High-tech product releases announced the week ending October 13 include the world's first Google-powered HD internet TV and Blu-ray player, a Google TV set-top box, a palm-sized controller, a webcam for VoIP video calls, a selection of Microsoft's first Windows Phone 7 (WP7) devices, and a luxury phone that doubles as an (expensive) international timepiece.
The world's first Google-powered HD internet TV
Sony's Google TV aims to break down the borders between browsing the internet and watching TV, offering users the ability to consume (almost) all their multimedia on one device. The internet TV is built on Google's Android platform and uses the Google's Chrome browser for surfing the web. Expect to pay $599.99 for the 24 inch NSX-24GT1, $799.99 for the 32 inch NSX-32GT1, $999.99 for the 40 inch NSX-40GT1 and $1,399.99 for the NSX-46GT1 Sony internet TVs. Sony's internet TVs will be available for purchase from October 16.
A set-top box that provides a "full" web experience on your TV
Logitech's Google TV set-top box is set to bring internet-loving TV-addicts the Google TV experience on their current HDMI-ready TV. The Logitech Revue with Google TV is a companion box (and compatible wireless keyboard controller) that enables consumers to browse the web, stream videos from sites like YouTube, play Flash games, connect with friends on social networks and even show off photos on the biggest display in the house. Logitech Revue with Google TV will start shipping in the US before the end of October and will cost $299.
A camera that connects to your TV for VoIP video calling
Logitech also released the Logitech TV Cam, a HD video camera that enables Google TV users to make high definition (720p) video calls via their connected TV. The Logitech TV Cam has two built-in directional microphones, a wide-angle lens and a 5x digital zoom. The Logitech TV cam will sell for $149.99 and should arrive in US-based stores before the end of October.
A palm-sized controller that manages your entertainment system
Made for Google TV systems, the Logitech Mini Controller is a miniaturized keyboard with dedicated TV-watching and web-perusing buttons. The palm-sized keyboard packs in a smartphone-like back-lit QWERTY keyboard plus dedicated buttons for managing the entertainment system and a dual-mode touch pad that replaces a mouse. The Logitech Mini Controller is priced at $129.99 and is expected to start shipping before the end of October.
A vertical QWERTY slider with features for both productivity and entertainment
The Dell Venue Pro is a powerful 800x480p touchscreen device with built-in portrait keyboard and a large 4.1 inch AMOLED display. The smartphone runs on Microsoft's WP7 mobile OS and has a 5MP camera with 720p video recording, 1GB of Flash read-only memory (ROM), 8GB of internal storage, and a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor - all of which is hidden behind the device's extra-tough Gorilla Glass display. No pricing information has been announced but the device is expected to arrive in the US on November 8.
A smartphone with a huge screen and surround sound
The HTC HD7 is a widescreen touch-sensitive WP7 device with high-fidelity surround sound and a large 4.3" display. It comes with a built-in kickstand, 16GB of storage and a 5MP camera with flash. The HTC HD7 is expected to be priced at £0 on 24-month plan or £379 (€435) on O2's "Pay & Go." The device will start to roll out to selected countries around the world starting from October 21.
A smartphone built for entertaining
With its foldout kickstand and a slide-out Yamaha speaker, the HTC Surround is designed for hands-free media consumption. The 3.8 inch touchscreen device has a 5MP camera with flash, Dolby surround sound, and 16GM of onboard storage. HTC Surround costs $199.99 on 24-month plan and will start shipping on November 8.
A thin, light smartphone with enhanced photo options
The Samsung Focus has a big 4.0 inch Super AMOLED screen but weighs in at just 110g. It has a 5MP camera with additional enhanced photo options such as 'smile detector' and panoramic shots, 8GB of internal memory, and a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. The Samsung Focus is available in the US for $199.99 on 24-month plan from November 8.
A smartphone that can instantly and wirelessly share multimedia files with other devices
LG's Optimus 7 (aka the LG E900) is a touchscreen handset packed with LG-"exclusive" features such as "Play-To" DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance)-based technology, augmented reality and Voice-to-Text translation. The device comes with a 3.8 inch capacitive 800 x 400p LCD display, a 5 MP camera with LED Flash and 720p video recording, 16GB of internal memory, an accelerometer, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor. The LG Optimus 7 is due to arrive "in time for the holiday season." No price has been announced.
A horizontal QWERTY slider built for productivity.
The LG Quantum (also known as the Optimus 7Q) has been designed to help consumers get the most out of their smartphone. It ships with a 3.5 inch 800x480 touchscreen, a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard, DLNA multimedia sharing, LG-exclusive apps for augmented reality and voice recognition, a 5MP camera with 720p video recording and 16GB of internal storage. The LG Quantum is priced at $199.99 on a 24-month plan and starts shipping on November 8 in the US.
A luxury phone that tells the time in any country
Swiss luxury phone manufacturer Gresso has developed a new high-end phone that features six independent Swiss clockwork mechanisms. The front of the phone features a sapphire crystal numeric keypad. The device's technical specs are somewhat lacking for a high-end handset; the Gresso Luxor World Time phone has a screen resolution of 240 x 320 pixels, 30 MB of internal memory and a 2MP camera. The luxury phone sells for $6,000 and is available now.