Apart from tablets running propriety operating systems like iOS and WebOS, the rest of the tablet market will most likely be dominated by Android and Windows. It is difficult to predict how the impending tsunami of tablets will change the tablet landscape, but one thing is certain: consumers will have plenty to choose from – maybe even too much. ViewSonic is willing to help those likely to vacillate between Windows and Android.
ViewSonic is a big name in display manufacturing, and has announced that they plan to transition their entire line of monitors to LED backlighting by early 2011. The move is being made with an eye towards energy efficiency, as well as consumer demand. "ViewSonic is leading the way towards a greener, more cost efficient future by delivering an array of green LED products for our customers to choose from,” said ViewSonic's Jeff Volpe.
Traditional LCD panels use a CCFL bulb to light the display. Displays that use LED backlights are usually more power efficient and have much better black levels. ViewSonic released their first notable LED monitor, VX2250wm-LED, just a few months ago. Early reactions from customers are good, so we can expect more quality products like this in 2011.
ViewSonic is being careful to appease their partners that are still using CCFL technology. We take this to mean that they will still manufacture panels with CCFL bulbs, but all ViewSonic's branded products will make the change to LED. Do you use an LED backlit monitor? Have you noticed any difference from the more common CCFL variety?
We're not real accustomed to seeing nettops without an Intel Atom or VIA Nano CPU inside, but ViewSonic's latest low-power rig -- the VOT125 -- eschews both popular chips in favor of Intel's range of ultra lower power ULV processors.
Most probably won't have a problem with that so long as ViewSonic doesn't jack up the price way above what you'd expect to pay for a nettop. We'll let you be the judge of that - the cheapest model checks in at $499 and includes a single-core Celeron 743 processor, while the highest priced model runs $679 and includes an Intel Core 2 Duo SU7300 CPU.
Otherwise, the VOT125 is pretty much like any other nettop. It measures just 5.4 inches by 5.1 inches by 1.5 inches and comes with a VESA mount kit. The rest of the spec sheet consists of 2GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, four USB 2.0 ports, 3-in-1 memory card reader, DVI/HDMI outputs, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, and Intel GMA4500MHD graphics. And in addition to the two previously mentioned processors, the VOT125 also comes configurable with an Intel Celeron SU2300 ($529) or Pentium SU4100 ($629), both of which are dual-core parts.
No word yet on these will be available for purchase.
Display maker Viewsonic has quietly thrown its hat into the ebook reader ring by unveiling the VEB620 and VEB625, a pair of ereaders that have so far been unaccompanied by a press release or any kind of fanfare.
Both models sport a 6-inch E-ink display, 2GB of onboard storage, and an accelerometer so you can view your ebooks in either landscape or portrait mode. Other features include a 3.5mm headset jack, SD card slot, a 0.5W speaker, support for MP3 audio, and support for XML (epub, fb2), HTML (HTML, HTM), PDF, TXT, and RTF.
Viewsonic says you can turn pages by using the left and right buttons or by shaking the ereaders left or right. The slightly taller (10.9 inches vs 9.9 inches) VEB625 adds touch functionality to the mix so you can also use a finger swipe to turn pages, take freehand notes and highlight sections, and peck notes on a virtual keyboard. In addition, the VEB625 integrates Wi-Fi connectivity.
We wouldn’t complain if we never had to review a cheap TN LCD panel ever again. Our experience with ViewSonic’s VP2365wb, on the other hand, has taught us we shouldn’t assume that the mere presence of an 8-bit IPS panel will ensure top-drawer performance. On the third hand, the fact that numerous online retailers are selling this monitor for just $300 renders it a solid value.
ViewSonic markets this model as a “professional grade monitor for pros,” which is an unusual claim to make for a 23-inch display with native resolution of 1920x1080 pixels. A monitor of that size and resolution sounds much more like a consumer electronics product for watching HD movies than a tool for editing digital photos. It’s also odd that ViewSonic would include HDCP in its DVI port but not include an HDMI port at all. Nonetheless, the VP2365wb is leagues better than the ViewSonic VX2433wm we reviewed in our December issue, a TN panel we dismissed as a “steaming pile of mediocrity.”
ViewSonic, a newcomer to the ULV laptop market, has just unveiled its VNB131 ViewBook Pro, the company's first nobeook to utilize ultra low voltage technology. According to ViewSonic, this is just the first of many more to come.
