Most PC gamers are content to game on the standard QWERTY keyboard layout, but a select few prefer a special niche peripheral: the keypad. Razer's been building these single-hand keyboards since it helped Belkin create the n52te SpeedPad and it's still at it, today announcing the Razer Tartarus. Featuring 15 face keys and 25 programmable buttons (including an eight-way directional thumb pad), the Tartarus is billed as a successor to Razer's Nostromo -- although it actually has more in common with the $130 Orbweaver.
Like the high-end keypad, the Tartarus has fully programmable keys with unlimited-length macro support, Razer Synapse 2.0 for profile syncing and key-binding and the company's modern design language, but it eschews the Orbweaver's articulating ergonomics and mechanical keys to hit a lower $79 price point. These efforts shaved 50 percent off of the product's sticker price, but also cost it an additional row of keys. We spent a few minutes with the device and were pleased at how well it worked right out of the box, handily emulating the standard WASD gaming setup it's built around. We did miss the Orbweaver's additional buttons, however, as the smaller keypad's three-row setup left us reaching for a row of numerical analogs that simply weren't there. It's not the game controller for everyone, but it's good to know that there are options for niche peripheral fans on a budget. Read on for the company's official press announcement.
Filed under: Gaming
There are almost as many ways to monitor your fitness these days, as there are ways to get fit. While most hardware trackers come with their own solution to present your (hard-earned) data, some users prefer to keep it elsewhere. If that happens to be MapMyFitness, then good news -- there's full two-way sync for Jawbone UP, as well as Nike FuelBand support. Jawbone's UP has had API hooks with MapMyFitness for a while, but now workouts etc. can be pushed in either direction, so all those steps can be viewed online (though not your sleep, or manually logged workouts). It's a similar story with FuelBand, while the Nike+ app and watch have played nice with the services, the wearable was notably absent -- until now. Set up is easy, just head to the import section of your account and link them up. Sadly, so easy, you won't earn any fuel points.
Sprint customers looking for a handset with panache may be happy to learn that the network is offering the "glamor red" version of the HTC One as a carrier exclusive. Launching tomorrow, August 16th, the device will set you back $199 on a two-year deal or with an eligible upgrade. Although, given HTC's newly-minted partnership with Robert Downey Jr, we kinda wish the company had gone all out with an Iron Man edition.
Verizon's insatiable appetite for spectrum is legendary. The company's most recently been eyeing Canada's valuable 700MHz airwaves and even shown interest in acquiring troubled carriers Wind Mobile and Mobilicity. (Especially after the CRTC rejected Telus's attempt to purchase the latter.) The Globe and Mail now reports that VZW's chosen to delay its potential acquisitions of the two carriers until after next year's 700MHz auction and that the US company is considering a bid for the spectrum directly. It's unclear if Verizon is attempting to buy time, trying to push the price of the struggling operators down or simply losing interest in the Canadian market. One thing's for sure -- if the company bids in the auction it won't be able to negotiate any deals with other applicants until next year.
[Image credit: Andrew Currie, Flickr]
Source: The Globe and Mail
We've had the chance to rent movies and otherwise purchase content through Facebook; wouldn't it make sense if we could sign in to Facebook to buy goods elsewhere? The social network certainly thinks so, as it just confirmed to AllThingsD that it will be trialing a mobile payment system in about a month. The service is reportedly very PayPal-like -- Facebook users with credit cards on file would just have to log in to make purchases inside of a mobile app. Only the flash sale outlet JackThreads is participating in the test at this stage, and there's no mention of when the trial period expires. However, a full-fledged launch is potentially a major advantage for the House That Zuck Built. The payment system would give Facebook both a larger foothold in e-commerce and more insight into what members are willing to buy from advertisers.
Update: Our colleagues at TechCrunch have shed a little more light on the subject. They claim that the payment system is more of a complement to existing services than a competitor: it would only fill out the forms for another payment provider, including PayPal. Facebook reportedly sees this more as an extension of its advertising system, as it would both speed up sales and let marketers know when their ads are effective.
If you didn't get early access to Plants vs. Zombies 2 on iOS, now's your chance to play -- PopCap's backyard defense game has just launched worldwide on the App Store. The time travel-themed sequel significantly expands on the original with new plants, new zombies, between-round maps and touch-controlled power-ups. We've tried the game, and it's a welcome refinement of a mostly familiar experience. For some, though, the big change in PvZ2 may be its sheer accessibility. This is a genuinely free-to-play title -- you can see virtually everything it has to offer without paying a dime. In-app purchases are largely restricted to perks, such as coin packs. The developer doesn't yet have a schedule for PvZ2 releases on other platforms, but those who have at least one iOS device can engage in herbal warfare at the source link.
Source: App Store
How do we know that Philips will unveil a 65-inch 4K television at IFA on September 5th? Because that same, unannounced device has just won the European Ultra HD TV of 2013-14 award. The self-congratulatory press release mentions that the Ambilight XL-packing hardware will be offered at a "significantly lower" price point than current UHD sets, which generally retail for upwards of $7,000 for this sort of screen size. There's no word on how much cheaper this new unit will be, but we're hoping that Philips has updated its (slightly clunky) smart TV interface to complement the eye-watering resolution.
LG launched the G2 without any mention of wireless charging, but Verizon seems to have scooped that feature for its own variant of the handset. On its sign-up sheet, Big Red is claiming that the CDMA version will come with "exclusive wireless charging," and the accompanying image also shows a slightly different design to the rear buttons. Exactly the sort of thing rival carrier CEOs like to squabble over.
Wish the munchkins would be quiet while you read your favorite gadget website? The BBC feels your pain, and has released the CBeebies Playtime app to help keep 'em entertained and learning while you're on the go. The app comprises of four mini games, which include coloring with Mr. Tumble, learning words with Alphablocks and a racing game with Tree fu Tom. Designed to work offline, the software comes with parental controls and is available for free on iOS and Android devices as well as the Kindle Fire -- assuming, that is, you trust your little darling not to break a $200+ tablet.
BT is swiftly becoming a sports broadcasting force in the UK after acquiring ESPN UK and Ireland in February, then launching two of its own channels at the beginning of August. It's now found a teammate in Virgin Media, and a newly inked, three-year deal will see BT Sport 1, 2, ESPN and their HD counterparts available through Sir Richard's cable TV service. From today, all those channels go free for subscribers of the TV XL package, or can be added to other tiers for £15 per month. Watching through Virgin's TV Anywhere app is currently not supported but will be "soon," letting you gasp, shout and throw obscenities at even more screens.