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June 25, 2018
Xiaomi's latest tablet offers LTE on the cheap
0 is pretty nice for the LTE-enabled Mi Pad 4.
Save for the earlier false alarm of Google nixing the tablet section on its website, things have been a little quiet in the Android tablet world. But earlier today, Xiaomi updated its tablet lineup with the Mi Pad 4, an 8-inch, 0.76-pound metallic slate that starts from a mere 1,099 yuan or about 0. Not bad at all for a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 device with 3GB of LPDDR4x RAM, 32GB of eMMC 5.1 storage, microSD expansion, a 1,920 x 1,200 IPS display and more.
For an extra 300 yuan (about ), you get 4GB of RAM plus twice as much storage; but you might as well throw in another 100 yuan () for the LTE + GPS version. At 1,499 yuan or about 0, the Mi Pad 4 is one of the most affordable LTE tablets coming from a major brand.
Despite their attractive prices, all three models -- available in black or gold -- still pack a 6,000mAh battery, dual microphones, stereo speakers plus a pair of f/2.0 cameras -- 5 megapixels on the front and 13 megapixels on the back. The only notable downside is that you're stuck with 5V/2A regular charging, so that's something to keep in mind the day before a long flight.
It's unclear whether the Mi Pad 4 will be made available outside of China, but for those who are thinking of picking up the China version, it's worth pointing out that the listed FDD-LTE bands (B1/3/5/7/8) are good to go for Asia and Europe, but not so much for North America.
June 22, 2018
New Surface Laptop with a Core i5, 8GB RAM, and 128GB SSD has the same price as 4GB
Last month, we reported that a new model of the Surface Pro was available. It comes with a Core i5, 8GB RAM, and 128GB of storage, for the same price of the model with 4GB RAM, which was 9. Sure enough, the 4GB model disappeared soon after that.
Now, Microsoft is doing the exact same thing with the Surface Laptop. You can get one with a Core i5, 8GB RAM, and a 128GB SSD for 9, the exact same price as the 4GB variant. Unsurprisingly, the 4GB model is out of stock, so don't be surprised if it disappears.
Also like its predecessor, this new model is only in Platinum. If you want Burgundy, Cobalt Blue, or Graphite Gold, you'll still have to bump up the specs to a 256GB SSD, which starts at ,299.
June 21, 2018
Logitech's school-targeted Crayon stylus is so good, Apple should copy it for iPad
The Crayon is great, and really responsive
The Logitech Crayon is specifically made to work only with the 2018 9.7-inch iPad and doesn't use Bluetooth. After updating to iOS 11.4, the rechargeable stylus just automatically works, as long as an Apple Pencil isn't already paired with it. It's a powered stylus and is almost like an Apple Pencil -- with a few changes. Some are for the better.
It feels better in my hands than the Apple Pencil, and its wider size keeps it from rolling off a table. It lacks pressure sensitivity, but it's still as fast as the Pencil is, feels extremely responsive, and also works at a variety of angles; tilt in and sketch, and your pencil lines get fatter. I like that it can recharge with a normal Lightning cable-in, like Apple AirPods (and unlike the jab-it-in-your-iPad Pencil, which has an outtie). It can also be used to navigate iOS and annotate instantly just like Pencil can, utilizing baked-in Pencil shortcuts which aren't recognized by a standard capacitive stylus or a finger on the screen. It lasts 8 hours on a charge, but I haven't gotten there yet.
June 20, 2018
Xplore Introduces New L10 Rugged Mobility Platform
First-of-its-kind platform offers multiple form factors that share the same accessory set while delivering increased durability and improved price/performance
Xplore Technologies Corp has unveiled an industry-first rugged mobility platform that gives customers a choice of three different 10.1” Windows® 10-based mobile computer form factors that are all compatible with a single, shared accessory set. The new Xplore L10 lineup features the XSLATE L10 slate tablet PC, the XPAD L10 tablet PC with a hard handle and built-in barcode scanner option, and the XBOOK L10 2-in-1 laptop/tablet complete with a Companion Keyboard and KickStrap. Each Xplore L10 model can be custom-equipped with the precise performance, security, connectivity, and usability features required to accommodate mobile workers’ individual device preferences and address a wide set of application workflows in the field, a vehicle, the shop floor, or in the office. Customers will be able to choose from multiple Intel® processors, each of which provides enough speed to meet high performance standards for the next several years, within current budget parameters.
