New OS will ultimately feature removal of charms, inclusion of Cortana
Microsoft has reportedly scheduled a September 30 debut date for the latest incarnation of its Windows operating system -- Windows 9. Rumored to be unveiled at the event is an early version of the system for developers, but it is not known if CEO Satya Nadella's espoused vision of "one OS" will come to fruition so early in his tenure.
Small Chromebox CXI runs Chrome OS, mountable behind monitor
Acer has revealed a new Chromebox, just over a week after the computer manufacturer unveiled a new Chromebook. The Chromebox CXI is a compact Chrome OS-based desktop computer small enough to be hidden behind a monitor on VESA mounts, with the device having a footprint of 6.5 inches by 5.1 inches, and a thickness of 1.3 inches.
Polls Facebook group
A DC-based legal firm, Whitfield Bryson & Mason, is considering a possible class-action lawsuit over graphics problems with the 2011 MacBook Pro. In a post to a Facebook group organized around the issue, the firm says it has "commenced an investigation leading us to your community." The firm adds that while other posts are providing information, it wants people to fill out a survey to "determine if any legal claims may exist." The company's track record includes suits against companies like Google and Lenovo.
Nvidia delivers genuine differentiation with its Shield gaming tablet
Although it might look like just another Android tablet, the Nvidia Shield Android gaming tablet is one of the more interesting devices to come out in a segment that swamped with endless options, but little genuine differentiation. It tries to stand out from the crowd not with a heavily customized user interface, or even bold design, but rather tries to specialize in one particular area - Android gaming. It is also one of the first devices on the market running Nvidia's latest chip, the Tegra K1. While it still sports a 32-bit ARM Cortex A15 4+1 architecture clocked at 2.2GHz, its graphics capabilities are the real highlight. It sports 192 Kepler GPU cores, which is the very same architecture that powers Nvidia's vaunted discrete desktop and notebook GPUs.
Mini PCs come in fanless, standard and expansion slot models, starting at $1,495
Stealth Computer announced four new compact PCs today, all of which include four Ethernet ports to give consumers options for connectivity in rugged, industrial and embedded applications. Mini PCs from Stealth Computers offer consumers customizable small-format machines that can be used in a number of situations, from in-car units to point-of-sale terminals. Each of the four units starts at $1,495 before upgrades.
Sandisk first company besides Samsung to make TLC-based SSDs
Sandisk today announced the new SanDisk Ultra II SSD with enhanced SSD Dashboard. The new SATA-3, 2.5-inch drive ships in 120GB, 240GB, 480GB, and 960GB capacities, and is the first SSD outside of those manufactured by Samsung to use TLC flash media.
Virtualization solution uses less RAM, speeds application launch
Parallels today launched Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac and Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac Enterprise Edition, its virtualization solution for Windows applications on Macs. New built-in intelligence and support for Apple's latest operating systems, including OS X Yosemite, is said by the company to improve ease-of-use for both business users and consumers. It also brings many of the announced features of Mac OS X Yosemite to Windows and Windows applications, supporting iCloud Drive, iMessages and SMS text sharing from Windows, and control of virtual machines from Spotlight preview and Finder QuickLook.
Macs for $1,019 or less
Right now at Apple's online store, find bargain prices on refurbished Macs with many priced at $1,019 or less. The refurbished 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been reduced to $1,019, for a savings of $180. A $170 discount drops the price on the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage down to $979.
Retina MacBook Pros, 4K HDTVs and more
Amazon this week cuts the cost on the 15.4-inch Retina MacBook Pro from $2,599 down to $2,250 with free delivery. That $350 discount makes this the lowest price we have seen on this by $150. This MBP features a 2.3GHz Intel Core i7 quad-core processor, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of PCIe-based flash storage. Included is a one-year warranty on parts and labor from Apple.
Microsoft-provided fix involves registry modification, manual deletion
Plagued by crashes, Microsoft has retracted its Windows patches from August 12. Users that have installed patches 2982791, 2970228, 2975719 and 2975331 are at risk of system instability, or a "0x50 Stop" error on startup, which prevents the system from booting. A fix requires either a clean OS install, or registry modification to purge the afflicted updates.
