The IFA convention in Berlin is off to a fast and furious start with product makers pouring out announcements by the handful. Among the attendees is Acer, which revealed its new (and rather extensive) product lineup for the holiday season. Acer's new products include a pair of Aspire R Series convertible laptops. two Aspire Switch Series 2-in-1 hybrid PCs, three Iconia Series tablets, and a Liquid Series smartphone.
Don't accuse Lenovo of putting all of its eggs in a single basket. That wasn't the company's strategy up to this point, nor is it the road to success going forward -- instead, Lenovo is kicking off the 2014 IFA Consumer Electronics Unlimited show in Berlin by showcasing three new tablet and gaming systems. They include the Tab S8, Y70 Touch laptop, and Erazer X315 desktop
Following the launch of the original iPad, consumers began flocking to tablets as if their favorite drug had just been legalized. Demand reached a fever pitch once name-brand Android slates came onto the scene with lower price tags, and the growth was so explosive that it had some analysts talking about the post PC era. What those short sighted analysts failed to take into account is market saturation, and for the first time since the iPad debuted, tablet shipments are on pace to see an on-year decline, market research firm TrendForce says.
Welcome back to the tablet scene, Barnes and Noble
After failing to compete in sales with the likes of Amazon and its Kindle Fire line, Barnes and Noble is officially invested in tablets again with the introduction of the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook. The Galaxy Tab 4 Nook is essentially a combination of the Android-based Nook platform baked into the Samsung's Galaxy Tab 4 hardware and billed as the first ever full-featured Android slate.
At first glance, you might think Fuhu's 20-inch and 24-inch Nabi Big Tab HD tablets were built for Shaquille O'Neal. After all, who else but a 7-foot 1-inch massive specimen would such giant slates be for? Turns out Fuhu designed the large size tablets specifically for kids, an interesting target audience for what the company claims are the world's biggest Android tablets made for sharing.
Consumers are no longer buying tablets in record numbers. Instead, tablet shipments slipped 5 percent sequentially to 48.4 million units during the second quarter, according to data released by Canalys. Apple still leads the tablet market, but had its weakest quarter since Q1 2012 with just under 13.3 million iPad shipments. Meanwhile, Samsung shipped 8.9 million tablets during the quarter, which also represents a sequential decline.
Best Buy's computer section looks decidedly different today than it did a couple of years ago. Gone are the aisles filled with desktop machines, which are now relegated to a small section off the side (if at all), replaced by mobile devices, including rows and rows of tablets. You can't fault Best Buy for following the money trail, and just as tablets took over the floor space when everyone wanted one, look for PCs to take some of its territory back. Why? Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly says tablets are now crashing.
VIA today unveiled its new Viega ruggedized Android tablet. Armed with a 10.1-inch display, the Viega features IP65 certification and rocks a durable design that protects it from spills, rain, dust, shock, vibration, drops from up to two meters, and more. It has tempered glass to prevent cracks in the panel from cutting your workday short when you're out in the field, and an "extra long-life polymer batter pack" that's good for up to 9 hours of runtime.
Don't hold your breath waiting for a smaller size Surface tablet
Leading up to the launch of Microsoft's Surface Pro 3, there were several rumors suggesting the Redmond company was planning to announce a Surface Mini tablet during the press event. Even Microsoft teased such an unveiling by inviting members of the press to a "small gathering" on May 20. Instead, Microsoft unveiled the Surface Pro 3 and the Surface Mini is still nowhere to be seen. That might not change any time soon.
If you're at all concerned about a part going bad in Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 tablet, you may want to consider an extended warranty. The alternative is to try and fix or replace a faulty component yourself, but unlike a traditional laptop, Microsoft's laptop replacement isn't all that easy to service. Straight to the point, the Surface Pro 3 scored a miserable 1 out of 10 in iFixIt's teardown analysis.