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Michael Kwan

A freelance writer and tech geek from Vancouver. Find me at michaelkwan.com and follow me on Twitter @michaelkwan.

Nokia’s emergency response phone

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Think of it as the “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” phone but for muggees and kidnappees. Nokia has applied for a patent for a new mobile technology that would allow users to automatically summon emergency help by pushing two buttons on the sides of the phone. The handset ...

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Motorola goes for high-fidelity sound with JBL

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With the proliferation of music phones, sound quality has become an important issue for buyers. Motorola recognizes this growing need and has thus teamed up with JBL to provide what they call “unmatched music and communications experiences.” JBL is a division of Harman International, which also includes such high-end names ...

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Robo-dogs not just a toy

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Some people may scoff at robotic pets, like the Aibo, and say that these things made of plastic and batteries will never provide the same level of companionship as a flesh-and-blood golden retriever. Well, a recent study just might be proving these nay-sayers wrong. The veterinary school over at Purdue ...

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Ford tests Escape Hybrid with 85% ethanol

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With gas prices soaring and the environment deteriorating, environmentalists and automakers alike have been discussing alternative fuels for quite some time. Ethanol-powered hybrids are receiving some attention from Ford Motor Company, and tests have begun on an E85 Escape Hybrid. This sport utility vehicle runs on a mixture of regular ...

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Toyota Camry now in NASCAR

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The stereotype goes that NASCAR is reserved for rednecks to argue over which American manufacturer is best. The picture just got a touch more complex as Toyota announced that they will be entering a NASCAR’ed out Camry into the mix, joining in on the hundreds and hundreds of laps on ...

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USB flash drive with external LCD. Smart.

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Everybody and their mother is releasing USB portable storage devices these days, so anything that can give you a leg up on the competition, particularly if it’s actually useful, is something you’d want to look into. Didigo’s offering includes an external LCD that’ll tell you a bunch of useful information, ...

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Voicebox helps your XM radio go hands-free

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IBM has teamed up with VoiceBox and the result is an XM Satellite Radio that you can tell what to do. Implementing IBM’s speech recognition solution, you can now be cruising down the interstate and change radio stations with a simple voice command. You don’t even need to adhere to ...

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New UTStarcom multimedia phone for Verizon

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If you’re in the market for a cell phone with mobile music and video capabilities, Verizon Wireless has a new addition to its line compliments of UTStarcom that will address both of these desires. The shiny black CDM8945 Music Phone goes hand-in-hand with Verizon’s new V CAST Music service, allowing ...

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LGE shows 25% growth in 2005

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LG Electronics, one of Korea’s biggest mobile phone makers, demonstrated significant growth last year, selling 55 million handsets worldwide. This is a full 25% more than the 44 million unit figure recorded for 2004. The rise in cell phone sales was particularly pronounced in the Q4 2005 where the company ...

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Mercedes jumps into MP3 market?

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Other auto manufacturers have already put their emblems and branding on a handful of multimedia devices, and Mercedes-Benz seems to be jumping all over the bandwagon. There’s no telling how legitimate this product is, and how much of an official endorsement it’s receiving, given that the only information available is ...

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Nano clone goes golden, adds video

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Sure, there’s already a wide selection of iPod wannabes out there, but this is the first time I’ve come across anything that sports 24-karat gold. The once bankrupt Jens of Sweden is launching a new multimedia player that, according to the company, comes in “nano format”. Like its Apple cousin, ...

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Lindy locks down your USB port

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Lindy has launched a USB Port lock that offers a simple, easy way to secure your USB port to prevent passive data theft. It’s not a software solution, so people can still steal files through your network. It won’t lock down your floppy drive or optical disc burner either, but ...

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A cool lap dance for your notebook

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You’re desperately trying to get that term paper done, but your laptop is setting your thighs on fire? Cooler Master has just what the doctor ordered. Their line of all-aluminium Notepal coolers include those compatible with 15- and 17-inch laptops, as well as a set for your Apple widescreen. A ...

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Acer imbeds more acronyms into Core Duo laptops

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Just as Wi-Fi cards have become a thing of the past with integrated wireless-G these days, it was only a matter of time before laptops took the next step and started imbedding connectivity for other wireless standards. Sony has GPRS/EDGE-enabled units, and Lenovo has a HSDPA-equipped offering, but Acer is ...

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Yamaha Bluetooth stereo for your phone

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Glossy white speaker sets to go with your glossy white iPods are nothing new, but the trend in Japan is now shifting toward mobile phones. Cell phones there, with huge internal memory and expansion slots, are becoming major competition for standard DAPs, and as such, some speaker sets are starting ...

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