As Xplore’s Chief Revenue Officer John Graff explains: “We have applied more than 20 years of rugged mobile computer engineering, and over two decades of customer feedback, to the design of the Xplore L10 rugged mobility platform. In doing so, we have introduced the industry’s first shared accessory ecosystem, which is a significant cost-saver for customers. We have also created an extremely durable, future-proof computing platform that will give organizations greater flexibility within their entire IT architecture. The seamless compatibility between all of the rugged tablet-based form factors and accessories in the L10 product family also provides a lower, more consistent, and more predictable cost of ownership for all of our customers’ mobile-connected technologies.”
Each of the three rugged tablet-based form factors in the Xplore L10 mobility platform is available with wide range of feature combinations to ensure that workers always have the right tools for their individual job requirements, including:
- Intel® processors that span from the highest performance Intel 8th Generation Core™-Series i5 or i7 with vPro™ to price performance offerings based on Intel Pentium® that deliver twice the performance when compared to Xplore’s current 10” rugged tablet offering
- A 4G LTE card that will boost data download speeds by up to 600% and upload speeds by up to 300% over previous generations, greatly improving worker productivity in the field
- A standard 500 nit or 1000 nit View Anywhere™ display with Gorilla® Glass for optimized indoor and outdoor viewing
- A generous number of I/O ports to stay connected to legacy and future technology systems, including standard RJ-45, two USB 3.0, USB-C ports along with optional True Serial and HDMI-in
Xplore has also combined the best-in-class durability, versatility, performance, and connectivity features of previous Xplore rugged tablet generations to elevate the standard mobile computing capabilities for these new L10 rugged tablet models:
- 6’ drop-rated, IP65 dustproof and waterproof rated, and C1D2 certified for safety and reliability, even in Hazardous Locations
- Combination of latest-generation NFC, Bluetooth® 4.2, 802.11 ac Wi-Fi, UBLOX GPS, and 4G LTE mobile broadband technologies to ensure uninterrupted connectivity
- Simultaneous MIMO WWAN, MIMO WLAN, and GPS pass-through antennas to improve in-vehicle throughput
- Multiple security features, includingtwo Smart Card/CAC reader options, a Kensington Lock, TPM 2.0, removable SSDs, and an integrated fingerprint reader
- One shared accessory ecosystem, including docks, batteries, and chargers that are compatible with all XSLATE L10, XPAD L10, and XBOOK L10 configurations, including future generations of each rugged tablet model
“Until the L10, no vendor had provided manufacturers, public safety professionals, utilities, and other field service and industrial organizations with a single rugged mobility platform that offers several form factor and feature set options to support their diverse mobile workforces,” Graff continued. “Xplore is giving customers the opportunity to custom-configure a truly rugged mobility solution that will reliably work in the world’s harshest environments, and within the strictest enterprise computing standards, for several years to come.”
To learn more about the benefits of the Xplore L10 rugged mobility ecosystem – and to compare the unique capabilities of the XPAD tablet with a top handle, XBOOK 2-in-1 laptop/tablet, and XSLATE L10 tablet – visit www.xploretech.com/L10. Xplore L10 models will begin shipping with Intel Pentium CPUs in July 2018 and Intel Core-Series CPUs in September 2018.
June 19, 2018
Microsoft and Adobe are extending their close partnership this week with the integration of Adobe PDF services into Office 365. Adobe’s PDF services will be available from the ribbon inside web versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Office 365 commercial users will be able to convert documents into PDFs all while preserving font choices, formatting, layouts, and password protection.
The PDF integration follows news of Microsoft’s plans to redesign its Office web apps to be more modern and a lot faster to use. Microsoft is starting to test a simplified ribbon for Office.com and its Office desktop apps, and Office on the web will now include avatars for comments and dedicated colors for participants who are also viewing and editing the same document.
