Subject: General Tech, Mobile | May 27, 2014 - 05:22 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: tablet, HP 7 Plus, hp, cheap tablet, cheap computer
Years ago, HP purchased Palm with the intention of producing tablets based on WebOS. After a very short time on the market, the company pulled the plug and liquidated their stock for $99. These tablets, of course, sold instantly. Now, HP has developed an Android tablet which actually intends to be sold at that $99 price point.
Called the HP 7 Plus, this tablet has a quad-core SoC from Allwinner Technology, based on the low-power ARM Cortex A7 architecture. This is the architecture that you often see paired with Cortex A15 cores in their "big.LITTLE" arrangement. Complementing this processor is 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage, a microSD slot, 640x480 front-facing and 2MP rear-facing cameras, and about five (5) hours of battery life. It is capable of Miracast over WiFi, which is an impressive feature for its price.
The operating system is Android 4.2.2, Jelly Bean. While this is not the most recent distribution of Android, it should definitely serve users looking for an under-$100 tablet. Seriously, this space is huge and often a crap shoot in terms of reliability. If HP released a decent device, it could be a winner.
The HP 7 Plus is apparently available now, but out of stock, for $99.99. I do not know whether they already released and sold out immediately, or if it is still waiting on its first shipment.
Subject: General Tech, Mobile | February 26, 2014 - 09:20 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: x360, Windows 8.1, tablet, hp, convertible tablet, convertible, Bay Trail
At MWC 2014, HP showed off an interesting convertible laptop similar in form factor to Lenovo's Yoga lineup. The HP X360 is a Bay Trail-powered laptop running Windows 8.1 that brings the 360-degree hinged hybrid laptop/tablet form factor to an affordable $460 price point. The red plastic and brushed aluminum PC is available for purchase now and will begin shipping in early March.
HP's new X360 tablet measures 12.12” x 8.46” x 0.86” and weighs in at a portable 3.08 pounds. It is noticeably larger than other Bay Trail tablets like the ASUS T100 and Dell Venue series, but it also has an integrated keyboard and trackpad attached via a permanently attached double hinge to the 11.6” LED-backlit touchscreen with a resolution of 1366x768. The chassis is a glossy red plastic while the keyboard cover and palm rest use a brushed aluminum surface that surrounds a large gesture compatible touchpad and a chiclet-style keyboard that appears to be well spaced for an 11.6” machine (excluding the arrow keys which are bunched up in the bottom-right corner in order to allow full sized shift and enter keys). A silver chassis version is also in the works, but will not be available until later this year.
The HP X360 features external I/O more akin to a traditional laptop than a tablet with the following connectivity options.
- 1 x USB 3.0
- 2 x USB 2.0
- 1 x HDMI
- 1 x RJ45 (10/100 Ethernet)
- 1 x headphone/mic combo jack
- 1 x SD card slot
- 1 x SIM card slot
Internally, the HP X360 uses an Intel Pentium N3520 processor, 4GB or 8GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive, 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios, and a 2 cell Lithium Ion battery rated for up to four and a half hours of use. HP has further packed its tablet with Beats Audio technology. Interestingly, the Pentium N3520 CPU is a quad core chip based on Intel's Bay Trail (Atom) architecture which uses Silvermont cores and Intel HD graphics. The CPU is clocked at 2.166 GHz base and 2.42 GHz Turbo with 2MB of cache.
The X360 can be used as a laptop or a tablet in several configurations by swinging the display around appropriately. It is very similar to Lenovo's Yoga system, though HP is using a slightly different hinge design.
The real advantage of the HP X360 is its price. At a starting price of $389 for the 4GB model, the X360 is much cheaper than the (admittedly more powerful) Yoga alternatives while still being a capable machine for note taking and media consumption. It lies in a middle ground between Bay Trail-powered tablets and Haswell-powered laptops. For an $80 premium over the ASUS T100, users get a more traditional convertible PC with more storage (albeit slower mechanical storage) and a faster clocked processor.
Personally, I'm tempted and have been debating between this and the T100 as a second portable machine to replace my aging Dell XT with comparably abysmal battery life (heh).
