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Lenovo announces 10th Gen Intel Core laptops

Lenovo has announced its latest ThinkPad laptops providing smarter productivity, connectivity and security experiences built for the demanding workforce.

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With the latest X1 Carbon running Intel’s 10th Generation CPU’s, Lenovo unleashes its first commercial platform part of the Project Athena program, ready to take on a full day’s work with all-day battery life and the latest Wi-Fi 6 connectivity.  

The updated commercial laptop line-up also includes a 10th Gen Intel Core processor refresh on the premium ThinkPad X1 Yoga, the ThinkPad X390 and the ThinkPad T490.

The ThinkPad features industry-leading security with ThinkShield, the ability to stay connected with LTE-A Wireless WAN and Wi-Fi 6 in the latest select models. The ThinkPad line-up continues to offer premium usability experience through vivid high-definition displays, immersive Dolby Audio, and the renowned ThinkPad keyboard.

In today’s tech world, security is a top priority, and we have addressed this need by adding  ThinkShield security features to our machines. The hybrid HD+IR Camera with ThinkShutter protects users from prying eyes. Secure multi-factor authentication is possible with Windows Hello, along with a match-on-host fingerprint reader. The lightweight form factor, versatile connectivity options, and long battery life empower you to achieve more, no matter where your work takes you.

Jerry Paradise, vice president, Commercial Product and Portfolio Management, Intelligent Devices Group at Lenovo, says: “We know from user insights that the next-gen workforce expects much more flexible working methods. This includes the need to work from anywhere, anytime with technological tools at their disposal that are fast, secure, intuitive and mobile. Our unparalleled family of ThinkPad laptops gives business professionals smarter productivity, security and connectivity experiences along with greater choice in selecting the device that’s right for them.”
Lenovo provided the following features for the notebooks:

ThinkPad X1 Carbon

  • Up to a 6-core 10th Gen Intel Core processor delivering multi-threaded performance, support for brilliant 4K content, and best-in-class connectivity with Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) and Thunderbolt 3 for on-the-go productivity whether you’re in the office, with a customer or somewhere in between
  • Project Athena enabling optimized battery life, best-in-class connectivity with Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) and more that are co-engineered with Intel for mobile performance whether users are plugged in or on battery. 
  • 14.9mm thin and starting at 1 kg.
  • A diverse selection of 14-inch display options is available, including the stunning 500 nit, 10 bit, 4K Dolby Vision enabled panel, or the option of a new, brighter 400 nit FHD display
  • The Dolby Atmos Speaker System, featuring two top-firing tweeters and two down-firing woofers, delivers a more immersive soundscape
  • Four far-field microphones enhance the experience of conferencing and collaboration
  • Enjoy up to 18.5 hours of productivity, and when the power gets low, Rapid Charge can deliver 80 percent battery in under 60 minutes
  • Global LTE-A Wireless WAN and new Wi-Fi 6 Gig+ option offer lightning-fast connection speeds for an always-on experience

ThinkPad X1 Yoga

  • Up to 6-core 10th Gen Intel Core processors
  • Weighs less than 1.4kg and is 15.5mm thin
  • Reinforced, precision machined “Iron Grey” aluminium chassis
  • Now supports all docking solutions, including ThinkPad Mechanical Dock
  • Enjoy up to 18.3 hours of productivity, and when the power gets low, Rapid Charge can deliver 80 percent battery in just 60 minutes.
  • Dolby Vision enabled display and Dolby Atmos Speaker System with far-field mics
  • Global LTE-A Wireless WAN
  • Integrated ThinkPad Pen Pro offers precise, multi-mode pen input.

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OnePlus 7 Pro scores high in audio playback

OnePlus’s latest flagship scored a high 65 in DxOMark’s Audio Scoring tests.

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Introduced earlier this year as OnePlus’s latest flagship, the OnePlus 7 Pro packs a lot of punch into a premium phone that is priced below many of its competitors, starting with a 6.67-inch Fluid AMOLED QHD+ display that can run at 90 Hz. A Snapdragon 855 SoC, along with 6GB/12GB of RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of storage ensure that it can handle a multi-application workload. Rounding out the specs are a 48MP main camera that includes separate ultra-wide-angle and telephoto camera modules. As is now common in audio specs for flagship devices, the OnePlus 7 Pro supports Dolby Atmos and has a dedicated microphone for noise cancellation.

We put the OnePlus 7 Pro through DxOMark’s rigorous Audio test suite to measure its performance both at playing audio back through its built-in speakers and at recording sound using its built-in microphones. In this review, DxOMark broke down how it fared in a variety of tests and in several common use cases.

Audio specifications include:

  • Dual stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos
  • Dedicated microphone for noise cancellation

About DxOMark Audio tests: For scoring and analysis in our smartphone audio reviews, DxOMark engineers perform a variety of objective tests and undertake more than 20 hours of perceptual evaluation under controlled lab conditions. This article highlights the most important results of our testing. Note that we evaluate both Playback and Recording using only the device’s built-in hardware and default apps.

Read more in DxOMarks’s detailed review.

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Nedbank to offer Mara phones to customers

Nedbank has partnered with Mara Phones to offer South African-made smartphones to its clients, along with finance options.

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Nedbank says it has partnered with Mara Phones to offer its South African-made Android smartphones to the bank’s clients, via flexible financing options. Pricing has not yet been announced, but the devices will be preloaded with the Nedbank Money App, suggesting that they will be heavily subsidised in order to drive app usage. Nedbank has apparently purchased several thousand of the handsets.

Mara Phones, a division of the Mara Corporation, recently launched what it claimed to be the first African-based smartphone-manufacturing factory in Kigali. President Cyril Ramaphosa opened the second factory in Durban on 17 October 2019. Each factory has a capacity to produce a few million smartphones units per year.

Ahuti Chug, chair of Mara Phones, said: “Our aim is to increase smartphone penetration on the continent by providing problem-solving, tailored solutions to for our customers and partners. This partnership strengthens our vision to change the narrative by demonstrating that Africans can produce high quality tech products. 

“The importance of quality and affordable smartphones cannot be overstated as they enable connectivity and efficiency.  It is part of Mara Phones vision and strategy to partner with financial institutions to offer solutions to consumers.” 

According to Ciko Thomas, Group Managing Executive for Nedbank Retail and Business Banking, the partnership resulted from Nedbank’s recognition of the close alignment of the Mara Phones philosophy with Nedbank’s purpose to use its financial expertise to do good. 

“Like Nedbank, Mara Phones is committed to leveraging technology to enable financial inclusion and enhanced education, healthcare and agriculture outcomes in South Africa and across Africa,” he says, “Through this transaction, the ability of both organisations to deliver on this vision will be significantly enhanced.”

The full details of Nedbank’s Mara Phones offer are still under wraps, but Thomas said the Nedbank offer would be a pre-packaged, high-value proposition, with the smartphones preloaded with the Nedbank Money App, and delivered via flexible finance options that make it easy for clients to pay for their devices.

Thomas says that Nedbank offer is unlikely to be network-specific. 

“We believe our clients should be able to use the mobile network of their own choosing, so we will be offering some, or all, of our Nedbank-bundled, dual-SIM Mara Phones devices without SIM cards, allowing the new phone owners to use prepaid voice and data packages from any cellular service provider.”

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