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Posts Tagged ‘tablet’

reMarkable 10.3″ Digital Notepad and e-Reader is Designed to Feel Like Paper

December 1st, 2016 13 comments

If you like to take notes with pen and paper, but would prefer a digital solution to store your note, there are already some solutions like Boogie Board and Rocketbook, but reMarkable offers much more that the other two with a 10.3″ E-Ink touchscreen display and pressure sensitive pen capable of detecting 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity, it allows to read books as any e-readers, and also write your own notes on a blank piece of “paper” or existing digital documents, drawing sketches, and save & share the results. The whole user experience is supposed to feel as if you were reading and writing on paper.

remarkable-digital-notepadreMarkable tablet specifications:

  • SoC – ARM Cortex A9 processor @ 1 GHz (Likely NXP i.MX6 series processor since they support EPD interfaces)
  • System Memory – 512 MB DDR3L
  • Storage – 8GB internal storage good for around 100,000 pages
  • Display – 10.3″ monochrome digital paper “CANVAS” capacitive touch display based on E-Ink Carta technology with 1872×1404 resolution (226 DPI); plastic cover to make it virtually unbreakable; Paper-like surface friction; sunlight readable
  • Connectivity – WiFi
  • USB – 1x micro USB port for charging
  • Battery – 3000 mAh battery good for several days
  • Dimensions –  256 x 177 x 6.7mm
  • Weight – ~350 grams

The included “Marker” pen does not require any battery nor pairing or setup, comes with a high-friction pen tip, with the device able to detect tilt and 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity. The tablet runs Codex Linux based operating system optimized for low-latency e-paper displays, and currently supports PDF and ePUB documents, with more formats planned. Notes and documents can be transfered over WiFi to your devices or the cloud through an app currently available for Mac OS, iOS, Windows 8 and 10 and Android.

The video is convincing, but pricing may put many people off, as reMarkable is now available for pre-order for $379 with a folio cover and a Marker pen, and shipping expected for August 2017. Once the pre-order period is over the retail price will go up to $529 for the tablet only with the Marker and the folio cover an extra $79 each. This tablet is only really useful if you buy the pen, unless you limit yourself to the e-Reader function…

Via Liliputing

How to Play Netflix HD on any Android Device with Widevine Level 1 DRM

November 28th, 2016 12 comments

A while ago I wrote an article entitled “Why Doesn’t your Android TV Box Play Full HD or 4K Videos in Netflix?” basically explaining that most TV boxes running Android could only play SD quality, because HD and higher quality requires both Widevine Level 1 DRM, and Netflix certification, and the second part is the most difficult since Netflix need to spend time testing a given product, and may not agree to do so for smaller manufacturers. The end result is that only a small subset of devices can play Netflix HD.

netflix-hd-tabletSamsung Tab S2 is one of the device with Widevine Level 1, but is not certified by Netflix, and by default can only play SD quality. But XDA Forum user chenxiaolong apparently found a workaround and as the photo above shows is now able to reach HD resolutions (e.g. 1920×1080) with Netflix using his tablet. After analyzing packets between the server and his two Samsung tablets, he noticed that he could set “enableWidevineL1” from the JSON response to true, and provided a method showing how to change the app without uploaded a modded apk. But others followed his instructions and released a modified Netflix HD apk.

Although it might or might not breach Netflix TOS, please note that this has nothing to do with piracy at all, nor does it skip DRM, as it still requires both a Netflix HD subscription and a device supporting Widevine Level 1 DRM. Sadly that also means the trick will still not work on most cheap Android TV boxes that are limited to Level 3 security. It’s also quite possible Netflix eventually notices and changes the code to prevent this little hack. You can check Widevine DRM support with DRM Info app.

Thanks to Theguyuk for the tip.

Categories: Android Tags: Android, hack, netflix, tablet, TV box

Voyo VBook A1 Laptop Comes with Intel Celeron N3450 Apollo Lake Processor, 11.6″ Full HD Display

November 22nd, 2016 10 comments

Voyo recently introduced one of an Apollo Lake mini PCs called Voyo VMac, and  powered by either Intel Celeron N3450 or Pentium N4200 processor combined with 4GB RAM and 32GB eMMC flash + 128 GB SSD storage. The company will soon launch an Apollo Lake laptop based on Intel Celeron N3450 quad core processor with the same 4GB RAM + 160 GB storage configuration, and an 11.6″ display with 1920×1080 resolution.

