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Last call to get Microsoft Windows 11 Pro for just $22.97
Fri, 19 Jul 2024 08:10:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
TL;DR: Get Windows 11 Pro for just $22.97 (reg. $199) through July 21. Packed with cutting-edge features, Windows 11 Pro is the ultimate operating system for professionals, gamers, and everyday users alike. And for a limited time, you can get Windows 11 Pro for just $22.97 (reg. $199). There’s a lot to love about Microsoft’s recently updated operating system. Besides enhanced security features and a more user-friendly interface, it incorporates AI to make it a modern powerhouse. Its new AI assistant, Copilot, uses a custom version of GPT-4 called GPT-4 Turbo to help you automate tasks and processes. It’s like getting the paid version of ChatGPT built into your OS. It can do things like help answer questions using natural-sounding language interactions. You’ll also see AI in apps like Paint. The latest AI enhancements make editing super easy and fun, with options like background removal and instantly generating images. You can save over $150 and enjoy a secure operating system that enhances every aspect of your digital life. Pick up Windows 11 Pro for just $22.97 (reg. $199) through July 21.   Microsoft Windows 11 Pro – $22.97 Get It Now! StackSocial prices subject to change. Personal Software
Last chance to get Microsoft Office for life for $25
Fri, 19 Jul 2024 08:08:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
TL;DR: Get Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more for life when you get a lifetime license to Microsoft Office Pro Plus 2019 for Windows or Mac for $24.97.  Reliable productivity apps aren’t optional, whether you’re a student, professional, or just need to track your budget at home. Microsoft 365 is one way to get software like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, but you have to pay for it every month. The more affordable alternative is to get a lifetime license to an older version of the same software that’s available as a lifetime license. That’s how you can get Microsoft Office Pro Plus 2019 for Windows or Mac for only $24.97 (reg. $229).  This license comes with lifetime access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, and Access. Install each of these apps on one computer and use professionally or personally.  If you’re used to working with Microsoft 365 apps, these may look at little different. Though some of the more recent updates and functions might be missing, the core functionality of each app is the same, but this time you don’t have to pay for them every month.  This is your last chance to get Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2019 for Windows or Mac for only $24.97 (reg. $229). No coupon needed.    Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2019 for Windows – $24.97 See Deal StackSocial prices subject to change.  Personal Software, Professional Software
Windows 11’s upcoming updates will be smaller, faster, and smarter
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 17:51:51 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Microsoft is tweaking how your PCs will receive Windows updates yet again, making them quicker and smaller to download. But, if you’ve been holding out for the Windows 11 24H2 update that’s landed on Copilot+ PCs, you’ll have to wait a little longer. How Microsoft is improving Windows updates is a bit technical, but builds off what Microsoft has done before. Beginning in 2021 with the Windows 11 21H2 update, Microsoft trimmed the file size of Windows updates by about 40 percent in basically two ways: separating Windows applications like Mail into their own apps, and not part of Windows; and downloading only what was needed for a Windows update. Microsoft is taking the same approach for Windows 11 24H2, but more aggressively. Going forward, Microsoft will look at the code it released during the last feature update that was downloaded to your machine, and the code it released during the current update, and try to send over just the code that is the “difference” between them. Between each feature update, Microsoft will issue smaller cumulative updates called “checkpoints.” The same technique will apply: Microsoft will send over just what’s changed, and not the entire update. The change in approach should be better for users in several different ways: smaller, quicker downloads, and probably less storage on your PC from older Windows updates that are archived there in case of a problem. The new experience will begin with Windows 11 24H2 later this year. For now, though, Windows 10 and users running older Windows 11 machines will experience business as usual. “If you are running other versions of Windows 10 or Windows 11 (earlier than version 24H2), the process of updating will be similar to previous monthly updates or annual Windows 11 feature updates,” Microsoft said. Right now, Microsoft is only shipping Windows 11 24H2 to Copilot+ PCs, and even then it has pulled back on certain features, such as Recall. It won’t be available as a general update for a while. “Windows 11, version 24H2 will be available as a traditional feature update to all devices later this year,” Microsoft says. That means that most users will probably see Windows 11 24H2 on its normal release schedule, sometime in September or October. But what this probably means is an end, once and for all, to lengthy updates — especially Windows 11 feature updates — that can put your PC use on hold for an hour or so while the feature update completes. Windows
Get this 27-inch 1440p Dell gaming monitor for just $162 right now
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 15:42:20 +0000
Source: PCWorld
There are two things I absolutely need for my PC’s monitors: a decently fast refresh rate for gaming, and an IPS panel for color accuracy when I’m working in Photoshop. The Dell G2724D has both, which is why it’s a PCWorld Editors’ Choice. Already a good deal at $300, today you can get it for an unbeatable $162 on Dell.com with the coupon code SAVE10. The Dell G2724D uses a 27-inch color-accurate IPS panel, and its resolution is upgraded to 2560×1440, giving you a noticeable boost over 1080p monitors. It’s also rocking a zippy 165Hz refresh rate and 1-millisecond response time, making it great for intense action multiplayer games where every frame counts. It’s a little light on extras with just one HDMI and two DisplayPort inputs, but at this price, that’s more than enough connectivity. It also has a standard VESA mount on the back for monitor arms, so it makes a great add-on for a multi-monitor desktop setup. Dell Dell Dell Dell is selling the monitor for $179.99 at the moment. But as a SlickDeals poster found out, you can get an extra 10 percent off that price AND get free shipping (at least that’s what it’s showing with my ZIP code) using the coupon code SAVE10 at checkout. That brings your total to $161.99 before sales tax, a steal in anybody’s money. Especially American dollars. Which is the money you’ll need to use. Save on this 27-inch Dell monitor with code SAVE10Buy now on Dell.com Looking for a more massive gaming monitor deal? This 49-inch Samsung super-mega-ultrawide is still going for over $700 off at the time of this writing, even though Amazon Prime Day is over. Monitors
This 512GB SanDisk USB flash drive is still just $33 after Prime Day
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 14:41:49 +0000
Source: PCWorld
No matter how fast your local network or internet connection gets, eventually you’ll have to use ye olde sneakernet to move your files around. That’s why we all have half a dozen USB flash drives hiding in various nooks and crannies. This Prime Day deal lets you can get rid of them all and replace them with this SanDisk 512GB USB flash drive for $33 on Amazon, down from its usual price of $90. And as of Thursday, it’s still going strong at this great price even after the sale is over. It’s not the fastest USB flash drive in the world, but with its 130MB/s read speed, you could copy an entire Fortnite installation (78GB) in a little over ten minutes. Not bad when you’re just moving files around. This is the best gig-per-buck ratio we’ve seen on a flash drive of this size, so pick one up if you’re in need of some pocket-friendly storage! Get this 512GB SanDisk flash drive for $33Buy now on Amazon If you need something faster or with a USB-C connection, be sure to check out these Prime Day deals for USB flash drives and Prime Day deals for SSDs. It’s all part of our full Prime Day deals coverage. More Prime Day deals Best Prime Day deals for Thunderbolt docks and USB-C hubs Best Prime Day deals for chargers and power banks Best Prime Day deals for keyboards Best Prime Day deals for monitors Best tech deals for Prime Day 2024 Computer Storage Devices
Samsung’s 49-inch ultrawide OLED monitor is still $720 off after Prime Day
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 14:29:08 +0000
Source: PCWorld
There are gaming monitors… and then there’s the Samsung Odyssey G9, an absolutely massive 49-inch ultrawide curved gaming monitor with a buttery smooth 240Hz refresh rate. Not only is this easily one of the most impressive monitors out there, but it’s now on sale for its best price yet of $1,080 on Prime Day over at Amazon. With an MSRP of $1,800 that’s actually enforced, this is a steep discount! At 49 inches, this Samsung Odyssey G9 is equal to two high-def monitors side-by-side, and it promises exquisite colors, contrast, and brightness—about what you’d expect for a monitor in this price range. Equipped with the advanced Neo Quantum Processor Pro, every frame on this OLED display is analyzed and optimized so you can have the best experience, no matter what you’re watching or playing. Gamers will appreciate the 0.03ms (GTG) response time and the blistering-fast 240Hz refresh rate, which ensures you’ll have a fantastic experience (as long as your computer hardware is on par, too). Go ahead and place your order for the Samsung Odyssey G9 at $1,080 while this deal is still active. It’s such a big discount that it feels like it’ll disappear any minute. Need something cheaper? The Samsung Odyssey G9 monitor is 40% offBuy now on Amazon Monitors
Xbox.com can now launch streaming GeForce Now games
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 14:18:09 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Cloud gaming is truly impressive tech under ideal conditions. Both Microsoft and Nvidia are working on their respective offerings, ostensibly competing with each other via Xbox Game Pass and GeForce Now. Yet despite being competitors, both companies are also deeply committed to PC gaming as a platform. In that context, it makes sense that Microsoft would use its own website to highlight games that work on Nvidia’s streaming service. That’s according to a tweet from the official Xbox account, showing off new functionality on the Microsoft game gallery (spotted by The Verge). Now when you click the “PLAY with CLOUD” launch button on a game’s profile page, you’ll get a choice between Xbox Cloud Gaming (if you’re subscribed to Game Pass Ultimate) or GeForce Now. Though Microsoft’s tweet says the functionality went live as of yesterday— as does the support page covering the feature—I’m not seeing it enabled on my end even though I should because I own a few PC games via my Microsoft account that are playable on GeForce Now. I’m not sure if Microsoft’s backend is being a little pokey with the feature update or it simply isn’t appearing for me because I don’t have Game Pass right now. Gaming
Best laptops 2024: Premium, budget, gaming, 2-in-1s, and more
