Synek hopes to change the world, at least for Beer Lovers!!

We ran into Synek a year or so ago and did an article on them and their new innovative beer brewing system. Now they are gaining momentum, and becoming an impressive force in the industry! They make an incredible device for beer lovers which allows them to have the best quality and best tasting beer from home.

They first launched on Kickstarter in 2014, see link kickstarter!

 

SYNEK

They have now made 3 huge advances to their brewing device:

1) A Growler Adapter so you’ll be able to use the dispenser both with the company’s specifically designed bags and with the big glass jugs that bars are more used to filling.
2) Redesigned bags that can hold more pressure. This will help homebrewers who want to carbonate their beer in the bag.
3) A pliable sling for participating bars that will help them distribute beer while introducing less oxygen.

They are like the Keurig or Nescafe of beer, allowing folks to enjoy the best at home.

We have not tried their beer or device so far, but if given the opportunity to test and review the device we would love to and then we can tell our perceptions of how good it really is compared to other ways of partaking of beer.

Please take a look at their exciting new overview video seen here-->

Watch this video on YouTube.

 

KICKSTARTER GRADUATE, SYNEK, ANNOUNCES NEW INNOVATIONS

FOR RELEASE: FEBRUARY 4th, 2016 10:00AM CT

(ST. LOUIS) After raising $650,000 on Kickstarter and a subsequent $3.1 million in initial funding, SYNEK (“sin-eck”) announces three major product innovations that will further expand the quality and variety of beer to its customers.

“We’re not a one trick pony,” said Steve Young, SYNEK founder and CEO. “Delivering the last preorder is just the beginning of our quest to make great beer available to all.”

While hundreds of breweries already partnered, introducing the Growler Adapter will expedite their vision of perfect access by tapping into the industry standard. For the first time, this expands SYNEK’s capabilities to the increasingly popular nitrogen infused beers.

To optimize for the strong homebrewing community, the newly redesigned SYNEK cartridges now tout a 50 percent higher pressure rating. The reinforced design allows homebrewers an easier, safer and cleaner way to package and pour their own brews.

A vast majority of the beer industry currently uses vented faucets. While common, these faucets introduce beer killing oxygen with every pour. By creating a simple pliable sling, these taps can be upgraded to provide higher quality and longer lasting beer whether enjoyed in a pint glass, growler or SYNEK cartridge.

“We’re not reinventing the wheel, just beer,” Young said.

All of these innovations are currently being tested by select breweries and will be available mass market in Spring 2016.

ABOUT SYNEK

Born on Kickstarter, SYNEK pours your favorite beer on draft, at home. By filling a simple cartridge from any tap, the dispenser keeps your beer chilled, pressurized and at perfectly captured quality for 30+ days. Now, every brewery is available at home. Craftsmanship deserves to be shared. Learn more at www.SYNEK.beer

Please check out the link on Engadget.com – >Engadget Synek Article

And their article on Cnet!--Synek Article on Cnet!

 

 

Oppo N1 With CyanogenMod

oppo-n1

Oppo’s flagship N1 smartphone went on sale globally for the first time on December 10, but the version everybody wants — that’s the one that comes with CyanogenMod 10.2 pre-installed — wasn’t available from day one. Oppo has today announced, however, that it will be available on December 24 — just in time for Christmas.

Oppo was waiting for the N1 to pass Google’s compatibility test suite (CTS) process, which gives it access to Google’s official Android apps — including the Google Play Store. Without this, the company would have had to launch the N1 without a Play Store — or build its own — and users would have had to side-load their applications.

It was certainly worth waiting for that before launching the CyanogenMod variant, then — even if it means you won’t quite get the N1 in time for Christmas.

The N1 becomes the first phone with CyanogenMod to have been certified by Google, “which marks a major milestone for everyone” involved in the project, said CyanogenMod developer Abhisek Devkota. “This has been something a long time in the making, ever since CM 4.0.4.”

It’s unclear how much this N1 variant will cost, but it’s expected to come with the same $599 price tag (€499 in Europe) as the original model. That gets you a 5.9-inch 1080p display, a quad-core Snapdragon 600 processor, a 13-megapixel camera, and 2GB of RAM.

