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All posts by Staff Reporter

  • iPhone triggers videogame gold rush

    The commercial tsunami unleashed by the iPhone has served as a launch pad for the videogame industry world-wide, which hopes to seize on the success of Apple's smartphone. Hundreds of participants in the two-day Montreal International Game Summit that opens on Monday in Canada will be looking for ways to better milk the gaming market cow, in the face of Apple's golden example. In barely a year and a half, the iPhone has seized...

  • Tablet computer rush: HP unveils ‘Slate 500′

    Hewlett-Packard unveiled a Windows-powered touchscreen tablet computer on Friday aimed at professionals, the latest entry into a growing market dominated by Apple's iPad. The "HP Slate 500" which features an 8.9-inch (22.6-centimeter) screen, slightly smaller than the iPad's 9.7-inch (24.6-cm) display, costs 800 dollars, about the same price as the top-of-the-line iPad. While the iPad is aimed more at consumers, HP is targeting its device at business customers and touting its ability to handle documents, spreadsheets and applications from Microsoft. HP described the Slate 500 as the "ideal PC for professionals who don't usually work at a traditional desk, yet need to...

  • Apple intros new tablet-inspired MacBooks

    Apple on Wednesday released a sleek new MacBook Air notebook computer inspired by its winning iPad tablet devices. "We asked ourselves what would happen if a MacBook and an iPad hooked up," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said as he unveiled two new laptop models. "This is the result." A MacBook Air with a 13.3-inch (33.8-centimeter) screen and measuring just 0.68 inches (1.73 cms) at its thickest point and its 11.6-inch (29.5-cm) "younger brother" went on sale Wednesday. They cost between US$999 dollars and US$1 599 dollars. The laptop computers dumped hard drives or optical drives in favor of solid state drives that...

  • More than 4-million iPads sold, but fall short of expectations

    Apple said on Monday that it had sold 3.89 million Mac computers during the quarter, up 27 percent from a year ago, 14.1 million iPhones, up 91 percent from a year ago, and 4.19 million iPads, up from 3.3 million the previous quarter. Apple shares were down 5.34 percent as iPad sales fell short of expectations. Analysts had expected Apple to sell as many as five million iPads during the quarter. The company's quarterly net profit soared 70 percent to 4.31 billion dollars on strong sales of its key products: Macintosh computers, iPhones and iPads. Apple reported record revenue of 20.34...

  • Sony delays global release of Gran Turismo 5 again

    Japan's Sony will again delay the global release of the latest version of its popular "Gran Turismo" car-racing game, which was due out early next month, officials said Thursday. Gran Turismo 5 for the PlayStation 3 video-game console was to hit US markets on November 2 and Japan the following day, but the release will now be "this holiday season", Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. said. The delay is due to "production reasons," said Makiko Noda, a spokeswoman for the electronics giant's game unit, without elaborating. The release of Gran Turismo 5 had already been delayed from March this year. Analysts say...

  • Viewdle gives mobile phones the ability to ‘see’

    High-powered players are pumping US$10-million into Viewdle, a technology startup crafting ways that enable smartphones "see" things the same way people do and identify faces. The influx of cash announced this week is coming from Qualcomm, BlackBerry Partners Fund, US electronics retail chain Best Buy, and Anthem Venture Partners, an investment firm that has backed Viewdle from the outset. "We are giving smartphones human eyes," said Viewdle co-founder and chief executive Laurent Gil. "Letting them see the world the way people do... it is artificial intelligence," he said. "It is happening." Northern California-based Viewdle bills itself as the leading independent facial recognition company...

  • Is it a book? Is it a film? Is it a game? Or all three?

    Is it a book? Is it a film? Is it a game? Or all three? Publishers and authors at the world's biggest book fair are battling to entice a new generation of readers with the latest multimedia products. That the electronic book reader has turned the book industry on its head is well known. Younger readers are no longer content to thumb through a printed book. The 21st century iPad generation wants interaction...

  • iPhone 4 outranks Justin Bieber on SA internet searches

    Apple’s recently launched iPhone4 has received greater internet search interest than Justin Bieber, despite the fact that the teen pop sensation was actually in South Africa at the time. This revelation comes from Google Zeitgeist-- a tool that provides insight into internet search trends. SA’s fascination with the latest gadgets is clearly evident, with the iPhone 4 topping the list of fastest rising searches from the last seven days, while Bieber only claims the number five spot. The YouTube star got SA teenyboppers in a flat spin last week, when he breezed into the country for some ‘rest and relaxation’,...

  • Mesh Potato device could dramatically lower connectivity costs

    Steve Song has spent the past two years as a fellow at the Shuttleworth Foundation, looking at ways to lower the costs of communications infrastructures. On Day 1 of the Tech4Africa conference in Johannesburg, he introduced the fruits of his labour to a captive audience, the Mesh Potato, a low cost wireless mesh device that you can also plug into a normal phone to provide cheap and simple connectivity. During his presentation, Song made a passionate plea for lowering the costs of communication in Africa, arguing that innovation will never take place until, in the words of Clay Shirky, we...

  • Vuvuzela iPhone app now a world-wide top seller

    A Dutch mobile development company has shot to fame (or notoriety depending on your point of view) for building a Vuvuzela iPhone app that has quickly become the number one downloaded app in many parts of the world. Love them or hate them -- everyone will agree that the Vuvuzela has made the FIFA World Cup in South Africa the loudest in the tournament's history. Everyone has caught onto the Vuvu bandwagon, and sales around the world are skyrocketing. In the UK, Tesco’s recently reported sales of one Vuvuzela every 20 seconds during one of the recent England games. But...