CES 2016 kicks off in Las Vegas this week, and PCMag will be there will all the news. Already, Lenovo has introduced new Chrome and Windows 10 systems, while Livestream is getting into the hardware market with its new Movi camera.
The show floor doesn't open until Wednesday, but Tuesday is press conference day, when the top gadget makers in the world (minus Apple) will show off their 2016 lineups in conference rooms across Las Vegas. Before they take the stage, here's a brief overview of what you can expect from each product category. Click the link on each topic for more in-depth analysis.
Wearables and Fitness Gadgets:
Since there's a whole section of the show dedicated to wearables this year, expect every company, large and small, burgeoning and unknown, to display their wares. Google's Android Wear will likely forego any major updates since it just had one a few months ago, so any updates we'll see will likely be cosmetic. Fitbit, meanwhile, is holding the only wearables-dedicated press conference of the show. The news will undoubtedly be good, but it's uncertain whether it will be a brand-new device, like an upgrade to the Fitbit Charge HR, or some kind of software platform update.
The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet will offer three optional modules at launch: a five-hour battery module that extends the device's battery life from 10 to 15 hours; a projector module (below) that includes a pico projector and an HDMI port; and an imaging module that makes use of an Intel RealSense 3D camera.
That's not the tablet's only selling-point. Much like the Surface Pro 4, the ThinkPad X1 Tablet offers a kickstand attached to the rear of the 12in 2160x1440 IPS panel, and a magnetic keyboard that arrives in the form of a full ThinkPad keyboard with a TrackPoint and trackpad.
Aimed squarely at business users, the device uses an Intel Core M7 vPro processor, up to 16GB of LPDDR3 RAM, up to 1TB of SSD storage and a nano-SIM slot to make use of the ThinkPad's built-in LTE-Advanced functionality. There's also a USB Type-C port alongside a USB 3.0 port.
Lenovo has debuted its new ThinkPad X1 Tablet ahead of the CES 2016 and has shown that its own hybrid tablet is better than the Surface Pro 4.
The ThinkPad X1 Tablet is able to add camera, projector, or battery modules and has USB Type-C ports for power, data, and video. Lenovo's 2-in-1 Windows PC comes with a price tag of $899, according to PC World.
Although the ThinkPad X1 appears to be a Surface Pro 4 clone, it comes with a much better standard keyboard. The Lenovo hybrid tablet has a thickness of 8.4 mm and weight of 1.75 lbs, but it expands to 13 mm and 2.4 lbs when the keyboard is attached to the device, the report details.
The ThinkPad X1 runs on the sixth-generation Intel Skylake core m7 vPro CPU with 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD, plus 16 GB of LPDDR3 memory. It boasts of a 12-inch IPS screen with a resolution of 2160 x 1440. It also has a stylus for users who love to sketch, Computer World reports.
Once an optional module is added, the hybrid tablet becomes even more impressive. The Productivity module, which costs $149, extends the device's battery life by 5 hours and adds a USB 3.0 port, a Lenovo Onelink docking connector, and a full HDMI port.
The 3D Imaging module, which costs $149, adds a rear-facing Intel RealSense camera and full HDMI. This module will be available by May, the report relays.
The Presenter module, on the other hand, adds a small Pico projector and HDMI in/out. This module comes with a price tag of $279, the report adds.
The ThinkPad X1's USB-C port presents an additional advantage because it will handle power, video, and data. The new line of ThinkPad products to be presented at the CES will feature fully functioning USB C-ports.
The new HP Pavilion x2 has a 12.1-inch IPS display with 1920 x 1080 resolution and 3:2 aspect ratio.
There’s potentially one great reason to go with the new 12.1-inch HP Pavilion x2 over the Microsoft Surface 3: it offers more bang for the buck.
Yes, there are plenty of Windows 10 2-in-1s cheaper than the Surface 3, which we dubbed “not quite pro, but premium nonetheless.” But the recently-released, 10.1-inch HP Pavilion x2 nearly matches the Surface 3 in overall quality, and the new 12.1-inch version, which HP launched at CES 2016, could surpass it with a larger display and bundled keyboard.
The new HP Pavilion x2 has a 12.1-inch IPS display with 1920 x 1080 resolution and 3:2 aspect ratio. The base unit is powered by a 5th-generation quad-core Intel Atom Atom x5-Z8500 processor, 2GB of LPDDR3 SDRAM, and 64GB of eMMC storage. It supports 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and sports a USB Type-C input (charging and data), full-sized USB 2.0, microHDMI, microSD card reader, and 3.5mm audio jack. It ships with Windows 10 Home. If that Atom processor is not enough, HP will also offer a 6th-generation Intel Core m3 version, with 128GB or 256GB capacity.
