Entertainment:

Laptops

Top Yahoo! Searches

Home Theaters

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Survey Find Surprising Facts About Americans' Relationship With LapTops

(NAPSI)-The benefits of being “plugged in” at all times are starting to burn out some laptop users- literally. According to a study by Wakefield Research, laptop users make significant sacrifices in exchange for mobility. The complaints are widespread and range in nature from scorching heat to subpar sound. Fortunately, solutions exist to fix the most-common woes.

There are accessories that can vastly improve overall laptop experience, no matter where you want to use it-at your desk, on the couch or even on the go.

All Fired Up

Laptop users reported that they consistently face issues with the heat generated from their computer. In fact, nearly half (47 percent) of laptop users surveyed have had to temporarily quit using the device because the heat became unbearable. Desperate solutions that people have tried-a pillow (27 percent), towel (19 percent) and magazine (15 percent)-don’t adequately address the problem.

Lapdesks can help alleviate the issues people experience with laptop heat. For example, the Logitech Portable Lapdesk N315 is slim enough to take along in a laptop bag while the Logitech Speaker Lapdesk N550 can shield you from heat and deliver rich, full stereo sound, too.

Did You Hear That?

Most people use their laptop primarily for entertainment, with just 4 percent using it exclusively at work. The trend of buying music and videos online has rapidly emerged as a common practice and people often use their PCs to listen to their newly acquired digital files for the first time. However, listening to digital files on the built-in speaker on a laptop often leaves room for improvement.

The sound quality is often so poor that nearly one in three laptop users report having stopped a movie on their laptop because the speaker quality was subpar. More than half of all laptop users say music sounds better on a record player than on their laptop’s speakers. The speakers built into most laptops are tiny and can’t always reproduce powerful audio. Whether you’re an MP3 devotee or a movie lover, adding laptop speakers makes it easy to connect, turn the sound up and lose yourself in the things you love.

Learn More

To learn more about Logitech laptop accessories, including speakers, lapdesks and cooling pads, visit www.Logitech.com.

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BP Oil Spill Tops 2010 Searches On Internet Giant, Yahoo!

(NAPSI)-Midterm elections, product recalls and high-profile job exits preoccupied online attention, but the Transocean oil rig explosion and the resulting spill that gushed nearly 5 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico transfixed the public and dominated online activity on Yahoo! in 2010.

“The spill unfolded like a slow-motion horror film,” explains Vera Chan, senior editor and a Web trend analyst at Yahoo! “There was the immediate tragedy of 11 deaths and then the slow realization that, with all our technology, we couldn’t stop a force that was poisoning our waters.” The spill took 86 days to cap. Besides igniting the issue of workplace safety, the disaster became a lightning rod for America’s energy policies, big government, billionaire CEOs, environmental protection and technological safety.

Yahoo!-visited every year by some 631 million people worldwide-has once again analyzed its aggregate search data, and the top stories and topics of the year from the Yahoo! network, to release its annual review. In a year distinguished by global sporting events, a sputtering economy and political standstills, the Yahoo! Year in Review distilled 10 themes that defined 2010.

Top Searches on Yahoo! in 2010

1. BP oil spill

2. World Cup

3. Miley Cyrus

4. Kim Kardashian

5. Lady Gaga

6. iPhone

7. Megan Fox

8. Justin Bieber

9. “American Idol”

10. Britney Spears

“This was a year of starts, stops and stalls,” Chan says. “We’ve had technological innovations, the beginnings of economic reform, the end of our formal involvement in Iraq, political standoffs and economic struggles. Change is definitely here. What kind of change is welcome-well, that depends on where you stand.”

Other takeaways of 2010, identified in the Yahoo! Year in Review:

The nature of news and searches. In the past two years, breaking-news events have dominated searches on Yahoo!, a change from more entertainment-driven searches from years past.

2010 news and social trends

In addition to the Top 10, the Yahoo! Year in Review also looked at the most searched sporting events, incredible survivor stories and cultural obsessions. The following can be found on the Yahoo! Year In Review (yearinreview.yahoo.com):

• Financial Top Searches

• Top Searched Obsessions of 2010

• Natural Disaster Top Searches

• Top Recipe Searches

• Top Searched Music Lyrics

• And more.

Does the consumer shift toward news show a change in Web behavior? “Hard times could mean we’re less frivolous,” Chan observes. “And we’ve seen a shift in how media and better gadgets have given people access to information in new and different ways. Look at the White House’s insistence on the underwater live-cam. News outlets are savvier with online updates. Recall notices now come in an app. Wikileaks shared secrets with the world. All this changes how we seek out information and what information we expect to be available to us.”

