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Different note

The new device aims to marry a phone and a tablet, but ends up being more of the latter.The new device aims to marry a phone and a tablet, but ends up being more of the latter.

twitter-logoNidhi Singal | Print Edition: December 2011

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE
Price: Rs 34,990
Specs: 5.3-inch display; 8 MP camera;
16 GB storage; 32 GB memory, expandable;
WiFi, 3G, Bluetooth, A-GPS;
178 gm; 2500 mAh battery.

The new Android beast from Samsung, the Galaxy Note, doesn't fit into the smartphone category. Thanks to the odd display size of 5.3 inch, it makes you look silly making a call-holding such a chunk of gadgetry close to your lobes is not very comfortable. So smartphone is out, but can it replace a 7-inch or 10.1-inch tablet? Yes, it somehow does. The Note operates on the familiar Android Gingerbread platform. The 1.4 GHz dual core processor handles everything smoothly-emails, web browsing, office documentation, games, social networking, downloading apps and multimedia.

Being a finger-friendly device, Samsung has thoughtfully added an alternative-a stylus that is similar to the HTC Flyer's. In addition, the stylus can be used for taking handwritten notes, sketching and painting, replicating the pencil-paper experience. The SMemo is like a piece of notebook sheet on which you can write, draw or insert an image or mark a location on a map while adding a personalised message. The saved sheet can be shared over email, Bluetooth, Facebook, etc, in the form of a picture. There is also the option of converting handwriting to text-sadly, it failed to work when we tried it out. We also wrote text messages with the Pen. But your writing has to be legible. The stylus isn't just a single piece of plastic. It has click functions too. A tap on the screen while holding the click launches the SMemo in a compact form. SChoice takes you to the Samsung App Store from where a bunch of Pen compatible apps can be downloaded. The Note is sleek, useful and lightweight. It's the size that is a bit inconvenient. It fits into a woman's purse, but men will have a bulge in their pockets- if it slides in at all.

BAG IT OR JUNK IT? Is awkwardly sized for use as a phone, but makes a good, convenient tablet.

COMPACT COWORKER

DELL 1250C

Price: Rs 17,000
Specs: A4 paper support; 150 paper input bin; 12 ppm mono, 10 ppm colour; 600x600 dpi.

The size of laser printers is often a factor for home or small office users. Dell has come up with a solution of sorts with its 1250C, which at 15.5 inches wide, 11.80 inches deep and 8.9 inches tall is probably the smallest colour laser printer around. The 1250C is done in dark black and should sit neatly on a workstation. It is connected to a computer using a 2.0 USB cable. Its basic controls have graphically lit indicators that make it easy to operate. However, a first time user might take some time to configure it as the pictorial instructions are not user friendly.

To turn it into arguably the world's smallest colour laser printer, Dell has used an advanced LED technology over the common laser technology. This not only helps the form factor, but also contributes to producing vibrant colourful reproductions. On the test bench, it produced both monochrome and coloured prints rapidly. While Dell claimed a print speed of 12 mono and 10 colour prints per minute, we actually got 16 mono and 12 colour prints per minute. If there was anything missing in the printer, it would be Ethernet and Wi-Fi connectivity, and perhaps even more importantly, a USB 2.0 port.

BAG IT OR JUNK IT? Compact, efficient, but lacks connectivity option

AFFORDABLE SOUND

PORTRONICS SOUNDBOX

Price: Rs 1,899

Portronics, as its name suggests, specialises in portable devices. One of its new products is the Soundbox, a pebble shaped device.The design is nothing to write home about. On its glossy plastic body, it has controls on the top, a display in the front and connectivity ports at the bottom. It has a 4W speaker at the back. It has an inbuilt FM radio and a music player. The main menu comprises calendar, music, line in for auxiliary input, FM radio and system settings. To play music, Portronics has added multiple interfaces.

The USB port at the bottom can be used to plug in and play songs. It also has a memory card slot and a 3.5 mm port for connecting a cell phone or a laptop using an auxiliary cable. Other than this, there is the FM radio, over which you can access various music channels. In both the modes, the sound was loud and clear. Of course, the audio cannot be compared with what biggies like Bose provide, but it is better than the local speakers available in the market. The Soundbox comes equipped with a 1050 mAh rechargeable battery that continuously keeps your ears engaged for close to seven hours.

BAG IT OR JUNK IT? Budget buyers would love to get this portable system.

Courtesy:Gadgets and Gizmos


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