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Google has changed the terms of its Android Market to prevent owners of unlocked G1 handsets from downloading paid applications, according to Macworld. The unlocked phones are now unable to download copy-protected programs, which includes the paid content. The transition was completed relatively quietly, although acknowledged on a help site by a Google employee. "If you're using an unlocked, developer phone, you'll be unable to view any copy protected application," the response read. "This is a chance that was made recently."
Microsoft on Wednesday filed a lawsuit against TomTom, accusing the navigation company of infringing on a number of patents. The dispute involves eight individual patents, with three relating to the use of a Linux kernel. Microsoft claims to have engaged the Dutch company for more than a year, attempting to negotiate a licensing agreement for the technology that has "been licensed by many others."
Gateway this afternoon swung its attention to its desktops with a trio of mid-range tower systems. The FX series gets a new balance between the budget and high-end systems with two new models. The FX6800-11 at $1,300 improves on the entry 01e version with twice the memory, at 6GB, and unspecified faster graphics than the 01e's Radeon HD 4850; the FX6800-09 has few details but at $1,650 is a further improvement that Gateway sees as sitting exactly in between the 01e and the flagship 05 system. Both use Core i7 processors.
A version of the W90 notebook from ASUS introduced at this year's CES is now shipping. The W90Vp-X1 sports an 18.4-inch screen with 1920x1200 resolution thanks in part to the ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4870 X2 dual video card with 1GB of dedicated memory. Processing power comes courtesy of a 2.8GHz Intel Core 2 Duo CPU and 6GB of RAM. The mainboard is based on Intel's X38, which is made for desktops. A Turbo Gear function will let users overclock the CPU by 25 percent.
Pioneer Europe on Wednesday announced it is shipping its BDR-203BK Blu-ray disc writer that is capable of recording single- and dual-layer BD-R discs at up to 8X speeds. The burner can also record to BD-RE discs at 2X speeds, as well as DVD-Rs at 16X speeds. Dual-layer DVD-Rs can be written at 8X speeds, with CD-Rs at 32X. Pioneer integrated a few of its technologies into the burner, including Ultra DRA vibration-suppressing tech borrowed from the company's DVD burners.
Nokia on Wednesday announced it will launch its Comes With Music service, along with the compatible Nokia 5800 XpressMusic handset, in Australia on March 20th. The handset, Nokia's first touchscreen device, will have access to a library that has more than 4 million tracks. As in other countries, the service will give users the option to download an unlimited amount music to their PC or the 5800 handset for one year and keep what they download, unlike other time-limited or pay-per track services.
Fujitsu on Wednesday announced the upcoming release of its LifeBook A1120 notebook PC which is due to replace the current LifeBook A1110. Like the predecessor, the new notebook has swappable lids that lets users customize the look of the computer, but the notebook has upgraded hardware that increases system performance. Processing power comes from a 2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, while RAM can be upgraded up to 4GB. Storage can be optioned up to 250GB on a 5,400RPM SATA hard drive.
In spite of a major redesign effort, Amazon isn't likely to experience the iPod-like growth curve in Kindle 2 sales that some expect, a research note from JPMorgan says today. Analyst Imran Khan expects the retailer to sell only 500,000 of the e-book readers this year and thus that the company will grow relatively little from its sales of the first-generation Kindle in 2008. Amazon has been hesitant to provide definitive numbers for the original reader despite frequent sellouts.
This Friday at the FC Expo 2009 in Tokyo, Sony will show off a number of hybrid fuel cells, with the most notable being the pictured devices. They combine a rechargeable lithium-ion battery with a methanol fuel cell and are capable of using one or both at the same time if conditions call for it. Power made by the methanol fuel cell that is not used is stored in the battery pack. A USB port lets users plug in and charge their portable electronics.
If accurate, a new leak has NVIDIA releasing an updated version of its Ion platform with support for more than just netbook processors. As part of a presentation obtained by Fudzilla that responds to Intel criticism of Ion, NVIDIA has acknowledged that it will launch a second-generation version that supports not only the Atom and VIA Nano but also regular Celeron, Pentium and Core 2 chips. The update would allow full-speed notebooks to use the smaller footprint.
Nokia on Wednesday began selling a North American version 5800 XpressMusic in the US, marking the first time a Nokia touchscreen phone is available in a North America-native version. The new version adds support for 3G data over 850MHz HSPA and lets subscribers to AT&T connect at up to the full 3.6Mbps downstream speed of its network. As an unlocked model, it can also be used with Rogers' 3G service in Canada and supports regular EDGE data on T-Mobile.
