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Acer Aspire M5 ultrabook Acer Aspire V5 Acer has announced the Aspire M5 ultrabook and thin-and-light Aspire V5 laptops. The 14 inch Acer M5 (M5-481PT) ultrabook costs $799.99 comes with a 14-inch, 1366 x 768 display driven by integrated graphics hardware, dual core, 1.7GHz Core i5 processor, 6GB of RAM, DVD drive, and 20GB SSD + 500GB hard drive combo. The device also has a backlit keyboard and an aluminium alloy top casing, and sports eight hours of battery life while being 0.81 inch thick and 4.6 pounds heavy. The 14 and 15.6 inch Acer Aspire V5 (V5-471P and V5-571P, respectively) has similar specifications, except for the hybrid SSD storage, does not have an aluminium casing and is somewhat thicker. The screen still supports 10 finger multi-touch. The 14-inch V5 costs $749.99 and the 15.6-inch $799.99. The devices will be available on the 26th October, with the official launch of ...

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Dale Vile, is Research Director at Freeform Dynamics has posted on CIO.co.uk about his perspective as a Windows 8 user on the operating system, and to help dispel the negativity which seems to be bubbling up from the online community. He writes:   As an industry analyst, I do a lot of multi-tasking in the average day, juggle many different information sources, and create a lot of content. This often involves working with survey data and making use relatively complex analytical models. I also do a bit of web development and multi-media stuff on the side, so all things considered, I would probably fit squarely into the category of ‘power user’. In terms of equipment, I routinely use a dual monitor desktop machine and a separate laptop/tablet hybrid (Lenovo T220). Both of these have been running Windows 8 for a couple of months now, and compared to Windows 7, I ...

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Microsoft has confirmed to Kotaku that, while the Windows 8 Store will support age ratings, it will still not allow games rated at PEGI 18 or ESRB Mature to be sold in the store. Section 6.2 of the Windows App guidelines reads: …apps with a rating over or PEGI 16, ESRB MATURE, or a corresponding rating under other ratings systems …are not allowed. Kotaku notes this is not a problem in USA, where the vast majority of games are PEGI 16 and below, but in Europe many popular games such as The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and the new Dishonored are in fact rated PEGI 18 and could therefore not be carried. Games can still be installed as usual via download, CD or through Steam, but this does expose a weakness in the service that should really allow for all possible apps, of course ...

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Logitech has introduced 3 accessories specifically designed for Windows 8, and which brings the smoothness of the touch interaction with Windows 8 straight to even desktop PCs. The Zone Touch Mouse T400 is pretty close to a traditional mouse, but with a small glass track pad which helps with horizontal and vertical scrolling, and has dedicated keys for going home and flipping through apps.  The device sports an 18 month battery life and costs  $49.99. The Touch Mouse T620 has a much larger touch surface, supports 6 Windows 8 gestures which can be customized, has 180 day battery life and will set you back $69.99. The Touchpad T650 has a spacious glass touch surface, supports multiple Windows 8 gestures and has 30 days battery life, and can be used while recharging via USB. It will cost $79.99. All three will be available in the US and Europe this month. Zone ...

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A series of training videos produced by Microsoft has surfaced, telling retail staff how they should be selling Windows 8 PCs. Sales staff are encouraged to concentrate on personalization, customization and showing how the OS works as well with a mouse and touch. The videos are as much instructional as they are sales training, indicating it is more than the customer that Microsoft needs to educate. Via Neowin.net ...

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This ad for the Lenovo Ideapad Yoga is about a month old, but I have just stumbled over it now. It makes a pretty good case for the hybrid form factor and 360 degree hinge, although I am not sure taking videos with your tablet camera is a good use case, no matter how many iPad users do it. Lenovo recently released the pricing for their Windows 8 range. The WindowsRT Ideapad Yoga II with an Nvidia Tegra 3 chip and 2GB of DDR3 memory powering its 11.6-inch, 1366 x 768 display, with five-point multitouch and up to 64GB of storage in a 2.8-pound, 15.6mm thin package will retail for $799. The x86 version of the device with a 1600 x 900 IPS display, 128GB of solid state storage, Core i5 processor, 13 inch screen and 10 point multi-touch will cost $1,099 and be on sale on October 26th, with ...

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It seems the success of Smoked by Windows Phone went to Microsoft’s heads, as they now have a taste for head to head comparisons between their and rival’s products. According to their stats those who took their Bing-it-on challenge chose Bing 2:1 over Google, but of course probably only Bing users knew about the challenge in the first place. Now it seems Microsoft will be running TV spots featuring street challenges similar to Smoked by Windows Phone hoping to spread the message that Bing is better than Google. With Google’s market cap recently (and briefly) exceeding Microsoft’s, and Google still extremely dependent on search ads for their income, it has become increasingly urgent for Microsoft to win ground and mindshare as a serious competitor in this space. Hopefully they will keep the pressure up. Via WindowsPhoneDaily.com ...

