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Google launches Latitude Leaderboards, wants to put the four in your square

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Social Networking | Posted: Feb 22, 2012 4:50 am

Well, the chief over here at TweakTown would be happy - he's a check-in master on Foursquare, so is our currently hospital-bound VGA editor, where I've stayed away from the whole Foursquare thing. In the mean time, Google have quietly rolled out Latitude Leaderboards.

 

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From the title, you should be able to tell. There's been an update baked into the latest Maps app, where Google have introduced another level of functionality. Check-ins now earn you points that get tallied up and are used to rank Google+ users on a global leaderboard, kinda like Foursquare.

 

The feature hasn't rolled out to everyone just yet, and only reveals itself after you check-in somewhere. If I used Google+ more, I think I'd probably get into it, but this is something I'd personally like to just 'pop-up' on my phone. For example, you walk into a store (say a McDonalds) and it pops up with a notification "would you like to check-in?" Clicking 'yes' goes into whatever check-in app you prefer (Facebook, Google+, Foursquare) and checks you in. If it did that, I'd use it.

 

Get to it, Facebook/Google/Foursquare.

NVIDIA Kepler GK104 part will be called the GeForce GTX 670 Ti

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Feb 22, 2012 3:28 am

Team Green is hard at work on their Kepler GPUs, which are based on a 28nm process, and it seems as though the GK104 part is going to be called the GeForce GTX 670 Ti.

 

nvidia_kepler_gk104_part_will_be_called_the_geforce_gtx_670_ti_05

 

NVIDIA is obviously keen to get this part onto shelves now, to combat the GCN-based AMD Radeon HD 79x0 parts, and this could be way the otherwise mid-range SKU has been changed from what should've been the GTX 660 to the GTX 670 Ti. This move could be so that it indicates this part will perform competitively against the high-end parts already on the market, such as the HD 7000-series.

 

Sources have told SweClockers that they expect the GK104-based GeForce GTX 670 Ti to outperform the GeForce GTX 580 and Radeon HD 7950. techPowerUp are reporting they're hearing rumblings of a March launch, and if NVIDIA want to beat the HD 7800-series launch, they'll have to wave that Team Green flag, now.

Japan's Softbank to launch 76Mbps 4G network this week

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Networking | Posted: Feb 22, 2012 2:41 am

Softbank, Japan's third-largest mobile carrier is set to enable a new high-speed mobile data service this week, with a portable Wi-Fi router capable of download speeds of 76Mbps. Softbank have also stated that its 4G network will eventually support devices with speeds of up to 110Mbps.

 

The official launch of Softbank 4G will be held this Friday, where the first 4G-capable Wi-Fi router will reportedly be the size of a "soap-bar", and is from Seiko Instruments. This device will allow up to 10 Wi-Fi users to share the mobile connection, with the aforementioned download speeds of up to 76Mbps down, and 10Mbps up.

 

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Softbank's high-speed network is based on a format called AXGP, which is an advanced version of an older Japanese standard, Personal Handy-phone System (PHS). Softbank has said that they are "highly compatible" with TD-LTE, a Chinese standard otherwise known as LTD TDD, which is growing in popularity throughout Asia. There are also reports floating around that Apple are said to be baking in support for the standard in future devices.

 

The service is not that expensive (when compared to here in Australia) with monthly prices of ¥5,505 ($US70) or ¥3,880 for users that also have a smartphone or tablet on contract. Download limits are quite bad, with just 5GB available, and download speeds are capped to just 128kbps once this 5GB has been reached. The limit can be increased for an additional fee, of course.

Continue reading 'Japan's Softbank to launch 76Mbps 4G network this week' (full post)

Samsung's GT-i9300 is probably not the Galaxy S III, only sports low-res screen

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Feb 22, 2012 1:40 am

Ah, leaks. I love thee, sometimes. But, the latest from Android Community is that the GT-i9300 is not the unannounced-but-probably-awesome Galaxy S III. Why is that? And how would we know, if it hasn't been announced?

 

Well, listed in the user agent profile, are stats for the device, where it has a model number of "GT-i9300", which would lead us to believe its the Galaxy S III. This is because the Galaxy S III is the i9200 and the Galaxy Nexus is the i9250... so the logical step to this would be... the i9300. No.

 

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You'll see in the above shot, that the "ScreenSize" is just 1024x600. Sob. What will this device be? Could we expect a smaller Galaxy S III Mini or something? Time will tell, and that time is getting shorter: Mobile World Congress is just around the hopefully higher-res corner.

Microsoft's Windows Vista and 7 get customer support extended to 10 years

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Feb 22, 2012 12:52 am

Microsoft have just updated its support policy for their two latest OSs, Windows Vista and Windows 7, where they'll now be offering extended support to the consumer versions of the two operating systems.

 

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Until now, Microsoft had provided 5 years worth of 'mainstream support' for consumers, where business users enjoyed an additional 5 years of support. Now, all Windows users will get security updates for 10 years after the operating system's release.

 

This takes Windows Vista's consumer support all the way through to April 11, 2017, and Windows 7 support gets a nice bump up to January 14, 2020.

