Bloglikes - Hardware en-US Thu, 15 Apr 2021 18:07:54 +0000 Sat, 06 Apr 2013 00:00:00 +0000 FeedWriter Amazon’s Alexa earbuds return with a smaller design and wireless charging It’s been about a year and a half since Amazon released the first Echo Buds. I reviewed them when they arrived, and they were, I don’t know, fine, I guess. They were a bit on the cheap side, facing some stiff competition in the category and, honestly, the idea of wearing Alexa on my head still isn’t super exciting to me.

But for a first attempt at the space, they weren’t bad. And now the company’s giving it a second go, with some tweaks to the original formula. Top of the list is a redesign that shrinks them 20% and makes them a bit lighter weight. The nozzle is smaller, which should make them more comfortable for longer periods, coupled with four ear tip sizes. The headphones are rated IPX4 for sweat and weather resistance.

Image Credits: Amazon

Amazon has moved on from the predecessor’s Bose noise canceling to its own proprietary tech, which it says can effectively double V1. There’s also an optional case that supports wireless charging via Qi, à la AirPods. The white case, in particular, looks…rather familiar.

That case runs an extra $20 over the $120 asking price for the USB-C case. Though Amazon’s running a limited-time deal to get the standard for $100 and the wireless charging version for $120. They’re also throwing in six months of Amazon Music Unlimited and Audible Plus. The new buds are also available in white. They’re up for preorder today and start shipping in May.

Image Credits: Amazon

Future software updates will bring a new VIP Filter to the headphones. Introduced on the Echo Frames, the feature lets users filter notifications from select senders. In addition to Alexa, the buds can also be set to access Siri or Google Assistant.

Amazon Echo Buds review

]]> Wed, 14 Apr 2021 09:00:54 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Hardware Wearables Amazon Echo Buds Wireless Earbuds Daily Crunch: Spotify unveils an in-car entertainment system Spotify wants to have a bigger presence in your car, Apple hints at iPad-centric announcements and Microsoft’s new Surface Laptop goes on sale. This is your Daily Crunch for April 13, 2021.

The big story: Spotify unveils an in-car entertainment system

Spotify’s new device is the oddly (but memorably!) named Car Thing. While there are plenty of other ways to listen to Spotify while driving, the company said this will provide a “more seamless” and personalized experience. Car Thing includes a touchscreen, a navigation knob, voice control and preset buttons to access your favorite music, podcasts and playlists.

This is actually an updated version of an in-car device that Spotify started testing a couple years ago. While Spotify is now making Car Thing available more broadly, it sounds like the company still views this as a bit of an experiment — during this limited U.S. release, it’s available for free, with users just paying for the cost of shipping.

The tech giants

Apple’s next event is April 20 — Invites for its “Spring Loaded” event went out today, sporting what appears to be a doodle drawn on an iPad.

Microsoft’s latest Surface Laptop goes on sale this week, starting at $999 — Sometimes the classics are classics for a reason.

Facebook, Instagram users can now ask ‘oversight’ panel to review decisions not to remove content — The move expands the Oversight Board’s remit beyond reviewing (and mostly reversing) content takedowns.

Startups, funding and venture capital

Fortnite-maker Epic completes $1B funding round — The company is amassing a large portfolio of titles through acquisitions, a trend that is almost certain to continue with this latest massive round.

Home gym startup Tempo raises $220M to meet surge in demand for its workout device — Tempo’s freestanding cabinet, which the company launched in February 2020, includes a 42-inch touchscreen with a 3D motion-tracking camera that consistently scans, tracks and coaches users as they work out.

ConsenSys raises $65M from JP Morgan, Mastercard, UBS to build infrastructure for DeFi — The fundraise looks like a highly strategic one, based around the idea that traditional institutions will need visibility into the increasingly influential world of “decentralized finance.”

Advice and analysis from Extra Crunch

What’s fueling hydrogen tech? — In 2021, the world may be ready for hydrogen.

Five product lessons to learn before you write a line of code — To uncover some basic truths about building products, we spoke to three entrepreneurs who have each built more than one company.

Expect an even hotter AI venture capital market in the wake of the Microsoft-Nuance deal — The $19.7 billion transaction is Microsoft’s second-largest to date, only beaten by its purchase of LinkedIn.

(Extra Crunch is our membership program, which helps founders and startup teams get ahead. You can sign up here.)

Everything else

Republican antitrust bill would block all big tech acquisitions — There are about to be a lot of antitrust bills taking aim at big tech.

Startup Alley at TechCrunch Disrupt 2021 is filling up fast — If you’re busy shoving envelopes and busting down boundaries, don’t miss your chance to exhibit in Startup Alley at TechCrunch Disrupt 2021 in September.

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 3pm Pacific, you can subscribe here.

Tue, 13 Apr 2021 18:43:44 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Automotive Hardware Media Daily Crunch Spotify
Apple’s next event is April 20 Apple only dropped info about WWDC two weeks back, but the company just announced another event – this one happening much sooner. After Siri spilled the beans this morning, the company has officially confirmed its next event for April 20. Invites for its “Spring Loaded” event went out just now, sporting what appears to be a doodle drawn on an iPad.

Of course, the assistant’s earlier suggestion that the event is being held at “Apple Park in Cupertino” was only true from a certain point of view, to quote a famous space wizard. It’s 2021, after all, and everything still very much happens online, which means some snazzily edited drone shots of the Spaceship Apple.

As for what this all means from a product perspective, all signs appear to point to new iPads. Specifically, the company is rumored to be releasing a 12.9-inch version of the Pro, sporting a Mini LED, improved cameras and faster chips in-line with what we’ve seen on recent Macs. Continued supply constraints, however, could present an issue.

