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Disgo 8400G Android tablet

Review: Disgo 8400G 7.9in Android tablet

A 7.9in Jelly Bean Android tablet with 3G connectivity for £150? There has to be a catch, right? Absolutely. The catch with the Disgo 8400G is that you’ve probably never heard of the company before... Now, this could mean you’ll be ahead of the game with the next big thing in affordable fondleslabs if you bought one. However, …
Bob Dormon, 22 Apr 2013
NetAtmo Urban Weather Station

Review: NetAtmo Urban Weather Station

Do we need a new obsession? Isn’t Facebook and Twitter enough for most folk? Some argue the British are obsessed about the weather. It’s hardly surprising we talk about it all the time, the weather here changes so much, it never fails to be topical. Well that’s how it used to be. Lately, Blighty has been blighted by a godawful …
Bob Dormon, 19 Apr 2013
TomTom Runner GPS watch

TomTom brandishes new strap-on in Amsterdam: The wristnav

Satnav maker TomTom guided the press - along with automotive and retail partners from all corners of the globe - to Amsterdam on Tuesday for the launch of its next gen satnavs and a new sporty lifestyle product range. The company has form with fitness gear, having teamed up with Nike to deliver its strap-on range of Nike+ GPS …
Bob Dormon, 18 Apr 2013
Kobo Aura HD E Ink reader

Kobo strikes new match against Kindle: The Aura HD e-reader

Kobo gathered the great and the good from publishing and distribution in London yesterday to launch its new high-res e-ink reader, the Aura HD. Michael Serbinis, Kobo CEO, said the company asked 10,000 book lovers for the features a perfect e-reader should have. While the Kobo Aura HD probably doesn't match all the survey …
Bob Dormon, 16 Apr 2013
Oblivion, the movie drone

Movie review: Oblivion

When the film Oblivion was mentioned in the office recently, my first thoughts were that it was a prequel to The Hangover series. I couldn’t have been more wrong... or was I? After all, this Tom Cruise sci-fi caper has loss of memory as one of its key themes, which, booze fueled forays aside, immediately has me thinking of some …
Bob Dormon, 13 Apr 2013
Kobo Arc 7in Android AnTuTu results and format warning

Review: Kobo Arc Android tablet

As pocketable Android tablets gather momentum and e-reader manufacturers look to offer a more flexible platform, the twilight zone where both meet is certainly looking lively. A criticism of Amazon’s Kindle Fire e-book-meets-Android offerings is the company’s imposition of a walled garden for installing apps: you have to …
Bob Dormon, 10 Apr 2013
HP ElitePad 900 Windows 8 Pro tablet

Review: HP ElitePad 900 Atom tablet

If HP’s ElitePad 900 is anything to go by, not everybody expects a business Windows 8 Pro Atom tablet to be a pocketable wafer. You only have to hold it in your hand to get the impression that this model has been built for endurance rather than designed as a fashion accessory. That’s not to say that it doesn’t look good, quite …
Bob Dormon, 08 Apr 2013
Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2 Modern UI

Review: Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2

I’ve tried out quite a few variations on the Windows 8 theme just lately – touchscreen notebooks mainly – but I’ve been dabbling with Boot Camp and virtual machine incarnations on the desktop too but without the finger friendliness. So trying out Lenovo’s business-centric ThinkPad Tablet 2 seemed like it would be an easy …
Bob Dormon, 28 Mar 2013
Cisco El Reg TelePresence

Whatever happened to telepresence? From $2.5m deals to free iPad apps

Cast your mind back nearly 10 years and high-end videoconferencing with its eye-watering price was being touted as the substitute for the corporate jet. At the time, having remote video streams to view your conference room was a big deal that involved an awful lot of looking after and a continuous investment each month for the …
Bob Dormon, 20 Mar 2013
Toshiba Satellite U920T Ultrabook

Review: Toshiba Satellite U920T Ultrabook

Whatever you might think about Windows 8, when it comes to taking the top down on the new ranges of convertible laptops, it’s certainly not boring. Every single one I’ve encountered so far has a different take on how to make the laptop-tablet duo dance work and Toshiba’s Satellite U920T Ultrabook offers yet another approach. …
Bob Dormon, 05 Mar 2013
Sony Vaio Duo 11

