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Archive for February, 2010

USB Sales Expected to Peak Half Trillion By 2015

Global USB Flash Drives Market to Reach 568.98 Million Units by 2015, According to New Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc.

GIA announces the release of a comprehensive global report on USB Flash Drives. The world market for USB Flash Drives, by volume sales is projected to reach 568.98 million units by 2015. The market currently witnesses challenges manifested in the form of the ongoing recession and resulting erosion in consumer confidence. USB flash driveSan Jose, CA (PRWEB) February 17, 2010 — With data storage needs evolving from “dumb” storage models, such as, compact flash cards, SD cards, floppy drives, CDs, smart media, and other removable storage devices, to more intelligent self-computing portable storage solutions, its USB flash drives’ time in the sun. With a long list of benefits stacked in its favor, USB flash drives are outshining other types of storage devices in the marketplace. The market over the last couple of years witnessed heady growth patterns. The ongoing global economic recession has, however, put the USB Flash Drives market on a “high alert” after forcing a retarded growth in the volume sales, as seen in 2008 and early 2009. Given the intense competition and deceleration in growth in USB flash drives market, innovation will be the name of the game for industry players. Continuous, and effervescent innovation remains critical in ensuring sustained kindling of customer enthusiasm. In short, incorporation of new value-added features and services into USB flash drives, such as, creative industrial designs and form factors will help keep customer interests sufficiently ignited. As stated by the new market research report on USB Flash Drives market, Europe and Asia-Pacific collectively account for a major share of the global USB Flash Drives market. The sluggish growth in the market can primarily be attributed to tightened budgetary conditions and reduced spending triggered by the financial crisis, the impact of which continues to diffuse in the marketplace. The economic slowdown and the resulting erosion in consumer confidence, steadily deteriorating consumer sentiment as a result of falling Continue Reading

USB Hot Plate From Old CPU

Here is a simple and incredibly fun USB hack where you turn an old CPU into a hot plate for your coffee, tea or some liquid fragrance [in a dish].

USB hot plate

This very useful USB hack can be done in 4 steps.
  • Step 1) Tools and Materials
1. A dead CPU. (Ofcourse you can use a working one but it won’t be feasible.) 2. A USB cable 3. A Fan grill with screws. 4. Any box (I used a wooden tie box cover) 5. A rotary Tool (the best tool ever invented) 6. Epoxy 7. A creative artistic mind…[continute]
  • Step 2) The Idea
A CPU will still have some working electronic circuits even if it stopped functioning probably. And this project will use the heat generated by running some Volts in the CPU through a USB cable.  First things first. Be Very Careful. Connecting a malfunctioning CPU to your computer may and will damage your computer’s ports or even worse. If you don’t have enough…[continue]
  • Step 3) The Steps
First, prepare the base. You have to find a thin box or a box cover to use as the base of the plate. I used a tie box cover made of wood because it has the same thickness as my laptop. Now put the CPU over the base you picked and mark a square to drill with your rotary device. The square must be a little bit bigger than the CPU. The reason behind the bigger hole…[continue]
  • Step 4) Preparing the hot plate
locate the ground pins in your CPU and that can be done by reviewing the CPU data sheet or simply by the devastating trial and error. Cut the USB wire and pass it through the hole you made previously in the base. Strip the USB cable and locate the black and red weirs (black wire = ground, Red wire = +5V). You can cut out the white and green data weirs for more space…[continue] Clearly this tutorial is from Instructables…Thanks Eric! Continue Reading

USB Camscanner Replaces Overhead Projector

Hovercam X500 is great name for the function it performs, hovering over documents to project via camera.  The Hovercam is meant to replace the age old overhead projector we are most familiar with from grade school.