Another long-standing rumor is the arrival of AirTags. Yes, we’ve heard that one before, but the company just laid the groundwork for some big Find My improvements. Along with opening the app to other companies, the company announced a bunch of third-party hardware sporting the tech. The list includes the Chipolo ONE Spot, which beats Apple to the punch as the first device tag to use the tech.

The event kicks off 10AM PT. We’ll (virtually) see you there.

E-bikes and earbuds among the first third-party hardware to support Apple’s Find My tracking

]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2021 12:13:28 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Apple Ipad Hardware Siri Tech Cupertino Ipad Pro Airtags Spotify launches its in-car entertainment system ‘Car Thing’ in U.S. Spotify this morning officially announced the limited U.S. release of its first hardware device, the oddly named Car Thing, aimed at Spotify Premium subscribers. The new device — which Spotify is surprisingly offering for free plus shipping — has evolved substantially from the version that first began testing in 2019. This upgraded model has a touchscreen, a big, grippable knob for navigation, voice control features, and four preset buttons at the top for favorite music, podcasts or playlists, similar to Spotify on mobile devices.

The company explained its interest in Car Thing is about solving a need for customers who want a “more seamless” and personalized in-car listening experience. Although many cars today support Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, Spotify points out that the average age of a car in the U.S. is actually 11 years old and the average lifetime of cars is 18 years. That means there are still a large number of cars on the road that don’t support modern, in-car infotainment systems.

Car Thing is being introduced to serve this market — and likely, to give Spotify the opportunity to explore future business models where it has a more direct relationship with customers inside the vehicle, though the company isn’t speaking to its longer-term ambitions at this time.

Image Credits: Spotify

The new Car Thing itself is a lightweight (3.4 oz.), thin (4.6″ x 2.5″ x 0.7″) music and podcast player that offers a combination of voice control, knobs, buttons, and a touchscreen display for navigating its menus and selecting the media you want to hear. You can choose to use set up the device to work via Bluetooth or an AUX or USB cable, depending on how you usually connect your phone to your car stereo to play music.

You’re also able to mount Car Thing to your dash in a variety of ways as the device ships with three different types of dash and vent mounts to choose from, along with a car charger and USB-C cable.

Image Credits: Spotify

At launch, Car Thing will walk you through a quick tour where it explains how to get started. The user interface recalls the Spotify mobile app, so it isn’t difficult to get used to for first-time users. Here, you can tap, swipe and use your voice to interact with the screen. The knob lets you quickly move through your choices — an experience that may be more comfortable to those used to interacting with knobs on their car’s built-in stereo.

Across the top of the device are four preset buttons that let you save your favorite content for easy access. By default, these are configured with your Liked Songs and Spotify’s Daily Drive and Morning Commute playlists, with the last preset empty. Many users may just keep these selections, but you can change them at any time, Spotify says.

Image Credits: Spotify

Ahead of the device’s launch, Spotify quietly began rolling out support for its “Hey Spotify” voice command, which Car Thing leverages, too. This lets you speak your requests directly to Spotify, by asking for a song, album, artist, playlist, station or podcast, which Car Thing “hears” by way of its four microphones at the top. (Four, because Spotify wants Car Thing to respond even if you’re blasting your music or have the windows down, which creates additional noise.)

On mobile devices, using “Hey Spotify” is an opt-in option that you can shut off from the app’s settings. But Car Thing represents a smarter, not to mention more safety-focused, use case for voice control. Instead of fiddling with the screen or knobs, you can speak your commands — or allow your kids to shout out their options from the backseat, perhaps.

Image Credits: Spotify

Spotify’s policy regarding its use of voice data explains the company will collect recordings and transcripts of what you say along with information about the content it returned to you, and may use the data to improve the feature over time. The company told us that beyond the voice data, the device isn’t collecting any more information that it does already in the mobile app. Still, Car Thing does give Spotify a more direct window into what people listen to during commutes and longer road trips, which could inform its future products, programmed playlists and other features.

“In a typical year, Americans spend over 70 billion hours in their cars and there are 250 million cars on America’s roads today,” noted Spotify’s Head of Global Culture and Trends, Shanon Cook. “That’s a lot of time spent on the road. So what you do and what you listen to, to help you get through those hours in the car really matters.”

Initially, Car Thing is being made available during this limited release period for free, as selected users will just pay the cost of shipping — a choice Spotify made because Car Thing is still somewhat experimental.

“This is Spotify’s first hardware, and we obviously want to get things right,” said Spotify’s Head of Hardware Products, Andreas Cedborg. “And we want to learn quite a lot here in the beginning, so it’s a natural way for us to start,” he said.

Image Credits: Spotify

Spotify says the current retail price for the device is $80. It doesn’t know if or when it will begin to retail the device, however. But it can roll out updates to its software so at least the device won’t be immediately obsolete, if Spotify decides to go in a different direction one day.

Despite Spotify’s exploration into hardware, the company stressed it doesn’t aim to be a hardware company. If anything, it’s seems more likely that Spotify is toying with the idea of becoming the next SiriusXM by way of a specialized in-car experience — although one that’s even more of an add-on than SiriusXM is as you physically have to attach the thing — the Car Thing — to your dash. Longer-term, it’s not clear it makes much sense to develop a Car Thing product line as cars get smarter every year and infotainment systems become more standard.

Car Thing will only be offered on an invite-only basis via to U.S. Spotify Premium subscribers with a smartphone. The company declined to say how many units would be shipped, so you’ll probably want to jump on the waitlist sooner rather than later if such a device interests you.

Tue, 13 Apr 2021 09:00:56 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs TC Transportation Spotify Hardware America Tech Spotify Spotify Shanon Cook Android Auto Spotify Andreas Cedborg
Microsoft’s latest Surface Laptop goes on sale this week, starting at $999 Microsoft is understandably positioning the latest additions to its Surface line as productivity devices. Laptop sales, in particular, have jumped amid the pandemic, as many have scrambled to shift to a work from home setting. With that in mind, the latest version of the Surface Laptop is far and away the headline item amid a new batch of devices.

