Tag Archive | "dell venue 8 pro"

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 8 thoughts and videos. (P.S. I’ve ordered one)

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I can’t get the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 8 off my mind.

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What has the Surface Pro 3, the Flex 10 and the Samsung Q1u got in common? A stand! The Lenovo Yoga tablet 2 8 (and 10-inch) has a stand too and at under 1 pound / 426 grams it’s the lightest self-standing PC in the world. That makes it interesting for me, especially as it’s got a 1920×1200 screen, a big battery, an LTE option and a starting price of just $299 (dual-band WiFi version.) According to a retailer in Germany that has it up for pre-order there’s a digital compass and GPS. This is too good. I hope not though because I’ve just ordered it. I’m expecting an early November delivery.

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 8 specs and more information.

The other interesting aspect here is the battery. This isn’t the lightest 8-inch Windows PC because it’s got a huge 24Wh battery inside. In comparison to the Lenovo Miix 2 8, which is one of the lightest, it’s got 35% more capacity. [The capacity is quoted at 6500 mAh. We can assume that it’s based on a 3.7V battery. Anything else would be too much for this weight.]

Take a look at some of the images and imagine the use cases here. Bluetooth keyboard, kitchen, seat-back, car, armchair…

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Wolfson® Master HiFi™ audio processing and Dolby® surround sound

Don’t forget that Lenovo are touting good speakers too so the Yoga Tablet 2 8 could end up being your hotel-room best friend.

The camera could be the best camera yet on a Windows tablet…8MP rear camera with f2.2 wide-aperture lens, advanced glare-reducing glass and a BSI 2 sensor.

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 8 (Windows) issues.

Here are the trade-offs you’ll have to consider. 1) It’s not the lightest. The Dell Venue 8 Pro remains the best ‘reader’ Windows tablet on the market. 2) The stand/battery might improve the portrait reading experience but it might cause problems when thumb-typing. 3) There’s no HDMI port. You’ll get Miracast for video-mirroring but it’s not good enough for an interactive experience in my opinion. DisplayLink over USB 2.0 works for basic office use though. 4) The SoC isn’t going to be any more powerful than those of the first-generation Baytrail tablets although there’s a possibility that the eMMC could be faster as it is on the Toshiba Encore 2 8 tablet. 5) Still no USB 3.0 and the charge+data issue remains. There may be hacks for the latter issue.

If you’re not feeling it for the Yoga tablet 2 yet, take a look at this video from Mobilegeeks. I’ll add more to this playlist.

4 weeks to wait for my hands-on. Can you wait that long or are you pre-ordering?

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 8 specs and information in our database here.

Dell Venue 8 7000. Hands-on and Realsense Snapshot demos

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I was asked for my opinion on the price of the Dell Venue 8 7000 just after it was announced and all I could think of was the nice looking Lenovo Tab S8 which is very similar, for about $199. After handling the Dell Venue 8 7000 I now see a product worth much more than that. The amazing OLED 2K screen is punchy and sharp. The 6mm thin design is light and stylish and the 3 additional Realsense snapshot cameras offer some interesting options for photographers. In this video you’ll see some of those features being demonstrated.

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After talking to a number of people about the Dell Venue 8 700 I know know the following.

  • It will be available in November.
  • There will be an LTE version. (Intel 7260)
  • It runs on Merrifield (Intel |Z35xx-series)
  • The screen is  2K resolution OLED
  • The base configuration will be 2GB RAM and 16GB storage
  • An SDK will be released but it’s looking like early 2015 before developers can create apps

 

Youll find out more in the video after the images…

 

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Dell Venue 8 7000 Tablet with Realsense launches at IDF14

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From the Intel press release.

Michael Dell and Krzanich previewed an upcoming Dell tablet with first-of-its-kind photo capabilities. The new Dell Venue 8 7000 Series with Intel® RealSense™ snapshot is the world’s thinnest tablet and will be available in time for the holiday season. Intel RealSense snapshot is an enhanced photography solution that creates a high-definition depth map to enable measurement, refocus and selective filters with a touch of a finger. It will introduce new capabilities and new ways of using the tablet, opening up a new creative horizon for developers to come up with apps that change how consumers engage with their photos.

 

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Updating from the keynote, live.

This 8-inch Android tablet will come with Realsense and a context sensing SDK from Intel which includes cloud-based context services.

