Apple shook up its tablet lineup last fall with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, a laptop-sized device that supports stylus input from the Apple Pencil and snaps to a Bluetooth keyboard. Even the iPad mini got a major overhaul last year.
But the Pro’s size and new features have a higher price tag attached, one that’s squarely in the laptop range, and while the iPad mini 4 is an amazing device, it’s too small for many people. iPad sales continue to plummet, as Apple’s Q1 earnings showed, so Apple is gearing up to take the wraps off the iPad Air 3 next month. If its rumored features come to be, this mid-sized iPad could convince hold-outs to upgrade.
Here’s everything we know so far about the 9.7-inch iPad Air 3.
Will any iPad Pro features come to the Air?
The rumor: Apple plans to improve the Air’s audio with four speakers, which would bring it up to Pro quality. Dual stereo speakers would make the next-gen Air a better device for streaming music and video, because the sound would be crystal clear no matter which way you held the device (unless you’re covering all the speakers, which would be a little crazy).
Plausible? Separate drawings of the Air 3 leaked to Engadget and 9to5Mac, plus a leaked mock-up case design, all show four speakers. Case designs aren’t the most reliable, and anyone can whip up an illustration of features they’d like to see in a device, but it would make sense for Apple to make the Air a better content consumption tool by bumping up the audio.
When is it coming out?
The rumor: The iPad Air 3 is on deck for a March debut, according to 9to5Mac
The most frustrating bugs suffered by Surface Pro 4 owners is the "black screen after sleep" problem. The problem is when a Surface Pro 4 is woken from whatever sleep state it manages to enter, the screen sometimes remains off and it will not turn back on despite all types of pressing and prodding. The machine remains awake and active because the Windows Hello infrared light turns on and starts scanning.
But there's an easy solution as long as you have your Type Cover handy. It so happens that the display driver forgets that it's using the local screen and tries to project to a non-existent external display. The solution in this case is fairly simple:
When the screen is black but the infrared light is on, hit the Win+P combination once.
Wait a few seconds, then hit the Win+P combination again. You're simply cycling through screen projection options.
After a second or so, the screen should turn on and you should see the "Project" bar on the right side. Bang, you're back in business.
If your Type Cover isn't available, then you'll have to force the Surface Pro 4 to shut down. A longer term solution is also available, but it's a little complicated: you can also manually install the Intel HD reference drivers from 12/22/2015 and the issue shouldn't recur (and you might get better sleep performance as well), but you'll be out of sync with Microsoft's official drivers and those Intel drivers cause some issues of their own.
To install the Intel drivers, you'll need to download and unzip them, and then do the following (this is all easier in desktop mode than tablet mode):
Open Control Panel > Device Manager
Expand "Display adapters"
Right-click on the Intel HD Graphics 520 device, select "Update Driver Software"
Select "Browse my computer for driver software"
Select "Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer"
Click "Have Disk?"
Browse to your unzipped drivers, navigate to the Graphics folder
Select "igdlh64.inf" and click "Open"
Follow the rest of the prompts. You may or may not have to reboot your system.
As you can see below, there's something of a pattern when it comes to Sony launching a new 10in Xperia Z tablet with a new model arriving at MWC every year since 2013. The odd one out is the smaller Z3 Compactwhich was announced at IFA in Berlin.
• Xperia Tablet Z – MWC 2013 February
• Xperia Tablet Z2 – MWC 2014 February
• Xperia Tablet Z3 Compact – IFA 2014 September
• Xperia Tablet Z4 – MWC 2015 March
Based on this, there's a good chance we'll see a new tablet at MWC 2016. We say this even though we've not seen any leaked details as phones are more commonly the stars of internet leaks. The more complex question is what model it will be.
Sony hasn't skipped a generation number yet so there's a good chance it will be the Xperia Z5 Tablet but the device didn't arrive with the phones therefore there's a slim chance it could be the Xperia Z6 Tablet but our money is on the former as the Xperia Z6 smartphone is unlikely to arrive until later in the year and Sony won't want a tablet with a similar name to make it seem old.
According to data from IDC the AppleAAPL +1.14% iPad Pro shipped more units in the most recent quarter than MicrosoftMSFT -1.89%’s Surface line of tablets. While that makes an interesting headline, it says more about the strength of Apple’s brand loyalty than it does about the long term prospects of the iPad Pro itself. The fact remains that the iPad Pro—or even iPad in general—is not an existential threat to the PC market.
First, let’s take a quick look at the numbers. IDC claims that Apple shipped about two million iPad Pros in the most recent quarter, compared to about 1.6 million Surface tablets. Personally, I have always taken exception to measuring success based on units shipped. A vendor can ship hundreds of thousands of units to sit in retailer warehouses. That doesn’t mean anybody is actually buying them. For historical reference, Google “HP TouchPad”.
Setting that semantic disagreement aside, let’s look at the IDC data at face value. Assuming Apple sold two million units to Microsoft’s 1.6 million, there are still two things right off the bat that stand out to me. First, I agree with my Forbes peer Brooke Crothers. He stated, “The iPad Pro is Apple’s newest iPad and was only released in November. It’s a big, brash rethink of the iPad. And, needless to say, the initial shipment numbers for an iOS device — even a pricey one — are typically pretty high.” Translation: Can Apple sustain that volume or is it just a reflection of the launch rush?
