Being stuck with a flat smartphone or tablet is a pain. Even being smart about charging doesn't help when you're away from home or your desk for an extended period of time. Here's a battery pack that'll charge any phone and pretty much any tablet from zero to 100 per cent charge, all while you're on the go.
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A UPS — or uninterruptible power supply — beneath your desk can be a lifesaver if your building loses electricity while you're working. However, most people don't own one because a UPS is typically designed for power-hungry desktop computers and end up being heavy and expensive — but not APC's new tiny and cheap Back-UPS Connect 70.
There's one thing that I just don't get about pre-paid. You pay someone money for something - either an amount of time to talk on a phone or an amount of data - and it's yours to do with as you see fit. Until that stuff that you paid money for expires after 30 days. Well, David Flynn over at APC tells us that Telstra is making its iPad plans a little bit better value by allowing customers to roll over excess data for an extra 30 days if you top up before your credit expires.
Now that Telstra's trying to fix its public image, is Optus trying to fill the role of telco villain? Neerav Bhatt over at APC magazine reveals that Optus – no stranger to criticism over its handling of Android – is actually blocking people purchasing paid applications for Android phones on their network.
As picked up by David Flynn at APC, Telstra CEO David Thodey has responded to a comment on the Telstra Exchange blog to announce that the company is "working with Apple to enable tethering on the iPhone", although he can't reveal any specific dates. It's kind of mind blowing that it hasn't happened already, although I'm sure it's what happens when you get two companies so focussed on doing things their own way that neither is willing to make the sacrifice necessary to bring this service to their customers.
David Flynn over at APC just loves his mini-notebooks. And it looks like they love him as well, considering that he's gotten the scoop on the Australian pricing and release dates for the S10 ultra-portable that was announced overnight.
We can expect the Ideapad S10 at the end of September for $699, which is for the 80GB model (a 160GB model is also expected).
Head over to APC for more details, including which colours won't be coming to Australia.
HP may already have an Eee PC competitor in its 2133 mini-notebook, but that $899 starting price isn't exactly catering to the Eee PC's market - people who wanta no-frills, cheap and functional mini-notebook.
That's why HP are looking at following up the 2133 with a low-cost model, sacrificing some of the durability and premium hardware and software options for price, according to APC.
If you're hanging out to get your hands on a HP-branded mini-notebook, apparently they'll be landing later this year, although there's no word on what kind of engine will be running under the hood - the 2133 currently uses the Via C7-M processor, although APC reckons HP will follow the rest of the market in moving to the new Intel Atom chip.
If you weren't too keen on Walt's review of the iPhone 3G, Dan Warne over at APC has gone and written his own review - and it takes an Australian viewpoint as well. How he got his hands on an iPhone, I have no idea. But I commend him for the effort - it's a pretty solid review. If you're wondering what he thinks of it... well, hit the link. I'm not going to rewrite it for you.
Our good friend Gus from Lifehacker has an incredible scoop over at APC - Apple will be selling movies on iTunes within the next month. His source is chief operating officer of iiNet, Mark White, who told him that despite the increased file sizes involved with movie downloads, iiNet will still have unmetered downloads for iTunes.
That means that once you've paid your money to buy the film, you don't actually have to pay again for the bandwidth required to download it.
The agreement has been in place for some time, although there's a substantial difference between downloading a few songs and downloading a movie.
Interesting opinion spot over at APCmag.com on the relative costs of PCs versus Macs. Danny Gorog shares his recent story of buying up to a Santa Rosa MacBook Pro for a net cost of $1000 after selling his old one. Mac vs PC pricing differentials are dicey at the best of times, but factoring the ability to resell easily - and get good money back - into the TCO is a valid take on things for those of us who like to rotate gear more rapidly than the typical user. In the age of eBay, it's easier than ever to resell, so it's even more valid.
Of course, I always get an emotional attachment to my notebooks. So sometimes it feels like selling family. I just can't do it. Yeah, I've gotta get over that. -Seamus Byrne
At the Google Developer Day (end of last week), a big announcement was the new Google Gears browser add-on and API (now in beta). It's set to let you run apps like GMail in an offline mode, as well as any other web app that plugs into the architecture.
This is a pretty huge step for online apps, as the elephant in the room has always been how dead they are when you are offline - and everyone is offline at one time or another.
Angus Kidman over has a good exploration of the tech over at APCmag.com. Well worth a look for anyone who is interested in reading about the future of applications. Yes, that includes you... -Seamus Byrne
Looks like our favorite Web browser is about to go mobile. Mozilla head honcho, Mitchell Baker, told the folks at APC magazine that Mozilla is working on a Firefox to go for your cellphone. It's a long-term project (meaning it's not coming out any time soon), but the goal is to allow it to work with all the add-ons and plug-ins that the full version works with. As long as it works on my smartphone, sign me up. â€“ Louis Ramirez