming GeForce 8800 GT video card from November 12th to October 29th to beat AMD's ATI Radeon HD 2950 Pro to shelves and potentially take more sales in the market -- an especially cutthroat move when both cards are expected to be some of the most popular for their price/performance ratios, the sources say.

Sonos to add cheaper networking option

10/09, 3:55pm

Sonos ZoneBridge BR100

Details have been revealed for Sonos' ZoneBridge BR100, an accessory which may save considerable money for those wanting to implement the company's wireless stereo technology. Whereas setting up a Sonos network currently requires having either the company's ZP80 or ZP100 stations near an Ethernet port, at a cost of $350 or $500 per unit, the BR100 should cost approximately $100, while still converting Ethernet transmissions into wireless broadcasts. Two Ethernet ports are available; this frees up a ZP station to be placed in a remote area, where it can be attached to speakers and/or an existing amplifier. The ZP100 features a built-in amp unit. At present, the BR100 is expected to be released later in the fall. [via Crave]

LG Shine coming to AT&T, with modifications

10/09, 3:15pm

LG Shine headed to AT&T

An anonymous source has posted images of what appears to the LG's popular Shine phone with AT&T markings. While this suggests that the phone will be adopted by the American carrier in the immediate future, the model in the photos is notably different, missing the trademark "roller" control found on several models. In its place is what appears to be a jogwheel, or possibly a directional switch. Any other changes are unknown; the basic Shine is a slider clad in silver-colored metal, and features a two megapixel camera plus 1GB of included storage. [via Gizmodo]

Samsung preps first wide VGA OLED for handhelds

10/09, 3:10pm

Samsung Wide Handheld OLED

Samsung SDI's OLED team has developed what should be the world's first small OLED display to feature a truly high resolution, the company revealed today. Previous attempts at the organic display technology had been limited to a quarter VGA resolution (320x240), but a new technology from Clairvoyante dubbed Pentile lets Samsung remove a third of the needed sub-pixels and pack the main pixels closer together. The reworking allows for a wide VGA resolution of 800x480 in a display measuring just 3.08 inches across, Samsung says.

AT&T readying BlackJack II 3G smartphone

10/09, 2:20pm

BlackJack II Coming to ATT

AT&T is on the verge of releasing a new version of its successful Samsung BlackJack cellphone, a leak from Mobiledia reveals. Formally known as the i617, the BlackJack II would tweak the design of the QWERTY-keyboard phone to add a sharper 2-megapixel camera as well as a slightly refined look with a deep red color option. Windows Mobile 6 will also be standard on the device rather than just an upgrade and should include Office Mobile out of the box. Access to AT&T's Music and Video download and streaming services will be available over the phone's 3G, HSDPA-based Internet access that carries over from the original BlackJack.

Canon puts out PowerShot service advisory

10/09, 1:30pm

PowerShot light leak

Canon has issued a service advisory for one of its prominent compact cameras. Select models of the PowerShot A650 IS have been determined to have a light leak, potentially ruining photos. The issue only affects the camera in specific conditions, however: the LCD screen must be unfolded, and the surrounding lighting must be high, as in daylight. Furthermore, while owners should check whether their camera has a zero in the serial number's fifth digit, even models with that zero may be unaffected if they have a special marking inside their battery cover.

Google buys Jaiku activity stream service

10/09, 1:25pm

Google Buys Jaiku

Google today announced that it had bought Jaiku, a popular updating service similar to Twitter that lets users send and receive short text, photo, and web link updates either from their computer or through a mobile device like a smartphone. The deal has been closed for a secret amount but is said to bring the Finnish startup into Google's lineup because the latter considers live streams of user activity and mobile presence "important," according to the Jaiku team. New registrations for the still beta-stage service have been temporarily shut down to control the flow of new members while Jaiku integrates, though Jaiku notes its service will still accept additional members through invitations.

BitTorrent debuts video streaming service

10/09, 12:05pm

BitTorrent video streaming

BitTorrent, the creators of the peer-to-peer format typically associated with online piracy, have announced their second "legitimate" service, BitTorrent DNA. DNA is not connected to the company's TV and movie sales; rather, says Reuters, it is a means of improving the speed of downloads and streaming for third-party businesses, who may not necessarily be able to handle the bandwidth on their own. Rather, users download a client that taps into a unique network; as new files are downloaded, old ones are uploaded, the latter continuing for a short time after the former.

