ASUS K53E, dual core SandyBridge mobility

Subject: Mobile | April 5, 2011 - 01:12 PM |
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With a 2.1GHz dual core Core i3-2310M processor, 4GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive and a 15.6" TFT with 1366x768 and a price tag under $650 the slightly bulky but also powerful ASUS K53E is an interesting notebook.  The Tech Report started the review hoping that the dual core processor would translate into longer battery life but instead ASUS opted for a less powerful battery, which does help the price.  Still, six hours of web browsing and 4.5 hours of perfect HD video playback is nothing to sneer at.  Check out the full review to see how well it handled other tasks.

"We've already put a quad-core Sandy Bridge notebook through the paces, but how does a system with a dual-core CPU based on the same architecture perform? Does it give previous-gen Core 2010 chips a run for their money, and perhaps more importantly, does it offer better battery life?"

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Looking to grab an new mobile PC before summer?

Subject: Mobile | March 30, 2011 - 01:40 PM |
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TechSpot have put in a lot of effort to their recent guide to mobile systems new for this first half of 2011.  They've broken the models down into six different areas, covering Ultraportables, Business, Desktop Replacements, Gaming, Value and lastly Netbooks.  Each of these areas represents a different segment of the market, now that consumers have a choice in size and performance, the needs of various users can be met specifically by the model they choose.  Head on over for an overview of the current market.

 

"The year kicked off to a good start in the laptop sector with AMD finally delivering its promised Fusion chips -- five years in the making -- and Intel launching its Huron River platform powered by Sandy Bridge processors. Fusion is doing well at the entry level market with limited competition from the Atom, but things haven't been going so smoothly for Intel. The company discovered a design flaw in its 6 Series chipset, which resulted in product launch delays across the board for new Sandy Bridge-based notebooks."

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Source: Tech Spot

ASUS Introduces the Eee Pad Transformer

Subject: Mobile | March 25, 2011 - 11:12 AM |
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Fremont, CA (March 25, 2011) - ASUS is excited to announce the launch of the Eee Pad Transformer, the best tablet choice for users looking for media consumption and mobile productivity in an elegant yet versatile design. The ASUS Eee Pad Transformer features the powerful and responsive Android 3.0 operating system, an optional expandable keyboard docking station, and ASUS’ intuitive Waveshare user interface that results in an exciting portable tablet for content creation, social communication, high-definition media playback and smooth realistic game play.

Exciting mini-cinema entertainment on-the-go
Powered by the NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core processor, the Transformer browses the web at blazing speeds, providing snappier response times and excellent multi-tasking performance. An IPS (in-plane switching) Panel made from durable and scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass is viewable at angles up to 178°, perfect for sharing your favorite photos, web pages, work documents and more with co-workers, friends or family next you or across the room. The 10.1” IPS panel features LED backlighting that provides brilliant and vivid colors at a 1280x800 resolution, perfect for viewing high-definition movies and other media content.

Built-in SRS Sound technology provides a dynamic 3D stereo audio experience, with maximum bass response and a wide sound field from the discrete speakers housed in a thin 0.51” thick chassis that only weighs 1.49lbs. A 1.2MP front-facing camera is perfect for video conferencing while the rear-facing 5MP camera can shoot and record HD video, which can be played back on HDTVs via the mini HDMI output port, making the Eee Pad Transformer a true mobile entertainment device.

Transform from pad to notebook mode with optional keyboard docking station
The Transformer sets itself apart from other tablets on the market by featuring an optional docking station. This unique docking station provides access to a full QWERTY keyboard along with unique Android Function keys, instantly turning the Transformer into a mobile content creation device.

A touchpad, 3.5mm audio jack, two USB ports as well as a built-in SD Card reader for easy file sharing and storage expandability makes the Transformer a versatile media hub. The docking station also extends the Transformer’s 9.5 hours of battery life up to 16 hours, so users can use it all day for work or play. In addition, the ultra-convenient ASUS WebStorage with one year of unlimited storage space provides worry-free cloud computing.

Android 3.0 OS melds with ASUS’ Waveshare UI for a unique user experience
Google’s Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) is a revolutionary operating system specially designed and optimized for tablets, which enables users a rich web experience for on-the-go web browsing, social media activities, video playback and casual gaming. Supporting Adobe Flash 10.2 and the ever growing Android Market, media entertainment is just a finger swipe away. The convenient ASUS Launcher also allows users to easily launch software, manage content and access online services and connect devices with a few simple taps, while ASUS’ Waveshare Interface hosts a variety of unique applications such as MyNet, MyLibrary, MyCloud and more.