You can find more information on the new X360 (HP Pavilion 11t-n000 x360 PC) on this HP product page.
Subject: General Tech, Systems | January 21, 2014 - 03:39 AM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: windows xp, Windows 7, hp
Windows 7 is not available to purchase at retail, officially, but system builders are still allowed to integrate it into their PCs until at least October. At the same time, Windows XP is nearing its end of life of April 8th (the day of its last security update). A third coincidence, modern Windows could easily be compared to modern art because it is made by someone who tells you what is legitimate and, when you actually attempt to admire it, makes no sense unless the designer explains everything.
If you purchase from a set of select new desktop or laptops, HP will ship it with Windows 7 installed by default. On top of needing to physically choose Windows 8.1, the default Windows 7 install also comes with a $150 USD discount. The models are spread between Pavilion and Envy desktops and laptops.
I believe this is a very smart move for HP. You may soon have a mass of customers looking to replace expired devices and they may want the closest analogy to what they are used to. They will still have Windows 8-based options but they want to capitalize on anyone looking for something else.
Personally, trolling aside, I actually do not mind the interface of Windows 8.1. My only complaint is the reliance upon Windows Store and its potential future problems especially if it becomes the only way to install software. Could you imagine if someone like the NSA forced Microsoft to not certify encryption apps (or worse, tamper with them)? One of a million problems that mandatory certification, and the interest groups who abuse it, brings.
Subject: General Tech | January 1, 2014 - 02:51 AM | Scott Michaud
HP has returned to profitability after its $12.7 billion hole that is otherwise known as Fiscal Year 2012. While this year was significantly better, netting $5.1 billion rather than losing it, the company is continuing the plan to reduce their number of employees. We reported on their intentions back in May 2012. At that time, the company reported that 27,000 would lose their jobs through 2014. That number has since grown, twice, reaching 34,000 by the end of the year.
HP attributes the increases to "continued market and business pressures".
There are two directions you could take this story: on the positive side, HP's stock has nearly doubled and they have basically nullified 2012 with the combined gains from 2011 and 2013; on the negative angle, they are cutting much more aggressively than predicted. Either way, the investors seem happy with the company's direction.
... and I am sorry for having this be the first story of 2014.
Subject: General Tech, Systems, Mobile | October 14, 2013 - 09:27 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: Lenovo, hp, dell, tablets
About 81 million PCs were sold in the third quarter of this year; a decline of 8 percent from the same quarter of last year. This is according to reports from Windows IT Pro who averaged figures from IDC and Gartner.
The firms, however, were expecting somewhere between a 9 and 10 percent drop.
A further decline (in global shipments) is still expected to occur next year. Tablet sales have slowed from projections, albeit still on a growing trend, due to emerging markets and the simplification of generic content consumption. Our viewers probably extend beyond the generic but many others do not, for whatever number of reasons, use their devices except for media and text-based web browsing; as such, customers are more hesitant to replace their PCs.
Lenovo, HP, and Dell were 1-2-3 in terms of worldwide PC sales with each experiencing slight growth. HP is very near to Lenovo in terms of unit sales, less than a quarter million units separating the two, although I would expect Lenovo would have wider margins on each unit sold. HP extends further into the low value segments. Acer and ASUS had a sharp decline in sales.
Unfortunately, the article does not give any specific details on the tablet side. They did not reach their projections.
Subject: General Tech | September 19, 2013 - 01:51 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: Spectre 13, hp, Leap Motion. spectre 17, hybrid
HP announced quite a few new products though they went a little light on the specs as far as many enthusiasts would prefer. The Spectre 13 will be a hybrid tablet and laptop, the screen a 13" 1080p and the full device being 13.4mm thick, weighing 1.47kg and selling for over $1000. Perhaps the most interesting feature of this device is that has no fans in the keyboard portion, something very rare in Haswell machines. They've also released some limited info about a 17" model which has a Leap Controller built into it, which is a little less expensive than the hybrid model and will give you a chance to wave your hands at your PC. The Inquirer spills what it knows here.
