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September was an awesome month for tech enthusiasts. Major consumer electronics companies unveiled major devices in mobile tech, entertainment tech, and videogames. These product announcements, along with the upcoming releases of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, have Q4 2013 looking awesome (and expensive) for tech nerds. Here’s a summary of some of the big tech announcements. After you check ’em out, I’d love to hear your thoughts about these products, as well as any recently announced tech gear I didn’t mention.
Amazon Kindle Paperwhite: The best-selling e-reader has gotten even better. The (already awesome) screen and UI (that still needs work) have been improved. Amazon is killing this niche and the competition is dwindling. While it’s not as sexy as some of the other tech products that were announced this month, I’m really excited for the new Paperwhite. It’s cheap, easy on the eyes, and is backed by an immense library. Check out more details on the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite from PaulSemel.com.
Samsung Galaxy Gear: First off, I can’t think “Galaxy Gear” without thinking about “Galaxy Glue.” Tech pundits have been predicting the rise of the Smartwatch in 2013. Samsung’s Galaxy Gear is the first release from a major smartphone player. While it does some interesting and useful things, I’m not sold on it. To be fair, I’m not big on the Galaxy S series, while a large portion of the world loves them. With that in mind, a smartwatch tied to a Galaxy smartmatch/tablet doesn’t work for me. That said, there are millions of Galaxy S and Galaxy Note fans, and I’m sure that a percentage of them will be high on the Galaxy Gear. I’m really curious to get your thoughts on this…and am equally curious to hear if you think that Apple will come up with a far more elegant smartwatch product.
Apple iPhone 5c: Tech pundits predicted that Apple would release a “cheap” iPhone available in colors. It was reasoned that the colors and low price would do well in China and India. The “experts” were completely wrong. It’s easy to say through the retroscope, but I never thought that was happening. Apple generally doesn’t do “cheap” anything. Instead, the iPhone 5c is a (very) slightly improved iPhone 5 that’s available in colors. It sticks to Apple’s strategy of using last year’s model as the mid-level choice, but spruces it up with colors. The kids (like RPadholic Tokz’s sister) love colors and there will be millions of people that buy this phone because it’s available in green, blue, yellow, etc. I’m not interested in this product personally, but am super-impressed by Apple’s execution. The profit margins on the iPhone 5c will be silly and the company will make a killing selling last year’s tech in new clothing.
Apple iPhone 5s: In the past, Apple has incrementally upgraded the iPhone every other year (iPhone 4s, iPhone 3gs, etc.). This year’s model is deceptively advanced. A lot of people are paying attention to the fingerprint scanner and many are dogging it. The camera is improved too, but that’s not what’s fascinating about this product. There’s a ton of potential with the iPhone 5s’ 64-bit architecture and M7 coprocessor. The jump to 64-bit is huge and I’m anxious to see how developers take advantage of the CPU/GPU power. The M7 is used to collect all kinds of motion data from the gyroscope, compass, and accelerometer. It will lead to a new wave of inventive location-based apps. While I’m completely bored with the form factor (Can I get a bigger screen already?!?), I’m intrigued by the guts of the iPhone 5s.
PlayStation Vita Slim: It’s like the PSP Vita, but slimmer.
PlayStation Vita TV: This is the Vita product that I want. It’s a set-top box that also lets you play some Vita games — think Apple TV, but with better games and worse media services. The Vita’s library is great, but it’s also completely ignored by people that don’t like mobile consoles. This sub-$100 product would give home gamers access to that underrated library. That’s the good news. The bad news is that Sony hasn’t announced plans for this product outside of Asia. The company says it has “no plans” for North American and European releases at this time, but hopefully customers in those regions will clamor for it. I want this now!!!