Things are looking up in the server market, and at the same time, they're looking down as well. Say what? According to market research firm Gartner, worldwide server shipments grew 3.2 percent year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2013, though overall revenue dipped 6.6 percent compared to the same quarter in 2012. Likewise, server shipments for all of 2013 rose 2.1 percent while revenue declined 4.5 percent.
Acer is closing out the month of February by offering up its K272HUL, a 27-inch monitor with an ultra-sharp WQHD (2560x1440) resolution in a 16:9 aspect ratio. An ergonomic frame props up the large screen display with 5 to 25 degrees of tilt action. You can also mount the monitor to your wall and have it sit relatively flat (the monitor measures 2 inches deep by 17.4 inches wide by 10.5 inches high).
Big changes are in store for Sony as part of a restructuring effort
Sony this week announced plans to close down 20 retail stores scattered throughout the United States, which will leave the company with 11 stores in California, New York, Florida, and Texas. The closures are casualties of a restructuring effort intended to help Sony remain competitive in an "evolving consumer electronics market," the company said. Thousands of job cuts are also in Sony's future.
Hardware makers are in a mad rush to cash in on the mobile craze, including smartphones, which are hot ticket items right now. However, growth in the smartphone sector won't always be astronomical, as has mostly been the case up to this point. Instead, market research firm International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that smartphone growth will drop to single-digit territory within the next few years.
Latest SSDs from Intel use a 3rd generation controller built in-house
Intel on Thursday launched a new line of solid state drives built specifically for power users and enthusiasts. The new 730 Series enters the performance storage scene wielding 20nm MLC (multi-level cell) NAND flash memory chips and a third generation Intel controller rather than SandForce silicon as found on the company's 530 Series. According to Intel, the 730 Series was built with DNA extracted from the data center and tuned for gamers and other consumers that require speed and reliability.
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."
You may never know the sorrow of losing a save file again
Razer has announced its new Save Game Manager feature. The feature will be coming to itsRazer Game Booster program and will allow users to save any title’s save files. The new save feature, which will be in beta upon release, is compatible with any game that has local save files and will support backup services for over 2,000 titles. Users will also be able to manually add games to take advantage of this service to Dropbox.
While 3D printing may have started out as a niche hobby, it's starting to turn into a popular pastime for creative types and even mainstream users who simply like the novelty of printing out their own tchotchkes. The category still has a long way to go before 3D printers truly become commonplace, but moving in that direction, MakerBot is selling its Replicator Mini, a compact 3D printer with a $1,375 price tag.
Every PC user should know how to program, and there’s never been a better time to learn
With the huge variety of computing devices all around us, it’s important to remember what it is that’s special about a full-fledged personal computer. We think the main difference can be summed up in one word: mastery. No matter how much time you spend with an iPad or an Android phone or in a web browser, you can never truly master it. There’s just not enough there to learn. But the PC? That’s different. The PC goes deep.
Note: This article was originally featured in the October 2013 issue of the magazine
One thing you can't accuse Valve of being is stingy with its Steam platform. It seems there's always a Steam sale going on, making it easy to add to your games collection quicker than you can actually play through your titles. Well, guess what? If you thought Steam sales were frequent now, they could become even more commonplace now that Valve is allowing publishers to self-discount their games.