LG X-Power Smartphone

SureCall EZ 4G

Kingston MobileLite
Kingston MobileLite G3/Pro

App Pick - Wheel of Fortune

Tweets Get Longer

If you are feeling cramped by the 140-character limit of Twitter and wish that URLs and photos didn't eat away your character count, you'll be happy to know that on September 19, Twitter is celebrating that random day by changing the way they do things. This will be an incredible step forward and now you'll be able to be more wordy when you post media and links. Really it's not a bad thing, but I don't think this will breathe life back into twitter.

Of course, this isn't the first time that we've heard these sorts of rumors. Last September, news broke that the 140-character limit would soon be nixed in a new product offering (it wasn't). And in May of this year, Twitter itself announced that it would soon ease the character-limit rules, though it did not set a specific date for implementing the change. We reached out to Twitter for confirmation but the company declined to comment so we'll just have to wait until Monday to find out if the rumors are true.

Source: Engadget

Jen-Hsun Will Open CES 2017

NVIDIA's Jen-Hsun is opening CES 2017 with their pre-show keynote. He will take the main stage this year and I believe will be a better fit for the show than the last few keynote speakers. It's been a few years since BCCHardware has attended the pre-show keynote, but this might be enough to get me to show up.


Source: NVIDIA

Microsoft to Unveil Surface All-in-One in October

There aren't a ton of details floating in about the next Microsoft fall hardware launch, but there are a lot of rumors and a few reports of their "Cardinal" product being an all-in-one that will turn your desk into a studio. There have been reports of a desktop device with multiple screen size options and this is likely the beast. We'll find out next month if what we expect is true. Hopefully, it is a solid device that will make up for Microsoft's horrible Windown Phone directive.

My bet: Cardinal is the rumored Surface All-in-One device running Windows 10, which may come in one, two, and/or three different screen sizes (21, 24 ,or 27), as first reported by Windows Central. This may be the consumer-focused version of Microsoft's Surface Hub, as Windows Central speculated, using the Perceptive Pixel screen technology that's at the core of Surface Hub.

Source: ZDNet

iPhone 7 Accessories That Let you Charge Your Phone

If you are thinking about getting an iPhone 7 (and you should - think about it, then be grateful you have a brain and decided not to waste your money), and want to listen to music, and charge your phone at the same time - you'll need an adapter of some sort because there is only the Lightning connector on the phone. There is a growing collection of adapters, dongles and more that will make your new iPhone 7 useful. Take a look and see what you need to buy to add to your expensive phone so you can charge it in your car while you listen to music.

The first is Apple's own iPhone Lightning Dock, which offers a Lightning connection and a 3.5mm headphone jack. This option seems to be more catered towards those that will be using their device in a stationary setting, which is how you probably charge your phone. The dock will come in five colors, matching the colors of the iPhone.

Source: Neowin

Microsoft Ends Sales of Lumia This December

Sales figures show that Microsoft's Lumia Windows phones are pretty much extinct and Microsoft has confirmed that they will in fact be killing the Lumia line this December. This comes only months after they showed off Continuum, the Lumia 950 & 950XL which could have changed the coroporate world. Microsoft has been known to do this, but the real bummer here is that the director of engineering mentioned a "Surface Phone". That's bad. Microsoft will end up abandoning all Lumia owners that purchased devices in the past 6 months and push another platform that they'll kill off. Microsoft NEEDS to get out of the mobile division altogether and stick to the Surface tablet/PC.

While all this is going on, Microsoft’s Director of Engineering (Windows Fundamentals), Laura Butler, who was recently involved in several Windows Insider planning meetings for Redstone 2, has been very vocal on Twitter recently, specifically mentioning a Surface Phone. While the tweets do not give much in the way of confirmation of the device, it does fuel yet more speculation.

Source: WinBeta

Raspberry Pi Sells 10 Million Units

The $35 Raspberry Pi has just sold over 10 million units now and the number continues to grow. The thing of beauty about this little computer - other than it's price - is the fact that it is powerful enough to run a desktop OS and with the latest generation (Raspberry Pi 3), it includes WiFi, Bluetooth, a 64-bit Quad-Core CPU and enough RAM to actually be very useful. More information can be found at the link below.

"At the time, we thought our lifetime volumes might amount to ten thousand units-if we were lucky," Upton wrote. "There was no expectation that adults would use Raspberry Pi, no expectation of commercial success, and certainly no expectation that four years later we would be manufacturing tens of thousands of units a day in the UK, and exporting Raspberry Pi all over the world."