The Surface Laptop 4 doesn’t seem to mark a massive upgrade to the line, arriving about a year and half after the previous model. Of course, the product has been one of the better received among the company’s proprietary hardware offerings, swapping the more creator-focused convertible models for a more straightforward approach. Sometimes the classics are classics for a reason.

Image Credits: Microsoft

Available with either a 13.5- or 15-inch touchscreen, the new Laptop sports either an 11th Gen Intel Core or AMD Ryzen processor. The system’s lowest configuration will run $999, but Microsoft has yet to break down the pricing from there. The company is promising improved performance and increased battery life, over the 11.5 posted hours on the Laptop 3. The below video puts the new time at “up to 19 hours,” which big if true — and nice for when we all start traveling again.

Why I flip-flopped on opposing remote work

The system builds on its predecessor’s HD webcam with the addition of improved low-light capabilities. That’s paired with a studio mic array. Again, nothing groundbreaking, but it’s nice to see companies paying attention to this stuff in the age of COVID-19, when a concerning percentage of our interpersonal communication occurs via webcam.

The design language is similar to earlier versions, though the company has swapped in a new Ice Blue color option. Microsoft is keeping that proprietary charging port around (fast charging will get you up to 80% in an hour). That’s coupled with USB A and C. There are a pair of Dolby Atmos speakers on board and the touchscreen works with the Surface Pen.

The Laptop is available for preorder today in the U.S., Canada and Japan, and starts shipping on April 15. The 13.5-inch AMD Ryzen with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage runs $999. On the high end, the 15-inch Intel Core i7 with 32GB of RAM and 1TB of storage is $2,399 (plus another $100 if you want to upgrade Windows 10 Home to Pro). The company is tossing in Surface Earbuds for early preorders.

Microsoft’s latest Surface Laptop arrives in 13- and 15-inch models

]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2021 09:00:16 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Japan Hardware Microsoft Tech Canada Surface Dolby Atmos Intel Core Surface Laptop Microsoft is really pushing Teams with its latest accessories The new Surface Laptop was the marquee arrival in today’s Microsoft announcement, but boy howdy, the company also dropped a whole bunch of new accessories. It’s a pretty broad range of new devices, including some small updates to existing products and entirely new entries. But there’s one clear through line across them all: Teams.

Microsoft is, after all, a software company at heart. That’s always fueled the company’s hardware products. So it’s really not a major surprise that its productivity software is the driving force here. After all, this is the company that was pushing Office integration on its earbuds.

Image Credits: Microsoft

Matter of fact, the company’s actually debuting a slight upgrade to its Surface Headphone line. The Headphones 2+ for Business. The big distinction here is the addition on-ear Teams control. The other additions to the well-received over-ear headphones are fairly minor (hence the telling “2+” name), including improved remote calling. They also run a bit of a premium at $299 to the Headphone 2’s $250. They’re shipping later this month.

Image Credits: Microsoft

The remainder of the new products fall under the “Modern” line, which currently also includes the Modern Mouse. Joining the Headphones are the Microsoft Modern USB and Wireless Headsets. Here the products get a dedicated Teams button for joining calls on MS’ platform. They’ll ship in June for $50 and $100, respectively.

‘One day we were in the office and the next we were working from home’

Microsoft is also adding a 1080p webcam to the mix. The Modern Webcam has a 78-degree field of view and can shoot in HDR. There’s a privacy shutter on board, as well as software settings for things like auto white balance and facial retouching, if you’re so inclined. And yes, Teams certification. Can’t help but think this would have been a big hit this time last year, but for many working from home will be the new normal, going forward. That will ship in June for a reasonable $70.

Image Credits: Microsoft

The oddest addition is probably the Microsoft Modern USB-C Speaker. With Cortana seemingly dead in the water, Teams is once again the driving force here. It’s a desktop speaker with dual microphones designed for Teams calls and some light music listening. That one is also arriving in June, priced at $100.

Microsoft Teams is coming to consumers — but Skype is here to stay

]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2021 09:00:14 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Hardware Microsoft Tech Microsoft Surface Surface Teams Skype Microsoft Teams Modern Webcam Microsoft Modern USB Hardware is still hard in the Motor City “It’s a little bit of a messy story,” Adam Leeb says with a laugh. The story that landed Astrohaus in Detroit on two separate occasions is a bit tangled, certainly. The hardwre startup’s cofounder and CEO isn’t the sort of hometown cheerleader you often encounter when speaking with executives who’ve opted to keep their organizations outside cities like San Francisco or New York.

Hailing from Detroit’s outer suburbs, Leeb cofounded the company in the Motor City in Fall 2014 with Patrick Paul. Astrohaus’s first – and best known – product was born as an attempt to offer users a “distraction-free writing experience.”

“I’m not even a writer,” Leeb says of the product’s inception. “What interests me about the product – what got me going – is yes, it’s about writing, but common among all of the things I’m interested in, is it’s more about process and productivity. That’s something I’m super passionate about. And making things easier that get out of your way and are really fun to use.”

Leeb, an MIT mechanical engineering graduate and Philips, a Michigan State graduate and software developer met through the Detroit startup community and got to work prototyping a word processing device that delivered the benefits of modern, without the sort of inherent distractions of computers and tablets that today’s writers know all too well.

The young company introduced itself to the world by way of Kickstarter, launching a campaign in 2014.

“The Hemingwrite combines the best features of all previous writing tools with the addition of modern technology,” the company wrote. “It is dedicated like a typewriter, has a better keyboard and battery life than your computer and is distraction free like a word processor. Finally, we sync your documents to the cloud in real-time so you never have to worry about saving, syncing or backing up your work.”

