In hardware news over the past week, we saw Intel answer AMD's Ryzen architecture strides with its new Coffee Lake line of desktop CPU cores, while Lenovo is paying homage to the past with its special anniversary edition ThinkPad 25 laptop. Meanwhile, Google has unveiled a high-performance Chromebook known as the Pixelbook [shown above], and Western Digital is setting records with a 14TB hard drive for enterprises and data centers. Let's take a closer look.
Intel's New Core Desktop Processors
Intel is reshaping its mainstream CPU lineup and taking aim at AMD's Ryzen architecture. Unveiled this week, the 8th Gen Intel Core desktop processors were created with premium performance in mind to please content creators, as well as gamers and overclockers. Intel says content creators can expect 65 percent faster editing compared with a 3-year-old machine.
Both the Coffee Lake-based Core i7-8700K and the Core i5-8400 boast six physical cores, support for faster memory speeds, and take advantage of a tweaked platform that promises robust power delivery and, ultimately, more performance.
Lenovo ThinkPad 25
Happy birthday ThinkPad! In honor of 25 years of laptop computing, Lenovo has gifted us with the ThinkPad 25, a limited-edition retro-affectionate ThinkPad Anniversary Edition 25, retailing for $1,899. With an emphasis on classic design, the anniversary edition takes the best elements of the business favorite ThinkPad T470, including classic design features such as a backlit 7-row ThinkPad classic keyboard, dedicated volume buttons, multiple status LEDs, and a multicolor logo.
Its goal, Lenovo says, is to be a "stylish productivity powerhouse." But the ThinkPad 25 isn't just about nostalgia: It comes with high-end components such as a Core i7 CPU, discrete graphics, and a 512GB SSD. CIOs will appreciate its built-in vPro remote management and dTPM encryption.
Google has been busy this week announcing artificial intelligence advances and a new Pixel smartphone, somewhat overshadowing launch of its new Pixelbook. This week's new model is actually the third version of Google's Chromebook Pixel laptop, which aims to be taken seriously as a business laptop. Priced at $999, the Pixelbook is designed to take the best features of a laptop, tablet, and smartphone and create a more portable, app-friendly business tool.
With an eye to security, the Pixelbook features the Chrome OS with multiple layers of security and automatic updates. Pixelbook uses Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and Google assures users that there's enough RAM for the busiest multitasker.
Western Digital Ultrastar Hs14 Hard Drive
Tackling the challenges of big data, Western Digital says its new enterprise-class hard drive boasts 40 percent more capacity and more than twice the write performance of its predecessor. Built for cloud computing and data centers, the Ultrastar Hs14 is the world's first to hold a massive 14TB capacity in a single drive. Fun fact: The drive is hermetically sealed with helium to allow for more and thinner disks, so it keeps things cool while reducing costs and power usage.
Here's what Western Digital says about the Ultrastar Hs14: "As data grows exponentially, storing it all in an affordable and accessible manner is an ongoing challenge for enterprise and cloud service data center operators. With a focus on total cost of ownership (TCO), the factors of capacity per rack, power consumption, cooling, maintenance, and acquisition cost are all paramount. To combat the big data challenge, Ultrastar Hs14 drives deliver unprecedented capacity leadership and online watt/TB power efficiency for extremely low TCO by harnessing two core complementary technologies -- fourth generation HelioSeal technology, and second generation host-managed SMR -- along with enterprise-class reliability."