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The California Energy Commission has approved a new set of efficiency standards aimed at regulating televisions sold in the state, according to CNET News. The rules apply to displays 58-inches or smaller, requiring retailers to stock TVs with 33 percent less energy consumption by 2011. The terms increase once again for 2013, with mandatory reductions in consumption by an average of 49 percent.
AT&T has fired back at Verizon's "there's a map for that" commercials by launching its own critical ad. The carrier hired film actor Luke Wilson, who guides viewers through a chart comparing several aspects of the 3G networks. Wilson credits AT&T with having the fastest network, the ability to simultaneously use voice and Internet, the most popular smartphones and access to over 100,000 apps.
Judge Timothy Batten Sr. dealt an early setback to AT&T's lawsuit against Verizon over allegedly misleading ads by refusing to grant a requested injunction that would have forced Verizon to take the ads down immediately. The US District Court ruled that the TV spots might be misunderstood but weren't harmfully deceptive, thus leaving no urgent need to change or withdraw the ads ahead of court proceedings. AT&T will have a second chance to persuade Judge Batten at one more hearing on December 16th.
Dell on Wednesday introduced six new inkjet all-in-one printers geared for home and business use. All of the models feature print speeds of up to 33 pages per minute in monochrome or 25 pages per minute in color. Monochrome copy speeds are claimed to reach 25 pages per minute, with color copies processed as fast as 21 pages per minute. All "w" variants feature integrated wireless connectivity, while an optional Bluetooth dongle can be connected to the USB Pictbridge port.
Magazine publisher Condé Nast today revealed that it's taking the unusual step of optimizing its publications with Apple's rumored tablet in mind. The agency doesn't claim to MediaMemo that it's privy to Apple's design but expects Wired, and later its 17 other magazines, to be ready in a format that works with the device by mid-2010. It will allow both actual-size and optimized formats and should include both mixed media and hooks for social networking.
Microsoft today inadvertently previewed its next mobile OS through a preview of Office Mobile 2010. Point 5 in a description of the beta shows a screenshot of the productivity suite running in an environment clearly unrelated to Windows Mobile 6.5 and which is consistent with earlier shots that point to a more touchscreen-friendly interface. At the same time, it retains the familiar two-button options at the bottom of the screen and generates touch lists not unlike the current platform.
The European Ombudsman has reprimanded European Union regulators on Wednesday for mistakes in its antitrust probe of Intel. In his report, ombudsman P. Nikiforos Diamandouros said the Commission failed to make a proper record of its meeting with Dell in relation to the Intel investigation. The note did not conclude whether or not the EU anti-trust body infringed Intel's rights of defense.
Microsoft on Wednesday released an early beta version of the upcoming Silverlight software. Version 4 adds a variety of new features including the ability to integrate HTML content within applications, while Google's Chrome browser will also be supported. The company claims performance optimizations allow apps to start quicker and run up to twice as fast as they would with Silverlight 3.
Enhance Technology has launched the EnhanceRAID TS800 series, a new desktop RAID line. The series includes four main models based on connection options: IP (iSCSI), SC (SCSI), SS (SAS) and FC (Fiber Channel). Each is powered by an 80-plus efficient power supply, and includes an integrated hardware RAID controller. Eight removable, key-locked drive trays are available, with light pipes displaying disk activity.
Qualcomm today showed off a new implementation of its mirasol technology that could lead to a major advancement in e-book readers. The semiconductor designer has developed an early mockup of an e-book reader that has a 5.7-inch, 1024x768 color e-paper display. While not fully functional, it represents a design that should not only be capable of supporting richer colors than any other reader but also playing video.
T-Mobile on Wednesday released new T-Mobile Complete prepaid packages that include a choice of handsets smartphone and one month of talk time without an associated contract. With this move, the provider has become the first in the US to offer a prepaid BlackBerry handset, the Curve 8520.
Samsung has announced the release of its latest portable multimedia player in its home market of South Korea with the YP-R0. The device has a 2.6-inch color LCD screen and is available in two models: one with 4GB of built-in memory, the other with 8GB. Either sports a microSDHC memory card slot for adding up to 16GB of storage space.
Flip will reportedly release a new USB camcorder with built-in Wi-Fi functionality early next year, thanks to Cisco, which bought Flip maker Pure Digital earlier this year. While this is not official, it should allow the ultraportable camcorder to upload videos directly to video-hosting sites over private and public Wi-Fi networks. The new Flip will purportedly also have a large screen that would slide out of the way to grant access to the record and menu buttons.
Google's frequently rumored self-branded Android phone could skirt around its partners' worries by using only Internet service if a source is true. The still unknown device would primarily be intended for data and would use VoIP for its calls. At least AT&T has expressed interest in supplying the network for the phone and could let customers pay as little as $20 per month for access, although TechCrunch understands that "conditions" may be involved at that price.
Nokia on Wednesday lived up to an earlier promise by officially announcing its N900 smartphone is now available for purchase in the US. The company's first phone to use Maemo Linux is being touted as a mobile computer, thanks in large part to the OS and its ability to Mozilla-based browser with Flash support as well as the capability to run many apps at the same time. There is also 32GB of storage space available to users.