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Prototype shown on stage (see below for live images)

 

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  • 2K resolution screen (Ultra HD(
  • Edge to Edge screen.
  • 8.4 inches.
  • Realsense snapshot
  • Early November availability
  • 6mm thin.

Price was not given.

Given the dimensions this has to be a Baytrail–based tablet. Update: Moorefield platform is being used here.

During Intel CEO Brain Krzanich’s keynote today at the Intel Developer Forum, Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell, previewed the upcoming Dell Venue 8 7000 Series – the first tablet with Intel® RealSense™ snapshot and the world’s thinnest tablet, measuring only 6mm in thickness. Intel RealSense snapshot is an enhanced photography solution that creates a high-definition depth map to enable measurement, refocus, and selective filters with a touch of a finger. It will introduce new capabilities and new ways of using the tablet, opening up a new creative horizon for developers to come up with apps that change how consumers engage with their photos.   For example, consumer can change the focus of a photo to different objects or foregrounds in editing.  Objects within the photo can also be measured.  The Android-based tablet is powered by the Intel® Atom™ Z3500 processor series and will be available in time for holiday.

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We’re at IDF14 and will try to bring you more details as soon as possible.

Toshiba Encore 2 WT8. This $192 Tablet PC arrives for review tomorrow.

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Looking for a sub $200 Tablet PC option? The Toshiba WT8 is $193 at Amazon.com today but the newer, lighter Toshiba Encore 2 WT8 is $192. This Windows with Bing PC arrives for testing tomorrow and I’m looking forward to it. What features have been stripped out of this Bing version of Windows? Is the new platform better? Is there significantly more available storage space or is this 1GB RAM limit going to negate any of the potential improvements? With the original Windows 8.1 8-inch tablets also at the $200-$220 mark, why bother with the Encore 2?

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Two important things to note about Windows with Bing are that 1) You don’t get an Office Home and Student license and 2) There’s only single language support. The latter may not affect many people (except myself – someone that relies on this for purchasing tablets in Germany and switching them to the English language) and the former is offset by a one Year Office 365 Personal license. You get Ooutlook included in that and you also get, in theory,  1TB of free online storage for the year. There may be other changes too.

There’s a 5.0MP auto-focus rear camera which could be useful if it’s as good as the one on the original WT8, microSD support up to 128GB and stereo speakers. As with the WT8 there’s no HDMI so you’ll need Miracast or DLNA support to stream movies to a bigger screen.

 

Toshiba Encore 2 8

If the Toshiba Encore 2 wants to be a competitor in the western market for tablet PCs it needs to beat the class-leading Dell Venue 8 Pro in features or undercut it by a big margin. This launch price isn’t enough to convince me but if the device checks out in my review for Notebookcheck and the price drops to $175 or less then it could be worth a closer look.

High-end 8-inch Windows tablets – Where do we go from here?

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I recently wrote about what a late-2014 high-end 8-inch Windows tablet could offer. I talked about Intel’s Realsense camera technology, 3G, USB3.1, 1080p screens and AC WiFi. A digitizer and additional access security could be interesting too but is there a market for these high-end features in the 8-inch sector? Could Microsoft create a market with a Surface Mini and a really special technical feature?

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MMV launches Console OS, a Dual OS Android project for your Windows PC

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consolebot-head-alphachannelBack at MWC we spoke to MMV CEO Christopher Price about dual-OS tablets, Ultrabooks and desktops. At that time they were public about iConsole.TV – an Android build designed to run games on high-power PC platforms. The idea of high-end gaming power is interesting but the more interesting topic for us was the promise that they were “building the first Android desktop PC.” [Watch the video here.] MMV have officially launched that project and it’s called Console OS. It’s going to be a true instant-switch dual-OS options for Windows PC owners.

Console OS is a part-completed dual-boot Android build that has the aim of being a complete desktop-capable fork of Android for X86 . The project has launched on Kickstarter where you can support and influence the project. If the project is successful we could see a true hypervisor-controlled instant-switch Android build in 2015.

The Kickstarter project is mainly geared towards building Console OS Pro – a version with hypervisor-based switching, service layers, maps and stores. This version will also, eventually, include OpenGL4.0 support and a Windowing system. Console OS will also be available to everyone soon as a basic dual-boot version.

