News http://www.maximumpc.com/taxonomy/term/4/ en Samsung’s 3D TSV DDR4 Modules Sport Quad Stacked Memory Dies http://www.maximumpc.com/samsung%E2%80%99s_3d_tsv_ddr4_modules_sport_quad_stacked_memory_dies_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/samsung_ddr4_0.jpg" alt="Samsung DRAM" title="Samsung DRAM" width="228" height="146" style="float: right;" />Industry's first 3D TSV-based DDR4 modules go into mass production</h3> <p>The desktop isn't the only place you'll find interesting things happening with double data rate-4 (DDR4) memory. <strong>Samsung this week said it has begun mass producing what it claims is the industry's first 64GB DDR4 RDIMMs using three dimensional "through silicon via" (TSV) package technology</strong> intended for enterprise servers, cloud-based applications, and other data center solutions.</p> <p>Sounds pretty fancy, right? Let us break it down. The new RDIMMs employ 36 DDR4 DRAM chips, each of which consists of 4-gigabit (Gb) DDR4 DRAM dies. They're built using Samsung's 20nm-class and 3D TSV package technologies, the latter of which marks a new milestone in memory technology.</p> <p>Following in the footsteps of 3D Vertical NAND (V-NAND) that uses high-rise vertical structures of cell arrays inside a monolithic die, 3D TSV is a different type of structure that vertically interconnects stacked dies. To build a 3D TSV DRAM package, the DDR4 dies must first be ground down as thin as just a few micrometers, then pierced with hundreds of tiny holes. Electrodes pass through the fine holes to vertically connect the dies.</p> <p><a href="http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20140826006160/en/Samsung-Starts-Mass-Producing-Industry%E2%80%99s-3D-TSV#.U_8jzzLt_vk" target="_blank">According to Samsung</a>, its new 64GB TSV module performs twice as fast as a 64GB module using wire bonding packaging, and consumes around half the power to boot.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/samsung%E2%80%99s_3d_tsv_ddr4_modules_sport_quad_stacked_memory_dies_2014#comments ddr4 enterprise Memory ram samsung tsv News Thu, 28 Aug 2014 13:07:01 +0000 Paul Lilly 28433 at http://www.maximumpc.com Google Brings 64-bit Chrome Browser to Stable Channel http://www.maximumpc.com/google_brings_64-bit_chrome_browser_stable_channel_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/chrome_64_bit.jpg" alt="Chrome 64-bit" title="Chrome 64-bit" width="228" height="200" style="float: right;" />Goodbye beta, hello stable!</h3> <p>Following successful runs in Google's Dev, Beta, and Canary channels, the <strong>64-bit version of Google's Chrome browser for Windows is now available as a stable release</strong> (Chrome 37). That means you can have all the benefits of the 64-bit version without the risks of instability that come from running pre-release software. According to Google, 64-bit Chrome offers a bunch of benefits for speed, stability, and security.</p> <p>"Our measurements have shown that the native 64-bit version of Chrome has improved speed on many of our graphics and media benchmarks. For example, the VP9 codec that’s used in High Definition YouTube videos shows a 15 percent improvement in decoding performance," Google stated in a <a href="http://blog.chromium.org/2014/08/64-bits-of-awesome-64-bit-windows_26.html" target="_blank">blog post</a>.</p> <p>According to Google, the 64-bit rendering engines are nearly twice as stable as the 32-bit engines when handling typical web content. On top of that, security safeguards such as Partition Alloc are able to "far more effectively defend against vulnerabilities that rely on controlling the memory layout of objects." In other words, 64-bit Chrome is pretty much better than the 32-bit variant in every single way.</p> <p>Be that as it may, the 64-bit version will remain opt-in, Google said. You can download <a href="https://www.google.com/chrome/browser/index.html" target="_blank">64-bit Chrome here</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/google_brings_64-bit_chrome_browser_stable_channel_2014#comments 64-bit browser chrome Google Internet Software News Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:33:35 +0000 Paul Lilly 28429 at http://www.maximumpc.com Microsoft's Working a Fix to Alleviate Surface Pro 3 Overheating Issue http://www.maximumpc.com/microsofts_working_fix_alleviate_surface_pro_3_overheating_issue_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_3.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 3" title="Surface Pro 3" width="228" height="136" style="float: right;" />Some Surface Pro 3 tablets are prone to overheating</h3> <p>A limited number of Surface Pro 3 owners have been reporting issues with their tablets overheating, even when running light tasks or simple sitting at idle. In turn, this has led to the cooling fan ramping up to excessive noise levels. <strong>Microsoft is aware of the overheating issue and has promised Surface Pro 3 owners that a fix will be issued "as soon as possible.