Zsun Wifi Card Reader Adds up to 64GB to Your Smartphone

February 27th, 2015 2 comments

I’ve previously covered Zsun SD11x USB flash drives with 8 to 128 GB internal flash, a battery, and Wi-Fi connectivity in order to easily add storage to devices without micro SD slots. The company has now launched a new Wi-Fi card reader to do the same, but with your own micro SD card instead allowing up to 64GB extra storage, and easy replacement. Zsun card reader specifications: SoC – Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 WiSoC System Memory – 256 Mbit RAM (32 MB) Storage – Internal flash for firmware (capacity TBD), micro SD slot up to 64GB Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi @ 150 Mbps USB – 1x USB 2.0 port for power and use as standard USB card reader Dimensions – 33 x 30 x 13 mm There’s no battery, so you’d have to connect the dongle to a power bank, PC, car charger etc.. to power it. If you connect it to a PC it will also be shown as…

Read more…

Categories: Hardware, Linux, Qualcomm Atheros Tags: Linux, usb, wifi, zsun

Linaro 15.02 Release with Linux 3.19 and Android 5.0

February 27th, 2015 No comments

Linaro 15.02 has just been released with Linux 3.19 (baseline), Linux 3.10.68 and 3.14.34 (LSK), Android 5.0.2, and Ubuntu Linaro Utopic. Listed changes for Linux Linaro are exactly the same as last month, except they’ve used Linux 3.9 release. Power management tools have been added to their AOSP build, and some work has been done for Android 5.0 on the new Hikey board. Here are the highlights of this release: Linux Linaro 3.19-2015.02 GATOR topic: version 5.20.1 updated integration-linaro-vexpress64 topic by ARM LT (FVP Base and Foundation models, and Juno support) updated topic from Qualcomm LT (ifc6410 board support) updated topic from HiSilicon LT (Hi36xx, HiP04, and X5HD2 families support) updated LLVM topic (the community llvmlinux-latest branch) included ILP32 patch set v3 rebased onto 3.19. Initial tests using syscalls LTP tests done. When using ILP32 userland, a few tests have to be skipped (msgctl07, msgrcv0[1-7], msgsnd01) to avoid the stalls, and to make the testing to complete. No stalls with…

Read more…

Imagination PowerVR GT7900 GPU is Made for Game Consoles and Notebooks

February 27th, 2015 No comments

Imaginatino Technologies has just introduced the most powerful GPU of their new PowerVR Series7 GPU family with GT7900 featuring 16 unified shading clusters and 512 ALU cores for game consoles, micro-servers, and notebooks. PowerVR GT7900 is still an embedded GPU with support for OpenGL ES 3.1 + AEP (Android Extension Pack) compatibility, full hardware support for tessellation and ASTC LDR and HDR texture compression standards. The new GPU delivers up to 800 GFLOPS (FP32) or 1.6 TFLOPS (FP16) graphics and compute performance at 800 MHz (using 16 nm FinFET+ manufacturing process), which compares to about 550 GFLOPS (FP32) for an Nvidia GeForce GT730M at comparable frequency. This is even more powerful than the Maxwell GPU found in Tegra X1 which delivers 1+ TFLOPS (FP16), although the Nvidia processor may have a lower power envelope. Combined with PowerVR Series5 decode and encode video processors and PowerVR V2500 camera processor, GT7900 can be integrated into SoC that support 4K video output, playback…

Read more…

Categories: Graphics Tags: games, gpu, imagination

Spark Electron Cellular Module for M2M Projects Comes with a $3 Monthly Data Plan (Crowdfunding)

February 26th, 2015 No comments

Spark IO started with Spark Core, a tiny Wi-Fi module, followed with Spark Photon is a cheaper, faster, and tinier Wi-Fi module, and now the company is launching Spark Electron to bring cellular connectivity to hobbyist projects at an affordable cost and small form factor. Spark Electron specifications: MCU – ST Micro STM32F205 ARM Cortex M3 microcontroller @ 120 MHz with  1MB Flash, 128K RAM Cellular Connectivity – U-Blox SARA U-series (3G) or G-series (2G) modem + NanoSIM card slot + u.FL connector for Antenna Headers – 36 pins with 28 GPIOs (D0-D13, A0-A13), plus TX/RX, 2 GNDs, VIN, VBAT, WKP, 3V3, RST USB – micro USB port for power and programming Misc – Setup and reset buttons, LED Dimensions – 5.08 cm x 2.03 cm x 0.76 cm (1.27 cm including headers) The board can be programmed with Wiring (Arduino’s programming language), C/C++, or ARM assembly. It’s longer than Spark Core/Photon, but still compatible with existing shields. One problem individuals…

