Apple iPhone Rumor Roundup

The rumors are flying, thicker than ever: will there be an actual Apple iPhone?The current round of rumors started with an Australian report citing executives from BenQ and several financial firms as saying that some Taiwanese manufacturers were competing to build the device. That was followed by a virtual scrum of analysts falling all over each other to predict Apple’s move: first a VisionGain analyst saying the iPhone would appear on new wireless carrier Helio (via MobileTracker) and then a somewhat confused report on our own from Rethink Research, predicting that Apple will work with Intel, an Asian manufacturer, and existing carriers to build the phone.I want to see an iPhone as badly as everyone else, and not just because I sit near “MacBook Pro” Cisco Cheng, “Intel Core Duo” Joel Santo Domingo and “iPod Hi-Fi” Mike Kobrin.


Phones generally have hideous interfaces for anything beyond basic voice calling, and the market could do with a big dose of that old Apple magic for making things intuitive and easy-to-use. An Appl-ization trend on mobile phone interfaces, if it bleeds over to other manufacturers, could really be a shot in the arm for high-end data services that right now only geeks bother to learn how to use.It wouldn’t take innovative new features for an iPhone to be a hit. It would just take unlocking the features high-end phones now have, through an attractive, easy-to-use interface that always works.I have no idea whether Apple will actually release a phone — their smoke is opaque to me — but I doubt they’ll do it at next week’s CTIA trade show.

I also think they’ll have to establish their own virtual carrier, or MVNO, like ESPN Mobile. (For global markets, the phone would probably be GSM, so Cingular and T-Mobile subscribers would be able to use it with their existing SIM cards.) The Motorola ROKR debacle shows that Apple doesn’t play well with others: that phone was held up for a year in bickering between Motorola, Apple and Cingular, and ended up looking like the product of too many hideous compromises. Apple’s strategy has always been to deliver a complete experience, and I don’t see why they’d settle for anything less with the iPhone.

The Kookiest Alarm Clocks I’ve Ever Seen

I LOVE CLOCKS. I think that’s why sent me their collection of the Top 5 Weirdest Alarm Clocks. To tell you the truth, these clocks aren’t just weird–they’re odd. Very odd.5.)

I hate having to get up to turn off an alarm clock. But if that’s the only way you can wake up, the Sfera Alarm Clock is probably a good idea. It is a radio alarm clock which hangs above your bed. When you set the alarm, the light on the Sfera gradually dims and the music fades as you drift off to sleep. When the alarm sounds in the morning, you have to reach up to turn it off. This clock was a project created by two students, so you won’t be seeing it for sale.4.) The Anemone Clock (patent pending) will have you physically chasing after it in a game of “Tag, You’re It.” When the alarm goes off, it actually rumbles. The clock also bounces away from you, making it harder to catch. I suppose the idea here is to also give you some exercise. I can’t imagine being this energetic in the morning though. 3.) If you’re more of a “Hide and Seek” kind of person, you’ll find “Clocky” amusing. Clocky is an alarm clock that actually runs away from you when you hit the snooze button and hides. The clock is on wheels, allowing it to quickly move to anywhere in your room. It’s made of shag carpet, which was used to absorb shock.

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But you can’t outsmart Clocky: it finds new spots to hide everyday. Apparently, the “Clockly” concept is popular already, appearing on CNN, The Tonight Show, and ABC News. Go to to be notified when it will be available for sale.2.) The Blowfly Clock would absolutely scare me from my sleep. It flies around your room at the time you set the alarm for and makes a buzzing sound, just like a fly or bee. Why anyone would want this contraption, I’m not sure!1.) The only clock on this list that you can purchase is the Puzzle Alarm Clock. It wakes you up by shooting four puzzle pieces up in the air. To turn off the clock, you have to collect the pieces and put them back in the clock. Sounds harmless. The Puzzle Alarm Clock is $52.00 on

PSP’s Expanding Universe

Griffin announced a few new accessories for the Sony PlayStation Portable, helping bring the PSP a little closer to the iPod’s status as a “digital lifestyle hub”. The iTrip PSP ($49.99 direct) is an add-on that plugs into the bottom of the PSP and transmits the audio signal to any FM receiver. An LED on the front of the iTrip lets you see what frequency the transmitter uses, and you can select any available frequency via the buttons on the iTrip’s front. Another FM-based product, the iFM ($49.99), adds a remote control and FM tuner to the popular Sony portable.

