The technology difference …

The technology difference between U.S. cell phones and European cell phones is amazing. Take the difference between the Nokia 8200 (U.S.) and the Nokia 8210 (Europe). They have the exact same front and look identical until you notice that the U.S. handset is nearly twice as thick. This is primarily because U.S. handsets like this come with a “tri-band” feature which usually means two digital bands and one analog. Because the US handsets need more room to put both technologies into the phones, the form factor and size increases. [via Ben Evans]

WebReview: The Myth of “Seven, Plus or Minus 2”

More adventures in bootleg DVDs: I picked up The Lord of the Rings on DVD today from a street vendor in New York City. I’m really curious as to how these bootleggers have this movie on DVD already, since it’s not supposed to be released until later this year. I popped the DVD into my Titanium Powerbook and imemdiately noticed that the video was nowhere near that of DVD quality. I suspect this particular bootleg was shot with a camcorder and then transferred to DVD before production. I haven’t watched the whole thing yet, but I did not hear any audeince noises, so perhaps this was somehow transferred to VHS somewhere and then back to DVD. I’m going to watch more of it tonight and will post a note later. If the quality isn’t worth it for me to keep the DVD, I’ll chalk it up as an interesting experience and get my $10 back by selling it on eBay.

Why don’t you just use a portable hard drive? A computer this small has no real use unless you can easily attach a full-size keyboard and use a monitor with it. But then, you might as well just call it a “portable CPU”. This is why Apple’s Titanium Powerbook is so awesome. It’s screen is big enough to use without an external monitor and its horsepower is equal to that of its bigger desktop brothers. And it’s a damn sexy laptop too. I get plenty of envious looks from my coworkers who are all stuck on Dell desktops, IBM Thinkpads (not a bad laptop in its own right) and those tiny Sony Vaios.

Let’s take a look at the innovations Apple has put into their iPod. It’s got a 5 GB hard drive that is very small. Small enough that we’ll start seeing similar hard drives in other portable computing devices. Like what happens when cell phones, digital MP3 players, and digital computing start to converge? Will we suddenly be able to stream MP3s to our cell phones, listening to your own custom playlists over headphones? What about device-to-device streaming and networking? Start looking at what’s popular in Japan and Europe where the cell networks are more advanced than here in the U.S. What’s selling there? What are people paying for? How can those trends be anticipated to sell in the U.S. market? What barriers of entry are there besides the incomaptible cellular networks in the U.S.? Yeah, too many questions, but this stuff totally intrigues me…

Posted by Cameron Barrett at February 6, 2002 07:26 PM

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