Read more…

Samsung Introduces Faster Full-Duplex UFS 2.0 Storage for Mobile Devices

February 26th, 2015 2 comments

eMMC (embedded multimedia card) provides a boost in read and write performance compared to traditional NAND flash memories, let alone micro SD cards. Samsung has now announced the manufacturing of the first 32, 64, and 128GB embedded memory solution based on Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 2.0 standard delivering up to 350MB/s read speed and 150MB/s write speed, or 40% improvement in read speed over eMMC 5.1.This should help further reduce boot time, and app loading times. Moreover, while eMMC read and write operating are sequential (half-duplex), UFS 2.0 allows for full-duplex operating, meaning writing and reading can happen at the same time. UFS can achieve this feat thanks to a LVDS (Low-Voltage Differential Signaling) serial interface with dedicated read/write paths contrary to the parallel 8-bit interface used for eMMC. Combined with a Command Queue(CQ), which sorts out the commands that needs to be carried out, UFS 2.0 allows three times faster file copy, and three times the multitasking capability compared…

Read more…

Categories: Hardware Tags: benchmark, flash, samsung, standard, ufs

Console OS Developer Preview Image Released for Some Intel Haswell and Bay Trail Systems

February 26th, 2015 2 comments

Console OS is an operating system based on Android that’s designed to run son x86 machines ide-by-side with Windows and with desktop-friendly user interface. The project has been funded via a Kickstarter campaign, so backers get the updates earlier, but the developers have now publicly released Console OS DR1 (Developer Release 1) based on Android 4.4.2 so that more people can download it and try it for free after registration. I wanted to try it on Mele PCG03, but it failed, even after copying bootia32.efi to /EFI/BOOT directory (I get stuck into Grub command line), and I found out that “Systems must have 64-bit UEFI firmware. Some systems have 32-bit UEFI firmware, and we are working on adding support for those provided you have one of the processors above”. So it won’t work on cheap Windows 8.1 dongles and mini PC like MeegoPad T01 or Pipo X7, but MINIX NEO Z64A may work thanks to its 64-bit UEFI firmware. If…

Read more…

Intel Introduces Atom x3, x5 and x7 Categories for Its Upcoming Low Power Processors

February 26th, 2015 5 comments

Intel has been using Core i3, i5, and i7 models for its desktop processor for a few years in order to help consumers chose between entry-level, mid-range, and high-performance processor, although you may also want to look at the launch date as some Core i7 launched in 2010 may be quite slower than Core i3 launched in 2013 or 2014 for example. Intel has now decided to use a similar naming scheme for its next generation Atom processor used in tablets, phablets, and smartphones with Atom x3, Atom x5, and Atom x7 product ranges instead of the often confusing names like Z3735F, Z3580, etc.. The company will still offer slightly more powerful Pentium and Celeron processor for 2-in-1 laptop designs and mini PCs, as well as new Core-M processors for low power and PC-like performance think laptops or tablets. Via Liliputing and UMPCPortal Intel has been using Core i3, i5, and i7 models for its desktop processor for a few…

Read more…

Categories: Intel Atom Tags: intel

Allwinner’s New Media Codec Library (CedarX) May Infringe on Open Source Licenses and Copyrights

February 26th, 2015 3 comments

Allwinner has had to good idea to open allwinner-zh github account last September in order to release source code, binary libraries, and documentation for these ARM processors. Yesterday, the company released a new version of their closed source CedarX library used to decode and encode video streams. But Luc Verhaegen (libv), known for his reverse-engineering work on ARM Mali-400 (lima driver) and now Mali-Txxx GPU (Tamil driver), analyzed the binary and claimed  the library is not compliant with LGPL licenses, and may also infringe on On2 copyrights. Luc wrote his concerns on sunxi-linux mailing list, and Allwinner promised to look into it. Two libraries are involved: ffmpeg which includes both LGPL and GPL licenses, but the contention seems to be about the LGPL part, since only optional features are GPL’ed in ffmpeg. It’s perfectly fine to include LGPL libraries into your binaries, as long as you don’t modify the open source libraries, but if you do, the source code modifications must…

Read more…