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Friday, March 03, 2017

Samsung's Chromebook Pro Wants to Be the Future, But It's Not | WIRED

"... The consumer Chromebook onslaught starts with Samsung’s Chromebook Plus and Pro, which are on paper the most well-rounded Chrome OS devices ever. The Plus starts at $450 and is available next week, and the Pro will be $550 when it ships in March. Both fit right into the normal-person laptop budget. They do all the Chrome OS things, have great and flippy touchscreens, and even support pen input. And best of all, they run all of the millions of apps in Google’s Play Store. They’re part smartphone, part tablet, part laptop, combined in a way that feels like the computer of the future.

I’ve been using the Pro for the last couple of weeks. Like I said, it sounds great… on paper. In reality, this brilliantly polymorphic computer still feels more like a science experiment..."

Samsung's Chromebook Pro Wants to Be the Future, But It's Not | WIRED

Google slams the brakes on Pixel Chromebooks | PCWorld

google chromebook pixel 2015 left vs pixel 2013 right

"Google is pressing pause on its efforts to build Pixel laptops, leaving the in-house premium brand to tablets and phones.

The company’s hardware chief, Rick Osterloh, recently told reporters during Mobile World Congress in Spain that Google had “no plans” to create a new Chromebook Pixel, according to TechCrunch. For now, Google is leaving it up to third-party Chromebook makers like Asus, Acer, HP, and Samsung to fill in the gaps.

Osterloh said the company has sold out of remaining Pixel laptop inventory and doesn’t plan on making any more. A quick look at the Google Store shows there are no Pixel laptops available.

Osterloh’s statements seemed to suggest that Google was giving up on making company-branded Chromebooks altogether. While Pixel laptops were never mass-market sellers due to their high price, they did function as flagship devices that led the way in design. Prior to the Pixel, Chromebook makers weren’t putting much thought or effort into the development of the laptops.

It would be a shame if Google gave up on making its own laptops; however, that may not be the case. Osterloh later responded to TechCrunch clarifying that the company doesn’t “have any plans [for new Chromebooks] to discuss at this time.” That may seem to imply that the company is working on something, but it isn’t ready to announce anything yet. More than likely, however, that’s just spin to calm the Chrome OS-loving masses from thinking Google has lost confidence in its PC platform.

Why this matters: Google built the original Pixel in 2013 when Chrome OS was still struggling for relevance. At the time, the value of Chrome OS and its “browser in a box” approach was questioned by everyone—even PCWorld editors who now adore the platform. Over time, Chrome OS has transformed into a capable (though still web-centric) operating system. It’s one of the top choices for laptops in education markets and consumers are slowly gravitating towards the devices too. With numerous, well-built Chromebooks from third parties, perhaps the world no longer needs the Pixel to point the way."

Google slams the brakes on Pixel Chromebooks | PCWorld

PCWorld - News, tips and reviews from the experts on PCs, Windows, and more

PCWorld - News, tips and reviews from the experts on PCs, Windows, and more

The 25 laptops with the best battery life - CNET

The top 25 laptop battery life performers from CNET Labs

"...  Based on the extensive battery testing conducted in the CNET Labs, these are the 25 PCs with the longest battery life scores over the previous 12 months, including Windows and MacOS laptops, Windows 2-in-1 hybrids, and Chromebooks running Google's Chrome OS. (Not included are Android or iOS tablets.)

The top spot is a bit of a surprise, going to the Acer Chromebook R13, a budget-friendly but long-lasting Chrome OS laptop. The top Windows system is Microsoft's 2016 refresh of the Surface Book, which benefits from having a battery in its tablet screen and a second battery in its keyboard base.

Apple's MacBooks are typically thought of as having excellent battery life, though the 2016 Pro models sometimes require an extra bit of coaxing to overcome uneven battery performance. The highest-ranking MacBook right now is the version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro without Apple's new Touchbar, at no. 3. (The 2015 MacBook Air lasts even longer, but it's an aging model with a lower resolution screen.)..."

The 25 laptops with the best battery life - CNET

LG G6 First Look Review

Official Galaxy S8 may have been leaked before March 29

How I take Notes (College) using my iPad Pro!

MacBook Pro or iPad Pro: THINK TWICE!

Thursday, March 02, 2017

The Chromebook Pixel lineup may not be dead after all. I love my Pixel LS.

I love my Pixel LS.

"... Most everyone took that for what it was, and suggested that we wouldn’t see another rendition of the Chromebook Pixel, and that Google would be leaving the market. Boy were we wrong. This morning, Osterloh tweeted stating that the company was not exiting the Chromebook market, but didn’t have anything further to share at this time.

