Get your geek on this holiday season with these hot gadgets - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Get your geek on this holiday season with these hot gadgets

Updated:
The WiFi version of Apple's iPad starts at $499.00 and from $629.00 for 3G plus WiFi models.(Source: Apple) The WiFi version of Apple's iPad starts at $499.00 and from $629.00 for 3G plus WiFi models.(Source: Apple)
The Samsung Galaxy Tab retails for $599.99. (Source: Verizon Wireless) The Samsung Galaxy Tab retails for $599.99. (Source: Verizon Wireless)
Samsung's 55" Class 7000 Series 3D 1080p LED HDTV has a retail price of $3,299.99  (Source: Samsung) Samsung's 55" Class 7000 Series 3D 1080p LED HDTV has a retail price of $3,299.99 (Source: Samsung)
ActiVision's Call of Duty Black Ops retails for $59.99 and is available in 3-D for both PS3 and Xbox 360. (Source: ActiVision) ActiVision's Call of Duty Black Ops retails for $59.99 and is available in 3-D for both PS3 and Xbox 360. (Source: ActiVision)
Microsoft's Kinect add-on for the Xbox 360 retails for $149.99. (Source: Microsoft) Microsoft's Kinect add-on for the Xbox 360 retails for $149.99. (Source: Microsoft)
Kennesaw, GA -

By J. Sebe Dale IV - email

KENNESAW, GA (RNN) - Strapping on your combat boots, elbow pads and credit cards in preparation for Friday's "it's a war out there" Christmas shopping onslaught? Before you storm the aisles, take a minute to acquaint yourself with what's hot this year in the world of technology.

Major retailers are stocking up and marking down some of the biggest deals in gadgets.

Ackerman's Christmas Gadgets

CNET.com's Senior Editor Dan Ackerman gives his must-have Christmas gadgets:

Eye-Fi Pro - The memory card that wirelessly sends photos to your laptop.

MadCatz Fender Mustang Rock Band Guitar - According to Ackerman, the coolest video game accessory of the season.

Samsung Galaxy Tablet - A mini iPad alternative available on several wireless carriers.

Microsoft Kinect - A controller-free, full-bodied gaming experience for the Xbox 360.

Sony PlayStation Move - PlayStation's version of Kinect that's comparable to the Nintendo Wii's gameplay.

Apple MacBook Air  - The new 11-inch version of Apple's slimmer than slip laptop.

OnLive MicroConsole - A very interesting streaming game service for your TV.

Phil Reid, general manager for Best Buy in Kennesaw, GA, said he is beyond excited about the holidays this year. He is stuffing his 45,000-square-foot store with as much inventory as possible while keeping it "shoppable."

[Click here for our Gadget Guides]

"I've been with Best Buy for 14 years now, and this year's new gadgets have me more excited than ever before," Reid said.

You don't have to do your own gadget reconnaissance; Reid shared his favorite geek-friendly picks for Christmas 2010:

'Tablet PCs are going to be huge'

The iPad is no longer the lone tablet front-runner. The market for the smaller and more portable computers has become more competitive this season with the addition of several new tablets.

The iPad will be challenged by new tablets such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, an Android-based tablet that is smaller and lighter than the Apple option.

"The Samsung Galaxy Tab is the only real competitor for the iPad," said CNET.com Senior Editor Dan Ackerman.

The Samsung tablet 3G connectivity is available from all major wireless carriers, he said, while the iPad is only available from AT&T and Verizon Wireless.

'3-D in general is blowing up'

Three-dimensional imagery is making the jump from the big screen to consumers' living rooms this year. Reid said that in order to get consumers to adopt this new visual technology, retailers are bundling the new TVs with the required equipment.

The new technology is also showing up in video games.

Reid said there is a lot of excitement surrounding Activision's Call of Duty Black Ops, the first-person shooter game available in 3-D for Sony's PlayStation3 (PS3) and Microsoft's Xbox 360.

Ackerman said he just made the switch to 3-D at home, and was impressed with the quality of a few 3-D movies. However, he cautioned consumers about adopting the new technology too soon.

"For the most part, there are not that many movies and fewer games for 3-D," Ackerman said.

Still, if you're thinking about purchasing a new, high-end TV this year, paying a bit more for 3-D might be the way to go, he said.

'The ghost of Christmas past - gaming - is going to be huge'

Move over Wii, the Xbox 360 has jumped into motion-based gaming.

The newly released Kinect for Xbox 360 is now offering a controller-free, full-bodied gaming experience.

It's not just for "hard-core" gamers, Reid said. He has watched several families trying out the game system in the store's Kinect display.

Ackerman said that aside from the obvious benefit of not being tethered to cords, the real benefit of the Kinect is that users can control media playback with their hands and through vocal commands.

The Xbox 360 add-on retails for approximately $150.


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Copyright 2010 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

KENNESAW, GA (RNN) - Before you strap on your combat boots, elbow pads and credit cards in preparation for Friday's "it's a war out there" Christmas shopping onslaught, you might want to take a minute to acquaint yourself with what's hot this year in the world of technology.

 

If you've got a techie on your list, major retail outlets are stocking up and marking down some of the biggest deals in gadgets.

 

Phil Reid, general manager for Best Buy in Kennesaw, GA, said he is beyond excited about the holidays this year. He is stuffing his 45,000-square-foot store with as much inventory as possible while keeping it "shoppable."

 

"I've been with Best Buy for 14 years now and this year's new gadgets have me more excited than ever before," Reid said.

 

You don't have to do your own gadget reconnaissance; Reid shared his favorite geek-friendly picks for Christmas 2010:

 

"Tablet PC's are going to be huge"

 

The iPad is no longer the lone tablet front-runner. The market for the smaller and more portable computers has become more competitive this season with the addition of several new tablets.

 

The iPad will be challenged by new tablets such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, an Android-based tablet that is smaller and lighter than the Apple option.

 

"The Samsung Galaxy Tab is the only real competitor for the iPad," CNET.com Senior Editor Dan Ackerman, said.

 

The Samsung tablet 3G connectivity is available from all major wireless carriers, he said, while the iPad is only available from AT&T and Verizon Wireless.

 

"3-D in general is blowing up"

 

Three-dimensional imagery is making the jump from the big screen into consumers' living rooms this year. Reid said retailers are bundling the new TVs with the required equipment offering savings to get consumers to adopt this new visual technology.

 

The new technology is also showing up in video games. Reid said there is a lot of excitement surrounding Activision's Call of Duty Black Ops, the first-person shooter game available in 3-D for Sony's PlayStation3 (PS3) and Microsoft's Xbox 360.

 

Ackerman said he just made the switch to 3-D at home, and was impressed with the quality of a few 3-D movies. However, he cautioned consumers about adopting the new technology too soon.

 

"For the most part, there are not that many movies and fewer games for 3-D," Ackerman said.

 

Still, if you're thinking about purchasing a new, high-end TV this year, paying a bit more for 3-D might be the way to go, he said.

 

"The ghost of Christmas past - gaming - is going to be huge"

 

Move over Wii, the Xbox 360 has jumped into motion-based gaming.

 

The newly released Kinect for Xbox 360 is now offering a controller-free full-bodied gaming experience.

 

It's not just for "hard-core" gamers, Reid said. He has watched several families trying out the game system in the store's Kinect display.

 

Ackerman said that aside from the obvious benefit of not being tethered to cords, the real benefit of the Kinect is that users can control media playback with their hands and through vocal commands.

 

The Xbox 360 add-on is running for about $150.

 

Copyright 2010 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

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