Catch Aaron's notes on hardware from his March update broadcast:
- New iPad hit the scene this month boasting a dual core processor with better graphics and video. The new release promises the same battery life as its predecessors despite the higher resolution screen. Bonus – older models have dropped $100 in price!
- Intel is settling into its new chip set. The biggest bonus it’s a lot better powered so we’ll start seeing laptops show up with the computing power of a desktop without the power draw. This will mean we’ll have portable devices that truly have the potential of the traditional desktop.
- Intel and AMD both took a stab at discreet graphics on a single chip designed for a portable market. Will this really satisfy users looking performing graphic intense jobs on their portable devices? Aaron weighs in during his March debrief.
- Pricing landscape for hard drives is still dismal. Prices are still going up due to global production issues. By next year there will be a useful 1 TB SSD for the consumer community. Reportedly it won’t be much faster than a spinning storage drive yet the drive for solid state is speed, durability and the price point is $3.00 to $4.00 per GB compared to desktop hard drives which come in as low as $0.95 per GB and dropping.
- OnLive is starting to leverage virtual graphics so your tablet can work like a computer. Currently they offer a monthly fee based model with a free one-month trial. You need 2mbps bandwidth up and down. (Normally home-based internet/DSL is 4mbps down and 5-12k up.) Cable could handle it if you’re only running one of these devices at a time. This could be a great opportunity for small businesses with a high-speed business cable setup. Eventually the business class version of this offering will allow for networking of devices. New TV set boxes will certainly take advantage of this technology bringing the desktop to your living room entertainment center.
In this month's hardware update, Aaron discusses the foll0wing:
- Intel has put out a new chip. And there’s a new chip set for the new chip—socket 2011. Looks like it’s going to be a desktop and server chip with 8 slots of memory, which means you can put a ton more memory on the board—doubled from the historical standard of four slots.
- Aaron recently purchased the Transformer Prime. Shortcomings? They took away a few things from the original, going more for aesthetics over function. For instance, the solid aluminum case makes it sleek and durable, but also makes it difficult to get a wi-fi signal. They’ve also eliminated one of the original USB ports: the original had two, the new model has only one on the keyboard dock that comes with the device.?Pluses? The new Transformer has the ability to read any SD card and mount it as media, which most portable devices are not capable of doing. Aaron has had success plugging external hard drives into his new device and it just works—no special formatting needed. This new Android also boasts a file manager. The speed upgrade has not gone unnoticed either!?Also, this is the first portable device that provides users the ability to manage power settings in a manner similar to a laptop. Performance mode gives you the juice you need to render high quality graphics and increase your speed, eco mode gives your battery life more longevity, and there’s a balance mode to give you something in between. If more portable devices adopt this level of management users will be better equipped to have the power they need on-demand.
- Hardware advancement in general is slowing down. Companies are not going to make giant leaps in their new releases if they’re only competing against themselves. This new trend has both Intel and AMD releasing new products with smaller increments of advancements such as the newest AMD video card—the 7000 series.
- Windows 8 is on the horizon. The same interface was planned from?Smartphone-to-server, but word is that Microsoft has scaled back their original grandiose plans to be more practical for the specific needs of the individual environments.
- The new Galaxy Note tablet was advertised during the Super Bowl, although it’s not out yet, but it is promising big things!
- Solid-state drives are dropping in price as production ramps back up after the flooding in Thailand and other factors affecting our global economy. Standard hard drives and spinning storage on the other hand is seeing an uptick in pricing.
Aaron Brenkus reports back on the hardware news as 2011 draws to a close. Get his opinion on the new Asus Transformer Prime, Amazon Kindle Fire, Samsung Galaxy Tablet and Windows Phone System. Plus AMD and Intel promise to deliver longer battery life; due to roll out Q1 of 2012.