The Week in Gadgets
It has been another busy week in the world of gadgets. IFA in Berlin saw the unveiling of numerous interesting gadgets – Epson’s top of the range projectors, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab, HP’s Envy laptops and much much more. We will be looking over a range of releases in more detail over the coming week. Apple released a slew of new iPods and finally updated the Apple TV. We had some initial thoughts here. Twitter released an iPad client with a futuristic and challenging UI. Meanwhile XBMC-based media server Plex could be built directly into DLNA enabled LG TVs. As my main moan with mainstream media servers is that they lack the elegance of XBMC, this is potentially the answer to sereval of my prayers.
Edifier, who made the affordable Opera shaped Prisma speakers have released a Soundbar USB – a micro speaker system with a specially designed bass reflection port. Doing exactly what is says on the tin, the Soundbar is a easy way to beef up underpowered laptop speakers, or provide a little more oomph to your audio when you are on the go. Yours for £49.99.
Flying in the face of Epson’s bold claims that the world (or image quality rather) is not ready for 3D projectors Sony released its first 3D home cinema projector, the VPL-VW90ES. Projecting in Full HD 1080p (of course) Sony’s headfirst push into the world of 3D continues and the VW90ES uses active shutter glasses and an upgraded version of Sony’s 240Hz Panel which is supposed to minimise cross talk. Out in Europe in November, we are keen to take a look and see if the image quality passes muster.
iPad owners keen to work some VPN magic on their tablets should head to the App store and check out the latest update to LogMeIn Ignition – one of the better remote access apps that gives access and more importantly control to your desktop or laptop from your iPad. I’ve tried quite a few remote access apps for the iPad whilst the idea sounds great, actual day to day use is next to impossible – the all powerful WIMP paradigm just doesn’t helpfully translate to the multitouch era. LogMeIn recognise this and have worked hard to simulate a multitouch workflow – supporting pinching, swiping and left and right mouse clicks. Unfortunately, you still have to “learn” how to use the app – a little hints dialogue opens on log in, reminding you of the various gestures. However, once learned (and being honest it doesn’t take all that long) it is reasonably easy to select windows, transfer files or switch views in a multiple monitor setup.
The LogMeIn Ignition for iPad and iPhone app can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store for a one-time charge of £17.99 and the update is freely available to existing Ignition owners.