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IDC: Migration from Tablets to Hybrids Continues in Q1

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The global tablet market continues to contract in Q1 2017, IDC reports-- shipments are down by 8.5% Y-o-Y to 36.2 million, marking a 10th straight quarter of tablet decline.

The analyst divides the tablet segment in two "very different" categories. The first is detachables, which are packaged with a 1st party keyboard and are actually growing, at least for the most part. The second is slates/traditional tablets, which lack a keyboard and are on "steep" decline following a 2014 shipment peak.

IDC Q1 2017 tablets

"As far as most are aware, the tablet market was created in 2010 with the launch of the original iPad, despite unsuccessful product attempts by other OEMs in the years leading up to this," IDC says. "The rate at which the tablet market grew from 2010 to 2013 was unlike many other consumer-oriented device markets we've seen before. However, it appears for many reasons consumers became less eager to refresh these devices, or in some instances purchase them at all. We continue to believe the leading driver for this was the increased dependency on smartphones, along with rather minimal technology and form factor progression."

iCX Cools EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Gaming Hybrid

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EVGA presents a "hybrid" version of its iCX cooling technology-- first seen in the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Gaming Hybrid, a graphics card featuring both direct liquid cooling and heatsink/fan cooling.

EVGA HybridThe liquid cooling takes care of the GPU, while the heatsink and fan keep the memory and VRM cool. The two cooling systems are combined with an array of thermal sensors and MCUs (iCX), and the company claims the result "gives you unbelievable GPU temperatures, sometimes cutting your GPU load temperatures in half."

The liquid cooling block is accompanied by a 120mm radiator and fan. The dedicated memory cooling plate makes direct contact with the cooling block plus dedicated heatsink/fan for the VRMs, helping push performance to the limit. Behind the scenes, iCX technology allows extensive monitoring and "full control" via Precision XOC software.

ECJ Rules STBs With Piracy Add-Ons Illegal!

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The European Court of Justice (ECJ) takes a further step against film and TV piracy as it declares STBs configured for easy streaming are against the law.

KodiThe ruling comes via decision taken in the Dutch district case against one Mr. Wullems, who used to sell multimedia players through the website Filmspeler.nl. The court decreed Wullems' actions as a "communication to the public" (a peculiar doctrine specific to European law) in breech of copyright law, and following the decision the sale of all such players is, essentially, illegal.

Filmspeler.nl sold Android-based STBs running a version of Kodi pre-loaded with plugins allowing for easy access to pirated streams. European law allows to the temporary reproduction of copyrighted work (which is what a stream technically does) but the court insists piracy-friendly boxes adversely affect the actual copyright holder, and thus go against the exemption.

Microsoft Presents Surface Laptop

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After the Surface and Surface Book, Microsoft takes on a classic form factor with the Surface Laptop-- a MacBook-style premium laptop with no frills of the detachable variety.

Surface LaptopUnveiled at a New York event, the Surface Book is aimed at students and the education sector. As such, it is a thin and light ultraportable, with a metal body and a keyboard area draped in Alacantara, a cloth-like material commonly used in cars. The backlit keyboard is similar to that found in the Surface Pro 4, while the touchscreen is a 13.5-inch PixelSense number with a 3:2 aspect ratio.

Inside the Surface Laptop are either Intel Core i5 or i7 CPUs, together with 4/8GB RAM and 128/256/512GB SSD storage. It is compatible with the Surface Dial, and Microsoft also offers a Surface Arc Bluetooth mouse. Since connectivity comes via single USB-C port an additional dock accessory allows one to charge the device while adding x2 HDMI, x1 ethernet and x4 USB 3.0 ports.

Logitech Intros Slim Folio Keyboard Case

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Logitech presents the Slim Folio-- a Bluetooth keyboard-case combo designed for the 5th generation 9.7-inch iPad, with a battery the company claims lasts up to 4 years on 2 hours of daily use.

Logitech Slim FolioThe keyboard has a comfortable laptop-style layout with "large, well-spaced keys" that are "stretched from edge-to-edge." It includes dedicated function and iOS shortcut keys for switching between apps, summoning the search function, Home screen access and volume control without need to touch the iPad display.

Connectivity comes through Bluetooth LE, and the keyboard automatically activates when placed in typing position. It runs on replaceable coin cell batteries able to last up to 4 years, with no need for replacements.

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