June 18, 2018
Surface Phone: Microsoft Is Launching 3 Devices This Year, And One Of Them Could Be The Surface Phone
Microsoft’s critically-acclaimed Surface brand is set to receive as many as three new additions this year. If reports and rumors prove true, 2019 might very well be the year when Microsoft would finally unveil a device that would allow it to re-enter the mobile market — the highly-elusive, near-mythical Surface Phone.
According to a Forbes report, three new Surface devices are expected to be launched by Microsoft within the next 12 months. The first of these is the Surface “Libra,” a portable device that is designed to take on the lower-end market. According to reports, Libra will be equipped with a USB-C connector instead of Microsoft’s proprietary Surface connector and would be taking on devices such as Apple’s iPad and Google’s Chromebooks. A keyboard cover is also rumored for the device.
Apart from Libra, Microsoft is also expected to unveil its next-generation Surface Pro machine, codenamed “Carmel.” While Microsoft has dropped the numbers from its flagship hybrid line, the current-generation device could be considered the Surface Pro 5. With this in mind, the tentatively-named Surface Pro 6 is expected to feature major bumps in specs, including Intel’s latest-generation processors and faster LTE capabilities.
Perhaps the most highly-anticipated device in Microsoft’s upcoming offerings is the Surface “Andromeda,” a portable device designed to be used as a handheld and as a full productivity machine. Andromeda has been making its rounds in the rumor mill for years as the near-mythical Surface Phone, and so far, Microsoft has been incredibly tight-lipped about the device. This year, however, with the device’s patents being published and with work on its operating system seemingly underway, the Redmond-based tech giant finally seems ready to unveil the device.
Best Tablets For Seniors | Which Tablet Is Good For Elderly Parents?
There are so many tablets available in the market right now, making it difficult to choose the right one that fits the needs and budget of a buyer. This is the exact reason we decided to make an extensive tablet buying guide for our readers. Sure, the guide hasn’t completed just yet, but we believe it should be over by this month.
In case you’re looking for a tablet to gift your parents or some elderly folk in your family, then you’ve come to the right place. Or, if you’re a senior citizen confused about which tablet PC to go for in 2018, then we sincerely hope this article clears the air for you.
There hasn’t been an iPad 9.7-inch model in 2018, but the 2017 variant is still a solid performer and offers easy-to-handle UI and portability out of the box. In terms of specs, this device features a large 9.7-inch Retina display and is powered by dual-core Apple A9 third-gen processor, coupled with 2 gigs of RAM. There are two cameras, a 1.2MP snapper on the front and an 8MP shooter on the rear. The iPad 9.7 (2017) runs iOS 10.3 on board, however, it can be upgraded to Apple’s latest mobile OS version 11.4 as soon as it comes out of beta.
June 15, 2018
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet vs. Microsoft Surface Pro: 2-in-1 showdown
These two laptops have a lot in common, and there's really no clear winner. But there are some key differentiators.
Lenovo's refreshed ThinkPad X1 Tablet is back in its third generation with some serious changes, including a 3K touch display, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and a better kickstand design. This is a serious 2-in-1 device, and while it's more of a business-oriented laptop, it remains in competition with Microsoft's Surface Pro. If you're in the market for a new 2-in-1, both of these are likely on your radar. Let's break things down to help you decide which is best suited for your needs.
Windows 10 is adding SwiftKey, laying the groundwork for dual-screen tablets
Microsoft-owned SwiftKey was one of the first virtual keyboards to offer intelligent, predictive swipe-typing on Android and iOS phones, and now Microsoft has announced that it will become the default keyboard for touchscreen-equipped Windows 10 computers as well.
"SwiftKey will now power the typing experience on Windows when using the touch keyboard to write in English (United States), English (United Kingdom), French (France), German (Germany), Italian (Italy), Spanish (Spain), Portuguese (Brazil), or Russian," reads a portion of Microsoft's blog post.
Which could be pretty handy if the rumors are true: Microsoft is reportedly planning to ship several new Surface tablets this year, including a new low-cost Surface slate and the dual-screen "Andromeda." Dual screens were a theme among laptop manufacturers at Computex last week, too.
And that's without mentioning all the existing Windows two-in-ones (detachables and convertibles) that could benefit from a better touchscreen keyboard.
