iPad 3 Rumors & Thoughts – Part 1: Hardware

With Steve Jobs gone and his legacy not completely publically known or understood, the iPad 3 is almost a complete unknown as well, though the rumor mill has been churning lately. Let’s take a look at some of the rumors and see what’s what.

I’ve been reading the authorized Steve Jobs biography, and quite honestly, I’ve been learning a great deal. Apple very much *IS* Steve Jobs, and vice-versa. It’s been an interesting read. Much of the design and thoughts for the iPad itself came before the iPhone. It was put on hold to address and release the need for the iPhone. However, the magic that is the iPhone will forever be beholden to the iPad. This was probably one of the most interesting revelations I’ve encountered in the book so far. But the iPad… that was Steve’s baby. He really wanted to do a tablet to counter the netbook surge and push, which is pretty much OVER at this point.

Apple has the tablet market pretty much sewn up. At this point, Android can try all it wants, but without the walled garden that Apple has cultivated and nurtured, it’s going to be hard for Google, any of their hardware partners, or ANYONE really, to catch up to them any time soon.

That being the case, rumors of an updated iPad have been circulating for quite some time. Many sites have been saying that the next generation iPad is already in production, and is readying for a March or April release. While I won’t say too much about that just yet, I do want to touch on some of the other rumors related to specific hardware feature sets that many are speculating will differentiate it from the iPad 2.

Better Screen – HD Resolution?
There’s been a great deal of speculation about this particular, potential feature upgrade. A Retina Display from Samsung, a Sharp IGZO display… No one really knows for certain what is going to happen here. However, I think it’s safe to say that Apple’s next generation iPad will have a much better screen than both the iPad 1 and iPad 2. Regardless of what type or which manufacturer really got the contract, Digitimes is reporting some (also unconfirmed) specifics on the screen:

  • A QXGA (1,536×2,048 pixels) display
  • Longer battery life
  • Although its other hardware specs may not be as exciting

The A6 Processor
Apple’s next system on a chip should have nearly twice as much punch as its previous iOS devices. The A5 chip is dual core. The A6 is rumored to be a quad core powerhouse. The tablet should be able to crunch through some major data at that point. Unfortunately, I haven’t heard how fast the chip is rumored to be, though I would assume 1.2-1.5gHz would not be unreasonable.

The Graphics Processor
Given that mobile gaming is on an uptick, and that iOS gaming is in no small part responsible for most of that uptick, it’s almost a certainty that an enhanced graphics processor will be part of Apple’s new iPad. There’s been very little about which processor…but with gaming becoming more important, and iLife apps like GarageBand and iMovie likely to be improved as well, the next edition iPad will need the additional punch of an improved graphics processor. This is probably more important than the implementation of the A6 processor.

HD Camera
The implementation of an HD quality screen begs the implementation of an HD camera. The implementation of a front and rear facing camera in the iPad 2, and the introduction of iMovie for the iPad really kicked this off. I would say that a 720p/8MP rear and 2-3MP front cameras are a safe bet as well.

4G-LTE
Apple clearly stated that it wouldn’t support LTE in the iPhone 4S. While speculation is ripe, no one is willing to make a FIRM say-so on the implementation of LTE. However, it is widely anticipated that Apple will support LTE in both the iPad 3 as well as iPhone 5. So as long as you’re in an LTE equipped market, you should be good to go.

Thunderbolt
This is probably my most favorite and most underused feature in my Early 2011 MacBook Pro. With the implementation of this high speed connectivity solution in its desktops, it seems logical that Apple will move to Thunderbolt and improve the throughput of local synchronization for all its iDevices. However, that would retether the devices it unleashed with the implementation of iCloud in iOS 5.

It would also totally hose about a gazillion iDevice accessories currently on the market today. Apple has been using their 30 pin dock connector forever, and while there have been a few changes to it, generally speaking they’ve stuck with it since the iPod was introduced many years ago.

