Tag : Laptop

A Steal of a Deal- Latitude 13 7000 Series 2-in-1

 

latitude

 

At $599, this 2-in-1 combines a laptop and tablet in perfect harmony. Whether it be business needs, student work, or basic computing, a 2-in-1 is the ultimate solution. Be free to switch between typing on a keyboard, and writing with a tablet, without the need for multiple devices. Superior performance makes way for easy to navigate user-friendly features. And it’s a Dell, which means a 3 year hardware service warranty and onsite service with remote diagnostics.

The Latitude comes fully loaded with 4 GB of memory and a 128 GB Mobility solid state drive, sure to handle any and all computing needs with superior performance. The battery life isn’t too shabby either, with 10.5 of promised battery life to get you through your work or school day without having to travel with the charger. If you opt for a 2-in-1 device, most likely you are an avid multitasker with an eye for streamline technology. The Latitude is equipped with a powerful Intel Core M processor with the multitasker in mind. The 13.3 inch HD touchscreen display implements the 10 point  touch technology for pinpoint accuracy.

latitude 3

This is not the average 2-in-1 device. No need to feel like you are working on half a machine, with the capabilities of a tablet but the lacking of laptop power. The Latitude is built with laptop standards in mind, so the ease of switching between tablet and laptop doesn’t feel like a compromise for efficiency.

Encryption protects you data across all endpoints, including external media and in public cloud storage, and if you have been keeping up with basically any tech news these days, this is huge. Advanced malware attacks are prevented with Dell Data Protection security tools.

Make sure to add the Dell Active Stylus to optimize the Latitude’s versatility.

latitude2

 

$599 is a pretty good deal for all the benefits of a tablet and a laptop rolled into one vamped up device!

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit : www.dell.com 

The verdict is in…2-in-1 vs. tablet

Just the other day I tried relentlessly to convince my mother than a PC with tablet capabilities would significantly improve her work flow. She brought up the usual restrictions associated with tablet use, “does it have enough power to accomplish what I need?”. Most iPads and tablets just can’t compare to the power behind a PC or laptop. Doing research can be a pain, as it isn’t always easy to switch between applications on a tablet device. Multitasking for the work day is exponentially better on a machine that can allow multiple applications to be open and running so that the user can easily shift gears without creating a giant mess. However, tablets have their perks, the machine is much lighter and easier to carry and the hands on capabilities are great. The riddle here is finding a machine that can take from both a PC and a tablet and combine efforts to create a better machine.

Windows 2-in-1 systems combine power, ease, and the Windows operating system, to create better raw usability. Apple iOS and Android can’t compare to the usability of Microsoft Windows even with continuous improvement. With a 2-in-1 system you can run full applications, several of them, side-by-side, switching without problem. The Windows platform was designed for this. I love Apple products and I own quite a few myself, but I know needs and Apple products cannot match the needs of the consumer that wishes to work from a tablet. I know this from experience as I tried to brave my first year of college on only an iPad. I lost a lot of sleep that year.

A Windows 10 powered 2-in-1 PC is not only less expensive, but easier to use for ‘real’ work. Here are a few guidelines to help you make a 2-in-1 purchase.

Choose your Size – 2-in-1 devices range in size from 10 inch models that are ideal for those that are always on the go and need something light that travels well, to 11 and 13 inch models such as the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and the Lenovo Yoga 900. If you are simply not impressed with 13 inches, the HP 15 inch Spectre x360 should do the trick.

Detachable or Rotating Hinge? – Typically you can opt for bendable or detachable. If you prefer the touch-based experience similar to using a tablet but again with better power and management, choose a detachable model. The Microsoft Surface Pro 4, HP Spectre x2 and the Dell XPS 12 are all great detachable models with tablet bodies and magnetic keyboards. In comparison, if you write a significant amount for your job then a bendable 2-in-1 is a better match for you. The Lenovo Yoga 900 and HP Spectre x360 have hinges that bend 360 degrees, and also offer tent and presentation positions.

