FUJIFILM Showcases Innovative New Range of Cameras at CES 2013

January 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Articles, News

FujiFilm has been making a comeback in the digital camera market after a stagnant few years, and their focus is marketing their cameras to the professionals who crave a simple and retro style of the good old years instead of competing with the likes of Canon and Nikon without skimping on quality and features. And at CES 2013, they announced a new range of some admittedly beautiful looking cameras. Here’s the press release:

FUJIFILM showcased a broad spectrum of photo and imaging solutions at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, from 8th-11th January, under the theme, “Fujifilm. expect INNOVATION.” FUJIFILM is committed to developing and building its innovative technologies that not only create new and advanced products, but also improve the lives of consumers and businesses everywhere.

“FUJIFILM’s core strength lies in its commitment to innovation and creating state-of-the-art cameras that enhance the lives of people around the world,” said Keitaro So, General Manager, FUJIFILM Electronics Imaging Division, MENA. “The Middle East will see a plethora of new camera ranges available in the market within the next few months, with the X100S and the X20 from the acclaimed X-Series being the highlights.”

X-Series: X100S & X20

At CES 2013, FUJIFILM showcased its award-winning, professional grade X-Series digital cameras. Developed to appeal to generations of professional photographers that appreciate true craftsmanship, the FUJIFILM X-Series digital cameras combine the highest caliber FUJINON lenses and advanced APS CMOS sensors with the latest EXR image processing technology to deliver extraordinary image quality.

The FUJIFILM X100S combines three high-performance FUJIFILM components that together defy ordinary digital camera limitations, and gives photographers a uniquely-advanced professional digital camera experience. By using FUJIFILM ‘s X-Trans CMOS II Sensor, EXR Processor II and FUJINON 23mm F2 fixed lens, the X100S is capable of the world’s fastest autofocus speeds of up to 0.08 seconds*1, and increases its image resolution by 25%*2 and reduces noise by 30%*3 over the first generation X100

The new FUJIFILM X20 digital camera improves on the highly-acclaimed FUJIFILM X10 with an advanced 12MP 2/3” X-Trans CMOS II Sensor and the EXR Processor II to deliver the world’s fastest autofocus speed of up to 0.06 seconds*4. The X20 also receives a newly-developed, advanced optical viewfinder with aDigital Trans Panel that displays critical imaging information syncing perfectly with the manual zoom lens

Bridge Cameras with Long-Zoom: HS50EXR, S8200, S8300 & SL1000

The new flagship FinePix HS50EXR features a manual zoom lens for high precision zooming over a huge 42x focal length range (24-1000mm*7) and a new ½” EXR CMOS II sensor with phase detection that achieves the world’s fastest autofocus speed in its class of just 0.05 seconds*6

There will also be to new additions to the popular long-zoom S and SL-Series lineup – the SLR styled FinePix S8200 and FinePix S8300 that each boast fast apertures of F2.9 to F6.5, an amazing Optical Image Stabilization system for excellent blur reduction, and genuine FUJINON long zoom lenses with 40x optical (S8200) and 42x optical (S8300) zoom options.

Additionally, the new FinePix SL1000 uses a newly-developed 50x optical FUJINON zoom lens (24-1200mm*1) with a fast aperture of F2.9-5.6 and a powerful new Optical Image Stabilization that reduces the effect of blurring at longer zoom lengths

Tough Camera: FinePix XP60

The all-new FinePix XP60 brings back rugged and durable for those adventurous shots that other digital cameras just cannot get. The new XP60 uses an improved 16MP CMOS sensor for enhanced image quality, a reinforced 5x FUJINON lens, and is Waterproof to 20ft (6M), Shockproof to 5ft (1.5M), Freezeproof to 14°F (-10°C) and Dustproof. The XP60 also has a newly redesigned battery door lock with double seals for enhanced protection so that users are certain to get their most adventurous shots, all with an attractive camera body that is easy to use for the whole family.

Polaroid Camera: INSTAX™ Mini

FUJIFILM showcased the newest consumer model of Instax Instant Film Cameras, including the new INSTAX™ Mini 8 and new rainbow frame-colored instant film. The all-new INSTAX Mini 8 instant film camera offers user-friendly control functions, fun style, and fantastic image quality found in the current INSTAX Mini models. The new fun and compact INSTAX Mini 8 will be available in three new exciting colors – pink, blue and yellow – along with the classic white and black models.

Atari US files for bankruptcy

January 21, 2013 by  
Filed under News

Iconic video game pioneer Atari’s U.S. operations have filed for bankruptcy. The company plans to sell all its assets in the next three to four months.  The assets in question include classic video game franchises like Pong, Centipede, Missile Command and Asteroids.

Atari also plans to sell its logo and while that may sound desperate, it’s not quite game over yet. The move to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection is designed to sever ties with its troubled French parent company Atari SA. It will also allow the company to secure independent funding to develop more games for digital and mobile platforms, which is the direction Atari US has been taking in recent years.

The video game maker has moved away from traditional retail sales to making mobile and digital versions of its classic games and licensing its logo. Releases for iOS and Android platforms have included Atari Greatest Hits and Asteroids Gunner.

In a statement, Atari said, “The Chapter 11 process constitutes the most strategic option for Atari’s U.S. operations as they look to preserve their inherent value and unlock revenue potential unrealized while under the control of Atari SA.”

