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Microsoft has taken the unusual step of promoting Windows 7 in Japan with Burger King's launch of a Windows 7 Whopper. Fitting in with the software theme, the burger stacks seven patties in an otherwise normal Whopper and measures 5.1 inches tall. It also has an appropriate 777 yen ($8.53) price.
Acer has formally introduced its first Aspire One notebook with a 3D display, the 5738DG. The device offers the same basic specs as the company's 5738 notebook, but trades the multi-touch display for a TriDef 3D screen. The 1366x768 display measures 15.6 inches corner-to-corner, with 64-bit Windows 7 Home Premium as the pre-installed operating system.
Game designed Shigeru Miyamoto has provided insight into Nintendo's upcoming Wii 2 console. In an interview with Popular Mechanics, Miyamoto suggested that the Wii's successor will feature a smaller form-factor and a lower price tag. He also hinted that the company may expand the Wii's capabilities to extend beyond its basic functionality as a toy.
Comcast is continuing to expand its On Demand Online portal for streaming TV shows, although the service will only be available to the company's own broadband subscribers, according to the Associated Press. The web-based content is said to eventually match the on-demand capabilities available through certain set-top boxes.
Shure this evening launched its first set of in-ear headphones with an integrated remote control. The SE115m+ passes up Shure's usual music phone adapter for a smaller, in-line microphone and remote made just for Apple devices, including the iPhone 3GS and the third generation for both the iPod shuffle and iPod touch. While it gives up flexibility in the choice of earphones, it reduces the likelihood of the remote detaching or becoming lost.
(Updated with unveiling date) Verizon today virtually confirmed its release date for the Motorola Droid by shipping a press pack with a date. A box, obtained by Gearlog and likely others, includes just a Star Wars R2D2 toy and a sheet that mentions November while pointing to Verizon's teaser page for the Android phone. The carrier has already alluded to a November release and in a separate invitation has promised a reveal on October 28th.
Details of T-Mobile's Project Dark smartphone plan pricing scheme have been revealed, thanks to leaked documents on TMoNews. This includes an individual $80 per month plan that gives users 500 anytime minutes as well as unlimited data and text messaging, which compares favorably to AT&T's $70 plan that includes 450 minutes and unlimited data but no text messaging. The pricing includes individual plans that carry no associated two-year contracts, as well as family plans with two lines and a two-year commitment.
Lenovo today began shipping two of its ThinkPad SL series notebooks with Windows 7. The SL410 and the SL510 have 14-inch and 15.6-inch LED-backlit LCD screen, respectively, while sharing the same processor options. Either can be had with dual-core Celerons to Core 2 Duo CPUs.
The iPhone and iPod touch are pushing the entire industry towards the mobile Internet, Morgan Stanley analyst Mary Meeker said at the Web 2.0 summit yesterday. With about 57 million of Apple's devices shipped since June 2007, their growth has not only been much more aggressive than landline Internet access in general but the entire home electronics industry. Three times as many iPhone-based devices exist as did AOL and Netscape users two years into their respective histories; Apple is also already outselling the Nintendo Wii despite its products coming half a year later.
Engineers at the North Carolina State University claim to have developed a chip smaller than a human fingernail that can store 50 times more data than current DRAM memory chips of similar size, Wired reported on Tuesday. The prototype can theoretically hold 1TB, says Jagdish Narayan, a professor of materials science and engineering at the school. This was achieved by selectively doping the material, or adding impurities to change its data storage capacity. In this case, the researchers added nickel to magnesium oxide, mixing the metal and ceramic.
Netflix this week partnered with Best Buy to endow the retailer's Insignia-brand Blu-ray players with the ability to stream Netflix movies and TV shows. This partnership has resulted in two Insignia Blu-ray players with this capability, including the Insignia Advanced Series Blu-ray Player (NS-WBRDVD) and the Insignia Connected Blu-ray Player (NS-BRDVD3). Either is Internet ready, though the former uses a Wi-Fi connection for access, with the latter relying on a wired Ethernet connection. Both are Energy Star certified and feature Dolby TrueHD sound capability. Either can upconvert standard DVDs.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) today set groundwork for net neutrality in the country through a ruling that discourages Internet providers from throttling traffic. The guidelines will encourage monetary practices first, such as bandwidth caps or metered Internet access, and will accept slowing down some or all service only when necessary. All providers will also have to clearly publicize any throttling practices and give customers at least 30 days' notice, or 60 days' notice for wholesalers dependent on another Internet provider's network.
Google's rumored Audio music service will be less controversial than rumored at first based on two follow-up leaks. Multiple contacts tell Reuters that it will automatically provide players for MySpace-owned iLike or Lala when users search for songs on Google and provide at least the option of playing a sample or else buying the MP3. EMI, Sony, Universal and Warner are all believed to have linked their music to the service.
