Monthly Archives: July 2010

Amazon Updates the Kindle

Just in time for the beginning of the Back to School shopping season (something we’ll have covered down to the smallest details over the next couple of weeks to make sure you head back to school with all the right tech), Amazon has announced an updated version of their very popular Kindle.

This 3rd generation Kindle comes with a whole bunch of updates and improvements to help it put up a better fight with some competing eReaders on the market (*cough* iPad *cough*), and while I’m still not sure it is better than a Barnes and Noble Nook or iPad, Amazon has made the choice between the three a lot tougher.

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Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock to Have Story Centric Quest Mode

Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock, the next generation of the hit series coming out in September, is going to be the most story centric Guitar Hero to date according to lead game designer Brian Bright. Warriors of Rock will have a Quest mode narrated by KISS bassist Gene Simmons that will have you fighting “The Machine” throughout the game. “The Machine” will represent all that is anti rock such as pop music, and will be your villain throughout the game. In the final battle with The Machine, you will choose your band from the 8 characters and, using their special abilities, defeat The Machine in an epic guitar battle. You will have 8 characters that all have special abilities and can turn into their respective warrior alter ego. For example, Johnny Napalm, a character that has been in every Guitar Hero game since the beginning, turns into a blue metal mutant and  has a power called “Speed Freak”, which never allows you to go below a 2x multiplier.

Johnny Napalm's Warrior Alter Ego

Along with the revamped Story Mode, Activision is putting a lot of work into creating incredible backdrops for epic guitar battles. The visuals in the story mode will be unprecedented for a Guitar Hero game. Think of the incredible backdrops of Brutal Legend, just custom made for each unique character in the game. During the final battle with “The Machine” you will be fighting in an epic wasteland with a fiery backdrop filled with volcanoes.

So is a beefed up story m0de enticing enough to spend more money on Guitar Hero? Or will you wait instead for the next Rock Band as your music video game of choice?

Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock is set for release September 28, 2010 for the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii with for $59.99 for the game itself, $99.99 for the game and guitar, or $179.99 for the whole bundle, which includes the game, a guitar, drums and keyboard.

The full set list of tunes is after the break. Read the rest of this entry

Apple Launches the Magic Trackpad– Bringing MacBook Gestures to iMacs and Mac Minis Everywhere

This was rumored for a while (since the time of the iPad announcement in the beginning of the year), and as part of a sweep of updates Apple did today– including speed updates to the iMac and Mac Pro, an updated Apple Cinema Display, and a new AA battery charger (yes, Apple appears now to be looking to get into the AA battery business….)– they released this promising little gem.

Basically, it’s that same glass trackpad found on the recent MacBooks and MacBook Pros, just now as a Bluetooth add-on for $69 for those who have desktops (or MacBooks with Snow Leopard and made before the multi-touch update). It really is everything you’d expect from an Apple trackpad– multi-touch gestures (like pinch-to-zoom, three finger swipe etc. things the recently updated Magic Mouse can’t do), the buttons for clicking being in the mouse itself, and a sleek aluminum design that matches nicely with the Apple wireless keyboard, as seen in the pic above. And yes, it can work with PCs as well, though for now we’re not sure how well it works and if all the gestures and features carry over smoothly (Apple has released an update for Macs running Windows which should make everything work fine there and possibly on all other Intel-running Windows PC’s as well).

If though you got an iMac or Mac Mini with Snow Leopard (and yes, you need Snow Leopard) and have always wanted MacBook like trackpad controls, this may be the mouse for you.

The Magic Trackpad is available now for $69 from Apple’s online store.

Pic and info from Apple

T-Mobile Puts Up Teaser Page for New High Speed Phone

T-Mobile users this one is for you. Today, T-Mobile put up a teaser page for people to sign up to be notified about the launch of their next big phone due later this year, a phone that is capable of connecting to T-Mobile’s really fast 3G network (called HSPA+, and is capable of delivering 4G speeds similar to that of  today’s 4G networks such as Sprint’s). And T-Mobile’s official Twitter (@TMobile_USA) has thrown out a tweet last week saying that this phone is coming later this summer– so what’s going on?

This of course is huge just on the network side, as with more powerful networks come much more powerful phones– and T-Mobile has already begun upgrading their current 3G network to HSPA+, with areas all across the US– from LA to New York– already getting some of the fun, with the plan being to cover over 185 million people with this HSPA+ goodness by the end of the year. But what exactly is this phone that T-Mobile is hyping? While T-Mobile obviously hasn’t said anything yet, here are a couple of guesses on what it possibly could be.

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Apple Begins Offering iPhone 4 Bumpers and Refunds

Got an iPhone 4? Listen up, as Apple has this weekend finally taken the wraps off the promised bumper “giveaway” for the iPhone 4 to that it announced the other week. Apple  has broken down the process in 2 ways, one for iPhone 4 owners with bumpers and one for iPhone 4 owners without bumpers– and thankfully both are fairly simple and straightforward.

Let’s start with the what happens to current iPhone 4 bumper owners. As someone who did buy a bumper prior to this whole fiasco, I’m glad Apple is making this as simple as it is. Basically, if you bought a bumper  from an Apple Store,  check your email, as you’ve probably got an email saying how Apple’s giving you back your $30. No wait and your phone is “fixed” today. If though you bought a bumper from AT&T, you’re going to need to fill out a “rebate coupon” and mail it in by September 30th to get your money back (coupon can be found here). Why it isn’t as simple as the process from an Apple Store I don’t know.

