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Cisco Systems has officially announced the FlipShare TV wireless distribution system that had surfaced in FCC filings late last month. Confirming earlier speculation, the device transmits video signals between a computer and a TV. Like the company's Flip recorders, the system is designed with simplicity in mind. The package includes a USB key to attach to a computer, while a small box receives the feed on the TV side.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment has introduced a new dual-format disc containing both Blu-ray and standard DVD content. The company has aimed the new discs at users planning to upgrade from DVD to Blu-ray in the future, or for owners of multiple systems utilizing both formats. Each side of the "flipper" disc contains the full film and special features.
Comcast and General Electric have allegedly finalized a deal that will land Comcast a 51 percent majority stake in NBC Universal, unnamed sources told CNBC. The sources claim only paperwork remains to be finished as the companies prepare to officially announce the merger. Vivendi is expected to quickly finish signing an agreement to sell its stake, which sits at 20 percent.
Square today took the covers off of a new mobile payment system that stands to potentially overhaul how customers pay at retail and restaurants. Created by early Twitter pioneer Jack Dorsey, the self-titled service currently uses a scanning dongle that attaches to an iPhone, iPod touch or notebook through the 3.5mm headphone jack. The add-on scans a credit card and processes the payment through an online system without having to use a relatively expensive commercial card reader and service.
The FCC late last week approved the creation of a database of white space frequencies to accelerate white space data access. Collected by a third party, the information would make a note of which frequencies are still being used by existing TV networks and thus which of the unused airwaves, or white spaces, could safely be used for wide-area networks. The database would be privately run and could charge for access to a limited number of aspects of the database, such as pre-made lists of available frequencies or registering hardware that runs at a fixed frequency.
Owners of Dell Latitude E6500 and E6400 notebooks are complaining of a problem on online forum boards that cause their 2.2GHz Intel CPUs to perform at just 1GHz. The problem is said to be triggered by any task that requires the CPU to perform intensively, including playing videos.
The world's largest cellphone maker, Nokia, is suing 11 manufacturers of LCD displays for allegedly colluding on fixing the prices of liquid crystal displays, according to a Tuesday WSJ report (subscription required). In the suit, filed on November 25th in San Francisco, Nokia maintains the companies raised the prices of LCDs above what they would have been in a competitive market, in a period ranging from January 1st, 1996, to December 11th, 2006. Nokia purchased these overpriced LCDs for its smartphones.
The Sony Ericsson Satio smartphone may soon go back on sale, as a software issue that caused it to be pulled from store shelves in the UK may have been addressed with an update. The firmware, R1CA037, downloadable over a PC and then synchronized to the handset, is said to only work with unbranded Satio devices and not ones sold by carrier Vodafone in the UK, for example. While what the update has exactly changed, if anything, remains unknown, but the phone is said to respond much faster now.
Google may be launching Android 2.1 just a month after 2.0, a combination of rumors suggests. Along with an update to Android's terms of service, info obtained by AndroidAndMe suggests the firmware will be available the same day. It also follows a makeover of the Android.com website that usually precedes wider availability of a new Android release.
AT&T is once again trailing other major US carriers in its quality of service rankings, Consumer Reports has found in its latest survey (live soon; subscription required). Readers scored the network just 66 points for its performance in numerous cities, just below the declining Sprint's 67 and significantly lower than T-Mobile's 70 or Verizon's leading 75 points. Most of the criticism was leveled against AT&T's voice service, which has been widely described as unreliable as the sheer load of iPhone customers has oversaturated the 3G network.
Nearly a year later than originally planned, Comcast today launched a test version of its data usage meter for its Internet subscribers. The gauge, currently found only in Portland, Oregon, gives cable modem users a rough benchmark for the amount of data transferred in a given month as well as their use history. It should theoretically be more reliable than computer- or router-based trackers as it checks all Internet use, including consoles, phones and other devices that aren't always covered.
A new touchscreen HTC smartphone, codenamed Rome, has been spotted recently, with the photos showing little other than the device's look and shape. What is known is that the device will be running on Android operating system and is currently known as the HTC Touch.B, though that's likely to change just as the HD2 was called the Touch.Three before it received its final name.
Samsung on Tuesday introduced a pair of Diva-series phones meant to appeal to women, with the S5150 Diva flip phone and the S7070 Diva touchscreen phone. The former has a hidden LED screen on its outside that only lights up when a notification needs to be displayed. The interface has special fonts and features, including a wish list for shopping. An etiquette mode quickly silences the phone, and the device can be programmed to call itself in order to give its owner an excuse to leave a conversation.