The product was greeted with excitement and some gentle-ribbing (and some not-so-gentle, including one review that called it “pretentious hipster nonsense” ) over a $500 reinvention of the typewriter. The crowfunding community went wild, with nearly $350,000 raised. In June of 2015, the product was renamed.

“We are updating our brand with a more demonstrative name that also no longer ties us to the persona of a certain famous writer,” the company wrote in a June 2015 Kickstarter updated. Two months later, Astrohaus relocated to New York City.

“I was really itching to leave. I didn’t know how we were going to make it in Detroit,” Leeb says. “There’s not really a hardware scene and my connections were mostly in New York. I pushed Patrick – we had raised some money and gotten going, so I was like, ‘let’s move to New York.’ There’s definitely more of a hardware scene and we were definitely a part of it.”

Once again, life intervened. Philips left the company and Leeb married Kacee Must, a Detroit resident – and owner of local yoga chain, Citizen Yoga. In 2018, he found himself building Astrohaus up again in the city where it started life. Three years later, the team is still a fairly lean one, with five full time employees in Detroit and a more distributed team of contractors.

Leeb’s feelings about launching a hardware startup in Detroit are clearly mixed. He bemoans the difficult it recruiting and finding funding locally, while acknowledging a sense of local cheerleading one really finds in larger cities. “With these smaller ecosystems, you really get to know people everywhere,” he says. “Everyone is so accessible. As far as anywhere I’ve ever been, Detroit companies really cheer or each other. There’s so much Detroit pride.”

For all of the talk of returning manufacturing to Detroit, Leeb says he’s had little luck in his pursuit to get the Freewrite and subsequent products created in the U.S.

“There’s a whole other world of advanced manufacturing startups that definitely get a lot of benefits from being in a manufacturing hub,” he says. “I think for software companies and for us it’s not so beneficial. We make our goods in China, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. I have good relationships with our factories and I spend a lot of time in China. That’s what they’re geared toward. They make consumer electronics.”

Astrohaus' Freewrite Traveler on a table

Image Credits: Darrell Etherington

Leeb says he’s found the Andrew Yang-founded Venture for America nonprofit a useful source of hiring locally. In the years following Astrohaus’ launch, impressions of the city have changed radically from a depressed byproduct of rust belt boom and bust to a viable place to launch a business.

“The last 10 years, there’s a massive difference in the city,” Leeb says. “[Quicken Loans cofounder] Dan Gilbert almost single-handedly brought the city back. There are a lot of people who hate him, but the reality is that, while he wasn’t the billionaire in town, he’s the only one who heavily invested in Detroit. He consolidated all of his suburban offices and put them in downtown and he convinced all of these companies to do the same.”

The Covid-19 pandemic will no doubt continue to have repercussions, as remote work becomes the norm for many or most tech outlets. Though hardware startups will always have a compelling reason to keep things in close quarters, as companies develop and test products. For his part, Leeb says Astrohaus’ next device aims to address concerns about remote collaboration.

“I’m very aggressively starting to work on a new hardware product that is a collaboration and communication too,” he says. “It was a problem before, and now it’s such a widespread problem that I feel we’re lacking in certain communication. There’s a lot to be done there. I don’t feel as connected as we could be, even with the technology we have.”

Mon, 12 Apr 2021 09:31:36 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs New York Hardware China New York City San Francisco Tech Mit Philips Detroit Dan Gilbert Michigan State Patrick Motor City Leeb Venture for America Andrew Yang Astrohaus City Spotlight Detroit City Spotlight Adam Leeb Patrick Paul Astrohaus Detroit Leeb Darrell Etherington Leeb
Memic raises $96M for its robot-assisted surgery platform Memic, a startup developing a robotic-assisted surgical platform that recently received marketing authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, today announced that it has closed a $96 million Series D funding round. The round was led by Peregrine Ventures and Ceros, with participation from OurCrowd and Accelmed. The company plans to use the new funding to commercialize its platform in the U.S. and expand its marketing and sales efforts outside of the U.S., too.

The company previously raised a total amount of $31.8 million, according to Crunchbase, including about $12.5 million raised through crowdsourcing platform OurCrowd.

Image Credits: Memic

The Hominis, as the company calls its platform, has been authorized for use in “single site, natural orifice laparoscopic-assisted transvaginal benign surgical procedures including benign hysterectomy.” It’s worth noting that the robot doesn’t perform the surgery without human intervention. Instead, surgeons control the device — and its robotic arms — from a central console. The company notes that the instruments are meant to replicate the motions of the surgeon’s arms. And while it’s currently only authorized for this one specific type of procedure, Memic is looking at a wide range of other procedures where a system like this could be beneficial.

“The Hominis system represents a significant advancement in the growing multi-billion-dollar robotic surgery market. This financing positions us to accelerate our commercialization efforts and bring Hominis to both surgeons and patients in the months ahead,” said Dvir Cohen, co-founder and CEO of Memic.

Where top VCs are investing in medical and surgical robotics

It’s worth noting that there are a wide range of similar, computer-assisted surgical systems on the market already. Only last month, Asensus Surgical received FDA clearance for its laparoscopic platform to be used in general surgery, for example. Meanwhile, eye surgery robotics startup ForSight recently raised $10 million in seed funding for its platform.

Memic’s Hominis is the first robotic device approved for benign transvaginal procedures, though, and the company and its investors are surely betting on this being a first stepping stone to additional use cases over time.

“Given the broad potential of Hominis combined with a strong management team, we are proud to support Memic and execution of its bold vision,” said Eyal Lifschitz, managing general partner of Peregrine Ventures.

