Personal computing, consumer electronics and technology columnist and travel writer: www.newyorkbob.com The Paper PC: www.paperpc.com Twitter: @newyorkbob
- Brooklyn, NY
Apple finally joins the big-phone party with the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus and the 4.7-inch iPhone 6. To sweeten the pot, Apple also rolls out its Apple Watch smartwatches. CLICK THE PIC to read my coverage in the @New York Daily News #iPhone6 #AppleWatch
The @Samsung Mobile US Galaxy Note Edge offers an innovative new feature: a display that wraps around its right edge that acts sort of like a Times Square news 'zipper' even when the device is closed. CLICK THE PIC to read my story in the @New York Daily News. #TheNextBigThing
Sharp AQUOS Crystal: A high-end Android smartphone at low-end pricing? That’s what Sprint hopes to offer with the new @Sharp AQUOS unit, which has a bright 5-inch display, a front-facing 1.2MP camera set on the bottom instead of the top and an extra mic on the back to help it detect and cancel out unwanted noises. The unit will be $10 a month with a Sprint service plan or $150 with Virgin Mobile USA or Boost Mobile prepaid service. For more, read the Aug. 23 edition of the @New York Daily News.
World’s first levitating Bluetooth speaker? That’s what the OM/ONE hopes to be with a little help from some crowdfunding. The baseball-size wireless speaker from Om Audio LLC magnetically floats an inch above its base. The 1.3-pound orb ($179 for early backers) has a 75mm driver, a microphone, a 15-hour battery and can be used as a speakerphone. The OM/ONE can also be used as a portable speaker without the base and two units can be paired into a stereo speaker system.
If you sat in one of these wooden seats at Boston's Fenway Park in 1934, guess what? Your seat's still here--along with about 12,000 other wooden gems. What they lack in knee room they make up for with charm. @Boston Red Sox @Boston USA #nabj14 @NABJ Headquarters Photo © Copyright 2014 Robert S. Anthony, Stadium Circle Features
There are many ways to miss a flight, but a dead cell phone shouldn't be one of them. Unfortunately, new TSA security regulations for some foreign airports require that cell phones and other electronic devices be turned on while going through security. The solution? Travel with an external battery–one that connects with your phone or tablet via a standard USB cable. CLICK THE PIC to read more at The Paper PC.
The JunoJUMPR power brick from @JunoPower is no larger than a smartphone, but has enough muscle to start a car. The $100 unit packs a 6,000mAh lithium polymer battery into a seven-ounce package which can deliver a peak output of 12 volts at 300 amps. That’s enough to wake up four- and six-cylinder cars, but not V8s or trucks. The JunoJUMPR can also charge smartphones or tablets via a less potent 2.1-amp USB port. Seen at Max Borges Agency Holiday Tech Showcase in NYC. #MBATechTheHalls
The bem wireless Speaker Band lets you channel your inner Dick Tracy and answer phone calls from your wrist or simply stream music. The $50 unit, which can call out the Caller ID of an incoming call, links wirelessly to most Bluetooth-enabled smartphones or tablets. The Speaker Band, available in black, white, red, green, gray or light blue, has a six-hour battery which charges via a micro USB port. Seen at Max Borges Agency Holiday Tech Showcase for the media in New York. #MBATechTheHalls
The winner and new tablet champion: The Samsung Galaxy Tab S? It’s definitely a contender with its Super AMOLED display—the first for a consumer tablet. Unlike an LCD pixel, which creates colors by filtering light from a white backlight, AMOLED pixels emit light themselves, thus allowing for richer colors. The @Samsung Mobile US Galaxy Tab S is thinner than an Apple iPad Air and its 2,560-by-1,600-pixel display is also sharper. The new 8.4- ($400) and 10.5-inch ($500) units can be preordered now.
Vizio’s new M-Series of premium Smart LCD HDTVs feature Wi-Fi, apps and full-array LED rear backlighting, which illuminates the screen more evenly than edge lighting. The @VIZIO TVs can selectively dim any of 36 backlighting zones to improve contrast and black levels. Combined with Active Pixel Tuning, which can increase the brightness of individual pixels, the Vizio units can render shadow detail and color better than older models. Units range from 32 ($330) to 80 ($3,200) inches.
Psst! Want a Samsung NX30 SMART Camera? Well you're too late to come to Times Square, where @Samsung Camera let the first 250 in line at its June 4 Ditch the DSLR event trade in their qualifying DSLRs for a new NX30. The lightweight 20.3 megapixel camera has shutter speeds down to 1/8000 second, a bright, swiveling touchscreen and a tilting viewfinder. It can zap your photos to your phone or tablet via Wi-Fi or with one tap via NFC (near field communication). $1,000 #DITCHtheDSLR #NYC
Is that a Wocket in your pocket? The Wocket electronic wallet lets you save all of your credit and debit cards in the unit’s encrypted memory and use a single reprogrammable card to replace them all. Select a card on the unit’s screen and it programs the data onto the card. The electronic card, which can be used like any conventional card, has an LED which displays the last four digits of the selected card and is erased shortly after use. The $150 Wocket can be preordered now.
