Now that GadgetMatch has confirmed its full participation at Computex 2017, we’re rounding up the biggest announcements we’re expecting at the multi-day tech convention in Taipei, Taiwan.
The event will run from March 30 to June 3, but you can anticipate most of the major news to pop up right before the start until midway through the official dates. Although there’ll be hundreds of brands at the showcase — from the major players to the most obscure startups — these expected launches should be the highlights.
Please don’t hold us accountable if we get a few (or all) of these wrong:
No next-generation ZenFone from ASUS
Despite rumors saying there’ll be a new generation of ZenFones to be announced during Computex, we’ve learned that only the ZenFone AR will be given the spotlight. Yes, it’s the same ASUS smartphone with augmented reality tech we got our hands on at CES last January, but this upcoming announcement will be for its regional pricing and availability.
Having a new ZenFone lineup this soon wouldn’t make much sense either. The ZenFone Live just came out, the ZenFone 3 Zoom is still reaching consumer hands, and the ZenFone AR (which is based on the ZenFone 3 design language) needs to build its own steam. Instead, expect ASUS to show off refreshed notebooks from its Republic of Gamers (ROG) and ZenBook lines like in earlier shows.
More on AMD’s Vega graphics cards
AMD has been feeding us leaks of its next-generation graphics cards bit by bit for the past few months, but with nothing more than possible specs to look at. We might be seeing something tangible at Computex with working units of the manufacturer’s high-end Vega line of GPUs. AMD better hurry, because NVIDIA has been eating up the hardcore gamer segment for a while now.
Another refresh from Acer?
Taipei may be Acer’s home turf, but the Taiwanese company already launched several of its Swift- and Predator-branded notebooks in New York last April. The Swift 1 and Triton 300, in particular, were the showstoppers Acer needed, but that leaves us with the question: What do they have left for Computex?
Notably absent from Next@Acer was an update to the Swift 7, still the world’s thinnest laptop. This could experience a refresh. At the same time, we wouldn’t be surprised if Acer uses Computex as a springboard for IFA Berlin in September; IFA 2016, if you recall, became the stage for the humongous Predator 21 X.
Gigabyte and MSI turn up the RGB
Computex has traditionally been known as the breeding ground for PC components and accessories, so we wouldn’t be surprised to see local brands Gigabyte and MSI introduce several new motherboards and graphics cards to keep up. RGB lighting is still considered cool, so expect the pair and all blatant copycats to dish out all the colorful LEDs they can muster.
A possible bombshell from Intel
As surprising as it may be, the biggest announcement could come from Intel. Leaks have shown the chip specialist planning to release its most groundbreaking processor series to date, the Core i9 line. It’s been discussed ever since the first Core i7 launched in 2008, and now we may finally expect something concrete at Computex.
Based on a leaked presentation, the Core i9 series could see a processor with as many as 12 cores and another with as few as only six (still more than any present Core i7). This may seem like overkill considering how great Core i7 processors have been, but the extra compute power will be vital once 8K video and graphics rendering become the norm.
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Intel 9th-Gen Core processors feature ‘world’s best gaming processor’
Headlined by the Core i9-9900K
Intel’s latest lineup of desktop processors, dubbed the 9th generation, were unveiled earlier today in an event in New York. They’re headlined by the Core i9-9900K, which Intel calls the “world’s best gaming processor.”
It’s definitely a powerful chip, owning eight cores and 16 threads with a single-core turbo frequency of 5GHz and base speed of 3.6GHz. It offers all sorts of speed boosts compared to the previous generation, but you’ll need a Z390-based motherboard to reach its full potential.
Included in the lineup are the Core i7-9700K and i5-9600K, which are equipped with eight and six cores, respectively — no extra threads here. All three chips, unfortunately, are still based on the 14nm process introduced years ago, with Intel releasing an updated 10nm process only in 2019.