Latest News from Fujifilm

FUJIFILM UNVEILS THE NEW X-M1 PREMIUM CSC FEATURING

A 16.3 MP APS-C X-TRANS CMOS SENSOR, EXR PROCESSOR II

AND A KIT OPTION FEATURING THE NEW XC16-50MM LENS

New X-M1 also includes a 3” tilting, high definition LCD screen, wireless image transfer for easy photo sharing and advanced filters for creative picture taking

 Fujifilm XM1 mirrorless ILC ships in July with 163megapixel APSC sensor, $700 price tag

(Note image was found on Engadget.com, http://www.engadget.com/search/?q=fuji+xm1

Valhalla, N.Y., June 24, 2013 – FUJIFILM North America Corporation today announced the all new, premium FUJIFILM X-M1 compact system camera (CSC), the third interchangeable lens system camera introduced within the award-winning FUJIFILM X-Series. The X-M1 is a lightweight camera that includes the same 16.3 Megapixel APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor used in the critically acclaimed FUJIFILM X-Pro1and X-E1 that delivers outstanding image quality, all in a premium, beautifully crafted body.

 

The X-M1 will ship with a newly-designed FUJINON XC16-50mm (24-76mm)*1 F3.5-5.6 OIS zoom lens that allows enthusiast photographers to capture crystal clear wide angle to mid-telephoto range images. The XC16-50mm is a versatile lens that is ideal for a wide range of photographic subjects, including stunning low-light scenes, true to life portraits and rich colorful landscapes. The lens consists of 12 all glass elements in 10 groups including 3 aspherical elements and 1 ED element. The lens features seven round-edged aperture blades, which offer 17 stops in 1/3 EV increments for precise aperture control.

 

“The X-M1 is a perfect combination of power and performance, all within a lightweight and well-built chassis. Photographers and enthusiasts alike can confidently take the X-M1 everywhere they go, and it will deliver images that exceed their expectations,” said Go Miyazaki, president and chief operating officer, FUJIFILM North America Corporation.

 

“The remarkable new X-M1 with its large APS-C X-Trans sensor, 3” tilting LCD screen, new XC16-50mm lens and easy wireless image transfer, gives enthusiasts the ability to capture amazing quality images and also share them effortlessly.”

 

Award-winning 16.3 Megapixel APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor and EXR Processor II

The FUJIFILM X-M1 uses the same large APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor that is found in the X-Pro1 and the X-E1 with a unique color filter array that minimizes moiré and false color without the need for an optical low pass filter. This makes it possible for the camera to maximize extremely high resolution, and to capture each image with accuracy and clarity when using high performance FUJINON lenses.

 

With the X-M1, users can set the sensor sensitivity from ISO200 to as high as ISO6400 in 1/3 step increments, and even take advantage of the extended range of ISO100 and ISO25600 to obtain amazingly clear and low-noise images even in low-light conditions when shooting at night or indoors.

 

Together with the EXR Processor II, the X-M1 gives customers incredible speed and response times with a start-up time of 0.5 seconds*2, a shutter time lag of 0.05 seconds and a maximum burst speed of 5.6 frames per second (max. 30 frames*3).

 

Compact performance and advanced features

The X-M1 compact ILC combines advanced features in a go-anywhere design. The X-M1 weighs just 11.6oz*4 and measures 4.6” W by 2.6” H by 1.5” D, about half the size of a traditional DSLR body. With a slim profile of 1.3” at its trimmest point, the X-M1 is easily carried anywhere, and can be trusted to deliver high-quality images.

 

Along with its large APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor, the X-M1 also features a 3” tilting high resolution LCD screen with 920,000 dots for easy image viewing and framing at various angles.

The 3” LCD monitor tilts at variable vertical angles, facilitating both low-angle and high-angle shots whether on or off a tripod.

 

The X-M1 gives users additional flexibility with its built-in high precision flash, with the guide number 7*5, and Super Intelligent Flash technology that automatically controls flash strength according to scene types to reduce highlight clipping.

 

Easy Image Transfer with WiFi® button

The X-M1 features a WiFi button that lets users transfer photos and movies*6 from the camera to smartphones, tablets and computers allowing enthusiasts to upload high quality images to social media sites for easy sharing.

 

To connect the X-M1 to a smartphone or tablet, users can download the free dedicated “FUJIFILM Camera Application” to their iPhone™ / iPad™ or Android™ smartphone or tablet device to transfer up to 30 pictures at a time from the X-M1. The app also lets users download movies, expanding the range of options available for enjoying pictures taken with the camera.

 

Intuitive design and easy operation

The intuitive design of the X-M1 gives users the ability for one-handed camera operation, which is perfect for the fleeting moments when you need to pick up the camera quickly and start shooting.

 

The X-M1 has its key operation buttons and dials positioned on the right side of the camera’s rear panel for easy use and quick picture taking. The Mode Dial for selecting the optimum setting for each scene gives access to the Advanced SR Auto function, which automatically recognizes each scene and selects the best settings for sharp and clear images.

 

The Advanced Filter function gives users a range of creative filters to apply and achieve unique and artistic looks. The use of two perfectly positioned Command Dials allows users to effortlessly adjust the aperture, shutter speed and exposure compensation, while frequently-used functions are given individual buttons, thereby enabling intuitive and quick operation.

 

FUJIFILM X-M1 key features list:

  • 16.3 Megapixel APS-C X-Trans CMOS sensor
  • EXR Processor II
    • Start-up time of 0.5
    • Shutter lag time of 0.05
    • Shooting interval time of 0.7
  • 3” (920K dot) tilting high resolution LCD screen
  • Full range of ISO100 – ISO25600
  • Wireless image transfer
  • Q Menu shortcut button
  • In-camera RAW processing
  • Film Simulation modes (Velvia, ASTIA, PROVIA, Sepia, and Black & White)
  • 8 Advanced Filters (Toy Camera, Miniature, Dynamic Tone, Pop Color, Soft Focus, High Key, Low Key and Partial Color)
  • Multiple Exposure mode to superimpose a second exposure on the first exposure
  • Full HD movie 1080P\30fps and built-in stereo microphone
  • Available accessories include: Leather Case, Hand Grip, and Clip-on Flash

 

 

FUJINON XC16-50mm (24-76mm) F3.5-5.6 OIS

  • 24-76mm equivalent F3.5-5.6 lens
  • Fully compatible with FUJIFILM X-Mount
  • 12 all glass elements in 10 groups including 3 aspherical elements and 1 ED element
  • Seven round-edged aperture blades, which offer 17 stops in 1/3 EV steps

 

The FUJIFILM X-M1 (body only) will be available in black and silver in July 2013 for $699.95.

 

The FUJIFILM X-M1 and XC16-50mm (24-76mm) F3.5-5.6 OIS lens (kit) will be available in July 2013 for $799.95.

 

The FUJIFILM X-M1 (body only) will be available in brown in August 2013 for $699.95.

 

The FUJIFILM X-M1 uses the same FUJIFILM X-Mount as the X-Pro1 and X-E1, and all FUJIFILM XF and XC lenses will work with all X-Series interchangeable lens cameras.

 

The current Fujifilm lens family includes the following FUJINON XF and XC lenses:

  • XF 14mm F2.8
  • XF 18mm F2.0
  • XF 27mm F2.8
  • XF 35mm F1.4
  • XF 60mm F2.4
  • XF 18-55mm F2.8-4.0 OIS
  • XF 55-200mm F3.5-4.8 OIS
  • XC 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OIS

 

 

*1 35mm format equivalent

*2 Quick Start mode

*3 Maximum number of frames can be shot in JPEG setting, using a “Class 10” or higher SD card

*4 Including the battery and memory card, excluding the lens

*5 ISO200・m; When shooting at ISO200, the light reaches a subject up to (7/F number) meters away

*6 FUJIFILM Camera Application for iOS can save movie files up to 1280 x 720

 

