Looks like our hopes of flipping the “Good Luck Now” switch on January 1 didn’t work as planned. This weekend, for instance, the Midwest gets a blizzard, and snow will hit the northiest-east states over the weekend, with plenty of rain up there through the weekend for those missing out on the snow. Rain or snow, just stay inside and read these dry and warm newsbits, including many many many from CES.
Starting here. HP, addressing a global workforce that’s still working remotely, has new products for the new normal. The HP Elite Dragonfly G2 (pictured) is a wonderfully light business convertible, and the HP Elite Dragonfly Max builds on that to power advanced collaboration. Block out noise with the HP Elite Wireless Earbuds and put the new HP Elite Folio tablet in employee hands for real mobility.
Think reality needs a boost now and then? Check out the new Lenovo ThinkReality A3 lightweight smart glasses. Immersive, but not isolating, power for augmented reality on select Motorola smartphones or a PC. Industrial frame options allow flexibility to deal with multiple work environments. (There were new ThinkPads and ThinkBooks from Lenovo too).
Gamers on the move should check out the updates and refreshes to the Acer Predator Triton 300 SE, Predator Helios 300, and Nitro 5. 11th Gen intel Core H35-series processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 Series GPUs keep the action fast and hot. For the non-gamers, Acer has new Aspire 5 and Aspire 7 notebooks powered by AMD Ryzen 5000 Series mobile processors. These use less power but have more cores, up to eight, doubling the data rates with the lower-power, higher-bandwidth memory versus earlier models.
A new laptop lineup from ASUS includes 11th Gen Intel Core processors and gets the Intel Evo platform design tag. Hello to the ASUS VivoBook 15, VivoBook Flip 14, VivoBook S13/14/15, ZenBook 14, ZenBook Flip 13 and 15, and more, including a new all-in-one. ASUS gaming fans get a long list of new “gaming weaponry,” starting with the ROG Flow X13 gaming laptop and its XG Mobile external GPU. More? How about the ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 SE gaming laptop, Strix SCAR 17 gaming laptop, the 32-inch ROG Swift PG32UQ 4K 144Hz gaming monitor with HDMI 2.1 for console and PC gaming, as well as the ROG Claymore II gaming keyboard and the ROG Gladius III Wireless gaming mouse?
Razer has two new gaming laptops: Razer Blade 15 and Razer Blade Pro 17 gaming laptops boosted by NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 Series Laptop GPUs.
Dynabook has some new laptops as well, with 11th Gen Intel Core Mobile vPro processors. Check out the Portege X30L-J and Portege X40-J with Intel Evo vPro platforms and the Intel Iris Xe graphics on the Tecra A30-J. The Portege X30W-J is so light Dynabook calls it “gravity defying.”
AMD announced a full slate of AMD Ryzen 5000 Series mobile processors, providing the efficient and powerful Zen 3 core architecture to the laptop market. Includes up to 8 cores and 16 threads.
NVIDIA rolled out another board with its Ampere architecture, the GeForce RTX 3060 GPU. Deets:
- 25 RT-TFLOPs for ray tracing
- 101 tensor-TFLOPs to power NVIDIA DLSS (Deep Learning Super Sampling)
- 192-bit memory interface
- 12GB of GDDR6 memory
More CES news. Slow Wi-Fi is so 2020. Talk to Linksys about the new AXE8400 Wi-Fi 6E Mesh System powered by the Qualcomm Networking Pro 1210 Platform for up to double the performance of earlier wireless. Three bands of fast networking, along with Linksys Aware if you want to get meshy with it.
Logitech unveiled a new generation of appliance and PC-based videoconferencing tools for meeting rooms small and large. The Logitech Rally Bar and Logitech Rally Bar Mini (pictured) include both sound and camera. For appliance fans, the Logitech RoomMate lets you run conferencing on Logitech conference cams without a PC or Mac.
