Loaded: It's not HBO. It's the Internet.Gmail goes offline, British Airways lets passengers use their cell phones in the air, and a consortium of movie studios plans to launch an online rival to HBO.
>> Gmail goes offline, British Airways lets fliers use their cell phones and it's not the Internet, it's HBO. It's Wednesday, January 28, I'm Natali Del Conte and it's time to get Loaded. ^M00:00:11 [ Music ] ^M00:00:16 >> Gmail is finally getting offline functionality. This is something I have been waiting for. It's nice that you can use gears to work on Docs offline, but e-mail is the one thing that I really want to catch up on when there's no connectivity. This feature is in beta and it let's you read, write and search your Gmail when you're not connected to the Internet. It will be available to users in the US and UK over the next few days. I tried to activate mine last night and it hadn't been offered to me just yet, but I will keep checking back. To turn it on go to the settings menu and find the Labs tab then click Enable in the offline mail option. Verizon Wireless is offering Femtocell for your home. The company is the second to get onboard offering Femtocell technology after Sprint Nextel. The device access the many cellular tower boosting cell phone reception and coverage capacity within 5,000 square feet. Sprint's offering cost $100 with the $5 monthly fee and Verizon's plan is more than double that at $250, but without a monthly fee. So if you're already a Verizon customer and you plan on using this for years to come you know what to do. AT&T is currently testing Femtocell though, so we can hope for a better offering from them sometime soon. We could see the next generation of Amazon Kindle as early as next week. Amazon is holding a press conference on Monday and speculation is that it's time for a new Kindle. What else would they have to tell us after all. There have been leaked images of the new device floating around the Internet for some time. It looks like it may have a bigger screen, a smaller page turner and more bubbly keys. I'm a pretty avid user of the Kindle and I would like a few things, a touch screen to swipe for page turning because the Kindle takes too long to advance itself, a backlight, a native document reader, perhaps a browser and I want it to just look cooler. I hate that egg shell color. I mean, what is this 1998? If you're an iPhone user you should upgrade your firmware today. iPhone 2.2.1 came out on Tuesday and it is supposed to improve the stability of Safari and fix some issues with images that are saved from mail to your camera roll. I didn't have any issues like that, but okay. You may not need medical insurance if you have a Wii. That's because Nintendo is planning a Wii channel that will act like a medical advice nurse. The channel will involve 2-way communication with medical experts and integrate the Wii Fit board to calculate weight and other bodily statistics. As far as we know, it will only launch in Japan in April, but likely will come overseas afterwards. And of course I'm not really advocating that you use this instead of medical insurance. In fact, please don't do that. If ever there was a reason to switch to HD here it is. On February 15, America's oldest running show will get a brand new makeover. The 20th season of the Simpsons will debut with all your favorite characters in high-def. I'm hoping that will look similar to the video quality of the Simpsons Movie. This comes just days after South Park announced that it will make the switch to HD when their season kicks off on March 11. So whether it's cartoons or reality, people do want themselves an HD. Sprint customers can get exclusive Super Bowl coverage on their mobile device this weekend. The company isn't going so far as to actually stream the game, but they're offering loads of exclusive NFL content including recaps for both team's seasons, roasters, statistics, analysis from NFL personalities, press conferences, breaking news and player interviews. There will also be highlights from past Super Bowls. For more information visit sprint.com/nfl. Verizon is adding shows from ABC and Disney to its V-Cast programming. Just a few weeks ago the mobile carrier started offering CBS programs. Now they're adding full length episodes of ABC and Disney shows such as Lost, Ugly Betty and Hannah Montana. Each episode will be available the day after it airs on network TV. This is one thing that I do not want, the person next to me on a flight jabbing away on their cell phone. If you wouldn't want that either maybe don't fly British Airways because the airline is going to start allowing Business Class customers flying to New York to use their cell phones while in the air. To be clear the prevision will only allow for use of data services, not voice calls, but that could just be one step away. Emirates Airlines has been allowing both for almost a year now. We don't know how much the in-flight data service will be, but I'm guessing it will be just as pricy as the calls you used to be able to make from those phones that were built under the seats. According to comScore, an Internet statistics company, the number of Internet users has surpassed 1 billion for the first time starting in December of 2008. Global recession not withstanding, a growing number of people are now joining the web. So where they are all located? 41% or more than 400 million users come from the Asia Pacific region. Europe comes in a distant second with 28% and North America, the birthplace of the Internet comes in at 18.4%. However, broken down by country, China is the number one place for net users with 179 million users, while the US is close behind in second place. So what's the most popular site on the net? No surprise there, it's Google. This news more than anything emphasizes the truly international scale of the web. My prediction is that we're going to see a lot less English on the net, so better brush up on your Chinese. Would you subscribe to something like HBO if you could get it over the Internet? Something like this is in the works. MGM, Paramount, and Lions Gate are working together to develop a website that will provide on demand movies online in addition to on TV. In fact the website is set to launch months before the premium channel. It could happen as early as May. The channel would offer over 15,000 movies from the three studios in addition to live concerts and original programming. According to the Wall Street Journal this network was formed after the studios failed to create something similar with Showtime, which incidentally is owned by our parent company CBS. New.com points outs that the new channel doesn't have any distribution deals with cable or satellite providers yet. It also doesn't have a name, but we'll watch closely and let you know when it does. Those are all your headlines for today, but I will be back tomorrow with more. Thank you for watching. I'm Natali Del Conte with CNET TV and you've just been Loaded. ^M00:06:16 [ Music ]