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  • HTC Thunderbolt gets an FCC-approved teardown

    We’ve already seen the HTC Thunderbolt hit the FCC, but it’s just now getting to the good stuff now that the phone has actually been released. While it’s not exactly to iFixit levels of detail, the agency has now provided us with a reasonably good teardown of the device, which lets you see just what makes this speed demon of a phone tick. Hit up the link below for a few more pictures where this one came from.

    HTC Thunderbolt gets an FCC-approved teardown originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 11 Apr 2011 17:43:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

    Permalink   |  sourceWireless Goodness  | Email this | Comments

  • Ad-supported Kindle to ship May 3rd: saves $25, includes lot of enticement

    Here’s a scenario: what if we told you that your next Kindle could be had for $25 less than retail? What if we told you it came from the rear of a nondescript white van? Or what if we told you that you’d first need to sign up for 842 email marketing scams? Thankfully, none of those scenarios are ones we’re looking to tell you about. Instead, we’re here to introduce you to the world’s first ad-supported Kindle, going on sale within Target and Best Buy locations for $114. That represents a gentle $25 savings compared to the price of today’s cheapest Kindle, but those 2500 pennies don’t come free — you’ll be asked to endure “advertisements on the bottom of the device’s home page and on its screen savers.” Furthermore, it sets a new precedent in the gadget arena that could very well carry over to ad-discounted tablets, netbooks, PMPs, and who knows what else. At this point, Buick, Olay and Visa will be advertising, and we get the impression that said list will bloom in due time. It’s hard to say just how intrusive they’ll be, but Kindle director Jay Marine seems to think that “customers are going to love it.”

    We aren’t so sure. While it’s crystal clear that the general populace adores coupon cutting, it seems problematic to us to ship a pair of identical products that cost within $25 of one another and expect Joe Sixpack to grok the difference. In fact, we’re guessing that this will inevitably lead to consumer complaints from those who can’t figure out why their “on sale Kindle” isn’t nearly as enjoyable to read as “Bob’s Kindle… that he found during a sale.” At any rate, a demo of the new device displayed a screen saver deal “where customers would pay $10 for a $20 gift card to Amazon,” and while no ads will appear in e-books, there’s still “a clear advertisement” along the bottom of the home screen. All that said, here’s the key feature that Amazon’s seemingly overlooking: an option in the software to pay back the $25 a customer skimped on to do away with the ads on their ad-supported e-reader. Solves the buyer’s remorse problem, at least.

    Ad-supported Kindle to ship May 3rd: saves $25, includes lot of enticement originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 11 Apr 2011 17:12:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

    Permalink   |  sourceAssociated Press  | Email this | Comments

  • Sharp suspends production at its two largest LCD factories following Japanese quake
    Toshiba, Hitachi, and Panasonic already said they would shutter their liquid crystal display plants for a month following the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami that struck the country on March 11. Now, Japan’s largest exporter of LCD TVs (Sharp, for those keeping notes) has suspended production at its two biggest factories, thanks to a shortage of a gas used in the manufacturing process. The Osaka and Mie plants, which have a combined capacity of 172,000 sets per month, won’t reopen until May 6, at the earliest. Until then, the company claims it has enough TVs in its inventory to last about a month. One JP Morgan Chase analyst estimates that the company stands to lose 50 billion yen ($590 million) this fiscal year due to the freeze.

    That all seems trivial, of course, given that more than 27,000 people in Northeastern Japan are dead or missing and the country is widening its evacuation zone, all while recovering from relentless aftershocks, including one that hit yesterday. Still, the domino effect of a strangled supply chain remains relevant to us as tech journalists, particularly if a scarcity in materials has the potential to drive up prices — and affect as many kinds of products as we think it will.

    Sharp suspends production at its two largest LCD factories following Japanese quake originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 11 Apr 2011 16:56:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

    Permalink   |  sourceBusinessweek  | Email this | Comments

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