And finally, the SmartShare ($14.99) headphone splitter wit41sSc6DdzKLh separate volume controls has been slightly rebranded for the PSP (okay, it looks exactly the same… this one’s a head-scratcher). So does this mean the PSP is stepping on the iPod’s little toes? As the PSP’s feature set is broadened by the addition of more accessories, it is becoming a more attractive platform, especially given its capacity for high-quality video and audio in addition to its core gaming features. Ultimately, though, I think the overall size of the product will be as crucial a differentiator as the feature set. But then again, who knows. Sony may one day decide to really gun for Apple and make a “PSP Mini” on this principle:
If people are willing to watch an hour-long TV show on a 2.5-inch screen (like that of the iPod) and play games on their cell phones, it stands to reason that they’ll be willing to play certain types of games on a PSP with a smaller screen as well. And call me crazy, but I’m pretty sure something with the combined capabilities of an iPod and a PSP in an iPod-size form factor would make every kid and gadget-nut drool.[Thanks to Mike Kobrin for writing this up!]

Memorex Underwhelms with Flash

Discposted on Friday, March 17, 2006 10:00 AMHold on to your hats, folks, this might be the real deal. That’s right, the era of carting around floppy disks may finally be at an end.  “Wait, Gearlog, you can’t possibly be serious!” Well, we’ll let you figure that out on your own.  But apparently Memorex is serious.

Its just-announced FlashDisc boasts a staggering 16MB of portable storage on a USB flash disk that looks like a donut.  Memorex says that the FlashDisc fills a niche between the traditional 1.44MB floppy disk and the portable USB flash drive, and is “affordable enough to share.” Well, maybe. You don’t really need half a gig of storage to carry around a PowerPoint or a few Word docs for school, and if little Tommy loses one of these it’s not the end of the world.Memorex may be right in assuming that most people view jump drives as too expensive and personal to give away;

I know I wouldn’t hand mine over to someone without keeping an eye on them until they gave it back.  But $19.99 for a 3-pack (48MB total) is just not a good deal. $20 these days can get you a decent 512MB jump disk, or two 265MB ones.  At the very least, it should get you a smaller form factor than these beasts, which at 2.3″ diameter by just over 1/4″ thick are larger than many multi-gigabyte jump drives on the market these days.In short, I can’t recommend these for many people over the age of 12, or (obviously) anyone with serious data-storage needs.  It goes without saying that there’s no disk encryption, sync software, or U3 support. But if you have (a small number of) files to share with family or friends and can’t send them via e-mail, a few of these wouldn’t break the bank. Get ’em at Best Buy, $19.99 for a 3-pack.

Suckle My Space-Age Nipple, Child

Before I had a baby, I never considered nipples to be so full of peril. But now I have a one-month-old and a very tired wife, and sometimes I like to give my wife a break and feed our little girl. Most bottle nipples seem designed to thwart breastfeeding, because it’s a lot easier to get milk out of a bottle than out of the ***.

Suckle My Space-Age Nipple, Child

That creates the dreaded ‘nipple confusion,’ which isn’t confusion at all – babies start thinking, why do I have to strain with this boob in my mouth when I could just wait for somebody to pour milk down my gullet?Then I discovered Second Nature nipples. Designed just two years ago by a former NASA scientist looking for a way to make spillproof cups and drink bottles, Second Nature nipples have a grid of tiny valves at the end, rather than just a hole. The valves only open if you both squeeze down on the nipple and suck, which is not coincidentally what a baby must do with a human ***. Apparently, scientists in California and Wisconsin are working on studies to see if these nipples really do solve the ***/bottle dilemma.

The nipples are also spillproof, so liquid doesn’t spray everywhere when you’re shaking the bottle. And they’re made and sold by a pretty small (15-person) American business, not by some baby-products giant. The only downside is that they’re a little fragile, so I’m already hunting around for more.The result: at our house, no nipple confusion. Happy baby with *** and bottle, and daddy who’s kind of psyched to be feeding baby with cool space-age gadget.

The nipples are kind of difficult to find, though, so find stores selling them at Apparently, our software has auto-censored the most inoffensive possible word for a lady’s upper frontal superstructure. Yet oddly, it does not censor boob, ta-ta, hooter, honker or gazoonga. How the heck are we supposed to talk about breastfeeding if we can’t talk about breasts? Score one for the Janet Jackson police.

