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BFG Technologies has announced that its Phobos Advanced and Elite edition gaming and home theater computer systems now integrate Intel's Core i7 950 and 975 processors, respectively. The Advanced version features a liquid cooling system for the CPU, along with three 1GB GeForce GTX 285 GPUs and two 300GB Velociraptor hard drives. The basic configuration also includes 6GB of DDR3 memory and Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit.
Sony Ericsson plans to drop the controversial Memory Stick Micro (M2) standard, according to TrustedReviews. The company's global marketing director, Fortuné Alexander, acknowledged the transition to microSD and microSDHC formats for upcoming devices. Sony Ericsson recently announced the Aino and Satio handsets, both integrating microSDHC slots instead of requiring Memory Sticks.
Although Apple's exclusive deal with AT&T is expected to last at least through 2010, Bernstein Research analysts Craig Moffett and Toni Sacconaghi claim iPhone sales could double if the device was also distributed by Verizon. The catch, however, would be a drop in subsidies attached to each phone. While AT&T has been estimated to pay a $450 subsidy per device, a non-exclusive deal would likely bring the value down to around $250 to $350.
PC and games console peripherals maker Nyko has recently announced the upcoming release of two new peripherals, the Zoom Case for the portable Nintendo DSi gaming system and the Type Pad Pro for the Nintendo Wii console. The former adds an 8x optical zoom to the DSi's 640x480 camera thanks to a detachable lens and has the added benefit of protecting the DSi as it wraps it entirely.
A pre-production version of the upcoming Nokia 6790 Mako has been photographed and tested in a new hands-on. The messaging slider is described by BGR as "ridiculously lackluster" despite veering sharply from Nokia's usual designs and appears more an advanced feature phone in the vein of the LG Xenon than suggested by the presence of Symbian S60. As the prototype runs beta software, however, expectations are that the device could improve by the time it's released.
As part of its E3 introductions, Microsoft has said it will add both a full game download service as well as social networking components. Tentatively called Games on Demand, the former will give gamers the option of buying entire Xbox 360 games that then exist solely on the console's hard drive. Buying itself will also be easier and, for the games alone, will allow purchasing directly with a credit card instead of having to first buy Microsoft Points.
Alereon on Monday announced it will show off an Ultra WideBand (UWB) AL5301 peripheral for iPhone and iPods that would allow users to sync the devices with PCs and Macs wirelessly. At the same time, the adapter has an extra battery pack that provides extra operating life for the Apple devices, though its capacity or how much time it will add is unknown. The AL5301 will be shown to the public at the Computex show in Taipei scheduled for later in June. In the future, the AL5301 will allow for a wireless connection to HDTVs for showcasing photos or videos.
Toshiba this afternoon confirmed that it would bring its NB200 series netbooks to the US. Now called the NB205, the line is much thinner and sleeker than its earlier counterparts while also including a more comfortable, optional "chiclet" keyboard. It also promises to upstage competitors with a six-cell battery as standard and making one of its USB ports a sleep-and-charge port that can power media players, phones or other devices while the system isn't fully active.
Microsoft this afternoon unveiled a technology meant for the Xbox 360 but which is also a technology first. Nicknamed Project Natal, the system uses a camera to detect a player's entire body movement. It can not only recognize limbs and posture but is intelligent enough to distinguish between active players and those in the background. It also has a microphone and recognizes voice commands, effectively creating a true hands-free game console.
Microsoft today launched a range of changes to the Xbox 360's video features. Now rebranded as a Zune service, the former Xbox Video Marketplace will now provide videos in full 1080p and promises an "instant-on" feature that starts streaming videos almost immediately on faster connections. The extension will be available in all countries and should come along with an expansion of video rentals and purchases to 18 countries from the current 8.
LG Europe has introduced its HR400 Blu-ray player that also has a 160GB hard drive for recording TV broadcasts. There is an integrated digital DVB-T tuner in addition to an analog tuner, and YouTube support once the HR400 is connected to the Internet via its Ethernet port, which also allows for BD Live 2.0 functionality. HDMI 1.3 outputs and the necessary related internal hardware allow for 1080p, video playback with 24FPS as an option for moives.
Activision today provided fuller details of the Tony Hawk Ride controller. The board sits on the floor and is fully aware both of pressure on the board as well as movement on its sides; users can lean on the board for manuals and other such moves while using a free foot to "push" the board or assist in tricks. It can further recognize spins on the board itself for reverts or other rotation-based moves.
AMD on Monday launched the latest AMD Opteron, codenamed 'Istanbul,' as the company's first six-core server processor utilizing Direct Connect architecture. The component is designed to balance performance with power consumption, with up to 34-percent more performance-per-watt than earlier generations running on the same platform.
The Zune HD portable audio player, recently unveiled late last week, is unofficially expected to be released on September 5th, according to a recent report by long-time observer Paul Thurrott. The device had already been rumored for fall but would now launch relatively early in the year, roughly in time with Apple's yearly iPod updates.
Sony Music and online digital music retailer eMusic announced on Monday that music that is more than two years old from the record label will be added to eMusic's online store. While specifics of the deal were not disclosed, a direct result of it will see eMusic raise its prices slightly and reduce the number of downloads in its monthly plans. The classic recordings from Sony Music labels that include Columbia, RCA, and Jive, as well as artists such as Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen, and Johnny Cash, will be added to eMusic's catalog in the third quarter of the year.
