The 8 Hottest New Devices for 2017

When it comes to the latest technology, you can never have too many options. And for tech lovers, there is nothing like the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) which takes place Jan. 5-8 in Las Vegas.

CES delivered an exciting look at the newest Windows 10 devices that will make your life easier by having a battery life long enough to last through a 15-hour flight, allowing you to log into your computer with just your face – no need to remember a password and much more. Featuring experiences such as Windows Hello, touch, Windows Ink, Cortana and Continuum, these devices will command attention this year. From PCs to all-in-ones, gaming solutions and portable devices, here are some of the most amazing unveilings from CES 2017 sure to enable the creator in everyone. 

1. Dell Canvas. Channeling the innovative possibilities of Windows 10 and the upcoming Creators Update into a new category of smart workspace technology, the Dell Canvas expands productivity allowing you to create, communicate and express your ideas as naturally as you do with pen and paper. Through the use of touch, digital pen and totems, you can turn drawings into part of the digital workflow with Windows Ink or mark up webpages in Microsoft Edge. Powered by virtually any Windows 10 PC, this device plugs seamlessly into software solutions from many partners to unleash the creative genius in everyone. 

2. Samsung Notebook Odyssey. Built specifically for intense and casual gamers alike, the Samsung Notebook Odyssey features advanced technology, such as the HexaFlow Vent, an advanced cooling and ventilation system allowing the device to remain cool at all times. For optimal gameplay, the Samsung Notebook Odyssey is equipped with an intelligent and robust processer. Powered by a 7th Generation Intel Core i7 processor, both models of the Samsung Notebook Odyssey offer lightning fast performance with premium graphic technologies. 

3. LG Gram. Weighing in at only 2 pounds and featuring a 60W battery – the highest capacity in the industry to-date – for a long battery life between charges, the LG Gram has a near edgeless touch screen and is built to deliver superior portability. Complete with a built-in fingerprint scanner that unlocks Windows Hello, the LG Gram promises to be this year’s hot travel companion. 

4. HP Spectre x360. The second generation of HP’s 15.6-inch revolutionary x360 is the most powerful in the Spectre profile and can be pre-ordered today. Its bigger battery allows for up to 12 hours while powering a micro-edge 4K display and featuring the latest Intel processors, high performance NVIDIA GeForce 940MX discrete graphics. It also offers fast and secure login with Windows Hello and a nearly borderless display with two new front-facing speakers to round out the user experience.

5. Lenovo ThinkPad XI Yoga. The latest ThinkPad X1 Yoga is flawlessly flexible and adapts to your needs offering true multi-mode capability that delivers stunning colors and absolute blacks. The only 14-inch notebook with an OLED display option, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga also comes with a redesigned rechargeable pen and improved “rise and fall” keyboard. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga will be available in February. 

6. Toshiba Portégé X20W. A premium 2-in-1 convertible PC running Windows 10 Pro with a 360-degree dual-action hinge allow you to use the Portégé as a notebook or digital inking tablet. And with a 7th Generation Intel Core processor, the Portégé packs plenty of power into its thin, 2.5-pound frame that includes a 16-hour battery. The pre-configured Portégé X20W will be available soon in Slate Gray. 

7. Acer Aspire VX 15. With its crisp videos, smooth games and clear audio, the Aspire will be hot throughout 2017. Available in January, the Aspire is equipped with a 7th Generation Intel Core processor, a 15.6-inch Full HD IPS screen and dual fans to keep it running at optimal temperature, no matter how much you push it during a gaming session. 

8. MSI GS63VR Stealth Pro Gaming Laptop. Created with the gamer in mind, the MSI GS63VR delivers a faster and smoother VR experience and is part of the latest lineup of MSI gaming devices powered by Windows 10. Thanks to the new 7th Generation Intel Core processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX1050 Ti & GTX1050 gaming graphics cards. Enhanced audio makes the GS63VR ready to support the finest audio quality through SABRE HiFi DAC delivered straight to high-end headsets.

These are just a few of the hottest devices shown for the first time at CES, and if you didn’t get a chance to see them at the show, don’t worry. They’ll be available in the coming weeks at your nearest Microsoft Store, microsoftstore.com or a partner retailer, so don’t wait to experience this amazing new tech this year. (BPT)

Tech-buying Tips: How to Give Grads the No. 1 Item on Their Gift Wish List

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Used with Permission From Microsoft

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Used with Permission From Microsoft

Cash, new wheels, dream travel, gift cards – what will you be giving the graduates in your life this year? Chances are good, what they really want is a laptop; 51 percent of high school grads and 43 percent of college graduates said a new laptop was the gift they most desired in 2015, according to a survey by technology protection provider Asurion.

Parents probably aren’t surprised when their soon-to-be graduates ask for laptops. Technology is a big-ticket item students likely can’t afford to pay for themselves. Yet, it’s something they really need to succeed in college and in professional life. Whether they plan to go to college (69 percent of high school grads go on to college, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics), go to work (36 percent, the BLS says), or start their own business (72 percent of high schoolers and 64 percent of college students want to be entrepreneurs, according to research firm Millennial Branding), quality technology is a must-have tool.

Balancing cost and quality is a critical concern for parents, who are already facing significant expenses sending kids off to college or helping them get started in their professional lives. If you want to purchase a laptop for your graduate this year, you don’t have to overspend to find exactly what they need. Armed with some knowledge of popular options and the types of tasks each is best for, you can choose an affordable, powerful piece of technology for your graduate.

Here are some common and popular options, all of which run the powerful Windows 10 operating system:

Laptops

For power and flexibility, laptops excel. With capabilities comparable to what you would find in a desktop, laptops offer portability, powerful video editing and game development capabilities, and the ability to add external peripherals like printers and external hard drives. Keyboards and screens that are larger than the average tablet also enhance their usability. Options like the Dell XPS 13 are also lightweight, squeezing a 13-inch display into an 11-inch frame.

Tablets

Portability, a sleek appearance and touch-screen convenience are all hallmarks of tablets. Earlier iterations lacked power to compete with laptops, but newer options like the Surface Pro 4 are both powerful and portable. Paired with a Surface Pen, the tablet empowers students to take notes in class, sketch out designs, finish a report or project, or just kick back and watch a movie in the comfort of their dorm room.

Hybrid Laptop

Deciding between a laptop-style device with a keyboard or a tablet can be a challenge. Each performs different tasks in different ways. If your graduate needs a device that merges the best attributes of tablets and laptops, the Surface Book can be a solution. The device comes with a keyboard and detachable 13.5-inch screen you can use on its own like a clipboard, similar to the Surface Pro 4. Add in a Surface Pen for digital note-taking and drawing, and the high-performance Windows 10 laptop allows users to create dynamic school projects and seamlessly edit photos and video.

All-in-ones

While hybrid devices can function as either laptops or tablets, all-in-ones step up the game with the ability to take on multiple configurations. Whether it’s taking notes on a tablet, typing on a laptop, or displaying a presentation in a tent or stand configuration, multi-tasking all-in-ones like the Lenovo Yoga 900 offer maximum versatility to fulfill a variety of tasks. The device can deliver in all four configurations: laptop, stand, tent or tablet, and offers a flawless writing experience on its touchscreen.

Knowing these basic options before you start shopping can help ensure your graduate gets the technology he or she will need to succeed in college or the professional world. If you’re still not sure what to buy, go ahead and ask your graduates for input – they’ll be delighted to know they’re getting the No. 1 item on their graduation wish list.