News Archive for 08/11/05

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Easyishop ships Audio Pro Porto Go iPod loudspeaker

11/05, 11:50pm

Porto Go iPod speakers

Scandinavian company Audio Pro has begun shipping the leather-wrapped Porto Go portable loudspeaker iPod dock, which is now offered at retailers such as Easyishop.co.uk. The Porto Go serves as an iPod dock, but a 3.5mm stereo jack is also provided for connecting computers or other devices. Two 1.5 inch tweeters provide the stereo sound, while a single 4.5 inch woofer drives the low end sound. The company claims a frequency response of 58Hz to 20,000KHz, and a sound pressure level of 100dB.

KeyRight Look & Learn keyboard aides typing skills

11/05, 9:40pm

KeyRight keyboard

KeyRight has introduced a keyboard that is designed to improve typing skills, the Look & Learn. The keys on the QWERTY keyboard have been color-coded to differentiate eight different "finger zones." Each color represents the keys that are used by a particular finger. For example, the set of red keys to the far left are colored red, which gives the user a visual reference for the proper keys for the left-hand pinky finger.

T-Mobile to skip HSPA+, move right to 4G LTE

11/05, 9:15pm

TMobile goes direct to LTE

After remaining silent for quite some time, T-Mobile on Tuesday confirmed its plans for its 4G LTE network, as well as what it will do with its current 3G network. Unstrung reports that T-Mobile is excluding HSPA+ from its network expansion plans, instead opting to focus purely on LTE, mainly due to matters of efficiency. "If I need to invest into more hardware, I think it's better to start early [with LTE]," said Joachim Horn, Chief Technology Officer. "LTE is a more future-oriented technology."

Seagate to develop hybrid line of solid-state drives?

11/05, 5:20pm

Seagate hybrid SSDs?

Memory device maker Seagate is investing as much as $100 million into developing a new type of solid-state drives (SSDs), according to a Wednesday report. According to company CEO Bill Watkins, Seagate is trying to resolve certain issues with the current technology, including SSDs' higher cost of production relative to hard disk drives and their limited read/write cycles. The company's solution would be to create a new technology that combines single-layer cell (SLC) and multi-layer cell (MLC) tech, marrying the former's superior reliability with the latter's low manufacturing cost.

Sanyo introduces three new navigation devices

11/05, 4:25pm

Sanyo intros three PNDs

Sanyo on Wednesday announced it will soon launch a trio of advanced in-car entertainment and portable GPS devices, including the 7-inch Gorilla NVA-GS1580FT that doubles as a car entertainment center and the portable 7-inch NV-SD750FT, as well as the 5.2-inch NV-SB510DT. The first two use 4GB solid-state drives as well as a dual 12Seg/1Seg TV tuner built-in to catch live broadcasts in the company's native Japan. Apart from the smaller touchscreen size, the NV-SB510DT supports only a 1Seg TV tuner.

Palm running low on cash?

11/05, 4:15pm

Palm May be Low on Cash

Smartphone producer Palm is likely burning quickly through its cash reserves without the sales figures expected to come along with its upcoming Nova platform, a note from Morgan Keegan analyst Tavis McCourt says. Although the Treo creator had $248 million to draw from at the end of its August quarter, a new filing discovered by McCourt on Monday has revealed that Palm has registered for permission to either take on debt or to issue shares and other securities in order to raise funds.

Best Buy offering MSI Wind netbook for $350

11/05, 3:35pm

MSI Wind drops to $350

An online Best Buy listing has been spotted on Wednesday and is offering a version of the 10-inch MSI Wind netbook for just short of $350, which is the least expensive Wind ever by about $50. The specific model is U100-420US, which is powered by Intel's 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU coupled to 1GB of RAM, and includes an 802.11b/g Wi-Fi module to stay true to its Wind name, which, according to MSI, was taken from Wi-Fi Network Device.

Intel dumps ultra-wideband development

11/05, 3:05pm

Intel Exits UWB Work

Intel has dropped its internal development of ultra-wideband (UWB), the company has revealed. The semiconductor firm decided to end the five-year-old project a month ago in a low-key move that is only now coming to light. The call doesn't mark the end of UWB at Intel but was made as the company decided it would be less expensive to source components from outside when necessary than to develop its own.

Microsoft Windows 3.x dead at an ancient 18

11/05, 2:30pm

MS Windows 3.x dead at 18

As of November 1st, 2008, Microsoft has stopped issuing licenses for its first operating system to put the company on the map with a wide range of users thanks to its graphical user interface, says a Wednesday report. The many versions of Windows 3.x, including 3.11, which launched in the US in May of 1990, were used worldwide and enjoyed great success, making Microsoft a viable alternative to Apple computers. Compared to the Mac alternative, the Windows OS could make use of improved graphics, had a wider color range and allowed for the addition of sound cards and CD-ROM drives.

Sprint/Clearwire union approved

11/05, 2:10pm

Sprint Clearwire Approved

The FCC late yesterday approved Sprint's deal with Clearwire for a national WiMAX network. The deal will allow the two to spread an effectively unified 4G wireless Internet service across the US that should cover as many as 140 million users by the end of 2010. FCC Commissioners, including Chairman Kevin Martin, describe the approval in historic terms and suggest it will create a genuine new competitor for high-speed Internet access in the US.

Best Buy gets unlocked subsidized T-Mobile phones?

11/05, 1:30pm

Best Buy T-Mobile phones?