First value notebook running Windows 8.1 may have Chromebook specifications
Microsoft's fight against Chromebooks will start with a low-cost offering from HP, according to a report. A leaked data list claims the HP Stream 14 will allegedly have a similar specification list to other Chromebooks, along with a competitive price tag of $200, though the notebook will be running Windows 8.1 instead of Google's Chrome OS.
housekeeping, rain damage and a new hope for an old Mac
Yesterday in the MacNN forums, Forum Regular "Topaz" sparked a conversation about the best way to clear redundant files and free up hard drive space without accidentally removing essential files. Earlier this week, Administrator "ghporter" was looking for software that could detect duplicate files as he has found an excessive amount of duplicate images on his computer that he would like to remove.
Mac minis from $509
At Apple's online store this week, find bargain prices on refurbished Mac mini models. The refurbished Mac mini with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 500GB hard drive has been cut by $90 to $509. A $120 discount is offered on the refurbished Mac mini with a 2.3GHz Intel quad-core i7 processor, 4GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive, now $679.
iMacs, iPads, printers and more
At BestBuy.com this week, get the 21.5-inch iMac for $990. That's $110 off the list price of $1,100, and the lowest price we have seen by $10. Free US shipping is included, but sales tax applies for residents of most states. This iMac features a 1.4GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive. It is backed by a one-year warranty on parts and labor from Apple. This configuration is also available in open-box condition for $921.
Weekly Electronista and MacNN deals for August 15, 2014
Once again, its time for Friday Deals! Every Friday, we're going to take a look at current sales, and bring you what we think are some of the best bargains on prime apps, gadgets, and peripherals for you, the discriminating MacNN and Electronista reader. All prices are verified at the time of publication, but any sales may not be valid if you're reading a few days down the line. Check pricing before you click buy! We have a tendency to add deals over the weekend as we find them, so check back often!
New IE 'not the one you remember' claim developers on Reddit.
Microsoft has had several discussions at high levels, according to reports, considering renaming the nearly two-decade old Internet Explorer browser. The move would be to distance the new versions from previous, flawed iterations, and would hopefully help to improve the image of the tarnished software. Also noted was that while there are tools for developers to test sites in Internet Explorer environments, there are no plans to make an OS X version of the browser.
Server-quality processor arriving en masse in September with up to 18 cores
Apple's much-lauded 2013 Mac Pro redesign will celebrate its first year of shipping just after Christmas, but that anniversary might bring with it an upgraded version. Intel has announced that its successor processor to the "Romley" series used in the latest Mac Pro will arrive in quantity in September. Furthering the speculation, AMD has begun outing its successors to the W7000/W8000/W9000 FirePro graphics cards, which are roughly equivalent to the custom-made D-series used in the current Mac Pro.
Company specialized in Apple accessories, reseller distribution
Veteran Apple and Macintosh accessory reseller Dr. Bott is closing its doors after 15 years in the business, and offering discounts on its remaining stock to liquidate its inventory. The Wilsonville, Oregon-based company, which acted as both a vendor and distributor of its own and other companies' products, said it was "sad to announce" the closure, but did not elaborate on the reasons behind it.
First quarter results from reveal boost in movile devices, desktop computers
Device maker Lenovo has released its financials for the first quarter ending June 30, revealing revenues of $10.4 billion. While the company posted a year-over-year increase in overall revenues, figures from the smartphone sales shows a more revealing number, with sales tallying more than 15.8 million units, an increase of 39 percent. Income increased to $214 million, a 22 percent increase, while earnings grew 23 percent to $214 million. Gross profit increased 13 percent, to $1.3 billion.
ARC 100 SATA III series features Toshiba A19 nm NAND, prices start at $75 for 120 GB
Toshiba-owned OCZ announced the release of a new series of 2.5-inch solid state drives (SSD) called the ARC 100. With the new ARC series drives, OCZ is offering solid state performance at entry-level pricing to spur consumer adoption. OCZ is selling the SATA III drives in three sizes, featuring Toshiba NAND, a three-year warranty and prices starting as low as $75.
