News Archive for 08/07/09

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Report: all NVIDIA G84 and G86 chips are faulty

07/09, 5:45pm

NVIDIA G84, G86 faulty

Despite NVIDIA's claims, the Inquirer reports all, not just a select batch, of the company's G84 and G86 chipsets used in GeForce 8400M and 8600M graphics cards are suffering from heat-related failures due to an unidentified substrate or bumping material used to help make the video hardware. They all share the same application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC), which is the source of the problems, in both notebook and desktop PCs. The chips have been failing since last year, and earlier this month, NVIDIA said the problems will drop the value of its shares to the tune of 25 percent, and is budgeting $200 million for repairs.

ECS G10IL netbook coming to the US, fights MSI Wind

07/09, 5:25pm

ECS G10IL netbook

Taiwan-based ECS is preparing to bring its netbook to the US market to compete with the likes of the ASUS Eee PC range and MSI's Wind netbooks. Unlike its other products, the G10IL will be the company's first netbook designed for business use exclusively instead of education. Only a 10.2-inch version of the G10IL will likely make it to the US market, also bringing with it optional and unique to the segment 3G support via the HSUPA and HSPDA mobile broadband networks, as well as EDGE.

Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang to resign?

07/09, 5:20pm

Yahoo CEO to resign?

Yahoo's top executive, CEO Jerry Yang, could resign to avoid a forced departure ahead of a decisive shareholders meeting on August 1st, according to new rumors. Yang and one of Yahoo's most influential shareholders, Gordy Crawford, butted heads at a recent meeting, sources say, with the latter and his top analysts questioning Yang's arguments and demanding an update on Yahoo's near-term strategy. Crawford has expressed interest in Carl Icahn's proxy takeover for Yahoo, which would likely lead to Microsoft taking over the company.

Two-way photo transfer for iPod and PCs

07/09, 5:20pm

CopyTrans Photo released

CopyTrans has announced CopyTrans Photo for transferring photos between iPods and Windows PCs. The software allows two-way transfer, allowing users to not only carry photos uploaded from a PC, but also to download photos off an iPod onto other PCs. CopyTrans Photo supports drag-and-drop file transfer and works with any photo-capable iPod, including the iPod Touch and iPhone models. It works with Windows XP and Vista, and costs $50.

iPhone 3G may have 'tsunami' impact on smartphones

07/09, 4:55pm

ChangeWave on iPhone 3G

The iPhone 3G should have a massive impact on the smartphone market, claims ChangeWave Research. The group has compiled the results of 3,567 people surveyed after the device's June 9th announcement, and found that while a steady 42 percent owned one of Research in Motion's BlackBerry phones, the original iPhone achieved its fourth consecutive growth period, climbing 2 points to reach 11 percent of the market. This puts it only 3 percent away from Palm, which slid 2 points to hit 14 percent.

Matsushita shows 50% more efficient nanosilicon LED

07/09, 4:20pm

Nanosilicon LED prototype

A prototype of a light emitting device developed by Matsushita Electric Works (Panasonic) and a Japanese University engineering department that is more efficient and smaller than conventional LEDs was unveiled today. Unlike fluorescent lamps, such as CCFLs used in HDTVs, the device does not require mercury, using a 5nm or smaller nanosilicon device to create a ballistic electron discharge into xenon gas. With further development, the nanosilicon LED could be used in future notebook, computer and HDTV screens, extending battery life in portable devices thanks to its efficiency.

Apple dominating US touch phone market

07/09, 3:55pm

Apple Leads US Touch Phone

Apple should already the clear market leader in the US for touchscreen phones by the end of the year, a new study claims from Strategy Analytics. The research group estimates that Apple will have shipped 6.3 million iPhones in the US alone by the end of the year, or enough to garner 35 percent of business for touchscreen cellphones in the country. The success is in large part due to Apple popularizing the interface with relatively little competition in the short term, according to the group.

