Coming up on this week's show we take you inside a Japanese nuclear power plant, recap mobile news from CTIA and check out a gadget that hopes to reduce repetitive stress injuries.
We'll start this week in Orlando, Florida where our team was for the CTIA wireless convention. Before the conference even started we heard that AT&T would buy T-Mobile USA for $39bn. The deal would give AT&T a total of 130 million subscribers, far more than 2nd place Verizon. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse expressed some concern though.
Dan Hesse CEO, Sprint: "Today the big two have about 67% market share. If that transaction is allowed to proceed it would be 79% market share in just hands of two providers. On the revenue side it would increase the top two, if you will, to 74% of the market. I do have concerns that it would stifle innovation with too much power just in the hands of two."
Of course Hesse has a vested interest in being critical of the deal. Sprints stock dipped 13% following the takeover news.
On the device side we saw new tablets as well as 3D and dual screen smartphones. Teh Samsung Galaxy tab line up got an addition, a device with an 8.9-inch screen. The company also improved the display on the 10.1 inch Tab, which will start at 500 and go on sale June 8. The 8.9-inch version starts at $470 and go on sale this summer.
Analysts are saying that 3D smartphones may sell well. At CTIA we saw the LG Thrill 4G and the HTC Evo 3D, both of which offer a glasses free 3D experience as well as dual lens cameras to take 3D pictures. Analysts predict that many early adopters will be interested in them for gaming and adult video. The LG Thrill will come with a 4.3-in. display and a dual core 1GHz processor, the HTC Evo 4G comes with a 1.2 GHz dual core chip.
On the app side we saw a demo from Snapkeys, which condeses a regular keyboard into four keys, separating letters into different categories. By using just the 4 keys and predictive text, the app seems to work well with some training. The company has been working on the technology for more than a decade and will begin to pop up in devices in the 3rd quarter of this year.
Something we didn't see at the show was Japan's NTT DoCoMo due to the disaster in the country. The booth space was left empty and in its place was a sign encouraging donations to the Red Cross relief efforts.
Apple sued Amazon.com on Friday, claiming rights to the name App Store, which Amazon tagged on its new application store. Apple accuses Amazon of infringing its rights to the name, the Wall Street Journal Reports, and Apple has asked the court for an injunction prohibiting Amazon from using the name as well as unspecified damages. Neither Apple nor Amazon would comment.
Working with your arms outstretched like this, be it an office, lab or factory can get tiring after a while, but X-Ar from Equipois hopes to give you a little lift. It attaches to one or both of your arms and uses a spring mechnanism to put constant tension throughout its range of motion, basically eliminating the weight of your arms. It doesn't need batteries and for now it's only chair mountable. It will ship this June, but pricing wasn't announced.
We showed you it first at the New York Auto Show two years ago and now its a reality. The plug-in hybrid Fisker Karma will be going on sale in the US and Europe by next month. It can travel up to 50 miles on a solely electric motor before an internal combustion engine kicks in. The luxury sports car will start at $88,000.