Leading global ICT company HP, producers of premium laptops and printers, has once again made good on its promise to continue to provide its Nigerian customers with its latest innovative products.
The company introduced its newest HP Pavilion x360 14 and 15 designed for an exceptional entertainment experience for the Nigerian market. The HP Pavilion x360 14 and 15 are perfect for consumers on the hunt for a versatile laptop that allows them to stream content or game from anywhere.
The devices have been updated with a more compact, lightweight design and feature optional Wi-Fi 61 for reliable connectivity in busy households and public spaces. Together with the highest screen to body ratio for an HP mainstream x360, OMEN Gaming Hub preinstalled, and Voice Assistance, consumers can experience better entertainment and a lighter weight for easier mobility.
Ifeyinwa Afe, Managing Director of HP Nigeria said, “the latest Pavilion products have reiterated our commitment in Nigeria, to always make sure that our customers are among the first in the world to experience HP’s latest innovative products. These products showcase the cutting-edge technology that HP is known for. For creative and technical pros in media and entertainment, architecture, and data science fields – our ecosystem helps transform creative processes and accelerate workflows.”
Designed with the environment in mind, the Pavilion x360 14 and 15 are two of HP’s most sustainable consumer laptops to date made from ocean-bound plastic bottles. A more premium configuration features recycled aluminum in the keyboard deck, reducing production waste from the post-industry recycle process and ultimately saving over 341 tons of CO2 emissions over the projected product lifecycle volume. Both PCs also contain post-consumer recycled plastic and are EPEAT Gold Registered and Energy Star Certified.
In terms of entertainment, the PCs are equipped with a four-sided micro-edge bezel and have up to an 88.92% screen to body ratio, the largest for an HP mainstream convertible PC. The reduced bezel dimensions give users more screen time for an immersive entertainment experience. As people work, learn, and play from home more during the pandemic, HP will introduce a simplified version of OMEN Gaming Hub to Pavilion users.
Preinstalled on the new Pavilion x360 14 and 15, users can experience the popular gaming dashboard with features that allow them to check their system vitals, download wallpaper, earn rewards, and more. And with new Amazon Alexa skills, users can use their PC to drop-in on other supported devices, stay in contact with family and friends with hands-free calling, discover music through a dedicated landing page, and control their smart home devices. Cortana and China’s Xiaowei are also supported.
Both devices also feature a 12 mm reduction in the Y dimension, which contributes to a six percent decrease in the overall footprint and a lighter weight as low as 1.509kg, making them HP’s lightest Pavilion convertibles. Stay connected with optional Wi-Fi 6 2×2 ax1 & 1×2 ax for that fast connectivity in a busy home or crowded café.
The HP Pavilion x360 14 and 15 will be available in the Nigerian market in April this year.
LG Shuts Down Mobile Phone Business
South Korean vendor LG Electronics confirmed speculation it is to close its mobile phone business, after suffering years of declining market share and huge competition from the likes of Apple and Samsung.
In a statement on 5 April, the company noted its decision will enable it to focus resources on its other technology businesses “such as electric vehicle components, connected devices, smart homes, robotics, AI and business-to-business solutions, as well as platforms and services”.
LG also cited 6G as an area of focus: “Moving forward, LG will continue to leverage its mobile expertise and develop mobility-related technologies such as 6G to help further strengthen competitiveness in other business areas.”
Its mobile phone unit is expected to close by 31 July, although customers will continue to be supported with service and software updates.
LG’s news will come as little surprise. Rumours of a market exit have been circulating for months, and reports suggest the company had little interest from prospective buyers.
The unit’s global market share was likely a major obstacle to securing an attractive price: Strategy Analytics data showed it held only a 2 per cent share of the smartphone market in 2020 and ranked as the ninth largest vendor.
News of potentially abandoning the segment first emerged in January, only a week after the company talked-up a rollable smartphone display, the latest attempt by the manufacturer to differentiate its high-end offer with alternative form factors.
Despite attempts to revive its fortunes through regular launches of devices at a range of price points and devising flagships with USPs, the smartphone unit was regularly cited as a blot on the electronic giant’s otherwise positive financial results, with wide losses often reported.
The unit recorded a loss of KRW248.5 billion ($221.9 million) in Q4 2020. Over the last six years the unit’s losses totalled around $4.5 billion.
The Asus ZenBook Flip S: Power in Design, Display & Performance
The ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) is ASUS’ latest 2-in-1 ultrabook that can double as a tablet also. The review below highlights the powerful design, great display and impressive performance put together in this new addition to ASUS’ ZenBook laptop portfolio.
The newly launched ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) by ASUS is a premium-end 2 in 1 ultrabook that can also transform into a full-fledged tablet with a stylus. Despite this unique form factor, the ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) does not feel bulky. It is, in fact, one of the lightest and most powerful portable computers at the moment.
The ASUS ZenBook Flip S is an extremely well-designed device that comes with a 4K OLED display. Using a Red Copper diamond-cut on a Black Matte finish body, the device has hues of the colour Gold on the hinge, edges around the screen and the chassis. The lid has concentric ring patterns with ASUS logo on the left.
The lightweight ultrabook, merely 1.2kgs, is very sleek at 14mm thickness and can easily fit in a bag; portable and easy to carry around without worrying about any noticeable weight in the bag.
