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Western Digital My Net N900 HD router review

Western Digital My Net N900 HD review

We've been testing the recently-released Western Digital My Net N900, a router released by the company most known for its hard drives. This isn't just any router though--it's supposed to make QoS setup quick and easy for the every man. With a few clicks, Western Digital says that you'll have an optimized home network that'll make sure the important data doesn't get hindered by background tasks that aren't as high on the totem pole of priority. Does the My Net N900 live up to that promise? Join us after the break for our full My Net N900 review to find out.

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HP getting rid of PC business, webOS devices dead

HP webos

Hewlett-Packard on Thursday confirmed that it will acquire U.K.-based Autonomy for $10.2 billion and is looking to spin off its PC assets.

Together with its plans to stop supporting webOS devices, the announcements mark a major change for HP. They appear to represent a seismic shift in how the Silicon Valley computing giant, the world's largest tech company in terms of annual revenue, plans to conduct business going forward.

The HP board's authorization of "the exploration of strategic alternatives for its Personal Systems Group (PSG)" includes "a broad range of options that may include, among others, a full or partial separation of PSG from HP through a spin-off or other transaction." Unlike the dumping of recently acquired Palm, slipping badly in a market dominated by Apple and devices running Google's Android OS, a spin-off of the PSG means HP would be parting with a long-standing investment that has turned into the biggest PC maker in the world.

Click to continue reading HP getting rid of PC business, webOS devices dead


Why the Flip camera failed

Flip Camera failed

The Flip was never my favorite pocket camcorder. That's partly because it was the darling of everyone else and also because I found more powerful options elsewhere, like the Kodak Zi6 (and then Zi8). Both offer HD video capture, a microphone-in jack and removable media. Flip didn't offer any of that; the Flip team always told me that those features would likely confuse consumers who just wanted to capture video.

Now I realize they were right. In fact more right than any of us had imagined.

A day after Cisco unceremoniously dumped its $590 million purchase in favor of a pure business strategy, Flip owners and even the Flip CEO are busy licking their wounds and wondering exactly what happened. I'll tell you what happened: A device came along that made video capture and sharing even easier than the Flip—end of story.

Flip's demise has to be one of the most spectacular flameouts in recent tech history. When I met with Flip last year (just prior to the launch of the ill-fated Flip SlideHD), Flip had marketshare numbers that looked not only unbeatable, but unstoppable. According to Cisco executives:

  • Flip sales grew by 300 percent between 2008 and 2009.
  • Flip led the category throughout the 2009 holiday buying season.
  • Flip sold more units than Sony, Canon, Kodak, and JVC combined.
  • Flip cameras were number nine out of Amazon's top 10 selling products.
  • The "Shoot and Share market" grew over 35 percent in 2009 and and Flip's share of that? A whopping 93 percent.
  • On CNN's popular iReport user-generated news section, 70 percent of the user-gen video was shot with a Flip.

This was the success story to beat all success stories. And while I complained even then that Cisco wasn't innovating enough with the Flip brand—I wanted a microphone jack and was begging for them to be the first to offer optical zoom—I could not argue with its success.

Click to continue reading Why the Flip camera failed


2010 Holiday Gift Guide Giveaway: Cisco Valet 802.11n wireless router

valet wireless hotspot router

The Cisco Valet wireless router is next in our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide, and we're giving away three of these home hotspots to your readers, but more on that below. First, the basics - we're recommending the Valet because, quite simply, it's simple. Cisco has made setting up an 802.11n network in the home super easy, with automatic security, guest access, parental controls, and more. This takes away the guesswork, which means less time for you to spend playing tech support specialist when your family and friends have network issues. See? It's like a gift to yourself as well! They typically sell for $99, but Amazon has them for $64.99, which is a killer deal.

Okay, now on to the details of the giveaway. We've got three Cisco Valet routers to give away, but as we said, they are meant to be simple. You set them up, and you are done. We know our readers are a bit more techie than that, so we've upped the ante a bit. Each winner will receive two Cisco routers - one Cisco Valet, and one Cisco Linksys E2000 Advanced 802.11n router! That way, you can keep the feature-packed Linksys for yourself, and give the Valet to a tech-challenged loved one as a gift.

Here’s how to enter:

That's it! Do that, and you are entered. However, this time we're giving our bonus entries. All you have to do is head to the Gear Live Facebook page and Like us, then leave a comment on our wall. That gets you a second entry. The contest will run through Friday December 17th, and is open to US residents. A winner will be chosen randomly from all eligible entrants.