Second, the iPad Pro may outpace the Surface tablet line, but the Surface tablet line is a drop in the bucket of the PC market, or even the 2-in-1 hybrid market. It still makes for compelling, breathless headlines—everyone loves a good Apple vs. Microsoft battle. In the end, though, aside from the headlines Apple’s iPad Pro isn’t really putting a dent in anything.
If you don't like One Note, the group of Microsoft developers behind its recent experimental iOS and Android apps could soon have a better note-taking app available called Plumbago.
"Whether you're writing, sketching ideas, or doodling designs, Plumbago offers the tools you need to easily capture them," according to Microsoft Research.
The app offers various writing tools, such as a pencil, highlighter, erasing tools, and different colors, on a circular or 'radial' menu -- a kind of painter's palette that can be moved anywhere on a page. To reveal more options, the user swipes to spin the wheel.
The app hasn't been released yet but Microsoft Research has published a detailed outline of its key features and functionality.
The countdown is on to Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco and —as usual– retailers are dropping prices on big screen TVs in the hopes of luring football fans into springing for the ultimate viewing experience.
But what if your plans for watching the Superbowl on Sunday are smaller? And more mobile? Or budget constrained?
If you’re at work, have no interest in cramming a wall mounted 60-inch monstrosity into your studio apartment, don’t dig the sports bar scene or don’t feel like shelling out for a cable TV subscription just to see one game, you have options. You can watch Super Bowl 50 for free on your tablet, PC or smartphone. Here’s how.
The key to watching the Super Bowl without cable is the official broadcaster of the game, CBS. The network offers free CBS Sports apps for all the major mobile platforms —iOS, Android and Windows 10— and has committed to providing the entire Super Bowl 50 production, live. You even get the Coldplay halftime show.
Use the free CBS Sports app to stream Super Bowl 50 on your tablet (Credit: CBS Sports)
Amazon and Samsung have each created tablets targeting customers looking for a full-size tablet with a low price. The Galaxy Tab A 9.7 and Fire HD 10 have quite a bit in common, so it’s not easy for consumers to choose which is the best option for them.
The HD 10 starts at $230, and the Tab A 9.7 is currently $249, so the prices are roughly equal. And both run Android, though Amazon has heavily modified its version.
We’re here to help people decide which of these two is the right fit.
Amazon’s latest tablet has a 10.1-inch screen with a 16:10 aspect ratio, but Samsung went for a 9.7-inch display with a 4:3 ratio. This makes the Tab A 9.7 shorter but wider overall than its rival. These devices are equally thin, but the Fire is slightly heavier — justified by its slightly larger screen.
Specifically, the HD 10 is 10.3 x 6.3 x 0.30 inches, and it weighs 0.95 pounds. The Tab A 9.7 is 9.6 x 6.6 x 0.30 inches, and 1.1 lbs.
Amazon went with an all plastic casing, but Samsung went with metal, making its tablet look more professional. The Fire is available in black and white casings, while the Galaxy Tab comes in those colors as well as blue.
The Tab A 9.7 has a screen resolution of only 1024 x 768, so it has a low pixel density of 132 pixels per inch. The HD 10’s display is 1280 x 800, resulting in a density of 149 ppi. This means the Amazon device has a screen that’s marginally better looking, but neither is all that great, as other models have pixel densities around 250 ppi.
As mentioned, Samsung chose a 4:3 aspect ratio, which many people prefer for accessing the Web, word processing, and other productivity tasks. Amazon picked 16:10, which makes it a better option for watching wide-screen movies and TV shows.
The Fire’s screen is slightly larger with a higher pixel density, but which of these screens is better depends heavily on what the user wants to display.
Canonical still believes in convergence. The company that makes the open-source OS Ubuntu and tried to raise $32 million for a smartphone that can power a PC has announced its first ever tablet, promising that the device is just a keyboard and mouse away from a full desktop experience. Plug in these peripherals and the 10.1-inch tablet switches from a full-screen mobile layout to a windowed user interface. Add a monitor, and you’ve got an Ubuntu PC. It’s a niche computing experience, but it’s one that’s full of possibilities.
The definitions of "specific form factors [are] increasingly arcane and outdated," Canonical CEO Jane Silber tells The Verge. "I think what’s happening in the industry is the blurring of those segments and the need for a consistent platform and user experience across those." Silber thinks Ubuntu can supply this.
As with Canonical’s previous mobile devices, the company has chosen to simply borrow an existing product and add Ubuntu — in this case, the Aquaris M10 tablet from Spanish manufacturer BQ. With 2GB of RAM, 1280 x 800 resolution, and a 1.5 GHz MediaTek processor, the M10 is far from a powerhouse, but the build quality is surprisingly good. It feels solid despite weighing less than an iPad Air, and the matte black plastic body looks neat and businesslike.
While in tablet mode, the M10 retains the quirks of Ubuntu’s mobile OS. Instead of having a single home screen or app drawer, there are scopes — themed screens that collate information from apps in certain categories, say, News or Messages. You can swipe in from the left of the tablet to bring up a task bar with pinned applications, or swipe in the from the right to access for a carousel-style app switcher with recently-used programs.
Of course, you’re not going to find the selection of apps you’d get on iOS or Android (or even Windows Phone), but Canonical is confident its scopes cover the key, non-frivolous, bases: email, messaging, news, music, etc. More importantly, though, is the future of the platform.
