|Questing for Access
You’re slick. You’re stylish. You’re the uber road warrior for your enterprise, closing deals at breakfast, on the golf course, at lunch, back on the golf course and at dinner. Of course, with all that deal closing comes a lot of travel, making finding connections to the Internet and your e-mail a chore.
|The Strong and Silent Type of Notebook
While more and more people turn to laptops for their computer needs, many are still hesitant to let go off their accustomed desktops, unwilling to sacrifice their large display, comfort of use and reliable performance for the sake of mobility. For these people, the HP nx6125 notebook is a great compromise.
|For Every Hero there is a SideKick
From Robin to Dr. Watson, every great hero has a sidekick in tow, to ready the Batmobile, or save our hero from danger. I’ve always figured that for a regular guy to really pull himself up to the level of hero, finding a trusty sidekick is a good start. So after many months of waiting, I got my SideKick II in the mail and felt instantly better equipped to fight crime. Or at least receive every e-mail and phone call it might take to fight crime.
|Is There Anything It Can’t Do?
You’re a rising professional who needs a stunning visual presentation to close the big account. You’re a mobile worker with the need to display the same PowerPoint slideshow in different locations and from different (and possibly dissimilar) computers throughout the same day. You’re a drunken college student who decides it’s a brilliant idea to project giant adult videos onto the face of the building across the street at 3:45 a.m. on a Saturday night. The BenQ PB2240 Digital Mobile Projector is for you.
|Elevate Your Status
Okay, so you’re not wearing the biggest wig in your organization. In fact, you’re just a lowly middle manager who is merely saddled with the bulk of the responsibility to run a wide spread sales and service unit. You’re in the trenches every day and often travel from hub to hub, ensuring that your division runs smoothly. Ah, traveling.
|A Networking Solution: Maybe Not
I’ll admit, my lifestyle doesn’t exactly beg for a compact mobile printer. I don’t specialize in on-the-go business transactions requiring receipts, I don’t usually need to quickly produce several adhesive conference nametags and I cannot conceive of a nerdier way to record and give my information to a prospective date. After two days with the Brother MW140BT, however, I tried reconsidering just how nerdy that would be.
|Smartphones that Understand You
If I calculated on my hands the sum of all the text messages I have ever sent, I wouldn’t even come close to running out of fingers. And it’s not because I possess a vast number of fingers. Got only 10, like everyone else. I abandoned text messaging about an hour after I got my first cell phone, after sending a couple of messages. It was so frustrating having to push a button several times to enter a character, and I just didn’t feel like spending two minutes typing, “Hi, how are you?” For the same reason, my phone calendar hasn’t even one event.
|A Girl’s Best Friend
I’m skeptical of thin and lights that don’t include an optical drive. Ever since I first met the Panasonic CF-W2, which is under three pounds and has an integrated optical drive, I don’t see a need to go without one? But then I met Dell’s latest thin and light, the Latitude X1, and I’m hooked.
|The Monster Toolbar
I wasn’t looking for a toolbar when I came across Advanced Searchbar. I don’t even like toolbars (not even the Google search one) because they take up precious browser window space and complicate the view. However, when I accidentally bumped into the description of Advanced Searchbar for Internet Explorer while searching for a calendar, I couldn’t resist trying it. And I’m glad I did.
|How to Get There from Here
The problem with online mapping and directions, when you live in a walking city, is that the maps and directions are made for people in cars. You also have to remember to map and print the directions in advance. (This may sound like a silly or small factor until you are juggling dozens of details and your mental check-list, running out the door in the morning, involves glancing down to make sure you’re wearing shoes. And pants.) If you have a Web-enabled device, you could surf on the go, but that’s not ideal, and it still leaves you with the issue of driving directions if you’re walking, and if you’re driving it would be awkward (and dangerous) to be constantly glancing down.
|Credit Where Credit is Due
In fulfilling the dream of anywhere, anytime mobile connectivity, Verizon has led the charge. With its initial EV-DO roll out, a service it calls BroadbandAccess, a simple PC Card connected to your laptop enables high speed, anywhere anytime access. Verizon originally rolled out BroadbandAccess to San Diego and Washington, D.C., late in 2003.
|Tales from a Messaging Madman
Though only really just beginning to catch on in the United States, I have always been a big fan of text messaging. When you only need to convey a few brief words, nothing suffices more than sending a quick text message to a colleague, friend or loved one. Far less intrusive than making a phone call, text messages serve a noble purpose in making mobile communications more efficient, 160 characters at a time.
|Through Cyberspace to Your Phone
I came across Vazu’s PC-to-mobile phone connection service recently. After reading about it I was impressed by its functionality, which promised to transfer text and contacts from any computer running Windows PC or XP to nearly any phone. So I decided to give it a try.
|It Worked, It Really Worked!