Two plus four equals LG G3. The LG G3 Android smartphone has an ultra-sharp 5.5-inch Quad HD IPS display with four times the pixels (538 ppi) than an HD screen plus two LED flash guns for its 13MP camera. The @LG USA G3 has no side buttons—just a multifunction button on the rear—and a laser focusing system that snaps images into focus in less time than it takes your eye to blink. The unit, unveiled today (May 27) also has a tap-to-unlock feature, a kill switch and can be charged wirelessly.
It’s a trap! Activision’s new Skylanders Trap Team lets players capture villain characters and turn them—with all malevolent powers intact—into playable good guys. Skylanders video games use real toy characters which get absorbed into the game when placed on an electronic pad. Villains are trapped in “Traptanium” crystals which can be removed until needed. Trap Team (order now, ready Oct. 5) supports Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Xbox One and Nintendo’s PlayStation 3, 4, Wii, Wii U and 3DS.
Electric "antique" cars for NYC’s Central Park? Hold your horses! But that's what NYCLASS hopes the city will do as it showed off a prototype eight-passenger electric “horseless carriage” at the New York International Auto Show. NYCLASS hopes the car, built by Dania, Florida-based The Creative Workshop, will replace the city’s horse-drawn carriages. It resembles an early-1900s-era Cadillac, but runs on lithium iron phosphate batteries. Its 84-*ahem*-horsepower engine last six hours. @New York International Auto Show
HTC stirred up the smartphone wars Tuesday with the launch of the metal-bodied HTC One M8 in New York. The unit has a 5-inch, 1,080p display, a micro SD memory card slot and two potent front stereo speakers. One of two rear cameras tracks depth, which lets you create images where one element is sharper than the rest. The clever @HTC Mobile Dot View case lets you see incoming calls and other notifications without opening it. The HTC One M8 ($200 with plan) is on sale now from multiple carriers.
Samsung used the curvy confines of New York’s Guggenheim Museum to launch its new curved UHD (ultra-high definition) TVs. The 55-inch ($4,000) and 65-inch ($5,000) Samsung HU9000 series curved UHDTVs go on sale this month while an $8,000 78-inch model will debut in May. A yet-unpriced 105-inch curved UHD TV is planned for later this year. All of the curved UHD TVs can upscale old videos into the sharper UHD format and all have smartphone-like quad-core processors for the many apps they can run.
The Nyne Cruiser Bluetooth wireless stereo speaker masquerades as a colorful toy, but is a potent music blaster. The $80 unit has a noise-canceling microphone and a phone answer/end button, making it useful as a traveling speakerphone. It comes with a soft case, a handlebar mount for baby strollers and bicycles and supports NFC (near field communication), which means you can link it with your smartphone with one tap. The @NYNE Multimedia Cruiser was shown at the Luxury Technology Show in NYC.
When is an Android smartwatch not an Android smartwatch? When it's from @Android Watches, a Florida luxury watch company founded in 1991—long before Google rolled out its Android mobile software in 2007. The Android Smartwatch GTS, shown at the Luxury Technology Show in New York, doesn’t run Android (it uses proprietary software) but can connect wirelessly to Android and iOS smartphones. It has a handful of built-in apps and can be used Dick Tracy-style as a Bluetooth speakerphone. $199
The @ReSound LiNX, billed as the world’s smartest hearing aid, is the first with Bluetooth Smart low-power wireless technology. It can stream phone calls and music in full stereo from an Apple iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. An app lets you control volume, treble/bass and tweak its Surround Sound audio processing technology to fit the setting, like a restaurant. If you lose the LiNX, the app can find it--a map shows the last known location. The $2,500-$3,500 unit is sold only by audiologists.
If you like to sing in the shower, the Kohler Moxie Showerhead and Wireless Speaker can minimize the torture to your family by drowning you out with music streamed from your smartphone. The water-resistant speaker, showcased at an @Amazon.com summer products press preview in New York, clings magnetically to the 2.5 gpm showerhead or can be used as a portable speaker. The @Kohler Co. speaker links with any Bluetooth-enabled smartphone or tablet, which can stay dry up to 32 feet away. $199
Crayola Virtual Design Pro: From idea to animated 3D fashionware. The Fashion Collection lets users design and color clothing on paper templates, scan their creations into an iPad or Android tablet and within a few clicks have their wares strutted by a cyber model. The Car Collection lets users tweak race cars and have them burn virtual rubber. The $40 @Crayola collections, which include dozens of colored pens and markers, were previewed at the 2014 American International Toy Fair in New York.
Did you miss Monday's New York Daily News? Not to worry. My 2014 International CES preview is now on the paper's website. A handful of new products, like Sony's clever MicroVault 2-in-1 flash drive, which has a PC-friendly USB 2.0 plug on one end, a phone-friendly micro USB plug on the other and 8GB ($20), 16GB ($30) or 32GB ($63) of storage in the middle, are rounded up in the article. #CES2014
A $100 Android smartwatch? E-Fun unveiled its colorful NextONE Smartwatch at the 2014 International CES in Las Vegas. The NextONE, which comes in multiple colors and has a 1.5-inch touchscreen, comes with a handful of built-in apps, including a calendar, voice recorder and calculator. Apple iPhone users take heart: Even though the NextONE runs Android 4.1, it will work with both iOS and Android smartphones via Bluetooth. It also has a microphone for Dick Tracy-like voice commands. #CES2014