Good keyboards are a valued asset in the laptop world, and they're starting to become a major factor in the tablet landscape, too. The iPad has its Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover; Microsoft Surface has its Type Cover. Perhaps Synaptics should get into the Windows 8 tablet keyboard landscape, too. … Read more
Gearing up for the shift to Windows 8, Synaptics wants PC makers to switch to an entirely new kind of touchpad, called the ForcePad. We recently met with the company in New York to take this new touch interface, which eliminates moving parts and adds pressure sensitivity, for a test drive.
Synaptics invented the touchpad in 1995, and since then, touch has become an increasingly important part of our interaction with technology (and the company now makes touch screens for phones, tablets, and laptops as well).
But laptop touchpads have also been a frequent pain point for consumers, with laggy … Read more
Apple's Retina Displays are drop-dead gorgeous. But be careful what you wish for.
Like many, I got the third-generation iPad because of the 2,048-by-1,536-pixel-density Retina Display. And, like many, I didn't see a huge difference at first.
That was then. Now it's painful to pick up my Dell laptop with its 1,366x768-pixel 13.3-inch display and Windows 7 fonts (note: font-smoothing utilities go just so far).
With Intel's annual conference just around the corner, its next-gen silicon is always a hot topic.
And this year, that's Haswell. Why should you be interested in Haswell? Well, it's going to be inside some of the thinnest, lightest, most powerful ultrabooks, MacBooks, and tablet-ultrabook hybrids to date. (And throw Microsoft's next-gen Surface tablets into that mix too).
Haswell's marquee feature -- besides being a new microarchitecture -- is that versions of the processor will put more of the PC's core functions inside one chip package than any Intel processor to date. And that … Read more
During an event at New York's Museum of Modern Art, PC maker Lenovo has announced new details about upcoming laptops, as well as a new ThinkPad-branded Windows 8 tablet.
The event was to mark the ThinkPad brand's 20th anniversary. Originally IBM's PC line, Lenovo bought the brand in 2005. The three new products profiled have all been spotted before, at CES 2012 or later in the year, including the flagship ThinkPad X1 Carbon ultrabook.
Video game publisher/developer Valve created the Steam distribution platform to offer easy downloads and installation for Windows and Mac games. The Steam app and online store work for both Valve's own games, including Half-Life and Portal, and games from other publishers, including both hits such as Skyrim and indie games like Torchlight. Now, the company plans to add nongaming apps, starting in September.
In a brief online statement, the company says: "The Software titles coming to Steam range from creativity to productivity. Many of the launch titles will take advantage of popular Steamworks features, such as easy … Read more
Analysts are not kind to ultrabooks. Add Tim Bajarin to that long list.
Though the Creative Strategies president offers plenty of reasons for ultrabooks' woes, one of the more intriguing is that Apple products are boxing ultrabooks into a pricing dead zone.
The mid-range, between $799 and $899 -- where an increasing number of ultrabooks are priced -- "may be going away," Bajarin wrote in a recent post.
That's the upper end of the pricing range of Apple's very popular iPad. And above that, it's a MacBook market -- which Bajarin says consumers will pay … Read more
Ultrabooks are currently limping along on Windows 7, but Windows 8 and "Haswell" should put some spring in their step.
While Windows 8 is obviously a hot topic, less is being said about Haswell, Intel's next chip design that will underwrite the third stage of ultrabooks.
That's because Intel hasn't been talking about Haswell, except on the QT in NDA sessions in Asia this week.
Haswell is probably the first mainstream PC-class chip from Intel designed with really thin, small PCs in mind from the get-go. It will also probably pack a mean graphics punch (… Read more
One pleasant surprise from the past couple of months has been the number of good-to-great laptops we've reviewed that can be had for $1,000 or less. That price range is usually Compromise City, with cheap-looking systems that may have decent CPUs, but skimp on a lot of other stuff. And, of course, no one wants to be seen in the coffee shop with a hunk of molded plastic while every other table sports a metal MacBook.
Whether you're gearing up for the fall semester or you're just ready for a pre-Windows 8 upgrade, the systems below all strike a good balance between price, design, and features.… Read more