lenovo

JBL’s $250 Google Assistant smart display is now available for pre-order

Posted by | Android, artificial intelligence, chromecast, computing, Gadgets, Google, Google Assistant, hardware, JBL, lenovo, LG, TC | No Comments

It’s been a week since Lenovo’s Google Assistant-powered smart display went on sale. Slowly but surely, its competitors are launching their versions, too. Today, JBL announced that its $249.95 JBL Link View is now available for pre-order, with an expected ship date of September 3, 2018.

JBL went for a slightly different design than Lenovo (and the upcoming LG WK9), but in terms of functionality, these devices are pretty much the same. The Link View features an 8-inch HD screen; unlike Lenovo’s Smart Display, JBL is not making a larger 10-inch version. It’s got two 10W speakers and the usual support for Bluetooth, as well as Google’s Chromecast protocol.

JBL says the unit is splash proof (IPX4), so you can safely use it to watch YouTube recipe videos in your kitchen. It also offers a 5MP front-facing camera for your video chats and a privacy switch that lets you shut off the camera and microphone.

JBL, Lenovo and LG all announced their Google Assistant smart displays at CES earlier this. Lenovo was the first to actually ship a product, and both the hardware as well as Google’s software received a positive reception. There’s no word on when LG’s WK9 will hit the market.

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Sales of PCs just grew for the first time in six years

Posted by | Acer, Apple, chromebook, Computer Hardware, computing, Dell, fujitsu, Gadgets, gartner, HP, lenovo, mobile devices, technology | No Comments

Don’t look now, but the PC might not be dead. According to Gartner, collector of marketshare and industry metrics, worldwide shipments of personal computers just experienced the first year-over-year growth since 2012. Shipments totaled 62.1 million units, which is a 1.4 percent increase from the same time period in 2017. The report states “experienced some growth compared with a year ago” but goes on to caution declaring the PC industry as in recovery just yet.

The top five PC vendors all experienced growth with Lenovo seeing the largest gains of 10.5% — though that could be from Lenovo completing a joint venture with Fujitsu. HP grew 6.1%, Dell 9.5%, Apple 3% and Acer 3.1%. All good signs for an industry long thought stagnate. This report excludes Chromebooks from its data. PC vendors experienced growth without the help of Chromebooks, which are the latest challenger to the notebook computer.

Gartner points to the business market as the source of the increased demand. The consumer market, it states, is still decreasing as consumers increasing use mobile devices. Yet growth in the business sector will not last, it says.

“In the business segment, PC momentum will weaken in two years when the replacement peak for Windows 10 passes.” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner said in the report. “PC vendors should look for ways to maintain growth in the business market as the Windows 10 upgrade cycle tails off.”

Consumers will likely continue, for the most part, to keep a computer around but since the web is the new desktop, the upgrade cycle for a causal user will keep getting longer. As long as a home has a computer that can run Chrome, that’s likely good enough for most people.

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Lenovo teases a slick, all-screen smartphone that doesn’t have a notch

Posted by | Apple, Asia, iPhone X, lenovo, Mobile, Notch, TC | No Comments

Lenovo has teased a new arrival that might top Apple’s iPhone X in a bid to deliver a true all-screen smartphone.

Apple’s iPhone X goes very close but for a tiny bezel and its distinctive notch, but Lenovo’s Z5 seems like it might go a step further, according to a teaser sketch (above) shared by Lenovo VP Chang Cheng on Weibo that was first noted by CNET.

The device is due in June and Cheng claimed it is the result of “four technological breakthroughs” and “18 patented technologies,” but he didn’t provide further details.

The executive previously shared a slice of the design — see right — on Weibo, with a claim that it boasts a 95 percent screen-to-body ratio.

Indeed, the image appears to show a device without a top screen notch à la the iPhone X. Where Lenovo will put the front-facing camera, mic, sensors and other components isn’t clear right now.

A number of Android phone-makers have copied Apple’s design fairly shamelessly. That’s ironic given that Apple was widely derided when it first unveiled the phone.

Nonetheless, the device has sold well and that’s captured the attention of Huawei, Andy Rubin’s Essential, Asus and others who have embraced the notch. The design is so common now that Google even moved the clock in Android P to make space for the notch.

Time will tell what Lenovo adds to the conversation. The company is in dire need of a hit phone — it trails the likes of Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and Huawei on home soil in China — and the hype on the Z5 is certainly enough to raise hope.

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Google launches smart displays with JBL, Lenovo, LG and Sony

Posted by | artificial intelligence, CES 2018, Gadgets, Google, Google Assistant, Google Assistant at CES 2018, google home, hardware, JBL, lenovo, smart display, Sony, TC | No Comments

 We’ve been waiting for Google to bring its Assistant to devices with a screen. After all, voice assistants are great — until you need some visual information to go with their answers. But Google is not launching a Google Home with a screen. Instead, the company today announced it is working with JBL, Lenovo, LG and Sony to launch new smart displays later this year. Read More

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The Minifree Libreboot T400 is free as in freedom

Posted by | BIOS, Booting, computing, Gadgets, lenovo, linux, TC, Thinkpad | No Comments

 The Libreboot T400 doesn’t look like much. It’s basically a refurbished Lenovo Thinkpad with the traditional Lenovo/IBM pointer nubbin and a small touchpad. It’s a plain black laptop, as familiar as any luggable assigned to a cubicle warrior on the road. But, under the hood, you have a machine that fights for freedom. The T400 runs Libreboot, a free and open BIOS and the… Read More

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Select Lenovo Android devices will ship with Office and Skype preloaded

Posted by | Apps, lenovo, Microsoft, Mobile, Motorola | No Comments

Moto G4 One user’s bloatware is another’s feature. And really, depending on where you fall on Microsoft productivity software, this could go either way, really. Lenovo announced today that it’ll be preloading the software giant’s offerings on future handsets – namely Office, Skype and OneDrive. No word on specific hardware, only that the deal includes… Read More

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Is Smartphone Innovation All Tapped Out?

Posted by | Android, BlackBerry Priv, Europe, Gadgets, lenovo, Mobile, mobile device, MWC16, privacy, Samsung Electronics, Security, smartphone, smartphones, TC, Virtual reality, VR, Wileyfox | No Comments

IMG_1732 A panel session probing the perennial heads or tails of mobile device commoditization vs mobile device innovation here at MWC 2016 earlier today heard an interesting range of views. Speakers ran the gamut of mobile makers big and small (Samsung, Motorola/Lenovo and Wileyfox), through to chipset maker Qualcomm, alternative open Android flavor Cyanogen, and mobile operator Telefonica. Read More

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