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Western Digital has announced an upgrade to its WD ShareSpace four-bay storage system, resulting in an increased storage capacity from 4TB up to 8TB. The enhanced storage is made possible by incorporating 2TB Cavier Green drives. In addition to the larger capacity, the new version is also designed to improve the system's read and write speeds by up to 30 percent for large media files, and includes a DLNA certified media server to help with streaming music, photos, and videos to popular DLNA-certified devices such as the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.
Asus has expanded its computer offerings to include the new U and UX series of ultra-thin notebooks. Both will offer LED-backlit displays that automatically adjust the brightness for the environment. The U models will offer a 15.6-inch display, Intel Core 2 Duo processor, NVIDIA GeForce G105M GPU and hard-drive capacities up to 500GB. The touchpad features lights that follow the user's fingertips, while the keyboard will also offer backlighting.
A California court has dismissed Gibson Guitar's lawsuit against Activision over the input devices used in the Guitar Hero game. The gaming company was sued for violating the "'405 Patent" which covers a system for generating and controlling a simulated musical concert experience, although the claims are geared for using real guitars as input for applications such as in-store demos. The court's strongly worded filing claims that Gibson's arguments "border on the frivolous."
Despite the buzz surrounding the unreleased Pre handset, Palm expects its financial report to show a continued decline in revenue through the third quarter of FY09 as the company experiences reduced demand for its older Centro and Treo devices. The delayed launch of the Treo Pro in the United States and the current economic recession have further contributed to the company's troubles.
After recently unveiling the M8 handset, Meizu CEO J. Wong has announced a new handset, the Meizu M9, is already in the works. It will be available in two versions, the M9c and M9t, with the former supporting conventional CDMA2000 networks and the latter built to work on China's government-supported TD-SCDMA 3G network.
Sony late on Monday announced it has added four new earbud headphones to its EX series, with the flagship MDR-EX500LP and MDR-EX300LP headphones as well as the lowest-cost EX earbuds to date, the MDR-EX33LP and MDR-EX35LP. All ship with three removable hybrid silicone rubber tips in three sizes to allow users to fit the earbuds into their ear canals. These work together with a more rigid internal silicone ring than before to exclude ambient sound.
ASUS had a number of new product announcements at CeBIT in Germany, including news about its Eee Keyboard which, as the name implies, combines a touchpad screen and computer hardware into a keyboard that is five inches deep. ASUS' chairman, Jonney Shih, said the hybrid PC and input device will launch in the second quarter of the year and probably by June. The company's CEO, Jerry Shen, said the company will have a wireless and wired version of the PC for connecting to monitors or TVs.
As promised, Taiwan-based Gigabyte came fully prepared to CeBIT in Germany, unveiling no less than one notebook, three new netbooks and a dock for one of them. The Gigabyte Touch Note M1028 has a 10.1-inch touchscreen that swivels, and all four variations are powered by Intel's newer 1.66GHz Atom N280 processor. The 160GB hard drive is pre-loaded with Windows XP home, and 1GB of RAM is standard, though upgradable to 2GB.
At the PMA show in Las Vegas today, Sakar has debuted a range of Vivitar-branded digital and video cameras and matching add-ons. The new products represent the first to be released from the brand since it was purchased by Sakar last year. The Vivitar V8400P is an 8.1-megapixel shooter capable of taking photos at depths up to 30 feet. It has an 8x digital zoom and a 2.4-inch LCD screen. The 32MB of internal memory can be expanded via an SD memory card slot. The shockproof camera can capture videos and will cost just short of $130 when it is released.
Native Instruments has released Maschine, a new hardware and software package meant for beat production. The suite enables automatic recording and editing of internal or external audio, and includes functions for repeating, slicing or auto-mapping beats. The bundled performance controller provides 16 illuminated pads, 11 rotary knobs, and 41 buttons. Musicians can also use the software as a plug-in for any software sequencer that supports VST, AU or RTAS.
Nearly one quarter of US phones are smartphones and are driven by trends the iPhone put in place, findings from the NPD Group show. About 23 percent of phones fit into the advanced category by the end of 2008, or double the share of a year earlier. Exactly half of these were touchscreen devices, a feat which NPD directly credits to Apple popularizing the format through the iPhone and pushing other carriers and phone makers to follow suit.
