slate en Tablets Can't Shake Gravity, Shipments to Decline for First Time in 2014 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/tablets_0.jpg" alt="Tablets" title="Tablets" width="228" height="165" style="float: right;" />What goes up must come down</h3> <p>Following the launch of the original iPad, consumers began flocking to tablets as if their favorite drug had just been legalized. Demand reached a fever pitch once name-brand Android slates came onto the scene with lower price tags, and the growth was so explosive that it had some analysts talking about the post PC era. What those short sighted analysts failed to take into account is market saturation, and <strong>for the first time since the iPad debuted, tablet shipments are on pace to see an on-year decline</strong>, market research firm TrendForce says.</p> <p>According to TrendForce, the novelty of tablets has worn off. Prices have bottomed out, and this time around, low-cost notebooks are stealing away tablet market share instead of it being the other way around. As a result, branded tablet shipments are expected to decline 1.8 percent year-over-year to 153 million units in 2014, while notebook shipments will increase 1 percent year-over-year to 171 million units.</p> <p>"Time has shown that notebooks are irreplaceable," <a href="" target="_blank">said Caroline Chen</a>, a notebook PC analyst with TrendForce. "They offer larger screens than tablets as well as a keyboard and mouse, which are all important for those who use their computers primarily for work reasons. Tablets remain limited to Internet browsing and entertainment functions."</p> <p>None of this means tablets are on their way out, and if you're in the market for a slate, the good news here is that there's likely to be a long term price war, at least among non-Apple manufacturers, TrendForce says. It's also encouraging if you're in the market for a laptop, as Microsoft is working with hardware partners to release models in the <a href="">$200 to $250 range</a>.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware mobile slate tablet trendforce News Mon, 25 Aug 2014 15:02:20 +0000 Paul Lilly 28409 at Barnes and Noble Rolls Out Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook for $179 <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/samsung_galaxy_tab_4_nook_0.jpg" alt="Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook" title="Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook" width="228" height="220" style="float: right;" />Welcome back to the tablet scene, Barnes and Noble</h3> <p>After failing to compete in sales with the likes of Amazon and its Kindle Fire line, <strong>Barnes and Noble is officially invested in tablets again with the introduction of the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook</strong>. The Galaxy Tab 4 Nook is essentially a combination of the Android-based Nook platform baked into the Samsung's Galaxy Tab 4 hardware and billed as the first ever full-featured Android slate.</p> <p>The device measures 7.36 (H) x 4.25 (W) x 0.35 (D) inches and weighs 9.74 ounces. It has a 7-inch display with a 1280x800 resolution (216 ppi), 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1.5GB of RAM, 8GB of onboard storage (expandable via microSD card slot), 802.11n Wi-Fi, micro-USB 2.0 port, 3.5mm headset jack, 1.3MP front-facing camera, 3MP rear-facing camera, GPS, and Android 4.4 KitKat.</p> <p>"The Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook is the most advanced Nook ever, delivering the great Nook experience our customers have come to love, with the high-performance tablet features they’ve asked for," <a href="" target="_blank">said Michael P. Huseby</a>, Chief Executive Officer of Barnes &amp; Noble, Inc. "We invite reading and entertainment fans to visit their local Barnes &amp; Noble store to experience the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook. Once they do, we’re certain they will make this innovative device part of their daily routine."</p> <p>B&amp;N says the new Nook is geared towards reading, and to get users started, it comes bundled with $200 of free Nook reading and entertainment content, including three bestselling e-books -- Freakonomics, The Wanderer, and I Am Number Four.</p> <p>You can grab an ad-free <a href="" target="_blank">Galaxy Tab 4 Nook</a> right away for $179 after a $20 instant rebate. The device is available black and white color options.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> barnes and noble ebook reader galaxy tab 4 nook mobile samsung slate tablet News Wed, 20 Aug 2014 16:42:25 +0000 Paul Lilly 28386 at Fuhu Unveils Ginormous 20-inch and 24-inch Nabi Big Tab Tablets for Kids <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/nabi_big_tab_hd.jpg" alt="Fuhu Nabi Big Tab HD" title="Fuhu Nabi Big Tab HD" width="228" height="205" style="float: right;" />A massive tablet for the little ones</h3> <p>At first glance, you might think <strong>Fuhu's 20-inch and 24-inch Nabi Big Tab HD tablets</strong> were built for Shaquille O'Neal. After all, who else but a 7-foot 1-inch massive specimen would such giant slates be for? Turns out Fuhu designed the large size tablets specifically for kids, an interesting target audience for what the company claims are the world's biggest Android tablets made for sharing.</p> <p>"We are so pleased to introduce the nabi Big Tab line of products and are excited about the implications as a new category of family tablets. We were simply amazed at how Big Tab's larger format transformed our interactions with our children, family gatherings and made the tablet experience easier for seniors," <a href="" target="_blank">said Jim Mitchell</a>, CEO. "We are hopeful, that everyone will fall in love with Big Tab like we have."</p> <p>Fair enough - we won't begrudge Fuhu's attempt to modernize family time, though consumers will be the ultimate judge if there can be a category such as this one. We're skeptical, considering the asking price -- $449 for the 20-inch model and $549 for the 24-inch version, both of which cost more than a PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or Wii U.</p> <p>The 20-inch version boasts a 1600x900 resolution and the 24-inch features a 1920x1080 display, both with 15-point capacitive touch support. Both also feature an Nvidia Tegra 4 quad-core processor, 16GB of onboard storage, and removable carrying frame.</p> <p>Fuhu's selling point (behind the big size displays) is the software. Lots of kid friendly games, entertainment, and educational apps come bundled with the Nabi devices.</p> <p>Both models will launch this fall.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android fuhi Hardware mobile nabi big tab slate tablet News Tue, 19 Aug 2014 17:42:49 +0000 Paul Lilly 28378 at Canalys Report Shows Notebook Shipments Skipping Ahead of Tablets in Second Quarter <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/hp_laptop_1.jpg" alt="HP Laptop" title="HP Laptop" width="228" height="183" style="float: right;" />Tablet demand is waning</h3> <p>Consumers are no longer buying tablets in record numbers. Instead, <strong>tablet shipments slipped 5 percent sequentially to 48.4 million units during the second quarter</strong>, according to data released by Canalys. Apple still leads the tablet market, but had its weakest quarter since Q1 2012 with just under 13.3 million iPad shipments. Meanwhile, Samsung shipped 8.9 million tablets during the quarter, which also represents a sequential decline.</p> <p>Part of the reason why demand for tablets is slowing down is because consumers who already own a slate aren't seeing any reasons to upgrade to something faster.</p> <p>"A slowdown in the pace of innovation is creating an issue for tablet vendors. The tablet market has quickly found itself in the same position the notebook market was in some years ago, with minimal increases in hardware performance forming the basis for an argument to upgrade," <a href="" target="_blank">said Canalys Senior Analyst Tim Coulling</a>. "But when considering the most common tasks that tablets are asked to perform, the need for more horsepower is often not evident."</p> <p>Somewhat surprisingly, notebook shipments leapfrogged ahead of tablets with 49.1 million units in the second quarter of 2014. That hasn't happened since the third quarter of last year, according to Canalys. Shipments were especially strong in North America, which saw a 13 percent jump compared to the same quarter a year ago.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> canalys Hardware laptop mobile notebook slate tablet News Tue, 05 Aug 2014 18:24:10 +0000 Paul Lilly 28295 at Best Buy Sees "Crashing" Tablet Sales <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/best_buy_0.jpg" alt="Best Buy" title="Best Buy" width="228" height="163" style="float: right;" />Tablet fad is slowing down</h3> <p>Best Buy's computer section looks decidedly different today than it did a couple of years ago. Gone are the aisles filled with desktop machines, which are now relegated to a small section off the side (if at all), replaced by mobile devices, including rows and rows of tablets. You can't fault Best Buy for following the money trail, and just as tablets took over the floor space when everyone wanted one, look for PCs to take some of its territory back. Why? <strong>Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly says tablets are now crashing.