Korea already plans 5G wireless

07/09, 3:05pm

Korea Developing 5G

Although fourth-generation (4G) cellular wireless still has yet to hold its own, the South Korean government is already developing 5G access that may be ready soon after 4G services go live, the country's officials say (registration required). The country hopes to invest money equal to $58.4 million over the next three years into both advancing 4G access and to starting work on 5G at the same time. Doing so is said to hopefully make the Asian country the top-ranked cellphone producer in the world by setting a 4G standard and becoming the primary source of 4G on the planet.

Leak confirmed as next 15-inch MacBook Pro?

07/09, 2:10pm

MB Pro Case Leak Confirmed

An apparent MacBook Pro case leak has been confirmed as legitimate, says AppleInsider. The aluminum shell is described as a prototype but one which is fundamentally similar to what will be used for the future 15-inch MacBook Pro and will mark a first significant redesign since the system's 2006 launch: the narrower but longer battery design will also allow users to access the hard drive themselves without disassembling the whole case, similar to current 13-inch MacBooks.

FCC clearing slate for Sirius/XM merger in July?

07/09, 1:45pm

FCC Clearing for Sirius XM

The FCC is telling XM Satellite Radio to clear its schedule for what could be a potential deal, says a report from Orbitcast. XM's legal counsel has allegedly been told by the US government agency to have all hands available for the rest of July and thus hints that the FCC is under pressure to decide quickly on the proposed merger between Sirius and XM within the next two weeks.

Sony Ericsson W595 images leaked?

07/09, 1:10pm

Sony Ericsson W595 leak

Early images of a new Sony Ericsson phone are available, a French site claims. The site says it has obtained photos of a device called the W595, which may be a successor to the W580. Although little is known about the product, images show a slider with a new, rounded top, a larger numberpad, and different navigation buttons. The phone is also believed to have a built-in accelerometer and FM tuner, as well as a preloaded copy of Google Maps. The accelerometer is likely meant to rotate the screen view along with the phone.

Touch Diamond for Sprint on Sept. 2nd?

07/09, 12:35pm

Sprint Diamond on Sept. 2?

HTC's Touch Diamond has finally secured a release date with Sprint, according to reports. A timetable, allegedly leaked from Sprint, mentions the MP6950 -- the Touch Diamond -- as shipping on September 2nd, alongside other phones from Motorola and Samsung. This puts the Sprint phone in a launch schedule similar to that of Telus' version, which is supposed to be the first North American one but only has a "summer" release date.

Hitachi first with very low-power 1TB drive

07/09, 12:00pm

Hitachi Deskstar 7K1000 B

Hitachi this morning touted its eco-friendliness and launched the Deskstar 7K1000.B. The disk holds the same 1TB as the earlier, original 7K1000 but demands 43 percent less power when idle, letting users upgrade without worrying that the drive will consume more energy just through its presence. The disk is also potentially more secure with the option of Bulk Data Encryption to lock data through hardware rather than depending on software.

Fujitsu downplays solid-state hard drives

07/09, 11:40am

Fujitsu Downplays SSDs

Fujitsu has no near-term plans to create solid-state hard drives (SSDs) of its own as the technology still isn't as fast it should be compared to hard drives, the company's business development VP Joel Hagberg says. He acknowledges that many notebook manufacturers are opting for the flash-based medium but argues that its performance advantage isn't as broad as other storage makers would claim. Many SSDs are very fast at random access for reading data but quickly falls apart when writing data or reading large amounts of data in a row, he says.

PlayStation 3 40GB to be replaced in August?

07/09, 10:35am

PS3 40GB May Exit in Aug

Sony could be replacing its baseline 40GB PlayStation 3 model with a new version as early as next month, according to a Wal-Mart data sheet obtained by Joystiq. The large retailer lists the Blu-ray game console as being replaced with a new version in early August but doesn't provide the new model or illustrate exact changes. Sony has yet to update the 40GB system with the Dual Shock 3 rumble controller or release an anticipated white PS3.

