No need to pout and pound sand if don't have an extra $8 million lying around for a diamond encrusted iPhone. For a mere $27,000 (or thereabouts), you can transform yourself into a walking target for thugs by yakking in public on your Vertu Constellation Quest.
Still too much, you say? No problem -- if you can do without the yellow gold trim, the plain jane model will only set you back around $7,500. If you can't afford that, well, you really have no business owning a smartphone (that's tongue-in-cheek folks, save the hate mail).
The Symbian-powered smartphone sports a high-res VGA screen, video output jack, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, GPS, FM radio, 32GB microSD card, full QWERTY keyboard, and crystal sapphire keys with silkscreen printed characters.
Zound Industries, makers of the, um, Coloud / Hello Kitty headset, has partnered with Marshall to develop a pair of Marshall branded cans for your skull.
Marshall specializes primarily in amps of various sizes, and as far as we can tell, the Marshall Headphones will mark the company's first foray into headsets.
"Nothing has been compromised when expanding the Marshall heritage of big stage performance to the individual enjoyment of good music," Marshall said. "These headphones are conceived from Marshall’s time-tested fundaments of performance and endurance, designed to thrive on daily use and to render music the way it was meant to sound, no matter what your flavor is. The greatest of effort has also been put into the aesthetics, making the headphones ooze of that iconic Marshall look."
Other than a partial sneak peek at the design, Marshall is keeping tight lipped about its upcoming headset, which is slated to launch on November 15, 2010.
Verizon on Tuesday announced the availability of its Wireless 3G Network Extender for "customers who live in homes where location, geography, or structural conditions interfere with reception."
The Network Extender supercharges 3G signals to provide coverage within 40 feet of the device. Verizon says it's about the size of a wireless router or woman's purse and routes Verizon Wireless calls through the customer's home broadband Internet connection. It supports up to six connections.
The new 3G Extender replaces the original Wireless Network Extender and is available now for $250.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs sure ruffled some feathers with his statements on yesterday's earnings call. RIM is just the latest to respond to some of the assertions Steve Jobs made. RIM CEO Jim Balsillie posted a rebuttal on the RIM blog that covered a few points. First, Balsillie contended that a 7-inch tablet will work for consumers just fine. Jobs claimed the users would have to "sand down their fingers to around one quarter of their present size" to use a 7-inch tablet. RIM also reminded us that their PlayBook will have Adobe Flash support.
RIM's other beef with Jobs revolved around the Apple claim that they had passed Blackberry in sales. Balsillie claims that Jobs was comparing a time they knew BlackBerry sales would be weak, leaving out the higher demand month of September in RIM's numbers. We may have to wait to see if an outside group can compare overall sales from the same period to settle this. In the meantime, we await the next company to launch a counterattack at Steve Jobs.
After all the rumors and leaks, the Palm Pre 2 has been officially outed by HP. This will be the first device to ship with HP webOS 2.0 that has been detailed for months now. The Pre 2 will pack all the software experiences we are used to in webOS, from multitasking cards, to the HP Synergy syncing solution. WebOS now has support for stacking cards for better viewing, and access to the Adobe Flash 10.1 beta.
The Pre 2 is an upgrade in some ways, and looks like its standing still in others. The form factor is mostly the same, but with slightly flatter edges. The slider portrait keyboard is still there as well. The camera has been updated to a 5MP sensor, but it is still just extended depth of field, not autofocus. The CPU will be a 1GHz chip; presumably a TI OMAP. The screen is, disappointingly, still only HVGA resolution.
France will see the phone this Friday on carrier SFR. US residents will have their chance in the next few months with the Pre 2 landing on Verizon. If this an intriguing phone for you, or is it just too little too late?
Despite rumors to the contrary, it doesn't look like Apple has any plans to ship a 7-inch iPad to compete with other upcoming tablets with similar sized screens.
"It's meaningless unless your tablet also includes sandpaper, so that the user can sand down their fingers to around one quarter of their present size," Jobs said during Apple's earnings call yesterday afternoon.
According to Jobs, tablets smaller than 10 inches just don't make sense.
"Apple has done extensive user testing and we really understand this stuff," Jobs said. "There are clear limits on how close you can place things on a touchscreen, which is why we think 10 inches is the minimum screen size to create great tablet apps."
Interesting comments coming from someone who represents the company responsible for the iPhone and iPod touch, two touchscreen devices that are decidedly smaller than 7 inches.
If you've always wanted a Chumby but couldn't get past it's $200 price tag (it's actually been slashed to $150, while the Chumby One goes for $120), perhaps the new Internet Clock Radio from Altaz is more your speed. With a street price of around $90 shipped, it's cheaper than a Chumby.
Altaz equipped its device with a 3.5-inch touchscreen with a 320 x 240 resolution. Internet radio is obviously part of the mix, as well as the ability to play MP3s, scroll through JPEG photos, and play MPEG videos. Other features include built-in 802.11g Wi-Fi, 128MB of internal memory, an SD card reader, and a 5v mini-USB connector.
Long gone are the days of bulky CRT monitors in mainstream use, a point which is underscored by the introduction of NEC's new 23-inch MultiSync EX231W LED-backlit monitor.
The EX231W sports a slim bezel measuring just 14.6mm wide and is comparatively light at 9.3 pounds, including stand. Specs include a 1920 x 1080 resolution, 250 cd/m2 brightness, and 25,000:1 contrast ratio (dynamic).
There are a couple of features not found on most monitors, such as a USB pass-through on top of the monitor, and a human sensor on the front that detects activity. This latter feature, NEC says, reduces power consumption by up to 95 percent.
NEC says the EX231W will sell for around $340 in November. Full press release after the jump.
In a blog post on Monday, Barnes and Noble revealed it's getting ready to release its "biggest update" to the Nook since it was launched a year ago. The 1.5 update is said to "dramatically increase" page turn speed on both the Nook 3G and Wi-Fi, as well as add other performance enhancements and features to the mix.
"The 1.5 update includes improved search on the device, customized B&N Library organization and password protection," Barnes and Noble said. "It also includes the ability to sync across all Nook and all devices enabled with our free Nook apps, by syncing your last page read. If you forget your Nook at home, use the Nook app for iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, Android smartphone or PC to pick up where you left off. And, the next time you pick up your Nook, the Reading Now page will be updated and ready to go."
Barnes and Noble said it plans to kick out the update in late November via Wi-Fi or manual download at www.nook.com/support.
Microsoft is at a key juncture in its history as a consumer tech company, with two high stakes launches scheduled for next month. It will be rolling out Windows Phone 7 on November 8 (in North America) as it looks to atone for the sin that was Windows Mobile. At stake is a respectable position in the increasingly important smartphone market.
The North American launch of Kinect is also scheduled for November. Here too the stakes are high as the company is looking for a magical moment that could see its console take a clear lead in what has been a keenly contested console generation.