Pricing is as follows: US$ 488 for the Core i9-9900K, US$ 374 for the Core i7-9700K, and US$ 262 for the Core i5-9600K. Pre-orders begin today with a rollout happening later in October.
In addition, Intel announced seven new Intel Core X-series processors, which include the Core i9-9980XE (US$ 1,979), i9-9960X (US$ 1,684), i9-9940X (US$ 1,387), i9-9920X (US$ 1,189), i9-9900X (US$ 989), i9-9820X (US$ 898), and i7-9800X (US$ 589). All will become available by November.
Built on Intel’s Mesh Architecture, the top-of-the-line model holds 18 cores with 36 threads to handle the most demanding tasks needed by professionals. Even wilder is the upcoming Intel Xeon W-3175X and its 28 core and 56 thread count, but it has no price yet — only a release date of December 2018.
NAIA caught using a pirated copy of Windows
No Windows seats available
As the famous idiom goes, death and taxes are the only constants in our lives. Given the abject nature of death, you’d think that taxes would, at least, work for everyone’s benefit. However, as every taxpayer knows, taxes don’t always end up for the common good.
Ever since taxes were invented, we wondered if our hard-earned money ended up contributing to government projects. At the very least, we hoped that it improved our government’s facilities.
Unfortunately, here’s one thing that our taxes are definitely not funding: government computers. As spotted on Reddit, NAIA’s computer screens are running illegitimate copies of Windows 7.
Around the Philippine airport, massive monitors update travelers on current flight times and statuses. Pictured by the eagle-eyed u/LyraStark, one monitor snuck out of full-screen mode and erroneously unveiled the taskbar. More than blocking out the flights, the taskbar also revealed the oddity with NAIA’s computers.
As most are probably familiar with, Windows notifies users when the system detects anomalies with the installation. If Windows figures out that your copy is pirated, you’ll get more than your fair share of reprimands. As you might expect, Microsoft isn’t keen on piracy.
Strangely, neither is the Philippine government. Despite having one of the world’s largest markets for it, the government has notoriously frowned upon pirated media and software. As such, NAIA’s blunder comes as an ironic shock.
Through comments, users have started wondering whether the illegitimate install took a slot in the airport’s budget. Some speculate that most government institutions run pirated software as well. Meanwhile, a few people think that genuine copies can mistakenly show the same notification.
Regardless, at the very least, the issue is something we can laugh about. Like the everyday user, the government doesn’t see the point in paying huge fees for Windows products.
Microsoft recalls Windows October update due to deleting issues
Don’t update your PC yet!
For most Windows users, installing the latest update represents a paramount concern for different reasons. To some, new updates add much-needed security patches to their beloved operating system. To the rest, Windows’ incessant reminders are just a chore.
Regardless of where their users place, Windows updates are an important part of Microsoft’s ecosystem. As such, a single hitch can collapse an unprecedented chunk of Microsoft’s users.
Now, that eventuality is upon us. This October, the latest Windows update is reportedly deleting a user’s files out of the blue. According to Windows support forums, some users’ Documents folders have completely vanished, replaced by a fresh one.
In response, Microsoft has pulled the update from its downloads section. Unfortunately, the update promised its fair share of new features. This included a new dark mode, optimized screen functionality, and better mobile-to-PC connectivity. With the recall, these new features will have to wait.
According to Microsoft, the company will investigate these “isolated reports” before launching a new update rollout.
Strangely, this issue has popped up even before the rollout. Some user reports date as early as three months ago. This time frame corresponds to users who signed up for the early-access Windows Insider Program. At the time, only a few users reported the issue. On launch, the few ballooned into a concerning number. Essentially, Microsoft failed to fix the issue before it cascaded into a bigger problem.
At the very least, the company has acknowledged the issue’s gravity. Instead of carrying on business as usual, Microsoft is undergoing steps to fix a crucial mistake. Hopefully, this results to a cleaner update launches in the future.
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