Monday, January 30, 2012

Power Bag for Working on the Go

If you are like me you have lots of little devices that tag along with you everywhere you go. There is nothing worse than being on the road and worrying about your batteries holding out throughout the day. Wouldn’t it be cool if there was a way to charge up your phone and Ipad and Ipod and other handy devices, all while on the road? Well, now there is.

Fūl has designed the Power Bag that can carry and charge your devices. The Powerbag contains a 3000 mha battery, a 6000 mha battery or a 9000 mha battery to fit your charging needs. It also contains pockets of various sizes and connectors to charge literally thousands of different kinds of devices including USB and Apple compatible connectors. With everything inside the bag, you never have to worry about leaving another charger behind in your hotel room while you are traveling.

Other features include adjustable straps, a power button on the outside of the bag, a plug-in to charge your bag and a meter display to check on the charging. This bag truly is invaluable to the traveling techie. Power Bags comes in three different styles including backpack, messenger and briefcase and run anywhere from $140 to $300. A 3000 mha battery in the messenger style bag is only about two pounds to add to things that I carry around with me anyway, and to be able to have them all together and charged is totally worth it. Powerbags can be puchased at BestBuy, Amazon, Staples and many more locations. For more information on Powerbags please visit their website.

Short-throw projectors only require half the projection distance of traditional projectors. The projector can be placed just a foot or so from the screen. This is nice because it keeps the projector and screen near each other instead of having a long throw projector that people can accidentally block.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Researcher Adds Photovoltaic Cells to OLED Screen, Starts on Path to First Self-Sustaining Smartphone

Here is some very interesting news for you. A crafty little researcher at the London Center for Nanotechnology managed to stuff a bunch of little solar power cells behind the display of a smartphone. According to Arman Ahnood, who just unveiled his design at the Materials Research Society at the end of last year, only 36% of the light produced by an OLED display is projected straight out. The other 64% is wasted as scattered light or bleeding from the edge of the display.

Ahnood created photovoltaic cells that line the back of and sides of an OLED display in order to capture some of this 64% of wasted light. The result? Free, harvested energy that can subsequently be used to power the phone or charge the battery. In other words, you now have a nearly self-powering smartphone.

The best part is that Ahnood's cells take the form of a thin film, similar to OLED and LCD displays themselves. Ahnood's idea is to bond this photovoltaic layer to the stack of films that make up an OLED display, which would ultimately produce OLED screens that automatically harvest wasted light. In addition to that, because OLED and LCD screens are not 100% opaque, these thin photovoltaic cells will gather ambient light from overhead lights or the sun.

As of right now, Ahnood's system only consists of a supercapacitor and some circuitry and only has an 11% efficiency rating. This is very low considering that commercial photovoltaic cells are reaching 30%, but Ahnood's is free energy. Ahnood's system can currently output a total of 5 milliwatts for a 3.7" smartphone screen, which is definitely a step in the right direction.

Ahnood's next step, as well as the next step for all the other researchers at the London Center for Nanotechnology, is to experiment with designs and materials to get the efficiency up to 90%. Once they get to that point, the system could extend the life of a phone battery by a few hours. Add in some more energy harvesting technology and we could very well see smartphones that can last more than a day on a single charge.

Source: ExtremeTech - Smartphone screens with built-in solar cells
IEEE Spectrum - Solar Cells in Smartphone Screens
Engadget - Arman Ahnood teases OLED display with solar cells, idealizes the self-sustaining smartphone

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Developer Newsletter Hints at March Release Date for Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone

Nokia Lumia 900This week's 2012 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was definitely one to remember. So much new tech was on hand, serving the sole purpose of making a lot of people mad that they weren't there and eager for the coming months. One of the coolest gadgets in the smartphone realm came out of the Nokia booth in the form of the Nokia Lumia 900. The device was unveiled by Nokia CEO Stephen Elop and will run Microsoft Windows Phone 7.5. It is also the biggest and fastest smartphone to date according to Elop.

But even though Elop and Nokia divulged a lot in terms of the phone itself, what they carefully left out of the unveiling was precise information on availability and pricing of the Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone on AT&T. AT&T wasn't much help either, as they too left out any specific mention of a final release date or final pricing scheme.

A Nokia Developer Newsletter that has been circulating around the internet gives a little detail about when and where we will see this phone saying that the Nokia Lumia 900 "will become available exclusively through AT&T in March." In addition to that, netcast hosts Paul Thurrott and Mary Jo Foley from Twit.TV gathered from sources of their own that the Nokia Lumia 900 will be available come March 18, just slightly more than two months after its debut at CES 2012.

Neither of these dates were confirmed by Nokia or AT&T at CES and neither company stated anything about pricing whatsoever, leaving people something to speculate about. Between now and March 18, on the other hand, there is another big electronics show set to take place at the end of February in Barcelona. This one is quite possibly more important for mobile device makers than CES, so you can expect Microsoft, Nokia and possibly even AT&T to give us a little more information about the Lumia 900 there.

Source: Engadget - Nokia Lumia 900 Coming to retail on March 18? - Nokia Lumia 900 Expected on AT&T In March Says Dev Newsletter

Power Point Projectors
Most business class projectors will do a good job displaying your PowerPoint presentation. If you have a small presentation group, a 2000 lumen LCD projector will be able to produce a nice and clear picture. For larger audiences you should consider a 5000 lumen LCD projector.

Friday, January 6, 2012

AOC Unveils 22" 1080p USB Monitor

AOC e2251FwuAOC has just announced its new 22" USB monitor in a recent press release. The USB monitor is a stylish, full HD LED monitor that receives power and signal completely from a USB connection. Being both energy efficient and affordable, the 22" USB monitor (also known as the e2251Fwu) offers simple plug-and-play connectivity, which makes it perfect for every tech savvy road warrior out there.

The e2251Fwu is perfect for business, gaming and entertainment use with its integrated USB port and high picture quality. If you are in the habit of running multiple applications, this is definitely a product you should look into. AOC states that the 22" USB monitor should be available in February for $199 and will also be showcased at the Bellagio, Monet 3 Ballroom at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show set to take place next week in Las Vegas.

According to Marketing Manager for AOC Robert Velez, "The 22-inch USB Monitor makes multi-screen computing more practical than ever with its plug-and-play setup, cord independence and low power consumption."

The e2251Fwu is extremely light and very thin and is an LED-backlit LCD monitor that comes with full 1080p HD resolution, 20,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, 200cd/m2 brightness and a 5ms response time. The LED backlighting allows the monitor to consume 50% less energy than most monitors and the monitor itself features a removable stand that allows it to instantly transform into a digital picture frame or presentation display.

Integration with other desktop or notebook computers is easy thanks to the DisplayLink chip and the device itself is also supported by Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Mac OS X Tiger, Mac OS X Snow Leopard and Mac OS X Lion. In addition to that, Linux support is available through many standard distributions. Full specifications include:

  • USB-powered LED display

  • 250cd brightness

  • 20,000,000:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio

  • 5ms response time

  • 1,920 x 1,080 resolution at 60Hz

  • HDCP compatible

  • 10.6mm thick

  • Supported on all leading operating systems including Windows, Mac OS X and Linux

Source: Engadget - AOC reveals 22-inch, USB-powered 1080p monitor

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