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The 5 coolest laptops of IFA 2018

The massive, annual technology show in Berlin, Germany known as IFA 2018 is drawing to a close for the press, which means it’s time to reflect on what we’ve seen. In particular, we’re looking back at the coolest laptops we’ve seen at the show.Starting in descending order, we’re very excited to try out Asus’s new line of ZenBook laptops. This new flagships are being dubbed ‘the world’s most compact laptops’ by Asus and are aimed at general use.All three of these laptops use the clever ErgoLift Hinge first found in the Asus ZenBook S launched earlier this year, tout a massive, 95% screen-to-body ratio and feature IR webcams for biometric login via Windows Hello. The 13- and- 14-inch versions of this laptop even feature a touchpad that can double as a numeric keypad. Asus hasn’t yet revealed pricing for these laptops, but stay tuned for when they land later this October.
IFA 2018 is Europe’s biggest tech show. The TechRadar team is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and hands-on first impressions of new phones, watches and other tech as they’re announced.
First teased during its annual launch event in New York City, Acer finally showed off a working model of the Acer Swift 5 to the press during IFA 2018. Just like the Acer Swift 7 reigns as the ‘world’s thinnest laptop,’ the Swift 5 takes the title of ‘world’s lightest 15-inch laptop.’The laptop uses a new magnesium-lithium shell to achieve its trademark lightness, otherwise cramming inside all of the latest technology you’d expect from a 2018 laptop.Now, we finally know when to expect this beauty on our office’s doorstep, and how much it’ll cost you. Acer Swift 5 will start going on sale in January 2019 starting at $1,099 (around £900, AU$1,500).
The latest take on the mainstream 2-in-1 laptop from Dell doesn’t do a ton of things that are entirely new, but rather introduces features that we can only hope will come to the more premium Dell XPS laptops.Specifically, Dell has managed to produce a laptop with both its trademark, InfnityEdge thin bezels as well as a webcam that sits above the display. This might not sound like a big deal to you, but when you’ve been following Dell’s love affair with the ‘chin cam’ on XPS laptops for the past few years, you might be as excited as we are.The Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 will go for starting at $879 (about £682, AU$1,196) when it launches along with the rest of the lineup on October 2.
It’s almost become an annual event for Acer to pull the curtain off of a wild and wacky PC that will release later on in the coming year. This time, Acer showed off the Predator Triton 900, a 2-in-1 gaming laptop.The laptop’s screen sits within a frame of sorts with a swivel hinge that allows it to orient itself in truly 360-degrees of movement. To make room for the swiveling screen, the touch pad is pushed to the right of the keyboard – just like the Acer Predator 21X.Unfortunately, there’s not much more we know about the Predator Triton 900, as it was merely behind glass during the show. Regardless, we’re rather hyped for such a device, so stay tuned for a full review as soon as we can muster it.Image Credit: Tom’s Hardware
Lenovo has reinvented its concept for the truly 2-in-1 laptop with the Yoga Book C930. Simply put, this version is better in every way, from bigger, sharper screens to more powerful processors. However, those improvements have driven the asking price way up to $999 (about £750, AU$1,300) at the start. So, no longer is this product about democratizing exciting technology so much as it is about delivering that tech in a more powerful, reliable and versatile package.Price hike or not, we’d be lying if we said we weren’t intrigued by Lenovo’s sequel to one of the most exciting laptop developments of the past five years. The Lenovo Yoga Book C930 hits stores this October.

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The 5 coolest desktops at IFA 2018

