The wait is almost over guys. According to reports, Verizon stores have already begun receiving shipments of the highly anticipated Motorola Xoom, which is slated to go on sale on Thursday (Feb 24). Several stores including Best Buy have already begun accepting pre-orders. However, as AP pointed out, it seems that Best Buy’s offer of $799.99 for the 3G-enabled Xoom doesn’t include taxes, while WireFly’s offer does.
Motorola is also working with European retailers to make Xoom available soon across the pond. The 3G version will be available in the UK via The Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy, while the Wi-Fi only version will be available through Currys and PC World. It should be available in additional markets across Europe through Deutsche Telekom.
The Honeycomb (Android 3.0) flavored Xoom sports a 10.1” widescreen HD display, 5-megapixel camera with HD (720p) video recording, and weighs in at 730 grams. Underneath the hood it has nVidia’s powerful Tegra 2 chip, which features a 1 GHz dual-core processor, and was one of the highlights of last month’s CES.
While the sale price of Xoom turned out to be a much more realistic than the initial rumored prices, it’s still a cause for concern. Motorola is definitely taking a big risk by asking for more than the market leader (iPad). When coupled with Verizon’s steep data charges ($20 for 1GB and $80 for 10GB of data – 1 month mandatory), the Xoom becomes quite an expensive affair.
SlashGear has gone hands-on with the highly anticipated and controversial tablet from India, the Adam, and they are impressed. Adam has excited and teased tablet users and Android fans around the world since its announcement last year. Things turned ugly (and fast) with the opening of pre-orders, thanks to Notion Ink’s inexperience. However, as the video demonstrations have shown, Adam is quite unlike any other device on the market.
Apple has made a name for itself by paying attention to detail. Now, Notion Ink is trying to challenge iPad’s supremacy by following the same principle. Although the Adam is an Android tablet running on the powerful Tegra 2, it has its own user interface (called Eden), and its own set of carefully developed applications.
According to Slashgear:
Eden, the multitasking UI, splits the screen into three panes, and intelligently uses the dual-core NVIDIA processor to balance power and battery life. For instance, the CPU shows up as a single core in the Android Aboutpage; Eden won’t activate the second core if there’s still capacity in the first core. The way individual apps are handled does its part to minimize Tegra 2 exertion too. In the mail client, for instance, when you’re only reading emails it doesn’t load the send-mail library. That reduces load times and shrinks the amount of memory and power required. Other apps work in a similar way, only loading the libraries that are necessary for the functions you’re actively using. Background apps are frozen to free up their resources.
Thanks to all the optimizations, Adam is silky smooth even under heavy load. Switching between applications is near instantaneous, and video playback is remarkably fluid. In fact, SlashGear found the entire experience to be as smooth as watching videos on a dedicated Blu-ray player.
Judging from the initial impressions, Adam might indeed be the perfect blend of beauty, flexibility and power. I am expecting iPad 2 to get multi-tasking capabilities. If that indeed turns out to be true, it will be interesting to see Apple’s approach, as Notion Ink seems to have done an outstanding job.
It’s CES’ worst nightmare come true. Apple products hogging the limelight even before the event could kickoff. Earlier today, Engadget spotted an eager exhibitor at the CES 2011 showing off what appeared to be cases for the yet to be unveiled iPad 2.
Very little is known about iPad 2, and even that too is mostly through unconfirmed rumors. However, that hasn’t stopped several manufactures from designing cases for the highly anticipated successor to the king of tablets. Dexim, the manufacturer in question, has gone a step further than others, and has even prepared an iPad 2 dummy to display with their cases. The dummy iPad 2, as captured by Engadget, is displayed below in its full glory.
If Dexim’s sources are correct, then the iPad 2 will indeed be slimmer and slicker than its predecessor. It will also have a camera at the rear and front, along with a larger speaker. Apple is expected to announce the iPad 2 in the coming weeks.
After all of mine and Pallab’s rant we finally got to see a real video of Notion Ink‘s Adam in action. All through mine and Pallab’s post we were very skeptical about this device, but in the end looking at the product demo in action made me change my mind.
However, Notion Ink brought this on themselves, first the stupid pre-order system and the stupidly written policies then the video lure which they could not upload would have thrown off anyone.
