Archives For Computing
Thanks to our pal Khaled, we’re back with several unannounced Logitech goodies on tap this fall. While they’re probably not as unique as the WiFi webcam broadcaster, solid computing accessories are a necessity. And I’ve long been a proponent of Logitech’s keyboard and mouse solutions.
Touch Mouse (T620)
The Touch Mice are slated to arrive in both black and white and will retail for $69 according to B&H Photo. While there’s no description, one can assume that the touch mouse is, er, a touch mouse – and the logical successor to the M600. It’s my understanding this may be a PC model, whereas the Mac model will go by T631.
Zone Mouse (T400)
Unlike the Touch Mouse that is presumably covered by a responsive surface, the Logitech Zone Mouse looks to have a very specific touch sensitive zone. And while I generally appreciate shiny things, I much prefer the T400′s black matte styling over the T620. MacMall has this one at $62.
Rechargeable Touchpad (T651)
The Bluetooth touchpad above looks to replicate what Apple offers. But as opposed to replacing those Duracels every few months, Logitech integrated rechargeable battery. Not to mention this is cross platform. MacMall has it listed for $94, but we’ve seen it as high as $110… and assume it’ll land somewhere in the middle upon release.
As we’re all well aware, Apple introduced the “new” iPad yesterday. And, while I’m still not quite sold on the tablet form factor, I did place a pre-order. Primarily due the iPad 3′s integrated voice dictation capabilities and much heralded “retina” display — likely featuring more pixels than anything else in our homes. Although, I do wonder how long it’ll take app developers to maximize its potential.
During the marketing spiel Apple made several fascinating and dramatic proclamations. I’m not prepared to classify any as dubious, but it looks as if some could be comparing apples & oranges. For example, I was initially stunned when they said, ”This new device has more memory and higher screen resolution than an Xbox 360 or PS3.” Yet, after thinking about it, the factoid isn’t so surprising… and what exactly does it mean?
Last night, while watching live TV (*gasp*), I inadvertently caught the commercial above. And what was I thinking? As “the new Ultrabook [was] inspired by Intel”… not Apple’s Macbook Air. It’s a cute ad and Windows users also deserve both better style and substance in their computing hardware. Further, Microsoft’s hardware partners would prefer higher margins than their dying netbook initiatives provided. But let’s keep it real. This sleek design originated at Apple. Ultimately, what’s most interesting about the advert is the collaboration between Best Buy, Microsoft, and Intel (who owns the “Ultrabook” trademark and powers these devices) attempting to communicate as a single entity.
It was nearly three years ago that I got my first netbook, an Asus Eee 1000HA. And despite a failed hard drive a year later (still under warranty), and complete failure six months after that, I loved my compact little machine. I loved it so much that I got another one in May of last year – the Asus Eee Seashell 1005PE. The upgrade included 2 GB of RAM instead of 1 GB, an Atom N450 processor, and a long-lasting battery. It too wound its way into my heart, but there were evident flaws from the beginning. Most importantly, the 2 GB of RAM didn’t seem to improve my operating speed, an annoying problem given how many tasks I like to run simultaneously. (Maybe a result of the OS upgrade to Windows 7?) Then in the spring of this year, I dropped my poor little netbook, and it’s never quite been the same.
Fast forward to today, and I’ve upgraded yet again. This time to a Lenovo ThinkPad X220 laptop. While I love netbook portability, I’ve decided that performance is more important. My X220 comes with 8GB of RAM and an Intel i7 processor. It’s also got decent battery life (5-6 hours), and a trackpoint – my favorite navigating tool. I’ve jumped in screen size from ten inches to 12.5 inches, which has its pluses and minus, and the laptop is a bit heavier than my previous netbooks, though not significantly. The big difference is the price. Fully configured, the X220 is roughly triple the price of any netbook. It was no small expenditure, and there will be no further upgrade in a year or 18 months.
I am cautiously optimistic about my laptop choice. The Lenovo brand means my X220 should last for several years, and I have high hopes for my improved productivity as a result of fewer computing slowdowns. Is the laptop worth the price increase over a netbook? I won’t know until I’ve had more time to try it out. My guess is that after a few months with the X220 I’ll have trouble considering a netbook ever again. I may be wrong, but I think my netbook experiment is over. It’s a new laptop era.
The Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 is launching in the US and Canada on April 26th as one of the first Android tablets with docking keyboard to grace our fair shores. (Brad Linder notes the Acer Iconia W500 Windows 7 tablet with keyboard is also on its way.) You may remember our excitement at CES 2010 over the Lenovo U1 hybrid tablet/laptop. Alas, that device still hasn’t made it to store shelves here, and it’s not clear that it ever well. The Transformer, on the other hand, promises much of what the U1 did, along with some 2011 upgrades.
If you’re looking for an Android tablet, the Transformer is beating out a lot of its more well-known competitors in review circles. According to Laptop Magazine, the Asus tablet compares favorably to the Xoom and G-Slate for battery life (about 8.5 hours detached, or more than 10 hours with the dock), and edges out both (just slightly in the G-Slate’s case) in a CPU benchmark test. Basic specs include the Android Honeycomb OS, a 10.1-inch display, Wi-Fi connectivity, a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor, 1GB on-board RAM with expansion room to 2GB, and on-board memory of 16GB (for $399) or 32GB (for $499) with support for microSD cards.
What most excites me, however, is the Transformer’s potential as a netbook replacement. Continue Reading…