Important Announcement


Ok I know this is a bit late in coming but I’d like to apologize and explain my absence for the past week or so. A lot has happened in the last few days folks; Android 2.2 has been launched, new laptops & netbooks have hit the market, BP’s attempts at trying to curb the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico have failed miserably. Yep…stuff happens fast.

I happen to have exams in two weeks; I have a couple of project presentations to make, and a research paper to write. As you can well imagine, my plate is more than full right now. So in the interest of all concerned I have put a lid on the blog for a while so I can focus on my studies. Rest assured, I shall return soon with more info for you guys. But for the next month or so, I’m pretty much out of action here. Tech stuff happens fast, and you need to keep your finger on the pulse constantly so as not to miss out on anything. But articles and posts take time; that’s why it’s tough to do so when it’s such a fleeting commodity.

I hope you can understand. Peace.

Peace.

Skype Goes Multi Facial: Simultaneous Video Conferencing For Upto 5 People


Skype

Good news for Skype users. The company has added conference calling features which enable users to host video chats for upto 5 people at a time, as opposed to the more common stable version which allows only one person per video conference. The only pre requisite is that each of them has to have a Web cam and Skype 5.0 beta installed on a Windows PC in order for video conferencing to work. This limitation could get in testers’ ways, but those are to be expected anyway since this happens to be a beta build. It became available on Thursday as a free download.

Skype certainly isn’t the first to bring video conferencing to everyday users. The free Skype competitor VoxOx offers video conferencing for up to three callers; the freemium ooVoo can support up to six.

British Telecom’s iPad Rival?


BT
A cross between “a mini PC” and “the telephone of the future” is what British Telecom is touting as their new iPad contender-to-be. Although you’d have to take BT’s statement at face value when they say that they don’t consider it to be such a thing. According to them, the device is designed to be used in domestic households and not as a mobile computing device ala the iPad.

The device is rumoured to have a screen that is smaller than that of the iPad. Call receiving/speaking will be accomplished via Bluetooth headset or through an integrated speaker, and features like email, web surfing and text messaging capabilities come as standard. Apps might include weather, news feeds, events and possibly a whole lot more. BT maintain that they’ve conducted surveys over what consumers want from this as yet unnamed device, so I’m guessing they might hit the bull’s eye the first time around.

Droid Incredible Vs. Nexus One: The Camera Shootout


The Incredible Camera Showdown: Droid Incredible VS Nexus One

These shots were taken by Clark Wimberly of Androidandme.com. The overall result is that the Nexus One has a clear edge over the blue tint inducing camera of the Droid Incredible. We do not own any of these photos and they are presented merely to provide you an idea of whether the 8MP flavour of the Incredible is any better than the Nexus One’s 5MP one. Surprising results await below.

Indoors, without flash

Edge: Nexus One

Indoors, with flash

Edge: Nexus One

Outdoors, indirect light

Edge: Nexus One

Outdoors, direct light

Sighted: Samsung Galaxy S With T-Mobile Apps


galaxy
The Samsung Galaxy S was initially reported to support all four major US carriers, and recently a version for AT&T was spotted.

In addition to that, Howard Chui of HowardForums has uploaded a video to YouTube which provides a quick hands on of the phone, which is for the T-Mobile network. Several T-Mobile specific apps have been spotted in this video, which as you can see in the above pic, include My Account, Visual Voicemail and others. According to Chui, the Humminbird processor embedded within the Samsung phone appears to be faster than the Snapdragon series that’s used in so many HTC sets.

Following are the complete features for this set:

  • Android 2.1 OS,
  • 1GHz Humminbird Processor,
  • 4″ Super AMOLED (480*800 pixels, 20% brighter and eliminates 80% of sunlight glare),
  • Social Hub,
  • 16 GB internal storage plus MicroSD capability
  • Document Editor
  • Remote Controller for Samsung TVs
  • Google Maps Navigation with Voice search and turn-by-turn (as well as real-time traffic updates)
  • Daily Briefing, a way to view your favorite widgets and info on one page
  • Wireless tethering
  • 5MP Camera (Auto focus, Smile detection, Digital zoom, Self-timer, Panorama),
  • HD Movie Recording (30 FPS)
  • Layar Augmented Reality Browser
  • allshare via DLNA

Pretty impressive line up. But you be the judge.

Nexus One Moves Over Into Retail Territory


nexusone

Well, it’s official. Google has changed the selling mechanism for their Nexus One smartphone, deinterlacing it from their web store and moving over to retail outlets.

According to Android head honcho Andy Rubin, the web store has “remained a niche channel for early adopters, but it’s clear that many customers like a hands-on experience before buying a phone, and they also want a wide range of service plans to chose from.”

You have to admit, the guy does have a point going on there.

But considering the fact that two of the Nexus One’s orginal carriers Verizon and Sprint jettisoned it recently, it would be a not unwise move to expand into the retail area whilst keeping the original web based stores. Still, innovation has its tradeoffs I suppose.

Buzznet: The Facebook Of Modern Media


buzzweb
Looks like we have another Mybook/ Facespace lookalike on the block. Except this isn’t really a lookalike, more like a combined amalgam of all things Facebook/ Twitter/ Myspace etc (hopefully without the security issues plagueing Facebook central).

Its a social networking site called Buzznet, and it focuses primarilly on the socio-cultural media preferences of its some 2 million users, which include, but are not limited to, music, movies, TV, photography, fashion and other art forms. This site has relaunched recently with a whole lot of fresh new features which borrow their concepts from other popular social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

Buzznet is basically focused on cataloguing and sharing users’ personal tastes in media. The revamped site now enables users to create a custom content feed which displays their own content and those of others. This would enable users to share and feature any community or blog that they follow, on their own blog. In much the same way as Twitter/ Facebook, folks would get dynamic updates on their own news feeds about every blog/community/content that they follow.

The “most followed” header on the Buzznet homepage features just what it says. A “trending topics” section covers the most popular features and topics on the network. There’s also a  new “reblog” feature which allows users to create a channel that reflects their personality and taste without having to post any original content. This of course is completely customizable, and no doubt helps folks build up their own identities in the network that much more conveniently and quickly.

It’ll be interesting to see whether this site gains as much momentum as Facebook or Myspace. The concept is based on a successful formula but now focuses on a niche category rather than cramming every aspect of  the users’ personal and professional lives onto one platform.

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