Computers

Microsoft Edge can improve your PC’s battery life by 70 percent

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I think you’ll agree with me when I say the tech in our devices today is off-the-charts good, though battery life continues to be a pain point for most consumers. There are ways to get more out of your gear, of course, and Microsoft reckons you can increase your computer’s or tablet’s usage time by up to 70 percent using its default web browser for Windows 10. (To be clear, we’re referring to Microsoft Edge, not Internet Explorer.)

In a recent blog post, Jason Weber, director of the web platform team for Microsoft Edge, shared why Edge might be the most battery-efficient browser out there, based on Microsoft’s internal testing.

We designed Microsoft Edge from the ground up to prioritize power efficiency and deliver more battery life, without any special battery saving mode or changes to the default settings. Our testing and data show that you can simply browse longer with Microsoft Edge than with Chrome, Firefox, or Opera on Windows 10 devices.

To come to that conclusion, Weber and his team compared Edge with three leading internet browsers — Chrome, Firefox, and Opera — across three different metrics. The first experiment was a test of power consumption in a controlled environment; the second examined crowd-sourced telemetry data from millions of Windows 10 devices; and the third measured how long the battery would last when used for streaming HD video.

In the last test, Google’s Chrome browser lasted just four hours and 19 minutes, compared to seven hours and 22 minutes on the Surface Book running Edge. Unsurprisingly, Microsoft’s browser bested the competition in the other metrics.

Microsoft’s findings, while encouraging, are skewed towards making Edge look good (and making Chrome look a lot like malware). However, Edge still lacks some key features like browser add-ons which you’d find in Chrome and Firefox.

Microsoft is looking to add some new functionality to Windows 10, including browser add-ons for Edge, when the Anniversary Update is released next month. Until then, I’ll continue to use Chrome as my daily driver.

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CES 2019

LG’s UltraWide and UltraGear monitors are coming to CES 2019

Meant for productivity and gaming

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LG UltraWide

CES 2019 is almost here, and when it begins, we’ll have new monitors from LG to enjoy.

The first one is the 49-inch UltraWide monitor (model name 49WL95), which has a long 32:9 aspect ratio. That’s like have two standard 16:9 screens combined!

It has a 5120 x 1440 resolution that spans the immersive curved IPS panel. With its 99 percent sRGB colors space and support for HDR10, it’s ideal for both work and play. There’s even a USB-C port that can charge a connected laptop or smartphone with 85W of power.

LG UltraGear

Next is the 38-inch UltraGear (38GL950G), a more manageable 21:9 monitor that’s geared towards gaming. It’s backed by NVIDIA’s G-Sync technology for smoother gameplay on the 144Hz refresh rate, as well as its 3840 x 1600 resolution and curved Nano IPS panel.

To give it a more gamer feel, Sphere Lighting is available to light up the back of the monitor with six color settings for you to choose from. This complements the 98 percent coverage of the DCI-P3 color gamut in front.

No pricing or availability details have been provided by LG, but both monitors will be shown at CES 2019, happening from January 8 to 11.

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Computers

ASUSPRO D340MC is designed with budget-conscious workers in mind

Prioritizes security and endurance

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ASUSPRO is known for producing reliable laptops, but did you business-grade desktop computers are part of its portfolio, too?

The D340MC is an example of this, and it delivers on several fronts. It may seem like a standard boxy PC at first, but most of the features are on the inside.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves; this is how it looks:

It definitely has a strong presence on any desk

Check out that port selection and DVD drive

The keyboard and mouse are part of the package

There’s lots of ventilation for cooling

Here’s a closer look at its ports

It’s easy to upgrade as needed

This is certainly a no-frills, get-the-job-done type of PC. Fortunately, it comes with good specs to show off: an Intel Core i7-8700 processor, up to 32GB of memory, 1TB of HDD storage, and a simple GeForce GT 720 graphics card to get you going.

But should really interest you are the reliability and endurance. The company claims the unit goes through rigorous quality tests in diverse environments, uses solid capacitors to lengthen lifespan, and produces little noise thanks to the thermal design.

The ASUSPRO D340MC starts at around US$ 600, but with its upgradability, it’s easy to give it more power when needed.

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Computers

Microsoft says you need a real computer, not an iPad

‘Don’t run out and buy an iPad’

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You’re probably familiar with Samsung teasing Apple and its iPhones through humorous commercials. But did you know Microsoft does the same against iPads?

Like Sammy, Microsoft loves to promote its products while humiliating those of close competitors. The latest attempt comes with this short holiday ad for the Surface Go.

Check it out:

The very first line — “Grandma, don’t run out and buy an iPad” — is already a clear dig at Apple. The little girl’s lyrics continue with, “It was fine when I was six, but now I’m 10. My dreams are big so I need a real computer to do all the amazing things I know I can.”

Yes, a real computer. If you’ve been following Apple’s promotions for the recently launched iPad Pro, you’d know that they tout it as a laptop replacement in a sense. Consumers and techies have since been debating whether the claims are true or not.

Well, Microsoft doesn’t think so, and instead believes that you need a Surface Go to cater to all computing needs. It runs desktop-class Windows 10 and is quite flexible productivity-wise when used together with the stylus and keyboard.

It seems like Microsoft’s goal here is to take away some of Apple’s strong younger market for iPads. Kids traditionally choose an iPad because of its portability, ease of use, and strong library of apps.

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