AT&T has unveiled a new satellite phone that can provide phone reception in areas where there are no cell towers.
Available today, the TerreStar Genus is a dual-mode smartphone that uses AT&T's cellular service by default but kicks in with satellite reception as a backup in remote areas. The satellite service offers the standard mobile phone trio of voice, data, and messaging, so it can function as an overall smartphone.
Though the hybrid phone might be intriguing to AT&T subscribers unhappy with their cell service, the company is gearing this model more toward enterprise, government, and small business customers. Specifically, AT&T sees the TerreStar Genus as an option for people who work in government departments, utilities, and transportation companies, as well as members of public safety agencies and disaster recovery groups.
However, a story from PhoneScoop last year said that AT&T is working on a consumer version. And TerreStar's Web site does include a signup form if you want to be notified when a consumer version is available. An AT&T spokesperson told CNET that there are no details on a possible consumer version yet. But the company does believe the satellite service would be ideal for recreational boaters, outdoor enthusiasts, and rural users who want broader mobile communications coverage when it's made available to consumers in the future.
As a smartphone, the TerreStar Genus runs under Windows Mobile 6.5 and offers a touchscreen, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 2.0 megapixel camera, MicroSD card slot, and a full QWERTY keyboard.
There are a few issues, however, worth noting. Coverage is available only in the U.S., Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and territorial waters. The phone requires a clear line of sight to the satellite in the southern skies, so you can't be surrounded by trees or other tall obstructions.
The price tag?… Read more
Earlier this year we reviewed the Altec Lansing Octiv Mini iPhone-iPod speaker and praised its compact size and attractive minimalist styling. Now Octiv is expanding the line with the dual-dock Octiv Duo, which is nearly double the size of its smaller sibling and costs about twice as much--a still affordable $99.
As with the Octiv Mini, Altec keeps things simple. After all, why build in a bunch of extras like an LCD for the clock, an AM/FM radio, or fancy alarm systems when they're all basically redundant to the impressive built-in capabilities of the iPhone or iPod Touch? … Read more
The Sanyo Xacti VPC-GH4 is nearly identical to its predecessor, the GH2. In fact, the only differences seem to be that the sensor resolution has been lowered from 14 megapixels to 10 and that there is sharing software embedded in the camcorder now for easier uploading to the likes of Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.
Key features:Records video in MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 at up to 1080/60i (1,920x1,080 pixels)Captures 10-megapixel photos2.7-inch LCD5x optical zoomDigital image stabilization (photo and video)Compatible with SD, SDHC, or SDXC memory cardsMini-HDMI portRechargeable lithium-ion batterySize: 1.5x4.3x2.2 inches (… Read more
Spider-Man: Total Mayhem brings the famed comic-book web slinger to the touch screen with a high-action oriented game that's fun, though a bit mindless. The controls include a directional joypad on the left and buttons for jumping, attacking, and web skills on the right. You'll also be presented with extra buttons under specific circumstances, like when Spider-man uses his "Spidey sense" to get the jump on bad guys, for example. You also have a super move that can only be used once you fill up an action bar, dealing big damage using multiple hits and kicks. … Read more
Market-leading PC maker Hewlett-Packard has been making headlines this summer, but not necessarily for its hardware. That's about to change with this collection of new laptop hardware and related accessories, ranging from 10-inch Netbooks to massive 17-inch desktop replacements that play 3D content.
Mini 210 and Mini 5103 NetbooksThe Netbook scene hasn't seen a lot of upgraded hardware since the start of the 2010, but new Intel dual-core Atom N550 processors are a potential bright spot (we've already seen Netbooks such as the Asus Eee PC 1215N with the current D525 dual-core version). The Atom N550 will be available on the new HP Mini 210 as an upgrade option. Otherwise, the new HP Mini 210 remains similar to what we've seen previously.
Starting at $329, the 10-inch-screened Mini 210 comes in Atom N455, N475 or N550 versions, with optional HD-resolution screens, Broadcom Crystal HD Enhanced Video Accelerators, and GPS. New colors include charcoal, crimson red, lavender frost, luminous rose, and ocean drive. The new HP Mini 210s are immediately.
The higher-end HP Mini 5103 is the successor to the 5102, and shares its ProBook-like looks (both are technically part of HP's business laptop line, but still very popular with consumers). An Intel Atom N550 dual-core processor is the default, along with support for faster DDR3 RAM and 7,200 rpm hard drives.
A spill resistant, more durable keyboard, Espresso-color metal chassis, and optional Gobi broadband and GPS round out the features on this slightly more upscale 10.1-inch Netbook, which also starts a bit higher at $399. The Mini 5103 is available starting September 17.… Read more
Bigger than a standard 10-inch Netbook, but still less powerful and less expensive than even budget-minded midsize systems, 11.6-inch laptops sit somewhat awkwardly between categories. Some call them premium Netbooks, others tag them as ultraportable systems. In general, they're what you get when you take a standard 10-inch Netbook and make it a little bigger, a little more powerful, and a little more expensive.
The timing for the current explosion of 11.6-inch systems couldn't be better, as the Netbook genre was starting to feel a little dated. That's mostly the fault of Netbook manufacturers, who … Read more
BloodnGuns is a top-down, dual-stick arcade shooter with quick controls, a simple but fun set of power-ups and weapons, and an almost comically bloody backdrop.
The aptly named BloodnGuns has no back-story, but the quasi-apocalyptic setting has you running and gunning against huge hordes of skeletons and zombies--specifically, zombies wielding enormous Final Fantasy-style swords. Your weapons range from the nondescript but fantastic (e.g., fusion, plasma, and pulse rifles) to the mundane and weirdly specific (e.g., Benelli M4 shotguns and M4A1 carbines). The gameplay is as straightforward as the interface: a virtual joystick under your left thumb controls movement, … Read more