All Articles Tagged "tablet"

Samsung Unveils Galaxy Gear Smartwatch, Galaxy Note Smartphone & A New Tablet

September 4th, 2013 - By Tonya Garcia
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via @FastCompany

via @FastCompany

Immediately before the big IFA Berlin tech conference, Samsung decided take the spotlight for its very own and unveil its new Galaxy Gear Smartwatch and the Galaxy Note 3 smartphone.

First, the watch. The Icona Pop singers were seen wearing them in NYC today and they love it! (JK) Basically, it looks like a watch but acts like an accessory for your smartphone, equipped with a camera, two microphones, and a speaker. But, it requires Bluetooth to work with a Galaxy device. There are lots of color choices for the wristband and it comes with the option of about 70 different apps including Evernote, eBay, and Runkeeper. The Verge gives it the once over in a video here.

The site criticizes the device’s speaker, which it says is far too quiet to be 100 percent useful. But more than that, “I find it hard to justify spending the $299 asking price on an accessory like the Galaxy Gear,” writer Vlad Savov says. “It’s too dependent on its parent device for functionality — which will cost you a fair amount too — and, like all other smartwatches, fails to truly live up to the ‘smart’ part of its name.” Yikes. Might want to hold off on that then. (Sidebar: USA Today‘s Ed Baig is tweeting that Samsung hasn’t decided on pricing yet, so more to come on that.)

The company also introduced the Galaxy Note 3. The display is 5.7 inches but, Mashable reports, it isn’t wider than the Galaxy Note II. Besides adding colors and undergoing a redesign, there are changes to the stylus pen. Mashable says:

The Note’s signature feature, the S Pen stylus, gets an upgrade as well. When the user hovers the S Pen over the screen, a circle appears: Tapping on the screen and clicking the pen’s button will reveal a semi-circular menu Samsung calls Air Command. The menu has several functions, including Scrapbook, which lets users save any content onscreen by marking it with a circle via the S Pen. S Finder lets users search for content on their device, taking written symbols into account.

There are also upgrades to the note taking app, a Multi Vision app that can combine displays from multiple users, and multiple windows that allow the user to run two different apps at the same time.

The Note 3 will be available in 149 countries starting September 25. There’s also a Galaxy Note 10.1 “2014 edition” tablet that will be released that day. The Verge has a quick overview of that device, which sounds a lot like a couple of other existing gadgets with a couple of upgrades.

It sounds like, if you own the previous iterations of the smartphone and tablet and there are design elements that really bother you, you’ll be wanting the newer version. But if you can wait a little bit, it never hurts to see what else might be coming down the pipeline.

What do you think?

9 Mother’s Day Gifts Besides Chocolate And Roses

May 8th, 2013 - By Candace Smith
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Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Mother’s Day is this weekend and chances are, you’ll be pulling up 1-800-FLOWERS from your speed dial and ordering a bunch of flowers. However, if you’re in a panic over what to get momma, especially beyond the standard red roses and chocolate-dipped strawberries, this list will help you on your way to buying her something sweet and useful.

New Tablet Alert! The Samsung 7-Inch Tablet, The Galaxy Tab 3, Has Landed

April 29th, 2013 - By Tonya Garcia
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via Samsung

via Samsung

Samsung has introduced its new tablet, the Galaxy Tab 3, which had been rumored since January. It’s an Android tablet (the third in the brand’s line) with a 1.2GHz processor. The WiFi version will be available in May and a 3G version in June. Engadget has more about the specs of the device.

The Next Web doesn’t exactly rave about the device, saying it’s “serviceable” for posts to Twitter and Instagram and calls the hardware “low-end.” While the price of the device hasn’t been revealed as yet, it’s expected to be less expensive than the $400 Galaxy Note 8.0. The device is a competitor to the Google Nexus 7 and the iPad Mini.

Let us know what you think if you’ve tested it out.

Tech Talk: CES Officially Starts Today, But It’s Already Earning Buzz

January 8th, 2013 - By Kimberly Maul
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Checking out the Sony smartphones at the CES event, taking place through Friday. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Checking out the Sony smartphones at the CES event, taking place through Friday. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

The 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is underway in Las Vegas and already new products and launches have made waves. Companies including Samsung, Lenovo, Intel, Ford, Toyota, and more are at the event, touting new innovations and technologies.