</strong>" It's unclear if that means it will come on Patch Tuesday (September 9), before, or after.</p> <p>One user on <a href="http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/forum/surfpro3-surfusingpro/excessively-loud-fan-constant-overheating-during/1efa253a-f7f2-486b-a891-5633738b8532?page=1&amp;tm=1408845783226" target="_blank">Microsoft's discussion forum </a>said he went through four Surface Pro 3 models, each with a Core i7 processor, and each one exhibited the overheating issue. According to his post, his Surface Pro 3 is the loudest thing in his office, even when running idle. At full bore, he says the fan noise becomes "ear-piercing" and the heat produced "immensely hot."</p> <p>In a statement to <em>CNET</em>, Microsoft said it's aware of a "very small number of Surface Pro 3 Intel Core i7 devices that are temporarily restarting and incorrectly showing a 'Thermometer Gauge' icon while attempting to boot up." The company said it has an update that will address the issue.</p> <p>At the same time, Microsoft was a bit standoffish about the complaints of excessive heat.</p> <p>"The i7 version of Surface Pro 3 is a first-of-its-kind tablet delivering i7 processing power in a thin and light package. As such, the increased power calls for the fan to spin more regularly and at higher speeds - and for the unit to run slightly warmer. If customers have any questions or concerns, they should contact Microsoft Support," Microsoft said.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/microsofts_working_fix_alleviate_surface_pro_3_overheating_issue_2014#comments Hardware microsoft OEM overheating rigs surface pro 3 News Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:13:51 +0000 Paul Lilly 28428 at http://www.maximumpc.com Intel Notes Rise in Proportion of Pentium and Celeron Notebook CPUs http://www.maximumpc.com/intel_notes_rise_proportion_pentium_and_celeron_notebook_cpus_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/intel_celeron.jpg" alt="Intel Celeron Logo" title="Intel Celeron Logo" width="228" height="171" style="float: right;" />Low cost laptops are on the rise</h3> <p>One thing Intel won't have any trouble doing in the coming months is moving low-cost laptop CPUs. That's because Microsoft and Intel are making concerted efforts with vendors to sell entry-level notebooks priced from around $200 to $250 in order to fend off the Chromebook push. As a result of this new focus, <strong>Intel is seeing a rise in the proportion of entry-level notebook CPUs</strong>, particularly its Pentium and Celeron chips.</p> <p>Citing information obtained from supply chain makers in Taiwan, <a href="http://www.digitimes.com/news/a20140827PD205.html" target="_blank"><em>Digitimes</em> says</a> that Intel's shipment proportion of entry-level CPUs has increased from around 50-60 percent in the first half of 2014 to as high as 70 percent currently. In other words, as many as 7 out of every 10 notebook CPUs Intel ships these days is a low-cost Pentium or Celeron part.</p> <p>In particular, Intel is seeing strong sales of its Celeron 2970M, N2930, and N2940 chips, along with Pentium 3558U, N3530, and N3540 parts. It's not just about the push for $200 to $250 laptops -- another reason is that demand for Ultrabooks, 2-in-1 devices, and touchscreen laptops has fallen below expectations.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/intel_notes_rise_proportion_pentium_and_celeron_notebook_cpus_2014#comments celeron cpu Hardware intel laptop notebook pentium processor News Wed, 27 Aug 2014 17:01:25 +0000 Paul Lilly 28427 at http://www.maximumpc.com HP Recalls 6 Million Laptop Power Cords Due to Fire Hazard http://www.maximumpc.com/hp_recalls_6_million_laptop_power_cords_due_fire_hazard_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/power_cord_ls-15.jpg" alt="Power Cord LS-15" title="Power Cord LS-15" width="228" height="138" style="float: right;" />Affected AC power cords are prone to overheating</h3> <p><strong>HP this week decided to err on the side of caution and issue a worldwide voluntary recall of around 6 million potentially faulty power cords</strong> for select HP and Compaq brand notebooks and mini notebooks. The recall also affects AC power cords provided with docking stations. All of the affected cords, whether bundled with a laptop or with a docking station, were sold from September 2012 through June 2012 for about $500 to $1,500.</p> <p>"HP believes that certain power cords shipped with notebook PC products and AC adapter accessories may pose a risk of fire and burn hazard to customers. We are taking this action as part of our commitment to provide the highest quality of service to our notebook customers," HP said.</p> <p>The recall involves HP's LS-15 AC power cords, though not all power cords with the LS-15 marking are faulty. You can check to see if yours is one of them using <a href="https://h30652.www3.hp.com/" target="_blank">HP's online tool</a>. If it is, HP says to stop using it immediately while it sends you a replacement at no cost.