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The thinnest and lightest small tablets

In the beginning, tablets looked more like the televisions that strap onto the back of a car's seat more than something out of "2001: A Space Odyssey." However, I'm happy to report that the times have changed and so have tablet designs.

After Apple released the iPad (let's give credit where credit is due), aesthetics and design became a more prominent selling-point for the emerging portable devices. Overall, tablet girth has declined, ushering in the new era of thin slates, and we've gathered the ones so sleek, their predecessors wouldn't even recognize them … Read more

Rumored Amazon phone: Six cameras, summer launch?

Here we go again. New reports online today suggest that the long-rumored Amazon smartphone is finally close at hand.

According to tech blog BGR, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted in a note to clients that "Amazon (US) will launch its own brand smartphone in 3-6 months, using the same hardware strategy as used for its e-reader and tablet." For those keeping track at home, this would put it on the market roughly two years after the first rumors copped up.

Kuo also predicts six cameras that include front and rear cameras, plus additional for touch-less gesture controls. … Read more

Samsung: iPad's bad, Surface is a joke, and Kindle's a swindle

For too long, tech manufacturers have mocked just one competitor at a time.

It allows for a little focus, but it becomes very monotonous.

Yes, Microsoft thinks the iPad's awful, Samsung thinks the iPhone's awful, and Amazon is sure the iPad's awful.

Someone at Samsung must have leaped out of bed recently and screamed: "I know! Why don't we say everyone else is awful?"

Here are the fruits of this thought. A new ad for the Samsung Galaxy Pro series of products proves beyond a reasonable doubt that everything else is garbage, trash, and … Read more

Amazon's video streaming device debuting in April?

While Amazon has yet to make any official announcement, word on the street is that the company's rumored video streaming device could be shipping as soon as early April, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Reportedly, the Amazon device could come with a variety of apps from other companies for streaming music, movies, and games, along with access to the company's own Video on Demand store and Instant Video service.

Rumors of the video streaming device have floated since last year. In October, it was said that Amazon approached a variety of app developers and cable TV providersRead more

Following Google and Roku, Amazon plans a TV dongle?

Amazon's video-streaming device is following the lead of Google, and more lately Roku, by going with a thumb-sized stick rather than a set-top box, according to a report from TechCrunch.

The Chromecast-like device is made by Lab126, the research and development arm of Amazon that produced the Kindle family of devices, TechCrunch reported on Monday, citing unnamed sources. It also cited a single source that it should have support to stream full PC games.

Amazon has been said to be on track to unveil a TV-streaming product, possibly with gaming, this month. Last week, images of an Amazon video-game controllerRead more

Is this Amazon's game controller for a TV box?

CNET Update goes whale watching:

In this episode of Update:

- Check out the latest clue in the Amazon media box mystery: photos of a Bluetooth video game controller, posted by Zatznotfunny.com. All signs point to Amazon releasing a streaming-media box in March or April.

- Catch selfie mania with Apple's new Selfie Section in the iTunes App Store. This must be great news for Manhattan, Miami and Makati City -- the top places for selfies according to Time.

- Go whale watching on Vine, now that #Whaling is trending.

- Expect to see video ads play in your Facebook News Feed. … Read more

Bluetooth game controller said to be for Amazon set-top box

Amazon's streaming set-top box could feature a game controller, according to a new report.

Amazon has reportedly been planning to launch a set-top box for the last several months. More evidence to that effect cropped up on Friday in Brazil where an FCC-like government agency revealed images of an Amazon game controller. That listing, discovered by Zatz Not Funny, shows an all-black controller feature four actions buttons, two thumbsticks, and both triggers and bumper buttons. The controller also includes a directional pad and connect via Bluetooth.

Amazon was reportedly planning to launch a set-top box last fall, but backed … Read more

ShopRunner: Amazon Prime fee hike will 'drive' away customers

Amazon rival ShopRunner is hoping to lure away Amazon Prime members by throwing a few barbs at the Internet retail giant and offering its own subscription service for free.

Following Amazon's announcement of a fee increase for Prime on Thursday, ShopRunner, which offers a two-day free shipping membership for various retail brands for $79 a year, took the opportunity to promote its service, while basically saying that Amazon is wasting money on its video-streaming service.

ShopRunner is offering a one-year free trial that specifically targets Prime users. The site's brands include Neiman Marcus, Brooks Brothers, PetSmart, and Blue … Read more

Pay more for Amazon Prime, less for Office 365

CNET Update takes the sting out of it:

In this episode of Update:

- Pay $20 more for Amazon Prime starting on April 17. At $99, it still is a good deal, if you use the perks of free shipping, video streaming and Kindle book rentals. If you only care about the service to save on shipping, look back on how much you spent last year to see if Prime is worth it. Amazon says standard shipping for most items is around $4 to $5.

- Avoid the price-hike pain for one more year by gifting yourself Prime, and "… Read more

Amazon's Prime fee hike: Is this just the beginning?

It took Amazon nine years to raise the fee for its Prime premium membership. It won't take nearly as long for the next price hike to show up.

Amazon's $20 increase in its fee sets a precedent for the company to raise its fees in the future, with the company having laid out the argument that it is facing rising fuel and transportation costs. It won't come without benefits, as Amazon races to add services and other perks to justify the increases. And the company will likely tread cautiously, sensitive to upsetting its most loyal of customers. … Read more