Processor Specs – The highest power systems will feature an Intel Core i7 or m7 chip. Midrange models will have Core i3, i5 and m5 CPUs, which will support productivity as a good middle range between price and performance. Those on a budget are going to find Intel Celeron and Atom CPUs in their hybrids. If you want a device for browsing the web, answering emails, and watching Netflix a lower budget spec should work just fine.

Storage– The standard for 2-in-1 machines is 4GB of RAM, but 8GB is better if you can afford the increase. I would not advise 16GB of RAM unless you are going to be answering some serious work demands. For most people the extra memory and performance is not needed, not to mention it is more expensive.

Screen Resolution– Screen resolution is very important! A higher resolution screen makes a huge difference throughout the day. Affordable 2-in-1 models have 13366 x 768 pixel displays, but if you can you should look for a sharper 1920 x 1080 full-HD screen. Better image quality and side by side window viewing. The higher end resolutions are so beautiful it is hard not to pay the price for higher resolution. But these can suck up a lot of power, so be mindful of what is really important.

Budget – You can spend anywhere from $150 to $3,000 on a 2-in-1 device. Prices escalate as you increase size, specs, storage, and resolution. Look to our next post to find the perfect 2-in-1 for you!

Microsoft OneDrive raises the bar for cloud storage

Microsoft OneDrive Cloud Storage The Microsoft OneDrive, otherwise known as “device cloud”, is available free of charge for anyone who has created a Microsoft account. Included are 5 GB of free storage, easy access to media files, folder syncing, documents, as well as playing and viewing capabilities in addition to simple storage.

Similar to the iCloud for iPhones and iPads, OneDrive allows iPhone, Android, and Windows phone users to automatically upload photos to the OneDrive camera roll. Combining online storage and syncing into one device, One Drive offers a new convenience for Microsoft users who had to previously deal with separate storage and syncing services. Windows 10 has allowed OneDrive to grow as a built-in capacity. If you utilize other technology platforms OneDrive is compatible with Windows 7 and 8, Mac OS X, iOS, and Android.

 

PROS-

Excellent photo viewing and slideshow capabilities.

Clear interface.

Works with Windows phone, Mac, iOS, and Android.

Easily retrieves any file from a PC.

 

CONS-

Storage offerings shrinking according to a recent release from Microsoft.

Not a share target for Windows 10 apps.

 

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about material presented in this blog post please visit:

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2409569,00.asp

ThinkPad T431

BVA just caught sight of Lenovo’s new ThinkPad T431, and it seems quite impressive. This updated model has gotten a complete makeover from the new color to it’s improved graphic performance.The company took almost a year of research alone to create this new laptop and it looks like it paid off well. Click here to read the changes they made and how they got there.

Air Display – User your IPad as a Second Monitor

As more and more users become mobile the need for mulitple screens on the road has become invaluable. Now if you have an iPad, using wifi, you can use it as a second monitor with your laptop.

You’ll have to install the app on your ipad for $9.99 as well and download and install the app on your laptop.

http://avatron.com/apps/air-display

Key features:
– An instant second monitor
– Touch your desktop
– Display it the way you want (ie Landscape or Portrait)
– No wires needed

Toshiba Portege Ultrabook

For my birthday my husband surprised me with a Toshiba Portege Z835-P370 Ultrabook with an i5-2467M processor, 6GB DDR3 memory, and 128GB Solid State Drive. I know most women like jewelry, gold, diamonds, whatever, not me. I’m a techy at heart and my husband is fully aware of that. Did I need another computer? Who doesn’t? This pc is just 2.5lbs, it has slim profile, and a listed 8 hour battery life (I haven’t seen this yet, max I’ve seen is a little over 4 hours but then I have everything turned up). Oh, it also has a backlit keyboard which I love! This is not my first solid state computer, I have Mac Airbook, I must say the solid state drive makes everything boot up much faster. I have setup this Ultrabook basically identical to my Toshiba Satellite and there is a huge difference in the speed of application loading. Whats really different about this Ultrabook that it has standard features a lot of others don’t such as 3 USB ports, an ethernet port, a VGA port as well as an HDMI port. I’ve been using it the laptop for a bout a week now and so far they only complaint I have is the keyboard size, for those of you with big figures it might take a bit to get used. I was also spoiled by my Satellite laptop as it had a 10-key which I used religiously. That being said, I’m very happy with this light easy to carry and work on laptop.