Neither version will ship with the Android application store or Google service integration but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible. It’s up to MMV, OEMS and Google to solve that issue and there’s obviously going to be money directed towards teasing OEMs into the project. Unofficial Google solutions are likely to appear but the hope is that Google would eventually come to their senses and support this commercially led project. The Amazon store is has already been tested and MMV will also build a Console Store that will include enhanced apps. MMV are also promising to allow you to import applications from your existing Android devices.

Other Cosnole OS Pro features:

  • Toggle between native and modified user-interface.
  • Ten-Second toggle between Windows and Android.
  • The Hypervisor looks like it will be based on Xen and include XenGT graphics virtualization technology.
  • 2 apps can be run side by side (on both versions)
  • ‘Industry licensed’
  • Secure-Boot supported
  • Gaming OpenGL 4 will be supported in 2015
  • ASUS Transformer Book T100 will be one of the first products to get a tailored build
  • Kickstarter supporters will be able to vote on which devices get priority in the tailoring process.

I’ve taken a close look at the project and spoke to MMV and I think it’s one of the best dual OS projects yet. Where Bluestacks, the AMD-funded project, runs inside a Windows-based runtime and others from Insyde and AMI haven’t really got off the ground this is not only a good technical solution but a well-organised project. Choosing to go through Kickstarter means it gets a good amount of free marketing too.

So why would you want Console OS? The free, dual-boot version may not interest too many people outside the early-adopter class but I think many will be interested in testing games on devices like the T100 and even some more powerful Ultrabooks. The Pro project is going to be the more interesting one for the mainstream though. There are going to be device-specific issues that will limit the audience at first but by choosing popular devices first – and the Transformer Book T100 is a perfect example – they should improve their reach quickly. Ultimately the OEMs need to pick up Console OS to make it truly successful and that success really does ride on being able to get a full Store and quality service layers into the product. Google is obviously the first choices but let’s not forget that Microsoft have a full Android stack in the Nokia X project.

MMV have published a list of competing Android X86 options and features.

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Here’s the list of devices that will get tailoring treatment from day 1 although it must be noted that there could be issues and changes. Sensors, 3G, multitouch, digitizers and other hardware will need open-source drivers before they are supported.

  • ASUS: Transformer Book T100
  • Dell: XPS 11, XPS 12, XPS 13, and XPS 15, Venue 8 Pro, Venue 11 Pro
  • Intel: Next Unit of Computing (all NUC models except for 847DYE)
  • Lenovo: Miix 2 8-inch, Miix 2 10-inch, IdeaPad U430p, ThinkPad X1 Carbon, Yoga 2, Yoga Pro 2
  • Sager: NP2740
  • Sony: VAIO Tap 11, VAIO Pro 11 & 13
  • System76: Galago UltraPro
  • Toshiba: Protege R30 & Z30, Tecra A50, Z50 & Z40
  • And, of course, all of our own iConsole-branded hardware like iConsole Unit 00 (and more, new hardware coming later this month)

Support for additional systems will be steered by OEM backing and by the community.

Console OS release timescales

Console OS Developer Release 1 within about 30 days of the Kickstarter’s conclusion (Est. September) After the initial launch the Kickstarter funds will be used to build out support for the devices that are  voted for.

MMV expects Console OS (Pro) 1.0 around December, 2014 with the goal of giving OEMs something to ship in time for new x86 tablets and convertibles this winter to ship in stores.

We’re in touch with MMV and looking forward to early testing. Expect more coverage from us soon.

8-inch Windows tablets get cheaper but ‘value’ models still not available.

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$214 for an Acer Iconia W4. $229 for a Dell Venue 8 Pro. $193 for a Toshiba Encore WT8. $220 for a Lenovo Miix 2 8. And that’s just the Amazon.com prices. The bargain though is the Acer Iconia W4 64GB at $259.

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We’ve seen some offers on 8–inch Windows tablets before but they were short-lived and mainly for hype-generation but it looks like prices have been pushed down permanently now as all the 8-inch tablets compete against each other. Prices at the Microsoft Store are also discounted but not as much as through some resellers at Amazon. The best deal I could find was the Acer Iconia W4 with 64GB sold by Amazon.com for $259.99. The Acer W4 has an HDMI port, good battery life, great screen and comes with a USB OTG adaptor cable so you can get going with USB accessories right out of the box. There’s a range of accessories too. Yeah, it’s not the thinnest or lightest but it’s very capable. For a thin and light solution either the Dell Venue 8 Pro or the Lenovo Miix 2 8. Given the slightly better screen and WiFi on the Dell, the $229 price for a 32GB version is still very good.

