Recently in Tablet Category

REVIEW: Dell Venue 8 Pro

| 1 Comment | No TrackBacks
| More

The tablet market is stronger than ever, with a 68% increase in tablet and hybrid device sales over the 2013 period.

Although Apple still remains in the top spot, there are plenty of alternatives to the ever popular iPad, including the Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet.

This 8 inch tablet, running Windows 8.1, comes with a full Microsoft Office suite of applications and is an easy to use platform upon which to experience windows 8.

In this video, we give an overview of the device and its specs:



The size of the tablet is small enough that it comfortably fits in one hand, with an appealing rubber-like texture on the back which makes it easy to grip. It also is very light at just under 400g, as well as its small size making it easily portable for working on-the-go such as on the tube or at home.

The usual Windows button, which would normally be located on the front of a Windows tablet, is a physical button at the side of the device, which impeded use a little, and I found it easier to use the swipe-menu feature to navigate instead.

dellpro2.JPG

We had particular trouble using the on-screen keyboard, but there are a number of different accessories available to make this tablet easier to use when out and about, including a wireless keyboard, stylus and a tablet cover that doubles up as a stand, but it will cost you extra.

The display, which is HD 800p, is vibrantly coloured and good for watching videos or looking at documents and presentations, and with the full Office suite available all of your work is at your fingertips.

Although the battery life lasts all day when in use, it seemed to run down just as quickly when on standby, and I would have expected it to last longer.

dellpro1.JPG

The processor is quite powerful considering the tablet's size, with an Intel Atom Z3740D Processor, so the apps load quickly. The dual-band Wi-Fi also ensures that web pages load quickly, although it can only be used where there are Wi-Fi hotspots or a reliable connection as the device has no SIM capabilities.

The tablet also features wireless display technology, allowing videos, photos or presentations to be streamed from your tablet to the nearest compatible TV using a Miracast secure direct connection.

Specs at a glance:

Dell Venue 8 Pro

    • Display: 8 inch HD 800p
    • OS: Windows 8.1
    • Camera: Front 1.2 MP, Rear 5 MP
    • Hard Drive: 32GB/64GB eMMC Hard Drive
    • Memory: 2GB Single Channel DDR3L-RS 1600MHz
    • Processor:  Intel  Atom Processor Z3740D (2MB Cache, up to 1.8GHz Quad-Core)

As far as small affordable tablets go, this is definitely one of the best for getting work done on a commute. The review unit was supplied to us by Ebuyer, where you can currently buy the Dell Venue Tablet Pro for £239.99.

Enhanced by Zemanta

MWC FIRST LOOK: Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD+

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

Over the last year the news has been filled with stories of Lenovo's success and it seems that they are slowly climbing their way to the top of the technology ladder.

The company even saw its smartphone sales increase by 102% over the course of 2013. So it's not surprising that during MWC, Lenovo has a whole new range of products to get excited about.

I focused on the new Lenovo Yoga table, since it will be available in the UK, and it was nice to take a look at something a bit different.

lenovo2.JPG

The tablet has a cylindrical battery running along one edge of the device, which not only provides up to 18 hours of battery life, but also acts as an extremely comfortable handle for holding when reading documents or books and taking pictures.

There is a kick-stand built in, which has been extended for flexibility of angles, allowing the device to stand upright when viewing content such as videos or presentations, but it folds away nicely when you're not using it, and doesn't get in the way when you want to pick up and hold the device.

lenovo1.JPG

The camera has been upgraded to an 8 megapixel camera, which takes pretty good photos and coupled with the battery/handle it's easier to take pictures than on traditionally shaped tablets.

Specs at a glance: 

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD+

    • Processor: Snapdragon 1.6GHz
    • Camera: 8MP Front Camera
    • Memory: 2GB
    • Storage: 32GB
    • OS: Android 4.3

The Bluetooth keyboard has been updated, and also functions as a cover for the tablet with a strengthened back plate that slides across the screen to protect it from damage and also to make it easier to carry both parts around in a bag. It also puts the tablet to sleep when you slide the cover on, which ensures that it doesn't get activated in your bag and saves battery.


lenovo3.JPG

The tablet and keyboard are also charged via micro USB as opposed to the previous proprietary charger, and the Yoga has a micro USB port with OTG capability, so it can be used to charge other devices when you're out and about.

lenovo4.JPG

They might not be market leaders in the tablet sector, but this device is stylish and has enough features to set it apart from other devices in the same vein. 


Enhanced by Zemanta

CES 2014: Panasonic announce new Toughpad FZ-M1

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

Panasonic's range of rugged devices has always been at the forefront of portable technology for rougher working environments, and it looks like the new Toughpad will be no different.

Toughpads have previously come in a range of sizes, including  7-inch, 10-inch and a massive 20-inch. The new Toughpad is a 7-inch model designed to be easily portable for people working in industries such as transport, retail and emergency services. With a 4th generation Intel Core i5 vPro processor, this fanless tablet is designed to provide high performance with low heat generation and power consumption.

Panasonic FZ-M1 Toughpad.jpg

The Toughpad FZ-M1 weighs 540g and the strengthened glass houses an LCD touch screen with an anti-reflection layer to allow working inside and out. The touchscreen can also process up to ten finger touches at once. With optional business expansion models including NFC, smartcard reader and battery hotswap capabilities alongside the standard USB 3.0, headset and microSIM, the tablet can be adapted to suit the industry it is needed in. 

And now for the justification for its "tough" label: the tablet can be dropped from 5ft, heated to 50°C, cooled to -10°C and is dust and water resistant. It might not be massively pretty, but it does what it says on the tin.

Specs

Resolution: 1280x800

OS: Windows 8.1 Pro (Windows 7 version available)

Processor: 4th generation Intel Core i5 vPro

Memory: 4GB (8GB optional)

Dimensions: 7-inch tablet, 18mm depth

The Toughpad FZ-M1 is due to become available in February 2014 for a starting price of £1,183.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Huddle Note - File sharing for the future

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

Huddle has launched a new app for enterprises to use as an alternative to Microsoft Office.

We've talked about Huddle before, and how it allow teams all over the world to work collaboratively on projects by sharing files and comments in the cloud.

Huddle Note iOS Screenshot 1.pngThe new Huddle Note application now allows teams to create, edit and store any content in the cloud, making sharing and cross-platform use easier. As explained by Huddle CEO Alastair Mitchell, it's a way for employees to share ideas wherever they are in the easiest way possible, without having to use other application or software.

He said: "People don't want to waste time skipping between apps, battling with legacy word processors, and then uploading documents to the cloud to share them with co-workers - especially when they're quick notes such as brainstorm ideas and meeting minutes. 

"With Huddle Note, we're adding an easy-to-use and intuitive way to capture content in Huddle, giving people a simpler, faster, mobile alternative to Microsoft Office and other bloated legacy offerings."

New features in the app include: creating and editing documentation in the cloud, sharing any content instantly with others and commenting and feedback. The app also has Huddle security features and an audit trail of activity so you can see when your documents have been read by others.

Huddle Note web screenshot.jpg

This move away from "Jurassic systems" (Mitchell's words, not mine) will give workers everywhere a chance to share their ideas and be more productive in an environment where there's proper support available. 

With the workforce slowly becoming more and more dispersed, with people working from home, abroad or even on public transport, it's exactly what people need.

The new Huddle iOS application is also free to download from the appstore, so why not give it a go yourself? 

Enhanced by Zemanta

British Airways deploys Panasonic Toughpads to help turnaround time for flights

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

I was invited to take a flight to the Isle of Man with BA Cityflyer to see a demonstration of the Panasonic Toughpad, which is used for flights from London City Airport to keep tabs on flight data.

As our plane landed, a transfer of several paper documents occurred - one of the things this new innovation is working to reduce.

The Toughpad is essentially a more practical upgrade from the previous Panasonic Toughbook, and is used in combination with Electronic Technical Log (ETL) software from NVable to record and sign off flight and maintenance information.