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 14:04:38 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Picking up a brand new laptop can be a stressful experience. How much storage will I need? Which hardware is the best for my budget? The sight of the alphabet soup model numbers are enough to set your heart racing. If you’re not sure where to begin, don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re looking for a lightning fast gaming laptop, a Chromebook, or a lightweight 2-in-1 for office work, we’ve tested hundreds of laptops to identify the best option no matter what you need. Why you should trust us: It’s in our name. PCWorld prides itself on laptop experience and expertise. We’ve been covering PCs since 1983, and we now review more than 70 laptops every year. All of the picks below have been personally tested and vetted by our experts, who’ve applied not only performance benchmarks but rigorous usability standards. We’re also committed to reviewing PC laptops at every price point to help you find a machine that matches your budget. Looking for sweet discounts? Check out our regularly updated roundup of the best laptop deals available right now. Updated July 18, 2024: We added the Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge ($1,749.99) as an alternative option underneath our Best Battery Life pick. Not only does it boast 21 hours of battery life, it also has a bigger screen. We’ve also updated our list of recent laptop reviews, so be sure to check those out near the bottom of the page. The best laptops we’ve tested Dell Inspiron 14 Plus (2024) – Best overall Pros Strong performance Exceptional battery life Wonderful typing experience Cons CPU throttles under heavy loads No user upgrades Price When Reviewed: $999 Best Prices Today: $999.99 at Dell Why we like the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus The Dell Inspiron 14 Plus is one of the most well-rounded laptops money can buy. It offers strong performance, exceptional battery life, and a vibrant display. The best part is that it costs about $1,000, which is a reasonable price point considering the price to performance ratio. In fact, it performed exceptionally in PCMark 10’s benchmark, according to our review. With a PCMark 10 score of 7,061, it beat out the Acer Swift Go 14, which has similar specs to the Dell, and the more expensive Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon. The Inspiron 14 Plus also lasted an impressive 17 hours on a single charge, which is definitely more than a full workday or school day. You don’t have to worry about finding a wall outlet to charge up. Who should buy the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus Anyone looking for a really good, well-rounded laptop. In addition to the impressive performance and battery life, it also has a lovely 14-inch 1400p display. According to our review, “the display is exceedingly well suited to office work and static imagery.” It has a peak brightness level of a stunning 418 nits as well as an anti-glare coating, which means you can use this laptop in different lighting environments. It may not have the prettiest design we’ve ever seen, but its hardware capabilities and astoundingly long battery life make up for the blah aesthetics. Alternative option: If you’re willing to spend a little more, the Lenovo Yoga Pro 9i ($1,699.99) is another great option to consider. It has a more powerful processor (Intel Core Ultra 9 185H), more RAM (32GB), and a higher resolution display (3200×2000). The keyboard is absolutely killer, too. It’s a fantastic high-end laptop. Read our full Dell Inspiron 14 Plus review Asus Zenbook 14 OLED – Best overall runner-up Pros Robust build quality Attractive OLED touchscreen Good CPU and integrated GPU performance Outstanding battery life Cons Blah design Keyboard isn't memorable Mediocre connectivity options Price When Reviewed: $849.99 Best Prices Today: $849.99 at Walmart$999.99 at Asus$1199 at Amazon Why we like the Asus Zenbook 14 OLED The Asus Zenbook 14 OLED wowed us with its zippy CPU performance, phenomenal battery life, and attractive OLED touchscreen display. According to our review, “movies and games look realistic and vibrant” on the 1200p OLED touchscreen, although it can be difficult to use in bright environments due to the reflective surface. It also lasted 16 hours on a single charge, which is absolutely wild! That result really trumps otherwise excellent competitors like the Lenovo Slim 7 14 Gen 9 and the HP Pavilion Plus Laptop 14. As for performance, the Asus Zenbook 14 OLED absolutely crushed the PCMark 10 benchmark with an impressive score of 6,772. That means it’s very fast and responsive during real-world tasks like web browsing, video conferencing, and so on. Who should buy the Asus Zenbook 14 OLED Anyone looking for a powerful, affordable laptop with an OLED display! It’s so much more than its OLED screen, though. The build quality is quite good and day-to-day performance is zippy. Plus, you won’t have to go looking for an outlet often thanks to the long battery life. Connectivity options are a bit limited, but that’s not unusual for a laptop in this price range. Overall, it’s a great Windows machine that hits all the right marks. Read our full Asus Zenbook 14 OLED review Acer Aspire Go 15 – Best budget laptop Pros Affordable Decent battery life Good display visibility Cons Big and bulky Cheap build Limited performance Price When Reviewed: $299 Best Prices Today: $299 at Acer Why we like the Acer Aspire Go 15 The Acer Aspire Go 15 offers decent performance and battery life for the price ($299). The Intel Core i3-N305 CPU is power efficient and more than capable of handling daily tasks like general browsing, checking e-mail, and so on. It also ran for almost 12 hours on a single charge, which is nothing to sneeze at. The port selection is quite good as well. You’re getting USB-A ports on either side, a 3.5mm headphone jack and Kensington lock slot on the right, and one USB-C port and one HDMI port on the left. Who should buy the Acer Aspire Go 15 Anyone looking for an inexpensive laptop with reliable day-to-day performance and good battery life. It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles you’d see on more high-end machines, but it’s both serviceable and affordable, making it a clear value. The CPU is power efficient and the battery should last you throughout the day. Plus, the 15.6-inch 1080p display is easy to see “despite its low brightness,” according to our review. It’s a solid machine, especially for those on a tight budget. Read our full Acer Aspire Go 15 (2024) review Microsoft Surface Laptop 7 – Best battery life Pros Attractive, slim, and light Class-leading battery life Excellent wireless connectivity via Wi-Fi 7 Good performance in real-world situations Cons Vague keyboard falls short of competitors IPS touchscreen's image quality can't compare to OLED Gaming performance doesn't hold up Price When Reviewed: Starting at $999.99, as-tested $1999.99 Best Prices Today: $999.99 at B&H$999.99 at Best Buy$999.99 at Microsoft Why we like the Microsoft Surface Laptop 7 The Microsoft Surface Laptop 7 with the new Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite is finally here and ready to party. And boy, can it party. While we love its lightweight form factor and phenomenal wireless connectivity, you just can’t beat the 20-hour battery life. Given that the Surface Laptop 7 is packing a mere 54 watt-hour battery, that result is even more impressive. According to our review, we believe it’s a “significant threat to alternatives with AMD and Intel hardware.” You better watch your back, competitors. Who should buy the Microsoft Surface Laptop 7 Anyone that needs a long-lasting laptop. It’s a great option for frequent travelers or those who just don’t want to worry about battery life. Although Qualcomm’s chip isn’t ideal for gaming, it’s fantastic for battery life and it performs very well in day to day tasks – a big departure from previous laptops with older Qualcomm chips inside. Those struggled mightily with software compatibility; the vast majority of programs just work, and well, on the Surface Laptop 7. Alternative option: The Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge ($1,749.99) is a great alternative option to the Microsoft Surface Laptop 7. It lasted 21 hours on a single charge and it has a bigger OLED screen (16 inches, in fact!). That said, it’s heavier than our current pick at 3.42 pounds and it comes with less RAM. The 14-inch configuration is also more expensive at $1,349 as opposed to the Surface Laptop 7’s $999.99 base model. Read our full Microsoft Surface Laptop 7 (13.8″) review Dell Inspiron Plus 16 – Best midrange laptop Pros Excellent performance Good cooling avoids thermal throttling Long battery life Cons Only one USB-C port, which is also used for charging No facial recognition (only fingerprint) Won't get Copilot+ PC features Price When Reviewed: $1,499 Best Prices Today: $1199.99 at Dell$1499.99 at Amazon Why we like this Dell Inspiron Plus 16 The Dell Inspiron Plus 16 brings a lot to the table: strong performance, long battery life, and top-notch build quality. Loaded with an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 GPU, this machine turned in a fantastic PCMark 10 score of 7,101, so it should have no problem chewing right through general web browsing as well as office work, while the powerful discrete GPU aids with creative tasks. The real star of the show is the battery life, though. We managed to get 17 hours out of the enormous 90 watt-hour battery on a single charge. It’s a phenomenal result for a 16-inch laptop. Who should buy the Dell Inspiron Plus 16 Anyone that needs more power than what your typical, day-to-day laptop offers. It’s powerful enough for more demanding applications and you can keep going and going thanks to the 17 hour battery life. If you’re looking to save a bit of money, the 2023 version of the Dell Inspiron 16 Plus ($1,249.99) is still a good option. While it gets a touch toasty under heavier loads, performance is reliable and it can pull double duty running games, if that’s your bag. Read our full Dell Inspiron 16 Plus review Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus – Best Chromebook Pros Snappy day-to-day performance Versatile 2-in-1 design Good typing experience Cons Stylus not included Heavier than expected Price When Reviewed: $499 Best Prices Today: $329 at Best Buy Why we like the Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus From the convertible design to the beautiful touchscreen, the Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus has a lot to offer, especially for under $500. The 2-in-1 design allows you to swing the screen around and use the laptop like a tablet, upping the versatility factor. You can also expect snappy day-to-day performance as well as lightning fast boot-up times. Who should buy the Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus If you’re looking to pick up a premium Chromebook for work or personal use, then the Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus is a fine choice. While the $499 price tag is very much in the high end when it comes to Chromebooks, we feel the overall fit, finish, and firepower make it worth the extra cash. Alternative option: If you’re looking for a cheaper Chromebook with a bigger screen, the Acer Chromebook Plus 516 GE ($699.99) is a great option. The display measures 16 inches and it has a 2560×1600 resolution as well as a 120Hz refresh rate. According to our review, the “120Hz display is excellent and gives the laptop an edge if you’d plan to play games on a cloud gaming service that supports high refresh rates like Nvidia’s GeForce Now.” The only downside is that it’s a bit expensive for a Chromebook. Read our full Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Plus review MacBook Air (M3) – Best MacBook Pros Excellent battery life Great combination of price, features, and performance 256GB SSD is now two NAND chips, maintaining performance Cons Expensive memory upgrades Dual external display support requires closed lid Price When Reviewed: $1699 Best Prices Today: $1,499 at Amazon$1499 at B&H$1499 at Best Buy Why we like the MacBook Air (M3) The MacBook Air (M3) has a lot to offer for the $1,299 price. In fact, it received high marks across the board thanks to the 8-core CPU (M3) and the 10-core GPU. It’s capable of chewing through office work as well as casual use tasks. While performance is comparable to the MacBook Pro (M3), there is one difference: the fans or lack thereof. The MacBook Air doesn’t have any fans, which results in