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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Engadget News


Engadget News

Existing Windows Phones to get Mango update within the next two weeks

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 10:51 AM PDT

We've already witnessed the launch of a Windows Phone with Mango and seen several others announced, so when's the update rolling out to devices still operating on NoDo? According to Microsoft's official Windows Phone Blog, we need only wait another week or two before the update begins rolling out. The Windows Team indicates it won't be pushed to your phone OTA when the time comes, so you'll want to ensure you have the right software (Zune for PC, Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac) installed on your computer before this all goes down. Now, a word of caution: we'd be completely taken by surprise if every phone received the update on the same day -- after all, the NoDo rollout spanned several weeks before it was delivered everywhere -- so it's best if you exercise a degree of patience if your particular handset isn't ready the very first day, just in case.

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]

Poll: Spotify tops two million premium subscribers -- are you one?

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 10:31 AM PDT

The competition may be nabbing most of the headlines these days, but Spotify's got some good news of its own to report. We just got word that the streaming music service has passed two million premium subscribers internationally. We attempted to get some clarification on just how many of those are based in the US, but the company doesn't break down such numbers by country. Still, it's a positive note for companies trying to monetize such services in the face of increasing free offerings. So, are you one in two million? Take the poll and tell us why -- or why not -- in the comments below.

Spotify tops two million premium subscribers -- are you one?

IRL: WildBlue satellite internet, international charging, a flashing habit and failing to get work done on an iPad

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 10:06 AM PDT

Welcome to IRL, an ongoing feature where we talk about the gadgets, apps and toys we're using in real life and take a second look at products that already got the formal review treatment.

It's been a whirlwind two weeks of sitting inside concept cars, soaking up details about the PlayStation Vita and getting acquainted with Windows 8, and now that it's all wound down, we're getting back to the business of griping about gadgets we already own. This week, Darren dresses down the satellite service we used to hit posts in the wilderness, Tim takes a breather after a year of jet-setting, Joseph carries on his flashing streak and as for Joe, well, let's just say his honeymoon with the iPad has come to a sudden, unproductive end.

Pop-up internet

WildBlue satellite internet has been around for eons -- we actually wrote about the company as it was offered by AT&T way back in 2006. We've all heard the horror stories -- terrible ping times, awful latency issues and barely enough bandwidth to stream anything from Netflix. Oh, and then there's the stratospheric price. That said, I'm still of the belief that the world is better off with satellite internet than without, and recently I finally had a chance to test out something that I've been blessed enough to not actually need at my own domicile.

During a weekend excursion with the team in upstate New York, we realized at the last minute that no broadband internet was offered in the house. So, we did the only sensible thing: we had a WildBlue dish installed for 72 hours. The installation process took all of 45 minutes, but we had to provide our own wireless router. Even when only one person was using the connection, loading Gmail and Engadget took markedly longer than with even a basic cable connection. In fact, it reminded me way too much of my dial-up days. The fact is, however, that WildBlue is far faster than 56K. I was able to upload a gallery of images in just a couple of minutes -- a task that would've been only marginally faster over DSL. The killer is the latency; I saw 1200ms ping times routinely. In other words, loading a new page took an eternity, but constant streams of information (uploads or downloads) were actually on-par with some of the faster ISDN connections I'd seen.

Did it work? Sure. Was it enjoyable? Considering that I was coming from DOCSIS 3.0, it most certainly was not, but I still found myself grateful for pop-up internet. We literally brought internet to a place that had none in under an hour, and the connection was solid as a rock throughout the weekend. It's undoubtedly better than living sans a connection, but I still find myself longing for more real-world speed so many years after this stuff first hit the market.
-- Darren Murph

Making friends in Gate B27

I've traveled internationally more in the past year than I did in all my months previous, and I've done more last-minute hustling to airports than I would recommend any sane human being attempt. I don't often have time to research just who is using what shape plug now, so my solution was to invest in a Kensington All-In-One Travel Plug Adapter. It's like a Swiss Army Knife, but as it contains no actual knives you can carry it through security without issue. (Good for me, as I never check bags unless forced.) There are four sliding buttons on the side that deploy enough prongs to tackle any outlet your curiously named foreign hotel might throw at you, and should you find yourself taking an exotic piece of gadgetry home with you, it works as a universal adapter going the other way too.

To make my life even easier, I've paired it up with a Belkin Mini Surge Protector. It sports three outlets and, while it's a little chunky, I assure you it is worth its weight in gold. Looking to make friends? Just walk up to any crowded AC outlet at the airport and slip this guy in. Suddenly you've doubled the number of available plugs and become Gate B27's own superhero. Dual USB ports on the side make charging a messenger bags worth of doo-dads even easier, but sadly those ports lack the requisite current to juice up power-hungry tablets (like an iPad). The Kensington adapter isn't perfect either (three-pronged plugs take a good bit of force to shove in there at first) but the two of these together form a bond that will ensure your gadgets will stay happily sated in foreign lands -- even if you can't find any restaurants serving something you'd consider food.
-- Tim Stevens

iPad for sale

Oh, iPad 2 with AT&T 3G. I remember the day it was announced. I rushed to my computer in the early morning hours to ensure I'd be one of the first to wrap my hands around one. Looking back I can't help but wonder, Why? I knew a tablet wouldn't be the best for productivity, but I was curious about filling that void bewtixt my 15-inch MacBook Pro and my iPhone. Plus, with 3G connectivity, I figured I'd finally have a simple device for surfing the web or watching Netflix while in transit.

After receiving it a few weeks later and installing some apps, I was having a grand ol' time using my giant iPod touch (and yes, I mean that). Then, I noticed my luck had afforded me the dreaded "screen bleed." After weeks of frustrating calls and two repairs, I was back in gear with an evenly lit screen. So, I continued on grabbing some gaming, magazine, music and movie apps that I still haven't used more than a handful of times.

Maybe it's just that I'm too set on using on full OS, but using the iPad for me is like pulling teeth. The simple tasking of switching from a webpage to another app is tiring after a few circles and better suited to a full OS. And that's the problem, really. I need a device to do more than one thing at a time and switch between tasks on a dime, and the iPad just doesn't cut it. The 11-inch MacBook Air I've recently acquired has fit my needs perfectly, and since I bought it my iPad's been accumulating more dust. Seems like it might be time to give up on the slate for now, maybe even sell it. Plus, it's not like the Smart Cover was that smart anyway; all it ever did was collect dirt... (Kidding! Kind of.)
-- Joe Pollicino
Hi, my name is Joseph, and I'm a ROM addict

I wasn't always this way. Once upon a 3G-only network, I considered myself a BlackBerry man - an always on-the-go power user who relied upon his Tour's solid portrait QWERTY for banging out emails, and its unlocked SIM for unfettered global access. Then one fateful day, an OG Droid dropped into my lap, and it's been me and forums ever since.

I've blazed through a plethora of handsets over the years, all rooted, flashed and SBF'd to within an inch of their fleeting market life. At the moment, I have four phones in my possession. Alas, OS X does not play nice with developer unlock tricks, but with the aid of a virtual Linux machine, I've been able to content myself with a variety of tweaks installed on my Nexus S 4G -- the current object of my fascination.

ROM flashing, I imagine, is much like changing one's hair color: the chosen shade never quite makes for a natural fit, but is, nevertheless, fun to rock while it lasts. And so too goes my preoccupation with MIUI and CM7, along with lesser- known ROMs floating about the hacker space. For the purposes of my digital ADD, I regularly maintain at least three different system backups on my Nexus S 4G, swapping them as I would UI themes (if only it were that simple). In the end, though, I always find myself crawling back to vanilla Android. Say what you will, but I haven't found much fault in the pure Google experience, though I welcome the homebrew tethering fixes (I'm looking at you, Peter Alfonso) and custom kernels that boost my single core handset from yesterday's 1GHz to a more contemporary 1.3GHz.

As for my OG Droid, that old, black slab has been lovingly updated to Gingerbread 2.3.5, Verizon Wireless be damned.
-- Joseph Volpe

T-Mobile's BlackBerry Curve 9360 available for $79 on September 28th, swanks it up with merlot variant

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 09:47 AM PDT

Attention power users and devotees of physical portrait QWERTYs, RIM's outing yet another member of its Curve family this month. Running the Waterloo-based company's latest BB 7 OS, Magenta's BlackBerry Curve 9360 actually goes up for pre-sale today, but you'll have to count yourself amongst the enterprise set for the early access perks. For the rest of us, the carrier's set a September 28th launch for the standard black version of this 2.4-inch, touchscreen-less handset. But that's not all -- perhaps following up on the latest fashion-centric trend, the company's also releasing this mid-range entry in a wine-soaked hue of merlot on October 12th. Regardless of your style preferences, the phone'll be available for a wallet-pleasing $79.99 on a two-year contract (after a $50 rebate). So, were not sure if this was worthy of the 'Apollo' moniker, but at least our in-house Ms. Cleo was right on the money.
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T-Mobile Announces Upcoming Availability of the BlackBerry Curve 9360
Bellevue, Wash. - Sep. 21, 2011

Today, T-Mobile announced the upcoming availability of the BlackBerry Curve 9360, which combines powerful new BlackBerry features with an attractive price point. The new BlackBerry smartphone will be available in two stylish color finishes – black and merlot. Running the latest BlackBerry 7 operating system and utilizing the powerful BlackBerry 7 Webkit-browser, the BlackBerry Curve 9360 provides an intuitive smartphone experience, perfect for those who depend on their smartphone to keep their personal and work lives organized. The new BlackBerry Curve is designed to address a large and important segment of the global mobile phone market where customers are looking to upgrade their existing feature phone or existing BlackBerry Curve with an affordable, easy-to-use, full-featured and socially-connected smartphone.

Encased in a sleek package, including a wide 2.4-inch screen, full QWERTY keypad and navigation track-pad, the BlackBerry Curve 9360 is ideal for efficient mobile communications. The new smartphone is also equipped with essential smartphone features such a 5-megapixel camera with flash, video recorder and Wi-Fi connectivity for voice and data for a premium smartphone experience. The next generation BlackBerry Curve smartphone delivers the world's best mobile communications and social experiences with the latest release of BBM™ (BlackBerry® Messenger) pre-loaded and now extends the real time BBM experience to a range of other apps, such as Foursquare, allowing users to easily interact with each other from within the 'BBM connected' app.

The BlackBerry Curve 9360 is expected to be available in an exclusive pre-sale for T-Mobile business customers beginning today, Sept. 21. The smartphone will be available in the black color finish at T-Mobile retail stores and at select dealers and national retailers nationwide starting Sept. 28 and is expected to be available in an exclusive merlot color finish starting Oct. 12.

Willcom unveils its 33-gram WX03A, a phone-accessory phone?

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 09:26 AM PDT

You can't get more niche than a phone accessory that's also a phone, but that's exactly what Japanese network Willcom has got here in the miniscule WX03A "strap phone" -- a candy-bar handset that attaches to another phone. The device weighs in just 33g, crammed in a 32 x 70mm frame boasting a thickness of 10.5mm -- which, as you can see, compares favorably with a packet of curiously-named Japanese mints. With the space at a premium, features are very thin on the ground; no Bluetooth, memory card slot or even email functionality. There is, however, an infrared connection (for exchanging contacts), microUSB port, headphone socket and a battery capable of 300 hours standby. Those genuinely interested in carrying two handsets can pick one up in December, and we hope to see in-the-wild pictures of lop-sided, dual-phone nunchucks soon after.

Eee Pad Slider shipping now, Archos 80 G9 hits pre-order status

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 09:04 AM PDT

Archos 80 G9
It's practically raining tablets these days, and two more just hit the market. Of course, the Asus Eee Pad Slider and Archos 80 G9 were announced some time ago, but now you can finally handover your hard-earned paper for one of these Android 3.2-sporting devices. The Slider is already available from a variety of outlets, including New Egg and Amazon, starting at $479, while the G9 is up for pre-order direct from Archos starting at just $299. If you need a reminder of what to expect from the latest Honeycomb slates you should check out our hands-on coverage before hitting those source links and loading up your shopping cart.

[Thanks, BH]

Samsung Galaxy S II makes its AT&T debut October 2nd for $199 on contract

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 08:41 AM PDT

You've endured almost a year's worth of Galaxy S II teasing, so what's a few more weeks? AT&T's swiftly sped past its "coming soon" announcement for Sammy's heralded handset, now giving us a firm release date of October 2nd for its NFC-enabled variant. You can snag the 4.3-incher when it hits the carrier for $199.99 on a two-year contract, and choose from the usual array of data packages -- with $15/mo being the minimum required. Make sure to enter your deets at the source link below so you'll be first in line for this sure-fire, sell-out device.