Activ Surgical raises $15 million to advance autonomous and collaborative robotic surgery

Eye surgery robotics startup ForSight raises $10M

]]> Mon, 12 Apr 2021 08:00:00 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Health Startups Hardware Medicine Tech United States Surgery Fda Telemedicine Ourcrowd General Partner U S Food and Drug Administration CEROS MEMIC Peregrine Ventures Recent Funding Dvir Cohen Asensus Surgical Eyal Lifschitz Peregrine Ventures Activ Surgical Apple said to be developing Apple TV/HomePod combo and iPad-like smart speaker display Apple is reportedly working on a couple of new options for a renewed entry into the smart home, including a mash-up of the Apple TV with a HomePod speaker, and an integrated camera for video chat, according to Bloomberg. It’s also said to be working on a smart speaker that basically combines a HomePod with an iPad, providing something similar to Amazon’s Echo Show or Google’s Nest Hub in functionality.

The Apple TV/HomePod hybrid would still connect to a television for outputting video, and would offer similar access to all the video and gaming services that the current Apple TV does, while the speaker component would provide sound output, music playback, and Siri integration. It would also include a built-in camera for using video conferencing apps on the TV itself, the report says.

That second device would be much more like existing smart assistant display devices on the market today, with an iPad-like screen providing integrated visuals. The project could involve attaching the iPad via a “robotic arm” according to Bloomberg, that would allow it to move to accommodate a user moving around, with the ability to keep them in frame during video chat sessions.

Digging into Apple’s media transformation

Bloomberg doesn’t provide any specific timelines for release of any of these potential products, and it sounds like they’re still very much in the development phase, which means Apple could easily abandon these plans depending on its evaluation of their potential. Apple just recently discontinued its original HomePod, the $300 smart speaker it debuted in 2018.

Rumors abound about a refreshed Apple TV arriving sometime this year, which should boast a faster processor and also an updated remote control. It could bring other hardware improvements, like support for a faster 120Hz refresh rate available on more modern TVs.

Mon, 12 Apr 2021 07:44:37 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Apple Ios Google Amazon Ipad TC Hardware Siri Tech Bloomberg Apple TV Computing Tablet Computers Speaker Video Conferencing Assistant Apple Inc Portable Media Players Touchscreens Smart Speaker HomePod
Global Chip Shortage Hits Apple’s MacBook And iPad Production Nikkei's new report states that the global chip shortage is starting to affect Apple on two of its other critical product lines: iPads and MacBooks.

The post Global Chip Shortage Hits Apple’s MacBook And iPad Production appeared first on

Sun, 11 Apr 2021 23:19:13 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs All News Hardware News Apple iOS iPad Mac Macbook Shortage
Intel Xe-HPG (DG2) 512EU Graphics Card Engineering Sample Leaked The Xe-HPG 512EU has one of the three cooler designs that Intel is currently evaluating and the final model might feature a white cooler.

The post Intel Xe-HPG (DG2) 512EU Graphics Card Engineering Sample Leaked appeared first on

Sun, 11 Apr 2021 23:10:40 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs All News Gaming News Hardware News Gaming Graphics Card Hardware Intel Intel DG2 Intel Xe Xe Graphics
Corsair and Elgato Launch New Gaming Products Corsair has added two new mice to its CHAMPION SERIES along with a release of a new keyboard while Elgato, on the other hand, has released the Cam Link Pro, which will help with multi-camera streaming setups.

The post Corsair and Elgato Launch New Gaming Products appeared first on

Sun, 11 Apr 2021 09:10:22 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs All News Gaming News Hardware News Corsair Gaming Keyboard Gaming mouse Hardware
Google denies Pixel 5a 5G cancelation, confirming it’s coming this year Sometimes you’ve just got to confirm an unannounced product to put the rumors to bed, I guess. That was Google’s strategy this afternoon, following earlier rumors from Android Central that a chip shortage had put the kibosh on the mid-budget phone.

In a comment to TechCrunch, a Google spokesperson noted, “Pixel 5a 5G is not cancelled. It will be available later this year in the U.S. and Japan and announced in line with when last year’s a-series phone was introduced.”

That time frame would put the device’s arrival around late-summer, meaning it won’t arrive in time for Google I/O in May, as some speculated. Interestingly, the company appears to be limiting the device’s availability to two countries — at least at launch. That could, perhaps, be due to earlier-reported component shortages.

Google’s budget Pixel 4a addresses its premium predecessor’s biggest problem

As The Verge notes, the company hasn’t been particularly precious when it comes to product announcements. The company took a similar approach ahead of the release of the Pixel. Either way, this isn’t exactly the standard big company approach to rumor denial, which is to either not answer or otherwise deflect.

Google may well be on edge about its Pixel line these days. The phone line hasn’t exactly taken the mobile world be storm, resulting in longstanding rumors that the company is looking to shake things up. That, in part, has seemingly been confirmed by some fairly high-profile exits.

Still, even while there have been issues on the premium side, the company’s budget “a” line has helped buoy its overall numbers. No word yet on specific specs, but the handset is not expected to be a radical departure from its predecessor.

Google I/O will return as a virtual event May 18-20

LG’s exit from the smartphone market comes as no surprise


Fri, 09 Apr 2021 18:52:58 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Google Gadgets Mobile Japan Hardware Tech Lg 5g Pixel 5a
Dell launches Alienware m15 R5 With Up To Ryzen 5900HX and RTX 3070 After almost 14 years since the arrival of the last Ryzen based m15, Dell has once again launched the Ryzen variant of the Alienware m15 R5.

The post Dell launches Alienware m15 R5 With Up To Ryzen 5900HX and RTX 3070 appeared first on

Thu, 08 Apr 2021 13:06:30 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs All News Gaming News Hardware News Dell Alienware Gaming Laptop AMD Ryzen Alienware m15 R5 m15 Dell
AMD Radeon Pro Workstation Card with 16GB Memory Leaked Apparently, the preparation for the next-gen Radeon PRO is in its final phases as the pictures for Radeon Pro graphics cards featuring RDNA2 architecture have been leaked.

