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Tablet News

Dell Is Transforming the XPS 13 into a Convertible Tablet

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The Dell XPS 13 is already one of the best Windows laptops out there, but many couldn’t help but lament the lack of a tablet mode in an otherwise excellent device. However, it seems Dell has heard the cries of its consumers and now has plans to transform the XPS 13 into a convertible tablet.

Dell is currently refreshing the design the XPS 13, and according to PC Mag, it will not only refresh the design but turn this popular laptop into a convertible during the process.

Overall, the XPS 13 will most likely keep some of its most attractive features including the edge to edge display known as the “InfinityEdge.” That means that Dell will probably have to do something at the software level to keep your fingers from accidentally tapping on the screen when it is in tablet mode. The new convertible device is also said to be getting the Kaby Lake chipsets, which should bring faster processing, improved integrated graphics and better battery life.

This isn’t the only laptop that Dell is converting. The Latitude 13 is also reportedly getting an updated design that could include the InfinityEdge display as well as the ability to transform into a tablet. It seems that Dell maybe be doubling down on their belief in the future of convertible devices.

Still, some laptop purists may not be happy with this change. Still, if you have ever made use the of the conversion abilities of these devices, it is really tough to live without them. At the same time, if you don’t like it, you don’t have to use it. But having the ability to do it is a nice update for an already popular device from Dell.

There is little doubt that the convertible laptop/tablet is really the way of the future. Consumers are increasingly trying to simplify their tech needs. To do this, they want to use less devices. That often means that tablets take a backseat when the time comes to upgrade. Today, many consumers are choosing to go with a convertible design so they get the best of both worlds.

On one hand, they have a laptop they can use with their keyboards and mice with ease. On the other they have a tablet they can sit back and use to enjoy their media consumption. With the convertible devices, all users need is one device that can do it all. That is where the appeal comes in and it seems Dell is recognizing that fact and creating a device that will be perfect for consumers who don’t want multiple devices to do what they want to do.

What do you think about this latest news from Dell? Are you looking forward to seeing an XPS that is also a tablet or do you think that Dell should leave their design alone? Let me know what your thoughts are on this matter in the comments below. I, for one, think it is a great idea and the perfect evolution of the XPS line. Do you agree?

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Tablet News

Hybrids Could Be the Tablet Savior

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Hybrids Could Be the Tablet Savior

There is no denying that the tablet market has been rather sluggish as of late. Some have even gone on record saying that the tablet is a dying breed. However, things are starting to look up, thanks mainly to the new hybrid tablets hitting the market.

This year alone, tablet sales are expected to decline another 9.6 percent. That’s no small chunk of change, however the tides could be turning for these mobile devices.

To be honest, tablets today are quite impressive, but they have lacked a bit of wow factor. Many believe they are just too similar to PCs in what they offer today. Like PCs, people are buying tablets and keeping them for longer than they do their smartphones. That means they are hanging onto their tablets for 4 or 5 years before they consider upgrading. That means today slower sales.

However, the new hybrid tablets are poised to wow consumers by offering them something a little different and finally giving consumers a viable solution to actually replace their laptop.

“One reason why the slate tablet market is experiencing a decline is because end-users don’t have a good enough reason to replace them,” said Jean Philippe Bouchard, IDC research director, Tablets.

Devices such as the Microsoft Surface Pro are already turning heads and currently account for about 16 percent of the market across the world. In 2018, IDC predicts that these devices will really begin to take hold with this one type of tablet capturing a full 31 percent of the market share.

The IDC still points out that there are many users out there that aren’t ready to break their traditional relationship with their tablet as of yet. These users prefer to use their tablet as a secondary device for relaxation. Even while the market has shrunk, 100 million devices are expected to be shipped around the world.

Still, it should be noted that the market for tablets continues to evolve and change, as does the PC market. Many experts believe that in many emerging markets mobile devices will be the only devices that consumers own.

“It wasn’t long ago the industry talked about one PC per person and to some extent that theory has vanished,” said Ryan Reith, Program Vice President with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers. “The PC we were referencing six to eight years ago has changed, drastically. In many emerging markets the only computing device for many will be a mobile device, whether that is a small screen tablet, smartphone, or both.”

One thing is abundantly clear, the tablet market is changing and right now hybrid devices are the golden child where tablet makers are looking to make their fortunes. More and more of these devices are being created and produced. Just think about all of the Windows hybrids on the market today and even Apple has gotten into the mix with the iPad Pro. No doubt many manufacturers will continue to pour resources into producing these types of devices as users both at home and at work look for devices to replace their PCs.

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Tablet News

How to Prepare Your Tablet for Windows 10

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How to Prepare Your Tablet for Windows 10

Microsoft has finally released its much anticipated next generation operating system upon the world, and users everywhere are currently patiently (or not so patiently) waiting to receive their update.  Unlike past versions of Windows, there is no separate version designed for tablets or smartphones.  There is only one version of Windows now, and Microsoft plans to roll this operating system out to devices over the coming weeks.  This means that your Windows tablet could be in line to receive Windows 10 sometime in the very near future.  But you want to be ready.  Today, let’s take a look at how you can prepare your tablet for Windows 10 so you are ready for the upgrade when it comes to your device.

