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All posts tagged "samsung"

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Samsung Series 9: Another Serious MacBook Air Competitor

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 10:00 PM

"Samsung has only been selling its laptops in North America for the last few years, and while those machines haven’t been bad, they haven’t been remarkable either. But with the Series 9, the company is putting forth a laptop that demands notice. From its sub–three pound, super-slim, and sexy chassis to its spare, sophisticated style, it looks like nothing so much as a MacBook Air. It’s a bold, high-profile move by a company that’s been firmly rooted in the mainstream."

It seems like the MacBook Air is a (somewhat stagnant) target for many vendors now, if you look at the newer (and arguably better) systems from Lenovo and ASUS, and, of course, Samsung's Series 9. With a similar physical footprint, the Series 9 offers what appears to be a more durable aluminum system, and better performance, courtesy of an Intel Sandy Bridge Core i5. At about $1650 for a system with 4GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD, it has received some criticism for imposing a 'style penalty' (paying more for stylishness) on buyers. Impressive, but expensive.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 LE Reviewed

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 02:30 PM

"It may be a bit difficult to pay attention to the spate of Honeycomb tablets that seem to be popping up left, right and center -- you know, now that Ice Cream Sandwich has been officially promised -- but what's not easy to overlook is an 8.6mm slate. Checking in at a sliver of a pinch thinner than the illustrious iPad 2, Samsung's rethought-out, redesigned and definitely-not-renamed Galaxy Tab 10.1 is the first Android tablet to date that seriously goes toe-to-toe with Apple in both specifications and design."

Looks like we may soon have a new leader in the Android Tablet Race. Scheduled for release on or about June 8, 2011, Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 is, in the reviewer's eyes, the first Android tablet to equal and (or) surpass the iPad 2 in most areas. Larger (wide) screen, sleek and attractive, better resolution @ 1280x800, lighter, and arguably more powerful, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 appears to be arriving at the same price as the iPad2, starting at $499 for a 16GB WiFi model. Come on, Samsung, how about being a tad cheaper than the iPad?!

Still, looking at the video, I think that the iPad still leads in ease-of-use out of the box, but Android seems to be catching up. With Android 3.1 on the near horizon, some of the complains are remedied, like adding re-sizeable widgets, USB host support, better HTML5 support, task switcher improvements, and improved performance. Looks like the gauntlet has been thrown down - it'll be interesting to see if iOS now 'borrows' some of the better features from Android. And, again, the consumer benefits!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Samsung's Chromebook Series 5 Makes a Cameo Appearance

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 11:00 PM

"Tonight at the Samsung Chromebook Series 5 launch party we got a chance to go hands-on with the first Chromebook, a sleek little notebook that could be the vanguard of a new laptop category."

I think that Samsung has met and exceeded expections with its new Chromebook Series 5. Looking very much like a lighter and sleeker MacBook, the Series 5, at about 3.3-pounds, with a 12.1-inch screen with 1280x800 resolution, is expected to power-on in under ten seconds, sport a dual-core Intel Atom N570 processor, 2GB of RAM, a 16GB SSD and a lithium polymer battery expected to last about 8.5-hours between charges, over 1000 charging cycles. Most of the negatives so far deal with the cost of $429 for a WiFi model and $499 for a WiFi + 3G model. As with the CR-48 testing, 100MB of data transfer will be provided by Verizon for three years at no extra cost (and you can of course buy more!).

Amazon already has a Chromebook page up, and ordering is expected to be live on June 15, 2011. I've seen several hands-on videos already, and this looks (technically) like a winner, and even some of the big objections like lack of native apps are being addressed by Google and partners like Citrix. I love the "thin client computing" concept, and the inherent security, so this may be on my summer wish list. Maybe even an option for my father-in-law (at 89 years old) who only wants to use a browser and nothing more - open it, do something, close it.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

First Hands-On: Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 at Google I/O

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 11:30 AM

"Google just announced that every attendee of I/O 2011 would be getting a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Limited Edition, and being that we're here in both mind and body, we were able to get our paws around one just now. We're still looking for an unsaturated WiFi network to get things setup, but until the impressions roll in, we couldn't resist bringing you a first look at what's easily the most beautiful Galaxy Tab to date from a nerd's perspective."

