Looks like Virgin and Tapwave are taking steps to establish a bigger presence in the portable audio market. Today’s announcement from the CES Show floor indicates that the two are working together to pair up the Virgin music download service with the versatile handheld, which through the help of SD cards, could store up to 2GB of music. Details are still unclear as to how the two devices will work seamlessly, but I can imagine an option on the Virgin service that allows transfers directly to the SD card, with minimal mouse-clicks. Virgin’s downloadable songs are going for $.99 each, while the Zodiac sells for $269.
Last week, we asked you to let us know what you felt were the best tech items in a few key categories. You responded, letting us know what you felt outshined the rest as far as audio, home entertainment, video games, and cell phones. One person even walked away with a free Logitech MX1000 Laser Cordless Mouse courtesy of PrizeCube (congrats b_culbert!). You even gave us what you felt was the best item of the year. Full results after the jump.
Now, you can take this for what you will, but former co-host of The Screen Savers Alex Albrecht states he spoke with a Microsoft employee who gave him some information on the Xbox 2 console which is set to debut at E3. According to the employee, the new console will sport a flash-based drive giving it an advantage on load times over the hard drive in the current model. The source also said that the Xbox 2 would in fact be showcased at E3, where a price and launch date will be announced. Like I said, take it for what you will.
Read More | Alex Albrecht
Canon announced Tuesday that it will start producing rear projection televisions this year. Canon, a Japanese camera and office equipment maker, wants a part of the rapidly growing big screen TV market. Along with rear projection TVs, they will also be working with Toshiba, Hitachi, and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd in producing a new type of LCD panel. They plan on offering rear projection TVs on a commercial basis by the end of this year. Rear projection TVs are the second flat-panel TVs that will be offered by Canon, the first being SED TVs which will also be available this year. This comes as good news for the end-user. Bigger variety of TVs to choose from, more competition leads to cheaper prices, and better quality as a result of quality research on the part of TV makers. Be sure to be on the look out next holiday season for these TVs, they are sure to be among many people’s wish list.
Read More | Reuters
If you are looking for serious cooling and monstrous looks for your gaming rig, check out the latest creation by Asus. No, it is not a jet engine, it’s a CPU cooler. This bad boy sits at 5.5 inches above the CPU and transfers the heat using three copper heatpipes. Asus promises a host of high performance features in its latest design for CPU coolers and even put some LED lights for all of the computer gurus that love to put on a light show at local LAN parties. The following features are taking straight from Asus’s web site.
- Universal 4-in-1 cooler: Just want to be with you forever, no matter if you upgrade your CPU engine or platform!
- Powerful High performance heatsink, pure Copper base with Copper fins and 3 heatpipes
- Expertise Side airflow direction, the excellent “cold-in / hot-out” airflow management to stop air circulation
- Upgradeable Optional 2nd fan for extreme performance
- Silent Smart 3-in-1 fan: Matching any kind of gamer’s demands
- Stylish Unique and fantastic outlook with UV LED lights make your PC attractive!
As you can see this CPU offers a host of features and promises to be the last CPU cooler you would ever need to buy. Aside from that, you’re gaming computer will look great with the UV LED lights and color shells.
Read More | Asus
Pretty soon, we’re going to be flooded with lots of news on all the new gear products coming out later this year and beyond. It’s because the annual Consumer Electronics Show opens up this week in Las Vegas. The show runs January 6-9, and features a messload of exhibits showcasing the latest in everything from BlueTooth technology to home theatre to WiFi. Some of the major products that debuted in past CES shows include plasma TV’s, HDTV, CD’s and DVD’s. It’s just huge, with some 129,000 attendees. Special events to look out for this year include a pre-show keynote speech by Bill Gates, and a show-floor gaming competition. Speaking of games, PSXExtreme reports that details on the Sony PSP’s US launch, pricing, and titles will all be revealed at the show.
The administration at Las Vegas’s McCarran International Airport have decided to grant its travelers free Wi-Fi service. The seventh largest destination irport in the country, McCarran will install the Wi-Fi and allow users to simply open their laptops and connect. In contrast, Raleigh-Durham International Airport has hired Cingular to install wireless, and will charge ten dollars per 24 hour period or fifty dollars per ten 24-hour connections.
This split decision by the two airports shows both sides of a national debate over wireless internet; should it be free, or should we have to pay for it? Having recently traveled through several large airports and having spent some time in layover, I wished I could log-on to the internet for a quick check of the e-mail, but the only airport offering wireless was Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, and it cost five dollars per hour.
In additions to airports, several coffee shops and restaurants now offer free wireless internet to their patrons. Recently, I visited a Taco Bell with a free wireless hotspot! Now that’s technology.
Read More | TechWeb
At this weeks CES, FIC will unveil “Vasilli” , a portable media player powered by linux. This PMP includes a built-in 20GB hard drive and large, 3.6-inch color LCD display. It also includes TV- and audio-out ports, a built-in speaker, a USB 2.0 device interface, a USB host interface, a 10/100 Ethernet LAN port and a docking station that supports s-video. The Vasilli will be priced at $500 and sold to OEM’s for rebranding.
Read More | LinuxDevices.com
SBC announced today their plans to provide digital set-top boxes for consumers that would provide DVR-like capabilities. In conjunction with Dish Network, Cingular, Yahoo, SBC broadband DSL, and other SBC owned companies, the devices would allow customers to record TV, listen to internet radio, view pictures from their computers, and program their DVR remotely from the internet. Also planned is the ability to program the DVR from your Cingular wireless phone.
Perhaps the most appealing part of their plan is the waiving of a monthly fee for usage; consumers will pay a one time fee for the device, and only continue to pay the standard subscription fees to Dish Network and SBC Yahoo DSL, all of which can currently be rolled into a single bill from SBC. This convenience is a contrast to the monthly fees charged by TiVo.
Read More | Forbes
Picture this: The temperature is cold, you are high atop a mountain looking down, and you drop off the lift. You feel the cold air as you wiz down the side of a mountain. You hear your favorite song playing, but it gets interrupted by your all too familiar ringtone. You tap your sleeve…“Hello?”, it’s the Mrs. yelling at you to get home.
Ok maybe not so cool, but this is the next generation of clothing. Motorola and Burton are devloping ski jackets that will have a padded casing for a Motorola cell phone and an MP3 music player. They will feature a device on the sleeve that lets the wearer control incoming and outgoing calls, and toggle back and forth to music, sending audio signals to removable speakers in the hood.
Thank you, Caller ID.
Read More | zDnet
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