Friday, May 17, 2013
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Creative today expanded its family of wireless speakers with the two new additions of the Airwave and Airwave HD. These are the first Bluetooth speakers from Creative that is NFC-ready and also the first to come with a built-in battery. The speakers also come with a fresh new design theme and smart features, a departure from Creative's traditionally black, boxy speaker design.
The Creative Airwave HD is the company's flagship portable wireless speaker that comes in two colors - red and black. It has 7 hours of playtime, a built-in mic and charges via the standard micro-USB connection. Besides having NFC which allows you to pair your NFC devices (mostly Andriod powered), it also has a Multipoint connection feature which allows you to pair 2 Bluetooth devices at once. The Airwave HD will retail at S$199 in June.
The Creative Airwave is the cheaper version of the Airwave HD. It comes in more colors and seem to be targeted at the younger audience. The Airwave features are mostly similar to the Airwave HD with the usual NFC, Bluetooth, AUX-in connection, built-in mic and aptX codec. Strangely, the Airwave has a longer playtime of 12 hours.The Airwave will retail at S$129 in June.
Posted by kingone at 8:18 AM
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Creative is expanding its line of Tactic3D gaming headsets with the new Rage series. Available in both wired and wireless, the Sound Blaster Rage gaming headset is one of the most affordable wireless gaming headset introduced by the company or dare i say in the market.
The Rage looks identical to the previously released Wrath headset but seem to enjoy some minor technical and technological improvements:
Sound Blaster Rage headset features:
- 50mm FullSpectrum drivers for all the bass you would ever need
- 16 million color illuminating earcups
- SBX Pro Studio allows you to customize your audio the way you want it
- 16 hours battery life
Creative is expected to ship these headsets in end October, just in time for Christmas we think :)
Thursday, August 9, 2012
Cambridge Soundworks, an ex-subsidiary of Creative has just announced 2 new portable Bluetooth speakers. Named the OontZ and OontZ Angle (honestly, I don't know what the difference is but I am guessing the angle is smaller), the two speakers look similar to the Jawbone Jambox at a cheaper price point. The main selling features of the speakers are its incredibly loud sound, built-in microphone and loew price-point ($69.99 USD). The question we have on our mind? "Why hasn't Creative done this?
Posted by kingone at 10:53 PM
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
For more details, visit: http://www.creative.com/instagram
There is also a similar contest for its Sound Blaster users here: http://www.soundblaster.com/instagram
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Just in time for CES 2012, ZiiLABS has unveiled its latest 100-core ZMS-40 StemCell Media processor. The ZMS-40 has 96 of ZiiLABS' StemCell media processing cores (twice of the ZMS-20) with four 1.5GHz ARM Cortex-A9 CPUs to deliver stunning multi-tasking application and media processing performance. It promises double the performance while reducing the power consumption by half.
ZiiLABS plan to showcase the ZMS-40 capabilities on the Jaguar3 Android tablet platform and is largely targeted at the Chinese market. In its press release, Sim had revealed that the company will be forming a Chinese Tablet Alliance with several "major Chinese partners" which will be unveiled soon.
Below is a video demo of Android 4.0 running on the ZMS-20
Posted by kingone at 5:53 PM
Sunday, November 20, 2011
It has been years since Mr. Sim Wong Hoo appeared at any of Creative's press event. But at the recent ZiiLABS' Jaguar3 closed doors press event in Singapore, Sim appeared with a clear message: "I'm here today because I want to tell our shareholders and to lift the morale of our employees that we are leading in the game."
The message couldn't have come at a better time. Creative's stock had fallen to an all time low of $2.4 a few months ago and was recently put on the watch list of the Singapore Exchange for having 3 consecutive years of pre-tax losses. The company has been struggling to stay in the black from quarter to quarter. The demand for Sound Blaster products have been decreasing as people are switching to on-board audio, its portable media players are under intense competition against the Apple's iPod while adoption for the company's wireless speakers are not picking up as fast as one would wish for.
