Tracey's Technology Blog

Technology news and gadget reviews relating to all of the latest consumer electronics products

05 May 2006

iPod Audio Navigation

Apple have recently released a patent for an iPod that speaks the name, genre, or any other relevant info. as you navigate through the menu's and songs



iPods are slowly getting integrated into cars, but of course there is a danger that users could accidentally crash whilst putting on "In the Air Tonight" by Phil Collins (Yes Apple, 'ColLins'- you could at least spell his name right!)

So, Apple have recently released a patent for an iPod that can overcome this danger. The iPod will tag each genre, song, artist, or any other relevant info. with their audible equivalent. So this means that when you're navigating from menu to menu, and from song to song, the iPod speaks the name of the item so you don't have to take your eyes off the road. Pretty nifty, and safe!

Related Articles
iPod Audio Navigation Patent
iPod Nano With 8Gb & 10Gb

03 May 2006

Shinco's New In-Car GPS

Shinco, the DVD manufacturer, has teamed up with Firefox.com to bring a stylish new in-car GPS unit to the UK.


Portable DVD player manufacturer Shinco obviously thought there was still a few quid left in the GPS goldmine at the entry level; because their new GM400 Voyager fits the bill.

Sporting a 4-inch screen, the GM400 Voyager is as dinky as an iPod. It has 64Mb of memory, and is powered by an ARM 200MHz chip which will last about three hours on its internal lithium-ion battery.

Inside the GM400 Voyager, you get UK maps and over 2 million points of interest. There is also the ability to buy more maps of other countries, and you also get an MP3 player included.

Its design looks pretty stylish doesn't it? It's the kind of device to buy if you enjoy getting a lot attention from your gadgets. It is priced at around £230.

Shinco Voyages Into Sat Nav - via Stuff Magazine

Napster Free Again

Napster are returning to its Copywrite-flouting early days, and are launching a new service where you are able to listen to Napster's songs and albums for free from its on-line library of over 2 million music files.

The only catch is, if you use Napster you are only able to listen to songs five times before you are asked to become a paid subscriber at Napster, or buy the song for 0.99 dollars (approximately 50p). If you don't pay, Napster will only play you a 30 second clip of the song after that.

The songs are also delivered to you at a rate of 32 kilobits per second; which is in fact lower in quality than the 128kbps typically used by Napster to stream music. Napster are clearly hoping users will upgrade to the paid service to get better sound quality, and avoid the ads.

If you use Napster's free service, you do however get free access to over 150 pre-programmed playlists, and artist profiles, and you don't need to install a separate music player!

By going back to its roots as a free service, Napster are clearly attempting to beat off increasing competition from the likes of; Yahoo Music, eMusic, MSN Music, and the leader in the digital music market; Apple's iTunes Music Store.

Having read a fair few comments on this, it looks like a lot of people will be previewing music on Napster, and buying it from Apple's iTunes; sorry Napster!

Napster is Sort Of Kind Of But Not Free Again, via Gizmondo