Tablet computer Stories August 21, 2015

ASUS is making a big push to disrupt the Android smartphone and tablet markets with its latest lineup of devices. Everyone’s talking about the ZenFone 2, and plenty more will be talking about the ZenPad 8.0 pretty soon. Along with a bunch of cases — including the battery boosting Power Case —  I was sent the low-end Z380C model which costs just $240 in the US and just £120 in the UK. Although its spec list isn’t quite as awe-inspiring as the ZenPad 8.0 Z580, it still seems great value for money. 

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Tablet computer Stories September 4, 2014

Granted that isn’t Samsung’s official reason for launching the ruggedized version of the Galaxy Tab, which is both water and dust resistant, and protected against 1.2 metre drops. Samsung says that the Galaxy Tab Active is likely to appeal to business users who need to use tablets in places like construction sites and transport depots.

Along with the protective casing, the device has what is described as a tougher C-Pen stylus. You might wonder how many Galaxy Tab variants are needed, but the company says that it consulted with Fortune 500 companies to determine what was needed from a professional tablet …  expand full story

Deal: Get Pixelbook at 25% off: $750!

Tablet computer Stories January 15, 2014

Last week, we went on the record saying that HP was set to unveil their new smartphones within a week and here we are just 5 days later with an announcement.  The quad-core Slate 6 and Slate 7 VoiceTab are (as predicted) 720P displayed “mega” phablets that will play in the same market as Samsung’s Galaxy Mega line. The initial launch country will be India but more are on the way.  While no price was given, we’d imagine that since the other details were true, the $200 price point for the Slate 6 VoiceTab and $250 for the 7-inch seem like a pretty good starting point.

The phones will come with 16GB of on board storage and have a Micro-SD card for 32GB more storage. As you can see in the image above, they both have stereo speakers a la the HTC One (no word yet on Beats Branding which HP still uses and HTC once used).

It appears that HP has really done its homework here and has identified a market where it can make things happen. HP obviously has a huge brand and PC presence in India and at the same time, the market is easy to enter because the carriers aren’t gatekeepers like they are in the US.

As for the phones themselves, they actually have some styling which is a notable step up from HP’s US slate lineup. While I’ll go on the record saying that I’m not a fan of the Black on Gold appearance from the press release and Android skin they are showing off, I’m not privy to style considerations from India.

Also ringing an alarm bell is the Android 4.2 launch OS. Combined with that pretty heavy looking skin/overlay, Indian consumers are already starting 2 OSes back…and counting.

In all, though Google has to be pretty satisfied with the launch. HP is traditionally a Windows shop but since Meg Whitman’s return has gone ChomeOS and Android first with the Slate line of tablets and now their Smartphones.

Another image if the Slate 6 Voicetab and Press release below: expand full story

Tablet computer Stories January 13, 2014

Nvidia made some pretty big claims when it launched its 192-core Tegra K1 mobile processor, notable among them that it would out-perform many of today’s PC chips. Benchmark results posted on the WCCFtech site suggest that the claims are true: a tablet with a Tegra K1 delivered GFX GLBenchmark of 60fps at 1080p, making it significantly faster than two basic Intel Graphics notebooks included in the comparison.

As you can see the only device included in the bench to beat the Tegra K1 chip was Nvidia’s own GT 740M; and seeing this is a full fledged dGPU with 45W TDP it doesn’t mean much. However for the target niche the Tegra K1 was actually created; it leads with a major gap. Scoring a rock solid 60fps in an off screen 1080p Benchmark it fares significantly better than the Tegra 4. The predecessor to this chip can only manage a measly 16fps so you can see for yourself how great a difference this is …  expand full story

Tablet computer Stories January 10, 2014

We’ve gotten word from inside HP that the company is set to release an inexpensive Android smartphone aimed at the prepaid and emerging (BRIC) markets. We’re hearing the street price will be around $200 and it will be released in more than one market. Our source has pegged the launch at next week but delays can’t be ruled out at this point (and we’ve yet to hear anything publicly). Nokia Meego defector and new HP SVP Mobility  Alberto Torres is said to be heading up the group which has been working on the product for a year and a half.

We’re hearing that the device resembles the 5.5-inch Galaxy Note with obvious cost cutting measures to get the device down to the $200 price point. With HP’s Slate Android products, the company cut costs by using low pixel density displays so having a 720P display would seem about right and put it on a collision course with Samsung’s Galaxy Mega line with its 6.3-inch display and current street price of around $400.

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HP CEO Meg Whitman last year confirmed the company was building a smartphone on the trail of dumping its WebOS ‘detour’.

“So a smartphone is not if, but when, for Hewlett-Packard?” – Whitman replied:  “[HP has] to ultimately offer a smartphone, because in many countries in the world that is your first computing device. You know, there will be countries around the world where people may never own a tablet or a PC or desktop. They will do everything on the smartphone. We’re a computing company, we have to take advantage of that form factor.”

Computerworld UK reported that she indicated it wouldn’t be in 2013.

“We don’t have any plans to introduce a smartphone in 2013, but we’ve got to start thinking about what is our unique play, how do we capture this element of the personal computing market?” Whitman said.

HP has to offer every kind of device, from workstations through all-in-one PCs, laptops, hybrid PCs, tablets “and, ultimately, smartphones,” she said.

“I believe that five years from now, if we don’t have a smartphone or whatever the next generation of that device is, we’ll be locked out of a huge segment of the population in many countries of the world,” she said.

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Tablet computer Stories January 3, 2014

If there was ever a dream team for a new kid’s tablet, DreamWorks and Fuhu has to be one of the hottest contenders for the title. The animated film maker and the company behind the Nabi range of children’s tablets told the NYT they are teaming up to launch a new 8-inch tablet at CES next week, expected to go on sale in the spring.

The tablet is expected to come with a mix of animated games and educational apps, and will include content that can interact with DreamWorks toys. DreamWorks claims the device will have similar power to an iPad and be treated like a cross between a tablet and a TV channel …  expand full story

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