When Will It Be Available

Officially, Windows 10 was released to everyone this past Wednesday on July 29, but that doesn’t mean you can download it right away.  There are billions of devices waiting to receive the update from Microsoft, so the company is staggering the release in order to make sure their servers don’t choke to death under the heavy load.

At the same time, Microsoft is also making the operating system available for computers running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 first, with members of the Windows Insider Program being the first to receive it.  Tablets running Windows 8.1 are a little farther down on the list.  That means that you will have to wait a bit longer before receiving the update although there has been no official word as of yet on how long you will have to wait.  Of course, that just gives you a little more time to get your tablet ready for the impending update that will be headed to you before you know it.

Windows 10 Cost

With the release of Windows 10, Microsoft has departed from its traditional model and has offered the operating system for free for all devices running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1.  That means that your tablet running Windows 8.1 could be set for the upgrade at no cost to you.  But there are a few requirements that you need to be aware of before you get too excited about the upcoming release.

Hardware Requirements

There are a few hardware requirements that you will need to check on before you can upgrade to Windows 10 on your tablet.  They are:

32-Bit Systems

  • 1 GHz Processor or better
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 16 GB of Free Storage Space
  • DirectX 9 Compatibility

64-Bit Systems

  • 1 GHz Processor or better
  • 2 GB of RAM
  • 20 GB Hard Drive Space
  • DirectX 9 Compatibility

If you are running a budget tablet that does not meet these requirements, unfortunately the Windows 10 update will not be available to you.  All is not lost, however.  Microsoft will continue to support Windows 8.1 for quite some time and you can expect that apps will continue to be released that will work quite well on both Windows 8.1 and Windows 10.

Windows RT

If you have a device that is running Windows RT, unfortunately this update is not for you.  For now you will have to live with the existing version of Windows RT.  Microsoft hasn’t forgotten about you, though.  While you won’t ever receive Windows 10, Microsoft is working on a new version of Windows RT that features an interface with a start menu much like Windows 10.  Still, if you are running RT, start preparing yourself for an upgrade in the next year or two.  Microsoft is basically abandoning RT in favor of their new software model.  So, after this latest update, I wouldn’t expect too much from them in the way of upgrades outside of security updates.

Prepare Your Tablet for the Upgrade

Before you try to install the upgrade to Windows 10, there are a few things you should do ahead of time to prepare for the update.  Why do you need to bother?  By simply taking a few steps before you upgrade, you can greatly increase the chances of a successful and fast upgrade and limit the possibility of running into some unknown problem that could stop the update in its tracks.

Remove All Unused Apps

Before you do anything else, it is time to take inventory of the apps you have installed on your tablet.  If you are like me and thousands of other users, chances are there are some apps installed that you simply never use.  If you don’t use them, why keep them?  All they do is take up valuable space on your tablet.  This space you could need in order to get the Windows 10 update.

Clear Out Old Data

Just like your old apps, you should take the time to go through and delete any old data, music files, video files, etc. that you no longer use.  All of these files can be taking up a substantial amount of storage space on your tablet.  Tablets don’t have anywhere near as much storage as PC’s do, meaning you will need as much room as you can get on there if you want to be able to download and install the new update.

Backup Your Data

Once you have cleared out the apps and data you no longer need, go ahead and back up the data that is important to you.  If something does go wrong during the upgrade, you could lose that data forever.  Before you run any type of upgrade, go ahead and backup your data by moving it to cloud storage services such as Dropbox or copy it to a microSD card or even a USB hard drive.  While this does take a bit of time on your part, if you do run into problems during the upgrade, you will be glad you did.

Run a Virus Scan

Viruses can cause all kinds of strange problems with your tablet, especially during a major upgrade such as Windows 10.  Before you make the move to Windows 10, run a virus scan and even a malware scan on your device and clean out anything that shouldn’t be there.  This will not only help you during the upgrade, but could improve your performance and increase the security of your tablet in the process.

Run All Windows Updates

Not everyone keeps Windows Updates set to automatic, although you should.  Having the latest Windows updates always ensures that your tablet is completely up to date with all the latest bug fixes and security patches.  Before any upgrade will run on your tablet, it will have to already be updated with all the latest patches from Microsoft for Windows 8.1.  So, one evening before you go to bed, take the time to visit Microsoft Update to update your copy.  This will ensure that your tablet is prepared with all the latest software from Microsoft when it is your turn in the upgrade line.

Sign Up for the Update

I should mention that in order for you to receive your free upgrade, you will need to sign up for it.  This will reserve your place in line for the update so the sooner you do it, the better.  To sign up all you need to do is go to the desktop on your tablet and look in the taskbar for a small Windows icon.  This is the notification that Windows 10 is here and by tapping on it you can go through the sign up process that will check your tablet and let you know if you are eligible.  If you are, it will then place you in line for the upgrade.