The airline wanted something durable and practical. There can be no room for error of any kind during flights, especially hardware failure. The Toughpad meets these criteria, as not a single Toughbook or Toughpad device has been returned for repair in the years that BA has been using them. It also has better battery life and is 50% lighter than the Toughbook.

toughpad.JPG

Dave Cooper, line maintenance manager for BA CityFlyer, explained that there are mandatory documents that must be signed for every flight so that all of the people involved in the flight process know how many times an aircraft has flown and when checks need to occur.

The Toughpad and NVable ETL software allow this information to be entered via the tablet and immediately transmitted to the BA Cityflyer maintenance system so that engineers and flight crew can access the information. The quick availability of data has contributed to reduced turnaround times for flights, and also cuts down on mistakes made when information is transcribed from paper into digital systems.

When showing me the system, he pointed out the maintenance list for the plane we were on. Some of the items on the list had a bright yellow exclamation mark next to them - not the most comforting sight to see when in the air. He assured me that it just meant the plane would need examinations carried out later that day, information that had already been transmitted to the maintenance system.

Once we were safely back at City Airport, I asked the pilot Klaus Egge how the Toughpad had improved the data recording process. He admitted that the Toughpad method reduced human error, and that using the Toughpad in the cockpit is much more convenient than paper or the previous Toughbook.

He said that automatic functions, such as warning when inspections are due, are a great benefit of the new system. "In the past we'll have to check that manually by paper," he said. "It will be more accurate which is probably more important, the most beneficial part is that it will take away mistakes."

pilottoughpadflight.JPG

Enhanced by Zemanta

Top five BYOD problems and app solutions

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

Since the advancement of mobile technology, an office environment has become less and less important in business. Everyone would rather use their mobile or iPad to do their work and the need for corporate issue devices has become less important.
 
But Bring Your Own Device schemes aren't without their problems; employees often overwork or compromise the security of office data. So here's a list of common B.Y.O.D issues, and apps that can help to fix them. 
 
1.      Mobile device management and data protection

Security is the top priority for firms when considering external devices to be used for company business. If mobile device management is not handled properly, this can lead to stresses such as restricting the apps that employees can use on their own phones, which could lead to discontent.
 
This can be resolved by an app that acts as a virtual machine to allow the employee to connect to the office network within a secure environment, such as AppSense's MobileNow or the VMWare Mobile Secure Desktop. This allows the corporations a level of control over security and the device being used and the employee can still use their device as normal; safe in the knowledge that they can do whatever they want with it.

appsense.png
 
2.      Device and data loss

Losing your device can be stressful enough without the added possibility of comprising any company data. That's why it is always handy to have an app that will help you find your lost device, such as Find My iPhone. There is also a risk of losing data. Corporations have many safe-holds in place to ensure that work is easily recovered if it is lost; something that many home-users don't consider. If you don't have a device that allows automatic cloud backup then looking into a way to keep data safe is highly advised, even if that is in the form of something as simple as SkyDrive.
 
3.      Over or under working

Bring Your Own device schemes work well for companies, as they allow employees to utilise their time and ensure that they are working whenever possible. But this can cause issues when the employee feels that they are putting more than their fair share of time, especially as the ability to work anywhere often means time spent at home is also spent working.
 
Similarly, when using your own device at work instead of a company-issued machine, there's the temptation to check personal e-mails and get sidetracked by whatever you might use your device for at home. An app such as HoursTracker can easily resolve this, as you can log the hours that you have been working, and what you have been working on, so that you can find out exactly how much time you spend working, and how often it exceeds the amount of time spent in the office.  

hours tracker.png
 
4.      Lack of structure

Merging work life and home life can make it difficult to keep track of projects and tasks due to the lack of re-enforced work structure. As they say "Tidy desk, tidy mind" so understandably if half of your work is done away from the desk, it wouldn't be unusual to find it hard to organise your workload. Applications that already exist on most phones can help with this, such as a calendar. For a more project-oriented app, there's the LiquidPlanner, which allows projects to be planned, and scheduled amongst users, and notes and documents to be shared, to ensure that both employees and corporations are maximising their productivity.
 
