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  • Review: The Xperia Neo, shiny like a Chinese stereo

    Looking for a midrange smartphone, want Android, don’t want to shell out iPhone prices? Look no further than the Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo. Just don’t look at it too closely: sleek and modern lines, but with chrome accents that wouldn't look amiss on a 1995 Panasony clock radio. Deeply flawed, but also deeply functional - good value for money, but could be better. Now that the high end of the smartphone market is pretty much locked in a Galaxy vs iPhone vs Motorola neck-and-neck, the ding-dong battle is to crack the midrange smartphone racket. And it's all Android, here. This...

  • Gearburn Goes Daily

    From today Gearburn goes daily – every day a new smorgasbord of reviews, tech news, views and tech industry musings. We tell it like it is, we connect the threads that give you the bigger story behind the story, and we have fun doing it, because we love this stuff. Back in the saddle is launch editor Roger Hislop, with Steven Norris and Stuart Thomas carrying the load, managed by the ever-worthy managing editor, Michelle Atagana. We also have our top-drawer contributors – Martin Carstens, Ronan Steyn, Danny Greef, Rick Bosch and others. On top of this we’re kicking Gearburn...

  • Legendary assassin’s tale climaxes in final instalment

    Stealthy death-dealer Ezio Auditore takes his noble crusade to the 16th Century Ottoman Empire with the release of Ubisoft's latest Assassin's Creed game -- his last appearance as the trilogy comes to an end. In a blend of historical truth and narrative fiction, Assassin's Creed: Revelations traces Auditore's exploits in thwarting an age-old grab for global domination reaching into modern times. "Revelations" is the fourth installment in a franchise that has sold more than 31-million copies since it launched four years ago. The game is the third and last centred on Auditore. "This is the finale of the Ezio trilogy, and...

  • Japanese display panel giants huddle for warmth

    Japanese display-manufacturing giants Sony, Toshiba and Hitachi will merge their small and medium-sized liquid crystal display businesses for smartphones and tablet computers called Japan Display. Panasonic, which recently did a major restructure of its LCD manufacturing division, will also be in on the party, transferring one of its panel plants to the new company. This will create a market-dominating giant to rival current leaders Sharp and stave off competition from Samsung and China’s Chimei Innolux. The move, first mooted in August this year, will be live by late 2012. The focus of the new display giant will be to create...

  • Android market share doubles

    Android has the wind behind it, and is taking over the smartphone market. More than half of the smartphones sold worldwide in the third quarter of the year were powered by Android, said technology research firm Gartner in a report just released. A total of 60.5 million Android-powered smartphones were sold in the third quarter, giving the operating system a 52.5-percent market share, up from 25.3 percent in the same quarter a year ago. For a more detailed analysis, see the Memeburn story. Nokia sold 19.5 million Symbian-based smartphones in the third quarter, but its share of the smartphone market fell to...

  • BlackBerry unveils Bold 9790, Curve 9380

    BlackBerry has unveiled two new phones designed to run on the BlackBerry 7 OS: The Bold 9790 and the Curve 9380. Bold 9790 BlackBerry describes the newest Bold as "both powerful and compact". The Bold combines a touchscreen with the traditional "tactile keyboard". BlackBerry also describes it as "powerful, full-featured and built with premium materials and finishes". The processor is meaty enough at 1GHZ and features enough onboard memory (8GB) to store ample content. As usual, power users can upgrade by adding in a 32GB memory card, the largest size the Bold 9790 supports. Curve 9380 "The first ever full-touch Curve," is what...

  • Review: Motorola Atrix – Still kicking ass 8 months on

    You could see this piece from two perspectives. It could be a belated review of the Motorola Atrix. Belated because, as the Atrix is permeating its final markets and we’re sending back our review units, the Atrix 2 is announced. Out with old, in with the new, right? Or, you could see it as a timely piece that could offer some useful buyer’s advice. The latter perspective stems from the likelihood of a reduced price on the original Atrix, which is actually not that far behind it’s newer, genetically gifted brother. The Motorola Atrix Looking past the swagger it derives from its Transformer-like...

  • Kindle Fire: The reviews are in

    Reviews for Amazon's Kindle Fire tablet are trickling in. The US$200 "iPad Killer", unveiled on 28 September, is seven inches of Android-powered goodness combined with a responsive multi-touch display. Here's what a selection of the web’s most trusted sites have to say about the device: Engadget Tim Stevens praised the price of the Kindle Fire, calling it "an achievement at US$200". He notes that while it is a perfectly useable tablet, the so-called "power users" will become frustrated with the Kindle Fire. The tablet is slightly underpowered with 512MB of memory and an 8GB solid state drive. When the battery life...

  • Skyrim, the ‘endless adventure’ released

    The numerically pleasing date of 11/11/11 held the promise of the much anticipated multi-platform release Skyrim, the fifth title in the Elder Scrolls series. Created by Bethesda Software, the same company behind Fallout 3 and Oblivion, Skyrim is the must-have title which RPG fans have been slavishly awaiting for. Between red-hot releases such as Modern Warfare 3, Batman Arkham Asylum and Battlefield 3, Skyrim looks as if it will make the most impact in the hearts and minds of gamers. Skyrim is an open-world title in every sense of the word. Players are free to explore every facet of their surroundings. If...

  • Uncharted 3: Perfected, or simply polished?

    The Uncharted series is Naughty Dog’s pride and joy for good reason; it is both a technological achievement as well as a fine gaming experience. So does the third in the series improve on its predecessors, and does advanced game technology translate into enhanced gaming pleasure? Emotional Story Nathan Drake: adventurer, explorer, wise-ass. When we last saw him, he was walking off into the sunset after having found the tree of life and getting the gal. Welcome to Uncharted - a mix of legend and adventure all rooted in ‘reality’. That was Uncharted 2: Among Thieves - game of the...