Podcast #499 - Onyx Boox, BitFenix, and more!

Subject: General Tech | May 10, 2018 - 04:35 PM |
Tagged: podcast, velocity micro, qualcomm, Portal, Onyx Boox, nvidia, Netflix, microsoft, linux, K63, Intel, hyperx, google, evga, corsair, coolermaster, ChromeOS, bitfenix, arm, amd, 4k, video

PC Perspective Podcast #499 - 05/10/18

Join us this week for discussion on Onyx Boox, a slick BitFenix case, and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

Hosts: Allyn Malventano, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath, Ken Addison,

Peanut Gallery: Alex Lustenberg

Program length: 1:01:13

Podcast topics of discussion:

  1. Week in Review:
  2. News items of interest:
  3. Picks of the Week:
    1. 0:47:40 Jeremy:Building a Ryzen on a budget eh?
    2. 0:50:10 Josh:I have issues.   We know
    3. 0:52:20 Allyn: System monitoring Gadgets. On Windows 10. Good ones.
  4. Closing/outro
 
Source:

HP Announces Chromebook x2, World's First Detachable Chromebook

Subject: Systems | April 9, 2018 - 08:00 AM |
Tagged: hp, detachable, core m3-7y30, ChromeOS, chromebook x2, 2-in-1

Today, HP is announcing the Chromebook x2, building upon their existing Chromebook 11 and Chromebook x360 devices.

HP Chromebook x2_FrontRight_Detached.jpg

As you might have guessed from the "x2" moniker, the HP Chromebook x2 is a detachable 2-in-1 device. While we've seen Acer announce the first ChromeOS tablet a few weeks ago with the Acer Chromebook Tab 10, the HP Chromebook x2 is the first detachable device to be running ChromeOS.

HP Chromebook x2_LeftProfile.jpg

 

HP Chromebook x2
Processor Intel Core M3-7Y30 (Kaby Lake)
Memory 4GB LPDDR3-1600 (Onboard)
Screen 12.3-inch Touchscreen (2400x1600)
Storage 32GB eMMC (non-upgradable)
Camera

HP Wide Vision 5MP Camera (front facing)

13 MP HP Camera (rear facing) 

Wireless Intel 802.11ac 2x2 + BT 4.2
Connections 2 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 (Type-C)
MicroSD Card Reader
Audio combo jack
Battery 48 Wh
Dimensions 11.50 in (W) x 8.32 in (D) x 0.33 in (H) 
 1.62 lb (tablet); 3.07 lb (tablet + base)
OS ChromeOS
Price $599 - available starting in June

Specs-wise, the HP Chromebook x2 looks to be one of the higher performance ChromeOS device. Built around an Intel Core M3-7Y30 processor, HP is aiming for the Chromebook x2 to be used as a primary computing device for consumers looking for more available horsepower on a ChromeOS device. 

HP Chrombook x2_TopDown_Detached.jpg

Along with the tablet mode capabilities come the included HP Active Pen stylus for sketching, notetaking, and navigation. 

Additionally, HP Chromebook X2 will support the running of Android apps from the Google Play Store inside ChromeOS. This will allow users to access more tablet-optimized Android apps, which should be great for media consumption.

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With pricing of $599, with the keyboard dock included, the HP Chromebook x2 is one of the few premium ChromeOS devices we've seen besides Google's Pixel offerings. 

While it remains to be seen if users are interested in the 2-in-1 detachable form factor for a device running ChromeOS, the HP Chromebook x2 seems to be a premium product and a compelling option for users looking for the Chromebook experience.

Source: HP

(Rumor?) Android Parallel Tasks Expected in Chrome OS

Subject: General Tech | December 31, 2017 - 11:24 PM |
Tagged: google, ChromeOS, chrome os

As far as I can tell, this feature has not been confirmed by Google, and everyone cites Chrome Unboxed rather than testing on their own Chromebooks. That said, Chrome Unboxed has a video of the feature in action, and I don’t have a Chromebook of my own, so I’ll just label this as a rumor even though I’m confident that it is true.

The feature? Android apps will soon be able to run in the background on Chrome OS. It is apparently possible using the beta channel Chrome OS 64, but that doesn’t mean it will land in Chrome OS 64 stable. This pushes Android (the app platform) significantly closer to a desktop-style platform, albeit when hitching a ride on Chrome OS.

