Credit for today's 404 Podcast show goes to the random madman in The 404 Live chat room this morning, who popped in only to shout "COLLEGE IS EXPENSIVE" before getting booted for using all caps. See you tomorrow, phantom screamer! Today's episode of The 404 takes a closer look at Blackberry's new Torch smartphone, Facebook's ethnicity trend study, regional gadget trends, and why it's never a good idea to sing John Denver at karaoke.
BlackBerry fans have much to be happy about when it comes to the new BlackBerry Torch, but few applauded Research In Motion for choosing AT&T as the exclusive U.S. carrier for the new phone.
Almost immediately during the live blog of the news on CNET's Web site, readers posting comments at the bottom of the story expressed their disapproval.
"Wonderful," said one commenter. "Another good looking, capable phone available only on AT&T's already over taxed network."
"Yet another hardware vendor goes exclusive with AT&T--what the heck?!?!&… Read more
Even before the great unveiling, some were already calling the Torch RIM's "iPhone killer" and though we'd rather never hear that term again, we were certainly interested in seeing what RIM had to offer. After all, the BlackBerry OS 6 preview videos were intriguing enough.
Well, we got a chance to spend some time with the Torch after the press conference, and found some things … Read more
On today's show, Verizon tries to claim the Motorola Droid doesn't have the hardware to support hotspot tethering with Froyo. And here's the thing: that's a lie. In other news, the BlackBerry Torch hits, Rdio lands, and the FBI is cracking down on coloring books. Or something. I'm a tiny bit incoherent today.Subscribe: iTunes (MP3) | iTunes (320x180) | iTunes (640x360) | RSS (MP3) | RSS (320x180) | RSS (640x360)… Read more
You're a fool for this one, TerrorByte. Get on Twitter right now and add Jeff Bakalar (me and Wilson, too!) because his nerdcore alter-ego is "kickin' fresh jams in versions alpha or beta, don't get it twisted or he'll corrupt your data." In honor of his forthcoming album, "8-Bit State of Mind," we're asking YOU to come up with your best techy rap lyric and e-mail it to us at the404(at)cnet(dot)com. If it's even moderately as clever as Jeff's, we'll read it on the air!… Read more
Research In Motion on Tuesday introduced the BlackBerry Torch, a touch-screen and sliding-keyboard device that will be the first to feature the sixth version of the company's phone software.
The phone, which goes on sale August 12 will be an AT&T exclusive. New or otherwise upgrade-eligible customers will be able to get it for $199 with a two-year contract. There's no word yet on whether it's available without a contract, and, if so, how much it will cost without a contract.
The marquee feature of the device, besides the touch screen and QWERTY combination (which … Read more
Rejoice, it's time for another umbrella blog post. This time, it's the EasyWalk Umbrella Torch, a foldable brolly with an attached flashlight. A single LED at the base of the handle is there to illuminate the ground you step on. This will help prevent you from tripping over a step, or more importantly, warn you of puddles in case you ruin your Jimmy Choos.
This umbrella-flashlight combo is available from Australian online store Latest Buy for $37.95.
I'm a big fan of flashlights. This is not a secret as I've written about a lot of them--from one that hugs you, to one that can stick to anything, to one that doesn't contribute to the greenhouse effect.
Earlier this week, however, I ran into a torch that instantly became my most favorite: the Rogue 2 from Icon.
Unlike other flashlights I've written about that come in unusual shapes, the Rogue sports the same tube shape as most traditional flashlights. But that's the only thing traditional about it.
First of all, according to Icon, the Rogue 2 is equipped with a microprocessor-controlled LED that produces an intense yet smooth beam. I don't know about smooth, but when I tried it out it was indeed intense, possibly the brightest I've seen among flashlights that use two AA batteries.
Fortunately, the Rogue 2 comes in two modes, one that shines at 100 lumens and the second at only 10 lumens, low enough not to hurt the eyes. You can toggle between these two modes and the off state with the tail-cap switch. It's too bad, however, that it doesn't have a third mode that shines at 50 lumens, which is as bright as most AA battery-based flashlights.
The second impressive thing about the Rogue 2 is its body, which is made out of super durable aerospace-grade aluminum with an open architecture design. The new design creates openings along the flashlight's body to offer a better grip, even when your hand is wet or oily. According to Icon, this also makes the torch virtually indestructible. You can drop it or even strike it into the wall or let it get run over by a truck and it will supposedly still work. … Read more