Cingular’s Insane American Idol Promo

Most of my phones are loaners, which come with the usual retail packaging, but occasionally I’ll get a special promotional model — and Cingular went way overboard with this one. They want you to know they sponsor “American Idol,” a show which, by the way, I despise – I think it generates a parade of bland, nearly unlistenable sub-pop with no genitals. (Think I’m joking? A group of fans has actually sued based on uncorroborated tabloid claims that one of their Idols, Clay Aiken, might have done certain grownup things they personally don’t like.)So yesterday a truly unusual package arrives at PC Magazine. It contains an utterly unremarkable Samsung SGH-X497 phone.

The X497 has much in common with American Idol; it’s alowest-common-denominator phone with a good set of pipes but little personality, a best-seller thanks to its low cost and reliability. But it’s the rest of the stuff that sort of freaked me out:A “do not disturb, I’m watching American Idol” sign. (“Do not disturb, Clay Aiken is in here doing things that a certain segment of his fans probably won’t want to see?” [Please note that this is not what the sign from Cingular actually said. Sascha is making fun of gossipers. See his 3 clarifications in Comments, below. Thank you.–Carol Mangis] ) – Okay.

  • A black T-Shirt (Simon Cowell reference.) – Unbranded T-shirts are nice, but Cowell wouldn’t be caught dead wearing a 50/50 cotton/poly blend.
  • A pom-pom. – Odd.
  • A container of hair gel. (Ryan Seacrest reference.) – Borderline funny, borderline a little gross.
  • A magnetic, legless stuffed dog. (Randy Jackson reference.) – Would be okay if the dog had legs.
  • A stick of deodorant (for ‘stressful moments.’) – Okay, that crosses the line, guys; that’s just disgusting.All of these things will remain in the PC Mag inventory for future testing. Cingular’s PR
  • crew gets points for originality, but no amount of shaking the pom-pom at the X497 will turn it into an SGH-ZX20, guys.

Track Your Workouts with Motion Lingo Adeo Fitness Companion

Spring is coming to the Northeast, which means it’s time for me to start pretending that I’m a serious cyclist. Serious is relative of course, but I try to get out about four times a week for twenty to forty mile rides. In the past, when I’ve gotten to the end of my rides, I went into Microsoft MapPoint and plotted my route, jotting down speed and distance info from my bike’s computer. This is why I was so excited at DEMO last month to see Bones in Motion’s BiM Active service. BiM Active is a free service that lets you map your route, capturing factors like speed (including splits), distance and calories. You can enter the data manually or upload it from a GPS data file.

Or, if you have certain GPS-enabled cell phones, you’ll be able to see and post your data in real-time. The real-time aspect carries with it a $9.99 monthly fee. Yes, it’s yet another monthly fee, but it’s pretty reasonable.Next month, a company called Motion Lingo is going to introduce the Adeo Fitness Companion, that takes a different approach to tracking workouts. The GPS-equipped Adeo looks like a small portable audio player. Plug-in headphones and Adeo will speak to you with real-time reports on your progress. You can also hook the device into your iPod or MP3 player and it will intersperse the reports with your music.When you get back to your PC, you’ll be able to download your workout data off of the Adeo, add comments, and track things like weather conditions and even shoe mileage. Adeo will cost $149.99 and, unlike BiM Active, it appears that there won’t be any monthly fee.

I would like to see community features with Adeo like BiM Active’s ability to share routes with other runners and riders.Despite the fact that I saw Lance Armstrong on an Outdoor Life Network special last year using his iPod while training on California roads, it’s not a very good idea to cycle in traffic while wearing headphones. (Lance had coaches keeping an ear out for motor vehicles.) You’re better off using something like a Garmin Forerunner GPS. But if you’re a runner or workout off-road, the Adeo Fitness Companion looks like it could be a great addition to your routine. Hopefully we’ll get a unit in soon to test out.