Aspire V Nitro range topped by high-specification Black Edition notebooks
Acer is expanding its range of Aspire notebooks with a new collection of gaming systems, named the Aspire V Nitro. At the same time, the company revealed a collection of monitors for gaming and business, with the three new ranges including screen sizes between 27 inches and 32 inches, and with WQHD and 4K resolutions to choose from.
Custom options include water cooling, hardware airflow control starting at $2018
Digital Storm has announced a new custom gaming computer that is aimed at the upper end of the enthusiast market, called the Velox. The unit brings a new level of customization to mid-sized computers, bringing numerous options including a hardline water cooling system and a hardware fan controller only available from Digital Storm.
New connector is symmetrical, similar to Apple Lightning
The USB 3.0 Promoter Group has ratified the new USB Type-C connector. Initially revealed in December, the new connector is symmetrical, smaller in size, and has scalable power charging. Additionally, the new specification supports faster speed, and is still backwards-compatible (with adapters) to previous versions of the spec.
Advanced memory allocation, not widely implemented, affected by flaw
Intel has discovered a major bug (referred to as "errata") in some models of its new Haswell chipset releases. Problems with the chip's transactional synchronization extension (TSX) instruction set will be disabled by Intel in revisions of motherboard firmware by vendors. Little, if any, software uses the instruction set now, but the feature is expected to be widely implemented in software tailored for the Haswell-EP server chipset.
Bugs in Yosemite
This week in the MacNN forums, members continue to discuss bugs they have found in the developer preview and beta versions of Yosemite. Today "angelmb" started a thread looking for help trying to figure out what keeps causing "Circus Ponies NoteBook" to crash, and they included a complete crash report.
iMacs from $1,050
Apple's online refurb store currently has a wide selection of refurbished iMac models. The 21.5-inch iMac with a 2.7GHz Intel quad-core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive has been reduced by $250 to $1,049. A $230 discount drops the price on the 21.5-inch iMac with a 2.9GHz Intel quad-core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive from $1,499 down to $1,269.
iPad Air with Retina display cut to $399
At Staples.com right now, get the 16GB iPad Air in Space Gray for $499. Use coupon code 79449 to drop the price down to $399. That discount makes this the best price we have seen on this model by about $50. This iPad model features a Retina display, Apple A7 processor, built-in Wi-Fi, 5MP iSight camera, FaceTime HD camera, and comes with iOS 7 and iCloud.
Heavy-hitting Dell Precision tower supports new line of Xeon processors
Dell today announced new mainstream and performance tower and rack workstations. The Dell Precision Tower 5810, Tower 7810, Tower 7910, and Rack 7910 are designed to address the requirements of customers in compute-intensive fields such as engineering and manufacturing. The new models have been updated with Intel's latest Xeon processors, DDR4 memory, next-generation graphics technology from Nvidia and AMD, and doubling the amount of memory from the previous generation.
New FirePro cards support 4K displays, use Graphics Core Next architecture
AMD has taken to Siggraph 2014 to launch new cards in its FirePro graphics card collection for professional use. A total of four graphics cards have joined the range, going from more basic offerings to high-performance variants, with the FirePro W2100, W4100, W5100, and W7100 all supporting 4K displays, with the group also using AMD's Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture.
Small form-factor computer ships in November, priced at $549 and up
Dell's Alienware division has launched preorders for its "Steam Machine," absent Valve's operating system. Dubbed the Alienware Alpha, an i3-4130T 2.9GHz-based version of the device retails for $599 and will ship with Windows 8.1, with the ability to install the SteamOS should it see the light of day in a timely fashion.
Speeds up interface, apps
NewerTech had released an accessory for the Mac mini, the Headless Mac Video Accelerator. Although Minis are often used as headless servers, the computer will automatically disable its GPU when a monitor isn't detected. This can potentially cripple performance in some tasks, such as accessing a Mini remotely, which is often necessary when it's in server mode.