quieter operation before heavy-duty tasks will likely put more pressure on the chip. That said, battery life is the real star of the show here. The MacBook Air (M3) breathed its last breath at the 19 hour mark, which is perfect for those with busy schedules. Who should buy the MacBook Air (M3) Anyone who prefers MacOS over competing operating systems. Battery life is outstanding and the laptop itself is both slim and light, weighing in at just over three pounds. The 15-inch Liquid Retina (LED) screen might be considered a step-down from the MacBook Pro’s Liquid Retina XDR (mini-LED) display, but that doesn’t mean it’s a poor screen. It still looks fantastic for day-to-day use. The $1,299 price tag is also reasonable for the performance and features you’re getting. Read our full MacBook Air (M3) review Alienware m16 R2 – Best gaming laptop Pros Solid gaming performance Rugged build quality Good battery life Cons Display is dimmer than we like Price When Reviewed: $1,849.99 Best Prices Today: $1849.99 at Dell Why we like the Alienware m16 R2 The Alienware m16 R2 delivers strong graphics performance and good battery life. This specific model comes loaded with an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 GPU, which is nothing to sneeze at. It lasted a respectable 11 hours and fifteen minutes on a single charge and it averaged 144 frames-per-second when running the Shadow of the Tomb Raider benchmark. According to our review, it’s only “four frames-per-second slower than the Razer Blade 16,” which has an RTX 4090 GPU and a price tag of over $3,000. Who should buy the Alienware m16 R2 Anyone looking for a great gaming laptop. You’re getting strong graphics performance as well as long battery life, which is unusual for a gaming laptop, as most tend to die around the six hour mark. The 16-inch IPS display also has a resolution of 2560×1600 and a refresh rate of 240Hz, so gameplay should be nice and smooth. The picture quality is good, but it’s not an OLED panel. While it may not be the brightest or most color rich display we’ve ever seen, it’s perfectly fine for gaming. Besides, you can always plug into an external monitor if need be. Alternative option: If you’re looking for a more lightweight option, you should definitely check out the $1,599 Asus ROG Zephyrus G14. It weighs just 3.31 pounds, which means you can easily take it anywhere with you. That said, it didn’t make the cut because of ho-hum battery life. Plus, the Alienware m16 R2’s RTX 4070 GPU is more powerful than the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14’s RTX 4060 GPU. Alternatively, if you’re looking for even more firepower, the ROG Zephyrus G16 is a killer OLED-equipped laptop with RTX 4070, 4080, and 4090 options available. Read our full Alienware m16 R2 review Asus TUF Gaming A16 Advantage Edition – Best budget gaming laptop Pros Impressive all-day battery life Gorgeous 16:10 display Rugged chassis Cons Keys feel a bit soft 720p webcam leaves little to be desired Price When Reviewed: $1,099.99 Best Prices Today: $949.99 at Best Buy$955 at Amazon Why we like the Asus TUF Gaming A16 The Asus TUF Gaming A16 Advantage Edition is something of a unicorn and I mean that in the best way possible. This specific machine exhibits strong graphics performance as well as long battery life. Long battery life? A gaming laptop? How preposterous. Well, not anymore! The Asus TUF managed an incredible 11 and a half hours on a single charge. Also, thanks to the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU, the laptop achieved 123 frames-per-second in the Rise of the Tomb Raider benchmark. That’s impressive, especially for a sub-$1,000 gaming machine. Who should buy the Asus TUF Gaming A16 The Asus TUF Gaming A16 Advantage Edition is a good option for those on a tight budget. For under a grand, you’re getting reliable graphics performance, a spacious keyboard, and long battery life. It also works as a good general purpose machine. With a Cinebench R20 score of 589, it should have “no trouble running lightweight apps and programs,” according to our review. Alternative option: The $1,000 Lenovo LOQ 15 stands as another solid budget option. It’s more than capable of 1080p gaming and the design is very sci-fi inspired. It didn’t nab the top pick because of the poor battery life (not unusual for a gaming laptop) and limited ports, but if you’re looking for more raw GPU horsepower, its RTX 4060 is a step above the RTX 4050 included in the Asus TUF. Read our full Asus TUF Gaming A16 Advantage Edition review Acer Chromebook 516 GE – Best gaming Chromebook Pros Rigid build Fantastic CPU performance Plenty of wired and wireless connectivity High resolution 1600p display Cons Disappointing speakers and microphone Display falls behind in contrast, color vibrancy Mediocre keyboard and touchpad Price When Reviewed: $649.99 Best Prices Today: $649 at Best Buy Why we like the Acer Chromebook 516 GE The Acer Chromebook 516 GE wins a lot of brownie points because it’s a reliable performer thanks to the Intel Core i5-1240P CPU and the 16-inch 1600p display’s fast 120Hz refresh rate. Compared to some Windows laptops, it’s reasonably priced as well. Not only does it fly through everyday tasks with ease, but it’s also a great machine for cloud gaming. As long as you’ve got a stable Internet connection and currently belong to a streaming service (Nvidia GeForce Now, Amazon Luna, etc), you’ll blitz right through most triple-A games. In fact, according to our review, “gameplay felt perfectly smooth” and “Nvidia’s GeForce Now diagnostics panel flagged no problems.” Who should buy the Acer Chromebook 516 GE Anyone that wants to give cloud gaming a whirl or just a dependable machine for day-to-day use–the Acer Chromebook 516 GE can pull double duty in that regard. In addition to the smooth cloud gaming performance, it also features a wide array of connectivity options: two USB-C 3.2 Gen 2, one HDMI, one Ethernet (wired connectivity is especially useful for cloud gaming), and one 3.5mm combo audio. Other goodies include a 1080p webcam, a 65 watt-hour battery, and a rugged design. Read our full Acer Chromebook 516 GE review Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra – Best content creation laptop Pros Phenomenal battery life Solid GPU performance Gorgeous OLED screen Good audio Cons Not a great keyboard Chargers keep getting bigger Price When Reviewed: $2999.99 Best Prices Today: $2349.99 at Best Buy$2399.99 at Samsung Why we like the Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra The Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra is the perfect laptop for content creation. The Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 GPU will give you the extra boost you’ll need for intensive video or photo editing tasks and the 16-inch 1800p OLED touch display is sharp enough to get those little details just right. Plus, it comes with 1TB of SSD storage (you’ll need a good amount of space for your images and videos) and a microSD for easy offloading of photos. Battery life is top-notch, too. It lasted a total of 18 hours on a single charge, which is downright impressive. That said, if you’re editing a lot of photos with the brightness turned all the way up, you may see a shorter result. Who should buy the Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra The Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra is a great laptop for content creators because of the powerful hardware (discrete graphics are a must!) and stunning OLED screen. It also has a diverse array of ports such as Thunderbolt 4, USB Type-A, HDMI 2.1, microSD, and headphone/mic. Although its OLED screen is high-resolution, it’s not 4K, so consider the similarly spec’d Dell XPS 17 below if editing 4K video is crucial to your workflow. Other cool features include a 1080p webcam, a fingerprint reader, and a lovely Moonstone Gray color scheme. Alternative option: The Dell XPS 17 9730, with its powerful internal components and massive 17-inch 4K display, is still a good option for content creators. While we like the thin chassis and long battery life, it doesn’t have an OLED screen, which offers better color accuracy. Read our full Samsung Galaxy Book4 Ultra review Acer TravelMate P6 – Best ultraportable Pros Long battery life Light and portable A good price for a business laptop Cons Keyboard is a tad mushy No NPU for future Windows AI features Consumer laptops deliver similar specs for a lower price Best Prices Today: $1158.99 at CDW$1168.63 at Amazon$1199.99 at Acer Why we like the Acer TravelMate P6 The Acer TravelMate P6 is featherlight at just 2.65 pounds. The chassis is made of magnesium-alloy, which is a very light yet durable material. According to our review, “the ports are reinforced with additional metal brackets to hold up wear and tear.” In other words, this machine is built to last. It also has fantastic battery life, which is what you want in an ultraportable laptop. The 65 watt-hour battery lasted nearly 13 hours on a single charge–more than a full workday! This laptop offers reliable performance, too. The Acer TravelMate P6 turned in a respectable Cinebench R20 score of 3,065, which isn’t far behind the more powerful HP Pavilion Plus. Who should buy the Acer TravelMate P6 Anyone looking for an affordable, lightweight ultraportable. In addition to the lightweight form factor, it also comes with a 1080p webcam with a physical privacy shutter and a 14-inch 1200p display with a 16:10 aspect ratio. The taller screen makes it easier to scroll through documents or webpages, and the 1080p webcam will make you look good on videoconferencing calls. The keyboard provides a nice typing experience, too. It even boasts white backlighting, which is perfect for typing in low light environments. Alternative option: If you’re interested in picking up a more high-end ultraportable, you should consider picking up the HP Dragonfly G4. It weighs same as the Acer TravelMate P6, but has much better battery life–it managed 17.5 hours on a single charge! The only downside is that it costs just over $3,000 thanks to its more potent components and support for mobile LTE connections. The Dell Latitude 7450 Ultralight is another great option, as it weighs 2.33 pounds, lighter than our top pick. But, similar to the HP Dragonfly G4, it’s just too expensive, costing north of $2,000. Read our full Acer TravelMate P6 review Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED – Best 2-in-1 Pros Long battery life Connectivity includes two Thunderbolt 4 ports Fast performance Cons Function keys are small The display is a little dim Price When Reviewed: 1199.99 Best Prices Today: $999.99 at Asus$1,199 at Amazon$1299 at Walmart Why we like the Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED When it comes to 2-in-1 laptops, the Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED just gets it right at the start. It has a gorgeous OLED display, a zippy Intel Core i7-1360P CPU, and a versatile convertible design. You can flip the screen around 360 degrees and use it like a tablet or prop the device up like a tent if you so wish. Colors on the 1800p OLED display are also “remarkably bright and saturated,” according to our review. The battery died at the 12 hour mark, dominating laptops with similar hardware like the Lenovo Yoga Book 9i and the Acer Aspire Vero 14. Who should buy the Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED The Asus Zenbook 14 Flip is a good option for business professionals because of its convertible, lightweight design and stunning OLED display. You can take this machine with you anywhere and you don’t have to worry about finding an outlet to charge up. How can you go wrong with that? Alternative option: The Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 ($849.99) is another good option to consider if you want to save some cash. The 1600p 16-inch display is bigger than the Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED’s and is a “pleasant screen for work and entertainment,” according to our review. Battery life is comparable to our current pick (about 13 hours) and it’s currently on sale for $849.99 at Best Buy as of this writing, which is a pretty good deal for the hardware and features. Read our full Asus Zenbook 14 Flip OLED review Recent laptop reviews Acer Swift Edge 16: Acer’s Swift Edge 16’s low weight and good performance makes it a solid travel companion, though a small battery holds it back. Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge: The Samsung Galaxy Book4 Edge is an excellent Snapdragon X Elite-powered PC with a beautiful display, long battery life, and great build quality. But you’re paying extra for high-end Snapdragon X Elite hardware on the 16-inch model, and it doesn’t deliver the big performance bump you might expect. Lenovo ThinkBook 14 2-in-1: The Lenovo ThinkBook 14 2-in-1 Gen 4 offers solid performance and a great value for anyone who needs a laptop to get work done. MSI Raider 18 HX: The MSI Raider 18 HX boasts a humongous screen as well as all the ports you could imagine, but the windy roar of the fans combined with the high price tag may deter some folks. How we test laptops The PCWorld team puts each and every Windows laptop through a series of benchmarks that test GPU and CPU performance, battery life, and so on. The idea is to push the laptop to its limits and then compare it against others we’ve tested. Chromebooks, on the other hand, go through a series of web-based tests. It wouldn’t be fair or possible to run the same kinds of tests on a Chromebook, as they’re Chrome OS-based machines. Below, you’ll find a breakdown of each test and the reasons why we run them. For a much deeper look at our review methodology, check out how PCWorld tests laptops. Windows laptops PCMark 10: PCMark 10 is how we determine how well the laptop handles lighter tasks like web browsing, word processing, spreadsheets, and so on. HandBrake: HandBrake is more intensive than PCMark 10. It basically measures how long a laptop’s CPU takes to encode a beefy 30GB file. Cinebench: Cinebench is a brief stress test of the CPU cores. It does this by rendering a 2D scene over a short period of time. 3DMark: 3DMark checks if 3D performance remains consistent over time by running graphic-intensive clips. Video rundown test: To gauge battery life, we loop a 4K video using Windows 10’s Movies & TV app until the laptop dies. Chromebooks CrXPRT 2: The CrXPRT 2 benchmark tests a Chromebook’s battery life. Speedometer 2.0: This test determines a Chromebook’s web browser performance. It simulates this by adding, completing, and removing a to-do list. Basemark Web 3.0: This benchmark gauges how well a Chromebook can handle web-based applications. Kraken 1.1: Kraken 1.1 is a JavaScript performance benchmark. Jetstream 2: Jetstream 2 is a combination of WebAssembly and JavaScript benchmarks. This is a way to gauge how well a Chromebook runs advanced workloads. FAQ 1. What form factor is best for a laptop? The first question you should ask yourself is what kind of laptop you’re looking for. There’s traditional clamshells, 2-in-1’s, Chromebooks, and much more. The displays on convertible laptops (aka 2-in-1’s), for example, can swing around 360 degrees. This allows you to use the laptop like a tablet. They can also be propped up like a tent for viewing movies or participating in video calls. Chromebooks, on the other hand, exclusively run Google’s web-focused Chrome OS and are generally used for everyday tasks. All you need is a Gmail account and boom, you’re in. There are pros and cons to each of them. Chromebooks are affordable and generally have good battery life whereas convertibles are normally lightweight and portable. 2. How much processing power do I need in a laptop? If it’s CPU power you’re looking for, look for processors with higher numerical names. A Core i7 is more suited to gaming and more intense work than everyday tasks. Intel processors are available in Core i3, Core i5, Core i7, and Core i9. The higher the number, the more powerful the CPU. If you don’t need a ton of power, Intel Core i5 processors are your best bet, as they offer good performance at a decent price. Basic office and web work gets along just fine on a Core i3. As for AMD options, the Ryzen 3 is good for basic productivity and web browsing, while Ryzen 5 chips rival Intel’s Core i5 as solid all-arounders. If you need more power, the Ryzen 7 chip is well suited for content creation like video editing. Finally, if you’re dealing with 4K video, spring for a Ryzen 9. 3. Discrete graphics vs. integrated graphics? You’ll want a discrete graphics card for hardcore gaming or editing videos. It’s separate from the processor, so you can expect higher performance out of it. Integrated graphics, on the other hand, are attached to the CPU and uses less power as a result. This is perfectly fine for everyday tasks, especially if you’re not doing anything that’s graphics-intensive. 4. How much memory do I need in a laptop? 8GB of RAM is zippy enough for general use. If you’ve got a gaming laptop, 16GB of RAM is the way to go, with 32GB being a future-proof configuration. Content creators will want as much as possible. 5. Do I need a big display on a laptop? If you’re a video editor or someone who does a lot of multimedia work, you’ll want a display that’s anywhere from 15- to 17-inches. The sweet spot is really anywhere from 13- to 14-inches, though. The bigger the display, the heavier your laptop is going to be. A 13- or 14-inch display is the best in terms of portability and value. 6. How long should my laptop last on a single charge? If you plan on taking your laptop anywhere with you, aim for something that can last 10 to 12 hours on a single charge. That’s more than a full work day, so it should theoretically get you through long flights or a day of classes. Obviously, more is always better. Just know that the bigger the battery, the heavier the laptop. Read our round-up of the best laptop chargers. 7. How much does a good laptop cost? Many good laptops cost around $500 to $750, but the price really depends on your budget. If you’re strapped for cash (been there, trust me), go for a Chromebook or an entry-level business laptop. You can find solid options for under $500. Spending $750 to $1,000 can get you better displays, additional performance, more storage, and nicer designs. If you splurge for a laptop that costs over $1,000, you’re usually paying up for premium build quality, great extras, and top-shelf performance. Gaming laptops are different. You can sometimes find gaming laptops with entry-level discrete graphics on sale for around $850, but you’ll usually need to spend at least $1,000 for a system with decent 1080p gaming chops. You can pay more — often much more — for better graphics firepower and nicer displays, but the costs can rise rapidly depending on your hardware of choice. Some fully loaded gaming laptops can go for multiple thousands of dollars but you’re getting the equivalent of a desktop replacement in return. Spending $1,200 to $2,000 usually gets you a very good gaming laptop. 8. Are connectivity options important on a laptop? A wide array of ports is always a plus in my book, as it eliminates the need for an adapter. I’d recommend a laptop that has both USB-C and USB-A. An HDMI port is good, too. This is especially useful for when you want to hook up to an external monitor. Laptops
Today’s best laptop deals: Save big on work, school, home use, and gaming
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 13:39:17 +0000
Source: PCWorld
If you’re looking to score a fast laptop at a killer price, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re on the hunt for a blazing fast gaming rig, an affordable laptop under $500, or an everyday Chromebook, we’ve assembled a list of the best laptop deals available right now, using our finely honed editorial judgement (and thousands of hours of testing experience) to only recommend truly compelling deals on worthwhile notebooks. We’ve separated the recommendations below by best laptop deals under $500, best home use laptop deals, best gaming laptop deals, and best premium laptop deals, to make it easier to find a notebook that fits your budget and needs. For more options, check out PCWorld’s roundup of the best laptops available right now. Best laptop deals (at a glance) Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 3, $299.99 ($229 off at B&H) Lenovo Flex 3, $328.99 ($150.01 off at Best Buy) Asus VivoBook 16, $479.99 ($120 of at Amazon) Dell Inspiron 15, $529.99 ($170 off at Dell) HP Envy x360, $569.99 ($379.01 off at Adorama) HP Dragonfly Pro One, $719.99 ($679.01 off at Adorama) Lenovo Flex 7, $1,039.99 ($220 off at Adorama) Samsung Galaxy Book4 Pro, $1,161.85 ($288.14 off at Amazon) Alienware m16 R2, $1,299.99 ($400 off at Dell) Dell XPS 14, $2,099.99 ($400 off at Dell) Best laptop deals under $500 Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 3: $299.99 ($229 off at B&H) If you fancy yourself a casual user (aka someone that likes to browse the web or social media), the Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 3 is the laptop for you. It comes equipped with an Intel Core i3-1315U CPU, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of SSD storage–that’s plenty of oomph for everyday tasks. The 15.6-inch 1920×1080 IPS display is nice, too. It should be clear enough for daily activities like spreadsheet work or watching a YouTube video. It also has a decent port selection with one USB-C and two USB-A. Not bad for a sub-$300 laptop! View Deal Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo Flex 3: $328.99 ($150.01 off at Best Buy) Sometimes all you need is an affordable laptop for surfing the web and composing e-mail exchanges. If you’re in the market for such a laptop, the Lenovo Flex 3 is definitely worth considering. It’s powered by a Pentium Silver N6000 processor, which is suitable for general browsing and streaming Netflix, but not much else. It’s not the fastest processor we’ve ever seen here at PCWorld, but you’ve also got to temper your expectations, as this laptop is specifically designed with basic tasks in mind. However, according to Best Buy reviews, the 1080p touchscreen display is pretty darn crisp, making this machine an excellent value. View Deal Asus Asus Asus Asus VivoBook 16: $479.99 ($120 of at Amazon) The Asus VivoBook 16 is the perfect machine for productivity. The 1200p display is a roomy 16 inches and the taller 16:10 aspect ratio makes scrolling through spreadsheets and web pages a heck of a lot easier. The bezels are so skinny they’re hardly there, too. Plus, the AMD Ryzen 7 7730U CPU and the AMD Radeon graphics should deliver snappy performance for day-to-day tasks as well as office work. Other neat features include a fingerprint sensor, a sleek Indie Black colorway, and a backlit chiclet keyboard. View Deal Best for home use Dell Dell Dell Dell Inspiron 15: $529.99 ($170 off at Dell) The Dell Inspiron 15 is a solid, well-rounded laptop with a 1080p display and 1TB of SSD storage. The Intel Core i7-1255U is a few generations old, sure, but it’s zippy enough for general browsing, streaming your favorite Netflix show, and so on. The ample storage will also increase the speed of the laptop’s overall performance. Finally, the 15.6-inch display is well-suited for everyday tasks with a resolution of 1920×1080 and a refresh rate of 120Hz. View Deal HP HP HP HP Envy x360: $569.99 ($379.01 off at Adorama) The HP Envy x360 is powerful, lightweight, and versatile. The 2-in-1 form factor means you can fold the screen back and use the laptop like a tablet, and it comes equipped with a good amount of RAM (16GB) and storage (512GB SSD). The 1080p display is quite large at 15.6-inches and is touch-enabled, which is perfect for habitual notetakers and doodlers. The keyboard is also full-sized and has backlighting–this is great for when you’re using the laptop in low light environments. View Deal Best gaming laptop deals Dell Dell Dell Alienware m16 R2: $1,299.99 ($400 off at Dell) The Alienware m16 R2 is a powerful gaming laptop with a high refresh rate display. In addition to the Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU and the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 GPU, you’re also getting a 16-inch display with a 2560×1600 resolution and a 240Hz refresh