Computers

Solar-powered classrooms bridge educational gap in rural communities

Making education more accessible one classroom at a time

Photos from Dell

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GadgetMatch is founded on the premise of making life better and easier through technology. For many of us who get caught up in emails and social media in our day to day, it’s easy to forget how technology changes lives.

It teaches new skills, builds self-confidence, and brings new job opportunities especially to rural communities; but that’s easier said than done. High costs and complex societal challenges hampers not just access to technology in developing countries, but human progress as well.

There are companies like Dell Technologies who make it a point to harness its resources and global reach to make technology more accessible. In areas where access to consistent energy and technology are scarce, Dell has partnered with Computer Aid International to create Solar Learning Labs. 

These labs are solar-powered and created by converting old shipping containers. The classrooms are filled with Dell Wyse Thin Client workstations managed by an air-cooled PowerEdge server. Up to 20 students can use a classroom at a time.

Reusing and converting what is otherwise considered waste is inline with Dell’s use of circular economy concepts. Relying on solar panels to generate electricity makes the containers self-sufficient. They can also be placed even in the most remote locations because of their size. They help deliver sustainable and affordable connectivity to schools.

A commitment to advance education

EMEA Strategic Giving Manager Houcine Faik says Dell is committed to enabling and empowering communities with technology, not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because it’s core to its business.

The goal is to help increase the exposure of entire communities to digital skills, particularly in developing countries where many students and schools still struggle to access reliable technology, infrastructure, and electricity.

The initiative first kicked-off in Lagos, Nigeria in 2013. Since then, Dell has already funded 18 labs in six countries around the world including South Africa, Morocco, Kenya, Mexico, and Colombia.

More than 10,000 students have benefited from the project during school hours. The labs are also open to other members of local communities even after school.

Faik tells Gadgetmatch that they chose South Africa to start expanding the program by leveraging a crowd-funded approach. The average number of ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) jobs in South Africa increased by 26% over the last decade.

There is also a national commitment to improving ICT for education in schools, but a shortage of training capacity and equipment.

Expanding to more countries

For now, Dell is focusing their efforts in scaling the Solar Learning Labs in South Africa, and then Latin America. “Based on the success in these locations, we’ll then look to expand to other regions,” shares Faik. By enabling crowd-funding, Dell hopes to open up the opportunity to partner with others to make scaling the project easier.

While there are no plans of expanding to Asia just yet, Dell recently released its full 2030 Progress Made Real plan. This outlines the company’s goals of creating a lasting, measurable impact on people and the planet over the next decade.

One of Dell’s 2030 commitments is to advance the health, education, and economic opportunity of 1 billion people. Using the company’s expertise and technology, it can help 1,000 nonprofit partners digitally transform to better serve their communities.

With its 2030 vision now set, Dell hopes to create a total of 100 labs by 2030. If you are interested in helping fund a Solar Learning Lab, visit solarlearninglabs.org.

Computers

HP launches new laptops and AIO PCs for your home office

Bolster your home office

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More than a year into the pandemic, the need for a powerful home office keeps intensifying. Companies are discovering the benefits (or the demand) for a more permanent work-from-home system. Adding more options for workers, HP has launched a flurry of new products for professionals and creatives.

HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 Laptop PC

Even in a home setting, a hybrid device can make all the difference. Taking your work device into several rooms keeps the productivity flow going.

Touted as the world’s first 16-inch laptop with an integrated 5-megapixel camera, the HP Spectre X360 makes it easy to take your laptop wherever you go. The laptop sports the 11th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050, 16GB of RAM, 512GB SSD of internal storage, and Windows 11. Its 16-inch frame houses a UHD+ OLED display with VESA True Black HDR and a 16:10 ratio. The battery can last up to 17 hours on a single charge.

The laptop also comes packed with features to make video calls and working much more of a breeze. HP GlamCam automatically touches you up for calls, adjusts lighting. It can also lock your device automatically if you walk away and can blur your screen when someone is peeking in behind you.

The HP Spectre x360 ships in October starting at US$ 1,639.

HP Envy AIO PC

For a more robust office experience, the HP Envy delivers an all-in-one experience like no other. The device is reportedly the world’s first 34-inch AIO PC with a 5K display. It sports an 11th-generation Intel Core i9 octa-core processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080, 32GB of RAM, 512GB SSD of internal storage, and Windows 11.

Further, it comes with a detachable, magnetic 16-megapixel camera. HP’s Enhanced Lighting can also improve how you look behind the camera.

The HP Envy ships in October and starts at US$ 1,999.

HP U32 4K DHR and M34d WQHD Curved Monitor

Rounding out the new releases, HP is launching a duo of monitors to supplement your setup. The HP U32 4K HDR monitor is a 31.5-inch diagonal 4K HDR monitor that can deliver stunning images. Meanwhile, the HP M34d WQHD Curved monitor adds in a curved form factor and integrated speakers to a 34-inch device.

The HP U32 4K HDR ships in October for US$ 499, while the HP M34d WQHD Curved monitor sells for US$ 529.99.

