"3D TV: It's the glasses, stupid"
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CNET Tech Review
CNET Tech Review
3D TV: It's the glasses, stupid
>> Coming up on the CNET tech review our new show asks whether you'll tap that. The iPhone OS gets multitasking and we fixed some of the iPad's shortcomings. It's all coming up next in the CNET videos you can't afford to miss.
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Hey, everyone. I'm Molly Wood and welcome to the CNET Tech Review the show where we round up the biggest announcements, the best gadgets, and the new shows you don't want to miss. Let's get started with the good stuff this week. ^*First up, good news for app fans. And who isn't one? Brian Tong has a new show devoted to apps on all kinds of devices. And this week, he's taken on opening day.
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>> Hey, guys. Brian Tong here with CNET TV with our all new show that we like to call Tap That App . And we are sticking to that name. And what we want to do is showcase all the coolest and hottest applications in the mobile space. We'll be covering things from Android, the iPhone, the iPad here, as well as blackberry and pri [phonetic ] if we're able to find them. Now, it's the opening week of baseball. The iPad also just came out. There's a lot of applications that are basically ports, but we really wanted to showcase an application like MLB At Bat 2010. And this is really just a tip of the iceberg of some of the really awesome apps that we've seen coming out for this platform. So when I open up this launch page, you'll see here all the current games that are running for today. They'll be up here at the top. And then you'll see a layout of the current game that's happening. This is Baltimore versus Tampa Bay. And we have the pitch count. You can also pull up lineups here and see how everyone's doing. Click on a specific player to check out their player card and their stats. So this is all within the application. And if there's highlights available, you can click right here. It will start playing them. You can pump them up full screen. Watch that -- great catch! And then close it back down and then the highlight pops right back in that corner. Now, what really makes this app special is the fact that, with MLB At Bat, you'll also have the ability to stream the games on the iPad itself. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to jump over here, and we have a variety of games that are going on right now. You have a free game of the day. But if you want to watch every single game, you have to subscribe to MLB.TV, their service. But let's just go into the free game. So the game is now streaming live. It does stream over WiFi and 3G. What I love about this is, while the live stream is going on, you have access to the stats of the game that you can click, pop up. Here's the box score, and you'll see all the players. Again, if you want to see how a player's doing for this season, you'll pull up their player card. And this is all overlaid on top of the game. We haven't seen anything really like this, and this is specific to the iPad. Another thing that you can also do here is check out the lineups where players are positioned. It will give you a layout of the diamond, who's at bat, who's in the outfield. And, again, if I want to see a player card, I just click on it and it pops right up. And, also, if you want to see what other games are currently doing, click here on this games button. And over the top, you'll see an overlay of all the latest scores. So MLB At Bat 2010 enables you to stream live games over WiFi and 3G and interact with the stats while the game is going, all the box scores and player cards. The thing about this is that, if you really want to take full advantage of it, you probably want to get the MLB TV service, which ranges somewhere around $100. So the verdict on this app? Well, if you're not really a baseball fan or sports fan, you probably don't care about this. But we really wanted to show you what's already possible on the iPad. And if you love baseball, would you tap it? Oh, yes. You would. Now, remember, if you guys have any apps that you want to send to us to check out and showcase, send your emails to Tap That App at CNET.com. And if any of you are brand new iPad owners, you can watch this show and all of our other good stuff at CNET TV.com made specifically for the iPad. I'm Brian Tong. Thanks for watching. We'll catch you guys next week.
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>> In other good news this week, you've probably heard that the iPhone OS got a little facelift including multitasking and even folders. Check out our first look on that guy.