It's here, and you can see a quick unboxing and features summary in the video within the main article. And in case you're curious about the color, here it is:

Are we seeing the emergence of the first Android tablet to truly be a competitor to the iPad 2? Google has also promised attendees a SIM card to slip into the 10.1, so this will be ATT/T-Mobile. I'm still trying to decide on my first non-iOS tablet, so this looks like a likely suspect!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

New Acer Laptop to be Slim and Trim

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 12:30 PM

"A newfangled LG display, dubbed Shuriken, is apparently being recruited in Acer's fight against irrelevance. The Taiwanese company will reputedly use it in an upcoming 14.1-inch laptop, but here's the kicker: the physical size of the laptop will be no bigger than that of a 13.3-inch model."

Slim is in! Thinner and thinner displays are becoming available and some feature thinner bezels. Forget a frame for your display. You will soon be able to see things almost to the very edge. Smaller is good, and with less of a bezel, the computing experience should be a little less distracting, especially for watcihng movies. I do wonder and worry that a smaller bezel will make the display more sensitive to flex. While I treat my electronic gadgets with care, sometimes you just forget that your notebook is on the couch, or maybe you have fallen asleep computing and rolled over. Going back, does anyone remember the days when laptop displays were so heavy that if you tilted them back too far ,the whole laptop fell over?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Galaxy Tab 10.1" Compared to iPad 2 in Video

Posted by Craig Horlacher in "Android News" @ 04:00 AM

"Honestly, we were a little bit worried that Samsung's rail-thin Galaxy Tab 10.1 was a mockup -- you know, seeing as how Sammy never turned it on -- but fast-forward to today and there's a working model in's capable arms."

The Galaxy Tab 10.1" is one of the slickest, if not the slickest, Android tablets I've seen. The video shows the tablet from all angles and compares it to an iPad 2. They also show you around the Honeycomb interface a little and launch Angry Birds Rio on it next to Angry Birds Rio on the iPad 2. If you're tablet shopping you should definitely take a look at this video to see how the 10.1" variety of the Galaxy Tab stacks up to the competition. It's due to hit the stores on June 8 with the 16GB WiFi model selling for $500. Do you like what you see? Tell us your thoughts!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Samsung SF310 Quick Review

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 09:30 PM

"Samsung's super-sleek Series 9 ultraportable is getting all the attention, but the company has another 13-inch notebook that costs less than half as much and provides comparable performance and battery life. The $729 Samsung SF310 features a muscular Intel Core i5-480M processor, a DVD drive, Nvidia GeForce 310M graphics, and Optimus technology to maximize endurance. Sure, it's not as thin or sexy as the SSD-packing Series 9, but the SF310 successfully shoehorns a lot of power into its attractive 4.6-pound frame."

After seeing the Samsung Series 9, and also seeing the price, the SF310 is looking pretty good, despite being significantly heavier, offering similar performance at about half the price. Reviews are generally positive, with minor negatives being a somewhat temperamental touchpad, the cover is a fingerprint magnet, and battery life (about 5 1/2 hours) could be better. Also a bit disconcerting is that the SF310 streams hot air out the back of the system, but at least it's not directed out the left or right side, directly onto the hands. Not a lot of customizing appears to be possible, but Samsung does actually include some useful software at no extra cost. All in all, a good notebook computer for the money.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Battle of the Blades! Laptop Style!

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 02:00 PM

"Apple really upped the ante with the latest 13-inch MacBook Air, slimming down its iconic design even more while adding a higher-res display and a lot more battery life. Just as important, the 13-inch Air ($1,299) integrates flash memory in a way that gives the machine an instant-on feel. Well, now there’s a Windows laptop that’s ready to take Apple’s star ultraportable head on. The Samsung Series 9 ($1,649) features a super-sexy and sturdy aircraft-grade metal chassis, a more powerful processor, backlit keyboard, and gesture-tastic clickpad. Is this machine you’ve been dreaming of, or is Apple’s slim marvel still the champ?"