The post AMD Radeon Pro Workstation Card with 16GB Memory Leaked appeared first on

Thu, 08 Apr 2021 13:04:11 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs All News Hardware News Graphics Card Amd Workstation Radeon Pro AMD Radeon Pro Workstation Card
E-bikes and earbuds among the first third-party hardware to support Apple’s Find My tracking Yesterday we noted that Apple launched a new Find My Certification Asst. app, designed to test support for third-party hardware. Find My, of course, has been a long-standing feature for Apple’s own hardware like iPhones, AirPods and Macs, but back at WWDC, the company announced plans to open it up to manufactures.

Today the company made official its Find My Network Accessory program, and unveiled a handful of hardware that will take advantage of the new Made for iPhone (MFi)-affiliated offering. Users will be able to locate missing devices via Apple’s Find My app.

Image Credits: Apple

At the top of the list are a pair of e-bikes, produced by VanMoof. The S3 and X3 will sport tracking functionality, along with a “Locate with Apple Find My” logo located on the bottom side of the crossbar. Belkin’s Soundform Freedom earbuds, meanwhile will join Apple’s iPods in sporting the feature, while the Chipolo ONE Spot will beat the long-rumored AirTags to the punch. According to Apple, the new products are set to hit the market next week.

There are a bunch of different privacy concerns laid out by Apple in the white papers, along with other specifications companies will have to adhere to. Draft specs for chip makers will also be released in the spring, so companies can utilize the Ultra Wideband tech on Apple devices sporting a U1 chip. Approved products will be able to display the aforementioned “Works with Apple Find My” badge.

Apple launches an app for testing devices that work with ‘Find My’


Wed, 07 Apr 2021 13:29:04 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Apple Apps Hardware Tech Belkin Vanmoof Find My Ultra Wideband Find My Network Accessory
HP Omen 15 2021 With Ryzen 7 5800H CPU and GeForce RTX 3060 GPU Leaked As per a leak from TechnikNews, the HP Omen 15 2021 will house up to Ryzen 7 5800H paired with the RTX 3060 Ti 6GB variant.

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Wed, 07 Apr 2021 12:52:16 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Hp Intel All News Gaming News Hardware News Nvidia Laptop Omen RYZEN Rtx 3060
You Can Upgrade the RAM and Storage of Your M1 Mac After Purchase Technicians in Guangzhou, China, have reportedly succeeded in upgrading the RAM and storage of M1 Mac.

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Wed, 07 Apr 2021 12:49:28 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Apple Hardware Mac All News Hardware News M1 Guangzhou China
Microsoft Now Submerging Servers Into Liquid Baths Microsoft is using a specially engineered fluid from 3M, which is harmless to electronics.

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Highlights from Berkeley SkyDeck’s virtual demo day With 17 startups participating, Berkeley SkyDeck’s Demo Day isn’t the largest cohort we’ve seen by any stretch. The collection of companies is, however, defined by a wide range of focuses, from pioneering diabetes treatments to retrofitting autonomous trucking, curated by the SkyDeck’s small team and a number of advisors.

Founded in 2012, the accelerator is focused on developing early-stage companies tied to the University of California system. Applicants must be affiliated with either one of the 10 UC schools or their national laboratories in Berkeley, Livermore and Los Alamos. Notable alumni include micromobility unicorn, Lime, and delivery robotics firm, Kiwi.

In 2020, SkyDeck — along with much of the rest of the world — went virtual.

“While flight restrictions did cause some international founders to pull crazy hours from our home countries to participate in the sessions, virtual sessions allowed additional members of our teams to participate that would otherwise not have been able to do so,” the accelerator’s organizers said in a TechCrunch post last year. “We are also hearing chatter that Demo Day will be larger than ever before because virtual events are much more scalable.”

Attending a remote startup accelerator is absolutely worth it

The 17 startups presenting today were whittled down from 1,850 applicants, according to the accelerator. Being a member of the cohort involves six months of launch  assistance from SkyDeck, coupled with up $105,000. “In six months, you’re going to pitch on stage at demo day, to an institutional investor in your industry,” Executive Director Caroline Winnett tells TechCrunch.

Here’s a closer look at six highlights from this Demo Day.


Image Credits: EndoCrine Bio, Inc.

Building on technologies developed in the stem cell research labs of UCSF, EndoCrine is looking to commercialize a better way to discover and develop drugs. Specifically, the startup is hoping to improve diabetes treatment beyond standard insulin injections.

“EndoCrine’s proprietary human stem cell-derived islet platform revolutionizes the drug discovery and development process, saving years of time and millions of dollars usually spent by pharma companies,” CEO Gopika Nair said in a statement offered to TechCrunch. “Our innovative solution opens an exciting era of personalized medicine in diabetes.”

The company says SkyDeck helped it take the earliest steps out of the lab and into startup mode.

NuPort Robotics

Image Credits: NuPort Robotics Inc.

NuPort Robotics is among the most mature of the 17 startups included here. In fact, in mid-March, the startup signed a partnership with Canadian Tire and the Ontario government, as part of a $3 million investment in an autonomous middle-mile trucking solution.

Rather than building autonomous trucking from scratch, NuPort’s solution is designed to retrofit semis with autonomous technologies.

“This results in operational cost reduction by eliminating the need to replace their existing fleet and yields a safer, more efficient and sustainable transportation system,” CEO Raghavender Sahdev tells TechCrunch.

The Hurd Co.

Image Credits: The Hurd Co.

The Hurd Co.’s goal is simple: reduce the environmental impact of clothing companies by helping to remove trees from the process. Specifically, the company creates cellulosic fiber pulp from agricultural byproducts. This is designed to bypass tree-based agrilose, which is used in the production of a wide variety of fabrics, including rayon.

“Apparel brands are scrambling for new, low-impact fabric that will allow them to meet their ambitious sustainability goals,” CEO Taylor Heisley-Cook tells TechCrunch. “We completely eliminate trees from the supply chain with a hyper-efficient process that dramatically reduces brands’ impact on the environment.”