To stop losing its market share in the US, Korean cellphone maker LG is said to be in talks with wireless provider T-Mobile to sell its Android handsets, according to market research company Prudential. A cooperation with the carrier is rumored on the cards, with representatives from T-Mobile said to have visited LG headquarters in Seoul recently. It's unofficially expected LG will bring Android handsets to T-Mobile's lineup, though whether this involves the Eve or another handset isn't evident.
Google could soon compete with iTunes by offering paid streams of videos through YouTube if a rumor from early today proves true. Multiple tipsters claim the video site has been in persistent talks with studios to let it charge for streaming, not downloading, individual TV episodes. The tentative system would cost $2 per show to stay consistent with downloadable services and would be available within a day after the episodes first air on TV.
Clearwire and Sprint together expanded their WiMAX networks to key areas in the US. Both companies now offer the 4G-level service in Chicago, Honolulu and Maui in Hawaii, Seattle and the Puget Sound area. Clearwire has also added its specific service to Austin, Dallas/Fort Worth and San Antonio in Texas as well as Charlotte, Greensboro and Raleigh in North Carolina.
Sony in Japan on Tuesday introduced the smallest USB biometric scanner for reading users' finger vein patterns, the FVA-U1. Sony calls the technology mofiria and maintains it is more accurate and secure than fingerprint readers as it relies on unique blood vein patterns inside a user's finger. The FVA-U1 attaches to PCs using a USB 2.0 connection and is the market's smallest and lightest.
A leak today reveals that at least three of Intel's mobile Core i5 and i7 parts should be available come the start of next year at moderate prices. The company plans to head up the line with the 2.66GHz Core i7-620M, which will support Hyperthreading to perform the work of four cores. It should carry 4MB of Level 2 cache, support Turbo Boost up to 3.33GHz on one core, and cost $332 in batches of $1,000.
NEC on Tuesday introduced its first LED-backlit desktop display for workers, the 22-inch MultiSync EA222WMe. Meant for business and school, the monitor is about 20 percent more efficient than other monitors with the same brightness. It's likewise NEC's most environmentally friendly desktop display, with reductions in heat, weight and packaging as well being free of mercury, halogen and arsenic.
Mac web usage saw an uncharacteristic drop in November that may be owed partly to Windows 7, new data from NetApplications shows. Windows 7's first full month of availability saw its share nearly double to 3.98 percent of Internet traffic and contributed to a rare fall in the Mac's share, which fell 0.16 percent across all versions. The data also reveals that many users had skipped Vista entirely, as Windows XP lost 1.45 percent of absolute share in the Windows 7 switchover while Vista only lost 0.23 percent.
Sony late on Monday said it had achieved a record for single-week PlayStation 3 sales last week. The combination of Black Friday deals at Amazon, Best Buy, GameStop and elsewhere, along with the usual increase in holiday shopping, helped the company push over 440,000 PS3s for the week ended Sunday. Upticks were also seen for PSP sales and for games across all platforms, though the company didn't provide exact numbers.
Creative entered the phone arena for the first time today by launching its Zii Trinity platform. Like the Zii Egg, the Trinity is a reference design rather than a full product and gives those building hardware or software a full-touchscreen Android (or Creative's own Plaszma) smartphone to work from. It supports quad-band GSM/EDGE as well as tri-band, 7.2Mbps 3G over HSPA but still carries the ZMS-05 chip that provides 1080p video decoding and hardware accelerated OpenGL ES 3D.
(Updated with pricing) Dell today upgraded its most powerful notebook line today by launching the Precision M6500. The new mobile workstation updates to Core i7 quad-core processors and scales up to a 2GHz Core i7 Extreme. It claims an additional performance crown as the first notebook anywhere to use NVIDIA's Quadro FX 3800M, supplying an extra level of speed beyond the 3700M in 3D rendering.
RED on Monday provided a wide range of updated information on several upcoming products including the Ray Pro, Scarlet 2/3", Redmote Pro, Redcine-X, and new lenses. The company's engineering team is still working overtime to develop a new layout for a manufacturing revision that should help resolve the ASIC chip issue disclosed last week. 'Fire Chief' Jarred Land admits, however, that there are still hurdles to overcome.
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