GW-254 -- Buffalo "Choi Tele (DH-ONE/U2)", Elecom TK-U09FG, Microsoft Xbox 360 HD DVD Player

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The Hottest Gadgets and Gizmos from Japan
Issue No. 254
Friday October 4, 2006
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Name: Buffalo "Choi Tele (DH-ONE/U2)"
Category: One-Seg tuner
Price: 12,075 yen
Release date in Japan: November 15, 2006

The Gist: It seems we spoke too soon last week when we told
you about Logitec's USB One-Seg tuner. The one that gives
you the capability to add One-Seg reception to virtually
any PC running Windows 2000 or XP. That's because Buffalo
has come along and one-upped Logitec.

Not only is Buffalo's "Choi Tele" USB One-Seg tuner cheaper,
it offers even more functionality. Last week we mentioned
how one of the downsides of the Logitec product was its
lack of recording capability; Buffalo has us covered as
the included "PCastTV for One-Seg" software allows
recording broadcasts. Resolutions up to 320 x 188 are
supported, which probably doesn't seem like much, but keep
in mind One-Seg broadcasts are intended specifically for
mobile devices (and thus, mobile screens). Since One-Seg is
broadcasted throughout Japan like any other signal, you
don't need internet access to view it. The Choi Tele also
supports Electronic Program Guide (EPG) data, enabling you
to schedule recordings through the PCastTV software.

The Choi Tele gets power from the USB bus itself, and
includes an optional antenna with a 3-meter extension cable.

More info:
Name: Elecom TK-U09FG
Category: Keyboard
Price: 5,040 yen
Release date in Japan: Late October 2006

The Gist: Elecom is attempting to brighten your lives with
their new keyboard using the company's new "Gear Drive"

Underneath each keys of the keyboard sits four gears. These
four gears will all support the key press at the same time,
regardless of where on the key you actually press. If you're
the kind of person that makes typos because you hit the
corner of the key instead of the middle (perhaps causing
your keyboard to not register a key press, or register a
key press for the adjacent key), this might be a good
solution for you.

For the rest of us, it's unclear how this would be
beneficial. Typos are typically made because keys are missed
altogether, or because other keys are accidentally pressed
while trying to type too quickly. It's also unclear how
Elecom plans to address hygiene issues: crumbs and gears
aren't exactly the greatest combination. Nevertheless,
Elecom's new keyboard may be interesting to try out if
you get a chance, if only because it's so rare that
advancements are so rare in the world of keyboards.

More info:
Name: Microsoft Xbox 360 HD DVD Player
Category: Digital video player
Price: 20,790 yen
Release date in Japan: November 22, 2006

The Gist: If you own an Xbox 360, it doesn't make much sense
to fail on purchasing Microsoft's upcoming HD DVD attachment.
Slated for release on November 22nd at 20,790 yen, the lowest
price anywhere in the world, it is evident Microsoft does
not intend to let the Blu-ray capabilities of Sony's
Playstation 3 go unmet. In fact, purchasing an Xbox 360
and an HD DVD unit for it is roughly the same cost
as purchasing the cheaper model of the Playstation 3.

The HD DVD Player connects to the Xbox 360 with a USB cable.
Microsoft also stated that they will be adding 1080p
support to the Xbox 360, so from a movie playback standpoint,
you should have a similar experience whether you're watching
Blu-ray on the PS3 or HD DVD on the Xbox 360. The Xbox 360
will also be supporting the "interactive" features of HD DVD,
such as picture-in-picture, bookmarks within movies, and
so on.

Unfortunately, Microsoft currently has no plans to allow
users to play games using the HD DVD drive. Whether this
will hurt the Xbox 360 in the end probably won't be known
for another year or so, well after Sony's Blu-ray gaming
goliath has entered the ring.

More info:
Written by: Liam McNulty
Edited by: Burritt Sabin (editors2 at
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