NexDock 2 Laptop Shell Gets a Full HD Display, a USB type-C Port (Crowdfunding)

NexDock 2

NexDock 14″ laptop shell was first introduced in 2016 to help people convert their smartphones or single board computers into a laptop with a display, a keyboard and battery. The crowdfunding campaign was successful with over $360,000 raised for the projects, and the first NexDock has been shipped to 2,600+ backers. The following year, the company – now called Nex Computer – announced plan to develop NexDock 2 with support for Intel Compute Cards. This did not quite work out as expected since Intel decided to stop further development of Compute Cards, but not all is lost as Nex Computer has now launched NexDock 2 with an aluminum body, a slightly smaller but higher resolution Full HD display, an edge to edge keyboard, and a USB type-C input port. NexDock 2 specifications: Display – 13.3” IPS LCD display with 1920×1080 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio Video Output – Full-size HDMI input port Storage – microSD card slo User Inputs Edge to …

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Snapdragon 8cx 5G Compute Platform Targets 5G always on, always connected PCs

Snapdragon 8cx 5G

Qualcomm announced Snapdragon 8cx processor for so-called always on, always connected mobile PCs in December 2018. The processor comes with eight Qualcomm Kryo 495 core, an Adreno 680 GPU with a 128-bit memory interface, NVME SSD, UFS 3.0 support, as well as a Snapdragon X24 4G LTE modem among other features. But the launch 5G cellular connectivity will start to (slowly) take off this year, so the company also revealed plans for Snapdragon 8cx 5G compute platform that brings the same processing power as 8cx processor but with an extra Snapdragon X55 5G modem. The company did not provide that many details about Snapdragon 8cx 5G in the press release, but we already know Snapdragon 8cx specifications as well as the key features of Snapdragon X55 2nd generation 5G modem, so we should already have a good idea about the platform. Qualcomm highlights the 7nm manufacturing process, multi-day battery life, and multi-gigabit 5G connectivity that will make remote storage as fast as …

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GPD MicroPC is a Windows 10 / Ubuntu MATE Portable Mini PC for Sysadmins (Crowdfunding)

GPD MicroPC

I shortly discussed GPD MicroPC, a portable computer specifically designed for for network engineers and sysadmins in a post about the company’s Pocket 2 Amber Black mini laptop, but I did not go into details at the time since it was not available. GPD has now launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo for the portable Gemini Lake mini PC, where you can pick one of the 2,000 units that are available for $299 including worldwide shipping. GPD MicroPC specifications: SoC – Intel Celeron N4100 quad core Gemini Lake processor with Intel UHD Graphics 600 System Memory – 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – Replaceable 128GB M.2 2242 SATA SSD, micro SDXC card slot Display – 6″ display with 1280×720, Gorilla Glass 4, 178° viewing angle Video Output – HDMI 2.0 up to 4K @ 30 Hz Audio – Built-in microphone, headphone jack, digital audio via HDMI Networking Gigabit Ethernet 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac WiFi 5 Bluetooth 4.2 USB – 3x USB 3.0 type A …

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Ubuntu 18.04 Now Boots on Some Snapdragon 835 Arm Laptops

Snapdragon 835 Ubuntu Arm Laptop

The first “proper” Windows 10 Arm laptops were unveiled at the end of 2017 and beginning of 2018, all based on Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor with always-on LTE connectivity, 20+ hour battery life, a fairly expensive price tag, and somewhat underwhelming performance. Qualcomm was not interested in supporting Linux, but there was interest from the community, and now it seems Ubuntu 18.04 images are available for Lenovo Miix 630, HP Envy x2, and ASUS Novago TP370 thanks to Aarch64-laptop project currently hosted on Github. Now the prebuilt images are not really ready for end users since UFS storage and WiFi are not working on any laptop yet, the touchpad is not working on the ASUS laptop, and accelerated graphics needs to be implemented. Interestingly WiFi is related to UFS on those laptops, and Marc Gonzalez is said to be being actively worked on UFS upstream support, which should enable for internal storage and WiFi. That means now you’d need to …