The shining beacon of hope for Creative, is the company's subsidiary ZiiLABS' Android reference tablet codenamed the Jagaur3 . Boasting one of the world's thinnest reference tablet design (that is if your remove all the frills), the Jagaur3 is powered by the ZiiLABS' ZMS-20 stemcell processor and has a 10.1' capacitive touchscreen and Android 3.2. OEM customers can also choose to upgrade the chip to a more powerful ZMS-40 quad-core processor simply by swapping the chip into the "granddaughter board". The most basic tablet could just cost U$100 to make.
Shedding more light on ZiiLABS' strategy, Sim revealed that the company has about 100 patents which was developed with the Jaguar3. Furthermore, Creative is now one of Google's approved vendor and has access to the source code to Android 3.2 OS - something which they did not have when developing the ZiiO. "We know how the technology works, we can build future iterations of Android very quickly now," Sim said.
Sim believes that "The gold mine is coming. We're nearly there," and he does have a valid reason for such optimism. The tablet market is growing at an unprecedented rate and there is certainly a market for low-end, high quality tablets as seen from the recent TouchPad $99 fire sale. If ZiiLABS can produce a worthy Android 3.x tablet at a sub-$200 price point, it certainly has a winner on hand.
Most tablets in the market now are priced ridiculously close to the Apple's iPad and have little differentiating factor. To put it simply, when you place all the Android tablets together, you can hardly tell one from the other. Instead of going head-on with the iPad, ZiiLABS' strategy of empowering companies to produce tablets at at least a third of the price could be its winning formula. Also, Sim's vision of transforming the landscape of education (at least in China) by digitizing textbook into an Android-friendly format onto an affordable tablet (or a highly subsidized one by the government) could give it a foothold in the tablet market. But admittedly, Creative faces a long, uphill battle to say the least.
In a market dominated by major players like Intel, AMD and Nvidia, ZiiLABS is relatively unheard of. Also, with the lack of an actual, successful shipping product, companies are understandably wary of the company's capability. Sim also did specifically mention that the Jaguar3 is "real" and "it's working", probably referring to the company's previous unsuccessful product - the ZiiEGG.
While I feel that it's good that ZiiLABS is focus on the OEM market instead of taking the big boys head-on, Creative as the parent company should lead by example and produce the company's first ZMS-20 powered Android 3.x tablet. To put it in Sim's own words, the "tablet market is pure ruthless in every sense", where even "a fast-track 6-month design cycle can still be lethal". Therefore, it would make sense of the company to produce a worthy and affordable Android tablet while the ZMS-20 is still considered an advanced processor than to wait for companies to adopt the platform.
Below are some of the demo videos of the Jaguar3 platform, honestly it does look promising.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
In a move that surprised many, Sim Wong Hoo, Chairman and CEO of Creative placed a full page advertisement in Singapore's top selling newspaper as a tribute to Apple's ex-CEO Steve Jobs.
The ad which cost about U$14,000 was described by a Creative spokesman as "simply a tribute to Steve Jobs from Mr Sim personally". The ad reads: 'Thank you for the great lessons. Thank you for the great products. Thank you for bringing a bit of us to the whole world.'
Reactions to the ad were mixed though most were positive. Most felt that it was a "gentlemen" and "classy" move on Sim's part for his personal tribute to Steve, while others question if the line "bringing a bit of us to the world" is a reminder to all of Creative's ZEN Patent victory against Apple. Whichever is the case, Creative seems to be the winner at the end of the day with the intense media converge (there was a half page coverage of the ad in the papers today which you can read about it here) with many others on Twitter and Forums discussing this ad.
Dave Bullard, editor-in-chief of Macworld Australia, believes that Sim’s decision to take out the ad in memory of Jobs was done with honourable intentions. “After the legal action of 2006, Creative took an ‘if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em’ attitude and started working with Apple in the Made for iPod program, and has made some excellent peripherals for Macs, iPods, iPhones and iPads over the years,” he was quoted saying in Marketing Magazine Australia interview. Cnet Asia also described the ad as a "creative and tasteful move by Sim".
What are your thoughts on this ad? Do share with us your views in the comments section.