voyo-vbook-a1

Voyo VBook A1 laptop specifications:

  • SoC – Intel Celeron N3450 quad core “Apollo Lake” processor @ 1.1 GHz / 2.2 GHz (Burst frequency) and 12 EU Intel HD graphics 500 @ 200 MHz / 700 MHz (Burst freq.); 6W TDP
  • System Memory – 4GB DDR3L
  • Storage – 32GB eMMC flash + 128GB M.2 SSD (Supports dual SSD extension, up to 512GB) + micro SD slot up to 128 GB
  • Display – 11.6″ IPS capacitive touch screen with 1920 x 1080 (FHD) resolution; rotatable by 360 degrees.
  • Video Output – 1x micro HDMI 1.4 port
  • Audio – HDMI, 3.5mm audio jack, built-in stereo speakers and microphone
  • Connectivity – Dual band 802.11 b/g/n/ac WiFi, and Bluetooth 4.0.
  • Camera – 2.0MP front-facing camera
  • USB – 1 x USB 2.0 host port, 1 x USB 3.0 port
  • Misc – Power and volume keys, 1x micro SIM card slot, lock key, G-sensor
  • Power Supply – 12V DC / 2-3A
  • Battery – 12,000 mAh Li-ion battery
  • Dimensions – 29.0 x 19.6 x 1.6 cm
  • Weight – 1.2 kg

apollo-lake-laptop

The laptop will run Windows 10 Home, and ship with a power supply and a user’s manual. The laptop appears to be inspired from Lenovo Yoga models, with the expression “YOGA 2-in-1 tablet” being used in the marketing documents, and the hybrid laptop also supports tablet, tent, and stand modes. A SIM card slot is mentioned in the specs and GeekBuying blog post, but somehow 3G / 4G LTE connectivity is not discussed at all anywhere, and it is stated that “this machine has a SIM card slot, but it does not support SIM card to surf Internet or make phone call.”

GeekBuying has started to take pre-orders for $299 including shipping, with delivery scheduled in about 40 days.

iFive and Techvision Rockchip RK3399 Hybrid Tablet/Laptop to Run Android 6.0 or Remix OS 3.0

October 16th, 2016 14 comments

We’ve seen Samsung is about to release the first Rockchip RK3399 Chromebook to the market. However it will be selling for $499, possibly a bit more than many people are ready to pay for such device, so Rockchip RK3399 powered iFive and Techvision 2-in-1 hybrid laptop & tablet devices showcased at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair might be worth a look as they should be quite cheaper.

rockchip-rk3399-tablet-laptop

Techvision 11.6″ 2-in-1 hybrid (center) and iFive 9.7″ tablet with keyboard (right)

The solution from Techvision ODM design house is a proper 2-in-1 hybrid laptop with a 11.6″ detachable screen with 1920×1080 resolution, two USB ports, a USB Type-C port and HDMI 2.0 output. The laptop also includes 2GB RAM, and 16GB flash. iFive model is more like a 9.7″ tablet sold with a keyboard acting as a tablet stand, and connecting with the tablet through pogopins. Beside the 4K display, the tablet also features 4 speakers, an audio jack, a USB 3.0 type C port, and a 13MP camera with image and depth of field sensors.


The two devices will run Android 6.0 or Remix OS 3.0, but Rockchip claims RK3399 also support Windows 10 Mobile, Chrome OS, Ubuntu, and Light Biz OS, another Android based OS with desktop improvements.

Pricing and availability are not known at this stage, but we should probably expect Rockchip RK3399 devices to flood the market by the end of the year, or early next year. One RK3399 TV box under the brand FenMi was also showcased at the fair, and it features 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, one USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports, and one HDMI 2.0 port.

Via Netbook Italia.

Android 7.1 Developer Preview Coming Soon with Image Keyboard Support, App Shortcuts API, etc…

October 12th, 2016 No comments

Google will soon release Android 7.1 Developer Preview for Nexus 5X & Nexus 6P smartphone, as well as Pixel C tablet, listed some of the changes you can expect in the new dot release, and provided a timeline for other devices and the official launch.

android-7-1-featuresAndroid 7.1 developer and user visible changes will include:

  • App shortcuts API will allow developer to set up to 5 shortcuts accessibly from app icon directly in the launcher. For example, a messaging app could have shortcuts to your favorite users and/or open a new conversation.
  • Circular app icons support to create rounded icons similar to what is used in Pixel launcher.
  • Enhanced live wallpaper metadata so that developers can show existing metadata such as label, description, and author, as well as a new context URL and title to link to more information.
  • Image keyboard support will let user easily insert custom stickers, animated gifs, and more from the keyboard app.
  • Storage manager Intent can be used by app to direct the user to Settings screen to clear unused files and free up storage space.
  • New APIs to support multi-endpoint calling and new telephony configuration options.