The company says its process uses half the water and significantly less energy than standard processes. The technology was developed by Hurd’s CTO, Charles Cai.


Image Credits: Humm

I won’t lie, this is the one in the batch I have the most questions about, having seen a number of companies claim their wearables can increase memory.

Here’s what CEO Iain McIntyre has to say: “It’s ideal for activities that depend on memory, like reading, problem solving or multi-tasking. The Humm patch uses tACS (transcranial alternating stimulation) and in clinical research studies, the Humm patch saw a measurable (+~20%) improvement against placebo.”

It’s an interesting underlying technology, and the advisors — which include a number of university professors in the sciences — certainly see commercial potential. There are some lingering questions around tACS.

Quoting Scientific American from January: “The potential therapeutic effects of tACS on memory, food craving and other neural processes have been tested in dozens of studies in the past. Questions have been raised about whether this method actually exerts any meaningful changes in the brain, however.”

Definitely interested in seeing more about this one and perhaps taking it for a spin when the product ships, later this year.


As far as elevator pitches go, Publica may have the best one of the show. “Publica is Shopify for Digital Content.” Essentially, the company wants to be a direct conduit between content creators and consumers.

“Publica is a service that enables authors and content creators to have their own custom storefront to share, market and sell e-books, audiobooks and any other types of digital content with no intermediaries,” CEO Pablo Laurino tells TechCrunch. “In the era of D2C and marketplaces, Publica helps authors and content to achieve that on their own storefront, offering authors complete control over their brand and ownership of the relationships.”

The system helps creators make their own own digital storefront to sell a wide variety of products, including audiobooks and e-books. The site is already up and running, with more than 1,200 stores created by 250 clients.

Serinus Labs

Image Credits: Serinus Labs

Serinus is developing a warning system for detecting failure in lithium-ion batteries.

Per CEO, Hossain Fahad, “Battery safety is the biggest challenge in the EV industry today. Serinus Labs’ proprietary LiCANS technology provides early warning signals to prevent catastrophic battery failure in electric vehicles.”

The tech uses gas sensing to detect early traces of vented gases that occur prior to battery failure.

Our favorite companies from Y Combinator’s W21 Demo Day: Part 1

]]> Wed, 07 Apr 2021 11:01:50 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Startups Hardware Funding Tech Automotive Venture Capital Biotech Robotics Berkeley University Of California Los Alamos Uc-berkeley Skydeck Kiwi Ontario UCSF Hurd Humm Caroline Winnett Berkeley SkyDeck Iain McIntyre Hurd co Berkeley Livermore Gopika Nair NuPort Robotics Inc NuPort Robotics Raghavender Sahdev Hurd Co Image Credits Taylor Heisley Cook Charles Cai Humm Pablo Laurino Hossain Fahad Creative Announces SXFI AIR GAMER Wireless Headset Creative Technology today announced the release of Creative SXFI AIR GAMER, which incorporates the best features of the SXFI AIR and SXFI GAMER for the most versatile Super X-Fi headphones yet.

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Apple launches an app for testing devices that work with ‘Find My’ Apple has launched a new app, Find My Certification Asst., designed for use by MFi (Made for iPhone) Licensees, who need to test their accessories’ interoperability with Apple’s Find My network. The network helps users find lost Apple devices — like iPhones, AirPods and Mac computers, among other things — but is poised to add support for finding other compatible accessories manufactured by third parties.

The launch of the testing app signals that Apple may be ready to announce the launch of the third-party device program in the near future.

According to the app’s description, MFi Licensees can use Find My Certification Asst. to test the “discovery, connection and other key requirements” for their accessories that will incorporate Apple’s Find My network technology. It also points to information about the Find My network certification program on Apple’s MFi Portal at, which currently references Find My network as a MFi program technology that’s “launching soon.”

The new app’s screenshots indicate it allows device makers to run a wide variety of tests in areas like connectivity, sound (for example, if the item can make a noise when misplaced), firmware, key management, NFC, power and more.

Image Credits: App Store screenshot

The app became publicly available on Sunday, April 4 on the iOS App Store, according to Sensor Tower data. It’s brand new so is not yet ranking in any App Store categories, including its own, “Developer Tools,” or others. It also has no ratings and reviews at this time.

The app’s launch is step toward the larger goal of opening up the Apple Find My network to third parties and Apple’s planned launch of its own new accessory, AirTags.

Apple at last year’s Worldwide Developer Conference had first announced it would open up Find My to third-party devices after facing pressure from regulators in the U.S. and Europe who had been looking into, among other things, whether Apple had been planning to give itself an advantage with its forthcoming launch of AirTags, a competitor to Tile’s lost-item finder.

Image Credits: screenshot of FMCA app

A prominent Apple critic, Tile had complained that AirTags would be able to connect with Apple’s U1 chips, which use UWB (ultra-wideband) technology for more precise finding capabilities, and at a Congressional hearing noted that AirTags would work with Apple’s own Find My app, which ships by default on Apple devices. This, Tile believed, would give Apple a first-party advantage in the lost-item finder market that Tile had successfully established and dominated for years.

Apple, in response, opened up third-party developer access to its U1 chip via its “NearbyInteraction” framework last year. As a result, Tile in Jan. 2021 announced its plan to launch a new tracker powered by UWB.

More recently, Apple updated its Find My app to include a new tab called “Items” in preparation for the app’s expanded support for AirTags and other third-party accessories, like those from Tile and others. This “Items” tab is enabled in latest Apple’s iOS 14.5 beta release, where the app explains how the Find My app will now be able to help users keep track of their everyday items — including accessories and other items that are compatible with Find My.

However, Tile (and likely others) feel that Apple’s concessions still disadvantage their businesses because participation in Apple’s FindMy program means that the third-party device maker would have to abandon its existing app and instead require its customers to use Apple’s FindMy app — effectively turning over its customers and their data to Apple.

