Notebooks, Tablets, Smartphones, Wearables And Gadgets

In-depth product reviews and news of notebooks, tablets, smartphones, wearable technologies and gadgets. We're now living in a contextually-aware computing world and mobile devices can not only help us enjoy the ride but create and capture new experiences as well.

The wealth of ultraportable laptops continues to grow, and we're seeing a more varied array of options than ever before. Be it 2-in-1s like Asus' T300 Chi or a tablet-gone-laptop like Microsoft's Surface 3, those in the market for a mobile computer have plenty of options these days. As manufacturers seek out their own differentiation, we're seeing Lenovo carve out its own special space in the sector with their new LaVie Z series of ultralight notebooks. The LaVie Z and LaVie Z 360 are similar machines, hence our doubled-up review here. The innards are identical, and their dimensions are too. The only marked difference between the two is the 360's price tag (it's $200 more than the standard LaVie... Read more...
Calling the smartphone market "mature" is likely misguided, even if you consider its increasing saturation levels. In the U.S., however, much has changed over the past half-decade, but more important perhaps is what has become commonplace. While the initial players all jockeyed for their share of the smartphone pie, companies such as Kyocera and Sony have all but vanished, while Apple and Samsung are the only two options that some mainstream users even consider. LG's mobile CEO is aware of the current landscape, stating recently that it hopes to sell around 8 million G4 handsets by the end of 2015. Apple sells 8 million iPhones in a good month, so the scale and scope is well-defined. The LG G4,... Read more...
LG officially lifted the veil on their G4 flagship Android phone this week and the buzz has been fairly strong in anticipation for how it measures up versus stiff competition from Samsung and Apple. LG's display prowess is well known, along with their ability to pack a ton of screen real estate into a smaller frame with very little bezel, as they did with the previous generation G3. However, what's under the hood of the new LG G4 is probably just as interesting for some folks, as the build quality and display of LG's new flagship. On board the LG G4 is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 808, the six-core little brother of the powerful and power-hungry Snapdragon 810 that's found in HTC's One M9. The One... Read more...
Lenovo's ThinkPad X1 Carbon has been through a few revisions now and it's easy to see why the product sells so well and why Lenovo continues to invest in the model lineage.  The ThinkPad X1 Carbon combines the sleek profile of a mainstream ultrabook with the durability and utility of Lenovo's classic ThinkPad line of business-class notebooks. With arguably some of the best notebook keyboard and trackpad setups in the market, the ThinkPad line is built for road warriors and demanding professionals first, but the X1 Carbon straddles the line with light-weight composite carbon fiber construction and squeaks in at .73 inches thick and just hair over 3 pounds for touch-enabled models. Lenovo... Read more...
Earlier this year, we took a look at Lenovo’s innovative YOGA Tablet 2 Pro that features a built-in projector. If that tablet caught your eye, but its size was just too big for your tastes or it's price was too high for your budget, the Lenovo YOGA Tablet 2 may be a better option. This smaller tablet features a 10.1-inch touchscreen with a resolution of 1920x1200 and a price tag under $250. As you might expect, there are quite a few similarities between the YOGA Tablet 2 Pro and the YOGA Tablet 2. A quick look at the specifications of both models reveals the same 4th generation Intel Atom processor and 2GB of RAM. You’ll also notice both tablets feature a unique hinge which enables them to be... Read more...
Lenovo's Thinkpad 540 is a beast, but you didn't need us to tell you that. This professional-caliber laptop is probably more powerful than your average desktop PC. And if its price doesn't tip you off to the fact that this laptop is sporting some serious hardware—$1,600 for Lenovo's "ready to ship" iteration of the laptop; starting at $1,400 for the customize-it-yourself iteration—then the system's spec sheet will surely give it away.  When loaded up with the high-end hardware inside our the system, the Thinkpad 540 inches past $2,500, easily.Yet, for all of this laptop's internal goodness, which includes a speedy Haswell processor and an eye-opening discrete... Read more...
Google created Android as an open platform with the intent that software developers and hardware manufacturers would create new, useful, and innovative things for the platform. Since Android was introduced, we’ve seen a number of interesting devices from cameras to HDMI dongles that utilize the OS. But tablets and smartphones remain the key focus for most manufacturers. Most Android tablets are cookie-cutter slates. The major differences from one model to the next are generally a combination of software features and variations in key hardware specifications such as the processor, screen resolution, or storage capacity. Over the years, we’ve also seen some spins... Read more...