</strong></p> <p>Joly made the statement to <em>Re/Code</em> in an interview, adding that he's seeing a revival in the PC business at Best Buy due in part to Microsoft's decision to stop supporting Windows XP. In addition, two-in-one devices that combine both a tablet and laptop are gaining favor among Best Buy's shoppers.</p> <p>"The tablets boomed and now are crashing. The volume has really gone down in the last several months. But I think the laptop has something of a revival because it’s becoming more versatile," <a href="" target="_blank">Joly said</a>. "So, with the two-in-ones, you have the opportunity to have both a tablet and laptop, and that’s appealing to students in particular. So you have an evolution. The boundaries are not as well defined as they used to be."</p> <p>Interestingly, Joly blamed some of the declining PC sales on the "enormous" deflation in the Windows market. He points out that you can find laptops selling for $300 that used to cost $1,000. The solution? More innovation at the high end of Windows, Joly says.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> <div style="width: 100%; max-width: 600px; margin: 0 auto;"><iframe src="//" width="600" height="400" frameborder="0" scrolling="no"></iframe><br /> <div style="text-align:center;"><a style="font:10px/14px arial;color:#3d3d3d;" href=";s=1sLeQ7" target="_blank">Best Buy Co, Inc - Stock Price and Volume | FindTheBest</a></div> </div> best buy Hardware mobile slate tablet News Wed, 30 Jul 2014 18:27:16 +0000 Paul Lilly 28269 at VIA Toughens Up Android, Launches Ruggedized Viega Tablet <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/via_viega.jpg" alt="VIA Viega" title="VIA Viega" width="228" height="132" style="float: right;" />Not your ordinary Android slate</h3> <p><strong>VIA today unveiled its new Viega ruggedized Android tablet</strong>. Armed with a 10.1-inch display, the Viega features IP65 certification and rocks a durable design that protects it from spills, rain, dust, shock, vibration, drops from up to two meters, and more. It has tempered glass to prevent cracks in the panel from cutting your workday short when you're out in the field, and an "extra long-life polymer batter pack" that's good for up to 9 hours of runtime.</p> <p>A 1.2GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9 SoC with NEON technology runs the show, Other specs include 1GB of DDR3 RAM, 16GB eMMC flash, optional 2MP front and 5MP rear cameras, micro SIM slot, microSD card slot, two micro USB ports, micro HDMI output, Wi-Fi, 3G, GPS, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC support, stereo speakers, and Android 4.2.</p> <p>"As more and more enterprises seek to increase productivity and improve customer service by equipping their staff with mobile devices, they are quickly learning that it is critically important to deploy customized solutions built to withstand the demands of their target environments rather than standard off-the-shelf products," <a href="" target="_blank">said Epan Wu</a>, Head of the VIA Embedded Platform Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. "With its rugged design, enhanced security features, and customization support, the VIA Viega addresses this need and provides the longevity support that enterprise level customers require."</p> <p>No word yet on when the Viega will be available to purchase or for how much.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> android enterprise Hardware mobile rugged slate tablet VIA viega News Tue, 15 Jul 2014 14:43:56 +0000 Paul Lilly 28166 at What's Up with Microsoft's Rumored Surface Mini Tablet? <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_mini.jpg" alt="Microsoft Surface Pro 3 and Mini" title="Microsoft Surface Pro 3 and Mini" width="228" height="130" style="float: right;" />Don't hold your breath waiting for a smaller size Surface tablet</h3> <p>Leading up to the launch of Microsoft's Surface Pro 3, there were several rumors suggesting the Redmond company was planning to announce a Surface Mini tablet during the press event. Even Microsoft teased such an unveiling by inviting members of the press to a "small gathering" on May 20. Instead, <strong>Microsoft unveiled the Surface Pro 3 and the Surface Mini is still nowhere to be seen. That might not change any time soon</strong>.