Posted by Edgar Alvarez | Filed under Techie Stuff
Aside from the super high-res display, the Pixel has also had something else other Chromebooks didn't: the Google+ Photos app. Starting today, however, Google's changing that and bringing the application to the rest of the Chromebook family, making it accessible outside of its sleek, pixel-packed laptop for the first time. The Google+ Photos app, which is available in 52 languages, remains unchanged otherwise, and users can download it now via the Chrome Web Store.
Posted by Daniel Cooper | Filed under Techie Stuff
We know you've got questions, and if you're brave enough to ask the world for answers, then here's the outlet to do so. This week's Ask Engadget inquiry is from Steve, who wants to shed weight but retain power for his next mobile computer. If you're looking to ask one of your own, drop us a line at ask [at] engadget [dawt] com.
"I'm a professional motion graphics editor looking for a laptop to take on the road with me. While I like the idea of a Haswell-powered machine, I'm really looking for a machine with proper discrete graphics. Is there an Ultrabook or really light laptop that marries both? Thanks!"
Our first thought was to look at Lenovo's W-Series, which offers a 2GB Quadro K2000M on the higher-end models and weighs in at a comparatively svelte 2.61kg. If, however, you want power and the ability to sneakily game while on planes, then there's one of Alienware's 14-inch units, which offer a GeForce GT750M and a weight of 2.7kg. Finally, you could always break the bank with a Retina Macbook, which offers a GeForce GT650M as a build-to-order option but weighs a relatively slender 1.02kg. That's three from us, we bet the Engadget Community can find you something even lighter.
Filed under: Laptops
Posted by Sharif Sakr | Filed under Techie Stuff
This isn't a huge shock, given that ASUS has already publicly expressed woes about poor sales of its Windows RT products, but CEO Jerry Shen's latest comments have a surprising edge of finality to them. Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, he repeated that "Windows RT has not been very successful" and said that the company took a writedown on its stock of RT tablets, although he didn't reveal the size of the loss. He also said that, from now on, ASUS will solely make Windows 8 devices that run on Intel / x86 processors, due to the backwards compatibility with Windows software offered by those products. Meanwhile, NVIDIA has also predicted losses due to its involvement with RT, but it seems to be pushing ahead with a next-gen ARM-based Surface tablet regardless.
Posted by Dana Wollman | Filed under Techie Stuff
At last: the laptop buyer's guide we wanted to write three months ago. You see, when it came time to publish our spring edition, Intel was on the cusp of releasing its fourth-generation Core processors, which meant almost everything we were recommending was destined for a refresh. So we basically said, "Wait for Haswell," and called it a day. By now, though, most of said companies have upgraded their notebooks, if not released brand-new ones, so we can finally recommend stuff without any caveats about obsolescence.
Of note: we've eliminated the "touch" and "non-touch" sections since most Windows notebooks (save for gaming machines) now come with touch, or at least offer it as an option. We've tried to make it obvious which of our picks have that feature and which ones don't. Oh, and if we've left something off the list, it might be because we don't yet have enough details about pricing or availability (the new Acer Aspire S3 comes to mind). Enjoy, and as always, if you have a favorite laptop yourself, feel free to tell us about it in the comments.
MSI tentatively entered the world of thin and light gaming laptops with the GE40. With the newly launched GS70, the company is leaping in with both feet. The 17.3-inch portable is clearly built to take on the Razer Blade Pro, mating a big screen with a chassis that's even lighter -- at 5.7 pounds, the GS70 is a flyweight next to its 6.6-pound rival. While the system's quad-core, Haswell-based Core i7 CPU, GeForce GTX 765M graphics and 128GB SSD match what Razer offers, MSI doubles the RAM to 16GB and complements its storage with a 750GB hard drive. That makes the GS70's $1,800 base price a potential bargain -- if you don't mind losing the Blade Pro's touchscreen trackpad, you'll get more PC for the money.
Gallery: MSI GS70 (2013)
Posted by Ben Gilbert | Filed under Techie Stuff
Stop worrying: BearExtender is not in the business of enabling the bear population, but rather WiFi signal strengthening. The company's two latest products -- the BearExtender 1200 and BearExtender Turbo (how's that for a name?) -- offer that service in two different flavors. The 1200 is a much stronger version of the company's previously released BearExtender, adding "70 percent more power" to signal boosting, while the Turbo is specifically designed to bring 802.11ac functionality to Macs. Both arrive this fall, with the 1200 ($50) landing in mid-August and the Turbo (not priced yet) available in October. Again, neither is designed to extend the reach of murderous bears, nor is the Turbo designed to speed up said murderous bears. That said, it's best to keep an eye out and stay vigilant.
Posted by Jon Fingas | Filed under Techie Stuff
The DockPort standard is only just getting off the ground with support in AMD's Elite Performance processors. TI could soon make the technology fly, however: its new (if awkwardly named) HD3SS2521 controller handles all the tasks of DockPort on a single chip. The hardware is both simpler and cheaper than past multi-chip designs, and makes it easier for laptops and tablets to deliver DisplayPort video, USB 3.0 and power through a single cable. Whether or not we see more DockPort-equipped mobile gadgets is another matter. While the TI chip is available today, device builders still have to choose DockPort over a more established standard like Intel's Thunderbolt.
Source: Texas Instruments
The MacBook Air's integrated graphics all but rule it out as a serious gaming machine. However, Larry Gadea at the Tech Inferno forums has found a way to make the Air a powerhouse through an ad hoc external GPU. His design mates a PCI Express video card to the Mac's Thunderbolt port through a combination of two adapters, a Boot Camp installation of Windows 7 and third-party software. The performance improvement is appropriately dramatic, leading to frame rates up to seven times faster than what Intel's HD 5000 can manage. Just don't expect to buy a pre-assembled version anytime soon -- the peripheral needs a desktop-class power supply just to run, and Intel won't issue the licenses needed to commercialize Thunderbolt GPUs. If you're absolutely determined to get a Crysis-worthy ultraportable, though, you'll find Gadea's instructions at the source link.
Source: Tech Inferno
Posted by Darren Murph | Filed under Techie Stuff
While Toshiba already outed its Haswell plans, the company has chosen today to unveil a few more PCs. The outfit's refreshing its Satellite U and M range in the UK, with the U50t being equipped with a 10-point touchscreen and Windows 8 onboard. The Satellite M50D and M50Dt, meanwhile, boast AMD's latest APU processors and Radeon graphics. The whole line (which is slated for dispatch in Q3) ships with Intel's fourth-generation processors and HD 4400 graphics, while those needing a bit more oomph on the pixel pushing side can opt for NVIDIA's GeForce GT 740M. As you'd expect, Intel's WiDi and Miracast technologies are infused, and each machine arrives with a full-size HDMI port, Bluetooth 4.0, an SD card slot and a pair of USB 3.0 sockets. Tosh isn't talking pricing just yet, but you can dig into the specification list just after break.
Filed under: Laptops