At IFA 2018, we’ve seen all kinds of bizarre and amazing pieces of technology shown off to prospective consumers – everything from new smartphones, 8K televisions to smart dishwashers. But, what we’re interested in here is the amazing new desktop PCs shown off by Acer and Lenovo. The best gaming PCs are about to get a lot more interesting.We can’t wait to get our hands on the PCs that will be running all the best PC games of 2019 and beyond, and we got a sneak peek this week. So, with all the hype around the Nvidia RTX 2080, we thought it’d be a great time to take a look at some of the desktops that are going to be featuring all the new PC components. From compact PCs that’ll feel at home in your living room to massive workstations with multiple CPUs, let’s dive in. 
IFA 2018 is Europe’s biggest tech show. The TechRadar team is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and hands-on first impressions of new phones, watches and other tech as they’re announced.  
We’re going to start things off small here – literally. The Lenovo Legion C730 is a small form-factor gaming PC that you’ll be able to put next to your TV without having it stick out too much. It does have a pretty gamer-y aesthetic, but it looks slick enough.What’s more interesting is the horsepower that Lenovo shoved inside this thing. Sure, you can just configure this thing with a simple Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060, but where it’s really going to shine is in its maximum configuration, with Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 or 2080  graphics – you can have ray tracing in your living room.We’re going to get our hands on this bite sized PC this November, and the refresh will start off at €1,999 (about $2,330, £1,790, AU$3,200) for the RTX 2070 configuration and €2,699 (about $3,140, £2,420, AU$4,330) for the higher-end RTX 2080 configuration. When you consider the 8th-gen processors and copious amounts of RAM, we think that’s a pretty good price.
At IFA 2018, Acer announced a refresh for its entire Predator Orion lineup. The Acer Predator Orion 3000, 5000 and 9000 are all getting updated with the latest high-end parts. The 9000, especially, is going to be capable of some insane performance – you can kit it out with dual Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti graphics cards, 128GB of RAM and an Intel Core i9 processor. This configuration will absolutely destroy your wallet, but hey, we won’t judge.Acer will be keeping all of this high end hardware cool with its own IceTunnel 2.0 cooling solution, which combines liquid cooling and air cooling which drives heat away from the center of the case. Good thing, too, because this desktop stands to get toasty.The lesser two configurations are nothing to shake a stick at either, though. No matter what you decide to go for, the Acer Predator Orion is going to be able to cover all of your gaming bases for a very long time. We don’t know what the pricing looks like for these Orion desktops, but we put our money on them being quite expensive.
Back at E3 2018, Lenovo hinted that its refreshed Legion desktops would contain the next generation of Nvidia graphics. What we didn’t know, was that it’d be among the first gaming PCs to feature these RTX-enabled cards. Not only does this desktop look cool as heck, but it’s going to be able to pack a ton of power at a pretty reasonable price. The pricing is similar to the Lenovo Legion C730 included earlier in this list: it’ll start at €1,999 (about $2,330, £1,790, AU$3,200) for the RTX 2070 configuration, with the 2080 option coming in at €2,699 (about $3,140, £2,420, AU$4,330).The Lenovo Legion T730, apart from the graphics cards, will be available with up to 32GB of RAM, an Intel Core i7-8700K and a 512GB SSD with dual 2TB HDDs. It’ll launch in November 2018.
After IFA 2018, no one will be able to utter the word ‘excess’ without thinking of the Acer Predator X. This thing isn’t content with just having a typical high-end setup. No, the Acer Predator X is going to have two processors. Not just any processor either, these are full on server or workstation Intel Xeon chips – this goes far beyond just gaming.Regardless of what Xeon chips are included here, it’s going to generate a ton of heat, which is probably why Acer’s IceTunnel 2.0 system will be included here. Acer hasn’t finalized the configurations, but it’s pretty much impossible to think of a single situation where the Predator X won’t cost a fortune – and that’s not to mention what your power bill will look like.  
The Acer Predator Thronos isn’t technically a desktop, but more like a crazy gaming throne that not only will contain your desktop, but up to three of the best gaming monitors. We felt the need to include this insane gaming bubble on this list because it fits the bill of insane PC gaming. Not only is it a gaming chair, with room for all your tech, but it’s completely motorized, with a roof, footrests and even a cup holder. If you’re a serious gamer with deep pockets, you’re going to want to check the Acer Predator Thronos out. As is the trend that you’ve likely noticed with the other Acer products on this list, we have no idea how much this thing is going to cost or when (if?) this chair will make it to market. However, chances are that it’s not going to be cheap – but isn’t it worth it to have your own private gaming bubble that kind of looks like it can roll around?

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The 9 biggest computing reveals of IFA 2018

IFA 2018 is well underway, and the biggest consumer tech show in Europe didn’t disappoint this year, with plenty of exciting computing products being shown off. From new mobile processors to insane dual-CPU gaming PCs, we saw plenty of exciting stuff at the Berlin event. So, naturally, we here at TechRadar did what we do best: we collected all the most exciting computing reveals of IFA 2018 and listed them here. So, whether you’re looking for a new practical laptop or you want to spend thousands of dollars on a futuristic gaming pod, read on to find the next big thing in computing.
IFA 2018 is Europe’s biggest tech show. The TechRadar team is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and hands-on first impressions of new phones, watches and other tech as they’re announced.  
We finally got the launch of Whiskey Lake and Amber Lake, the next generation of mobile Intel processors. Well, when we say the ‘next generation’, we really mean ‘new 8th-generation processors,’ as these won’t be included in the Coffee Lake Refresh-led Intel 9th generation of CPUs. Regardless of whatever generation Whiskey Lake and Amber Lake belong to, Intel has pushed mobile processing power even further with these processors, with boost clocks up to 600MHz faster on the Core i7 chip. Intel claims that these new processors will increase performance over Kaby Lake R chips somewhere in the realm of double digits. Whether that’s true or not remains to be seen, but the next best Ultrabooks are going to be rocking these chips, so we can’t wait to see what they’re capable of. 
The Acer Predator Triton 900 might be one of the most bizarre gaming laptops we’ve ever seen, but for some reason, we just can’t look away. The hinge on this thing will allow you to swivel the display in any orientation you imagine, meaning that this isn’t just a 2-in-1 laptop – it’s more like a 5-in-1.This flipping screen functionality means that you can center the display right above the keyboard, so that the display is marginally closer to you – a true revolution in technology, if we’ve ever seen one. We’re not sure exactly what kind of hardware is included, but we imagine an 8th-generation Core i9 and either mobile Nvidia Turing graphics, or maybe a GTX chip. We’re sure we’ll hear more about this unique laptop at CES 2019. Image credit: Tom’s Hardware 
Dell has been killing it recently, and it looks like it’s about to offer some high-end features to its budget-minded Inspiron lineup. They’re refreshing these mainstream 2-in-1 laptops with the latest 8th-generation Intel processors, fingerprint scanners and even a webcam that’s in a reasonable location – if only the Dell XPS 13 would follow in its footsteps.The Dell Inspiron 14 5000 2-in-1 will start at just $479 and will include up to a 2TB HDD paired with a 256GB SSD. The slightly higher-end Dell 13 7000 2-in-1 will launch at a starting price of $879 with faster storage. Both the 5000 and 7000 lineups will launch on October 2.
Asus revealed a spattering of new ZenBooks at IFA 2018: the ZenBook 13, 14 and 15. Not only are these premium laptops extremely thin and light – Asus claims they’re the ‘world’s most compact laptops’ – but they’re packing in some seriously high-end specs. On top of the latest 8th-generation Intel Core processors, up to 16GB of RAM and speedy SSDs, Asus is including its exclusive NumberPad, which sees the touchpad transform into a keypad on demand. It’s all pretty cool stuff, but what’s especially interesting is that these new ZenBooks meet military-grade reliability standards. So, not only are these laptops easy to carry with you wherever you go, but you can actually carry them anywhere you travel without having to worry about them breaking. Asus says these new ZenBooks will be available in October, with a worldwide launch following later. Prices have yet to be confirmed, but we expect them to fall in line with other Ultrabooks. 
The Lenovo Yoga Book is one of the most unique laptops on the market – it’s not quite a notebook and not quite a tablet. The new Lenovo Yoga Book C930 takes this concept and brings it to the modern age with a ton of exciting new features.Where the Yoga Book of yesteryear felt like this weird combination of Windows and Android tablets, the Lenovo Yoga Book C930 brings things like an E-ink keyboard and a ‘tap to open’ mechanical hinge to the device. This all combines to make one of the most unique laptops we’ve ever used, and it feels like a natural development over the 2016 model. It’s also more powerful, packing a 7th-generation Intel Core processor, meaning that it can keep up with light computing work, instead of being limited to some casual web browsing. If this sounds as exciting to you as it does to us, you can get your hands on it in October, starting at $999 (about £750, AU$1,300).
Now, we’re getting into stuff that just radiates sheer power and opulence. While we don’t know the full specs of the previously-teased Acer Predator X, we do know that this gigantic tower will rock not one, but two Intel Xeon processors on top of whatever other high-end hardware Acer decides to pack into this thing that it teased once more during the show. We don’t know who this tower actually appeals to, but Acer did say that it’s targeted at people who are doing content creation and also gaming. However, we feel like there are more cost-effective ways to get that stuff done – Ryzen Threadripper, anyone? Either way, we expect that the Acer Predator X will be not only extremely powerful, but also obscenely expensive – we’ll know more at CES, probably. 
So, you’ve seen the best PC gaming chairs out there. But, what about a PC gaming chair that effectively is your gaming PC? That’s an untapped market if we’ve ever seen one, but don’t worry, the Acer Predator Thronos is here to save the day. Not only is this thing a fully mechanized gaming seat with a cup holder and foot rests, but it also has a mount for up to three 27-inch gaming monitors, with space for a gaming PC under the seat. It’s like a bubble of PC gaming – so immersive that you’ll forget the outside world is a thing. Again, we have no idea what the pricing or release window for this thing is going to be, but with a gaming accessory this ornate, you can expect to pay an exorbitant sum.
Acer recently launched the Acer Swift 7, which is the thinnest laptop in the world right now. It achieved this unparalleled thinness by sacrificing apparently trivial things, like CPU power and a touchpad that clicks. With the Acer Swift 5, it looks like the Taiwanese manufacturer is doubling down on this goal of unmatched portability with a thin and light machine that is apparently the lightest 15-inch laptop on the market. Acer did mention that the Swift 5 would feature a magnesium-lithium alloy build which allows it to be extremely light, without sacrificing the rigidity of the build. Add that on top of the inclusion of the latest Intel 8th-generation Core i7 and i5 processors – and we could be getting an extremely powerful laptop that’s easy to carry around when it launches for $1,099 (around £900, AU$1,500) in January.
With the Lenovo Yoga C930, the manufacturer is taking a completely different approach with its flagship 2-in-1 laptop lineup. Instead of that signature watchband style hinge that we all fell in love with, we’re instead getting a ‘speaker hinge.’ This hinge will have what is essentially a Dolby Atmos soundbar inside, delivering amazing sound. We’re not quite sure how well this new speaker hinge setup is going to work out, but it could end up being the best 2-in-1 laptop for anyone that likes to consume media on the go. Lenovo has also included a slot to store the included stylus, so you don’t have to worry about losing it the second you take it out of the package.The revolutionized Lenovo Yoga C930 is going to launch in October at $1,399 (about £1,000, AU$1,900). A steep price, but then again this is a laptop that has reinvented itself.

