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80,259 News Articles

November's coolest gadgets revealed

PC Advisor's monthly round-up of new launches in Japan

NTT Aroma Advertising

This certainly stands out as the most unusual gadget of the month: a system from Japan's NTT and Air Aroma that wafts tempting smells into an underground shopping mall to lure people into a beer hall. The system, being tested this month, receives instructions over the internet and creates the aromas.

At lunchtime the smell of oranges and lemons is hoped to have a refreshing effect on people and get them in the mood for lunch while in the evening a woody smell is hoped to be the clincher in getting customers inside. At the centre of the system is an aroma generator that mixes a number of oils to create up to 80 scents.

If successful it could mean the start of a whole new advertising business - and a whole new way for advertisers to invade our bodies in their quest to sell products.

R&D: OLED televisions

OLEDThe latest OLED (organic light emitting diode) TVs were on show by Samsung and Epson at the FPD Expo in Yokohama. Samsung won the bragging-right for biggest screen with a 14in prototype. That's not only larger than the Epson 8in panels but also the 11in TV that Sony will commercially launch in Japan in December. But despite the size the Samsung panels weren't perfect: a close look revealed pixels locked to a single colour.

That's evidence of the challenges companies face in making larger OLED panels. The smaller Epson screens didn't have any visible problems. Neither Samsung nor Epson would say when their larger TV screens might be ready for mass production. Sony's TV is due on sale in Japan on December 1. The XEL-1 comes with a price tag of ¥200,000 (£875) and Sony plans to produce about 2,000 of the sets per month. There are no plans to sell the TV outside of Japan.

NTT DoCoMo L705iX

L705iXMobile-phone users in Tokyo will soon be able to get their hands on the L705iX, a new phone from Japanese operator NTT DoCoMo produced by South Korea's LG Electronics.

It's a local version of the 'Shine' handset and notable because it supports 7.2Mbps HSDPA data transmission. NTT DoCoMo plans to offer the service, which is double the speed of its current 3.6Mbps service, from April next year.

Also included are mobile digital TV reception and a 2 megapixel camera. It will be available in Japan from January next year and prices will depend on carrier subsidies and incentives.

For more mobile phone reviews, news and tutorials, see Mobile Advisor, brought to you in association with BlackBerry

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