As you may be aware Our Picks love keyboards that are a bit on the strange side. Here’s another one that’s a possible addition to the top ten, the heated keyboard from V8 Tools. The keyboard pumps out up to 20W of heat and has two settings – hand temp (85 to 90 F) and body temp (95 to 100 F). It draws its power from the mains and connects via USB to your PC.
Combine this with the heated foot rest from CozyWinters (what a great name) and you will be the envy of all your office colleagues.
With the launch date of the iPhone rapidly approaching here’s the latest report in the hype from DailyTech. If you’re living in the USA you’re going to have to stroll on down your your nearest AT&T supplier to get hold of one of Apple’s latest gifts to the world. The boys at AT&T have snaffled up exclsuive US distribution rights for the next five years. OUCH! Rivals Sprint and Verizon are gonna be smarting after that maneuver.
And smarting they are with Sprint getting dirty
In recent full-page newspaper ads, Sprint has lately been dumping on AT&T by name, taking swipes at the quality of its wireless network.
and so AT&T replies
In full-page ads, including one in USA TODAY, AT&T shot back that “15 times more people choose AT&T than Sprint.”
Now, now boys, wait until your father gets home. Anyway back to the main point, AT&T use the GSM mobile standard and so current Verizon and Sprint customers who want an iPhone will have to jump the fence to AT&T as Verizon and Sprint networks use CDMA technology and not GSM.
It’ll be interesting to see what the iPhone competition come up with over the next few months as I’m sure Verizon and Sprint will want to hit back with iPhone-destroyer product! Watch this space!
According to InfoWorld, Ritek, a Taiwanese disc manufacturer has started production of Blu-ray re-writable discs (BD-RE) as well as HD DVD-RE discs. A small step for disc manufacturing may be, but an important one for the end user – you and me – this dual format production will eventually force down the price of these suckers.
At the moment you’re looking at around US$10 per disc, not a small amount to extract from anyone’s wallet and perhaps even harder to swallow when you’re told the production costs are only US$5. I’m obviously in the wrong business. However as other disc manufacturers start to produce both formats the US$10 price tag will fall.
How much can these suckers handle? Well, the BD-REs have a capacity of 25GB which equates to 3 hours of high-def TV, where as the HD DVD-REs hold 20GB.
As for recording devices, the Sony BWU100A is still an expensive addition to your PC at around the US$700 mark, but as with all tech gear this price will drop and one day the terms BD-RE and HD DVD-RE will be as common as DVD-RW.
To see what’s hot and what’s not in the cellular world, I tried to find out what was the top selling cell phone in the US at the moment. Up popped this little beauty, the Nokia N95 according to mysimon.com. Not cheap at US$724 but it certainly has all the bells and whistles and then some. Sexy double slider action, 5 mega pixel camera, GPS mapping so I get home safely from the pub, and yes I can even call a taxi with it if the walk home gets too much! Up to 2GB of memory for tunes and vids too.
Here’s the official ad for the wee beasty listing all the funky features of the N95 with some groovy Moby-esque music in the background.
I’m certainly impressed by the N95 and obviously so are a lot of Americans. It may not be the slimmest phone around, but then with all that functionality stuffed into one piece of kit it was always going to be a bit on the chubby side. And obviously battery life is a concern but if you are looking for an all in one piece of kit and are the kind of person who remembers to charge it every night then the N95 could be for you.
The Scorpio 250GB is the latest 2.5 inch hard drive offering from Western Digital. The drive uses WD’s WhisperDrive technology to optimise seek time thus improving power consumption – also a bonus for laptop users – and reduce drive noise. The drive also encorporates WD’s ShockGuard tech to protect the drive and platters from damage.
From the specs on the product page, it is certainly one of the largest capacity and fastest 2.5 inch SATA HDs around boasting a whopping 250GB and an external transfer rate of 600 Mbps. The MSRP for this puppy is US$199, not cheap but that’s what you pay for speed and size.
It seems that Bungie and Microsoft had a few issues with their limited beta for Halo 3 last week. According to 1up,
5:00 a.m. on that appointed date came and went, though, and the beta didn’t launch for Crackdown owners. It wasn’t until some 14 hours later — 7:00 p.m. PST — that Microsoft issued a patch for Crackdown…yes, Crackdown. There wasn’t an issue with the beta — Halo 3 downloaded and played fine for press and those involved in the Friends and Family program — so how did Microsoft’s biggest promotion of 2007 blow up in its face after months of hype?
After a lot of finger pointing Microsoft fessed up that the issue was with Xbox Live.
“This is the first time that we’ve tried to interface downloading of a beta through Xbox LIVE with a previously-shipped game. It’s a complicated process, made even more significant by the huge interest in this beta,” said the company [Microsoft] in a statement.
Given all the effort (hype?) that has gone into marketing this launch which is after all just a beta release and a limited one at that, you think Microsoft would have thoroughly tested the process. You get the feeling the first user to download the beta was the VERY first person to download it. People had taken time off work and school to be some of the first to play test this beta so the lack of QA by Bungie and Microsoft is pitiful. Hopefully a bit more effort will be put into the final release – the marketing machine has already stepped up a gear with this press release announcing the launch date of September 25th.
For those of us who weren’t involved in the beta screw-up, err, test here’s a great Halo video with a smattering of Alien vs Predator to feed our Halo need.
Rather than read me banging on about the various features of the Motorola RAZR 2 check out this video from Shinymedia. Two lasses show off the new features on the RAZR re-incarnation although as they point out the vibrating touch screen feature – hauptics – is a bit difficult to demo in a video! A warning about the video is that your eye will be drawn away from the RAZR 2 by the garish ‘rose ring’ worn by the faceless presenter. Apart from the ring, enjoy!
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