About Fujifilm
FUJIFILM North America Corporation, a marketing subsidiary of FUJIFILM Holdings America Corporation consists of four operating divisions and one subsidiary company. The Imaging Division provides consumer and commercial photographic products and services, including: photographic paper; digital printing equipment, along with service and support; personalized photo products; film; and one-time-use cameras; and also markets motion picture archival film and on-set color management solutions to the motion picture, broadcast and production industries. The Electronic Imaging Division markets consumer digital cameras, and the Graphic Systems Division supplies products and services to the graphic printing industry. The Optical Devices Division provides optical lenses for the broadcast, cinematography, closed circuit television, videography and industrial markets, and also markets binoculars. FUJIFILM Canada Inc. sells and markets a range of Fujifilm products and services in Canada. For more information, please visit www.fujifilmusa.com/northamerica, go to www.twitter.com/fujifilmus to follow Fujifilm on Twitter, or go to www.facebook.com/FujifilmNorthAmerica to Like Fujifilm on Facebook. To receive news and information direct from Fujifilm via RSS, subscribe at www.fujifilmusa.com/rss.

FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation, Tokyo, Japan, brings continuous innovation and leading-edge products to a broad spectrum of industries, including electronic imaging, digital printing equipment, medical systems, life sciences, graphic arts, flat panel display materials, and office products, based on a vast portfolio of digital, optical, fine chemical and thin film coating technologies. The company was among the top 10 companies around the world granted U.S. patents in 2012, and in the year ended March 31, 2013, had global revenues of $26.7 billion*. Fujifilm is committed to environmental stewardship and good corporate citizenship. For more information, please visit www.fujifilmholdings.com.

* At an exchange rate of 83 yen to the dollar.

 

All product and company names herein may be trademarks of their registered owners.

###

 

Breffo Spiderpodium an exciting and versatile product from the UK

I ran into Breffo at CES 2012 and CES 2013.

I had the recent opportunity to test and review the Breffo Spiderpodium’s the little one for phones and the larger one for tablets. To put it mildly I was impressed by their design, ease of use, versatility and how fun they are!! It is a quick and simple user friendly stand and much more.

Description from Breffo’s Website–>

Designed with today’s portable handheld consumer electronics in mind, the ‘take it everywhere, use it anywhere’ Spiderpodium portable dock & podium is a universal, multi-purpose, gadget grip, holster, dock and display podium which is compatible with most all compact handheld devices including smartphones, portable phones, portable movie players, mp3/4 players, gaming systems, SatNav’s, camcorders, portable projectors, compact camera’s, e-readers and more!

Utility and Versatility

They are efficient, and can be used for phones, tablets, cameras, gps devices, and mp3 player. They are easy to take with you such as in a camera bag or laptop case. They are flexible and can be manipulated to work with a variety of devices and on a many surfaces as well.

 

The amazing and versatile breffo holders!!
The amazing and versatile breffo holders!!

Fun

The Breffo Spiderpodium tablet and smaller device holders are fun as well. They look like spiders, and since I work for Orkin in commercial sales they are fun for us to show customers. My twin almost 17 year old sons also love them. My wife however does not want them any where near the dinner table since she has a fear of spiders which can be fun in itself as well.

 

Design

As seen in the following image, they come in a variety of colors to suit the user’s preference.
They come in 2 basic sizes, one for smaller objects. I used that one with my old Sony Xperia ION, and my new Samsung Galaxy S3 and my daughter’s ipod touch and they worked well for all devices. The ipod touch was a bit small but the Breffo Spiderpodium worked well for it as well. I also tested the larger model for tablets and was impressed with it too. I used the larger one with my Apple Ipad Mini, and HTC View 4g and it worked well. Breffo might want to consider a larger one for the larger android tablets as well. The breffo tablet spiderpodium worked well with my Ipad Mini, and My co-workers ipad as well.

I did not review the new one that just came out for cameras specifically but it appears to be quite nice as well.

One thing that could improve the product is some type of suction cup on the end of the spiderprodium for use on shiny surfaces like glass tables but other than that they are very nicely design and fun as well.

A variety of colors and 2 sizes.
A variety of colors and 2 sizes.

