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The Best Tech of 2001

Boot Camp feature for Wednesday, December 19, 2001

The best tech products of 2001. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. The downturn in the economy may have hurt sales... but it hasn't slowed down the pace of innovation. For consumers... the new product with the biggest impact is Windows XP. It makes using a PC easier and less frustrating... with fewer crashes. It's not perfect... but it is a big step forward and includes support for wireless networking. Price drops have made that technology the best way to connect two or more computers. And PCs themselves become much more affordable. Dell has led the way with steep price cuts that have brought high end computers below the thousand dollar price point. But if you want all of the bells and whistles... .Sony has built my favorite PC of the year with its Vaio MX series. It comes loaded with memory, hard drive space... and multimedia capability... but carries a price tag approaching three thousand dollars, without a monitor. Also pricey but top notch is SONICblue's new ReplayTV 4000. It lets you send movies you've recorded to a friend's unit across the Internet. My vote for best handheld computer goes to Casio's new Pocket PC E 200. Two built in expansion slots, light weight and a high resolution color screen make it a winner. The top handheld application... is the Pocket Co-Pilot navigation system from TravRoute. For wireless connections... it is still hard to beat the RIM Blackberry and the Kyocera SmartPhone. The best digital music player I've seen is Creative's Nomad 20 gigabyte Jukebox. Carry your entire music collection along on a device the size of a portable CD player. When it comes to the new game consoles, competition is intense. The best technology belongs to Microsoft Xbox... but the games will determine which of the platforms comes out on top. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.