The 2008 Audi A8 L W12 rests in a premier echelon of cars that combines extreme luxury with exceptional driving performance; these cars make it difficult to decide whether you'd rather be reclining in the back seat while a chauffeur drives, or up there where the action is, with your hands on the wheel. The back seats tempt with a DVD-entertainment system, power adjustment, and a refrigerator. The driver's seat offers control over the 6-liter 12-cylinder engine and superb all-wheel-drive handling for such a large car. All seats get treated to stellar sound from the Bang & Olufsen … Read more
I admit it; I've been in denial about my cell phone habit.
I'm a multitasker on the phone and I tend to make calls when I'm in transit. Why not get some of those calls I have to make out of the way while I'm walking or driving? (I really do try to not use the phone while on the bus so as not to annoy other passengers, but sometimes it just can't be avoided.)
Of course, I've known for months that I was going to have to curb the habit while driving because … Read more
With many states recently passing laws requiring the use of hands-free cell phone devices while driving, we're seeing a flood of new Bluetooth gadgets into what is already a pretty crowded market.
The Funkwerk Ego Cup is one such device, promising clear calls without fear of a citation. It stands apart from similar devices by mounting in a cup holder, which can be a blessing or a curse.
The numbers are in for Bluetooth headset sales in California, and the retail hype around the new hands-free-driving law seems to have paid off. The law boosted device sales to four times the national average, according to a report by retail market researcher The NPD Group.
NPD said California's four largest markets--San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles, and San Diego--saw a major Bluetooth boost in the months before the law went into effect effect July 1.
In March, San Francisco sold two times more Bluetooth headsets than the national average. By May that number had risen to four times the … Read more
Sony Ericsson dropped a load of accessories to go with its new W902, W595, and W302 announced yesterday. The new products range from stereo wireless speakers to wired noise-canceling headsets. We give you the details below--or check Sony Ericsson's Web site for more specs. The accessories won't be available in most markets until the end of this year.
The MPS-100 portable speakers are an update to Sony Ericsson's earlier MPS-60 and MPS-70 speakers. Though they use a wired connection to your Walkman handset, the MPS-100 speakers have an appealing, compact design. They weigh just 4.8 ounces … Read more
Cowon has released photos and specs of a new portable video player dubbed the P5. As a successor to their Q5W mega-gadget released last year, the P5 adds a few new tricks to the Q5W's features and wraps it all up in a less intimidating design.
Offered in silver, red, and black, the Cowon P5 includes a 5-inch touch screen with a 800x480 resolution and a new haptic feedback feature. In the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink tradition of the Q5W, the Cowon P5 includes stereo Bluetooth, FM radio, TV-output (component, composite, and S-Video), stereo speakers, USB and USB-host ports. Noticeably missing from … Read more
NEW YORK--Using a laptop, cell phone headset, building access badge, credit cards, or even a passport can make you a walking target for data thieves and other criminals, a security expert warned at the Last HOPE hacker conference here late Friday.
In a frightening but entertaining session entitled "How do I Pwn Thee? Let me Count the Ways" (pwn is hacker speak for "own" or control), a hacker who goes by the alias "RenderMan" explained how most people are at risk and don't even know it.
By now most people probably know they … Read more
At first, I thought California's new hands-free calling law was a great idea. Though it's debatable whether cell phones in the car can ever be safe, I took a lot of comfort in knowing that holding your phone to your ear while driving was now illegal. True, there's no guarantee that both hands will now be on the steering wheel, but I thought my chances of being run down by a yakking driver were just a bit smaller.
But, only a few days after the law went into effect I realized that it had one unfortunate consequence: … Read more
Although Honda claims a major update for its 2008 Honda Odyssey minivan, the results look to us like a minor face-lift, with just a little work around the eyes and mouth but the same old body. The front of the car exhibits some modern touches around the headlights and grille, but the bulk of the car looks at home in the '90s. For the real updates, we have to look in the cabin electronics and under the hood. This new Odyssey gets Honda's Bluetooth hands-free cell phone system and a new rear-seat DVD screen. Likewise, the engine gets added … Read more
It's the rare notebook that doesn't have Wi-Fi, but not all models offer Bluetooth. Though not a critical feature, the short-range wireless technology is handy to have for things like cordless mice and cell-phone tethering (i.e., using your phone as a modem). Meritline has a teeny-tiny USB-powered Bluetooth adapter on sale for just $7.99 shipped.
What I love about this thing is that it's so teeny-tiny: Just a rounded little nub. You can leave it plugged into a USB port and barely know it's there. This is a Bluetooth 1.2-compliant adapter with a … Read more