Chromebooks are great, but I have a very specific opinion about buying them. I want a price around $200, an Intel processor, and a minimum 32GB of onboard storage. Right now, Best Buy has just such a deal: You can get the . The only catch is you have to sign-up for a “My Best Buy” account to see the sale price, as this is an “early access” deal. This is a great price for this machine—and surprising to see so soon, given that we just saw this steep discount during last week’s . For $220, you get an 11.6-inch touchscreen display with 1366-by-768 resolution, 32GB of eMMC flash storage, 4GB of RAM, and a 1.6GHz quad-core Intel Celeron N3160 processor. The N3160 is a pretty standard processor for Chromebooks, and it runs really well with Chrome OS since the operating system is so light.
Ski goggles. That’s the inspiration for SteelSeries’s new Arctis line of headsets, including the wireless Arctis 7 I’ve been using for the past few weeks. Take the floating headband that SteelSeries popularized on its old Siberia line, replace it with the elastic you’d use to strap on ski goggles (or maybe a VR headset) and you’ve got the Arctis. Sounds weird, right? But it’s one of the most comfortable headsets I’ve ever worn.
It’s amazing nobody else has done this. I’ve praised floating headbands in the past, especially those from SteelSeries, but there was some caveat. Maybe the headset had a tendency to slip around, or the headband felt like it would wear out too quickly, or it seemed unreasonably bulky (see: ). A great idea maybe, but one that needed refining.
Updated July 20 with confirmation from Microsoft about the , and how on affected PCs.
Owners of some Windows 10 laptops and tablets are crashing into a worrying roadblock when they try to install the . Windows Update initially says the notebooks are compatible with the upgrade, but fails to install it after downloading the setup files, instead displaying the following message: “Windows 10 is no longer supported on this PC. Uninstall this app now because it isn’t compatible with Windows 10.”
No Windows 10 Creators Update for you, Microsoft says—at least, not if you happen to be the unlucky owner of certain older Atom-based Windows devices, and other aging models in the future. After stories arose of such hardware to the Creators Update, Microsoft confirmed late Wednesday that any hardware device that falls out of the manufacturer’s support cycle may be ineligible for future Windows 10 updates. In the case of the (part of the Cloverview platform) that have fallen into Intel's End of Interactive Support phase, they will be ineligible for the Windows 10 Creators Update, Microsoft confirmed. Instead, they’ll simply be offered the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, plus security updates through January, 2023, the end of the original Windows 8.1 support period.
When Intel’s next Core i9 CPU appears in a month or so, it may face some stiff competition in a battle people long thought was over: the Megahertz Wars. Although Intel hasn’t formally declared the clock speed of its upcoming 12-core Core i9-7920X, the company appears to have inadvertently disclosed it. A price list by the company on July 14 shows the $1,200 Core i9-7920X with 16.5MB of cache, 12 cores, 24 threads, and a clock speed of 2.9GHz. Intel officials declined to comment to PCWorld on the apparent slip.
As the Android O release date nears, Google’s busy engineering team still found time on Wednesday to hop onto . Users submitted a barrage of questions, and here are the most interesting things we learned:Dark mode isn’t coming, so stop asking
Google teased us with dark mode on both the Android N and O developer previews, but it’s not making it into the full release anytime soon. The reason? “Reliable and consistent theming is hard.” Numerous questions about themes and dark mode stacked up on the Reddit board, and Android engineer Alan Viverette addressed it thusly: “There are technical and logistical issues with theming. The technical side is largely solved in O with Runtime Resource Overlay support (a Sony framework that allows the system to modify the look and feel of an app while it is running); however, we still don’t have stable APIs for describing what can be themed or adequate ways to verify that existing applications properly support theming.”
Pop! OS is more than just another Linux distro. Many Linux OSes borrow from other OSes in one way or another but add their own spin to the OS in question--like a different desktop environment, for example. Pop! OS is not much different in this respect, except that it's developed by System76, a company that sells laptops and desktops preloaded with Ubuntu. Well, for now. System76 recently released an Alpha version of its own . The company has set the first official release for Pop! OS for October 19.
In this week’s The Full Nerd, , , , and discuss all things AMD, starting with the . Sixteen cores and 32 threads for $999! Can the far more expensive compete with such aggressive pricing by AMD, especially with Intel’s debut 12-core clocked at a mere 2.9GHz (as we discovered totally by accident, live, in the middle of the show)?
was probably 2016’s greatest surprise. After a disastrous multiplayer “beta”/demo I was primed to hate it, only to come away from the campaign a few weeks later thinking it was . With that in mind, the phrase “We’ve retired the Doom season pass” should be cause for celebration. Bethesda that all of Doom’s post-release downloadable content is now free to everyone, as part of Update 6.66. More Doom? For free? Excellent.
