High-tech product releases announced the week ending June 6 include hybrid tablet-laptops, transforming desktops, web-based PCs, tablets, ultrabooks and waterproof smartphones.
A unique-looking dual-screen laptop that transforms into a tablet
The Asus Taichi is a dual-screen ultrabook that converts from a laptop into a tablet. The Taichi is available in 11.6” and 13.3” versions and runs on Windows 8. It features a high resolution 1920 x 1080 display, a full-size backlit QWERTY keyboard and trackpad and a third generation Intel core processor. Pricing and release dates have not been announced.
The world’s largest tablet (is also a desktop)
Asus’ Transformer AiO is both an All-in-One desktop computer and the “world’s largest tablet.” It has an 18.4” LED touch display which can be detached from the base station and used and a touchscreen tablet. It features both Windows 8 and Android operating systems. Pricing and release dates have not been announced.
A hybrid laptop that slides into a tablet
The MSI Slider S20 is also a hybrid laptop. The 11.6” Ultrabook runs Windows 8 and sports a new generation Intel processor. Its display slides down over the keyboard to transform the device into a touchscreen tablet. Pricing and release dates have not been announced.
The world’s lightest 11” ultrabook
The Gigabyte X11 is the world’s lightest 11.6” ultrabook. It weighs in at under 1kg (975g) and features a full carbon fiber body. At its thickest part the X11 has a profile of just 1.65cm. It’s powered by 3rd generation Intel Core processors, has a 128GB SSD, USB3.0 and rapid-start technology. The Gigabyte X11 will be launched in July for between $999~$1,299.
The world’s first widescreen ultrabook
The Toshiba Satellite U840W Ultrabook lays claim to being the world’s first widescreen ultrabook. It features a 14.4” 21:9 cinematic display, a two-tone aluminum chassis with a textured palm rest, a Intel Core i5-3317U processor, a 500GB hybrid hard drive, and Toshiba’s new Hi-Speed Start. The Satellite U840W is expected to hit stores during Q3 for AU$1,499 (€1175).
Two compact computers that love the web
Google’s brand new Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook and compact Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebox desktop are cloud-based, web-centric computers. The Chromebox and Chromebook run on Google’s Chrome OS -- an app-centric user interface based on Google’s Chrome web browser. Spec-wise the Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook features a 12.1” screen, a 1.3GHz dual-core Intel processor, 4GB of RAM, optional integrated 3G connectivity, 16GB of storage, a 4-in-1 memory card reader, a 1MP webcam and up to 6 hours of battery life. The Samsung Series 3 550 Chromebox has a 1.9GHz Intel dual-core processor, a 16GB SSD, 4GB of RAM, a built-in mono speaker, 6 USB ports and 2 display ports. The Samsung Series 3 550 Chromebox is priced from $329.99. The Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook with WiFi only is priced at $449.99 while the WiFi + 3G version costs $549.99.
Smart-looking smartphones that don’t mind a swim
Sony’s new Xperia acro S and Xperia go Android-powered handsets are svelte and streamlined but feature extra protection like waterproofing, dustproofing, scratch-resistant displays and wet finger tracking. The Xperia go comes with a 3.5” “Reality Display,” a 5MP camera, a 1GHz dual-core processor, Sony’s Music Unlimited and Video Unlimited services and Android 2.3 (upgradable to Android 4.0). The higher-spec'd Xperia acro S has a 4.3” 720p HD Reality Display, a 12MP camera with full 1080p HD video recording and 720p HD front camera, and a 1.5Ghz dual-core processor. The Xperia acro S is also PlayStation Certified and ships with Google’s Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich operating system. Xperia go (aka the Sony Xperia advance in the US) and Xperia acro S will be available globally from the third quarter 2012. Pricing has not been announced.
Three new touch-enhanced smartphone-like mobiles that won’t break the bank
Nokia has released three new handsets in the Asha series, the Nokia Asha 305, Asha 306 and Asha 311. The affordable devices sport smartphone-like features like web browsing, social networking and games. The Asha 311 is a 3.5G device which is powered by a 1GHz processor, the Nokia Asha 305 sports a dual SIM, and the Asha 306 is Nokia's most affordable Wi-Fi handset to date. The Asha 305 is is priced at €63 and will launch in Q2, 2012. Both the Asha 306 and 311 will start shipping in the third quarter of 2012, priced at €68 and €92 respectively.