Thin is in. The evolution of the laptop has generally tended towards thinner and lighter models. There are models that fit the desktop replacement motif and those that are on a tight budget. But the real hotness comes to laptops so thin that they can split atoms with their lids. They are so thin that you would swear they only exist in two dimensions. The Air captured a lot of people's attention when it was first released, and other manufacturers have been trying to get the same kind of media darling status that the Air produces. Is the Samsung Series 9 the new ultra-thin to beat, or does the Macbook Air remain king of its domain?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Figure Fudging and Fake Fans: When Will They Ever Learn

Posted by Kevin Jackson in "Android Slates/Tablets & Accessories" @ 12:00 PM

"When I got there, I found that the 10.1″ Tabs out on tables were the older, relatively portly version announced last month at Mobile World Congress. The new 10.1-incher (and its 8.9″ sibling) were inside glass cases, and they weren't powered on. I also discovered that my friend Fritz Nelson of InformationWeek had beat me to the booth-and he told me that he was trying to get Samsung to give him a Tab he could hold and judge."

Samsung appears to have created another PR nightmare for itself. It appears that the new Galaxy Tabs which are supposed to be thinner than the new iPads are actually a bit thicker. Additionally, interviews with actual users of the Tabs turn out to be staged. Is there anything wrong with that? Not normally, but when these are touted as being real-life users with no indication that they are staged, the line gets a bit blurred in my opinion. Why not just let the technology speak for itself? By all accounts the new Galaxy Tab devices are pretty decent, but they don't need negative PR before they even hit the market.

So, Samsung, if you're listening, just get the hardware out there and let it speak for itself. It's going to succeed or fail based on its own merits and no amount of pre-release trickery is going to help sales. In fact, you could end up hurting yourselves even more if you're not careful.

Samsung Galaxy Tablet Not So Far Away

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 10:00 AM

"With the first Galaxy Tab's display measuring seven inches, Samsung's story is clever and simple: 7, 8.9, 10. The message: Not only are Samsung's tablets just as thin and light as the iPad 2, but they're also just as powerful, their cameras are better, and they come in a variety of sizes."

With all the hype around the iPad2 launch complete with lineups for the coveted device, it is easy to miss out on other tablet related announcements like that for the Galaxy Tab. While Apple is trying to downplay hardware specifications, I do believe that it is still important, at least for the near term, as tablets and smartphones have not quite reached a point where increases in speed (or cores) is marginally noticable. The Galaxy Tab does come with some pretty powerful hardware, enough to keep things peppy for the next month or two, until you lose interest in your toy, and start craving the newest quad-core tablets running Android 4.0 Dried Mango.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Samsung Announces Two New Galaxy Tabs

Posted by Craig Horlacher in "Android Software" @ 08:00 AM

"The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and 8.9 will feature Samsung own TouchWiz User Interface on the Android 3.0 Honeycomb platform. The Tab 10.1 weighs 595 grams and is 8.6 mm thin. The Tab 8.9 will weigh 470 grams and is also probably 8.6 mm thin. These Tabs will support HSPA+ and will have Bluetooth and Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n connectivity. Both Tabs include a 1GHz dual core processor."

Samsung has two nice looking tablets on the way. Due in June, one is 10.1" and the other is 8.9" and both have dual core processors are very thin. They will have some form of TouchWiz on top of Honeycomb. I'm not sure I like that but I don't think it would keep me way from them either. The models start with an 8.9" 16GB WiFi only version for $469. Make sure you follow the "Read" link for all the information. Are you interested in one of these new Tabs? My hunch is they'll be more popular than the Xoom but who knows what patches could come out for the Xoom by June.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Samsung 900X1A - A MacBook Air Competitor for Windows

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 11:00 PM

"Remember we brought you news last week of the Samsung Series 9 super-svelte 13.3in, duralumin-encased ZX310 laptop shipping in the States, well get ready to meet its even smaller brother, the 11.6in 900X1A. The 11.6in display on the 900X-1A comes with a resolution of 1366 x 768 and is encased in the same black duralumin as the ZX310. It will come with the Intel Core-i3 processor, 2GB of RAM, a whopping 128GB SSD (the same as its older brother), a backlit keyboard and Windows Home Premium pre-installed."