D-Link announced its DWR-2000 Wi-Fi 6 CPE and DWR-2101 5G Wi-Fi 6 Mobile Hotspot. With these, wherever you are, there’s your network. For the home (and sometimes office), D-Link has three new Wi-Fi 6 tools: the AX1800 Wi-Fi 6 USB 3.0 Adapter (DWA-X1850), AI M32 AX3200 Wi-Fi 6 AI Mesh Router (D-Link AI M32), and AX1800 Scalable Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Router (DIR-LX1870).
TP-Link has a suite of new Kasa products for the new smart home. Included are the Motion-Activated Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch (KS220M), Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch with 3-Way Dimmer Kit (KS230KIT), and more, like cameras and smart doorbells. Need a network to tie them all together? Try the Deco Mesh Wi-Fi 6E and Archer router and the AX7800 Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi 6E system. Or one of the other new routers from TP-Link.
Need some fast and portable storage? Check out the new Western Digital SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD with a 4TB solid state drive. Or one of the lower capacity models, all encased in a metal housing for protection.
Wintel news. Intel welcomes back Pat Gelsinger (pictured) as its new CEO starting February 15. He spent 30 years there before serving as CEO of VMware since 2012.
Need some Intel Xeon processors? You’re in luck, with recent models of the 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors (Ice Lake) ramping up in 10nm for improved performance, security, and efficiency.
Cybereason and Intel are collaborating to adopt new Intel Hardware Shield protections for ransomware on 11th Gen Intel Core vPro mobile platforms. The result? Multi-layer protection via CPU threat detection, full-stack visibility, machine learning, and more.
Microsoft’s new Surface Pro 7+ for Business aims to help people, teams, and classrooms in our new like-it-or-not flexible workplace mode. Less portable, the Surface Hub 2S 85” smart screen whiteboard is ready to ship this month.
If you work with members of the U.S. government’s Defense Industrial Base, you should probably take a look at the Microsoft Government Community Cloud High (GCC High). Microsoft Azure Government and Microsoft 365 GCC High now support both federal agencies and their suppliers.
Other product news. No matter the lockdowns, every retail business needs to print receipts for customers. Perhaps the new OmniLink TM-m50 POS thermal receipt printer (pictured) from Epson can assist. Part of the intelligent OmniLink POS printer family.
To keep those customers in your pocket, the new Salesforce Loyalty Management product stands ready to help. Built on the Salesforce Customer 360 Platform.
The OneView management dashboard from Malwarebytes now integrates directly with ConnectWise Manage.
A new teamup of Digital Defense Frontline.Cloud and Cortex XSOAR from Palo Alto Networks tracks network segments that are under attack or at high risk, develop a playbook, and take remediation steps.
Prime Plus, from Cowbell Cyber (as in cyber-insurance), offers businesses with up to $1 billion in revenue an additional $10 million in excess limits.
Agentless device security platform makers Armis now also make Armis Asset Management, a standalone offering designed tyo eliminate asset management blind spots that deploys globally in as little as 45 minutes.
Wanna compute securely anywhere? Try the new IGEL UD Pocket2, a portable USB device with USB-A and a USB-C connectors to provide access from any x86-64 endpoint to your managed cloud or VDI workspace.
TPx’s MSx Managed Networks service now leverages Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) to boost business productivity.
Hospitals overflow with networked devices down to and including Internet of Things devices new to healthcare. To help wrangle all this, check out the new Zyter Smart Hospitals service. Bed device monitoring, asset monitoring, and much more.
Non-product vendor news. ConnectWise made three changes to its leadership team:
- Chris Timms joins as EVP of growth
- Tom Greco (pictured), formerly director of information security, is now chief information security officer
- Tony Clancy joins as SVP of engineering
Cloud player LogicMonitor welcomes Christina Kosmowski as president.
Andy Wishart joins Agiloft as chief product officer.
James Phillips is the new CTO at Rev.io.
Sage appoints Aziz Benmalek as executive vice president of the global partner organization. That’s a long .sig title.
Later this month, Grant Hoffman joins Poly as executive vice president, chief supply chain officer.
JumpCloud brings in Kevin Biggs as chief revenue officer.