If you're daring, you can actually try the new SwiftKey-powered keyboard on Windows 10 right now -- the news came as part of the announcement of a new Windows 10 Insider Preview Build. Here's how.
June 14, 2018
The design of the Surface Pro has remained unchanged for a number of years, including in its last update in 2017, which was simply named the “Surface Pro.” But in the product’s next release cycle, all that’s going to change.
Thurrot.com said that Microsoft has been actively working on a successor to the current Surface Pro. That device is known internally by its Carmel code name.
Rumors suggest that the Surface Pro 6 is expected to arrive in 2019. Although Thurrot.com writer Brad Sams notes that the device is expected in early 2019, ZDNet‘s Mary Jo Foley said she heard this device “isn’t coming until mid-2019.”
Microsoft’s many investments in inking could materialize in the next generation of a Surface Pen alongside the Surface Pro 6. The company has filed a number of patents over the years, showing where it plans to innovate. While all these technologies that Microsoft is exploring won’t make it to a final consumer product, they give us some insights into what Microsoft envisions for its digital stylus.
One patent suggests that Microsoft may be working on a Surface Pen with a retractable tip, similar to regular pens today. A patent for haptic feedback on a Surface Pen, for example, allows the pen tip to retract when pressed against the screen. With the applied pressure, the coil inside pen will activate and vibrate. The pen will work in a similar manner to 3D Touch on Apple’s iPhone today.
Another pen patent that seems less likely to debut next year is a Surface Pen that can harness the light from the Surface Pro’s LCD screen to recharge itself while being used.
June 13, 2018
Microsoft's Surface Pro 6 will reportedly be 'heavily redesigned' for 2019 debut
Microsoft is reportedly planning a big redesign to the Surface Pro next year. ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley reports that the Surface Pro 6 (or whatever it will be called) isn’t arriving until mid-2019, but will be “heavily redesigned.” It’s not clear what this design will entail, but Microsoft is also reportedly readying a refresh for this fall with Intel’s latest 8th-generation processors. Separately, Thurrott.com reports that the Surface Pro 6 is codenamed Carmel.
ZDNet speculates that a Surface Laptop might arrive this fall with Intel’s latest processors, but there’s no confirmed reports of the addition of USB-C on the refreshed Surface Pro or Surface Laptop. It would make sense for Microsoft to refresh both devices with USB-C, especially as the company recently introduced its Surface Book 2 with a USB-C port. Microsoft will likely keep its Surface Connector for another generation, though. Microsoft is also reportedly readying a new Surface-branded headset. ZDNet reports that the mystery device is similar to a Jabra Evolve.
Dual-screen Andromeda headlines Microsoft's leaked 2018 Surface lineup
KXXV News Channel 25
Unlike the dual-screen PC prototypes shown at Computex, Microsoft’s Andromeda is said to be a pocketable device, bridging the gap between a smartphone and a laptop, Sams noted. It’s unclear if Microsoft will maintain its 2018 target for Andromeda given the company’s recent leadership changes.
In addition to Andromeda, Microsoft also has some updates to its Surface hardware lineup. A Surface Pro 6 — the current Surface Pro is the company’s fifth iteration — is in the works, as is a new Surface Tablet, Sams said. The Surface Pro 6 is also referred to by its Caramel code name, while the new Surface Tablet is known internally as Libra. The Surface Tablet is said to come in at a lower price point and is likely positioned as a Surface 3 successor aimed at competing against Google’s Chrome OS and Apple’s iPad devices in the education space. These devices are expected to arrive this year. The next-generation HoloLens is expected to arrive in the first quarter 2019 as is the new Surface Hub 2.
June 12, 2018
Apple Books, all new for iPhone and iPad, celebrates reading
Discover and Enjoy Books with New, Easy-to-Use App Coming This Fall
Apple Books, which Apple previewed at the Worldwide Developers Conference last week, is a new app that has been entirely redesigned to make discovering and enjoying books and audiobooks effortless for iPhone and iPad users. The Apple Books app will replace iBooks with the launch of iOS 12 this fall.
