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December 05, 2006

LG: WinMo 5 and Tablet PC with WiMAX, possibly a UMPC in '08

Lg_logoLooks like all of the good mobile news is coming out of the International Telecommunication Union Telecomm World 2006 conference in Hong Kong; I knew I should have renewed that passport! LG is the mobile king at the moment: their KC1 handheld will run on Windows Mobile 5 and will support mobile WiMAX for downloads up to 10.2 Mbps, which is five times faster than my home DSL speed over the wire. When WiMAX isn't available, the KC1 will drop down to 1X-EV-DO. No word on price or other specs just yet, but LG hopes to have the KC1 out in the first half of 2007.

In related news, LG is enabling the XNote C1 Tablet with similar WiMAX capabilities and the company is considering a UMPC entry with WiMAX as well. We'll be hittin' the LG folks up next month in Vegas; you can bet we'll ask about that whole UMPC idea.

December 05, 2006

Toshiba packs 100 GB of storage in a 1.8-inch drive

Toshiba_mk1011gahSign me up to buy! Toshiba just announced a giant 100 GB capacity hard drive in the diminutive 1.8-inch form factor. The dual-platter 4200 RPM drive increases capacity while keeping power down to 0.003W/GB; I'm not sure what that equates to when compared with other drives because I haven't see a "watts per Gigabyte" factor from Hitachi and others in this space.

We'll see the new drive, affectionately known as "MK1011GAH" at CES in four short weeks; aside from seeing the actual product, we'll be sure to ask what devices we can expect to see these in: notebooks, Tablets, UMPCs and digital audio players are usual suspects. Mass production starts next month as well, so before the snow thaws here in the Northern Hemi, you'll be sure to see the higher capacity in various products.

December 05, 2006

DVDs on your mobile device with SPB Mobile DVD

Spb_mobile_dvdSPB Software House recently released SPB Mobile DVD, software that will get your legally owned DVD videos onto your mobile device. The $24.95 software will re-encode a DVD movie into either WMV or XVID formats, although WMV is native to Windows and Windows Mobile. According to Arne Hess, "On a new PC it is possible to convert a 2 hour long DVD film in about 20 minutes" which is fantastic! One of the drawbacks in early versions of similar software was the encoding time: in some cases you could have actually watched the movie on DVD in less time!

I'll be giving the free trial a shot in the next day or two simply because the Zune supports WMV files as well. It should be a simple matter of outputting the encoded video file to a folder that I have my Zune software monitor for changes. For more info, check out the SPB Mobile DVD product page or give the 15-day trial a download. The software is supported on Windows 98, 2000, or XP and you can output your video for square screen Windows Mobile devices as well; a nice touch.

OneNote 2003 fix for touchscreens

Onenote_2003This fix for OneNote 2003 is actually from May of this year, but I don't think we covered it. The OneNote Extensibility & More blog published the info yesterday and it addresses a specific OneNote 2003 issue on touchscreen devices. I haven't seen the issue on my touchscreen UMPC, but apparently, OneNote will sometimes cause a pen stroke to disappear as soon as you lift the pen from the screen. If you've got a case of vanishing scrawl in OneNote 2003, there's a patch available from Microsoft. The issue is specific to OneNote 2003, so if you're running OneNote 2007, you won't see this problem. If you're not running OneNote 2007, remember that you can download a free 60-day trial.

Who says VoIP phones have to be ugly?

VoIP phones are all the rage but all of the models I’ve seen to date have been ugly.  That changes with the handsets offered up by Futiro.  Take a look at just one of the phones, the Luna, which is a sleek black masterpiece that is freestanding and supports Skype.  Just ignore the annoying black background in the photo.  $75

Fujtiro Luna VoIP phone

How to: Google local listings with any TXT-capable phone

Bestbuy_local_google_1Need to find a local business address on Google, but don't have web access? If you've got a phone with text messaging capability, you can perform that Google search and get info in just seconds. Here's how:

  1. Create a new TXT message to GOOGL (46645)
  2. In your TXT message, enter the business name and zip code closest to you
  3. Send your message

In just a few seconds, you'll get a reply message with the business address info; it's that simple. I just tried this to find the nearest Best Buy (as if I didn't know) and my reply message shown was returned in under five seconds.

