Microsoft announced that it is releasing a developer preview of its upcoming next-generation operating system, currently named “Windows 8,” during its BUILD conference in Los Angeles on Tuesday. President of Windows and Windows Live Division Steve Sinofsky took the stage during BUILD’s opening keynote and discussed several of the operating system’s new features. “We reimagined Windows,” he said. “From the chipset to the user experience, Windows 8 brings a new range of capabilities without compromise.” As Microsoft has already revealed, Windows 8 will offer a new “Metro style” user interface that is built to take advantage of touch input but works just as well with a keyboard and mouse. Internet Explorer 10 will also offer full support for touch browsing, and Sinofsky hinted that even desktop-sized Windows 8 computers will largely take advantage of touchscreen monitors. Developers will be able to create Metro style applications that will fill the entire screen, too. Microsoft said the next-generation of Windows 8 hardware will turn on instantly and will be capable of running all day on a single charge. The OS is designed to run on devices ranging from a 10-inch tablet to a large desktop, and developers will have access to Windows 8 later this week. Read on for the full press release that discusses several other new features in Windows 8, as well as a hands-on video from WinRumors. More →
We knew right when we exclusively revealed the BlackBerry Monaco and Monza back in January that the devices would likely shed the “Storm” moniker, and now it’s looking even more likely. BlackBerry enthusiast blog N4BB cites multiple sources in suggesting that RIM may have finally landed on a new brand for the full touchscreen smartphone it is preparing to launch later this year: “Volt.” The report is unsure at best however, suggesting that RIM might instead choose to slap the Torch brand on the Monaco 9850 and Monza 9860. We took a hands-on look at the BlackBerry Monaco/Monza — which features a 3.7-inch touchscreen, a 1.2GHz processor, a 5-megapixel camera and NFC — back in March. More →
Barnes & Noble on Tuesday unveiled its all new NOOK eBook reader, and to say it’s an improvement over the previous-generation model is an understatement. This new version replaces the older greyscale model, not the still-young NOOK color, and it features a major improvement we probably all saw coming… a touchscreen. The eReader sports an on-screen keyboard and it also allows readers to look up words or take notes with simple taps on the beautiful E Ink display. The new NOOK features just one button compared to the Kindle’s 38, which obviously simplifies the user experience significantly. More importantly, the new NOOK can last up to two months on a single charge — double the battery life of Amazon’s Kindle. Other nifty features include a new proprietary dissolve transition that takes readers from one page to the next, and social media integration that allows users to share recommendations via Twitter, Facebook and more. Of course the new eReader also features Wi-Fi connectivity and owners can enjoy free hotspot access at all Barnes & Noble stores as well as every AT&T hotspot across the country. The new NOOK will retail for $139.99 when it becomes available on June 10th from Barnes & Noble, Best Buy and more. Pre-orders are available immediately.
While Microsoft is busy showing off the latest and greatest its Windows Phone platform has to offer, Barnes & Noble is across town getting ready to take the wraps off its brand new NOOK eReader. Tablets like the Apple iPad 2 and BlackBerry PlayBook are taking center stage right now, but these jacks of all trades have a long way to go before they can even come close to matching the reading experience afforded by dedicated eReaders. Avid readers and casual readers alike can appreciate the remarkable battery life and unique features that only a dedicated eBook reader can afford, and good luck trying to soak up the sun while reading a book on your iPad — right now, only an E Ink display can remain perfectly visible and glare-free while combating the sun’s rays. So what new features does Barnes and Noble have in store for its latest NOOK eReader? Hit the break for our live coverage of the unveiling, which will begin just before 10:00 a.m. EST, and don’t forget to refresh the page often for all the latest updates! More →
We spent some time with the BlackBerry Touch a little while back, but we wanted to update you on something that’s changed. We have heard the model number of the device will now be 9870, but that’s not all. On the unit we played with, the four BlackBerry menu buttons were all part of one strip, much like the buttons on the BlackBerry 9700 or Curve. However, we’re told that the buttons on the BlackBerry 9870 have changed in the latest hardware revision, and there are now four separate buttons that are rectangular in shape. We have not been told a reason for the change, but this could definitely be part of the reason the phone wasn’t announced at BlackBerry World last week.
New BlackBerry Bold appears on BlackBerry.com, probably the only device announcement at BlackBerry World
It looks like RIM’s website team jumped the gun a bit, as we have just caught the new BlackBerry Bold on RIM’s main BlackBerry site. It’s not like you haven’t seen the BlackBerry Bold before, though, as we not only broke news of the device but have also spent some one-on-one snuggle time with RIM’s flagship handset. With that said, we also exclusively reported that RIM might only launch one device at BlackBerry World, as opposed to previewing and demoing the company’s 7-device lineup for 2011. It looks like what we reported will be correct — the introduction of the new BlackBerry Bold (we’re still not positive if the final name will include Touch in it) as well as BlackBerry OS 7 (formerly known as OS 6.1). There’s one more image after the break.
