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Intel's next CEO Pat Gelsinger promises a return to greatness
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 11:08:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
There were essentially two parts to Intel’s fourth-quarter 2020 earnings call on Thursday: the actual results, and the homecoming of former Intel CTO Pat Gelsinger as the company’s incoming chief executive.Gelsinger, who doesn’t officially return until February 15, was invited to sit virtually alongside outgoing chief executive Bob Swan. Though Swan shepherded the call, Gelsinger contributed frequently, including outlining his vision for what he hoped to achieve at Intel. Gelsinger has his eyes fixed on 2023, when it sounds like Intel plans to reboot its manufacturing leadership on the next-gen 7nm process.To read this article in full, please click here
Microsoft Edge will open your email from the new tab page
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 10:53:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Microsoft’s latest version of its Edge browser, in conjunction with Microsoft Bing, are rolling out some intriguing new features as part of the latest Microsoft Edge version 88 update. The most unique: Edge will now show a few new emails when you open a new tab page.Edge 88 offers some nifty new security features, such as the long-awaited password generator. The company has also added some useful personalization and productivity features, including what could be my favorite: the Edge sidebar search function, which is now generally available.To read this article in full, please click here
The next MacBook Air could get even lighter and thinner and bring back MagSafe
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 07:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Apple’s consumer-level laptop could see a redesign later this year or in early 2022.
Q Acoustics Q Active 200 review: This high-end powered bookshelf audio system delivers impeccable performance
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 04:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Wired or wireless, this audio system can accommodate nearly any source: high-res streaming services, a local server, a TV, Bluetooth, even an old-school turntable.
Ryzen 5000 doubles AMD's gaming laptop share, but Nvidia still rules
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
AMD has said it would make impressive inroads into gaming laptops this year, and so far it’s trending well, according to an ongoing list of gaming laptops available to order or pre-order.Youtuber GizmoSlipTech created the list of gaming laptops with GeForce RTX 30-series GPUs that are available to buy or pre-order. Our sample set below dates from January 15, when, by GizmoSlipTech’s count, there were 28 different RTX 30-series laptops with Intel CPUs and 13 RTX 30-series laptops with AMD CPUs.To read this article in full, please click here
How much of my budget should I spend on a graphics card? | Ask an expert
Fri, 22 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Q: What percentage of my build budget should go toward the graphics card? While a lot of advice says to aim for an even balance between the CPU and the GPU, some people suggest choosing a mid-tier processor and then plowing as much of my remaining budget toward the video card as possible. This PC will be for gaming.A: When giving general advice, we usually recommend letting your monitor dictate the limits of a graphics card purchase for a gaming PC. Its resolution and refresh rate will make it clear what you need in performance, and where the line sits between a bit of future proofing and extreme overkill.For example, if you have a 1080p 75Hz monitor, you don’t need to spend a ton on a GPU. In normal times (when prices and availability of graphics cards are reasonable), shopping in the $200 to $300 range will max out your hardware’s capabilities and, at the higher end, leave room for the card to keep up with future AAA titles.To read this article in full, please click here
PC market soars, driving Intel's revenue and profits unexpectedly higher
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 14:23:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Outgoing Intel chief executive Bob Swan previously told PCWorld that he was worried that, when the pandemic hit, PC sales would drop off a cliff. As Intel’s fourth-quarter earnings revealed, the exact opposite occurred.Intel reported $5.9 billion in profits and $20 billion in revenue for the fourth quarter of 2020, with profits down by 15 percent and revenue essentially flat. But those numbers far exceeded analyst expectations, and the PC was primarily the cause.“Fourth-quarter revenue exceeded prior expectations by $2.6 billion driven by record PC-centric revenue, with PC unit volumes up 33 percent year-over-year led by record notebook sales,” Intel said in a statement in advance of a conference call with analysts on Thursday afternoon. In a related presentation for Wall Street analysts, Intel broke down the PC’s success further: While PC volumes grew by 33 percent, notebook revenue soared by 30 percent.To read this article in full, please click here
Microsoft Edge can finally generate new passwords for you