The truth about tablets though is that because they aren't used as nearly as frequently as smartphones do, people just don't have the need to update them every year. So yes—tablets are down in sales, but they also aren't going anywhere anytime soon. If you're out for a tablet right now, you're looking out a lot of great tablets from 2015 and early 2016, including the new products from companies like Apple, Samsung, and Google. Here are our recommendations for what's out there right now.
10. iPad Air 2 - $499: The iPad Air 2 came out originally in late 2014 and has been our mostly highly recommended tablet ever since. Apple decided to skip out on giving it an update in 2015 (instead opting to introduce the iPad Pro), leaving us wondering what Apple was going to do next with it's iPad Air line. We are now looking at a new springtime release date for the iPad Air 3 rather than the traditional October release, means the Air 2 will most certainly be getting a price reduction soon.
3. Surface 3 - $399: I’ve always been a fan of Microsoft’s Surface Pro line, but the lighter Surface products have always struggled to impress and find their sweet spot. This a true hybrid product, but for the purposes of distinguishing between laptops and tablet, the Surface 3 falls into this list and really stands out.
It’s impressively powerful to set up and use as a productivity device, as well as a tablet you can just recline and watch videos with. If an affordable Windows tablet is what you're looking for, the Surface 3 is really the only tablet you should be seriously considering.
Microsoft Surface Phone is a tricky device because nobody knows for sure if it’s coming, or should we say nobody knew? Microsoft recently registered surfacephone.com which more or less confirms that the tech company is planning to roll out the device sooner or later, or it’s at least in conceptual stages.
We first started hearing about the Microsoft Surface Phone in the middle of 2015 and it started out when the Surface Pro 3 rumors started too. The concept is pretty simple if you take a look at the facts: Microsoft has a huge success in the tablet market with their Surface Pro lineup and it had a very poor success in the phone business so it’s basically making a smartphone from the Surface Pro lineup.
February 7, 2016
Congratulations to Peyton Manning & the Denver Broncos
Consumers eyeing Microsoft's Surface Pro 4 tablet or Band 2 activity tracker can save some cash thanks to a new sale.
The Surface Pro 4 comes in five variations, each now on sale for $100 off the usual retail price at the Microsoft Store. The offer is good through February 27. The Microsoft Band 2 is on sale for $200, a savings of $50, through February 20. Consumers can take advantage of the discounts through Microsoft's website and its retail stores in the US and Puerto Rico.
Launched in October, the Surface Pro 4 is the latest iteration of Microsoft's popular tablet that can convert into a laptop via an attachable keyboard. The Band 2 is Microsoft's newest entry in the market for fitness and activity trackers.
I was recently in the market for a tablet for my young son. Much as it pains me to admit it, I didn't even consider Nvidia’s Shield tablet K1. I thought it was just another 8” Android tablet.
Boy, I was wrong.
The Shield tablet K1 has some impressive hardware under the hood. It is powered by a 2.2 GHz ARM Cortex A15 CPU. The graphics of the tablet are driven by Nvidia’s Tegra K1 192 core Kepler GPU. And all of this is supported by 2GB of RAM.
The tablet comes with mere 16GB of storage but you can use a microSD card to expand storage.
The 8-inch 1920x1200 multi-touch Full HD display is sharp and bright. It’s not as pixel perfect as is the iPad Mini, but then the target of the tablet is gamers and games don’t go over 1080p.
It has an 802.11n 2x2 MIMO 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi (something you will need for game streaming), Bluetooth 4.0 LE for connecting to gamepad, and other peripherals.
It comes with an HDMI port so you can use the tablet as controller for your Nvidia Shield Android TV or you can plug it into a TV monitor to play games or watch movies on a bigger screen.
Overall tablet sales are slumping, except for Surface, thanks to good hardware and Windows 10.
Microsoft didn't get off to a great start with the Surface tablet, coming late and confusing the market with the RT and x86 versions. But its legendary patience is once again paying off, in that Windows 10 tablets are the one bright spot in tablet sales.
The latest statistics from market research firm Strategy Analytics showed the overall tablet market dropped by 11% in the last quarter when compared to the same period in 2014, with iPad sales in particular falling 25% and Android tablets down 7%.
Windows tablets, however, grew by a very impressive 59%. At least part of that is likely due to the fact that Surface had so much room to grow, while the iPad market was more mature. But even with that caveat, that's still good news for Microsoft.
The Surface tablet has the advantage of the huge Windows library of applications, plus a company really behind it. I get the feeling the iPad and Android tablets are secondary products in the eyes of their vendors and not part of a real strategic push, while Microsoft is investing much more into the Surface tablet.
Most laptops are fragile. One hard bump or accidental brush with gravity and you could be looking at a cracked screen -- or worse. Not good news for students and other folks who lead, er, intense lifestyles.
Sure, you could buy a ruggedized, battlefield-ready system, but it's likely to be heavy, clunky and expensive.
Or not, if you hop on this Woot deal: the Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga 11E for $269.99, plus $5 for shipping. Unlike most Woot stuff, it's new not refurbished. Like most Woot stuff, it's available today only and while supplies last. Regular price for this configuration: $799.
Just to be clear, this is not the Chromebook version of this machine. In fact, it runs Windows 10 Professional. The latter nets you some decidedly business-oriented extras, including remote-access services and Bitlocker drive encryption.
The Surface Book is a powerful 2-in-1 PC, and nobody will beat Microsoft when it comes to display and build.