Hologram broadcast a reality in ten years?

Cortana Hologram

Imagine, if you will, sitting in the local coffee shop waiting for your ever so tardy girlfriend to show up before your lunch break ends. Suddenly, she is right in front of you, only not in the way you had hoped. It’s a hologram, beaming straight from your cellphone right before your eyes. Her digital representative a fully rendered three dimensional image of her informing you that she will be there in 5 minutes. No, this is not science fiction - it’s the future. And the future is eye popping.

With the demands of technology growing by the second, our everyday bandwidth needs are increasing exponentially. Cisco and Verizon are both anticipating a quadruple increase in bandwidth requirements by the year 2014! This tremendous surge in our bandwidth needs can be attributed largely in part to the burgeoning 3D television market, as well as the growing use of streaming HD video.

Click to continue reading Hologram broadcast a reality in ten years?

Read More | Cnet

AT&T 3G MicroCell reviewed: It works, and it’s a rip-off

AT&T 3G MicroCell

There’s been a lot of hype and discussion surrounding the 3G MicroCell, and now we’ve got a review from someone who actually purchased one. As a refresher, this device is designed to significantly boost both the voice and data signal in your home by using your own home broadband network. In other words, if the AT&T network sucks enough in your area that you can barely get through a call to Domino’s without it dropping, you can now pay AT&T even more money to get the reception that you should already be getting as part of your monthly payment plan. Oh, and the AT&T 3G Microcell also boasts additional feature options, like unlimited talk time, for additional cost. 

So far, only the community of Charlotte, NC actually has them for purchase , and the device sells for $150. Ouch. One buyer reports that the device works as planned, and that before the purchase, they had one bar of EDGE coverage in their home, and now reports five bars connected to 3G.

Read More | Jason Nash

Newegg Deal: Linksys WRT54GL broadband router

Linksys WRT54GL‘s got a deal on the Linksys WRT54GL 802.11b/g router for $49.95, selling it for $30 less than retail from now through June 15. This is a router that is a dream for DIYers, as it works great with a lot of different custom firmware packages, making it easy to set up your own VPN, Samba, and FTP servers. It can also boost existing wireless signals, act as a Radius server, and more. Take a look at the Linksys WRT54GL on Newegg, and use promo code ROUTER685 to get the savings.

As always, you can find all sorts of Newegg promo codes and deals on our forums.

Read More | Newegg: Linksys WRT54GL

Flip UltraHD and UltraSD announced

Posted by Andru Edwards Categories: Cameras, Handhelds

Flip UltraHD

Pure Digital has finally and officially acknowledged the existence of the Flip UltraHD and UltraSD mini camcorders, and we felt it best to bring you the full rundown. The Flip UltraHD features 8GB of internal storage and records in 720p. Compared to the Flip MinoHD, the Ultra versions feature a 2-inch screen, compared to the Mino’s 1.5-incher. Our favorite feature, though, is that the FLip Ultra series ships with a rechargeable batery pack, which can be removed and replaced with AA batteries if need be. That, we can appreciate. The UltraHD battery will last you a good three hours, while the UltraSD will go for five—of course, with that one, you give up the whole 720p recording thing. Both feature the now common fold-out USB connector that the Flip cameras are known for.

You can grab a Flip UltraHD now for $200, or the UltraSD for $150.

Read More | Flip UltraHD product page

Cisco to Purchase Pure Digital

Posted by Sheila Franklin Categories: Cameras, Corporate News

Flip minoCisco Systems has announced that it is buying Pure Digital for about $590 million in stock. The company has enough cash for investing in such companies and CEO John Chambers said that a weak economy can mean a good opportunity. Pure Digital has only been around for about 2 years and about 2 million Flips have already been sold. In a kind move, Cisco is offering stock incentives for employees who stay with the company.

Read More | USA Today

U.N. Teams With Google for MDG

MGD logoThe U.N. has gotten together with Google and Cisco Systems to launch a site this week that they say will let us know of the planet’s poverty fighting efforts. The Millenium Development Goals site gives statistics on health, education, malnutrition and women’s equality. Google Earth maps will show by satellite where the areas are established.

The U.N. is hoping that by 2015 the MGD Monitor will aid in accomplishing such goals as beginning to reverse HIV/AIDS, cutting child mortality by 2/3, and reducing people without safe drinking water by half. While we applaud the plan, we hope any money spent creating the MDG is justified by not spending it on the project itself.

Read More | Googland

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