The Atom-powered Pavilion x2 costs $499.99, and ships with a keyboard. Arguably, it’s a better keyboard too, considering the Pavilion’s size and the fact it has island-style keys compared to the Type Cover’s block. The Pavilion also has more ports, including a new USB Type-C, which will increasingly become the new standard for accessories.
For the number-crunchers among you, the 12.3-inch wide gadget comes with a huge choice of different configurations. The lowest model starts at £749 and offers Intel’s m3 low-power processor, 4GB of RAM and a 128GB of sold-state storage (SSD). That goes all the way up to a hulking £1,799 for the top-end version with an Intel Core i7 processor, a 512GB SSD and ginormous 16GB of RAM.
What that tells you is that the Surface Pro 4, like previous Surface Pros before it , should be considered a desktop-in-tablet-form, rather than a regular tablet for playing Candy Crush or browsing YouTube on the couch. Even the basic model will run several programs at once and chew through software like Photoshop or Premiere Elements without breaking a sweat.
Dell's Latitude 12 tablet will start at $1,000 for a model with a high-definition screen
With its new Latitude 12 7000, Dell believes it can offer a sexier, lighter and more feature-loaded tablet than Microsoft's Surface.
The standout feature in the Windows 10 tablet is an optional 12.5-inch screen that can display images at a 4K resolution. It's easy to question the need for a 4K resolution on such a small screen, but during a hands-on, the images looked amazingly sharp. The resolution could be a big deal for those who have a sharp eye for detail.
Another unique feature is the 3D camera, which could make Skype chats more fun. With the camera's abilities to recognize objects and measure distance, the tablet could also prove useful in real estate, design and other commercial applications. The front camera is 5-megapixels and the back camera is 8-megapixels.
The tablet is 8 millimeters thick and weighs about 730 grams. It was easy to hold and felt lighter than Microsoft's Surface Pro 4, which weighs 766 grams, and HP's Elite X2 1012, which weighs 816 grams.
This is CES week, when the consumer electronics industry, and some of the tech industry, descends on Las Vegas like digital locusts, to show off some new wares. I'll be there again, as I have been for many, many years. And my Verge colleagues will have great, wall-to-wall coverage.
But, as I noted in an essay last year, the most important consumer tech companies — the ones you rely on most every day — have very little presence at the show. And the most impactful consumer tech products of the last 20 years or so weren't unveiled there.
So, for this week's column, I thought I'd look past Las Vegas, and past the ritual predictions of what will happen in tech this year. Instead, I'd like to talk about what should be done in 2016 by five of the biggest companies — to make your everyday digital life better.
Judging by a CES 2016 event hosted by Microsoft I attended this week, you'd be forgiven for thinking that it's "Mission Accomplished" time.
In fact, most of the major PC manufacturers, from Lenovo to Dell to Samsung, are showing off tablet/laptop convertibles that very obviously take their design cues from the Surface Pro, with detachable keyboards, or the Surface Book, with detachable laptop sections.
But Terry Myerson, Microsoft VP of windows and devices, told Business Insider in a short conversation that the fight is all but finished.
Surface Pro 4, barely 8.4 mm, sports a Windows 10 Pro operating system (OS), enabled with a 12.3-inch PixelSense display and 6th generation Intel core processor, USB 3.0 port, card reader, five MP front and eight MP rear camera coupled with Dolby audio for sound enhancement. It has an additional type cover that converts it from a tablet to a laptop and a Surface Pen loaded with 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity enabling you to write, draw and create documents.
The device with an i5 processor, four gigabyte (GB) random access memory (RAM) and 128 GB storage is priced at Rs 89,990. Meanwhile, the model with eight GB RAM and 256 GB SDD comes at Rs 120,990. The one with an i7 processor, eight GB RAM and 256 GB SDD is for Rs 144,990. Also, the device comes with custom-made applications from Adobe that are a treat to work on for any virtual designer.
Microsoft also said that since the launch of Windows 10,200 million computers are running on the operating system, making it the fastest-growing OS release in Microsoft's history.
Speaking to the media, Microsoft India Chairman Bhaskar Pramanik said: "Surface Pro 4, the most awaited tablet, is now available in India. It is a perfect choice for people who place a premium on portability, yet require more productivity and performance out of their devices."