Periodically Newegg decides to heavily discount its Rosewill cables and connectors. Right now, the retailer has a sale on its in-house products that’ll beat even a $0.99 HDMI cable on eBay: Everything’s free. Kind of. These products are free after rebate, so you still have to pay up front. (And depending on where you live, you’ll also have to pay sales tax, which won’t get reimbursed.) After the rebate, you’ll get a gift card worth the value of the purchase. Of all the products available today, I’m most interested in the (before the $12 rebate).
Just yesterday I was that we’d never see another Wolf Among Us, with Telltale apparently content to churn out licensed superhero games, and then...more Wolf Among Us. Surprise! Telltale announced a trio of games this morning at San Diego Comic-Con—Batman: The Enemy Within,The Walking Dead: The Final Season, and (most importantly) Wolf Among Us 2. Batman is the only one out in 2017, so it is indeed a year of Telltale superheroes—Guardians of the Galaxy and Batman will finish out the rest of the year. Episode one, titled “The Enigma,” will be out on August 8 which is mere weeks from now. And if you hadn’t already guessed from the title, Riddler will play a large role in the new season.
Updated 7/19/17 to reflect a new contender in our roundup, CyberGhost, which earns the distinction of for best overall VPN. Choosing the right (VPN) service is no simple task. A VPN should keep your internet usage private and secure, but not every service handles your data in the same way. Just look at the critiques of notable and to understand the challenge.
CyberGhost in brief:
P2P allowed: Yes Business location: Romania Number of servers: 852 Number of country locations: 27 Cost: $30-$48 billed annually Blazing-fast speeds are something that all VPNs promise, and most of them are fast enough for common use cases like high-definition video streaming. CyberGhost, on the other hand, has some consistently fast speeds across most of its network. CyberGhost is also good on privacy and anonymity, and offers an attractive user interface that will appeal to most, especially novice VPN users.
Google Now is gone, but your information feed lives on as a revamped, humbly no-name , whose mission is you and only you. When you launch the new (or swipe right on Pixel phones), it won’t look much different. The search bar remains at the top, followed by your shortcut icons and a series of cards based on your interests. What’s changing is how Google populates it. As Google's Shashi Thakur writes in a blog post, “Your feed will not only be based on your interactions with Google, but also factor in what’s trending in your area and around the world. The more you use Google, the better your feed will be.”
The is quite simply a power outlet that you can control from anywhere. Using your smartphone, you can turn devices on & off, set programs to turn them on & off at set times while you're away, or engage a "countdown timer" which powers the switch off after a set amount of time. Installation is simple -- just plug a device into your smart plug and connect to your wifi network. The HS100 is also compatible with Amazon Alexa, for voice control. Buy multiple plugs and get creative.
Put 2 Echo devices in your cart and Amazon will credit you back $100 right now, effectively pricing each one at $129.99 vs. the typical $179.99 list price. But you'll have to use a special code at checkout, to activate the discount: . Amazon Echo is a hands-free speaker you control with your voice. Echo connects to the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, news, sports scores, weather, and more—instantly. All you have to do is ask. Echo has seven microphones and beam forming technology so it can hear you from across the room—even while music is playing. Echo is also an expertly tuned speaker that can fill any room with 360° immersive sound. When you want to use Echo, just say the wake word “Alexa” and Echo responds instantly. If you have more than one Echo or Echo Dot, Alexa responds intelligently from the Echo you're closest to with ESP (Echo Spatial Perception), so it makes a lot of sense to pick up 2 right now with this discount. .
Updated July 19, 2017, to reflect changes based on Windows 10's Creators Update. There’s no doubt about it: with data-tracking tidbits and hooks into all sorts of Microsoft’s online services. Handing over all that data has some tangible benefits, like Windows 10’s OneDrive integration and the Bing-powered brains behind the Cortana digital assistant, but not everyone is thrilled with the idea of an operating system that’s constantly looking over their digital shoulder.
Update 7/19/17: Bixby Voice is rolling out to all Galaxy S8 and S8+ phones. See below for how to download and install it. It’s been a long time coming, but Bixby has finally found its voice. Samsung has begun pushing out the final piece of its AI package, Bixby Voice, to all Galaxy S8 phones. Before long, millions of people will be saying, “Hi Bixby” to summon the new assistant. But while we might not need another AI assistant on our phones, Bixby is actually a pretty good companion to Google Assistant. It’s a little slow on the trigger at times, but I was impressed with how well it was able to understand me. And Bixby isn’t a clone of Google Assistant or Sir eitheri. Samsung’s AI is more servant than smartie pants, carrying out phone tasks that would normally require numerous steps. Here's everything you need to know to get started: