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Dynabook maxes out specs in thin laptop

Dynabook returns with another stellar notebook, the Tecra X40-F-147, that’s packed with functionality like a fingerprint reader, a touchscreen, and 4G/LTE support. BRYAN TURNER put it through the works.

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Dynabook, formerly known as Toshiba, has created a laptop to be reckoned with. The Tecra X40-F-147 may be a mouthful to say, but it has the specs to match. Tecra is a line of business laptops that boast high functionality, along with stunning designs. The X40-F features a magnesium alloy chassis, so the laptop remains light as well as MIL-STD-810G. 

The rest of the laptop is a brushed black anthracite finish with sharp edges. While Dynabook boasts the formal Military Standard casing on the X40-F, we didn’t drop it. That said, it looks like it could take a few knocks and still operate, thanks to the sturdy build quality. It comes in at 16mm thick, and weighs 1.25kg, making it one of the lighter laptops on the market in the business segment. It features two symmetrical air vents on the back to assist with airflow out the back of the computer.  

One of the most astonishing aspects of this computer is the thinness, all with solid cooling mechanisms inside that are geared towards process-intensive workflows, like crunching numbers on data science platforms while having several documents open at the same time. 

It houses Intel UHD Graphics 620, which is suitable for multi-user video conferences, streaming video, and light gaming. This, combined with a 14.0” 1,920 x 1,080 touchscreen display, makes it a delight to look at and work with. 

The processor is a 4-Core 8th Generation Intel Core i7 CPU (i7-8565U), which provides snappy performance for processor-intensive tasks. We noted a start-up time from shutdown to desktop of 8 seconds. This was made possible by lightning-fast i7 CPU and 512GB solid-state drive in the computer. This also makes it a delight to open and work with programs. 

The computer’s sound was superb for listening to music and video conferencing. That’s due to the Harman Kardon sound integrated into the device, which replicates sound excellently, even at high volumes. 

For business applications, a keyboard matters the most and that’s where Dynabook has put its focus. The matt black backlit keyboard is a pleasure to type on, and features one of the best typing experiences we’ve ever experienced on a laptop. The backlight option is a huge win for working in darker situations by being able to type in the dark, with a dimly lit keyboard that allows users to see their keys without being distracted by a bright keyboard light. 

The keyboard features a pointing nib, the rubber nib in the keyboard for pointer navigation. It’s recessed enough for those who don’t want to use it, but there for those who prefer this form of mouse input. 

The trackpad is an absolute dream. It has the right texture, it’s the right size, and it’s mostly in the middle of the computer. It also works flawlessly with the Windows 10 multi-gesture navigations. It also didn’t get oily, which speaks to a careful texture design that makes the computer comfortable to work on after extended periods of time. The trackpad also features a nifty fingerprint sensor, which works very well for fast authentication without the need to type in a password.

Connectivity is also sorted with this laptop, as it features a SIM card slot for 4G/LTE connectivity. Those with a big data plan can have seamless connectivity from Wi-Fi to mobile data in cases where Wi-Fi signal is weak.

The laptop’s battery is 48Wh, which may seem on the low side, but it powered through a 7-hour workday on a single charge. If the brightness is turned all the way up, that changes to around 5 hours.  

It is available from under R23 000 in its 512GB SSD + 8GB RAM configuration, putting it on par with other laptops in the space that have less comfortable keyboards and trackpads. 

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New software cuts transfer speed in half

Laplink’s PCmover Complete software offers a full PC or phone migration in under 60 seconds.

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Laplink Software has announced the release of PCmover Complete, a one-click, connection-free solution for data migration in under 60 seconds. The software, for both home users and businesses, automatically transfers data and applications to a new PC or phone. It also includes Laplink’s new DoubleSpeed technology which doubles the processing speed of the CPU in the new PC or phone. 

“We’ve created a one click wonder, bringing data migration as close to magic as it can get,” says Thomas Koll, CEO at Laplink. “Not only is this a single click solution, but for the first time ever, there’s no connectivity required allowing transfers to take place whenever and wherever the user chooses.  

“We now fully support PC to phone transfers so users can have all their PC apps and data transferred to their phone, ready to use. But I’m most excited about our DoubleSpeed technology, which accelerates the CPU performance of the new PC or phone to two times its native speed.” 

PCmover Complete automatically moves all applications, files, settings and user profiles from an old PC to a new PC or phone. Users download the software and click the “Complete Migration” button. There is no need for the computers to be on the same network or connect with a cable, and the migration is completed in 60 seconds or less.

