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LG slashes curved OLED TV price in half

LG has announced it's halved the price on the 55-inch 55EA9800 OLED screen it released in July 2013, which will now sell for under $7000.

The curved 55EA9800 originally retailed for $14,999.95, and after an earlier price cut in August, LG is now offering the screen for $7999 with an immediate $1000 rebate as of today.

In January 2014 it appeared the company was clearing stock to prepare for new models when three UK retailers offered deep discounts to £3,000 ($4,910) on the screen.

However, the UK price has since aligned with the new US pricingRead more

Toshiba's 13-inch Chromebook available now

The first Chromebook to sport a 13-inch display is now available from Toshiba.

For $300 you get a 1,366x768 display, a fast Intel Celeron processor (in the Chromebook world "fast" is anything faster than the pokey Samsung Exynos 5250 processor in the HP Chromebook 11 and Samsung Chromebook), 2GB of RAM, a 16GB solid-state drive, a claimed nine hours of battery life, and, of course, the Chrome OS.

At 0.8-inches thick, it weighs in at 3.3 pounds, but "it has an upscale feel for such an inexpensive system," according to CNET's hands-on. (… Read more

Crave giveaway: CES swag bundle, part 2

Congrats to Deborah S. of Port Clinton, Ohio, for winning our CES swag bag in last week's giveaway, and to Janine M. of Quakertown, Pa., for scoring a $250 gift certificate from Rakuten.com Shopping the week before that. This week's winner gets more freebies from the CES show floor.

Included in the bundle is a leather NueVue antimicrobial case that promises to clean the germy screen on your iPhone 5, 5S, or 5C every time you slide your device in. To stick on the back of that case (or any phone other case), we've got a CNET silicone rubber wallet that holds money, credit cards, bus passes, and the like. … Read more

Crave giveaway: CES swag bundle, part 1

The CNET crew's back from CES 2014, and bearing swag aplenty. What will we be doing with all the stuff we collected on the show floor? Sharing it with readers, of course. This week's giveaway winner scores a big giant stash.

Inside your CES backpack you'll find a 40-watt-equivalent energy-saving Samsung LED light bulb; a 16GB PhotoFlash i-FlashDrive cross-platform storage device for Android and iOS; and an Impulse Controller, a portable Bluetooth controller for mobile devices that's also a key finder. (When you find your keys, you can put them on the TiVo keychain we're tossing in). … Read more

The 404 1,410: Where we tour the Crystal Cove with Scott Stein (podcast)

Leaked from today's 404 episode:

- Virtual reality 2.0: Taking a ride in the Oculus Rift Crystal Cove Prototype.

- NASA JPL takes a VR tour of Mars with Oculus Rift and Virtuix Omni (video).

- Hands-on with PlayStation Now: Everything we know so far.

- Sony at CES: PlayStation Now, "Breaking Bad," and the "wow" factor.

- PlayStation Now will need DualShock for all devices.… Read more

Screw you, pink polka dots: When tech products for women go awry

I'm back from CES 2014, where I spent time hefting a connected tennis racket, riding a Segway competitor, and drooling over a DeLorean. In my meanderings, I saw endless displays full of phone cases covered in rhinestones and pink zebra stripes. Business as usual. What turned my head was what I found at the Acoustic Research booth.

Acoustic Research was showing off its new "AR for Her" spring collection of tech accessories. The first thing I thought about was "Bic for Her," the much-maligned and ridiculed pen "designed to fit comfortably in a woman's hand." Is Acoustic Research stepping into the same mud puddle of stereotypical lady-pandering design? Yup.… Read more

High Dynamic Range: Dolby Vision, X-tended Dynamic Range Pro, and beyond

Dynamic range: the spread between the darkest and the brightest a TV can be. In other words, contrast ratio. But having beaten that term into the ground with a decade of dubious marketing use, it was time for new terminology.

Except, this isn't just marketing fluff. High dynamic range, in its multiple forms, can be a significant and noticeable increase in picture quality. Multiple companies are talking about it, from Dolby and its Vision tech, to Sony, Samsung, and others.

While 4K, curved, and OLED get lots of attention, it's possible HDR will improve not only LCDs, but other technologies too. … Read more

Akamai CEO on streaming 4K TV into your home (podcast)

Just about every TV maker at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was showing off 4K TVs. But to fully appreciate these Ultra High Definition (UHD) TVs, you'll need content that's recorded in 4K.

As far as I know, a 4K standard for broadcast, cable, and satellite isn't on the immediate horizon, nor is a standardized way to deliver the content via disc. So, the solution lies in Internet delivery. But that too raises a challenge because the amount of bandwidth required for 4K is considerably more than today's HD video.

Akamai, which has … Read more

The voice-activated Lynx Smart Grill prototype talks back

Lynx sells expensive built-in and free-standing grills. Although these professional-grade grills are all full of fancy features, none of them offer connected features. But Lynx made an announcement at CES 2014 that's about to change all that. It's a new product called the Lynx Smart Grill. Basically, it does everything except put your food on the grill for you.

This thing comes equipped with what Lynx calls My Chef technology. That's a voice-recognition feature that allows you to chat with your grill. Before you start grilling, it will ask you a series of questions about your recipe (… Read more