Rumors were rampant about what to expect at CES this year: smart appliances, including TVs and refrigerators; new technologies for mobile phones; and in-car apps and technology. And this year’s press day on Monday, prior to CES’s launch on Tuesday, didn’t disappoint.

Intel hosted a press conference on Monday, showing its roadmap for PCs through 2014. The company highlighted how its “Haswell” chips will make devices thinner and smarter going forward, demonstrated a tabletop touch-screen device, and announced a microprocessor for tablets.

AP Photo/Lenovo

AP Photo/Lenovo

Lenovo also debuted its 27-inch, IdeaCentre Horizon Table PC (at right), with full internet capability and, at the size of a coffee table, space for four people to get their hands on the touch screen. The Los Angeles Times said of the device, “it’s easy to imagine this in your living room.”

Other innovations in the living room included smart TVs. Samsung, Panasonic, and Sony debuted their collections of smart TVs, which bring together live TV, social networks, and personal content such as photos. Additionally, Samsung debuted a refrigerator with a LCD screen and Sony, meanwhile, introduced its water-proof mobile phone, the Xperia Z.

LG is also focusing on appliances at CES 2013, with the debut of a washing machine and refrigerator with touch screens and wireless technology. Chief technology officer Skott Ahn spoke to Forbes about getting consumers to embrace these types of technologies.

“We really try hard,” he said. “Consumers don’t need to understand what they have to do, or what kind of functions really spread over all the devices and what kind of technologies are involved to implement that. We’d like to make our consumers do something they just want to do. Then all the other background steps should be done by all the connectivity we have provided.”

On the automotive side, car companies such as Ford, Toyota, General Motors, Kia, Audi, and more have been coming to CES for several years, touting the in-car technologies they have introduced. This year, Ford and GM are both reaching out to developers and software designers to create apps that will translate to use on the road, the Wall Street Journal reported.

CES will be going strong all week, so look for continuing coverage on tech blogs and outlets. While Apple and Microsoft will not be at the event, there will still be plenty of news out of Las Vegas this week.

Are you a gadget-freak who is paying close attention to CES?

Oprah’s Digital Double Talk: Is the Surface Really Her Favorite Tablet?

November 20th, 2012 - By Tonya Garcia
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PatrickMcMullan.com via AP Images

Oprah was betrayed by technology last night after she posted a tweet crowing about her favorite tablet — the Surface — but posted it using an iPad.

You probably don’t even think about it when you’re typing away, but, as CNBC notes, “When you view Twitter using some third-party programs, you can see where someone sent a tweet from.” Dang. Oprah included the iPad on her list of favorite things back in 2010, so maybe she was using her old iPad rather than her new Surface tablet to tweet last night? TechCrunch points out that “Twitter hasn’t released an official Twitter client in the Windows Store yet, but it remains one of the most popular apps on other platforms.” So that may have been the cause for the snafu.

via TechCrunch

She also tweeted at one point yesterday that she bought 12 Surface tablets to give as gifts this year. So maybe the dollar is a mightier endorsement than the tweet.

Oprah announced all of her Favorite Things and gave them away to military spouses during a special that aired the other day on OWN, just like she used to on her daytime talk show. Also on the list were Coach puffer jackets ($458 apiece) , a TUSK checkbook clutch ($117 each when you use a special OPRAH code), and P.Jamas pjs ($160 per). Oh, and also trips to Fiji. Which all of the military wives also got. And completely went crazy over when they found out. Video below.

Do You Have One? Apple Loses Market Share While Tablet Industry Heats Up

November 5th, 2012 - By Kimberly Maul
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Customers checking out the iPad Mini in Chicago. Image: AP Photo/M. Spencer Green

While consumers waited for the release of the iPad Mini, which was officially announced on October 23, Apple’s hold on the tablet market dropped in the third quarter of 2012.

According to a report from the International Data Corporation, Apple had 14 million shipments of tablets in the third quarter. While this is an increase from the 11.1 million in the third quarter 2011, the company’s market share dropped. In Q3 2012, 50.4 percent of tablet shipments were from Apple, a drop from 59.7 percent from Q3 2011.

The IDC noted that this drop may have been due to some Apple fans waiting for the new iPad Mini. Full year results will show the impact the Mini had on the tablet market, but so far, Apple reported that three million iPad Minis and fourth generation iPads were sold during the opening weekend starting on Friday, November 2.

Meanwhile, Samsung’s market share rose from 6.5 percent to 18.4 percent from Q3 2011 to Q3 2012, as its shipments rose from 1.2 million to 5.1 million.