</p> <p>According to <em>Digitimes</em> and its sources entrenched in the upstream supply chain, Microsoft has <a href="" target="_blank">called off plans</a> to mass produce the Surface Mini. Microsoft is reportedly hesitant to jump into the highly competitive small-size tablet market where there's a flurry of products, including Amazon's Kindle Fire line, Google's Nexus 7, and Samsung's Galaxy Tab line, to name just a few.</p> <p>The Surface Mini was rumored to sport a 7.5-inch to 8-inch display powered by an ARM processor. It would come with OneNote and Windows RT 8.1, but nothing really exciting to make it stand out among all the other similar sized tablets available.</p> <p>While the Surface Mini was never announced, there was at least one third-party company that began selling Surface Mini cases on Amazon. Interestingly, the <a href="" target="_blank">listing is still on Amazon</a>, though the accompanying picture appears to show the cover wrapping around Lenovo's ThinkPad 8 tablet.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware microsoft mobile slate surface mini tablet News Mon, 30 Jun 2014 15:56:03 +0000 Paul Lilly 28092 at Microsoft Surface Pro 3 Bombs iFixIt's Teardown Test <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_crack.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 3 Crack" title="Surface Pro 3 Crack" width="228" height="186" style="float: right;" />This tablet's locked down tighter than Fort Knox</h3> <p>If you're at all concerned about a part going bad in Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 tablet, you may want to consider an extended warranty. The alternative is to try and fix or replace a faulty component yourself, but unlike a traditional laptop, Microsoft's laptop replacement isn't all that easy to service. Straight to the point, the <strong>Surface Pro 3 scored a miserable 1 out of 10 in <em>iFixIt's</em> teardown analysis</strong>.</p> <p>Higher scores are better, so a score of 1 out of 10 essentially means you're very likely to do more harm than good if you attempt to crack open the Surface Pro 3. And that's exactly what the expert electronic surgeons at <em>iFixIt</em> did from the get-go.</p> <p>"Our teardown engineer carefully heated and pried up the glass at the edge of this device, but the cooling adhesive alone was enough to crack the glass on our photo table," <a href="" target="_blank"><em>iFixIt</em> notes</a> in Step 5 of its teardown analysis. "Microsoft went to great lengths to make the Surface Pro 3 super portable, thinning it down from the Pro 2's 0.53 inches to a mere 0.35 inches thick -- but it seems the thinner glass does not bode well for ruggedness or repair."</p> <p>Several obstacles stand in the way of DIY repair, some big and some small. For example, there's a springy metal bracket pinning the display connector in place that needs coaxing from a spudger to let it free, and the battery connector requires a somewhat uncommon T3 Torx bit.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_tape.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 3 Tape" title="Surface Pro 3 Tape" width="620" height="365" /></p> <p>Other factors leading to a 1 out of 10 score were the "tons of adhesive" Microsoft used, the display assembly consisting of a fused glass panel and LCD (making it difficult to remove), and non-standard connectors. Summed up, disassembly "leaves no room for mistakes."</p> <p>Microsoft isn't alone in this regard -- most tablets score low in teardown tests, and so some Ultrabooks and ultra-thins. Reduced DIY repairability is one of the tradeoffs in the pursuit for increasingly thin and light form factors.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware ifixit laptop microsoft notebook slate surface pro 3 tablet teardown News Mon, 23 Jun 2014 16:16:42 +0000 Paul Lilly 28055 at Microsoft Surface Pro 3 is Now Available at Stores <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_1.jpg" alt="Microsoft Surface Pro 3" title="Microsoft Surface Pro 3" width="228" height="158" style="float: right;" />Surface Pro 3 has arrived!</h3> <p>Today we'll begin to find out if Microsoft is on the right track with its Surface hardware. As the company promised, <strong>Surface Pro 3 is available at retail stores, online, and through authorized resellers</strong> in the U.S. and Canada today, exactly one month after <a href="">Microsoft announced</a> the upgraded device during a press event in New York City. The caveat? Only the Core i5 version is available straight away.