This would be an interesting development; and one that I actually hope doesn’t come about. However, we’ll have to wait and see.

Come back next time, and I’ll dive into this a bit more with some speculation about iOS 6 and what it’s going to bring to the table.

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Powermark battery life test for Windows 7 devices

We all heard of Futuremark, the software development company that produces computer benchmark applications for home users and businesses such as 3DMark and PCMark. Well, a while back, Futuremark expanded its product line with Powermark.

Powermark is a new battery life and power consumption test for Windows 7 notebooks, laptops, tablets and other battery powered devices. Powermark includes a set of standard tests based on productivity and entertainment use-case scenarios, as well as allowing custom settings for bespoke testing requirements.

Battery life is critical to delivering a positive user experience. Powermark helps PC industry OEMs and their suppliers strike a balance between performance and power consumption by providing a consistent, accurate and reliable testing and measurement tool created with Futuremark’s deep experience in quality benchmarking software.” - Jukka Makinen, CEO of Futuremark.

Powermark Professional Edition commercial licenses start at $200 for 10 activations. However, at this time, Powermark is only available for business customers.

Order Powermark

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Cellphone battery that will take just 15 minutes to recharge and last more than a week

Imagine a cellphone battery that will take just 15 minutes to recharge and last more than a week. That dream battery could be closer to reality thanks to Northwestern University research.

A team of engineers has created an electrode for lithium-ion batteries (such as those found in cellphones and iPods) that allows the batteries to hold a charge up to 10 times greater than current technology. Batteries with the new electrode also can charge 10 times faster than current batteries.

The researchers combined two chemical engineering approaches to address two major battery limitations (energy capacity and charge rate) in one fell swoop. In addition to better batteries for cellphones and iPods, the technology could pave the way for more efficient, smaller batteries for electric cars.

The technology could be seen in the marketplace in the next three to five years, the researchers said.

We have found a way to extend a new lithium-ion battery’s charge life by 10 times,” said Harold H. Kung, lead author of the paper. “Even after 150 charges, which would be one year or more of operation, the battery is still five times more effective than lithium-ion batteries on the market today.” - Kung is professor of chemical and biological engineering in the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science. He also is a Dorothy Ann and Clarence L. Ver Steeg Distinguished Research Fellow.

For more details, see the source article at Northwestern University but prepare yourself with strong coffee. Battery icon source from Vector Junky.

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One important thing you should know about Lithium Ion batteries

Did you wonder why your phone, PDA or iPod is able to cheerfully tell you that “Your battery is now exhausted” for several seconds on its brightly-lid LCD screen before switching off? The reason is simple; there is an artificial circuit that shuts off the device when the charge in the battery is too low.

This extraneous circuit is built to protect from the damage that could result if the charge of your lithium ion battery falls too low. If you still don’t get it: if the charge of your lithium ion battery falls too low, the battery can get irreversibly and permanently damaged. So since Lithium Ion has no “memory effect”, it is better to simply charge your portable device as and when you can or remember.

To set your mind at ease, a “charge cycle” means a single iteration of depleting followed by a re-charge until 100% of battery charge. If you consume 50% of your iPod’s battery on day 1, recharge to 100% at night, and do the same thing on day 2, then you would have just finished up one charge cycle of its battery life.

Hence constantly recharging a lithium ion battery does not shorten the battery life more than normal usage would. Avoid letting it sit on empty for too long; instead, keep it charged-up if you can.

Source: Techatplay.com

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Why is your laptop battery not charging?

Laptops of various brands happen to be used among people, but few of them know easy methods to repair the problem if the laptop is not charging the battery anymore. Here are some general guidelines in case you will encounter this problem.

