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Sep 14, 2012

Nokia Lumia 800 Running Windows Phone 7.8

Nokia has already confirmed that the upcoming Windows Phone 7.8 operating system would be loaded on its existing Lumia devices, although it did not offer a specific date for when that should happen.

Apparently, we’re moving closer and closer to seeing the new operating system version delivered to users, as it has already been spotted running on Nokia’s Lumia 800 smartphone. A Polish website dedicated to Windows Phone has published a series of images that present Windows Phone 7.8 on Nokia’s handset, yet it wasn’t able to offer info on when the update would be released.

The photos, which are said to be real, show the new homescreen with resizable tiles, as well as various theme colors that users will be able to enjoy. You can also have a look at the upcoming platform release via the video embedded above, coming from the same website.

Windows Phone 7.8 running on Nokia Lumia 800
Video credits to windowsmaniapl

Windows Phone 8 Lacks the Iconic Camera Filmstrip Interface

Windows Phone 8, the next-generation mobile operating system from Microsoft, will arrive on devices with a variety of changes when compared to the previous releases of the platform, including some in the camera app.

Apparently, the interface of this application has been modified in the new OS flavor, and no longer shows the preview of the last taken photo. Microsoft’s hasn’t detailed the feature, but it was noticed in the hands-on video that Microsoft’s Ben Rudolph has published last week with Nokia’s new Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 smartphones.

The small strip was a highly appealing feature in Windows Phone, and it’s a bit disappointing to see it gone, WMPoweruser notes. However, various enhancements have been brought to the camera in Windows Phone 8, and the disappearance of this feature might not seem like a deal breaker at all.

Ben Rudolph goes hands-on with two of Nokia's exciting new devices: the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820.
Video credits to windowsphone

Elsa Magma ExpressBox 3T External ThunderBolt PCI Express Enclosure

Professional graphic cards manufacturer, Japanese company Elsa is presenting a new external enclosure that can practically handle three video cards that are connected to the laptop or the computer through a ThunderBolt cable.

The reality is that ThunderBolt provides very good bandwidth, but not even a fifth of what a simple PCIe Gen2.0 x8 offers. This means that there is no point in building such a setup, with three video cards inside, unless the goal is to have various display options or several video capture cards. In fact, the manufacturer recommends its new Elsa Magma ExpressBox 3T enclosure for video capture setups, media transcoding or encoding, audio processing or high-end solid-state drives with PCI Express interface like STEC’s SSAs, or OCZ’s RevoDrive. The Elsa Magma ExpressBox 3T enclosure has two PCI-Express Gen2 x8 slots and one PCI-Express Gen2 x4 slot along with its own internal power supply unit that’s able to deliver a maximum of 220 watts.

Elsa’s new ThunderBolt enclosure is compatible with both, Microsoft’s Windows and Apple’s Mac OS X operating systems. The main problem with installing one or several graphics cards inside the Elsa Magma ExpressBox 3T enclosure is the lack of the necessary bandwidth and the power consumption limitations. On the other hand, the user can deduce in a simple way just what cards would fit together inside the new enclosure. They have to be single-slot solutions and the extra power connectors must be missing. If a card has a simple 6-pin power connector, it means that the part needs more than 75 watts that the PCI-Express slot is designed to offer.

Cards with no extra power connector must fit inside the 75W TDP and therefore the user is free to install three of such adapters as all three will not consume more than 225 watts. That’s a little bit over the Magma ExpressBox specifications, but the ThunderBolt connection should prevent the cards reaching the maximum processing peak so the maximum power consumption peak will also not be achievable.

Elsa Magma ExpressBox 3T External ThunderBolt PCI Express Enclosure
Images credits to ELSA

Eurocom Monster 1.0 11-Inch Notebook with Core i7 and 1 TB HDD

Eurocom has a thing for high-end mobile personal computers, so it comes as little surprise to us that its newest model is a bit overkill. The company doesn't even try to hide it, as is clear from the product's name.