Review: Sony Vaio Duo 11 Ultrabook

The other day, a friend sent me a Picasa link to photos he'd taken at a recent vintage motorcycle show. It was a wide ranging display of classic engineering imagination put to work to power a rider on two wheels. Similarly, it’s those variations on a theme that Windows 8 has spurred among mainstream computer makers, as they all …
Bob Dormon, 26 Feb 2013
BRIT Awards 2013 pass

From stage to stream: The unseen tech at the BRIT Awards 2013

If you think you know all about the O2 Arena having visited it when it was called the Millennium Dome, then think again. When the site was sold to entertainment biz AEG in 2004, it was gutted and turned into a concert venue; all that remains of the original structure is the tent. Today, its owners claim it’s the busiest live …
Bob Dormon, 20 Feb 2013
BT Openreach van

So: 6,500 Win 8 laptops later, how are BT's field engineers coping?

An unheard-of decline in PC sales figures since launch, a grumbling press and a user base that struggles without a touchscreen: Windows 8 is easy to take a swipe at. Yet BT announced in November last year it was deploying 5,900 Win 8 Panasonic Toughbooks for its "last mile" Openreach division – the engineers who walk the line …
Bob Dormon, 30 Jan 2013
Steve Jobs and the Apple Lisa

Happy birthday, Lisa: Apple's slow but heavy workhorse turns 30

Read a press release from Apple in the 1990s and it'll end with something along the lines of: “Apple ignited the personal computer revolution in the 1970s with the Apple II and reinvented the personal computer in the 1980s with the Macintosh.” All of which is true up to a point, but the statement does overlook the product that …
Bob Dormon, 18 Jan 2013
Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 Ultrabook

Review: Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 Windows 8 convertible Ultrabook

To be fair to Lenovo, reviewing the IdeaPad Yoga shouldn't really be all about Windows 8. After all, this touchscreen Ultrabook – that bends over backwards to become a fully fledged tablet – is a well crafted piece of hardware with engineering merits of its own. So what, if it runs Windows 8? So do a lot of PCs these days. The …
Bob Dormon, 11 Jan 2013
Landmice Aston Martin wireless mouse

Ten... tech stocking stuffers

Stuck for ideas for someone who has everything or just in need of inspiration to top up a stack of gifts you already have? It's certainly tricky sorting out gifts that are going to please over those that will be destined for eBay come the New Year. So here we have a bit of mixed bag – or should that be Santa's sack? – ranging …
Bob Dormon, 19 Dec 2012
Apple iMac 21.5in late 2012

Review: Apple iMac 21.5in late 2012

I'm a sitting behind a 2010 iMac. You know, it's one with the dodgy Seagate hard drives that Apple is replacing en masse. I must get this sorted soon, but it hasn't died ye—. Apple iMac 21.5in late 2012 Long time no see: Apple's late 2012 21.5in iMac Now I'm sitting behind a very late 2012 iMac. It's the super slim one that's …
Bob Dormon, 12 Dec 2012
Licence graphic

Adobe demands 7,000 years a day from humankind

I'm not a very good liar, I haven't got the memory for it, which is why it always pricks my conscience whenever I tick the yes box to the prompt "I have read and understood…" when installing software. I am, of course, fibbing. I never read a word. In fact, even though we all tick yes to these agreements every day, unless you're …
Bob Dormon, 04 Dec 2012
iConnectMIDI

MIDI: 30 years old... almost

Despite rumours to the contrary, MIDI is not 30 years old today. The concept is older and its actual adoption as an industry standard gets its birthday next summer. Yet as industry standards go, it’s certainly been a robust one. As with a lot of technology standards – remember draft-n Wi-Fi? – manufacturers don't want to hang …
Bob Dormon, 28 Nov 2012
Griffin Technology StompBox guitar pedalboard for iOS

Griffin StompBox iOS pedalboard review

Music making on Apple's iOS devices has long since migrated from mere display driven ditties to a range of additional hardware better suited to musicians. Alesis, Digitech and IK Multimedia, to name a few, are known music technology brands working the iOS instrument dock market. Nowadays, mainstream iDevice accessory vendors, …
Bob Dormon, 04 Oct 2012
TalkTalk YouView set top box launch

