Jun 1 2010

Intel Executive Forecasts His Company’s Direction

Intel employee David Perlmutter, the executive vice president and co-general manager of the architecture group, has recently spoken about his company’s future direction.

Perlmutter says that the computer market is continuing to grow, as are data centers and cloud computing. Due to the increasing amount of devices people will own, Intel will also grow because it makes a lot of the chips for these devices. Many of the devices at the Computex trade show in Taipei (which Perlmutter attended) are going to be based on Intel’s Atom processor.

Perlmutter also added that in 2011, most of Intel’s revenue will come from chips in personal computers and data centers. The company also plans to ship one billion chips within five years. Though it sounds like an almost unachievable goal, Intel plans to ship over 350 million units in 2010 and hopes to double that number in 2011.

Perlmutter says his company is at least a year ahead of some other chip companies and all in all, he sees a rosy future for Intel.

Via The Wall Street Journal, image via Intel.

May 31 2010

Netbooks Vs. Tablets

For computer users who want a small, portable device, there exist two options: netbooks and tablets. But how does one decide between the two devices? According to technology analyst Tim Bajarin, the main difference lies in what he calls content consumption vs. content creation. The terms are self-explanatory: content consumption is looking at and absorbing others’ content, while content creation is the making of content oneself.

Content creation takes up 25 percent of the time people spend on computers. The other three quarters of the time is spent consuming content. This distinction is important to make because netbooks (and laptops) are good for content creation, but tablets are good for content consumption.

Ultimately, a user must assess his or her own needs when deciding between a netbook or a tablet. If someone already owns a laptop, a tablet can be a nice supplement for content consumption. Indeed, tablets are optimized for content consumption, much more so than laptops or netbooks. But for users who need to create a lot of content, a netbook is probably a better choice than a tablet.

Via PC Magazine.

May 24 2010

Seagate Introduces SSD/Hard Drive Hybrid

Seagate is releasing a new hard drive for laptops this week called the Momentus XT. It is unique because it will contain a standard hard drive with a 4 GB solid state hard drive.

The spinning hard drive is available in 250, 320, or 500 GB sizes, all of which have 7,200 rpm. It boots in twice as much time as a 5,400 rpm hard drive and increases performance by keeping regularly accessed data in the SSD using Adaptive Memory technology.

The Momentus XT boots like any other hard drive the first time it is used, but by the third time, it starts to learn the user’s habits and can boot twice as fast. The data in the SSD part is mirrored in the regular spinning part just in case the SSD part has problems.

The target market for the Momentus XT is power users, especially gamers. The most expensive model is $156.

Via ChannelWeb, image via TG Daily.

May 18 2010

New MacBook Boasts Longer Battery Life

Apple has updated its MacBook laptop line as I expected, being that it recently updated its MacBook Pro line of computers as well. The new MacBook has a 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and has a battery life of 10 hours, three hours longer than the previous model. (I personally do not believe any of Apple’s claims about battery life in its products, as these estimates are always much longer than what the product actually offers.)

The new MacBook has 2 GB of memory and a 250 GB hard drive, like the previous model. However, it has a new graphics card, the Nvidia GeForce 320M. The previous model had Nvidia’s GeForce 9400M graphics card, as well as a 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor.

The physical design of the MacBook remains the same: white body with a 13.3-inch screen. For users looking for a reliable laptop but unwilling to spend the money for a MacBook Pro, the MacBook remains a good choice.

Via CNET, image via Apple.

Feb 25 2010

Apple May Update MacBook Pro

The supplies of MacBook Pro laptops are more limited than usual and, according to an analyst, this could mean that Apple is going to update the MacBook Pro line of computers. An updated MacBook Pro would probably include a new processor from Intel that would boost battery life and overall performance. The new MacBook Pro could ship by June, if not sooner.

The analyst says that Macs in general do not need to be refreshed because they are doing so well, but a refresh of the MacBook Pro would keep Apple products new and exciting.

Apple last updated the MacBook Pro in June 2009. Currently, the cheapest MacBook Pro has a lot in common with the MacBook, which was updated in October 2009. To preserve the MacBook Pro’s higher pricing, Apple needs to differentiate between the two models by giving more advanced features to the MacBook Pro.

Via The Washington Post, image via Apple.

Feb 17 2010

Apple Acknowledges Defective MacBook Hard Drives

Apple has acknowledged that a small percentage of the hard drives used in MacBooks bought between May 2006 and December 2007 are defective. Unfortunately for users, this defect manifests itself in a hard drive failure: the affected laptops simply stop working and display a question mark on a file icon when they are turned on.

Luckily for these affected users, Apple has announced that they are eligible for a free replacement under a warranty extension. Apple is encouraging users with this frustrating problem to go to an Apple store or contact customer support for a replacement. Those who have already paid for repairs may be eligible for a refund.

