Wednesday, September 30, 2009

New Macs on October 9th?

Here comes another rumour from the mill of fun. TUAW is reporting that they have received tips from site users that new iMac’s and Mac Minis are due for a hardware refresh as early as October 9th.

This follows the report from AppleInsider a few days ago which they stated that Mac supplies were short in retail shops.

TUAW says:
A tipster ordered a mini on September 18th, received shipping information but today… they received an email saying that their Mac mini order will ship on October 9th.
Will these latest rumours amount to anything decent? Hopefully not a minor speed bump and a SD card slot. But hopefully a new feature such as Blu-ray.

No doubt more rumours will come any day now saying the same thing. Could there be a apple event in the works?

Source: TUAW

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Dell unveils the Latitude Z

It’s the first Latitude with attitude.

Dell on Tuesday pulled back the curtain on the rumored Latitude Z thin-and-light laptop, a 16-inch slab of angular portability packed with an array of business-centric features.

First mentioned just 10 days ago as a high-horsepower executive power system, the Latitude Z makes quite an impression in person. I had a chance to take a sneak peek and manhandle the laptop last week, and it’s an impressive piece of kit.

Dell reps said that the Latitude Z is intended to be an executive laptop to be coveted and bragged about — “executive bling,” they said — somewhere in the same space that the MacBook Air or Sony Vaio Z currently occupies.

Clearly, the Latitude Z is certainly unlike anything on the market right now.

[Image Gallery: Dell Latitude Z]

[Image Gallery: Hands-on with Dell Latitude Z]

As you can see in the images, Dell continues to distinguish its offerings on the basis of style. The Latitude Z has been designed to evoke a strong reaction, but backs the visual claim up with a bevy of business features that the other laptops don’t offer.

First, the outside: with hard angles all around and a demure black cherry “soft-touch” finish that appears black from certain angles, the Z is the world’s thinnest and lightest 16-inch laptop: it’s just over an inch thick and weights 4.5 lbs. — the same specs as my 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Open the Latitude Z up and you’ll notice a redesigned Dell-style backlit keyboard (slightly scalloped, but with isolated keys) and a bigger, gesture-enabled touchpad. The interior of the clamshell is trimmed in a real aluminum border, and you’ll notice a fingerprint reader and a contactless RFID card scanner (yes, that’s right: security via your company ID) where your palms rest.

The 16-inch HD (1600×900) LCD WLED backlit matte display is topped off with an optional 2-megapixel autofocus webcam and microphone for videoconferencing. In a nod to business types, the Latitude Z comes with Dell Capture Business Card Reader and Document Scanner software, which allows you to hold up a business card or document to the built-in webcam and it will literally pull the information off the photographed document and put it in usable text form, no extra equipment needed.

(I tried this myself in person, and while it takes a little practice lining up a business card appropriately with a “target” that appears on the screen, it’s pretty neat to have someone’s business card info completely typed up and organized, ready to go.)

The built-in webcam also works with Dell FaceAware, which locks out others when you step away from the system.

The other real news is Dell EdgeTouch, an almost-hidden capacitive strip along the right side of the display’s bezel that’s activated by a finger touch on a small outlined sensor at the bottom-right corner. When activated, a taskbar-like touch menu appears on the right edge of the display, allowing for shortcut access to useful items.

Around the edge, you’ll find two USB 2.0 ports (one doubles as an eSATA port), 1 DisplayPort and an audio in/out port. All of these ports are on the right side — the left edge is purely for ventilation. On the 45-degree zinc hinges that flank the color-matched battery, you’ll find an RJ-45 Ethernet port and Dell’s barrel-shaped power port.

Speaking of that battery, by the way: in typical Dell fashion, the Latitude Z comes with a 4-cell (four hour) battery that sits flush with the hinges; an 8-cell (eight hour) version adds a bumper-like hump to the system.

The final new business feature is Dell’s Always ON technology, an instant-on, no-boot miniature operating system that allows for Web browsing, e-mail, calendar and contact access. (Dell reps said they’re working on incorporating instant messages into the environment; for now, no dice.) Believe it or not, this environment uses an entirely different, secondary mini ARM processor that sits beneath your palms, saving battery life.

Inside you’ll find a choice of Intel Core 2 Duo processors: the 1.4GHz SU9400 or the 1.6GHz SU9600, which come with 2GB and 4GB of dual-channel 1066MHz DDR3 memory, respectively. (This doesn’t include the mini CPU for the Always ON environment.)

Storage is solid-state only, and supports up to two drives in your choice of 64GB non-encrypted, 128GB encrypted or 256GB encrypted capacities apiece.

