Expand Photo Contest: Win a Samsung Galaxy Camera!

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Engadget Expand Photo Contest Win a Samsung Galaxy Camera!
Our first ever Expand event is around the corner, this March 16-17 in San Francisco. In addition to oodles of interesting speakers, there’ll be shiny sights to see: robots, retro games, of course gadgets galore and a few surprises we haven’t even unveiled yet. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to record said sights with your own state-of-the art camera?

Show us you can shoot an awesome photo of your favorite gadget, and you could win a Samsung Galaxy Camera! We described it thusly: “Samsung’s Android-powered Galaxy Camera is a bit of a wild card, marrying Google’s Android Jelly Bean OS with a 16-megapixel camera – heck, it’s even got a 4.8-inch 1,280 720-pixel (308 ppi) touchscreen display… the entire back consists of that 4.8-inch screen, edge-to-edge…” Check out our full review for all the details and specs.

Want a chance at nabbing this bad boy for your very own? Step 1 is to Like the Expand Facebook page. Step 2 is to use the entry form on our Facebook page to submit a photo you’ve taken of your favorite gadget, title the photo, and give a short description about why it’s your chosen top device. Team Expand will judge entries based on creativity, style and skill. Show us why you deserve a new camera!

Good luck, and may the best shot win — you have until this coming Monday, March 4 at 2pm PST to get your entry in. To be eligible to enter, you must be 18 years of age and a U.S. resident (please peruse the full rules).

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Sony intros MDR-X05 headphones: massive Simon Cowell-endorsed bass, small footprint

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Sony intros MDRX05 headphones massive Simon Cowellendorsed bass, small footprint

Is this really happening, again? Why, yes, it is. Following up on its massive MDR-X10 bass-pumping headphones from last year, Sony and Simon Cowell have introduced the MDR-X05. As you might take from the name, the cans are basically a smaller addition to the series, packing 40MM drivers (down from 50) and a few more color options (red/black, red/red, white/silver, red/silver and black/silver) — some of which do the headphones more justice than the silver/red colorway we got our mitts on previously. As far as we can tell, by the way, these are very likely a re-badge of the MDR-X400 headphones for the American market. As you’d expect, the cans fold flat for storage and feature an iDevice-compatible inline remote and mic.

Unlike the X10, the tangle-proof flat cabling isn’t removeable and connects using both earcups, but the connections seem robust enough to handle a good bit of torture. Because the same materials and finish are used on the X05 as the X10, the headphones feel virtually the same in-hand — a bit plasticky, but solid overall. The headphones may be smaller, but they still manage to feel nearly as cosy and isolate a fair amount amount of external noise as their bigger brother, mostly because they’re packing the same style of plush memory foam earpads. As far as sound quality goes, the bass push on these is just as smooth and open-sounding as the X10, but the high-end is noticeably harsher — we definitely felt the need to turn on “treble reducer” in our iPhone’s EQ settings. If you’re bass-hungry ears are interested, the X05 headphones are up for pre-sale at Sony’s online store for $200 (100 less than the X10), but the smaller discount won’t make them look any less loud on your ears while you’re out and about. You can expect ’em to hit shelves March 22nd. For now, find more details in the press release after the break.

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Source: Sony

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Mobile World Congress 2013: best of show

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Mobile World Congress 2013 best of show

Another Mobile World Congress has come and gone. While we weren’t treated to a mountain of device launches, as seen in previous years, we definitely all came away with some favorites. LG outed a few handsets, HTC‘s One made its first public appearance and Firefox OS made a grand entrance with additions to the new platform from a few different handset makers. And, on the wireless side, we were treated to what has to have been the biggest NFC love fest we’ve ever witnessed. Follow on past the break to check out some of our favorites from this year’s MWC, then weigh in and let us know what you think about the show.

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Wrap-up: Engadget editors sound off on MWC 2013

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Wrapup Engadget editors sound off on MWC 2013

We blew out last month’s CES with our biggest group of editors to date, and now we’ve done it again here in Barcelona. There may have been fewer high-end smartphones than expected at the show, but we still managed to spend time with dozens of handsets and tablets, and even a surprise hybrid or two. Fira Gran Via, Mobile World Congress’ new home for 2013, was a fitting venue, and there’s even room to grow, should that be in the cards for next year. Still, we leave Spain with mixed emotions, and mixed impressions of the show. So, what exactly did we take away from our week of smartphones, sangria, tablets and tapas in Europe? Read on past the break for our take.

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Boeing touts a ‘permanent’ fix for 787 Dreamliner batteries, Japan stays cautious

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Boeing says it has a 'permanent' fix for 787 Dreamliner batteries, Japan remains cautious

There’s been talk for weeks of Boeing developing a fix for the 787 Dreamliner’s battery fire troubles. If the aircraft maker has its way, that should soon translate to action. The company’s commercial airplane chief, Raymond Conner, tells reporters that the company has a “permanent” fix that would place three layers of protection around the batteries and, theoretically, head off fires and their causes. It sounds like just the ticket — the challenge will be getting everyone else to feel the same way. American investigators believe the batteries are at fault, but their Japanese counterparts haven’t yet ruled out external factors. With this kind of ongoing debate, we’re not about to book a 787 to Tokyo for spring break.

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Source: New York Times

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Apple patent application reveals a camera with built-in privacy filter

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Apple patent application reveals a camera with builtin privacy filter

It feels a bit strange to report on a webcam privacy shade as if it were a novelty: various products already let users put a decorative background on screen in lieu of a live stream, or even pull a physical shade across the lens. What Apple is apparently proposing, though, is a camera with such privacy filters built into the camera module itself. The company just applied for a patent on a camera whose images could selectively transition from opaque to transparent and back again, depending on how much privacy is called for.

Based on that illustration up there, we’re going to hazard a guess it could be used in Apple’s MacBook and iMac lines, though the patent application doesn’t explicitly exclude mobile devices, either. (In fact, the filing acknowledges a camera like this could be used in, ahem, a television.) What we’d really like to know is how easy it would be for the user to active the privacy mode. Alas, though, the USPTO doc doesn’t give any definitive answers — the filing suggests the user could choose to switch modes, or that launching certain applications (i.e., those that use the camera) might trigger a change in privacy settings. In any case, that’s about all we can glean from the patent application, but feel free to peek for yourselves if you feel like letting your imaginations get ahead of you.

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Source: USPTO

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China claims its defense sites face constant US hacking attacks

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China claims its defense sites face constant US hacking attacks

China is routinely accused of launching concerted hacking campaigns against the US, many of them reportedly tied directly to the army’s Unit 61398 in Shanghai. If you believe the Ministry of Defense’s spokesman Geng Yansheng, however, just the opposite is true. Along with claiming that China would never hurt (or rather, hack) a fly, he asserts that the Ministry and China Military Online sites faced an average of 144,000 hacking attempts per month from foreign sources in 2012, 62.9 percent of which allegedly came from the US. The Ministry’s man stops short of leveling cyberwarfare charges, although he notes the US’ recent plans to expand and formally define its cyberwar strategy. There’s some ‘splainin to do, he argues. While there isn’t a formal US response, we suspect that neither side is an innocent dove here — China is just the most recent to cry foul.

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Via: Reuters

Source: Ministry of National Defense (translated)

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