Apple, evidently, has a lot of employees with drinking problems, and it keeps letting those employees take iPhone prototypes out of the building. Really? Wow, dudes. Also, T-Mobile tries to pump up its employees over the merger situation, you can finally legally play Doom in Germany, tablet makers try everything but the easy solution, and China is going to kill us all. Or give us $99 tablets, hard to say. And Buzz Out Loud is getting out of the daily deals business.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
Samsung announces the Galaxy Tab 7.7 and Note that blur the line between smartphone and tablet, George Lucas has made more changes to the original Star Wars trilogy for release on Blu-ray, and Apple loses yet another prototype iPhone at a bar.
Links from Thursday's episode of Loaded:Apple loses another prototype iPhone Samsung announces the Galaxy Tab 7.7 and Note Sony announces the S and P Tablets Skype works with any home phone Star Wars gets changes again Blogger gets a new look Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (HD) | RSS (MP3) |&… Read more
BERLIN--With its new Galaxy Note, Samsung is adding another size category to its already broad range of Android devices.
The company already had more conventionally sized Android smartphones with its Galaxy S line, larger tablets such as the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and 8.9, and intermediate ones such as the original 7-inch Galaxy Tab and the new Galaxy Tab 7.7. The Galaxy Note is basically a very large smartphone, though, with a 5.3-inch screen and Android 2.3, aka Gingerbread, which is designed for phones, not tablets.
BERLIN--Samsung, the most aggressive backer of Android tablets, announced the Galaxy Tab 7.7 today, a model that brings a dual-core processor and the company's Super AMOLED Plus display technology to the line.
Apple's iPad line still dominates the tablet market, but those using Google's Android operating system are trying hard to find a place. Samsung's announcement at the IFA electronics show here follows Sony's yesterday and more from other players, too.
The Galaxy Tab 7.7 display uses the company's active matrix organic light-emitting diode technology, which Samsung says will mean good contrast, brightness, and colors. The resolution--1,280x800 with a 7.7-inch diagonal--is a bit bigger than the original 7-inch Galaxy Tab that debuted a year ago with a 1,280x600 resolution. … Read more
If you're looking for the most lens in a small body, the new Samsung WB750 might do the trick. It offers an 18x f3.2-5.8 24-432mm zoom lens (35mm equivalent) in a camera that can squeeze in a pants pocket. Now, whether that's a good thing will come down to its photo quality.
To help with that, Samsung used a 12-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS sensor. Samsung says it's a proprietary sensor, but doesn't really mention what that brings to the table. It seems to do all of the things that other BSI CMOS sensors do, including … Read more
Flip-out and/or rotating screens are not new to digital cameras. However, they have disappeared from compacts for the most part, so for Samsung to slap one on an ultracompact point-and-shoot is a bit different. Of course, it would be more impressive if Casio hadn't done it with the Tryx earlier this year, but that's not important right now.
What's important is that for the MV800, Samsung took a 3-inch touch-screen LCD and put it on a hinge so that you can be in front of the camera for a self-portrait or have it above or below … Read more
Thanks to the rather sedate pace of sensor development by Micro Four Thirds-backers Olympus and Panasonic, for a while it looked like interchangeable-lens cameras (ILCs) would be refreshingly free of excessive megapixelation. But manufacturers using APS-C-size sensors seem determined to undermine every advantage the larger sensor confers by packing them with increasing numbers of photo sites. Sony's latest Alpha NEX model delivered its 24-megapixel sensor, and now Samsung offers up a 20-megapixel sensor in its new NX200. (What I find interesting is that the companies driving the increasing resolution are all camera companies who also make sensors--Canon, Sony, and Samsung.)
Thankfully, there's more to the NX200 than just a lot of pixels. I had a chance to shoot with a preproduction version, along with a bunch of the new lenses, and liked it quite a bit. For one, it's much better than the NX100; it's smaller, yet conversely more comfortable to grip, and more solidly built. Samsung has also redesigned its i-Function lenses, and the new 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 kit lens, while slow as all the other kit lenses, operates much more smoothly and feels better constructed than its predecessor's 20-50mm model. It's not nearly as compact, though, which puts it at a slight disadvantage compared with, say, Panasonic's new Lumix X series collapsible lens. (I forgot to take photos of the lenses. D'oh!)