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Just bought a new tech gadget? Do these 5 steps right now!

It’s hard to describe the sense of excitement that comes with buying a shiny new gadget. Many people treat them like Christmas presents, spending time admiring the beautiful packaging before tearing it off.To make the moment truly memorable, you also need to make sure that nothing happens to your latest piece of techno-wizardry. In this guide you’ll explore ways to make sure that this isn’t the device that got away due to theft, breakdown or accidental damage. You’ll also discover some tips for protecting sensitive personal information on your gadget.

1. Register your product
Back in the day most gadgets came with a special warranty card which you could fill in and send to the manufacturer. These days you’re usually invited to register online when setting up your device. While most users skip past this step, make sure you don’t. If a fault develops later on, the manufacturer will need a way to check your device is still within warranty.  this is especially important if you bought your device from a third-party reseller instead of directly from the manufacturer.This is also a great way to keep informed about any available upgrades for your gadget. Once registration is complete, head over to Immobilise and register your device. If your gadget is lost or stolen, Immobilise can share data with the police to help return it to you. Registering your device details is free but we strongly recommend investing in ‘Complete Property Marking Kit’, which includes security tags and a UV pen to mark your device.  
2. Get insurance
Most countries have some form of Consumer Law which guarantees new hardware against manufacturing flaws within a certain time period. For instance, EU Consumer Law protects products in this way for up to two years from the date of purchase.Should your device be accidentally damaged or stolen however, manufactures generally aren’t obliged to fix or replace it for you.Check with your insurance provider that your own policy covers your new gadget. Make sure to retain your proof of purchase in case you need to make a claim. If you only have household insurance, check your policy wording to see if it applies should your device be lost or damaged outside your home. If you don’t already have insurance, search online for providers who offer protection for electronic devices. Payment is usually made monthly but for extra piece of mind you can pay by the year if you prefer.

