For my long-form Chromebook test-drive, I'm spending most of my computing time with the HP Pavilion 14 Chromebook. Like the smaller 11- and 12-inch Chromebooks we've reviewed, it operates almost entirely within the Chrome Web browser, which looks and feels the same as the Chrome Web browser you may be using right now on your Windows or Mac OS computer.
But even as Android adoption continues to flourish, Google has another horse in the race: Chrome OS. Chrome's mission statement is simple: With everything moving to "the cloud," why have a heavy, expensive Windows or Mac operating system acting as a middleman? Why not just have the browser be the OS? And that's precisely the reason it shares a name with Google's increasingly popular Web browser.
It's a clever enough idea, and one that plays to Google's strength: search, Gmail, Google Docs, Maps, Picasa, and nearly all of the company's other products don't require traditional software -- just a browser and a live Web connection. Still, when we last looked at it in the fall of 2012, we found Chrome OS to be promising, but ultimately not up to the level of a full-time OS. In other words, it was generally fine for a "second computer," but not quite ready to run your one and only go-to PC for every task.… Read more
In advance of a planned May 3 press conference, PC maker Acer is teasing a new laptop as part of a tie-in with the upcoming film "Star Trek Into Darkness."
In the (somewhat cheesy) video, clips from the film are intercut with rendered images of what looks like a massive new laptop. Separately, Acer says this is going to be a "unique" laptop that "approaches touch and type in a new way."
As seen in the video above and these screenshots, this unnamed laptop has an unusual hinge that pivots the entire lid out, … Read more
By now, anyone interested in the PC business has heard about the poor showing for global computer shipments in the first quarter of 2013. As noted here:
First-quarter global computer shipments dropped 14 percent from the previous year, said International Data Corp., much worse than its forecast for a 7.7 percent decline. The pullback marked the worst-ever quarter since IDC began tracking quarterly PC shipments in 1994, and it's the fourth consecutive quarter of year-over-year shipment declines.
Some were quick to blame Windows 8, which launched in October 2012, while others pointed to everything from the increasing popularity … Read more
We recently complained about the lack of a single best-case gaming laptop for the Windows 8 era. That was largely because of the handful of portable PCs with higher-end graphics cards we'd reviewed in the six months since Microsoft's new OS took over, none thought to include a touch-screen display. That's a feature not particularly called for in even current-gen PC games, but it's one that Windows 8 practically begs for during the hours when you're not using your laptop for gaming.
Since then, we've finished reviews of a couple more gaming laptops -- … Read more
With these new discounts (no word on if they are temporary or permanent), our initial reviews of these specific systems deserve a second look, if only because a big knock against each one was the unrealistic asking price.
Are they much better machines at $100 to $250 off, … Read more
Welcome to the third generation of Vizio PCs. You won't find many things different technology-wise in this round compared with previous models. The biggest news is that the laptops -- two 14-inch, and two 15.6-inch models -- all ship with touch screens now. Vizio's all-in-ones already had touch screens, but this generation gets a CPU bump, and higher prices to match. Vizio has also added wireless networking adapters that support the new 802.11ac standard across the lineup.
For the laptops, the 14-inch Touch Thin+Light CT14T-B0 comes it at the lowest price, going for $1,089.… Read more
Take a Windows 8 tablet. Add Nvidia graphics. Mix in a snap-on controller. Toss in a TV-friendly dock. Suddenly, what was a gaming PC in theory can become a console; step back, and a tablet becomes a gaming handheld.
This is the promise that the Razer Edge provides: a Surface for the gaming set, if you will. It's a novel idea that no one else has made tangible yet, and the Razer Edge stands alone in that regard.
At its heart, the Razer Edge is a 10-inch Windows 8 tablet with either a Core i5 or i7 processor, like … Read more
A recent question from a reader brought up an issue we've been discussing around the office recently -- the lack of Windows 8 laptops that include both a touch screen and a high-end GPU. Our reader's question, excerpted below:
May I ask for your advice on purchasing a gaming PC? I'm considering the Alienware M14x, but the only thing holding me back is the absence of a touch screen and I can't seem to find powerful laptops with a touch screen. Do you think touch-screen laptops will soon become the standard?
Today at the Engadget Expand event held in San Francisco, Lenovo announced its new ThinkPad T431s laptop. This is an update to the company's already available T series of laptaps. The new laptops features a 14-inch screen and will be released in April with prices starting at $949.
Not to veer too far from what's it's known for, the new 14-inch laptop looks like a Lenovo ThinkPad: It's (graphite) black, and there's a red button nub in the middle of the keyboard for navigating; however, there are a few changes of note.