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Sony on Thursday introduced plans to launch an online portal for music, movies, books, and other content such as applications, according to BusinessWeek. The market, named Sony Online Service, is expected to fulfill CEO Howard Stringer's goals and help the company compete against alternatives such as iTunes.
Twitter today added its promised geolocation feature for tweets. The addition gives any app using the API, but not the Twitter site itself, the option of tagging posts with a location as well as to automatically draw on the location for position-based features, such as finding tweets in a certain area. It isn't exclusive to GPS-equipped devices and will work with Wi-Fi and other methods that can generate the relevant data.
Dell today posted disappointing results for its latest quarter ended in October. The company saw its year-over-year revenue drop 15 percent to about $12.9 billion and its net income drop even further, falling 54 percent to $337 million. Both decreases were blamed on poor results both in the public sector and in its staple home PC business, where its shipments were up about 17 percent compared to a year earlier but its revenue was down 10 percent, an indication that many buyers were opting for less expensive PCs.
The recently launched Palm Pixi handset is now selling for just $25 at Amazon, or about $75 less than it did at launch, though it still requires a two-year contract with Sprint. It's not known why the price cut has been made just days after the phone's release.
Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer today warned at a yearly shareholders' meeting that the company needed to improve the standing of Windows in the future. The executive was emphatic that Microsoft was still in a comfortable position with "96 out of 100" choosing Windows worldwide but acknowledged that Apple had cut into Microsoft's share in the past year. He downplayed the amount, labeling it a "a couple of tenths of a percent" but added that even the claimed amount was significant and worth fighting for.
Microsoft announced on Thursday it will soon release Power Pack 3 for Windows Home Server. The update is meant to improve the integration of Windows Home Server with Windows 7 and Windows Media Center by allowing backup and restore of Windows 7 comptuers, Windows 7 Libraries integration, new features in Media Center and added support for netbooks. Windows Home Server is meant for network-attached storage devices.
Canadian wireless provider Telus is suing competitor Rogers over ads that say Telus' wireless voice and data network is less reliable than its own. Such claims can no longer be made, Telus argues, as it recently launched a 21Mbps HSPA+ network that is on par with Rogers' in terms of speeds. Telus claims requests made to Rogers to stop airing these inaccurate ads were ignored, resulting in the lawsuit filed through the British Columbia Supreme Court.
Olive has introduced a new home music server with its Olive 4 HD which sports a 2TB capacity and the ability to rip music CDs. Compared to the earlier and similar looking Opus N°4, there is a digital to analog converter (DAC) and all the ports are now gold-plated. The DAC is a high resolution unit in the form of Texas Instrument's 192kHz/24-bit Burr-Brown PCM1792A.
Hasselblad today kept its H3DII camera line alive by adding a specialized model, the H3DII-50 Multi-Shot. It addresses image quality through an unusual approach that drops the need for the Bayer filtering common on virtually all cameras: it takes four shots, each offset by a pixel, and composites these into a single image. The result is a shot where every pixel has full color information and eliminates the visual artifacts that creep up on even better cameras, such as moiré from the interpolated color values.
The recently highlighted Qualcomm Mirasol e-reader prototype may be the first to offer the capability to play action games, thanks to a gaming controller accessory revealed on Thursday. The mirasol display technology is capable of reproducing colors and can play back video and the company behind it is seeing a potential as a gaming platform for its device. The plug-in controller has two control sticks, like many popular gaming consoles.
Dell today quietly slipped the Studio 17 Touch into its lineup as its first touchscreen notebook. The 17-inch system adds multi-touch input and carries Dell's own suite of touch apps, such as its photo browser. Most of the design remains the same and is treated as a desktop replacement and media center hybrid with a 2.1-channel JBL speaker system and HDMI output.
Google provided its first public details of Chrome OS at a special event today. Electronista supplied coverage of the just-ended even; all updates are listed in reverse chronological order. Among the news unveiled are the first public view of the OS, that there will be no beta today and that the platform is being open-sourced early as Chromium OS a year ahead of its planned late 2010 release.
Sony's PS3 gaming console may soon benefit for the Mozilla Firefox web browser, according to a rumor in a Wednesday PSInsider report. The source is said to be close to Sony, and indicates the two companies have been in talks regarding the matter. Whether a deal has been reached in the negotiations is not known, the source points out.