5.      Lack of monitoring

Companies will want to have as much control over devices as possible, especially as data exchanged via devices brought from home could lead to a security risk if misused. But this can be an issue with employee owned devices, as they will want to have the freedom of using their device without interference from the company that they work for.

Innovations such as the Samsung Knox and the Blackberry Balance could be the future of B.Y.O.D technology, allowing one device to act as two separate devices, using an app that provides a complete work space which is separate from any personal use of the device, providing the perfect work and home balance. 

Perhaps this is a glance into the future of business?
Enhanced by Zemanta

Gadget Guide: Tablets

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More


gadgetguide.jpg


Computer Weekly's Gadget Guide on tablets gives you a round up of all the latest tablet news, previews, and reviews from Inspect-a-Gadget.

If you're researching the wide range of tablets in the market head over to our guide for the low-down on all things smart, flat and rectangular.

REVIEW: Maroo's Kaimata Tablet Stand

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

We're bringing more and more tablets into the workplace and into our home, but have your arms ever got tired from holding your iPad, or have you got frustrated trying to type flat on your Nexus? If you're using it for more than "sofa surfing" a decent stand for your tablet is a must.

image (3).jpeg
image.jpeg

Kaimata stand from Maroo is designed for the iPad, Kindle, Galaxy Tab, Zoom and PlayBook specifically, although supports any tablet with a thickness of around 9mm.

 

image (5).jpg

It has a sturdy base and an adjustable arm which flexes up to 90 degrees, as well as a hand fixture which flexes to around 160 degrees. This allows your tablet to be held at all possibly positions that you would need when using it on a day-to-day basis.

While the base is sturdy, I found that the arms holding the tablet are much less so. Quite a few times the iPad would wobble a little too much for comfort - especially in landscape mode. I felt like the arms needed to be just a few centimetres wider to account for a 10inch tablet.

I also found the arms quite rough to touch, when removing my iPad quickly from the stand, I was worried that the arms might scratch the screen.

But the best thing about this product is the flexibility of the display arm. It could be moved easily from typing to viewing. And being able to pop the small base onto most surfaces from a sofa arm or prominently on your work desk made this product very versatile. 

image (13).jpeg

The base provided a clever "management" for cable woes with a cable routing space under the base for you to organise your wires. This was a thoughtful touch to the product.

The no slip tray was a good idea, fitting my iPhone 4S snugly in the middle (I don't think it would be tall enough for the 5!), but the two trays either side were a little pointless as they were so small. The box showed a set of keys on the smaller tray, but you couldn't fit more than a single key and accompanying keyring.

image (9).jpeg
With an RRP of £39.99, I felt that this was one of the better stands and not a horrendously overpriced gadget just because it is associated with the word 'Apple'. And at the moment Amazon are offering it at £24.95,so be quick and make your tablet even more functional. 
Enhanced by Zemanta

New PCs enter the market at Computex

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

Dell, Acer and Asus have all unveiled various PC models at Computex in Taiwan this week. In a midst of a PC market crash, the computer manufacturers have taken a leap of faith and revealed new designs the safety net being of course the hybrid tablet devices.

Dell

Dell announced its XPS 11 model, a 2-in-1 convertible Ultrabook. This hybrid device has a 360 degreed rotation design in order to hide away the keyboard and flip into a tablet device. At 14.9mm and 2.5 pounds this product could be utilised within an BYOD environment, which has seen many of these types of devices in recent months.

Additionally, Dell launched an OptiPlex 9020 and All-in-One machine. This commercial desktop will be available in four different form factors, an all-in-one computer, as well as three different sized towers, all powered by Intel Core i7 processors.

Dell also launched a 4th-gen Intel business laptop, including swappable batteries. The Latitude E6540 will feature comprehensive file-level encryption, advanced authentication and malware protection.

The XPS 12, OptiPlex 9020 desktop, and Latitude E6540 will be available in the coming weeks.