Windows 8 Tablets at Amazon.com

While prices for the current generation of tablets are good, where are the promised $99 tablets? The Onda V819i Android tablet running on a Z7935D at about $130 (local price conversion) is said to be getting a free Windows 8 ‘sidegrade’ but as yet I’ve seen nothing about availability although there is this demo video available. (Via)

Apart from this, clearly local information, there’s nothing to be seen in the US and European markets yet.

We’ll keep an eye on pricing and evidence of Z3795-based Windows 8 tablets. Right now it seems that the only action is with Android. The latest Tesco Hudle 2 could be one of them so keep an eye on pricing because the bill of materials for the Android and Windows versions are the same. The Hudle 2 is said to be coming in late Q3.

Dell Venue 11 Pro (Baytrail) Tablet and Tablet Keyboard Review

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Dell Venue 11 Pro (1)

In our last review we looked at an 8-inch tablet running on the Atom Z3740 costing under $300. In this review we have the Dell Venue 11 Pro 10.8 inch tablet running the current high-end Z3770 CPU and costing $499. The powered keyboard is an additional accessory at $159. The two units are extremely well built but are they worth it? We take a look in our detailed Dell Venue 11 Pro  review.

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Off-the-grid entertainment with DVB-T on a Windows 8 Tablet.

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For cheap, off-the-grid entertainment, OTA digital TV is the only way to get live information onto a tablet. I took a DVB-T receiver from Terratec, installed the driver and the TV software along with a codec pack on a Dell Venue 8 Pro and it’s working very well. According to tests, one charge should run for the full length of a footballl game, including extra time and penalties. It’s perfect for the up-coming World Cup!

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I’m using the DVB-T standard Terratec Cinergy DT USB XS which is a USB-connected receiver and from the image above you can see it has two antennas. It’s connected via a USB adaptor so you’ll need to make sure you‘ve got one of those. (MicroUSB to USB female connector.) As I’m testing approximately 500 meters from the local DVB-T transmitter I can operate it with no antennas attached, indoors but most people are going to need some sort of antenna. The cheaper USB sticks only have one antenna and may not be good for the edges of reception areas so you’ll need to be aware of that but there are a few with integrated antennas which would be practical if you’re in a good reception area.

The receiver doesn’t auto-install on Windows 8 so I downloaded the latest drivers and the Terratec DVB Viewer software. Unfortunately there’s a third step due to lack of MPEG-2 support in Windows 8.

The problem and solution for MPEG-2 on Windows 8

Windows 8 doesn’t include the required MPEG-2 codecs like Windows 7 did so you’ll need to install a codec pack which is always a bit risky but I’ve found what appears to be an ‘honest’ and simple codec pack with easy installation and setup in the Shark007 basic codec pack. Install the standard 32-bit codec pack and remember to ‘skip’ the freeware offers. For configuration choose the Shark007 SUGGESTED settings. If you’re running a 64-bit system you’ll probably need the 64-bit extensions but I haven’t tested that.

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The Terratec viewer software is for desktop only and isn’t very finger friendly but scanning of the local frequencies here was straightforward and resulted in 34 channels being found. Unfortunately this receiver won’t pick up DAB (radio) or the new DVB-T2 standard but the quality is fine for this 8-inch tablet and casual usage.

Quality of the streams on DVB-T is ‘standard definition’ 528×576 25fps MPEG-2 at about 2.5Mbps with an MPEG2 audio channel. (DVB-T2 offers high-definition streams.)

Under normal viewing conditions on this Z3740D-based tablet the CPU is using 17%. In aircraft mode (no WiFi needed for this) and with full screen brightness I was seeing 5.6W of power usage which, on this 19Wh device is going to give you 3hrs 20 minutes of viewing time. Let’s say 3hrs to be safe.

The Terratec software I’m using here allows TV to be recorded to disk at a rate of about 20MB / min which means you’ll have no problem recording a few hours of something for later playback.

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The Dell Venue 8 Pro is a great tablet PC for this TV activity due to its bright, high-contrast IPS screen and loud speaker. It’s mono, but it’s still the best speaker you can get on a low-cost 8-inch Windows tablets.

DVB-T and DVB-T2 won’t work for everyone but if you’re in a good reception area it’s a good, simple, off-the-grid solution for entertainment.

