Friday, March 16, 2007

So what's Next?.. The Wait.

Even though the wait might not that be long in human years, its seems like alot in tech years.
The next slew of Tech gadgetry will be pouring into the market around April and onwards. So i'd hold tight to my pocket if i were you for those laptops, ipods and cellphones.

Here are just a few of the major launches and features you need to watch out for in case your in the market looking for something:

Laptops and mini laptops (UMPC's):

- New Operating Systems
The next versions of Windows and Mac operating systems have just been launched and have barely gotten into the the market, so beware of old laptops that bear the "Vista Ready" logo but only have Windows XP installed. I'd rather buy a laptop that already has Vista fully installed on it. Do note that Vista has several versions from Basic to Ultimate. Most people will find that basic will do, the most popular feature right now selling the ultimate version is a feature called "Dreamscene" (basically its just a fancy desktop background that's animated, neat but unecessary). One thing you also might want to watch out for is the Vista feature called "Aero", this feature basically makes your desktop look nice and fancy by applying the type of "glass transparency" effect you would expect from an apple system. Aero however demands that you have a capable enough video card to run it, any laptop spec that has a video card higher than the Intel GM945 chipset will do (trust me you'll want this.) From Intel, "The Intel® 945G & 945GM Express Chipsets will be the first Intel products to support the Windows Vista Aero user interface".

Apple is launching their next OS version called "Leopard" soon. Since their really good at keeping their new features under tight wraps their isn't much to know yet but there are the usual rumors circulating. check here for more..

- New Form Factors

A lot of hardware partners like OQO, HP, IBM and Sony have been pumping out new form factors for varying purposes like mobility and access. Here are a few of the big things:

Sideshow (only found in windows laptops)
- sideshow is a feature by Windows Vista that provides an easy way for you to add so called "gadgets" on your desktop like fancy clocks or a mini-calendar. What neat about this feature is that the hardware guys have begun to place a mini-pda if you will, on laptops that display gadgets through the sideshow feature. Think of it as a second screen that is on top of the lid of your laptop and allows you to play music or read email without even having to turn on your computer or open the lid. Easy Access! note: you could even remove the sideshow device from the laptop and carry it with you like and mp3 player or PDA with all your info, then "dock" it back into the laptop itself to re-sync. I love this feature. Right now only the Asus W5fe laptop has this. Expect future laptops to be incorporating it soon.

Hybrid Harddrives "Flash/NAND/SSD Disks"

- This is a big thing! this year we will begin to see hard drives that have NO moving parts. The concept is similar to having a USB Flash disk the size of 32 Gig in your laptop. No moving parts basically means more power savings, more speed in turning on your laptop and more space saved inside the laptop. Imagine turning on a windows laptop that boots in 10 sec? i wish. We have yet to see but one definite thing is that the prices are going to radically drop because both Microsoft and Apple are already building devices that will have this in them. So expect to see Flash ipods in the future, like a nano but bigger capacity than just 4 or 8 Gig, click here to learn more on apple and flash. One product that has this feature is the Samsung Q1 SSD (Solid State Disk).

Built in Wireless Broadband internet (not WIFI)
- More and more laptops are beginning to sport "built-in Wireless internet". This is different from Wi-Fi, because wifi requires you to connect to a wireless hot-spot like a cafe.
Wireless Area Network or WAN as they might call it, releases you from having to sit near or find signals from a cafe with wifi signals. It does this instead by connecting to Cellphone Signals. Yep, it uses a cellphone SIM card that you insert into the laptop to connect to the telco. So cellphone data signals like GPRS, EDGE and 3G are at your disposal anywhere you go! instant broadband internet on your laptop! Check out the Sony TX Series.


Next big thing for cellphones are:

Internet Access
- cellphone will be using the internet more and more for purposes of sending photos, video and music over the web. From Photo blogging to TV streaming to Downloading Music over the net will become a basic feature everyone will want to have. Even the basic function of talking over the phone will change as we move towards talking over the internet via VOIP (Voice over IP/Internet). An example would be the free phone service SKYPE which is now available on some PDA phones that have Wifi access. There are phones now that have all the possible access features: (from slowest to fastest) GPRS, EDGE, 3G, 3.5G (HSDPA), WIFI.

Bigger Screen
- With all the content such as TV programs, photos and webpages which are all going to command a big space of your phone's screen its no wonder why screens have either gained in size or resolution in trying to pack all that content into one screen. VGA resolution which is the minimum on most desktops now a days are now coming to a phone near you! so loading a webpage on your phone would just be like how it would load on a computer, size wise.

Form Factor
- The PDA phones coming out now a days are offering more variety of input techniques. Such as the touchscreen keyboards (which i dislike because you still a stylus or finger nail to tap on the screen), the normal number keypad or the full QWERTY keyboard (which is my favorite!). one phone that is combining almost all of these input methods is the HTC s710 which combines the number keypad and qwerty keyboard into one! for one or two handed operation! Click this link for more upcoming phones loaded with new Operating systems like the Windows Mobile 6 platform.

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