The laptop features a 360° ErgoLift hinge design which enables the display to be flipped to any position. This allows the ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) to turn into a 2-in-1 convertible laptop, with a screen that can be swivelled full 360-degree.
Once the display is flipped back, the laptop can be used in different modes, including a tablet with touch and pen support. This can also be used as a simple laptop, placed on a desk or lap while on the go. This feature ensures that there is sufficient airflow for the device’s heat management. Though almost unnoticeable, the design also lifts the keyboard a bit to raise the typing position. Asus has tested the hinge for over 20,000 open/close cycles to clear any doubt around durability.
Asus ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) comes with an edge-to-edge keyboard design. It is backlit to ensure smooth typing even in dark environments. The keys are well-spaced and do not squeeze. The keypad is integrated into the touchpad with NumberPad 2.0, an LED-illuminated numeric keypad. The touchpad functions smoothly and is glass covered for added protection. Brightness regulator and a calculator that pops-up with a simple touch and gestures are smart controls available on the touchpad.
Considering its slim form factor, Flip S (UX371EA) also offers a lot of connectivity options, two Thunderbolt 4 USB Type-C port, one USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A port and a standard HDMI port. The ports offer “ultrafast speeds” and also support USB-C Power Delivery. The notebook also gets support for connecting external 4K UHD displays and provide up to 40 Gbps data-transfer speeds for high-performance peripherals. On the right edge is the power button while the LED indicator is placed on the left edge. The laptop comes with USB Type-C to 3.5mm dongle for those who want to use a 3.5mm audio device with the device.
As for the display, the ASUS ZenBook Flip S features a 13.3-inch 4K OLED touchscreen with support for a high resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. The display offers high colour reproduction with 100 per cent DCI-P3 colour gamut coverage. This OLED panel is calibrated to accurately reproduce colours in a 3D colour volume – ensuring that the panel covers 100 per cent DCI-P3 colour gamut regardless of the brightness level. Also, the panel features a high 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and is certified to supports up to 500 nits of brightness and 0.0005 nits of deep black levels for an immersive viewing experience.
Content, both videos and images on this 4k resolution screen are sharp and rich. Viewing angles are fine and the screen is bright enough to use even in the broad daylight. For movies and game lovers, when it comes to the display, size and quality of the panel, the ASUS ZenBook Flip S emerges as an ideal choice with decent viewing angles.
The hardware inside the ZenBook Flip S is also equally impressive. This new laptop packs within its sleek frame the latest 11th Generation Intel Core Tiger Lake processors – i7-1165G7 CPU. If purchased for general use, the Flip S (UX371EA) processor can handle pretty much anything you throw at it. For gamers, it can handle most e-sports and AAA titles decently well.
The processor comes paired with Intel Iris X integrated graphics and can deliver up to 20 per cent higher computing performance than previous generation laptops. There is also a 1TB PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD on-board, as well as a Gen 3 PCIe X4 storage for a fast read, write speed and load time. The Flip S also packs an ultrafast PCIe 3.0 x4 SSD, up to 16GB of 4266MHz LPDDR4X RAM and hardware for Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) connectivity. It functions without any lag even with multiple tabs opened.
The ultrabook ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) offers a 67Wh battery power pack which is rated to provide up to 10 hours, with a minimum runtime of around 6-7 hours, usage on a single charge. It supports fast charging and can charge to full capacity in an hour, using the supplied charger. It comes with a 65watt fast charge adapter which charges the battery up to 70 per cent in 50 minutes. The laptop comes with USB Type-C Easy Charge support which means it can be used with any standard USB Type-C chargers with a range of 5V-20V.
ASUS ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) runs on Windows 10 Home. Its touch screen has a 0.2 ms response time and it comes with TUV Rheinland certification for low blue light and flicker-free visuals. This is to ensure less strain on the eyes even after long hours of use.
Sound output levels are loud enough despite the speaker being placed at the bottom side. The laptop comes with Harman Audio certified audio system which delivers rich sounds. ASUS ZenBook Flip S (UX371EA) is equipped with AI-noise cancelling mic which will come in handy during video calls and meetings. There is also an in-built fan to dissipate excess heating.
The ASUS ZenBook Flip S is, undoubtedly, a delightful machine that looks as good as it works. It is packed with more power and primed for work on the go as well as casual gaming. It is definitely among the top picks. The powerful design, great display and impressive performance justify the price tag.
Facebook Mulls AR Wrist Device for Users
Facebook revealed efforts to develop an AR device designed to be worn on users’ wrists to act as an interface with virtual environments, as part of longer-term research into human computer interaction (HCI) technologies.
In a blog, Facebook explained it is working on a watch-like device which monitors a users’ nerve signals and turns them into digital commands.
Initially commands may only include click and pinch functions to enable interactions with AR objects, but Facebook added the goal is to expand to “richer controls” including typing and swiping.
It added custom haptic vibrations delivered via the device could also allow users to receive information and complete certain tasks, citing answering calls as an example.
Investigation into the wearable forms part of a broader push by Facebook Reality Labs (FRL) Research, which also includes work on AR glasses.
FRL Research director of research science Hrvoje Benko said wristbands could ultimately deliver “ultra-low friction” input for AR glasses, but added they are “not a complete solution on their own”, citing a PC mouse as an example.
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