The CrunchPad, a mobile web tablet that is completely optimized for web usage, seems to be on the verge of coming to fruition. Bits reports that, according to Mike Arrington, we should expect an official announcement sometime this month, or next month, and that the CrunchPad will be available “as soon as possible.” As it turns out, Mike Arrington, the man behind TechCrunch, has been spending about two-thirds of him time working on the CrunchPad over the last six months alongside a 15-person team from Fusion Garage.
The CrunchPad is an Intel Atom-powered touchscreen tablet, aimed at letting you use the Internet comfortably from it’s 12-inch screen. There is no keyboard (although, you can plug one in) and no mouse. In the simplest terms, you can think of it as a large, 12-inch iPhone that only runs Safari. Except the CrunchPad also supports Flash. The best part, though, is that this device will cost under $300. A 12-inch WebKit-based tablet device, for under $300? Sign me up.
Read More | Bits
A recent study by Pew finds that 97% of American teens of the age 12 to 17 play computer, portable, console or online video games. When asked, half of them claimed they played yesterday and the ones who admitted to daily playing say they did so for at least an hour. Here are some of the other statistics:
- 86% of teens play on a console like the Xbox, PlayStation, or Wii.
- 73% play games on a desktop or a laptop computer.
- 60% use a portable gaming device like a Sony PlayStation Portable, a Nintendo DS, or a Game Boy.
- 48% use a cell phone or handheld organizer to play games.
- 80% of teens play five or more different game genres, and 40% play eight or more types.
- Girls play an average of 6 different game genres; boys average 8 different types.
We expect that if Pew queried adults, they would find at least the same statistics, or more for those who play MMORPGs like WOW. As for the good news, another study last September found that, for the most part, teens playing games resulted in positive social action.
Read More | Pew
Wrapsol’s invisible anti-scratch film can be used for iPhones, BlackBerrys, laptops, iPods and other digital devices. The company claims that it’s twice the strength of other film and will keep your electronics dirt and dust free. Even better the packaging is recyclable and a portion of the sales goes to Cool Earth. Purchase a Wrapsol and save 500 ft. of rainforest. Prices vary, depending on the kit you choose.
Read More | Wrapsol
Lucky Washington gets to be the first U.S. city to receive free mobile digital TV for laptops, cell phones, handhelds and in-car entertainment systems. The first broadcasts will be like those beamed to TVs, including advertising. The target date is set for late summer and will consist of CBS, NBC, PBS, Ion and Fox. Mobile DTV will be available to about 2 dozen other cities by the end of the year, to include New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Boston and Atlanta.
Read More | USA Today
Blackberry users can now search with Google Mobile by My Location and Voice. Tell it you want a hamburger and it will tell you where the closest restaurants are. It will store your location for faster and more relevant results. The application gives quick access to local and Internet news and images. You can test run it on your Blackberry by going to Google. The app will work with Blackberrys running on O/S 4.1+ and with Search by voice on O/S 4.2 and above, and they are working on a version for the Storm.
Read More | Google Mobile Blog
Mobile service providers are nervous that today’s inauguration won’t be able to handle the demand of cell phone and handheld calls, texts, photos and videos of the event. COWS (Cells on Wheels), COLTS (Cells on Light Trucks) and SatCOLTS (Satellite Cell Sites on Light Trucks) are being sent in to meet the demand. Carriers are also increasing in-building coverage on Capital Hill, along the parade route, the National Mall, and other high traffic areas. Even with the boost, those attending may still get a “no, you can’t” signal and carriers are hoping that users will text instead of making their calls,or taking photos and video.
Update: In fact, this seems to be the case, so if you are catching up on your handheld or cellie, there may be a delay.
Read More | eWeek
We don’t know where you are, but here we are in the negative numbers when it comes to outside temperature. Verizon has offered some helpful cell phone tips. The cold can run down your battery quicker, so recharge often. Because the display cover can actually become brittle, they suggest you keep it in an inside pocket so it will receive your body warmth (or get it a fuzzy cover.) Check your signal strength to determine where it is the strongest during a normal day. Finally, keep a list of emergency numbers in your address book such as police, fire, rescue agencies, and schools to check for closings.
Read More | Netscape
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CP Docks has a new cell phone station. The portable Plug-in-Shelf takes care of messy cords while charging your cellie or handheld. The device features a plug adapter to accommodate your present charger, a shelf, and a cord holder. Made of plastic with a skid-free pad to keep things in place, this is a perfect last minute gift for the traveler in your life. Available for only $12.95, free shipping is also included for now.
Read More | CP Docks
Kids are fairly sophisticated these days, but even the oldest still believes in the Claus. Since 1996, NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense) has been tracking Santa online. Last year the site received over 10 million visitors worldwide. Now you can follow his journey on your iPhone, T-Mobile G1, BlackBerry, Nokia or Windows Mobile Phone by using Google Maps for mobile by searching “norad santa” beginning 6 a.m. Eastern time December 24. Put the official Santa site on your favorites to keep track of the countdown.
Read More | NORAD
If you are thinking smaller netbook, maybe it’s time to think smaller peripherals. The Mini Bluetooth Keyboard is a diminutive 140 x 70 x 13mm with a weight of 65g. The device has 83 keys, a maximum reach of 15m, and gets its power from 2AA batteries (not included.) It has a button in the back for easy on/off selection. A possible gift for travelers and those who cannot stay home, the mini-keyboard is available for $39.00.
Read More | Gadget4all