“Samsung took advantage of an opportunity in the second quarter,” said Ryan Reith, program manager, IDC’s Mobile Device Trackers, in a statement about the data. “The company offers a wide range of tablet offerings across multiple screen sizes and colors, and that clearly resonated with more buyers this quarter. Its growth to 18.4% of worldwide market share during the quarter represents the first time a competitor has attained this level of share since the original launch of the iPad.”

Amazon, which was not tracked in 2011, saw 2.5 million shipments, or nine percent market share, while Asus (8.6 percent market share) and Lenovo (1.4 percent) rounded out the top five tablet vendors.

It seems tablets are everywhere these days, and the numbers back that up. The IDC also found that tablet sales were up 49.5 percent over the past year, with 27.8 million tablets shipped during the third quarter.

Leaked Photos and Video of Google’s Nexus 10 Tablet Are Online

October 29th, 2012 - By Kimberly Maul
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A Google Nexus 7 on display earlier this month in London. Image: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire URN:14808395 (Press Association via AP Images)

After a busy week full of tech announcements, Google was all set to host an Android-related event in New York on Monday morning. Cue Sandy.

But while the event was canceled, leaked photos and a video have surfaced online, showcasing the new Nexus 10 Tablet, which is made by Samsung and runs with Android 4.2 operating system. BriefMobile has the photos and more information about the technical specifications of the 10-inch tablet, and we’ve embedded the video, also from BriefMobile, below.

Additionally, PhonesReview.com has what appears to be the manual for the Nexus 10.

Google has yet to announce a new date for the event, which was also supposed to showcase the Android 4.2 operating system and the LG Nexus phone. But it has created a Crisis Map for Hurricane Sandy. The map has information about the storm and its location, as well as public announcements, alerts, and evacuation info.

With all these new tablets flooding the market, do you know which one you want to buy?

Apple vs Microsoft: Who Won This Week?

October 26th, 2012 - By Kimberly Maul
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The new iPad Mini. Image: Rex Features via AP Images

This was a big week in the tech space as both Apple and Microsoft hosted events to debut and showcase their latest products. Apple introduced several new versions of its products, as well as the new iPad Mini, while Microsoft demonstrated the Windows 8 operating system on various PCs and launched the Surface Tablet.

Microsoft put Thursday, October 25 on the books a long time ago and no doubt part of Apple’s strategy was to pull buzz away from Microsoft with an announcement of their own. On Tuesday, October 23, Apple not only debuted the iPad Mini, but also a fourth generation iPad, a new iMac, and a 13-inch MacBook Pro with retina display. So who won?

On Social
SocialMention.com is a free tool that analyzes the way a company or phrase is mentioned across various social media sites, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and WordPress. Over the past week, both the Microsoft Surface and iPad Mini had a strong showing in social media, with one mention every 17 or 18 seconds, respectively. Sentiment for the iPad Mini was slightly more positive than that for the Surface, however, and Apple always sees more overall buzz on social media in general.

In Real Life
One way that Microsoft had an edge this week is that its Surface product is currently available. The product was originally previewed back in June and the events this week were about the official launch on Friday, October 26, and showcasing Windows 8 operating system. Apple’s iPad Mini will not be available until November 2. While the wait can build more excitement for Apple products—just look at all those people in line!—by getting the Surface out in the market this week, Microsoft raised its visibility.

Concerns
Apple is taking a little bit of a hit this week, as the tablet market becomes even more crowded. As of Friday morning, the day after Microsoft’s announcement, Apple’s stock had been dropping slightly, while Microsoft’s was on the rise. (Here are Apple’s earnings, released yesterday after the bell.) Concerns over whether Apple can continue its dominance in the space may be to blame.

Additionally, while Microsoft isn’t as “hot” as Apple, it has such a strong hold in the PC market that, while sales may or may not reach internal expectations, Windows 8 will continue to be the operating system for a variety of PC manufacturers and hold on to its dominance there. When it comes to the Surface, tech reporters, bloggers, and reviewers mentioned concerns about the software and apps available for the tablet, which may be a bigger concern down the line.

Overall
Yes, there was a lot of buzz about Apple and its product announcements this week, especially on social media, but the company is used to that kind of web notoriety. Microsoft was able to hold its own, generating plenty of news stories and buzz about Windows 8 and the Surface, despite the fact that Apple tried to steal some of its spotlight. Additionally, with some solid reviews of the Surface, praise for its hardware, and the physical availability this week as well, I declare Microsoft the winner. Next week, when the iPad Mini is out, is a different story.