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 13:18:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Microsoft is poised to release several substantial security updates to version 88 of its Edge browser, including a long-awaited password generator and monitor.Edge 88 is rolling out now, according to Microsoft, though the new Password Monitor feature may take a couple of weeks to demonstrate any real results, the company said in a blog post on Thursday morning. From a user’s perspective, Microsoft’s automated complex password generator is one of the biggest competive weaknesses the browser faced. Google’s Chrome has offered this feature for over a year. When you're using Chrome and you sign up for a new web service and enter a user name, the browser offers to generate a new, complex password and store it for future use. Now Edge does the same, generating the password according to the site’s rules, storing it and syncing it across your browsers. (According to Kyle Pflug, an Edge program manager, the password generator works only on the desktop version of Edge.)To read this article in full, please click here
Otter's transcription service now integrates with Google Meet
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 06:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Transcription service Otter.ai has added a Chrome extension to enable customers using Google Meet to transcribe their meetings on the fly.Microsoft began making live transcription available in Teams late last year via its own transcription service. But with Google Meet, there hasn’t been a good way to transcribe a meeting automatically as it happens; users report that Chrome plugins Google Meet Transcribe and Chat Transcribe don’t perform well. Otter.ai’s own Otter.ai plugin for Chrome steps in and uses the Otter service to provide the transcription. Zoom, for its part, already has an integration with Otter.To read this article in full, please click here
How to see what Facebook knows about you, and download your data
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 03:31:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
What data does Facebook have on you? A staggering amount if you’ve been using the service for a while. Fortunately, the social network makes it easy (if not straightforward) to find out exactly what information it has about your activities, and even lets you download your Facebook data. Here’s how.Before you begin, make sure you’re logged into your Facebook account in your web browser. If you’re not, this won’t work.Once that’s done, head over to the “Your Facebook Information” section of Facebook’s account management options. You can do it the easy way by simply following this link, or the more tedious way by clicking the downward-pointing arrow at the top-right corner of the page and selecting Settings & Privacy > Settings > Your Facebook Information. The company’s Help Center page on “Accessing & Downloading Your Information” also provides handy links to the various resources available in the Your Facebook Information page.To read this article in full, please click here
Asus talks about the new Rocket Lake chipset: Z590
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Intel's 11th-gen Rocket Lake CPU isn't here yet, but the Z590 chipset for the motherboards that will use it is.Unfortunately, that's left us with more questions than answers. To get a better idea of just what Z590 and PCIe 4.0 in Intel CPUs bring us, we talk with Juan Jose Guerrero of Asus about its new line up of LGA1200 boards.And yes, JJ even tells us if you can use Intel's 11th-gen Rocket Lake CPU in older Z490 Asus boards or run an older 10th-gen LGA1200 CPU in a Z590 board. To read this article in full, please click here
ATSC 3.0 in 2021: Why it's still early days for antenna TV's big upgrade
Thu, 21 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
ATSC 3.0 in 2021: Why NextGen TV is still early days for cord cutters.
There will be no GeForce RTX 3060 Founders Edition, Nvidia confirms
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 10:48:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Nvidia won’t release its own Founders Edition model of the $329 GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card scheduled to launch at the end of February, the company confirmed to PCWorld today.“From time to time we decide not to design a Founder’s Edition card for cards targeted at the mainstream part of the market,” a spokesperson said in response to a PCWorld query. “So it’s all [partner cards] for this one.”While Nvidia crafted Founders Edition models for the GeForce RTX 2060 and GTX 1060, it did not create a reference version of the older GeForce GTX 960. This decision indeed is not unprecedented.To read this article in full, please click here
The Full Nerd ep. 164: GeForce RTX 3060 and Intel 11th-gen CPUs dissected
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 08:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
In this episode of The Full Nerd, Gordon Ung, Brad Chacos, Alaina Yee, and Adam Patrick Murray dig deeper into some of CES 2021’s biggest PC hardware announcements, then dive deep into your questions.Brad kicks things off by dissecting the specs for Nvidia’s affordable $329 GeForce RTX 3060—though he worries it won’t actually be anywhere near that price when it launches in late February. And why did Nvidia equip this card with 12GB of memory when the pricier RTX 3060 Ti and RTX 3070 only have 8GB? It’s all explained. After that, Gordon wades into what we can expect from Rocket Lake S, the codename for Intel’s newly revealed 11th-gen Core desktop processors.To read this article in full, please click here
Netflix's long-awaited shuffle button will arrive this year
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 07:25:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
After months of testing a “shuffle play” button, Netflix will roll out the feature in the first half of 2021.
