Futuremark has begun hammering out code for the next version of its popular 3DMark benchmark utility. The working title is 3DMark for Windows 8, and according to Futuremark, it will be the company's most wide-ranging 3DMark ever, with the ability to measure and compare gaming performance from all Windows 8 devices, regardless of the underlying processor. This means you'll be able to compare a Windows 8 tablet to a desktop PC, and everything in between.
Are you concerned that Windows 8 with its radically redesigned UI and Metro style Start menu will be too much to swallow on the desktop? It's a valid concern, though it doesn't appear to be scaring off businesses and IT departments, both of which are already showing strong interest in Microsoft's upcoming OS well ahead of its 2012 launch.
Even though Kinect does not celebrate the first anniversary of its launch until November 4, Microsoft is already in a celebratory mood. The Redmond-based software giant on Monday seemed cock-a-hoop as it fondly recalled what’s been “an amazing 12 months” for Kinect, the fastest-selling consumer electronics device in history. Besides going gaga over the “Kinect Effect,” Microsoft talked about the release of the commercial version of the Kinect for Windows SDK.
As we reported earlier today, Asus is said to have dramatically cut down its ultrabook sales target for 2011 due to lackluster initial sales. If true, this doesn’t augur too well for Intel and its costly ultrabook initiative, which has been conceived as an answer to both the MacBook Air and iPad (and other tablets). As for Asus, it’s pretty simple: if you can't beat them, join them. To this end, Asus is said to be readying a strong lineup of tablets.
When even the purpose of our own existence continues to be a mystery, Taiwan-based ITG has every right to sell a desktop OS-running phone that apparently has no clearly defined purpose. By the same token, it also has the right to come up with a successor to that pointless phone. And that’s exactly what ITG plans to do.
HP seems to be rethinking its plans to get out of the consumer business with new CEO Meg Whitman at the helm. According to HP itself, it has been testing the Windows 8 developer release on the defunct HP TouchPad. This is just being done as a proof-of-concept right now, but there have even been talks of reviving the device as a Windows 8 slate.
The Windows engineering team continues to detail changes in Windows 8 one blog post at a time. The latest Building Windows 8 blog post once again turns the spotlight on the Start screen, which has already attracted a “ton of [critical] interest” from users. If the previous posts focused on the evolution and design of the Start screen in the upcoming operating system, the latest delves into the design of the Start screen’s integrated search feature.
Reviewers – including us – got their grubby little hands on AMD’s long-awaited “Bulldozer” 8-core FX -8150 chip a week ago, and while there is plenty to like with the processor, a lot of folks were expecting, well, a bit more. Benchmark tests showed performance similar to Intel’s Core i5-2500k pretty much across the board. But wait! AMD expects more efficient multi-core CPUs to work more efficiently with Windows 8 than they do with Windows 7. But will the news OS make that much of a difference?
Amazon did more than just throw down the gauntlet when it announced its $200 Kindle Fire tablet, the e-tailer may have also scared off some of the competition altogether. Oddly enough, the Kindle Fire might actually help Microsoft increase its presence in the mobile market, as OEMs look to Windows 8-based slates in order to avoid a price war among Android tablets.
The tablet war has pretty much been a two horse race: Apple vs. Android. (Yeah, we know about the PlayBook, but let’s be realistic.) And that race has been like a blowout as the iPad 2 has been galloping away from the competition pretty handily. Microsoft’s hoping to hit the ground running with Windows 8 sometime soon, however, and they’ve just got a boost from Dell, who says they plan on heavily supporting the upcoming operating system.