Pandora rolls out HTML5 redesign to everyone, drops 40 hour listening cap

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 08:24 AM PDT

Remember that Pandora redesign that we told you about, way back in July? Well, it's finally done testing, and is ready to bring its HTML5-based goodness to the Internet radio-loving masses. The revamp offers up a number of new features like improved socialization, easier station creation and additional information about artists, including lyrics, bios and larger album art. Coolest of all is the ditching of the 40 hour music listening limit for non-premium users -- a welcome change in light of similar announcements from MOG and Rdio.

Verizon's FiOS on Demand app brings Flex View streaming to iPad, iPhone

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 08:03 AM PDT

It's been in the works for more than a year, but Verizon's FiOS on Demand app has finally arrived to the iPad and iPhone. Available as a free download on the iTunes Store, this tool provides FiOS subscribers with instant access to all movies or TV shows available under the provider's Flex View service, which now boasts some 4,400 titles for purchase or rent, along with 32GB of cloud storage for each customer. It's still unclear whether Verizon will be releasing a version for other tablets or handsets anytime soon, but iDevice owners can download the app at the source link below.

Amazon lets you check out Kindle books from library websites, asks you to shush yourself at home

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 07:41 AM PDT

Love libraries, but hate having to look at all of those dusty old books? Good news: following the recent Seattle-only launch, it's now possible to check out Amazon Kindle books from some 11,000 library sites, as long as you have a valid library card and an Amazon account. You can check a library's inventory (like their physical counterparts, the libraries only have a limited number of Kindle copies for each title) and download copies to your Kindle or Kindle app-enable device via WiFi or USB. Like the libraries' physical books, Kindle copies will carry an expiration date -- but after that time, they can either be renewed or purchase through Amazon, with all of your bookmarks and notations still in place. Press release after the break.
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Kindle Books Now Available at over 11,000 Local Libraries

SEATTLE-Sept 21, 2011-(NASDAQ: AMZN)-Amazon.com today announced that Kindle and Kindle app customers can now borrow Kindle books from more than 11,000 local libraries in the United States. When a customer borrows a Kindle library book, they'll have all of the unique features they love about Kindle books, including Whispersync, which automatically synchronizes their margin notes, highlights and bookmarks, real page numbers, Facebook and Twitter integration, and more. For more information about borrowing library books for your Kindle or free Kindle apps, go to www.amazon.com/kindle/publiclibraries. To start checking out Kindle library books, visit your local library's website.

"Starting today, millions of Kindle customers can borrow Kindle books from their local libraries," said Jay Marine, Director, Amazon Kindle. "Libraries are a critical part of our communities and we're excited to be making Kindle books available at more than 11,000 local libraries around the country. We're even doing a little extra here – normally, making margin notes in library books is a big no-no. But we're fixing this by extending our Whispersync technology to library books, so your notes, highlights and bookmarks are always backed up and available the next time you check out the book or if you decide to buy the book."

Customers will use their local library's website to search for and select a book to borrow. Once they choose a book, customers can choose to "Send to Kindle" and will be redirected to Amazon.com to login to their Amazon.com account and the book will be delivered to the device they select via Wi-Fi, or can be transferred via USB. Customers can check out a Kindle book from their local library and start reading on any generation Kindle device or free Kindle app for Android, iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, PC, Mac, BlackBerry or Windows Phone, as well as in their web browser with Kindle Cloud Reader.

"This is a welcome day for Kindle users in libraries everywhere and especially our Kindle users here at The Seattle Public Library," said Marcellus Turner, city librarian for The Seattle Public Library. "We're thrilled that Amazon is offering such a new approach to library ebooks that enhances the reader experience."

When borrowing a Kindle book from their local library, customers can take advantage of all of the unique features of Kindle books, including:

- Whispersync technology wirelessly sync your books, notes, highlights, and last page read across Kindle and free Kindle reading apps

- Real Page Numbers let you easily reference passages with page numbers that correspond to actual print editions

- Facebook and Twitter integration makes it easy to share favorite passages with your social networks

- Popular Highlights show you what our community of millions of Kindle readers think are the most interesting passages in your books

- Public Notes allow you to share your notes and see what others are saying about Kindle books

To start checking out Kindle library books, visit your local library's website.

Canon enables AirPrint on a trio of PIXMA wireless printers, plans to keep up the trend

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 07:29 AM PDT

Here's the scenario: A., You've been getting your wireless print on with Canon's PIXMA MG8220, MG6220 or MG5320 all-in-one inkjet printer, and B., you own an iDevice. Well, feel free to do a little dance (just not this one), because Canon's added AirPrint support for the lucky three aforementioned. Simply (we hope) update your printer to the latest firmware, and boom, you'll be printing over iOS 4.2 and beyond. Better yet, it's also stated that the "majority" of forthcoming PIXMAs will follow in a similar AirPrint-enabled fashion. Need more info? Full PR is just past the break.
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LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., September 20, 2011 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, today announced that the PIXMA MG8220, MG6220 and MG5320 Wireless Photo All-In-One inkjet photo printers will now support AirPrint* wireless printing for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. AirPrint allows users to wirelessly print photos, emails, web pages and other documents without the need to install device drivers, saving time and making for a seamless user experience.

AirPrint will be supported by the majority of Canon PIXMA inkjet printers launched from this point forward. AirPrint works with iPad, iPad 2, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPod touch (3rd generation and later) running using iOS 4.2 or later.

For more information on the support models and other details, please visit www.usa.canon.com/airprint.

†Based on weekly patent counts issued by United States Patent and Trademark Office.

All referenced product names, and other marks, are trademarks of their respective owners.

Availability, prices, and specifications of all products are subject to change without notice. Actual prices are set by individual dealers and may vary.

iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. AirPrint and the AirPrint logo are trademarks of Apple Inc. All other product and brand names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

* Printer firmware update is necessary for AirPrint function. Certain exception may apply. AirPrint functionality requires an iPad, iPhone 3GS or later, or iPod touch 3rd generation or later device running iOS 4.2 or later, and an AirPrint-enabled printer connected to the same network as your iOS device. A printer connected to the USB port of your Mac, PC, AirPort Base Station, or Time Capsule is not supported.

LG Enlighten to achieve retail zen September 22nd on Verizon

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 07:04 AM PDT

There are a number of ways to achieve inner-peace, like years of meditation, for example -- or you could just pick up an $80 Android handset. LG finally made official the release of its Enlighten handset today. The Gingerbread phone features a 3.2-inch display, a QWERTY slide out keyboard, a 3.2 megapixel camera and an 800MHz processor. The largely unexceptional bit of hardware will be hitting Verizon's site on September 22nd, followed by a September 29th debut in Verizon retail stores. It'll run you $79.99 with a two-year contract after a $50 mail in rebate. Enlighten yourself with the press release after the break.

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Verizon Wireless and LG Mobile Illuminate With LG Enlighten

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. and SAN DIEGO, Sept. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Verizon Wireless and LG Electronics MobileComm U.S.A., Inc. (LG Mobile), today announced LG Enlighten(TM) will be available online at www.verizonwireless.com beginning Sept. 22, and in Verizon Wireless Communications Stores beginning Sept. 29.

Powered by Android(TM) 2.3, LG Enlighten is ideal for messaging, email and apps in a slim and affordable smartphone. Customers can stay connected and up-to-date on news and their social life on the nation's most reliable network.

Key features:

Android 2.3 Gingerbread

3.2-inch touch screen display (320 x 480)

800 MHz processor for performance and multi-tasking

Full QWERTY keyboard with large keys for easy typing

Adobe® Flash® 10

3G Mobile Hotspot allows users to share a data connection with up to five Wi-Fi-enabled devices

Seven customizable home screens with shortcuts to apps, favorites and widgets

Customizable apps menu

3.2-megapixel autofocus camera and camcorder

Additional features:

Support for Google(TM) Mobile Services, including Gmail(TM), YouTube(TM), Google Search(TM) and Google Maps(TM), as well as access to more than 250,000 apps available to download from Android Market(TM)

Bluetooth® 3.0 Enhanced Data Rate (EDR)

Wi-Fi connectivity (b/g/n)

Exchange support

Suite of messaging options, including text, picture, video and voice messaging and mobile instant messaging

2 GB microSD(TM) card pre-installed

Pricing and availability:

LG Enlighten will be available for $79.99 after a $50 mail in rebate with a new two-year customer agreement. Customers will receive the rebate in the form of a debit card; upon receipt, customers may use the card as cash anywhere debit cards are accepted.

Customers will need to subscribe to a Verizon Wireless Nationwide Talk plan beginning at $39.99 for 450 minutes per month and a smartphone data package starting at $30 monthly access for 2 GB of data.

Verizon Wireless Mobile Hotspot data plans are available beginning at $20 for 2 GB.

Edison2's Very Light Car is now very electric, too

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 06:40 AM PDT

When we caught a glimpse of Edison2's Very Light Car earlier this year, we were told to expect an electric version of the X-Prize winning featherweight in the near future. Well, here it is. Known as the eVLC, this "supremely aerodynamic" concept car is powered by a 10-kWh battery pack and, believe it or not, can comfortably seat four passengers. The plug-in has yet to go through the EPA's official round of mileage testing, but Edison2 claims that the eVLC is far more fuel efficient than the Nissan Leaf and believes it could even receive the highest MPGe rating ever awarded. There's still no word on when this little critter could hit the market, but you can check out Autoblog Green's gallery (at the source link below) for a more extensive tour of what Edison2 calls the "inevitable future of the automobile."

Acer Aspire S3 Ultrabook opened up for the FCC, should have showered first

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 06:16 AM PDT

Dark stains aside, it looks like the S3's WiFi and Bluetooth credentials are all in order so we'll hopefully see its skinny 17mm (0.67-inch) form stateside before too long. The regulatory teardown pics don't tell us a great deal, but then we already know plenty from our earlier hands-on: a choice of Core i3, i5 and i7 processors, a 13.3-inch (1366 x 768) display and a competitive €799 European price tag, not to mention some heavy expectations from the Ultrabook promoters at Intel.

HTC Raider 4G arrives bearing South Korean LTE, looks a lot like the Holiday

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 05:51 AM PDT

HTC has bestowed a sparkly new handset upon its South Korean customers today, with the release of the Raider 4G. Sporting a 4.5-inch qHD display, this Gingerbread-coated device is powered by a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and boasts 1GB of RAM, along with 16GB of internal storage. Graced with what appears to be HTC's Sense 3.0, the Raider also features an eight megapixel camera, 1.3 megapixel front-facing shooter and supports 1080p Full HD video recording, as well as the usual smattering of WiFi b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0 and GPS capabilities. When connected to a South Korean LTE network, this handset can reportedly achieve downstream / upstream speeds of 100Mbps and 50Mbps uploads, respectively, with HSPA downloads clocking in at 21Mbps and uploads at 5.76Mbps. The manufacturer hasn't revealed any plans for an international release, though rumor has it that this Holiday-like device may be heading to AT&T at some point. Trot past the break for the machine-translated press release, along with an extra image.

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Smartphones HTC LTE radar (Raider) 4G nation's first public

The global smartphone manufacturer HTC smartphone on September 21 New LTE public, and that led to the evolution of domestic LTE network in the face of the leading companies have demonstrated. a high-speed 4G networks based on performance and amazing mobile experience, providing stylish and sleek design is remarkable. The new product is released in Korea, Asia's first more significant.

HTC North Asia CEO Jack Tong "HTC goal of the consumer's lifestyle to fit the product and a new mobile experience to that provided," he said, "Now, the LTE of the era, and South Korea LTE quickly introduced, and commercial By has led to worldwide markets."

Best Entertainment - 4.5 inches large screen, wireless surround sound system
the best multimedia entertainment features and communication capabilities are proud. Large 4.5 inches qHD IPS display and a wireless surround sound system with a "moving theater" is, as high-speed LTE is optimized for enjoying multimedia images. HTC smartphone released in Korea most of the screen is a big product and service content via hagiedo is perfect viewing movies and TV shows.

Content - official opening later this month
The latest movie, TV show, you can enjoy easy and convenient content services
HTC progressive download services (Progressive Download) technology is based on the year, even while the file downloads, you can watch videos. The content is available for purchase, rent or purchase, up to five products are available from HTC. In addition, the brand new DMB dongles (sold separately) also can watch terrestrial DMB can be mounted.

best multimedia - 4G network and the superior camera performance
the back of the 8-megapixel, 1.3 megapixel camera with the front of a powerful multimedia experience. Both rear and front camera vivid HD picture quality (both 1080p, 720p) recording of the possible, to never miss an important moment can cherish. Music, also supports video trimming, and it sent directly to Facebook or Twitter, or, DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) through the HDTV, monitor, dijiteolmakera, printers, etc. Wireless sent a lot of people can enjoy together.

your memories anytime, anywhere
the precious memories anywhere, anytime produces catch the whole thing on tape. 8-megapixel auto-focus and dual LED flash is supported, f/2.2 lens and the rear one trillion injection sensor (back-illuminated sensor) equipped with a sharper shooting in the dark is possible. In addition, 28mm wide-angle lens and a panorama feature and hands from a trip to the beautiful scenery you can easily fit on one screen. Decorating features more photos, complete album makes dramatic.

