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LG releases world’s first 8K OLED TV

LG Electronics (LG) has announced the start of sales of the world’s first 8K OLED TV (model 88Z9), with pre-orders for the 88-inch set starting this week in South Korea. The TV will be available in North America, while Europe will follow in the third quarter of the year. While Samsung has released 8K TVs in South Africa, they are QLED rather than OLED units.

Click below to read more about the TVs.

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As LG’s largest OLED TV to date, the 8K OLED TV innovation was made possible by LG’s proprietary display technology. LG says the new model highlights the superiority of OLED over conventional LED displays. The TV employs an advanced panel with over 33 million self-emitting pixels to deliver lifelike colors in a wide viewing angle, an infinite contrast ratio, and true black. Images are exceptionally sharp on the 88-inch TV thanks to 8K Ultra HD resolution (7,680 x 4,320), equivalent to 16 times the number of pixels in full HD and four times that of UHD.

The performance of LG’s 8K OLED panel is enhanced by the company’s second-generation α (Alpha) 9 Gen 2 8K intelligent processor. The processor elevates picture and sound quality with deep learning technology and has access to an extensive database of visual information. This allows the chip to optimise content by recognising source quality and implementing an algorithm that assists in creating stunningly real images. With the α9 Gen 2 8K processor, LG’s 8K 88-inch 8K OLED TV boasts enhanced processing capabilities with effective 8K upscaling and improved noise reduction to 6-steps from 4-steps in the 4K version, resulting in the most life-like 8K picture when upgrading from 4K (3,840 x 2,160) or 2K (1,920 x 1,080) content. The processor also analyses ambient conditions to achieve an optimal level of screen brightness.

“Being the first to market with the world’s first and largest 8K OLED TV shows our commitment to leading the ultra-premium TV segment and delivering the ultimate viewing experience,” said Brian Kwon, president of the Mobile Communications and Home Entertainment companies at LG. “LG was a pioneer in bringing OLED to market and we will continue to introduce state-of-art TV technologies that push the boundaries of what’s possible in home entertainment.”

The LG 88Z9 increases viewer immersion with its impressive audio performance. Sound quality is boosted by an intelligent algorithm that can up-mix two-channel audio to deliver convincing virtual 5.1 surround sound. Deep learning significantly improves output by analysing source content to produce enhanced sound effects in movies, deeper bass in music, and clearer voices in sporting events. Users can adjust the sound to suit viewing conditions or let the TV set the best sound levels based on the environment. 

The LG 8K OLED TV comes with Dolby Atmos for incredibly realistic sound and intelligently fine-tunes content compatible with Dolby Vision. The TV supports HDMI 2.1, allowing viewers the opportunity to enjoy 8K content at a fast 60 frames per second. The TV also supports automatic low latency mode (ALLM), variable refresh rate (VRR) and enhanced audio return channel (eARC).

In some markets, the LG 8K OLED TV will offer built-in versions of both the Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa for flexibility, convenience, and control of the TV and connected smart devices.

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IFA 2019: Dell puts 10th gen Intel Core in laptops

Ahead of IFA, Dell has announced its consumer portfolio with new form factors and the addition of 10th Gen Intel Core processors to its current XPS and Inspiron portfolio. It is likely that the devices will go on display at IFA 2019 in Berlin at the beginning of September.

Click below to read more about the updated portfolio.

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Dell says its latest consumer portfolio refresh can deliver performance gains needed for compute-intensive, demanding, multi-thread workloads, while still handling 4K content efficiently. In doing so, Dell says it gives heavyweight performance in a thin, light and portable design.

XPS 13

The refreshed XPS 13 will be available in the USA on 27 August, along with some of the models housing Intel 10th Gen Core U series processors, while i7 hexacore models will be available in October.

With the new Killer AX1650 (2×2) built on Intel WiFi 6 Chipset, wireless connectivity is three times as fast as the previous generation. Along with Dell CinemaColor, Dolby Vision and an optional 4K Ultra HD InfinityEdge display, the XPS 13 will remain eye candy for those glued to their screen. 

The XPS will be available with either Windows 10 or Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, the latter serving as the foundation of the XPS 13 developer edition, now in its 9th generation. Ubuntu versions also mean lower cost due to not having to pay for Windows bundled with the computer. 

Inspiron 14 7000

With the latest 10th Gen Intel Core processors, Dell says it is putting premium materials and performance to its Inspiron line with the introduction of the new Inspiron 14 7000 ultralight laptops. Weighing under 1.1 kg, this impressively portable design was achieved through introducing a lightweight yet durable magnesium alloy chassis.

It features a new lid-open sensor, Connected Modern Standby and fingerprint reader built into the power button. The system signs on securely and starts in a flash. The stylish laptop features all-around narrow borders with 100% sRGB colour coverage, great for mobile multitasking.

For more specs, details, pricing and availability, follow Gadget on Twitter.

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Acer’s latest Chromebook means serious business

The latest Acer Chromebooks for business have arrived in South Africa. BRYAN TURNER reviewed the Acer Chromebook 715.

Click below to read the review.

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The Chromebook market has been perceived as very consumer-focused, until the recent introduction of management tools for Chrome OS.

To complement these corporate management tools, Acer has released the Chromebook 715, aimed at the business person that works in the cloud, in South Africa.

The unit we reviewed contained an Intel Core i5-8250U, 16GB of RAM, and 128GB of eMMC storage. All of this was housed in a sturdy aluminium body. 

On the left side, the computer features a USB Type-C port for charging and data transfer, a standard USB Type-A port, and a headphone jack, while on the right it has a Kensington Lock, another USB Type-C port just for connectivity and a microSD card slot. 

When open, the narrow bezelled 15.6″-inch display has a Full HD resolution for crisp lettering in documents. The wide colour gamut also ensures that colours are accurately represented on screen. 

The keyboard features a first for Chromebooks: a num-pad. This is especially useful for those working with spreadsheets on Google Sheets or Excel Online, or accountants working in web apps like Xero.

The overall design of this computer shows the professional look Acer was going for with a business-facing Chromebook. It has a grey aluminium body, which looks heavy, but comes to a mere 1.8kg. It’s much lighter than it looks for an almost 16″ laptop.

The performance is great and switching between web apps is fast. This is thanks to the embedded i5 processor, which doesn’t make as much of a noise as its Windows counterparts.

The computer isn’t for the “slashie”: those who run their personal and business lives on the same device. As a result, games don’t run on the computer because it doesn’t run applications. This asserts the device’s status as a purely business-focused device.

Apart from the hardware features, the computer is handled via the lightweight Chrome OS. 

Chrome OS is Google’s answer for those who only work with web apps, and don’t want their computer’s performance hindered by unnecessary apps. With the increasing power offered from web apps, the computer application as we know is likely to disappear eventually. 

With Google’s Apps for Work platform, the Chromebook lends itself to the same admin management tools that exist on other platforms. 
The integrated 45 Wh battery may seem small but operates for around 9 hours, thanks to the lightweight software and good battery management.  

Overall, for those who want a no-nonsense approach to computing, the Acer Chromebook 715 may be their best next device. However, its pricing at R7,999 may deter those who would expect to pay less.

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