TalkTalk's YouView box gets Ab Fab reception

UK telecoms provider TalkTalk added YouView IPTV to its product portfolio in London today with the release of its own set top box. Although made by Huawei, the telco had a hand in its interface design and offers it free to all its Plus package customers. TalkTalk YouView set top box launch TalkTalk's STB is Huawei built but the …
Bob Dormon, 27 Sep 2012
Viewsonic

Viewsonic 22in Android 'tablet' hands-on review

There was birthday cake aplenty at Viewsonic’s 25th anniversary event in London today that also saw the introduction of three new products covering an innovative range of display options. Viewsonic VSD220 Smart Display Viewsonic's VSD220 Smart Display: 22in fondleslab, anyone? The main attraction was the VSD220 Smart Display …
Bob Dormon, 11 Sep 2012
Samsung Galaxy Note 2 Android smartphone hands-on review

Samsung Galaxy Note 2 hands-on review

Samsung’s big idea, well, big phone actually, has not only spawned the 10in Galaxy Note but, at IFA, the company announced the Galaxy Note II successor to its original 5in stylophone stylus phone. It seems that if you add a pen to a touchscreen device these days, then it acts as insurance that you haven’t copied from Apple. Note …
Bob Dormon, 04 Sep 2012
Sony Vaio 11 Duo hybrid PC Ultrabook

Sony Vaio 11 Duo hybrid PC hands on review

Examples of Windows 8 tablet plus detachable keyboard combo devices were all over IFA like a rash. However, Sony’s Vaio Duo 11 has a different approach that keeps the two components together. There are advantages and disadvantages to this arrangement, whichever way you look at it. Great, I’ll never lose that keyboard... mmmh, …
Bob Dormon, 03 Sep 2012
LG EA93 21:9 monitor

Hands on with LG's 21:9 monitors

With so many telly boxes out there, it seems likely an on-board tuner on the TV itself will become a thing of the past in the not too distant. Perhaps LG’s EA93 21:9 aspect monitor, announced at IFA, offers a clue to the shape of things to come. LG EA93 21:9 monitor A 29in monitor touting a 2560 x 1080-pixel resolution it may …
Bob Dormon, 31 Aug 2012
HP Envy X2

Hands on with the HP Envy X2

The tablet plus keyboard combo looks set to be a prominent vehicle in getting Windows 8 into the hands of punters. Along with the new OS comes a slightly different form factor too with 11.6in keyblets from Samsung – its Ativ Smart PCs play this game with Core i5 and Atom CPU options – and HP has its own Atom-powered Envy X2 …
Bob Dormon, 31 Aug 2012
The Register breaking news

If you can't take the Samsung, get out of the kitchen

Samsung’s IFA keynote was true to form, some might say. Although the company had "a different script" with its presentation style, it did seem to have copied been influenced by the recent UK Olympic opening ceremony, given its theatricalities. Samsung's head honcho and chief wizard of the day, Boo-Keun Yoon, consumer electronics …
Bob Dormon, 30 Aug 2012
The Register breaking news

Samsung readies handheld releases for Windows 8

At the Mobile Unpacked event in Berlin last night, Samsung showed off its Windows 8 handheld devices that appear in its new Ativ range of computing products that all feature touchscreen functionality. Samsung Ativ tablet The Windows RT Ativ Tab is a 10.1in fondleslab with a 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor with 2GB …
Bob Dormon, 30 Aug 2012
Amazon Kindle Touch e-book reader

Amazon Kindle Touch Wi-Fi eBook reader review

Having so many unread books at home, the Amazon Kindle and its numerous variants never really captured my imagination. I just wasn’t that fussed about e-Books and using them was a slow burn, starting with iBooks on my iPhone – I’m blessed with good eyesight – followed by musing over tomes on an iPad 2. Amazon Kindle Touch e- …
Bob Dormon, 09 Aug 2012
Pure Sensia 200D Connect

Pure Stream takes on AirPlay

Pure’s Sensia 200D Connect has been on its web site for a while, but now you can actually buy one. This latest incarnation of the company’s touchscreen Wi-Fi radio is a significant revamp on the original Sensia and showcases Pure Stream, which enables content to play wirelessly from Android and iOS devices. It’s an obvious take …
Bob Dormon, 19 Jul 2012
Pure Contour 200i Air AirPlay wireless music system