Qualcomm chief Paul Jacobs in an interview today said his company has been talking with Apple about providing chips for the iPhone. He didn't provide specifics but tried to downplay the significance for Bloomberg, explaining that Qualcomm's size means it talks to "everybody." He also pointed out that company "haven't made [a deal] yet" with Apple and didn't say what progress if any had been achieved.
Video on demand service Hulu, which offers the majority of its content for free to US viewers, is adding a dedicated music video section to its site on Wednesday. Together with music label EMI, the first artist's videos will be singer Norah Jones, before more artists' work is featured over time. All of Jones' videos will be on the site, as will footage of four concerts and several of her interviews.
Still adding to its CDMA smartphones, Telus today gave that side of its network an upgrade through its version of the BlackBerry Storm2. The successor to the original Storm has made some improvements, including replacing the mechanical click-down touchscreen with a piezoelectric system. It still generates a physical response but still allows for basic multi-touch inputs to speed up typing.
Microsoft on the second day of its Professional Developers Conference by providing an early look at Internet Explorer 9. The new browser is just three weeks into development but is already expected to significantly outperform its predecessor. The new version will take advantage of hardware acceleration from graphics chipsets that support D2D in DirectX to offload many of the visual elements of browsing, such as maps or sub-pixel rendering. Microsoft's aim is to let the hardware "shine through" in the browser, chief software architect Steven Sinofsky said.
Nokia will abandon Symbian for all its Nseries services by 2012, the company said at a launch event for the N900. The Maemo-based smartphone is the only one of its type in Nokia's lineup so far, but the company plans to gradually phase out Symbian S60 on all its Nseries devices over time. It should eventually end in relatively mainstream devices and not just high-end flagships like the N900, which itself is considered a "bridge" between the old and new worlds.
Short-range wireless device maker Wireless Dynamics today introduced its iCarte 110, which is the first device to bring two-way near-field communications (NFC) and RFID to the iPhone and iPod touch. The iCarte can transfer info and make contactless payments by containing an embedded smart chip which can act as a debit, credit, pre-paid or loyalty card, turning the iPhone into an electronic wallet.
Sony today acted on early teases by updating the PlayStation 3's firmware to 3.10. The update is the first to integrate with Facebook and links with an account to push news to the social network in certain conditions: it can share news of of trophy milestones, buying new games or game events in future Facebook-aware titles. Code in the web browser has also been improved to better display Facebook itself.
ASUS today officially took the wraps from the first notebook to use NVIDIA's GeForce 3D Vision. The G51J 3D uses both NVIDIA's special glasses and a 120Hz LCD to add spatial depth to games that support it, such as Arkham Asylum and Borderlands. The combination of a 1.6GHz Core i7 and a GeForce GTX 260M help run the games at the 15.6-inch notebook's native 1366x768 resolution.
Sony on Wednesday began taking pre-orders for its most advanced e-book reader, the Reader Daily Edition. The third e-book Reader from Sony, following on the Reader Pocket Edition and Reader Touch Edition, is the first Sony Reader to get a 3G connection for faster connection to Sony's eBookstore. It also sports a larger 7-inch touchscreen for easier reading of digital newspapers and magazines, and can be viewed in either portrait or landscape orientations.
Sony Ericsson is in the middle of a surprise, major cost-cutting measure that will close some of its key buildings, an internal memo has revealed today. The cellphone designer is notifying workers that it's closing its Research Triangle Park facility in North Carolina as well as offices in Chennai (India), Kista (Sweden) and Miami. As a result, Engadget hears the company will have to drop 2,000 jobs, or more than four times the 450 jobs it dropped in 2008.
Garmin on Wednesday introduced a new Custom Maps capability that lets users take existing paper or digital maps and upload them to their portable Garmin navigators. The free service is compatible with Dakota, Oregon and Colorado outdoor GPS handhelds. Those using Macs and PCs can use the service.
Google's rumored self-developed Android phone is real but has been pushed back, a scoop claimed on late Tuesday. The handset would be built by a third party, most likely LG or Samsung rather than the previously preferred HTC, but would carry only Google's branding and is said by TechCrunch to be designed almost exclusively according to Google's design. It would launch in early 2010 after a delay but would receive heavy marketing as soon as January.
AMD on Wednesday bragged of the graphics performance crown with the launch of the ATI Radeon HD 5970. The card uses two 5800 series chipsets on one card to provide the most performance possible. While each has the speed of a 5850 with a 725MHz primary clock speed and 1GHz GDDR5 memory, the 3,200 stream (effects) processors, 160 texture units and 2GB of memory give it as much performance as two 5850s but in half the space.
Casio today added a new category to its Exilim cameras tailored just to ruggedized models. The Exilim G series is headed up by the EX-G1 and claims the title of the thinnest toughened camera: it measures just 0.78 inches but can survive drops of 7 feet and is both dustproof as well as waterproof at depths of up to 10 feet for up to an hour. Winter travelers can also use it as it operates in temperatures as low as 14F (-10C).
Sharp is allegedly readying an Android-based handset for the local Japanese market, according to MarketWatch. The report, originating from Nikkei, credits Sharp executive Masami Ohbatake with making the announcement, although he declined to disclose which carriers will get the device first. NTT DoCoMo is expected to be the "first in line," however.
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