Here are some videos of the product in action from other reviewers:

and a link from a review the that guys at Engadget did as well–>

http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/08/breffo-spiderpodium-tablet-stand-hands-on/

In testing we found that the Spiderpodium Tablet was an excellent tool and it worked well for Android and Appple tablets as well as phones, after we go a handle on how to use the spiderpodium manipulate it’s arms properly it worked quite well. It could also be helpfull to hold up a book, or portable dvd player or a mirror in a beauty shop as long as it does not scare the users. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who needs to have hands free access to a device for watching a movie, reading a book or doing a presentation!! The Breffo Spiderpodium can also be used for holding a tablet to the back of a car’s head rest so the people in the back seat can watch movies too. There are tons of uses for the exciting Breffo Spiderpodiums!!

BEST OF CES 2013-REPLAYXD AND THEIR EXCITING HD CAMERA’S A PREVIEW!!

Replay XD
Replay XD

While I was at CES 2013, I spent 3 days trying to find products that really impressed me in their quality and design.

I really liked ReplayXD’s products!!

Here is a video highlighting their products:

Here is a second video of their products in action!!

Here is a video from our friends at Engadget–>http://www.engadget.com/2011/06/09/replay-xd1080-promises-to-capture-your-exteme-activities-without/

 

 

Replay XD!!!
Replay XD!!!

So far I am very impressed by the company, their people and their products. I am looking forward to testing and reviewing their products for real.

Apple launches Ipad 3–> Information and Overview!!!

–>It’s Features include a retina display,an enhanced 5 megapixel camera and 4G LTE capability
–>It’s Screen is higher resolution than most 40″ big screen tv’s
–>It is powered by high-speed A5x chip which according to Apple is faster than the Nvidia Tegra 3!!
–>Apple boasts picture resolution so crisp that words will appear sharper than words in print
–>New model of Apple TV set-top box will also play HD films
–>Films on iTunes Store now available in Full HD for first time

Specifications–>

A video from APPLE–>

Quotes from other tech sites–>

Gizmodo: ‘It’s almost like looking at a glossy magazine page. It also has much more powerful guts, with a much faster processor, graphics and more memory.’
TechCrunch: ‘As far as weight and shape, it’s almost exactly the same as the iPad 2. They wouldn’t allow comparison shots – probably because the new iPad is a little thicker – but the dimensional differences are minor and the overall feel is near-identical.’
Engadget: ‘By and large, the new guy is the same as the old guy (Home button included), but with a few nice amenities that could very well convince owners of earlier iPads to upgrade. Upon touching the HD variant, it’s not the overall form factor that grabs us — it’s the screen.’
TechRepublic: ‘Apple is trying hard to get us to see the iPad as more than just a consumption device. It clearly wants this to be a viable option for more and more users to consider instead of a laptop.’

Please also check out–>http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2111564/iPad-3-launch-Apple-introduces-new-HD-tablet-thats-4-times-faster.html?ITO=google_news_rss_feed

Here is another nice review from Techdigest.tv–>
http://www.techdigest.tv/2012/03/hands-on_new_ip.html

Jason Gilbert from the Huffington Post also had an interesting article on it as well–>
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jason-gilbert/ipad-first-impressions-why-apples-new-ipad-not-disappointing_b_1328362.html

Personally I can not wait to get my hands on one to evaluate. It should prove to be a great educational tool, as well as one for musicians, artists and business users. I wish they would come out with an 8″ version for around $299 for those that do not have a budget for the higher priced versions.

A CES 2012 report from our our friends Engadget—>We’re live from CES 2012!

Here is a report from the big guys, Engadget with regards to CES 2012. We inspire to be like them, with a tech, and autism focus.

