Features

Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 5i: Finding the work-life balance

Work smart, play hard

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Anyone living in this age is quickly frustrated by sluggish experiences — be it through their devices, internet connection, or relationships. For most people, it’s easy to find work-life balance when everything just works; a feat you can achieve when you have the right resources.

Now that the line between our work and personal lives are blurry, our yearning to maintain a good work-life balance amplifies. However, most people forget how investing in a well-performing machine can help you fast-track your goals in achieving your desired lifestyle.

For instance, the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 5i is a capable laptop built to help you find the balance between life and work.

The value of working smart

Gone are the days where our worth is measured by the hours we clock in. Living in this age ushered the importance of efficiency, prompting people to work smarter to free up hours for meaningful things that make them happy.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 5i teaches us the same ethos — the value of working smart. This machine will let you expect a hiccup-free experience so you can multitask, be productive, perform creative tasks, and even play games to unwind.

Lenovo’s smarter technology promise ensures that people can prepare for the challenges ahead, seeing how technology has become extremely important to meeting people’s basic needs, and keeping the world going even during a crisis.

The IdeaPad Slim 5i is a testament to that, as it adds to Lenovo’s innovative technologies across its vast portfolio of devices that position the company as the most prolific end-to-end global technology organization.

It is thanks to this laptop’s internals, which is powered by up to the latest 10th-gen Intel Core i7 processor and runs on NVIDIA’s GeForce MX350 GPU and Intel’s Iris Plus Graphics. It also sports an 8GB RAM and 512GB SSD storage, and up to 16GB RAM and 1TB SSD storage on some units.

Moreover, it’s equipped with WiFi-6 connectivity, ensuring a strong connection for all your online activities. Even with multiple gadgets at home, trust that the IdeaPad Slim 5i won’t give up on your connection — even when everyone else does.

Feature-packed for its price

Some features that make our lives easier are considered a luxury, especially for non-flagship and non-premium laptops. Yet the IdeaPad Slim 5i was able to pack certain features to ensure a seamless experience.

First, you can have peace of mind when it comes to your safety and security since it’s equipped with Lenovo’s distinct Privacy Shutter.

Design-wise, it’s paint-coated with fabric-like finish in colors such as platinum grey, graphite grey, or light teal; colors that won’t steal the spotlight away from you.

Also, it’s soft and comfortable to touch, and it’s designed to be opened with just one hand, flexing its sturdy hinges and durable build.

Moreover, it hosts several ports — a USB-C port, two USB 3.1 ports, a DisplayPort, an SD card reader, and an audio jack — for better connection.

Work, play, rest, repeat

When the going gets tough, you can always opt to take a break. The IdeaPad Slim 5i isn’t just a productivity powerhouse, it can be a portable entertainment hub, too!

With a Dolby Audio-tuned front-facing speakers situated beside the keyboard, and partnered by an FHD display with 90% Active Area ratio, it’s set to be a perfect leisure companion. Stream your favorite tunes or binge-watch your favorite shows, wherever you want it.

Furthermore, it lets you work or play uninterrupted for 12 hours with its 57Wh battery. If you need additional juice, you can use its Rapid Charge which gives an extra 3-hour usage within 15 minutes of charging.

As the routine gets mundane, take time to rest so you and your laptop can cool down. Taking a step away and changing your scenery can help improve your well-being. Treat your body just like how you would take care of your gizmos.

Striking a balance between life and work

Surely, the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 5i is a great tool to help you strike a proper work-life balance. After all, it’s a no-frills laptop focused on getting the job done, so you can do the things you’ve always wanted to do in life. Moreover, it’s a feature-packed laptop with value for money.

The IdeaPad Slim 5i retails for PhP 49,995 (Intel Core i5) and PhP 59,995 (Intel Core i7) and is available in authorized stores like Silicon Valley, PC Express, Villman, Complink, Gigahertz, Octagon, and Abenson.

Lenovo is currently running a promo that offers freebies worth PhP 20,475 when you purchase the IdeaPad Slim 5i. You’ll get premium gifts such as a 65W Type-C travel adapter, a Lenovo B210 backpack, a Herschel Little America backpack, and a free Microsoft Office with a lifetime license. For more information, visit Lenovo’s Summer Sale Promo 2020.


This feature was produced in collaboration between GadgetMatch, Intel, and Lenovo Philippines.

Computers

This 34” LG UltraWide monitor disrupted my workflow

In the best way possible

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I’ve been working on a laptop almost exclusively for the better part of the last decade. It’s been so long that I had forgotten the benefits of working with a bigger screen — a benefit that was shoved into my face when I used the LG UltraWide 34” Curved monitor. 