CES is where companies go to offer up their latest wares to masses of tech journalists. By paying attention to trends, it's also where you can figure out what directions tech will move in during the new year. We've already written loads of articles about individual things that excited us at CES 2016 and we've awarded our Best of Show winners, but now it's time to step back and look at the bigger picture. Here are some of the top trends we saw at the show.
Connected Home Tech Keeps Getting Smarter
We all might not be able to build AI butlers for our homes like Mark Zuckerberg, but home appliances for the masses are becoming smarter. Flic smart buttons connect home devices like smart lights and speakers and makes controlling them as easy as pressing a button. When the Netatmo Presence security camera detects an intruder, it can distinguish between a harmless animal and a real potential threat. Finally, the Samsung Family Hub Fridge could be the first truly smart appliance. This intelligent refrigerator has a 21.5-inch, 1080p touch screen that's surprisingly useful. You can write notes, watch videos, access the fridge's internal cameras, and order new food if the old food starts to go bad.
Laptops and Tablets Continue to Merge
Microsoft's decision to merge laptop and tablet with the Surface Pro becomes more validated by the minute. The iPad Pro's larger screen and hardware keyboard certainly seemed inspired by Redmond's tablet, and at CES the most exciting laptops we saw were the ones meeting tablets in the middle. The Samsung Galaxy TabPro S has the thin and light design you'd expect from Samsung's popular Android tablets, but this device runs Windows 10 on a Core M processor. The Lenovo Yoga 900S hybrid laptop is similarly thin, light, and convertible while still packing an Intel Core i7 CPU. Dell's Latitude 2-in-1 tablets are sleek, professional, and available soon, as is the HP Spectre x360. The message is clear: laptops should be more like tablets, and vice versa.
The Microsoft Surface Pro product line has been a great success. If you want proof of its success, just take the popularity of its design at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this past week, where numerous tablet/laptop hybrids appeared on the show floor in an attempt to capture the Surface Pro 4’s appeal.
First in line is the Samsung Galaxy TabPro S. To be fair, Samsung produced pen-enabled Windows tablets before Microsoft did, but turned to Android, as Windows tablets weren’t profitable for the Korean company. However, now that Microsoft has succeeded, Samsung has decided to get back into the game with their new tablet.
The Verge describes Samsung’s latest device as “an Android tablet running Windows 10” and, overall, the publication is thrilled about the tablet, particularly its display.
“But the star of the show is unsurprisingly Samsung’s Super AMOLED display, which measures 12 inches diagonally and has a 2160 x 1440 pixel resolution. Its bright, colorful, and has great viewing angles, which will come as no surprise anyone that’s used a recent Samsung smartphone.”
Next up is Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1, which copies the Surface Pro 4 concept and builds on it. PCWorld is impressed with Lenovo’s effort.
“The ThinkPad X1 starts as an 8.4 mm thin, 1.75-pound tablet that fattens to 13 mm and 2.4 pounds total when you attach the included keyboard. This is basically a Surface clone, but arguably with a much better standard keyboard.”
The article adds that the Surface Pro-like tablet also includes up to a sixth-generation Intel Core M7 CPU, a 1TB SSD, 16GB of RAM, and an Intel Skylake Core M7 processor. The cheapest configuration starts at $899 and should be available during the first quarter of 2015.
Toshiba is next in line in the Surface Pro 4 clone wars with the dynaPad, a 12-inch Windows 10 tablet device that promises to give consumers an almost true pen-on-paper experience with its TruePen stylus, Wacom support and 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. CNET was pretty impressed with the device.
“At 6.9mm thick and just 1.28 pounds (580 grams), it’s among the most travel-friendly of Windows tablets…Inside is an Intel Atom CPU, along with up to 4GB of RAM. But for drawing and sketching, you may not need much more, especially as the active pen promises Wacom support and 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity.”
The single greatest advantage of Microsoft's high-end Surface Pro 4 tablet over other high-end mobile Windows devices is its pressure-sensitive stylus. So those of you who jumped in with the latest generation of the device may have been perplexed (as I was) to find that some of the most popular graphics apps out there — including older versions of Photoshop (CS6) and even the open source GIMP — were incapable of using stylus pressure ... even though they worked just dandily on the Surface Pro 3.
Almost as perplexing was the lack of a workaround to the problem — at least as far as I could find — from Microsoft, Adobe or the Internet in general.