Although the usage of Android for web browsing is continuing to increase, that growth has slowed substantially, figures from Net Applications are said to show. Some six months after launch -- through devices like the T-Mobile G1 -- the OS came to represent 0.0783 percent of the web market, a slight rise from the previous month's share of 0.0728. Growth has remained relatively modest since Android's fourth month however, no longer rising in bounds.
Today's featured deal from DealNN is on the 2.8GHz 24-inch iMac from MacMall.com. It has been reduced from $1799 to $1199, and until June 30th 2009 a mail in rebate offer drops the price again to $1124. This iMac has a 2.8GHz processor with 2GB of RAM and a 320GB hard drive as well as Bluetooth, iSight webcam, microphone and 8x SuperDrive.
Amazon this afternoon said that it would ship the Kindle DX on June 10th, shipping its largest e-book reader ahead of the promised summer schedule. Launched just last month, the e-paper device centers on a 9.7-inch, 1200x824 display large enough to be used for textbooks and for a larger view of newspapers and other common literature. It accordingly gets an accelerometer to auto-rotate documents for viewing in landscape while gaining native PDF support to read many free documents without needing them converted.
Taiwan-based Prime View International (PVI), one of the larger suppliers of e-paper displays, today set out plans to acquire e-paper display maker E Ink for $215 million. E Ink's displays are used in the relatively successful 6-inch Amazon Kindle 2 e-book reader as well as its rival, the Sony Reader. The company also makes a 9.7-inch display for the Kindle DX, which it similarly sells as a prototype kit to hardware developers.
Samsung continued its OLED launches on Monday by providing some added early details of its first TV-sized active matrix OLED (AMOLED) displays. Calling both "production-ready," the Korean company says the 31-inch screen will be the first-ever OLED set to produce a native 1080p resolution and will have particularly high image quality: it manages 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio while showing more than 100 percent of the NTSC color range. It will also be thinner than LCDs at just 8.9mm (0.35in) deep.
Qualcomm upped its stake in the mobile space today with an upgrade to the Snapdragon line of mobile processors. The QSD8650A jumps from the previous 1GHz to a new 1.3GHz but is also Qualcomm's first 45 nanometer processor; it's about 30 percent faster than its predecessor but simultaneously uses 30 percent less average power than earlier parts. Video performance in 3D and elsewhere has also been given a boost, the company says.
Panasonic on Monday released pricing and release information for the first portable Blu-ray disc player, the DMP-B15. First shown at this year's CES, the device sports an 8.9-inch LCD screen with 1024x600 resolution and, more importantly, Internet access via Panasonic's VIERA CAST technology along with Bonus View and BD Live functionality. This allows users to access some websites from any connected TV in their home or on the DMP-B15 itself.
Intel today confirmed previous rumors that it had reached a settlement with Psion over the use of the term "netbook." An official for the semiconductor company told the Register that the two have struck an agreement out of court but hasn't said what the terms of the deal would be. An earlier tip had suggested Psion had agree to waive any trademark claims to the word "netbook."
AMD took its graphics in a new direction on Monday by rolling out the ATI Radeon E4690. The embedded chipset has the same feature set as modern Radeon HD 4000 chipsets but fits the visual core and 512MB of GDDR3 memory all into a single 35mm package small enough for very tight spaces. It's estimated to be about three times faster than the previous E2400 and can not only produce advanced 3D but, in a rarity for the class, handle two displays at once.
ASUS may soon release its Eee PC netbooks and Eee Box nettop PCs running on the NVIDIA Ion mainboard that would tie in Intel's Atom CPU with NVIDIA's hybrid graphics and system controller combo. The computer maker is apparently already testing such configurations, Digitimes reported on Monday, citing industry sources. The same source has an Ion-based Eee Box B1006 coming to stores in the summer of this year, though no estimated dates are being guessed at.
Belkin today unveiled a pair of updated TuneBases built with the iPhone in mind. Both the TuneBase Direct and TuneBase FM route audio from Apple devices to the car stereo while simultaneously charging them over the 12-volt port and cradling them on a flexible neck that puts the iPhone at a more viewable position. Users only have to tap a button on the TuneBase itself to take or end the call in speakerphone mode and can use either model for listening to music.
Google this weekend signaled its plans to offer paid e-books through its site. The approach would let users effectively "unlock" books and view them over the web; offline reading will rely on browser caching. While potentially less convenient than downloads, the approach is said by Google senior partnership director Tom Turvey to avoid creating a "silo" that limits access and should let smartphones as well as any other devices with sufficiently advanced browsers read the text.
Samsung's Mobile Display group has unveiled a new display likely to improve the quality of touchscreen smartphones. The 800x480 AMOLED (active matrix organic light-emitting diode) screen has the resolution of the latest mobile LCDs but is far more color-rich, thinner and power-efficient. Despite the resolution increase, the panel actually increases brightness to 350 candelas and consumes 40 percent less power than an earlier 400x240 AMOLED display.
Dell on Monday gave its Studio XPS 13 and 16 notebooks the choice of a Merlot Red lid color. The option gives a matching red leather accent near the hinge and is the Studio XPS line's first color choice outside of black. Changing colors is free for either model and is available immediately through Dell's online store.
Samsung this morning bowed a new flagship camera phone. The Pixon12 upgrades the original Pixon with a namesake 12-megapixel camera that offers the highest resolution in a cellphone camera. It also gets a 28mm wide-angle lens and Xenon flash to produce shots closer to a dedicated compact camera. A 3.1-inch AMOLED screen also plays into the photography role: it more accurately reflects the view with a 10,000:1 contrast ratio and lets owners autofocus on a specific point just by touching that area on the screen.
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