Think of the device as a 13.5-inch Surface Pro 4 tablet mounted on a full, detachable keyboard that includes an extra battery and a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GPU on most units. That makes it ideal for editing 4K video, 3D modeling and even gaming. The well-crafted hinge attaching the keyboard to the removable screen is perhaps the Surface Book's defining trait, and it raises the bar for future 2-in-1 PCs.
Enterprise pros and cons: The Surface Book may be fancy, but it's still a PC -- utility and all. It runs Windows 10 Pro, features two USB 3.0 ports and a full-sized SD card reader, and it ships with the excellent Surface Pen. The screen can detach and operate as a standalone tablet, or it can fold directly onto the keyboard, making for a thicker and more stable tablet. The added keyboard battery should power the Surface Book for a full day of use. Plus, enterprise IT will like the Surface Book's support for Windows Hello, Microsoft's facial-recognition camera for user authentication and access control.
Released last year, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 was not impressive enough as expected. It had a number of bugs and it’s apparent that fixes and some improvements were imperative. The predecessor launched in October 2015, and now the next in line, the Microsoft Surface Pro 5, is expected in the latter part of this year with newer upgrades. Rumored specs and features about the new tablet are spreading online. Let’s find them out and their respective difference to the Surface Pro 4 specs.
The Surface Pro 5 is expected to come with a Surface Pen, the batteries of which can charge automatically by placing it on a dock connected to the tablet. The beauty of the stylus lies in its ferromagnetic material that serves as the charging terminal to boost the battery power. The Surface Pro 4 stylus pen may be battery-operated, but it cannot be recharged. Hence, by including a rechargeable stylus battery, Microsoft hopes to enhance portability and functionality of the upcoming device.
New reports by The Cubic Lane hinted at some interesting predictions. With newer developments and progress in technology, the upcoming Surface Pro 5 is expected to weigh lighter than its predecessor, which weighed 1.76 lbs. Now, carry your tablet anywhere without feeling its weight and keeping your productivity to the mark.
Unlike the current version, the Surface Pro 5 will come with a fingerprint scanner installed on it. Users find it difficult to access the fingerprint scanner in the Surface Pro 4 which is embedded in the keyboard that users don’t always carry with their tablets.
This week buyers have the option of grabbing the lowest prices anywhere on Apple's current generation 13" MacBook Air models together with three full years of AppleCare extended protection, and also snag a free Apple Super Drive, free shipping, and no sales tax in 48 states with each order. Plus you can get the biggest discounts yet on WiFi iPad Pro.
The discounts for a brand-new, sealed iPad Pros have finally arrived but over at eBay Deals. The online auction site has joined hands with Top-Rated-Plus seller Electronics Valley to knock $100 off the price of Apple's 32GB WiFi iPad Pros and 128GB WiFi iPad Pros, selling models in Space Grey, Gold, and Silver for $699.99 and $849.99 with free shipping.
32GB Silver WiFi iPad Pro for $699.99 ($100 off)
32GB Space Gray WiFi iPad Pro for $699.99 ($100 off)
32GB Gold WiFi iPad Pro for $699.99 ($100 off)
128GB Silver WiFi iPad Pro for $849.99 ($100 off)
128GB Space Gray WiFi iPad Pro for $849.99 ($100 off)
Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 may be running low on inventory, but a Reddit user with the handle "Splice1138" has come up with a brilliant, but simple, hardware mod for the tablet. It involves placing a grey Lego faceplate on the back of the Surface Pro 3 so it can be used to attach accessories.
Splice1138 posted up a series of photos on Imgur showing how the Lego faceplate was cut and sanded down so that it could be taped to the Surface Pro 3's back. The edges had to be sanded down to allow the tablet's built-in kickstand to keep working, although it doesn't have as much range.
This allows for accessories like a USB hub, a power cord, a PC mouse and more to attach to the back of the Lego faceplate, and thus eliminate a lot of awkwardness in carrying extra items for the Surface Pro 3. He even put in his version of a Windows logo on the faceplate. He states:
"I'm happy to sacrifice a little range for the convenience and fun of sticking things to the back of my Surface. I've already gotten several compliments in the field, people instantly recognize LEGO."
Even though this modification was made for the Surface Pro 3, the same Lego faceplate could also be cut down and taped onto any Surface tablet model.
Apple is currently on target to start selling its next iPhone and iPad models the same week that the new products are introduced in March. Apple is currently planning to introduce a new 4-inch iPhone dubbed the “iPhone 5se” and a new iPad Air at an event on Tuesday, March 15th, then put the products up for sale online and in retail stores as early as Friday, March 18th, according to sources. Apple is unlikely to offer pre-orders for the new devices, according to sources who cautioned that the plans could still change.
Launching the new iPhone and iPad models so soon after introduction and not offering pre-orders would be a new strategy for Apple. Apple typically releases new iPhone models one or two weeks following the introduction events and an online pre-order period. A similar strategy has been followed for many new iPad releases, but the iPad Pro hardware actually went on sale over two months following the device’s initial introduction. Manufacturing of the new 4-inch iPhone began ramping up in January, sources say.