Bestbuy_local_google_2

Thanks to jkOnThePhone for the tip....hey, shouldn't jk be "OnTheRun"? James, put the phone down and stop spamming Google with text messages, would ya?

Zune is better than iPod for some and getting better

Zuneipod2So we're three weeks after the initial launch of Zune and it's safe to say it isn't yet an "iPod killer", but it's not the flop that many are predicting. Matt Miller has used his Zune for three weeks and shares his observations as well as some of the hacks and mods that folks are already using to extend their Zune. Matt also provides a very compelling reason why the Zune dropped from second to fifth in sales during the last week.

I'd agree with most by saying the integrated WiFi is crippled at best: to this point, I haven't even turned on my WiFi radio in the Zune simply because I haven't seen any other Zunes in the wild and I get an extra hour of battery life. However, the fact that WiFi is there in a firmware upgradable device shows promise. Zune 1.0 might not yet be the raging success that Microsoft wanted. Then again, maybe they sold Zune 1.0 so you could later own Zune 2.0 in the same physical device.

Philips DVD player case- cool mini laptop bag

Phillips_dvd_case_003I recently mentioned that I thought cases made for carrying portable DVD players would work fine for carrying UMPCs around and today I dropped by Target to check them out.  I had the idea that it would be nice to have a small case to carry the Fujitsu P1610 along with a few accessories and avoid carrying my backpack everywhere.  Sometimes you just want to go small so off to Target I went to look at the cases for DVD players.  I found one that fit the P1610 perfectly so here's a look at the Philips DVD player case I picked up for $25.  Read on after the jump for my impressions of this cheap case.

Continue reading "Philips DVD player case- cool mini laptop bag" »

December 04, 2006

Early Vista Tip #3: run the CMD line as an Admin

I didn't think I would ever need to do this but thanks to Vista's overly-protective security, you might need to run a CMD line as an Admin. In true Vista fashion, the approach to circumvent security isn't very intuitive (a good thing) and thanks to Paul's wonderful Zune hack on Vista, we now know how to do this.

Click your Start Orb and type "CMD" but don't press Enter and don't click on the search results that Vista will return. Instead, hold down CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER. If you have the Vista User Access Control (UAC) enabled as it is by default, you will be prompted to continue before you gain Admin rights. Click "Continue" and you're all set! Instead of seeing this:

Cmd

You'll see this and have full Admin rights:

Cmd_admin

56 days, 4 hours, 8 minutes and 50 seconds left....49.....48....47....

Samsung Q1P finally has a product page

Q1_video_6The Pentium-based Samsung Q1, known as the Q1P, has finally appeared on the Samsung Q1 product page. This more powerful model of the original Q1 UMPC has previously appeared at retailer sites, so there isn't much news here. CDW has carried the unit for some time for around $1,250: you'll get the faster processor (1 GHz) along with a Gigabyte of RAM and a 60 GB hard drive, all increases over the original Q1. Interestingly enough, Samsung's product page indicates that the 3-cell battery will provide up to 5 hours of battery life; the Celeron-based Q1 is rated at 3 hours and while the Pentium can "speed-step" the processor to save battery life, I'm leery on the claim, but if someone has a Q1P and can share their typical battery usage, please set me straight. Also, we heard in September that the Q1P would have an option for embedded HSDPA, but there's no mention of that on the official product page.

Thanks to jkOTR reader Tom for the heads up!

What's after HSDPA? HSUPA, of course

Wow, we don't even have HSDPA 3G close to rolled out and the next level isn't that far behind. If HSDPA and HSUPA sound like funny acronyms, they are, so let's give you the 40,000-foot view to get you up to speed (literally!). HSDPA stands for High-Speed Downlink Packet Access and is a cellular wireless technology that provides speedy upload and download speeds to the tune of up to 3.6 Mbps down and 385 Kbps up. HSUPA is the next-step and promises double the download speed (7.2 Mbps) while quadrupling the upload to 1.5 Mbps.

Now that you don't have to buy a vowel to understand the two technologies, this tidbit might make sense: Qualcomm will be demonstrating HSUPA technology at the ITU Telecom show in Hong Kong. None of the U.S. carriers have committed to HSUPA, but Cingular is currently rolling out HSDPA; it's a safe bet that if any carrier will bring HSUPA to the U.S., it would likely be Cingular in the next few years.

Parallels adds "coherency": can you spot Windows on this Mac?