The Yahoo! Year in Review, which launched December 1, will continue to post blogs that plumb the company search data for more Top 10 lists (such as politicians and athletes), as well as the stories behind the biggest searches of 2010.

For more about the Yahoo! 2010 Year in Review and other top searches, go to yearinreview.yahoo.com or search for “2010 Year in Review” on Yahoo.com.

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Home Theaters Can Be Fun And Affordable

(NAPSI)-More homeowners are now giving entertainment a room of its own—converting dens, guest rooms, garages and basements into home theaters.

What do you need? Here are a few tips on getting started:

• Decide where you can fit the home theater and come up with a game plan. Will the room serve a double purpose or be solely for entertainment?

• Make a list of what you need and research the latest entertainment systems. A true home theater should have a projector, a screen, a Blu-ray player, a speaker system, maybe a gaming console or a multimedia computer and other accessories. Decide where you want to sit, where the screen should be, and how you want to set up the room.

A great projector showing sharp images and true-to-life colors is important. An increasingly popular addition to many entertainment rooms is Mitsubishi’s portable HC4000 high-definition home theater projector.

The projector delivers a worry-free home theater experience. Setup is easy and the power switch and electric screen controls are linked for one-touch operation.

The high-brightness and long-life lamp has an estimated lifetime up to 5,000 hours when operating in low mode, which makes it an economical choice.

The Mitsubishi HC4000 projector is designed with sealed optics, making it resistant to dust, dirt and other microparticles, so problems typically associated with clogged filters, such as overheated lamps, are reduced.

Subdued scenes are easy to hear with the projector’s quiet engine that has an ultrahushed noise level. And at less than 8 pounds, the projector can be taken almost anywhere. With its built-in 1.5x zoom ratio lens, as well as a digital keystone correction, setup is easy and more flexible for various room configurations.

• Get comfy. Once you have the technology down, get a comfy recliner, couch and some chairs, a popcorn machine and a small fridge for cold drinks. To decorate, consider posters of your favorite films or sport teams. Now you’re ready for a big-screen theater experience right in your own home.

For more information, call (888) 307-0312 or visit www.mitsubishi-hometheater.com.

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Does Your "Remote" Control You?

(NAPSI)-If your home is like many in the U.S., you have at least four remote control devices and need to push a lot of buttons to simply watch TV or a DVD. Since 2005, the average number of remote controls in the living room has grown worldwide and, as a result, consumers are showing a clear interest in technologies that make home entertainment simple again.

Fortunately, with the right remote, you can replace up to a dozen others.

According to the “Global Remote Control Trends Study” by independent research firm Wakefield Research, nine out of ten Americans believe their home entertainment experience would be more enjoyable if they only needed to push a single button to enjoy their favorite television show or movie. A new line of remotes from Logitech can help consumers ease the transition from cluttered mess to sleek simplicity. The Logitech Harmony line includes features such as touch screens and activity-based control, making it easy to access your most-used functions. Each remote is designed so the controls are intuitive, grouped in ways that make sense and are easy for anyone to use, so consumers can be just one touch away from their entertainment. Whatever you want to watch, play or listen to, with one of these remotes, you’re just one touch away from creating perfect harmony in your living room.

Other findings in the survey include:

• One in five Americans owns a device, such as a DVD player or home audio system, that is connected but rarely or never used due to a missing remote.

• Two out of three Americans have lost the remote in or around their home.

• More than a quarter of Americans would rather give up their toothbrush for an entire month than their remote control.

• About half of consumers agree that touch-screen remote controls would make their entertainment experience better.

• Nine out of ten Americans view a universal remote as a solid investment. If you’re among them, you may be glad to know you can now take control of your remote and the electronic devices that respond to it in a modern, convenient and even enjoyable way.

Learn more at www.logitech.com/harmony.

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Consumers Demand More From Cell Phones

(NAPSI)-In today’s world, people are busier than ever. The balance of work, life and fun makes people yearn for a phone that can do more. According to a recent study from Harris Interactive, 85 percent of adults aged 35−54 currently use a cell phone and 25 percent of those are turning to smartphones get more done and have more fun on the go. To meet this wild demand, companies such as Microsoft are developing new phones that let people do it all from wherever they are.

Search On the Go

Search engines have quickly become one of the most popular ways people access information on the Web. But with people’s on-the-go lifestyle, they are increasingly looking for the same search experience on their phones. An example of how phones are seeking to meet this need is the new Windows Phone, which offers a dedicated search button on every phone. This allows people to quickly and easily search through contacts, apps and more at the touch of a single button. It also connects people directly to Bing Search without opening a browser.

