Sony Showcases Intriguing Concept Tablets at CES 2012

Sony’s first attempt at creating bold new tablet devices elicited mixed responses, as the S1 and S2 ended up prioritizing x-factor over plain old usability. However, that hasn’t stopped the Japanese electronics giant from thinking out of the box again.

At this year’s CES, Sony is showcasing two new tablet concepts – the Slate and the Hybrid. The Slate is a sleek tablet with a unique oval design and a beautiful silver back. However, once again, Sony’s penchant for uniqueness means that the tablet is not without its flaws. The bezel is unnecessarily thick, and the rear has oddly placed buttons that might be prone to accidental presses.

Sony-Viao-Slate

Paired with the Slate is an equally stunning wireless keyboard. The remarkable design of the keyboard manages to transform a mundane accessory into something drool worthy.

Sony-Wireless-Keyboard

Sony-Wireless-Keyboard-Thickness

The most noteworthy concept on display was the Hybrid, which is a cross between traditional laptops and tablets. It is essentially a tablet that docks with a keyboard with embedded speakers. Once again, the design is simply stunning. Interestingly enough, the Hybrid also features a blast from the past in the form of a stylus that fits in beneath the keyboard.

Sony-Viao-Hybrid

Even though both of these devices carry the old Vaio tag, they represent intriguing attempts by Sony to redefine what we expect from a tablet. Absolutely nothing is known about the technical specifications of the Hybrid and the Slate, which were tucked inside a glass case to fend off the inquisitive journalists. In fact, we don’t even know if Sony plans on manufacturing them.

Firefox 5 Concepts Revealed; More Site Specific Features For Apps

Mozilla will be releasing in the next few weeks. 4 sports a complete overhaul from the previous versions and is very similar to . However, Mozilla is now working on the next version Firefox 5 which might be released in late 2011.

Firefox 5 Desktop Apps

CNET got hold of some concept pictures which show the future of the browser. The concept pictures can be seen at http://areweprettyyet.com/5/. One of the main  focus of Firefox 5 will be desktop apps which will contain site specific features in them.

For example, if you use the app, you will see options such as creating a new tweet, checking your direct messages and more. This feature will also be available for other sites like and IMDb.

Techie Buzz IE9 Pinned Tabs

Internet Explorer 9 has a similar feature where they allow websites to define tasks when a website is pinned to the taskbar. It is not  yet known whether the site specific features in Firefox 5 will have their own tasks or rely on websites to define those tasks.

Firefox 5 Search Box

In addition to the site specific features, Firefox 5 will also have a new visual appearance for the search box, where the color of the button would change based on the search engine the user is using. This color could either be specified by the search engines themselves or will be fetched from the favicon of the search engine.

Firefox 5 will also promote the Firefox Sync option to users so that they can sync their passwords, bookmarks and more in the cloud and use it on any mobile device or PC.

Firefox 5 Add-on Manager

Mozilla will also be revamping it’s add-on manager which is used to install and manage in the browser. Firefox 4 introduced a new add-on manager, but it looks like they will be revamping it again in Firefox 5.

These are just some of the key features from Firefox 5 which are available as concepts. It looks like Mozilla will continue building on Firefox 4 and add these new features to it, so the look and feel of Firefox 5 may not be any different than Firefox 4.

So what do you think about the new Firefox 5 concepts? Do you like them? What else would you want to see in Firefox 5? Do share your opinions and views about it.

Nokia X9 Concept Pictures

Nokia is working on a new phone Nokia X9, which is similar to the Nokia X6 phone, but will be much better than the X6 is terms of specifications and features.

Nokia X9 Concept Pictures

A Greek site pestaola.gr has just published some concept pictures of the Nokia X9. The main features of X9 includes a large capacitive touch screen display, camera with video recording capabilities and HD 720p quad LED.

Nokia X9 Home Screen

The device may also have HDMI support to connect the phone to the TV and slots to add external microSD cards. From the looks of the Nokia X9 concept pictures, we can definitely say that this will be a very popular device when it launches.

Nokia Xp People Screen

Visit the blog post from Pestaola to get more information on the Nokia N9 concept.

[via Daily Mobile]

Mozilla Account Manager May Simplify Online Identity Management [Concepts]

Online Identity Mozilla ConceptsBeing an early adopter of technology, I usually sign up for beta services as soon as they are released. Now, with that I have hundreds of accounts I need to remember and keep track of. Most browsers make this easier by providing an option to remember username and passwords, however, it still leaves a lot to be desired.

Mozilla Account Manager Concepts

Mozilla is working on a new concept called “Account Manager” which will dramatically simplify how users connect to websites. The initial prototype of the concept integrates into Firefox and allows users to sign in and sign out of websites from the toolbar.

Mozilla Account Manager

The basic concept behind account manager is to allow users to simplify the process of signing in and out of your web accounts. Once you install the add-on you will see a key sign next to the location bar. Clicking on which will show you an option to connect to the current site.

Mozilla Account Manager Connect

Clicking on connect will sign you into the account for the current site. You can also use the same key button to sign out of the account from the current site. The current add-on is in just a prototype so don’t expect it to work very well. More details follow below.

What Is Account Manager?

According to the Mozilla Wiki, here is what the Account Manager Project aims to produce:

  • A protocol definition that sites can use to define their account-and-session management features in a format a web browser can understand
  • An implementation of this protocol as a Firefox add-on.

The goal is to help users manage the process of “connecting” to a site, in a way that allows us to use secure browser chrome, and supports multiple authentication mechanisms.

The account manager is an evolution of the Firefox password manager and the Weave identity components (OpenID + auto-login). It will help users manage logins and profile information for each site, and it will automate currently manual tasks such as signing up for sites, generating passwords, etc. The first prototype will have support for “traditional” login methods (example., form + cookie), but it will also have some support for OpenID/federated logins.

Account Manager Standards

Mozilla is basically creating a new standard called “HTTP Extensions for Account Management and Session Identification” for websites, which will lay down the specifications on how this unified Account Manager will work. There is an early draft for the concept available here.

Websites which follow the specifications in the draft will automatically allow Account Manager to manage them.

Trying Out Account Manager

Account Manager is just a prototype right now and only works with a select few sites, including Google, Yahoo and . If you want to give the account manager a shot, head over to this page to download it.

Account Manager requires that you have the passwords stored in the password manager for it to work.