“Apple Books will inspire a love of reading — it puts a world of books and audiobooks right at your fingertips, whether you want to dive into your favorite story for a couple of minutes or a few hours,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software & Services. “This is our biggest books redesign ever, and we hope this beautiful app inspires both customers and authors alike.”
The Book Store tab makes it easy to browse all that Apple Books has to offer, including Top Charts, Staff Picks, Editorial Collections, and Special Offers & Free. The new design lets you swipe between books, and makes discovering something you will love to read intuitive and fun. As you read more books from the Store, you will receive personalized recommendations based on your purchases in For You.
In the Library tab, you can peruse your full collection of books with large, easy-to-see cover art, including the books downloaded to your device and a Finished section showcasing the books you have read in the past and the date you finished them, displayed in a timeline.
June 11, 2018
New Microsoft Surface Leak Reveals 'Secret' Codenames
More evidence of Microsoft’s move into lower-cost tablets has come to light, as codenames for both the tablet and the attachable keyboard have been reported. The USB-C equipped tablet is ‘Lex’, while the keyboard cover attachments will be ‘Gibs’.
As I noted the last month in Forbes, the move towards a lower-cost Surface tablet challenges Apple’s iPad in the educational market, but with the benefits of a much more open operating system.
"While Windows 10 in its many variants also maintains a connection to Microsoft’s cloud based services, these potential new Surface machines will have a significant advantage - they will be open to third-party programs outside of a walled garden, huge amounts of legacy support, and the machines will be easily transferable between users."
June 8, 2018
Best tablet 2018: the top slates tested and ranked
The best tablets are all about versatility, with most offering a decent keyboard and desktop-style experience to sound the death knell for laptops.
From Apple's iPad Pro range to an array of Android tablets, there's a lot of choice out there. And unlike the best smartphones, Windows makes an appearance too.
We're picking from our top recommendations of iOS 11, Android and even Windows 10 tablets, all offering thin-and-light designs and many with decent keyboard and desktop-style experiences.
We rank tablets based on multiple factors, including performance, battery life and screen quality, with price playing an all-important role in the final verdict.
With all that in mind, below we've put together a list of the top ten tablets you can buy right now. Bear in mind prices and availability may change from time to time depending on where you live, and we'll be sure to update this guide when more tablets come out.
Microsoft's Surface Pen may never need recharging in the future
If you’re a fan of digital inking on Microsoft’s Surface line of computing devices, you may — in the future — never need to recharge your stylus or change its batteries again. Microsoft has filed a patent with the United States Patent and Trademark Office for a solar-powered stylus. The patent was initially filed at the end of 2016, but it’s unclear if Microsoft has any intentions of commercializing this idea in a future iteration of its Surface Pen
Rather than using light from an external source, like the sun or a nearby lamp, Microsoft’s invention calls for a light collecting mechanism to be placed near the tip of the stylus to collect light emitted from the display when the stylus is being used. This way, the light that your Surface Pro‘s screen gives off could be harvested to power and recharge your Surface Pen. The light is sent via fiber optic cables positioned inside the barrel to a solar panel array on the inside of the pen, located at the end opposite its tip.
“The stylus collects light during interaction with the touchscreen, while the stylus is in close proximity to the touchscreen,” Microsoft wrote in its patent filing. “Due to the close proximity of the stylus to the touchscreen during harvesting, the intensity of light that is collected from the electronic display is significantly higher than intensity from ambient lighting in a room or from outdoor lighting.”
June 7, 2018
Tablets overtake desktops in online usage for the first time as researchers reveal a huge spike in use by seniors and low income families
For the first time, more people are accessing the internet using tablets and mobile devices than desktop computers.
New research from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration has found that more than 13 million people have signed up to use the internet over the last two years.
The number of people who used multiple devices to access the internet has also substantially increased.
'The digital divide is showing signs of giving way as more Americans from all walks of life connect to the Internet,' the NTIA wrote in its report.
'Several historically disadvantaged groups showed significant increases in online adoption.'
Here are the iPads and iPhones getting Apple's latest iOS 12 update
Apple was keen to point out in its Worldwide Developer Conference keynote that iOS 11, in particular, had reached an amazing 81 percent of all active iOS devices, and all of the devices that were qualified to receive the iOS 11 update would also be receiving the iOS 12 update. Which devices does that actually mean? Five years worth of devices will be applicable for the update, and even within Apple’s tightly controlled and well-kept garden, that is a lot of devices. We rounded them all up so you can easily check.
