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CES 2013 - I got a chance to go hands on with MSI's newly announced S20 slider and I'm pretty impressed. It's light, yet it is supposed to get at least 5 hours of battery life, all while featuring a full Intel Core experience. I do have one qualm with it though.
It features a keyboard when the screen is slid back. It's great and would be exactly what I'm looking for in a tablet. However, if you touch into a text box while the screen is slid back, meaning the keyboard is exposed and usable, the on-screen keyboard pops up. It's minor, but would definitely annoy me.
Otherwise, the thing is pretty awesome.
While Microsoft are having issues with sales numbers of Windows 8-based devices and Apple continue to push their awesome Retina-based MacBook's, it is the Linux-based Chromebook from Samsung and Google that is topping Amazon's charts.
Listed at just $249, with Amazon selling it for up to $317 - as demand is driving up the price and retailers are taking advantage of this. Even at $317, which is $68 more than its list price, it is still cheaper than all of the other 20 laptops in Amazon's top 20 laptop list. What makes the Chromebook such a huge seller?
After its price being the number one reason, secondly just about anyone can use it as a Chromebook is pretty much just a Chrome web browser-based notebook, and that is definitely not a bad thing. Linux is churning away underneath, but you don't see that on top of the OS. Most people turn away from a Chromebook because they think Google's many services are all online-only, but they're not.
HP's EliteBook Folio Ultrabook getting screen upgrade option in March, will offer 1600x900 resolution
The Windows 8-based HP EliteBook Folio looks great on paper, but really loses out on its screen res with just 1366x768. In this day and age - hey, we're in 2013 now - that resolution is just ridiculously low.
It seems as though HP has come to their senses in the new year after a few drinks, and are now set to offer a 1600x900 option to US and European customers starting in early March. There's no information on how much the screen res upgrade will cost, but it shouldn't be too much more than the offering price, maybe $100-$150 extra.
Samsung has gone ahead and detailed the update to the Series 7 Chronos and Ultra Windows 8 notebooks and they feature what you would expect: loads of memory, 1080p screens, and more. The Chronos is a 15.6-inch beast, packing an Intel Core i7 processor, the new AMD Radeon 8870M GPU, up to 16GB of RAM, and a terabyte of storage.
With all of those high specs, the system remains under 6 pounds and claims to feature 11 hours of battery life, an impressive achievement, if true. The Ultra is a 13.3-inch beast that comes with an i5 or i7 processor, up to 16GB of RAM, and up to 256GB of SSD storage. The battery life is quoted at 8 hours and it comes with optional 4G/LTE connectivity.
MSI announces Slider S20 Ultrabook convertible ahead of CES, we will be sure to check it out at the show
MSI has announced the new Slider S20 Ultrabook convertible notebook. For those who don't know, a convertible Ultrabook features some way of turning into a tablet, either by sliding, flipping, or spinning. Due to the name of this machine, you can take a pretty good guess about the method used by MSI to turn this notebook into a tablet.
"Many users prefer the mobility of a tablet, but still need the processing power of an actual laptop computer," said Andy Tung, vice president of sales for MSI US. "MSI's S20 Ultrabook Convertible solves that problem by combining the best of both worlds, giving users the choice of using it as a tablet or as a laptop."
The system will feature a full HD 1920x1080 10-point multitouch screen, 8GB of DDR3 RAM, 128GB of SSD storage, and an i5 processor, all while remaining under 2.2 pounds and less than 1 inch thick. It will come with wireless, Ethernet, 2USB 3.0 ports, BlueTooth, miniHDMI, and a 720P HD webcam.
You'll be able to pick the machine up in Q1 of 2013 for a suggested retail price of $1,199.99.
Samsung has released a new video which teases the update of the Series 7 Chronos line of laptops. Not much detail was given in the video, seen below, besides a RAMaccelerator, said to load apps 50 percent faster, a full HD display, JBL speakers, and the new Radeon HD 8870M GPU.
CES is just a week away and we're pretty confident this machine will be seen there. If it is, we'll grab all of the details.
DigiTimes, a source that is hit and miss when it comes to reports, is reporting that Apple is planning to refresh the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air line of systems in June and will keep the same design as they currently feature. They cite Taiwanese supply chain sources, who reportedly received requests for quotations.
The MacBook Air is said to be switching to a new CPU platform, which likely means Haswell. However, this doesn't jive with the information I've heard about Haswell's release. Haswell is said to be due out in the Q3 of 2013, which is after the reported June refresh. Due to that, I'd take this with a grain of sand, though Apple may hold off shipping the Air until Haswell debuts.
DigiTimes has been hit and miss in the past when it comes to MacBooks, previously predicting there would be a MacBook Air for $799 in Q3 2012. No such device materialized.
Ultrabooks have been here for a while, but they can be thinner, right? Well, NEC have added another member to their Lavie notebook family with a new premium system that is said to be the thinnest of its kind. At its slimmest point, NEC's new 15.6-inch Lavie X Ultrabook is only 0.5 inches thick, which is quite amazing.
In order to get it down to this super-thin design, NEC required ultra-thin internal components that measured less than 3.5mm thick, as well as a specially engineered keyboard that took 1mm off the design. There is, however, two fans that measure 5mm in thickness in the Lavie X. It doesn't weigh too much, either, at just 3.5lbs (1.59kg) - compared to the 13.3-inch Lavie Z which is 1.92lb (0.87kg).
At 1.59kg, you're receiving the 15.6-inch 1080p IPS screen, 1.9GHz Intel Core i7-3517U processor, 4GB of RAM, 256GB SSD, two USB 3.0 ports, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 + HS, HDMI-out, an SD card reader and 2-megapixel webcam. NEC's Lavie X offers up to seven hours of run time and its battery can be rapidly recharged to about 80% of its total in just a single hour.
NEC's Lavie X Ultrabook should ship in Japan on December 27 for 175,000 yen, which works out to a little over $2000. A second model will be on offer which is slightly cheaper, but sports half the flash storage and will be 129,780 yen or $1541.
We all have lost an expensive device due to a fall onto a hard object. Amazon's Jeff Bezos is looking to change that with an idea he co-invented with Gregory Hart.
The device senses a fall, calculates the damage such a fall would create and decides whether or not to deploy an airbag to cushion the fall. All of this happens within a split second and has the potential to save your expensive toy.
The patent was awarded on December 11th 2012. In short the patent states that it is "a method for protecting a portable device that includes an airbag deployable from a side of the portable device "
HP has unveiled the HP EliteBook Revolve today. The system is a convertible notebook meaning that the screen flips around to become a tablet. The name should give you a bit of a hint of how it does this, but if it doesn't, the picture below will certainly help.
It features an 11.6-inch screen that can spin around and cover the keyboard, enabling the laptop to become a tablet. Unfortunately, the screen only supports a resolution of 1366x768, but at 11.6 inches, it's not as bad as if it were on something a bit larger. The system is powered by either Windows 7 or Windows 8.
It features the latest Intel Ivy Bridge processors, and anywhere from 4GB to 12GB of RAM. Aimed at the business and government sectors, the tablet comes with all of the usual accouterments that business and government laptops do. The system is expected to launch in March 2013, at which time pricing will be available.