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Tag Archives: WiFi

Lookee TV Streams Internet Radio And TV

Lookee TV Desktop (Image courtesy Best-Supplier)
By Andrew Liszewski

There are countless boxes capable of streaming radio broadcasts from the internet, instead of just over-the-air, giving you access to content from all over the world. But the Lookee TV one-ups them all by adding the ability to stream video content from the internet as well. All-in-all it gives you access to over 1,400 ‘TV’ channels and over 3,000 radio stations, including podcasts.

Now enjoying that wealth of content on a 4.3-inch 480×272 pixel display is not exactly a home theater caliber experience, so the Lookee includes a standard definition video-out connection for hooking it up to a larger display. But the device seems to be targeted as a more advanced alternative to your standard alarm clock, so perhaps it’s best enjoyed bedside as an alternative to the witty banter of your local radio morning hosts. Users have the ability to search for stations by region, language, genre or custom keywords, and favorites lists can be compiled for preferred content. It of course also doubles as a desktop media player/digital photo frame with audio and video content like AVI, FLV, MKV and WMV files played from an SD card.

Even with all that functionality I’m still a little confused as to where the best place something like this could be enjoyed. On your desk at work? In the kitchen? On a bedside table? And at $199.99 it seems a little expensive for something I’m not entirely sure what to do with.

[ Lookee TV Desktop ]

Logitec’s New LAN-WH450N/GR Is A Wireless Router, Not A Wind Turbine

Logitec LAN-WH450N/GR (Image courtesy Logitec)
By Andrew Liszewski

If you’re worried you might have to stick Logitec’s new LAN-WH450N/GR wireless router outside or near a window to catch a breeze and keep it powered, don’t be. What looks like blades on a wind turbine is actually its tri-tenna design which supposedly lets this IEEE802.11 n/a/g/b router achieve speeds of up to 450Mbps (theoretical value) when using compatible devices. It’s also got gigabit ethernet on board if you prefer to go the more reliable wired route, all the standard wireless security methods you’d expect to find on a wifi router these days and will be available mid-April for ~$230 (¥19,000).

[ Logitech LAN-WH450N/GR ] VIA [ Akihabara News ]

D-Link Releases A Couple Of New Tiny Wifi Adapters

D-Link Wifi Adapters (Images courtesy D-Link)
By Andrew Liszewski

If your aging desktop or laptop is starting to feel a little dated, particularly when it comes to wifi speeds, an easy way to bring it up to modern standards without having to remove a single screw is through a USB wireless adapter. And if something unobtrusive is what you’re after, last week D-Link released a couple of new wifi adapters with minimal footprints.

The DWA-131 Wireless N Nano USB Adapter, aka the ‘larger’ of the two pictured above, works on IEEE 802.11n or ‘g’ networks and features 11n technology for speeds up to 300Mbps. Its dime-sized built-in antenna also provides for a greater range, and uses the company’s ‘Intelligent Antenna Technology’ to circumvent dead spots and interference by broadcasting multiple signals at the same time. The DWA-121 Wireless N 150 Pico USB Adapter is the smaller of the two pictured above, and offers mostly the same features as the DWA-131 though with speeds reduced to 150 Mbps, and obviously a more limited range given its minimally sized antenna. Both are currently available directly from D-Link for $49.99.

[ D-Link DWA-131 & DWA-121 ] VIA [ The Gadgeteer ]

Mini LED Projector With Built-in Wifi

Mini Projector with Wifi + Wireless Remote (Image courtesy Chinavasion)
By Andrew Liszewski

Were we in the market for a pocket-sized projector we’d probably be eyeing the AAXA L1 Laser Pico Projector we reviewed back in the Summer. But admittedly it’s lacking a couple of cool features that this LED-based compact projector has. Like Wifi and that snazzy little wireless keyboard. Powered by a Linux-based custom OS the projector doesn’t really have a full-fledged desktop UI, but it does allow you to access online photo galleries and videos from sources like YouTube, in addition to offline content from an SD card or a USB flash drive.

Chinavasion is currently selling it for just north of $200, which isn’t that expensive. Just keep in mind you’ll have to settle for 640×480 VGA resolution, a limited 10 lumens of brightness and a maximum of 2 hours of battery life, presumably when using it as sparingly as possible. In terms of file format support it’s pretty robust, happily playing MPEG1, 2 & 4 files, VOBs and DIVX/XVID clips, and the included remote makes entering a wifi password far easier than with with the projector’s limited buttons. Oh and that fancy mini tripod is included too, which from my experience will come in really handy.

[ Mini Projector with Wifi + Wireless Remote ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]

OhGizmo! Review – Cisco Valet Plus M20 & Linksys E3000 Wireless Routers

Cisco Valet Plus M20 & Linksys E3000 Wireless Routers (Images courtesy Cisco)
By Andrew Liszewski

I made mention of it a couple of weeks ago, but unless you’re an IT type who hasn’t been completely demoralized by the job, it’s really hard to get excited about wireless routers. In fact, I think I’d be more eager to research and shop for washing machines and dryers than a wireless router. But in an age of laptops, iPads and other portable devices, a wireless router is pretty much a must-have accessory for any home with internet access.