</p> <p>Anyone who pre-ordered a Surface Pro 3 with an Intel Core i5 processor inside will receive them directly. The Core i3 and Core i7 versions will begin shipping on August 1, which is also when they'll be available to purchase in stores and at commercial resellers.</p> <p>As for the docking stating, Microsoft's <a href="" target="_blank">Panos Panay said</a> it will be available beginning Friday, August 15 in the U.S. and Canada, though you can pre-order one today.</p> <p>There are two versions of the Surface Pro 3 with a Core i5 inside -- a $999 model with a 128GB SSD and a $1,299 model with a 256GB SSD. The least expensive Surface Pro 3 is the Core i3 SKU with 64GB, which starts at $799. Those interested in Core i7 models have the 256GB ($1,549) and 512GB ($1,949) models to choose from.</p> <p><iframe src="//" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware laptop microsoft mobile notebook OEM rigs slate surface pro 3 tablet News Fri, 20 Jun 2014 15:55:20 +0000 Paul Lilly 28044 at Samsung Unveils Ultra-thin Galaxy Tab S with Super AMOLED 2560x1600 Display <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/samsung_galaxy_tab_s.jpg" alt="Samsung Galaxy Tab S Side" title="Samsung Galaxy Tab S Side" width="228" height="133" style="float: right;" />A worthy competitor to Apple's iPad</h3> <p><strong>If it's a premium Android tablet you're after, you'll want to look into Samsung's new flagahip Galaxy Tab S family</strong>. There are two versions up for grabs -- an 8.4-inch model and a 10.5-inch SKU, both of which wield a Super AMOLED display with a 2560x1600 resolution (that's the same as most 30-inch monitors that predate 4K). In addition to the high resolution display, the Galaxy Tab S line is notable for its remarkably thin profile.</p> <p>They're only 6.6mm thick, while the 10.5-inch model weighs a mere 465 grams for the Wi-Fi version, or 467 grams for the LTE model. The 8.4-inch model checks in at just 294 grams (Wi-Fi) and 298 grams (LTE).</p> <p>"Building on the heritage of the Galaxy S smartphone line, the Galaxy Tab S line delivers on our commitment to bring meaningful innovation that our customers care most about," <a href="" target="_blank">said Gregory Lee</a>, president and CEO of Samsung Telecommunications America and Samsung Electronics North America Headquarters. "We know consumers want the best screen when purchasing a tablet, and as an undisputed leader in display technology, we’ve brought our industry-leading Super AMOLED screen to the Tab S for an unrivaled viewing experience in both connected and Wi-Fi options."</p> <p>Wi-Fi models ship with a Samsung Exynos 5 Octa chipset consisting of four Cortex-A15 cores clocked at 1.9GHz and four Cortex-A7 cores clocked at 1.3GHz; LTE versions go the Snapdragon 800 route and sport a 2.3GHz quad-core Krait 400 CPU. Both also feature 3GB of RAM, 16GB or 32GB of internal storage, microSD card slot, 8MP rear-facing camera, 2.1MP front-facing camera, and Android 4.4 KitKat. There's a bigger battery in the 10.5-inch model compared to the 8.4-inch version -- 7900mAh versus 4900mAh.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u69/samsung_galaxy_tab_s_side.jpg" alt="Samsung Galaxy Tab S Side" title="Samsung Galaxy Tab S Side" width="586" height="17" /></p> <p>Both are available to pre-order today starting at $400 (8.4-inch) and $500 (10.5-inch) and will be available to purchase sometime in July.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> galaxy tab s 10.5 galaxy tab s 8.4 Hardware mobile samsung slate tablet News Fri, 13 Jun 2014 16:18:10 +0000 Paul Lilly 28002 at Barnes and Noble Inks Deal with Samsung to Co-Create Branded Nook Tablets <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/samsung_galaxy_tab_4_nook.jpg" alt="Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook" title="Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook" width="228" height="211" style="float: right;" />The Nook is getting a makeover courtesy of Samsung</h3> <p>Talk of tablets rarely falls on the Nook, which fair or not has been largely overshadowed by competing slates. Looking to change that, <strong>Barnes and Noble has teamed up with Samsung to develop co-branded Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook tablets</strong> featuring B&amp;N's digital reading experience. The new device will mesh Samsung's Galaxy Tab 4 hardware with customized Nook software.</p> <p>Come early August, the new BFFs will launch a Galaxy Tab 4 Nook in a 7-inch form factor, <a href="" target="_blank">B&amp;N announced</a>. They'll be prominently displayed alongside traditional Nook e-reader devices an sold at each of B&amp;N's nearly 700 locations across the U.S., as well as on the company's website.