Unfortunately, a hard drive replacement won’t bring back lost data (so please, please make sure you are backing up to an external hard drive or some other form of reliable backup). The new warranty extension extends either three years from purchase date or to August 15, 2010, whichever is longer.

Via PC World, image via Apple.

Dec 25 2009

Apple Corporate Sales Could Be On The Way Up

Apple is set to have an increase in corporate laptop sales, according to a new survey by ChangeWave. Ten percent of companies plan to buy a Mac laptop in the first quarter of 2010, up from nine percent in August. Seven percent said that they plan to buy a Mac desktop in the first quarter of 2010. This statistic has remained unchanged throughout 2009.

Mac sales did not change at all in the corporate world, despite Apple’s introduction of a new iMac and the Mac mini server.

The survey found a projected increase in corporate IT sales for the first quarter of 2010, with the vast majority of people planning to buy a laptop to start the new year. Almost one fifth of the upgraders are upgrading because of Microsoft’s Windows 7.

Even so, Windows 7 has a high level of customer satisfaction – thirty seven percent said their company is very satisfied with it and fifty-six said their company is somewhat satisfied.

Via AppleInsider.

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Dec 2 2009

Windows 7 Users Experiencing Dreaded Black Screen of Death

While it may not be as bad as it sounds for most Windows users, it’s still not a step in the right direction for Microsoft.  Many people (not just Windows 7 users) have been reporting a black screen which appears following a successful log-in. Once the black screen appears, systems reportedly lock up to the point where theres nothing you can do.

Although some users have claimed that they will have access to My Computer after getting the black screen, the operating systems still slow down to a crawl. Microsoft claims that their recent security update is the most likely suspect and is investigating further to narrow down the issue and eventually solve the problem.

So what should you do in the meanwhile? If affected, its suggested that you look up Prevx, a UK developer of anti-malware software. They’ve claimed to put together a fix that’ll fix the issue. We can’t promise that the fix won’t screw everything up further, so it may be worth your time to research them further. We’ll keep you posted as we learn more from Microsoft.

Via: Engadget.

Dec 2 2009

Dell’s E6400 and E6500 Models are Overheating and Underclocking!

If you’re an owner of a E6400 or E6500, the above picture should be a startling notice that the health of your precious laptop is at risk.

Hundreds of owners just like yourself have been reporting in over the past few weeks about severe performance issues, with some users claiming that their laptops are performing as low as 95% below what would be normal operating conditions.  For some users, the systems will get hotter than usual; for others, BIOS suddenly lowers its performance until it stops working all together. While some users have been reporting these issues as early as January 2009, its been claimed that Dell had actually started to censor posts on their own forums. This doesn’t look like good news for E6400 & E6500 users.

UPDATE: Some users have claimed that the Studio XPS 1645 is having similar issues, according to this thread. This appears to be happening due to a poor AC adaptor, take heart though. If you call Dell and complain, they will ship out a replacement adapters to those affected. Now all Dell has to do is make good on the E6400 and E6500 users, and it’ll all be square.

Via Engadget.

Nov 9 2009

Dell Releases Unstoppable Inspiron 13z & 15z Laptops

Dell has just released two laptops that will not quit.  With respective battery lives of 11 and 10 hours, the Inspiron 13z ($550) and Inspiron 15z ($580) outlast most other laptops on the market today.

The ULV (Ultra Low Voltage) processors used in these machines operate at lower voltages and require less cooling, permitting not just great battery life, but also slimmer profiles.  Furthermore, Both laptops are less than 3 cm thick.

As usual, Dell offers many options for customizability.  Both the Intel Pentium Dual-Core and Intel Core 2 Duo processors are offered, and hard drive sizes and memory amounts are selectable.  The 13z features a 13.3 inch monitor, and the 15z features a 15.6 inch monitor.  Unfortunately these two laptops are not yet available in the U.S. (see Dell.com), but are available in Australia, India, New Zealand, and everywhere else we wish we could be.

Via Thaindian News

Nov 8 2009

Dell Adamo XPS Laptop Previewed

Keeping competition hot with Apple, Dell has released the details of its Adamo XPS laptop as an attractive alternative to the Macbook Air.  The Adamo XPS boasts a number of unique badges, such as being the thinnest laptop ever (accomplished by a special hinge allowing the keyboard to be folded into the screen), weighing a mere three pounds, and possessing a special touchstrip required to open the laptop.

The specs for the Adamo XPS include a 13.4-inch 1266 x 768 display, a dual-core 1.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo ULV processor, 4GB of RAM and a 128GB solid-state drive with Windows 7.  Unfortunately, the laptop only nets two hours of battery life.  It will start at $1,799, the same price as the Macbook Air.

Here’s a video preview of the Dell Adamo:

Via SlashGear.

Nov 8 2009

Paper Laptop Concept for Increased Disposability

While intriguing, it may be a while before the logistics of this one are worked out: a laptop whose entire frame is made of recycled paper.