If you want to receive the Developer Preview automatically, enroll your device on Android Beta. After the first preview, more devices will be supported in the final Android 7.1.x release scheduled for early December, including Nexus 6, 5X, 6P, 9, Player, Pixel C, supported Android One devices, as well as the new Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones.

Categories: Android Tags: Android, google, nougat, sdk, smartphone, tablet

Linux 4.8 Release – Main Changes, ARM & MIPS Architectures

October 4th, 2016 3 comments

Linus Torvalds has officially released Linux 4.8 last Sunday:

So the last week was really quiet, which maybe means that I could probably just have skipped rc8 after all. Oh well, no real harm done.

This obviously means that the merge window for 4.9 is open, and I appreciate the people who already sent in some pull requests early due to upcoming travel or other reasons. I’ll start pulling things tomorrow, and have even the most eager developers and testers hopefully test the final 4.8 release before the next development kernels start coming 😉

Anyway, there’s a few stragging fixes since rc8 listed below: it’s a mixture of arch fixes (arm, mips, sparc, x86), drivers (networking, nvdimm, gpu) and generic code (some core networking, with a few filesystem, cgroup and and vm things).

All of it pretty small, and there really aren’t that many of them. Go forth and test,
Linus

Linux 4.7 introduced support for AMD Radeon RX480 GPUs, parallel directory lookups, the new “schedutil” frequency governor with lower latency, EFI ‘Capsule’ firmware updates, and much more.

linux-4-8-changelogSome notable Linux 4.8 changes include:

  • HDMI-CEC framework
  • Kernel documentation system is now based on Sphinx
  • GPIO subsystem has a new user-space ABI for the management of general-purpose I/O lines; it is based on char devices and replaces the long-deprecated sysfs interface. You can check out tools/gpio/ directory with lsgpio, gpio-hammer, and gpio-event-mon for examples
  • Various file systems improvements for Btrfs, EXT-4 (unified encryption), OrangeFS (better in-kernel caching), Ceph (RADOS namespace support), XFS (Reverse-mapping support), etc…

Some improvements and new features specific to the ARM architecture and corresponding hardware platforms:

