#ATTDevSummit: AT&T Brings Asus Padfone X to USA

20140106_103127_3I’ve been waiting for this one for a while. Asus has experimented with phone and tablet modular systems for a couple years now. Turning Android tablets into laptops, and phones into tablets. Padfone X marks the first Asus modular solution officially supported by an LTE equipped North American carrier.

Padfone merges a 5” 1080p smartphone with a 9” tablet shell. Dock your phone into the tablet, and the services on your phone are instantly transported to a larger screen. A helpful benefit as you can now support a phone experience and a tablet experience over AT&T LTE with only one data plan.

While specific hardware details are slim, we know it will arrive with Android 4.4 KitKat, and it will be one of the first to support AT&T’s LTE Advanced network rollout and HD Voice.

More info at: http://ATT.com/padfonex

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#ATTDevSummit: AT&T to ease the burden of data caps with Sponsored Data

2014-01-06 09.48.57Data mobility often comes with limitations, caps or throttling. This can have a chilling effect on customer use and innovation. Developers might shy away from data driven services if their target audience can only use those apps on WiFi.

AT&T took the wraps off their Sponsored Data program today at the AT&T Developer Summit. Essentially Sponsored Data is a “toll free” data service similar to how a 1-800 telephone number works. Companies sponsor a site or service, and customers wont get hit with data usage on their bill.

It’s a novel model at working around some of the existing business models which often place more burden on consumers’ pocket books. Now various 3rd party companies can provide additional value to their users, while encouraging more data mobility services.

More info at http://www.att.com/att/sponsoreddata/

Lenovo CES Assault: Wrapping up with the Thinkpad 8, ThinkVision, and Thinkpad X1 Carbon

Thinkpad 8_Wifi_Win 8_04Ok sure. Lenovo is ramping up their consumer offerings, but I know them as the “Think” company, and they’re always going to get my attention with new pro gear.

Starting small, the Thinkpad 8 is an eight inch 1080p mini-tab powered by an Intel BayTrail Quad Core. Performance should slot in well between ARM powered tablets and low powered Core processors while still offering a full Windows 8 experience. None of the limitations of Windows RT, you get all the new apps and full support for legacy software. As it’s focused towards the business pro on the go, you’ll also be able to sign up LTE and 3G data service (carrier support to be announced. Add in up to 128GB of storage and a max price of $429, and Lenovo will have a handy competitor in the mini-tab arena.

Moving up the food chain, the new X1 Carbon is one of the slimmest ultra-portable on the market. Continue reading “Lenovo CES Assault: Wrapping up with the Thinkpad 8, ThinkVision, and Thinkpad X1 Carbon”

Lenovo CES Assault: C560 All in One Desktop, Y40/50 Workstation Laptop, and Z40/50 Portable

C560 Touch_Black_Standard_07Continuing the Lenovo onslaught, a couple of standard computing solutions.

The C560 is a very clean 1080p 23” all in one powered by a Core i7 and up to 8GB of RAM. It packs a few optional tricks like a multi-touch screen and a TV tuner.

The Z40/50 laptops are powerful, well balanced machines with full HD displays and up to Core i7 processors. NVIDIA graphics should keep you cranking, and you pack the sucker with up to 16GB of RAM. No touchscreen options here, but Lenovo is still including some of their more novel tech like voice commands and facial recognition.

The Y40/50 series lappies takes those same specs from the Z40 and drops in a 4K display for an incredibly high resolution experience. It’s a Retina busting pixel pitch . Pun intended. Combined with a new, edgier looking build (pic below), and it looks like it could be a really solid buy for a power user.

Full PR and more pics after the jump. Continue reading “Lenovo CES Assault: C560 All in One Desktop, Y40/50 Workstation Laptop, and Z40/50 Portable”

Lenovo CES Assault: Desktops – Windows A740 & Horizon 2, Android N308, and Beacon Home Cloud Storage

A740_01Lenovo is leading the charge on redefining the home computing experience with a trio of large touchscreened solutions.

On the Windows front, the A740 Touh All in One features a 27” screen with up to 2560×1600 resolution powered by an Intel Core i7, up to 8GB of RAM, NVIDIA graphics, Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11 AC, NFC, and Dolby Home Theater certified JBL speakers. The Stand features the handy trick of swiveling to lay the computer completely flat, allowing it to act as a table top computer.

The Horizon 2 matches all of the specs of the A740, but includes the handy trick of being battery powered. Continue reading “Lenovo CES Assault: Desktops – Windows A740 & Horizon 2, Android N308, and Beacon Home Cloud Storage”

Lenovo CES Assault: Miix 2 10 tablet, Yoga 2, and Flex Laptops

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Windows 8 really comes alive with hardware built for its unique UI. After scoring some early success with the original Yoga, Lenovo is pushing farther into new form factors for Microsoft’s OS.

A new consumer variant of the Yoga 2 will feature 11 and 13 inch displays. The 11 will be powered by a lower power Intel Pentium processor, while the 13 steps up to a Core i5. Both rock the same swivel hinge which can flip the laptop screens around into full tablet PC’s. I’m really stoked to see the orange lid return from the Yoga 2 Pro. A nice touch of branding for a company mostly known for Thinkpads.

The Miix 2 is one of the more sought after mini-tablets for Windows 8 users. Now the Miix line is expanding with 10” and 11”  slates. The 10 has an Intel Atom quad core and 2GB of RAM. The 11 will step up to a Core i5 with up to 8GB of RAM, and both are sporting 1080p LCDs. Continue reading “Lenovo CES Assault: Miix 2 10 tablet, Yoga 2, and Flex Laptops”

Samsung unveils Galaxy Camera 2, Android powered Point and Shoot Super Zoom

Galaxy Camera 2 5Last year the Galaxy Camera was an interesting experiment. An Android powered media player with a point and shoot camera stapled to the back. WiFi, Bluetooth, and even LTE data connections were included allowing it to do anything but make a phone call. It continued a conversation for Samsung where they could create new product niches, and play with exotic gadgets.

Now they’re continuing this experiment with a sequel of sorts. The Galaxy Camera 2 is officially official. It sports a new 1.6GHz quad core processor (likely built off of the Exynos line) and a 21X zoom paired with a similar 16MP BSI CMOS sensor. While Sammy isn’t radically changing up the sensor, and it’s the same size as the old Galaxy Camera and Galaxy S4 Zoom (1/2.3″), they are bragging about a new image processing engine which they say will improve image quality.

Galaxy Camera 2 8NFC will make an appearance on this camera to include tap and share options. Of all the updates, I’m most looking forward to the larger battery, up to 2000mAh from 1650 in the OG camera.

What we don’t know yet is if the 4.8″ LCD screen will receive a resolution bump to 1080p as the original G-Cam had 720p LCD. Also no mention is made in the press release if we’ll see another LTE enabled camera or if Samsung will stick to WiFi only devices. And of course, we have no info on pricing and availability. Just a tease that the camera will be on display at CES, but so far this sounds like an uncharacteristically modest update from a company which we’re used to seeing deliver on audacious devices.

Full PR and more pics after the jump.

Continue reading “Samsung unveils Galaxy Camera 2, Android powered Point and Shoot Super Zoom”