As we demand more and more from our mobile devices manufacturers are forced to try and stuff higher power CPU and GPUs inside ever-shrinking laptop and tablet shells. This leaves them in tricky position; they have to either put in tons of fans or make the materials for their products. Some have tried to split the difference with a combination of fans, materials and also components that react to the demands of the user. However, (you knew there was a however didn’t you) there are times when these are not enough and where the ergonomics of modern laptops (to include thin and light). Due to this unfortunate fact cooling companies have managed to open up a market for coolers which are intended to keep your high-performance laptop cool. Many of these are ungainly (in terms of ergonomic) despite bringing better cooling to the table. They also tend to be bulky and difficult to transport making their use limited. Thermaltake has a novel design that aims to deal with both portability and ergonomics, the GOrb II. Let’s take a look at this interesting device and see if it really does help bring something new to the table.
Every now and then we like to step back and take a look at the component industry. It has not been that long ago when the number of individual component makers began to dwindle. We have already watched as ABIT, SOYO DFI, FIC, and other motherboard manufacturers have disappeared. These were once great companies and flourished in the heyday of the DIY market (the Super Socket 7, Slot A and 1, Socket A etc.). Now the market is collapsing and we see companies that once only directly sold the pieces and parts for our computers starting to assemble them for us as well. Although the three major players in the motherboard/GPU market all have presence in Europe and Asia only one has truly penetrated the North American market and stands poised to make an even bigger impact there; this is Asus.
Linus Torvalds publicly expressed his disappointment via Google's social network about screens on laptops, which have a resolution that has long been stagnant. Currently the most common resolution is 1366x768. According to Torvalds, even cell phones will soon surpass the resolution available on most on laptops, in fact there are a couple of phones that do and many tablets as well
SilverStone launched two very interesting and practical additions for owners of portable computers. It is a reservoir for SSD disks named SilverStone Treasure TS08 and TS09, which are intended to be incorporated into the space reserved for the optical drive. The TS08 comes in white, with net weight of 27 grams, while the TS09 is for black notebooks, and since it supports a larger drive bay thickness it is a bit heavier, but still very light at only 40 grams.
Just as they conquered the Android world, or maybe even the whole smartphone market with their Galaxy S3, Samsung wants to do the same with Windows 8. On their invite with the “Framing The Future” catchphrase we can see two notebooks, and from the first look they will definitely try to make a good first impression with its thickness and neat design. The event will take place at the Museum and maybe that's just a hint from Samsung that they intend to do (or bring) something revolutionary.
In the second half of 2012 most panel makers stationed in Taiwan expect their biggest orders to come from the rising tablet and notebook markets. Customers want more and more from mobile devices and as we know there are a lot of new tablets coming out just before the holiday season. AU Optronics said that they expect their shipments of small and medium size segments to grow even more in the last 2 quarters of 2012. Panels in near future will continue to have higher and higher resolution as well as reduced power consumption. As far as size is concerned most shipments will be of 7 to 10-inch panels as they are the most popular.
The Lenovo Group declared the results for the first quarter of 2012. Lenovo made 8 million in sales which is a 35% improvement from last year, at the same time net profit has improved by 30%, or $141 million. These results are an indicator that Lenovo can maintain increasing profit in a competative market. On a worldwide scale they had 15% market share, which helps the company to have a significant advantage over others. They also showed a 24.4% increase in net distribution; making it the 13th quarter in a row they beat the rest of the computer industry in this field.
On an investors conference that Asustek hosted yesterday, company president, Jerry Shen announced that company sales have been beyond planned in Q2 of 2012. They achieved a new record in operating profits and profits before tax. They plan to ship out 22 million notebooks in 2012, and believe that the release of Windows 8 in the fourth quarter will be very important for their market results. According to Asustek there is a new wave of competition arriving at the end of the year that will reshuffle the rankings of tablet and notebook PC players. They announced consolidated revenues of $3.15 billion for second quarter, which is a 4% increase.
They say the consumer has a very short memory and that may be true in many cases, but when news that AMD is being sued by Quanta (the largest contract notebook maker in the world) we saw many, many posts and comments bringing up nVidia’s fiasco with the 8600M GPU. Although the two issues might appear to be similar, they are very far apart in terms of not only the problem, but who was/is ulimately responsible for the problem.
Sharp will soon start mass producing of IGZO LCD screens for laptops. This would finally should allow bigger availability of high resolution screens in laptops, which have so far been well behind in comparison to tablets in the density of dots per inch.