Your Desk in Your Pocket

More and more, people are using their phones to get work done outside of the office. Of mobile phone users under the age of 35, 47 percent admit to using their phones to stay connected with colleagues or check work e-mail during holiday gatherings, according to the Harris study. The same Windows Phones that let people easily search also offer tools that help people work on the go. With Office Mobile, people can edit and create Word documents and access and edit PowerPoint and Excel documents right from their phone.

Camera

As mobile phones become multifunctional gadgets, high- quality cameras are quickly becoming a must-have feature. However, for many people, accessing the camera to catch a special moment is a challenge. By the time they’ve unlocked the phone and found the camera app, the moment has passed. Microsoft has solved this problem with a dedicated camera button on all Windows Phones that when pressed opens the camera app automatically, even from the lock screen, so they don’t miss a moment.

Entertainment

Whether it’s watching movies, catching up on TV shows or playing games, consumers are increasingly looking to phones to keep them entertained. In fact, 23 percent of adults admit to keeping their kids occupied with a phone during holiday gatherings. But not all phones are created equal. With Zune and Xbox Live built-in, large screens and kickstands for easy viewing and apps like Netflix, Windows Phones offer what people need to have more fun on the go.

Learn More

The new Windows Phones are available from T-Mobile and AT&T and come with some of Microsoft’s most popular programs built right in, like Xbox Live, Office, Zune and Bing. With features like a customized Start screen that lets people quickly see the information they need and the People Hub, which brings together contacts and Facebook in one place, Windows Phones make it easier for people to get to what they love easier and faster from anywhere. To learn more, visit the website www.windowsphone.com.

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Making Mobile Broadband Communication Even Faster

(NAPSI)-In this age of high-speed communication, the faster you can get your message across and the more places you can send it from, the better—so it can pay to stay on top of the latest developments in technology.

Currently, the front-runner in the communication technology race is 4G. 4G stands for the fourth generation of cellular wireless standards. It succeeds 3G and 2G standards, offering secure ultrabroadband Internet access and multimedia use.

With 4G, you can do everything faster—download, watch, transfer and share. And you can do it from pretty much anywhere, with any Wi-Fi-enabled device—the computer at the office, laptop at the beach, phone from the train or gaming device on the family road trip.

A few providers are testing networks, and one company, Sprint, already offers 4G service to customers in 68 markets. The Overdrive 3G/4G Hotspot enables any Wi-Fi-capable device, such as iPad, Nook eBook, Zune HD and Netbook, to become a 4G device where the 4G network is available.

Overdrive can also simultaneously connect up to five Wi-Fi-enabled devices such as iPhone, iTouch, Palm Pre, laptops and gaming devices.

The 3G/4G dual-mode devices, such as Overdrive 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot, provide the coverage and dependability of the 3G network plus the immediacy and power of 4G where it’s available.

The company has also launched 15 4G-capable devices, including America’s first 4G-capable handsets—HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G. Both incredible 3G phones, HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G—when used on the 4G network—make it possible to download music, pictures, files or videos in seconds—not minutes.

The company delivers downlink speeds that are up to 10 times faster than 3G and provides peak speeds of over 10 Mbps (average download speeds of 3−6 Mbps).

For more information, visit www.sprint.com/4g.

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Smartphones Get The Shot

(NAPSI)-Technology that was once used to film award-winning movies is now available for your smartphone.

Garrett Brown, Oscar-winning inventor of the Tiffen Steadicam, used this camera stabilization system to shoot nearly 100 movies including “Rocky,” “The Shining” and “Return of the Jedi.” Now, there’s a version to help camera-phone enthusiasts capture real life.

With more consumers using smartphones to capture videos, the Steadicam Smoothee can help create videos on the go without the shakes normally associated with handheld devices.

This easy-to-use camera stabilizer comes with a mount and can be used with the Apple iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 or the Flip MinoHD video camera.

A bracket on the steadicam attaches to a smartphone to keep it isolated from small, jerky movements. Panning and tilting can be done by nudging the hinge with your thumb.

The steadicam is sold on www.amazon.com.

For more information, you can visit www.tiffen.com.

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Control The Action With Your Guitar

(NAPSI)-An electrifying new game is striking a chord with music lovers-as it uses a six- string guitar that functions as a wireless game controller.

Featuring the music of Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews and Kid Rock, "Power Gig: Rise of the SixString" for Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 has been called the true evolution of band video games.

Through an exclusive deal, the music of these artists will only appear here and not in any other games.

The game integrates real guitar playing into entertaining gameplay. The video game can recognize gamers' input along the guitar, making the guitar as easy to pick up and play as other band-game button controllers.

Outside of the game world, the SixString can also be used as a fully functional electric guitar.

Anyone can play, even without guitar experience. If you like your existing button controllers, have at it as the software is cross-compatible with existing band games. For more information, visit www.powergig.com.

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