We talk about them, and hope that they return the favor at some point…

From Engadget–>

http://www.engadget.com/2012/01/06/were-live-from-ces-2012/

We’ve landed in Vegas, just in time to enjoy the proverbial calm before the storm that will be the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show. Motorized carts zoom around the parking lot as the Las Vegas Convention Center begins to take shape — as always, getting the million-dollar-booths fully dressed before the curtain comes up next week seems an impossible task, but the crews will come through, making the finished product a far-cry from what we see today. And as exciting as it can be to roam the halls of the LVCC and surrounding venues during the show, the pageantry of CES is really about the products, including many of which we haven’t heard so much as a peep about in the weeks leading up to the show. But as the booths inside will remain veiled until company heads have a chance to brief attendees, a few hints have begun popping up outside the convention center, as workers hang sponsored banners above and along the massive entranceways. Some of these product hints serve to confirm previous rumors, so join us past the break for an early look at what’s to come.

Engadget and their hands on with the Motorola Xyboard 10.2, and a video overview from Youtube

Are LTE speeds and an improved silhouette enough to lure wayward users back into the company’s willing embrace? Does anyone even care about non-Ice Cream Sandwich tablets? Read on as we explore the odd ends and angles of this curiously-shaped slate.
Motorola Droid Xyboard 10.1 vs Xoom LTE… fight!

So, let’s face that elephant in the Xoom head-on: this iteration of the Xyboard is lighter at 1.33 pounds (603 grams) and considerably thinner at just 0.35 inches (8.8mm). Gone are the hard edges that marred Moto’s original tab and, instead, we’re treated to the same curved edges that made their debut on the Droid RAZR, as well as a flanking of soft touch plastic. Immediately, you’ll notice the device’s ergonomic improvements over its predecessor, but it’s still a far cry from being a pleasure to hold. In fact, those awkward angles dig into your palms no matter how you orient the slate. Sure, the Xyboard’s looks serve to set it apart from the competition, but we’re not sold on this build as the model going forward.

Though this fella was meant to be a clean break from the company’s tablet past, it appears as though Motorola simply couldn’t part with its ill-advised decision to mount the power button and volume rocker on the device’s backside — here somewhat easily locatable on the upper right. It takes some getting used to, but we acclimated to this placement soon enough. Soft touch plastic surrounds the gunmetal grey aluminum back, which neatly stacks Motorola’s insignia atop that of Verizon’s own and the operator’s 4G LTE logo. Up top, the slate’s 5MP rear camera with single LED flash lies centered between the stereo speakers. Ports are mainly relegated to the bottom, where you’ll find a removable tray for the SIM card, as well as a micro-HDMI out and micro-USB. While the 3.5mm headphone jack is left by its lonesome on the opposite end, with the 1.3MP front-facing camera just beneath it.

With a dual-core processor bumped up to 1.2GHz and an ample 1GB of RAM, the Xyboard zooms along, hampered only by the addition of Moto’s Blurring of the Honeycomb OS.

The O.G. Xoom repped a 1,280 x 800 WXGA display which, although decent for its time, literally pales in comparison to the Xyboard’s TFT-IPS. Colors are noticeably bolder, the panel is brighter and images come across much crisper. Motorola’s claim of 178-degree viewing angles are no joke, either — the screen retains a stunning visibility even when tilted nearly full out of eyesight. Obviously, this bump in quality should go over well with folks who intend to consume mass amounts of streaming video on the tablet.

With a dual-core processor bumped up to 1.2GHz and an ample 1GB of RAM, the Xyboard zooms along, hampered only by the addition of Moto’s Blurring of the Honeycomb OS. Indeed, transitions are often choppy and lack the fluidity of Samsung’s TouchWiz UX. Why the company chose to break from offering users a pure Google experience and overlaid a choppy skin is beyond us. Again, tradition seems to prevail here. Save for the original Droid, all subsequent brand descendants shipped with the OEM’s special skinned touch. And so, too, has Motorola extended that consistently poor software customization to its successive Android 3.2 tabs.

With skinning comes crapware and the Xyboard has it a plenty. Third party apps like Amazon Kindle, Citrix, Dijit, Evernote, Fuze Meeting, Let’s Golf 2, Madden NFL 12, Netflix, Quickoffice, and Slingbox come pre-installed. That list doesn’t include Verizon’s own branded offerings which help to crowd the app drawer. Certainly, some of these applications are useful, but we’d like app downloads to ultimately be the user’s choice and completely uninstallable.