BenQ reveals bright SP820 computer projector

10/09, 11:40am

BenQ SP820

BenQ on Tuesday gave both presenters and home theater users the SP820, a new semi-portable DLP-based projector. Labeled as an ideal projector for just about any area, it has a 4,000-lumen brightness that displays clear pictures even in brighter rooms. Its 2,000:1 contrast ratio is roughly five times higher than some competing models and delivers far more accurate blacks than most projectors, the company claims. In a rare move, BenQ also opens up color management: home theater viewers or presenters concerned about color accuracy can adjust the principal six colors of the projector for their individual hue and saturation levels to get a near-perfect image.

Alienware ships first desktops with 64GB flash drives

10/09, 11:10am

Alienware 64GB SSD Desktop

Alienware today took the unusual step of launching an option for 64GB solid-state drives with its high-end gaming desktops, following its recent introduction of the same feature for its notebooks. The flash-based storage is available for both the Area-51 ALX and Aurora ALX systems and is meant to replace the main hard drive for gamers who want extremely quick load times without the penalty of a noisy or potentially unreliable 10,000RPM rotating hard drive. The option pairs up two of the 64GB drives in a RAID 0 stripe that not only improves speed even further but provides a continuous 128GB of space.

VTech phone uses Bluetooth for home, cell calls

10/09, 10:25am

VTech LS5145 Phone

VTech on Tuesday morning unveiled a new home cordless phone that can double as an interface for the iPhone or most any cellphone. The LS5145 serves as a normal cordless phone for landline connections but also incorporates a Bluetooth receiver that will relay calls from one of up to eight different Bluetooth-equipped cellphones to its handset, allowing users to leave their cellphones docked and take their calls in areas where the cellular signal would normally drop off, such as a basement. Bluetooth headsets will also work for private calls, the company says. The VTech phone's use of the 5.8GHz frequency means that it will not only avoid conflicting with its own Bluetooth transmissions but also most Wi-Fi networks.

Real's Rhapsody on TiVo goes live

10/09, 9:45am

Rhapsody on TiVo Goes Live

RealNetworks and TiVo today announced the full launch of their official music collaboration. Simply called Rhapsody on TiVo, the finished service lets any TiVo Series 2, Series 3, or HD DVR box with a high-speed Internet connection gain access to all of the Rhapsody online store's music catalog and play it without needing a computer online at the time. The service takes advantage of Rhapsody's subscription method to let users browse and play music without the worry of having to buy tracks and transfer them across the local network. Like on a computer-based store, listeners can jump between albums from a given artist or see similar artists; a unique play system lets users continue to play songs while they browse menus.

AT&T pays $2.5b to expand mobile network

10/09, 9:35am

AT&T buys more spectrum

AT&T on Tuesday announced that it is paying $2.5 billion for radio spectrum from Aloha Partners to expand its mobile wireless network. The licenses cover 196 million people in the 700 MHz frequency band, according to the largest telecom company. Last month, AT&T promised to unveil an upgrade to its mobile network with a six-fold upload increase, but those improvements won't include Apple's iPhone until the Cupertino-based company unveils a newer model with support for the carrier's faster service--something which Apple CEO Steve Jobs said is not expected until next year (when battery life issues are resolved).

Sony rolls out 4X internal Blu-Ray burner

10/09, 9:10am

Sony BWU-200S Blu-Ray

Sony today switched its attention to add-in Blu-Ray drives for PC users looking to jump to the HD storage format. The BWU-200S is the company's first 4X drive and writes a full 50GB Blu-Ray disc in about 45 minutes, or half the time of the company's first drive from last year. Such speed makes it possible to burn nearly four hours of 1080i video in a reasonable amount time, Sony says. The new burner is also one of the first to burn DVDs as quickly as a dedicated DVD drive and will write a single-layer DVD-R at 16X, eliminating the need for a second drive just for quicker burning.

Sony offers up 40GB PS3, Dual Shock 3 in Japan

10/09, 8:25am

40GB PS3 and DS3 in Japan

SCEI this morning made Japan the second region to offer the 40GB PlayStation 3 after Europe, launching the new model but also adding extras previously unseen in any territory. The 40GB model itself is unchanged from the European version and cuts storage, the multi-format card reader, and two USB ports to trim costs; Wi-Fi carries over from the 60GB model. In exchange, Japanese buyers can now pickup a ceramic white model with a matching SIXAXIS wireless controller. Both it and a version in the original black will be available in the country for $341 on November 11th bundled with a copy of Spiderman 3 on Blu-Ray. A US release date is expected soon but is unlikely to include the white color scheme.

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