</p> <p><img src="/files/u69/power_cord.jpg" alt="Power Cord" title="Power Cord" width="620" height="225" /></p> <p>According to the <a href="http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/2014/Hewlett-Packard-Recalls-Notebook-Computer-AC-Power-Cords/" target="_blank">U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission</a>, there have been 29 reports of power cords overheating and melting or charring, which resulted in two claims of minor burns and 13 claims of minor property damage.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/hp_recalls_6_million_laptop_power_cords_due_fire_hazard_2014#comments Hardware hewlett-packard hp laptop mobile notebook power cord recall News Wed, 27 Aug 2014 16:04:27 +0000 Paul Lilly 28426 at http://www.maximumpc.com Dropbox Keeps It Simple, Consolidates Pro Plans to a Single $10 Per Month Tier http://www.maximumpc.com/dropbox_keeps_it_simple_consolidates_pro_plans_single_10_month_tier_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/dropbox_1.jpg" alt="Dropbox" title="Dropbox" width="228" height="179" style="float: right;" />Get 1TB of cloud storage for $10 per month</h3> <p>Dropbox helped popularize the concept of cloud storage, and in effort to remain relevant (and competitive), it's now offering users more storage for less money, and simplifying things to boot. Instead of offering users a choice of 100GB, 200GB, and 500GB of storage priced at $10, $20, and $50 per month, respectively, <strong>Dropbox is now touting a single Pro plan with 1TB of storage for $10 per month or $99 per year</strong>.</p> <p>That's twice as much storage as the previous top tier plan for half the price, or ten times the storage of the cheapest plan for the same price. However you want to slice it, Dropbox is offering <a href="https://blog.dropbox.com/2014/08/introducing-more-powerful-dropbox-pro/#more-3730" target="_blank">more storage for less money</a>, and is likely to attract a wider audience as a result.</p> <p>In addition to beefing up storage and consolidating its plans into a single offering, Dropbox added some features to its service, such as new sharing controls. You can now issue passwords for shared links, set expirations for shared links, and issue view-only permissions for shared folders.</p> <p>There's also a new remote wipe feature that lets you delete your Dropbox files from a lost or stolen device while keeping them backed up in Dropbox.</p> <p>Current Dropbox Pro users will update to the new plan automatically in the next couple of days. Otherwise, you can sign up at <a href="https://www.dropbox.com/pro" target="_blank">Dropbox's website</a>. Other available plans include Basic (Free, 2GB of storage) and Business ($15 per user).</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/dropbox_keeps_it_simple_consolidates_pro_plans_single_10_month_tier_2014#comments cloud dropbox storage News Wed, 27 Aug 2014 15:18:29 +0000 Paul Lilly 28424 at http://www.maximumpc.com Spotify Brings Free Streaming to Windows Phone Users http://www.maximumpc.com/spotify_brings_free_streaming_windows_phone_users_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/spotify_logo_0.jpg" alt="Spotify Logo" title="Spotify Logo" width="228" height="228" style="float: right;" />Rock out with your Windows Phone out, for free!</h3> <p>Sometimes the Windows Phone platform gets forgotten or otherwise overlooked by developers. Such has been the case with Spotify, which has been serving up free tunes to Android and iOS users for some time now, but hadn't extended the same courtesy to Windows Phone. Well, that changes today -- <strong>Spotify has finally brought the free mobile music experience to Windows Phone users</strong> around the globe.</p> <p>"From today, Windows Phone owners can enjoy access to millions of songs across their smartphones for free," Spotify announced in a <a href="http://news.spotify.com/us/2014/08/26/windows-phone-free/" target="_blank">blog post</a>. "Listen to all your playlists, discover new music, or simply sit back and dig into your favorite artist's entire back catalog."</p> <p>The Spotify app for Windows Phone now lets WP users stream all the playlists they've created along with playlists of people they follow without ponying up for a paid subscription (albeit only in shuffle mode). They can also discover new music, save, re-shuffle, and share.</p> <p>In addition, Spotify introduced a series of improvements throughout the app, such as making search results look better and making it easier to browse artists.</p> <p>You can download the <a href="http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/store/app/spotify/10f2995d-1f82-4203-b7fa-46ddbd07a6e6" target="_blank">Spotify app</a> for Windows Phone 8/8.1 at the Windows Phone store.