rate. So, what does it all mean? Basically, the hardware should have no problem running most games with the graphics dialed up. The visuals should look fluid, too–this is helpful when playing faster-paced titles. Plus, when we reviewed a similar configuration back in March, we awarded it 4.5 out of 5 stars plus an Editor’s Choice award. The build quality and performance are truly top-notch. View Deal Best premium laptop deals HP HP HP HP Dragonfly Pro One: $719.99 ($679.01 off at Adorama) The HP Dragonfly Pro One is a good laptop if you’re a serial multitasker. This baby is packing an AMD Ryzen 7 7736U CPU as well as 16GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage, so it should be capable of handling a bunch of open tabs and more demanding applications. The 14-inch touch display has a resolution of 1920×1200 and a maximum brightness of 400 nits, which means the picture should be sharp and vibrant. The Ceramic White colorway is also just plain gorgeous and a welcome departure from the grey rectangles we’ve grown accustomed to seeing. View Deal Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo Lenovo Flex 7: $1,039.99 ($220 off at Adorama) The Lenovo Flex 7 is a great laptop for those who want an affordable 2-in-1. You’re getting a lightweight design as well as a decent amount of power for just over $1,000. It has an Intel Core i7-1355U CPU, Intel Iris Xe graphics, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of SSD storage. Zipping through spreadsheet work, light use tasks, and so on should be no problem for this machine. In addition to the 2-in-1 form factor, in which the screen swings back 360 degrees, it also weighs just 3.53 pounds. That means you can easily slip it in a backpack or messenger back and take it with you anywhere. View Deal Samsung Samsung Samsung Samsung Galaxy Book4 Pro: $1,161.85 ($288.14 off at Amazon) The Samsung Galaxy Book4 Pro is a great laptop, full stop. Whether you’re working in a spreadsheet or browsing the web, performance is fast and reliable. The 14-inch 2880×1800 OLED display is simply gorgeous and is capable of producing deep blacks and vibrant colors. It’s a touchscreen as well, which is perfect if you like to doodle or take copious notes. It also weighs just 2.71 pounds, which is ridiculously lightweight. You can easily throw this laptop into a bag and be on your merry way without concern. In PCWorld’s review of the Samsung Galaxy Book4 Pro, we awarded it 4.5 out of 5 stars and an Editors’ Choice award. We loved the sturdy aluminum casing as well as the OLED screen, in which we said the “color reproduction is outstanding.” Talk about high praise! View Deal Dell Dell Dell Dell XPS 14: $2,099.99 ($400 off at Dell) If you’re in the market for an ultra-luxurious laptop with a stunning OLED display, the Dell XPS 14 is a fantastic option. Inside you’ll find an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 GPU, 32GB of RAM, and 1TB of SSD storage. Given the specs, this laptop should deliver snappy performance. The 14.5-inch 3200×2000 OLED display should also produce rich colors and inky blacks. It’s a great screen for entertainment or graphic design. Other features include a backlit keyboard with a fingerprint reader, a 69.5 watt-hour battery, and a 1080p webcam. View Deal FAQ 1. How much RAM will I need in my laptop? You’ll want at least 8GB, though 16GB is preferable, especially if you play games. Don’t buy laptops with under 4GB of RAM or 128GB of SSD storage—though on a Chromebook or a budget Windows machine, this configuration is acceptable. Check out our article on how much RAM does a laptop need for more in-depth info. 2. What’s the difference between a Chromebook and a Windows laptop? The one big difference between a Chromebook and a Windows laptop is the operating system. Chromebooks run ChromeOS and Windows run, well, Microsoft Windows. Chromebooks make good everyday machines because they’re designed for browsing the web, checking e-mail, and so on. They use less resources and are generally more affordable than the Windows variety. They also don’t need antivirus protection. A Windows laptop is a lot more versatile in what it can do, and not just in terms of running local programs. You can really pump a Windows laptop up with a ton of RAM, storage, and so on. 3. When should I look for a laptop deal? You’ll likely find the best laptop deals during Prime Day (mid-July), Black Friday (November 29th), and back-to-school season (June-August). Sure, you’ll find good laptop deals throughout the year, but if you really want to save big, we’d recommend scoping out your favorite online retailers during those times. 4. Which retailers offer the best deals? You can find all kinds of deals across a wide range of online retailers such as Newegg, Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, and so on. However, we’d recommend checking out deals from laptop manufacturers like Lenovo, HP, and Dell. You’ll usually find many different configurations on sale and the discounts can be pretty darn steep. For more options, check out PCWorld’s roundup of the best laptops available right now. Laptops
Acer Swift Edge 16 review: A lightweight laptop with a beautiful OLED display
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 12:00:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
At a glanceExpert's Rating ProsVery thin and lightSharp, beautiful OLED displayGood CPU performanceLots of wired and wireless connectivityConsIt’s not much to look atShort battery lifeWeak speakersOur VerdictAcer’s Swift Edge 16’s low weight and good performance makes it a solid travel companion, though a small battery holds it back. Price When Reviewed$1,299.99 Best Prices Today: Acer Swift Edge 16 Retailer Price $1206.20 View Deal $1299.99 View Deal Price comparison from over 24,000 stores worldwide Product Price Price comparison from Backmarket There’s no shortage of excellent 16-inch Windows laptops available in 2024, but the bulk of these laptops are, well, bulky. Acer’s Swift Edge 16 is among the few to deliver a 16-inch display in a laptop that weighs under three pounds, and it pairs a thin, light profile with good all-around performance and an affordable price tag. But keeping the price and weight low requires compromise and, in this case, it’s battery life that takes the hit.  Looking for more options? Check out PCWorld’s roundup of the best laptops available today. Acer Swift Edge 16: Specs and features The Acer Swift Edge 16 is powered by an AMD Ryzen 7 8840U processor, which has eight cores and 16 threads. It’s paired with 16 GB of RAM and AMD’s integrated Radeon 780M graphics, which includes 12 graphics cores. The laptop also has a 16-inch OLED display with a stunning resolution of 3200×2000 pixels and a maximum refresh rate of 120 Hz. CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 8840U Memory: 16GB LPDDR5 Graphics/GPU: AMD Radeon 780M Display: 16-inch OLED 3200×2000 120Hz refresh rate with HDR support Storage: 1TB PCIe Gen 4 solid state drive  Webcam: 1440p with dual-mic array Connectivity: 2x USB-C 4 with DisplayPort Alternate Mode and 65 watts Power Delivery, 2x USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, 1x HDMI 2.1, 1x microSD card reader, 1x 3.5mm combo audio jack Networking: Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.3 Biometrics: Fingerprint reader Battery capacity: 54 watt-hours Dimensions: 14.18 x 9.78 x 0.72 inches Weight: 2.71 pounds MSRP: $1,299.99 Acer currently sells just one configuration of the new Swift Edge 16, which is the configuration reviewed. It carried an MSRP of $1,300 at the time the system was tested. Though not a budget laptop, the Swift Edge 16’s price is reasonable considering the processor, OLED display, and other hardware that Acer includes. LG’s Gram 16 and SuperSlim laptops, though comparable in size and weight, are often more expensive with models starting around $1,400 (with less RAM and storage). Acer Swift Edge 16: Design and build quality IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith The Acer Swift Edge 16 doesn’t make a great first impression out of the box. It’s a simple, matte black slate that lacks any detail, flair, or texture. There’s nothing wrong with the design, but shoppers craving a premium look will need to look elsewhere. Build quality is a similar story. The laptop is built from magnesium-aluminum alloy, a strong yet light material frequently used by ultra-thin PC laptops. However, the alloy lacks the rigidity of brushed aluminum; in fact, it’s easy to mistake for plastic. The laptop’s lack of rigidity and heft makes it feel like an inexpensive, budget-oriented machine. The magnesium-aluminum alloy does its job, however. The Swift Edge 16 weighs just 2.71 pounds and measures no thicker than 0.72 inches. Its weight is especially low for a 16-inch laptop; only LG Gram laptops are drastically lighter. It’s easy to forget the Acer is in a backpack once stowed, and picking up the laptop from an edge or corner is hardly a strain. That makes the Swift Edge 16 attractive if you travel often but also want a large display. Acer Swift Edge 16: Keyboard, trackpad IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith An enjoyable keyboard and number pad stretches across the Acer Swift Edge 16’s interior. The layout is spacious, although some keys, such as the number pad keys, are slightly undersized. Key travel is lengthy and ends with definitive bottoming action that provides some tactile feedback. It’s not an amazing keyboard, but it’s surprisingly good for a thin, lightweight laptop. The keyboard includes a backlight that’s extremely bright at its maximum setting, so visibility is never an issue. Acer also packs the usual array of function keys, including the new Copilot key, and a shortcut to open the Acer software which manages most laptop settings. A responsive and large touchpad sits below the keyboard at an offset to the space bar, which means there’s less palm space on the left than on the right. The touchpad surface measures about five inches wide and three and a quarter inches deep. Though not as large as the touchpads found on premium competitors like a Dell XPS 16, it still provides plenty of room for activating multitask gestures, and is similar in size, or slightly larger than, the touchpads on price-competitive laptops like the Asus Vivobook 16 and Dell Inspiron 16. Acer Swift Edge 16: Display, audio IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith Acer equips the Swift Edge 16 with a 16-inch OLED display with a resolution of 3200 x 2000 pixels, which works out to a pixel density of 235 pixels per inch. That beats not only 1080p laptop displays but also a 4K 27-inch or 32-inch monitor. You’ll only see a crisper picture if you pick up a laptop with a 4K display, but those are relatively uncommon and, at this size, 4K’s advantage is hard to notice in most situations. Acer’s Swift Edge 16 is an affordable and alluring pick for people who want a 16-inch laptop with a beautiful display, yet also prefer a laptop that’s thin, light, and affordable. The OLED display also has a maximum refresh rate of 120Hz, which is always great to see. In addition to better motion fluidity and clarity in PC games, the higher refresh rate offers a more responsive experience on the Windows desktop compared to a 60Hz refresh rate. It is a subtle difference but noticeable, especially if you go back to a 60Hz display after using the Swift Edge 16’s 120Hz OLED display. Acer also benefits from the usual strengths of OLED. The display has an excellent contrast ratio, extremely wide color gamut, and great color accuracy. It looks vibrant, crisp, and immersive across a wide range of content, from photo editing to PC games. HDR is supported, too, and while HDR brightness isn’t outstanding, it does deliver a slight boost to detail and immersion. While the display is excellent, it doesn’t provide Acer much edge against its competition. OLED displays are now widely available, and most deliver similar benefits. The Swift Edge 16 is affordable for a laptop with a 16-inch OLED display, but the Asus Vivobook Pro 16 isn’t much more expensive (though, to be fair, it’s much heavier than the Acer Swift Edge 16).