Samsung Galaxy S III LTE

January 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Product of the Week

Samsung GALAXY S III just gets us. Little things, like staying awake when you look at it and keeping track of loved ones. designed for humans, it goes beyond smart and fulfills your needs by thinking as you think, acting as you act.

Some evolutions move fast. Very fast. LTE speeds currently run between 30 to 60 megabytes per second and it’s only going to get faster. Stream videos, upload your content to the cloud, or play the latest graphics-rich online games.

Check out our speed tests to see what makes the S III LTE so great.

Tech deals not to miss this DSF

There are two events that tech enthusiasts look for in the UAE- GITEX Shopper and DSF. Both of these events allow us to fulfill our lust for latest gadgets with some amount of justification such as “Honey, the deal is just too good to miss.”

To save our viewers the hassle of going all over Dubai, our team of editors visited some of the power retailers and have picked up deals that we think are worth checking out. The retailers we visited are Emax, Jacky’s Electronics, Jumbo Electronics, Plug-ins, Sharaf DG and Virgin Megastore.

We looked out for deals in five categories- TVs, Phones, Tablets, Cameras and Laptops, and, over the next few pages, have listed the models that we would pick and where to pick them from. If you have seen any other deals worth not passing up on, please feel free to add it in the comments section to help other viewers

Samsung Galaxy S III LTE speed tests

January 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Features, Smartphones, Spotlight

Samsung released the super successful Galaxy S III in the middle of last year with a model number I9300. Last month, an update was released to the S III in the UAE with a model number of I9305. There really are only two key difference between these models- first Samsung upgraded the RAM from 1GB to 2B for snappier performance when you have multiple applications running and second, the radio has been upgraded making the Galaxy S III the first official handset in the UAE operating under the 4G/LTE.

We asked Samsung to send a unit across so we could test the network speed of this updated model and that’s what we are reporting on today. We’ve already reviewed the device earlier so we’re not going to go into details but it’s worth mentioning that the unit feels snappier with the upgraded RAM and the upgrade to the latest Android version Jelly Bean. You also get the Premium Suite of apps which includes a slicker looking gallery and the ability to use multiple applications at one time- ala Galaxy Note II. Also worth mentioning is the new gray colour with a brushed look- it surely makes the S III look sexier.

Keep in mind that out of the two carriers in the UAE, Etisalat is the only one that has launched their 4G network. In fact, the Samsung Galaxy S III is the first handset that Etisalat is selling with 4G connectivity. You can buy one from them for AED 2499 and subscribe to a bundle created specifically for the S III LTE- 4GB data, 200 messages and 800 minutes of calling for AED 249 per month. So exactly how fast is the data speed on the Galaxy S III with LTE? Here are three screenshot of speedtest from our office located on Sheikh Zayed Road near Safa Park.

No points for guessing that the Samsung Galaxy S III LTE is in the left with 32Mb download speeds and 12Mb uploads. In the centre, we have the 3G/HSPA version of Galaxy S III on du with 5Mb downloads and 2.7Mb uploads while the far right shows the iPhone 5 at HSPA+ on the Etisalat Network with 7Mb downloads and 1.19Mb uploads. Besides testing from speediest, we also compared loading pages on the two Galaxy S III devices and the 4G version always completed loading the page about 30-40% faster than the 3G version of the Galaxy S III.

Do keep one thing in mind though- with the 4G network being new, you won’t necessarily find excellent coverage everywhere. However, the Galaxy S III easily falls back to HSPA+ so it’s not a matter of not having a signal- but just making sure that the 4G signal is strong enough which will only come with time as telcos add more towers that support 4G.

I also wanted to see how big of a battery impact 4G has over 3G and while I did not conduct any scientific tests, the Galaxy S III 4G lasted me about the same time as the non-4G version did so don’t expect as massive of a hit in battery life as we did when we moved from 2.5G to 3G networks a few years back.

It’s quite clear that 4G will become a standard on mobile phones and not a feature and this will happen much sooner than in took 3G to become mainstream. The speed differences between 3G and 4G are quite obvious- web pages load faster, music downloads faster and you spend a lot less time waiting for your YouTube video to start or buffer. There’s just no going back once you get used to 4G speeds and simply put, the Samsung Galaxy S III 4G is the best handset to get at the moment if you want to enjoy a super speedy mobile connection in the Middle East.

Rumor: Samsung working on its own iPad Mini?

January 21, 2013 by  
Filed under News, Tablets

According to Sammobile, Samsung is perking up on the idea of a small-scale tablet and is looking to go head-to-head with iPad Mini and Kindle Fire HD with its own 8-inch tablet.

The tablet,  apparently named Galaxy Note 8.0, will sport 1280×800 TFT display, 5MP camera on the back and 1.3MP camera in the front, 2GB of RAM, and a microSD slot for additional memory. The tablet will be launched in 2 varieties, 16GB and 32GB, as well as 3G+ WiFi and WiFi only versions. The Note 8.0 will be equipped with a massive 4600 Mah battery and the latest Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system.

The Note 8.0 will join Samsung’s already crowded lineup of Galaxy Note and Galaxy Tab tablets, but has that ever stopped anyone from making new hardware? Samsung is expected to debut Galaxy Note 8.0 at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next month.

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