  • Allwinner:
    • Allwinner A10/A20 – Display engine clocks (TCON, FE, DE), I2S audio interface (ASoC) driver, added NFC node to DTS
    • Allwinner H3 – Clocks (through sunxi-ng), USB multi-reset lines support
    • AXP2xx driver – External drivebus support, AXP223 USB power supply support, AXP809 PMIC support
    • Broadcom BCM53125 support as it’s used in Lamobo / Banana Pi R1 router board.
    • New boards – Polaroid MID2407PXE03 & inet86dz (Allwinner A23 tablets), Banana Pi M1+, Banana Pi M2+, Allwinner Parrot (Allwinner R16 EVB)
  • Rockchip:
    • Many new peripherals added to RK3399 (eDP, clock controller, etc…)
    • Preparations to use generic DMA mapping code in the Rockchip IOMMU driver
    • Fixes for eMMC controller, SPI controller, eDP controller, and I2C
  • Amlogic
    • AmLogic meson8b clock controller (rewritten)
    • AmLogic gxbb clock controller
    • Reset controller driver for Amlogic Meson
    • New watchdog driver for Amlogic Meson GXBB (S905) SoC
    • Added support for Amlogic Meson RNG in crypto drivers
    • Some Amlogic ARM64 DTS updates
  • Samsung
    • Enable drivers for Exynos7 and Exynos5433 based boards: S2MPS clock driver, SoC: RTC, SPI, watchdog, EHCI, OHCI, DWC3, ADC and PWM, Enable Samsung SoC sound
    • Samsung ARM64 DTS Changes – Adjust the voltage of CPU buck regulator so scaling could work.
    • Samsung DTS changes
      • Add missing async bridge for MFC power domain on Exynos5420. This fixes imprecise abort on s5p-mfc re-bind.
      • Define regulator supplies for MMC nodes on Exynos4412 Odroid boards and for TMU on Exynos542x Peach boards.
      • Thermal cleanups on Odroid XU3-family (Exynos5422).
      • Enable AX88760 USB hub on Origen board (Exynos4412)
      • Disable big.LITTLE switcher so the cpufreq-dt could be enabled.
      • Enable Samsung media platform drivers.
      • Enable some board-specific drivers for boards: Trats2, Universal C210.
      • Enable Virtual Video Test Driver on nulti_v7 and exynos defconfigs. Useful for testing
    • Samsung drivers/soc updates:
      • Move the power domain driver from arm/mach-exynos and prepare for supporting ARMv8.
      • Add COMPILE_TEST.
      • Make SROMC driver explicitly non-module.
      • Endian-friendly fixes.
      • Fix size of allocation for Exynos SROM registers (too much was allocated)
    • Add CEC interface driver present in the Samsung Exynos SoCs
    • Added support for Exynos 5410 Odroid XU board
  • Qualcomm
    • Added MDM9615 support
    • Qualcomm ARM Based Driver Updates:
      • Rework of SCM driver
      • Add file patterns for Qualcomm Maintainers entry
      • Add worker for wcnss_ctrl signaling
      • Fixes for smp2p
      • Update smem_state properties to match documentation
      • Add SCM Peripheral Authentication service
      • Expose SCM PAS command 10 as a reset controller
      • Fix probe order issue in SCM
      • Add missing qcom_scm_is_available() API
    • Qualcomm ARM64 Updates
      •  Enable assorted peripherals on APQ8016 SBC
      • Update reserved memory on MSM8916
      • Add MSM8996 peripheral support
      • Add SCM firmware node on MSM8916
      • Add PMU node on MSM8916
      • Add PSCI cpuidle support on MSM8916
    • Qualcomm Device Tree Changes:
      • Reverse BAM dma node reverts
      • Add BAM remote control options for affected platforms
      • Enable peripherals on APQ8074 dragonboard
      • Enable PMA8084 pwrky
      • Fix PMIC reg entries by removing unnecessary size element
      • Add SCM binding and support for all currently supported boards
      • Add Qualcomm WCNSS binding documentation
      • Rename db600c to SD_600eval and add peripheral nodes
      • Remove gpio key entry from Nexus7
      • Add APQ8060 based dragonboard and associated peripherals
      • Add ARMv7 PMU for IPQ4019
      • Update smem state cells to match documentation
    • ARM64 defconfig: Enable PM8xxx pwrkey support, enable MSM8996 support
    • ARM defconfig: Enable MSM9615 board support, enable MSM8660 pinctrl support
  • Mediatek
    • Added Mediatek MT6755
    • Display subsystem added to MT8173
    • Support for Mediatek generation one IOMMU hardware
    • New drivers for Mediatek MT6323 regulator
    • new encoding codec driver for Mediatek SoC (linux-media): H.264/VP8/V4L2 video encoder drivers for MT8173
  • ARM64 – arm64 architecture has gained support for the kexec mechanism (allowing one kernel to boot directly into another) and kernel probes.
  • Other new ARM hardware or SoCs – NXP i.MX 7Solo, Broadcom BCM23550, Cirrus Logic EP7209 and EP7211 (clps711x platforms), Hisilicon HI3519, Renesas R8A7792, Apalis Tegra K1 board, LG LG1313, Renesas r8a7796, Broadcom BCM2837 (used in Raspberry Pi 3)

MIPS architecture changelog:

  • Fix memory regions reaching top of physical
  • MAAR: Fix address alignment
  • vDSO: Fix Malta EVA mapping to vDSO page structs
  • uprobes: fix incorrect uprobe brk handling, select HAVE_REGS_AND_STACK_ACCESS_API
  • Avoid a BUG warning during PR_SET_FP_MODE prctl
  • SMP: Fix possibility of deadlock when bringing CPUs online
  • R6: Remove compact branch policy Kconfig entries
  • Fix size calc when avoiding IPIs for small icache flushes
  • Fix pre-r6 emulation FPU initialisation
  • Fix delay slot emulation count in debugfs
  • CM: Fix mips_cm_max_vp_width for non-MT kernels on MT systems
  • CPS: Avoid BUG() when offlining pre-r6 CPUs
  • DEC: Avoid gas warnings due to suspicious instruction scheduling by manually expanding assembler macros.
  • FTLB: Fix configuration by moving configuration after probing, clear execution hazard after changing FTLB enable
  • Highmem: Fix detection of unsupported highmem with cache aliases
  • I6400: Don’t touch FTLBP chicken bits
  • microMIPS: Fix BUILD_ROLLBACK_PROLOGUE
  • Malta: Fix IOCU disable switch read for MIPS64
  • Octeon: Fix probing of devices attached to GPIO lines, fix kernel header to work for VDSO build, fix initialization of platform device probing.