Based on a new report, Best Buy Mobile stores will soon offer a choice of three Nokia smartphones subsidized by contracts from wireless provider T-Mobile. Reportedly starting on November 16th, the offers will allow buyers to choose from the E71 in grey or white with a two-year T-Mobile contract for just shy of $200, instead of the unlocked, contract-free price of about $460. The N95 will cost $350 on a two-year term versus $760 retail, while the N96 will be priced at about $600, down from nearly $900 contract-free.

Dell plans harsh cutbacks in view of economic woes

11/05, 1:10pm

More Dell cutbacks coming

Dell is going to make even more drastic expense reductions than it originally planned a year ago, says spokesman David Frink. Although the company had previously set a goal of cutting $3 billion in annual expenses by 2011, which has so far resulted in the loss of nearly 8,900 jobs, Frink says the company intends to slash expenses further in order to cope with the global credit disaster. No new firings are expected, but a hiring freeze is being put into effect, and some workers are being pressured into taking buyouts or one to five payless vacation days.

Canon upgrades two pro HDV camcorders

11/05, 12:20pm

Canon XH A1S and XH G1S

Canon today chose an unusual mid-day update to launch a pair of updates to its pro HDV tape camcorders. The XH A1S and XH G1S both have had their 20X zoom lenses upgraded to give better control over focus, irising and zoom as well as camera firmware that lets users adjust the zooming speed to deliver a more natural feel to pull-in or pull-out shots. Audio has also been given a boost with two XLR inputs at varying sensitivity, the ability to record with external and built-in mics at the same time, and overall better sound performance.

Eizo intros 24-inch FlexScan LCD with DisplayPort

11/05, 11:25am

Eizo 24-inch DisplayPort

Japanese company Eizo on Wednesday introduced a new 24-inch LCD monitor, the FlexScan S2432W-H, which is one of its first to rely on the newer DisplayPort video standard. sports both a 1920x1200 resolution and a contrast ratio of 1,000:1. Other specs include a brightness rating of 360cd/m2 and a true black-to-white pixel response time of 16ms, while the neutral (gray-to-gray) response time is 6ms.

Google, Yahoo back out of ad deal

11/05, 11:10am

Google and Yahoo Back Off

Google and Yahoo on Wednesday said they would end their controversial ad agreement and go their separate ways. The move is friendly but leaves Yahoo without a major third-party to show ads on certain search results, potentially cutting into Yahoo's overal results. Google describes the departure as being on amicable terms but also as the result of pressure from US government officials, which had forced revisions after concerns that it would create an unfair web monopoly.

Hybrid LTE, WiMAX 4G chips due in 2009

11/05, 10:30am

Hybrid LTE and WiMAX Chips

Next year will bring devices that have two competing 4G data formats at once, a note from ABI Research. Company principal analyst Philip Solis explains that multiple carriers have expressed interest in supporting both Long Term Evolution (LTE) and WiMAX on the same chipset, letting them support either standard depending on the provider and region. The move would let carriers such as KDDI and Vodafone serve both their own services, which will prefer LTE, without the cost of building a second device for a WiMAX network in another country or a related provider.

SanDisk tech promises 100x faster SSD writes

11/05, 9:25am

SanDisk ExtremeFFS

SanDisk on Wednesday said it has developed a way to eliminate one of the few performance bottlenecks of solid-state drives. A new flash file system known as ExtremeFFS uses a page-based method that no longer ties the logical location of data on the drive to its physical space. Instead, it dynamically writes and alters the position of data based on where it would be most efficient as well as the user's own habits.

Sony Blu-spec brings Blu-ray to CD audio

11/05, 8:45am

Sony Blu-spec

Sony Music Entertainment's Japanese branch today unveiled a new disc standard that aims to bring the company's lessons from Blu-ray to music CDs. Blu-spec uses the blue lasers that would normally master Blu-ray movies to cut CDs more accurately than would be possible with red lasers. In tandem with the use of polymer plastic for the discs themselves, the format should improve the quality of audio CDs while remaining compatible with existing CD players; the latter has been a weakness of Super Audio CD and other defunct sound formats.

Samsung T*Omnia due in US by end of November?

11/05, 7:45am

Samsung T Omnia US Soon

Samsung has only just introduced the T*Omnia in its home country but may already be enroute to the US within a matter of weeks, a claim from BusinessWeek. The company is reportedly in talks to bring the Windows Mobile touchscreen phone with an unspecified US carrier by the end of November, though whether it represents the fully-upgraded T*Omnia or its lower-resolution, lower-capacity ancestor is unknown.

Meizu to launch iPhone clone Nov. 30th

11/05, 1:05am

Meizu M8 Due Nov 30

Meizu's shadow to the iPhone, the M8, should be available in at least a limited form before the end of the month, according to a post by company head J. Wong. While already tentatively slated for November, the touchscreen phone should be launched in Meizu's native China no later than November 30th. The company is waiting for a government license for the phone but will release a test version to users even if the license isn't granted by the end of the month, Wong explains.

Firefox hits 20% worldwide usage

11/05, 12:15am

Firefox hits 20% usage

Firefox now boasts 20 percent global market share, according to a new document published by Net Applications, showing the spike during October. ReadWriteWeb reports that the Mozilla-developed web browser has seen a recent surge in possibility due to users seeking asylum from Internet Explorer's notoriously insecure nature. Firefox is facing increasing pressure in the web market, both from Apple and Microsoft, but also from newer competitors, such as Google's Chrome.

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