Now for those who don’t already have a bumper, Apple is also making it fairly simple for you to redeem your free bumper/case and choice of case. First off, redeeming the case. All you got to do is download an app on your iPhone 4 called “iPhone 4 Case Program” (a clever name we know. And yes, there’s an app for even this too), and once downloaded you just fire up the app, sign in to the iTunes account you used to buy your iPhone, and chose either an Apple bumper (available only in black sadly), or one of the other 7 cases available from all different manufacturers like Griffin, Speck, Belkin and Incase. After that, just wait the time  for it to ship and you should be all set (the bumper is among the quicker choices available with a ship time between 3-5 weeks, while some cases like the Speck Pixel Skin won’t be available for 2-3 months).

So there you have it fellow iPhone 4 owners, how to get free case or get your money for your case back. Let us know how it all goes for you in the comments.

Pix and info from Apple.com

White iPhone 4 Delayed Again– Not Coming Until Later This Year

Waiting for that white iPhone 4? Unless you’ve got a whole lot of patience you may wanna switch to black (which also will set you back a 3 week wait if you order today) as Apple just announced that the white iPhones are turning out to be harder to produce than expected, and that they are not coming at the end of the month as announced last week, instead being pushed off until “later this year.”

Apple did say that production of the black iPhone 4 is not affected by these delays.

So, anyone changing their iPhone plans?

Microsoft Finally Reveals Kinect’s Price– $150 When it Launches November 4th

Back at E3 Microsoft made a lot of big waves— a whole bunch of new games, a new Xbox 360, and a whole bunch of info on Kinect, including the revealing of its true name, some demos of launch games, and even a November 4th release date. One thing that everyone was waiting for, the price, wasn’t announced at E3. Don’t worry though Xbox 360 owners, that wait is now finally over as Microsoft has today announced that Kinect will cost $150 and ship with Kinect Adventures when it launches on November 4th.

Yes, unfortunately that’s a lot more than the $84 rumor we heard last year (and yes, the Kinect price is now almost the same price as a new Wii)–  and that is just for Kinect, you still need to have an Xbox 360 to plug it into (something that will cost anyone without an Xbox 360– and again, Kinect will work with all 360’s both new and old — at least $199 for the Arcade version). Speaking of the  Xbox 360 Arcade… Microsoft also announced today that an updated version of the 360 Arcade (now called the Xbox 360 4 GB, and brings along all the new Xbox 360 features like that new sleek design, WiFi N, and that Kinect port along with 4 GB of built-in storage) will be coming on August 3rd for the same $199 that the old Arcade cost. Oh, and if you can wait until November 4th, you can pick up a new 4 GB Xbox 360 with Kinect and Kinect Adventures for $299 (or the price of the 250 GB 360 sans Kinect).

Microsoft also has put the Kinect up for pre-order starting today, and you can head over to their site here for all the info.

So, do you plan to buy Kinect now that we know the price is $150?

Apple Finally Addresses the iPhone 4 Antenna Issue– Free Cases to all iPhone 4 Owners Between Now and September 30th

Today the silence (well, Apple’s silence) around the infamous “antennagate” iPhone 4 antenna problems has finally been broken, with Apple hosting a special press conference in their Cupertino, CA campus to address this nagging issue. And boy did they have a lot to say. We’ve got everything you’re gonna need and want to know after the break, so read on.

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Samsung Vibrant for T-Mobile Finally Gets a Price and Release Date

T-Mobile users looking to pick up T-Mobile’s latest and greatest Android phone listen up: while there have been some rumors that T-Mobile will be launching their version of the Samsung Galaxy S (aka the Captivate on AT&T and Fascinate on Verizon) tomorrow (the same day as the Droid X for Verizon goes on sale), we’ve just received the official word– July 21st for $199.99 with 2 year contract and data plan. Not bad for a phone that includes that 4 inch Super AMOLED screen, 1 GHZ Hummingbird processor, 5 megapixel camera all atop Android 2.1.

And if waiting 6 days to by directly from T-Mobile isn’t your game, you can go try on some jeans and score one for $150 and have it ship tomorrow.

So T-Mobile users– if you’re looking for a new Android phone, are you gonna go for a phone like this, a myTouch 3G Slide, or wait it out for the Motorola Charm?

UPDATE: Well what do you know, it looks like T-Mobile has in fact bumped up the Vibrant’s release date to today. You can get one now from T-Mobile’s site here for that same $200. Enjoy T-Mobile users, and let us know if you get one and how you like it!

Looking for a New Phone? Go Try on Some Jeans

Yes you read that right– jeans. American Eagle, in a really awesome yet very out of the box attempt to draw more people to its stores is running a promotion from July 21st until August 3rd, where all you got to do is try on a pair of jeans and you get a card to redeem a free phone online. Yes– just walk in, try on some jeans (you don’t even need to buy them!), and walk out of the dressing room and you’ll get the redeem card. That’s it.

And we’re actually talking about some really good phones here— phones like the HTC Aria, BlackBerry Bold 9700 and Palm Pixi Plus for AT&T; the Palm Pre Plus, Motorola Droid and BlackBerry Bold 9650 for Verizon; or the Android packing Motorola Cliq XT for T-Mobile and BlackBerry Curve 8530 for Sprint– along with a bunch of other phones like the LG enV 3 and Samsung Alias 2, all for that awesome price of free (there are even deals for other phones like $10 off the HTC EVO 4G, $80 off a myTouch 3G Slide, and even the new T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant for $150, which isn’t even available yet from T-Mobile’s site).

Now there are some catches in a deal like this– you need to sign up for a new 2 year contract, and if you’re getting an Android, Palm, Windows Mobile phone or BlackBerry you will also have to sign up for your carrier’s respective data plan– but hey, free phones! Oh, and to make the deal EVEN BETTER: if your order your phone and pick your plan by September 30th American Eagle will give you an additional $25 gift card (and thus another reason to head back to their store).

So, who else all of sudden needs to go check out some new jeans?

For all the info check out American Eagle’s site here.