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  • Windows 8 is touch and tablet tastic

    Microsoft pulled back the curtain on version eight of its Windows operating system that has been designed for the new touch, swipe, pinch and prod world of touch-screen devices, whether tablets, notebooks or desktops. Windows division president Steven Sinofsky boasted about the diverse types of hardware that Windows 8 will run after its official release, stressing tablets in particular. Sinofsky was part of a Microsoft team that provided an in-depth look at Windows 8 to software developers at a BUILD conference the US technology giant kicked off in Southern California. "We re-imagined Windows," Sinofsky said. "From the chipset to the user experience, Windows...

  • Facebook automates picking your real friends

    For those mystified by how Facebook chooses which of your friends to anoint as your nearest and dearest, the ones whose updates you most desire to be peppered with: it seems that it was, basically, random all along. At least it must be, as Facebook has just taken the covers off "smart lists" that automatically sort friends into categories and prioritize news from those dearest to members of the world's largest online social network. The rollout of smart lists commences on Wednesday and comes as rival Google+ seeks to win over users by providing sharing in "circles" that mirror real-world...

  • Nintendo throws games at sinking 3DS

    Nintendo unveiled a string of new software titles at a highly anticipated Tokyo trade show as it attempts to boost sales and reignite interest in its struggling 3DS handheld games console. Nintendo shares however tumbled more than 5 percent on the Osaka bourse with investors underwhelmed by the video game giant's attempt to boost the 3DS, after it slashed the console's price by up to 40 percent six months after launch. The company will also strengthen the functions of the console to enable its camera to take 3D movies, while releasing a pink-coloured version in what it said was an effort...

  • Review: Tunebug Vibe stalks flat surfaces for sweet music

    Imagine you're somewhere fairly quiet. Your den on a Sunday afternoon. A cubicle in an empty office*. A hotel room in a strange city. You only have your phone to play music on, and it's got a sucky built-in speaker. You don't want to wear headphones. Plug the Tunebug Vibe into its headphone socket and make its sound output a bazillion times better. Remembering that this massive, massive number of 'a bazillion' is calculated off a low base (phone speakers' outputs are generally rated at about SFA**) so while the Tunebug is way better, don't get your hopes up of...

  • Top 5 gaming laptops you should want

    Laptops can be divided into three rough and ready categories: casual, business and gaming. Casual laptops are often fragile and sometimes barely as powerful as a tablet. Business models are often tough and fast, but lack the meatier graphics processors to satisfy the hungry gaming market. So the niche of gaming laptops was born -- and is taking off. Buyers are starting to cotton on to the potential of gaming laptops, and bigger markets means less expensive models are emerging. Today we are not going to bury you in stats, we are going to show you why you want one....

  • Motorola releases EX225: its first Facebook phone

    Not much is known about it, but we do know it's called the Motorola EX225 and marks the mobile giant’s latest foray into social gadgets. Motorola is seemingly forgetting the mistakes it made with the Motoblur and instead going head to head with mobile phones such as the HTC ChaCha and the recently launched Vodafone Blu 555 by also adding a dedicated Facebook button. The phone will be socially connected, with Facebook features deeply integrated into the handset. The Facebook button is a customisable input which allows for one-touch status updates, instant link posting and so on. Other features...

  • Congress fiddles while patents burn us

    American politicos both Republican and Democrat agreed that something had to be done about patents, and the costly, innovation-choking mess they were making of American success. The new America Invents Act represents the most sweeping changes to the US' law in decades, but the bill is not expected to end the courtroom wrangling between technology giants. Experts rated it as pretty good tinkering, but not game-changing. "My feeling is that it won't change the dynamics much of the ongoing patent wars," said Roger Kay of Endpoint Technologies Associates. "The problem is with patents in general, in that there's way too...

  • App of the week: Official Rugby World Cup 2011 App

    This week I take a look at the Official Rugby World Cup 2011 App, a resource rich and very informative app that I would happily pay a couple of dollars for. This one is free. Win! A mecca for adrenalin junkies, panicky expats from all over the world and home of the All Blacks rugby team, New Zealand is a beautiful little country in the Pacific Ocean that has a helluvalot going for it. Lovely beaches, hobbits, active volcanoes, Rhys Darby and deep-fried Mars Bars are just some of the wonderful experiences you can have in the land of the...

  • Video Review: Samsung NX11

    Here is our video review of the NX11. It's a surprisingly competent piece of camera kit; well thought out and fast handling. Changeable lens from wide to long tele, fairly compact, and we like the depth of field preview button. Not only do you get a healthy 14.4MP, but the larger sensor improves lower light shooting and a lets you choose a shallow depth of field if you want to blur the background. Shows class.

  • Windows-based Galaxy tab out next week?

    A report from the Korea Economic Daily says Samsung has teamed up with Microsoft to make a new tablet computer powered by Windows 8. Citing an industry source, it said the new tab would be unveiled at Microsoft's BUILD developers' conference in California next week from September 13-16. "This new product manufactured by Samsung will be the company's first collaboration with Microsoft in its hardware devices," it quoted the source as saying. A Samsung Electronics spokesman declined to comment. Analysts say Samsung is trying to diversify the operating systems of its smartphones and tablet PCs beyond Google's Android system, on which it...