New Nvidia Quadro releases span low to high-end performance
Nvidia today unveiled its next generation of Quadro GPUs. The company promises that the new lineup delivers up to twice the application performance and data-handling capability of the previous generation of the line. Five new Quadro GPUs have been announced -- the K5200, K4200, K2200, K620 and K420.
Pushes back possibility of Broadwell-based MacBooks into 2015
Intel's latest consumer-class CPUs, the energy-saving "Broadwell" chips, will only be appearing in limited quantities this year -- and even then only the lowest-end of the chip range will be available, intended for fanless devices like tablets and hybrid tablet-ultrabook devices, says Intel. The new delay, particularly of the more powerful variants, will put a dent in the plans of notebook manufacturers to release power-sipping revamped products in time for the holiday buying season.
Sales up 79 percent over previous year, sales expected to hit 14.4 million units by 2017
Research firm Gartner released a report today over the growth of the Chromebook market so far this year. In the report, the firm states that Chromebooks are expected to sell 5.2 million units by the conclusion of 2014. This marks a substantial growth over the previous year for the low-cost notebooks, powered by Google's cloud-based operating system.
Gaming system offer from Origin PC includes two Titan Z graphics cards for price of one
Computer producer Origin PC has issued a few announcements about its gaming computer lines, including the launch of a trade-in program. The company is offering systems it's billing as capable of playing games at a 4K resolution from under $4,000, as well as the commencement of its Trade Up program, where customers can receive credit towards an Origin PC notebook or computer after trading in an Alienware-branded Dell notebook.
Tegra K1-powered Acer Chromebook 13 boasts 13-hour battery life
Acer has launched its first Chromebook using Nvidia's Tegra K1 chip and a 1080p display option. Aside from opting for a Tegra chip instead of the Core i3 the C720 uses, the new Chromebook 13 with a 13.3-inch display is claimed to have a hefty 11-hour battery life for the 1080p model, while the 1366x768-resolution version can last for up to 13 hours on a single charge.
Philips' 28-inch 4K Ultra HD monitor now available
Philips has announced the availability of its new 28-inch 4K Ultra HD display, offering 1080p Full HD video quality. The model (288P6LJEB) is ideal for use while gaming due to its high resolution of 3840 x 1260 pixels, with a color depth of 1.07 billion colors. Its Multi-View functionality enables users to work with multiple devices like a PC and laptop simultaneously. The UltraClear display is equipped with HMDI, DisplayPort, Dual-Link DVI and VGA SmartConnect ports, as well as USB 3.0 connectivity. Priced at $600, the display is now available for purchase online.
Pricing, availability for new Bay Trail device not yet known
Computer hardware manufacturer and designer MSI has released the S100 "three-in-one" tablet, a Windows 8.1 tablet featuring a keyboard and a protective cover. The new device is powered by the Intel Bay Trail-T quad-core processor, and has a 1280x800 IPS display.
Power On youth access initiative launches for LGBTQ teens
Straight But Not Narrow, The Trevor Project and Human I-T have announced a joint initiative to provide LGBTQ youth access to computers and online resources. Entitled "Power On", the initiative will run until LGBT Spirit Day on October 17, with the organizations encouraging donations of laptops, tablets and smartphones for distribution to LGBTQ resources centers throughout the US. The aim of the project is to provide youth with access to the Internet for the purpose of being more readily connected to peer support regarding sexual and gender identities. Donated devices will be refurbished by Human I-T.
Does the mid-range panel have what it takes for your desk?
Buzzwords and acronyms abound when talking about monitors. HDMI, DVI, HD, Full HD, 4K, and these just skim the surface. With the proliferation of super-high resolution computer monitors adding to the alphabet soup, there is always a need for a midrange but physically large display for computers implementing fewer of the codewords, just to give a bit more real estate to workers, or a fast responding display for gamers. Samsung is attempting to bridge both worlds with the S27D390H 27-inch LED monitor. How well does it straddle the line between affordability and performance? Check our review to find out.
peripheral connections, RAID upgrades and more
Today in the MacNN forums, Mac Elite "rotuts" explained that he is getting a new iMac next week and was wondering what connectors would be necessary to run an external monitor off the iMac. Earlier this week, Grizzled Veteran "PHoynak" was looking for the best way to increase the storage in his RAID setup.
