The week in gadgets

20 Sep 2010

A look at gadget, game and geek happenings in the week ahead.

Two new Sony Ericsson handsets

Two new handsets from the Sony Ericsson range are now available in Ireland.

The Sony Ericsson Zylo and the Sony Ericsson Spiro are both Walkman phones which fuse music with social networking. Users can check their Facebook while listening to their favourite tunes.

They also both have TrackID, which lets users access the name and artist of a track they hear playing wherever they are.

The Zylo includes the FLAC format, providing the best sound quality ever heard on a phone. It allows users to upload clips onto YouTube by two clicks and lets users share photos on Flickr and Picasa.

The Spiro comes with an FM radio and Bluetooth stereo. It, too, is a social-networking phone, allowing access to Facebook and Twitter.

The Sony Ericsson Zylo is available from Meteor in black and pink, and from O2 in silver for €119 pre pay. It’s also available from Vodafone and 3 in jazz black from €99 and can also be bought in Carphone Warehouse outlets.

The Sony Ericsson Spiro is available from O2 in black, Vodafone in black and contrast white, Meteor in black and pink and is also available in Carphone Warehouse outlets for €69.99.

Napster creates an app for iOS devices

A new app for Napster has been launched, available for the iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone.

The app allows users to save songs, albums and playlists for offline listening. It also makes recommendations and auto mixes.

While it is free to download, it requires a Napster plus Mobile Access subscription in order to use it, which costs $10 a month for US users.

Napster had attracted much controversy from 1999 to 2001, as a peer-to-peer service that allowed users to easily share MP3 files, paving the way to mass internet piracy.

It was soon shut down for copyright violation, before relaunching itself later as a subscription-based service.

Microsoft: Kinect to outsell iPad

According to Microsoft’s Kinect spokesperson Kudo Tsunoda, the Kinect will sell millions at Christmas, outselling the Apple iPad.

Speaking to Gamasutra, he noted that the preorders have been quite strong already.

“As far as what we’re looking at for holiday, this is going to be stuff that’ll blow away any of the sales you’ve seen with iPad,” said Tsunoda.

“The Xbox 360 is already selling better than the Wii and Sony right now. Kinect’s really just going to boost that to a whole new level.”

Tsunoda also said he feels the Kinect will go beyond games based on gimmicks.

“People are really surprised by the skill-based gameplay and the depth of gameplay that are in the experiences … I think those are the kinds of things that all types of gamers love,” said Tsunoda.

“People who love playing games like the same stuff. They like games that are fun; they like playing games where the more you play, the better you get. And those are things that we’re doing really well with all of the Kinect titles.”