The name in question is Eurocom Monster 1.0, even though the laptop measures just 11.6 inches in screen diagonal, less than many ultrabooks really. From just a glance, it is easy to see that the hardware in this thing is not trying to be inconspicuous and light at all, not at that thickness. The spec sheet confirms it. As if it's not enough that such a small laptop has a powerful Intel CPU at its heart (Core i7 3820QM is one example), the Monster 1.0 uses a 2 GB NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M discrete GPU. Four to sixteen gigabytes of DDR3-1600 RAM are part of the feature set as well. And now we reach the part that Eurocom saw fit to emphasize in its press release: the Monster 1.0 can be configured with a 1 TB Hitachi Travel Start 5K1000 hard drive (5,400 RPM). Needless to say, other storage drives can be chosen as well.

“In my case I have chosen the impressive Intel Core i7 3820QM Processor with 4 cores, 8 threads and 8 MB of L3 Cache with 16 GB DDR3-1600 RAM and a 240 GB Intel 520 Series SSD,” said Koldo Valle Garcia, Computer Science and Communications Services, Elecnor. “I can run plenty of VMs at the same time: w2k3 r2 sp2, w2k8 r2, CentOS 6... with no problem. The performance with MatLab and others engineering tools is amazing. Never seen that in a 11.6 inch portable.” Eurocom's Monster 1.0 has a battery that can last for up to 410 minutes, just short of seven hours. Unfortunately, we don't know the price, only that it's supposed to be “reasonable.”

Eurocom Monster 1.0
Image credits to Eurocom

WiGig Docking Technology Demoed at IDF 2012, 7 GHz Speeds Possible

Intel envisions a words where everything is wireless and, true to form, the exhibition at IDF included wireless multigigabit docking technology based on WiGig.

The WiGig alliance has already promised cable-free data transmissions of up to 7 GHz. There is still time to go before such things become common of course, but that doesn't mean the supporters of the technology (WiGig Alliance) have nothing to show. In fact, WiGig docking technology was revealed working at the Intel Developer Forum.

Using the unlicensed 60 GHz frequency band, as well as advanced Protocol Adaption Layers (PAL), the wireless standard should become a data bridge for mobile, consumer electronics and PC applications alike. The next CES (Consumer Electronics Show) is where a range of products will be put on display for all to see. Too bad January 2013 is still so far away.

WiGig logo
Image credits to WiGig Alliance

ASUS Matrix HD 7970 Platinum Monster Card

We reported here about ASUS’s plans to release an AMD-powered Matrix video card and today we’ve got some new impressive details for the gaming enthusiasts. The new card special buttons to control the voltages and set the maximum fan speed.

ASUS’ Matrix AMD Radeon HD 7970 Platinum video card is clearly targeted at overclockers so a special Safe Mode button is also present for situations where an overclocking attempt is unsuccessful or a BIOS flash goes bad. The GPU is clocked at an amazing 1070 MHz and this is the default frequency as the card is a GHz Edition so there will also be a Boost option that will likely clock the chip beyond 1150 MHz, OverClockers reports.

A very nice surprise is the GDDR5 memory that runs at 6600 MHz effective frequency directly out of the box. The card features a 16-phase GPU power circuit plus two more additional power phases for the memory and the PLL. There is no official information on pricing yet, but readers should know that this is a certified AMD Eyefinity video card.

ASUS Matrix AMD Radeon HD 7970 Platinum GHz Edition video card
Images credits to overclockers.ua

Intel Display NUC Mini PC, Has USB, HDMI, Thunderbolt and Ethernet

The Intel Next Unit of Computing, or NUC for short, is an Intel product that has been secondary to ultrabooks in Intel's advertising efforts. Still, the product was brought to the Intel Developer Forum (IDF).

IDF San Francisco lasted from September 11 to September 13. Many things were revealed there, regarding Intel's Haswell CPUs and other matters. One unfortunate side-effect is that some products on display at the show were overlooked during the first days. Fortunately, some people remembered the NUC, that small, box-like PC that Intel made for people who think even HTPCs are too large. A Core i3 Ivy Bridge CPU was at the heart of the two models showcased in San Francisco, paired with a QS77 chipset. A pair of dual-channel DDR3 SoDIMM slots is part of the spec sheet, along with mSATA, mini PCI Express (for SSD and WiFi cards) and five USB 2.0 ports. Furthermore, the NUCs run on 19V DC power.