The idea is to make a laptop disposable, just as some phones and cameras are disposable.  Between flexible OLED screens, foldable electronic paper, and printable circuit boards, the potential for creating a paper laptop is gradually increasing.

The pace of technological change sometimes seems to outstrip itself. Disposable electronics could provide a solution to making replacement technology cheaper and reducing environmentally unfriendly waste.  It’s out for debate how well this kind of laptop could compete with increasingly low prices for netbooks and laptops unless the technology involved would allow for an absolute decrease in productive costs without loss of durability.

Via CoolestGadgets

Nov 6 2009

Walmart Announces Ultra Thrifty Deal on HP Notebook

Walmart has a super cheap Windows 7 laptop that you will be able to buy on Black Friday.  Customized for Walmart by HP, this notebook will not have you playing World of Warcraft at mind-numbing resolutions everywhere you go, but it should suffice for your daily email, internet, and word processing needs.

Specs include a 15.6” Brightview display at 1366×768 resolution, integrated graphics, 250 GB of hard drive space, 3 GB of RAM, and a 2.2 GHz Intel Celeron processor.  The real shining point of the system is the $298 price tag.  With these kinds of prices for laptops, competition continues to intensify between the netbook and laptop industry.

Via I4U News.

Nov 6 2009

ASUS Considers Fanless Laptop Prototype

ASUS is toying with a radical new laptop design that could permit their laptops to be built without any fan at all (though in some computers the processors already require no fan).

Through a special folding configuration and “thermal holes” that help draw air into the laptop, airflow is greatly increased even without a fan.  As a result, the laptop would require less energy, run more quietly, and trim down its frame a bit.

There is no news yet on when this technology would be released, what the laptop stats might be, or even what name ASUS is heralding the project by.  However, it appears to have great potential, if you don’t mind the squeaking as the laptop opens and closes – which surely is not an actual issue, but you can hear it in the video after the jump.

Via REGHARDWARE.

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Nov 5 2009

Acer Launches Massive Desktop Replacement Laptop

In time for the holidays, Acer has created a monster laptop, four times the weight of a run-of-the-mill netbook.  The weight is worth it when you consider the potential to play World of Warcraft at mind-numbing resolutions anywhere you go.  And the weight is literally worth it when you consider the price – starting at $1350 on Newegg, the AS8940G-6865 falls neatly into line with Acer’s usual highly competitive pricing.

For your $1350 and willingness to haul a 10-pound laptop with you, you will receive in turn the new Intel® Core™ i7 Quad-Core 720QM processor, 4 GB of RAM, a 500 GB hard drive, and an NVIDIA GeForce GTS 250M, all manifesting themselves across a glorious 18.4 inch HD screen.  Also features Windows 7 and Blu-ray capabilities.  Spinal support not included.

Via CrunchGear and Newegg.

Aug 28 2009

Dual-Screen Spacebook Laptop Great For People On The Go

I can’t even begin to say how convenient having a second monitor is, especially if you’re working with multiple documents or putting together presentations. But who wants to lug around a second monitor? Not to mention that it’s definitely not something at the top of your packing list if you’re traveling long-distances.

Good thing gScreen’s coming out with a dual-screen laptop. The Spacebook Laptop is to have two 15.4″ screen displays, the second of which can be stowed away behind the first when not in use.

The standard configuration for this laptop includes an Intel Core 2 Duo processor, a NVIDIA GeForce 900M GT graphics chipset, 4 GB of RAM, and a 7200 rpm hard drive. Unfortunately, the price tag on this machine is a bit heavy on the pockets. This powerhouse will cost nearly $3000.

gScreen is expected to release this laptop by this holiday season, so if you’re thinking about something to get your loved one and don’t mind spending a couple (*cough cough*) extra dollars, this might be something worth looking into.

For those of you that don’t want to shell out the entire three g’s, there might also be a 13″ model in the making. We’ll keep you posted.

Via Engadget.

Aug 22 2009

New Acer Aspire Laptop Is A Netbook Challenger

Before the laptop came to the market, PCs dominated. Later, a new, cheaper alternative came to the scene: the netbook. For students and budget buyers, the netbook seemed like a God-send. They were nearly as powerful, but were also smaller and more portable.

Now it looks like the laptop is fighting back with a new contender: The Acer Aspire 5516-5474, weighing in at 6 pounds, double the average weight for your standard netbook. At $279, this is a bargain to just about anyone, shaving some $300 off the price of other new ultra-thin laptops.

This bargain laptop computer is also a little power-house, featuring an AMD-Athlon TF-20 64bit Processor running a 1.6 GHz CPU, 2GB of DDR2 RAM (PC2-5300), and a 160GB Serial ATA hard drive. It also has a crisp 15.6″ display.

This laptop comes with Microsoft Windows Vista Home Basic Service Pack 1, as well as a host of other programs, making it ready for anything you’d want to throw at it (apart from your cup of coffee!)

Via Cnet.
Image Via Acer US.

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