If last week's FCC leak wasn't proof enough, the UK's Automated Home (via Gizmodo) has pretty much filled in all the details on an as-yet-unannounced networking accessory for the Sonos Digital Music System. The Sonos ZoneBridge BR100 will act as a wireless bridge between other ZonePlayers in the Sonos' proprietary mesh network. That's useful because the Sonos system requires at least one of its boxes to be tethered to a wired network connection. Previously, that meant one of the two included base stations of the Sonos system would need to be near an Ethernet port, or … Read more
This week marks Verizon's first attempt at enforcing its "Worry Free Guarantee," a new policy that will allow Verizon customers to change plans without having to extend their contracts. The guarantee also includes a test-drive offer that will let customers try out the Verizon service for 30 days risk-free. Customers can also receive a free phone every two years if they sign up for a calling plan of at least $34.99 plus a two-year contract renewal. It's about time Verizon got hip to this, as other carriers like T-Mobile and Alltel have allowed this for … Read more
It's been a busy week for Verizon Wireless. Just days after it released four sparkling new phones, the carrier today announced yet another model, the Samsung Gleam SC-U700. We suppose the "Gleam" name comes from the phone's silver-and-black skin. Yes, we know that black won't exactly gleam in the sunlight, but the handset also has a silver keypad. Otherwise the flip phone has a pretty standard design with a thin (0.55-inch) profile.
Inside you'll find the usual range of Verizon multimedia features. The support for EV-DO networks brings compatibility with the carrier's … Read more
After having a day to reflect on Microsoft's latest Zune offering, I began to think that perhaps the iPod vs. Zune battle is a little too obvious. Whether the iPod's position at the top of the MP3 player food chain is deserved or not, history has shown us that it will likely stay there. The real question is, "As the holidays approach, which MP3 player will come in second place?"
When it comes to interface and killer features, the challenger that Microsoft should really keep an eye on is the yet-to-be-released Samsung YP-P2 I reported on back in August. Although Samsung hasn't released pricing information yet, things could really heat up if the YP-P2 can get close to the $149 and $199 price points of the iPod Nano and Flash-based Zunes. Not only does the YP-P2 offer a 3-inch touch screen and built in Bluetooth, but it also has the advantage of not being Microsoft. Honestly, after Apple's successful "I'm a Mac" smear campaign, it's tough to convince people that Microsoft makes cool gear (unless you've got Halo 3 as bait).
We've been able to dig up two videos on YouTube that demonstrate the interface for both the Zune and Samsung YP-P2.… Read more
Welcome to my first post on the newly relaunched MP3 Insider blog. I'll be updating this blog regularly with MP3 player-related rants and predictions. If you're a fan of the MP3 Insider podcast I co-host with Jasmine France, you'll probably enjoy this blog as well. I wanted to start with something classy, but instead, let's get the ball rolling with a juicy product smackdown.
After having a day to reflect on Microsoft's latest Zune offering, I began to think that perhaps the iPod vs. Zune battle is a little too obvious. Whether the iPod's … Read more
Microsoft has officially revealed its plans for new 4GB, 8GB, and 80GB Zune MP3 players (the rumormongers nailed this one). The new players are expected out in November, priced at $149, $199, and $249, respectively. The 80GB version is only available in black, but both the 4GB and 8GB versions will be available in black, red, pink, and green. While the news hasn't exactly knocked us off our feet, there are some interesting new features worth noting (skip to the end to find out what they didn't add).
Wireless sync Zune users can now sync their player to a computer over a home Wi-Fi network. This is a feature Zune users have been asking for from the very start, so it's nice to see it finally implemented. Existing Zune users (all 1 million) will also be given the new wireless sync feature… Read more
Verizon Wireless unveiled four new handsets it plans to have on the market for the Holiday 2007 season, but unless I missed something, there wasn't an iPhone killer among them.
On Tuesday, Verizon Wireless invited various reporters, such as myself, to a hotel in New York City to take a look at new handsets expected to launch before Thanksgiving just in time for the holiday season. Company representative said that these phones were just a sampling of what's to come, with more handsets expected to hit store shelves in the next couple of months. Maybe I am being … Read more
Though there was much ado about Verizon Wireless' V Cast Mobile TV service when the carrier launched the service earlier this year, it's been eerily quiet since then. In particular, we've been waiting for new handsets beyond the original LG VX9400 and the Samsung SCH-U620.
Fortunately, our wait came to an end this morning when Verizon and Motorola announced the new Moto Rizr Z6tv. Sporting the familiar, and may we add quite attractive, Rizr slider design, the Z6tv offers a solid feature set beyond the Mobile TV support (which is quite enough by itself). You'll find Bluetooth, … Read more
I don't know about you, but I'm not a big fan of skinny phones. Oftentimes, manufacturers sacrifice a lot of usability just to get to that slim form factor. That's why I'm always happy to see softer, curvier phones that are actually comfortable to hold and use. The LG VX8350 certainly falls in that category, and the great thing is that it's also one of Verizon's most feature-rich phones. It features a 1.3-megapixel camera, a music player, and a virtual cornucopia of broadband content courtesy of Verizon's EV-DO support as well as … Read more