The iPad Air 3 is said to include a Smart Connector and support for Apple-branded accessories, which could mean that updated Smart Keyboards and Apple Pencil support for the 9.7-inch device are in the pipeline. The new iPad is also expected to include a variant of the A9 processor, an upgraded camera system, and potentially a rear flash for brighter photos
The Surface Book is expensive and isn't for everyone but it is a wonderful piece of engineering
With its Surface line of two-in-one hybrids, Microsoft has long touted the rather bold claim that its Surface Pro was the "tablet that could replace your laptop", and, truth be told, its latest iteration, the Surface Pro 4, has got very close to meeting those lofty exultations.
However, not everyone wants a tablet that replaces their laptop. Some people are better suited to a more traditional laptop device that occasionally serves double-duties as a tablet when needed. Enter the Microsoft Surface Book, the company's very first laptop that aims to be the very best Windows 10 device ever conceived.
Earlier today, Microsoft revealed that the US Department of Defense would start upgrading its computers to Windows 10, and now the company has revealed that the Surface Pro 3, Surface Pro 4 and the Surface Book have passed the DoD's certification process for Multifunction Mobile Devices (MMD). As a result, the devices will be available through the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) Unified Capabilities (UC) Approved Products List (APL) for deployment.
Key Features: Bundled keyboard dock and Surface Pen; Optional secondary NVIDIA GeForce GPU; Intel Core i5 or i7 CPU; 13.3-inch PixelSense display; 8GB or 16GB RAM; 8-megapixel rear, 5-megapixel front cameras
What is the Surface Book?
Microsoft’s Surface range of tablets has steadily been growing a huge following since the US powerhouse started shipping the devices in 2012. And for reasons that go beyond monstrous amounts of marketing and product placement.
The 2015 Microsoft Surface Pro 4 offered top-end specifications within a neat portable design and is, in my opinion, the ultimate productivity tablet at the moment. However, its usability as a laptop is marred by its lack of a dedicated GPU and bundled keyboard – the Type Cover keyboard accessory still costs over £100 extra.
The Surface Book, on paper, fixes these flaws, and is being marketed by Microsoft as a laptop first and a tablet second.
It seems like Microsoft has finally, completely solved its long-standing power problems with the Surface Book and Surface Pro 4. At least that’s the message its sending with a new firmware update that was released today.
According to Microsoft, the firmware update released Wednesday fixes an issue whereby both the Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 failed to go into a low-power “sleep” state. That’s resulted in less-than-expected battery life for both devices.
“Today’s updates include a set of Microsoft and Intel driver and firmware updates for Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 that will help you get the most of the power management options that Surface is designed to offer and continue to make your Surface more productive,” said Panos Panay in a blog post. Panay, the former chief of Microsoft’s Surface business, moved to a higher-level engineering role last year.
Why this matters: Someone of Panay’s rank wouldn’t normally be communicating a firmware update, but this is no ordinary patch: Complaints about the Book and SP4’s power issues have flooded Microsoft’s forums since last year. Early on, Microsoft executives said a fix was coming in 2016, which did not sit well with owners of the affected devices. Then when Microsoft released its Surface firmware in January, excitement quickly turned to disappointment when it lacked the expected power updates.
Panay said he’s conscious of the user feedback.
“Building devices people love is what drives our team,” Panay wrote. “It’s why we come in to work every morning and it’s what keeps us up at night. And feedback from our customers is really important to the team and to me personally. I read the blogs, I read the comments, I read social media, I read the forums…and so does the team. We love the energy. We’re listening and channeling that feedback directly into our products. Today we’re releasing an update to continue to address that feedback.”
After countless years of speculation, Apple finally launched a bigger version of its traditional iPad just a few months ago. While its increased format unlocks some potent new possibilities, the device also comes with a couple of drawbacks. In the end, how suitable is the iPad Pro for business use and how good is it as a notebook replacement?
The iPad Pro features a traditional Apple design; thin, elegant, premium and robust. The first time I held it in my hands, I realised how massive it actually is. Nonetheless, the tablet is just 6.8mm thick, weighs 713g and has a great feel in the hand. To put things into perspective, the iPad Air 2 (9.7-inch) and iPad Mini 4 (7.9-inch) are just a bit thinner (6.1mm) and weigh 473g and 300g.
The GSM Association, the trade organization that runs the Mobile World Congress show, also gives out the Global Mobile Awards during the trade show. For 2016, in the category of Best Mobile Tablet, the organization gave the award to Microsoft's Surface Pro 4.
This award shows that Microsoft's efforts to create tablets on their own continues to yield positive results for the company. Indeed, many of the Windows 10 tablets that have been released are clearly influenced by the Surface lineup. Even some non-Windows tablets have some similarties to the Surface, including, some might argue, Apple's recent iPad Pro.
The Huawei MateBook has a 12in IPS display running a 2160x1440 resolution, which can be connected to a detectable keyboard to turn it into a laptop, and comes running Windows 10 Home or Professional.
The device is 6.9mm thick and has a 10mm bezel around the display. It weighs 640g, notably lighter than the 713g iPad Pro.
Despite the slim frame the MateBook manages to house a sixth-generation Intel Core M processor running up to 3.1GHz. Top end versions of the hybrid come with an M7 chip and 8GB of memory, while Lower and midrange models have M3 and M5 processors respectively, paired with 4GB to 8GB of RAM.
Storage comes in 128GB, 256GB and 512GB options, giving the MateBook a similar solid state drive setup to rival hybrids.
The Huawei MateBook also manages to fit dual stereo speakers into the tablet to offer Dolby audio, although that’s two speakers short of the iPad’s quad setup. It has a twin microphone array and a front-facing camera.