Over the past several years, Lenovo has been aggressively targeting PC gamers, who are known both for their willingness to drop serious cash on hardware and for their skepticism of mainstream brands. Lenovo inherited some of IBM’s corporate image when it took over the company’s laptop business, but winners like the Yoga line got Lenovo tons of exposure with mainstream consumers too. Along the way, the entertainment-friendly Y series of laptops became Lenovo’s gaming line: a suite of affordable systems that brought Lenovo’s understated design sense to bear in a market awash in garish colors, lights, and gimmicks. The Y70 Touch is Lenovo’s flagship mobile gaming PC, so we took... Read more...
Lenovo's Yoga 3 Pro 2-in-1 ultrabook has made a bit of a splash as of late, from appearing in a number of holiday shopping-infused TV spots, to flash prank comparisons tricking unwitting mall shoppers into thinking they got framed for busting up a MacBook Air laptop. It's with good reason that Lenovo is making an effort to amplify interest in the product. The Yoga 3 Pro one of the first hybrid ultrabooks to hit the market powered by Intel's new low power Core M Broadwell processor. In a nutshell, you can think of Broadwell as a full-featured Intel Core series notebook processor that performs at near-tablet power consumption envelopes (4.5 Watt TDP).  It makes for a very interesting notebook... Read more...
When Intel gave us an early deep-dive look at their new 14nm Broadwell Core M series processor back in August, we were hopeful that great things would be coming to ultra-light notebooks and premium 2-in-1 tablet devices. Intel's low power 14nm Tri-Gate architecture coupled with an enhanced integrated graphics core, offered the promise of "fanless" devices as thin as tablets that could offer true notebook-class performance. Then, once we got a sneak peek at some performance numbers at IDF 2014, we came away even more impressed with Broadwell, at least in its early stages. However, without quality time spent in hands-on testing, we were left with only a view colored admittedly so often by... Read more...
Who would have thought that bootleg watch faces would become a thing? Yet that is what is occurring as smartwatches continue to make their way to consumers. The Apple Watch isn’t out yet, but the need for consumers to customize the watch face of their device is growing as smartwatches like the Moto 360, allows them to customize the watch face. However, this has prompted luxury watchmakers to band together in order to remove watch faces from download sites.Users wishing to customize the look of their smartwatch can go to websites, such as FaceRepo, in order to download watch faces that are digital copies of luxury watches from companies such as Rolex, Cartier, and Tag Heuer. It’s a much cheaper... Read more...
Chromebooks seem to have found their place in the market, especially in the education segment, and shipments have increased significantly. The latest statistics show Chromebook shipments jumped 67 percent in the most recent quarter and are on track to double compared to last year. Now that Intel and Google have joined forces to further the Chromebook platform, companies such as Lenovo (and others) are expanding their Chromebook offerings. Lenovo’s N20 and N20p Chromebooks are the company's first Chromebooks targeting consumers (previous Lenovo Chromebook models are geared toward the education sector). The N20 gives users all of the features and the thin and light form factor... Read more...
As a follow-up to its ThinkPad 8 tablet (see our review), Lenovo has now incorporated Intel's Bay Trail platform into its larger size ThinkPad 10, a business-ready slate the company claims can offer users a full PC experience. Stopping there would be selling this tablet a bit short, however, as it's really a multi-mode device that can serve a number of purposes, both during and after business hours. Ideally, this would negate the need to purchase separate systems for work and play. Lenovo ThinkPad 10 tablet. What Lenovo's really doing here is tapping into the potential of Microsoft's Windows 8.1 ecosystem. From the beginning, Microsoft envisioned Windows 8/8.1 as a universal operating system... Read more...
LG is probably getting a little tired of scraping for brand recognition versus big names like Samsung, Apple and yes, even Google.  However, the company is also likely taking solace in the fact that their smartphone sales figures are heading for an all-time high in 2014, with an estimated 60 million units projected to be sold this year.  Part of that success probably comes from private label sales of devices like the LG-made Google Nexus 5, though the LG G2 certainly sold its fair share as well. So, at the end of the day, LG is sort of the "sleeper" of smartphone makers and as a major OEM display manufacturer, they've got the chops to compete with the best of breed in the race for superphone... Read more...
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