Dell U2311H: 23-inch IPS LCD Monitor

Dell’s U2311H is a simply-designed (I like) 23-inch LCD monitor sporting an IPS TFT LCD and a very affordable price of US$300. The exact IPS panel is probably LG Display’s e-IPS (read LG Display (LPL) 23″ e-IPS 1080p LCD Monitor Panel). The design looks to be business oriented but the aspect ratio is 16:9, quite consumer, with a pixel format of 1920×1080. I would think business users would prefer a 16:10 with 1920×1200. Other specs include: DisplayPort, DVI, VGA, 1000:1 CR, 300 cd/m2 of brightness, 8ms GTG response time and an unfortunate CCFL backlight.

A “3-Year Premium Panel Advanced Exchange Service” is included. If the U2311H has problems that cannot be resolved over the phone Dell will ship out a replacement unit the very next business day. All you need to do is use the same box to ship out the defective one. Now that’s nice. The U2311H as well as the slightly smaller 21.5-inch U2211H has been added to the IPS LCD Monitor database. Source: Dell via electronista

4G = Video Phone Calls

HTC’s EVO 4G demo running on Sprint shows video phone calls are right around the corner, a significant development since we can’t even get a decent voice call via 3G using Skype. With the up-coming iPhone that most likely will have a front-facing camera, video phone calls will hit the masses and hopefully AT&T won’t screw things up this time. Source: Engadget

By the way, Sprint will be selling the HTC EVO 4G on June 4 for US$199 with a new two-year contract. Before all discounts the full price is $450. You’ll also need to budget for an additional $10 Premium Data add-on (no data limit) in addition to the regular data plan. Unlike Verizon’s Palm Pre Plus where you get a 5-device mobile hotspot for free, the EVO 4G’s 8-device WiFi hotspot will be a stiff $29.99. Unlike Verizon and like AT&T simultaneous voice and data is possible.

Sony Alpha NEX Pre-Order

Sony’s NEX micro-DSLRs are now up for pre-order. The NEX-5 with the 16mm pancake lens is US$649.99. The NEX-5 with an optically stabilized 18-55mm lens is $50 more at $699.99. I’m predicting aggressive price cuts from Panasonic and Olympus to be announced shortly. A DSLR-sized APS-C image sensor at these prices is a no-brainer, but I’m not buying one (read Sony NEX-5 Preview) Source: Sony

Next Generation iPhone Teardown

Taoviet has taken hold of the next generation iPhone and tore it up. An Apple-branded processor is on deck, probably the same or similar one that’s powering the iPad. This version is different than the one Gizmodo had: two screws on the bottom are gone. Looks a lot cleaner but no doubt it will be more difficult to open. This is interesting as previous generation iPhones have sported these two screws. But there are rumored stories of Steve Jobs’ hatred for screws. I don’t think we’ll be too surprised at how the next generation iPhone will look like when Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (read Apple WWDC: June 7, 2010) comes around in June.

Andy Rubin: I Just Don’t Want To Live In North Korea

When they can’t have something, people do care. Look at the way politics work. I just don’t want to live in North Korea.

This is in response to a question asking Google’s Andy Rubin, a VP for Engineering, whether consumers actually care if their mobile phone software is open or not. Maybe Rubin had a brain fart but I don’t get the connection. I personally don’t give a rip whether or not a mobile phone software is open or not. I’m going to pay for what I think I need or want. If I don’t want it or need it then I’m not going to pay for it. Do I think the iPhone is perfect? No. Will I pay for it? Probably, for the one coming out in June. Do I think Android phones are perfect? Far from. Will I pay for it? No. It’s about choice, not politics. There are so many things that I can’t have, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to get all political about it. @Rubin: Please stick to the topic of engineering at Google. Source: The New York Times

Samsung P580: 15.6-inch Business Notebook

The P580 business notebook from Samsung sports a 15.6-inch matte LCD with a 1366×768 pixel format, which is a 16:9 aspect ratio. That’s peculiar. Why would a business-oriented notebook need a decidedly consumer aspect ratio of 16:9? Business customers definitely do not need this. A more appropriate wide aspect ratio for a business notebook would be 16:10 that gives more vertical room to work on documents, slides, spreadsheets, etc. And then there’s another thing.

I think we are on the verge of resolution-independent operating systems (read “Resolution Independence“) that can take advantage of extremely high-resolution displays. And when I say resolution I mean Pixels Per Inch (PPI). With a high-PPI display we can have text and images that look about as good as those found in magazines. The P580 boasts a 100.45 PPI resolution, which is quite average, for notebook LCDs from a few years back. Today the average seems to be 110PPI or above. To get there the pixel format in a 16:9 aspect ratio should be at least 1600×900, but with a more appropriate 16:10 aspect ratio the pixel format would be 1680×1050 with a 127PPI resolution.

And then what’s with the offset keyboard? Do we really need a separate numeric keypad? Source: Engadget

The Geek Tablet from Google & Verizon

Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam confirmed that the company is working with Google on an tablet. And Marquett Smith, Verizon’s VP of Corporate Communications, added that it would be an Android OS-based tablet. If the simply-designed closed iPad is for the masses, I’m guessing the Geek Tablet from Google and Verizon will be for geeks: quite open, meaning hackable, with lots of ports and buttons (at least four on the front face). I hope hardware design is left to companies like HTC so we can look forward to beautiful Android tablets in the near future. I’m also guessing these companies will make sure Flash works very well. In terms of pricing, it will probably be subsidized by Verizon with a $30 unlimited data plan. Source: Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal

Windows Phone 7: Near-Final Screenshots

Not surprisingly, aside from the home screen and a few others, there seems to be a lot of black in the Windows Phone 7 near-final screenshots (source: Paul Thurrott’s SuperSite for Windows). I wonder if it was just the natural result of a text-oriented UI, or if it was strongly influenced by the type of display technology it will eventually be using. Where am I going with this… Well, as most of you know OLED displays consume less power compared to LCDs only when there’s a lot of black. In black areas the pixel is completely off on an OLED display and consumes almost no power. Not so in the case of LCDs as the backlight is always on*. If the Windows Phone 7 UI were to be mated to OLED display technology we could see battery life not just in terms of hours but potentially days.

* There is one recent exception to this: Pixel Qi’s 3qi display technology allows for completely turning off the backlight and getting to reflective mode resulting in significant power savings.



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