Finally a Windows ultralight that would seem to be able to go head-to-head with a MacBook Air, and offer better specs for about the same cost. With a 128GB SSD standard, an Intel Core-i3 standard, and a backlit keyboard, this beauty from Samsung is (in my opinion) what Apple should've shipped. No information is available on availability in North America. Could this be the laptop that will lure "switchers" (like me) back to Windows?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Defend Against Scratches With the Otterbox Defender For the Galaxy Tab

Posted by Karey Westfall in "Android Slates/Tablets & Accessories" @ 05:30 AM

"Otterbox is well known for its protective cases for a lot of devices. One of the latest additions to the Defender Series is a Defender case for the Samsung Galaxy Tab. I have used several Otterbox products before and I must admit when my device is protected by a Defender case I don't have to worry it gets damaged or suffers any influences from outside."

Still looking for a case for your awesome Samsung Galaxy Tab? Well, check out this review on the Otterbox Defender. The case fully encloses your Tab (not waterproof though) without blocking the ports and buttons to protect it from bumps, small drops and scratches! Plus, it includes a build in stand for those moments when you want have both hands free for grabbing popcorn while watching a movie on your Tab. Sounds like a pretty sweet case to me!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Samsung's QX410 Laptop Reviewed

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 08:00 AM

This is my review video of the Samsung QX410-J01 (you can check out my unboxing and first impressions here). The QX410 has a 14 inch screen, running at a disappointing 1366 x 768 resolution (1440 x 900 is my ideal resolution at 13 to 14 inches). It packs a lot of power in the CPU/GPU department: it uses an Intel Core i5 CPU running at 2.53 Ghz with turbo boost up to 2.8 Ghz. It has an NVIDIA GeForce 310M GPU with 512 MB of dedicated RAM. Other hardware includes 4 GB of DDR3 RAM, a 640 GB 5400rpm hard drive, a DVD/CD burner, gigabit Ethernet port, memory card reader (SD), 802.11b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth, a Webcam with built-in microphone, HDMI output. The laptop runs Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.

The materials of the laptop are impressive though - the lid is a brushed aluminium and the overall feel of the materials is one of quality. It's not quite at the level of a Macbook Air/Pro, but it's close. Read more...

Monday, February 28, 2011

Samsung's QX410 Laptop Unboxed

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 08:00 AM

This is an unboxing and first impressions video of the Samsung QX410-J01. The QX410 has a 14 inch screen, running at a disappointing 1366 x 768 resolution. It packs a lot of power in the CPU/GPU department: it uses an Intel Core i5 CPU running at 2.53 Ghz with turbo boost up to 2.8 Ghz. It has an NVIDIA GeForce 310M GPU with 512 MB of dedicated RAM. Other hardware includes 4 GB of DDR3 RAM, a 640 GB 5400rpm hard drive, a DVD/CD burner, gigabit Ethernet port, memory card reader (SD), 802.11b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth, a Webcam with built-in microphone, HDMI output. The laptop runs Windows 7 Home Premium. Read more...

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 Video Including Specs Leaked

Posted by Karey Westfall in "Android Slates/Tablets & Accessories" @ 10:30 AM

"We found a "leaked" video announcing the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Tab 2. The leaked specs include..."

There is a leaked video that is circulating the web starring the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2. Featured in the video are some specs on the upcoming Tab 2 including, Android 2.3 with possible upgrade to Android 3.0, 3D display, USB port, 64 MB internal memory and more! The speculated better stats would be a nice bump up, but would it be worth it for you to ditch your Tab 1 for a Tab 2?