For those unfamiliar with Samsung's i-Function system, it consists of a button on the lens, which invokes shooting settings, such as ISO sensitivity or shutter speed, which you then change using the manual-focus ring. The system works well, and it feels much like shooting with the Canon PowerShot S95 or Olympus XZ-1. It distinguishes the NX cameras from the other ILCs in a way that adds to the shooting experience rather than detracts from it.
If you choose to go the traditional route, Samsung introduces a new (for it) Smart Panel interactive control panel interface that you pull up with the function button. It's easy to use, but I found myself missing the type of customization control that Panasonic's cameras offer over the interface, as well as the capability to save custom settings. You can program a raw override (as well as which options appear on the i-Function ring), but that's just not as much as I'd like.
The camera supports manual exposure controls during movie recording, though I was unable to get that to work. This is usually an interface issue, and without the documentation I find a lot of these cameras to be not obvious in this respect.
As for image quality, I was pleasantly surprised. There were no significant artifacts that I could spot at low ISO sensitivities except for some muddiness in out-of-focus areas that you see a lot in point-and-shoots. And I'm guessing that for midrange sensitivities--ISO 400 through ISO 1600--it would probably gain some latitude by shooting raw (I didn't have any raw processing software) and possibly from some tweaks to the firmware before shipping. Beyond that, I don't think there's much chance for improvement; but that's typical for this class of camera.
In daylight, though, the color accuracy looked quite good, the metering and exposure were generally both consistent and appropriate, and the sensor handled bright, saturated colors without blowing out detail. I didn't get a chance to really analyze the dynamic range in general or play with the settings that affect it.… Read more
Samsung unveils the Galaxy S II and Epic 4G Touch smartphones, Google offers free calls to the U.S. for American soldiers through Gmail, and HP will bring back the TouchPad for one final, short production run.
Links from Wednesday's episode of Loaded:HP brings the TouchPad back Samsung new phones Motorola Pro+ Firefox on Android Honeycomb tablets CNN buys Zite Soldiers get free calls from Gmail Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (HD) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS HD
In addition to its new Series 7 laptops, Samsung is showing off a new Windows tablet, called the Series 7 Slate. We got a chance to play around with a demo unit earlier this week, and at a minimum, it at least includes some of the smarter ideas we've seen for Windows tablets (which may be faint praise, as the Win 7 tablet universe is filled with clunkers).
The 11.6-inch system we saw ran an Intel Core i5 CPU, but Samsung says Core i3 and even Pentium versions will be available. That Core i5 CPU is why we … Read more
Samsung today announced a new laptop line, adding the Series 7 to the existing Series 3 and Series 9 lines. We had a brief chance to get our hands on the 15-inch version (as well as a nonfunctioning mock-up of the 13-inch version), to see how they stack up against Samsung's other recent high-profile releases.
While the Series 9 laptops, available in 13-inch and 11-inch sizes, are very high-end machines originally priced at $1,699 and $1,199 respectively, and the Series 3 laptops are closer to budget prices (the 11.6-inch version exclusively at Staples is $699), the Series 7 falls somewhere in the middle, starting at $999.
Samsung reps brought a working 15-inch unit and a nonworking 14-inch unit over to us to check out, and the systems do indeed look and feel like a halfway point between the Series 9 and Series 3 systems. The aluminum bodies were sleek, cast in gunmetal gray, but not as fancy as the curved Series 9 chassis. At the same time, they looked and felt a lot more expensive than the Series 3, which has the feel of a budget-minded plastic ultraportable (but a very nicely designed version of one).
We especially liked how the 14-inch model was built into what would normally be closer to a 13-inch chassis, and the 15-inch model was also fairly slim and light for a midsize laptop. The lids of both models had thinner than usual bezels, which Samsung says is inspired by the company's nearly bezel-less plasma TVs, and the 1,600x900 screen on the 15-inch model was not only bright, but also had a matte finish, a feature we always appreciate. … Read more