You will find several factors that may lead to battery not charging. Let’s check those problems one after the other:

  1. The battery stops charging as soon as you slightly move it. Sometimes the problem may come from the adapter; especially the power tip of the adapter is a little loose and won’t be able to fit the laptop tightly. If this happens, you could simply get hold of your laptop manufacturer for one proper adapter. Usually when you use the adapter, be sure it is properly connected and the power tip fits properly.
  2. The battery discharges quickly. Sometimes, new batteries may behave erratically until they are charged or discharged after several circles. If it is a new battery, you may attempt to charge and discharge the battery a couple of more times. Usually span for a laptop battery is between two to three years. If your battery had been used for about 2 to 3 years, maybe it will be the time to buy a new replacement battery.
  3. The battery is not detected by the laptop. Whenever the laptop battery is properly installed and positioned, but still not detected when you log in to Windows, there are two factors that may lead to the problem: either the motherboard of the laptop or the battery is defective. To troubleshoot the problem, you may first replace the battery with a working one. In case the problem persists after you replace the old battery, the problem may result from the motherboard. It is recommended to bring the laptop to a repair shop and replace the motherboard.
  4. The battery can be detected, but the laptop immediately turns off in case the AC adapter is unplugged. If this happens, maybe the battery is not seated properly or the battery contacts got dirty. You may try to remove and reinsert the battery for a few more times to see if it can solve the problem. Meanwhile, you may also use a brush or eraser to clean the battery contacts that connect the battery to the motherboard of the laptop. If it still does not help, you may try to replace the battery with a new one. However, even if replacing the battery can’t solve the problem, you may have to check if the problem is not coming from the motherboard itself.

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iOS 4.3 is killing your battery life?

A big number of users complain that iOS 4.3 seems to be draining their batteries much faster. Even with the same settings turned on, (for some), their battery life just vanish.

What can you do?

1. Try a factory restore, for some it seems to fix the issue.

2. If the factory restore didn’t work, try this:

- Go into Settings/Mail, Contacts, Calendar, tap on the Exchange account name and turn off the 3 switches.

- Back out of settings, then open Mail, then Contacts, then Calendar to clear the connections.

- Reboot the phone (hold HOME and SLEEP until an Apple logo appears, ignoring “Slide to power off”)

- Go back into settings and turn the 3 switches back on.

You can also do this by deleting the Exchange account, rebooting, and adding it back.

3. If neither the Exchange re-setup nor reboot didn’t help, you can also try to disable the Ping function which runs in the background and drains the battery. Just go into Settings > General > Restrictions and turn off Ping.

Hopefully, one of the solutions will fix the problem.

 

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What kind of laptop is right for you?

In this guide, we’ll outline the different categories of laptops and which types are best for different users. We’ll also take a look at CPU, hard-drive, and networking options.

While there are many ways to divide the categories–based on weight, price, and components–the screen size is the primary deciding factor, as it’s the clearest physical difference between types of laptops.

UMPCs (or ultramobile PCs) are small handheld devices with screens that are between 5 and 7 inches, but they never really caught on. While the idea of a palm-size computer Dell d620 running Microsoft Windows and including most of the features you’d find on a full-size desktop or laptop was an engaging one, most of these devices were not exactly practical outside of a handful of specialized users.

Key features:
5- to 7-inch display
Nontraditional design

Netbook

Netbooks are either the most exciting thing to happen to mobile computing in years, (Acer aspire 4520 battery) or they are the downfall of an industry engaged in a painful price war race to the bottom. We generally define Netbooks as having 7- to 12-inch screens, a full keyboard, and an inexpensive, single-core low-voltage CPU.

While the earliest Netbooks had 7-inch screens and Intel Celeron processors, the typical Netbook today has a single-core Intel Atom CPU, 1GB of RAM, a 160GB hard drive, and runs either Windows XP or Windows 7.

Small and lightweight, they lack optical drives, have tiny keyboards and touch pads, and are generally underpowered for anything other than Web surfing, e-mailing, and basic office productivity. The payoff is that a typical Netbook can be had for less than $300, an unheard-of sum just a few years ago.