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>> Hi. I'm Kent German, senior editor here at CNET.com. Today we'll take a first look at iPhone OS 4.0. Now, this the brand new iPhone operating system update. Brings some very important features called -- like multitasking, folders, unified email box, a few things we've been waiting for for a long time. So we're very excited to see those. Now, we are showing you this on the iPhone 3GS. And the reason for that is because the biggest feature we're getting, multitasking, is not going to be available on the iPhone 3G. And it's particularly not on the original iPhone. You can get some of iPhone OS 4.0 benefits on those handsets, but this is the only phone where you'll get everything. But, first, let's talk about multitasking. This is something, yes, we've been waiting for for a long time. And multitasking, of course, is the ability to have multiple things open at once. You can have an app open, listen to music in the background, maybe browse the Web or you text or something like that. So the first thing you need to do is, if you are on the home screen, you just double tap the home button. That will bring up a bar down on the bottom, and it'll show you the current open apps. You can scroll right or left to get through them. Only shows four at a time. That's simply because the screen is only four apps wide. But you just choose what you want. And, then, if you press and hold -- and you remember you can do that to move things around on the main home screen -- you'll get a little icon that looks like a delete button. You can just press that and it will close the application for you. My other point that I've noticed is that, for instance, when I was going to the camera, I was taking photos, I was taking some screenshots. And then, when I closed out of the camera, I've noticed that it doesn't exactly end the camera. I do have to go to my multitasking. The camera is -- still looks like it's running. So I'm going to have to test that out as we -- as the update finally comes. But, as far as I can see, the experience is pretty user friendly. You can switch back and forth easily. You will be able to be on a call, maybe browse the Web, look for a restaurant. They did show that in the demo. That is a nice feature. And, like I said, you can listen to background music while you're using other things. Another feature we've really been waiting for was folders. And, of course, this is the ability to take multiple apps and put them in one space on the home screen. On the iPhone, what you do is you actually have to press and hold an icon. So you do this again when you want to move things around. The icons will start to jiggle. Take that icon, you drag it on top of another one. And then it'll create a folder. It's going to be a square icon with tiny icons of the included apps inside. So there in games, you'll get games, entertainment, whatever it might be. You can change that title if you want, but the default name is there just for your benefit. If you want to see what's inside a folder, you just press it. It'll appear on the bottom. You can then move them out if you like. Then -- or you can, of course, click the app if you want to open it. It is a nice way to just keep everything in one place. Next item is Game Center. And we can't really show you a lot about Game Center simply because it's not up and running. But what Game Center will allow you to do is allow you to social gaming. You can find your friends, play games with them. This does bring a different level of gaming to the iPhone, something we haven't seen yet. Camera zoom, yet another feature we've been waiting for for a while. This is a 5X camera zoom. Works pretty easily. You just tap on the screen and you can't -- and then you'll see a bar down below where you can just zoom in or zoom out. Again, it's nice to see Apple come on board with this and just add it in. Related to that is the tap to focus and video. This is something that the iPhone feature has brought. That is, when you're in the photo, you tap on the screen. You'll see a little blue box. That will actually focus the camera on that particular point. You can move it around too. You can put it wherever you want. You know, in the center; you can put it on the side. But that feature wasn't available in video before, so it is there now. So just another nice thing. It doesn't work perfectly but it is nice. Rotate photos, another minor feature. But you actually can go in into the menu now and just change that automatically. Spellcheck, of course, is just a great addition. So when you're typing a long email, especially something at work, you know, you want to spell everything correctly. You'll get that red underline on the word that's spelled incorrectly or at least isn't recognized that you see in other -- a lot of word processing applications. So that's a nice step. Web search suggestions, specifically Google. You'll find this in the Safari browser. Let's say I search for CNET and I've searched for it before, it will bring that up. But if I'm searching and if I type in CN, I'll get CNN; I'll get CNET; and I'll get everything that begins with that Google is suggesting. So that's a nice touch, as well. Home screen wallpapers, this allows you to actually change the wallpaper for the home screens. Now, one thing we've noticed is that, if you change the wallpaper on the home screen, you can't go back in and actually change it to that black background again if you want. Apple may definitely change that by the time it comes along. The last really important addition is a unified email box. So what that is, of course, you have multiple email accounts. You have a Yahoo account; you have a Gmail; you have work or whatever it might be. You can actually have them listed all in one box so you can go down and select the message you want. And somewhat related to the new email function is the ability to search inside your text message application. This is just for text messages. So it's a little curious that Apple is just adding that now. But, hey. We're going to welcome it. So those are the highlights of iPhone OS 4.0. When the update is released this summer, and hopefully when we have a new iPhone, we will check back with you to give them a full review and tell you exactly what we think. But, for right now, I'm Kent German, and this is a first look at iPhone OS 4.0.
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>> That's right. The good news, it's now a modern mobile phone OS. And speaking of mobile phones, Microsoft held its own big fancy event in San Francisco this week. And they've got two new phones out and they're both called KIN. I don't know.
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>> Today I want to introduce you to the newest member of the Windows phone family, KIN, a phone designed to navigate your social life. KIN keeps up with everything that's going on in your life. It gives you a unique and easy way to share what's going on in your world. And KIN comes in two flavors. We have the KIN One and the KIN Two.
