It may look like Belkin's Darth Vader answer to the Apple TV, but this unassuming slab is in fact a WiFi-enabled USB hub. In effect a tiny system running embedded Linux, it has five USB 2.0 ports that communicate with any PC on a network via 802.11n - devices plugged in show up as if they're connected directly to the PC itself.
Seeing Mitchell Oke's review of the Belkin N1 Router came at quite an opportune time for me, since I'm thinking of upgrading my network to accommodate all the media that's drifting round it. Taking advantage of draft-N WiFi, which promises 300mbit speeds, Belkin sent him the surprisingly chunky base station and an N1 ExpressCard to test it with and Mitchell took it to task to see how worthy the $149.95 & $119.95 successors are to existing 802.11g wireless.
Gear Diary's Judie is a lot more accepting than I am. When faced with Belkin's TunePower external battery pack for her Zune, she's capable of overlooking its brick-like appearance and trying to find its inner charm. Admittedly, it does promise a lot: doubling the DAP's battery life from the roughly eleven hours of audio and five of video Judie has been enjoying. But still, five-inches long and an extra 4oz?!
While the form-factor is inconvenient, Belkin have made sure the rest of the TunePower is full of useful features. The same AC adaptor will charge both the Zune and the external battery simultaneously, and the pack takes five hours to fully recharge. There's also a handy kick-stand which props the Zune up for hands-free video viewing, and the cradle has cut-outs for all the ports.
When is a cable not a cable? When it's a Belkin Easy Transfer Cable for Vista, that's when! So set off some fireworks and kiss the nearest person on their rosy-red lips, because the bandwagon jumping is in full force. Belkin are advertising this as the easy way to transfer all files, audio and video multimedia, application data, OS settings and internet settings from an XP-based PC to a new computer running Vista.
Now it's entirely possible that I could be missing something here, but isn't this just a USB-to-USB networking cable, such as has been available for ages now? I get the feeling that the only difference from existing products is the "Premium Vista Logo".
If power outtages have you worried over your precious computer servers, then Belkin’s Battery Backup with Flashlight will give you peace of mind. Just plug all your equipment into the device so that when the power goes off it will keep your connected equipment on long enough to let you shut them down and prevent data loss or hardware damage.
The detachable flashlight will automatically light up during power outtages so that you can use it to see when shutting down your system and finding your way to the exit. The Battery Backup with Flashlight will be available in mid-February for $99.99.
While many people attempt to clutter their desktops with extra monitors and peripherals, Belkin is thinking less is more. If you have two computers or one computer and one notebook, why have two different speakers systems when you’ll only be using one at a time? Or, lets say you have a huge Apple cinema display. Perhaps, your notebook and computer can both share that one display and you can flip back and forth with just the click of a button.
Belkin’s Flip DVI-D does the trick by letting you share your keyboard, mouse, speakers, and DVI monitor. The unobtrusive remote button sits on your desk while the hub can be hidden below connecting all your peripherals. The device will be available in February for $149.99.
Transferring bulks of files from one computer to another can be painstaking, especially if you have to burn the files onto a CD or save them onto a thumb drive. Thus, Belkin offers a solution with their Easy Transfer Cable, which can eliminate the need to setup a network and provide an easy mobile solution for copying files to and from your notebook, home PC, and work PC.
The Easy Transfer Cable can transfer files between two PCs at speeds up to 480Mbps, transferring 30GB of data in one hour. The product will be available late this month for $39.99.
Keep your laptop cool with Belkin’s new USB-powered ‘Cooling Stand’. The product name isn’t very creative, but the form takes on a unique wave design that creates a channel right below the laptop to faciliate air flow. Apparently, the wave design is so unique the company claims its patented.
Overall, the Cooling Stand has low power consumption, uses natural convection to enhance cooling, and is compact enough to easily fit into a laptop bag. The stand will be available in late February for $29.99.
Belkin is bringing you a new accessory for your iPod Nano called the TuneFM. Having just gotten FCC approval, the TuneFM will allow you to wirelessly transmit your songs from your iPod to your car stereo. The design is very minimalistic and the unit appears to directly hook onto the bottom of your iPod.
Appropriatey thin and compact, the TuneFM features arrow keys for setting your optimum transmission frequency and some numbered buttons to store up to four choices of frequencies. Tx mode can also be set to mono, should that improve signal reception. There is no information yet on pricing or availability.