Parallels_1I'm beginning to wonder if someday we'll all have Apple hardware running Windows software. If the folks who build the Parallels software have anything to do with it, I'd say it's a safe bet. The latest beta version of Parallels adds several new features, but the one standout from a productivity standpoint has to be new "coherency" mode.

Coherency allows Windows apps to float right in the Mac workspace, appearing as if they were native Mac apps. This means you don't need to keep Windows-based windows in the Microsoft workspace on a Mac running Parallels. You can even share and move data between Mac and Windows apps using shortcuts. Essentially, the new coherency mode makes the OS boundaries disappear and that can have a profound effect on computing choices. You have to see this for yourself in a video at Michael Verdi's site; if you can spare two minutes, this is a must see.

MacBook Pro slimming to 12-inch widescreen?

Blueapplelogo_1When the MacBooks got the Intel Core 2 Duo refresh, I wondered what was next for the Mac notebook line and MacRumors might have the answer. Word is that Apple is readying a 12-inch widescreen version of the MacBook Pro that would be "ultra-thin". Since I'm on the run quite a bit, I prefer my notebooks & Tablets to be 12-inches or less, so this would be in my "sweet spot". There's no mention of any Tablet functions, but if Apple could get MacBook Pro functionality in an "ultra-thin" form factor like the Fujitsu ST 5112 slate I have under review, they would have a very appealing package. Here's hoping! Thanks for the tip, Dave!

Remove cord-clutter with Belkin's UWB hub

Belkin_uwb_hub_1

If you're a heavy-duty notebook or Tablet PC user that owns many USB devices, you might appreciate Belkin's Cable-Free hub due here in the U.S. in the next few weeks. The $200 device is a wireless USB hub that supports UWB, or Ultra-Wideband technology, so you can cut the cord to your USB printer, keyboard, mouse, web-cam or digital music player. The hub isn't quite a full docking-station replacement: if you want to pipe video to an external monitor, for example, you'll still need the dreaded VGA or other video cable. Still, the ability to remove cord-clutter is a bonus in my book.

EverNote Software Featured on All New Fujitsu Notebooks and Tablet PCs

Sunnyvale, Calif., Dec. 4, 2006 – EverNote® Corporation today announced a new partnership to distribute EverNote software on the Fujitsu Computer Systems Corporation line of high-performance and reliable LifeBook® notebooks and Stylistic® Tablet PCs shipping in North America.

In addition, the LifeBook P1610 pen-enabled convertible notebook will include both EverNote Plus and EverNote ritePen®, an advanced handwriting recognition software.

EverNote Corp. is a leader in information capturing technologies. From best-of-breed digital ink and handwriting recognition technologies, to its popular personal content management application, EverNote provides a single place for capturing, categorizing, and instantly locating any kind of notes, including text, web and document clips, handwritten notes and images, and accessing them on multiple platforms and devices.

“People appreciate software that works with them to make their job easier,” said Paul Moore, senior director of mobile product marketing, Fujitsu Computer Systems. “EverNote, whether it is used with a pen or keyboard, delivers on this with a clear, easy-to-use, searchable notepad.”

A leader in mobile computing, Fujitsu offers a complete line of LifeBook® high-performance notebook PCs, ranging from powerful desktop replacements to ultra-portable and convertible notebooks, to fit the needs of every mobile user.  Fujitsu Stylistic® Tablet PCs offer unsurpassed levels of flexibility, productivity, and performance with both pen and keyboard inputs.

“The popularity of Fujitsu notebooks and Tablet PCs gives EverNote more exposure to a growing base of mobile users,” said Leonid Kitainik, executive vice president of EverNote. “We are excited about the partnership with Fujitsu that helps business users and consumers manage the myriad of content that they interact with every day. Additionally, we are positive that LifeBook and Stylistic users will enjoy the forthcoming version 2.0 of EverNote, which includes our new Search in Images (AIR-Search) technology.”

About EverNote Corporation
Headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., EverNote Corporation is a provider of note management, digital ink and handwriting recognition software and technologies for the PC, mobile and wireless markets. Please visit www.evernote.com for more information.

ritePen and EverNote are registered trademarks of EverNote Corporation. Fujitsu, the Fujitsu logo, and LifeBook are registered trademarks of Fujitsu Limited. Stylistic is a registered trademark of Fujitsu Computer Systems Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners
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