Browsing articles in "Gadgets"
Jan 6, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

HTC EVO Shift 4G On Radio Shack Launch Today?

There have been a deluge of leaks with respect to the upcoming variant of HTC EVO – the Shift 4G. We already know that the device will be a slider keyboard variant of the original EVO with a smaller 3.7″ display and will run on Android 2.2 operating system. The entire specification list was recently made available on Wal-Mart’s partner website when we also confirmed that Sprint is likely to be the carrier for this Android smartphone.

Now, according to a new rumor, the EVO Shift 4G Android 2.2 smartphone could be launching as early as today. According to a leaked memo purporting to be from Radio Shack, the device shall be available on the Radio Shack shelves starting January 6. The memo reads,

“The Shift 4G cannot be offered until January 6, so if you receive inventory before Thursday, please secure it in your backroom and do not sell it or put it on display until that day

Now that we are already on D-Day, why not check out the neighborhood Radio Shack store and let us know if you find the new Android device on display on their shelves in the comments below.

Jan 5, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

VUDU 3D Movie Streaming To Start Next Week

VUDU, the Wal-Mart owned internet based movie streaming service in United States will start running 3D movies starting next week. Announcing this on the sidelines of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the company has noted that the new portfolio of movies will be available on any of the 3D-supported television boxes without the need for any additional software.

The available screening resolutions will include SD (480p), HD (720p) and HDX  (1080p). The bandwidth requirements for 3D streaming are not too different from those for 2D streaming. Supported devices include HDTV from the likes of LG, Samsung, Mitsubishi, Philips, Toshiba in addition to Sony PlayStation 3, VIZIO and Boxee Box.

The VUDU press release does not give us any details about the new titles on offer. Also, details regarding the price are not available at the moment. We expect the company to make these revelations when they commence 3D streaming next week.

Jan 5, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

Tablet PC Sales Forecast For US Market

According to a new research report published by Forrester, close to one third of American online customers will own a tablet computer by 2015. This is a pretty significant update from their position last year. Forrester has said that they were too pessimistic in their report last year where they had put an average tablet’s frequency of upgrade on par with PCs. In the latest report, the research firm has clubbed tablets with other “lifestyle devices” like smartphones that would be upgraded more often.

Forrester’s research shows that close to 44 million tablet PCs will be sold in 2015. These tablets will cumulatively attract close to 82.1 million users. While this is without doubt a pretty optimistic picture, analyst Ben Banjarin has said that he believe these numbers still do not paint the real picture. He expects 50-52 million tablets to be sold as soon as this year. Here are the numbers from the Forrester report

Tablet PCs sold (US)

2010 : 10.3 million
2011 : 24.1 million
2012 : 35.1 million
2013 : 39.8 million
2014 : 42.3 million
2015 : 44.0 million

Tablet PC Users (US)

2010 : 10.3 million
2011 : 26.0 million
2012 : 50.7 million
2013 : 67.7 million
2014 : 76.1 million
2015 : 82.1 million

Jan 5, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

iPad 2 Features Closer To Confirmation With New Case Design

We have received a lot of information about the next generation iPad over the past couple of weeks. As we have already noted, iPad 2 is expected to be significantly thinner and could come with tapered sides, front and rear facing cameras, a wide-range speaker and possibly a USB port.

Now Dexim, a case design manufacturer has been exhibiting one of their new cases that has been designed for iPad 2. The case has been pretty smartly designed that allows a Bluetooth keyboard to connect to a sleeve that will contain the iPad 2 that will enable users to get their iPad working like a laptop.

With a number of accessory manufacturers producing iPad 2 cases that seem to be built with the rumored new features in place, the credibility of the speculations regarding the iPad 2 design is just getting stronger. What do you think? Check out a snapshot of the exhibited iPad 2 case from Dexim embedded below.

Dexim iPad case

Jan 4, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

New iPod Nano Controls To Offer Tap-Based Navigation

The latest generation iPod nano comes with a refreshing new form factor that is without any physical controls. While that does make the device look more slick, one major issue that regular iPod users face is the new need to look up at the device while using the controls. This is unlike the earlier devices where the user could use the controls without having to look at the device; thanks to the tactile physical buttons.

That could change with the next generation model – or perhaps even via a software update. Apple is reported to have filed a patent application that will bring a tap-based navigation system to iPod nano that will let users perform regular functions like Play, Pause, Forward, Rewind,etc. with just repetitive taps.

iPod nano multitouchWhile the patent does not explicitly mention the use of these controls for iPod nano, the rendition of a use-case does use a current generation iPod nano without the physical volume buttons.