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PineBook Pro Linux / BSD Rockchip RK3399 Laptop Coming Up for $200

Pinebook Pro

Pine64 announced the Pinebook laptop in 2016. The ultra cheap ($89 and up) laptop was based on Allwinner A64 quad core Cortex A53 processor coupled with 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, and a 11.6″ or 14″ display. It was never meant to be a replacement for your current laptop due to the low end specifications, but you could still use it to tinker with Arm Linux or *BSD, as a lightweight portable terminal, etc… Pine64 made several announcements in a single blog post right before FOSDEM 2019 where they’ll showcase some of their upcoming products including the Pinephone development kit that’s use to develop software for the upcoming Pinephone open source phone, PineTab *BSD/Linux-only tablet with  Allwinner A64 SoC, and an 11.6″ display like Pinebook laptop, a retro gaming case compatible with Rock64 and Rock64Pro boards, an open source IP camera based on Allwinner S3L processor,  Pine H64 Model B (Allwinner H6) board with Rock64 form factor, Rock64 Rev.3 with some …

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Cosmo Communicator 2-in-1 Smartphone & Pocket Computer Runs Android 9, Linux

Cosmo Communicator

In recent years, we’ve started to see Windows 10 mini laptops with 6″ to 8″ display and a foldable keyboard coming to market thanks to products such as GPD Pocket 2 or One Mix 2 Yoga. They offer a full Windows 10 experience in an ultra-small form factor, but you’d still need to carry your phone around with you for things like calls or SMS. Cosmo Communicator offers a similar experience, but instead of relying on Intel processor and Windows, the device comes with a Mediatek P70 mobile processor capable of running Android 9 Pie or Linux distributions merging phone and mini laptop functionalities into a single device. Cosmo Communicator preliminary specifications: SoC – Mediatek P70 octa-core processor with four Arm  Cortex A73 cores @ up to 2.0GHz, four Cortex A53 cores @ up to 2.0GHz, Arm Mali G72 MP3 GPU  @ 800MHz, and a  Dual-core mobile AI processor (APU) System Memory – 6GB RAM Storage – 128GB flash, microSD …

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Intel Project Athena Defines Guidelines for Always-On 5G Laptops

Intel Project Athena

Arm, Qualcomm and their partners first introduced always-on always-connected mobile PCs running Windows 10 in 2017 with over 20 hours of battery life and LTE connectivity. The first models delivered on their battery life promise, but they were expensive while delivering underwhelming performance, but the upcoming Snapdragon 8cx processor should address performance concerns. Those type of laptops are still a niche market, and so far Intel and their partners have not delivered similar type of laptops with long battery life, cellular connectivity, and always-on capabilities. That’s where Intel’s Project Athena innovation program comes in. The program that defines a new class of advanced laptops running either Windows or Chrome OS operating systems, offering long battery life, 5G connectivity, artificial intelligence, and consistently powered on. They may not target the 20 hours of battery life like on Arm platform, but the part of the infographic above reads “worry-free day of battery life” so that you can “confidence to leave the charger …

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$100 Laptop Shell to Support Smartphones, USB Type-C PC Sticks, and SBCs (Crowdfunding)

100 dollar lapdock

Launched in 2011, Motorola Lapdock turned the company’s Atrix 4G smartphone into an Android laptop, but it did not end up being a commercial success so the company stopped manufacturing the laptop shell a few years ago. It is still used by hobbyist for example to create their own DIY Raspberry Pi laptop, and in recent years, with phoned getting much more powerful and desktop support for Android improving, lookalikes have been launched such as NextDock or Mirabook. A new option will soon be available, as Charbax known for his armdevices.net website and YouTube channel has just launched an Indiegogo campaign for a $100 Lapdock. Two models will be available with Lapdock 11.6″, and Lapdock 14.1″ referring to their size, but sadly no other specifications were provided for the display. We still know they’ll work with Samsung Dex / Linux on Dex modes, Huawei PC mode, and basically any device with a USB type-C with DisplayPort Alternate mode, as well …

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