Windows 8.1 Update – update.

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With only 2/9 touch PCs updated here, 1 installing as I write, 1 downloading and 5 failures that need re-trying I suspect that there’s quite a bit of throttling and control going on by Microsoft today. I’m behind 1 IP address and after trying concurrent installs I’ve dropped back to a one-at-a-time method and it seems to be working now. I advise you do the same if you have multiple PCs

The Dell Venue 11 Pro, Lenovo Miix 2 10 and Acer W510 have updated successfully and all three are booting to Modern, as expected. Non-touch PCs will now boot to desktop.

I’m not a fan of integrating the mouse controls on the Modern UI but because they are hidden when using touch, it’s not an issue. The start-screen search box is a good idea. A Control Panel shortcut now appears in the Modern ‘Change PC Settings’ menu and you can pin Modern apps to the desktop taskbar – a first step in cross-environment integration but remember there’s no floating Windows Store apps in the desktop yet and no changes to the Start Menu. They are coming in a future update. Newly installed apps are easier to find in the Modern apps list now.

For those of us lucky enough to have Connected Standby-capable devices, you won’t see the Power icon on the Start screen.

Just in case you think it’s not worth updating because you’re on a tablet, think again. If you don’t update you’ll eventually lose the ability to update in the future. This update is obligatory.

A new ‘Disk Space’ menu item is a good start in providing users with 16, 32 and 64GB SSDs easier ways to control disk usage but there’s a lot more that could go in there. A shortcut to the ‘Disk Cleanup’ option for a start.

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Here’s a video update from my home office this morning. Let us know what your experience was in the comments below and if you’ve had problems, let us know which device it was.

Offers on four low-cost 8-inch Windows 8 tablets.

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[USA-focused post]

The 8-inch Windows tablet segment is pretty hot right now which is no wonder considering that these usable tablets are also fully-capable PCs. Microsoft have price reductions on three of the 8-inch low-cost Windows 9 tablets today and Amazon have an offer on the Lenovo Miix 2 8. Here’s an overview for you.

Dell Venue 8 Pro Tablet – 32GB $229.00 (was $299.00) save $70.00

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You’ll find the Dell Venue 8 Pro 32GB for just $229. That’s probably the easiest Windows 8 tablet to recommend right now because of the price and the all-round quality of the device. There’s no HDMI which makes the free Office suite a little more difficult to take advantage of.

 

Lenovo Miix 2 8 Touchscreen Tablet – 32GB $249.00 (was $299.00) save $50.00

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How about the Lenovo Miix 2 8. It’s $20 more than the Dell Venue 8 Pro right now but comes with GPS on board which might be attractive to those looking for a location-focused device. The Lenovo Miix 2 8 is the lightest Windows 8 PC in the world right now and also has the ability to do concurrent data and charging over the MicroUSB port. Our full review just went up this week. Click here.

Update: While writing this post the price dropped further. Lowest price is $213 at time of writing but latest lowest price at Amazon always available here.

 


Toshiba Encore WT8-A32M Touchscreen Tablet $299.00 (was $329.00) save $30.00

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The Toshiba Encore WT8 is the big boy of the group. Large battery life, HDMI port and probably the best mics of all the Windows 8 tablets. With that HDMI port you’ll be able to take advantage of the free Office Home and Student license and, honestly, you’ll be surprised how fast it is at doing that. Our full review here.

Acer Iconia W4 Windows Tablet 32 GB $249.99 (was $299)

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The Acer Iconia W4 is, again, a larger tablet with a a bigger battery, GPS, good screen and that all-important HDMI port for those wanting a mini desktop. We’ve just had the W4 with us for a three day trip and are pleased to report that it was on active standby (InstantGo) for the whole time and used just 60% of the battery. Acer have a range of keyboard and cover accessories and a 3G option making this the all-round mobile PC winner.

You can find all the Microsoft offers on their store page here.

A side-by-side comparison of these four tablets is available here.

All 8-inch Windows tablets are listed here.

Lenovo Miix 2 8 Review

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Lenovo Miix 2 8 (4)

The 8-inch Windows Tablets all look similar but underneath the specifications there’s always one or two unique features. The Lenovo Miix 2 8 offers us the lightest 8-inch Windows 8 tablet build, GPS, a good price and some good looks but are there any issues lurking under the cover? We take a deep-dive in our Lenovo Miix 2 8 review.

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