3. Boost your security
While the loss of your device might be upsetting, the damage caused by identity theft can last for years. If you’re using an Android or iOS device make sure to enable device encryption. Choose a secure PIN code of at least 8 digits. If you’ve bought a computer or laptop, consider using built-in software such as Microsoft’s Bitlocker or Apple’s FileVault. To encrypt your personal files. Use a good quality password to make sure that thieves can’t easily access your data. (see our guide on choosing a strong password)Apple device owners should enable ‘Find my iPhone’. Despite the name this allows you to track any Apple device if it goes missing, then remotely disable it. More recent versions of Android also have a similar feature.Most modern gadgets offer a way to back up your data automatically. Make sure to enable this during setup to keep your data safe. Windows users should also consider installing anti-virus software.  
4. Remove bloatware
Many devices come with unnecessary ‘bloatware’: superfluous apps provided by third parties. These usually just slow down your gadget and provide you with little benefit. This is a particular problem for Android devices, as many vendors use their own customized version of this OS.When you first receive a device, check for any apps you don’t recognize and remove them. Generally, the system won’t let you remove anything vital unless you can re-install. For instance, Apple now allows you to remove native iOS apps such as ‘Mail’ from devices but you can always download them again from the App Store.If you’re device has already been setup, perform a factory reset so you can go through the process yourself. This will remove any apps which aren’t bundled with the OS itself.If your gadget runs Windows 10, make a note of your product serial number before re-installing so you can re-activate Windows.

5. Update, update, update…
On first launch your gadget will usually check for any software/firmware updates automatically. If not, you should do this yourself once setup is complete. Some devices need to be connected to a computer to run and check for updates via a specialized app such as iTunes. If this is the case, make sure the app itself is up to date before plugging in your gizmo.For gadgets running on battery power, make sure your charger is plugged in before you begin any updates. If you have a new laptop there may be a newer operating system available. Before downloading, check the developer’s website to ensure its compatible with your device. 
Just got a new device? These are the Apple and Android apps you should try first

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Pre-orders open for Asus ROG Zephyrus S – the ‘world’s thinnest gaming laptop’

Customers in the US can now pre-order the super-slim Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531, which the company claims is the thinnest gaming laptop in the world. The Zephyrus S GX531 isn’t quite as powerful as its predecessor, but it compensates with a chassis that’s noticeably thinner (just 14.95mm at its thickest point) and tips the scales at a mere 4.63 pounds (2.1kg).The Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX531 is equipped with an Intel Core i7-8750H processor, and you can choose from an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q or GTX 1060 GPU.
Something a little smaller

Starting today, you can also place your order for the Asus ROG Strix Scar II GL704 – a remarkably compact 17-inch gaming laptop. Asus has fitted a 17.3-inch screen into a 15.7-inch laptop frame, using super-thin bezels similar to those of the new Zephyrus.Despite its small size, the Strix Scar II doesn’t skimp on the hardware. The little powerhouse comes equipped with either an Intel Core i7-8750H processor and either a GTX 1050 Ti or GTX 1070 GPU.
Both laptops also come with Asus’ new Armoury Crate software, which combines all of the company’s PC management tools into one handy package. With Armoury Crate, you can control lighting, receive system information reports, create game and application profiles, and adjust all key hardware settings.The two laptops are due to launch in the UK in October, but Asus hasn’t yet announced release dates for other territories.
The best laptops of 2018

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Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8180 for Windows 10 on ARM flexes on Geekbench

While the Snapdragon 850 processor for Windows 10 on ARM devices debuted at IFA 2018 with the Lenovo Yoga C630 WOS, we’re already hearing about a successor from manufacturer Qualcomm in the Snapdragon 8180, previously referred to as Snapdragon 1000.A processor going by the aforementioned new name has appeared on publicly listed Geekbench 4 test result postings, first caught by WinFuture. The German technology news outlet suspects that the processor is early in development, judging by information on the Geekbench 4 results page.Specifically, the processor was clearly being tested on a 32-bit version of Windows 10, but will be expected to run on the 64-bit version of the operating system when it launches. Not much more can be confidently sussed out from these benchmarks that wasn’t already known or expected from the processor based on previous leaks, but it does put the possible power profile of the chip into perspective.
Windows 10 on ARM goes bigger
This Snapdragon 8180 processor is widely expected to be based upon processor-maker ARM’s latest Cortex A76 cores, and run on up to 15 watts (W) of power. With 9W more power available to it than the Snapdragon 835 or 850 available now in Windows 10 devices, it’s no surprise that these numbers show a 50% gain in performance over the Snapdragon 835.This is promising news for Qualcomm’s presence on Windows, because a lack of power for the price was the most common complaint among reviews of the first laptops running on the Snapdragon 835. However, what will this increase in power draw mean for the strongest claim Qualcomm’s laptops hold: incredible battery life?With Snapdragon 850 not even available in a Windows 10 laptop at the time of writing, we’re likely several months off from a public Snapdragon 8180 release. Judging by these new details, there could be life in Qualcomm’s plans for Windows domination yet.
These are the best laptops we’ve test this past year
Via WccfTech

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