Gadget corner

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 07 February, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 07 February, 2010, 12:00am

Jaw dropping

San Francisco-based Aliph's latest premium Bluetooth headset, the Jawbone Icon (below), is its most innovative yet. Measuring 45mm long and weighing 8.2 grams, the device comes in six jewellery-like designs. The 'multipoint' function lets users switch seamlessly between calls from different phones and there is no need to carry cables thanks to its standard micro-USB charging capability. Noise Assassin 2.5 technology, originally developed for use in military tanks and helicopters, eliminates background noise. Custom audio tones whisper into a user's ear information such as remaining battery life and caller ID. Aliph is testing MyTalk software that will allow Icon users to personalise and update their device's features online.

The Jawbone Icon is priced at US$99.99 and will be available outside the United States from next month at

In focus

The 14.1-megapixel Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W380 (above) combines a 24mm wide-angle lens with 5x optical zoom. The company's 'G' lens provides exceptional contrast to correct so-called field curvature aberration - a common problem in wide-angle lenses, in which objects in the centre and edges of the field are not in focus simultaneously. The camera's 'sweep panorama' function captures panoramic views by assembling individual frames shot at high speed. Users can shoot high-defini- tion films of 1,280 by 720 pixel resolution at 30 frames per second. The Cyber-shot DSC-W380 costs HK$2,390.

Sweetening the pill

As a rival to Apple's recently launched iPad, French consumer electronics company Archos has tossed its hat into the tablet-personal-computer arena with the Archos 9 PCtablet (below). The device is a high-end touchscreen netbook powered by Intel's latest Atom Z processor and runs Microsoft's Windows 7 operating system. The device, which is 17mm thick and weighs 800 grams, has a high-definition, 8.9-inch touch display, Wi-fi and 3.5G network support, a 60-gigabyte hard drive and a USB for connecting compatible devices, such as a digital camera. The Archos 9 sells for HK$4,680.