MyNet easily streams digital media wirelessly within home network devices so HD videos or music can be played on devices such as an HDTV or desktop PCs for an even better experience from the Transformer. MyLibrary consolidates downloaded books, magazines and newspapers in to one easy to browse profile while MyCloud is a total cloud solution, providing access to digital content such as music, videos and files from the cloud anywhere, anytime. Users can even use MyCloud to remotely access and control any PC or Mac system and access applications or files to extend the versatility of the Eee Pad Transformer experience.

Source: ASUS

Playing with RIM's Book

Subject: Mobile | March 24, 2011 - 02:33 PM |
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The Inquirer had a chance to check out the new RIM Blackberry Playbook and a customized version of Need for Speed that can use the tablet as controller and display.  A 1GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9-based processor resides in the 7" tablet and there are dual cameras, a 3MP front facing and 5MP back facing which can be handy in numerous situations ... as is support for Flash.  We still don't have an exact availability date though.

****Update***

Not long after this post appeared RIM announced the availability of the Playbook in both the US and Canada on April 19th.

"THE PLAYBOOK TABLET from Research in Motion (RIM) is a neat and stylish bit of kit and its entertainment potential delighted us.

Though we don't know yet when the Playbook will be available, The INQUIRER was impressed with its first proper go with the device. The tablet is still in development and was running an older version of the Blackberry tablet operating system than will be preloaded at launch."

 

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Source: The Inquirer

A cloud with Chrome lining; the Google Cr-48 Notebook

Subject: Mobile | March 22, 2011 - 12:34 PM |
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Google's Cr-48 Chrome notebook does not come with crapware preinstalled, technically it has hardly anything installed as it is a cloud based laptop.  In this particular case this means it has an App store with a variety of 'programs' ranging from what are in truth simply bookmarks to actual extensions similar to those found on the browser.  Physically it is powered by an Atom 455 @ 1.66GHz, 2GB of DDR3-1333, a 1280x800 LCD powered by Intel's GMA 315a and a 16GB Integrated SSD for local storage. 

See it at Benchmark Reviews.

"Cloud computing has been the big word for the last two years, and has quickly become a part of everyone's daily lives. Photos going up on the web to be edited, music and video being streamed, and documents stored online are becoming the norm. Google's CR-48 Chrome Notebook running the Chrome OS is a culmination of all of these. It provides no local services and allows users to only use internet accessible services. Benchmark Reviews will investigate to see if the CR-48 is really the future of computing or if it just is an interesting idea that will fade away like many other products that have been touted as "the future of computing."

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Slim Core i7 Gigabyte Laptop, with a subwoofer too

Subject: Mobile | March 17, 2011 - 06:40 PM |
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Tweaktown has a look at a Core i7 powered GIGABYTE P2532, a 15.6" laptop with a 1920×1080 backlight screen, a 500GB 7200rpm HDD, 4GB of RAM and NVIDIA's GeForce GT550M with Optimus technology if for some reason you wanted to pretend this beast could enter a 'power saving mode'.  Also included is a DVD burner, two USB 3.0 ports, and HDMI but the real kicker is the 4.1 sound system; yes there is a subwoofer inside. 

"With all the notebooks flooding the market it's nice to find one with a grand claim to fame. "The thinnest 2nd Generation Core i7 Notebook", as with all tech titles like that are fleeting, but they are good while they last. The GIGABYTE P2532 multimedia laptop offers a stylish design with a powerful quad-core 2nd generation Intel Core i7 processor.

In its 15.6" chassis it sports a full HD display with 1920×1080 resolution and a LED backlight screen. Under the hood we've got a 500GB 7200rpm HDD, 4GB of RAM and NVIDIA GeForce GT550M/ 2GB VRAM with Optimus technology. Taking a look around the unit, you'll find a DVD burner, two USB 3.0 ports, HDMI, and THX Tru Studio Pro technology in its 4 speakers and 1 subwoofer."