</p> <p>The partnership means B&amp;N no longer has to focus on hardware design, which will greatly reduce its investment and goes a long way towards rationalizing the struggling Nook business. Furthermore, it should give the company's Nook division a much needed boost -- during its last reported quarter, B&amp;N said Nook sales dropped 50.4 percent.</p> <p>What isn't so easy to speculate is Samsung's angle here. The company is already a major competitor in the tablet space and hardly needs a deal like this.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> barnes and noble Hardware mobile nook samsung slate tablet News Thu, 05 Jun 2014 15:48:15 +0000 Paul Lilly 27947 at Acer Announces Iconia Tab 8 Tablet with Full HD 1080p Display <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/acer_iconia_tab_8.jpg" alt="Acer Iconia Tab 8" title="Acer Iconia Tab 8" width="228" height="221" style="float: right;" />Acer's newest tablet rocks a quad-core foundation and Full HD 1080p IPS display</h3> <p>The tablet market <a href="">isn't growing at the same clip</a> it was a year ago, but growing it is, prompting tablet makers to come out with new devices. <strong>Acer just launched its Iconia Tab 8, an 8-inch Android slate</strong> with a Full HD 1080p (1920x1200) In-Plane Switching (IPS) display with Zero Air Gap technologies to reduce light reflection and offer higher contrast with brighter, crisper images and better readability under sunlight.</p> <p>It also features an anti-fingerprint coating to reduce fingerprints, which <a href="" target="_blank">Acer says</a> makes it easier to clean and read. Underneath the hood you'll find an Intel Atom Z3745 quad-core processor (2MB cache, 1.33GHz to 1.86GHz).</p> <p>Other features include dual stereo speakers, 802.11n Wi-Fi with MIMO, up to 7.5 hours of battery life, microSD card slot, front- and rear-facing cameras, and Android 4.4 KitKat. All this comes wrapped in a slim chassis with a metallic finish measuring 8.5mm and weighing 360g.</p> <p>The Acer Iconia Tab 8 will be available in the third quarter of this year. No word yet on price.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Acer Hardware iconia tab 8 mobile slate tablet News Fri, 30 May 2014 16:20:40 +0000 Paul Lilly 27911 at IDC Reduces Tablet Forecast as Demand for Phablets Heats Up <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/samsung_galaxy_note_3_0.jpg" alt="Samsung Galaxy Note 3" title="Samsung Galaxy Note 3" width="228" height="171" style="float: right;" />Consumers aren't all that anxious to upgrade their existing tablets</h3> <p>Mobile devices are ultra hot right now, including tablets, though the market for slates isn't skyrocketing like it once was. Instead, consumers are largely content with their current tablet devices, and those who do see a need to pick up a new mobile device are trending towards phablet (large size smartphones) devices. As such, <strong>International Data Corporation (IDC) reduced its tablet shipment forecast</strong> for 2014.</p> <p>IDC is now forecasting 245.4 million tablet and 2-in-1 hybrid device shipments by the end of the year, down from its previous forecast of 260.9 million units. If the new forecast holds true, it will represent a 12.1 percent year-over-year growth rate, down significantly from the 51.8 percent year-over-year growth rate tablets and 2-in-1 devices enjoyed in 2013.</p> <p>"Two major issues are causing the tablet market to slow down. First, consumers are keeping their tablets, especially higher-cost models from major vendors, far longer than originally anticipated. And when they do buy a new one they are often passing their existing tablet off to another member of the family," <a href="" target="_blank">said Tom Mainelli</a>, Program Vice President, Devices &amp; Displays at IDC. "Second, the rise of phablets – smartphones with 5.5-inch and larger screens – are causing many people to second-guess tablet purchases as the larger screens on these phones are often adequate for tasks once reserved for tablets."</p> <p>While tablet and 2-in-1 device shipments are slowing down, phablets are gaining ground. Phablets went from accounting for 4.3 percent of the smartphone market in the first quarter of 2013 to 10.5 percent in the first quarter of this year, with 30.1 million units shipped.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> 2-in-1 Hardware idc mobile phablet slate tablet News Thu, 29 May 2014 15:54:33 +0000 Paul Lilly 27903 at Microsoft Equips Surface Pro 3 with a Bigger Screen, Thinner Profile, and Faster Hardware <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_unveil.