Audio quality is disappointing. The Acer’s built-in speakers deliver passable volume at their maximum setting, but turning the volume up that high can severely muddy the mid-range when playing music or watching an action movie. External speakers or headphones are recommended. Acer Swift Edge 16: Webcam, microphone, biometrics A 1440p webcam is nestled in the Acer Swift Edge 16’s top bezel. It delivers good sharpness and color for a laptop webcam, which will help you look your best on video calls. With that said, it can still struggle to find an appropriate level of exposure in especially bright or dark rooms. The microphone is similarly capable, picking up crisp dialogue with minimal to modest background noise.  Biometric login is available through a fingerprint reader integrated into the power button. It works well enough but, like other fingerprint readers, it can be fooled if your finger is even slightly damp or dirty—so keep your hand out of that Cheetos bag.  Acer Swift Edge 16: Connectivity IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith The Acer Swift Edge 16 packs a good mix of future-proof and legacy connectivity.  It has two USB-C 4 ports, both which support DisplayPort Alternate Mode and up to 65 watts of Power Delivery. They can be used to charge the laptop and/or connect a monitor over USB-C or DisplayPort (with an adapter). Acer also ships the laptop with a small 65-watt power adapter for charging the laptop. The USB-C port’s versatility is convenient while traveling. You can pack a single 65-watt USB-C adapter for your laptop, phone, and other devices. USB-C is paired with two USB-A ports, so it’s possible to connect a wired keyboard and mouse at once. Dedicated video-out is provided by HDMI 2.1, and the laptop also has a microSD card reader with support for cards up to 512GB in size. Ethernet is the only physical connectivity notably absent, but that’s also true for most laptops of similar weight and size.  Acer’s wireless connectivity is excellent, as the laptop supports both Wi-Fi 7 (the latest version of the Wi-Fi standard) and Bluetooth 5.3. This should futureproof the Acer’s wireless connectivity, since Wi-Fi 7 was just released. It also makes the loss of physical Ethernet a bit less painful, since Wi-Fi 7 can exceed Gigabit Ethernet speeds in optimal conditions (though keep in mind you’ll need a Wi-Fi 7 router, too).  Acer Swift Edge 16: Performance The Acer Swift 16 Edge has an AMD Ryzen 7 8840U processor with eight cores, sixteen threads, and a maximum boost clock of 5.1GHz. It has performed well in our prior tests of other laptops, and has potentially strong integrated graphics in the form of AMD’s Radeon 780M. The Swift 16 Edge’s overall performance is strong, though it doesn’t stand out from the crowd.  IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith Acer’s laptop gets off to a tepid start in PCMark 10, a general synthetic benchmark that tests multiple elements of system performance. It returns a score of 6,563 which, though respectable, falls a tad behind other recent AMD Ryzen 7 and Intel Core Ultra systems. The older LG Gram SuperSlim, which we reviewed with an older Intel Core i7-1360P processor, is the only laptop that falls way behind the pack. IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith Cinebench R20, a multi-threaded CPU benchmark, produces a reasonable but uninspired result on the Swift Edge 16. It’s not much slower than the competition, but does fall behind overall. That’s difficult to justify: the Acer is inexpensive, but the Dell Inspiron 16 is even more affordable. IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith Handbrake continues the Swift Edge 16’s trend of acceptable but modest results. It required more than 26 minutes to grind through a test encoding a two-hour-long movie from MP4 to MKV format, which is slower than the laptops chosen for comparison. In truth, the difference is slim enough that it wouldn’t be a real-world problem, but it’s still a loss for the Acer. IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith The Ryzen 7 8840U packs an AMD Radeon 780M with 12 graphics cores. It sounds good on paper, but Swift Edge 16 achieved a mediocre Time Spy score. That’s acceptable if you just want to play older 3D titles or games with generally less demanding graphics, but it’s not going to hold up in modern AAA titles.  The Swift Edge 16’s result also lands it significantly behind some competitors with Intel Arc and AMD Radeon 780M graphics. The Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 with Intel Arc integrated graphics was over 40 percent quicker in this test. That’s a big gap. Acer Swift Edge 16: Battery life Acer’s decision to keep the Swift Edge 16’s weight well below three pounds makes it easy to pick up and toss in a bag, but also limits battery life. The Swift Edge 16 has a small 54 watt-hour battery that drains more quickly than I’d like. IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith IDG / Matthew Smith I saw a little over seven and a half hours of battery life in PC World’s standard battery test, which loops a 4K file of the short film Tears of Steel. This is a light workload by modern standards, and the Swift Edge 16’s real-world battery life was equally unimpressive. I saw about six to seven hours of endurance while browsing the web and writing in Google Docs.  That’s not going to be enough if you want a laptop that can handle an eight-hour workday without needing to top off, and it’s less than what most 16-inch laptops offer. The recent release of Qualcomm-powered Copilot Plus PCs, which can exceed 20 hours in this test, makes slim battery life especially hard to accept. Acer Swift Edge 16: Conclusion Acer’s Swift Edge 16 is an affordable and alluring pick for people who want a 16-inch laptop with a beautiful display, yet also prefer a laptop that’s thin, light, and affordable. The Swift Edge 16 is generally less expensive than competitive Windows laptops that have similar hardware and a thin-and-light design.  However, Acer is forced to reduce the size of the battery to keep the laptop’s weight low, which leads to disappointing battery life: an especially notable problem now that Copilot Plus PCs with up to 20 hours of battery life are available. The Swift Edge 16’s performance is also a bit weak. In most cases it won’t be noticeably slower than its peers, but it fell behind in benchmarks.  If you can excuse that, though, the Swift Edge 16 is a less expensive alternative to featherweight competitors like the LG Gram. Laptops
7 nifty Windows File Explorer tips to keep under your belt
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 10:30:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Everyone has to deal with File Explorer. It is, after all, the Windows feature you use to get around the file system, organize data, copy and move folders, access external drives, and more. Get Windows 11 Pro for Cheap Windows 11 Pro Price When Reviewed: 199.99 Best Prices Today: $59 at PCWorld Store – Win 11 Pro Upgrade Only | $79.99 at PCWorld Software Store Over the years, Windows File Explorer has gotten new features and improvements. Quick tools at the top and a redesigned left sidebar give you faster access to files and folders, especially in OneDrive. Here are several tips for making the most of File Explorer and handling your Windows files and folders like a pro. 1. Open File Explorer with a keyboard shortcut Foundry Foundry Foundry There are several ways to open File Explorer, whether it’s through the Start menu, the Taskbar, or another way. You should use the method that you find most convenient—perhaps the keyboard shortcut? You can open File Explorer by pressing Windows key + E on your keyboard. This brings you right to This PC for your convenience. 2. Use multiple tabs Foundry Foundry Foundry For some time now, File Explorer has been easier than ever to use thanks to the tabs feature. Just like in any modern web browser, you can open multiple locations in their own tabs at the same time. Press the plus icon in the tabs bar at the top to create a new tab. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + T. To turn a tab into its own window, drag the tab outside of File Explorer. 3. Preview files on the fly Foundry Foundry Foundry File Explorer has improved its ability to preview files. You can now peek at an image or Microsoft Word document without launching an app. Simply click on the View menu in the actions bar, then select Preview pane to open the preview pane. (Alternatively, use the Alt + P keyboard shortcut to toggle it.) Now, whenever you click on a file, it will appear as a thumbnail in the preview pane to the right. 4. More right-click menu options When you right-click on a file or folder in the new File Explorer, a menu appears—but it’s shorter than you’d expect. Microsoft has cleaned it up, so finding what you need might require an extra click. When you right-click on a file or folder, you can select Show more options to see the full original list of available actions. 5. Track your images using Gallery Foundry Foundry Foundry File Explorer has a new feature called Gallery, which tracks your Pictures folder plus various manually designated folders and shows all images from those folders in one convenient location. (You can also include phone photos if you set up camera roll backup.) Click on Gallery in File Explorer’s left sidebar. After adding at least one folder to track, you’ll see your images displayed in reverse chronological order, with a timeline navigator on the right. Press the View button to change how the images are displayed. 6. Change images tracked in Gallery By default, everything in the Pictures folder is displayed in Gallery, but this can be changed. You can remove Pictures from inclusion and/or you can add other folders to be included. Open Gallery in File Explorer, then click the Collection menu in the actions bar. Click on Manage collection to see which folders are being tracked for Gallery and the option to add or remove folders. 7. Easily share files with others Foundry Foundry Foundry File Explorer has a Share tool that makes it easy to send files to others, whether via email, via certain apps, or directly to nearby devices. Simply right-click on a file and select Share in the menu. In the Share window, you can search for people to email. Or you can select an app like Microsoft Teams. But we find it most convenient to use Nearby Sharing, which you have to turn on before you can use. To do that, open Settings and navigate to System > Nearby sharing. Then, select between Off, My devices only, or Everyone nearby. You can also select where downloaded files go (when shared by others). Learn more about how to use Nearby Sharing to transfer files because this is one of the best recent features in Windows! Windows
Record Video from Websites on Various Devices
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 10:28:21 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Quick Answer: What’s the best way to record video from any website? Screen recording online is one of the most popular ways to access and download video or audio materials on a website, as you don’t need to download a program on a PC or Mac to achieve it. An online screen recorder is usually free and fully compatible with all kinds of websites through different web browsers. It’s also easy to handle. Launch a web browser Open the target website or specific web page Click a Record button Complete the recording task and save the recordings Online resources you might want to capture include lectures, meetings, webinars, and live streams. For post-editing purposes or to effectively demonstrate feedback to clients, you may need to record a real-time screen with video and audio that can be showcased or reposted elsewhere. While online screen recording software is the most easily accessible method for achieving this, sometimes you will need to turn to a more advanced, powerful desktop screen recorder solution with built with video editing features. Beware of any copyright restrictions with the media you wish to screen record, particularly if your purpose for that material reaches beyond personal use. Assuming all is above board, let’s dive in. The solutions we describe cover all platforms, including Windows PC, Mac, iPhone, and Android. Record all web videos through online screen recorder Compatibility: All websites Operational difficulty: Easy Best for: Users who want to capture online videos from different browsers without third-party tools If you want to record online streaming videos from YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, or Twitter, the most efficient way is to adopt a user-friendly and professional online screen recorder like the EaseUS online screen recorder. EaseUS EaseUS EaseUS In short, this online screen recorder can exempt you from downloading third-party tools and provide better screen recording services. For example, it lets you capture video from websites without lag, watermark, or time restriction. Moreover, it can work on all browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, and Opera. Record video from any website using desktop screen recorders Compatibility: Windows 11/10/8.1/8/7 and macOS 10.13 and above Operation difficulty: Easy Best for: Both newcomers and professionals who need screen recording and video editing features on Windows and Mac EaseUS RecExperts is an ideal screen recorder for computer users to screen record protected videos without a black screen on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Vimeo, Udemy, or Byjus. You can record videos from these websites with audio or system sound based on your needs. Its mute recording mode can also help you record videos from various websites in silence. If necessary, you can use it to only record audio from a website.  