But the workaround is actually quite simple — and even official. It's just very, very poorly documented.
The one thing you need in order to make both Photoshop and GIMP work with the Surface Pro 4's pressure-sensitive stylus is the latest Wintab driver from Microsoft.
Dan Laycock, Senior Communications Manager for Surface, told TrustedReviews that "the strategies are very different" between Microsoft's approach and that of the iPad Pro.
"Microsoft really wants you to only carry one device for tablet and PC use," he said, "whereas the iPad Pro is always going to be a companion device."
While the latest Surface devices run Windows 10 - the same version available on desktop PCs and notebooks - the iPad Pro runs the mobile-focused iOS. Notably, both companies' devices are still sold as tablets only - buyers must pay an additional $129.99 for a Surface Type Cover, or $169 for Apple's Smart Keyboard, and a further $99 for the Pencil stylus on the iPad Pro (whereas the Pen is included with the Surface Pro 3 and 4).
Laycock also commented on Apple's introduction of the Pencil:
At one point in time, Apple declared that if there's a stylus, that's failure. We're a huge believer in the pen; we know our customers love it. So to see Apple do something that feels a little bit similar, that is clearly skewed for a bigger screen, and more productivity built in, and the ability to use a pen.
Referring to Microsoft's Surface devices, he added: "We don't see it as a one-to-one comparison, because this is a full PC, you're running full apps."
Like the Surface Pro 4, the Spectre x2 is not great for using on your lap. This is contentious, I know. Some people, presumably with much longer legs than my own, think it's fine. For me, the kickstand design doesn't provide enough stability and rigidity to support comfortable on-lap usage. This is a desk/table-bound design, not a full laptop replacement.
But when used on a desk or table, the Spectre x2 is very good. The backlit metal keyboard feels very sturdy, the key travel is excellent (1.5mm, according to HP), and the layout is pretty sensible. This is a good keyboard. Like the Surface Pro 3 and 4, the keyboard has a magnetic strip that gives it a slight angle for more comfortable typing.
This is a keyboard that anyone would be happy with, one that puts many laptops, much less tablets, to shame.
The touchpad is also pretty decent. Its shape is a little unusual; as we've seen on some other HP machines, it's very wide without being tremendously tall. I found it tracked accurately and had a nice smooth surface. It supports the Precision Touchpad spec, too, so it provides the full range of Windows 10 touchpad gestures.
The screen is a decently bright and crisp 1920×1280 3:2 WLED-backlit affair. There are higher resolutions available from competing systems, but I didn't feel that I was missing out on much here. Viewing angles are good, the backlight seems even, and the brightness was sufficient for most viewing conditions.
But it is a touchscreen, and everything worked in that regard. More unusually, it has Wacom pen support. HP sells (though does not supply in the box) a pen for use with the Spectre x2 that supports 2048 pressure levels. The pen is an active design, using a AAAA battery that HP says will last for about 700 hours. I can't speak to the finer points of this feature based on my mediocre attempts at doodling, but tracking seemed accurate, with little discernible gap between the pen point and cursor and good precision even at low speeds. Palm rejection was also reliable
Let’s compare Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Dell XPS 12. These devices host high-end components and run the same operating system (OS), which makes them equally competitive. If you plan to buy a Windows 10-based hybrid-tablet, here is a complete guide to help you decide.
Dell offers a 12.5-inch screen with Gorilla Glass, and extremely sharp 4K Ultra HD (3840x2160 pixels). Although this display may be attractive for many, but some could find it to be unnecessarily sharp, which is why the 1920x1080 pixel variant is also available.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4 offers a 12.3-inch screen with 2736x1824 pixels, which makes the device brighter and sharper than its predecessor. The display is good for professional needs and entertainment. However, we believe it is not as good as the one in Dell XPS 12, unless you hate extremely sharp displays.
Moreover, Dell XPS 12 is one of the first hybrid-tablet to get a 4K resolution. In the display category, Microsoft leads only when Surface Pro 4 is compared with the 1920X1080 Full HD variant of XPS 12.
The most evident new features in both the devices are the Touch Pens. The Dell Active Pen comes separately, whereas, Surface Pen comes with the bundle.
Surface Pen is better integrated with the device; it seems like a feature, not an external add-on such as the Active Pen for XPS 12. With better integration, it offers more pressure sensitivity, and the ability to attach the pen to the side of Surface, when the peripheral is not in use. Surface Pen offers an eraser too.