Friday, January 14, 2011

Samsung's 9 Series Notebook: Finally, Some REAL Competition to the Macbook Air

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 11:24 AM

"If you're thinking about ditching Windows to get a MacBook Air, you might want to think twice. The Samsung 9 Series, which goes on sale next month, is sexy, slim, and oh so fast. Weighing in a 2.89 pounds and measuring just .64 inches thick (versus 2.9 pounds and .68 for Apple's 13-incher), the 9 Series is just as portable. But there's a lot more to this notebook."

When I saw the Samsung 9 Series laptop, it was techno-lust at first sight. Wow, what hardware! This is exactly the kind of thing I've been waiting for someone to do: really try to go after the Macbook Air market with a drop-dead gorgeous design, superior materials, and hopefully a price tag that isn't out to lunch ($1599 for the 13" version is the only price tag mentioned). The units we saw at CES were prototypes, not final hardware, so Samsung was cagey about some of the specs and prices. We know it will come in two screen sizes: 11.6" and 13" (maybe 13.3"?). The 11.6" will come with a Core i3 or a Core i5, and the bigger 13" version will be a Core i5 and possibly a core i3. A 128 GB SSD will be standard on the 13" model, as will USB 3.0, and the screen technology - dubbed "SuperBright" - kicks out 400 nits and looked excellent in person. This is a laptop series I'll have my eye on! Laptop Magazine's video after the break, along with some of my own photos. Read more...

Sprint Chops the Price of the Galaxy Tab

Posted by Craig Horlacher in "Android News" @ 06:00 AM

"Word of a price drop at Best Buy for the Sprint Galaxy Tab leaked out via some images last week, but Sprint has beaten Best Buy to the punch and now list their Galaxy Tab for $299 on contact and $499 without contract."

Let the price drops begin! With all the new Android tablets announced at CES I was expecting prices on the Galaxy Tab to drop but this is a really big drop happening sooner than I expected. With a $200 price drop, a great size (at least for me), reasonable resolution for the size at 1024x600, and a Hummingbird CPU that probably has the best mobile GPU other than the Tegra 2 that's a great deal in my book! It may not be upgradable to Honeycomb but at least it does have Froyo now. While I wouldn't want an oversize iPhone and over-sized Android device could be very useful thanks to good multitasking, good notifications, and widgets. Is $200 enough of a price drop for you to buy one?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Samsung Galaxy Tab Review: Best of the Android Bunch

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 12:30 AM

"The Galaxy Tab is the most refined Android tablet we've tested, in large part thanks to its "Super TFT" screen. At 1024x600, this 7-inch display exceeds Android 2.2's maximum screen resolution of 854x480. While Android apps built to that standard spec will be "upscaled" on the Tab's screen, we didn't notice any ugly pixel interpolation during testing."

Still the best of the Android bunch, the Galaxy Tab does a great job taking Android where it wasn't really meant to go - yet. The inevitable comparisons to the iPad go on and on, with this generation of Android tablets still coming up second best. I'd love to get a Galaxy Tab, but, at about $600 off-contract, I'll have to wait until the new year. Do any of you readers think that a non-Apple competitor to the iPad will appear in 2011?

Saturday, December 18, 2010

LAPTOP Editors' Choice: Samsung SF510

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Samsung Laptops & Netbooks" @ 12:00 PM

"Ivory and brown? Yes, and it works. The $629 Samsung SF510--a Best Buy exclusive--is a budget-friendly laptop with plenty of flair. Armed with an Intel Core i3 CPU, this 15-inch notebook is an excellent choice for consumers looking for something powerful enough for everyday computing in a curvy design that is anything but ho-hum."

If you're looking for a good all-around notebook, the Samsung SF510 may definitely be a contender! Not particularly light at about 5.4-pounds, it has exceptional battery life for this class of computer, its six-cell battery lasting 5:40 hours in the LAPTOP battery test. Decent (but not exceptional) graphics and video coupled with outstanding audio, make this a good multimedia system for the price, $629 as reviewed, exclusively at Best Buy. This laptop received LAPTOP's Editors' Choice, so definitely worth a look if you're looking for a stylish luggable notebook.

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