Verizon’s LTE service in New York City hasn’t fared so well in the past few days, dropping off and defaulting the Xyboard to a 3G connection due to network issues. Things look to have been fixed on the operator’s end since and we’re back to enjoying those blistering speeds, which maxed out at 27.64Mbps down and 8.12Mbps up on the Xyboard. Typically, performance will hover between 17Mbps to 22Mbps down and 5Mbps to 7Mbps up, so if you’re planning on a marathon Netflix session, you won’t be left wanting. Big Red’s 4G coverage has had the benefit of an early head start and, consequently, signal strength was relatively hardy.

Perhaps to add that extra value oomph to the Xyboard, Motorola’s bundled a stylus into the box. But don’t let that get your hopes up, the functionality reeks of last minute add-on.

Perhaps to add that extra value oomph to the Xyboard, Motorola’s bundled a stylus into the box. But don’t let that get your hopes up, the functionality reeks of last minute add-on. Wondering why Evernote comes pre-loaded? Wonder no more, the app is one of three options made available when the stylus icon is activated from the tablet’s dock on the lower right. Users wielding Moto’s pen, which itself is actually well-made and feels great in the hand, can choose between Floating Notes to create and save memos, Open to see a list of saved memos and the aforementioned Evernote. Integration doesn’t run too deep, as you’ll only be able to choose from three distinct pen tip / eraser widths and eight colors. The handwriting recognition software showcases an apparent lag, trailing behind our hand’s movements and forget about resting your palm on the screen, as that’ll impede your ability to write. That’s not to say it totally fail to recognize your attempts at legible scrawl, but it’s definitely a hit or miss experience. Navigation and typing can also be managed via the stylus, although it’s not ideal.

For the power user, Motorola’s released a slew of accessories to extend the Xyboard’s functionality. There’s an HD station for docking the tablet that packs an extra three USB ports and HDMI out so you can watch content on your flatscreen, a portfolio cover that flips back to create an impromptu stand and a wireless keyboard with portfolio. We took the Bluetooth keyboard for a trial run and despite its decidedly less than premium construction, its usefulness actually exceeded our low expectations. The hard-edged square keys are stiff, but have just enough travel to make typing surprisingly fluid and natural feeling. We did occasionally encounter difficulty locating some of the modifier keys, shrunken as they are to fit the layout, but Motorola did manage to include shortcuts for menu, home, back and search. Depressing any of the alphanumeric keys while viewing the homescreen accesses the tablet’s search function, displaying a list of relevant contacts, search terms and applications. And to make up for the lack of a trackpad, there’s a soft rubber-coated mouse button that lies centered between the G, H and B keys. It’s implementation is actually more frustrating that helpful, as it’s overly sensitive and difficult to control. So much so, that we found ourselves defaulting to touch navigation out of resignation.

HP TouchPad returns in TigerDirect bundle, if only for a moment

I had heard rumors that HP Touch Pads would return around the Holidays, and it seems that they are starting to appear.

According to Engadget–>http://www.engadget.com/2011/12/15/hp-touchpad-returns-in-tigerdirect-bundle-if-only-for-a-moment/

“We’ve got TouchPads!” That’s the slogan, but even TigerDirect admits that it’s expecting its latest batch of TouchPad slates to evaporate in a matter of minutes. Strangely enough, we’ve seen the zombie-like webOS tablet on sale in a variety of locations during the past few months, and if you’re quick, you’ll be able to buy yet another from yet another vendor at 2:30PM ET today. The company’s not saying how many are in stock, but we’re told to expect the entire batch to be claimed “by 2:32PM ET.” The deal? $249.99 nets you a 32GB TouchPad, a 10.1-inch Belkin tablet case and Creative Labs’ D80 Bluetooth speakers, while a $299.99 bundle replaces the speaker with a Photosmart printer. Oh, and don’t even bother trying to order over the phone — this one’s online only, and it’s one bundle per customer. We’re telling you now so you’ve got time to memorize your credit card number. Feel free to talk about nerves, shaking limbs and tales of luck in comments below.