ViewSonic has recently unveiled some of its first portables above the netbook class in its Viewbook series. The 12.1-inch VB120, 13.3-inch VB130 and 14-inch VB140 Pro are all powered by Intel's CULV chips, with the VB120 getting a 1.3GHz Core 2 Duo and 2GB of RAM. It also has a 250GB hard drive preloaded with Windows 7.
HP at mid-day updated its Compaq displays with one of its first mainstream multi-touch displays. The 21.5-inch L2105tm has a built-in optical sensor that recognizes two-point touch input in operating systems that support it but can still accept input from an included stylus for artwork or other more precise apps. To help, the display is specifically designed for touch and has a fixed-height panel that won't shift around in mid-use.
A rumor from this summer has been confirmed, as Intel quietly updated its Core i7 chip range with a new flagship offering, the 3.2GHz i7 960. Based on the Bloomfield core, the chip can be overclocked to 3.46GHz when the Turbo Boost feature shuts down one or more cores. The 45nm chip otherwise has an 8MB L3 cache, a 4.8GTps (gigatransfers per second) Quick Path interface and a peak 130W power use.
ARM used its presence at TechCon3 today to unveil a new processor architecture built to speed up lower-cost handhelds. The Cortex-A5 is about twice as power-efficient as older budget designs but shares many of the same foundations as fast processors like the Cortex-A8 found in the iPhone 3GS, including the NEON vector instructions that boost media and some other tasks. It can work either as a very low-power single-core design or scale up to quad-core for more demanding devices.
AT&T has filed a lawsuit in a federal court in San Francisco on Tuesday against Samsung, LG Display, AU Optronics and other LCD makers for allegedly colluding on fixing the price of display panels in the US. According to a Wednesday Bloomberg report, AT&T claimed Samsung and six others have formed an illegal international cartel meant to "restrict competition in the United States in the market for LCD panels." In its complaint, AT&T claims this conspiracy has included communications and meetings during which defendants agreed to eliminate competition and fix the prices of LCD panels that were coming to the US.
Advance sales of Windows 7 at Amazon UK set an all-time record, the online retailer said this morning. Pre-orders for the Microsoft OS, which began in July, have been higher than for even the final Harry Potter book and in sheer numbers has only been outweighed by the release of Dan Brown's Lost Symbol. Windows 7 has also significantly outsold Windows Vista and took only eight hours to exceed what its predecessor sold during its entire pre-order run.
ARM at the TechCon3 expo starting today will begin showing working examples of its Mali graphics core. The design is now known to be much faster than most existing mobile graphics and, even with the basic single-core Mali-200, can render modern-looking 3D in 720p at 30 frames per second. In many cases it can use 4X antialiasing to clean up the image without a performance hit.
Earlier this week, Fujitsu added more notebooks to its line preloaded with Windows 7. The line centers on the 12.1-inch LifeBook T4310 and T4410 tablets with multi-touch capability, the 15.6-inch LifeBook A1220 mainstream notebook, and the 10.1-inch M2011. The T4310 and T4410 are meant for use by students and mobile professionals, respectively, each with 12.1-inch multi-touch screens with a 1366x768 resolution, 2.2GHz Core 2 Duo processors and 2GB of RAM.
HTC's Android-based Hero is selling well enough that it's causing supply issues, the company's Asia Pacific VP Jack Tong revealed on Wednesday. Sales in the phone's initial Asia and European launch areas are described as "brisk" enough that demand has put a strain on HTC's production lines and won't see manufacturing catch up until November. The pace is expected to continue at least until early 2010.
Monster Cable today catered to audiophiles with a special earphone and music combo. The Miles Davis Tribute set includes both a set of Monster's current in-ear headphones branded with the jazz musician's signature as well as a deluxe copy of Kind of Blue that brings two music CDs, a DVD and extended liner notes. The audio gear continues to center on the company's signature eartips claimed to provide better isolation than usual silicone pieces.
A rumor today hints that Google may be on the verge of launching its own music service. More than one source claims to TechCrunch that a service dubbed Google Audio is "imminent" and that it has involved securing rights from music labels over the course of the past few weeks. At least a US release is supposedly confirmed.
Dell's rumored media tablet has been confirmed today by a leak from Vietnamese source Tinhte. To be called the Streak, the device will be almost exclusively controlled by a 5-inch, 800x480 capacitive touchscreen and should not only use Android 2.0 but support multi-touch gestures, including pinch to zoom. It should have 3G onboard and will even support calls, though the size means this will be a secondary role.
RIM today confirmed early slips with a launch for the BlackBerry Bold 9700. The smartphone is a refinement of the 2008-era Bold with a more compact design but a round of improvements, including a higher-resolution 480x360 screen (up from 480x320), a 3.2-megapixel camera (improved from two), and an optical trackpad in place of the more clog-prone trackball. Wi-Fi calling is new for carriers that support UMA, like Rogers and T-Mobile.
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