AMD looks to increase its presence in the tablet market
It's not just Intel that wants to twist some tablet market share out of ARM's grip. AMD sees an opportunity to generate additional revenue as well. The Sunnyvale chip designer is currently showing off a reference tablet built around its 28nm Mullins chip, which is a quad-core part clocked at 1.2GHz. It's also running a 64-bit operating system -- Windows 8.1 with performance described as being "quite good."
As 2013 came and went, there was nary a new Nook tablet in sight. It would be easy to assume Barnes and Noble had given up on tablet hardware, but apparently that's not the case. Instead, Barnes and Noble confirmed it's planning to release a new Nook model sometime this year, though details are sparse -- about the only thing we know is that it's going to be a color device (tablet) as opposed to a black and white model (e-reader).
New top-end mobile chips from Qualcomm bring the boom
Qualcomm just threw down the gauntlet in the mobile handset space by announcing some potent parts. More specifically, Qualcomm unveiled its Snapdragon 610 and Snapdragon 615 chipsets for high-end smartphones. According to Qualcomm, the 615 part is the world's first commercial octa-core solution with integrated LTE and 64-bit capabilities, while the 610 offers the same in a quad-core package.
If your daily work space is on a mountain top or some other tough terrain, an Ultrabook may not be what you need. Instead, GammaTech offers a line of rugged systems, including its new Durabook R8300, a 13.3-inch notebook that's certified to stringent MIL-STD-810G and IP64 specifications. It can withstand drops, getting wet, dust, temperature fluctuations, and other variables that are likely to occur in hostile environments.
As expected, Samsung introduced its Galaxy S5 smartphone at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, a handset that represents an attempt at returning "back to basics" with a focus on capabilities that consumers want most, the South Korean phone maker said. It starts with a big size display -- a 5.1-inch Full HD 1080p (1920x1080) Super AMOLED powered by a peppy 2.5GHz quad-core processor.
Low priced convertible from HP takes on Lenovo's Yoga
If the HP Pavilion x360 looks familiar, it's because we've seen the 360-degree hinge trick before when Lenovo introduced its Yoga. HP's Pavilion x360 is also capable of swinging all the way around and transforming itself from a laptop into a tablet, but it carries a much lower starting price. The cost of entry is $400, significantly lower than the Lenovo Yoga 11s, which starts out at $1,100 on Lenovo's website.
New SoCs give Intel a greater presence in the mobile sector
The mobile device category is dominated by ARM-based processors, and that's something that doesn't sit well with Intel. The Santa Clara chip maker is used to being on top of the semiconductor world, and in the mobile space, Intel will attempt to wrestle some share away from ARM with its new 64-bit Atom Z3480 processor, otherwise known as Merrifield, which is a quad-core part intended for Android devices.
It worked for netbooks, can it also work for entry-level laptops?
Regardless of how power users feel about Chromebooks, they're selling, and they're selling well. In fact, a Samsung Chromebook model is the best selling laptop on Amazon, and out of the top 10 most popular notebooks (in terms of sales), Chromebooks account for half. That's certainly not the landscape Microsoft envisioned when it released Windows 8, and to counter the Chromebook movement, the company is reportedly planning to slash Windows 8.1 licensing fees by 70 percent.
The Alliance for Wireless Power (A4WP) scored a big win by adding its first major PC OEM to its ranks. That OEM is Dell, which joins an A4WP alliance that's over 80 members strong. Quite a few heavy hitters are part of the group, including Broadcomm, Intel, Qualcomm, Samsung, Fujitsu, HTC, LG, Panasonic, SanDisk, and more. The group's goal is to standardize a wireless power transfer protocol using near-field magnetic resonance technology.
Could you imagine if Ron Burgundy owned a cell phone? Actually, it's probably best if you don't visualize what he'd do with one, such things have a tendency to burn a permanent spot in your brain requiring years of therapy to remove. Though you may not want to picture Ron Burgandy firing off sext messages, there's a good chance you or someone you know actively engages in sexting.