Tablet PCs


Canadians buying tablets in impulse purchases

Microsoft_SurfaceWhen shopping for electronics, do you hunt for the best deal? Or do you thoroughly research things, exhausting all tools available online before putting down the plastic?

If you’re buying a new tablet, chances are that it’s an impulse purchase and not something you’ve mulled over, a new study suggests.

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Hands-on preview: Microsoft Surface

IMG_3564[1]While Microsoft is launching a major new operating system, it’s also rolling out a major new piece of hardware: Surface.

Like the Xbox, Surface combines hardware and software developed by Microsoft. The company has taken full control over not just the operating system, but the physical device.

At first glance, it looks like just any other tablet, except this one has a 10.6-inch screen that displays 16x9 video beautifully.

Microsoft says a great amount of design work has gone into developing the Surface. The batteries, which it claims can last a workday of use, are specifically designed for the Surface and are spread evenly through the device.

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Could Smartglass, XBox Music regain ground for Microsoft?

Could Microsoft finally be getting it right? The company has been against the ropes for some time in consumer-focused areas such as music and mobile, but the stars seem to be aligning this fall. Blogs and news services are alight this week with the discussion of Windows 8, which is already shipping in some parts of the world. I'm more interested in what's happening in the living room – and of course, the two are related.

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Microsoft Surface to start at $519, but is that cheap enough?

Surface-Cyan-Cover_PageMicrosoft has announced that pricing for the Surface – its first recent Windows hardware and software device – will start at $519.

For that price you’ll get just the tablet, no keyboard.

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Are PCs going extinct?

If new market research numbers are anything to go by, the PC as we know it might be going the way of the floppy disk.

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Preview: Acer Iconia W700 tablet makes good sense of Windows 8

Acer-iconia-w700Better late than never for Microsoft to launch an operating system that “works” on tablet computers. In this case, Acer has just the PC to help.

I had an opportunity to try Acer’s Iconia W700 tablet before it goes on sale Oct. 26. Like a freshman who did his readings before class, the W700 is set to arrive on scene well-equipped for Windows 8.

Inside the tablet itself, Acer has squeezed in an Intel Ivy Bridge Core i3 processor (a faster i5 chip is also available). No beefed-up mobile phone processor here, this is a proper CPU providing sufficient grunt to plow through a bulk of tasks.

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PC sales slumping: report

Sales of desktop and laptop computers are beginning to sink around the world, new statistics suggest.

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Will Microsoft Surface rule the living room?

Microsoft is late to the party with its new tablet device. Can it trounce the iPad?

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Parents to get weekly reports of kids’ activity on Windows 8

2844.FamilySafety02_0ABFB825Parents wondering what their kids are up to on the computer will be able to receive weekly reports from Windows 8, detailing their every move.

Ideally, a child’s computer (or the one they use most often) is placed in an open area of the family home. That way, parents can easily look over their son/daughter’s shoulder to see what they’re up to.

But that presents a few problems. 1) With busy lives, parents aren’t always around when kids are on the computer. 2) Desktops are becoming less common, with laptops and tablets becoming more popular.

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Review: Apple plays it steady with the new iPad

With the new Apple iPad, Apple is playing it safe and steady.
The new iPad, which went on sale Friday, features a super high-resolution screen that Apple calls its Retina display.
With it, games look astonishingly sharp and vivid. The amount of detail you can see is stunning and the display really makes media pop.
With photos you can see each single strand of hair, and in movies you can spot every single nuance of lighting.
Powering this impressive display is an A5X processor. Same dual-core chip but with four times the graphics power.
But a more powerful chip will be thirstier on battery power, and so the iPad has gained a bit of weight and grown a bit around the waist.
It's nothing dramatic, but iPad2 users will notice a difference.
The camera has also been improved with a 5 MP image sensor and the optics from the iPhone 4S.
On the new iPad it will produce some reasonably good still photos and full HD video.
The improved iPhoto and iMovie apps make it as easy to edit a photo or cut a video as it is to change a light bulb.
But media enthusiasts may stick with the power and customization available from traditional computer programs.
With the new iPad's launch, prices for the iPad 2 have dipped across the board.
If you're thinking of getting a tablet with the best screen, the new iPad is your best bet. Albeit a little pricey at $519 to start.
But frugal shoppers should definitely consider the now-cheaper iPad 2. It's hard to go wrong with Apple's tablet app-rich iOS ecosystem.
- Maurice Cacho, MSN Tech & Gadgets


Danny BradburyDanny Bradbury

Danny Bradbury is a technology journalist with 20 years' experience. He writes regularly for publications including the Guardian, the Financial Times, the Financial Post, and Backbone magazine. Danny also writes and directs documentaries.

Maurice CachoMaurice Cacho

Maurice Cacho is a Toronto-based journalist mixing his love for tech with a passion for news. He's also CP24's Web Journalist and appears daily on CP24 Breakfast and weekly on the channel's tech show, Webnation, discussing tech news and trends.