You can find the full list of changes in Linux 4.8 changelog with comments only generated using git log v4.7..v4.8 --stat. A list of changes for Linux 4.8 will also soon be found on kernelnewbies.org.

Xiaomi Mi Pad Tablet with Tegra K1 Processor, 64GB Flash Sells for $120 (Promo)

September 30th, 2016 15 comments

Xiaomi Mi Pad 7.9″ tablet powered by Nvidia Tegra K1 processor was launched in 2014 with either 16 or 64 GB flash, and on July on that year you could buy the version with 64GB storage would sell for $370 and up from sites like Aliexpress. A little over two years, the price has dramatically dropped, and there’s now a promotion for Xiaomi Mi Pad with 64GB storage for $119.99 on GearBest with MiPad64G or MP64GBCSMO coupon.

Xiaomi_MiPadLet’s refresh our memory with the specifications of the tablet:

  • SoC – Nvidia Tegra K1 quad core Cortex A15 processor @ 2.2 GHz with Nvidia 192-core Kepler GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB LPDDR3
  • Storage – 64GB eMMC, extensible to 128GB via microSD card
  • Display – 7.9” IPS display, 2048×1536 resolution; 326 PPI
  • Camera – 8MP rear camera, 5MP front-facing camera
  • Connectivity – 802.11ac 2×2 Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • Audio – 3.5mm audio jack, speaker
  • USB – 1x micro USB port
  • Battery – 6700 mAh battery
  • Dimensions – 202.1 x 135.4 x 8.5 mm
  • Weight – 360 grams

Even by today’s standards, XiaoMi Mi Pad should offer a pretty good performance, but the main downside is the tablet is stuck with Android MIUI V5 operating system based on Android 4.4. English is supported by default, but some other languages such as German, Italian and Dutch, are not supported in the firmware, however GearBest claims they can “offer these language packs”.

Via AndroidPC.es

Rockchip RK3399 Benchmarks Appear on GeekBench

September 28th, 2016 51 comments

Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core processor with ARM Cortex A72 and A53 cores and a Mali-T860MP GPU will soon be found in TV boxes, development boards, tablets, Chromebooks, virtual reality headset and more, and is widely expected to offer a significant performance boost against previous Rockchip processors, including RK3288, and outperform SoCs from competitors like Amlogic and Allwinner.

We can have a first clue about the performance as Rockchip RK3399 boxes and one tablet are now showing up on GeekBench.

rk3399-benchmarks

The box is clocked at 1512 MHz, while the tablet is limited to 1416 MHz, but overall single-core score is about 1350 points, while multi-core score hovers around 2,550 points. I’m not that familiar with GeekBench so number don’t tell me anything. Let’s compare it against RK3288 which CPU-wise is the fastest processor I known of from Chinese silicon vendors targeting TV boxes.

rk3399-vs-rk3288There’s a significant single-core performance boost (+73%), and lower multi-core delta (+30%) as expected since RK3399 has 2 fast Cortex A72 cores, 4 low power Cortex-A53 cores, against 4 fast Cortex-A17 cores for RK3288. If you look into the details AES is over 10 times faster on RK3399, so there must be some special instructions used here, or AES hardware acceleration.

Rockchip RK3399 “reference” TV box also has 4GB RAM, so I’m expecting RK3399 devices to come with 2 and 4 GB versions.

RK3399 vs Tegra K1

RK3399 vs Tegra K1

Rockchip RK3399 is also faster than Nvidia Tegra K1 quad core Cortex A15 @ 2.2 GHz for single thread performance, and about equivalent for multi-core tests.

[Update: I also found GFXBench 3D graphics results for RK3399, and compared it to Nvidia Tegra K1.

rk3399-gpu-benchmarkThe Mali-T860MP used in RK3399 is still far from the performance delivered by the Kepler GPU in Tegra K1.

Now if I compare the results to RK3288 (Mali-T764 GPU) based Ugoos UT3s TV box, the score on RK3399 (Mali-T860MP4) is also lower.

rk3399-vs-rk3288-gpuWe’ll have to wait and see here, as we don’t know at which frequency the GPU is running. Both GPUs are supposed to have the same performance according to Wikipedia.]

Thanks to Feelgood for the tip.