News Bits: AMD Unveils ‘Puma, Creative X-Fi ExpressCard Debuts, Dell Sued by NY

News Bits: AMD Unveils ‘Puma, Creative X-Fi ExpressCard Debuts, Dell Sued by NY

AMD unveils next-gen mobile platform for notebooks

AMD today officially announced new details about its upcoming “Puma” mobile platform. It is designed to deliver extended battery life, improvements in graphics and video processing, and a higher level of performance overall. The “Puma” platform is expected to build on the AMD M690 mobile chipset and feature 65nm AMD Turion 64 X2 dual-core processors.

Key technologies in the new “Puma” platform include the “Griffin” AMD next-gen mobile processor and AMD “RS780” mobile chipset. “Puma”-based notebooks are expected to be available in the mid-2008 timeframe. The platform is based on an open platform strategy – in addition to the “Griffin” processors and “RS780” chipset, the “Puma” platform also includes ATI Radeon graphics, Nvidia chipset and graphics technologies, and advanced wireless technologies.

Read More (

Creative debuts X-Fi ExpressCard for notebooks

Creative has released information about the new X-Fi Xtreme Audio Notebook on its website. The card is designed to enhance the audio capabilities of a notebook. The Xtreme Fidelity card features 24-bit surround sound, X-Fi Crystalizer Technology (restores detail and vibrance to compressed music and movies), and X-Fi CMSS-3D (enhances headphone sound by moving sound orientation).

The X-Fi Xtreme Audio Notebook ExpressCard has various ports and connections for audio equipment. An optional Speaker Docking Module allows for 5.1/7.1 surround sound connectivity.

The requirements for the X-Fi are as follows:

  • Windows Vista or Windows XP (SP2, x64, or Media Center)
  • 1.66GHz Intel Pentium M, Intel Core series, or AMD Turion equivalent
  • 256MB RAM (512MB for Vista)
  • 600MB hard drive space
  • ExpressCard/54 slot
  • CD/DVD-ROM drive

The X-Fi for notebooks is a recent addition to the Creative website so it should be appearing in stores soon.

HP 12.1-inch LED-backlit notebook coming in Q3

HP is planning to release a 12.1-inch LED-backlit notebook in Q3 according to a DigiTimesreport. AU Optronics (AUO) and Chi Mei Optoelectronics (CMO) will start to ship the panels in small volumes for the notebook in . Dell is also likely to come out with an LED-based notebook according to the report.

While LED technology will not become mainstream in 2007, DisplayBank estimates that by , notebooks with LED backlighting will account for 39.5% of shipped units.

SIIG introduces USB-to-ExpressCard adapter

SIIG today introduced a USB-to-ExpressCard adapter, which enables any USB 2.0 port on a PC to act as an ExpressCard slot. It works on Windows Vista and Mac OS X 10.3+ without a driver. The only potential problem is that the adapter is only compatible with USB-based ExpressCard devices; PCI-based ExpressCards won’t work.

The adapter retails for $32.

Read More (

HP’s good looks are paying off

HP’s focus on style for its PCs has started to pay off – HP’s fiscal Q2 revenue was up 12.7% from the same period a year earlier, totaling US$25.5 billion. Notebook PC revenue grew 45%, and desktop sales were up 9%, which is remarkable considering the desktop market has been relatively flat. HP has also increased its operating profit margin to 4.8% from 3.6% in the same period last year; it has more than doubled since two years ago.

One of the first things charimen and chief executive of HP, Mark V. Hurd, did when he took over in 2005 was hire the chief operating officer of Palm, Todd Bradley. He is regarded as a strategist inside the company and developed HP’s design-focused strategy. He realized that there was a shift in consumer preference from desktops to notebooks and that styling could increase sales.

Dell has struggled to keep up with HP in terms of notebook sales. Samir Bhavnani, research director of Current Analysis West, said that “H.P. is like the plain girl from high school that you see three years later and she is a bombshell, while Dell is the hot girl from high school who has gained 30 pounds.”

Dell has taken notice of HP and will be introducing redesigned notebooks and desktops over the next few months, which will take styling cues from their high-end XPS line.

Read More (

Dell getting sued by N.Y. attorney general over deceptive practices

A lawsuit was filed against Dell by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, saying the company and its financial services affiliate deceived customers to increase sales. The lawsuit claims that Dell and Dell Financial Services LP have engaged in false advertising, fraud, and deceptive business practices.

The lawsuit accused Dell of attracting customers with misleading financing terms, rebates, and other benefits, but in the end charged high interest on lines of credit and avoids giving customers rebates through various tactics. The lawsuit also accuses dell of failing to honor warranties and service contract by making it difficult for them to get tech support.

A Dell spokesman, BoB pearson, said the following in a written statement:

“Our customers are our top priority at Dell. We will vigorously defend ourselves in court. We are confident that our practices will be found to be fair and appropriate. While even one dissatisfied customer is too many, the allegations in the AG’s filing are based upon a small fraction of Dell’s consumer transactions in New York.”

The lawsuit wants Dell to pay unspecified amounts in damages to affected customers, $500 for each instance of certain violations, and a further $2,000 for additional costs.

Read More (

Alienware adds 200GB 7200RPM hard drive option in notebooks

Alienware has added a 200GB 7,200RPM hard drive option for select notebooks. The drive is one of the new Hitachi 7K200 models – we covered the release of that drive here. It features NCQ (Native Command Queing) and has16MB of cache.

The drive is available as a $400 upgrade on the 17-inch Aurora m9700and 15.4-inch Area-51 m5550, and a $220 upgrade on the top-of-the-line 19-inch Aurora mALX.

Playing World of Warcraft on an OQO

What’s cooler than playing World of Warcraft on a notebook?  Why, playing it on an ultra portable computer with a 5-inch screen that you can hold in one hand – the OQO. The computer, despite having meager specifications, runs WoW surprisingly well and has an undeniable cool factor.

Full Story & Videos Here





Leave a Reply