Research In Motion (RIM) is a Canadian company best known for developing the BlackBerry, which was the dominant popular smartphone until the advent of Apple’s iPhone in 2007. The iPhone quickly found favour with BlackBerry users, particularly in corporate circle, and competition intensified after the iPhone’s success inspired companies like Samsung Electronics to launch smartphones powered by Google’s Android operating system. In January 2013, RIM launched a comeback effort, with a new line of handsets, and changed its name to BlackBerry.
Cups runneth over
Headphones maker Monster is kicking off the year with the Beat Studio White (below), a studio-quality, high-definition headset endorsed by rapper/producer will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas. The headphones feature Monster's power-isolation technology, which cuts external noise to allow users to hear clear vocals, detailed highs and deep bass. Weighing 260 grams, the headset is loaded with extra- large speaker drivers, a digital amplifier, a wide, adjustable headband, soft-hinged ear cups and a 1.3-metre iSoniTalk cable for connecting to an iPhone or other music-enabled handset. The Beat Studio White sells for HK$2,980 at Fortress and HMV.
Samsung Electronics has added style and performance to its internet-ready netbook line with the N150 (above). The computer's integrated hinge allows for a smoother opening of the lid than previous models. It is powered by Intel's 1.66gHz Atom N450 chip and runs Microsoft's Windows 7 Starter Edition operating system. It has a 10.1-inch, anti-reflective LED display, a 250-gigabyte hard-disc drive, 1GB of internal memory and a six-cell battery that delivers up to eight hours of continuous power. Weighing only 1.24kg, the N150 is priced at HK$3,280.
Bold and beautiful
Research In Motion's new top-of-the-line smartphone is the BlackBerry Bold 9700 (right). The dark-chrome frame and leatherette back bring a sleek and elegant look to this 3.5G handset. Premium features include a touch-sensitive track pad that allows for more intuitive navigation and a highly tactile keyboard with finely sculpted keys and chrome frets. Weighing 122 grams, the smartphone has a 3.2-megapixel auto-focus camera, Wi-fi and Bluetooth support, a 2.44-inch display, a multimedia player and access to the BlackBerry app store. The BlackBerry Bold 9700 costs HK$5,188 at SmarTone-Vodafone shops.