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Thu 16 Oct 2008 04:00 AM

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Inspecting gadgets

ACN rounds up the latest and greatest executive gadgets, from teeny-tiny notebooks to the latest ultra-precise laser mice.

ACN rounds up the latest and greatest executive gadgets, from teeny-tiny notebooks to the latest ultra-precise laser mice.

Samsung SGH-G810

The need for people to carry both a mobile telephone and a digital camera has been fading for some time, and the feature-packed Samsung SGH-G810 is doing little to slow that need.

The phone contains a five megapixel super-camera with xenon flash, featuring 3X optical zoom and 4X digital zoom with various nifty photographic options, and has received some fairly serious accolades since its release.

Most recently, the European Imaging and Sound Association awarded the camera-phone ‘European Photo Phone 2008-2009'.

EISA's convergence panel commented that the technology present in the G810 would have been simply unimaginable in a consumer device a few years ago, almost begging the question - "Is it a camera or is it a phone?" The only answer to this question is simply, "both".

The camera part is certainly up to scratch, taking extremely slick photos that are starting to approach the quality of professional cameras. Samsung have not rested on their laurels and appear to have spared no expense on the phone aspect of the device either.

GPS, Bluetooth, video, MP3 and radio are some of the other features that can be toyed with when the user becomes tired of the crystal clear photography.

However, the G810 isn't entirely perfect - the relatively low amount of inbuilt memory (130 Mbytes) is frankly insulting when one considers that Samsung is one of the world's largest memory manafacturers. And for the price the Korean firm is asking for this phone, we know they can do better. Logitech V550 Nano Cordless Laser Mouse

Laptop users who are adverse to touch pads and tired of clumsily carrying their mouse as a separate entity could soon be introduced to an alternative to these two options. The Logitech V550 nano cordless laser mouse appears to have been designed with two major objectives in mind - subtlety and portability.

Subtlety is found in the relatively sleek design of the device itself, along with the miniscule USB dongle companion.

Although computer users of the larger variety may find the slim gadget disappears underneath their hand, those comfortable with other members of Logitech's nano mouse family will find the device has evolved to become even less noticeable than ever.

The portability lies in the newly introduced docking pad, that can be attached to the roof of a laptop for easy transportation around the office. The mouse is attached to the pad through a minute hole on the underbelly of the device, keeping the mouse locked solidly in place.

Such a design makes the mouse ideal for those constantly in transit.However users should be aware that despite the fact that you don't have to be concerned with lugging around a mouse in your free hand, you do need to be aware that the laptop itself will become ever so slightly more bulky and awkward to carry.

But let's face it, not by much. Putting your notebook under your arm should keep the mouse from catching any edges as you rush from room to room. Lenovo Thinkpad W700

The Lenovo Thinkpad W700 is quite simply a monster of a laptop computer. The lightning quick 3GHz Core 2 extreme quad core processor, 8Gbytes of DDR3 RAM and a 1Gbyte Nvidia Quadro graphics card make this a machine that would turn most desktops green with envy.

A 17-inch screen, full numeric-pad inclusive keyboard, and 5 USB ports complete the list of goodies.

Notebooks like the W700 have begun testing the limits between laptops and desktops, so much so that they no longer seem either very mobile or portable.

But of course this latest Thinkpad with its myriad of options is not intended for everyday use. Graphics and data intensive users will find the product a breath of fresh air, but it's too cumbersome and bulky for the average notebook user, for whom there are plenty of other options out there in the notebook market.

Those willing to sacrifice a little mobility in exchange for a truly powerful workstation, however, will no doubt come face-to-face with the Thinkpad W700 in the near future. Microsoft Explorer Mouse

For IT managers and executives who never quite know when they will have to pull out their notebook and get to work, Microsoft's new BlueTrack technology could prove to be quite handy.

Microsoft claim this new technology will work on anything but glass and reflective surfaces. Granite benchtops, carpet, fabric, metallic surfaces, as well as hair and skin are examples of some of the surfaces that this ergonomically designed Explorer mouse can go to work on.

Now although few executives will be using another human being for a work desk, the mouse's ability to work on carpet and fabric may come in handy for busy managers who may need to follow up on their work at home.

The mouse was tested on 40 different surfaces and is designed to address the increasing need for mobility in the world of modern business. The computer giant has also developed a slightly more portable miniature version of the Explorer Mouse, creatively titled - yes, you guessed it - the "Explorer Mini Mouse."

The mouse will also appeal to the fashion conscious IT executive, with its glowing blue underside akin to the neon lights on a Japanese street racing car.

The top half of the mouse is also quite stylish with chrome highlights again adding to the sports car effect. Whether the Explorer mouse will win the tracking technology race, will be seen in the coming months. Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte

Titanium, carbon fibre, stainless steel, and polished glass; no it's not the latest BMW roadster - we're talking about the latest addition to the Nokia family, the new $1000 8800 Arte. If James Bond was shopping for a mobile telephone, this would be his choice.

This handy little gadget is loaded with 4Gbytes of storage space, a 3.2 megapixel camera, various trimmings, and absurdly good looks that combine to make what is an extremely classy mobile telephone.

The sliding face design along with the subtle black and silver colour scheme also adds to the device's smooth and sophisticated look.

The product is aimed squarely at taking on the Apple iPhone, while also appealing to a more professional market. Nokia's latest Arte may look like a miniature sports car, but the iPhone will be expected to lead the race with its higher initial memory capacity and better affordability.

Nevertheless, the 8800 is full of handy gadgets and certainly looks the part, ensuring phone giant Nokia will remain competitive with the iPhone and other all-encompassing handsets.

The 8800 Arte is not the phone to be thrown around the office or over-used for one simple reason - it's so very expensive! But let's face it, although it's on the indulgent side, this is a slick unit full of the latest features and gadgets and it does look very, very classy.

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