All these features of the Surface Pen add to productivity, especially for individuals who seek to do graphic or art related work on such hybrids.
Apple Phasing Out iPad Pro for iPad Air 3? Get Ready For Best Tablet Ever - Could the iPad Pro be on the verge of extinction? This seems improbable, considering that the new tablet was only announced by Apple very recently.
However, if recent reports are to be believed, the upcoming iPad Air 3 may out-perform the Cupertino-based tech giant's iPad Pro and even its predecessor, the iPad Air 2.
This reason why the iPad Pro and the iPad Air 3 were not launched side by side just adds to the speculation that the next iPad Air is being prepared to become the best Apple tablet there is.
Rumors regarding the features of the iPad Air 3 have been doing rounds on the web. Its potential release date has also been predicted to be this coming March 2016 along with other rumored next generation Apple devices like the iPhone 6c and the Apple Watch 2, among others.
After a year of the Surface Pro 3 being our primary family PC, I was excited to check out the new Surface Pro 4. We’ve been running it through its paces here at our house for the past month, and all I can say is that this is going to be the most disappointing loaner return ever.
First off, the new keyboard is fantastic. With the new Surface Pro 4 type cover, Microsoft has changed the keys and spaced them out a bit. It feels much more like a standard keyboard with the raised keys and the greater travel distance of each key (slide back and forth in the image below to compare). Moving the “Function” key to the left side of the keyboard was also an improvement, at least for me (sorry, lefties). The dual-button trackpad is much larger, and great for browsing, but you’re going to want to connect a mouse for finer detail. In fact, after connecting my wireless trackball, I was able to use the Surface Pro 4 as my main work machine using the new keyboard. Were this my machine and not a review loaner, I would definitely look into purchasing the docking station so I could use it with my dual monitor setup.
Microsoft also finally addressed the question of where to store the pen by adding an incredibly strong magnet so you can attach it to the side of the tablet. After a few dozen times in and out of my backpack, I have yet to have it fall off. Instant access to Cortana with a click of the top button is slick as well.
Speaking of Cortana, the Surface Pro 4 comes with Windows 10, and I felt like the entire experience was much smoother and cleaner than with my Surface Pro 3 running Windows 8.1. You really feel like Microsoft has embraced the duality of the Surface Pro 4 by making it work well both in tablet mode and in desktop mode. Microsoft and Intel worked closely together to tweak both Windows 10 and the 6th-gen Intel chips to make the Surface Pro 4 the most powerful tablet on the market. So powerful, in fact, that you’ll likely never go back to your old de7sktop or laptop again, especially if you pick up the Surface Dock.
Two very different approaches to the high-end hybrid. A tab that could be a laptop or a laptop that could be a tab. Which is better?
Microsoft upgraded its line of notebooks with the Surface Pro 4 late last yea, to widespread acclaim from techies. It was swiftly compared with other tablet / laptop hybrids such as Apple’s iPad Pro. User expectations have been high for this one, especially in terms of how it improves on the Surface Pro 3.
To get an idea of how it performs, we measured it against HP’s HP Spectre x360. The Spectre x360 hit the shelves in March, last year, says PC Mag. HP’s latest packed unique features including a flip-folding fulcrum. This proved a big hit.
Here’s a skim through the specs of either machine:
Both are equipped with the latest Windows 10 OS. They are both comparable in their ultra-portability. They equal each other out in battery life, with similar real run-times after being completely charged. This may be true if the Surface Pro 4’s GPU isn't being used as a part of its quoted battery life. Its high-end graphics put a great burden on the battery, running it down very quickly. The battery inside the Spectre x360 could last longer because of its expanded Skylake chipset.
On the weighing scale, there isn’t much difference between either device. The difference in dimensions is too small to matter.
A big difference is the hinge that converts these two into smart tabs. HP’s x360’s display folds back 360 degrees to turn it into a tablet. Not being able to detach the keyboard can make it unmanageable. The Surface Pro wins with its detachable display. Or dockable keyboard, whichever you prefer.
Other factors too can determine what a user will buy. If someone prefers a 4K display and detachable keyboard, then choosing the Surface Pro 4 seems rather obvious. If a buyer really wants a high end laptop-cum-tab then the HP Spectre x360 with its affordability is the choice to make.
Even so, we think the specs weigh in favour of the Surface Pro 4, so that is declared the winner.
Fujitsu has announced a hefty new lineup of 11 computers, including tablets, laptops and desktop PCs.
