In a very short time frame we’ve become constantly connected; always on and high speed, we need to be able to get our internet fix anytime, anywhere. Most of us are more than a little reliant on our Internet connections; it’s certainly not far from the truth to say that we take this access for granted. For example, how many of us would be horrified if we had to go back to a 56K modem? (To those of you who are currently rocking such a vintage connection speed, our condolences).
While there are many methods of getting a high-speed connection when you’re away from your home service, they all have their pros and cons. We’re going to break down some of the different devices and services that provide internet access across all fifty states, delivering that delicious online content you crave.
3D Map of the World Wide Web - image courtesy vlib.us
A Minnesota man is finding out that you can actually serve hard time for actling like an all-around jackass online. That can take many forms, but in this case, Barry Ardolf received an 18-year prison sentence for essentially terrorizing his neighborhood through a series of cyberattacks in retaliation for having the cops called on him by his neighbors. It gets more bizarre after the break.
Little brothers are like your own portable punching bag: name calling, insulting and rubbing your smaller sibling's face in the dirt are all typical big brother pastimes. As any bigger brother can tell you, though, it sucks when your little brother gets big enough to fight back and punch you in the eye. The days of us big brother PC-types mocking younger technologies like smartphones and tablets may be coming to an end if a recent report is any indication: more people access Wi-Fi Internet using mobile devices than traditional computers.
Last month, we told you about an upcoming Wi-Fi mouse from the world’s leading PC vendor HP. Well, the company quietly stripped the wireless rodent of its upcoming tag on Friday. Hit the jump to find out more about the HP Wi-Fi Mobile Mouse.
Ah, it's good to be an on-the-go computer user in the Big Apple. Just last week Mayor Bloomberg and AT&T announced a collaboration to bring free Wi-Fi access to 26 locations across New York's various parks. Now, Cablevision's boosting their "Optimum Wi-Fi" network in order to bring customers cable-modem speeds over the airwaves. "But I'm not a Cablevision subscriber!" you wail, scrunching your face to hold back the tears. No need to cry, chum – Time Warner and Comcast struck a deal with Cablevision about a year ago that lets their subscribers hop on to Optimum Wi-Fi at will.
For watching movies on the go, it's hard to beat a tablet PC. Unfortunately, the hard drive limitations on portable PCs mean that media junkies like us can quickly run out of disk space.
Seagate's just-announced GoFlex Satellite 500GB hard drive is designed to address the storage concerns associated with on-the-go computers. The drive's built-in Wi-Fi support means you'll be able to leave the hard drive in your backpack while you stream videos to your portable device, and the battery life isn't anything to sneeze at either – the GoFlex will be able to stream video for five straight hours or sit in standby for over a day before it'll need a recharge. That's a lot of Sopranos videos.
A wireless mouse solves one problem while simultaneously introducing another, and it's up to you to decide if cutting the cord (and maybe a bit of clutter) is worth the trade-off of giving up a USB port for the wireless receiver. HP's engineers didn't think so, but rather than throw in the towel, they went and developed the new HP Wi-Fi Mobile Mouse, the first mouse to connect quickly and easily without a USB dongle using a PC's built-in Wi-Fi receiver. Genius!
You can never really have enough USB ports, and this is especially true if you own a laptop, most of which are decked out with just three or four of them. By the time you plug in an external mouse, keyboard, and laptop cooler, you're either out of USB ports or down to one. Be that as it may, USB modems continue to outsell embedded modules by a wide margin, a research company says.
It looks at though Dell's Wi-Fi only Streak 7 tablet PC is finally available in the U.S. after having gone on sale in the U.K. earlier this week. Dell hasn't yet formally announced U.S. availability, but a quick peek at mega e-tailer Amazon.com shows that it's in stock and shipping now, provided you have the requisite $380 to drop on the Wi-Fi only device.
It's been a long wait for Motorola to drop its Wi-Fi only Xoom tablet, and those living in Canada will have to hang tight just a little bit longer. Motorola on Monday announced it will begin shipping and selling its Wi-Fi Xoom slate to Canadians beginning sometime in April, though stopped short of offering up an exact release date, or price for that matter.
While Motorola didn't want to get into pricing details, you can find the Xoom for pre-order on both Best Buy's and Future Shop's Canadian portals, with each one offering up the Wi-Fi tablet for $600, the same price as here in the States.
"Motorola Xoom brings PC-like power to a tablet, providing consumers with an easy-to-use, lightning fast experience designed with fun and productivity in mind, and we're thrilled to bring it to Canadians," said Jeff Miller, corporate vice president, Motorola Mobility.
Likewise, Canadians should be thrilled to have access to a viable alternative to Apple's first and second generation iPad tablets. As we noted in our review, the Xoom has a shot at being an iPad killer, but it's critical to get the Wi-Fi only version out there in the wild for people have no need or desire for the 3G radio, which carries a pricing premium.