Source: Fortune

Maybe the Apple Watch isn't for everyone...

18 months ago Apple told us that the Apple Watch was for everyone and it was going to change the world. Well that didn't happen and now Apple is singing a little different tune at their latest event where they were flogging a "more affordable" version of the Apple Watch that was aimed heavily at the runners, swimmers, and hikers and everyone who wants an affordable activity tracker as apparently they must be the only ones buying smartwatches in any kind of numbers. The fact that Apple hasn't release sales numbers for the Apple Watch probably is a pretty strong indication that things haven't gone exactly as planned. Vox has the story.

The Apple Watch was going to be a status symbol, a productivity tool, a toy, and a fitness tracker — all rolled into one. Everyone from busy CEOs to busy stay-at-home parents would want one. Gradually, almost everyone would realize they needed one, and the Apple Watch could eventually become as big as the iPhone.

Samsung brings back the flip phone

Samsung has just gone back to the past with their new Galaxy Folder 2, yup that's right, a new flip phone. While it would be a better news story if I could make fun of it relentlessly, the Galaxy Folder 2 is actually very well equipped and looks pretty decent. Currently it is aimed at Asian markets, but that doesn't mean it won't be making a North American appearance at a later date. Yahoo Tech has the story.

Who doesn’t miss the satisfying snap you feel when you end a call on a flip phone? Samsung has got you covered with the Galaxy Folder 2.

That’s right, there’s a successor to 2013’s Galaxy Folder. The 2016 model runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow and retains the familiar look we’ve come to identify with Samsung’s Galaxy lineup. Except, of course, for the fact that it’s a flip phone.

Apple AirPods

When Apple holds a press conference technology news usually grinds to a half, yesterday was no exception.

The biggest story of the day was Apple removing the headphone jack in the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. This seems to be the biggest news story and conversation point as Apple has moved away from a feature that has been featured on every audio device for the past couple decades. Of course you'll be able to buy and adaptor (price not yet set), but when you use the adaptor you'll be tying up your charge port (and carrying around an adaptor).

Oh, did they mention the new AirPods are $159?

Every time a big player like Apple makes a major change people react in funny ways, but I think the headphone jack removal might be one that people have a hard time getting over. Mashable has more on the headphone jack story in an article called "No Apple, removing the headphone jack isn't couragous", which pretty much sums up the general feelings of consumers the day after the announcement.

I've been at or watched every Apple keynote and product launch event since 1998. I was there when they killed the CD drive in the Macbook Air and the 30-pin connector in the iPhone 5. I've witnessed the demise of every Macbook charger. 

And I've never heard anything as ridiculous emanate from that stage as I did Wednesday, when marketing chief Phil Schiller explained why the iPhone 7 would not have a standard 3.5mm aux cable input, better known as the headphone jack.

"It comes down to one word," Schiller said. "Courage. The courage to move on and do something better for all of us."

Schiller was thoroughly mocked for those words on Twitter, and rightly so. Courage is marching across the Edmund Pettus bridge in Selma in 1965. Courage is facing down a tank in Tiananmen Square or a machine gun nest on the beaches of Normandy. Courage, by definition, involves doing something that makes you afraid. 

And what has Apple done? It has eradicated the most successful, most widespread and best-sounding audio standard in the world in favor of its own proprietary system. 

PlayStation 4 Pro

Sony has finally made it official, the PlayStation 4 Pro will be hitting shelves November 10th and will be a beefed up version of the PS4 with 4K capabilities. The price tag at launch will be $399 and feature the 1TB hard drive in addition to faster specs all around. Microsoft of course brought out the Xbox One S which also upped the specs and will be going head to head with the PS4 Pro.

The 2016 holiday season will probably be an interesting one in the console market as two "upgraded" systems hit the shelves, I guess consumers will be the ones that determine if this is a good more or not. The Verge has the full story on the PS4 Pro launch.

Sony has officially unveiled the next big iteration of the PlayStation 4. The console — codenamed Neo, which the company discussed in brief just ahead of E3 in June — upgrades the three-year-old PS4 hardware with a faster processor, better graphics, and support for 4K resolution. It launches November 10th, and it will cost $399. It’s intended to be sold alongside the base PS4 instead of replacing it, and new games will still be playable on the older hardware. The existence of Pro, formerly called Neo, was first reported on back in March.

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