Each of the models will run Windows 10, and the announcement includes two tablet models, seven laptop models, a desktop model and a "long-life PC model." Only availability in Japan has been announced, and the computers are set to roll out later this month.
Perhaps most interesting in the lineup is the new 2-in-1, called the Fujitsu Arrows Tab R726/M, a 12.5-inch tablet that has a detachable magnetic keyboard. With the keyboard, it comes in at 14.7 mm thick and offers a full HD display resolution. The tablet also has a little kickstand so that it can be propped up for things like movie-watching. It is available with an LTE connection or Wi-Fi only.
The company's second tablet offers a 13.3-inch display and is dust-, water- and chemical-resistant. It can be configured to include a number of different features, including a palm vein sensor for security.
The VAIO Z Canvas is a high-end, convertible Windows 10 tablet built for creative professionals. It's expensive, but it has the build and performance to justify the cost.
The rumors of VAIO’s demise are greatly exaggerated. Following a selloff by Sony in 2014 to Japan Industrial Partners, VAIO is back with a high end convertible tablet made for creative professionals like photographers, artists, and architects running powerful software programs. Operating on Windows 10 Pro and including a host of interesting features, the VAIO Z Canvas costs a lot but has incredible power under the hood, if not weak battery life.
Microsoft has applied for a new patent on a PC stylus that recharges via a magnetic connection. The filing was noticed by the site Patently Mobile and it reveals what we may expect from the next round of Surface devices.
The new patent application shows a charging base for the pen, which is then stuck to it magnetically. From the application:
"As a stylus may be easily misplaced due to the typical size and shape of the stylus (e.g., a thin, rod-like shape with at least one tapered end), the stylus charger may take the form of a dock that holds the stylus in a particular location during charging and/or while the stylus is not being used."
"… the stylus includes at least one terminal of the charging circuit that is formed from a deposit of ferromagnetic material on an exterior of the stylus body. Including a magnetically-attractable element that also serves as a charging terminal enables the terminal to be aligned to a charging contact of the dock and secured to the dock against gravitational pull and other forces via magnetic attraction to a permanent magnet of the dock."
The HP Sprout Pro is an updated version of the innovative PC that HP launched last year, this time aimed at artists, designers and modellers – professional and at school. (The first edition was aimed at home users).
If you've not seen the Sprout before, it's an iMac-like all-in-one PC with a 23-inch touchscreen. Below the screen sits a 20-inch 'Touch Mat' that you can draw on with the bundled Adonit Jot Pro stylus or touch with your fingers. This mat is projected onto by the 'Illuminator' that sticks out over the top of the screen, essentially turning the mat into a Cintiq-style tablet/display. The Illuminator also includes a 3D camera to capture flat objects like sketches and essentially 3D scan anything you put underneath it.
While now marketed as a 'Pro' version, the Sprout Pro isn't any different to the original Sprout in concept: it just has a faster processor (a 'Skylake' Intel Core i7 chip that's two generations on from the original Sprout's 'Haswell' Core i7 chip) and RAM (DDR4 rather than DDR3). There's also a more powerful graphics chip – a Nvidia Geforce GT945A with 1GB of graphics RAM, which strangely is half that of the RAM of the GT745A in the first sprout.
We'll be publishing a full review of the Sprout Pro after we get a review sample nearer to its release. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter to ensure you don't miss it.
A slew of tablets under $500 are available in the market and choosing what's best for one's budget could be a daunting task. Here is a list of the best tablet customers can buy under $500.
iPad Mini 4
Apple launched the iPad mini 4 as the successor to the iPad mini 3 in September 2015 along with the iPad Pro. The iPad mini 4 sports a 7.9-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1,536 x 2,048 pixels. The tablet runs on Apple's own A8 processor.
The Apple offering has an 8-megapixel iSight camera and a 1.2-megapixel FaceTime camera. The iPad mini 4 is available in 16 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB internal storage models.
The starting price tag of the iPad mini 4 (16 GB Wi-Fi only model) is $399. The tablet is also available in Wi-Fi and cellular model but it has a higher price.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8-inch
Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab S2 series of tablet, which includes 8-inch and 9.7-inch models, in July 2015. Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab S2 8-inch as a direct competition to the iPad mini 3.
The smaller Galaxy Tab S2 tablet sports an 8-inch Super AMOLED display with 1,536 x 2,048 pixels resolution. An Exynos 7 Octa 5433 processor clocked at 1.9GHz and 3 GB of RAM powers the Galaxy tablet.
