Stories by Melissa J. Perenson

  • Blu-ray format adds capacity, functionality

    The Blu-ray Disc format will soon be able to perform some nifty tricks--if manufacturers adopt new specifications that the Blu-ray Disc Association, the format's governing body, is likely to finalize soon. For starters, Blu-ray disc capacity could jump to hold 128GB; today's maximum is 50GB.

  • Western Digital to sell consumer SSD

    Solid-state drives are so plentiful that the fact a new drive is joining the fray is almost a nonstarter. That is, almost a nonstarter. This drive, the SiliconEdge Blue, is from Western Digital and is one of the first (if not the first) solid-state hard drives to be marketed to consumers. As one of the leading consumer hard drive manufacturers today, it is significant that WD is adding SSD to complement its strong lineup of internal and external consumer drives.

  • Intel, Micron introduce 25nm NAND flash production

    2010 will go down as the year flash storage goes mainstream. Intel-Micron Flash Technologies -- a Lehi, Utah-based joint venture from the two companies that's been sharing technology and flash production since 2005 -- has unveiled its 25 nanometer flash production process. And the impact on consumer products will be immediately noticeable as the flash makes its way to products.

  • Hands on with the Apple iPad

    I had the opportunity to spend some hands-on time with the long-awaited Apple iPad tablet after today's much-hyped press event. Unfortunately, I was a bit underwhelmed: I can see a lot of really useful applications for the iPad, but the reality is that it looks and behaves like an iPhone (or iPod Touch) on steroids. And that's not exactly a good thing.

  • 2010: Year of the E-reader

    When Amazon released its first-generation Kindle, the company was light years ahead of the market, with virtually no competition for digital readers’ eyeballs. In 2010, though, the e-reader universe is not only set to explode, but it’s also set to fragment. What defines an e-reader? Is it only a device with an electronic paper-like display? Is it a device (tablet or otherwise) that has an LCD screen? Or does software turn any device into an e-Reader?

  • 2010: Year of the e-reader

    Move over, Kindle -- this year promises a slew of devices that will make it easier than ever to digitally consume books. We highlight the latest from CES.

  • USB 3.0 finally arrives

    When you're in front of your PC, waiting for something to transfer to removable media, that's when seconds feel like minutes, and minutes feel like hours.

  • Sony emphasises 3D across all HDTV lines

    3D is the big buzz here at CES, and the company started its press event by exhibiting its commitment to 3D with a live demo of 3D capture and display technology. Sony also introduced its lineup of 3D-capable HDTVs and Blu-ray players for 2010.

  • First USB 3.0 tests: Western Digital's My Book sails through

    The Western Digital My Book 3.0 desktop external drive will be one of the first to market with the new SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface. Announced today, the 1TB version is available for sale today; the 2TB is due later this week. So does USB 3.0 deliver on its promises? We got the 1TB My Book 3.0 into the PC World Lab, and our early results look very promising.

  • Eye-Fi Pro X2 increases capacity and speed

    Eye-Fi has announced a re-engineering of its Eye-Fi card wireless SD Card that should make these niche cards more appealing. When I last reviewed Eye-Fi, the experience was hampered by slow upload speeds, and minimal memory (those cards maxed out 4GB, which feels downright paltry compared with the 16GB and 32GB SD Cards now readily available. The Eye-Fi line of SD Cards allows you to use 802.11 wireless networks to transfer images stored on the cards to a nearby PC or to a photo sharing Website, eliminating the need to remove the card from the digital camera.

  • Buffalo ships USB 3.0 hard drive

    In spite of rumors that the first USB 3.0 products wouldn't surface until the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Buffalo Technology has beaten all comers to the punch by announcing today it was shipping its new DriveStation HD-HXU3 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 drive.

  • Amazon Kindle DX E-Book Reader

    In spite of its larger size, the Amazon Kindle DX ($US489 as of October 29, 2009) comes off as a surprisingly lean and elegant contender in the current e-book reader steeplechase. This enlarged version of the Kindle has a number of appealing features - including strong PDF support - along with a few missteps.

  • Windows 7 hardware: touch finally arrives

    Before Windows 7's arrival, touchscreen support wasn't part of the Windows operating system itself. Instead, all-in-one PC vendors resorted to stopgaps ranging from elegant (HP's growing TouchSmart software suite) to kludgy (touchscreen apps from MSI and Asus).