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Archive for September, 2011

Second U.S. version of Galaxy S II due Oct. 2

September 22, 2011

AT&T's version of the Samsung Galaxy S II will be available Oct. 2 for $200 on contract, and at 0.35 inches is “the nation's thinnest 4G smartphone,” says the carrier. The HSPA+ handset runs Android 2.3 on a dual-core 1.2GHz Samsung Exynos processor, and offers a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, eight- and two-megapixel cameras, and a motion sensor that mutes calls when the phone is turned over.

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Linux-based home automation system adds tablet controller, Android app

September 21, 2011

Control4 announced a seven-inch tablet, meant for portable control of its Linux-based Control4 home automation, surveillance, and music-server system. In addition to the Control4 7″ Portable Touch Screen, the company also announced a “Control4 MyHome — Android” app.

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Adobe evades Flash limitations by taking to the AIR

September 21, 2011

Adobe announced Flash Player 11, touted as delivering “a new class of gaming and premium video experiences” via hardware-accelerated 3D graphics. Conceding that the browser-based Flash isn't supported on Apple's iOS or Windows 8's Metro-style interface, the company added that its AIR runtime will be — bringing support to more than 200 million smartphones and tablets by the end of this year.

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Asus Slider tablet ships, combining Android 3.2 with slide-out keyboard

September 21, 2011

Asus has begun shipping its Eee Pad Slider Android 3.2 tablet in the U.S. for $479 with 16GB storage and $579 with 32GB. The Slider is equipped with a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, 1GB RAM, 16GB flash, a 10.1-inch, 1280 x 800 display, dual cameras, and all the other standard Honeycomb features, but adds a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

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Will Windows 8 block Linux installs?

September 21, 2011

Windows 8's use of the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) allows for eight-second boot times, but it could potentially keep users from loading Linux on a Windows 8 PC, says a Red Hat developer. Meanwhile, Casio signed a patent agreement with Microsoft regarding the use of Linux in its products.

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HP lays off 500 at WebOS division — PC group next?

September 20, 2011

HP will lay off 500 WebOS workers this week as part of its discontinuation of its Touchpad tablet and Pre smartphones, suggesting that any potential sale of WebOS will not include a large staffing contingent. Meanwhile, the CyanogenMod modding project has made headway on its port of Android 2.3 to the TouchPad, adding 3D gaming and 720p video support.

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Nvidia unveils fifth ‘stealth’ core in Kal-El Tegra

September 20, 2011

Nvidia has revealed that its upcoming “Kal-El” processor will include a fifth, hitherto-secret CPU core. All cores are ARM Cortex A9-based, but the fifth “Companion core” runs only up to 500MHz, and is optimized for saving power when running background tasks, the company says.

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Core-powered panel PC’s safe in hazardous environments

September 20, 2011

GE Intelligent Platforms announced a panel PC designed to be used in hazardous environments, and capable of operating in temperatures from -4 to 140 deg. F. The Wolverine III has a sunlight-readable 15-inch screen with resistive touch capabilities, 4GB of soldered-on memory, non-incendive USB ports, and isolated serial ports, according to the company.

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HTC Rhyme phone wants to charm women

September 20, 2011

HTC announced an mid-range Android smartphone for Verizon Wireless that appears to be marketed at women. The “Rhyme” is equipped with a 1GHz processor, 768MB of RAM, 4GB of flash, five-megapixel and VGA cameras, plus accessories including a free docking station, headphones, and a “Charm” device that flashes a light to indicate an incoming call.

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Entry-level Overo module is just $99 in quantity

September 20, 2011

Gumstix announced a entry-level version of its Linux-ready Overo computer-on-module (COM) that sells for as little as $99 in quantity. The “Sand” includes a 600MHz Texas Instruments OMAP3503 processor, 256MB of RAM, and the same 2.3 x 0.2 inch format as the other Overos, but drops onboard flash storage.

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Google Wallet launches with Visa, AmEx, and Discover

September 20, 2011

Google Wallet has launched on time in New York and San Francisco, letting consumers pay via short-range NFC technology on Sprint's Samsung Nexus S 4G Android smartphone. In a surprising turn, Visa, American Express, and Discover have joined Citi and MasterCard as credit card partners in the venture.

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Google preps Honeycomb developers for ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’

September 20, 2011

Google provided some tips to help developers of Android 3.x (“Honeycomb”) tablet applications prepare for its upcoming “Ice Cream Sandwich” (ICS) build. Tips and techniques include how to block Honeycomb apps from being used on small screens, as well as optimizing the apps for ICS handsets by creatively using modular “fragments.”

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4.1-inch Android 2.3 phone debuts on Verizon’s 4G LTE for $100

September 19, 2011

On Sept. 22, Pantech will start selling an Android 2.3 smartphone on Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network for just $100, following rebate and two-year contract. The Pantech Breakout is equipped with a 1GHz processor, an 8GB microSD card, a 4.1-inch, 800 x 480 touchscreen, as well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 3.0, says Verizon.

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Industrial-focused Cortex-A8 SoCs offer CAN support, imaging subsystem

September 19, 2011

Texas Instruments (TI) announced three ARM Cortex-A8 system on chips (SoCs) featuring a camera imaging subsystem, a wide range of peripheral support including CAN-bus, and an optional evaluation board. Aimed at industrial applications, the Linux- and Android-ready AM387x triplets all feature 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 cores, while two of them offer video subsystems and the top-of-the-line AM3874 is endowed with a 3D accelerator.

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Low-vision eyewear runs Linux-compatible Unison 5.2 RTOS

September 19, 2011

RoweBots announced that its minimalist, Linux- and POSIX-compatible “Unison” real-time operating system (RTOS) powers eSight's Alivios Intelligent Eyewear. Currently in clinical trials, Alivios helps to improve vision in people with eye diseases such as macular degeneration, combining Unison OS 5.2, a Texas Instruments (TI) DaVinci processor, an HD video camera, and “near-to-eye” displays, says the company.

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