>> Microsoft is trying to show that it's hip and cool. And one of the ways they did that is they're launching the KIN at a night club in San Francisco. So this really isn't Microsoft's iPhone competitor. That's Windows Phone 7, which is coming this fall. What this is is a set of the same technologies that are in Windows phone targeted to a specific audience, really the people that are texting and tweeting and uploading their Facebook all the time. This is a phone for them. And this is where Microsoft is trying to go. It's got a really good camera. ONE has a 5 megapixel. The other model has an 8 megapixel. The 8 megapixel one, the KIN Two also can shoot HD video. It's also the first phone that has Zune built in, so TV shows from Zune as well as the subscription music service.
>> So as friends are suggesting things to me, I can fire off a search, look for an album, brings it up. I can start playing it. I can start streaming it. I don't have to worry about gigabytes or storage cards. I have millions of songs in my pocket.
>> So this is the first time that Microsoft has taken the Zune and put it on a phone. It will also be on Windows phone 7, but this will be out sooner. The other piece is the companion Web services. So everything that you're doing on the phone, you can also look at and organize on the Web. That means you have a backup, but it also means you can see the photos that you've taken right there on your computer.
>> The KIN Studio is my phone online in any Web browser. I've got all my photos and videos. I've got all my messages and call history. I've got all the people I've been in touch with most recently. And I've even got things like the Loop.
>> There's two models. The KIN ONE, which is shorter and squatter. They're both slider touch screens. The slide down to reveal a keyboard in both cases. The KIN Two is longer and wider. That's the one with the bigger camera and can do HD video. So if you are part of "Generation Upload," as Microsoft's calling it, these phones will be available in May from Verizon and later around the world from Vodaphone. In San Francisco for CNET.com, I'm Ina Fried.
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>> Yeah, see. That one almost ended up in the bad because of the whole KIN and KIN Spot thing. KIN Spot? Oh, goodness. And while you try to find your KIN Spot, let's take a quick break. But we'll be right back to fix some iPad problems. No, really. It has some problems.
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>> What's up? Brian Tong here. And if you want the scoop for all the good and bad inside the Apple world, then the only thing you should be watching is CNET's Apple Byte. I'll give you the latest news, rumors, tips, apps of the week, and even call out the bad apples. So watch it all at CNET.com slash Apple Byte and I'll see you there.
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>> Okay. We're back and guess what? It is time for the bad. Now, lots of people are crazy for the iPad right now. But we all agree on a couple of downsides. It doesn't support Flash, and it doesn't have a camera. Well, here's Tom Merritt to solve those problems.
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>> You know, a big complaint about the iPad is the lack of support for Adobe Flash. This means many sites, especially video and gaming sites, aren't accessible in the included browser. Now, one way around that is using a VNC app. VNC stands for virtual network computing. It allows you to show and control one computer from another. So you can use a computer that does support Flash to show in a VNC app on the iPad. For my example, I'm using Desktop Connect. Currently it sells for 12 bucks in the iTunes App Store. Though there are cheaper VNC apps, this one works with a lot of platforms and is pretty easy to configure. If the computer is on the same network, Desktop Connect will find it and connect to it. Otherwise, you'll have to configure it manually. Once you're connected, you can navigate from within the iPad and pull up your Flash gaming site and run it on the iPad. Now, there is a bit of a lag and there's a limit on how close you can zoom. And the big downer: no audio. But if you just have to view something in Flash on the iPad and you have a computer you can VNC into, you can do it. That's it for this how to. I'm Tom Merritt, CNET.com.
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One major complaint about the iPad: no built in camera. But thanks to the enterprising Yusuke Sekikawa, those of you with iPhones can add a wireless camera to the iPad. Here's how. First, on the iPad, go to the App Store and search for the app camera A. It's 99 cents, so this whole thing has to be worth a buck to you. If it is, buy the app, download, and install it. Then, on your iPhone, search and download camera B. This app is free since it's sort of useless without the camera A on the iPad. Launch camera B on the iPhone; then launch camera A on the iPad. If all goes well, you should shortly see the view from the iPhone's camera show up on the iPad screen. Point the iPhone camera at what you want to photograph and then press the camera icon on the iPad to take the picture. If you don't get a connection, make sure Bluetooth is on both the iPad and the iPhone or make sure both devices are connected to the same WiFi network. Enjoy your new camera on the iPad. Sort of. I'm Tom Merritt, CNET.com.
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>> See? iPad fixed. Kind of cool, right? No, I know. It still needs Flash and a camera. Yeah. And, finally, it's time for the bottom line.