Easy setup 

Putting it together was relatively easy. I didn’t need any special tools or anything of the sort. Everything just fit into place seamlessly.

Here are all the ports on its back. That’s two (2) HDMI ports, one (1) Display port, two (2) USB downstream ports, one (1) USB upstream port, and one (1) headphone out port.

It also comes with a cable organizer that you kind of clamp to the stand so your setup can look clean.

Once everything is plugged, you only need to use this button at the bottom center of the display to make any changes in the settings or switch between inputs should that be necessary.

My regular workflow

At any given day I can be doing anything from writing an article, a script, coordinating with the team and external partners, copy-editing articles, and video editing among others.

This means I toggle between screens A LOT. Other than that, my posture while working is mostly crouched down since I’m looking at the laptop screen.

However, that all changed when the fire nation attacked. No, I mean, it was definitely shaken up when I started using the LG UltraWide 34” Curved Monitor.

I didn’t really have a proper setup with it owing to the tiny space I live in but in the brief week that I used it, I started craving a better work from home setup.

How the LG UltraWide monitor disrupted my workflow

The first thing I noticed was how I was now looking up instead of looking down. It might not be that big a deal for younger people, but when you reach a certain age, even the smallest improvements to your posture can make a huge difference.

The extra space is invaluable. At one glance I can look at Slack and Tweetdeck. This means I can quickly look up if there’s anything new that needs to be edited while also monitoring any potential news that we should run on the website.

Bonus: I can also have a floating tab with a playlist of my favorite girls TWICE cheering me up as I slog through another work day.

This works in other instances too. I can pull up a press release for reference on one side of the screen and have Google Docs on another. This means I no longer have to quickly press Alt+Tab every time I need to double check details.

Just the overall convenience of seeing more at a glance is already a major upgrade to the workflow I’ve grown accustomed to.

Video editing

I no longer video edit as much as I used to due to changing roles and all. But here, the benefit of having a larger, wider monitor is even more pronounced.

Having a wide workspace means I didn’t have to hide certain tools while editing. They’re just there, easily and immediately accessible when I need them. It was honestly tough going back to the smaller screen especially for this task.

Taking less steps to complete your everyday tasks is a godsend. Every small thing adds up to a faster, smoother, and generally better working experience.

Should you upgrade to the LG Ultrawide 34” Monitor?

There are plenty of things to consider. For people like myself who have mostly worked on laptops, we’re pretty set in our ways. Plus there are a few other peripherals I might need to get so it’s not an easy yes or no decision.

You also need to consider your workspace. As I mentioned, I live in a rather tiny place with very little space to accommodate a fully desktop setup.

But this is me. If you’re still working on a more traditional 16×9 monitor, I guarantee the difference, while jarring at first, can be truly beneficial in the long run.

The LG Ultrawide 34” Curved Monitor retails for PhP 45,999 (around US$ 937). If you’re ready to splurge to up your productivity, this isn’t a bad place to start.

LG has other monitors you can check out. The UltraWide line of monitors start at PhP 12,699 for the 25”, PhP 14,799 for the 29”, PhP 29,499 for the 34”, and PhP 45,999 for the curved 34” version.

LG’s UltraGear gaming monitor line on the other hand starts at PhP 12,599 for the 24”, PhP 22,199 for the 27”, and PhP 23,999 for the 32”.

SEE ALSO: LG UltraGear 24” Gaming Monitor review: Enough to get you started

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Entertainment

The cost of the post-pandemic movie

Why you should care about Mulan’s terrible premiere

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The fate of the Hollywood blockbuster rests on a fingertip. A formerly grandiose affair with celebrities dressing up to the nines, the red-carpet premiere is now an impossibility thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. On the other side, streaming services blossomed with new titles and exclusives. It was (and is) a great era for the home theater. But the home theater will not last forever. Hollywood is now facing a crisis for the future of the premiere.

If the past year is any indication, Hollywood will, of course, not go down without a fight. Large networks and production houses have released their own streaming platforms to monopolize their content, putting additional weight on a consumer’s budget. Take Disney’s Disney+ or NBC’s Peacock, for instance. Now, a few of these (like Disney and Netflix) make their own blockbuster content as well. We’ve seen Netflix’s streaming-only premieres already. How about Disney’s (or anyone else’s) Hollywood premieres, which often rely on astounding box office numbers?

This week, we got a taste of such a strange premiere scheme. In an earnings call, Disney CEO Bob Chapek detailed the future of a delayed movie, Mulan. Initially premiering in theaters back in March, Mulan was repeatedly delayed because of the continued shutdown of movie theaters. Now, as the company is itching to finally launch it, Chapek announced a hybrid release for the film. Partly premiering in theater in safe countries, the film will also launch simultaneously on Disney+ for unsafe markets.

Now, here’s the catch: the film will cost US$ 29.99 for Disney+ users. Even if you have a subscription already, you have to fork over approximately PhP 1,474 to watch the new film. Of course, the hair trigger response is, “c’mon, Disney; stop haggling money from your customers.” And the response is right. However, there is so much more to this. Mulan can set the stage for an unprecedented era for Hollywood premieres.

Let’s get down to business

In New York, an average movie ticket costs around US$ 15 (approximately PhP 736). Mulan’s price tag is twice as much as a theater ticket. It’s even weightier in cheaper states and, most especially, in the Philippines (where movie tickets are only around US$ 5). Further, you’ll still need an active Disney+ account to access the film, costing an additional US$ 6.99.

(Naturally, it’s impossible to accurately translate the prices to an Asian market since Disney+ has not launched in all of Southeast Asia yet. We can only assume that Mulan’s streaming price is 200 percent of normal ticket prices, whatever it might be.)

Objectively, Mulan’s price is worse than a regular movie ticket. It’s easy to conclude the argument with this statement and head home. However, there is a way to justify the price.

The whole family plus your cow

Now, a single movie ticket typically admits one person. Buying Mulan pays for the streaming privilege which can typically include an entire family. With a 15-dollar average, two people watching the same Mulan purchase is already a break-even point. In the same vein, a family of four obtains double the value of the 30-dollar film price. Even better, a family can watch the film over and over again. And, as any parent who has a Frozen-loving child can tell you, unlimited playbacks is a blessing for your wallet (albeit a curse on your sanity).

Unfortunately, despite the mathematical mind-bending, Mulan’s price is still far from ideal. The movie-going experience is not the same on a streaming platform as in a cinema.

An assumption of equality

A cinema ticket is price of equality. Besides a few slight differences, everyone is paying for the same product. All other things considered equal, a 20-year old college student is paying and enjoying the same experience as a 50-year old CEO. Same film, same seat cushions, same facilities, same projector.

On the other hand, a streaming subscription cannot assume the same thing. A platform cannot control where and with what device a user will watch the movie from. A 20-year old college student watching the film on a laptop screen in a poorly lit dorm room is not enjoying the same experience as a 50-year old CEO watching the same thing in their high-end home theater with Dolby Atmos.

Likewise, the platform cannot assume how many people will watch the film in one purchase. Now, Mulan is a family film. Disney can easily assume that multi-person families will buy and watch the film. However, how will the audiences take the same price tag for a more polarized movie like Christopher Nolan’s Tenet or the next James Bond film?

All of Hollywood knows you’re here

In the same announcement, Chapek hints that Mulan’s price is just a “one-off.” Basically, other films might not follow the same pricing scheme. In a way, it makes sense. Mulan was made with a pre-coronavirus budget. It was expected to make millions from box office tickets. This might be the only way for Mulan to recoup its many losses. In the future, Disney might make films with lesser budgets and lesser expectations.

However, make no mistake; other filmmakers are intently watching Mulan’s performance on streaming. If Mulan succeeds, they can likely charge the same amount without incurring a lot of losses. That said, streaming premiere prices will likely vary from film to film. Even then, this isn’t the last discussion on the future of the film industry.

If the industry hopes to adapt to the new normal, it needs to rethink its strategy even further. Disney is offering only one solution for the problem of streaming. Unfortunately, the brand’s solution leverages a family-oriented release, one that might not appeal to the average moviegoer today.

A price worth fighting for

My suggestion: Implement a tiered premiere price. Not everyone will want to pay the full 30 dollars for a film they’re not wholly interested in. Most will watch it once and forget about it. Some won’t even care about watching it in HD.

Why not implement a pricing scheme based on those different preferences? For example, charge US$ 5 for a standard-definition, one-time playback premiere; US$ 10 for an HD, one-time playback premiere; US$ 20 for a standard-definition, unlimited playback premiere; and US$ 30 for an HD, unlimited playback premiere. In one swoop, a film can appeal to all streaming markets and needs.

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Hands-On

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra Unboxing, Hands-on & Camera Test!

Elegance and sophistication in an ULTRA-big device

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Just recently, we had a quick video introduction of Samsung’s latest Galaxy Note 20 series. Now, we finally have a Galaxy Note 20 Ultra on our hands!

Be sure to subscribe and hit that notification button to stay notified on our upcoming review video on August 18th.

For now, you can enjoy our unboxing, hands-on, and a quick camera test using the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra by clicking here.

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