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Lenovo embraces AMD for faster server computing

Lenovo has jumped on the AMD train early with its ThinkSystem SR servers, which enables faster single-socket server processing at a fraction of the cost of competitors.

Click below to read about the server upgrades.

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Lenovo has announced the Lenovo ThinkSystem SR635 and SR655 server platforms, two of the industry’s most powerful single-socket servers. As businesses are tasked with doing more with less, the new solutions provide the performance of a dual-socket server at the cost of a single-socket. 

These new additions to Lenovo’s expansive server portfolio are powered by next-generation AMD Epyc 7002 Series processors and were designed specifically to handle customers’ evolving, data-intensive workloads, such as video security, software-defined storage, and network intelligence, as well as support for virtualised and edge environments. The result is a solution that packs power along with efficiency for customers who place a premium on balancing throughput and security with easy scalability.

Doug Fisher, COO and Senior VP of Business Units, Lenovo Data Center Group, says: “Lenovo’s endless pursuit of innovations to accelerate our customers’ intelligent transformation has been paramount in our rise to become one of the fastest-growing data center OEMs in the world. Today Lenovo is expanding our AMD relationship with new, fully optimised solutions to help our joint customers address complex and data-intensive workloads, enabling them to do more with less while still providing uncompromised end-to-end security.”

The technological breakthroughs and increased capabilities of the new platforms are in line with recent governmental commitment to further implement fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technology across industry verticals. As South Africa continues to implement new, data- and processing-intensive technology, it is more necessary than ever that the backbone behind it be tailored for growing workloads.

Organisations are juggling business priorities with tight budgets. Lenovo’s new ThinkSystem SR server platforms allow customers to run more workloads on fewer servers, and offer up to 73 percent savings on potential software licensing, empowering users to accelerate emerging workloads more efficiently. Customers can also realise a reduction in total cost of ownership (TCO) by up to 46 percent2. Further supporting these advances in workload efficiency and TCO savings are the ThinkSystem SR635 and SR655 servers’ 16 world records, including two for energy efficiency3. The net result of all these enhancements is a better price for performance.

The Lenovo ThinkSystem SR provide more throughput, lower latency, and higher core density, as well as the largest NVMe drive capacity of any single-socket on the market. Beyond that, the new 2nd Gen AMD Epyc processor-based systems also provide a solid opportunity for the enablement of additional hyper-converged infrastructure solutions. This gives Lenovo the ability to offer customers SAN and other certified nodes and future ThinkAgile software-defined appliances for simple deployment, management, and scalability.

The new Lenovo ThinkSystem SR635 and SR655 solutions are now available through Lenovo sales representatives and channel partners across the globe.

For more information, please visit https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/data-center/single-socket-innovation.


1 Software licensing:

(a.) 9x x3650 M5 servers -18 sockets VMware vSphere 6 w/ 5 years support ($9,390.48 per socket) =$169,020

(b.) 5x SR655 servers – 5 sockets VMware vSphere 6 w/ 5 years support = $46,950 **software licensing costs taken from DCSC (https://dcsc.lenovo.com/#/) on 6.2.19

2 TCO Calculation: Retrieved 6.9.2019: https://amd.valuestoryapp.com/epyc/sales;  https://dcsc.lenovo.com/#/ | VMware vSphere 6 w/ 5 years support ($9,390.48 per socket) | 9x x3650 M5 servers (Xeon E5-2699 v3 2.3GHz) – 2 CPUs x 18 cores = 320 VMs | Total TCO: $389,908 | 5x SR655 (AMD EPYC 7002 @ 2.2GHz (225W) – 1 CPU x 64 cores = 320 VMs  | Total TCO: $179,822

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Volvo unveils new XC40 plug-in hybrid

Volvo’s new T5 Twin Engine petrol-electric hybrid powertrain debuts in the XC40.

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Volvo reaches an important milestone in its industry-leading powertrain electrification programme with the debut of the new T5 Twin Engine hybrid system in the multi-award-winning XC40 SUV. The introduction makes Volvo the only manufacturer to offer plug-in hybrid versions across its entire product range.

Power and efficiency

The T5 Twin Engine combines Volvo’s new 1.5-litre three-cylinder 180hp petrol engine with an 82hp electric motor in a hybrid system that delivers 262hp. This makes it the most powerful powertrain in the XC40 range. This power is balanced with strong environmental credentials: preliminary WLTP figures for CO2 emissions are from just 38g/km (where 19-inch wheels are specified), while combined cycle fuel consumption is expected to be up to 141.1mpg.

The compact, energy-dense lithium-ion battery has a capacity of 10.7kWh, enabling exhaust emissions-free electric-only driving of up to 28.6 miles (provisional data), according to driving conditions and battery charge levels.

The new T5 Twin Engine joins two diesel and three petrol powertrains in the XC40 range, with an all-electric model joining the line-up next year.

A first for the CMA platform

The T5 Twin Engine is also the first to be engineered for use in Volvo’s CMA (Compact Modular Architecture) platform. It is front-wheel drive, in contrast to the established T8 Twin Engine (390hp) powertrain deployed in larger models built on the SPA (Scalable Product Architecture) platform, which has all-wheel-drive capability.

