Intel has recently slashed the prices on their SLC (Single Level Cell) and MLC (Multi Level Cell) SSDs. This move comes in the wake of the failing economy, but also in the interest of helping to keep their competitors, such as OCZ, at bay.
OCZ claims that their series of SSDs have continued to see delays due to firmware reliability and performance. Reportedly many customers are anxious to buy them, but it is notable that OCZ is doing their best to avoid Seagate’s firmware issues.
Intel is planning for a 128GB SLC drive and a 320GB drive using new 34nm MLC chips in late 2009. For the time being though, their price cuts are mighty significant. Their 80GB model is down fro $585 to $390, 160GB down from $945 to $765 and their 32GB is down from $575 to $415.
In case you missed the earlier stories, MaximumPC readers and many others have been concerned about how easy it was for malware to change UAC levels and subvert the new and allegedly improved User Account Control in Windows 7.
To find out what's changing - and who deserves the credit - join us after the jump.
The Registerreports that there's good news and bad news for the many Windows XP users who took a pass on Windows Vista and decided to wait for Windows 7.
The good news? Windows XP users will be eligible for Windows 7 upgrade pricing.
The bad news? Windows XP users will need to do a clean install of Windows 7.
El Reg quotes a Microsoft rep thus:
I can confirm that customers will be able to purchase upgrade media and an upgrade license to move from Windows XP to Windows 7 - however, they will need to do a clean installation of Windows 7.
This requires the user to back up their data, install Windows 7, re-install the programs and restore their data. For PCs running Windows Vista customers have the option of an in-place upgrade of Windows 7 keeping their data and programs intact or to perform a clean install of Windows 7.
For those of you in the XP to Windows 7 camp, does the need to do a clean install bother you, or were you planning a clean install anyway? Join us after the jump for your chance to be heard.
If you’re one of the many that’s looking to get your computer all bundled into one convenient package, MSI has got a treat for you.
The MSI NetOn AP1900 AIO PC, originally announced at CES 2009, is expected to go on sale later this month (though, no official word by MSI has been found). The NetOn is reported to feature an 18.5-inch WXGA LCG screen that will feature a native resolution of 1366x768. And, powering that screen will be a 1.6GHz Atom N270 CPU, Intel’s 945GSE chipset, integrated graphics, 1GB of DDR 2 RAM and a 160GB HDD.
It’s also rumored that this machine will come with Windows XP Home installed, but we have very good reason to doubt that.
Originally expected to show up in the second half of 2009, Intel has begun shipping its Atom N280 processor to PC makers several months ahead of schedule, says InfoWorld. Like its predecessor, the N270, the newest Atom also utilizes a single-core design and is intended for netbooks, but there's more than meets the eye than a simple clockspeed boost.
Unlike the N270, which was paired with the 945GSE chipset, the N280 + GN40 chipset combo brings high-definition content to netbooks. The hardware-based high definition video decoder makes it possible to view 720p HD videos, making the platform a bit more competitive with Nvidia's upcoming Ion, which brings 1080p content to the table.
Spec-wise, the N280 jogs along at 1.66GHz, a slightly faster pace than the N270's 1.6GHz clockspeed. The frontside bus also receives a bump to 667MHz (compared to 533MHz), and power consumption comes rated at 2.5W.
Intel did not say how much the new chip will cost, but it will be used in Asus $399 Eee PC 1000HE netbook.
MSI says it "wants to offer you the freedom to play," and it plans to do that by tacking on a couple of freebies to its Wind Netbook. Owners of MSI's U100 and U90 models are eligible to receive the company's Q-Face and Windy Zone game software applications for free, a $200 value according to MSI. What exactly is MSI's Q-Face, you ask?
"Using the MSI Q-Face v.188.8.131.52 software, you can easily transform your icon on instant messaging software, by putting a hat on your picture, changing into a cute puppy, or adding a frame of bubbles around the image," MSI writes. "Q-Face brings fun and excitement to the never-changing world of instant messaging!"
Try to hold back your 'Oh-face,' but there's more.The Windy Zone application includes 6 "classic games," including Star Mission, Chicken Shake, Chicken Invader, Island Wars, Loco, and Smileville.
If the way you swept your girlfriend off her feet was by showing her your crazy high 3DMark06 score and boasting about your badass overclock with exotic cooling, then perhaps Metadot's latest promotion is right up your alley.
Metadot, the maker of the Das Keyboard, is running a "Buy One, Get One Half-Off for your Sweetheart" Valentine's sale. The promotion runs from Saturday, February 7th until 3:00 PM EST Thursday, February 12th and includes free ground shipping. However, to guarantee delivery on or before Valentine's Day, you'll need to place your order before 4:00 PM EST on February 9th, Metadot says. If you've already purchased either model between July 14, 2008 and February 6, 2009, Metadot says existing customers should refer to an email notification detailing a "Valentine's Appreciation Offer."
Made famous for its label-less design, Metadot recently refreshed its Das Keyboard lineup with two new redesigned models, the Professional (labeled keys) and Ultimate (blank plank). Mechanical gold-plated key switches contribute to the audible key clicks and tactile feedback, and an n-key rollover function allows up to 12 keys to be pressed simultaneously.
After serving three years at the helm, Lenovo CEO William Amelio handed in his resignation. The timing of Amelio's departure comes amid dismal quarterly numbers for the company, which includes a $96.7 milion quarterly loss. It's the first time in several years since taking over IBM's personal computer division that Lenovo has fared so poorly. But is Amelio to blame?
"My take on his departure was that he was really the fall guy for Lenovo's problems in the last year or so -- and rightfully so in some respects, because a lot of these issues came under his tenure," said John Spooner, an analyst with Technology Business Research. "I think that if Lenovo had been a little more successful, he may have stuck around for a bit."
Amelio's resignation comes at the end of his three-year contract, during which time Lenovo gave up market share in the enterprise sector to Dell and HP.
"As we've improved other parts of the language, regexps started to stand out as being slower than the rest," Chrome programmers wrote in a Chromium blog post. "We felt it should be possible to improve performance by integrating with our existing infrastructure rather than using an external library."
Despite ongoing rumors to the contrary, Microsoft has continually denied it has plans to release a smartphone. But that's not true, according to analysts Rob Sanderson and Mark McKechnie at Broadpoint AmTech.
"MSFT Smart-Phone Launch? Multiple industry sources are telling us that MSFT is planning to launch a smartphone," AmTech wrote in a memo. "We are told it will be a 2H launch."
AmTech goes on to describe Microsoft's strategy as "a bit puzzling," pointing out that a Microsoft-branded smartphone may alienate existing Windows Mobile customers who would be forced to compete with the software giant in hardware. Nevertheless, AmTech claims an official announcement could be forthcoming at 3GSM in Barcelona on February 16th, or at another analyst event in New York on February 24th.
So what's our take? We'll see a Microsoft smartphone about the same time as the company releases a Blu-ray capable Xbox 360 console.