Graphics are provided by Intel’s GMA 4500MHD, and connectivity comes by way of Bluetooth, mobile broadband (EVDO; HSUPA) and WLAN 802.11a/g/n. (WiMax is an option.)

For the green-minded, the system is Energy Star 5.0 compliant, achieves an EPEAT Gold rating, and is made from mercury- and arsenic-free glass and halogen-free components.

The power adapter is a slim, redesigned model that might eventually replace current options on the rest of the Latitude line.

Not content with all this, Dell’s also got a Latitude Z-specific wireless charging station in the pipeline that doubles as a monitor stand, as well as a small wireless dock station (DVI, USB). Both can be seen in the image gallery.

The Dell Latitude Z600 is available today in the U.S., Canada and select countries in Europe and Asia, starting at $1,999. The wireless charging stand and the dock will be available in late October.

My impression: After seeing and playing with the Latitude Z in person, it’s a formidable machine. I don’t think the style is for everyone, but the array of business-friendly features means it’s not just eye candy. Above all, the Z is an immensely useful system that means business. I wonder, though, if users would really drag a 16-inch machine around, despite the light weight and thin profile. (If you’re worried about flex on such a thin, large system, fear not — it felt pretty sturdy when I held it by one hand.) I also wonder about the decision to release the system ahead of the Windows 7 launch.

More impressions from around the web:

  • Engadget: “A pretty tight design from Dell, and oozes quality.”
  • Gizmodo: “Chock-full of some kick ass tech.”
  • LAPTOP: “A premium business machine that’s worth the splurge.”
  • Ars Technica: “Not every aspect of the Z600 is an obvious win, but it represents a step in the right direction.”
  • Computerworld: “The question is whether corporations have lifted themselves enough out of the recession doldrums to purchase what is, in essence, a luxury item.”

Love it or hate it? Tell me what you think of Dell’s new Latitude Z in TalkBack.

(Taken from

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Wii Price Cut

Nintendo is slashing the price of its Wii game console in Japan and the US by 20%, part of a global strategy to spur sales ahead of the crucial Christmas shopping season.

In Japan, the Wii's price will be cut to 220 dollars on October 1, the company has said.

In the US the day before, Nintendo said the console's price will be lowered by 50 dollars on Sunday to 200 dollars. The company gave no details on possible UK cuts.

The reductions follows similar moves by rivals Sony and Microsoft. Console price cuts are customary for the video game industry after the systems have celebrated a birthday or two, because they help lure in mass audiences.

Sony said in August it would cut the price in Japan for its popular PlayStation 3. Microsoft said last month it was cutting the Japanese price for its Xbox 360 game console by 25%.

Nintendo had earlier said it had no plan to slash the price for the Wii. But a company spokesman said it hoped to "spur sales" with cheaper Wii consoles.

"With the price cuts both in Japan and the US, we want to spur sales during the upcoming year-end shopping seasons," he said.

The global recession has made price cuts important, especially as game companies gear up for the Christmas shopping season, when the video game industry makes most of its money. Without the price cuts, it would be difficult to entice budget-conscious shoppers to buy the machines.

The Wii, whose game control senses motions without having to rely solely on buttons and levers, is the top selling console worldwide. Launched in 2006, Nintendo's Wii hit 50 million unit sales worldwide in March 2009 - the fastest sales pace of any video game machine ever.

3.1 Software Features

I know I'm a tad bit late, but here is the list of things that apple has updated in 3.1

iPhone OS 3.1 includes these features and updates:

  • Improved syncing for music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and photos1
  • iTunes U content organization
  • Redeem iTunes Gift Cards, codes, and certificates in the App Store
  • Display available iTunes account credits in the App Store and iTunes Store
  • Save video from Mail and MMS into Camera Roll
  • Option to "Save as new clip" when trimming a video on iPhone 3GS
  • Better iPhone 3G Wi-Fi performance when Bluetooth is turned on
  • Remotely lock iPhone with a passcode via MobileMe
  • Use Voice Control on iPhone 3GS with Bluetooth headsets
  • Paste phone numbers into the keypad
  • Option to use Home button to turn on accessibility features on iPhone 3GS
  • Warn when visiting fraudulent websites in Safari (anti-phishing)
  • Improved Exchange calendar syncing and invitation handling
  • Fixes issue that cause some app icons to display incorrectly

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

iTunes 9.0.1 Released today

iTunes 9.0.1 was released today, it fixed some major bugs and security holes. Read the full features list here:

Promo Code

iTunes App Store Promo Code for GlossyTouch: PYRR46MT3M3J
First come first serve!

iTunes Security Flaw

Apple has shipped iTunes 9.0.1to fix a critical security hole that puts Mac and Windows users at risk of computer takeover attacks.