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/spotify_brings_free_streaming_windows_phone_users_2014#comments mobile music Software spotify streaming windows phone wp News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 16:14:12 +0000 Paul Lilly 28422 at http://www.maximumpc.com Seagate Goes Big, Ships Industry's First 8TB Hard Drive http://www.maximumpc.com/seagate_goes_big_ships_industrys_first_8tb_hard_drive_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/seagate_hdd_3.jpg" alt="Seagate 8TB" title="Seagate 8TB" width="228" height="152" style="float: right;" />Go big or go home</h3> <p>Anybody remember when hard drives were measured in megabytes? How far we've come from those primitive days in computing. Further distancing us from the stone age of storage, <strong>Seagate today has begun shipping the world's first 8TB hard drive</strong>. The feat comes a mere five months after Western Digital's HGST subsidiary shipped the first 6TB HDD -- could a capacity war be at hand?</p> <p>We're not sure, though Seagate did previously mention 10TB models in the not-too-distant future. For now, 8TB is as capacious as single HDDs get in the 3.5-inch form factor. Details of the new drive are in short supply, though Seagate did confirm that it sports a SATA 6Gbps interface and features multi-drive RV tolerance for use in high-density environments such as data centers.</p> <p>"As our world becomes more mobile, the number of devices we use to create and consume data is driving an explosive growth in unstructured data. This places increased pressure on cloud builders to look for innovative ways to build cost-effective, high capacity storage for both private and cloud-based data centers," <a href="http://www.seagate.com/about/newsroom/press-releases/Seagate-ships-worlds-first-8TB-hard-drives-pr-master/" target="_blank">said Scott Horn</a>, Seagate vice president of marketing. "Seagate is poised to address this challenge by offering the world’s first 8TB HDD, a ground-breaking new solution for meeting the increased capacities needed to support the demand for high capacity storage in a world bursting with digital creation, consumption and long-term storage."</p> <p>Seagate seems to be taking aim at data centers and cloud computing providers, though the thought of slapping several of these drives in a NAS box has us salivating at the sheer amount of storage space.</p> <p>In any event, the 8TB drive is shipping now to select customers and will be more widely available next quarter.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/seagate_goes_big_ships_industrys_first_8tb_hard_drive_2014#comments 8tb Build a PC Hard Drive Hardware HDD seagate storage News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 15:56:08 +0000 Paul Lilly 28421 at http://www.maximumpc.com Research Firm Expects All-in-One PC Shipments to Decline in 2014 http://www.maximumpc.com/research_firm_expects_all--one_pc_shipments_decline_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/lenovo_aio_1.jpg" alt="Lenovo AIO" title="Lenovo AIO" width="228" height="165" style="float: right;" />Was the push for all-in-one systems just a fad?</h3> <p>Poke your head into Best Buy and take a peek at the computer section. In it you'll find lots tablets, laptops (including hybrids), and all-in-one systems, along with a small selection of desktop towers. AIO PCs have been around for many years now, but only recently became popular, in part because of dropping prices. You have to think that the prominence of touchscreen displays helped matters too. However, <strong>at least one research firm believes AIO shipments will drop this year</strong>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.digitimes.com/news/a20140825PD206.html" target="_blank">Digitimes Research</a> projects a 2.4 percent year-on-year decline in AIO shipments in 2014 because enterprise and consumer buyers have both used their budgets to purchase conventional desktops. In addition, Sony has dropped out of the PC market, so there's one less vendor to feed the AIO sector.</p> <p>As it stands, Apple and Lenovo are the top two vendors in the AIO category with a combined 60 percent share of the market. Other vendors, such as HP and Dell, have seen their share decline.</p> <p>Time will tell if Digitimes Research is correct in its prediction, though if prices keep coming down, we suspect the allure of a space saving design will prevent AIOs from slipping into obscurity, if at all.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/research_firm_expects_all--one_pc_shipments_decline_2014#comments aio all-in-one Hardware News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 15:34:55 +0000 Paul Lilly 28420 at http://www.maximumpc.com Nvidia Retains Lead in Discrete Graphics Card Business, Shipments Down Overall http://www.maximumpc.com/nvidia_retains_lead_discrete_graphics_card_business_shipments_down_overall_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nvidia_0.jpg" alt="Nvidia" title="Nvidia" width="228" height="171" style="float: right;" />Tablets and embedded graphics are eating into the add-in board market</h3> <p>The latest report from Jon Peddie Research (JPR) shows that <strong>graphics add-in board (AIB) shipments during the second quarter of 2014 declined 17.5 percent compared to the previous quarter</strong>. JPR says the market is behaving according to past years, though the decrease was more than the 10-year average. What's also interesting is that the drop in discrete graphics card shipments coincided with a 1.3 percent increase in desktop PC shipments.