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 3 Unveil" title="Surface Pro 3 Unveil" width="228" height="170" style="float: right;" />Surface Pro 3 makes a bid to replace your laptop</h3> <p>As expected, <strong>Microsoft took to stage and unveiled its Surface Pro 3 device</strong> at a press event in New York City today. The third generation Surface represents an improvement over previous models in just about every way and may finally convince users it's worth using as their primary laptop. It's thinner at 9.1mm, lighter at 800g, and boasts a bigger display at 12 inches. The Surface Pro 3 is also faster with up to a Core i7 foundation.</p> <p>The theme during the unveiling was that Surface Pro 3 is a tablet that can replace your laptop. It certainly has the hardware -- Core i3, i5, and i7 processor options, 64GB to 512GB of storage space, 4GB or 8GB of RAM, full-size USB 3.0 port, mini DisplayPort, and a microSD card reader. All this supplements the color-calibrated 12-inch display with a 2160x1440 resolution</p> <p>To really replace a laptop, however, you'd be well served to invest in an optional Type Cover and/or dock. The Type Cover comes in five colors and has a more responsive touchpad that's 68 percent larger. It also has an secondary attachment mode that provides additional stability when using the Surface Pro 3 on your lap.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_3_0.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 3" title="Surface Pro 3" width="526" height="362" /></p> <p>Other notable tidbits from the unveiling -- the kickstand features a new hinge design that can bend all the way down to 150 degrees, the docking station can output to 4K Ultra HD displays, and Microsoft invented a new fan technology that's 30 percent more efficient than the previous version.</p> <p><iframe src="//" width="620" height="349" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>The Surface Pro 3 will be available to preorder tonight at 12:01 am Eastern Time at <a href="" target="_blank"></a>, at Microsoft Stores, and Best Buy in the U.S. It will then be available to purchase on June 20th.</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware laptop microsoft mobile notebook slate Surface 3 tablet News Tue, 20 May 2014 16:23:21 +0000 Paul Lilly 27840 at Tipsters Supposedly Reveal Microsoft Surface Pro 3 Specs and Prices Ahead of Launch <!--paging_filter--><h3><img src="/files/u69/surface_pro_2_2.jpg" alt="Surface Pro 2" title="Surface Pro 2" width="228" height="159" style="float: right;" />If leaked information turn out to be true, the highest end Surface Pro 3 will cost $1,949</h3> <p>Microsoft is holding a press event tomorrow afternoon in New York City in which it's believed the company will unveil at least one new Surface product line. Speculation up to this point has been that a Surface Mini category to compete with similar sized tablets and slates in the Android and iOS space is imminent, though there's also been chatter of a Surface Pro 3 line. One site even claims to have learned <strong>specification and pricing information for Microsoft upcoming Surface Pro 3</strong>.</p> <p>The folks at <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Windows Phone Central</em></a> didn't say where they're getting their information from, only that they've come across details of the new Surface Pro 3 products. According to <em>WMP's</em> info, there will be five versions consisting of the following baseline configurations:</p> <ul> <li>Intel Core i3, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage: $799</li> <li>Intel Core i5, 4GB RAM, 128GB storage: $999</li> <li>Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB storage: $1,299</li> <li>Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, 256GB storage: $1,549</li> <li>Intel Core i7, 8GB RAM, 512GB storage: $1,949</li> </ul> <p>According to <em>WMP</em>, the Surface Pro 3 is expected to be a larger model than previous Surface devices, perhaps around 12 inches. This would explain why the site believes Microsoft is also launching new Type Covers, which will come in black, purple, cyan, and red (may be limited to Microsoft Stores).</p> <p>Stay tuned -- we'll have more information tomorrow!</p> <p><em>Follow Paul on <a href="" target="_blank">Google+</a>, <a href="!/paul_b_lilly" target="_blank">Twitter</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p> Hardware laptop microsoft notebook slate surface pro 3 tablet News Mon, 19 May 2014 14:13:42 +0000 Paul Lilly 27829 at