The vulnerability could be used by hackers to launch code execution attacks via booby-trapped “.pls” files, Apple warned in an advisory.

  • Impact: Opening a maliciously crafted .pls file may lead to an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution
  • Description: A buffer overflow exists in the handling of .pls files. Opening a maliciously crafted .pls file may lead to an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution. This update addresses the issue through improved bounds checking.

The update is available for Mac OS X v10.4.11 or later, Mac OS X Server v10.4.11 or later, Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7.

T-Mobile's new myTouch 3G

You’ve probably seen the latest commercial for T-Mobile’s myTouch 3G smartphone, where comedian Whoopi Goldberg, NBA coach Phil Jackson and motorcycle builder Jesse James pass the handset to each other.

But did you ever wonder if the thing was any good?

I spent the better part of a month with the myTouch 3G to find out.

The appeal of the myTouch 3G is apparent from the beginning: it’s the first fully touchscreen handset (no QWERTY keyboard here) powered by the Google Android operating system, and by extension, it’s been positioned as the kind of smartphone that you can feel safe giving to both your parents and kids.

The surprisingly light myTouch 3G is sold to be “100% you,” satisfied by three colors (black, white, burgundy) and an array of customized backplates, skins and apps from the T-Mobile myTouch Studio. It also comes, in a nice touch for users, with headphones, a screen protector, a soft drawstring phone case, a charger that mimics the shape of the phone itself and a cushioned, branded soft-hard case to pack it all inside.

But the aspect of customization also refers to the Android OS that powers the handset. With it, you can program widgets to sit on the three screen-wide home screen, download apps through Android Market and generally do whatever you want with the device — work, play, whatever.

To challenge this proposition, I used the phone for the better part of a workday, syncing my work and personal lives to the device. The phone supports Microsoft Exchange out of the box, and offers a separate icon for the purpose.

I had no problem syncing my corporate mail account to the device, and naturally didn’t have any problem syncing my personal Gmail account, either (Android offers a third option if you have another e-mail provider).

I set up Yahoo! Messenger (work) and Google Chat and AIM (personal) and was effectively on my way.

As is expected, the myTouch integrates perfectly with all Google services. That’s a great thing for those of us who use Google services regularly; if you don’t, this phone will still suffice, but you’ll be missing out on key integration opportunities.

Android uses a notification system that alerts you at the top of the screen of an incoming message. The feature becomes useful if you’re in one connection tool and get messaged with another, but the alert is a bit hard to read.

In this sense, the Android flavor of the myTouch 3G (Cupcake) is still fairly basic, and you need to duck in and out of connection apps to keep abreast of your potential avenues of contact. (It’s the same limitation iPhone users face.)

Other vendors have already begun addressing this problem, including Palm with its webOS for the Pre and Pixi and Motorola with its Motoblur RSS-based widget architecture for the CLIQ. But unless you’re using this device as a hardcore business communication tool, it’s not truly essential to navigate three different IM clients at once.

That said, the myTouch can be quite effective if you’re a user who prefers a touch interface. It improves on the somewhat-maligned T-Mobile G1, made by the same manufacturer, HTC. In losing the G1’s heavy slider keyboard, the myTouch 3G is remarkably lighter, thinner and more pleasurable to use.

(Strangely, I had a difficult time conditioning myself to not confuse the home and power/off buttons.)

The 3.2-inch, 262,000-color, 480×320 pixel resolution screen is as impressive.

The myTouch 3G offers a rollerball that can serve as an alternate navigation method; in practice, I found that the touch-rollerball combo was versatile, intuitive and effective in addressing different situations. (For example, I found myself using the rollerball to navigate menu options; I preferred using my finger for navigating media, such as photos.)

But business-minded users will note the myTouch 3G’s lack of Outlook calendar and contacts sync, as well as a missing file manager. And the virtual keyboard was just a bit scrunched for my big thumbs.

Curiously, despite being “about you,” there aren’t any options to edit photos, or for that matter, a flash for the camera. Furthermore, the handset lacks a standard 3.5mm jack, so you’re limited to using the earbuds that come with the phone.

Storage comes in the form of an included 4GB microSD card — smaller than the iPhone’s storage.

In use, I found the myTouch 3G to be mostly smooth in navigation and loading content, but occasionally Android would hiccup for unexplained reason, a moment’s snag before the interface would catch up (such as when using the sliding main menu on the home screen).

Integration with Google Maps was great, but I found that about 50 percent of the time it was inaccurate. In New York City, it occasionally mapped me 30 blocks from where I was standing; driving down I-95 in New Jersey, it occasionally pinned me in a field adjacent to the highway, rather than on the road itself.