At the CeBIT show currently taking place in Germany, ASUS has introduced a new range of multimedia-oriented notebook PCs, the K-series, made up of the K40IJ, K40IN, K50AB, K51AB, K50IJ and K70IO models. The two K40s sport a 14-inch screen, the K50s a 15.6-inch display, while the K70IO has a 17.3-inch LCD. All have a textured surface that extends to their touchpads, while strategically-placed cooling vents that keep the contact surfaces cool to the touch even after prolonged use.
US President Obama on Tuesday afternoon confirmed that he has chosen Julius Genachowski to serve as the FCC's chairman. The President chose the new official based on his "diverse and unparalleled experience" with technology, which includes a former tenure as chief counsel to the FCC chairman during the Clinton administration, a role Chief of Business Operations at InterActiveCorp, and board positions on multiple web firms such as Expedia and The Motley Fool.
Rather than focus on its navigators, Mio today launched the Explora K70. One of the company's first phones to depend almost exclusively on its 3.5-inch touchscreen for its interface, the phone is also the company's first to carry 3G over HSPA as well as the firm's signature GPS in a single device. Appropriately, the K70 draws on Mio's experience with GPS and has turn-by-turn navigation with a bird's-eye view.
ASUS' centerpiece at the CeBIT expo today is a new addition to the Eee PC family. Nicknamed the Seashell for its blue-and-white colors, the design is much rounder and has a thinner, tapered design very similar to that of the MacBook Air, including for its side ports and sealed-in battery. The trade-off produces a 10-inch netbook which is an inch thick only at one point and is comparatively light at 2.4 pounds.
Dell today unveiled a limited run of its 15.4-inch Studio notebook, appropriately named the Studio 15 Special Edition. Compared to the standard Studio 15s, the Special Edition gets an LED-backlit display and a Black Vapor exterior paint scheme. Technically, the Special Edition is available in three separate trims with various levels of equipment. All share a 2.0GHz Intel Pentium dual core CPU and Intel's integrated 4500MHD graphics processor, while the display has a 1440x900 resolution, a step up from the regular Studio 15's 1280x800 resolution.
Panasonic has announced a second entry into its Lumix G series of Micro Four Thirds cameras, the GH1. The camera continues to use a 12.1-megapixel sensor, but introduces the ability to record in 1080p, 24fps video, echoing one of the primary features of Canon's more expensive EOS-5D Mk. II. Video is saved in AVCHD format to the camera's SDHC slot, and can additionally be scaled down to 1280x720 for 60fps recording. Shutter and aperture settings can be tweaked to produce special effects.
JVC this afternoon picked PMA as the venue to launch the Everio X line of camcorders. Starting with the GZ-X900, the range stresses both HD video capture as well as unusually strong still image photography in the same device. The X900 can record widescreen 1080i video in AVCHD format but is also capable of shooting 9-megapixel native images and can shoot consecutive images at up to 15FPS. A mixed shooting mode also lets the camera take 5-megapixel shots while recording 1080i movies, potentially taking still photos up to the SDHC card's storage limit at the slowest 4 frames per second.
Pentax today followed up on late leaks with the formal debut of the X70. Considered a "bridge" camera, the 12-megapixel camera is one of the longest-ranged ultrazooms with a 24x, 26-624mm equivalent lens and with image stabilization built into the sensor. It also provides full manual control and settings often reserved for SLRs, with aperture and shutter priority providing photographers an in-between option for photography.
Roku today gave its Roku Player support for Amazon's Video on Demand service. The feature gives the networked media hub its first non-subscription video model and lets owners both rent movies on a title-by-title basis as well as buy them; as Amazon allows online streaming, movies and TV shows can be seen without needing permanent storage as on the Apple TV or VUDU Box. Roku's interface for Amazon also trumps the Netflix solution by letting owners browse and buy directly from the TV interface rather than require users add titles separately on a website.
On Tuesday at the PMA expo, Sigma has demonstrated the DP2 digital camera, a successor to the DP1. First seen back in September, the DP2 shares its 14-megapixel FOVEON X3 image sensor with the company's digital SLR, the SD14, which is much larger than the sensor in other digital cameras. Touted as a compact digital camera with most of the functionality of a DSLR, the DP2 also has an ISO sensitivity range that tops out at ISO 3,200.
NVIDIA's turn at CeBIT on Tuesday saw the company launch four new mobile graphics chips, including new models for thin notebooks. At the top of the range are the GeForce GTX 260M and GTX 280M. Both are updated versions of the 9800M series and use manufacturing refinements to run up to 50 percent faster than the outgoing models without consuming more energy. Both also support SLI for twin graphics hardware as well as Hybrid SLI to switch to integrated graphics in battery-saving situations.