13.3-inc rMBP for $1,450
At Adorama.com this week, get the 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1,449. That's $250 less than the MSRP of $1,699, and the lowest price we have seen on this Mac model by the same price margin. Free US shipping is included, but sales tax is applied for residents of New York state. This MBP features retina display, a 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 16GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage. It is backed by a one-year warranty on parts and labor from Apple.
Slim Alienware gaming notebook due for release before end of year
Dell has unveiled another gaming notebook under the Alienware brand, with a smaller display compared to others in the range. The Alienware 13 has a selection of 13-inch displays to fit it out with, including a touch-enabled 2560x1440 IPS panel with 400 nits of brightness, a 1080p 350-nit version, and at the low-end, a 720p-resolution screen with 200 nits of brightness.
Memory to be released in dual, quad channel packages, voltage dropped to 1.2
Adata, a company known for solid state drives and computer memory, announced today that it is releasing a series of DDR4 memory aimed at the overclocking enthusiast market. The new memory will support the latest versions of the Intel Haswell-E processors, as well as see a reduction in voltage to allow overclockers to get the most out of their money.
Surface Pro 3 heading to 25 new markets at end of August
The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 tablet will soon be available to purchase in 25 more countries later this month. The software giant has confirmed the street date for the latest in its tablet range will be August 28th in the new markets, with the original Core i5 and the newly-added Core i3 and Core i7 variants all shipping at the same time.
MSI WS60 portable workstation includes Core i7 processor, Windows 7
Computer hardware manufacturer MSI has unveiled a new work-focused notebook running Windows 7 Professional, which it touts as being thin and light for a portable workstation. Spiritual successor to the GS60 gaming notebook and weighing in 4.36 pounds and measuring under 0.8 inches thick, the WS60 boasts an Intel Core i7 processor clocked at 3.4GHz, with a choice of 15.6-inch 16:9 displays including a 2880x1620 resolution option and a 1080p version with eDP Wide View Angle technology.
hard drive, slideshows, Illustrator and more
Yesterday in the MacNN forums Grizzled Veteran "chasg" was asking fellow members if they knew what brand hard drive their 24-inch iMac came with, as they want to upgrade and heard that it would need to be a "like for like" swap. "Thorzdad" asks if there is a way to re-start a slideshow after it has been paused, restarting it at the exact moment that it had been paused.
5 MacBook Air models for $979 or less
Right now, Apple's online store is offering refurbished MacBook Air models at low prices, with five configurations landing at sub-$1,000 price points. The refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been reduced by $130 down to $719. A refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air, originally released in June 2012, with a 1.8GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been cut by $420 to $779.
new Mac Pro now $3,199
Currently, Adorama.com has the new Mac Pro on sale for $3,199. That's $200 off the list price of $3,399, and about $150 less than the lowest price seen anywhere else. This Mac Pro features a 3.7GHz Intel Xeon E5 quad-core processor, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of PCIe-based flash storage. Included is a one-year warranty on parts and labor from Apple.
New full tower case features signature brushed aluminum design, tool-less features
Lian Li has announced a new brushed aluminum case in its lineup, adding the full tower PC-V2130 chassis. The new case features support for water cooling, including four positions for radiators 240mm or 280mm in size. The PC-V2130 supports a number of motherboards, including ATX, XL-ATX and Micro-ATX. Up to 11 drives, 2.5 or 3.5-inches in size, can be installed in hard drive bays or on the back of the motherboard tray, with an additional four 2.5-inch drives in a removable bracket. Lian Li's new case uses tool-less design for PCI card mounting, thumbscrews for front plate removal and side panel removal with only two latches. Consumers worried about the size and weight of the case will be happy to know that it includes four wheels for easy movement.