Reboot Your Tablet

Most mobile users rarely reboot their tablets.  I know I am guilty of not rebooting.  Remember, they are essentially a small hand held computer.  This means that like their bigger PC siblings, a good reboot is always a good idea every now and then.  Before the upgrade, try rebooting your tablet on occasion to make sure it is running in the best shape it can when Microsoft rolls the update out to you.

Keep It Charged

It would be a shame for your upgrade time to come when you don’t have any battery life on your tablet.  While I’m not saying plug it in and leave it until you get the upgrade, don’t let it sit with no battery power or, worse, completely dead for any length of time.  This could delay the upgrade for you making you wait even longer.  Instead, go ahead and use it just like you would normally.  But when you put it down, take the five seconds to plug it into its charger so your tablet stays on and has enough battery power to allow the upgrade to commence.

windows-10-on-tablet

A Little Work Now Can Save You A lot Later

Simply by following this list, you can save a lot of time later when the upgrade is finally ready for your tablet.  I recommend just following this list like it was a checklist, checking off each step as you complete it.  In most cases, you can accomplish everything on this list in one evening on your tablet, depending on how many files you have and how long it takes for your virus scan and Windows update to run.  Still, all of this should be done before you even consider upgrading your tablet.  That way, you can make sure your tablet has the space it needs, your files are safe, and your tablet is running in the best condition that it can so your upgrade process is relatively quick and painless.

Final Thoughts

Windows 10 is finally here and it is most definitely a far superior operating system when compared to Windows 8.1.  In my opinion, if your tablet is compatible with Windows 10, there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t upgrade.  Windows 10 provides the best of what Windows 7 and Windows 8 had to offer and combines them in a package that will run seamlessly across all devices.  Once you upgrade your PC, you will essentially be running the same operating system across all of your devices.  What is there not to love about that?

However, you want to be prepared for the update.  Once you have checked to make sure your tablet is compatible with the new upgrade, you need to take the proper steps to ensure that the upgrade itself will run smoothly.  By taking a few steps to ensure the safety of your data and by making sure that your tablet is in the best possible shape it can be, you can greatly increase your chances of a quick upgrade success and you can reduce the risk of failure during the update process.

Windows 10 is by far one of the best operating systems I have ever used, and tablet users everywhere will love how easily it functions with just a simply tap of your finger.  While tablet users will have to wait just a little longer before it rolls out to their devices, there is no reason why you shouldn’t go ahead and prepare it ahead of time for this major release from Microsoft.  In the end, you will be glad you did as you will find the upgrade process to run much more smoothly than you could have ever hoped and in no time, you will be running the latest software provided by Microsoft to the world.

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Tablet News

Will My Tablet Run Windows 10?

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Will My Tablet Run Windows 10?

Windows 10 is finally here and users across the world and patiently (or maybe impatiently) waiting for their upgrade.  If you use a Windows tablet, you may be wondering if your tablet is compatible with the new update.  That’s a fair question, as Microsoft has confirmed that not every tablet will be able to install Windows 10.

System Requirements

First, you must look at the hardware requirements for Windows 10.  Unlike past versions, these requirements carry over from laptop to desktop to smartphone and even tablets.  Unlike in the past, Microsoft maintained separate operating systems for some of their devices.  With Windows 10, all that changes.  Now, Microsoft offers one operating system for all their devices.

So what does your tablet need?  Well, for starters it needs at least 16 GB of free space in order to receive the download.  On top of that, you need at least a 1 GHz processor with a minimum of 1 GB of RAM for the 32-bit version and 2 GB of RAM for the 64-bit version. These kinds of specs are usually only found in more high-end 10-inch tablets.

Storage Could Be a Problem

On some of the tablets with lower amounts of storage, users may have a tough time upgrading without wiping out all of their data and starting from scratch.  While that is not always a bad thing to do, it can be quite inconvenient for many users.  If you are having trouble meeting the storage requirements, I recommend doing a little housekeeping.  Go through your tablet and delete any apps that you no longer use and go through all your saved files and get rid of anything you really don’t need.  If you are still having trouble after that, try migrating your files to the cloud using SkyDrive or one of the other could services that are available.

Will My Tablet Run Windows 10?

Windows RT

If you are running Windows RT on your tablet, you are basically out of luck.  Microsoft has not made Windows 10 available for tablets that run Windows RT and currently has no plans on releasing a full version of Windows 10 for those devices.  However, not all is lost.  Microsoft has confirmed that a new update for Windows RT will be released in September.  This new update will include a new desktop and start menu with a new lock screen that looks and feels much like Windows 10.  It seems they aren’t giving up on RT entirely, but I wouldn’t hold my breath for any other major updates to RT as they move away from that version of their Windows operating system.

Final Thoughts

With the release of Windows 10, Microsoft has created an operating system that will run on all of their different platforms, meaning you won’t have to learn a bunch of new systems with each new device you buy, as long as they run Windows.  That being said, you need to make sure your tablet is ready for the update so you can get ahold of your copy of Windows 10 while it is free.  If you don’t, you could find your tablet becomes quickly outdated as app creators move ahead with the new platform leaving that dusty copy of Windows 8 on your tablet behind for good.