Let me start with a disclaimer: I'm a console gamer. Always have been, since my friend down the street in Minneapolis got an Atari 2600 in 1979, and I trumped him a year later with Mattel's Intellivision. (Along with George Plimpton, we found Intellivision's Major League Baseball to be clearly superior to Atari's Home Run baseball. Intellivision baseball, hockey, and skiing were pretty much all I cared about in 1980.) Like Larry King with wives, there's long list of consoles that I traded in for newer models over the years: Intellivision to Intellivision 2, to … Read more
With HP's decision to release a slew of new laptops that offer a slick design and nice specs, it had me thinking: is this the new face of the notebook market? Are notebooks becoming commodities that can be differentiated only by design?
And if all of that is true, what will happen to brand loyalty? Is it another victim of this vicious battle?
I think it is.… Read more
There are a whole bunch of Blu-ray players being announced at CEDIA, but for the most part, there's not too much to differentiate them. Sharp's new Blu-ray player, the BD-HP20U, is its first-ever, but is still mostly the same as other players. Yet the company's press release claims that the BD-HP20U will load Blu-ray discs in 10 seconds. For those of you not used to the sluggish speeds of high-definition media, that's very fast--we're used to most high-definition players taking from 40 seconds to well over a minute to load discs.
Sharp BD-HP20U's key … Read more
The folks at HP seem to be riding high these days--passing archrival Dell as the No. 1 PC retailer, dodging some thorny legal issues, and even being one of TV madman Jim Cramer's favorite stock picks. The company is working its new mojo by unleashing a torrent of new products today, some of which were highlighted this evening at a press event in New York.
The biggest news was the first product to spring from the HP/Voodoo team-up, the HP Blackbird. This impressive-looking gaming PC sits on a single giant foot and includes pretty much every high-end component … Read more
HP announced the first product of its joint design efforts with Voodoo PC this evening. Our review of the HP Blackbird 002 is up, and it achieved the highest rating we've ever awarded a desktop. We'll let the review speak for itself, but we'll only add here that while we wrote about a custom configuration that won't be available until Oct. 1, you can buy a similar, fixed-configuration system today for $5,500 that looks like this:Overclocked Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6850 (2) Nvidia GeForce 8800 Ultra graphics cards Windows Vista Ultimate 2GB, 800MHz DDR2 … Read more
At an evening press event in New York, HP announced a much-needed new look for its business laptop line. With a silver finish, drop-hinge panel, and scooped-out keyboard, the new models look more modern than the boxy corporate HPs of yore, though they'll still blend in with traditional business environments. Inside the redesigned cases you'll find all the component options you'd expect from a business laptop: Intel Core 2 Duo processors, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, DVD burners with LightScribe, and HP's ProtectTools support software. The three new models announced today include the 14.1-inch HP Compaq 6520s (… Read more
Last year, HP introduced its HP iPaq rx5900 Travel Companion, a sleek gadget that combined the powers of a PDA and a portable navigation system into one solution. It was the first GPS device for the company, and based on user opinions, it was a pretty successful product. Now, HP has decided to embark on its first GPS-only venture with the new HP iPaq 310 Travel Companion. I got a sneak preview a couple of weeks ago, and I must say, I'm pretty impressed. Unlike the rx5900, which used TomTom software, HP created its own interface for the iPaq … Read more
Ha! And people thought the PDA was dead. Today, HP introduced two new models to its iPaq line of handhelds: the HP iPaq 110 Classic Handheld and HP iPaq 210 Enterprise Handheld. Now, in this day and age of smart phones, will this type of classic PDA fly? I say yes. There are still plenty of people who want one device for organizing their contacts and appointments while keeping their cell phone separate. And heck, since Dell exited the handheld market in April and there hasn't been a new PDA from Palm in years, HP fills that void. Both … Read more
In addition to several other mobile product announcements today, HP showed off two new smart phones, and they're not for the faint of heart.
First, there's the HP iPaq 610 Business Navigator, a quad-band mobile with support for HSDPA and assisted GPS with integrated Google Maps. The Windows Mobile 6 (Professional Edition) device is also equipped with Bluetooth 2.0, Wi-Fi (802.11b/g with WPA2 security), 256MB Flash ROM/128MB SDRAM, and a 3-megapixel camera. Like the previous HP iPaq 510 Voice Messenger, the iPaq 610 has more of a voice-centric focus and includes the same advanced … Read more
Printing has long been one of Hewlett-Packard's most reliable businesses, but recent moves show the company is trying to adapt to the very mobile and Web-centric world of documents.
The Palo Alto, Calif.-PC maker laid out its new plan to focus on the intersection of printing and the Web at an event last week in New York. After the glut of announcements regarding its new Printing 2.0 campaign, HP said Tuesday it has chosen someone to lead a new unit devoted to this effort.
David Murphy, 45, has been appointed senior vice president of the newly formed … Read more