cellphones

An e-cigarette packed with Bluetooth? Talk to the hand

The scenario is all too typical -- you're walking down the street puffing on an e-cigarette, just wishing you could use the little metal nicotine stick to make a phone call... How handy would that be?

Well, dreams can come true.

A company called Supersmoker has come up with an e-cigarette it claims is the world's first to double as a Bluetooth headset and device that streams MP3s from a smartphone. That's right, a musical cell phone cigarette.

"Never seen before! An electronic cigarette with Bluetooth functionality," the company writes on its Web site. "… Read more

FCC vote opens door to end ban on in-flight calls

The Federal Communications Commission took the first step toward removing regulations that ban phone calls while in flight. But FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler emphasized that the Department of Transportation, which oversees the Federal Aviation Administration, will have the final say.

At the FCC's monthly open meeting Thursday, the agency voted 3-2 to approve a measure that will open up for public comment a proposal that will lift the technical ban on in-flight cell phone use.

Speaking during FCC's meeting, Wheeler emphasized that the decision to green-light cell phone use is not ultimately the FCC's decision. He said … Read more

Restaurant offers 50 percent discount for turning off phone

Look your lover in the face. Tell him or her why they're the best, most gorgeous, most intelligent, inspiring person you've ever met.

Then dig into your mackerel or your malloreddus.

That's how a romantic meal should go. Instead, these days, the obligatory phones lie on the table like needy puppies. Within moments, the lovers' eyes are buried in them, as if this were a table for one.

One restaurateur in Israel has decided that, rather than ban cell phones, he will offer an incentive so great that it makes your average Black Friday bargain seem like … Read more

Are in-flight phone calls in our future?

CNET Update dials in:

In this episode of Update:

- You may have to invest in noise-canceling headphones if airlines allow passengers to make in-flight calls with their cellphones.

- Learn how Walmart is preparing to battle Amazon for Black Friday.

- Get a free BlackBerry Z10 from some carriers (that is, if you actually want one).

- Get caught up on the verdict of the Apple v. Samsung trial for damages (hint: it's not pretty for Samsung).

- Listen to the horrible grinding sounds that some unfortunate Xbox One owners heard when they put a disc into their … Read more

FCC considers lifting cell phone ban on planes

The Federal Communications Commission is considering green-lighting the use of cellphones and mobile broadband services on airplanes above 10,000 feet.

The agency, which has restricted the use of cellular devices for making phone calls or surfing the Web in-flight, is circulating a proposed rulemaking among its commissioners. The agency will introduce the item at its December open meeting, and will then allow for public comment on the proposal.

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said Thursday that it's important for the FCC to keep up with changing technology.

"Modern technologies can deliver mobile services in the air safely and … Read more

Carriers reject idea of phone kill switch

CNET Update is a steal:

In this episode of Update:

- Learn what you can do to foil phone thieves, since carriers won't thwart theft with a kill switch.

- Translate languages with Word Lens on Google Glass, as developers begin making more complex apps for the headpiece.

- Compare the Logitech PowerShell iPhone game controller case with the Moga Ace Power snap-on controller. Both devices were unveiled this week for the holiday shopping season.

- Check out CNET's review of the Xbox One, Microsoft's new console that hits stores Friday.

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Canadian man thwarts polar bear attack with cell phone

Mobile phones are amazing tools -- and sometimes even life savers.

That's what a Canadian man learned over the weekend when he apparently used his cell phone to stop a polar bear attack in Churchill, Manitoba.

Garett Kolsun was walking home alone early Saturday morning when he found himself face to face with a 400-pound polar bear. It cornered him and sank its teeth into his hip. Kolsun seemed doomed until he whipped out his cell phone. … Read more

Confused about locked vs. unlocked phones? Ask Maggie explains

Ever since the Librarian of Congress decided not to renew a provision in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that essentially makes it illegal to unlock your phone without your carrier's permission, there's been intense interest in the issue. But when it comes to unlocked cell phones, there's also been a lot of confusion.

Many people have been looking for ways to unlock their devices. The U.K. Web site Mobile Unlocked, which sells unlock codes to consumers, says sales of unlock codes are up 71 percent. But others are still trying to figure out what the heck … Read more

Why Apple would make a cheaper iPhone

CNET Update clears calendar for summer:

In addition to a brand-new summer iPhone, it's said Apple is working on a plastic iPhone. Today's Update explains why that could make sense for Apple.

Also in the roundup, there's yet another video service launching. The streaming music service Rdio is diving into the video space with Vdio.

For those that won't give up on CDs and vinyl records, Amazon is offering free digital copies of songs with AutoRip.

And what's next for mobile communications as the cell phone turns 40? HD Voice is rolling out to carriers … Read more

Mobiledit Lite is light on the execution

The cloud has become a popular term of late, and for good reason: It offers users a convenient way to store and access frequently used files from any location. Mobiledit Lite taps into the cloud's convenience by giving users a way to manage their mobile device on any computer. However, when we put it to the test, it failed to recognize our mobile device after repeated attempts to connect.

During the installation process, a pop-up window asked if we wanted to install phone drivers if we didn't already have them installed. We opted to do so and were … Read more