"COMPUTER MAKER HP announced a raft of PCs and laptops today, including a fanless 2-in-1 detachable Haswell powered ultrabook and a notebook with a leap motion controller built in."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Kernel Developers, Linus Torvalds Emphasize Diversity for Innovation @ Linux.com
- Intel Iris Pro Linux Graphics Yield Some Wins Against Windows @ Phoronix
- Accurate temperature control of your 3D printer extruder @ Hack a Day
- Cyanogenmod goes pro, looks to create a better version of Android @ The Inquirer
- iOS 7 review @ The Inquirer
- Meet the Unmagnificent Seven: The critical holes plugged in Firefox update @ The Register
- Mountain Mods Ascension CYO @ Modders-Inc
- Apple iPhone 5S 64GB @ eTeknix
- TESORO Joint Giveaway - Win 3 Kuven 7.1 Virtual Surround Headsets & 3 Gandiva Gaming Mice @ NikKTech
Subject: Displays | August 22, 2013 - 02:40 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: hd, 2560x1440, asus, dell, eizo, fujitsu, hp, LG, Iiyama, philips, Samsung
Hardware.info had a chance to review 14 different 2560x1440 displays of which all but three they could find for sale; prices ranged from $500 to $950. That price range is interesting as all of the displays reviewed were 27" models, so the disparity is not caused by larger screens. Gamers may want to head straight to their findings on Response Time and Input Lag but you should spend the time to read the whole round up if you are more interested in the colour accuracy.
"Most IT product categories tend to evolve rapidly, but developments in computer monitors have been decidedly slower. Although larger screens are slowly becoming more affordable, the most common resolution remains 1920x1080 pixels. Nonetheless, this year we're seeing more and more manufacturers release WQHD monitors. Hardware.Info collected 14 different models of these very impressive monitors and tested them to find out which is the best one to get."
Here are some more Display articles from around the web:
- Asus ProArt PA249Q 24″ AH-IPS LCD Monitor @ eTeknix
- Nixeus VUE 30: 30" 2560x1600 IPS Monitor @ AnandTech
- Vizio M501D-A2R Review @ TechReviewSource
- SilverStone ARM11SC Arm One Monitor Mount @ Phoronix
Subject: General Tech | July 14, 2013 - 03:02 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Lenovo, IDC, hp, desktop market share
Earlier this week Gartner reported that global PC shipments in the second quarter of this year had fallen 10.9% YoY. In line with Gartner’s statistics, market research firm IDC (International Data Corp) has also released Q2 2013 results on global PC shipments. The interesting takeaway from the IDC report is the market share numbers, however. The IDC report shows that Lenovo has overtaken HP as the number one PC OEM with the highest market share.
According to IDC, global PC shipments fell 11.4% to 75.632 million units versus the same time last year. Despite taking first place, Lenovo still managed to shrink 1.4% YoY due to a 10% decrease in shipments to the Asia/Pacific market (excluding Japan) which makes up about 50% of Lenovo’s market. It still managed to outperform market forecasts by only seeing a slight decrease from 12,802,000 PC shipments in Q2 2012 to 12,619,000 in Q3 2013.
Because Lenovo’s shipments only decreased 1.4%, it managed to snag 1st place from HP which shrank 7.7% YoY. Lenovo now holds 16.7% of global PC market share versus 15% market share at the same time last year. Comparatively, HP went from 15.7% in Q2 2012 to 16.4% in Q2 2013. ASUS and Acer actually lost market share and saw decreased global PC shipments of 21.1% and 32.6% respectively.
In short, Lenovo lost the least amount of shipments in an overall declining market, so it managed to edge out HP and the other major OEMs for top spot. Although it still had a net loss (in number of shipments / growth), it performed quite well this quarter.
More information can be found here.
What do you think about Lenovo earning the most market share for global PC shipments?
Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards, Processors, Mobile | May 15, 2013 - 09:02 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: tegra 4, hp, tablets
Sentences containing the words "Hewlett-Packard" and "tablet" can end in a question mark, an exclamation mark, or a period on occasion. The gigantic multinational technology company tried to own a whole mobile operating system with their purchase of Palm and abandoned those plans just as abruptly with such a successful $99 liquidation of $500 tablets, go figure, that they to some extent did it twice. The operating system was open sourced and at some point LG swooped in and bought it, minus patents, for use in Smart TVs.