Tuesday Morning Roundup for February 21, 2012

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Roundups | Posted: Feb 21, 2012 2:26 pm

The latest happenings in the technology world, February 21st, 2012

 

Storage:

 

QNAP TS-879U-RP NAS Rack Server - Benchmark Reviews

Intel 520 240GB SSD RAID 0 Performance Review - Hardware Canucks

RunCore Pro V Max 120GB SATA III SSD - Legit Reviews

OCZ Vertex 3 SSD 240GB - Technic3D

 

Cases & Cooling:

 

Corsair Hydro Series H100 Liquid CPU Cooler - circuitREMIX

Enermax Fulmo GT Full Tower Chassis - eTeknix

Continue reading 'Tuesday Morning Roundup for February 21, 2012' (full post)

Deal of the Day: Dell Inspiron 15 with an Intel Core i3 for $399.99

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Laptops | Posted: Feb 21, 2012 1:26 pm

Our Deal of the Day is Dell Home - 15.6" Dell Inspiron 15 with Intel Core i3, 4GB Memory, 500GB HD, DVD Burner, Wireless-N, Webcam, and 6-Month Blockbuster Subscription for $399.99 with FREE Shipping!

 

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Get a 15.6" LED-backlit Dell Inspiron 15 (N5040) laptop with 2.66Ghz Intel Core i3-390M, 4GB DDR3 SDRAM, 500GB hard drive, 8x DVD+/-RW DL, 802.11b/g/n wireless, webcam, 6-cell LiOh battery, Windows 7 Home Premium x64, and 1 year warranty, plus a 6-month trial to Blockbuster Total Access for $519.99 - $120 instant discount = $399.99 with FREE shipping. Ends 2/21/12 at 7AM CT.

 

DELL INSPIRON 15 LAPTOP DEAL

 

Check our TweakTown Daily Deals page for more tech bargains!

Mobile App of the Day: Ceramic Destroyer for Android

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 21, 2012 12:26 pm

Our Mobile App of the Day is Ceramic Destroyer for Android.

 

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Easy but very addictive blasting game!

 

Ceramic Destroyer is a blasting game which is easy but verrrrrrry addictive. Your target is to use the bombs to explode various ceramics. But the key point is you need to destroy the whole ceramic as possible as you can, never left even one tiny piece.

 

You will get 1 star if you destroyed 90%, 2 stars for 95% and 3 stars for 100%.

 

How to play?

 

1: Pull the catapult

2: Adjustment angle and intensity

3: Release your finger shoot

4: Destroy at least 90% to level up

Tips: The 4 different bombs have different function

 

Features:

 

-Beautiful ceramic style pictures.

-Be full of the pleasure of explosion.

-You can destroy more than 100 different ceramics like Guitar, Butterflies, Robots, Candy and so on.

-Green Bomb: Pull the catapult to shoot the bomb

-Blue Bomb: Tap The screen to split the bomb into 3 mini-bombs

-Yellow Bomb: Tap the screen 3 times to lay out the mini-bombs

-Purple Bomb: Rub the screen to control the direction of the bomb

-More challenges coming soon

Continue reading 'Mobile App of the Day: Ceramic Destroyer for Android' (full post)

Download of the Day: VLC Media Player 2.0.0

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Software | Posted: Feb 21, 2012 11:26 am

Our Download of the Day is VLC 2.0.0.

 

VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols without external codec or program.

 

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It can also be used as a server to stream in unicast or multicast in IPv4 or IPv6 on a high-bandwidth network.

 

VLC can play:

 

MPEG-1, MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 / DivX files from a hard disk, a CD-ROM drive, and so on

DVDs, VCDs, and Audio CDs

From satellite cards (DVB-S)

Several types of network streams: UDP/RTP Unicast, UDP/RTP Multicast, HTTP, RTSP, MMS, etc.

From acquisition or encoding cards (on GNU/Linux and Windows only)

 

Download VLC 2.0.0 here.

Intel Rosepoint is close, sports dual-core Atom with built-in Wi-Fi

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Feb 21, 2012 10:23 am

Get ready, people. Intel are ready to unveil a breakthrough System-on-a-Chip (SoC), which is said to be a new dual-core Atom-based chip, that sports a digital 2.4GHz Wi-Fi receiver, get this, built into the same die.

 

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This new chip is dubbed "Rosepoint", and is built upon a 32nm architecture and will be shown off for the very first time as a research project at ISSCC 2012 in San Francisco. We should see devices sporting this technology to significantly improve power consumption and produce a more reliable Wi-Fi connection than current analogue-based receivers.

 

Intel Chief Technology Officer, Justin Rattner, says:

 

With a digital approach to radio, you can bring the benefits of Moore's law to RF and radio circuits.

 

In order to achieve this, Intel needed to find a way of stopping the radio waves from interfering with the CPU. Rosepoint steps in and stops this by employing noise-cancelling and radiation-shielding methods to enable the concept to work. At the moment, Rosepoint is just a working prototype, but Intel believes that they can develop the technology into a shipping product by 2015.

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