I’m curious how much control will be given to Android developers, though. It seems like Google would want apps to do things like reduce their workloads when unfocused. If so, would they bring this feature to Android proper? Or would it be a Chrome OS-specific feature that developers need to specifically target?

Either way, it looks like Google is working on it.

Rumor: 15.4" Broadwell-U Chromebooks Are Coming

Subject: General Tech, Systems | December 29, 2014 - 01:42 PM |
Tagged: laptop, google, dell, ChromeOS, Chromebook, chrome, acer

According to DigiTimes via The Tech Report, because of course DigiTimes, we should receive 15.4-inch Chromebooks in the near future. Their sources claim that both Acer and Dell have products planned with that operating system, in that size, and will cost less then $300. The Acer system is expected in March 2015 with Dell scheduled for some time in the first half of 2015.

12-failslow-Chrome.png

One part that stands out for me is the maximum price of $300. The claim is that this is a Google mandated ceiling for Chromebooks with up-to Core i3 performance. This is troubling for two reasons. First, depending on the details, it might dance around inside the minefield of price-fixing laws, although I am sure that Google is doing this in a legally. I mean, Apple has been getting away with enforcing maximum retail prices of iPods and iOS devices for around a decade and I believe console manufacturers do about the same.

Second, and more importantly, it limits the ability for manufacturers to be creative and innovative, which is the major advantage of an open ecosystem. Being a web browser-based platform, there is already constraints on what manufacturers can implement. Sure, Google is probably open to communication with their partnered hardware vendors, but it is uncomfortable none-the-less. I could use the Nexus Q as an example of an experiment but unfortunately it was neither a hit nor did it cost over $300. Sure, they could add a more powerful processor to escape that clause but it is still

These Chromebooks are expected to launch in the early half of 2015.

Source: Tech Report

Blink and It's Gone: Google Forks WebKit

Subject: General Tech, Mobile | April 6, 2013 - 05:47 PM |
Tagged: webkit, Blink, Android, Google Chrome, ChromeOS

There once was a web browser named Konqueror which was quite common in the Linux community. At its core was the KHTML rendering engine, a nice standards-compliant layout package; KHTML was so nice that Apple decided to create WebKit based on it. Since then, WebKit has been the basis of Google Chrome and other applications such as Steam as of a few years ago.

And even though the project maybe never be done, Google stuck a fork in it.

Blink is a new layout engine, based on WebKit, soon to be implemented in Google Chrome. By soon, I mean practically the next release. It stands to reason, too: a forked project by definition starts out looking nearly identical because they both start from the same point. The two projects will be able to evolve in different directions as each begin to differ in needs and desires.

So what does it mean? Firstly, web developers do not need to worry about a new vendor-prefix until at least Google starts to worry about one. According to their above Q&A, they currently seem more interested in reducing prefix support rather than adding new ones. Personally, I expect that at some point they will likely need to add some as standards evolve.

In terms of the future: I feel that multiple rendering engines will only be better for the future of the web. Sure, it can be difficult for web developers to test their products across a variety of devices but that is a drop in the bucket compared to the misery caused when a dominant player gets complacent. A noncompeting player will stop innovating and maybe pull away from open standards.

Then again this pretty much always happens: no-one is satisfied with monopolies. Thankfully the WebKit license made it easy for dissatisfied parties to take action. In turn, WebKit can benefit from many of these developments at their leisure, particularly before their products look too dissimilar.

Source: CNet

Xi3 Announces The First Chrome OS Based Desktop PC

Subject: Systems | May 24, 2011 - 01:21 PM |
Tagged: Xi3, SFF, PC, ChromeOS

ChromiumPC_photo.jpg

Xi3, the makers of a series of small form factor module based computers, is launching a Chrome OS based desktop computer which they have dubbed the ChromiumPC. The ChromiumPC will be based on similar "module" technology to that in their current Xi3 computers. They have broken the traditional motherboard down into three parts and fitted them into an aluminum chasis measuring "4.0- x 3.656- x 3.656-inches." The PC will use either a single or dual core 64-bit, x86 based CPU. The device is slated for a July 4th, 2011 release, and will be generally available in the second half of the year.

If this small form factor PC is priced right, it may prove to be a popular option for schools, businesses, and people wanting a second PC.  Are you interested in desktop PCs running cloud based operating systems?

Source: Xi3