RIP old-school Internet: Chrome 88 lays Flash and FTP to rest
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 07:24:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Google started rolling out Chrome 88 this week, and while browser releases usually herald what’s new, the most noteworthy change in this update is what’s not included. Chrome 88 lays Adobe Flash and the FTP protocol to rest. RIP circa-2000 Internet.Neither comes as a surprise, though it’s poetic that they’re being buried together. Adobe halted Flash Player downloads at the end of 2020, making good on a promise made years before, and began blocking Flash content altogether a couple weeks later. Removing Flash from Chrome 88 is just Google’s way of flushing the toilet.On the other hand, FTP isn’t dead, but it is now for Chrome users. The File Transport Protocol has helped users send files across the Internet for decades, but in an era of prolific cloud storage services and other sharing methods, its use has waned. Google started slowly disabling FTP support in Chrome 86, per ZDNet, and now you’ll no longer be able to access FTP links in the browser. Look for standalone FTP software instead if you need it, such as FileZilla.To read this article in full, please click here
What are the best pre-built PCs for basic tasks? | Ask an expert
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Q: What are the best options for a pre-built desktop PC? My parents need a new computer, but building them one isn’t an option, as I don’t live in the same state. All they do is surf the web and play an ancient card game, so I don’t need to buy them much.A: Since this question can be interpreted as either one about best form factors or best vendors, I’ll tackle both topics. In regards to the best types of pre-built PCs, the easiest option is an all-in-one computer. Having the system components housed within the monitor simplifies setup and thus any potential technical woes that come up when trying to help troubleshoot from afar. (“What do you mean by an input? What’s an input? No, I don’t have an HDMI.”) Some now come with built-in webcams, too, which means your parents would only need to plug in the keyboard and mouse.To read this article in full, please click here
Samsung Galaxy S21 vs iPhone 12: Which should you spend your $800 on?
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
January has barely begun and we already have our first heavyweight smartphone battle of 2021. Samsung has released its lineup of Galaxy S21 phones a little earlier than usual this year, and it’s clear they have Apple’s newest phone in its sights. Samsung hasn’t reinvented the S21 as much as it’s retooled it to take on the iPhone 12, with a lower price point, sharper design, and some new camera tricks. Here’s how the two $800 phones stack up.To read this article in full, please click here
Rocksteady Stadium 2-Pack review: You could fill an arena with these portable Bluetooth speakers
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
They sound great, but “AI-powered” audio smells like hype to us.
How to buy the right-sized TV (the only problem is that it might not exist)
Wed, 20 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Quality over size is our usual mantra, but vendors don't generally offer their best technology in TVs smaller than 55-inch class.
MediaTek's powerful Dimensity 1200 smartphone CPU will challenge Qualcomm
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 23:20:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
On Tuesday night, MediaTek launched the Dimensity 1100 and 1200, a pair of smartphone chipsets that aim to challenge the best that Qualcomm’s Snapdragon smartphone chipsets have to offer.MediaTek released just two performance benchmarks to support its claims. But the specs of both the Dimensity 1100 and 1200 CPUs match up well against the Snapdragon 888, Qualcomm’s recent smartphone launch, with even higher clock speeds. There’s a good chance that you’ll have either one or the other in your next phone.While Qualcomm tends to dominate the market for smartphone chipsets that cover premium phones, MediaTek is actually the largest smartphone chipset vendor in the world, with 31 percent market share, according to CounterPoint Research. MediaTek passed Qualcomm during the third quarter of 2020, thanks especially to the rise of midrange phones and MediaTek’s success in India and parts of Asia. MediaTek’s presence was helped by aggressive pricing moves to help the lower the cost of 5G phones, as well as support by phone makers like Xiaomi.To read this article in full, please click here
The best SSDs of 2021: Intel says goodbye to Optane in desktops
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 13:03:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Switching to a solid-state drive is the best upgrade you can make for your PC. These wondrous devices obliterate long boot times, speed up how fast your programs and games load, and generally makes your computer feel fast. But not all solid-state drives are created equal. The best SSDs offer solid performance at affordable prices—or, if price is no object, face-meltingly fast read and write speeds.Many SSDs come in a 2.5-inch form factor and communicate with PCs via the same SATA ports used by traditional hard drives. But out on the bleeding-edge of NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express) drives, you’ll find tiny “gumstick” SSDs that fit in M.2 connections on modern motherboards, SSDs that sit on a PCIe adapter and slot into your motherboard like a graphics card or sound card, futuristic 3D Xpoint drives, and more. Picking the perfect SSD isn’t as simple as it used to be.To read this article in full, please click here
Intel quietly kills its face-melting Optane desktop SSDs