Now here is what the case is, these guys do not seem to be aware of the fact that there is something called as Public Relationships. Yes, the entire PR team of Notion Ink should be sacked or sent on a vacation, because they created the biggest problem of all, not bringing the device closer to the users who matter to their sales and to their reputation.
Hell, the Adam founder Rohan who I interviewed back in March 2010 is taking all the onus on himself to provide updates himself. I have seldom seen a CEO or founder of a product taking so much pains to explain why they exist, least of all take all the criticisms.
Nevertheless, I wanted this product to succeed all this while. My skepticism came from the fact that they did not know how to handle things. It still remains, however, it is subdued now and will remain subdued for a while. Remember that I have a very curious and national interest in this project.
Would I order this device now? Of course, I *might* order the Adam on a future date, but I would rather wait for CES 2011 and MWC 2011 before I make a decision. It looks like a very good portable device with a lot of slots among other things, but again, there is no promised Pixel Qi, which is a deal-breaker for me, I will wait till I see that in action.
Rest aside, I quenched my doubts and choked on them, Adam exists and it is good. But I won’t order it as of yet.
Microsoft has launched the Microsoft Kinect for Xbox 360 in India. Kinect which is a controller free gaming system allows users to play games using motions which is detected by the Sensor.
Kinect has been a huge success across with Microsoft selling over 1 million units in 10 days. Microsoft Kinect sensor standalone will sell for an estimated price of 9,990 along with "Kinect Adventures". The Xbox 360 4GB console with Kinect sensor and Kinect Adventureswill be available at an estimated retail price of 22,990.
Microsoft will be selling Kinect at 150 large retail stores in 7 top cities in India including Delhi/NCR, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Pune.
For more information about Kinect, visit our earlier post to know What is Kinect or read the Microsoft Press release here.
Amazon Kindle, which got a price drop last month and now sells for $189 has been selling like hot-cakes according to a recent press release from Amazon. Kindle Books have also been outselling Hard Copy books in the past 3 months.
According to Amazon, the Kindle has been the best selling device for over 2 years and is also the most-wished-for, most-gifted and the product which has received the most 5 star ratings on Amazon.com.
"We’ve reached a tipping point with the new price of Kindle–the growth rate of Kindle device unit sales has tripled since we lowered the price from $259 to $189," said Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon.com. "In addition, even while our hardcover sales continue to grow, the Kindle format has now overtaken the hardcover format. Amazon.com customers now purchase more Kindle books than hardcover books–astonishing when you consider that we’ve been selling hardcover books for 15 years, and Kindle books for 33 months."
Amazon has had to cut the Kindle price thanks to competitors like Sony and Barnes and Nobles slashing pricing and also more direct competition from the Apple iPad in the e-Book reader segment. However, the price drop has helped significantly along with some good sales in Kindle books too.
Amazon states that over the past three months, for every 100 hard copy books sold by Amazon, there are 143 Kindle books sold. The past three months Kindle books sale is 3 times that from the earlier quarter.
The U.S. Kindle Store now has more than 630,000 books, including New Releases and 106 of 110 New York Times Best Sellers. Over 510,000 of these books are $9.99 or less, including 75 New York Times Best Sellers. Over 1.8 million free, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books are also available to read on Kindle.
More at the Official Amazon Press Release.
NVIDIA has announced a DirectX 11 GeForce GTX Graphic card which will sell for $199. The DX11 GeForce GTX 460 card comes in two versions, one with 768MB memory and the second one with 1GB memory.
NVIDIA today announced the latest addition to its Fermi-class of graphics processing units (GPUs), the NVIDIA ® GeForce GTX 460 — which delivers a great DX11 gaming experience and is priced right at the market’s $199 sweet spot.
The new GeForce GTX card is built from ground up and deliver up to 4x tessellation performance(i) over competing GPUs. The GTX 460 bring the ultimate gaming experience with DX11 bundled with Windows 7 and Windows Vista. GeForce GTX 460 also supports NVIDIA 3D Vision technology.
Epic Games, Tim Sweeney who is the Chairman, CEO and Technical Director commented: "With the GeForce GTX 460, NVIDIA is really upping the ante with an amazingly fast DirectX 11 GPU available at a great, mainstream-friendly price. Its new hardware tessellation support will enable games to reach an entirely new caliber of graphics."
