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Qualcomm Boosts Mobiles With Snapdragon 660, 630 Chips

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Qualcomm presents a pair of chipsets for lower-cost smartphones-- the Snapdragon 660 and 630 SoCs, upgrades on the Snapdragon 652 and 625 chips offering more power and faster connectivity.

Snapdragon 660The Snapdragon 660 and 630 feature the X12 LTE modem found inside the high-end Snapdragon 820 SoC, together with Bluetooth 5 and, in the case of the 660, 2 x 2 MIMO wifi. CPU and GPU speeds get an increase, as Qualcomm says the 660 is 20% faster than the 652, while the 630 is 10% faster.

The two chips are built using a 14nm process, and support up to 8GB of RAM. The 660 has an 8-core Kryo CPU and an Adreno 512 GPU, while the 630 has 8 Cortex A53 cores and an Adreno 508 GPU.

Cooler Master Intros Master Box Lite 5

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Gamer customers wanting a stylish PC chassis on a budget might be interested in the Cooler Master MasterBox Lite 5, an ATX mid-tower chassis featuring a "DarkMirror" front panel.

Coolerblaster lite As a more mainstream PC case the MasterBox Lite 5 has little in terms of thrills of frills. What it does have is a PSU cover for the hiding of cables, four 120mm fans, space in the front and rear for liquid cooling radiators and up to 400mm space for the fitting of graphics cards. Storage comes in a single 2.5-inch SSD mount plus two combo 3.5-/2.5-inch mounts for two more HDDs or SSDs.

The trim is customisable in either red, black or white, and a transparent acrylic side panel allows one to show off internal components. Customers wanting to customise the chassis further can even get downloadable 3D printing schematics for the top or buttom trim.

Logitech Puts Romer G Switches in K840 Keyboard

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Logitech announces the K840-- a keyboard promising an "elevated typing experience" through the use of the company's Romer G mechanical switches.

Logitech k840Typically found in the Logitech gamer keyboards, the Romer G switches promise to make the K840 ideal for a "productive environment at home or in the office." Romer G switches claim a lifespan of over 70 million keystrokes and give "near instant" key feedback for improved typing, coding or programming.


HP Updates Elite x2 Hybrid

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HP presents the latest generation of Elite x2 notebook-tablet hybrid-- the 1012 G2, a Microsoft Surface Pro rival featuring the usual tablet-plus-keyboard form factor.

Elite x2The 1012 G2 features a 12.3-inch 2736 x 1824 resolution display complete with Gorilla Glass 4 protection and Active Pen support. Inside the aluminium chassis is a choice of 7th generation Core i3, i5 or i7 CPU (maxing out at the Core i7-7600U), up to 16GB LPDDR3-1866 RAM, up to 1TB SSD storage and a 47 watt-hour battery promising up to 10 hours of use on a single charge (with quick charging powering the battery to 50% capacity in all of 30 minutes).

Connectivity comes through UCB-C with Thunderbolt 3 port, USB-A 3.0 port, microSD reader and a SIM slot for cellular connectivity. Also included are dual-band 802.11ac wifi, Bluetooth 4.2 and various options for connecting to 4G LTE and WiGig networks. Security comes through 5MP front-facing camera with IR for facial recognition and a fingerprint reader.

Apple Buys... Sleep Tracker Maker?

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A privacy policy update reveals Apple has bought Beddit, a Finnish maker of sleep-track devices users can connect with iOS and Apple Watch apps.

Apple Beddit"Beddit has been acquired by Apple," the policy reads. "Your personal data will be collected, used and disclosed in accordance with the Apple Privacy Policy."

The latest Beddit product is the Beddit 3 Sleep Monitor-- a sensor-equipped strip users install under the bed sheets. It tracks movements using "ballistocardiography," with no need for users to wear an activity tracker (or even remember to switch it on). Once the night is over it pushes collected data to iDevices, with HealthKit compatibility.

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