On the other hand, f/2.2 lens, 28mm wide-angle lens features the fourth quarter after the firmware update is available.

intuitive and easy-to-call, text feature
Localized to fit the tastes of domestic consumers country-specific features is noticeable. First smart dial (Smart Dialer) and Phone Book (People) function in the domestic currency has been upgraded to suit the way. Hangul also differed for each manufacturer so far three kinds of keyboard (Heaven, Earth, SKY keyboard) all adopted, will be able to access more easily and intuitively.

Jack Tong, President, "Radar 4G the consumers most at the center, from consumers, inspired innovations and to develop products that HTC's human-centered philosophy, showing for example, 4G with the possibility of expectations is large, and future domestic provide the best experience to consumers for LTE will not stop innovation," he said.

AOC's 16-inch portable monitor sucks power, video from your USB port

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 05:26 AM PDT

AOC's latest may not have the IPS viewing angles of recent tablet offerings or high-end monitors, but this portable 16-inch screen connects -- and powers itself -- through just one USB port. Priced at $139, the AOC e1649fwu also includes a fold-up stand and can be propped up in both portrait and landscape. The 16:9 TFT screen packs 1366x768 resolution, and AOC promises that it won't immediately suck all the life out of your laptop, though we'll hold our judgement until we can get our hands on one. It could be a very canny addition to your portable office arsenal; it weighs in at a spritely 2.3lbs (just under over 1kg) and the 1.4 inch thickness means it may squeeze into some (admittedly more capacious) lappie bags. You'll finally be able to look like you mean business while pluggin' away in your own private corner at Starbucks after this launches next month.

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AOC Unveils 16-inch Portable USB Monitor, The Must-Have Laptop Accessory

Fremont, Calif. – September 20, 2011– AOC, the worldwide leader in monitor display technology, announces the sleek and portable USB Monitor, the ultimate laptop accessory. The lightweight monitor features a convenient built-in USB port that receives both power and signal via a single USB cable for plug-and-play connection.

The monitor does not require a power cord or VGA cable, and is ideal for dual- and multi-monitor setups. Along with functioning as an extended display, the accessory can also be used for on-the-go presentations. The AOC USB Monitor will be available at major retail chains nationwide in October 2011. The 16-inch model (e1649fwu) will have an MSRP of $139. "The USB Monitor showcases AOC's dedication to expanding its display offerings and using the latest technologies to come out with innovative and user friendly products," said Robert Velez, Marketing Manager of AOC. "The USB Monitor is ideal for business presentations, photo frame applications, multiple monitor displays and as a companion monitor for laptop and netbook users who want more out of their computer."

With the launch of the USB Monitor, AOC continues its commitment to providing the latest in digital display technologies and innovative styling. The 16-inch e1649fwu model also offers impressive image quality with 50,000,00:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio, 5ms response time and 1366 x 786 resolution. A handy built-in Smart Stand pivots out when needed and stores flush against the back of the monitor when not in use. The foldable stand supports both portrait and landscape display.

Because the monitor does not require a power cord or VGA cable, it permits maximum portability while still allowing the display of multiple applications like instant messenger, movie player, gaming and digital picture frame apps. The e1649fwu has a clean and modern aesthetic that is complemented by a black piano-polish finish on the bezel, while a hard glass screen offers superior protection.

One laptop can support multiple USB Monitor connections to create a multi-monitor setup. The USB Monitor is also compatible with desktop PCs. Every AOC monitor is manufactured to meet the most stringent green standards. Along with being mercury free, the packaging for the eco-friendly USB Monitor is made from recycled materials. In addition, AOC's industry-leading LED display technology allows for a powerful and crystal clear display while minimizing power consumption.

• Panel Type: LED
• Widescreen 16:09
• Screen Size: 15.6"w
• Viewable Image Size: 395 mm
• Brightness (typical): 250cd
• Contrast ratio (typical): 50,000,000:1
• Response Time: 5ms
• Max. Resolution: 1366x768 @60Hz
• Input Signal: 1 USB
• HDCP Compatible: No
• Special Features: USB Powered

About AOC
AOC is the world's largest manufacturer of LCD/LED monitors and HDTVs. With more than 60 years of design and manufacturing experience, AOC has earned a reputation for selling user-friendly, technologically advanced monitors, TVs and multi-functional displays. Every aspect of AOC's global business focuses on the development of products that fit seamlessly into consumers' digital lifestyle. For more information, please visit us.aoc.com.

Facebook adds real-time 'ticker' to overhauled news feed, donates old layout to science (video)

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 05:01 AM PDT

Facebook is about to turn your social life into an online newspaper. That's the takeaway from a new slate of changes the company unveiled yesterday, ahead of its annual f8 developer conference in San Francisco. From now on, if you log in to Facebook after a lengthy hiatus, your news feed -- much like the front page of a daily paper -- will consist of a list of "top stories," photos and updates that were posted while you were away, with each high-priority item tagged with a blue earmark. More frequent users, on the other hand, will find a list of most recent stories presented in chronological order, along with larger photos embedded directly within their news feed. The company has also introduced a new "ticker" feature that provides users with real-time updates on their friends' activity, displayed along the right-hand side of the home page. Here, you'll find the exact same updates you'd see on a real-time news feed, with the crucial difference being that you'll be able to interact with each development without missing a beat. If you see that a friend comments on a cat video, for example, you'll be able to click that item in the ticker and add your two cents, without having to navigate away from the home screen. Facebook will likely provide more details on these new features at its f8 tomorrow, but you can find more information in the demo video, after the break.

Adobe's launching Flash Player 11, Air 3 bringing HD video and 3D gaming to all

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 04:15 AM PDT

While we've had access to Adobe's Flash Player 11 in beta form for months, the company announced it will finally get official, along with Air 3, next month. Among the many new features included are support for accelerated 2D and 3D graphics with a claimed 1,000 times faster performance than Flash Player 10 and Air 2. That's enough to enable "console-quality" gaming on both computers and connected TVs and on mobile devices (Android, iOS, Playbook) with a pre-release version of Flash 11 (a production release you can take on the go is expected in "the near future"). Other new options include allowing developers to package Air 3 along with their apps in a single install, HD video quality on multiple platforms including iOS, DRM for video rentals, 64-bit support and more. Check out Adobe's pitch to developers with a press release and demo videos after the break, including a look at the hit iPad game Machinarium which was built with its tools.

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September 21, 2011 12:01 AM Eastern Daylight Time
Adobe Enables 3D Games With Flash Player 11, AIR 3

Milestone Release Delivers Major Advancements for Gaming, Media and Data-Driven Applications

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced Adobe® Flash® Player 11 and Adobe AIR® 3 software to enable the next generation of immersive application experiences across devices and platforms including Android, Apple iOS (via AIR), BlackBerry® Tablet OS, Mac OS, Windows®, connected TVs and other platforms. As the game console for the Web, Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 allow game publishers to instantly deliver console-quality 2D and 3D games over the Internet to nearly all PCs and many other devices. Media companies can take advantage of new features to seamlessly deliver protected feature-length, cinema-quality HD video through the Web, in mobile apps, and even with surround sound for connected TVs. Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 provide a cross-device entertainment platform, enabling the best in online gaming and premium video while helping content publishers to reach the broadest possible audience with highly-leveraged development investments.

Dozens of new features in Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 allow developers to deliver a new class of gaming and premium video experiences, as well as sophisticated, data-driven applications with back-end systems integration across devices, including the iPhone and iPad via AIR. AIR native extensions add support for unique device features and native code libraries, empowering developers to freely choose the right mix of Flash, HTML5 and native code to provide powerful user experiences across PCs and devices. Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 will be publicly available in early October. Flash Builder® and Flex, Adobe's open source framework for building mobile, Web and desktop apps, will offer support for the new features in an upcoming release before the end of the year.

"With this milestone release Adobe pushes the envelope of what is possible on the Web with a typical PC and opens up a new world of immersive, high-performance gaming experiences," said Danny Winokur, vice president and general manager of Platform, Adobe. "Flash offers the best way for content owners to deliver their most demanding experiences, including games, premium video and sophisticated data-driven apps, to all of their users, while HTML 5 tools such as Adobe Edge and Dreamweaver® are ideal for building interactive Web pages, rich ads, branded microsites and general-purpose mobile applications."

Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 offer dozens of new features including:

Accelerated 2D/3D Graphics: Full hardware-accelerated rendering for 2D and 3D graphics enable 1,000 times faster rendering performance over Flash Player 10 and AIR 2. Developers are able to animate millions of objects with smooth 60 frames per second rendering and deliver console-quality games on Mac OS, Windows and connected televisions. A pre-release brings these same accelerated 2D and 3D capabilities to mobile platforms including Android, Apple iOS and BlackBerry Tablet OS. A production release for mobile platforms is expected in the near future. For examples of 3D games for Flash Player, visit www.adobe.com/go/gaming.
AIR Native Extensions: With support for thousands of highly-optimized, open-source libraries, developers are able to tap into unique software and hardware capabilities including access to device data, vibration control, magnetometers, light sensors, dual screens, near field communications (NFC) and more. Native extensions also allow developers to more deeply integrate AIR applications with other business software.
Captive Runtime: Developers can automatically package AIR 3 with their applications to simplify the installation process on Android, Windows and Mac OS in addition to Apple iOS. Users no longer have to download and update AIR separately on any of these platforms, or BlackBerry Tablet OS, which includes AIR built in. In addition, with the captive runtime option developers can manage version updates to their application independent of general AIR updates by Adobe.
Content Protection: Premium video content can now be protected using Adobe Flash Access® 3 across all supported platforms, including new support for mobile platforms.
HD Video Quality Across Platforms: Full frame rate HD video can now be displayed within AIR applications on Apple iOS devices using H.264 hardware decoding. Rich applications on televisions are also able to deliver HD video with 7.1 channel surround sound.
Rental and Subscriptions Support: With support for Adobe Flash Access and Adobe Pass, content publishers can take advantage of rental and subscription options for more flexible business models and offer TV Everywhere content to more than 80 percent of U.S. pay TV subscribers.
Compatibility: 64-bit support on Linux, Mac OS and Windows ensures a seamless experience with the latest 64-bit browsers.

"Zynga's mission is to connect the world through games by bringing play to everyone, everywhere," said Cadir Lee, chief technology officer, Zynga. "In order to do that, we're committed to building mainstream entertainment across all devices, platforms and applications, whether it's through Flash or HTML5. We look forward to the release of Adobe Flash Player 11 and Adobe AIR 3 as next-generation applications to help bring Zynga games to our players worldwide."

"We strive to bring games to our customers wherever and whenever they want to play," said Mark Vange, vice president and chief technology officer, EA Interactive. "The ubiquity of Flash helps EA to bring our chart-topping games to a broader variety of platforms and connect with consumers across a wide range of devices."

"In 'Petz World,' players can adopt, train animals and take them on exciting adventures around the world," said Shara Hashemi, senior international brand manager, Ubisoft. "It's important the animals in 'Petz World' act as if they are alive and behave like their real world counterparts. Flash Player 11 with fully hardware accelerated 3D graphics allows us to deliver the same high-quality animations and 3D models on the Web that our players have loved for years on consoles."

"The opportunities for casual gaming on desktops, tablets and other mobile devices are endless and without Flash we wouldn't have been able to create such beautiful, rich and interactive animations," said Jakub Dvorsky, game designer and director, Amanita Design. "It's absolutely crucial for us to reach the widest possible audience without having to start the development work from scratch for each platform. With Flash, we were able to revamp Machinarium in a matter of weeks and bring it from the Web to the iPad as an app in less than two months with other platforms like Android and BlackBerry following soon."

"Adobe Flash Player with 3D lets us render a tremendous number of buffered triangles quickly with excellent performance and stability," said Michael Plank, co-founder, Pro 3 Games. "It was clear from the beginning that Adobe Flash was the perfect solution to deliver browser-based, console-quality games with powerful visuals and interactivity. The develop once, deploy anywhere capabilities enable us to engage gamers everywhere across Web browsers and sets us up nicely to move into the mobile space."

"Adobe Flash makes it easy to extend the reach of our brand and our games because of the deep market penetration of Flash Player and that worldwide ubiquity is critical for us," said Anton Volkov, chief technology officer, AlternativaPlatform. "Adobe Flash Player 11 with Stage 3D provides unique functionality, including native 64-bit support and asynchronous bitmap decoding, to allow us to leverage both 2D and 3D components for the best gaming experience possible."

