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Archive | January 3, 2011

Nook Color Bluetooth adapter used for the first time

Today marks an important step for the full transformation of Nook Color into a cheap and stylish full featured Android tablet. User occip from XDA Developers managed for the first time to use the embedded Bluetooth device that all the Nook Colors have embedded but turned off by default.

There have been some questions about the Bluetooth capability of the Nook Color devices but now that we know the hardware is there and can be used, more functionality will surely come, including usage of Bluetooth headsets for Skype users, maybe even Bluetooth enabled GPS usage using external GPS adapters, etc. The possibilities are endless.

The process is not for everybody to use though, being available only on Android Froyo (2.2) builds and tis functionality is still very buggy. Currently, Nook Color comes with Android 2.1 by default and the update is a complicated process. However, B&N promised Froyo update sometime in the following month so, we might have microphone input / GPS via Bluetooth devices sooner than expected.

Nook Color has been rooted for some time transforming into a full fledged Android tablet. We have a number of articles explaining the process in detail.

Opera for Tablets announced, demoed on a Samsung Galaxy Tab Android device

Tablet users rejoice: A new optimized browser was announced by Opera, a browser that aims to enhance user experience while using a screen larger than a smartphone.

Initially demoed on a Samsung galaxy tab Android tablet, the new Opera browser will be officially announced during the upcoming CES 2011 show. Among the features detectable in the video we can see the now mandatory pinch and zoom, the standard Opera home-screen with favorites thumbnails, etc.

Check the following video to see the new browser in action and read the press release after the break.

Read More…

Fluxx AC Ryan media player / streamer launches with 1080p, browser, games and widgets

If Boxee Box (full review here) doesn’t work for you for whatever reasons, there is no shortage of media players / streamers coming on the market in 2011 and as the technology goes, they’ll just get better and better. The latest addition to the pack is the AC Ryan Fluxx media player / streamer and it looks rather impressive. Built around an Intel®Atom™  CE4150 processor, the box packs some heavy punches supporting an Internet Browser, Games, Widgets, Social Media clients, UI customization, SATA internal storage, SD expansion ports and Gigabit Ethernet.

AC Ryan Fluxx will also play your local content supporting a large list of video codecs like AVI / MKV (uncompressed & compressed) / TS / TP / TRP / M2TS / MPG / MP4 / MOV / M4V / VOB / ISO / DVD-ISO / IFO / DAT / WMV / ASF / RM / RMVB / BD-ISO / FLV / QT, audio formats like MP3 / MP2 / WMA / AAC / FLAC / WAV / OGG Vorbis / PCM / LPCM / MS-ADPCM / LC-AAC / HE-AAC / COOK / RA-Lossless / MPEG-1, -2, -4 and of course UPNP / DLNA support so the box will certainly make a dent in the sales of more established manufacturers. For an early look, the box will be available during upcoming CES 2011 show at Bellagio hotel in Vegas.

Check the full specs after the break. Read More…

Vizio VIA Tablet and VIA Phone Details

Vizio recently offered a sneak peak about an upcoming Android tablet during Rose bowl break. Now, they came back offering more details about two upcoming Android devices, a VIA Android tablet and a VI Android smartphone in their recent press release.

  • The smartphone, called VIZIO VIA Phone is built around the now standard 1 GHz processor and a 4″ high-resolution capacitive touch screen. network wise, the devices sports both 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, GPS, a MicroSD card slot for memory expansion (cool) and HDMI output with HD video playback (even better). Front facing camera for video conference is a given as well as the back camera for HD recording.
  • The VIZIO VIA Android Tablet is also built around a 1 GHz processor, the screen size is 8″ this time, also capacitive, the networking system has both 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, GPS, a MicroSD, HDMI output with HD video support and a front-facing camera. No back camera for the tablet but the 8″ size makes it ideal for web surfing and reading.

Since both devices are made by VIZIO, they have a IR blaster built in and embedded universal remote control software forthe entire home theater. Android Market is also confirmed, as it is Vizio Internet Apps enabling streaming a la Netflix with stop and resume on compatible devices. Both Android devices will be shown at the upcoming CES 2011 show.

Check after the break for VIZIO’s full press release. Read More…

How to Root your Nook Color and transform it into a cheap Android tablet

The latest entry in my series of articles about rooting your Nook Color will describe how, after you root it, you can configure it to behave exactly like an Android tablet, although much cheaper. To be honest, I just returned from Costco where I found Samsung Galaxy Tab and I was able to to a comparison. While Nook Color is heavier, is thinner and looks way better in my opinion. While it doesn’t have 3G capabilities and GPS, I have an iPhone for those purposes and Nook Color tethering via the iPhone works very well.

To begin, let’s look at the prerequisites: You’ll need to have your Nook Color rooted, side-loading of the apps enabled, Android Market installed and, if you need it, tethering installed. I wrote separate articles for each process:

Update: Our tutorial for rooting Nook Touch is now live as well.

1. If your Nook Color is still at version 1.0.0, follow How to root Nook Color

2. If your Nook Color is at the version 1.0.1, follow How to root Nook Color 1.0.1 using Auto-Nooter

3. Auto-Nooter method will install Android Market by default, it is a good idea to update your Nook and follow the rooting method that uses Auto-Nooter. if you performed the root following Method 1, you’ll need to separately install Android Market. Read More…