Wii U Launch Date Confirmed In North America, November 18th For $299

NIntendo has let loose its first HD generation home game console. The Wii U will launch in the United States on November 18th, with several packages available. The first, called the ”Basic Set”, includes a Wii U console, GamePad, AC adapter, HDMI cable, Wii U sensor bar and 8GB of storage for $299.99. The second bundle is the ”Deluxe Set,” which has everything the Basic Set has, with a GamePad charging cradle, console stands for the the console and GamePad, 32GB of internal storage and a copy of Nintendo Land; it will be available with a black paint job for $349.99.

Also, heads-up! There’s a new Wii U feature, oddly called “Nintendo TVii” — described as a “new way to find, watch and engage with TV, movies and sports.”  and also that TVii is a “personalized TV guide that can tell you what’s available on Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video, live TV and video on DVR.” It’s designed to work with the Wii U GamePad, so that’s kind of interesting.

And with that, it’s time to see how Nintendo fares for the holiday season.

Nikon’s D6000 Is The Cheapest Full-Frame DSLR Out There

The Nikon D6000 is the kind of camera for a photographer who has the money to invest on a high-end DSLR, but not enough to score the D8000 or a Canon EOS 5D. The D6000 is the perfect gray area, with a 24.3-megapixel, full-frame (35.9 x 24mm) sensor, a light weight 26.8 ounces, a 3.2-inch LCD screen, a smaller 31-point autofocus system (compared to 51 in the D8000), and finally, can shoot video in 1920 x 1080 resolution video at 30, 25, 24 frames-per-second and 1280 x 720 video at 50 and 60 fps.

Want to take a continuous set of photos? Then you can do so at 5.5 photos per second. That’s pretty awesome for a full-frame camera.

But now, for the prices. Nikon has a cute D600 kit option; for $2700 the camera comes bundled with a sweet 24-85mm f/3.5 lens, or for $2,100 you can get the body-only. It may not be the very best DSLR, but Nikon is pushing it as a game changer, and game changers usually change the game, obviously. Maybe the D6000 will on its launch date, September 18th?

Via: Nikon

Apple’s New iPod Touches Seem Pretty Snazzy

The new iPod Touch is a very, very attractive looking device. It may not be an iPhone 5, but it does sport a 4-inch Retina display of the same resolution, comes in numerous colors, an attachable loop for comfort, is 6.1mm thin, and sports Apple’s fantastic Apple A5 dual-core processor, 720p front-facing camera for FaceTime, iOS 6 with Siri, Apple’s newly improved EarPod headphones (which took three years to build), along with the usual Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Nike+, and 5 megapixel iSight camera capable of HDR, 1080p HD video recording, and everything else that makes an iSight camera so noticeable in quality. Plus it comes in five colors (plus Product RED version), in only two versions:a 32GB model ($299) and a 64GB number ($399), in October.

Will the Windows Phone series survive?

It’s a controversial question to ask, but it’s one that’s likely on the minds of at least a few who’ve watched the Windows Phone market continue not to see the growth of its competitors (Android and iOS 6 with the just announced iPhone 5 – let’s not pretend RIM’s Blackberries are a threat to anyone, at this point) and seen its range of apps continue to grow, but again, not at the same rate.

The primary issue is that it’s competing with two platforms that have unique advantages. iOS is the number one destination for Apps, and also happens to come exclusively on what are commonly seen as the most fashionable phones to have whether you’re a lawyer, an architect or a poker.dk player. The Android OS runs on almost every single other handset in the market bar Windows and RIM. Two advantages that make it near impossible to assert any kind of dominance. So what do you do if you can’t dominate a market? You create a niche.

Seemingly, the current niche for Windows Phone users are those who went for early eye-grabbing purchases like the Omnia, and those who happen to be big Nokia fans. The OS itself is slick, though it’s arguable that if they scaled the icons down a little you could’ve had a grid of three panes per row, rather than two and a large black space, which looks unsightly.

Its gaming marketplace also has massive potential, given that Windows Phones tend to be pretty powerful devices in the hardware department, and Xbox Live Arcade’s achievement system has been running for years. It’s a given that there should be developers flocking to the device, but there aren’t. Why? Because iOS is where the money is, with mobile. However, if Windows can start pushing devices in the next six months that make the iPhone 5 look a little lacking in places, they might have a chance. Otherwise, they risk going the same way RIM has.

Your call, Windows.

iPhone 5: LTE, HD Voice, A6 Processor, And 4″ Screen, For September 21st

Behold, the iPhone 5. Apple’s latest smartphone brings it on par with the rest of the modern competitors. To start off, a 16:9 ratio 4-inch Retina display with am 1136 x 640 resolution, the Apple A6 processor (it’s 2x as fast the iPhone 4s’), 8 hours of LTE browsing, a better 8 megapixel camera with backside illumination, hybrid infrared filter (which will yield better colors), and a nice f/2.4 aperture with a faster shutter speed (improving shooting times).

Apple is claiming the iPhone 5 is the world’s thinnest smartphone, at 7.6mm thin. That’s a possible selling point, obviously.

Still improving, the iPhone 5 has a better front-facing 720p camera with face detection (with FaceTime over cellular), 4G LTE on Verizon, Sprint, and AT&T, along with a five-magnet transducer for better voice reception, which yields HD voice calls over the LTE network you’re on. Black and white are the two available colors, with iOS 6 bringing Apple’s own in-house Maps solution, plus bug fixes and tons of other improvements starting Sept. 19th. Alas, NFC  did not make a debut in the iPhone 5 this year. Another thing to add to the list of changes: a new Lightning dock

As for availability? $199 for the 16GB model, while the 32GB will cost $299 and the 64GB $399 starting September 21st. Cue the waiting lines.

Via: Apple (Businesswire)

Sony Alpha A99: 24 Megapixels Of Full Frame DSLR Glory

While it may be a camera designed for the leading filmmakers and studios, the Sony Alpha A99 would make any DSLR photographer happier. It sports a lightweight 25.9 ounce body, 24.3 megapixel Exmor sensor, two auto-focus systems — one 19-point then a 102-point AF depending on the shooting situation — 1080/60p HD recording and 24p options with AVCHD 2.0, including uncompressed output through HDMI (with simultaneous output to a monitor) and phase-detect focus support in video mode.

When shooting, there’s 6 frames-per-second burst mode, 14-bit RAW output for stills, the same 921k-dot Xtra Fine twilt-and-swivel LCD included with the A77 with WhiteMagic and TruBlack color technologies, with an OLED viewfinder, also found on A77, NEX-6 and NEX-7 cameras. And of course, lenses like the updated 300mm f/2.8 G SSM II lens for $7,500 or a 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6 optic coming in September fit perfectly on Sony’s news full-frame professional camera.

The Sony Alpha A99 ships later this fall, starting at $2,800, body only.

Mark Zuckerberg Admits Facebook Messed Up With HTML5

First off, Mark Zuckerberg is at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco. Otherwise, he admits that, “The biggest mistake we made as a company was betting too much on HTML5 instead of native. […] We burnt two years.” when speaking of the inclusion of HTML5 in the mobile apps for Facebook. “We’re betting completely on it,” he said, referring to native apps, “native is going to be the approach that we go with for iOS and Android.”

And with that, the official native Android app is coming. Also, Zuckerberg made note of its upcoming release: “It will be ready when it’s ready.”