Flash Player is supported on more than 98 percent of Internet connected PCs today and by the end of 2011, Adobe expects more than 200 million smartphones and tablets including Apple iOS devices to support Flash based applications via Adobe AIR. By the end of 2015, the number of devices that will support Adobe AIR is expected to increase to 1 billion.

Adobe AIR, a superset of Flash Player, enables developers to leverage existing code to create and deliver standalone applications across devices and platforms. Thousands of Flash based applications have already been created and made available on Android Market, iTunes App Store, Samsung SmartTV Store and BlackBerry AppWorld™ today.

Report: Apple to hold media event on October 4th, Tim Cook to unveil iPhone 5

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 03:31 AM PDT

We have yet to receive official word on this, but All Things Digital is reporting today that Apple's next big media event will be held on October 4th, where freshly minted CEO Tim Cook is expected to unveil the iPhone 5. Sources close to the situation say Cook will be the main presenter at the event, with execs Phil Schiller, Scott Forstall and Eddy Cue playing supporting roles. This would mark the first time that Cook has actually led an Apple event, adding an extra wrinkle of significance to an already highly anticipated occasion. The site's sources went on to say that the next-gen iPhone will be available for purchase "within a few weeks" of the announcement, though All Things Digital acknowledges that the exact date of its unveiling is still subject to change. As always, we'll be sure to keep you posted as soon as we hear more.

SteelSeries Sensei gaming mouse goes up for pre-order, obeys your macro come October

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 02:42 AM PDT

Competitive gaming scored itself a new peripheral vying for the top spot back in August, when SteelSeries unveiled its ambidextrous Sensei mouse. If you'll recall, the Sensei tracks up to 150-inches per second with its 10.8 megapixel sensor, and uses a 32-bit ARM processor to calculate it all without bogging down your rig. Making things sweeter, a trio of illuminated sections can be set to differing hues befitting your mood, and an LCD planted on the Sensei's underside will let you change some settings without a computer. If you've been dying to get your FPS-loving mitts on this $90 input device, it's now officially up for pre-order from the company's website and due to hit doorsteps during the first week of October. As usual, the full PR is located just past the break.

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Consumers Can Order the New Mouse Directly on the SteelSeries Web Shop

CHICAGO – Sept. 20, 2011 – The most customizable mouse to ever hit the competitive gaming industry, the SteelSeries Sensei, is now available online for consumers directly from the SteelSeries' Web Shop. With an MSRP of $89.99 / €89.99, and a list of original features that have been perfected alongside some of the world's most recognized competitive gamers, the Sensei is setting a new standard in mouse customization and capabilities; some of these features include:

· A 32 bit ARM processor, that powers sophisticated calculations to be done directly on the mouse – without the need for software drivers and without having to rely on the user's computer.

· Complete customization, from the buttons, macros and multiple profiles to the colors, and technology settings.

· Illumination with 16.8 million colors choices to be programmed in 3 different zones on the mouse.

· Sensitivity settings that can be changed in increments of one from 1 to 5,700 CPI, and an "overclocked" Double CPI feature that allows the user to go all the way up to 11,400 DCPI.

· A 10.8 megapixel image correlation laser sensor at up to 12,000 frames per second and the ability to handle tracking movements of up to 150 inches per second.

· An ambidextrous design with a metal, non-slip grip coating and is connected with a double braided nylon cord with a USB connector.

· Simple plug and play; for the PC Gamers* who want advanced customization options, the Sensei is supported by SteelSeries Engine technology – save multiple profiles, create long and advanced macros with layers, keystrokes and precise timing. The Sensei Mouse is compatible with both Mac and PC; *SteelSeries Engine for Mac will be coming in 2012; for PC it is available now.

The SteelSeries Sensei can be pre-ordered from the SteelSeries Web Shop directly at http://steelseries.com or by clicking the 'Buy Now' button, at http://steelseries.com/sensei.

Microsoft and Casio enter cross licensing agreement, world wonders if Casio actually makes Linux-based devices

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 02:08 AM PDT

If you happen to be making devices that run on Linux -- of which Android is a subset -- odds are pretty good that you'll be getting a phone call from Redmond at some point. And that's just what happened to Casio, who's joining existing licensees TomTom and Amazon in signing a cross license agreement with Microsoft for patents pertaining to the Tux-approved OS. Covering Linux on "certain Casio devices," the joint statement was equally vague about how many greenbacks exchanged hands, simply stating: "[both] parties acknowledge that Microsoft is being compensated by Casio." There ain't much more to it, but folks looking to humor themselves can do so after the break.
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Microsoft and Casio Sign Patent Agreement

Agreement provides Casio customers with coverage for use of Linux in certain devices.

REDMOND, Wash. and TOKYO, Sept. 20, 2011 -- Microsoft Corp. and Casio Computer Co. Ltd. have entered into a broad, multiyear patent cross-licensing agreement that, among other things, will provide Casio's customers with patent coverage for their use of Linux in certain Casio devices. This licensing agreement is an extension of the long-standing relationship between the two companies; Casio utilizes a wide variety of Microsoft software for its products, including its industrial handheld terminals and business information systems. Although the details of the licensing agreement are confidential, the parties acknowledge that Microsoft is being compensated by Casio.

"We're pleased to reach an agreement and to see continued recognition of the value of our patent portfolio, particularly as it relates to operating systems," said Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel of Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft.

Microsoft's Commitment to Licensing Intellectual Property
This patent agreement is another example of the important role intellectual property (IP) plays in ensuring a healthy and vibrant IT ecosystem. Since Microsoft launched its IP licensing program in December 2003, the company has entered into more than 700 licensing agreements and continues to develop programs that make it possible for customers, partners and competitors to access its IP portfolio. The program was developed to open access to Microsoft's significant R&D investments and its growing, broad patent and IP portfolio.

More information about Microsoft's licensing programs is available at http://www.microsoft.com/iplicensing.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Google Voice enters internal testing across Europe, international launch on the horizon?

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 01:24 AM PDT

Lather up your vocal cords, Europe, because it looks like Google Voice is on its way over. That's according to the company's European Director of Business Development, Jens Redmer, who told The Next Web yesterday that Google is taking "concrete action" to expand the service to the Old World. Redmer later confirmed that he's currently conducting internal tests with Voice, adding that its voicemail transcription feature has performed particularly well within Europe. He stopped short, however, of offering a precise launch date, saying only that the service's release would hinge upon legal and regulatory issues, rather than any technical obstacles. Now that the train has rolled into the testing phase, though, it may only be a matter of time before it arrives at the station.

AT&T launches new global messaging plans, lets you comfortably roam

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 12:53 AM PDT

The largest GSM carrier in the country is popular amongst travelers because you can use nearly all of its phones anywhere in the world. Messaging whilst abroad, however, has always been an expensive headache since the best option on AT&T was a bundle of 50 SMS / MMS messages for $10. That's a quaint number, to say the least, considering many of us can burn through that many messages in an hour. Beginning today, two more options are available for the more text-savvy roamers: you can get a package of 200 for $30, or 500 for $50. This number only reflects the number of messages you send, which means those received are counted against your US bucket of texts (if you're on a pay-per-use messaging plan, they'll cost 20 cents). Given the company's recent history of streamlining, we applaud the additional choices global jetsetters now have. Enjoy the presser after the break.
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International Travelers Take Off With New Messaging Packages Delivering More Value, More Choice

Dallas, Texas, September 20, 2011

Want to share the family picture from in front of Big Ben? Or a video message from the top of the Eiffel Tower? Go ahead and hit "send." With the addition of two new global messaging packages, international travelers now have more freedom and flexibility to use messaging abroad just like they do at home.

Available beginning today, AT&T's* new global messaging packages** allow travelers to share their experience using text, picture, video and instant messaging for one, low monthly rate from more than 100 countries. The new packages include:

Global Messaging 200 - send 200 messages for $30/month
Global Messaging 500 - send 500 messages for $50/month

With the new packages, customers benefit from significant savings compared to international roaming pay-per-use messaging rates, which cost travelers $.50 per message sent for text and instant messages, and $1.30 per message sent for picture and video messages. In contrast, with the Global Messaging 200 package, customers just pay $.15 per message sent.

"When our customers travel abroad, we want to deliver a wireless experience that's affordable and customized to fit their needs," said Mark Collins, senior vice president, Data and Voice Products, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets. "Our Global Messaging 200 package lets travelers send a text, photo or video message for only $.15 a message – a great value and one we're excited to add to our international lineup."

The new additions reflect the increasing popularity of using mobile messaging to communicate from overseas. In a recent AT&T survey among international travelers, nearly two-thirds of respondents (65 percent) said they text from abroad, while nearly half (47 percent) stay in touch using picture and video messages.

As a global leader connecting travelers all around the world, AT&T remains the only major U.S. wireless carrier to offer low-cost international messaging packages when traveling in more than 100 countries – a complement to the broadest lineup of international-compatible phones, and the new global data plans announced earlier this year.

Customers may add one of the new packages to their current calling plan beginning today. For more information on other AT&T international services, including discount packages for voice, data and international long distance services, as well as travel tips, visit www.att.com/global.

dockBoss+ adapter brings iOS speaker dock compatibility to Android, BlackBerry and WP7 handsets*

Posted: 21 Sep 2011 12:10 AM PDT

A while back, you probably splurged for that insert-iPod-sound-system-here thinking you'd get some pretty good mileage out of it. If you also jumped ship at some point along the way (read: switched to Android), CableJive can help keep your bookshelf system cranking for a little while longer. The dockBoss+ adapter features micro-USB and audio plugs opposite a 30-pin connector, the latter of which fits nicely in one of the eight quadrillion iOS-compatible sound systems currently on the market. Now, you can port that valuable charging action to your existing handset -- plus, the accessory also features a built-in charge converter for FireWire-enabled cables and docking stations, if needed. Not only that, but the dockBoss+ will also work in tandem with your iOS-centric car or home stereo -- unless you're still clinging to the factory head unit in your VW Beetle... bummer. Those looking to pick one up can do so starting September 28th for $30; a handful of Lincolns is much easier on the ol' wallet than a brand new one of these, that's for sure.

*Assuming, of course, that you're cool with a few cables hanging out, and that your handset actually uses micro-USB.

[Thanks, Gregor]

There is now a $4.6 million Tata Nano made of gold

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 11:03 PM PDT

There are people who ask why, and people who ask why not -- and yet others who decide to turn a $2,500 car into a $4.6 million car by covering it with gold and jewels. Yes, that's none other than a lowly Tata Nano in an extravagant disguise that you're looking at, and, yes, it's very much real -- and apparently for sale if anyone's interested, according to the Tata jewelery subsidiary responsible for it (at least once it's done touring it around for a few months). Head on past the break for a video of the unveiling from ITN.

[Image credit: Megha Bahree / The Wall Street Journal]

Switchable graphics solutions duel it out, AMD ends up looking like a chump

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 10:13 PM PDT

AMD Dynamic Switchable Graphics
At this point, NVIDIA's Optimus switchable graphics are old hat, but AMD is relatively new to the game of packing dual GPUs in a single laptop. AnandTech decided to pit the two solutions against each other and, well, lets just say AMD doesn't come out looking so great. The biggest problem appears to be stability. While performance is acceptable (though, not quite as good as it should be) the site had trouble getting four of the supposedly 16 supported games to switch between the integrated and discrete GPUs as advertised. Regular driver updates, not to mention a bit more testing, could solve the issues, but for now NVIDIA's Optimus simply outclasses its AMD counterpart. Check out the video after the break and don't forget to hit up the source link for all the details.

Nikon unveils V1 and J1 mirrorless cameras: 10.1MP CMOS, 1080p video, ships in October for $650+ (video)

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 09:01 PM PDT

Rumors of a Nikon mirrorless camera have been floating around the web since the middle of last year, and recent leaks have made us wonder not if the company would release a compact ILC -- only when such an announcement would be made. Well, we finally have our answer. We journeyed to a secret location in midtown Manhattan tonight, with nary a peep from Nikon about what to expect until just before the clock struck midnight -- and only after more than two hours of laptop-free house arrest and live Counting Crows. Only the rumored mirrorless cam seemed worthy of such unusual precautions, so we were relieved to discover that Nikon had managed to justify this late night adventure. The company has finally announced not one, but a pair of compact "1 System" mirrorless cameras, and it seems totally fine with putting the focus speed up against the self-proclaimed champ. Head on past the break for more details!

