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One thing we all love are gadgets of various sorts. At some age, after they have lost interest in He-Man and women aren't a novelty anymore, Western males will find themselves drawn to toys for grown-ups to plug the black hole of their meaningless, everyday existence. Be they mobile phones or miniature beamers, there are plenty of gadgets out there for every budget, so anyone can regularly plug those annoying inner void leakages that tend to spring up now and then.
Aiptek displayed a few gadgets which fall into the "fun but boring after a few weeks" catgegory. Apart from showing their usual low-cost HD flash camcorders, they also let the public behold the wonderments of their miniature PocketCinema range.
The new stand alone PocketCinema V20 features 2GB internal memory and supports flash cards up to 32GB. Punters can naturally also hook up their iPhones, notebooks or game consoles. Aiptek claims it will can cover 65" of wall space with moving images and photos, however the unit on display was bust.
Two highly daft gadgets on display were a stonking large 3D camera unit which spewed a very grainy, pixely image onto a TV. In other words, plastic junk which is a nice party gag until people get bored of their 3D glasses.
A less junky but still not-so great gadget on display was a boombox with an in-built DVD drive and projector. Sound was thin and without any boom, the picture was small, pale and dull. Perfect for an eight year-old though, who can make use of it in a blanket cave and watch his Disney movies, or the secret one he stole from daddy and mummy.
Ed Hardy gets a special prize for licensing his crap to some mobile phone accessory maker. Discerning teenage bonesacks can add bling to their handsets to annoy grumpy old people even more when they listen to N-Dubz through their phone's speakers in the bus.
Mobile phones were hardly anywhere to be seen. SonyEricsson, Nokia and HTC merely showed handsets already presented at MWC, or before. Motorola also had booth space in the same hall, but all I could discover were babyfones. To be fair, Motorola had a big booth right next to Alcatel Lucent in the Broadband World exhibit, yet that hall was for network infrastructure so it can hardly be believed they showed handsets there, either. Yes, CeBit is going down the drain.
One mobile phone that did get my attention was the tPhone2, a touchscreen handset presented at the booth of the Islamic Republic of Iran. According to the man I spoke with it was developed and manufactured in Iran, even though it looks strikingly similar to a HTC handset. It runs on Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.5 professional, has a 5MP camera and uses a Samsung SiRFstar III receiver for GPS.
Being directed at Arabic customers, it features 55 translations and 9 Tafseer (commentaries) of the Holy Quran, 2000 Hadith and a whole lot more. Prayer times and Quibla directions can be calculated by GPS.
Have a look here for photos of the tPhone.