The Five Most Awesome Features of the Galaxy S4

It’s finally here!  Samsung announced one of the most anticipated smart phones of the year, introducing the Galaxy S4 to the world.   This phone is the next step in the evolution of the popular Galaxy S line of phones.  The S4 comes with some expected features, such as a 13 mega pixel camera with upgraded photo and video software and a slightly larger 2600 mAh battery.   It also includes 16/32/64 GB of built in storage with removable microSD card slot.  As expected, the S4 will run the Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean operating system.   It’s also loaded with tons of health conscious exercise and dieting software, meant to enhance your quality of life.  As a fat, out of shape tech blogger myself, I didn’t pay much attention to that crap.   While there are lots to like, below are the 5 most awesome features of the new Samsung Galaxy S4.


ScreenYou can’t talk about Galaxy S series phones without talking about their gorgeous screens.   The Galaxy S3 was a standard bearer for what a beautiful smart phone display should be.  The Galaxy S4 upholds those high standards.   It comes fitted with a gorgeous 5 inch HD Super AMOLED display, packing in 441ppi.   To top it off, the screen is made from Corning’s new Gorilla® Glass 3, making it one tough SOB.

Group Play

It appears Samsung has worked some real magic with this next new feature.   Samsung’s Group Play enables users to share music, photos, documents and games across multiple devices without using Wi-Fi or cellular signal.    For example, Samsung claims users will be able to “have the same song playing on multiple phones in sync to create the best party atmosphere.”  This sounds like an upgrade to the Samsung S3′s All Cast feature.   I am not a fan of the All Cast feature because it was too many steps for users to sync up, making the feature more of a hassle than a benefit.  Hopefully, Samsung has worked through these kinks and Group Play will be beneficial.

Smart Pause and Scroll

Expanding on their “smart line” of features that started with Smart Stay on the Galaxy S3, Samsung unveiled Smart Pause and Smart Scroll.   Smart Pause will control video you are watching, “the video pauses when you look away then it starts right up again when you are back.”    Smart Scroll enables you to scroll your web browser or email without touching the screen, by monitoring your face and the movement of your wrist.   I was really excited last year with the announcement of Smart Stay because I do a lot of reading on my phone.  Unfortunately, I could never get this feature to work for me.  I assume that it is because I wear transition lenses and it interfered with the phone reading my eyes.   It’s nice to see Samsung pushing innovation in these gesture areas. Let’s hope these features work in the practical world as well as they are advertised.

Touchless Gesture Features

Samsung is taking the touch out of the touch screen with their new Air features, Air View and Air Gestures.  Air View allows users to hover with their fingers to preview the content of an email, S Planner, image gallery or video without having to open it.  With Air Gesture, you can change the music track, scroll up and down a web page, or accept a call with a wave of your hand.  I love the idea of not having to touch the screen of my phone to do basic tasks.  It will help to keep that beautiful screen more fingerprint free.

WatchONI am still waiting for all of the Google Home items that Google showed off at I/O two years ago.   Samsung is making a move into the home automation field with the Galaxy S4 with their WatchON feature.  The S4 will “transform into an IR remote to control your home entertainment system including TV, set-top box, DVD player and even air conditioner.” I love this because I am very much into consolidating as many devices as possible.  The more I can do with a single device, means the less things I have to misplace.


The Galaxy S4 isn’t a game changing device, but Samsung has packed it with enough power and features to make it a solid follow up to the Galaxy S3.  If your contract is up and you’re looking for a new phone, this would be the phone that I would recommend.  The screen is gorgeous, yet, not too big to manage, and it’s got plenty of fun, innovative features to try out.  Although, if it’s anything like the Galaxy S3, you’ll find yourself trading out the Samsung Features out for the comparable Google versions because they just work a lot better.So what do you think of the Galaxy S4?  Is this the phone you are lusting after, or do you have another phone you want to purchase?  Let me know in the comments below.

Clash Royale has gain an incredible response from players

It was’t enough for the split development staff Supercell to rest on the laurels of their previous success, although Clash of Clans has been one of the largest mobile games to day. Nowadays, Supercell launched a gentle launch of their fresh card-based, direct competition sport Clash Royale.

Clash Royale has gain an incredible response from players that are mobile since its global launch just lately March 2, 2016. From then, the sport raced into the seniority of the best- saved charts and best -grossing mobile game listings. The video game company celebrated with the success of the mobile game Clash of Clans, supercell, has launched this brand new strategic real time duel sport nonetheless emerge the Clash of Clans galaxy. To be able to get resources you must spend plenty of money but utilizing our Clash Royale Compromise device, you can generate unlimited assets at no price.

