Does the e-reader need saving? If Amazon, Barnes & Noble and the like have sold plenty of units, the category is still facing some tough competition and it lacks a compelling reason to exist. Apple has fired the first shots in the consumer tablet war, but I think e-reader devices can easily survive if they avoid that fight altogether.
Normally when we talk about gear from Adesso, it's a keyboard aimed at the general home user or the HTPC fan looking for wireless tech. Today Adesso has announced a new gaming keyboard that sounds very nice with full mechanical keys. That will perk the interest of many gamers out there.
Garmin-Asus have announced their latest smartphone, the Garmin-Asus nuvifone A10, a new Android-based handset which is apparently optimized for pedestrian navigation. The A10 has a 3.2-inch HVGA touchscreen supporting multitouch, 5-megapixel camera, GPS and comes preloaded with mapping data and - optionally - cityXplorer guides to public transit systems.
While the marketing for the A10 is being targeted at those traveling on foot, automobile users aren't left behind either. In the box there's a powered audio mount for the A10, with a loudspeaker for more audible voice navigation prompts. Meanwhile there's also the usual bevy of Android apps together with Microsoft Exchange support and access to the Android Market.
The Apple iPad is here, and if ever there was a contentious gadget, this is it. We met with Apple this past week to pick up one of a few iPads let out into the wild early, and have been playing with it ever since. Already the subject of countless discussions, arguments and parodies - not least because of what it doesn't do rather than what it's actually capable of - there's also a grudging expectation that, if anyone can make tablets wildly popular, it's probably Apple. So, does the iPad live up to its promise, or is this really just an oversized iPod touch too big (and too expensive) for your pocket? Check out the full SlashGear review after the cut.
Palm and AT&T have announced that the Palm Pre Plus and Palm Pixi Plus will be launching on the AT&T network in the coming months. Priced at $149.99 for the Pre Plus and $49.99 for the Pixi Plus, the handsets will be functionally identical to their Verizon counterparts, aside from packing 850/1900 UMTS/HSDPA and quadband GSM/EDGE connectivity rather than EVDO Rev.A.
We already have push-to-talk and audio MMS messages, but leave it to Apple to try and reinvent - and re-patent - their own system. According to a new patent application made in November 2009, Apple envisage a setup whereby audio notes are transmitted via the voice channel rather than a carrier's data backend server, thus removing one potential point of overload. The outgoing message could be recorded audio or it could be text automatically converted into audio for transmission through the voice channel.
Volvo’s long-awaited S60 sedan is equipped with something intriguing and potentially disaster-averting; a newly announced “Pedestrian Detection” system with full automatic braking technology, which can sense pedestrians who are in the car’s way, warn the driver - and automatically apply full braking power if the driver does not respond in time. Check out the cam-recorded feed after the break.
Samsung have unveiled their latest range, the Samsung Shark series, and they're taking on entry-level social networking. Three devices will be initially available - the candybar Samsung Shark S5350 and two sliders, the Shark 2 S5550 and Shark 3 S3550 - each with shortcuts to Facebook, MySpace, Bebo and other popular social networks on their homescreen. Meanwhile the Samsung Communities app allows for easier uploading of photos and videos to (together with on-device browsing of) Flickr, Picasa, Photobucket and YouTube.
Kindle beware: there's a new wireless-toting ebook reader on the scene. The Barnes & Noble nook packs not only the backing of a serious retailer but some interesting design and usability features like ebook loaning, dual displays and touchscreen navigation. The mere promise has been enough for holiday demand to exceed supply, but does the nook experience live up to hype? Check out the full SlashGear review after the cut.
As well as their headline smartphone announcements this morning, Verizon have also officially confirmed a couple of featurephones that have each been rattling around the rumor mill for a while. The LG Chocolate Touch and Samsung Convoy - a touchscreen candybar and rugged flip, respectively - don't have the Android magic or hardware QWERTY of the Verizon DROID Eris by HTC or the BlackBerry Curve 8530.