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Lenovo IdeaTab  Lynx Lenovo IdeaTab  Twist We may be rapidly seeing the death of the traditional laptop, as more and more hybrid devices with touch screens and innovative hinges are announced. The latest to join the fray are two new hybrids by Lenovo, the Ideatab Lynx and the ideatab Twist. The Lenovo Lynx is a tablet PC with an optional detachable keyboard dock and a 1.8GHz Intel Atom dual core processor (Z2760), 2GB DDR2 RAM, 32/64GB eMMC storage, a 11.6" IPS HD display, 5-point capacitive touch and 8 hours of battery life without the dock and 16 with the dock. The Lynx also comes with a range of sensors; a G-sensor, proximity sensor, compass, gyro and ambient light sensor. The device will start at $599 for the base configuration. The Lenovo Twist features a Intel i7 processor, up to 8 GB of RAM, Intel Integrated Graphics, 320/500 GB – 7200 ...

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It’s less than 3 weeks before Microsoft is set to sell their very own computer, and so far their promotions have been pretty low key, with enigmatic graffiti appearing in all kinds of odd places. Now reader Zach has noticed a much more conventional ad showing up at a bus stop in Chicago, on the UIC campus. Presumably we will see the campaign escalate significantly over the next few weeks, to help Microsoft make good on their biggest bet ever. Thanks Zach for the tip and pictures. ...

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Winsource has posted this video preview of the Firefox Metro nightly, Mozilla’s Modern-style browser for Windows 8. The software is still pretty buggy as one can expect, and in part does not really reflect the Modern UI, in the preview especially in the UI around the tabs. If you want to help Microsoft avoid anti-trust charges for IE10 in Windows 8, you can download Firefox Metro nightlies here. ...

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Reviews are rolling in of the Acer Iconia W510 hybrid Windows 8 laptop, and the Intel Atom Z2760 Clovertrail processor appears to be managing to run Windows 8 pretty well. Engadget reviewed the device, and found their biggest complaint to be the build quality of the hinge in the dock stand, which they found wobbly, and issue shared by the Verge, who found it wobbly and stiff at the same time. The found the gorilla-glass ensconced 1,366 x 768 display to be pretty good, with good viewing angles, and though they would not commit to commenting on battery life and performance, due to the pre-production drivers, still found the device in general fast and responsive, despite only having 2GB of RAM. Engadget concludes: Having met with Acer’s product team in person (and having read its executives quoted in the press), it’s obvious the company is eager to shed its reputation ...

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Liveside.net reports that Bing users are now able to download there iconic wallpapers directly to their desktop if they sign in with their Facebook ID. Users are not however able to browse the back catalogue, so to get the best of Bing you probably have to visit every day. The download feature may not be visible to everyone yet, and if you only want a new and beautiful wallpaper for your phone every day the Bing Desktop app works pretty well. Via LiveSide.net ...

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Microsoft has expressed a somewhat irrational confidence in the prospects of Windows 8 and its new UI environment. Microsoft Vice President Keith Lorizio told Beet.tv that Microsoft expected to have 400 million Windows 8 PCs in the market by July 1st. “When Windows 8 goes live on October 26, the [size of the market] is [over] 1 billion consumers. Our goal … is conservatively over 400 million units in the marketplace by July 1.” This would be even faster than Windows 7, a very successful desktop OS, sold. He also this explosive growth in the new platform to also boost developer interest. “We’re expecting to aggressively pursue [delivering] 100,000+ apps [to Windows 8’s online marketplace] over the first three months,” he said. The Windows Store just crossed 3600 apps recently, with around 5000 apps expected at the launch of Windows  8 on October 26th. Microsoft expected this rapid growth due ...

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The Verge reports that in the RTM version of Windows 8, users are currently not only able to pay for music and videos using credit cards, but also that this is now the default option, in preference to the much hated Microsoft Points. Microsoft Points have long had a home on the Xbox 360, but has made it unnecessarily complicated to know how much you are spending, and also required one to keep a balance in Microsoft’s system.  The move to credit cards makes the system much more user friendly, and as payment via Points remain available, will still allow users without credit cards to purchase Points at retail locations. The changes are part of the last minute polish Microsoft is applying to Windows 8 in the run up to its general availability on the 26th October, which has also included the updating of many of the built-in apps in ...

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Microsoft recently promised a range of updates for the built-in and bundled apps in Windows 8. The SkyDrive app has been one of the first to be updated, and is now available in the Windows 8 store. The update to version 16.4.4388.928 brings: Search within SkyDrive from the Windows 8 Sidebar Rename and move folders and files using a new Manage control available in the taskbar within the app New first-run experience video Custom sort order Recycle bin Support for sharing to the SkyDrive via the Share Charm The update can be found in the Windows 8 Store. See the full list of coming updates here. Via LiveSide.net ...

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The biggest cause of antipathy towards Windows 8 by Windows 7 users is the removal of the start menu in preference to the Modern style Start screen. Now StarDock, long known for their Windows Shell replacement and enhancement software, has taken up the cause with Start8, a Start Menu replacement. The app features: Windows 7-style Start menu with Windows 8 enhancements Search for Windows 8-style (Modern UI) apps Pin desktop and Metro apps Boot directly to the Windows 8 desktop Windows 8 Start screen accessible from the Start menu StarDock is selling it For $4.99 from their website here. Are our readers ready to embrace the future, or will you be relying on crutches like this? Let us know below. Via Windows8hacks.com ...

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