News Archive for 08/06/06

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New Panasonic D-dock rips CDs to SD cards

06/06, 5:00pm

Panasonic SC-NS570SD

Panasonic today announced its newest addition to its line of D-dock mini sound systems, with the SC-NS570SD. The system is equipped with an SD card slot for file playback, and it also has the ability to rip CDs at up to 8 times playback speeds to SD cards in the AAC format. Rated at 15W for each of its twin speakers, the system will play MP3, AAC or WMA-encoded CDs, or broadcast programs via its AM/FM tuner.

IBM unveils water-cooled 3D chip prototype

06/06, 4:40pm

IBM shows water cooled CPU

IBM on Thursday announced plans to use water to cool its next-generation of computer chips internally, allowing it to develop faster multi-layer processors that don't require additional external cooling. To this end, the company showed off a prototype 3D chip with thousands of tiny water passages in between the chip's layers. The company says interlayer cooling was necessary, as traditional heat sinks weren't efficient enough to cool today's densely packaged processors. The water-carrying tubes are just 50 microns in diameter, and integrating them into the chip necessitated the development of a new thin-film soldering technique by IBM engineers.

Philips intros 22-inch commercial 3D display

06/06, 4:15pm

Philips 22-inch 3D display

Philips is set to introduce a 22-inch 3D display at the InfoComm 2008 show on June 18. Based on an WSXGA (1680x1050) LCD panel, it is available in either a frame-mount or desktop configuration. The display uses Philips' WOWvx technology to provide 3D-like images without requiring users to wear special viewing glasses. WOWvx uses the company's 2D-plus-Depth (the 2D image and its depth map) format and combines it with the Declipse format developed especially for autostereoscopic 3D displays such as this one. Declipse provides additional "background" information for a more realistic 3D effect.

Amazon outage knocks out store, Kindle [U]

06/06, 3:50pm

Amazon Outage

(Update: service back late in the afternoon) Amazon has been suffering an ongoing shortage that has both affected its main business as well as hurt its Kindle e-book reader, according to user reports. The outage began earlier this afternoon and has left Amazon's main page nearly, blank, with only a "service unavailable" message at the front. Kindle users in turn note an inability to access the company's site for downloading e-books.

HTC Touch Diamond hit with crucial delay?

06/06, 3:35pm

HTC Touch Diamond Delay

HTC's Touch Diamond is suffering from a significant delay that could critically affect the timing of its launch, say reports. UK reseller Devicewire and others are being told by HTC that the touchscreen phone will miss its originally scheduled June 9th release date and will be pushed back to June 23rd due to a last-minute firmware upgrade necessary for all of the devices.

Western Digital readying 20K RPM hard drive?

06/06, 2:50pm

WD Readying 20K Drive

Western Digital is in the early stages of developing the first hard drive to spin at 20,000RPM, alleged sources have told Bit-Tech. Fears that solid-state drives may overtake its business have led the company to develop a record-setting hard drive that will share the same design philosophy as the VelociRaptor; the hard drive itself will measure 2.5 inches across but sit in a 3.5-inch enclosure that both cools the disk and cuts down on noise.

ASUS, Realtek work on Wireless USB displays

06/06, 2:20pm

ASUS Wireless USB Displays

ASUS and Realtek on Friday said they would team up to introduce a computer display based on Wireless USB. Using a built-in Wireless USB adapter, a future ASUS display line will connect to a host computer without using any cables or requiring special setup; like most wired USB displays, the screen will automatically configure itself and make adding one or more displays largely a matter of plugging in the display's power cable.

Intel hit with FTC antitrust investigation

06/06, 1:45pm

FTC investigating Intel

Intel is officially being investigated by the Federal Trade Commission, writes the Wall Street Journal. The CPU maker has been accused of violating US antitrust laws, specifically for a practice of using exclusive rebates and other tactics designed to discourage builders from turning to other companies. The case appears to be the result of long-term pressure from rival AMD, which has yet to resolve an antitrust lawsuit first filed in 2005. Another government probe began this year in the state of New York, with the help of local politicians.

FCC delays plans for free broadband vote

06/06, 1:15pm

FCC delays free broadband

The Federal Communications Commission is delaying a vote regarding the creation of free broadband services around the US, Reuters reports. FCC chairman Kevin Martin has proposed auctioning off a portion of the 25MHz wireless spectrum, on the condition that winners not only agree to offer a free broadband option, but filter out "obscene" content in the form of pornography. A vote on approving the auction was originally scheduled for June 12th, but no longer has a firm date.

Apple, RIM claw world share from Nokia

06/06, 1:00pm

Apple and RIM Add Q1 Share

Both the BlackBerry and iPhone have contributed to a downfall in Nokia's smartphone marketshare in the latest quarter, Gartner analysts report. The Finnish phone maker's influence dropped from 46.7 percent of the world market in the first quarter of 2007 to 45.2 percent a year later after aggressive moves by both Apple and Research in Motion into its territory. The iPhone as a new entrant for the quarter earned about 5.3 percent of the smartphone business through shipping 1.7 million iPhones between January and March; RIM, in turn, climbed from 8.3 percent to 13.4 percent on the back of 4.3 million BlackBerries delivered during the three-month span.

LG Dare for Verizon spied, detailed

06/06, 12:10pm

LG Dare Spied

Verizon's first all-touchscreen media phone has been spotted late yesterday in a working form and has accompanying new details to match. The LG Dare, also known as the VX9700, is now believed to have EVDO Revision A cellular data that should help it compete against both the Samsung Instinct on Sprint as well as the updated iPhone and other competing devices on AT&T's 3G network. The phone should also support Real's Rhapsody music service and use microSDHC cards for 8GB or more of storage.