Laplink’s DoubleSpeed technology, included with PCmover Complete at no additional charge, executes automatically when the data migration is complete and approximately doubles the performance of the new PC or phone. 

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Fitbit announces Charge 4

Confirming all the rumours, Fitbit has announced the Charge 4, which comes with built-in GPS and Fitbit Pay.

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Fitbit has announced the Fitbit Charge 4, the latest addition to its most popular line of wearables. The device features built-in GPS, Fitbit Pay, and Spotify Connect & Control. Charge 4 includes Fitbit’s latest innovation, Active Zone Minutes, a new personalised standard based on one’s resting heart rate and age that tracks any workout that gets one’s heart pumping. This measures the time one spends in each heart rate zone toward a weekly goal of 150 minutes. 

This confirms the all rumours speculated from its FCC filing, except for integrated GPS – which is a very welcome addition.  

“Our mission has always been to help people around the world get healthier,” says James Park, CEO and co-founder. “In today’s extraordinary times, that mission is more important than ever, but we realize how hard it is to focus on your health and wellness. However, staying active, eating well and getting enough sleep can help reduce stress and boost immunity.  

“To help support our users, we’re offering a free trial of Fitbit Premium and added content so our users have the right tools at home to help them stay healthy; and, with Active Zone Minutes, we are giving users a new personalised standard for health and fitness so they can get the most out of any activity that works for them and help to keep them motivated.” 

Active Zone Minutes will launch first with Charge 4, with an innovative design made to optimise GPS performance plus house other advanced sensors and capabilities while maintaining a slim, lightweight tracker form at the same approachable price and battery life. Its premium, lightweight, swimproof design is comfortable for all-day (and night) wear, featuring an inductive button, a scratch-resistant screen and a bright, crisp touchscreen display that is easy to view in natural light. 

As the first Fitbit tracker with built-in GPS, users can leave their phones at home and get optimal performance for activities like running, walking and other outdoor excursions. Now with the ability to track pace and distance in real-time, in addition to the 20+ goal-based exercise modes, users can access seven GPS-enabled exercise modes, including a new outdoor workout mode for outdoor activities like hiking, running, or a brisk walk.  

With Fitbit’s PurePulse 24/7 heart rate tracking, Active Zone Minutes uses one’s personalised heart rate zones to track their effort for energising activities, whether doing power yoga or taking a vigorous walk outside. One earns credit for each minute of moderate activity in fat burn zone and double the credit for vigorous activity in cardio and peak zones – Active Zone Minutes does the math for users so they can quickly understand how many they need to reach their daily and weekly goals.  

Active Zone Minutes is based on recommendations from leading health organisations, including the World Health Organisation, which recommends getting 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week, which has been linked to better overall health and well-being, disease prevention, improved cognitive function, less anxiety and better sleep. 

Previously only available on Fitbit smartwatches, smart wake (coming soon) uses machine learning to wake you at the optimal time. Sleep Score provides deeper insights into your sleep with a daily look at the quality of your sleep, now available on-wrist for the wearable. Other sleep features on the Charge 4 make it easy to improve your sleep, from your wrist: quickly set alarms and activate Sleep Mode to maintain routines and sleep schedules. 

It comes standard with health and fitness essentials like SmartTrack automatic exercise tracking, Cardio Fitness Level and Score, floors climbed, Reminders to Move every hour, female health tracking, food, and water and weight logging. It offers motivation from a global social fitness network of nearly 30 million like-minded individuals around the world, and free educational insights about activity and sleep in the Fitbit app help one better understand how health and wellness tie together. 

Now standard on all Charge 4 devices, users can make secure payments from the wrist with Fitbit Pay with nearly 500 issuers at retailers in 44 countries and 10 transit systems worldwide, including Discovery Bank, FNB and RMB Private Bank, Investec and Nedbank. 

With all these new features, the Charge 4 is still powered by up to seven days of battery, as with its predecessor. 

Charge and Charge 4 Special Editions will be available in stores once they reopen and online through Takealot, Sportsmans Warehouse, Cape Union Mart, Total sports, Dis-Chem, Incredible Connection, Makro, E-Bucks, FNB and other retailers. Charge 4 will be available for R2,999 in black, rosewood and storm blue/black. Charge 4 Special Edition will be available for R3,399 in a granite reflective/black woven band plus a classic black band to swap out for workouts or a sportier look. 

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