But given how tech illiterate the majority of the world’s computer users are, a wireless router can be a nightmare for anyone who serves as the unofficial tech support for their friends and family. Thankfully someone, somewhere at Cisco has suffered the same fate, and as a result the company has done quite a bit to make the latest generation of their wireless routers extremely user-friendly. After playing with a couple of their models for the past week I would be completely confident in handing my parents one of these routers and then walking away, knowing that I wouldn’t receive a single tech support phone call while they set it up and got it running. And if you’re curious just how easy Cisco has made the setup process, you can check out my full review after the jump.

Continue Reading

Cisco Valet And Linksys E-Series Routers Now Available In Canada

Cisco Valet And Linksys E-Series Routers (Images courtesy Cisco)
By Andrew Liszewski

It’s hard for even IT professionals to get excited about a wireless router, since arguably they all tend to offer similar functionality. You plug in your modem, configure a few security settings, and you can then enjoy the internet without any wires. But believe it or not, Cisco’s Linksys E-Series and Valet wireless routers, which are now available in Canada, have a lot to get excited about, particularly if you serve as your family’s primary source of tech support. Both the Linksys and Valet routers provide the same level of configurability you’re used to, but thanks to the included Cisco Connect software, even consumers without a background in IT should have no trouble setting them up or connecting their PCs.

In fact the Valet routers in particular are designed to be as consumer-friendly as possible. They don’t even feature the term ‘router’ anywhere on the packaging, and come with an Easy Setup USB flash drive that makes configuring the router and your PCs almost as easy as plug-and-play. But besides ease-of-use, both routers also offer some unique consumer oriented features I really like such as the ability to setup up a guest network with a unique password and custom limitations (time limits, blocking nefarious sites etc.) so visiting friends don’t have access to your primary network. I’ll actually be posting a review of a couple of these new routers next week (hopefully) so stay tuned if you’re in the market for a new one, since they’re definitely worth considering from what I’ve seen.

[ Cisco Valet & Linksys E-Series Routers ]

Canadian pricing details and additional product information is included after the jump for my peers ‘up north.’ Continue Reading

Free Unlimited Wi-Fi Coming To Starbucks

By Chris Scott Barr

Free Wi-Fi seems like one of those luxuries that is slowly spreading like wild fire. Yet there are times where you can’t find it to save your life. Sure, there’s a Starbucks on every corner, but you have to mess with one of their cards if you want your internet access. Well, at least you do until next month.

Starting July 1st Starbucks is throwing open the doors on their Wi-Fi service. You’ll be able to enjoy free access for as long as you like (provided you’re still sipping on their overpriced coffee). Just sit down, click on the network and you’re ready to roll. No more dealing with their cards, or AT&T’s login. They’re also going to be launching some sort of Starbucks Digital Network that will give you access to exclusive content, community news and local volunteer opportunities. But honestly, the free Wi-Fi is what’s really important here.

[ Starbucks ]

Soyntec Wiffinder Bags Feature (You Guessed It) Built-in Wi-Fi Detectors

Soyntec Wiffinder Bags (Image courtesy Soyntec)
By Andrew Liszewski

Apparently there’s still a market for Wi-Fi detectors, so much so that a company called Soyntec actually builds them into the laptop bags and backpacks in their Wiffinder line. A small LCD on the outside of the bags usually shows just the current time, but a push of a button will tell you if there are any Wi-Fi networks nearby, and their signal strength. It doesn’t seem to indicate whether or not the Wi-Fi signals are encrypted, which is a pretty vital piece of info, so I’ll let you make the call on whether or not this feature makes the ~$47 bags worthwhile.

[ Soyntec Wiffinder Bags ] VIA [ Gear Diary ]

SIMFi Turns 3G Into WiFi, Makes Too Much Sense To Ever Happen

wifi_simBy Evan Ackerman

WiFi? In my SIM card? It’s more likely than you think, if Sagem Orga’s SIMFi SIM card ever becomes a commercial reality, which it won’t, because it’s awesome and wireless providers aren’t. Eye-Fi showed us that you can stuff all kinds of useful things into absurdly small packages, and Sagem Orga has managed to cram a full blown WiFi router into a SIM card about the size of a hiccup. Somehow, the card taps into your phone’s data network and makes it accessible to any WiFi device:

“The new generation USIM card “SIMFi” can be inserted in any type of classic handset to act as a universal and interoperable HSPA/Wi-Fi router for any device.”

What’s that you say? I can just stick this in my phone and give internet to my laptop? Why, that would make my life so much better and more convenient and sunshine and rainbows and I won’t have to worry about forking over another sixty bucks a month so that I can check email on my phone and my laptop!

Aaaand this is why the only way we’re going to see one of these SIMFi cards is through some kind of severely restricted and ludicrously expensive carrier program. Yes, we can’t have nice things because when somebody invents one, our wireless carriers take them out back and beat them with a money brick.

I hope I’m wrong and that AT&T lets me buy a SIMFi for a realistic one time cost and stick it in my iPhone, but they won’t. We’ll let you know how many of your firstborn children you need to sell to get one of these if it ever becomes available.

[ Sagem Orga ] VIA [ SlashGear ]