So how about that Android?
The floodgates are open on Tegra 4 with HP announcing their SlateBook x2 hybrid tablet just a single day after NVIDIA's SHIELD move out of the projects. The SlateBook x2 uses the Tegra 4 processor to power Android 4.2.2 Jellybean along with the full Google experience including the Google Play store. Along with Google Play, the SlateBook and its Tegra 4 processor are also allowed in TegraZone and NVIDIA's mobile gaming ecosystem.
As for the device itself, it is a 10.1" Android tablet which can dock into a keyboard for extended battery life, I/O ports, and well, a hardware keyboard. You are able to attach this tablet to a TV via HDMI along with the typical USB 2.0, combo audio jack, and a full-sized SD card slot; which half any given port is available through is anyone's guess, however. Wirelessly, you have WiFi a/b/g/n and some unspecified version of Bluetooth.
The raw specifications list follows:
NVIDIA Tegra 4 SoC
- ARM Cortex A15 quad core @ 1.8 GHz
- 72 "Core" GeForce GPU @ ~672MHz, 96 GFLOPS
- 2GB DDR3L RAM ("Starts at", maybe more upon customization?)
- 64GB eMMC SSD
- 1920x1200 10.1" touch-enabled IPS display
- HDMI output
- 1080p rear camera, 720p front camera with integrated microphone
- 802.11a/b/g/n + Bluetooth (4.0??)
- Combo audio jack, USB 2.0, SD Card reader
- Android 4.2.2 w/ Full Google and TegraZone experiences.
If this excites you, then you only have to wait until some point in August; you will also, of course, need to wait until you save up about $479.99 plus tax and shipping.
Subject: Systems | April 19, 2013 - 03:56 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: X-Gene, servers, project moonshot, microserver, hp, arm, Applied Micro Circuits, 64-bit
A recent press release from AppliedMicro (Applied Micro Circuits Corporation) announced that the company’s X-Gene server on a chip technology would be used in an upcoming HP Project Moonshot server.
An HP Moonshot server (expect the X-Gene version to be at least slightly different).
The X-Gene is a 64-bit ARM SoC that combines ARM processing cores with networking and storage offload engines as well as a high-speed interconnect networking fabric. AppliedMicro designed the chip to provide ARM-powered servers that will reportedly reduce the Total Cost of Ownership of running webservers in a data center by reducing upfront hardware and ongoing electrical costs.
The X-Gene chips that will appear in HP’s Project Moonshot servers feature a SoC with eight AppliedMicro-designed 64-bit ARMv8 cores clocked at 2.4GHz, four ARM Cortex A5 cores for running the Software Defined Network (SDN) controller, and support for storage IO, PCI-E IO, and integrated Ethernet (four 10Gb Ethernet links). The X-Gene chips are located on card-like daughter cards that slot into a carrier board that has networking fabric to connect all the X-Gene cards (and the SoCs on those cards). Currently, servers using X-Gene SoCs require a hardware switch to connect all of the X-Gene cards in a rack. However, the next-generation 28nm X-Gene chips will eliminate the need for a rack-level hardware switch as well as featuring 100Gb networking links).
The X-Gene chips in HP Project Moonshot will use relatively little power compared to Xeon-based solutions. AppliedMicro has stated that the X-Gene chips will be at least two-times as power efficient, but has not officially release power consumption numbers for the X-Gene chips under load. However, at idle the X-Gene SoCs will use as little as 500mW and 300mW of power at idle and standby (sleep mode) respectively. The 64-bit quad issue, Out of Order Execution chips are some of the most-powerful ARM processors to date, though they will soon be joined by ARM’s own 64-bit design(s). I think the X-Gene chips are intriquing, and I am excited to see how well they fare in the data center environment running server applications. ARM has handily taken over the mobile space, but it is still relatively new in the server world. Even so, the 64-bit ARM chips by AppliedMicro (X-Gene) and others are the first step towards ARM being a viable option for servers.
According to AppliedMicro, HP Project Moonshot servers with X-Gene SoCs will be available later this year. You can find the press blast below.