Do you agree? Let me know in the comments.

It’s Not Just Apple. Microsoft Has Some New Stuff Too!

October 26th, 2012 - By Tonya Garcia
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The new Surface tablet. Image: AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

Get out of your Apple-induced haze. Microsoft also has some new stuff that they’re hoping you’ll pay attention to.

One item is Windows 8, its latest operating system, which went on sale today. According to The Wall Street Journal, Windows powers nine out of 10 computers in the world. The story also says that computer makers are hoping that the new system will inspire PC sales, which have been in a slump recently, with consumers opting for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.

“Microsoft and its hardware partners plan to market Windows 8 heavily, together spending hundreds of millions of dollars on ads. Microsoft is also opening 34 temporary stores this week, mostly in malls, to show off the new ware,” the article reports. If you watched Scandal last night you probably noticed that the next episode in two weeks (the Country Music Awards will be on next Thursday) will be “brought to you by Windows 8.” A check of the ABC Network’s website shows that a few shows are being brought to you by Windows.

And Oprah’s OWN has signed on with an app. Getting brands to sign on for apps is the next big hurdle, says the WSJ. While some magazine companies, Conde Nast, for instance, have jumped on the system with their apps, others like Meredith, haven’t. In fact, Reuters reports that many businesses say they have “no compelling reason to adopt” the new system.

Besides the new operating system, there’s also the new Surface tablet, which, The Washington Post says, has gotten some good reviews, but the reception has otherwise been mixed. It starts at $499, but you will need to spend extra for a cover that is a necessity for content creation.

However, both CNET and TechCrunch argue that the Surface is not a true tablet. “If Microsoft succeeds, in reality, it will create a new category. Surface is something between tablet and a laptop,” says CNET, citing that keyboard as a reason it’s something else entirely. TechCrunch goes so far as to call it a straight up PC. Saying its “hard to handle” because of its operating system, Windows RT, the story continues, “The problem here is that the Surface is basically a big laptop screen without the keyboard.”

Praising the device for its ability to handle the writing duties of a TechCrunch reporter, the writer also had criticisms for its size, screen, and photo-taking abilities. If you’re curious about the device, it’s worth it to read this review as well as some of the others.

Any thoughts out there? Will you be investing in a new Microsoft product?

Get Ready to Lose Your Mind: The iPad Mini is Here!

October 23rd, 2012 - By Tonya Garcia
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AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

Our Twitter feed was on fire with the Apple presentation, which wrapped up just a short time ago. Everyone had been anticipating the iPad Mini and — Behold! — the image above is that of Phil Schiller, Apple’s SVP of worldwide product marketing holding one aloft for all the world to see.

It’s 7.2 millimeters thick (!), 23 percent thinner than the current iPad, and weighs .68 of a pound. According to USA Today‘s live blog of the event, “Among the iPad Mini nuts and bolts: an A5 dual-core chip, 5 megapixel iSight camera on the rear of the tablet which can shoot 1080p HD video, 4G LTE and Wi-Fi support as well as the new Lightning connector available on the iPhone 5.” But, the 16GB version starts at $329; 4G starts at $459. It’s already up on the Apple website. It’ll ship on November 2.

Business Insider notes that Apple’s stock dropped immediately after the announcement of the Mini’s price. The New York Times live blog of the event says the price tag is a mere $30 more than the recently released iPod Touch (so why would you buy that?) and more expensive than the Google Nexus 7 Tablet ($200) and the Amazon Fire ($160). For more on that, check out this article on Ars Tecnica, which lays out all of the seven-inch tablet options and their specs.

The company also introduced the 13-inch MacBook Pro, which is 3/4 of an inch thick, weighs 3.5 pounds and costs $1,699. And there’s a brand new iMac desktop priced at $1,299, shipping next month.

We tweeted some of the trivia that CEO Tim Cook dropped during the presentation as well. A few of the highlights:

-100 million iPads were sold in the summer quarter, more than all of the PC-maker competition combined.

-35 billion apps have been downloaded from the Apple Store.

-And separately, from the Times live blog, iBooks, digital textbooks, are available to 80 percent of American high schools.

So, will you be getting an iPad Mini? Maybe adding it to your holiday wish list?

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