Virgin Mobile's Canadian division will soon carry the iPhone, according to an announcement. The company has revealed few details, except that it will sell both the 3G and 3GS, and that a launch should happen sometime "in the coming months." The device will also be the carrier's first HSPA-based phone, possible through an upgraded Bell cellular network.
AT&T on Thursday announced it will soon add the HP Mini 110 netbook to its range of 3G mobile broadband equipped netbooks. The Windows 7-equipped netbook sports a 10.1-inch LED display, an Intel Atom CPU and 1GB of RAM. There is otherwise a 160GB hard drive, along with a webcam and built-in microphone.
Despite an official promise of launching its 9-inch mobile tablet PC at the end of October, Archos has not delivered and is now saying the device will not see store shelves until early in 2010. The device will ship early in December, but retailers such as Amazon and Walmart will not get the device until the new year. Its specs are expected to carry over, including the inclusion of Windows 7 Starter Edition and the $500 price tag.
Intel's first Celeron processor based on its 32 nanometer Arrandale design should ship this spring, a leak says today. The P4500 will clock in at just 1.86GHz but should be a dual-core example and have 2MB of Level 2 cache and perform faster than an older 45nm Celeron. Both Hyperthreading and Turbo Boost will reportedly be disabled, as with the Core i3, to keep the price down and differentiate from faster Core i5 and i7 models.
Germany's Sharkoon is coming out with a USB 3.0 hard drive dock that allows users to plug in any IDE or SATA hard drives and transfer data through a fast USB 3.0 connection. The Quickport Combo is an upright drive station that can support 2.5- and 3.5-inch IDE or SATA hard drives as well as optical 5.25-inch IDE drives. SATA hard drives can be plugged directly into the top-facing dock, while IDE devices are connected via the dedicated front connector.
Two of Lenovo's first notebooks to use AMD processors have been given hard specs in a German leak. True to form, the ThinkPad X100e is now known to be Lenovo's first portable in between netbooks and notebooks and should use a 1.6GHz Athlon Neo, an 11.6-inch 1366x768 display and a multi-touch trackpad. Configurations will vary but should hold up to 4GB of RAM, a 3- or 6-cell battery, and between 160GB and 500GB of hard drive space.
iBuyPower on Wednesday introduced its latest gaming PC, the Chimera 2. The various hardware components are housed in a new Chimera Inferno II Chassis with a wraparound flame color scheme. Users can spec a 2.66GHz Intel Core i5 or i7 but can also switch over to AMD's 2.8GHz or 3.2GHz Phenom II processors.
Imation this morning made further inroads into hard drives by shipping two new designs. The Imation Pro WX gives both Macs and PCs their first Wireless USB external hard drive and transfers data at a usable 15MB per second over the air. It comes in a single 1.5TB capacity and uses a physical USB adapter to provide its wireless connection. Imation sells it for $450.
Livescribe today followed trends today by launching its own app store for its intelligent pens like the Pulse. The unusual addition uses a combination of the pen output, screen and audio features to provide a mix of games, education tools and utilities. In many cases, users draw some of the interface itself; language tools speak dialogue.
Verizon added a new rugged phone to its slate through the Casio G'zOne Rock. The clamshell is hardened to the military's 810F standards for dust- and waterproofing, shock and temperature but also now has six apps tailored for hiking and other outdoor activities. It uses its GPS both for a distance-aware compass as well as a pedometer; it also has independent apps for the lunar calendar, sunrise/sunset, temperatures and the tides.
ASUS' Eee PC 1201N today received more definitive release details for the US. The American version will have both the 1.6GHz dual-core Atom 330 and NVIDIA Ion chipset that should give it both faster overall performance and the option of 1080p video, including in Flash 10.1. The netbook will be one of the first to come with Windows 7 Home Premium and accordingly come with 2GB of RAM and a 250GB hard drive.
Apple may have delayed the launch of its repeatedly rumored tablet line to incorporate newer parts that could include an OLED touchscreen, a purported leak claims today. While an often mentioned 10.6-inch version with an LCD is still deemed on tap, the entire line may have been moved to the second half of 2010 to accommodate a 9.7-inch OLED from LG Display. The company may be delaying the launch to wait for OLED prices to fall, as a panel costs $500 today where Apple could save $200 to $300 just by waiting several months.
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