Thanks, Joey S! More →
Research In Motion isn’t just a leaky faucet ahead of BlackBerry World this year, it’s a waterfall. We scooped RIM’s 2011 BlackBerry lineup back in January and more recently, we gave you a hands-on look at the BlackBerry Bold Touch, BlackBerry Touch and BlackBerry Torch 2 smartphones, but the leaks continue. In recent days we’ve seen full specs, brief hands-on videos and more, and for the two or three remaining naysayers who still don’t believe RIM is about to announce its next-generation smartphone lineup at BlackBerry World next month, RIM’s promo videos are now starting to leak out. Companies typically don’t put these promotional spots together unless the have some devices to, you know, promote — so BlackBerry fans should sit tight for another couple of weeks and we’re certain they’ll have some sleek new smartphones to swoon over. Hit the break for RIM’s official BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry 9860 promo videos. More →
You remember the BlackBerry Touch — also known as the Monaco or Monza — don’t you? Of course you do. The device we brought you exclusive images of last month has been nabbed again, this time on video. The two-plus minute clip showcases the device running BlackBerry 6.1 and, from what we can see, it looks to be pretty snappy. The video’s narrator is speaking in Thai — which is not a language in our linguistic wheelhouse — so we’re just going to have to let you observe and pass judgement on your own. The video is waiting for you after the break. Enjoy. More →
Right on schedule, Apple has released iOS 4.3 beta 3, build number 8F5166b, to developers through its online developer’s portal. The code is available for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. We’re in the throes of downloading the new bits as we speak. You do the same and be sure to let us know what you find.
The sleuths over at unwiredview.com have found a Bluetooth SIG entry for a fairly peculiar device being called the INQ Cloud Touch. In the filing, the Cloud Touch is described as:
An Android smartphone built to make messaging faster and smarter. It’s designed around the way people naturally communicate and has Facebook built into its core. The homescreen features multiple entry points to different Facebook functions, while a dynamic widget displays a feed of status updates, albums, videos and photos.
Back in September, Bloomberg published a report indicating that INQ was working on a handset for the social networking company. The filing is fairly recent as the software version has a build date of 12/17/2010. While there is no way to be one-hundred percent sure this is a Facebook Phone, the evidence seems to point in that direction. What do you think? Anyone out there so invested in the Facebook ecosystem that this is appealing? More →
The BendDesk is a new multitouch workspace created by the talented minds at The Media Computing Group, and it’s absolutely incredible-looking. It’s a fully curved display that looks to form a 90 degree bend and makes use of two projectors, 3 cameras, and loads of IR lights to view and track up to 10 touch points. The software they have come up with is also equally impressive — you can flick photos for instance from the top or bottom part of the display, or hold them in a locker in the middle where the curve is. Unfortunately this isn’t something you’re able to buy anytime due to the fact a ship date nor price were revealed, but we’ll keep waiting. In the meantime, check out their demo video after the break. More →
Today, via a press release, Sprint officially announced its ZTE Peel iPod touch mobile-hotspot case. The iPod accessory, which will be available November 14th, will retail for $79.99 and will fit second and third generation iPod touch devices. Sprint will offer a $30, month-to-month hotspot plan for the Peel that will include a 1GB data allowance. The Wi-Fi case will support WEP 64-bit encryption, has a 3-hour run-time, and is comparable with Windows 7, Vista, and XP as well as Mac OS 10.5 and 10.6. The announcement mirrors information we broke about the Peel last week and on Monday. Hit the jump for the full press release. More →
On Friday, we told you about a rumor we were hearing surrounding the release-date and pricing for Sprint’s ZTE Peel; the iPod touch case that provides 3G internet access. Today, we’ve got cold hard evidence to confirm our previous scoop. As you can see from the above screen shot, the ZTE Peel will indeed be hitting the Now Network on November 14th and will retail for $79.99. The plan that Sprint will provide Peel customers is a $29.99, month-to-month, offering that will include a 1GB data allowance; overages will be billed at $0.05 per megabyte. The Wi-Fi case will be able to provide internet access for up to two devices and supports second and third generation iPod touch devices. Although… we do have to wonder if Sprint/ZTE will delay the current Peel as it is not compatible with the fourth generation iPod touch; most notably, the camera is in a different location.
What do you think iPod touch owners, you like?