XC40 T5 Twin Engine models come with a recharging outlet on the nearside front wing. A 4.5m cable with a three-pin plug is provided as standard.

The powertrain’s efficiency and performance are supported by a new seven-speed twin-clutch automatic transmission, featured for the first time in a new-generation Volvo model.

Improved charging

Charging via the fast-charge cable will completely recharge the car’s high-voltage battery in as little as 2.5 hours. Fully charging via the three-pin plug cable takes between 3.5 and 6 hours.

Every inch the modern Volvo

Displaying cool, clean, contemporary lines, the XC40 blends Scandinavian style with desirability and dynamism customers seek from a compact SUV.

According to Greg Maruszewski, Managing Director of Volvo Car South Africa, South African motorists are definitely “going green”.

“We are seeing this with the Volvo XC90 T8 Plug-in hybrid; interest in this vehicle is at an all-time high. There is currently no plan for the new XC40 plug in hybrid version to come to South Africa but if it did, we would anticipate a high level of interest.”

XC40 T5 Twin Engine technical specifications*

Transmission                             Seven-speed twin-clutch automatic, front-wheel drive

Engine configuration                 In-line, three cylinders

Engine capacity                        1,477cc

Max. engine output                    180hp/5,800rpm

Max. engine torque                    265Nm/1,500-3,000rpm

Max. electric motor output         82hp

Max. electric motor torque         160Nm

Battery type                              Lithium-ion

Battery capacity                        10.7kWh

Total system max. output          262hp

0-62mph acceleration                 7.3 seconds

Top speed                                127mph

WLTP CO2 emissions                 38g/km (19-inch wheels); 41g/km (20-inch wheels); 43g/km (21-inch wheels)

WLTP fuel consumption             112.8-141.1mpg

WLTP all-electric range              26.1-28.6 miles

First deliveries to UK customers from February 2020.

* All technical data is preliminary

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Huawei Watch GT 2 gets on-wrist calling

Huawei’s new Watch GT 2 features slimmer bezels and the ability at accept calls directly on the watch, thanks to a new integrated microphone.

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Huawei has unveiled its second generation smartwatches, the Watch GT 2 46mm and 42mm series, powered by the proprietary Kirin A1 chip. It is Huawei’s first smartwatch with an all-in-one 3D glass screen, creating a wider, borderless display. The new smartwatch delivers more sports modes with richer programmes, as well as adding Bluetooth calling and music playback functionalities, enhancing comprehensive health and fitness monitoring capabilities.

The previous generation Watch GT was loved by users because of its impressive battery life. Watch GT 2 goes in further, being equipped with Huawei’s proprietary Kirin A1 chipset to further improve on battery life. The Kirin A1 chipset integrates an advanced Bluetooth processing unit, a new audio processing unit, a low power consumption application processor and a separate power management unit. 

The application processor uses the Cortex-M7 processor to achieve ultra-low power consumption of 10uA/MHz, which is far below the industry average of 30uA/MHZ.

In daily use, the Watch GT 2 46mm series can operate continuously for up to two weeks, with both the intelligent heart rate monitor and call notification functions on and weekly usage of up to 30 minutes of Bluetooth calls; up to 30 minutes of music playback; up to 90 minutes of exercise and using the scientific sleep mode at night. 

In the classic mode, the smaller Watch GT 2 42mm series can operate continuously for up to one week. According to Huawei, the 46mm series achieves battery life of 30 hours under the GPS tracked sports mode, while the 42mm series reaches 15 hours.

The 46mm series is equipped with a 1.39-inch AMOLED HD precision touch screen with display resolution of 454 x 454 pixels, wider colour gamut, and ultra-thin design that is superior to LCD screens, achieving fuller screen colour and higher contrast. 

The 46mm series connects with Huawei mobile phones via Bluetooth and supports Bluetooth calls at up to 150 meters. The watch also supports phonebook functionality so users can save friends’ contact information on the watch to look them up. At the same time, the watch comes with large storage capacity, housing up to 500 MP3 songs. 

In the sports mode, it is compatible with 15 sports, including eight outdoor sports (running, walking, climbing, hiking, trail running, cycling, open water, triathlon) and seven indoor sports (walking, running, cycling, swimming pool, free training, elliptical machine, rowing machine). 

For these 15 sports modes, the watch provides full-scale monitoring of approximately 190 types of data. The watch provides targeted pre-exercise data analysis for different sports, and data recording analysis during the exercise. Huawei says the watch can also offer professional advice after a workout.

The watch can help monitor bradycardia, a type of very slow heart rhythm. Unless in the sports mode, the user will be notified if heart rate is above 100 bpm or below 50 bpm for more than 10 minutes. Users can also view the data in the Huawei Sports and Health App to keep an eye on their health in real time.

In addition to heart rate monitoring, TruSleep 2.0 monitors sleep quality, real-time heart rate, sleep breathing quality, and uses big data analysis to rate sleep quality. It combines Huawei AI technology to accurately analyze sleep problems and provides sleep improvement suggestions, as well as personalised sleep services and reports to help users improve sleep quality. 

The Watch GT 2 will be available later this year. 

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