Mulitple Displays

Recently I wrote a blog on the use of travel monitors so even when you’re out of the office you can have multiple displays. Now while in the office I use three monitors, one is my laptop screen, and two external monitors. Now you may ask, “how do you have two external monitors attached?” as laptops only have one VGA port available. The answer is simple, I use a USB video adapter for my third screen. I’ve tested a number of these from makers such as Iogear, StarTech, Kensington, and HP. The problem with a lot of these USB video adapters is the resolution isn’t always the greatest because of the hertz rates they use there can be frequency issues so you’re seeing the screen flicker or streaming lines also you may experience slowness when moving items on the screen. This hardware uses the DisplayLink software to simplify how multi-monitors talk to each other.

I have been using the HP external video adapter (Part: NL571AA) for the last year and a half and I have to say it works great! The resolution is amazing; I experience no slowness, and no flickering. Priced between $49 and $79 the unit is a must have if you’re in need of multiple screens and are a laptop user or even a desktop user and don’t want to hassle with installing a video card into your machine. At home I have to of the adapters installed so that I can use 4 screens on my desktop!

Mobile Monitors


Today’s trend in the computing workforce is one where you will find people using two, three and sometimes even four monitors to get their work done. The idea of flipping between applications is in the past as users have found that having multiple applications opened on different monitors has increased their productivity. This is true in regards to mobile users as well. Awhile back I picked up a portable Toshiba Mobile LCD Monitor that I can easily connect to my laptop via USB connection. No more am I flipping from application to application while onsite at client working on their network and servers. I can view my documentation on one screen and the servers or another application on the second screen.

What’s also pretty cool is if you’re in meetings and need to show a co-worker or potential client something instead of rotating your laptop for them to see the screen, you could already have the second monitor hooked up and cloning your laptop screen so that they are seeing what you are without either of you moving. What’s really cool about this Toshiba monitor is that it comes with a case and when closed it about legal sized portfolio, and the case doubles as a stand. The monitor is completely USB powered with a resolution of 1366×768 HD. http://us.toshiba.com/computers/accessories/mobile-monitor/

There are other mobile monitors out there such as the Lenovo ThinkVision LT1421
There are other mobile monitors out there such as the Lenovo ThinkVision LT1421 http://support.lenovo.com/en_US/product-and-parts/detail.page?&DocID=PD015702 this one has the same screen resolution and also comes with a case. The ThinkVision LT1421 14-inch Wide Flat Panel Monitor (1452) features:
•14-inch (355.6 mm) viewable image size
•Display resolution of 1366 x 768 matching mainstream Notebook resolution
•Slim (21.5mm, as slim as 9.3mm)
•Light weight (monitor: 0.84kg/1.8lbs; with protective case:1.35kg/2.97lbs)
•Photo frame tilt stand adjustments for viewing comfort (12 degree~40 degree)
•Brightness adjustment button for 16 level brightness
•USB 2.0 connection

Another place to look for a mobile monitor is www.mmt2.com. They have two pretty cool options, one for
your laptop they are calling Field Monitor Pro (these actually include a built in 10key pad) and another version called Monitors2Go (these are built to work on ipads as well as laptops and other portable devices).
The Toshiba and Lenovo monitors are priced around $199, the mmt2 monitors are due to be released sometime this year, pricing has not be listed for these as of yet.

Capabilities and Limitations of the Apple iPad in a Standard Business Network Environment

The iPad is a great device. It’s light, ultra-portable, and you don’t have to take it out of your carry-on for airport security. It’s sleek and sexy. It’s remarkably versatile. Many people wonder: can I replace my Window laptop or MacBook with it? If I add a Bluetooth keyboard, is it a netbook?

You can try, but it’s like trying to get a Corvette to replace a pickup truck: they both serve the same fundamental purpose, but they each excel at different things. You can try to get your pickup up to 180 MPH, and you can try to haul a ton of bricks in your Corvette. With enough effort, “McGyver”-ing, and aftermarket accessories, you could no doubt accomplish each. But is it a good idea? And if you think it through ahead of time, do you really want to?