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Source: TweakTown

Fusion powered 15.6" notebook joins Toshiba's Satellite lineup

Subject: Mobile | March 14, 2011 - 02:25 PM |
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The Toshiba Satellite C655D is an AMD E-240 Fusion powered notebook that you can pick up for under $450.  Unfortunately the MSRP is $349, so you might want to wait for the price to come down somewhat before picking up this notebook.  AMD's choice to offer a relatively low powered CPU on such a large notebook has resulted in some interesting sacrifices.  The extra size is nice but Matt discovered that it meant 720p playback on YouTube was not smooth and gaming at the native resolution also suffered.   Check out his full review to see if you feel the positive outweighs the negative.

"This makes for a complex verdict. Yes, the AMD E-240 is slow. But this laptop, the Toshiba Satellite C655, is a nice laptop for the price - and this laptop only exists because AMD has finally produced a competent Atom competitor. The 15.6” display, with its correspondingly large keyboard, is more pleasant to use than your typical 10.1” or 11.6” netbook. If you’re looking for a laptop, but your budget is slim, the Toshiba Satellite C655 should be on your short list."

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It's a 3D phone from LG, no glasses needed

Subject: Mobile | March 7, 2011 - 02:44 PM |
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With a 4.3" LCD screen powered by a 1GHz OMAP4 3D dual core processor the LG Optimus 3d can display 2D content at full 080p when outputed to an HD capable screen and 3D video at 720p on a stereoscopic display.  You can also watch 3D content on the phone its self without needing glasses, though The Inquirer warns you can't move your head much without the image degrading.  You can also create your own 3D content as the phone has dual stereoscopic 5MP cameras with which to capture your video. Check out the sneak peek over at The Inquirer.

"The INQUIRER was able to get its hands on the Optimus 3D for a quick test run at the CeBIT trade show in Germany. The phone was running Android 2.2 Froyo at the show but will be upgraded to Android 2.3 Gingerbread shortly after release and eventually will be available on the Three network."

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Source: The Inquirer

Apple announces iPad 2

Subject: Mobile | March 2, 2011 - 02:38 PM |
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Today, amidst much rumor and speculation, Apple announced the second generation of their iPad. The iPad 2 as Apple is calling it, is the first device to feature their new A5 processor. Apple is touting the specs of the A5 as having a dual core processor with a "9x faster' GPU. It seems most likely that PA Semi and Intrinsity (both ARM design companies purchased by Apple in the past few years) have developed a chip based off of the ARM Cortex A9 platform with a PowerVR SGX543 dual core GPU.

The power of this GPU is utilized in the new HDMI video out feature of the iPad 2. Like some Android Tegra devices that we have seen, the iPad 2 will support mirroring on the screen through HDMI output at resolutions up to 1080p with a separate adapter. A nice feature of the adapter however is that it has a fullsize HDMI port, and Apple 30pin dock connector to still facilitate charging.


Image courtesy of Engadget

Apple is also saying that this new iPad is 33% percent thinner (8.5mm), with the same battery life oh 10 hours that the original iPad achieved. This points to improvements in efficiency of the new A5 chip.

The iPad 2 also adds cameras to the equation. Both a back and front facing camera allow for things such as video conferencing through FaceTime on Apple devices.

Apple also talked about features of their new iOS 4.3, such as the Photo Booth application, enhancements to the Apple AirPlay standard, and an improved JavaScript rendering engine for the mobile Safari browser.

The iPad 2 will be available in both black and white on March 11, in the same pricing scheme for the current iPad with prices ranging from $599 to $830 (16GB WiFi only to 64GB 3G model).

Hate the iPhones and figure Android is a flash in the pan? HTC has a Win7 phone for you.

Subject: Mobile | February 28, 2011 - 01:16 PM |
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If you are a Windows user and want a phone with a familiar interface then perhaps the HTC HD7 Windows 7 smartphone will be perfect for you.  A 4.3" WVGA display at 480 x 800 pixels gives decent video as it is powered by a a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor.  It even has some nice extras like a built in kickstand so you can rest it on a flat surface, but expandable storage would have been nice.