Polaroid intros PoGo inkless portable photo printer

06/06, 11:50am

Polaroid PoGo printer

Polaroid recently announced it will launch its PoGo portable photo printer later on this summer. First seen at CES 2008, the printer, whose name is short for Polaroid-on-the-go according to Polaroid, achieves its compact 4.7- by 2.8- by 0.9-inch size by not requiring any ink cartridges. Instead, it uses Zero Ink technology and ZINK Photo Paper as its medium.

Hop-on preps $125 smartphone, 3G phone, more

06/06, 11:25am

Hop-on Budget Smartphone

Hop-on today unveiled six phones in its very low-cost lineup that branch into new territory for the company. While declining to provide most details, the company promises that its HOP1801 will be the lowest-cost smartphone on the market at $125; the company also plans to have one of the least expensive 3G phones with the HOP1809, a handset that will also supply a camera, Bluetooth, and support for MPEG-4 media playback. A third phone, the HOP1808, will be aimed at frequent travelers with dual SIM card slots for multiple phone accounts; it lacks 3G but shares the other features of the HOP1809 and adds an FM radio tuner.

Nvidia aiming to help rivals beat iPhone: CEO

06/06, 11:25am

Nvidia CEO on iPhone

Nvidia's mobile technology will help rivals "leapfrog" the iPhone, according to the company's CEO. Jen-Hsun Huang made the comments in an interview, promoting the company's new low-power Tegra platform. Huang notes that the iPhone has a "great computer chip," with a high-performance graphics core, something that helps establish it as the world's first "legitimate" mobile Internet device (MID). The difficulty with this is that many of the companies that may be looking to best Apple do not have their own chip designers, and so cannot produce a phone with graphics and an interface that is on par.

Icahn: Google/Yahoo deal OK if MS out

06/06, 10:55am

Icahn on Yahoo Strategy

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn today responded to criticisms from Yahoo with a second open letter to the search engine giant. Addressing claims that he has no plans for Yahoo should Microsoft decline to make bid with a newly replaced board in office, Icahn says he would be willing to have Yahoo strike a search deal with Google as long as its terms would still allow a future Microsoft takeover. Icahn doesn't say whether this would still involve the proposed ad bidding system trialed earlier this year or a new plan altogether.

Intel faces $25.4m fine for Korea antitrust

06/06, 9:55am

Intel faces $25.4m fine

Yesterday's reports (registration required) see chipmaker Intel slapped with a $25.4 million fine in South Korea. The Korea Fair Trade Commission concluded the country's antitrust laws were broken by Intel's offer of $37 million in rebates between 2002 and 2005 to PC makers Samsung and Trigem (Averatec) in exchange for avoiding AMD chips. Intel's legal representatives say the decision will likely be appealed, arguing its rebates reflect simple volume discounts.

iHome serves up first clock radio for Zune

06/06, 9:40am

iHome ZN9

iHome today catered to the relatively small but growing number of Zune users with the ZN9, an audio system it says is the first clock radio dock for Microsoft's media players. Similar in style to the iP99 dock for iPhones and iPods, the ZN9 centers around a multi-alarm system that can wake either to AM/FM radio or any dockable Zune with varying degrees of control. Listeners can wake to separate weekday and weekend alarms as well as set the alarm to gradually lower or raise the volume in sleep and wake modes.

Australian resellers get mystery Apple boxes

06/06, 8:40am

Aus Mystery Apple Boxes

Australian resellers are receiving packages from Apple they aren't allowed to open until after Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, MacTalk says. A photo of one of the alleged packages indicates that the box is under a non-disclosure agreement and that resellers are barred from opening the box until June 10th, or the same day as the Apple event after accounting for differences in time zones. An example box is relatively small and is unlikely to contain any typical computers based on early observations.

Carriers to give iPhone date 'immediately'

06/06, 7:45am

Carrier iPhone Dates Soon

Cellular carriers will set their individual iPhone launch dates "immediately" after Apple's expected 3G iPhone announcement on Monday, says Reuters' Italian division. A claimed source from Telecom Italia (TIM) says the provider will make a more detailed announcement of its iPhone plans no later than Monday night or Tuesday morning local time, with the go-ahead hinging largely on Apple's official announcement. Pricing and most other details are still unavailable.

First Look: iN Studio 5.0 Smart Speakers

06/06, 12:05am

iN Studio 5.0

In the old days, a complete stereo system might require a turntable, tape deck, CD player, receiver, and speakers. Nowadays, such stereo systems with multiple components taking up entire shelves seem as antiquated as a television set with vacuum tubes. For most people, their entire music collection fits comfortably on their favorite digital music player. However, music players require headphones or ear buds. If you want to share your music with others, you need a set of speakers such as Sierra Sound's iN Studio 5.0 Smart Speakers.

First Look: O ROKR Pro, wireless speakers

06/06, 12:05am

O ROKR Pro

Mobile phones and digital music players make it easy to take your music wherever you go. While it's easy to listen to music through headphones or ear buds, headphones can be cumbersome to wear and ear buds can be annoying jammed in each ear, especially with wires dangling in the way if you exercise while listening to music. For a more stylish and wireless solution, specifically designed for wearing while exercising, consider the O ROKR Pro sunglasses that come with built-in speakers.

T-Mobile sets end-of-life notice for iPhone

06/06, 12:00am

T-Mobile EOL iPhone

T-Mobile is allegedly preparing to dump the first generation iPhone in anticipation of the 3G-enabled version, a move it appears to anticipate happening on the July first. ZDNet reports that the German telecom recently posted a sticky-style notice on its iPhone plans, stating it would cease selling the device on June 30th this year. While T-Mobile did not expressly say that the 3G version would follow the next day, the iPhone's current and potential worldwide popularity hint that the new version would not be far behind.

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