hovercam x500

The X500 USB imaging device has a 5 megapixel sensor mounted on a swing arm that can either scan and recognize or monitor and project anything on the surface underneath. As a scanner, the HoverCam performs as a 600dpi equivalent scanner. Scans are snapped as photos would be, in an instant. No more waiting for the slow trudging of the scan sensor to run up and down the page.
The free software that is included with the X500 is called HoverCam Flex. The Flex is not surprisingly built on the Adobe Air platform, and is a desktop based application that connects directly to their web services. Images can be uploaded, saved, published, shared and OCR’d with a quick drag and drop. The HoverCam Flex service also provides quick integration with other cloud services like Google OCR, Picassa, DropBox and e-Fax. The benefits of the software alone might be worth the $199 asking price of the HoverCam X500.
To get the Hovercam X500 just visit Amazon and you’ll get a better price than the MSRP. Continue Reading

USB Rechargeable RC Helicopter

The mini RC helicopters have been in all the computer shops as of lately, and Brando just upped the ante with their USB rechargeable version, the Grand NANO.

usb helicopter

I’ve seen these things in action, don’t use them around small children, the helicopter blades move so fast, it could cut off a finger if flown right into a child [by mistake of course!]. The Grand NANO is made of light weight metal alloy and has shockproof landing gear.  This makes it a bit less likely you’ll smash the thing while landing. The Grand NANO has an electronic gyroscope system which provides excellent stability, control and maneuverability. Equally impressive, is the modified poker chip case for quick and easy storage of the USB rechargeable helicopter.

usb helicopter case

Brando is dumping this for Continue Reading

MagicJack Pays $50K In Lawsuit Settlement

magicjack ceoOne of GetUSB.info’s most popular post’s is the Review: MagicJack Phone article that talks about the product and services as experienced by one of my contributing editors.  Today, we find out that MagicJack paid $50Gs to Boing Boing in a defamation lawsuit pertaining to an article they wrote. So what was all the fuss?  Boing Boing uncovered some interesting information about the MagicJack which we didn’t realize during our review.  The MagicJack uses customer profiles, locations and call habits to push targeted ads to the MagicJack software interface.

review magicjack

Boing Boing reports that during the purchase of the product, activation of the product or support for the product, at no time is the user aware of these terms and conditions. Now, I don’t think the ad sponsored business plan is a bad one, but giving the users a heads-up or opt-out choice is definitely needed.  Even with the small amount of ad space used for such an incredibly cheap and convenient product is not a big deal [in my eyes]. So here is our official notice:  be aware of this fact before buying a MagicJack phone.  To read the full review of this wonderful product, please visit the original article:  Review:  MagicJack Phone. Source:  Boing Boing. Continue Reading

Secure Banking USB Device

Banking giant UBS started deploying a device from IBM which ensures online banking transactions aren’t being manipulated by on-line hackers. IBM’s ZTIC (Zone Trusted Information Channel) is a smart-card reader that attaches to computer via a USB cable. During an online banking transaction, it bypasses the Web browser and makes a direct connection with the bank.  The connection is an industry standard SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) which enables the user to enjoy a secure link between their computer and the bank server.

UBS secure banking

What is great about the USB secure product is that a hacker could not cloak a transaction via the web and show the user a transaction of one amount, while robbing them blind with a different amount as the “actual” transaction. What is funny about the UBS press release is the following:
If the transaction has been hacked and the account number is different, the customer can abort the payment by hitting a red “x,” or a green check if it’s fine
Well…if they knew the transaction was hacked, wouldn’t they stop it anyway? Another nice feature of the UBS secure USB device is that a keylogger could not record keystrokes because the sync process between the user and bank happens through the UBS device, no account numbers are used or typed. Continue Reading

DTS Sound From USB Vacuum Tubes

The Japanese firm Hanwa’s announced today their solution to putting DTS digital sound on your computer via their USB Vacuum Tube dongle.

usb vacuum tube

I seriously doubt the vacuum tube brings any value to enhancing the digital sound, but rather put a nestaligic look to a high tech product. The USB vacuum tube will retail in Japan for $45 USD and include the USB dongle with DTS technology along with the headphones which support DTS sound.  After all, the dongle doesn’t do you any good without some speakers for enjoyment.

usb dts sound

~~~

usb vacuum dts

Source:  SlipperyBrick. Continue Reading

USB Hack: Motorola Android With USB Connectivity

I was given a tip today on how someone hacked the Motorola Android and now has USB connectivity. It’s a great little hack so now just about any USB device could potentially be connected to the Android.  The question becomes what kind of drivers will the Android support so that printers, controllers, USB sticks etc can be used. The hack is fairly simply.  With a little amount of effort, it is possible to enable the B port of the Android as a host interface, meaning the cable USB hack supplies power and acts as the bus controller for connectivity.

android hack

You’ll need to make two things, a micro-dongle to enable the port (you plug it in during boot time) and a cable with the right connectors on each end (for connecting your peripheral). To do this you’ll need three cables:
  • A car charging cable (off-the-shelf at the Verizon store)
  • A Micro-USB cable (as above)
  • A USB extender cable (the teeny ones that sometimes come free with USB keys work great)
The full write up and USB hack can be found here. Continue Reading

Old Tech For New Gadgets — USB Fan

MSN did a nice article today about 9 new tech gadgets you can make with the stash of old stuff you probably have laying around.  One which fits into the USB category, is this USB fan. Retro and cool looking, you can put together a nice desk fan with just an old tower or power supply fan along with solder and USB connector.

USB fan

Other new tech gear from old gadgets include a stone age cell phone tricked into a portable safe.  Scanner table where you can display items under the glass cover of the scanner and a USB mouse turned up-side-down and carved out for a plant holder. Not the most impressive conversion, but a fun article to read on your break or lunch hour. MSN 9 Uses for Dead Tech GearContinue Reading

MacBook Wireless USB Solution For VGA & DVI

MacBook laptops don’t come with VGA out or DVI out connectors for extending one’s video screens to more then the MacBook itself.  Today Wisair announced a solution for just that with their Wireless USB DisplayDock Set.

macbook wireless monitor

Wisair’s DisplayDock solution allows Mac users to connect to a monitor, keyboard, mouse and speakers, via a single wireless link with a single adapter that connects to a USB port on the MacBook.  Since we haven’t seen a big offering to help out MacBook users we expect this to be a big hit with the MacFanBoys. Wisair will be OEMing the solutions via three vendors [Atlona, Source R&D, Cables Unlimited and Olidata in the UK. Some major points to consider:
  • Point to point plug and play USB wireless
  • Universal solution for MacBooks
  • Distance up to 30 feet
  • Doesn’t load over WiFi so your internet USB gadget surfing remains fast
  • Wireless video supports up to 1440 x 1050 screen resolution
  • Mac Leopard (10.5) and Snow Leopard (10.6) OS support.
No price yet was announced from the Press Release or OEM sites.  Product will be available the first of March. Continue Reading

Jungo Releases Zero USB Driver For Mobile Devices

Press Release

jungo logoSAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Jungo Ltd., a leading provider of connectivity systems and driver development tools, today announced the release of its ZeroDriver software, which enhances the user experience by enabling seamless connectivity between USB data cards (both 3G and 4G) and any laptop or PC, without the need to install drivers or applications on the host PC. “We are pleased Jungo supports USB technology, by extending the simplicity and broad capabilities of USB to its customers.” ZeroDriver supports all data card features that in the past have required drivers or additional applications, including dial-up and high speed browsing, voice calls, SMS, diagnostics, network statistics and more. Equipping a data card with ZeroDriver is a highly cost-effective and user-friendly solution, for example, it reduces installation support calls to a minimum, maximizing user satisfaction and in turn, increasing ARPU. With support for HSPA+ bandwidth standards, ZeroDriver is fast and extremely flexible – it is easily ported to a variety of hardware mobile platforms. ZeroDriver is currently available for Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7 and is compatible with a wide range of PC applications, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, MS Office, Thunderbird and more. Future versions will support Mac and Linux. ZeroDriver is also available in “installation mode” for operators who want to offer enhanced system support. “Due to its ease of use and global availability, USB has become the standard interface between mobile broadband modems and PCs,” said Jeff Ravencraft, president and chairman, USB Implementers Forum. “We are pleased Jungo supports USB technology, by extending the simplicity and broad capabilities of USB to its customers.” Continue Reading

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