Amazon has posted Sony's NWZ-X1000-series Walkman multimedia players on its UK webstore, revealing their prices and approximate dates of availability. The two devices, each equipped with a 3-inch OLED touchscreen display with 432x240 resolution, are aimed squarely at the iPod Touch and Samsung P3. The NWZ-X1050B has a built-in 16GB drive and is priced at the equivalent of $305 while the larger 32GB NWZ-X1060B version costs about $403. The site promises either should ship to customers in two to five weeks.
Wireless provider AT&T on Wednesday announced it will add the Pantech Breeze C520 flip phone in black to its offering later this week. The two-tone phone features an all-black exterior along with a silver-painted interior and has the same features as the current all-silver Breeze, including a VGA camera with video capture capabilities, access to e-mail and a WAP web browser. Instant messaging via mobile clients for AOL, Yahoo and Windows Live Messenger is also supported, all via the EDGE network.
AT&T is warning customers to be especially careful in charging its Quickfire messaging phone, a circulating letter shared with Electronista reveals. Some owners of the Quickfire GTX75 are said to be connecting the AC charger upside-down, an action which requires forcing the connector into the phone. The result can be "significant overheating," according to AT&T, which has in turn led to the letter, explaining how to properly charge a Quickfire.
Microsoft could have Windows 7 on shipping PCs by September, Compal president Ray Chen said today at an investor's conference. The PC contractor executive understands from plans that the software should be available in either late September or early October. The news would corroborate word of an April release candidate that would let Microsoft finish, manufacture and deliver Windows 7 well ahead of the holidays.
A research note from Janco Partners analyst Mike Hickey today claims that Sony is likely on the verge of a price drop for the PlayStation 3. The researcher cites channel investigations that hint at a cut within the "next couple of days," though how deep the cuts would run and whether they would apply to both 80GB and 160GB models isn't known. Sony introduced these models just last year but hasn't lowered prices since the $399, 40GB PS3 shipped in 2007.
AMD Business Development head John Fruehe late yesterday confirmed plans for his company's first 6-core processor. Nicknamed "Istanbul," a variant of the company's current 45 nanometer Opteron processors is due in the second half of this year and should provide significantly more simultaneous computing power without hurting power use. Fruehe claims tests show the same levels of energy and heat as for existing quad-core Opterons.
Nintendo on Wednesday announced its recently-announced DSi portable gaming device will soon be available in pink, green and metallic green in addition to the traditional white and black. In its home market of Japan, the new colors of the DSi will be available on March 20th, while previously mentioned black and blue versions of the system will come to North America on April 5th. Black and white DSis will ship in Europe on April 3rd and Australia on April 2nd. Nintendo has not mentioned when the new colors will launch in these regions, however. The black and white DSis are currently available in Japan.
Panasonic, Philips and Sony today published plans to create a single licensing firm for Blu-ray discs. The new, unnamed company will let companies visit just one place to get rights to make Blu-ray burners, movie players and discs and as a result should lower the costs of the licenses themselves. The group estimates that the cost of a license should drop "at least" 40 percent versus today's approach, which requires talking to each of the three partner companies individually.
Intel reportedly plans to release a pair of significantly faster ultra low-voltage processors for ultraportable notebooks within the space of a month. Sources at PC builders tell Digitimes that the company will introduce a 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo, the SU9600, that represents a significant boost in performance over the older 1.4GHz chip but should still consume just 10W of power. It should also be accompanied by a similar jump with a Core 2 Solo SU3500 chip that upgrades the single-core chip speed from 1.2GHz to 1.4GHz.
Dell this morning revealed more ambitious plans for its desktops with an early launch for the Studio XPS 435. Unlike the original, the new version has its own, much sleeker case design with better airflow and more room for expansion: the new system has room for up to 24GB of memory (up from 12GB), holds as much as 4.5TB of storage and carries a 475W power supply that can handle significantly more expansion than most pre-made PCs.
Vestalife has released the Butterfly, an iPod speaker dock that allows users to listen to their music while charging the device. The Butterfly consists of two speakers at the top, an iPod docking station in the middle which holds most iPod models, LED volume indicators, and an auxiliary-in jack that allows users to connect non-docking iPods, CD players, or other MP3 devices. Also included in the Butterfly is a USB port that enables synchronizing with a computer.
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