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3D TV -- is it hot or is it hype? Well, at our very first CNET Showcase, we put the TV makers in front of users and our CNET editors to see how 3D actually stacks up in person. Here's the wrap-up.
>> 3D TV. Next big thing or next big niche? Three parties have a say in that: the manufacturers of all this gear; the various experts and editors like ourselves here at CNET; and, most importantly, the users who either have to buy this stuff or walk right by it. Let's find out what all three constituencies have to say here at the first ever CNET Showcase on 3D.
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This select group of CNET users got the good, the bad, and the bottom line about 3D from our TV guru, David Katzmaier; Retrevo's director of content, Andrew Eisner; and CNET editor Rafe Needleman.
>> Is that why we're here? Is this the Avatar effect in action here? If it had not been for Avatar, would we be talking about something else today?
>> There's no discussion about one thing, however. Consumers have to be wowed before any of this stuff moves off shelves. And there are hurdles to that.
>> From my perspective, it looks great. So, you know, I think it's -- the big thing is going to come down to the glasses. You can imagine all the problems you're going to have with glasses. It's sitting is on the couch. Somebody sat on it. Somebody broke it. Somebody lost it. Somebody forgot to change the battery.
>> Major studios are very on board with 3D, so content will get a big push. Look first for the animated features, because they can readily be made into 3D. That's less the case for filmed productions. While content ramps up, so must consumer acceptance of the goggles.
>> Oh, I don't know. I mean, it's just hard for me to put on a pair of glasses.
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>> How do you feel you look with those on?
>> I look like a huge dork.
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>> And, what's more, the glasses are the one piece of 3D that isn't standardized yet. Without that standard, you currently need different glasses for different brands of 3D TVs.
>> We're using a very specific glass technology we think gives best results. But we do agree. Portability of glasses would be a great thing for the consumers. So everybody's working together. Hopefully we get to that point, but we're not there today.
>> Interestingly, TV makers don't really expect you to run out and junk your current HD TV just to get a 3D verdicts.
>> Consumers who just bought a TV, they're going to be thrilled with the TV they just bought. And when they go out to buy their next TV, one of the options they're going to consider is 3D TV. We don't think that this makes anything obsolete. What we think is it's part of the normal adoption process. A substantial number of consumers who go to retail this year to buy a TV are going to say, "Why would I buy a TV that won't be able to do 3D?" Because 3D is clearly coming.
>> That's good news for the majority of us who don't buy top end TVs but instead look for mature technology at a mature low price.
>> I think when people are going for new televisions they're going to ask, you know, is it worth it to future proof. And if the Delta's [phonetic] small enough -- it's 100 bucks, 50 bucks, 200 bucks -- maybe they'll say, you know what? I'm going to have this TV for ten years, so might as well get 3D. The question is, is the content there for it? Are they ever going to use that technology?
>> And don't thing this is just a TV thing. Companies like Nvidia and Acer were on hand at CNET Showcase with a total gaming focus that might actually be 3D's first big win.
>> I think that's the immersive experience. That's where, as they were saying on the panel, you want the event where you put on the glasses, you isolate yourself from the world, and you go deep into the game. For television where you just want to get some background content or something, it's kind of awkward to put the glasses on at all. But for movies, for big sporting events, sure. Why not.
>> All these vagaries aside, 3D has one ace in the hole in all forms. It does wow people.
>> For a first gen technology, there's definitely some issues. Don't get me wrong. But you get that immersive feel. You get that wow! You know, it's like this is different from anything I've seen before. And it really is, and that's what people see behind this. That's what people are reacting to is that 3D wow factor.
>> Just like at the surface, you know, the water service effect, when you feel like you can sort of reach into it and grab something, that's when it starts to me to cross the boundary of is this just kind of an effect or is this something that my brain starts taking as being more real.
>> All right. This 3D game is just beginning. If you're making your own score cards to spot a winner, here's what should be on it. Number one, killer content that everyone's talking about that looks great in 3D. Is it there or not much of it? Number two, goggles. Do we get over the fact that we feel weird wearing them and do they become standardized so mine work on your TV when I come over. And, number three, when does this technology come down from those sets you wish you could afford down to the price class that you and I actually buy. From the CNET Showcase, I'm Brian Cooley.
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>> Uh-huh. Nice pussyfoot. Bottom line on 3D TV? Don't call us. We'll call you. And that's our show for this week, everybody. See you next time, and thank you for watching.
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