Rogers to offer $30 6GB iPhone 3G plan [U]

07/09, 9:45am

Rogers 6GB iPhone 3G

(Updated with extra plan info) Rogers and its sub-brand Fido today made concessions to potential subscribers worried about low bandwidth by offering a limited-run promotional plan for the iPhone 3G. Customers who sign up for the Apple device before the end of August will have access to a $30 monthly plan that offers 6GB of data per month while purchased with any existing voice plan Rogers or Fido already offers. The pricing effectively gives an iPhone user enough bandwidth to watch nearly 105 hours of YouTube videos per month on the cellular connection, Rogers claims.

Xbox 360 60GB due this month, 20GB out?

07/09, 9:25am

Xbox 360 60GB in July

Microsoft's Xbox 360 price cut this month may be just a measure to phase out the old Pro system before a new one takes its place, if a leaked memo proves accurate. The internal company message now suggests that the 60GB Xbox 360 is a direct replacement for the 20GB edition and will replace the earlier model before the end of July, with the $50 discount on the earlier system now being used just to clear out stock.

Samsung rolls YouTube-friendly H.264 vidcam

07/09, 8:40am

Samsung SC-MX20 Camcorder

Samsung on Wednesday updated its MX series camcorders with a refresh targeted at the web and portable players. The SC-MX20 effectively replaces the earlier MX10 and adds a Web & Mobile mode that records H.264 video in a 640x480 format that can easily be transferred to video websites such as YouTube; it also lets users record home video that doesn't require transcoding to work with iPhones, iPods, and other H.264-aware devices.

BlackBerry Thunder late, software a "joke?"

07/09, 8:00am

BBerry Thunder May Be Late

Claims of a summer launch for the BlackBerry Thunder may be thwarted by a still very rough design, says an alleged Research in Motion insider speaking to BGR. Initially pitched as a near-term competitor for the iPhone 3G, the first touchscreen BlackBerry is described as "in no way shape or form" ready for a near-term launch and has glaring bugs that include a flawed on-screen keyboard and overall interface, a touchscreen that ripples on touch, and an overly sensitive tilt sensor.

D-Link, Divx ship MediaLounge DSM-330

07/09, 2:05am

MediaLounge DSM-330

Networking device manufacturer D-Link and DivX have begun shipping the first DivX Connected media player in the U.S. (distribution in Canadian markets is expected to soon follow). The HDMI-connected D-Link MediaLounge DSM-330 offers streaming of music, photos, Internet services and high definition video from PCs to any connected television, ostensibly challenging Apple TV, Apple's device for the living room. The set-top box, however, uses the slower 802.11g networking (or optional wired Ethernet), while most newer devices, including Apple TV, use the new (and faster) 802.11n band. Unlike Apple TV, the device supports a larger range of format, including DivX (including DivX VOD files), Xvid and WMV9 (transcoded on PC) as well as a variety of image formats, including JPEG, JPEG 2000 and BMP (non-compressed).

MS to counter Apple, Mac OS with new ad campaign

07/09, 1:20am

MS to challenge Apple

Calling Vista the most secure operating in the world (and taking jabs at Mac OS X security), Microsoft on Tuesday relented in its defense of the problematic Windows Vista, which has been the butt of many of Apple's jokes through its "Get a Mac" ad campaign. The Microsoft exec admitted that the system broke many things and said he feels badly for users' plights; the world's largest software developer, however, will counter Apple's anti-Windows/Vista campaign: "We've got a pretty noisy competitor out there," Brooks said of Apple whose "I'm a Mac... and I'm a PC," commercials criticize Windows Vista. "You know it. I know it. It's caused some impact. We're going to start countering it. They tell us it's the iWay or the highway. We think that's a sad message. Software out there is made to be compatible with your whole life."

iPhone praise, concerns: WSJ, NYT, USA Today

07/09, 12:30am

iPhone praise and concerns

The iPhone 3G's official launch on June 11th is just over two days away, and several industry heavyweights have already offered their opinions on Apple's next generation device, offering mostly praise, peppered with a few criticisms. Among the acclaimed technologists were Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal, David Pogue of the New York Times, and USA Today's Edward Baig. The three writers noted that the different pricing structure and 3G battery life were two small strikes against the new device, but ultimately considered the upgrade to be a boon.

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