June 6, 2018
Surface Laptop vs. MateBook X Pro video smackdown
June 5, 2018
The Microsoft Store is selling the Core i5 Surface Laptop for 0 off today
The Core i5 version of the Surface Laptop is 9 today, the same price as the Core m3 version at the Microsoft Store
Everyone was excited when Microsoft rolled out an Intel Core m3 version of the Surface Laptop for 9 earlier this year. That was a great entry level price and it still is. But right now, the Microsoft Store is also selling the next step-up version of the Surface Laptop with a Core i5 processor for 9—that's the same price as the Core m3 model and one of the best deals we've ever seen.
It’s not clear how long this sale will last, so if you're in the market for a luxury laptop at a solid price, you should probably act fast. You can get this same model for under 0 from third-party retailers on Amazon, but that doesn’t come with the relative ease and customer support you’ll get from purchasing through the Microsoft Store.
This version of the Surface Laptop features a 13.5-inch multi-touch display with 2256-by-1504 resolution, a Core i5 (7th generation) process, 4GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD. There’s also a 720p webcam that supports Windows Hello, a USB 3.0 port, one mini DisplayPort, a Surface Connect port, Bluetooth 4.0 LTE, and 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi.
June 4, 2018
Watch Apple's WWDC 2018 Keynote Live
Watch Apple’s 2018 Worldwide Developers Conference 2018
on the Apple official WWDC 2018 event livestream page
Microsoft Office 365 coming to the all new mac store
Lenovo Flex 6 14 review: Premium look with a few compromises
The Flex series of IdeaPad convertible laptops from Lenovo is all about offering a similar experience to what you'd find with the Yoga lineup, albeit at a far cheaper price. I reviewed the 15-inch Flex 5 last year and came away impressed with what was on offer at the price, even if there were a few concessions.
I have here now the refreshed 14-inch Flex 6. There are some seriously cheap configurations (starting at about 0), though they employ 768p displays or Pentium CPUs to cut costs. This review unit, which costs a modest 0, has an 8th Gen Intel processor (CPU), 1080p touch display, discrete NVIDIA MX130 graphics (GPU), and an optional active pen for Windows Ink. Let's see how it stands up after about a week of regular use.
Most of the chassis is made up of a PC-ABS plastic and glass fiber composite mix, and it feels entirely sturdy and durable. The lid has almost no flex to it at all, which is a good thing on a laptop where you'll regularly be converting it around to tablet mode. Overall the Flex 6 feels like a premium laptop, copying the Yoga's new design with a bit of an overbite when closed. It's relatively thin at 0.69 inches (17.6mm), and the hinges are sturdy as ever.
There is a decent selection of well-spaced ports here, including two USB-A 3.0, USB-C 3.0, HDMI, and an SD card reader (which doesn't go very deep or have a click mechanism). There's likewise a fingerprint reader set into the right palm rest, far enough out of the way to avoid rubbing against your palm while typing, and two down-firing Harman speakers on the bottom of the chassis deliver a decent amount of sound. A 720p webcam located above the display gets the job done, but don't expect anything special.
June 1, 2018
Apple won't unveil any new hardware at WWDC
Apple’s annual conference, the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is happening next week (between June 4 and June 8). If the reported information coming from Bloomberg's sources, or as the publication calls them "people familiar with the plans", is to be believed, Apple will not announce any new hardware at all this time at WWDC. Instead, the California-based multinational tech giant will focus on software improvements.
First among those will be iOS 12, where the company is expected to deliver news of quality improvements and new features in the mobile and tablet OS, including a new dark mode and always-on display option that the iPhone X’s OLED screen can benefit from. Whether this hints at future iPhones and iPads also employing OLED displays, we do not know yet. Apple is also expected to include in iOS 12 an implementation of its new CoreNFC framework that will help iPhones take more advantage of their NFC chips. If done right, it might enable iPhones to unlock encrypted doors (at say, hotels) and make contactless payments more easily.
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