As hard as it may be to believe now, Advanced Micro Devices once presented a serious threat to Intel’s dominance of the PC microprocessor market. However, if you invested in a first-generation Pentium 4 processor (codenamed Willamette) between November 20, 2000 and June 30, 2002, you may not have particularly fond reminiscences of AMD’s heyday. Your recollections of that time may very well be of your new Pentium 4 chip living up neither to your expectations nor to the impressive “independent third-party” benchmarks that Intel released to reviewers in the lead up to Pentium 4’s launch.
Will reportedly be based on a new power-efficient Haswell part
Ever since Microsoft sent out press invites for a Surface-related event scheduled for May 20, 2014, in New York, the tech media has been busy speculating about the event’s agenda. Many in the tech commentariat expect the long-rumored “Surface Mini” to finally step into the realm of reality to take center stage at the upcoming event. But with the hitherto fabled Microsoft tablet widely rumored to pack an ARM-based SoC from Qualcomm, the question is: What about Intel?
Microsoft missed the boat by not bolstering Windows cross-platform capabilities
Let’s begin with the most amusing part of the widely derided launch of the Xbox One: At least some of the game demos for the new system were run on a PC using Windows 7 and an Nvidia graphics card. See! Even Microsoft doesn’t use Windows 8 for gaming!
Since the beginning of time (or thereabouts), Intel has dominated the x86 scene, even when AMD blazed a trail into 1GHz territory (Athlon) and 64-bit computing (Athlon 64) on the consumer side several years ago. Both of those architectures represent design wins for AMD, and if we fast forward to today, AMD has done well to get its hardware inside all three major game consoles, especially the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, both of which feature x86 foundations.
192GB of RAM in a system, Bay Trail, and Haswell-E—Oh my!
We’ll admit it, it was damned hard to find desktop and enthusiast-related hardware at the 2013 Intel Developer Forum 2013. We almost wondered if the old desktop PC was like the Intel’s crazy aunt living in the basement. Fortunately, the desktop PC and PC enthusiasm was alive at well at IDF—if you looked hard enough.
Click through our photo gallery for the most important PC news from IDF and—gasp!—proof that Haswell-E on desktop lives!
We had the opportunity to get our hands on the Razer Edge, which Razer is advertising as the most powerful gaming tablet in the world. Our particular unit costs $1,450 and is armed with an x86 i7 CPU and a discrete GeForce GT640M video card. No integrated graphics and ARM processor here, folks: This is a full PC. Watch as we unbox the device and it's various peripherals (console dock, controller extension, and more).
In between my chores as a hardware tester, I’m an IIBT board-certified troller and can successfully argue with anyone about anything, anywhere, at any time.
These days, one of the many issues I get to spar with people over is, “What is a PC?” That might seem about as basic as opining on the color blue, but the distinctions are extremely important. Just this morning, I was reading a headline stating that Apple’s new mini tablet could very well “hurt the PC market.” Of course, on the very same news site, six months ago, was a story about how analysts had deemed Apple the world’s largest “PC maker.” That’s not because Apple sold more PCs than HP, Dell, or Lenovo, but because it sold more iPads, which as we know, should be counted as PC sales, right?
Note: This column appeared in the Holiday 2012 issue of the magazine.
Today’s PlayStation Meeting 2013 event at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom was, as expected, all about the future of Sony’s home console franchise. While the company did make the long-overdue Playstation 4 official, it somehow managed to wrap up the two-hour event — during which it outlined the console’s specs, detailed key features and showcased a raft of games — without giving attendees a glimpse of the actual console. To be honest, though, what it can do matters more than the way it looks. So what exactly can it do?
BlueStacks wants you to get your Android apps back on Windows 8
At last month’s Consumer Electronics Show, Android virtualization startup BlueStacks announced that its “App Player” software, which lets people enjoy Android apps on their PCs, was coming to Microsoft’s latest desktop operating system. It promptly delivered on that promise earlier this week when it released a new version of its free-to-download tool.
Following the unmitigated disaster that was the TouchPad, Hewlett-Packard has kept a low profile in the tablet market, with the Windows 7-powered Slate 2 tablet PC being the only HP-branded tablet device to have hit the market since then. In August, John Solomon, senior VP of HP's Americas printing and personal systems division, said that the company’s Windows 8 tablet would pack “some unique intellectual property.” We now know what Solomon was talking about back then.