Powering all this hardware is a 33.7Wh high-density lithium battery, which Huawei says will give 10 hours of average daily use.
With the way the 2-in-1 tablet market is picking up and how Microsoft has become the front-runner, it should be rather predictable that the sales of Microsoft Surface devices – which include the Surface 3, Surface Pro 4, and Surface Book laptop – have blown up in 2015.
According to a source in Microsoft’s supply chain, approximately 6 million Surface tablets made it out to customers last year, a nice 50 percent more than expected.
A trend is developing. The iPad – which consists of the standard model, Air 2, Mini 4, and iPad Pro – seems to be moving on a gradual downward slope in sales after a crescendo in 2013 that saw it average roughly 17.75 million each quarter. Thereafter it dropped to a per quarter average of about 17 million in 2014, falling even more to 13.71 million per quarter in 2015.
Lately it looks like the iPad Pro doesn’t have too much of an advantage over the Surface Pro 4 after it sold 2 million units to the Surface Pro’s 1.6 million last quarter. Are we seeing a shift in powers occurring in the market?
Today at Mobile World Congress, Lenovo introduced two new consumer Windows 10 PCs: YOGA 710 and 5101 convertible laptops and the ideapad MIIX 310 2-in-1 detachable tablet. We recognize consumers' need to work on multiple devices for different tasks. For example, they may text on a smartphone, work on a laptop, and read on a tablet. That's why we designed each of our new devices to either convert or detach into tablet mode, so users can do more with the comfort of typing on a keyboard and the power of the latest generation of Intel processors, while giving them long battery life2 to leave the power cord at home.
We created the new 11-inch YOGA 710 for travelers and mobile workers who are productive on the road. Powered by a 6th Gen Intel Core i7 processor on the 14-inch model and up to Core m5 processor on the smaller 11-inch model, the YOGA 710 comes with Windows 10 and is one of the most powerful and portable convertible laptops available. Users can multitask seamlessly between videoconferencing, emailing and editing photos on the go. Weighing only 1.04kg, its compact size and ability to convert into a tablet make it ideal for people looking to save space in their bags.
The YOGA 710 can flex into four modes that make it easy to type in laptop mode, present in stand mode, watch videos in tent mode, or browse in tablet mode. Its bigger sibling, the14-inch model, fits those looking for improved connectivity, via an innovative hinge antenna that delivers up to 20 percent better Wi-Fi connections than before.4 The 14-inch YOGA 710 also has an up to 256GB solid state drive (SSD) for fast access to movies, pictures, and files without having to use an external hard drive. It also has enhanced performance with optional next generation NVIDIA GeForce graphics.
Beautifully slim and light, both models offer up to 8 hours of battery so users can enjoy a movie marathon and still have charge to squeeze in a couple of hours of work.2 The FHD (1920x1080) display makes everything from movies and photos to games and video chat look sharper. The addition of Dolby Audio Premium energizes entertainment with rich, powerful sound that dynamically adjusts audio to deliver home theater quality in a virtual surround sound experience.
When Apple introduced its newest, biggest iPad in September — the giant 12.9-inch iPad Pro — the company also introduced a special stylus (sold separately) that could be used for writing, drawing, or navigation.
Critics actually loved the $99 Apple Pencil. But unfortunately, it looks like some of that accessory's important functions are going away pretty soon.
According to MacRumors, Apple has actually removed functionality from the Apple Pencil in the latest beta versions of iOS 9.3, an upcoming update that will bring lots of changes to iPhones and iPads this spring.
In iOS 9.2, the current version of iOS, you can use Apple Pencil to swipe across the screen, swipe between apps, tap and select text, scroll, and more.
In iOS 9.3, however, you can no longer use the Apple Pencil to scroll, select, or manipulate text. As iMore’s Serenity Caldwell points out, it also means the Apple Pencil can’t be used for cutting and editing video or audio. You can still use the Apple Pencil to write and draw within apps, however.
PC manufacturers first started copying Microsoft’s Surface last year, building devices that act as laptops with a detachable keyboard. While Microsoft may not have invented the 2-in-1 itself, its success with the Surface range of tablets has clearly inspired the industry. Up until this week, that has largely consisted of PC makers attempting to try the new form factor in a desperate attempt to boost falling computer sales. Now smartphone makers are getting in on the game.
Alcatel and Huawei announced 2-in-1 tablets powered by Windows 10 this week at Mobile World Congress. Both companies have never created this type of device before, but Huawei’s first effort is generating a lot of interest here in Barcelona, and it’s easy to see why. Huawei has taken its phone design and simply dragged and dropped it into a tablet form factor, and it works well. Dell, HP, Lenovo, and others have really struggled to transfer their PC design skills into 2-in-1 form factors, but phone makers like Huawei and Samsung have nailed it with ease recently.
2-in-1 tablets are now starting to mature to the point where they’re capable enough to use daily. Crazy twisting form factors from the Windows 8 era have been replaced with the idea of making a tablet work just like a laptop, with a keyboard that fades away when you don’t need it. Windows 10 has also helped on the software side, making things a lot easier to use with helpful modes for different form factors.
These new devices are still not perfect on the lap, but that seems to be a tradeoff that manufacturers still haven’t fully nailed. However, if you’re looking around for a laptop this year and you really want a tablet, it’s probably time to start considering all the various 2-in-1s. I use laptops, tablets, and 2-in-1s daily, and they're all starting to look and feel so similar. This form factor will only get better, and it's clearly here to stay.
My Surface Book did something unusual this morning: When I opened its lid, the device jumped to life, with the lock screen appearing almost instantaneously and the device ready for work. After four long months, the nightmare is over, at least for me: Thanks to a recent firmware update, Surface Book—and the nearly identical Surface Pro 4—can now sleep and wake up normally.
I was taking a few days off with my family when the Surface firmware updates hit last week. So when I arrived home on Friday, I immediately set out to update my sleep-challenged Surface Book to see whether the firmware update really fixed things.
(As I noted in Reassessing Microsoft Surface, the sleep issues that had ruined the Surface Book/Pro 4 experience for many users were not universal for reasons related to both computer science and black magic. So in my case, Surface Pro 4 has never had any issues. But the Surface Book could not be trusted to sleep at all, and would always “hot bag” it if I forgot to shut it down.)
MobileDemand is leading the way in the rugged Windows® tablet industry, consistently innovating and developing new products for mobile workforce productivity. Announced today, the company has created a robust, one-of-a-kind rugged case for the Microsoft® Surface™ 3 and Surface™ Pro 4. MobileDemand designed the cases as a participant in the Microsoft Designed for Surface Program.
The versatile rugged Surface cases from MobileDemand are impact-resistant with protected ports, preventing unwanted water and dust from entering the device. Engineered for maximum protection, the cases are constructed out of an enterprise-grade plastic with rubber bumpers occupying each corner for added shock absorption. It’s lightweight for mobile applications yet durable for tough, industrial jobs.
Easy to Carry and Hold – Both the Surface 3 and Surface Pro 4 cases offer a comfortable back hand strap, convenient briefcase handle and shoulder strap for reliable mobility. A secure grasp on the device is key to ease of use and preventing users from dropping the device, keeping IT costs down.
Proven Ruggedness – For a device to pass MIL-STD-810G testing, it must survive 26 drops from four feet. Many companies use up to five devices to pass those tests whereas MobileDemand uses only one and provides video recording and test reports as a resource. It is a testament to the high quality and standards of the product and is proven to protect your assets.
Fully Adjustable Easel – The cases feature an innovative rugged easel with a strong hinge for any-angle viewing. Strong magnets are embedded in the case which keeps it securely closed when not in use. In addition, when closed, the easel helps keep the Type Cover Keyboard securely attached to the tablet.
Easy Vehicle Mounting – Another standard feature of the Surface case is a clip for the MobileDemand Snap Mount. The optional vehicle mount is ultra-slim and sturdy, allowing the device to be securely docked in vehicles for added functionality in the field. The mount is engineered for quick insertion and release of the Surface tablet.
The Surface Screen Protector – Additionally, customers may shield the Surface 3 and Surface Pro 4 display from scratches, smudges and chips by implementing a chemically strengthened glass screen protector. The water-resistant screen protector reduces wear on the device while preserving optimal screen clarity and fast response to both touch and Pen.
The Surface Book is the first of a new line of laptops from Microsoft with a twist, the screen comes off.
Microsoft’s Surface Pro line started off clunky: big, heavy and rather industrial in design. The latest Surface Pro 4 is thinner and more capable, but pretty much the same: a Windows 10 tablet with a removable keyboard.
But the Surface Book is a different animal altogether: a laptop first, tablet second. It sounds like an odd distinction, but it makes quite a difference if the keyboard is your primary driver of a computer.
Washington: Microsoft raised the bar last year by releasing the Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book and both these devices have tasted good success so far
With the release of Microsoft's devices it became quite evident that other technology firms would offer products to compete with the Surface Pro line and we've seen several new products from Dell, Lenovo, ASUS, HP, and others. Dell XPS 12 is one device which is seen as a strong challenger for the Surface Pro 4.
The Dell XPS 12 is a 2-in-1 laptop which is available in two different models with a couple additional bundle offers. Dell sent along the $999 configuration (1080p/M5/8GB/128GB) configuration with the optional active stylus pen and optional 'slim' keyboard accessory. The folio case and travel keyboard of this device come standard with all configurations.
Dell's device has got a sleek and stylish design with a soft touch black shell and minimal side bezels. The two keyboard accessories are very impressive with large keys and great travel. Gray material covers both keyboard folios.
Microsoft Surface Pro 5 release date rumors seem to be everywhere: Update
Rumors are going viral about Microsoft’s Surface Pro 5. Reports suggest that the Surface Pro 5 will be introduced in the market in October later this year.
Though it is still around seven months when the tab will be introduced in the market, the tech enthusiasts have already started speculating as to how it will look and with what sorts of specifications it will come.
Though rumors in this regard started appearing a few weeks ago, things are becoming rather clearer now. A report in the MNR Daily says that while Microsoft has decided to launch Surface Pro 5 in October, it is going to take care of one of the big concerns of Surface Pro 4 users with the next edition in the series: battery life.
Fresh new ideas are in short supply in the tech industry, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that you’ve seen the Spectre X2 somewhere before – perhaps with a shiny Microsoft logo on the back. However, the big difference between HP’s latest hybrid and the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 is the price.
With the cheapest model in HP’s range including a Core m3 processor, detachable keyboard and stylus for £699, the Spectre x2 is £160 cheaper than its Microsoft-branded rival. HP, you’ve got my attention.