Nikon 1 System hands-on

The V1 and J1 share nearly identical specs, with the latter model sporting some fairly minor tweaks. Both ILCs include 10.1 megapixel CMOS sensors, HDMI / USB connectivity, a 1200fps slo-mo capture mode (!), 3-inch LCDs, 10fps shooting, high-res electronic viewfinders, and full HD (1080/30p) video capture -- though 720/60p and 1080/60i modes are thrown in for good measure. The J1 touts a built-in flash, auto-noise reduction on movie clips, a 73-point AF system, dual-core EXPEED processing engine, and a 29 minute cap on single movie files (far greater than the five minute ceiling on its earlier DSLRs), while the V1 boasts an EVF and supports an external flash, as well as a mechanical shutter, stereo microphone input, a "multi-accessory port" and a magnesium alloy chassis.

We're a bit disappointed by some of the specs, however, though Nikon's clearly aiming these at the novice / amateur crowd. Not only are they limited to capturing 10.1 megapixel stills (and a ho hum native ISO ceiling of 3200), but both new models use a new CX-size (13.2mm x 8.8mm) sensor with a 2.7x crop factor. This new guy is significantly smaller than the APS-C sensor used in Sony's NEX cameras as well as the Micro Four Thirds sensor used in similar offerings from Panasonic and Olympus. We'll withhold judgment until we have a chance to review sample images and video, but a beefy sensor tends to make a significant impact with image quality. High-end glass also plays its role, so we're surprised to see the lens selection limited to a small handful of entry-level optics.

Sony NEX-C3 sensor compared to Nikon J1 sensor

If you're curious about details on those, we've learned that the initial bounty will include a 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 (kit lens), 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 ($249.95), 10mm f/2.8 ($249.95) and a 10-100mm f/4.5-5.6 ($749.95), and a customized $149.95 Speedlight (SB-N5) flash will also be in tow. As for feature set? There's a "Motion Snapshot" mode that snags stills as a video is rolling, and geotagging will be supported for those who opt for the $149.95 GP-N100 GPS hot-shoe accessory. Furthermore, the company's drilling home the "non-pro" theme with a gaggle of colorful straps and cases to match the rainbow's worth of hues -- white, pink, red, silver and black -- that these guys will ship in. We know, we know -- you're curious at pricing, so here goes. The Nikon J1 and V1 will be available throughout the US starting October 20th, with the J1 + 10-30mm kit available for just $649.95. The V1, available with the same bundled piece of glass, will retail for $899.95. Nah, the specs aren't nearly where we want 'em, but those prices are hard to scoff at. Only one question remains: will Canon have a similar announcement to share?

Looking for buttered-up sample shots, straight from Nikon's press department? Here's a painter, and here's someone's best friend. [Warning: those are around 4MB each!]

Darren Murph contributed to this report.

Nikon 1 System HD footage, provided by Nikon
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The New Nikon J1 and V1 Cameras as Well as Four New Ultra-Portable Lenses are Engineered for Expressive Living

MELVILLE, N.Y. (Sept 21, 2011) – Nikon Inc. today announced a revolutionary new digital imaging system built from the ground up to empower users with new ways to tell stories through photography, driven by imaginative next-generation technology. The iconic new Nikon 1 system is designed to become one with the user and their lifestyle, providing a unique form of expression with amazing image quality, speed and portability.

From Nikon, a company with more than 75 years in imaging excellence, the Nikon 1 J1 is an advanced camera with interchangeable lenses that opens the door to a fresh way to capture pictures and High Definition (HD) movies. This Nikon 1 system represents a new category of camera that challenges conventional thinking, emphasizing a pocketable form factor with unbelievable speed, combined with the high image quality that only Nikon could create. Thanks to a wealth of innovative technologies, the Nikon J1 camera is a simple to use conduit for creativity, seemingly anticipating a consumer's needs in any situation. Moments are instantly captured using amazingly fast new hybrid Autofocus (AF), and blazing fast speed with continuous AF. Users can also shoot with confidence knowing that the Smart Photo Selector will automatically capture the best possible image without a second thought. Furthermore, just a touch of the shutter button instantly captures a high quality image while simultaneously recording Full HD 1080p movies, and the exciting new Motion Snapshot mode captures fleeting moments like never before with a combination of moving and still images, bringing memories to life. To accompany this exciting new form factor, Nikon created the entirely new 1 NIKKOR lens system that seamlessly integrates powerful precision optics into a camera platform to capture more of the world around the user.

"The needs of the consumer are changing and the world is becoming one of visual conversation, which paves the way for the next chapter in image capture devices. The new Nikon 1 system is the culmination of more than 75 years of optical excellence and relentless pursuit to the unrivaled technological advancements in camera technology," said Bo Kajiwara, Director of Marketing, Nikon Inc. "Nikon's new 1 J1 camera allows consumers to have confidence in a new way to express themselves, with amazing speed, versatility, ease of use and portability."
One Purpose: A Revolutionary New System

The new Nikon 1 system is a completely original concept, engineered specifically to strike the ultimate balance of performance, intuitive simplicity and portability to chronicle life like never before. This breakthrough platform lays the foundation for future technologies, and the Nikon 1 system has been created for the consumer who wants to capture, share and connect to life. The fully electronic lens system enables the camera to keep pace with an active lifestyle and delivers amazing images and Full HD 1080p movies to connect with friends and family. Whether it's a spontaneous outing or a planned trek abroad, the versatility of interchangeable lenses in a convenient form factor will allow a consumer to take the camera with them wherever life leads. Furthermore, the J1 camera makes a personal style statement with a variety of matching colored camera bodies and lenses.

The heart of the new J1 camera is the new Nikon developed CX-format, 10.1 megapixel High-Speed AF CMOS sensor that helps make this camera the pinnacle of portable performance. The newly developed CMOS sensor has been engineered for amazing image quality in a variety of lighting conditions, with a native ISO range of 100- 3200 (6400 Hi-1) for maximum versatility. Images captured with this new sensor exhibit striking colors, vivid hues and rich detail so lifelike, it's the next best thing to being there as memories unfold.

Nikon's exclusive new EXPEED 3TM image processing engine drives the system and is the catalyst behind the camera's rapid response, fast AF and high-speed performance. In addition, the new dual core EXPEED 3 processor works to maximize battery efficiency while yielding images and movies with low noise and vibrant tones. The Nikon J1 is engineered for maximum ease of use, featuring a clean button layout and intuitive graphical interface. Distractions and menus are minimized; creating a clear path to the camera's advanced functions, further unleashing creative potential.

The Fastest One
From first steps to first date, life moves fast and the Nikon J1 is the camera to keep pace. The camera seemingly anticipates action with amazing autofocus, response time and operation. The new advanced hybrid AF system is the world's fastest autofocus1, allowing consumers to capture more of their world than ever before. The Nikon J1 features new focal plane phase detection AF that reacts instantly to deliver incredibly fast, split-second response. Wherever action is happening in the frame, the 73-point AF system will get the shot. This newly developed hybrid system continuously evaluates the scene at hand for optimal results, and can switch between phase detection and contrast detect AF to best suit the scene. Whether shooting in low-light conditions like a late night block party, or a fast moving pick-up game, photographers can capture details with confidence.

When the action is happening, users can also shoot at a fast 10 frames per second (fps), with full adaptive AF for frame after frame of images with incredible sharpness and detail. Additionally, the scene can be captured at full resolution up to a staggering 60 fps (AF locked), which is the world's fastest continuous shooting speed2. So go ahead and capture a best friend's high dive at the next pool party, and then confidently share every aspect of the leap with stunning detail.

The One That Inspires a New Way to Capture with Motion Snapshot
Motion Snapshot is a new approach to capturing images that will dramatically alter the way we perceive digital photography. By selecting the Motion Snapshot icon from the Mode Dial at the back of the camera, consumers can capture fleeting moments with staggering depth and emotion like never before. The result unites a frozen still image with a slow-motion movement set to a built-in audio soundtrack to create a portrayal of an occurrence with maximum impact. With Motion Snapshot, users are now able to relive memories in stunning detail, as real movement and depth are included in the image. Motion Snapshot provides a way to once again experience someone's hair flowing in the breeze or relaxing scenes like waves crashing or rustling leaves that evoke an emotional response.

Consumers are also able to create masterpieces of moving images from multiple files using the included Short Movie Creator software. This easy-to-use, intuitive software works in conjunction with Nikon's View NX2 to make managing photos and movies fun and easy. With these programs, users are empowered to organize, share and edit photos, Motion Snapshots and HD movies. Users are also able to connect and share Motion Snapshot files using Nikon's my Picturetown, an online resource at www.mypicturetown.com.

The One to Set Trends
Both the camera technology and exterior design were inspired by the pursuit of balance, as a device that lives in perfect accord with any lifestyle. The lines are clean and minimalist, the colors are vibrant, creating a stylish accessory for every personality. The design is meant to inspire creativity, with a simple interface and easy-to-use camera controls, intuitively placed for any user. Switching from modes and accessing advanced features is easy, enabling the user to further push creative boundaries, whether trusting the smart automatic settings or creatively exploring the full manual control modes.

Control highlights include a Mode Dial, with the four main common functions readily available, in addition to a Command Dial with common camera settings. The new "F" (feature) button is a new design element to Nikon cameras, which automatically brings up relevant menus and options based on what mode the camera is set.

The Nikon 1 system is further complemented by fashionable, premium accessories tailored to perfectly fit a user's lifestyle. These accessories include a custom fit body case set available in a variety of colors, as well as fashionable, color coordinated leather neck and hand straps.

The Smart One: Nikon's Smart Photo Selector
The new Nikon J1 is an advanced camera with interchangeable lenses that features new technologies aimed at creating better pictures, easier. Nikon's new Smart Photo Selector feature strives to deliver a perfect image every time. When a "can't miss" photo opportunity arises, users can switch to the Smart Photo Selector mode which uses the camera's pre-cache to start shooting and storing images. All of these images are analyzed within the camera, and the best photo is selected based on a number of factors including exposure, focus and advanced facial recognition. While the camera suggests the best image, five frames are recorded, providing the user a choice of their favorite photo. What's more, the J1 also includes favorite core Nikon technologies, such as Active D-lighting, Auto Scene Selector and Picture Controls.

One Device That Also Captures HD Movies
The new CX-format CMOS sensor produces breathtaking Full HD movies at 1080p (30 fps). Users can also shoot at a rapid 60 fps (1080i), or elevate the production with additional 30/60/400 and 1200 fps modes for super slow motion effects. The J1 is made to be flexible, and can capture both HD movies and high resolution images simultaneously. Simply press the shutter while recording to freeze the action with a high quality image file with sharp focus.
Additionally, the Nikon J1 applies noise reduction to movie files, giving the user amazingly sharp, crisp movies with deep black levels. This feature makes this the ideal camera for shooting movies when light is less than ideal, such as indoors or at night. A full HD movie can record a full 29 minutes, while the senses are further treated to sound sampled in full stereo for lifelike reproduction.

One Vision, Two Distinct Cameras
The Nikon J1 is the model designed for those consumers who use a camera as part of their connected lifestyle; always carrying it to bring passion and depth to visual storytelling. Both the camera and the lenses come in a variety of matching stylish colors, including white, pink, red, silver and black. Photos and movies are easily composed and shared on the bright 3.0-inch high-resolution LCD monitor. With the aid of the concealed pop-up flash, consumers can easily add fill flash as needed or shoot in most conditions including low-light.

The Nikon 1 V1 is for photo enthusiasts who value interchangeable lens versatility and desire a small form factor. In fact, it's the world's smallest and lightest camera in the world with interchangeable lens versatility and an electronic viewfinder (EVF)3. Aimed at the user excited about creating amazing images and movies, the Nikon V1 has added features including a 1.4 million dot high resolution EVF that automatically activates when the user raises the camera to their eye. In addition to the high-speed electronic shutter, the magnesium alloy body conceals a high performance mechanical shutter that affords tactile feedback and expanded shooting options.

The V1 camera also features Nikon's new Multi-Accessory Port for attaching options such as the new SB-N5 compact speedlight, or the GP-N100 GPS module. For those making movies, the V1 has a stereo microphone input for professional quality audio.

1 NIKKOR Lenses and Accessories
Building upon a 75 year legacy of NIKKOR lenses and optical excellence, the new 1 NIKKOR lens system has been developed to push the boundaries of what's possible. Experience as the world leader in optical engineering has driven Nikon to create a compact, lightweight lens system that provides users with stunning image quality. New technology in these lenses includes a Silent Stepping Motor (STM) for whisper quiet AF and zoom during operation and while shooting movies. Additionally, this high performance system places Nikon's VR II image stabilization technology inside lenses to minimize instances of camera shake. The result is sharp images in a variety of challenging lighting conditions, even while handheld.