When you demo a new product and discover that it works just like it said it would on the box, it really shouldn’t come as a surprise. But unfortunately, we live in times of major hype and minor delivery. So it is with as much pleasure as surprise that I announced to my maybe-less-than-interested colleagues how easily—I mean almost like magic—Susteen’s DataPilot worked.
|Now Here’s an Idea
These days, people expect phones to do more than make calls. People want one tiny device that can organize schedules, contacts, to-do lists, can take photos, send e-mails and remind me to call my mother. Luckily, these super devices will appear in the very near future, and a few good ones already exist. As Eric Zeman, ME’s editor-in-chief, just illustrated in his review of Sierra Wireless’s Voq phone.
|A New Voq-ation
First impressions are important. Very important. Especially in business settings. Shake someone’s hand the wrong way upon meeting them and you might have just doomed any chance you had at making a sale. Many experts agree that people can win or lose deals within the first 60 seconds simply because of the impression they create. The folks at Sierra Wireless, though, have nothing to worry about, because the Voq phone makes a great first impression.
|Desktop Access Delivered
Accessing e-mail from the palm of your hand no longer falls into the swanky, elite category for most. Today’s users want not just e-mail, but a complete mobile desktop solution with security to boot—all for less than the price of dinner. If you find yourself nodding your head in agreement, a new solution from Sproqit Technologies offers an easy way to satisfy your wishes with dollars to spare.
|Nearly a Magic Wand
Planon Systems DocuPen is the perfect size, it’s about 8.5 inches long and only .5 inches wide. It weighs 2 oz, comes with a black leather soft case and even with the cords and installation CD it barely adds to the briefcase bulge. And you feel like a really slick spy, scanning documents with such a discreet tool.
|No Tough Decisions Here
Anyone who travels for business is usually required to bring along a laptop so they can access corporate e-mail and their network—you know, so they can be productive. As most of us know, the more we have to stuff our briefcases, the harder it is to lug them around.
|Big Businesses Require a Big Solution
To be competitive, it's more important than ever for large organizations to adopt mobility.
Close your eyes, and imagine for a moment that you're a manager at a huge, utility-sized business. Tens of thousands of employees; billions of dollars in assets all sprawled over a region covering an entire metropolitan area; hundreds of thousands--if not millions--of customers, all depending on you to deliver whatever service it is that you provide.
Whether it was to get some work done over the weekend, or because you forgot to print an important file at work, you know you’ve at least once wished you could access your work computer from home. GoToMyPC Personal enables you to remotely access a host computer or wireless device from any computer in the world—as long as it’s connected to the Internet.
|Almost the Mountain Top
The promise of anywhere, anytime access is relative to your connectivity options. Luckily these options have been rapidly expanding over the last year, with more hotspots popping up everywhere from the airport to McDonald’s and with true 3G services like EV-DO from Verizon Wireless and AT&T Wireless’ (now Cingular Wireless’) EDGE service.
|Tiny, Wireless, Easy
When it comes to trying out new products I never get tired of saying, “it worked!” I guess it’s due to having been through too many hype cycles. So here’s another product I am proud to announce really works; this one’s a gem of a tiny, 802.11g wireless router that was so easy to use, it’s as if we really have hit the wireless age.
|Small but Tough
I have to admit that the Averatec C3500 Convertible Notebook is the first Tablet PC I have ever touched. It usually takes me a while to get used to new ways of doing things. I once spent weeks trying to adapt myself to a certain touchpad and still ended up buying a mouse. So I was surprised when, after twenty minutes of exploring this notebook using only the stylus pen for navigation, I felt like I’d been using it for years. And after getting over the scroll wheel nostalgia, I forgot that computer mice ever existed.
|Back that Disk Up
Being a creature of habit, and habits that are often bad, I don't really back up my computer. I mean, I think about it—I certainly am able to draw on data and personal testimonials to the importance of backing things up—but really, I hardly ever do it. It's as if, hearing and knowing about the need to do it every day makes it already done.
|Deserving of the Spotlight
The trouble with being the editor-in-chief of a technology magazine is that technology vendors delight in sending me review units of their latest and greatest engineering and design feats. At any one time, my desk is awash with several Pocket PCs, a few Palm devices, a lap-full of laptops and various other nifty gadgets. What I’m saying is, it’s hard for a product to stand out from the crowd.
|Mouse to Go
Tired of laptop touchpads but don’t want to bother with carrying around an oversized mouse with wires? Meet the BenQ M310, the Wireless Mini Optical Mouse. There are several features that distinguish this device from other mice that may have crossed your path. Portability, power-saving capabilities and high responsiveness make the BenQ M310 a great choice for an everyday computer user who is constantly on the go.
|Year of the Rooster, End of the Mouse?
The iGesture Pad, from Delaware-based FingerWorks, is a lightweight, pencil-thick 7- by 5-inch touchpad that connects to a PC, Mac or Linux computer through the USB port. The pad is designed to replace your mouse and increase your productivity by replacing keystrokes, scrolling, zooming, rotating, etc., with more efficient and intuitive finger gestures. Additionally, it creates a healthier hand position that can reduce—or even eliminate—common repetitive stress injuries such as carpel tunnel syndrome.
|A Killer App of My Own
My fellow editors and I often have access to some of the latest tech gear—slim phones, tiny notebooks, indestructible hard drives, fast wireless all sorts of bells and whistles and shiny eye catching whositswhatsits. But what I’ve been pining for, a gadget I could really geek out over, is a handheld with a handwriting recognition program that actually recognizes my scrawl and easily converts it into a Word doc for legible, savable notes.
|Bright Lights, Small Projector
Nothing if not thorough, I put this little Epson to the test—perhaps more so than the good people at Epson intended. I spent a rainy weekend watching movies (an approximately 7-foot-wide projection being enormously more satisfying than my 13-inch TV), elicited ooo’s and ah’s from friends on New Year’s Eve, and even set it on a platform 15 feet in the air and—via remote—used it to play a documentary at the opening party of an art exhibition in a refurbished factory. Against a high, crude wall, and with lights blazing, the picture was rich and sharp—and a good 9 feet wide. Total success.