Additionally, the computer manufacturer added two printers to its portfolio of peripherals. The B1165nfw and B1265dfw claim to provide affordable printing options, wireless networking capabilities and document management software. The two printers will have the ability to print, scan, copy and fax within the single device.

Acer

Acer announced its new Iconia tablet, the Iconia W3, which claims to be the first 8.1-inch tablet running Windows 8. The company believes that this is the "optimum size for productivity and entertainment, while comfortable enough to sit in one hand". It will be available pre-installed with Microsoft Office Home & Student 2013.

The company also launched a "phablet" device - the 5.7-inch 1280x720 screen Liquid S1. It offers an option to insert two SIM cards, and runs Android Jelly Bean and a 1.5 GHz processor. Additionally, it has a few functionalities to boost productivity: The Acer Float User Interface, which allows several apps to stay open at the same time so users can multitask; the Auto Profile which supports predefined network settings, which will adjust settings such as brightness, volume and connectivity as users visit frequent locations.

Acer also launched its flagship ultrabook, the 13.3-inch Aspire S7. The ultrabook boosts a longer-lasting battery for "all day computing" as well as a updated cooling fan which makes less noise. It also offers wireless display technology for sharing on a big screen wirelessly. Like its previous model, it will include a 10-point WQHD display with 2,560 x 1,440 resolution taking full advantage of the touch capabilities of Windows 8.

Asus

Probably, most interesting from all the launches at Computex, was the Transformer Book Trio from Asus. This 11.6-inch clamshell tablet with a detachable display, consists of two operating systems. It can switch between Windows 8 notebook, Android tablet and Windows 8 desktop PC.

The Transformer series has been a success of Asus in the consumer space in recent years, the ability to switch between app stores, synch data and apparently "continue to surf a webpage when moving from notebook to tablet, could be a game changer for the device in the business space also.

The PC station dock has its own 4th generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor, keyboard and 750GB hard drive and it can also be hooked up to a monitor to be used as a desktop PC. Additionally the screen can be removed from the station dock to be used on the go as a tablet with a 2.0 GHz Intel processor , 64GB and full HD display- taking the meaning of "hybrid" one step further.

Intel

Intel also had a presence at Computex, revealing a 22nm low-power, Atom system on a chip design, which it claimed would offer faster graphics and twice the CPU performance of the current generation. According to Intel, the new chip would power Android and Windows 8.1 devices for up to eight hours.

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Gadget Show Live HANDS ON: Boogie Board

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
| More

The fundamental Boogie Board technology has been around for 20 years under the name Kent Displays, but for the last two years the company has concentrated on producing touch slates which replace the need for paper notebooks.

The cholesteric liquid crystal display (ChLCD) screen was developed out of the company's R&D, and the slates remind me of a darker Kindle screen.

English: The Taj Mahal, complete with ripples ...

English: The Taj Mahal, complete with ripples in the reflection (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The basic tool slate (£30), is a simple slate which when it was launched, was thought that it would be aimed at children - think a modern day etch-a-sketch, just write on the slate and press the erase button to wipe away. However, the children's market only takes up 40% of sales. The Boogie Board is very popular in Japan as electronic stationary, but 5% of the market share actually comes from call centres who find that it is safer to write notes regarding sensitive information and quickly erase it again.

The basic slate requires no power to generate or retain an image, and only a small amount to erase (supplied by a small watch battery, which will execute over 50,000 erase cycles).

The next stage Boogie Board (£80) connects to a computer via a micro USB, and as you write on the slate it can be seen replicated on the computer screen, alternatively it can be written away from the computer, connected and saved before erasing. I also played around with a prototype of the next generation device, which will be launched in Q4 2013, giving the Boogie Board wireless connectivity via Bluetooth. 

IMG_1735.JPG

It's not particularly glam, or sleek like a tablet, but I can definitely see the appeal in utilities, call centres and in health care.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Archives

Subscribe to blog feed

Recent Comments

  • jason smith: Blackberry 10 has an Android Runtime layer, thus allowing android read more

About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries in the Tablet category.

T-Mobile is the previous category.

Telepresence is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.