The new system offers a lens for every occasion. The camera kit includes a color-matched 1 NIKKOR VR 10- 30mm f/3.5-5.6 lens (27-81mm 35mm equivalent) for optimal focal range in a small lens. For those needing maximum versatility, a 1 NIKKOR VR 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 lens (81-297mm equivalent) is available, or users can explore their creative side with a color matched 1 NIKKOR 10mm f/2.8 pancake lens (27mm equivalent). For the movie enthusiast, a new 1 NIKKOR VR 10-100mm f/4.5-5.6 (27-270mm equivalent) power zoom lens will be available. This new lens is Nikon's first powered zoom, and provides smooth and silent changes in focal length while recording movies. Additionally, the FT-1 F-mount adaptor for legacy NIKKOR lenses will be available in the future, so that photographers can utilize their collection of quality NIKKOR lenses.

Price and Availability
The Nikon J1 and V1 will be available throughout the United States beginning October 20th. The Nikon J1 camera with 10-30mm lens kit will be available at a suggested retail price4 of $649.95. The Nikon V1 camera with 10- 30mm lens kit will be available for a suggested retail price4 of $899.95. For more information, please visit www.nikonusa.com.

About Nikon
Nikon, At the Heart of the ImageTM. Nikon Inc. is the world leader in digital imaging, precision optics and photo imaging technology and is globally recognized for setting new standards in product design and performance for its award-winning consumer and professional photographic equipment. Nikon Inc. distributes consumer and professional digital SLR cameras, NIKKOR optics, Speedlights and system accessories; Nikon COOLPIX® compact digital cameras; 35mm film SLR cameras; Nikon software products and Nikon sports and recreational optics as well as the new Nikon 1 advanced camera with interchangeable lens system. In 2011, production of NIKKOR lenses surpassed 60 million, creating a new milestone in Nikon's heritage of superior optics. For more information, dial (800) NIKON-US or visit http://www.nikonusa.com, which links all levels of photographers to the Web's most comprehensive photo learning and sharing communities. Connect with Nikon and other photographers on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nikon and get the latest news and information from Twitter by following @Nikon_USA.

1: Based on performance with shooting using a standard zoom lens (10-30) at the maximum wide-angle position with AF-area mode set to Single-point (results based on Nikon test conditions)
2: The world's fastest continuous shooting speed: 60 fps (while the AF is locked in the first frame) (shot at full resolution (10M)). Among cameras with interchangeable lenses
3: Among cameras with interchangeable lenses with a built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF).
4: Suggested retail price listed only as a suggestion. Actual prices are set by dealers and are subject to change at any time
*Comparison models include the Nikon D3100, Sony NEX-5, NEX-2 NEX-C3 NEX-5N, Olympus E-PL1s, E-PL2, E-P3, E-PL3, Panasonic G10, GF-2, GH2, G3 Samsung NX-10, NX100

Key Features – Nikon Advanced Camera with Interchangeable Lenses
The new Nikon 1 system is a revolutionary system, built from the ground up - Engineered specifically to strike the balance of performance, intuitive simplicity and portable design to enable users to capture and share their world like never before. This system is a platform for the future and targeted towards the expressive user who is connected to their world socially. The new 1 Mount is fully electronic, allowing for amazing speed and response High Speed AF CMOS Sensor - New 10.1 megapixel CX-format High Speed AF CMOS sensor engineered for this new system to deliver amazing image quality. Overall, it is one of the major components attributing to the optimally balanced package which was engineered to deliver the ultimate balance of portable form factor and image quality
New EXPEED 3 image processing engine - Dual core image processor helps drive amazing performance and speed

The Nikon 1 system has the worlds fastest AF - the cameras use a new advanced hybrid autofocus system that enables fast AF with 73 focus points. The advanced hybrid autofocus system combines phase detection AF, which enables faster focusing and superior subject tracking performance with moving subjects, while contrast- detect AF performs well in low-light conditions

Fast continuous shot - Users can also shoot at 10 fps, while frame after frame the full adaptive AF system will yield sharp photos. It also has the worlds fastest full resolution continuous shooting speed at 60 fps (AF locked) It's simple and intuitive - Thanks to smart technologies, the camera and interface are intuitive, and the user will want to capture more of their world
Motion Snapshot - By selecting the Motion Snapshot icon from the command dial at the back of the camera, consumers can capture fleeting moments with staggering depth and emotion like never before. The result unites a frozen still image with a slow-motion movement set to a built-in audio soundtrack to create a portrayal of an occurrence with maximum impact
o Works in conjunction with bundled Short Movie Creator Software and my Picturetown Smart Photo Selector - When a "can't miss" photo opportunity arises, users can switch to the Smart Photo Selector mode which uses the camera's pre-cache to start shooting and storing images. All of these images are analyzed within the camera, and the best photo is selected based on a number of factors including exposure, composition, focus and advanced facial recognition
Design and style - Both the camera technology and exterior design were inspired by the pursuit of balance of form factor and performance. The Minimalist interface inspires creativity, while an intuitive GUI makes users want to delve into advanced features
Full HD 1080p movies - Users can capture Full HD 1080p movies, along with simultaneous capture of high quality still and movie. Users can also enjoy slow motion effects, and select from a variety of frame rates.

The Nikon J1 - Designed to become a part of a lifestyle, and color choices with matching kit lenses include White, pink, red, silver, black. The Nikon V1 camera adds features such as a High Res EVF, mic jack, high endurance mechanical shutter, Multi-Accessory Port for accessories like new GPS and flash

Available Lenses include a new Silent Stepping Motor for whisper quiet operation (All prices suggested retail price)
Kit lens – 1 NIKKOR VR 10-30mm f/3.5-5.6 lens (kit lens)
Pancake lens - 1 NIKKOR 10mm f/2.8 lens ($249.95)
Zoom lens - 1 NIKKOR VR 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 lens ($249.95)
Nikon's first power zoom (ideal for recording movies) – 1 NIKKOR VR 10-100mm f/4.5-5.6 ($749.95) SB-N5 Speedlight is $149.95
GP-N100 GPS unit is $149.95.
Price and availability (suggested retail price)
Product availability October 20th. Suggested retail price is $649.95 for the J1 lens kit, and $899.95 for the V1 lens kit.

Kazaa rolls out music streaming app for iOS devices

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 08:18 PM PDT

Kazaa may not have exactly caught fire since it ditched its shady past and went the legit route back in 2009, but the company is still around, and it's now finally released its first mobile app. That comes on the form of an iOS app initially (compatible with the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch), which itself is completely free and includes a seven-day trial of the Kazaa music service (including unlimited streaming and downloads of "millions and millions of songs"). Once that's up, however, you'll have to fork over $9.99 a month to keep the service (US-only, for now), which places it in direction competition with the likes of Spotify and Rdio. Hit the link below to try it out for yourself.
Show full PR text
Kazaa Mobile Music App Now Available for Apple iPhone and iPad
Instant Access to Millions and Millions of Streaming Songs with Unlimited Downloads

NEW YORK, Sep 20, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Atrinsic, Inc. /quotes/zigman/2380042 ATRN +40.45% , a marketer of direct-to-consumer subscription products, including Kazaa ( www.kazaa.com ) - a digital music subscription service, announced today that its streaming music application is now available for download through Apple's App Store. The Kazaa app can be downloaded for free -- users can enjoy a free seven day trial. All subscribers get access to Kazaa's constantly updated catalogue of millions and millions of songs.

The easy-to-use and intuitive app includes these key features:

-- Search and listen on demand: Find all the music you want. Unlimited listening to any artist, album or song at any time in any order. Rewind, fast-forward, pause, skip and shuffle. Even view the cover art for all albums and tracks.

-- Unlimited downloads. Download any album, song or playlist so you can listen to music even when you are offline - out of cell or WiFi range and have no connection.

-- Create, sync and access your playlists. Everywhere. Your playlists, your favorite tracks, your favorite artists are synced instantly -- seamless integration of Kazaa across web and mobile.

-- Kazaa Radio. Only Kazaa offers a vast variety of artist based radio stations, as well as radio stations specifically created for and recommended to each of our subscribers. Sit back and discover music you will love.

-- Higher audio quality options. Subscribers have the option to receive either standard or high quality audio streams and/or downloads.

"Our goal is to allow our subscribers to access whatever music they want, whenever and wherever they want it in the easiest way possible with the highest quality service. The launch of our app today makes it even simpler for our users with Apple devices to do this. This marks another important step forward in Kazaa's product development.

We look forward to continuing to improve Kazaa's web and mobile services in every way. Kazaa mobile will be available on more and more devices in the future. The Kazaa music library, which already contains millions of songs from all four of the major labels, will continue to grow; we expect to add millions of more tracks from thousands of independent record labels. Our customer experience and our value proposition will continue to improve and be refined," said Stuart Goldfarb, President and CEO of Atrinsic, Inc. "The music industry - and the way that music listeners consume music -- is going through tumultuous and fundamental change. Kazaa is well positioned to embrace this opportunity."

About Atrinsic and Kazaa

Atrinsic, Inc. is a marketer of direct-to-consumer subscription products, including Kazaa, and an Internet search-marketing agency. Kazaa is a subscription-based digital music service that gives users unlimited access to millions of CD-quality tracks. Unlike other music services that charge you every time a song is downloaded, Kazaa allows users to listen to and explore as much music as they want for one monthly fee, without having to pay for every track or album. Royalties are paid to the rights' holders for licenses to the music utilized by this digital service. Atrinsic and Brilliant Digital Entertainment, Inc. jointly offer the Kazaa digital music service pursuant to a Marketing Services Agreement and a Master Services Agreement between the two companies.

SOURCE: Atrinsic, Inc.

Hulu Plus for Android gets more plusses, adds compatibility to nine devices

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 07:24 PM PDT

Do we want to live in a world where the Vizio Tablet actually has Hulu Plus before our beloved Motorola Droid Bionic or Droid 3? No matter your answer, the fortunate news is that we no longer have to, because the streaming video service is now readily available on eight more devices. The list includes the two mentioned above, as well as the HTC Droid Incredible 2, LG Revolution and G2x, Motorola Droid X2, HTC Sensation and EVO 3D. This is great news, though don't forget that you'll need to pony up $8 per month for the subscription. Still interested? Follow the source to download and install it on your device.

GeeXboX LiveUSB HTPC Linux distro hits v2.0, adds ARM support for multi-core video decoding

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 06:53 PM PDT

Last time we heard about GeeXboX, Palm was ushering out its first webOS phone, Google was putting the traditional navigation model in the grave and unlimited Skype calling over LTE was but a figment of our imagination -- two years later, and the aforesaid distro is finally reaching version two dot oh. Like version 1.2.2, the HTPC-centric Linux distribution allows users to decode media on dual- and quad-core systems, with added support for devices running ARM SoCs (like the TI OMAP4 Pandaboard and Tegra 2). The new 72MB version ditches the unique ISO generator tool, legacy HDD installation, support for V4L Analog and DVB Digital TV cards (although the manufacturer promises the last digital feature "will come back shortly"). Check out the source for full upgrade deets, and save us a seat on the couch, will ya?

ASUS' U46SV-DH51 goes up for pre-order, ships to bezel haters on October 1st (video)

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 06:27 PM PDT

Do you despise thick bezels, yet harbor an unnatural aversion to portables from LG and Samsung? We're not here to psychoanalyze, but ASUS' U46SV-DH51 might be more to your liking. The "Brushed Champagne" notebook is notable for its diminutive bezel, which, like Sammy's smaller Series 7, allows for a 14-inch display to exist in a 13-inch chassis. It's got some punch too, packing a Core i5-2410M, 4GB of RAM, NVIDIA's GeForce GT 540M and a DVD burner (remember those?). Not bad for a 4.85-pound laptop that'll supposedly go 10 hours between charges and set you back $879. You'll find a pre-order page at the source below, but before you go, why not hop past the break and indulge in a video?

[Thanks, Danijel]

Desk Pets' TankBot rolls out with Android and iOS support, is the tiny racer in your hand

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 05:59 PM PDT

Lonely and living in the city, but don't have the patience or maturity for Man's Best Friend? Well, you could always take a TankBot under your wing. Desk Pets' palm-sized four-wheeler first whirred into our hands earlier this year at the International Toy Fair, promising a variety of play modes and iOS control. Now, the team behind the roving gizmo has finally released it to retailers' shelves, tacking on a $25 price tag and adding Android compatibility. The mini-bot operates in a trio of configurations: an autonomous mode that makes use of its infrared sensors to navigate obstacles, a free-roaming option that'll have it wandering aimlessly and, most importantly, a free mobile app that puts dual joystick control on your Apple device's screen or universal remote (connected via headphone jack) for steering on an Android phone. Don't expect to squeeze hours of fun out of this little tchotchke, though, as its retractable USB port only gets you about 15 minutes of gee whizzery. Skip past the break to watch a video demo of the lil' guy en vivo.

Show full PR text
Desk Pets International Deploys TankBot, Available Nationwide at Radio Shack and Toys "R" Us
20 Sep 2011

Interactive micro-robotic tank features 3-modes, including maze solving, free-roaming, and smartphone control

Toronto, Canada – (September 20, 2011) – Desk Pets International (HK) Limited, creator of interactive micro-robotic toys and gadgets with big-play value, unveils TankBot, winner of Popular Science's Best of Toy Fair 2011. Three interactive modes allow TankBot to navigate mazes, free-roam, and be fully controllable by your Apple iOS or Android mobile device. Featuring a built-in USB charger, battery cost is non-existent, giving TankBot hours of inexpensive playtime. Available today for $24.99 at Radio Shack and Toys "R" Us nationwide.

Equipped with a variety of play modes, sounds and maneuvers, TankBot has a personality all its own. In autonomous maze solving mode, infrared sensors allow it to navigate twist, turns and around obstacles with military precision. Set TankBot to free-roaming mode and watch it take the helm, acting under its own direction while providing various sounds including aggressive growls, impatient honks and in the rare case it tips over, even a helpless cry. With Desk Pet's free downloadable iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android mobile device application, users can fully control TankBot with their mobile device. Using the Apple iOS, dual joystick steering allows realistic tank maneuvers by powering left and right tracks individually. Each TankBot comes with an iDesk Pets universal remote that easily plugs into the headphone jack of your mobile device. Once connected, the application is compatible with TankBot, as well as Desk Pets current products SkitterBot and TrekBot.

Desk Pets International Managing Directors, David Piltz and Michael Trzecieski have high hopes for TankBot as we head into the holiday season. "TankBot's smartphone compatibility and multiple modes, coupled with budget friendly USB charging and a sub-$25 price point, make it a great stocking stuffer for the holidays," says Piltz. Michael Trezcieski points to its interactive play and military like maneuvers that set it apart. "In free-roam mode you can block it with your hands and watch it aggressively attack or decide to turn and run. The maze solving mode is incredibly accurate, with complete autonomous navigation TankBot can solve any puzzle you can come up with."

TankBot features include:

Fully controllable by iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android mobile device application Autonomous mode uses IR sensors to navigate mazes, avoid obstacles, and react with military precision
Free roaming mode with various sounds
Retractable USB charger built into body of the product, 40 minutes of charge = 15 minutes of play
Flashing heartbeat eyes pulse when robot is idle
Each color (orange, blue, black, and green) operates on own frequency, allowing for multi-player racing and battling

Yale demos NFC-enabled residential locks, germaphobes rejoice (video)

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 05:30 PM PDT

Assa Abloy has already brought NFC-based door locks to some Swedish hotel rooms, but one of its subsidiary companies is now looking to bring them to your doorstep, as well. Earlier this month, Yale Locks & Hardware unveiled what it hopes will be the first NFC-enabled residential lock to hit the US market. With this system, all you'll need to do is wave your smartphone in front of one of Yale's Real Living line of motorized locks, which will then automatically open (as long as you've been authorized to do so). Demoed at this year's CEDIA Expo, these revamped locks are also compatible with either Zigbee or Z-Wave home automation technologies and support Assa Abloy's Mobile Keys software, which allows users to securely load all of their digital keys on their handsets. Pricing and availability remain unclear, but you can unlock more details in the brief demo video and full press release, after the break.

Show full PR text
Yale Debuts First NFC Door Lock for Homes

Near Field Communication (NFC) employs Mobile Keys platform from parent company Assa Abloy.

LENOIR CITY, TN -- Yale Locks & Hardware (http://www.yalelocks.com), an ASSA ABLOY Group company and a world leader in door hardware for residential and commercial applications, will demonstrate a version of its Yale Real Living locks with Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. The demonstration will take place at the upcoming CEDIA Expo 2011, September 7-10 in Indianapolis, IN.

The Yale Real Living line is the company's first locks specifically designed to integrate seamlessly into the digital home.

In adding NFC capability, Yale expects to be the first US brand to offer residential locks with NFC capability. What's more, this Yale Real Living line will be compatible with the ASSA ABLOY Mobile Keys platform. A scalable secure delivery infrastructure for distribution and management of mobile keys, the ASSA ABLOY Mobile Keys platform allows credentials to be distributed securely through NFC-enabled mobile phones as an alternative to mechanical keys and physical access cards. Consequently, this will be the first line of residential locks that can be unlocked directly using an NFC-enabled mobile phone.

NFC is a short-range wireless communication technology standard that enables the exchange of data between devices up to a 10-centimeter distance. Applications include contactless transactions such as payment and transit ticketing, keys, data transfers including electronic business cards, and access to online digital content.

The mobile keys platform enabled by the NFC technology has already been introduced to the hospitality industry by Yale's parent company, ASSA ABLOY. In fact, ASSA ABLOY recently completed the first-ever trial of the mobile keys platform at the Clarion Hotel in Stockholm, in which 28 frequent hotel guests were invited to use the technology over an eight-month period. Reaction to the mobile keys platform was overwhelmingly positive.

"From a residential perspective, the mobile phone is ubiquitous," said Jason Williams, General Manager of Yale Residential. "We use it to make reservations, schedule our day, everything. By incorporating NFC technology into our Yale Real Living locks, we've extended the functionality of the mobile phone even further. What's more, we've created a highly secure product that capitalizes on ASSA ABLOY technology that is being extremely well-received in other end-user markets."

Available with either a sleek capacitive touchscreen or pushbutton key pad, Yale's new platform of intelligent locks supports both Z-Wave® and ZigBee, allowing them to integrate seamlessly into a wide range of home control and security systems, including Control4, the Vera Z-Wave home control system by Mi Casa Verde, and Alarm.com's emPower, among others.

Comcast and FCC partner to give low-income families access to internet, Nyan Cats

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 05:04 PM PDT

Like a giant warlock guarding the gates of the interwebs, financial barriers all too often block our young people from accessing the plethora of awesomeness found in front of those iconic triple-Ws-and-a-dot. In a bid to spread the love more evenly, the FCC and Comcast's promised Internet Essentials platform is going live -- giving low-income families $9.99 / month web access and "discounted" (read: $149.99) computers. The platform that we first heard about in August will also include a Norton Security Suite and computer training for youngsters and their parents alike. The cable provider is accepting participants until 2014, honoring the contract dependent on the child's status and family income. Like other heavy hitters involved in similar initiatives, the goal is to bridge the education gap and to provide a more level playing field for kids. To get more details on the program, direct your attention to the source link.
Show full PR text

WASHINGTON, Sep 20, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Comcast Corporation Executive Vice President David L. Cohen, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, and District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Chancellor Kaya Henderson today announced the launch of Internet Essentials, a new nationwide program which provides families with children who are eligible to receive free lunches under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) with low-cost Internet service, affordable computers and digital literacy training. The goal of Internet Essentials is to help close the digital divide and ensure more Americans benefit from all the Internet has to offer.

The program addresses what research has identified as three primary barriers to broadband adoption:

-- A lack of understanding of how the Internet is relevant and useful;

-- The cost of a home computer; and

-- The cost of Internet service.

According to David L. Cohen, Comcast Corporation Executive Vice President, "Internet Essentials helps level the playing field for low-income families by connecting students online with their teachers and their schools' educational resources. The program will enable parents to receive digital literacy training so they can do things like apply for jobs online or use the Internet to learn more about healthcare and government services available where they live."

Today, during an Internet Essentials launch event at Ballou High School in the District of Columbia, Mr. Cohen, Chairman Genachowski, and Chancellor Henderson were joined by students, school officials, and national and local community partners.

"This past January, Comcast made a commitment to the FCC and the American people to provide discounted broadband service to millions of low-income families. Thanks to continued follow through, I'm pleased to be here today at the national launch of the new Comcast Internet Essentials program that aims to provide high-speed Internet to millions of school-age children and their families who have not adopted broadband. The program will prepare the next generation, create new opportunities for more jobs and will make a positive difference in the lives of many Americans. I challenge other service producers to take concrete steps to help close the broadband adoption gap," said FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski.

"Through the Internet, our students and their families can unlock unlimited learning and growth potential," said DCPS Chancellor Kaya Henderson. "Programs like Internet Essentials that provide instant access to information and educational resources should be implemented everywhere. We are so grateful and wish to thank Comcast for expanding that access in the District of Columbia and helping to bridge the digital divide for many of our underserved DCPS students and families."

This announcement builds on Comcast's long standing commitment to provide schools with cutting-edge broadband technology and training through programs such as Cable in the Classroom, an educational training for teachers, parents and administrators on the educational use of Internet resources and High Speed Education Connection, a program to provide free high-speed Internet access to schools nationwide. In 2002, Comcast rolled out a new high-speed Internet service in the District with an announcement that Ketcham Elementary School, in the same neighborhood as Ballou High School, would be the first to pilot the new service.

"Broadband is transforming the way we educate our young people. We need to help more of our students and their families who may not be able to afford Internet access. I applaud Comcast for helping to close the digital divide through the Internet Essentials program which will bring access to affordable broadband and computers to tens of thousands of families and students in the District of Columbia," said Mayor Vincent C. Gray.

Comcast is working with a growing network of school districts and community based organizations across the nation to spread the word about Internet Essentials and provide digital literacy training. In an effort to increase awareness of the new service, which provides access to low-cost Internet service, training, and technology to low-income communities, already:

-- More than 1,000 school districts -- including nearly 20,000 schools with more than 4.5 million students who are eligible to receive free lunches under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) -- and almost 1,000 community partners nationally have agreed to participate and share information about Internet Essentials;

-- Nearly 10 million pieces of bilingual Internet Essentials informational materials have been distributed to schools and grassroots organizations across the country; and

-- More than 60 In-Person Training sessions have been scheduled and confirmed for September and 30 Train-the-Trainer sessions have taken place in August/September.

Service Details:

Internet Essentials participants will receive:

-- Residential Internet service for $9.95 a month + applicable taxes;

-- No price increases, no activation fees, or equipment rental fees;

-- A voucher to purchase a low-cost computer for $149.99 + tax; and

-- Access to free digital literacy training in print, online and in person.

Additional benefits include the Norton(TM) Security Suite ($160 value) for comprehensive online security protection at no additional cost.


A household is eligible to participate in the Internet Essentials program if it meets all of the following criteria:

-- Is located where Comcast offers Internet service;

-- Has at least one child who is eligible to receive a free school lunch under the NSLP; -- (As an example, according to the Department of Agriculture, a household of three would have to make less than $25,000 a year in income);

-- Has not subscribed to Comcast Internet service within the last 90 days;

-- Does not have an overdue Comcast bill or unreturned equipment.

Comcast will sign up eligible families in the program for at least three years, through the end of the 2013-2014 school year. Any household that qualifies during this three-year period will remain eligible for Internet Essentials provided a child eligible for a free lunch remains living in the household.

Verizon continues nationwide LTE expansion tour, edges closer to year-end goal

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 04:39 PM PDT

It appears that Verizon's showing no signs of slowing its LTE expansion efforts, as 26 markets lit up last week and at least another 21 are ready to debut on October 20th. The most recent switching of the flip, which took place on September 15th, rose the grand total of cities blanketed by LTE to 143, covering more than 160 million people; the upcoming effort to expand will increase it to 164 cities. The carrier's goal by the end of the year is 175, which means it'll be just 11 cities away from achieving its 2011 objective with two months to spare. Notable highlights include: Albuquerque and Santa Fe, New Mexico; Buffalo and Niagara, New York; Green Bay, Wisconsin; and Stockton and Modesto, California. Los Angeles and San Diego will also be getting more coverage. Check the list after the break to see if your city will be the fortunate recipient of some 4G love, as well as the press release to take a look at the entire list of available cities. New markets:
  • Green Bay, WI
  • Bloomington, IN
  • Bedford, IN
  • Mitchell, IN
  • Evansville, IN
  • Birmingham, AL
  • Albuquerque, NM
  • Santa Fe, NM
  • Terre Haute, IN
  • South Bend, IN
  • Mishawaka, IN
  • Elkhart, IN
  • Goshen, IN
  • Sioux City, IA
  • Buffalo, NY
  • Niagara, NY
  • Modesto, CA
  • Stockton, CA
Expanded markets:
  • Greater Erie, PA
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • San Diego, CA

Show full PR text
Verizon Wireless Launches 4G LTE In 26 New Markets And Makes Major Expansions In 3 Cities On September 15
With the Introduction of the new DROID BIONIC™ by Motorola, Verizon Wireless Offers 11 Cutting-edge 4G LTE Devices


BASKING RIDGE, NJ - Verizon Wireless is turning on the world's most advanced wireless network in 26 additional cities and expanding its network in San Francisco, Indianapolis and Cleveland/Akron on Thursday, Sept. 15, bringing the blazingly fast speed of 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) to a total of 143 markets across the United States. Consumers and businesses can choose from 11 4G LTE-enabled devices to connect to the fastest 4G LTE network in the country, including the new DROID BIONIC™ by Motorola which is the first Verizon Wireless smartphone to combine 4G LTE with the power of dual-core 1 GHz processors, 1 GB of RAM and a stunning 4.3-inch qHD display.

Starting Thursday, Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network will be available in Fort Smith and Jonesboro, Ark.; San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, Calif.; Daytona, Fla.; Bloomington, Champaign/Urbana, Rockford and Springfield, Ill.; the Quad Cities, Ill./Iowa; Iowa City, Iowa; Shreveport, La.; Kalamazoo and Saginaw, Mich.; Reno, Nev.; Las Cruces, N.M.; Fargo, N.D.; Canton, Lima and Mansfield, Ohio; Dyersburg, Tenn.; the Tri-Cities, Tenn./Va.; and Austin, Beaumont/Port Arthur, Wichita Falls and El Paso, Texas. The company is also making major 4G LTE expansions on Thursday in San Francisco, Indianapolis and Cleveland/Akron.

"We've followed an aggressive roll out plan for our 4G LTE network, and consumers and businesses can connect today to the fastest 4G LTE network in the country with nearly a dozen devices," said David Small, chief technical officer of Verizon Wireless. "Speed matters, and it matters when you're in your hometown as well as when you're on the road. That's why it's important that you can connect over 4G LTE in 143 markets, from New York to San Francisco, and from Miami to Las Vegas."

4G LTE Devices, Speed and Coverage

Consumers can choose from 11 devices to access the blazingly fast speeds of the 4G LTE network, including:

Smartphones: DROID BIONIC by Motorola, Revolution™ by LG, DROID Charge by Samsung and ThunderBolt™ by HTC
Tablets: Samsung Galaxy Tab™ 10.1 with 4G LTE
Notebooks and Netbooks: HP® Pavilion dm1-3010nr Entertainment PC and Compaq™ Mini CQ10-688nr with built-in 4G LTE
Hotspots: Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot MiFi™ 4510L and Samsung 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot SCH-LC11
Modems: Verizon Wireless 4G LTE USB Modem 551L and Pantech UML290 USB modem
In real-world, fully loaded network environments, 4G LTE users should experience average data rates of 5 to 12 megabits per second (Mbps) on the downlink and 2 to 5 Mbps on the uplink.

When customers travel outside of a 4G LTE coverage area, the devices automatically connect to Verizon Wireless' 3G network, enabling customers to stay connected from coast to coast. Verizon Wireless' 3G network is the most reliable network in the country and allows customers in 3G coverage areas today who purchase 4G LTE devices to take advantage of 4G LTE speeds when the faster network becomes available in their areas.

Reliability: In and Beyond Major Cities

As the first wireless company in the world to broadly deploy 4G LTE technology, Verizon Wireless is committed to building its 4G LTE network with the same performance and reliability for which it has long been recognized. Verizon Wireless' consistent focus on reliability is based on rigid engineering standards and a disciplined deployment approach year after year. The company's 700 MHz spectrum gives Verizon Wireless specific advantages with 4G LTE, including a contiguous, nationwide network license.

Verizon Wireless' vision also includes bringing its 4G LTE network beyond major cities. The company is working with rural communications companies to collaboratively build and operate a 4G LTE network in those areas using the tower and backhaul assets of the rural company and Verizon Wireless' core 4G LTE equipment and premium 700 MHz spectrum. Already, 11 rural companies have announced their participation in the LTE in Rural America program and have leased spectrum covering, in total, more than 2.1 million people in rural communities and nearly 62,000 square miles. These companies include: Bluegrass Cellular, Carolina West/Clear Stream, Cellcom, Chariton Valley, Convergence Technologies, Cross Telephone, Custer Telephone Cooperative, Pioneer Cellular, S&R Communications, Strata Networks and Thumb Cellular.

4G LTE Markets as of Sept. 15, 2011

While Verizon Wireless' 3G network covers more than 290 million Americans, the company's 4G LTE network covers more than 160 million Americans and will be available in 143 cities on Thursday, including:

Decatur, Ala.
Huntsville, Ala.
Mobile, Ala.
Montgomery, Ala.
Phoenix, Ariz.
Tucson, Ariz.
Fayetteville/Springdale/Rogers, Ark.
Fort Smith, Ark.
Jonesboro, Ark.
Bakersfield, Calif.
Fresno, Calif.
Los Angeles, Calif.
Oakland, Calif.
Sacramento, Calif.
Salinas/Monterey/Seaside, Calif.
San Diego, Calif.
San Francisco, Calif.
San Jose, Calif.
San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Santa Barbara, Calif.
Colorado Springs, Colo.
Denver, Colo.
Fort Collins, Colo.
Greater Fairfield and New Haven, Conn.
Hartford, Conn.
Washington, D.C.
Daytona, Fla.
Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Gainesville, Fla.
Jacksonville, Fla.
Lakeland, Fla.
Miami, Fla.
Orlando, Fla.
Pensacola, Fla.
Sarasota/Bradenton, Fla.
Tallahassee, Fla.
Tampa, Fla.
West Palm Beach, Fla.
Athens, Ga.
Atlanta, Ga.
Augusta, Ga.
Hilo, Hawaii
Honolulu, Hawaii
Kahului/Wailuku, Hawaii
Lahaina, Hawaii
Boise, Idaho
Bloomington, Ill.
Carbondale, Ill.
Champaign/Urbana, Ill.
Chicago, Ill.
Rockford, Ill.
Springfield, Ill.
Fort Wayne, Ind.
Indianapolis, Ind.
West Lafayette, Ind.
The Quad Cities, Ill./Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa
Wichita, Kan.
Louisville, Ky.
Baton Rouge, La.
Hammond, La.
New Orleans, La.
Shreveport, La.
Baltimore, Md.
Frederick, Md.
Boston, Mass.
Springfield, Mass.
Worcester, Mass.
Detroit, Mich.
Flint, Mich.
Grand Rapids, Mich.
Kalamazoo, Mich.
Lansing, Mich.
Saginaw, Mich.
Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.
St. Louis, Mo.
Omaha/Council Bluffs, Neb.
Las Vegas, Nev.
Reno, Nev.
Las Cruces, N.M.
Albany, N.Y.
Ithaca, N.Y.
New York, N.Y.
Rochester, N.Y.
Syracuse, N.Y.
Charlotte, N.C.
Fayetteville/Lumberton, N.C.
Greensboro/Winston Salem/High Point, N.C.
Raleigh/Durham, N.C.
Wilmington, N.C.
Fargo, N.D.
Akron, Ohio
Canton, Ohio
Cincinnati, Ohio
Cleveland, Ohio
Columbus, Ohio
Dayton, Ohio
Lima, Ohio
Mansfield, Ohio
Toledo, Ohio
Oklahoma City, Okla.
Tulsa, Okla.
Portland, Ore.
Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton, Pa.
Altoona, Pa. Erie, Pa.
Harrisburg, Pa.
Johnstown, Pa.
Philadelphia, Pa.
Pittsburgh, Pa.
Wilkes Barre/Scranton, Pa.
State College, Pa.
Charleston, S.C.
Columbia, S.C.
Greenville/Spartanburg, S.C.
Hilton Head, S.C.
Sioux Falls, S.D.
Chattanooga, Tenn.
Clarksville, Tenn./Hopkinsville, Ky.
Cleveland, Tenn.
Dyersburg, Tenn.
The Tri-Cities, Tenn./Va.
Knoxville, Tenn.
Memphis, Tenn.
Nashville, Tenn.
Austin, Texas
Beaumont/Port Arthur, Texas
Bryan/College Station, Texas
Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas
El Paso, Texas
Houston, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Temple/Killeen, Texas
Wichita Falls, Texas
Provo, Utah
Salt Lake City, Utah
Olympia, Wash.
Seattle, Wash.
Spokane, Wash.
Tacoma, Wash.
Charleston, W.Va.
Madison, Wis.
Milwaukee, Wis.

Epic 4G Touch gets 'experimental' Windows-only root, overclockers and undervolters dance for joy

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 04:26 PM PDT

Epic 4G Touch Rooted
Since you can't upgrade the GPU or add more RAM to your smartphone, there's really only one way to improve upon an already impressive handset like the Epic 4G Touch -- root it. It hasn't been on the market for very long, but the crafty hackers over at XDA forums have already figured out how to open up the phone to your every whim. The crack is "experimental" at this point, so proceed with caution. You'll also need to have both Kies and Odin 3 up and running, which makes this a Windows-only treatment at the moment. Head on after the break for a pair of videos and hit up the source link for full instructions. Oh, and happy modding.

Introducing Engadget Distro!

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 02:58 PM PDT

Say hello to Engadget Distro. At its most molecular level, it's nothing more than a series of ones and zeros, cobbled together in a compiler and made to look like words and images on Apple's iPad. But in reality, it's something far greater -- something that the entire Engadget staff couldn't be more proud to have their names on. Distro is the week in technology news, distilled down and reformatted into a beautiful, offline view that can be enjoyed anywhere. You know, like one of those regional jets still awaiting their rightful Gogo injection. We've got a team of designers and editors toiling around the clock to assemble our best long-form feature content and reviews, re-wrapping it in a fashion that takes full advantage of a little thing called "multitouch."

As of now, we've got plans to launch Distro on the iPad soon (as in, super soon!), but you can bet we're already hammering away on versions for the other major tablet platforms. Rest assured, we're as eager to finish them as anyone, and yes, they'll all be absolutely free of charge. For those who find themselves a touch overwhelmed with the sheer torrent of news that occurs in this space each and every day, Distro offers a relaxing, peaceful alternative. Sort of like morphine, but available sans a prescription. We'll be showing off a sneak peek during tonight's live Engadget Show (tune in here!), and we'll be sure to keep you abreast of our launch date as it draws closer. For now, have a look at what Distro will bring in the video after the break. We hope you enjoy.

Engadget HD Podcast 266 - 09.20.2011

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 02:55 PM PDT

Netflix's surprise split took the top spot this week, so we dug into what this means for the company and its subscribers, especially those who prefer Blu-ray quality over streaming convenience. Closing things out is our quick preview of this week's fall TV premieres, with a few media streamers, CEDIA notes, satellite outages and Windows 8 discussion squeezed in between. We're now living in the era of Qwikster -- press play and we'll talk you through it.

Get the podcast
[iTunes] Subscribe to the Podcast directly in iTunes (MP3).
[RSS - AAC] Enhanced feed, subscribe to this with iTunes.
[RSS - MP3] Add the Engadget HD Podcast feed to your RSS aggregator
[Zune] Subscribe to the Podcast directly in the Zune Marketplace
[MP3] Download the show (MP3).

Hosts: Ben Drawbaugh (@bjdraw), Richard Lawler (@rjcc)

Producer: Trent Wolbe

07:10 - Netflix admits it will end up with fewer subscribers than predicted, shrinks DVD-only count Hear the podcast


This posting includes an audio/video/photo media file: Download Now

HP's unreleased white TouchPad and Pre 3 for AT&T (hands-on video)

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 02:36 PM PDT

What's this? Some of HP's unreleased WebOS devices? Well yes! Say hello to the white European TouchPad, the black TouchPad 4G for AT&T, the Pre 3 4G for AT&T, and our very own Veer 4G review unit, all gathered on a fine specimen of new century modern upholstery. We were able to unbox these devices and handle the hardware, but the software was off limits. The owner of the Pre 3 did activate it for us, but that's as far as we were able to go. While still heavier and thicker than the competition, the white TouchPad -- a 64GB model with the faster 1.5GHz CPU -- is significantly more attractive than its black sibling, and less of a fingerprint magnet to boot. AT&T's TouchPad 4G -- with 32GB of storage and the same 1.5GHz processor -- features a working SIM slot for the carrier's faux-G network (HSPA+), but is otherwise cosmetically identical to the existing WiFi version. The Pre 3 is the same phone we handled during HP's announcement last February, save for the AT&T logo on the back. Check out our gallery below, and hit the break for our hands-on video.

The Engadget Show is live, here at 6:00PM ET! (update: we're done!)

Posted: 20 Sep 2011 02:25 PM PDT

Are you ready for this? If not, too bad, because we're back, and boy have we got jam-packed show this month. The next episode of The Engadget Show starts shooting tonight at 6PM ET, and you can join us at this very URL -- so keep your browser locked to this spot.

This time out, we'll be testing out the Grace One electric bike on the streets of New York City, paying a visit to the Frog laboratories to check out some awesome design projects, popping by Maker Faire in New York and discussing DIY projects with Make:Live co-hosts Matt Richardson and Becky Stern, getting serenaded by viral rock star Jonathan Coulton and discussing the origins of everyone's favorite dancing robot, Keepon.

Update: That's a wrap! We'll have it edited and up on the site as soon as we can!

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