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Players were allured by Clash of Clans with quite a few effective gameplay components. There ’s a sense of ingenuity that goes into creating a foundation. As it’s significant in order to evaluate and assault angles intelligently, scheme also plays a role. Group dynamics experienced the mix with the clans pitting themselves against one another, and the set-it- together with -neglect-it naturel of a lot of the gameplay let even gamers with a busy schedule get in on the activity.

Nonetheless, as games like Hearthstone have demo, there’s clearly a market for one-on-one, live multi player with card-based mechanics. Clash Royale attempts to bring users the same sense of creativity by letting gamers construct their own deck filled up with Clash of components and Clans figures, but with the immediacy and engagement of a card game. HackingFactory has released the newest tool: Clash Royale Hack, with this amazing software you will no longer need to spend money on in-game purchases.

As it is an entirely different sport of its own now, this is’t a whole lot a sequel to Clash of Clans,. Clash Royale seems like it may also have a radically different demographic than its forerunner, and Supercell reviews the team working on the project is totally diverse from the the one that remains actively creating Clash of Clans. Up to now, Clash Royale h AS only been released on iOS, but there’s little doubt that we’ll see it striking the Android operating system some time in the near future.

What are your applying for grants Clash Royale? The principal criticism leveled at Clash of Clans is that a few assert it drops in the pay to win” camp of mobile gambling. Will the sam-e criticisms be leveled at Clash Royale?

A Nearer Seem of Clash Royale on the Sport Mechanics

The previous games developed and released by Supercell aimed mo-Re on kingdoms or creating bottoms as well as on guarding them from additional players asynchronously. The offense and protection manners of the games exposed doorways for a mo Re aggressive setting. Clash Royale, on the other hand,is a-one-on-one conflict that is simultaneous not with a computer program but with still another player that is human.

The battle is real time and lasts for just three moments. The target would be to destroy the towers of the opponent while protecting your own. Each players have the same set up of three systems – a king tower behind and between two summit towers, merely that their systems are reverse with each additional.

BattleField 3 – Seizure Edition

This is my opinion and not that of GI, its sponsors or its staff. (Shut up Jim!)
First of all let me say that when the game is working well it’s a great game. I like the Battlefield series over the COD’s because of the tactical nature, the awesome vehicles, and my ability to stay alive for more than 2 minutes (even if one of those minutes is spent dashing across a massive battlefield).

battlefield 3
Hey EA/DICE, your lobby sucks! I don’t have any of the expansions for this game so anytime I try selecting a lobby I’m unable to join because “this server is currently running content that you don’t own”, only that’s a flat out lie! Border Brother and BooBoo, two major supporters of GI rent a personal server and they’ve reverted their server settings to only us the default maps in its rotation and I still can’t accept their invites. I don’t know if this is a problem with the code or if this is EA saying ” Hey looser, you thought this game was only $60 bucks? Wrong its $85 plus tax and don’t &*%@ing think about trading it in cause its worthless once you’ve used the online pass code that came with it”!
Lets get to the real grips though! And before I start I do have a high-speed internet connection and when I was playing this weekend no one else in the house besides me was using it. Three steps pause, three steps pause and then I get my dog-tags snatched by the invisible man! Apparently I’m running in place while everyone is zipping around the freaking map like sparkly vampires. And when I’m not lagging I’ve seen enemies just standing around shaking like their having a seizure, I can only assume that’s what I look like when I’m lagging and yes I’ve killed them all. Sorta like putting a rabid dog out of its misery!
Oh yeah I can’t get over the tank lag, I think I have seriously blown myself up in tanks more times than Splosion Man. It’s like the tanks cannon has a rubber band on it. Try aiming left right up or down and it snaps back dead center, so if what ever you’re targeting isn’t directly in front of you you’re pretty much driving a huge metal casket! Once when I was lagging in a tank, a guy ran me down on foot placed C4 on my tank took cover and blew me up. all the while I was driving in circles trying to get him directly in front of me so I could score the kill. If this situation wasn’t so funny I would have probably rage quit at that moment.
My advise for laggy games is to completely exit out of the game then start it up again. If that doesn’t keep repeating until you get a decent connection. And EA, you ought to be ashamed of yourself, this game is over 6 months old, you’re selling DLC and your servers are on crack!