</p> <p><a href="http://jonpeddie.com/publications/add-in-board-report/" target="_blank">According to JPR</a>, tablets and embedded graphics caused part of the decline. However, "PC gaming momentum continues to build and is the bright spot in the AIB market," with Nvidia reaping the lion's share of the rewards.</p> <p>Nvidia's share of the discrete graphics card market slipped sequentially from 64.9 percent to 62 percent, though barely budged compared to the same quarter a year ago when Nvidia held a 61.9 percent share of the market. Meanwhile, AMD ended the quarter wit ha 37.9 percent share, up from 35 percent in the previous quarter and down slightly from 38 percent a year ago.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/nvidia_retains_lead_discrete_graphics_card_business_shipments_down_overall_2014#comments amd graphics card jon peddie research jpr nvidia Video Card News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 15:11:58 +0000 Paul Lilly 28419 at http://www.maximumpc.com Digital Storm Targets Gamers with Bolt II Battle Box Titan Z Special Edition http://www.maximumpc.com/digital_storm_targets_gamers_bolt_ii_battle_box_titan_z_special_edition_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/digital_storm_battle_box.jpg" alt="Digital Storm Bolt II Battle Box" title="Digital Storm Bolt II Battle Box" width="228" height="183" style="float: right;" />Liquid cooled and ready for the heat of battle</h3> <p><strong>Digital Storm today unveiled its Bolt II Battle Box Titan Z Special Edition</strong>, which is a specially priced Bolt II small form factor (SFF) rig wielding a dual-GPU Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan Z graphics card. In addition to adding a Titan Z, Digital Storm went back to the drawing board and redesigned the Bolt II to accommodate a new Hardline Cooling System consisting of a 240mm radiator, pump, and "stunning" acrylic tubing with yellow coolant.</p> <p>"Nvidia launched the GTX Battle Box Program to allow gamers to play AAA, combat-focused games at max settings and super high resolutions," said Harjit Chana, Chief Brand Officer. "But gaming in 4K requires much more than simply upgrading components. Our Hardline Cooling System allows gamers to unlock the Bolt II’s full potential and experience games in ways they never thought possible."</p> <p>The Bolt II Battle Box is available now for just under $5,000, down from what its regular selling price should be, which is $6,658. At that starting price, the Bolt II Battle Box comes with a painted chassis, an overclocked Intel Core i7 4790K processor, Asus Maximus VI Impact motherboard, 16GB of DDR3-1600 memory, Blu-ray player, 250GB Samsung 840 EVO SSD, 1TB Seagate HDD, Titan Z graphics card, liquid cooling, internal lighting, 700W power supply, and Windows 8.1 64-bit.</p> <p>You can find out more (and/or place an order) on <a href="https://www.digitalstormonline.com/configurator.asp?id=1034531" target="_blank">Digital Storm's website</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/digital_storm_targets_gamers_bolt_ii_battle_box_titan_z_special_edition_2014#comments battle boz bolt ii Digital Storm Gaming geforce gtx titan z Hardware nvidia OEM rigs News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 14:35:10 +0000 Paul Lilly 28418 at http://www.maximumpc.com Amazon Acquires Twitch, Rumors Say Acquisition Was up to $1.1 Billion http://www.maximumpc.com/amazon_acquires_twitch_rumors_say_acquisition_was_11_billion_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3>Who saw that coming?</h3> <p><img src="/files/u166440/twitch_logo.jpg" alt="Twitch Logo" title="Twitch Logo" width="200" height="113" style="float: right;" />Up until now, everyone was expecting <a title="MPC Google to bu Twitch" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/google_reportedly_going_after_twitch_1_billion_buyout_offer_2014" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google to purchase Twitch</span></a>. Rumors had been passed around that Google was going to purchase the video game streaming service for $1 billion. Instead of Google being the one to buy it, <strong>Twitch ceo Emmett Shear announced today that Amazon has acquired Twitch</strong>. However, Shear didn’t disclose how much Amazon had spent, though speculation is that the price was $1.1 billion.</p> <p>“Today, I’m pleased to announce we’ve been acquired by Amazon,” <a title="Twitch Announcement" href="http://www.twitch.tv/p/thankyou" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">said Shear</span></a>. “We chose Amazon because they believe in our community, they share our values and long-term vision, and they want to help us get there faster. We’re keeping most everything the same: our office, our employees, our brand, and most importantly our independence. But with Amazon’s support we’ll have the resources to bring you an even better Twitch.”</p> <p>The acquisition of Twitch appears to be a great deal for Amazon. Back in 2013, the streaming service had reported that there were 45 million users who had viewed around 12 billion minutes of video. Aside from primarily being used to stream games on PC, Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One also feature Twitch, increasing the services reach and consumer base.&nbsp;</p> <p>Despite Twitch’s popularity, it has been receiving quite a bit of criticism for some recent policy changes. Earlier this month, it <a title="MPC Twitch changes policy" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/twitch_enables_copyright_scans_and_limits_archiving_vods_2014" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">announced</span></a> that it would no longer save VODs for an indefinite amount of time. In addition, it has started to scan VODs for copyrighted music in 30-minute increments. If copyright music is detected, then that 30-minute block of video is muted.&nbsp;</p> <p>But how do you feel about Amazon’s acquisition of Twitch? Is it a better alternative to Google? Sound off in the comments below!</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/amazon_acquires_twitch_rumors_say_acquisition_was_11_billion_2014#comments $1.1 billion amazon Amazon buys Twitch Emmett Shear Google twitch Gaming News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 01:21:25 +0000 Sean D Knight 28417 at http://www.maximumpc.com WhatsApp Continues to Grow After Facebook Acquisition, Hits 600 Million Users http://www.maximumpc.com/whatsapp_continues_grow_after_facebook_acquisition_hits_600_million_users_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3>Facebook acquisition doesn’t seem to have slowed the app down</h3> <p><img src="/files/u166440/whatsapp.jpeg" alt="WhatsApp Logo" title="WhatsApp Logo" width="200" height="126" style="float: right;" />Back in February Facebook spent <a title="MPC Facebook acquires WhatsApp" href="http://www.maximumpc.com/facebook_gobbles_whatsapp_messaging_service_16_billion2014" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">$19 billion</span></a> to acquire messaging service WhatsApp. Since then, its user base has continued to increase at an impressive rate. WhatsApp Inc founder and ceo Jan Koum announced on his <a title="Koum Twitter Account" href="https://twitter.com/jankoum/statuses/503725598414368768" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter account</span></a> that <strong>WhatsApp has reached 600 million monthly active users</strong>.</p> <p>Koum’s tweet reads, “Now serving 600,000,000 monthly active users. Yes, active and registered are very different types of number.” This means that the user base has grown by 100 million since April when it was revealed that there were 500 million users. Other data for that time period included a daily record of 64 billion messages that had been handed within 24 hours. Of that, 20 billion were sent and 44 billion were received by users.&nbsp;</p> <p>What will be interesting to see is if, and when, Facebook’s $19 billion investment will pay off. WhatsApp lets consumers use its service freely for one year. But when that year of service has ended, they are charged $1 per year to keep using it. Unfortunately, we don’t know how many people are actually paying for the service at this point or how many continue to use the service when their free period is up.</p> <p>Despite such a large user base, is it enough to charge $1 a year and will Facebook make back its money? Sound off in the comments below!</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/whatsapp_continues_grow_after_facebook_acquisition_hits_600_million_users_2014#comments 600 million users facebook Jan Koum whatsapp WhatsApp 600 million users News Tue, 26 Aug 2014 00:00:30 +0000 Sean D Knight 28416 at http://www.maximumpc.com Razer Announces Razer Cortex to Help You Find the Best Gaming Deals http://www.maximumpc.com/razer_announces_razer_cortex_help_you_find_best_gaming_deals_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u166440/razer_cortex.jpg" alt="Razer Cortex" title="Razer Cortex" width="200" height="124" style="float: right;" />You will no longer have to browse for the best deals</h3> <p>One of the best things about being a PC gamer are the great video game sales we have access to. While Steam sales are the most well-known, sites such as GOG.com have their own great sales and even EA’s Origin has been getting the general idea. So to make browsing around easier,<strong> Razer has announced the Razer Cortex which will compare prices for video games </strong><strong>among other functions</strong>.