Fridges and microwaves are pretty much required for a college dorm room, just as they're necessary in an office environment or anywhere else that you need to eat but don't have space for a full kitchen. The MicroFridge Combination Appliance puts a small refrigerator--complete with a separate freezer space--together with a microwave in one appliance that will fit just about anywhere. The appliance even incorporates a charging station that will allow you to recharge electronic devices. The charging station actually helps the unit to be more energy efficient by making better use of the energy that any fridge … Read more
Mini USA announced today that it has developed, in partnership with Allstate Roadside Services, the first official roadside assistance app, dubbed Mini Road Assist for iPhone and Blackberry.
So the next time, you need a jump start, a flat tire changed, or an extra gallon of gasoline to get your Cooper home, you can just tap an icon on your iPhone or Blackberry and your personal info, the nature of assistance needed, and your current GPS location will automatically be beamed to Allstate Roadside Services' HQ and help will be dispatched, provided that you have a cellular data connection.
After downloading the app, Mini owners will supply their VIN, name, address, and other details to confirm ownership of a Mini vehicle. The system taps into the free roadside assistance that is available to all North American Mini owners as long as the vehicle remains under warranty. Mini owners who fall outside of the warranty safety circle due to expiration can still download the free app and use the roadside assistance for a fee set by the service provider.
Mini Roadside Assist is free to Mini owners and can be downloaded from Allstate Roadside Services.
Check out the video after the jump, which details the ins-and-outs of the app in greater detail.… Read more
Can we all agree on something? There's no longer a difference between a Netbook and a notebook. Thanks to Netbooks' move to more features and larger-size screens, the distinction between the two can now be considered little more than marketing speak.
We recently wrote about the fall's coming battle between Netbooks--a category now 2 years old--and thin and light notebooks with consumer ultra-low voltage (CULV) processors. In theory, the value of a Netbook--with its small keyboard, small screen, and lack of an optical drive--vs. an ultralight laptop with a long battery life and a full-size keyboard for roughly the same price was very low.
But now that we're actually seeing how PC makers are packaging and selling CULV notebooks (take Dell's recent introduction of its Inspiron 11z notebook) it's obvious: Netbooks are nothing more than smaller, cheaper notebooks.
The distinction made some sense early on. The first Netbooks were very small, around 7 or 8 inches, and were used for little more than getting online. They were marketed by smaller brands such as Asus and MSI as super portable, inexpensive notebooks that ran Linux, cutting out much of the cost tacked on with a Windows license. But they didn't really take off until Microsoft began offering Windows XP specifically for Netbooks, long after it was no longer available on new laptops and desktops.
The big PC makers, understandably, wanted a piece of the action too, but not at the expense of cannibalizing their budget-conscious traditional notebook lines. So Netbooks were sold as a "companion device." As in, if you keep some of your data "in the cloud" as with e-mail on Yahoo or Gmail or pictures on Facebook or Picasa, and you stream music on a service like Pandora or Last.fm, you can use your regular notebook at home and use something smaller on the road that still affords access to a lot of your stuff.… Read more
A new, slimmer PlayStation 3 wasn't the only news to come out of the Sony press conference at Gamescom in Germany Tuesday. There were also plenty of announcements about the PSP and PlayStation Network that weren't completely expected.
First, the PlayStation Network will get an overhaul beginning September 1. New features and a more logical navigation are among the updates. A "What's New" tab highlighting new PlayStation Store releases will also be accessible directly via the XMB (cross media bar).
We reviewed Western Digital's WD TV HD media player several months ago and generally liked what we saw. Now the company is back with a less expensive--and smaller version--that's called the WD TV Mini. The unit costs $99.99 and is allegedly available now.
Like its big brother, the Mini is designed to read a wide assortment of audio and video file formats from an external storage device, whether it be one of Western Digital's own external hard drives or just a simple thumb drive, and play it back on your TV.