Meanwhile, it also provides other practical features for your video recording. Provide the full-screen recording and selected region recording options Release microphone noise reduction to reduce/remove the background noise Offer video editing features like file-cutting to keep your targeted video clips The following steps explain how to capture video from websites on PCs via EaseUS RecExperts. Step 1. Install and launch EaseUS RecExperts. Select Full Screen or Region recording mode to manually set the size of your recording screen. EaseUS EaseUS EaseUS Step 2. The system sound is turned on by default. If needed, you can also open your webcam and microphone. Step 3. Click REC to start recording; click Stop to end video recording. After recording, you can click Recordings to preview or edit your captured website video. Capture website video for free via OBS Compatibility: Support Windows, macOS, and Linux Operational difficulty: Hard Best for: Professionals with higher technical requirements OBS Studio is another free and open-source software for screen recording and live streaming on Windows and Mac. It aims to help users record and blend audio and visual resources such as computer screens, cameras, and microphones. For example, many video creators may recreate videos from YouTube or other streaming platforms by recording them. Although practical, its complicated operating steps can discourage newcomers from trying it. A beginner likely needs three to four hours to learn the basic settings and features. Step 1. Run OBS Studio on your Windows. Click + at the bottom left corner of the screen, then click + under Sources. Step 2. Select Display Capture, rename it, then click OK. EaseUS EaseUS EaseUS Step 3. After seeing another pop-up window, set the display area you want to capture video from websites. Click OK, then select Settings. Step 4. Select Output > set a saved path. Then click Start Recording. Capture video from websites on Windows via Xbox Game Bar Compatibility: Windows 10 and 11 Operational difficulty: Medium Best for: Gamers who want to record games on Windows 10 and 11 Built into Windows 10 and 11, the Xbox Game Bar enables users to capture videos up to four hours long while playing PC games. The recorded website video can be exported in HD quality, but the recording region cannot be set. Refer to the steps below to finish the gameplay screen record on Windows 11/10. Step 1. Press Windows + G to open the Xbox Game Bar. If your Game Bar is not showing up, press Win + I to open Windows Settings. Choose Gaming > Xbox Game Bar to enable this feature. EaseUS EaseUS EaseUS Step 2. Click Settings to adjust your recording parameters based on your needs. Step 3. Return to the floating toolbar, then select Capture and click Start recording or press Win + Alt + R to begin your video recording process. Step 4. You can enable or disable your microphone during the recording. Once you’ve done this, press Win + Alt + R to end the recording. You can click Show all captures to show all the accessible recordings. Record video from website URLs on Mac via QuickTime Compatibility: Only supports macOS Operational difficulty: Medium Best for: Apple users QuickTime, developed by Apple, is a reliable tool that provides synced visuals, sound, video, text, and music. It can also function as a movie player, image viewer, audio player, and virtual reality (VR) application. This reliability makes QuickTime a secure tool for recording your screen, audio, face, or all three at the same time, ensuring you can create your content without any worries. Here are the steps to record video from websites on a Mac using QuickTime. Step 1. Launch QuickTime Player. Click File and select New Movie Recording. Step 2. Select View > Float on top to ensure the camera window will appear on top of any other applications on your screen. Step 3. Click File > New Screen Recording, then click the red Record button to begin recording. Step 4. To exit the recording window, press Command-Control-Esc. If necessary, please go to QuickTime > Edit > Trim to remove your unwanted video parts. Record Google Chrome via Screencastify Compatibility: Only supports Google Chrome Operational difficulty: Medium Best for: Google users Screencastify is Chrome’s most basic free screen recorder and interactive video platform. It allows Google users to become good communicators by recording, editing, and sharing movies from Chrome’s websites in seconds. Step 1. Go to the Google Chrome Store to download the Screencastify extension. Step 2. Click the Screencastify icon to open it. Select to record your Browser Tab, entire Desktop, or Webcam Only. Step 3. Click Show more options to set additional settings for your website video recording. Step 4. Click the blue Record button. Record screen video on iPhone via an official screen recorder Compatibility: Only supports Apple users Operational difficulty: Medium Best for: Apple users If your iPhone runs iOS 11 or later, you do not need to use additional tools to capture video. You may quickly record video from websites on iPhone with audio using the built-in screen recorder. Step 1. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to open your Settings > Control Center. Step 2. Click the Screen Recording icon. Tap Microphone > Start Recording. During the three-second countdown, quickly open the website video you want to record, it will automatically capture video from websites on your iPhone after the countdown.  Step 3. After recording, click on the red blob or bar at the top of the screen to stop recording. You can open your Photos to locate your recorded website video. Record screen video on Android via AZ Screen Recorder Compatibility: Only supports Android users Operational difficulty: Medium Best for: Android users AZ Screen Recorder is a dependable, high-quality screen recorder with audio. With several capabilities, such as screen recording, screen capture, video editor, and live streaming, this screen recording tool allows you to produce and share gameplay videos, store video calls, and capture videos that cannot be downloaded from websites. Step 1. After launching the AZ Screen Recorder app, you’ll see the options for recording, taking screenshots, live streaming, and so on. Step 2.  Click Record to start recording; click Stop to stop your recording. Can you download a video from a website that doesn’t allow it? Websites that use DRM make it challenging to capture or download videos. In this case, you need to seek help from professional third-party screen recording tools such as EaseUS RecExperts. With the help of this tool, recording protected videos from streaming websites or online web pages is simple. Any video downloaded in this way must be for personal use only. Personal Software
HP: AI TOPS will plateau, but innovation in AI will continue
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 09:00:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
You could say we’re in the honeymoon phase of an AI PC boom, with AI chip technologies and software in a state of rapid and perpetual improvement in laptops. At least that was the vibe I got at HP’s Imagine AI event in New York City last week, where HP personnel were talking up the current AI PC technologies and teasing what’s to come in the AI PC space later this year. “This is one of the biggest, most dynamic inflection points I’ve ever seen in my career. There’s stuff on the front burner in the AI category coming soon, even later this year, including even more AI performance in consumer laptops and workstations,” said Alex Thatcher, senior director of cloud client and AI experience at HP. “We’re also going to see big innovations around AI PC security and you’re also going to see a lot of investment in AI PC software. That’s AI software development HP is doing in house, but also work we’re doing with our independent software vendors (ISVs),” he said. Innovation in more powerful AI chips was an obvious example at the event where HP announced the HP OmniBook Ultra, the company’s highest-performing AI PC, featuring a Ryzen AI 300 processor and a new maximum 55 TOPS (trillions of operations per second) NPU processing power — that’s a jump of 15 TOPS over the company’s previous most powerful AI PC. But when I asked if we’ll continue to see such big leaps in TOPS in successive AI laptops, the answer was surprising. “For common users I think we’ll see a plateau in TOPS, before we see it continue to climb again,” said Thatcher. HP’s new OmniBook Ultra PC has 55 TOPS NPU power — that’s the highest in the company’s laptops to date.  HP’s new OmniBook Ultra PC has 55 TOPS NPU power — that’s the highest in the company’s laptops to date.  Dominic Bayley / IDG HP’s new OmniBook Ultra PC has 55 TOPS NPU power — that’s the highest in the company’s laptops to date.  Dominic Bayley / IDG Dominic Bayley / IDG Jumping in to explain why any plateauing in AI TOPS power won’t halt innovation in AI PCs was Guayente Sanmartin, SVP and division president of commercial systems and displays solutions at HP. “I think it’s important to realize that HP is innovating in three areas that aren’t just related to TOPS performance,” she said. “The first is we’re innovating anything that allows the user to work more efficiently — like the AI apps we’re making available in our laptops.” “The second is that all the sensors and feedback our AI PCs have will continue to personalize the experience exactly to how you’re going to be working. So, we’ll know how you work and which devices you have around you.” “Then there’s going to be innovation in security — strong security but with a privacy component. Because not only do you want to keep your data private but you’re also going to need to access the data yourself,” she said. Laptops
A lifetime of learning all 14 of Babbel’s languages is just $130
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 08:00:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
TL;DR: Get a lifetime of all Babbel’s languages to learn while it’s on sale for just $129.97 (reg. $599) through July 21. Whether you want to boost your career, prepare for international adventures, or simply enjoy the thrill of learning something new, now is the perfect time to finally get Babbel. Lifetime access to all 14 languages is just $129.97 through July 21. Designed by linguistic experts, Babbel’s courses use proven methods to help you learn naturally and efficiently. Real-life conversations and practical vocabulary ensure you can use your new language in everyday situations. With lessons ranging from 10 to 15 minutes long, Babbel fits into your life, not the other way around. Available on both desktop and mobile, you can learn whenever and wherever you want. Learners of varying levels can rely on speech recognition technology to help with pronunciations, while personalized review sessions help you steadily progress. With over 10 million subscribers and counting, there’s no better time to invest in your personal and professional growth. Get lifetime access to all 14 of Babbel’s languages for just $129.97 through July 21.   Babbel Language Learning: Lifetime Subscription (All Languages) – $129.97 Get it now! StackSocial prices subject to change. Personal Software
Transform your growth with a lifetime subscription to Headway Premium for $45
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 08:00:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