The Android Market for apps is fine enough, but it’s still lacking in surfacing key offerings, such as an official Facebook app. As the Android platform grows in popularity (and it will), this will become a non-issue.

The battery life on the myTouch 3G is much improved over the G1. It’s rated at 7 hours and 30 minutes of talk time and 420 hours standby, and I browsed and messaged and e-mailed on 3G for most of the day without a problem.


Currently, the T-Mobile myTouch 3G is the most versatile Android smartphone on the market. It’s fairly easy for people of all ages to use, and it can be configured to suit a person’s needs rather easily.

The little accessory touches that T-Mobile packages with the device make the purchase price ($199 with a two-year contract) a little easier to swallow.

The mytouch 3G is also a good choice for someone who wants iPhone-like features without buying into Apple’s product ecosystem.

With that said, the market for Android phones is about to expand dramatically, and the reign of the myTouch as the best Android phone out there will be short-lived. Motorola, Samsung and HTC have more Android-based handsets in the pipeline, and several (HTC’s Hero, on Sprint, and Motorola’s CLIQ, on T-Mobile) have shown themselves to be equal to or superior than the myTouch 3G.

Still, when those handsets arrive to market (October), they will command higher prices, and the myTouch 3G will likely be reduced in price. When that occurs, the myTouch 3G will still be able to reinforce its value as the easiest way to transition to a 3G smartphone — no whiz-bang required.

(Review By: Andrew Nusca, ZDNet)

Microsoft's New Tablet PC Pics!

Microsoft's Courier tablet revealed

Microsoft's new tablet PC pictures have been released, not much on features yet. We know for sure about a 3MP Camera w/ flash & a touch screen (obviously).
More coming soon.

(Pictures from

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Halo 3: ODST Contest is holding a contest where 20 lucky winners will receive a copy of Halo 3: ODST, and one lucky grand prize winner will receive a 60" Flat Screen LCD TV, XBox 360 Elite, and a copy of Halo 3: ODST. (Registration Required)

Gifting iPhone apps?

iTunes has previously allowed giving albums as a gift, rumors say they may be doing the same with all iPhone apps in the next update.
Let's wait and see

Get Windows 7 Free

Get Windows 7 Ultimate for free... by throwing a party

Dying to throw a party where everyone goes home alone? Microsoft's got you covered. Redmond's looking for Windows 7 fans to throw launch parties from October 22-29, and if you're chosen, you'll get a free "Signature Edition" of Windows 7 Ultimate, free party favors, and a chance to win a PC valued at $750. Sure, you'll have to suck up your pride and invite your friends to a party with a theme like "setting up with ease" or "family friendly fun," but if you're willing to throw a party where everyone is apparently supposed to sit around a laptop and then go out and buy something, well, we're guessing you don't have too much pride to begin with.


Monday, September 21, 2009


The changes have been made. Please comment and let us know how you like it.



Notice: The Computer Junkies blog will be undergoing maintenance, we apologize if the blog acts slow during our upgrading.


New iPod Touch 3g Features

Now that the rest of the world has stopped crying about the new iPod Touch not having a camera, there is some good news:

  • The third generation iPod Touch has a better screen. When you play videos or surf the Internet, you will notice that the colors are crisper and the screen doesn't wash out as much.
  • The 3rd gen iPod Touch has a faster processor, 50% faster than the previous 1st & 2nd generation processors to be exact.
  • iPod Touches are now cheaper, the 8gb model is only $199, 32gb is $299, and 64gb is $399. It seems that Apple has decided to drop the 16gb model. (I don't understand why, I personally would have dropped the 8gb model myself)
Not much in the new iPod Touch, but still an upgrade

Thursday, September 17, 2009

How to Make a Stylus for your iPod Touch

Here is how you can build a cheap, effective stylus for your iPod touch (Bonus: It won't scratch the screen!)

  • Pencil
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Electrical Tape
  • Something to shorten the pencil with (I used a grindstone)
What to do:

1: Shorten the pencil to about 5 1/2"
2: Wrap the entire pencil with aluminum foil (Make sure to cover the tapping end completely)
3: Wrap both ends with electrical tape (Make sure to completely cover the tapping end, so you won't scratch your screen)
4: Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Apple 3.1 iPod Touch Software

iPod Touch 3.1 software update is out!
iTunes 9 is out too!

Apple rock n' roll

Saturday, September 5, 2009


Jolicloud is a new Linux OS for your netbook. It is designed for social networking, media, and other. Find out more here:

I will post a review shortly

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