The Galaxy Tab S2 8-inch is equipped with 8-megapixel rear-facing and 2.1-megapixel front-facing cameras. The Samsung tablet runs on Android 5.0 Lollipop and rumors suggest that the tablet will get Android 6.0 Marshmallow software update in February 2016.
Amazon is selling the 32 GB version of the Galaxy Tab S2 8-inch for $399.
Get details and answers to common questions about the Microsoft Surface Pro AC power cord recall. Learn how to order a free replacement part if your Surface Pro power cord is affected.
How do I know if I qualify for a free replacement AC power cord (the cord that plugs into an electrical outlet)?
Surface Pro and Pro 2 customers
All Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2 customers qualify to order one free replacement AC power cord (the cord that you plug into an electrical outlet) for each eligible Surface you own without proof of damage.
Surface Pro 3 customers
Only customers with Surface Pro 3 devices purchased before March 15, 2015 qualify (newer Surface Pro 3 devices already have the new-style AC power cord). If you have an old-style AC power cord, you can order one free replacement AC power cord for each eligible Surface Pro 3 you own without proof of damage.
Check to see whether you already have a new-style AC power cord (the cord you plug into an electrical outlet).
If you already have a new style power cord as shown below, you do not need a replacement, and no further action is needed.
Microsoft’s Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 have been available for several months now in various configurations, but if you are looking to get your hands on the most expensive model with top-of-the-line specs, you can now do so at the online Microsoft Store . If you are in the market for a powerful tablet that can work as a laptop, or a laptop that can work as a tablet, these two products are quite the performers, if you can afford them.
The Surface Book model features 1TB of storage space, 16GB of RAM, dedicated GPU located in the keyboard base, and an Intel 6th generation Core i7 processor for $3199. The top-of-the-line Surface Pro 4 model features the same processor, memory, and storage specs for $2699.
The expensive and powerful Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 are only available via the online Microsoft Store and select retailers. You can snag the Surface Pro 4 in person too at your local Microsoft Store , but we’d recommend calling them first to make sure.
The combination of the iPad Pro and Apple Pencil is unexpectedly winning over professional artists from their beloved Wacom technology.
Having had the tablet and pencil in the home for some time they’ve become one of the most popular creative pursuits for my family. I was unexpectedly impressed with the AppleAAPL +1.00% Pencil in my review, and that experience has not dulled. The sense of direct connection between the nip and screen, combined with a wide array of apps you can use with it mean that the children have put it to all sorts of creative uses — from homework to art projects.
Google and Apple have been rivals since forever. They’re both experts in creating mobile devices and operating systems, but they’re also expanding their horizons, doing all kinds of experiments. This time, we’ll compare two of their tablets, which come with awesome specifications. We’re pretty sure that you’ll be interested in purchasing any of these two tablets: Google Pixel C, a convertible Android tablet, and iPad Pro, Apple’s largest iOs tablet which works with a stylus and physical keyboard.
Dimensions and Weights: The Google Pixel C measures 242x179x7mm and weights 517 grams. On the other hand, the iPad Pro is bigger and thinner, as it measures 305.7×220.6×6.9mm, but it weights 713 grams (Wi-Fi variant) or 723 grams (LTE variant).
Displays: The Google Pixel C comes with a LTPS IPS LCD display of 10.2-inch supporting a resolution of 2560×1800 pixels at 308 ppi. The iPad Pro has a larger LED-backlit IPS LCD of 12.9-inch, which supports a higher resolution of 2732×2048 pixels at 264 ppi.
Processors, Graphics Cards & RAM: The Google Pixel C sports an Nvidia Tegra X1 chipset, which is powered by a quad-core processor clocked at 1.9GHz, it has an Nvidia Maxwell GPU and 3GB of RAM. The iPad Pro features an Apple A9X chipset with a dual-core Twister processor clocked at 2.26GHz, a PVR 12 Cluster Series 7 graphics card and 4GB of RAM.
The January firmware update for Microsoft’s popular Surface Pro 3 tablet causes Blue Screens of Death (BSODs). Also heat issues have been reported and some report their device doesn’t properly startup and shutdown anymore.
On the Microsoft Answers Forum and on Reddit several users report they have to press the power and volume button together for 30 seconds to boot the device. They also get random BSODs that show the error DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE. Another issue is the old ‘”battery drain” problem which causes the device to drain the battery while in sleep mode. During that mode the Surface Pro 3 also becomes hot, an issue from which several Surface devices suffered from last year too.