Intel hopes to sell NUC to OEMs and consumers who like to make their own PCs, even if the latter will only need to buy memory and storage. To that end, Chipzilla has chosen to differentiate the consumer-grade model from the business-centric one, and not just by coloring them red and black, respectively. The former has an HDMI connector and a Thunderbolt port, while the latter uses two HDMI connectors and Ethernet. Shipments will begin in October, for a rather hefty price, if we were to be honest: $400. That's 306 Euro, according to exchange rates. Still, as we've said before, prices in Europe seldom reflect them, so the probability is higher that deliveries on the old continent will be made in exchange for 400 Euro. At least the NUC can double as a smartphone pedestal in a pinch, though we doubt this had a bearing on the price.

Intel NUC
Images credits to engadget

Panasonic Lumix GH3 Micro Four Thirds Camera

We can finally say that Panasonic has not allowed this whole week to pass by without a product launch. It is not letting its rivals enjoy all the attention of the consumer base after all.

Naturally, we know about the high-end, 3D projector built in collaboration with Hollywood filmmakers. That product doesn't really count though, not now, after Pentax, Nikon and Sony showered the market with photo and video cameras. It turns out, though, that Panasonic does have a camera nearing availability. The company just wasn't as forthcoming on the details as everyone else. And by that we mean that there is no press release to be found. Instead, a commercial, posted on YouTube either by accident or deliberately, has revealed it, as well as some hardware specs. It is called Lumix GH3 Micro Four Thirds and it relies on a 16-megapixel image sensor. Thus, it isn't as overpowered as the Sony Cyber-shot RX1. 16-megapixels is still a lot though, something that the NEX-6 will definitely testify to, so to speak. Other assets revealed by the commercial are the Venus Engine processor, a flip-out LCD, an f/2.8 12-35mm lens and a splash- and dust-proof magnesium alloy body.

Panasonic's product should have no trouble capturing high-quality HD video at 72Mbps and 60p. It is possible that Full HD (1080p) footage can be shot at that rate as well, but there is no guarantee. At this point, we aren't sure what to expect from the companies on the photo, video and projector market. After seeing Fujifilm announce that it is quitting the cinema film business, we are left wondering if Panasonic will back out of some segment or other as well. So far, the company has been using the other method of cutting its losses: firing people, but that can only work for so long.

Panasonic readies Lumix GH3 Micro Four Thirds camera
Image credits to Panasonic

Microsoft Hands Out Windows 8 PCs and Surface RT Tablets to All Employees Worldwide

Claiming that Google is the best place to work (and live) in the world is more like a cliché these days, but Microsoft apparently continues its efforts to at least get closer to its Mountain View-based rival.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer managed to bring a smile on everyone's face yesterday at KeyArena, as he announced that absolutely all company employees worldwide would receive a Surface RT tablet, a new work PC with Windows 8 and a Windows Phone 8 device. Of course, only Microsoft employees were allowed to attend the conference, but many expressed their enthusiasm on Twitter or on several other online social networks. “Steve Ballmer is the new Oprah! Our Company Meeting was so magical, everyone was glued to their seats. So much innovation!” one of the 94,000 employees said on Twitter seconds after the event came to an end. “Quite the energetic, emotional and very generous ending to the Microsoft company meeting from Ballmer!” another one added.

Not much was said about the aforementioned goodies that would be handed to Microsoft employees, but The Seattle Times reports that workers are even allowed to choose between several devices. For example, the work PC can be either a desktop, a laptop, an ultrabook or a tablet, but each of them will be running the brand new Windows 8. What's more, employees are also allowed to pick their Windows Phone 8 too, but again, everyone inside Microsoft remains tight lipped on the subject. Obviously, the phones can be used both at home and at work. For those of you who don't know, Microsoft changes employees' computers every three years, just in time for the debut of several products wearing the company's badge. Windows 8 will be launched on October 26, so yesterday's announcement pretty much makes sense.

Microsoft remains one of the best companies to work for
Image credits to dailymail.co.uk

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