&nbsp;</p> <p>Razer Cortex: Deals will compare prices from digital platforms in an interface that will highlight the best prices and allow users to create wish lists. Once a wish list has been created, the application will notify the user anytime the game drops in price or appears in the store’s deals. The application will also suggest other games users might enjoy based on what they are playing.</p> <p>“Our goal is to make games as accessible as possible to the Razer gaming community,” says Razer co-Founder Min-Liang Tan. “By pointing gamers to the best options for their wallets without wasting valuable time digging through different stores, they can squeeze more gaming juice out of their budgets. With a solution like Deals, we’re doing our part in providing a much needed dose of transparency to the gaming industry, while enabling our players to focus on gaming.”</p> <p>For now, the application will only compare deals across Amazon, Gamersgate, GameStop, GOG.com, Green Man Gaming, Steam, and Origin though Razer says that more will come.&nbsp;</p> <p>Razer Cortex also comes with a few additional features that includes a save file backup function, screen capture gallery, and a game booster function that enhances the PC’s gaming performance.&nbsp;</p> <p>Starting August 25, Razer will hold an <a title="Razer Cortex Early Access" href="http://www.razerzone.com/cortex/earlyaccess" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">early access event</span></a>, for two weeks, where users will be able to sign up with their Razer ID. However, the deals feature will only be comparing prices in the US with addition regions to be added after launch. From there, users will be given access, in waves, to test the server’s performance prior to its launch.</p> <p>Razer Cortex will be available September 10.&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Follow Sean on&nbsp;<a title="SeanDKnight Google+" href="https://plus.google.com/+SeanKnightD?rel=author" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Google+</span></a>, <a title="SeanDKnight's Twitter" href="https://twitter.com/SeanDKnight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Twitter</span></a>, and <a title="SeanDKnight Facebook" href="https://www.facebook.com/seandknight" target="_blank"><span style="color: #ff0000;">Facebook</span></a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/razer_announces_razer_cortex_help_you_find_best_gaming_deals_2014#comments game sales price comparison razer Razer Cortex Razer Cortex Deals News Mon, 25 Aug 2014 21:58:40 +0000 Sean D Knight 28415 at http://www.maximumpc.com Burger King Now Serving a Selection of Free Smartphones http://www.maximumpc.com/burger_king_now_serving_selection_free_smartphones_2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/burger_king_phones.jpg" alt="Burger King Phones" title="Burger King Phones" width="228" height="208" style="float: right;" />One Big King and a large soda - would you like a smartphone with that?</h3> <p>Interested in the LG G2? What about the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini or Galaxy S4 Active? Believe it or not, these represent a small <strong>selection of smartphones you can get for free through Burger King's website</strong>. Yes, Burger King, the fast food chain that just brought back Chicken Fries to go with your Whopper. Apparently Burger King really, really wants you to download and use its new mobile app for Android.</p> <p>Of course, the standard two-year service agreement applies, with phone options for AT&amp;T, Sprint, and Verizon (no love for T-Mobile). And you have to order the phone online at a <a href="http://burgerking.ordermysmartphone.com/shop/" target="_blank">special portal on Burger King's website</a> using the coupon code FREEPHONE rather than have an employee add a Motorola Moto X to your bag with extra ketchup.</p> <p>What's surprising (other than the odd pairing of Burger King and smartphones) is the selection of devices. You won't find the latest flagship models, but the selection is far from miserable. In addition to the ones already mentioned, other notable entries include the LG Optimus G Pro, Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One (M7, not the M8), and LG G2, to name a few.</p> <p>If you'd rather have the just the app without getting a new smartphone, you can download it from <a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.emn8.mobilem8.nativeapp.bk&amp;hl=en" target="_blank">Google Play</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="https://plus.google.com/+PaulLilly?rel=author" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/Paul.B.Lilly" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> http://www.maximumpc.com/burger_king_now_serving_selection_free_smartphones_2014#comments Burger King Hardware mobile smartphone News Mon, 25 Aug 2014 18:56:28 +0000 Paul Lilly 28413 at http://www.maximumpc.com