Key features:
9- to 12-inch display
No optical drive
Single-core low-voltage CPU, Intel Atom or comparable
Typically less than $500

Ultraportable

Before the rise of Netbooks, ultraportable systems were 11- and 12-inch laptops with then-expensive low-voltage CPUs, allowing them to be small and power efficient, but still relatively underpowered.

The popularity of Netbooks had threatened to make this category irrelevant–after all, who would pay $1,500 or more for an 11-inch laptop, when a $300 10-inch Netbook hp nx6100 battery (Hp dv9000) adapter was a reasonable substitute for basic Web and office tasks?

The ultraportable has been revived of late with the introduction of Intel’s new low-cost consumer ultralow-voltage CPUs. These chips are slightly more expensive and somewhat more powerful than the Netbook Intel Atom CPU, and are available in both single-core and dual-core versions.

Key features:
9- to 12-inch display
Low-voltage ULV CPU
No optical drive
Typically $600-$800

Thin-and-light

This somewhat unimaginative descriptor is intended for 13-inch laptops. Why do laptops with 13-inch displays deserve their own distinct category? It’s because they occupy a unique space in the industry. We define this by pointing out that a 13-inch laptop is the smallest size we’d be able to work on comfortably all day, and at the same time, the largest size we’d consider carrying around more than once or twice a week.

read the full article on: http://www.goodlaptopbattery.co.uk/battery-blog/

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Top 11 Tips to Increase Laptops Battery Life

Tip 1. Avoid using unnecessary programs
One of the main reasons of battery life reduction is the usage of unwanted programs on the laptop which only takes in more power from the battery. Hence use only those programs which you mostly work upon. Opening limited number of programs simultaneously can help increase your battery life as well. Also use applications which consume less power.
Tip 2. Clean your Laptop regularly

Any electronic devices gathering dust or dirt generates more heat as it blocks the air-vents and with devices such as Laptops or cell phones their battery life reduces fast. Cleaning air vents from time to time and working in an open space zone which allows the air vents to breathe will help reducing the battery life and heating of the devices.

Tip 3. Genuine Adaptors

The use of cheap quality adaptors can harm the battery life of your laptop. So make sure you use the adaptor of a better quality.

Tip 4. Reduce Background processes

Background processes which are not used much should be reduced. In case of the non usage of the internet stop the other programs associated with running on the task bar something like the anti-virus program as it will also use battery to keep itself running.

Tip 5. Unplug external devices

Make sure that various USB devices such as flash drives, Wi-Fi, data cables, Bluetooth, external speakers….etc should be unplugged when not in use as they use more battery power than any other device.

Tip 6. Check the appropriate levels of your brightness

on your laptop screen. Limit the use according to your tolerate levels as it is again one of the causes of power sink.

Tip 7. Sounds to be checked

Avoid using high volume sounds of your speakers and also try muting your speakers when not in use.

Tip 8. You do not require screen savers

Screen savers suck in more battery power and are totally useless for genuine reasons. So simply avoid using screen savers for effective battery coverage.

Tip 9. Control power options

You can turn off your hard-drive or monitor for a specific time duration using Windows XP and Windows Vista that already come with advanced power management features. This can further be checked by going to control panel and clicking the ‘power options’ feature available on it.

Tip 10. Choose Hibernation mode to Standby mode

Opting in the Hibernation mode will save the battery power as it will turn the computer off completely (saving of course the current state)than choosing the Stand by option where although being in the ‘sleep mode’ with monitor or hard drive turned off the memory still remains active and slows down the CPU.

Tip 11. Go for recent modern laptops
The modern laptops which have arrived in the market have Li-ion ( ‘Li’ stands for Lithium) batteries which doesn’t affect the memory as there is no problem of ‘partial discharges’ and recharge which very much exists in laptops having Ni-MH batteries. It is therefore recommended that you buy a latest one rather than going for an older version.

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