ASRock at CES 2017

ASRock was at CES this year in a suite so they could meet with press, buyers and marketing people without yelling over top of the crowds. They also did this as there were trying to show off a couple of new products they have been working on that are still working on Intel certification. ASRock is most known for their motherboards and they certainly had quite a lineup of new Kaby Lake Intel boards as well as some new boards for AMDs Ryzen CPU. Some of their high-end Intel boards now come with 5GbE networking. Of course 10GbE is already available in the commercial space for servers and large companies, but for the general consumer, 5GbE is the gap-filler that ASRock is hoping will take off.



It's purely cosmetic, but ASRock has taken to putting themes on their motherboards and the PCB, slots, cooling solutions and more reflex different designs. As more PCs have windows and RGB lighting, ASRock wants to make sure you keep your theme going - and take it a step above the competition. It's pretty nifty.

ASRock is jumping back into network as well, but the piece they are excited about is the new Micro-STX platform. If you've heard about it before CES, you're a lot more connected than me (and probably are), but this was the first time that I'd seen this form factor. The boards are rectangular like a standard motherboard, but they are much, much smaller. The amazing thing is that ASRock is working with the 7th-Gen Intel Kaby Lake platform here as well and the board uses DDR4 SODIMMs. 


Micro-STX Front


Micro-STX Back


You'll notice that there aren't a lot of traditional SATA connectors or graphics card slots. ASRock is moving to M.2 for storage and has included four slots on the back. For graphics card upgrades, they are working with NVIDIA primarily to produce MXM form factor cards to be used on this system. As you can see, there are a few bottlenecks remaining, but ASRock is betting big on this new platform. Why not? You could easily populate the M.2 with 3TB of ultra-fast storage, an 802.11ac module, Kaby Lake CPU at crazy speeds and a new MXM GTX 1080 graphics card.



The system they had running was very quiet and performed like a champ. It's a brave new world and ASRock is hoping they get to help pave the road to the future with the Micro-STX system they had on display.

For more images from our ASRock visit, please check the gallery here. Also, you can view our entire CES coverage over here.


Lenovo K8 Note to ship with stock Android

Apparently Lenovo has been listening to their customers and has made the decision to ditch their Pure Vibe UI and ship their upcoming K8 Note with the stock Android experience. Most companies for some reason have felt that they need to add a different user interface to their phones to help set themselves apart, unfortunately adding a different skin to Android only slows things down and in some cases just confuses everyone. I think this is a trend that most Android users would probably be ok with if other companies decide to go the same route. Gadgets360 has the story.

Lenovo has confirmed that going forward, it will be abandoning its Vibe Pure UI Android customization which ran on top of its recent Android smartphones in almost all markets. The company will be switching to stock Android experience, and the Lenovo K8 Note will be the first smartphone from the company to ship with Android 7.1.1 Nougat out-of-the-box. Anuj Sharma, Head of Product Marketing, Smartphones, Lenovo MBG India confirmed the news to Gadgets 360.

"What we have done in last 11 months is we looked at what we had in terms of software perspective. We have been close to the consumers and we saw what they were asking for. There was a certain trend and we have now decided to cut the Vibe Pure UI off from our phones. So you will now get the stock Android which consumers have been asking for," Sharma told Gadgets 360.

ZTE Latest Big-Screen Phone Packs Dual-Cameras for $129

ZTE has made a few premium devices and a whole host of other entry-level devices - and most of them have been really good. Their latest device is an entry-level device with some great features - including dual-cameras. The ZTE Blade ZMax has a huge battery as well. It packs in a whopping 4,080mAh battery that feeds a pretty solid device. It won't blow you away in terms of performance or image quality, but it offers amazing performance and features for the dollar is a great value.

What stands out about this year's model is that it has dual cameras -- an unusual feature at this price. A slew of $200 phones unveiled at CES all featured the same iPhone 7 Plus–like setup, but the Blade ZMax is the first to offer it for less than $150. With the pair of sensors on the back, you can take pictures with artificially blurred backgrounds to highlight your subject. The Blade ZMax's 16-megapixel RGB sensor captures color information, while its 2-megapixel monochrome counterpart takes care of details.

Source: Engadget

Razer Atheris is Ultimate Notebook / Gaming Mouse

According to the marketing people over at Razer, the new Atheris is the ultimate mouse for both productivity and performance. It is designed for notebook users as it is wireless and has incredible battery life. You can expect 350 hours of use on a single set of batteries. Also, it is quick enough for gaming and is almost lag-free. If you want one mouse to do it all, this can work on the road and it sits comfortably at your workstation or your gaming rig.


Nokia 8

The latest and greatest from Nokia is launching, dubbed the Nokia 8. This new Nokia phone is using the Nokia name but it a partnership by a company called HMD Global which hopes to bring Nokia back to its former glory days.

Now it's no surprise that the smartphone market is crowded, with Samsung and Apple being the big players and a whole truckload of others all scrambling for market share. The Nokia 8 has something that no one else does with a new "killer feature" which they are calling the 'bothie'. So basically what the 'bothie' feature will do is use both cameras at the same time which will allow you to either take a picture or record video of you as well as what you are looking at. Now the idea seems a little silly, and who knows how popular it'll be, but for the somehow hugely popular YouTube streaming audience it might actually be something they grab onto. Now of course, if it is to take off, I would assume everyone else will come out with the same thing, but until that time, the Nokia 8 is your device.

The Guardian has more.

Nokia has launched the most important new handset in its attempts to revitalize the once world-beating brand for the modern smartphone era dominated by Samsung, Apple and China’s Huawei.

The Nokia 8 marks the culmination of efforts to bring the Finnish telecoms brand back to the mainstream handset market, which kicked off six months ago with the nostalgia-inducing remake of the classic Nokia 3310 feature phone.

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