The WD TV HD media … Read more
While much was made of Dell killing off its Mini 12 Netbook recently, one question raised was: what might fill that 11-to-12-inch void in the future? That question is answered, in part, with today's announcement of the Dell Inspiron 11z, an 11.6-inch thin-and-light weighing only 3 pounds. How thin? At its thickest point: 1.02 inches, according to Dell's specs. This is Dell's first real entry into thin-and-light, a category that's been gaining momentum recently (the Acer Aspire Timeline 3810T, MSI X340, and Lenovo IdeaPad U350 to name a few).
Inside, there's no Atom processor, but instead a single-core 1.2 GHz Intel ULV Celeron 723. Equipped with a three-cell battery, Dell promises long battery life in a chassis that's "24 percent smaller than 14-inch laptops" (but this is an 11.6-inch laptop, so how is that fair?). Unfortunately, that "long battery life" equates to 3 hours in the press release, but we'll remain optimistic. The keyboard is 92 percent standard-size, close to a regular laptop experience (although sometimes we've found that small differences in ergonomics can be disorienting). Like a Netbook and most thin-and-lights, the 11z has no optical drive.
One of the best features is the price: Dell's Web site lists the Inspiron 11z as $399, the same cost as a Netbook.
So, you might ask, why get this over a Netbook? For one, it runs Windows Vista SP1 Home Premium--while Windows 7 is just around the corner, this OS qualifies for a free upgrade. And the 11z also breaks through the XP Netbook barrier of RAM/hard drive space, with 2GB and 250GB respectively. Other notable features include HDMI-out and a 1.3-megapixel Webcam. The Inspiron 11z comes in Obsidian black with silver tones.
Full specs below, as well as more product shots after the break.… Read more
A caller wonders what happens to the Chevy Volt if you have the gas in there too long. Does the gas go bad? Well, it could get gummy. And nobody wants gummy gas. or gummi gas either. Not tasty. We also take the SEC conference to task for trying to ban Twitter and photos during their football games. Seriously? Also China got a Dell phone. But will they want it?Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1043
China Mobile introduced a new mobile platform Monday, and one of the presenting partners on hand has raised a few eyebrows.
Details of a Dell phone, reportedly called the Mini 3i, began to circulate on the Web almost immediately after being presented at the event, but Dell says it has not yet announced any smartphone for the China market.
"Dell was there supporting China Mobile as a development partner. We did not confirm or announce anything," said Dell spokesman Matt Parretta.
There was, however, a "proof of concept mobile device prototype" shown off at the event, … Read more
If you're a big fan of Diet Coke, Koolatron makes a fridge just for you. The Koolatron Diet Coke Fridge is painted and shaped to resemble a can of diet coke, right down to the tab on top. It is smaller than the average mini-fridge, offering enough room to chill eight 12-ounce cans or two 2-liter bottles, but as cool storage for drinks, it probably doesn't need to be any bigger. The Diet Coke Fridge measures 11 inches by 11 inches by 17 4/5 inches. It will easily fit under a desk or in other tight spots … Read more
Dell has partnered with Nickelodeon and Whyville.net to give life to its latest version of the Mini10v. According to Dell, the kids' Netbook has been designed with safe computing, education, and entertainment in mind. At a glance, Dell is only trying to reach another market (children), but if you look a little closer, the Netbook may represent a change in the way the next generation of preteens and children will learn to socialize and develop their decision-making skills.
The Netbook comes with desktop animations which link to Whyville.net, a virtual world where kids of all ages chat, shop, and visit places in town that engage them in science, nutrition, art, and business activities.
One of the most interesting locations is the cafeteria, where Whyvillians can pick a food item, view its nutritional facts, and select a meal based on an educated decision. If their character eats more fattening, high-calorie items, the cartoon character will see the effects as it becomes fatter and unhealthy. Likewise, if the character doesn't eat enough, he will become frail and sickly. A lack of vitamin C will cause scurvy sores, and a lack of calcium will cause weak bones and a bandaged head. As a result, the child may be advised that his Whyvillian should see the Whyville nutritionist.… Read more