Source: TECHGAGE

Apple updates Macbook Pros with Sandy Bridge and Thunderbolt

Subject: Mobile | February 24, 2011 - 01:52 PM |
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Along with the release of Intel's Thunderbolt technology, Apple also released updated MacBook Pros that is really only a minor product update.  In general, the major update includes a move from Arrandale platform on the 15-in and 17-in models and from the Core 2 Duo CPU on the 13-in model to a complete Sandy Bridge based lineup.  Dual-core CPUs ranging from 2.3 GHz to 2.7 GHz will make up the 13-in MacBook Pro while the 15-in and 17-in versions will get the quad-core varian

Check out the Viewsonic Viewpad 7

Subject: Mobile | February 21, 2011 - 02:22 PM |
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The numeral on the Viewsonic Viewpad 7 indicates the size, not the version.  It is a 7-inch TFT @ 800x480 powered by a 600MHz Qualcomm MSM 7227 processor, 512MB SDRAM and with 512MB NAND Flash storage and a microSD card slot that supports up to 32GB of removable storage.  The Inquirer had a chance to try it out and were quite impressed by all but the resolution of the front-facing camera which sports a 0.3MP resolution.

Source: The Inquirer

Motorola announces price for Xoom tablet, release date leaked?

Subject: Mobile | February 16, 2011 - 08:31 PM |
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According to a report today from Reuters, Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha has officially announced the pricing for their Xoom Tablet. While rumors have been flying about how expensive the 32GB Android 3.0 tablet will be, it has been confirmed to $799 (3G model) and $599 (WiFi only). As the Xoom seems to be Google's flagship product for Android 3.0, it becomes an interesting comparison with the 3G and WiFi only iPad 32GB at $729.00 and $599 respectively.

Source: engadget

NVIDIA announces quad-core Tegra SoC and demos performance

Subject: Mobile | February 16, 2011 - 01:02 AM |
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Geez, you step away from the computer for just a couple of hours and all hell breaks loose over in Spain at the Mobile World Congress.  NVIDIA decided that just a month or so after the official release of the Tegra 2 dual-core processor was a great time to let loose information on project "Kal-El", the next step in the Tegra chip line that first entered the NVIDIA offices only 12 days ago.

HTC announces first Android tablet at MWC 2011

Subject: Mobile | February 15, 2011 - 05:39 PM |
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In the run up to, and subsequent release of the Samsung GALAXY Tab just a few months ago, one of the main questions on our mind became when would HTC enter the Android tablet market. Being one of the biggest players in the mobile phone market, it seemed only natural for HTC to branch into tablets.

Source: engadget

Nokia drops Symbian, as Windows Phone 7 gains momentum

Subject: Mobile | February 15, 2011 - 12:19 AM |
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The rumors were true, as late last week Nokia killed off their long developed and cherished Symbian mobile Operating System. While the mainstream adoption of Symbian may have been lacking in the United States, it was once a force to be reckoned with in Europe and other parts of the world. Nokia has said that they will continue development on their MeeGo operating system, which is a joint effort with Intel.

Source: engadget

Samsung introduces new GALAXY S Family of Mobile Devices

Subject: Mobile | February 14, 2011 - 06:33 PM |
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This week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain has already brought a plethora of mobile device announcements, with one of the most exciting being the Galaxy S II family. Samsung has announced 3 different devices, including a phone, tablet, and wifi only iPod touch competitor

Source: engadget

The iPad is no longer alone

Subject: Mobile | February 14, 2011 - 05:47 PM |
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The iPad had the pleasure of being the only mass produced product of its particular species for a while, but that time is up and its particular niche is now home to several competitive products.  RIM, Samsung and others have hit the scene and the newest comes from HP in the form of the TouchPad.  A quick run down of the pertinent stats was provided by Think Computers; 1.6lbs, 24cm (9.45") x 19cm (7.48") x 1.4cm (0.54") with a 1.2GHz Snapdragon dual-core APQ8060 CPU, 1GB of RAM with a 9.7-in

The ASUS N53SV - a good laptop with a poor interface

Subject: Mobile | February 8, 2011 - 01:17 PM |
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Overall the ASUS N53SV-A1
seems to be a great laptop, a 15.6" 1366 x 768 LCD powered by an NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M with a Intel Core i7-2630QM paired with 4GB DDR3.   With those specs you know that you will have a powerful and likely warm piece of mobile computing hardware.  The problem for TechReviewSource was the customized keyboard layout that ASUS chose to implement, so be warned that some keys on the right hand side might not be where you are used to them being.

Muse 2.0 Inspires HP Notebook Updates

Subject: Mobile | February 8, 2011 - 12:00 AM |
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Despite the protests of some enthusiasts, the aesthetics of a notebook is often more important to your average consumer than the hardware inside. HP’s realized this several years ago, which is why so many of its laptops ship with color options and/or lid patterns.