The XPS 15z, true to Michael Dell’s word, is now with us. Provided “now” is May the 24th in whatever part of the world you happen to live in. Laptop shoppers in Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, and Taiwan — a group of nations already enjoying the glories of Tuesday — can now buy the 0.97 inches-thick 15z for prices starting at just under A$1,400. That buys you a Core i5-2410M from Intel (2.3GHz default speed, 2.9GHz with Turbo Boost), a generous 6GB of DDR3 RAM, backlit keyboard, GeForce GT 525M graphics with 2GB of dedicated memory, a 750GB hard drive, and a 64WHr battery. The screen spans 15.6 inches diagonally and offers 1920 x 1080 resolution. Stepping up to A$1,700 gets you a Core i7-2620M (2.7GHz default, 3.4GHz TB) and 8GB of RAM. Juicy specs, we must admit. Now when’s midnight coming?
“One OS that runs everywhere.” There you have it, folks! Google intends to meld its Honeycomb tablet wares and Gingerbread smartphone software into one delicious Ice Cream Sandwich. Maybe that’s why the “sandwich” bit is in the name, eh? Either way, it’ll be a universal OS that runs on everything from teeny tiny Android phones to 10-inch tablets and will intelligently adapt to each form factor with things like a resizable status bar. Some other fancy new additions were demonstrated during Google’s I/O 2011 keynote, including face-tracking and camera focus shifting based on voice recognition, but most of the salient details remain under lock and key for now. We’ll be sure to dig around Mountain View campus fridges in search for more clues about the next major iteration of Android.
We were just pondering this very thing yesterday — would Intel dedicate itself to Thunderbolt and give USB 3.0 the cold shoulder — and now we have our answer from the Santa Clara crew, albeit delivered from Beijing. The Chinese capital is the site of Intel’s currently ongoing developer conference, which is where Kirk Skaugen, VP of the company’s Architecture Group, assured the world that the promise for native USB 3.0 support in Intel chipsets will be fulfilled. Not this year, mind you, but it’ll be with us in 2012 as part of the Ivy Bridge CPU refresh. That matches AMD’s plans to support USB 3.0 in Fusion APUs, and was augmented with a strong word of endorsement from Skaugen about the connector’s future. He urged developers to embrace USB 3.0 on an equal footing with Intel’s proprietary Thunderbolt interconnect, describing the two technologies as “complementary.” If you say so, captain.
Earlier this year, HTC allowed its previously Verizon-exclusive brand name out to prowl the globe with the Incredible S, and now it’s doing the same with the heretofore Sprint-only EVO moniker. The EVO 3D, says a tweet from HTC’s French mouthpiece, is coming to the land of baguettes, stylish mustaches and stripy pullovers, though a little bit of mystery remains as to when exactly its arrival shall be. Whatever the schedule (the EVO 3D’s set for a “summer” release in the US), the rest of Europe’s unlikely to be left out, meaning a 4.3-inch superphone with a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 1080p video recording in 2D and 720p in 3D, HTC’s newest Sense skin and Android’s freshest Gingerbread build, is headed out to the Old World. And that, fellow pilgrims, is a mighty awesome thing indeed.