Pure Contour 200i Air wireless music system

Sometimes, the only way to appreciate what a new technology or product can do for you is to actually try it. So when Pure dropped by the office and left a Contour 200i Air – its latest AirPlay savvy wireless music system – I felt dutybound to use it. Pure Contour 200i Air AirPlay wireless music system Pure Contour 200i Air …
Bob Dormon, 12 Jul 2012
Samsung Chromebox Series 3 XE300M22 Chrome OS cloud computer

Review: Samsung Chromebox

Moan, moan, moan: that’s how I suspected this review would come across as I pondered on my initial impressions of Samsung’s Chromebox – its Mac Mini-styled desktop computer that runs Google’s Chrome OS. You know, the online operating system that turns your computer into paperweight when there’s no internet connection. And then I …
Bob Dormon, 05 Jul 2012
Nokia 808 Symbian 3 camera phone

Hands on with Nokia's 808 41Mp camphone

If a company needed some luck right now, then Nokia would certainly fit the bill. Having partnered with Microsoft to deliver a new range of smartphones based on Windows Phone 7, it consequently shares a platform with the likes of HTC and Samsung. Still, Nokia is thinking lucky because it reckons it can deliver services on …
Bob Dormon, 28 May 2012
Nikon D3200 DSLR camera

Hands on with the Nikon D3200 DSLR

The great and the good were out in force at Nikon’s London press launch this week of its latest entry-level DSLR, the D3200. Boasting a new 24.2Mp DX format CMOS sensor, the camera also bags an Expeed 3 processor – the same imaging engine featured on the Nikon D4, the company’s flagship shooter. Nikon D3200 DSLR camera Indeed …
Bob Dormon, 19 Apr 2012
Digitech iPB-10 guitar effects pedalboard for iPad

Digitech iPB-10 guitar effects pedalboard for iPad

When the Digitech iPB-10 arrived, I duly dispatched an e-mail to a muso mate with a link to this ultimate iPad guitar pedalboard. The wag replied: Nice machine you're reviewing, but I don't know whether 87 pedals, 54 amps and 26 cabinets is quite enough for me... Digitech iPB-10 guitar effects pedalboard for iPad Heavy metal: …
Bob Dormon, 29 Mar 2012
Lantronix xPrintServer

Lantronix xPrintServer

As far a tech goes, my encounter with the Lantronix xPrintServer was somewhat unusual. This fag packet of a device plumbs into your network and enables an iPhone, iPad or even an iPod Touch to access the local printers, assuming there’s a Wi-Fi access point on the same subnet. There’s no need to track down an AirPrint compatible …
Bob Dormon, 20 Feb 2012
Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook

Dell debuts shrunken Ultrabook

CES 2012 Week Although Intel has been busy faking Ultrabook gaming demos, Dell has been busy working on the real deal. At CES the Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook was unveiled – touted as a “13.3in display machine in near 11-inch form factor”. Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook It sounds a bit TARDIS, but compared with both the Asus Zenbook UX31E …
Bob Dormon, 11 Jan 2012
Nikon 1 J1 compact camera

2011's Best... compact cameras

2011 was the year when compact system cameras (CSC) really began to hit their stride. Late to this year’s party were the Nikon 1 J1 and V1 models, but we’re still waiting to on Canon to show its hand in this arena. More to the point, Canon has yet to deliver a successor to its revered PowerShot G12 which is showing its age now. …
Bob Dormon, 20 Dec 2011
Nikon D7000

2011's Best... DSLRs

While few would argue that a DSLR offers the best combination of features, performance and image quality, 2011 didn’t really set the world alight with new models. For the most part manufacturers patched holes in their respective ranges, to provide a full spectrum of models to suit both budgets and ability. A couple of years ago …
Bob Dormon, 16 Dec 2011
Prada Phone by LG 3.0

Prada and LG peg up third fashion phone

The tech meets trendsetter partnership between the fashion tour de force Prada and Korean electronics giant LG continues where others have failed. Indeed, that was the message both companies were pleased to convey as the third Prada phone by LG was unveiled with some seriousness at Claridges in London yesterday. Prada Phone by …
Bob Dormon, 15 Dec 2011
Ensoniq Mirage DSK keyboard sampler

How digital audio ate itself ... and the music biz

In the first part of this series, we looked at how digital audio emerged in the studio, going beyond its Compact Disc domestic debut. As Moore’s law impacted on the cost of digital audio recording, studio techniques were emerging to add colour to this transparent medium – first in hardware, then in software. Digital signal …
Bob Dormon, 29 Nov 2011
Mitsubishi_X-880 32-track_ProDigi recorder

How digital audio ate itself and the music industry

Digital audio began life with high ideals and worthy engineering feats, with its extended dynamic range came the promise of noise-free recording. This is a story of how it first charmed and then choked the industry it was designed to enhance. HHB Digital Information Exchange agenda and newsletter 1987 1987 DIE roster and HHB …
Bob Dormon, 24 Nov 2011
Windows Phone 7

Updating to Windows Phone 7.5

Just like Apple iPhone users needn’t own a Mac to sync data and apply updates, Windows Phone 7 users needn’t be reliant on a PC either. To broaden the appeal of Microsoft’s latest handset OS, the company offers a Mac software alternative. Windows Phone Connector for Mac Nice to know there's an update, but what version is it? …
Bob Dormon, 25 Oct 2011
Lingo iMini DAB/FM receiver for iOS

Lingo iMini DAB/FM iOS pocket tuner

DAB radio: always a contentious topic given its cost and varying fidelity. But a DAB radio accessory for iOS devices and for £55 too? You might as well skip the rest of this waffle and head for the comments now. Go on, you know you want to. Lingo iMini DAB/FM receiver for iOS Lingo's iMini: puts DAB on your pad Ah, didn’t get …
Bob Dormon, 23 Sep 2011
M-Audio Keystation Mini 32

M-Audio Keystation Mini 32

It always pays to read the fine print, especially when it’s to be found on the bottom of a box, while on the top the label says, ‘Works with iPad’. Such is the case with M-Audio’s Keystation Mini 32, a really rather good portable keyboard controller for mobile musos and the classroom. This host powered 32-note USB keyboard isn’t …
Bob Dormon, 19 Sep 2011
Kingston Wi-Drive

Kingston Wi-Drive wireless flash storage

The lack of any direct storage expansion in Apple's iOS products has been one of the more enduring causes of complaint for those using or pondering on owning one of these devices. Kingston Technology demonstrated its idea of a workaround when it previewed the MobiSX at CES at the beginning of the year. Now in production, with a …
Bob Dormon, 08 Sep 2011
Eton Mobius iPhone 4 solar charger

Apple gives green light to Eton solar cell iPhone case

At IFA in Berlin, Eton set a shining example among the iPhone 4 portable chargers with its Mobius battery case that features a solar panel on the back. Eton Mobius iPhone 4 solar charger As is the norm with portable solar products, the panel keeps a secondary battery topped up that then offloads its power into the …
Bob Dormon, 03 Sep 2011
Acer Aspire S3 Ultrabook

Acer claims first Core-i7 Ultrabook

At IFA in Berlin today, Acer took the wraps off its first Ultrabook, the Aspire S3. At 1.3kg and 13mm thick it falls well within Intel’s 18mm max to claim this slimline performance computing marque. Acer Aspire S3 Ultrabook Also requisite is an Intel Core-i Sandy Bridge ULV CPU, with Acer making claims to be the first to …
Bob Dormon, 02 Sep 2011
Samsung NX200

Samsung unveils 20Mp EVIL shooter

At IFA today, Samsung upped the ante on the EVIL (electronic viewfinder, interchangeable lenses) marketplace by introducing the NX200, sporting a 20.3Mp APS-C CMOS sensor. Besides being a stills shooter capable with RAW support, the NX200 captures video at full HD 1080p at 30fps with stereo audio. Samsung NX200 Its …
Bob Dormon, 01 Sep 2011
Sharp 8K4K hi-res prototype TV

Sharp shows off 8K4K hi-res prototype telly

At IFA, Berlin Sharp set about wowing its press audience with a European premiere of it Super Hi-Vision 8K4K, 85in LCD TV, developed in collaboration with Japanese broadcaster NHK. Sharp 8K4K hi-res prototype TV Touted as the next-gen HD format, this telly has a knock ’em dead 7680 x 4320 resolution – 16 times higher than …
Bob Dormon, 01 Sep 2011