SEE ALSO: HP unveils its new OMEN 15 gaming laptop – GadgetMatch

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Computers

Lenovo’s ThinkVision P27u-20 offers more than just a pretty monitor

It’s a workstation hub for your home

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Working from home is now a norm. Even after the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, workforces have embraced a more hybrid schedule. As such, home workstations are now the in thing. To help with that, Lenovo is expanding its ThinkVision line to make hybrid workstations easier.

ThinkVision P27u-20

A workstation hub in itself, the ThinkVision P27u-20 offers dual wide color gamut calibrated for color accuracy. The 27-inch UHD IPS display can provide crystal clear images for photographers, videographers, and content creators.

The monitor also acts a hub for your other connectors. It features multiple USB 3.2 ports and Thunderbolt 4 compatibility which can power your laptop by up to 100W. The USB-C ports can also charge your smartphone up to 27W. Besides USB connectors, the P27u-20 also has an Ethernet port and built-in speakers.

Launching in December, the P27u-20 will retail for US$ 769.

Lenovo G27e-20 and G24e-20

Besides the ThinkVision monitor, Lenovo is also launching a pair of gaming monitors for gamers and young professionals. Both monitors blend image quality and ease of use with low blue light technology.

Both also feature AMD FreeSync Premium technology, which can provide tear-free, low-latency images. They have a 100Hz refresh rate and can overclock up to 120Hz for a smoother watching experience.

While the G24e-20 offers the same experience at 23.8 inches, the G27e-20 puts out images at 27 inches and 300 nits of brightness. Both are set at 1080p resolution. With Lenovo Artery, users can easily adjust features within the UI. And, as mentioned above, Lenovo’s EyeSafe reduces blue light output to protect every gamer’s eyes.

Both will ship out starting in October. The G27e-20 retails for US$ 239.99, and the G24e-20 retails for US$ 209.99.

SEE ALSO: Lenovo Tab P12 Pro headlines new P-Series tablets

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Huawei MateView monitors now available in Singapore

Different monitors for different niches!

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MateView Singapore

Huawei continues to reach out to other market segments, and they are already making waves in the PC monitor market. Recently, the company has launched new PC monitors in Singapore catering to different niches. Professionals, gamers, or just those looking for a reliable second screen have something to look at with these monitors.

Huawei MateView

Leading the pack of these new monitors is the Huawei MateView. Aimed for professionals, this PC monitor comes with a large 28.2-inch display and a crisp 4K resolution of exactly 3840 x 2560. It also has a 3:2 aspect ratio, which is becoming increasingly popular for professionals alike. Truly, this is a monitor for professionals thanks to its 98 percent color reproduction of the DCI-P3 gamut and the near border-less screen. It also has a TÜV Rheinland certification for protection against the harsh blue light.

For connectivity, the MateView has two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, one HDMI port, one Mini DisplayPort, and one 3.5 mm headphone jack. Users who wanted a wire-free setup may can make use of the monitor’s screencasting feature, which boasts low latency while supporting up to 2K resolution.

Of course, the MateView won’t be a premium, professional-grade monitor without its two front-firing speakers that produce load and crisp audio. Speakers, however, are not the only thing present on this monitor. It even has dual far-field microphones with noise-cancellation — perfect for video conferences and meetings. All of this premium features come packed in a sleek, minimalist design that blends almost anywhere.

MateView GT

Meanwhile, the Huawei MateView GT caters to gamers looking for a no-fuss yet premium monitor. It also boasts the biggest screen size among Huawei’s MateView monitors, measuring at 34 inches. The emphasis of this monitor is on immersive gaming experience, and it delivers with its 21:9 aspect ratio and 1500R curvature.  Not only that, it also has a 165 Hz refresh rate designed for action-packed and competitive gaming scenarios.

The display is only one factor though for a truly immersive experience. The MateView GT has dual 5W speakers integrated into the soundbar located at the monitor’s base. Plus, gamers can rely on the dual noise-cancelling microphones for crystal-clear communication during extended gaming sessions.

Huawei Display 23.8

Last but not the least is the Huawei Display 23.8. A perfect addition especially for those working from home, this monitor provides unhampered viewing experience thanks to its 90 percent screen-to-body ratio.  The monitor has an ample screen size at 23.8 inches. The resolution peaks at full HD — exactly 1920 x 1080 — with a wide 178-degree viewing angle. Finally, it also supports AMD FreeSync technology — a boon for gamers looking for a budget PC monitor.

Price and availability

The Huawei MateView comes at SG$ 998, but can be had a reduced price of SG$ 858 when buyers purchase the voucher for SG$ 1 on Shopee during the 9.9 sale. The monitor also comes with a free Huawei FreeBuds Studio worth SG$ 398 during the launch period.

Meanwhile, the Huawei MateView GT is available at a usual price of SG$ 798, but can also be had at a reduced price of SG$ 658 with an SG$ 1 voucher available only from Sept. 1 – 8. Same as above, buyers can snag a free Huawei FreeBuds Studio when they purchase this during the launch period.

Finally, the Huawei Display is available only for SG$ 228. Buyers can even have it less for SG$ 30 less on select experience stores from Sept. 17 — 30.

All of Huawei monitors can be purchased from Huawei experience stores, Lazada, and Shopee official online stores. For more information, visit their website today.

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