SonyEricsson debut new phones

Yesterday SonyEricsson announced several new phones, including the W960 which is a walkman phone with 8GB of memory. It seems to improve on the W950 as it also has a camera.

The P1 is now also available on the SonyEricsson store which is their P990 replacement (it's actually phone sized rather than brick sized).

SonyEricsson are definately giving Nokia a run for their money and are up there with good styling and functionality.


Sonos BU130 bundle

I should have written about this a long time ago, but now is the time for the Sonos kit to go.

The bundle consists of two ZP80 players and a controller, Sonos also threw in a controller cradle. The kit is very well built and feels very solid. Power supplies are built into the units, but are not auto-sensing, so ensure they're set to the right voltage or smoke will follow.

The Sonos software is relatively easy to install (it's a shame they don't support other streaming software like iTunes or Slimdevices Slimserver as they were already installed), however the software will pick-up iTunes playlists that have been created under iTunes.

The players work well, though they're not as good as the Slimdevices Transporter (but then they cost a lot less), however saying that, the Sonos controller is fantastic with a lovely display (that displays cover art) and "feels" like using an iPod.

The ZP80's need to be connected to amplifiers (they have analogue and digital outs - both optical and co-ax), there's also an analogue in that converts to digital formats (compressed and uncompressed).

Sonos also sent a ZP100 which has a built-in amplifier, it's very heavy!!! Again it feels like a quality unit and has four solid speaker posts to connect to speakers (Sonos supplied their SP100's which are very solid bookshelf type speakers). They are a bit on the high end and could do with a sub-woofer if heavy bass is required (the ZP100 has a sub-woofer output).

Various music services are directly supported by the controller (Rhapsody, Emusic and others) and it can also mount music stored on a NAS (network attached storage) using Microsoft file sharing (CIFS). Again it's a shame it doesn't directly support other streaming formats such as Slimserver, iTunes, UPaP etc as the NAS could directly output these and as the NAS was in a MS domain, mounting shares wasn't as easy as it could have been.

Altogether though the Sonos kit is recommended (though I still prefer the Slimdevices kit), though the controller beats the pants off the Slimdevices stuff. The BU130 bundle now retails for £699 (or $999 in the US) and would make a nice edition to any home.


iPhone supports Web 2.0

Though Apple is not allowing 3rd party developers (yet) to install applications directly on the iPhone, they are fully supporting Web 2.0 so application developers can write server based systems.

This will mean there is interaction over air, but with US carrier pricing adopting unlimited data plans, this will allow highly interactive applications.

If the iPhone really is running MacOS X and the full set of application libraries it should allow developers to relatively easily port Mac application over to it, if Apple then allow them to be stored on the phone itself.

Apple to release Safari for Windows

Safari 3 has been released as a public beta for MacOS X and Windows. Safari 3 will come with Apple's MacOS X 10.5 known as Leopard.

Apple state Safari is siginificantly faster than other browsers on the Windows platform (2x IE7 and 1.6x Firefox v2), however Windows users may be slow to adopt Safari most people will use IE by default.

It does give developers (who don't use Macs) the opportunity to test their web pages on multiple browsers on Windows though, although that's a tiny market.

This seems more a dig at Microsoft than a real browser competitor.


Sun hints at MacOS X Leopard file system

Sun have hinted that zfs (zettabyte file system) will be part of Leopard. Initially they commented that it would be the default file system, but later changed that to being a file system in Leopard.

ZFS was developed by Sun in 2004 and has been part of Solaris and OpenSolaris. However Solaris has only very recently been able to boot off a zfs disk system. MacOS may also be able to boot off a zfs disk system by the time it launches in October.

ZFS is an extremely flexible system using a 128bit pointers (compared to most file systems 64bit), it supports dynamic pools and journaling.

Steve Jobs may well announce something at the worldwide developers conference that opens today in San Francisco.