This has got me a little bit excited, as I’ve been lusting over the Chromebook Pixels ever since the original one was released back in 2013. However, if Google is gearing up for another release at a date-to-be-named-later, then I’m all on board with that.

Maybe, just maybe, we’ll see something regarding the oft-rumored “Andromeda OS” along with a new Google laptop."

The Chromebook Pixel lineup may not be dead after all

Capture ideas in Google Keep, bring them to life in Google Docs

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"... Starting today, you can capture your ideas for work: Keep is now a part of G Suite. You can also take your ideas and notes from Keep and easily add them to Docs for easier brainstorming.

Capture ideas in Google Keep, bring them to life in Google Docs

[Editorial] New Samsung, Conglomerate abandons fleet-style management of affiliates

"The reforms announced by Samsung Group are welcome, but the conglomerate’s own efforts will not be sufficient to address the problems that impelled it to revamp itself, such as corrupt ties between businesses and politics.

The reforms announced Tuesday were prompted by the influence-peddling scandal involving President Park Geun-hye and her confidante Choi Soon-sil. But the scope and boldness of the plans were greater than expected.

That reflects how seriously Samsung and its jailed leader Lee Jae-yong are taking the current crisis engulfing the nation’s top conglomerate.

The most noteworthy point of the reform is the abandonment of its top-down, fleet-style management of the 59 affiliates belonging to the biggest chaebol.

Most symbolic was the disbandment of the Future Strategy Office, which -- under different names over the years -- has acted as a control tower for the group since its founding in 1959.

Working under direct control of the boss, the office wielded strong power by taking charge of personnel, finances, audits, media relations and legal and government affairs for the entire group.

Having started as a secretariat for Samsung founder Lee Byung-chull, the office also played a key role in ensuring the founding family’s dynastic succession of management control and served as a liaison office between the chairman, government officials and politicians.

The disbanded Future Strategy Office was also accused of having played a major role in giving suspicious money to Choi, for which the junior Lee was put into custody on suspicion of bribery.

The office was a target of lawmakers during the parliamentary hearing on Lee and other chaebol tycoons. Lee said he would abolish the office if the public had such a negative view of it.

Despite Lee’s pledge, few expected him to act so swiftly, because he was under investigation -- by the state prosecution and then the independent counsel. Some also doubted that he could break away from a tradition so cherished by his grandfather and father.

As if to dispel such skepticism, Samsung made it clear that now each affiliate will be run independently by its CEO and board. There will no longer be a regular meeting of CEOs.

Starting this fall, there will be no more group-wide, simultaneous recruitment of new employees. The internet home page and blog for Samsung Group will be shut down. In short, the name “Samsung Group” will fade into history.

It remains to be seen how those changes -- a bold experiment -- would affect the competiveness of Samsung units, which altogether employ 500,000 employees, make a combined revenue of 400 trillion won ($350 billion) and account for 30 percent of the total market capitalization. "

[Editorial] New Samsung

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 And Galaxy Book 12 And 10 Hands-On Preview - HotHa...

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 hands-on review: a well-deserved Tab S2 upgrade - Hardware reviews - AndroidPIT

AndroidPIT Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 Hands on MWC 2017 5731

"Thanks to the inclusion of some key features, especially Samsung's decision to (finally!) include the S-Pen and the reworked software, the Tab S3 promises to become the well-deserved but also expected upgrade to the Tab S2. The better speakers mean it might be the ideal device for watching a movie in bed. When we get a chance to undertake a more detailed test we'll be able to get a better idea on the S-Pen functions and how well the Tab S3 works as a netbook replacement for everyday use."

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 hands-on review: a well-deserved Tab S2 upgrade - Hardware reviews - AndroidPIT

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

2008 Redux- Samsung heir will be indicted for bribery, embezzlement, perjury, and hiding criminal profits - The Verge

"Samsung's heir apparent, Lee Jae-yong, will be indicted on multiple charges including bribery and perjury in his native South Korea, The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg report. The country's special prosecutor plans to indict Lee along with another four executives, a spokesperson for the body told reporters on Tuesday, in relation to bribes allegedly given to the South Korean government in exchange for favors.

Lee faces formal charges of bribery, perjury, embezzlement, hiding assets abroad, and concealing profit from criminal acts. He was arrested earlier this month following claims that Samsung paid 43 billion won ($38 million) to secure government support of a huge corporate merger in 2015. Money was allegedly directed from Samsung to companies controlled by a close friend of South Korean president Park Geun-hye. President Park herself was impeached last December after a corruption scandal that gripped the country."

Samsung heir will be indicted for bribery, embezzlement, perjury, and hiding criminal profits - The Verge