January 6, 2010 |
In an ambitious bid to expand its reach even to consumers on the go, Google Inc. on Tuesday unveiled the widely anticipated Nexus One smart phone as it launched a bold new business model that could shake up the mobile phone industry. The Internet giant began selling the phone -- manufactured to its specifications by a Taiwanese firm -- directly to consumers through its website rather than through retail outlets and service providers. Although initially available only with T-Mobile service, the phone could eventually be used on other networks, including Verizon Wireless and Vodafone Group in Europe.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 20, 2009 |
The U.S. manufacturers of a toxic flame retardant commonly used in television sets have agreed to phase out production under a deal with federal regulators. The retardant, known as deca, is one of a class of chemical compounds that have been found in California residents at the highest levels in the country, a consequence of widespread exposure linked to the state's strict flammability standards for furniture. Deca is a polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE), a group of flame-retardant chemicals used in the manufacture of electronic equipment, furniture cushions, upholstery textiles, carpet backings, mattresses, cars, buses, aircraft and construction materials.
December 18, 2009 |
Three-dimensional television took a big step forward Thursday with the finalization of a standard for Blu-ray disc machines. The Blu-ray Disc Assn. announced it had reached agreement on the long-awaited standard that allows for full 1080p viewing of 3-D movies on TVs. Blu-ray disc players that use the standard will be delivering two images, each in full resolution, to create the effect. Details on the first Blu-ray machines equipped for full-on 3-D are expected at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January and then be available later in the year.
December 10, 2009 |
IPhone users guilty of hogging data could see their phone bills fattening. In a presentation to investors Wednesday, AT&T's head of consumer services, Ralph de la Vega, said that just 3% of iPhone users generate 40% of the data traffic on AT&T's cellphone network. As such AT&T, the exclusive carrier of the iPhone, is likely to introduce a pricing system that would penalize heavy data users, encouraging them "to either reduce or modify their usage so they don't crowd out the other customers in those same cell sites," he said.
October 21, 2009 |
Barnes & Noble Inc., looking ahead to the next chapter in digital publishing, took the wraps off an electronic book reader, dubbed "nook." Anyone who has read Dr. Seuss' "One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish" will recall Theodor Geisel's Nook who took a look at the book on a hook. For Barnes & Noble's $259 device, the hook is its ability to let users lend their books to their friends for up to 14 days at a time. Using the LendMe feature, nook owners can send a copy of their digital titles to their friends' iPhone, iPod Touch, BlackBerry or computer.
October 2, 2009 |
Here's maybe the best reason yet to make sure your Wi-Fi connection is secure from snoopers. A French technology company called Withings has introduced the first bathroom scale with Wi-Fi capability. And if that wasn't enough, it also has an iPhone app. All you do is step on the scale, and your weight shows up on a personal Web page (hopefully, that's secure too) or the phone screen, where you can compare it with past readings. You can even get a graphic showing weight loss -- or gain -- over time.