Users also complain about Windows Hello, Windows 10’s new biometric login feature. Some users report they can no longer login and had to perform a ‘forced restart’ on their device by pressing the volume and power button combined for 30 seconds.
Microsoft has announced to work on a fix and an user has posted a workaround for the BSOD and startup issues. The temporarily solution is to roll back the Surface Pen driver from version 10.0.302 to version 184.108.40.206.
The Surface Pro is the model that everyone wants. Made for business and high end users, each machine packs in the power of a full desktop, while being both a laptop and a tablet. You can switch from designing in Adobe Photoshop, to typing out a proposal to a client, to watching a movie while waiting for a response quickly, smoothly, and comfortably.
If you are considering buying a Surface, your only question might be on if to pick up a Surface Pro 3 or a Surface Pro 4. On one hand, it is easy to buy a Surface Pro 3 for cheap. However, it is also always tempting to have the newest and best piece of technology. So, is the extra price of a Surface Pro 4 really worth it?
The Surface Pro 3, released in June 2014, is literally last years technology. Compared to the Surface Pro 4, heavier, which is an important consideration for a portable computer tablet hybrid.
One of the main Highlights from CES 2016 was the announcement of Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro S and its specs, release date, price and new features has gotten unleashed soon afterwards.
"Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro-The Best of a Tablet and a Laptop.Brilliantly designed to be thin and light, the Galaxy TabPro S is a stylish 2-in-1 that's ready for anything, anywhere" Cited Samung.com.
The Tab Pro S is the new surface Pro clone from Samsung that runs on Windows 10 Operating system instead of the usual Android OS. The new device has come as a rival against its competitors and there have been umpteen reviews about the device from tech geeks discussing and comparing its specs in terms of Galaxy Tab Pro S Vs iPad Pro/Windows Surface Pro.
Full notebook PC functionality from a lightweight tablet: This Samsung galaxy tablet could be turned into a laptop device when attached to a keyboard through a magnetic connector and it serves its purpose of productivity.
The productivity features include the full-sized keyboard with integrated touchpad that enables you to create presentations, write emails, and edit documents, all on a lightweight tablet!
The Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro S is a Premium Tablet that combines Samsung's world class technology and Microsoft's latest Windows 10 OS platform. The company had been wise in making this choice of OS for the device that would be ideal for its Hybrid form factor, according to experts.
This device is the first Windows tablet to feature super-AMOLED display. It comes with a multitouch screen and a deeper color contrast giving the best-in-class viewing experience.
Microsoft issued an update for Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book this week and it appears to offer positive results for people who have had major problems with the tablets since Microsoft started selling them in October.
"It seems that Microsoft has done a great job with this update," a user going by Igor1968 wrote on Microsoft's community forum. "The computer became faster, less warm and so far works stably. But this is just a first impression, let's see what will happen next."
The most significant problems that some users have complained about include one that prevents the tablets from sleeping properly and another that freezes and crashes the machines.
The new iPad is expected to be launched alongside a 4-inch iPhone 5se and a new Apple Watch, according to 9to5 Mac's Mark Gurman.
The new iPad makes sense given that the 9.7 inch variation hasn't been updated since October 2014. Looking to the latest iPad Pro and iPad mini models, it's possible that this new 9.7 inch iPad Air will incorporate stereo speakers, Apple Pencil support, rear-facing camera flash, newer processor, and faster Touch ID performance (similar to the iPhone 6s line).
People have been asking for a smaller iPhone and it looks like the iPhone 5se may appear at this March event as well. It's rumored to have a 4-inch display, A9 processor with M9 chip, always-on Siri, Apple Pay support, solid cameras, and more.
One area where of healthy growth was with their Surface line bolstered by the Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book. The solid numbers were attained despite ongoing criticisms of stability and OS software issues.
The company reported $1.35 billion in revenue, which beats their previous record of $1.1 billion from the same time last year and more than doubled last quarter's $672 million number. That means coming off of the holiday season the Surface line exceeded previous sales although that is likely helped by the price bump of the Surface Pro 4 and the all-around high price tag of the Surface Book.
The Tablet PC is a fully functioning mobile computer that runs Windows XP, Tablet PC Edition which includes new, advanced handwriting and speech recognition capabilities that enable the creation, storage, and transmission of handwritten notes and voice input. Tablet PCs come in three styles, Convertible, Slate and Hybrid.