HTC Flyer 7-inch tablet Video Hands-On from MWC 2011
MWC 2011 - Today HTC announced its first tablet at MWC called "Flyer". It is a 7-inch tablet with a 1024 x 600 display running Android and maybe most notably with HTC Sense for Tablets. Many will know HTC Sense on HTC's range of mobile phones, a kind of overlay on the OS which includes a range of easy to use widgets and such. HTC Sense for Tablets is much of the same thing, but has been optimized for the larger screen.
Next up is HTC Scribe Technology which implemented a "scribble" feature which allows the user to jot down notes or mark certain sections in books or even on Facebook and other applications that they want to remember or to easily show to a friend. Using the included multi-function pen, you can select different pen thicknesses and colors and just start writing in many different areas. If you want to make changes, you can adjust the pen setting and use it as an eraser.
From the looks of things, you use the pen to tap in a certain area of the screen and it quickly snaps a screenshot and launches the "Scribble" application. Basically, it seems like you are editing a saved screenshot image in a very simple graphics editor. Then if you like you can share the Scribble image using a range of different methods.
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Samsung Galaxy S II (GT-I9100) Video Hands-On from MWC 2011
MWC 2011 - The next product stop for Miss Scooter after checking out the 10.1-inch tablet from Samsung was the latest smartphone to be introduced by Samsung, the Galaxy S II (GT-I9100).
This is yet another Google Android device based on Gingerbread 2.3. Different from the first Galaxy S is the new and slightly larger 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus screen which has a better contrast ratio and .3-inch more of screen to enjoy. Other hardware specs to change is the inclusion of a dual-core 1GHz processor which is said to provide the key advantage of offering mobile download speeds of up to 21MBit/s compared to 7.2MBit/s on the original Galaxy.
On the back of the device is a very impressive 8 megapixel camera with a flash which provides video recording at 1080p as well as playback at 1080p. In the video above we get a demo of the Readers app where you can download over 2000 newspapers from around the world. You get full page views of each page and then you simply tap on a headline to read each story in its own view.
Continue reading: Samsung Galaxy S II (GT-I9100) Video Hands-On from MWC 2011 (full post)
Qualcomm announce quad core 2.5ghz Snapdragon, APQ8064
Qualcomm are riding the wave of smartphone and tablets by announcing a new quad core chip at the World Congress event, capable of running at 2.5GHz and is designed for next-gen tablets. The new chip will go head to head with NVIDIA's Tegra 3 system on a chip.
The new chip, APQ8064 has the same design as the APQ8060 but has ramped the speed up to 2.5GHz and doubles the processing cores to four. It is based on a 28nm design and is featured in a new family of upcoming Snapdragon chips based on the "Krait" codename. APQ8064 also includes a new quad core Adrenos 320 graphics processor with up to 15 times more performance than the current Adreno GPU that it will replace.
If the numbers are right, Qualcomm will have 12 times more performance while using 75-percent less power when compared to their current chips. Qualcomm's Luis Pinesa has said "We're excited about the new, innovative devices the APQ8064 will enable in the market, With its Wi-Fi integration and ability to seamlessly interface with Qualcomm's 3G and LTE modules, the APQ8064 will provide OEM's with a flexible, cost-efficient and fast time to market platform that can meet all of their design configuration needs for tablets and next generation computing and consumer electronic devices."
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Valve is more profitable per head than Google or Apple
Valve's digital distribution platform, Steam, has been rumored to control between 50 and 70-percent of the entire downloadable PC games market. The digital distribution market on PC is said to be worth $4 billion USD.
Newell talked to Forbes as part of a company profile and said that Valve was "tremendously profitable", but would not give specific figures. Valve is a private company after all and does not release financial reports publicly either. Newell did say that Valve's 200 percent year-on-year growth and relatively small headcount of just 250 employees made the company more profitable than Google or Apple.
Forbes has also claimed through various sources that Valve are valued at between $2 billion and $4 billion USD with an estimated 2010 revenue in the 'high hundreds of millions'. Steam's on-going success could be that Steam publishers earn a gross margin of 70 percent, compared to that of retail that offer a meager 30 percent.
Continue reading: Valve is more profitable per head than Google or Apple (full post)
Plextor First with New Marvell SATA 6G SSD 480MB/s Read
In the State of Solid State 2011 we predicted that Plextor would be the first to market with a Marvell 88SS9174 controlled SSD and what do you know, we were right. Plextor is claiming that the new M2 is now shipping in the US with speeds up to 480MB/s read and 330MB/s Write. This new controller is the final version of what we tested from ADATA several months ago, the difference being that the controller is now ready for retail.
Personally I can't wait to get my hands on the new drive to see if it lives up to the hype we've been hearing since last June. The timing couldn't be better either since there is now a shortage of 3Xnm flash and many companies are moving their SandForce SF-1200 production to 25nm flash modules. The 25nm flash will work out really well for next generation SSDs but are causing headaches for unsuspecting owners who are finding their SF-1200 drives with 25nm flash to perform slower than the drives we've tested over the last year and two months. Look for a full story in the coming days as we are wrapping up putting the pieces together.
Plextor's New SATA 6Gb/s Solid State Drive Available Now
Continue reading: Plextor First with New Marvell SATA 6G SSD 480MB/s Read (full post)
AMD to abandon its Sempron, Athlon and Phenom brand names?