TL;DR: Get Headway Premium for just $44.99 (reg. $299) with code HEADWAY through July 21. While we all want to make time for personal and professional growth, time is precious and limited. Headway is a mobile app designed to make self-growth fun and easy. It’s made to be a healthy replacement for scrolling on news and social sites. Secure a lifetime subscription to Headway Premium for just $44.99 (reg. $299) when you use code HEADWAY through July 21. Gain valuable insights from the world’s bestselling nonfiction writers without feeling overwhelmed. Headway distills the essence of powerful concepts, providing actionable takeaways to implement into your life.  Whether you prefer to listen to or read your summaries, Headway has you covered. Choose the format that suits your lifestyle and start growing, no matter where you are. Headway simplifies the process of making self-growth a sustainable habit. With bite-sized content and engaging formats, you’ll have personalized recommendations and curated content at your fingertips instead of wasting your time on TikTok. Don’t miss getting a lifetime of Headway Premium for just $44.99 (reg. $299) with code HEADWAY through July 21.   Headway Premium: Lifetime Subscription – $49.99 Get it here! StackSocial prices subject to change. Personal Software
Microsoft wants you to pay $300 per year for AI art in Word
Thu, 18 Jul 2024 08:00:00 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Today, you can ask Microsoft Copilot to draw an AI-generated image of a strawberry pie for free, right from within Windows. But if you want to do the same thing in Microsoft Word, it will cost you at least 26 dollars per month. Does that make sense to you? AI art has existed within Microsoft’s ecosystem since 2022, when Microsoft released its first beta of Microsoft Bing Image Creator. That later became Microsoft Designer, the design tool that Microsoft developed to compete against Canva. This week, Microsoft said that Designer’s AI art capabilities would roll out in several of its apps and services, including Photos, Word, and PowerPoint. There’s a catch, though: Those capabilities don’t come for free. Microsoft 365, of course, requires a subscription: A Personal user must pay $6.99 per month or $69.99 annually, while Family users pay $9.99 per month or $99.99 annually. (PCWorld sells discounted Microsoft 365 subscriptions.) That subscription unlocks Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and more, of course. But to generate AI art within Word, Microsoft charges an additional $20 per user per month for what it calls a Copilot Pro subscription. That’s where it begins to get a little weird. Consider what Microsoft’s offering, as part of this GIF below: Microsoft is essentially saying that if you want to create an AI-generated illustration for your Word document, you can do so, right within Word. You can also add similar images as backgrounds, themes, or embedded images within PowerPoint. AI art within Microsoft Word. AI art within Microsoft Word.Microsoft AI art within Microsoft Word.Microsoft Microsoft But there’s still things that you can’t do: If you want to add an AI-generated banner to a document, for example, you can’t. That feature is coming soon. (Isn’t a banner just an elongated illustration?) But you don’t even need a specialized Copilot subscription to generate AI art! You can tap the Win+C button on your PC, open Copilot, and have it generate an AI image for you. Than you can simply download it to your PC and import into Word, like so: Mark Hachman / IDG Mark Hachman / IDG Mark Hachman / IDG And if Copilot can’t do it, a number of other AI art generators can. (Adobe Photoshop plus Lightroom, which also has generative AI art capabilities via Firefly, costs $19.99 per month.) Copilot Pro offers more than just these AI art capabilities, of course — Microsoft is offering access to premier LLMs, for example. But with any new subscription — including Microsoft 365! — Microsoft will have to continually add features and capabilities to justify you paying for it. Meanwhile, smart users will look for ways to perform those same tasks without paying extra. Add it all up, and Microsoft wants you to pay over $300 per year (Microsoft 365 Personal + Copilot Pro) to plop a few AI-generated images of pastry inside your neighborhood newsletter. Is that something you’re willing to do? I don’t think it is. Personal Software, Windows
Save 26% on this massive 16TB WD external drive on Prime Day
Wed, 17 Jul 2024 18:32:54 +0000
Source: PCWorld
Amazon Prime Day is in its final hours, but you can still save a ton of cash on essentials—like external drives, a necessary accessory for all your backups. (You are backing up your files, right?) If you have a lot of data to store, you’re in luck, because the price on a Western Digital Elements 16TB external hard drive is down to $228, or 26 percent off. After monitoring prices for the last year, I like this particular deal for how low the price is, as this popular, spacious drive has been much more expensive since last fall. This USB 3.0 desktop hard drive is meant for holding massive collections of bits and bytes: Think all your PCs, media, photos, video, and game files. As such, it requires its own power source (rather than just plugging into a USB port) and a dedicated spot on your table or shelving. And while it doesn’t come with a lot of extras—no built-in encryption or automatic backup software—you can get tools for each. Most people won’t need encryption for backups of, say, family photos and videos either. Get the WD Elements 16TB external desktop drive for $228Get this deal on Amazon Don’t want something quite so gigantic, both in capacity and physically? You can check out our round-up of the best Amazon Prime Day storage deals, which includes picks for portable SSDs. The well-rated 2TB Crucial X9 is just $110 right now, for example. To shop Prime Day deals, an Amazon Prime subscription is required—if you don’t have one yet, you can just sign up for a 30-day free trial. That’ll allow you to take advantage of Prime member deals. After you sign up, you can have a look at deals in other categories through PCWorld’s best Prime Day deals roundups. More Prime Day deals Best Prime Day deals on SSD and storage Best Prime Day laptop deals Best Prime Day deals on Thunderbolt docks and USB-C hubs Best USB flash drive deals for Prime Day Best tech deals for Prime Day 2024 Storage
This is the best Chromebook deal I’ve seen for Prime Day
Wed, 17 Jul 2024 18:29:38 +0000
Source: PCWorld
I’ve been disappointed with this year’s Prime Day Chromebook deals! The price tags haven’t been as shockingly low as I expected. However, Amazon’s Prime Day discount on the Asus Chromebook CX1 represents the best deal I can find, and it’s what I think most people want. The Asus Chromebook CX1 is down to $180 on Amazon (28% off). Even at its MSRP of $250, it’s a good buy—at this price, it’s fantastic. Here’s why I like it. First, it has 8GB of RAM. That may sound a little stupid, but memory matters in Chromebooks, especially if you tend to run with a dozen or more open tabs. A 1080p screen isn’t an absolute must but it’s close, and the 15.6-inch size makes for a very comfortable screen to look at without the need for an external monitor. I’m not worried about the processor—an Intel Celeron N4500, which is perfectly reasonable—or the storage. Chromebooks tend to work in the cloud, so 64GB is really more than you’ll need. I will say this, however: before you jump on this deal, take a screenshot of the listing. Weirdly, the Amazon description lists all of the above specifications, but the listing itself offers a choice of three different models, which change when you click a specific model. (This is an extremely annoying thing that Amazon does.) The deal above highlights when you click the “Pentium N6000” button. The processor isn’t the issue, though the Pentium N6000 is a tad better: 3.3GHz turbo speed versus the 2.8GHz speed of the Celeron N4500. The N6000 also can process four instruction threads versus the two threads that the N4500 can handle. I just want you to make sure you have a record of the things that matter—like the screen and memory—just in case there’s an issue. I took a screenshot of the listing for you to check against, too: Asus / Amazon Asus / Amazon Asus / Amazon You always have to be a bit wary of retailers dumping older hardware, but I think this is a solid deal on a good Chromebook. There aren’t many, but I’ve gone through listings on Amazon, Best Buy, and more for the best Chromebook deals for Prime Day. Remember, Prime Day ends today, July 17! Grab this while you can. Get the Asus Chromebook CX1 for 28% off on Prime DayBuy now on Amazon Note that this is a Prime Day deal for Amazon Prime members. Despite Prime Day ending soon, you should get yourself a Prime subscription. If you’ve never had a Prime subscription before, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial and take advantage of these sales now. And if you’re looking for discounts in other tech categories, be sure to check out PCWorld’s comprehensive Prime Day deals coverage! More Prime Day deals Best Prime Day laptop deals Best Prime Day laptop bag deals Best Prime Day tablet deals Best Prime Day USB flash drive deals Best Prime Day tech deals Chromebooks
Kingston’s encrypted, self-destructing, 256GB flash drive is $80 off on Prime Day
Wed, 17 Jul 2024 17:49:32 +0000
Source: PCWorld
If you want to keep your documents and pictures absolutely secure, the Kingston IronKey Vault Privacy 50 flash drive is now available for just $140, down from its $220 MSRP, the best price we’ve ever seen for this 256GB drive. I’ve been a tech writer for many years now, and quite a few of those years have been spent looking for the best tech deals around because who wants to pay full price? So, finding this Kingston flash drive that takes security seriously for such a good price was a “cha-ching” moment. The Kingston IronKey Vault Privacy 50 is FIPS 197 certified, so you can trust that your data is securely encrypted. This model uses unbreakable 256-bit encryption plus Kingston’s extra protections against brute force and BadUSB attacks. The flash drive also allows you to enable Admin, User, and One-Time recovery passwords. Admins can set up passwords for users, giving them access to permitted content only. If the user’s password is entered incorrectly ten times in a row, they’ll be locked out. The Admin password, however, is more important—if the Admin password is entered incorrectly ten times in a row, the drive’s contents are crypto-erased, making them impossible to recover. With read speeds up to 250MB/s and write speeds up to 180MB/s, this thumb drive ensures quick file transfers, saving you time and hassle. Whatever files you need to keep secure, the Kingston IronKey Vault 50 is a solid solution, especially when it’s more affordable than ever before… so snatch it for $80 off on Amazon before this deal runs out. The Kingston IronKey Vault Privacy 50 is 36% off for Prime DayBuy now on Amazon Since this is a Prime deal, you’ll need an Amazon Prime subscription to access the discount. If you’re not yet a member, you can start a 30-day free trial for this discount and thousands of others. Plus, make sure to check out our extensive Prime Day coverage to find even more gems! More Prime Day 2024 deals Best USB flash drive deals for Prime Day Best Prime Day deals on SSD and storage Best battery charger and power bank deals for Prime Day Best Prime Day deals on Thunderbolt docks and USB-C hubs Best tech deals for Prime Day 2024 Computer Storage Devices
This RTX 4060 Asus gaming laptop is $405 off on Prime Day
Wed, 17 Jul 2024 17:46:49 +0000
Source: PCWorld
One of the best-valued gaming laptops on the market right now, the Asus TUF Gaming A15 just got more affordable after Prime Day slashed its price down to $995. With an MSRP of $1,400, getting this RTX 4060 laptop for under $1,000 is an absolute gold find. I’ve been in tech media for over 12 years and I’ve spent a good chunk of time looking for the best tech deals. So, finding the Asus TUF Gaming A15 for such a low price made me especially happy. We reviewed the Asus TUF Gaming A15 and found it to be a great value laptop because it has a great configuration, a solid battery life, a beautiful screen, and a reasonable price even when it isn’t on sale. “It’s a competent, reasonably fast gaming laptop with no huge flaws, so it’s ideal if you want solid gaming power without spending silly money,” our expert noted. Equipped with an AMD Ryzen 7 CPU and Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card, this gaming laptop is built to handle anything you throw at it. The 16GB of DDR5 memory ensures seamless multitasking, while the 1TB SSD significantly speeds up loading times. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to snag the Asus TUF Gaming A15 gaming laptop for $995, a 29% discount on Amazon. The RTX 4060 Asus TUF Gaming A15 is $995 on Prime DayGet it at Amazon This discount on the Asus TUF Gaming A15 is exclusive to Prime members—but if you don’t have Prime, you can start a 30-day free trial and get access to this deal plus many others. Then, find even more spectacular discounts in our various Prime Day 2024 deal roundups. More Prime Day 2024 deals Best laptop deals for Prime Day Best Prime Day deals on SSD and storage Best battery charger and power bank deals for Prime Day Best Prime Day deals on Thunderbolt docks and USB-C hubs Best USB flash drive deals for Prime Day Gaming Laptops
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