Five hottest gadgets for 2011

A touch-pad gaming console that makes calls, a Nintendo that can take photos and the new iPhone. 2011 is a good year.

Arsalan Faruqi April 21, 2011
1. Blackberry Playbook

Weighing less than a pound (425g) and being just 0.4 inch thick, this WiFi enabled device has already hit the market on April 19, 2011. The BlackBerry PlayBook is the world's first professional grade tablet with its industry centric performance which includes multitasking capabilities, support for Adobe Flash 10.1, high definition multimedia, and out-of-the-box enterprise support.

The device which is available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB versions has been priced at $499, $599 and $699 respectively. The pricing is similar to its competitor, the Apple iPad 2 which is supposed to make its launch on March 2, 2011.

2. PlayStation Phone

Featuring a four-inch panel offering touch-screen abilities, the PS Phone is reportedly dubbed the Sony Ericsson Z1. Set to be released soon, this gadget will surely bring back Sony in the main stream. Codenamed Zeus, the PS Phone build is very much similar to the Sony Ericsson’s Xperia series of phones.

The addition which makes it a PSP-like phone is the slider gaming controller. The slider sports two controllers and a multi-touch touchpad. With regards to the internal hardware, the PS Phone has got a Qualcomm MSM8655 Snapdragon 1 GHz processor and 512 MB RAM. The ROM is expected to be anywhere between 512 MB and 1 GB. The phone has a Micro SD card slot and will come bundled with an 8 GB card which is expandable up to 32 GB.

The PS Phone surprisingly runs on Android. The first prototype was found running Gingerbread but later reports suggested that it will release with stock Android 2.2. The device is rumoured to be priced at $400.

3. Nintendo 3DS

Priced at $249.99, this latest addition in the Nintendo family was launched in the North American and European markets on March 26, 2011. This small wonder features a 3D screen, enabling 3D view without the need for special glasses along with the ability to adjust or turn off the 3D effect with the Depth Slider.

The device also has stereo cameras that enable users to take 3D photos that can be viewed instantly on the screen, new input interfaces including the Circle Pad, a motion sensor, a gyro sensor and parental controls which enable people to restrict game content by ratings as well. The 3DS also has specific wireless connectivity and 3D functionality.

4. Apple’s iPhone 5

Apple has announced July 2011 as the launching month for the iPhone 5. This gadget may not be a ground breaking model compared to its predecessor, the iPhone 4. In fact, it might just be a re-modelled version. The base model of the iPhone 5 is expected to come with 32GB to 64GB storage. Signal strength may not remain an issue with the iPhone 5.

The new iPhone will have a facial recognition system as a security feature. Thickness may further be reduced as compared to all the previous models that Apple has come out with. It will have up to 14 hours of talk time on the 3G and seven hours on the 4G. Video Chat will now be on a 4G network instead of a slow 3G one. The new iPhone will have a shatter resistant and scratch resistant screen. A killer feature in the next iPhone would be a processor clocked at around 1.2 – 1.5 GHz, giving the iPhone 5 a huge edge and allowing developers to release much heavier games.

The incorporated NFC technology would allow users to pay for everything from cake to clothes by waving their iPhone 5 across a dedicated reader. The iPhone 5 will have a built-in GPS alongwith certain surprise features that haven’t been revealed by Apple as yet. It is expected to fetch a price almost similar to that of iPhone 4.

5. Sony VAIO 3D (F-series)

The new F-series is a high end laptop launched by Sony. With a base price of $869, this laptop comes with a 16 inch display that can be switched between 3D and 2D at the touch of a button. The machine also provides a pair of active shutter glasses through which the user can have the same quality experience as a Bravia 3D TV.

The laptop also has some other great features like an Intel Core i7 processor, two USB 3.0 ports, Bluetooth 3.0 and Windows 7. The F-series powers entertainment and computing with 2nd Generation Intel® i7 Quad Core™ processor supported by a high performance NVIDIA® DX11 graphics card.

According to the official statement by the Sonystyle website:
“The latest VAIO F Series laptop is locked and loaded for all-out performance. Forged for gaming and built for quickness, the F embodies everything multimedia. Thanks to new Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, the Intel® Core™ i7 quad-core processor automatically adapts to your tasks, dialing up speeds and responding to your needs.”
Arsalan Faruqi An entrepreneur with a degree in computer engineering and an MBA from IBA Karachi. He tweets as @arsalanfaruqi (
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


John | 13 years ago | Reply Nothing can beat iPad 1 or 2, does not matter. In our house, we stopped using laptops and all work is done in iPad. Four iPad(two 1 and two 2 ) and it seems we never get tired of them. They travel everywhere with us including toilet. With screen intensity reduced to the minimum, we easily suck out 14hrs of battery. Our children went and got Blackberry play book and Samsung galaxy tablet but were always using our iPads and finally they sold the BB and SG within two weeks to their friends and stood in line at 6 am for 9 am store opening and got their iPads. If any one still contemplating which one to choose, go for iPad. Forget the adobe flash paranoia. It never stopped us from web contents and all the news channels are now offering iPad compatible streams. FaceTime is much better than Skype. Crisp clear image without any frame dropping with minimal DSL connection. No one cares Mac book Air in our house any more.
Azar Ali Zain | 13 years ago | Reply Where's Amazon Kindle 3? Where's Motorola Xoom with HoneyComb? And do you realize that there is even a Copy-Paste error in this blog? See this: For the Playbook, it says in the first lines; "has already hit the market on April 19, 2011" and in the very next paragraph it says, "the Apple iPad 2 which is supposed to make its launch on March 2, 2011." Arsalan bhai, khair tou hai?! ET - all good? People read your blogs with interest. I don't think you want to ruin your credibility right after an year of your launch.
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