HP Spectre x2: Touchscreen and stylus
The Spectre x2’s touchscreen follows in the gloriously squared-off 3:2 footsteps of the Surface family – a wise decision. The 12in display isn’t quite as pin-sharp as it uses a lower 1,920 x 1,280-pixel resolution, but it’s still sharp enough by most standards, and good viewing angles mean images only drop off slightly in brightness and contrast as you move away from head-on.
With Apple gearing up to release a 4-inch iPhone dubbed the iPhone 5se next month, it's easy to forget that Apple is also planning to release a brand new iPad model. Over the past few months, it's been widely assumed that the device would be an iPad Air 3; but now comes word via 9to5Mac that Apple's next-gen iPad will, in fact, be a smaller version of the iPad Pro rather than an iPad Air 3.
While this might initially seem like a trivial point about product branding, it does point to Apple releasing a 9.7-inch iPad model with Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard support, two features which launched exclusively with the iPad Pro this past fall.
Apple will further differentiate the next-generation 9.7-inch iPad from its predecessor by making it part of the new iPad Pro line, according to sources. Much like the MacBook Pro comes in 13-inch and 15-inch sizes, the iPad Pro will soon come in 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch variations. This trend follows Apple not calling its 12-inch MacBook a new Air despite developing the product as an apparent successor to the MacBook Air.
Rebranding issues aside, the smaller version of the iPad Pro looks like it will be an extremely compelling device. Some of the rumors we've seen suggest that the device will come with a 4K display, 4GB of RAM, a vastly improved speaker system, a blazing fast A9x processor, a camera with LED flash support and even better battery life.
The least helpful question in assessing a new piece of tech is “How do you like it?” Why? Because sometimes, users have contradictory feelings about their devices – for example, something that meets a need in your daily life can still be exasperating to use.
So how would I answer the unhelpful question, “Hey, Android Guy, how do you like your new Microsoft Surface Pro 4?”
On the one hand, I love it. My skepticism that the Surface could perform as the “tablet that can replace your laptop,” as Microsoft loves to proclaim, has mostly subsided.
Still, my mixed experience might be able to help other people assess their planned tech purchases – or see whether there’s something they can do to improve how they’re using their existing tech. Here’s how my Surface Pro 4 adventure has gone so far.
Sometimes you really need a pen to do your work
One of the reasons I was drawn to the Surface was my long-time affinity for the idea of pen input. It goes back to the Middle Ages of computing, before everyone had a smartphone and touch interfaces were a far-off dream. In the early 200s I had a Thinkpad Windows XP Tablet PC Edition.
I’ve floated away from my pen-based computing habit in the past few years. My need to go with a laptop as my primary computer given the fact I travel frequently and like to write on the go often drew me to a MacBook. I’m still relatively happy with that decision, especially in how well things like iMessage and Continuity work together (I use an iPhone for testing along with my Nexus 6P).
But when it comes to large projects, research, or editing there’s a lot of value in the pen input. If you’re someone who reads a lot of text during the day and has to sometimes dissect boring analyst reports, the ability to highlight items and scribble notes is a serious game changer. The Surface’s pen and tablet combination really drives home how easy and elegant the user experience is when you have a well-deployed stylus and software combo. This has become critical to my workflow and I highly recommend it if you’re someone who requires doodling, highlighting or non-linear typing in your work or play.
Searching for the perfect tablet can often be a bit of a hassle. From comparing prices to size to screen resolution to function, everything gets jumbled and you end up right where you started – still with no tablet. For many, deciding on an operating system is step one in the process of finding a tablet that best fits their lifestyle. Luckily, Nextbook offers both Android and Windows models for the best of both worlds.
The Android operating system is a clear-cut winner for those who want a tablet for entertainment purposes. Nextbook's Android tablets come preloaded with many free apps such as VUDU Movies and TV, and Barnes and Noble NOOK. The Google Play store contains around 1.3 million apps – ensuring everyone will find the app they are looking for. Android tablets are also energy efficient and offer more flexibility for customization in a variety of ways. For those who want complete control over their device, rooting an Android tablet gives you access to more apps, the latest OS updates, new software skins, tweaks to boost speed and battery life, and more.
If you're looking for a work savvy tablet, Windows outperforms all others on the market. If you already own a Windows PC, a Windows tablet will be more familiar, easier to use, and have compatibility to transfer all your work files. A Windows tablet can connect to printers, scanners and DVD writers making it easy to bounce from presentations to meetings throughout the day. With Windows 10, you can experience features such as Cortana, Windows Continuum, and Microsoft Edge. Plus, have access to Office Mobile with Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote apps that are built for Windows tablets and designed for work on the go. Productivity is increased by the ability to use various screens at one time and the addition of a stylus, mouse or keyboard.
Check out all the different styles online and choose between the Android entertainment guru and the Windows tech genius. No matter your preference in tablet style, there is a Nextbook just for you!
Apple will be unveiling a brand new set of products on March 21, which comes a day before the company's big face-off with the FBI, (over a motion that would compel Apple to help hack an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino terrorists.)
The new devices said to be showcased include the next generation of the iPad, new Apple Watch bands, increased support for Apple Pay, and an iPhone that is the same size as the iPhone 5s but with a faster chip. The announcement is expected to be at Apple's Town Hall in Cupertino.
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.