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CeBIT 2013 - Johannes Knapp is on the ground for us at the moment in Germany at CeBIT 2013.
One of the first new products he discovered at the show was Panasonic's 11.6-inch Toughbook CF-AX2 with a 1366x768 resolution and 10 finger capacitive multitouch screen. It's a business focused Ultrabook device with plenty of great featuring including a flip-over convertible style design that turns it into a tablet, which should work well considering it comes installed with Windows 8.
The device comes with a load of different I/O options (two USB 3.0, LAN, SD-XC, VGA and HDMI) that should work well for most business users and starts out with an Intel Core i5 CPU and goes up from there with various configuration options. Being a Toughbook, it's rather ruggedized weighing around 1.15kg and should be able to take a few drops here and there. Panasonic claims up to eight hours of battery life.
It's quite expensive starting at around $2000, but if it looks like the kind of "tough" device you need for your meeting and travel, it could be worth a look.
One of the latest devices to join the Ultrabook convertible category is the ASUS Transformer Book. This Windows 8 machine is part tablet, part notebook and costs a pretty penny. Official pricing hasn't been released by ASUS, but MacMall has put the machine up for pre-order for a small fortune of $1,479.99.
The 13.3-inch device is powered by a Core i7-3517U CPU and 4GB of RAM. The display checks in at 1920 x 1080 resolution and is powered by Intel's HD4000 graphics processor. Storage is provided by a 500GB HDD and a 128GB SSD, which is most likely used for booting and quick-on technology.
While that price comes with the keyboard, you'll probably want to wait to order the device until ASUS officially outs the pricing and it becomes available at more locations. It's very possible and likely that MacMall has the price artificially high to make some extra money off of the early adopters.
Google has proved that a leaked video was indeed accurate. The previously rumored Chromebook Pixel, a Chromebook developed by Google, has officially been announced by Google and will be available for pre-order in the Google Play Store soon. The device will start shipping in April, though the price presents quite a barrier to entry.
The Chromebook Pixel features a 12.85-inch touch-enabled Gorilla Glass display that outputs 2,560 x 1,700 pixels. This gives it a total of 4.3 million gorgeous pixels. It features 239 pixels per inch, which beats out the Retina Macbook, and is roughly double that of most Windows laptops.
The device will be powered by an Intel Core i5 processor and will come with Wi-Fi connectivity. An upgraded model will be available with Verizon LTE compatibility, though this will set you back an additional $150. The base price of the new device is $1,299 and the LTE model comes in at $1,449.
"This is for power users who live in the cloud," Senior Vice President of Chrome Sundar Pichai said.
Development of the laptop started two years ago and is developed by Google with the help of unnamed PC manufacturers.
Rumors are circling that Google is set to release a touchscreen version of its Chromebook at some point near the end of this year. We are hearing reports from the Wall Street Journal that Google is working with an unnamed hardware manufacturer to bring some touchscreen Chromebook goodness to market.
The WSJ is reporting that sources close to the matter say that as many as 100,000 Chromebook's were sold in the US during Q4 of 2012 alone, and that accounts for a significant improvement over previous sales figures.
Nothing is set in stone yet, but the final form for the new Chromebook Touch, could resemble the Chromebook Pixel which was leaked earlier this month. This means that the touchscreen Chromebook could have a 2560x1700 display built into an ultra slim frame, similar to that of the Macbook Air.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Google has developed a touchscreen Chromebook that could go on sale as early as this year. Google is continuing to put pressure on rivals Microsoft and Apple with its competitively priced mobile devices and Chromebooks and a touchscreen version is the next logical step.
During the fourth quarter alone, Google is said to have sold around 100,000 Chromebooks. Combine that number with the fact that 25 percent of all Windows 8 laptops sold last month were touchscreen capable and you start to see why Google would be working on developing a touchscreen Chromebook.
Google is lucky in that they've had a fair bit of experience with touch interfaces. Thanks to the Android operating system, Google should be able to overlay a touch interface on the current Chrome OS. The report doesn't say who Google might be working with on this new project, but could this be something along the lines of the rumored Google Pixel?
One of the latest rumors out of the Apple rumor mill is that Apple is planning to release a MacBook Air that is equipped with a Retina display. The rumor says that Apple is planning on releasing this new MacBook Air sometime in the third quarter of this year. Previous rumors have said that the Air would get the Retina treatment in June.
Of course, if the Air gets a Retina display, it's going to need more horsepower to drive those pixels and a bigger battery to power the display. It's not clear if Apple will be able to pack all of the extras required into the Air's tiny chassis, though Apple has done other engineering marvels before.
EMSOne says that the update will be arriving in the coming months, so it may be worth holding off if you were thinking of getting a new MacBook Air.
Ex-console manufacturer Sega has teamed up with Japanese retailer Enterbrain to release some nostalgic Sega branded notebooks that will be sold for a limited time in Japan. The laptops feature removable lids that mimic classic Sega gaming consoles.
The lids showcase design elements as well as logos from Sega's popular Saturn, Dreamcast, Mega Drive, with a fourth sporting the Sega logo and a bright blue paint job. Before you get your hopes up, the laptops will not come loaded with classic Sega games, but will include exclusive wallpapers and custom sounds. The themed lids can also be purchased separately, so you can change out your retro experience at will.
The laptops come in four flavors of hardware specifications: Light, Standard, High-Spec and Premium. The Light version sports a 2.5GHz Intel Processor and 4GB of RAM, while the Premium version includes a 2.4GHz i7, 8GB of RAM and an NVIDIA 650M. All four levels include Windows 8, 15.6" HD screen and USB 3.0.
Apple's flagship Retina MacBook Pro line of computers are getting a little bit more value for the money. The 15-inch version of the Retina MacBook Pro is receiving a 0.1GHz speed boost on its quad-core processor and is remaining at the same price of $2,199 for the intro version.
The 13-inch version is now $200 cheaper than before and will set you back $1,499 for the base model which includes 128GB of sold-state storage. If you need 256GB, it'll set you back that $1,699.
It's not immediately apparent what has sparked Apple to cut the price of the 13-inch model and boost the specifications of the 15-inch model. Perhaps it's the slumping Mac sales or perhaps its the stock price that has been getting hammered lately. Either way, you can't say no to more value for your dollar.
The ThinkPad Helix was said to be delayed until March or April according to a Facebook post by a company rep. The post added that an announcement would be made soon. Today, Lenovo has made that announcement, saying that the Helix will be coming in early March.
This delay isn't nearly as bad as it could have been. The device was originally slated to ship in late February, so an early March launch isn't too bad. The Helix is one of the new convertible Ultrabooks that seem to have become popular overnight. The screen of the Helix detaches from the keyboard base and can be used as a tablet.
The Helix offers performance components as options including a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. The starting price of this 11.6-inch touchscreen machine is $1,499.
A video was leaked today that seems to indicate that Google is working on a Chromebook completely in-house. The new Chromebook would best the other currently available systems in terms of resolution as the screen is reportedly a 2,560x1,700 touchscreen panel.
In the video seen here, you can see some fairly high production value meaning that it likely wasn't done by some amateur. The Chromebook in question is reportedly named "Pixel," though Developer Francois Beaufort says that it is called Google Link. He goes on to claim that it is being developed and tested at Google right now.
At the end of the video, it says that it was designed by Google, down to the last pixel. This lends credence to the notion that the device is being developed completely in-house. We'll have to wait to see if this thing is real, but I'd be inclined to say it is from the video. What are your thoughts on the device?