The longing to replace a laptop with an iPad is easy to understand. An iPad travels well. It’s simple to connect it to a Wi-Fi network, and you don’t have to wait for it to boot up. The battery lasts. When you’re not working, you can use it to play music, movies, or games. It’s a terrific reader for news and e-books. It’s a great email client for Gmail, AOL, and (if your company’s mail system supports it and the corporate policies allow it) Exchange mail, calendar, and contacts using ActiveSync.

But it’s important to remember that the iPad is NOT a laptop or a tablet PC. And, despite being an Apple product, it’s NOT a MacBook. It isn’t built on Windows or Mac OS X – its operating system (iOS) was originally developed for the iPhone. The interface uses multi-touch gestures and an accelerometer, making possible applications that can’t run on a PC or Mac. That also means that applications written for a PC or Mac can’t run on an iPad – unless the author specifically develops a version for iOS. Even then, they would need to publish their application through the Apple App Store (thus sharing their proceeds with Apple) – or you would need to jailbreak your iPad, voiding the warranty.

Importantly, the iPad (like the iPhone and iPod Touch) does NOT support Adobe Flash or Java, meaning that websites that use those technologies won’t behave as designed. Why not? Apple CEO Steve Jobs called the Adobe product insecure, buggy, battery-intensive, and incompatible with a touch interface.

The iPad is better at consuming information than it is at creating it. It’s great for creating and editing smaller emails and documents, but you’ll want a PC to create large or complex documents. Another challenge: once you’ve created or edited the smaller documents, you can email them from the iPad, but only one file per email. To send multiple files, you need to send multiple emails. This can be pretty cumbersome. You’ll note that as you explore the iPad you won’t even encounter the concept of a “file” as you would on a PC or Mac.

To think of the iPad as a replacement for a netbook, notebook, or MacBook is like thinking of the Corvette as a replacement for a Ford F350. Is it fair to call the iPad an overgrown iPhone? No. It’s a terrific multi-function device with some very valuable business purposes in specific situations. Should you expect it to behave like a Windows machine or Mac? You’ll only end up frustrated if you do.

Love the iPad for what it is, and don’t hate it for what it isn’t. And don’t expect your IT consulting company to help you make it do what it’s not designed to do – they can’t fit a ton of bricks in a Corvette, either.

So… what CAN the iPad do in a business network environment? In other words, what is reasonable to expect your company’s I.T. team to support?

  • Email access. If your company allows remote email access from a smartphone using POP or IMAP protocols, you can do it from your iPad. Note, however, that it’s up to you go get the iPad connected to the Internet on the remote Wi-Fi. If you have a 3G iPad, getting it on the Internet is strictly between you, Apple, and AT&T.
  • Calendar/Contact synchronization – if your company has a fairly new Exchange server and the network is configured to allow ActiveSync access. If you have a non-BlackBerry smartphone that wirelessly syncs Calendar/Contacts, your iPad can also.
  • Remote Desktop to a Terminal Server – if your company has a Terminal Server. If you have access using Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Connection software for either Windows or Mac, you can have access from your iPad. Be sure to get a good RDP app such as iTap RDP, which makes it easier to operate a Windows desktop from with the iPad’s smaller display, and makes the best use of the iPad’s direct manipulation and multi-touch gestures.
  • VPN access. If your company allows VPN connections from other devices, such as an IPSec VPN tunnel to a Cisco firewall or a PPTP connection to a Windows RAS Server, you can have the same connection from your iPad. You might use it to establish a Remote Desktop Connection to your office workstation, if your company’s policies allow this.

Now… what CAN’T you expect your company’s I.T. team to support? Pretty much anything not listed above. At its heart, the iPad is a consumer device, and is probably not included in the list of officially-sanctioned “clients” for your company’s server-based applications. There’s no doubt that the iPad will continue to evolve, and new apps are released every day that enhance its functionality and usefulness. But, as a mobile network device, it presents challenges in terms of data security, bandwidth usage, and compatibility. These translate into significant I.T. support costs, so don’t be too surprised if your company won’t support it.