"Our mobile and desktop PC products range in size and functionality in order to meet every individuals' computing needs," said ViewSonic's senior director of product marketing Sally Wang. "With our ULV VNB131 ViewBook Pro, mobile warriors get all the power they need, packaged to go in a lean, green design."
More specifically, ViewSonic's first ULV notebook ships with a 13.3-inch screen and an Intel Core 2 Duo ULV SU7300 processor clocked at 1.3GHz. Other specs include a 320GB hard drive, 2GB of RAM, and a removable DVD burner. That last bit is particularly noteworthy because if you take the optical drive out, ViewSonic says you can pop in an extra 3-cell battery for up to 12 hours of run time.
The rest of the specs include 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, a 1.3MP webcam, 7-in-1 media card reader, HDMI, two USB 2.0 ports, a 6-cell battery, and Windows 7 Home Premium.
None of the monitors we examined was flawless, but the ViewSonic VX2433wm surprised us with how poorly it fared in many of our DisplayMate benchmarks, even after an intense round of button-mashing. In the color-uniformity test, for instance, the monitor should have displayed a consistent wash of color from edge to edge; what it delivered instead was a mottled, blotchy mess.
The VX2433wm had trouble with all four test colors (red, green, blue, and gray), but the distortion was particularly objectionable with green and blue—it was almost like staring at a Rorschach inkblot (ironic, considering we used Watchmen for our Blu-ray movie test). The ViewSonic turned in another poor performance when displaying low-saturated colors against the high end of the grayscale, with red, green, and blue at two-percent saturation disappearing into the background.
First spied at CES earlier this year, ViewSonic has begun shipping its VPC100 All-in-One PC in the U.S. Billed as being eco-friendly, ViewSonic says the VPC100 uses about 50 percent less plastics and requires roughly 45 percent less power than a traditional computer.
The spec sheet screams nettop and consists of an 18.5-inch LCD display with a 1366x768 resolution, Intel Atom N270 processor (1.6GHz, 533MHz frontside bus), 1GB of DDR2 RAM, 160GB hard drive, four USB 2.0 ports, WiFi, Super Multi DVD writer, and Windows XP.
The VPC100 is available now with an MSRP set to $599, an street pricing hovering around $550.
If laptops keep getting bigger, we may need a new term for these gigantic portable PCs. Such would be the case if rumors of ViewSonic releasing a 22-inch notebook turn out to be true.
The rumor comes courtesy of news site DigiTimes. Citing those always un-named "industry sources" in Taiwan, DigiTimes says ViewSonic is looking to have a bigger presence in the Chinese market, a goal it literally plans to follow through with by developing a 22-inch laptop to be released in China. The company also plans to push its full product line, from LCDs to netbooks, in China as well.
Earlier this year ViewSonic jumped into the netbook and nettop sectors with the VieBook and ViePC, respectively. The all-in-one ViePC comes with an 18.5-inch display, which means the low-power desktop would be trumped in size by the rumored 22-inch laptop.
No other details are yet available on the upcoming notebook, including price and whether or not ViewSonic also plans to release it in the U.S. market.
Need more proof that the netbook market is the most popular kid on the block? Try this on for size - ViewSonic is getting in on the action! That's right, the company best known for its monitors, digital picture frames, and other types of displays plans to offer a computing line based on the stupid popular netbook and nettop segments.
The VieBook, as ViewSonic's calling it, will check in at 2.6 pounds and pack an Intel Atom (what else?) 1.6GHz processor, 1GB of memory, a 160GB hard drive, a webcam, WiFi, and all the other doodads you'd expect on a modern netbook. A 10.2-inch screen and Windows XP Home round out the package.
On the nettop front, ViewSonic will also release the VPC100 ViePC, an all-in-one unit with an 18.5-inch display. This too will boast the same internals of the VieBook, except the ViePC drops down from a 4-in-1 media card reader to a 3-in-1 and adds a DVD burner.
Last on the list of ViewSonic's venture into low power computing is the LinkPC, an attachable box that the company says will hook up to the back of any VESA compatible monitor. Once again, look for an Intel Atom 1.6GHz processor, 1GB of memory, and a 160GB hard drive as the main components.
ViewSonic says the VieBook and ViePC will be available in February 2009 for $430 and $550 respectively, with the LinkPC showing up in March 2009 for $400.