GeForce GTX 460 Specifications and Pricing
Both the GTX 460 cards will have 336 CUDA Cores and 675 MHz Graphics Clock. GTX 460 will also have a 1350 MHz processor and a texture fill rate of 37.8 billion per second. The 768MB version will have a 192-bit memory interface and Memory Bandwidth of 86.4 GB per second.
On the other hand, the 1GB card will have a 256-bit Memory Interface Width and a Memory Bandwidth of 115.2 GB per second. The 768MB GeForce GTX 460 GPU will sell for $199, whereas the 1GB GPU will sell for $229.
The GeForce GTX 460 768MB version will be available starting today from NVIDIA add-in card partners. Wider availability of the GeForce GTX 460 1GB is expected by July 26, 2010. For more information and specifications visit the product page for GeForce GTX 360.
Apple has revealed the price of the latest Mac Mini for Indian customers and it will be priced at Rs 44,900 for the regular edition and Rs. 64,900 for the server edition.
The new Mac Mini from Apple comes with either a 2.4GHz or 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics processor with 256MB of DDR3 SDRAM. Storage space for the device could be either 320GB or 500GB SATA. It also has system memory of 2GB which can be expanded to 4GB.
Mac Mini also has 802.11n Wi-Fi support and a FireWire 800 port. The gadget also has a 8x Super Drive and comes with 4 USB 2.0 ports and a SD card slot.
Mac Mini will run on the latest Mac OS X Snow Leopard and come with a host of pre-installed software from the iLife suite.
Mac Mini will be available for purchase at Apple affiliated stores soon and will cost Rs. 44,900 for the regular version and Rs. 64,900 for the server edition.
Today, at E3 2010, Nintendo’s CEO, Satoru Iwata gave the world its first glimpse of the Nintendo 3DS. In case you haven’ heard yet, the Nintendo 3DS is a hand-held gaming console, which will allow you to play 3D games without being forced to wear glasses that make you look like a buffoon.
The 3DS has two screens – the one at the top is a 3.5 inch widescreen, while the one at the bottom is a standard one. It also has a slide pad for analog control, a gyro sensor and a motion sensor. Users will be able to control the level of depth offered by the 3DS through an easy to use slider.
Nintendo has tied up with 21 major gaming studios to ensure a hefty supply of games for the 3DS. Some of the big names roped-in include Capcom, EA, Activison, Sega, Ubisoft and Kojima who will be bringing popular franchises like Resident Evil , FIFA Soccer, Madden NFL, The Sims 3, DJ Hero, Sonic, Assassin’s Creed, Ghost Recon, Splinter Cell and Metal Gear to the new hand-held.
3DS is not just a gaming console. Nintendo claims that it is also capable of playing 3D movies and even snapping 3D pictures. Disney, Warner Brothers, and Dreamworks are among the initial partners who will be producing content for the 3DS.
With the 3DS, Nintendo has once again managed to reinvent the wheel and redefine our expectations. If 3D is your thing, then prepared to be blown away by the 3DS, which is expected to be released in the fiscal year ending March 2011. Pricing remains unknown.
[Images via Gizmodo]
While the iPad has been setting tablet computing on fire, a tiny Indian startup, Notion Ink has been working diligently to roll out its own tablet computer – Adam. We covered Adam fairly extensively in the past, including an exclusive interview with its CEO Rohan Shravan.
Some recent reports suggested that Adam might have been delayed until November. Notion Ink has now come out and debunked those rumors without promising any specific release date. “We are on track” is all Rohan Shravan revealed in his blog post. This probably means that Adam will be launched in a couple of months. However, like the iPad, Adam will have a staggered roll out all over the world. The good news for Indians waiting for a competitive tablet device is that India will definitely be among the first to receive the gadget.
Notion Ink has also closed their final round of fund raising. Once again, they didn’t provide any specifics, but Shravan did seem pretty jubilant about it. He wrote, “We have closed the final round of funding and are now in perfect sync with our investors. This is extremely good news for everyone. I say that, because if we have Global ambitions, there must be someone who can help us achieve that. And now we have got the muscle power”.
The Adam is an nVidia Tegra 2 powered Android tablet with Pixel Qi technology, which ensures readability even under direct sunlight. A cheaper version with normal LCD screen will also be available for users who don’t plan on doing too much reading on the Adan. In fact, we may even get a third variation, which is supposed to run on a mysterious battery efficient platform.