AMD are rumored to can the Athlon, Sempron and Phenom brand names in favour of its AMD Vision trademark. AMD are set to introduce their codenamed Llano and Zambezi microprocessors later this year but, will not introduce a brand-name for them. Instead, AMD will put them into different classes of Vision platforms.
Zambezi-based processed which are built on the Bulldozer micro-architecture will include four, six or eight cores will be branded under the FX-series and sold under AMD's Vision Black and AMD Vision Ultimate labels. Llano on the other hand will include two or four cores as well as sporting Radeon HD 6000 series graphics cores and will be known as A-series processors. These chips will be part of the AMD Vision Ultimate and AMD Vision Premium platforms.
The lower-end of the market will be given E-series units with single or dual cores and a basic Radeon HD 6000-series graphics code-named Zacate under an AMD Vision sticker. AMD slashing the Athlon, Phenom and Sempron range is not an easy thing but, it will eventually lead to a more simplified line up of CPU's. Having different classes will help the end user who is not necessarily 'tech-savvy' to differentiate between the AMD range of products.
Continue reading: AMD to abandon its Sempron, Athlon and Phenom brand names? (full post)
Aussie Flood Appeal Dream System - An update on donations!
Well folks, we are about 16 days into the TweakTown Aussie Flood Appeal and I thought it was time that I give you all an update on the donations we have received so far.
At this very moment, the donations total $4,655.17 AUD - yes, some of you donated odd amounts like $11 and $16, but thanks all the same for the extra. It all counts! We have converted to Australian Dollars since that is what will be given.
This means we are only a little short of our minimum of $5,000 USD and still a long way short of our target of $10,000 USD. The first end date for the appeal is Feb 26, 2011, but as mentioned in the original news post, we may extend up to March 31st in one week intervals if required.
Continue reading: Aussie Flood Appeal Dream System - An update on donations! (full post)
New phone camera sensors from Samsung hopes to bring better shots
While smartphones have taken over a lot of useful functions in our lives, it's no secret that most phone cameras stink. Unless you've got a steady hand and perfect lighting, getting a really good shot is nearly impossible without hours of setting tweaking. Samsung has heard the cries of blurrycam victims everywhere and are working on two new camera sensors that could let you say goodbye to your point and shoot forever.
The tech serving to help improve photo quality is back side illumination, which allows a ton more light to enter the sensor even in low light conditions. Generally, rule number one for better photos is get as much light as you can. Samsung's 8 megapixel sensor, labeled the S5K3H2, is capable of capturing 1080p video at 30 FPS, 720p video at 60 FPS, and VGA video at 120FPS. While VGA, or 640×480 resolution, may seem pointless in this setup Samsung's giving the ability to play back VGA video in slow motion for those truly epic YouTube fail videos. The big dog of the lineup is the 12 megapixel S5K3L1, which sports all of the above listed features but also includes pixel-correction to clean up photos and videos.
The timeframe for these sensors to hit manufacturer's hands for implementation is about six months, which means we'll probably be waiting until 2012 before we see these in any of our phones. If it works, point and shoot cameras may officially become a thing of the past.
Continue reading: New phone camera sensors from Samsung hopes to bring better shots (full post)
Both Facebook and Google wanted to acquire Twitter, at $10 billion
Facebook and Google both had Twitter in their targets last year and even went as far to have talks with Twitter. Obviously all three companies have declined to comment on the news.
The meetings have let the flood gates open and rummaging through the wreckage is a golden nugget of info, Twitter was valued by Google and Facebook at between $8 billion and $10 billion. This is all according to sources quoted by The Wall Street Journal:
Executives at both Facebook Inc. and Google Inc., among other companies, have held low-level talks with those at Twitter Inc. in recent months to explore the prospect of an acquisition of the messaging service, according to people familiar with the matter. The talks have so far gone nowhere, these people say. But what's remarkable is the money that people familiar with the matter say frames the discussions with at least some potential suitors: an estimated valuation in the neighborhood of $8 billion to $10 billion. This for a company that, people familiar with the matter said, had 2010 revenue of $45 million-but lost money as it spent on hiring and data centers-and estimates its revenue this year at between $100 million and $110 million.
Continue reading: Both Facebook and Google wanted to acquire Twitter, at $10 billion (full post)
dB Logic ships new EP-100 earphones that protect hearing
Every time I go to the gym and see someone wearing headphones, it never ceases to amaze me that I can hear their music with them wearing earphones from 10 feet away. I can only imagine how loud that must be in their ears and how bad that must be for their hearing.
If you worry about your hearing or the hearing of your kid or another loved one that wears earphones a lot dB Logic has a new set of earphones that will be perfect for you. The earphones are called the EP-100 and are shipping now for about $30. The headphones have special SPL2 technology inside that protect the user from hearing damage associated with listening to music too loudly for a long time.
The circuits inside the headphones regulate the volume without causing distortion and other issues with the music. The technology needs no batteries either and is transparent to the user. The earphones come in silver, red, blue, pink, green, and orange colors and are available right now on Amazon and directly from the manufacturer.
Continue reading: dB Logic ships new EP-100 earphones that protect hearing (full post)