Eye-Fi took advantage of PMA to launch the Eye-Fi Share Video and Eye-Fi Explore Video SD cards. The new models move to SDHC to get a total of 4GB in storage and now also support direct uploading of short-form videos over Wi-Fi to Flickr and YouTube in addition to still photos at Flickr and other sites. As before, the Explore adds geotagging to locate shots.
At CeBIT on Monday, ASUS revealed a number of new and concept products, including the ASUS-Lamborghini VX5 notebook with a highly-styled chassis meant to mimic the aggressive lines of the Lamborghini Reventón supercar. As well, the notebook will be the first to ship with a 1TB solid state drive (SSD). Like the 16-inch VX5 introduced at CES earlier this year, the notebook otherwise sports an Intel Core 2 Quad CPU of unspecified clock speed and 4GB of RAM.
Otherwise unchanged since August of 2007, Apple has at last released an update to the Mac mini, its lowest-priced and most compact desktop Mac. The two new versions of the computer use updated 2GHz Core 2 Duo processors, but primarily benefit in a switch from Intel integrated graphics to NVIDIA's GeForce 9400M chipset, the same used in modern unibody MacBooks. Graphics functions are said to be five times faster than before; nevertheless, the computer uses less than 13W of power when idle, which is said to make it the most energy-efficient desktop available.
Apple on Tuesday morning updated the Mac Pro Mac Pro based on Intel's Nehalem architecture. The first-ever Mac to use the technology now supports triple-channel, DDR3 ECC memory and builds a memory controller directly into an updated, faster line of Xeon processors. Doing so gives about 2.4 times more memory bandwidth and reduces memory lag by about 40 percent, according to Apple. The new systems also have an updated interior that provides much easier access to RAM slots as well as space for a RAID card that doesn't require cables to link with hard drives in the four bays above.
Casio this morning gave the Exilim Zoom a new entry-level model in the EX-Z29. The camera has a now standard 10-megapixel sensor with a 3X zoom lens but is designed to both be easier to carry and now comes with 23 presets (dubbed Best Shot modes) to simplify shooting under specific conditions. Casio relies solely on DSP-based stabilization to reduce blurring but adds face detection, 16:9 video recording and a full-auto mode for absolute beginners.
Garmin at CeBIT today broke new ground for itself with two new nuvi navigators. The nuvi 1200 and 1300 are the first devices from Garmin to explicitly support pedestrian GPS mapping in urban areas; adding a CityXplorer map pack provides not only walking directions across parks and other areas off-limits in road-only maps but will also plot routes based on buses, subways and other public transit. To help, the devices themselves are also significantly slimmer than Garmin's exclusively automotive devices.
Kodak today reserved a single camera for PMA with an updated entry level camera in the EasyShare Z series. The 10-megapixel Z915 adopts a semi-pro camera body to get a 10X, image stabilized lens but is designed more for typical home users with software features like fully-automated scene detection (here called Smart Capture) as well as powering the camera through AA batteries that are more friendly to vacationers than lithium-ion packs.
AMD has used the start of CeBIT to launch two new notebook graphics chips that represent firsts for any video chipset from the company. Both the ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4830 and 4860 are made using a 40 nanometer manufacturing process that lets AMD step up the complexity of the processors without significantly impacting relative power or heat output. The feat lets either chipset carry 640 stream (effects) cores and run at clock speeds of 450MHz or 600MHz (for the 4830) and 650MHz (4860) without necessarily requiring a large, desktop replacement-class notebook.
Psion has reacted to Intel's lawsuit over the term 'netbook' by filing its own countersuit, arguing that the chip-maker's claims are "barred by reason of Plaintiff's own unclean hands," as the legal battle between the companies continues to develop, according to Ars Technica. The allegations further accuse Intel of "unjustly benefiting from Psion's goodwill and reputation" and "willfully and maliciously" encouraging other companies to participate in the trademark infringement.
Sony has introduced a new line of audio/video receivers that are geared for high-definition home theaters. The flagship STR-DN1000 features a piano-black gloss finish that matches the company's latest Blu-ray players. The receiver provides 7.1-channel audio playback, with 110 watts per channel at 8-Ohms, and support for codecs such as Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD High Resolution Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio and LCPM. The receiver can also route 1080p 60/24 HD video signals, while all incoming analog signals are upscaled.
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