CompTIA has a new Cybersecurity Advisory council. Congratulations to co-chairs Tracy Holtz, of Tech Data, and Kevin McDonald, of Alvaka Networks.
Datto joined the Multi-Sector Ransomware Task Force, run by the Institute for Security and Technology.
The security boffins at Sophos are now a Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) Numbering Authority.
D&H and DLL financing extended the disti’s coronavirus-inspired 60-day repayment terms until the end of 2021.
Over in telco land, there’s a new team cooking up new services: Google Cloud and Nokia shook hands (safely) to jointly develop cloud-native 5G core solutions for communication service providers and enterprise customers.
SYNNEX customers now have access to Cybereason’s Essentials Bundle and Complete Bundle to better protect companies against never ending attacks.
Backup solutions provider Altaro was acquired by email cloud security provider Hornetsecurity.
LogRhythm acquired MistNet to add its cloud-based analytics platform to the SOC tools it offers.
Over the next six months, those in the Akamai Partner Program will migrate to a new program that enhances their ability to deliver high-value services.
Cybersecurity company Forcepoint is now officially, formally, and finally owned by Francisco Partners, who bought the group from Raytheon Technologies.
This week’s stats ticker:
Do you feel better about putting your data in public clouds? Barracuda commissioned Cloud networks: Shifting into hyperdriveto find out. Three quarters of orgs use multiple cloud providers, meaning 56% struggle to manage seamless availability. Nearly 70% report performance issues running SaaS workloads like Office 365. More than 60% say their MPLS costs increase heavily with seasonal workload peaks. Nearly 80% have deployed at least one Azure-based network. 70%+ play to roll out an SD-WAN solution in the next 12 months, but 60% say they’re hesitant because of fears of complexity and cost. Does make you feel better or not about public clouds?
You’d certainly feel better if there were fewer gaps in your network management tools. Auvik released the 2021 Network Field Report, which surveyed IT pros across North America and found that only 36% of them backup their network device configurations weekly. But hey, configs never change, right? Oh, they do? Newer and smaller orgs are the worst about crossing their fingers rather than backing up configurations. IT folks feel they’re spending less time on reactive tasks (48%), but still spend too much time on tasks that should be automated, including documentation (58%), mapping (55%), and those pesky network config backups. More than half (52%) of their time is spent on projects they hate or tolerate. Only 30% of IT pros are evaluated based on uptime/downtime or number of closed tickets. Overall cost is the main success metric at 54% of responding orgs.
Nintex released findings from its Workplace 2021 Study and confirmed one of the things employees have been telling their bosses for years: working from home makes them more productive. 1,000 U.S. based full-time American workers at companies with 501-50,000 employees found that 70% report working from home has been better and more productive than they expected. No commute, more family time, fewer interruptions (wonder how many check their email during Zoom meetings?), and improved work-life balance. 37% want more automation software to help them be even more productive. 41% report they’re already getting more done in less time per week. Of those now at home, 56% are very excited by the prospect of their companies pulling them back into the office. 50% said their work life would improve if they worked remotely permanently.
Man’s chattiest friend. CES always includes some, ah, interesting new products. Not bizarre concepts like the Flying Cadillac, but “real” products that are a bit, um, unusual.
Latest example? A South Korean startup named Petpuls that makes a collar for tracking what dogs are saying when they bark. The collar collects the bark sound, connects to your smartphone, and tells you whether your dog is happy, relaxed, anxious, angry, or sad. It also tracks the dog’s physical activity and rest. They claim 90% average accuracy based on their 10,000 test barks from 50 breeds. The large collar is $109, while the smaller model costs $99.
Dog owners may take issue with the list of words or “emotional states” tracked by the AI-based canine translator. It takes little time to figure out when dogs are barking to get out or get back in, or barking because they’re ready to eat or want a treat.
If the South Koreans really want to help, they need to find a kill-switch for the barking when your dog sees what they think is a horrible monster about to break into your home and kill everyone. You know, the mailman or mailwoman, a leaf, or maybe just the wind blowing. Until then, just keep yelling “shut up!” over and over like you do now.