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 07:12:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Surprise! Out of nowhere, Intel killed its entire lineup of Optane SSDs for desktops over the weekend, signaling the end for the Optane 800P, 900P, and 905P, as well as the Optane Memory M10, as spotted by Tom’s Hardware. The radical Optane drives were so durable and ultra-fast that we maintained a discrete section for them in our guide to the best SSDs, but the brand doesn’t have the same staying power as the hardware itself, it seems.Don’t expect replacements either. “Intel will not provide a new large capacity Optane Memory SSD as a transition product for the client market segment,” the discontinuation notice states. “Intel will focus on the new Optane Memory H20 with Solid State Storage for the client market segment.”To read this article in full, please click here
Samsung 870 EVO SATA SSD review: The speed you need, at sane prices
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 07:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Samsung’s been at the top of the SSD storage food chain since the day the company entered the market, and the 870 EVO honors that tradition. It’s the fastest SATA SSD we’ve tested, it’s available in up to 4TB of capacity, and it’s exceedingly affordable given its speed. Specs and pricing The 870 EVO is a 2.5-inch, SATA 6Gbps SSD employing Samsung’s own TLC (Triple-Level Cell/3-bit) V-NAND. The company is typically coy as to on the actual controller technology or the number of layers, but it’s likely an in-house Samsung-designed controller with, judging from the capacities, 92 or 96 layers.The drive will ship in 250GB/$40, 500GB/$70, 1TB/$130, 2TB/$250, and 4TB/$480 flavors (see note at end). There’s 512MB of primary DRAM cache for every 250GB of capacity, and the drives are rated for 150TBW (TeraBytes that may be Written) or five years of service—whichever comes first. That is, the five-year warranty is invalid once you exceed the TBW rating. Most end users won’t come close to writing that much data, so consider it five years.To read this article in full, please click here
Qualcomm's Snapdragon 870 is a faster 865, but without WiFi 6E
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 06:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Roughly a month after launching the Snapdragon 888 for next-gen smartphones, Qualcomm decided to go back to its earlier Snapdragon 865 to tweak it once again, resulting in the upgraded Snapdragon 870. The only gotcha? A lack of Wi-Fi 6E.In a nutshell, the new Snapdragon 870 is a faster version of the original Snapdragon 865. Qualcomm corralled a number of its partners to endorse the new 870 chip, including OnePlus. Devices based on the Snapdragon 870 will be released this quarter, Qualcomm said.To read this article in full, please click here
HDFury 4K Arcana review: This magic box fixes a crucial shortcoming of pre-2019 TVs
Tue, 19 Jan 2021 03:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
The HDFury Arcana unlocks the Sonos Arc's full potential on non-eARC TVs for $199.
Wyze Sprinkler Controller review: 8 zones, 50 bucks
Mon, 18 Jan 2021 04:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
A dirt-cheap way to take care of what’s in your dirt.
The Full Nerd: What you need to know about Ryzen 5000 mobile
Mon, 18 Jan 2021 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
AMD announced its new Zen 3-based Ryzen 5000 mobile chips January 12 at CES, and to hear the company tell it, last year's stunning Ryzen 4000 was just a warm-up.Although there's still much to be known about just how fast the new chip is, it's expected to increase single-threaded performance significantly and offer better battery life.But if you're wondering how many PCIe lanes it has and how AMD was able to get Zen 3 into laptops so quickly, who better to tell us than AMD's Director of Technical Marketing Robert Hallock, who joins us in this special CES edition of The Full Nerd.Hallock also tells us what to expect from performance and battery life, and which laptop CPU he thinks will be the predominant choice in high-end gaming laptops this year (the answer won't surprise you).To read this article in full, please click here
Wait, did Nvidia just say it could make graphics cards for cryptocurrency miners?
Mon, 18 Jan 2021 03:30:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
If you heard that Nvidia might make graphics cards just for cryptocurrency miners, hold your fire. As GPU supplies remain lean, Nvidia’s priorities appear to lie in other directions. Nvidia Chief Financial Officer Colette Kress acknowledged that the company could make cards for crypto miners, at least in theory. “If crypto demand begins or if we see a meaningful amount, we can also use that opportunity to restart the...product line to address ongoing mining demand,” Kress said in a conversation with analysts at the J.P. Morgan Tech/Auto Forum Conference on Tuesday, transcribed by Seekingalpha.com.To read this article in full, please click here
Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Unboxing and ears-on impressions
Fri, 15 Jan 2021 08:00:00 -0800
Source: PCWorld
Samsung just unleashed its first premium pair of earbuds, the Galaxy Buds Pro, and they come brimming with features such as improved water resistance, spatial 3D audio, adjustable active noise cancellation, a four-step ambient noise mode, and the ability to dial down the ANC and up the ambient sound when you start talking.We’ll have a full review of the Galaxy Buds Pro once our review takes them for a thorough test drive, but I couldn’t resist cracking the box and taking them for a quick spin. Read on for my first impressions.Design Inside the box you’ll find the Galaxy Buds Pro sitting in their charging case (roughly an inch thicks, and two ounces with the earbuds inside), along with a USB-C to USB-A charging cable and three eartips—small, medium, and large—in addition to the tips that are already on the buds.To read this article in full, please click here
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