Dell's Surface Pro 2 rival appears at Microsoft Store

The Microsoft store has begun selling an Intel Core i5-based Dell tablet that competes with the Surface Pro 2.

Microsoft has added an Intel Core i5 4210Y-based Venue 11 Pro to its lineup of Dell tablets, which already includes an Atom-based Venue 11 Pro and the Venue 8 Pro.

The i5-based Venue 11 Pro differs from the Intel "Bay Trail" Atom model in some important respects, performance and price being the most salient. The Core i5 variant is faster and more expensive than its Atom counterpart. The i5 model is priced at $899, compared with $499 for the Atom-based model. … Read more

Intel CEO talks delayed factory, 'Broadwell' production start

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich discussed the start of the next-gen Broadwell chip, the delay in the startup of its Chandler, Ariz., factory, and new tablet chips during the company's fourth-quarter earnings call Thursday.

The chipmaker's net income rose 6.4 percent year over year to $2.6 billion, and revenue rose 2.6 percent to $13.8 billion. Here are some of the highlights from the conference call:

Fab 42 delay -- PC growth did not play out: "We have to start construction projects three years roughly in advance. They're very complex. If you go back … Read more

Intel: Don't expect tons of Android, Windows dual devices yet

LAS VEGAS -- Erik Reid, general manager of Intel's tablet business, says that the company's customers are exploring the Windows 8.1, Android dual-OS strategy in the face of Android's overwhelming popularity in mobile devices. But "exploring" is the operative word.

That, of course, is an advantage that only Intel has -- its chips can run both operating systems -- and one it wants to exploit it in as many feasible ways as possible.

Intel's customers -- the world's biggest device makers -- are looking into the technology, but it's not clear … Read more

Intel reportedly eyes future 18-core 'Broadwell' chip

A high-performance version of Intel's future Broadwell chip will squeeze in 18 cores -- Intel's highest core count to date -- according to a report. Meanwhile, another report points to future Broadwell chips that could populate tablets.

Vr-zone reported this week that a future 18-core Broadwell-EP or EX Xeon chip is planned that is based on Intel's upcoming 14-nanometer production process.

"Intel will not...speed up the cores, but simply pile up more of them on each [chip] die," said Vr-zone, which published a slide showing a purported Intel roadmap.

That multi-core chip wouldn't … Read more

Dell Venue 11 Pro: The anti-iPad

My first impression of the Dell Venue 11 Pro is positive. It's very different from the iPad Air but that's OK.

The Venue 11 has a gorgeous 10.8-inch -- an unusual size -- 1,920x1,080 IPS display, and the model I'm using is powered by a quad-core Intel Atom Z3770 "Bay Trail" processor with 2GB of memory.

(See updated impressions of the Venue 11 Pro.)

And Dell bundles Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 with the $500 tablet (64GB version).

I've been using it for about a week and the 64-bit Bay … Read more

Intel credits Apple with big gains in battery life

At Intel's investor day meeting Thursday, an executive cited Apple as the primary force behind the chipmaker's push for big improvements in battery life.

"We're extremely excited about the MacBook Air," said Kirk Skaugen, senior vice president of Intel's PC Client Group.

"Essentially, cooperating with Apple doubled the battery life from generation to generation -- from 6 to 12.5 hours on the MacBook Air," he said.

CNET Reviews said that the battery life on the 2013 MacBook Air with Intel's Haswell processor is "astonishing."

"The previous-generation 13-inch … Read more

Intel CEO taking big steps to overhaul chipmaker

Intel's CEO is putting the world's largest chipmaker on a fast track to change. That become clear Thursday at the company's investor meeting, happening in the shadow of a declining PC market.

Intel will open its factories to "any company" that wants to tap its leading-edge manufacturing capabilities, CEO Brian Krzanich said today.

To date, Intel has taken a very cautious, small-scale approach to making chips on a contract-manufacturing basis.

Separately, in one of the biggest revelations, Intel will develop a phone chip called "SoFIA" that will be built at a factory outside … Read more

Toshiba 'Haswell' laptop boasts smartphone-like battery life

Toshiba is claiming smartphone-esque battery life for a laptop that will be released in Japan on Friday.

The dynabook Kira V634 will run for 22 hours on a charge, according to a write-up at Nikkei Business.

The V634 model 27KS comes with a 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-4200U Haswell processor, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB solid-state drive, and a 13.3-inch display with an unimpressive 1,366x768 resolution.

That lower-resolution display (higher-resolution screens draw more power), however, helps Toshiba to achieve the long battery life, in combination with a power-efficient U series Haswell chip and the company's own BIOS. … Read more

Dell refresh of XPS 13 arrives with Apple in its sights

Dell has begun selling the refresh of a strong rival to Apple's MacBook Air, the XPS 13. It has also launched the super-svelte XPS 11 -- another Air-esque design -- and the Ubuntu version of the XPS 13.

The updated model sports a "Haswell" fourth-generation Core processor -- the power-efficient U series variety -- and comes for the first time with a touch screen option.

Specs for the $1,300 XPS 13 include 8GB of RAM, a 1,920x1,080 resolution 13.3-inch touch display, Intel HD 4400 graphics, Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260 + Bluetooth 4.0, … Read more

Acer slashes $50 from C720 Chromebooks

For a while, it seemed like Chromebooks had a sweet spot of $250, so Acer rose to the challenge and priced this year's new Chromebook C720 at that level -- $50 higher than last year's C710.

On Friday, it released an updated version of the C720 -- back at $199.99.

The Acer C720-2848 Chromebook is 0.75-inch thick, weighs 2.75 pounds, sports an 11.6-inch, 1,366x768-pixel display, and matches the previous Acer C720 model. For now, it retails at Best Buy and Amazon.com. It will be in the Acer store in December, according to … Read more