Jan 4, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

Microsoft Windows TV Set Top Box To Take On Apple TV & Google TV

Microsoft is expected to make a significant announcement during CES 2011 that will see the company unveil its new Windows-based set top box that will take on Apple and Google in the web-based set top box space. The product could be named Windows TV and will basically be a stripped-down version of the Windows OS that is customized for a television.

Microsoft should have a significant advantage over the rest considering that they are already the largest desktop OS and should be able to offer users a platform with a very familiar look and feel. Writing about this new foray, Brier Dudley from the Seattle Times writes,

“They’ll pose a serious challenge to the new Apple and Google TV devices, largely because the Windows boxes have a polished and familiar TV-program guide that makes it easy to blend and navigate both online and broadcast content”

It will be interesting to see how Microsoft integrates its computer based media platforms like Windows Media Center with a TV set top box. We will wait for an official unveiling from Microsoft at CES.

Jan 3, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

Verizon Galaxy Tab Price Drop To $499 – With Freebies

Head over to the Samsung Galaxy Tab page on the Verizon website and you should be seeing the usual $599 price point. But according to a number of sources, this price should drop down soon to less than $500. According to these sources, Verizon would not just be dropping the price of the Galaxy Tab from $599 to $499, but will also drop in an additional $60 worth of free movie rentals with these purchases.

It is not clear when these announcements are due. The sources claim that the $100 discount offer will also apply to customers who have made a Galaxy Tab purchase in the past 14 days. With the holiday shopping season now over, most of the customers must now be done with their seasonal shopping.  In any case, this is a pretty attractive deal and we look forward to an official announcement.

Notion Ink Adam Eden UI – Video Walkthrough

Bangalore based Notion Ink has generated a lot of buzz in the past one year. In just a few more days time, the Consumer Electronics Show will get underway in Las Vegas where Rohan Shravan is expected to unveil the new Adam officially. Expect high quality official video demonstrations then. In the mean time, if you have been following Notion Ink on their blog, you may have been able to get a hold on most of what is to be expected with this launch.

Check out the video walk-through of the Eden UI that have been posted on the Notion Ink blog until now.

Introducting Eden

Email Demo

Canvas

Eden Browser

Eden Leaves

Managing Full Apps

Jan 1, 2011
Anand Srinivasan

Rumored iPad 2 Hardware Features “Extremely Accurate”

Over the past couple of weeks, a number of revelations have been made with respect to the next generation iPad. These include the possible inclusion of a wide-range speaker on the rear bottom of the device, tapered sides and flatter rear and camera slots on the front and rear of the device.

These speculations have come through third party accessory pictures that were posted on Chinese eCommerce website Alibaba.com. In addition to this, folks at 9to5Mac too had published iPad 2 case mold drawings that gave us a much more complete picture of the forthcoming device. Until now these remained just rumors that carried little or no credibility.

However, it now appears these feature speculations were indeed correct. Apple or one of their partners seemed to have contacted all websites that had taken a lead in publishing these photos and demanded these images be pulled. Subsequently, 9to5Mac and Alibaba among others have pulled the images that they had posted on their websites. 9to5Mac have updated their earlier post with a message that reads,

“we’ve been told (not so nicely) to remove those mold drawings because they are the property of someone else. We’ve complied.”

Meanwhile, FullChance Industrial Co., who reportedly have partnered with Hon Hai for the manufacture of the accessories have revealed that the published images are “extremely accurate“. So there you go. In case you had any doubt about what the next generation iPad would look like, you just had your answer.

Dec 31, 2010
Anand Srinivasan

NOOKcolor Is Barnes & Noble Best-Selling Product In Forty Years

Barnes & Noble has announced that it has sold a record number of NOOKcolor eReader devices during the Christmas shopping season that has taken the device to become the hottest selling product on Barnes & Noble in its four decade history. While the media statement did not disclose the exact number of NOOKcolor units sold, it does note that “millions of NOOK eReading devices” have been sold.

Another interesting revelation from the company’s press statement is the fact that digital sales have overtaken sales of physical books on BN.com which is apparently the second largest online bookstore in the world.

Barnes & Noble launched the new NOOKcolor eReader back in November this year. The popularity of the device soon surged following a successful rooting of the device that brought Android market to NOOKcolor. Rooted NOOKcolor devices are now also capable to handling Kindle compatible ebooks which enhances the value of this eReader even further.

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