It’s worth noting that, upon launch, the app features an icon that shows three items: headphones, a backpack and a suitcase. Not coincidentally, perhaps, Tile’s first integrations were with Bose headphones and luggage and bag makers, Away and Herschel.

Apple has not responded to a request for comment about the new app’s launch.

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]]> Tue, 06 Apr 2021 13:38:55 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Iphone Apple Ios Apps Europe Hardware Tech iOS App Store Tile Apple Inc Developer Tools MFI Congressional Network Technology UWB Find My Airtags Ios 14 AirTags Apple U1 chip U1 Herschel Apple Gigabyte May Have Found a Solution To End The Vertical vs Horizontal GPU Debate AORUS Spain posted a weird render image of a concept GPU with an angled design shroud.

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Tue, 06 Apr 2021 13:31:35 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Hardware All News Hardware News Gigabyte Graphics Card Gpu AORUS AORUS Spain
AMD To Launch Zen3 Based Ryzen Threadripper 5000 Soon We can expect the Zen3 based high-performance desktop (HEDT) series, aka Threadripper 5000 soon, as AMD had already introduced its Vermeer (AM4 Zen3) series back in November 2020.

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RTX Voice Now Supports Non-RTX Graphics Cards Well it appears that NVIDIA has quietly patched RTX Voice to support all GeForce GTX graphics cards supported under their 410.18 driver or newer.

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Sonos delivers a near-perfect portable speaker with the new Sonos Roam Sonos has a new speaker that starts shipping later this month, and it’s a significant departure from the company’s usual offerings in a number of ways. The all-new Sonos Roam is a compact, portable speaker with a built-in battery and Bluetooth connectivity — but still very much a Sonos system team player, with wifi streaming, multi-room feature, voice assistant support and surprisingly great sound quality.

The basics

Priced at $179, the Sonos Roam is truly diminutive, at just over 6 inches, by roughly 2.5 inches for both height and depth. It weighs under a pound, and is available in either a matte white or black finish, which is par for the course for Sonos in terms of colorways. Roam is also IP67-rated, meaning it’s effectively waterproof, with a resistance rating of up to 30 minutes at depths of up to 1 meter (3.3 feet).

Sonos has placed the speaker’s control surface at one end of the device, including a microphone button, volume controls and a play/pause button. These are actual, tactile buttons, rather than touch-sensitive surfaces like you’d find on other Sonos speakers, which makes sense for a speaker designed to be used on the go, and in conditions where touch controls might get flummoxed by things like rain and water.

The Roam also has a power button on the back, next to a USB-C port for charging. It also offers wireless charging, via a receiver found in the base of the speaker, which can be used with Sonos’ own forthcoming magnetic charging adapter (sold separately), or with any standard Qi-powered wireless charger you want.

In addition to wifi streaming, Sonos Roam can also connect to any device via Bluetooth 5.0. It also features AirPlay 2 for connecting to Apple devices when on wifi, and it works out of the box with Spotify Connect. The built-in battery is rated for up to 10 hours of playback on a full charge, according to Sonos, and can also provide up to 10 days of its sleep-like standby mode.

Design and performance

This is the smallest speaker yet released by Sonos, and that’s definitely a big plus when it comes to this category of device. The dimensions make it feel like a slightly taller can of Red Bull, which should give you some sense of just how portable it is. Unlike Sonos’ first portable speaker with a built-in battery, the Sonos Move, the Roam truly feels like something designed to be thrown in a bag and brought with you wherever you happen to need it.

Despite its small size, the Sonos Roam offers impressive sound — likely the best I’ve yet encountered for a portable speaker in this size class. Inside, it manages to pack in dual amplifiers, one tweeter and a separate custom racetrack mid-woofer, which Sonos developed to help deliver both lows and mids with a faithfulness that normally escapes smaller speakers. The Roam also gets a lot louder than you’d probably expect it could, while keeping audio quality clear and free of distortion at the same time.

One of the keys to the Roam’s great sound quality is Sonos’ Automatic Trueplay tech, which tunes the audio to best suit its surroundings actively and continually. This feature requires that the mic be enabled to work, but it’s well worth having on in most settings, and makes a big difference while streaming in both Bluetooth and wifi modes. This also helps the speaker adjust when it’s switched from horizontal to vertical orientation, and it’s one of the main reasons that the Roam punches above its weight relative to other speakers in this size and price category.

The Roam would be a winner based on audio quality alone for the price, but the extra Sonos system-specific features it boasts really elevate it to a true category leader. These include a standby mode that preserves battery while keeping the Roam available to your system for wifi streaming via the Sonos app (handy, and also optional since you can hold the power button down for five seconds to truly power off and preserve your charge for even longer, which is great for travel).

One of Roam’s truly amazing abilities is a hand-off feature that passes playback of whatever you’re using it to listen to on to the nearest Sonos speaker in your system when you long press the play/pause button. This works almost like magic, and is a great speaker superpower for if you’re wandering around the house and the yard doing chores with the Roam in your pocket.

Bottom line

Sonos waited a long time to release their first travel-friendly portable speaker, but they obviously used that time wisely. The Sonos Roam is the most thoughtfully-designed, feature-rich and best-sounding portable speaker you can get for under $200 (and better than many more expensive options, at that). Even if you don’t already have a Sonos system to use it with, it’s an easy choice if you’re in the market for a portable, rugged Bluetooth speaker — and if you’re already a Sonos convert, the decision gets that much easier.

Tue, 06 Apr 2021 09:00:47 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Reviews Apple TC Gadgets Spotify Technology Hardware Bluetooth Tech Computing Speaker Sonos Qi Airplay Assistant Wireless Speaker Wireless Charger Smart Speakers Play:3
LG’s exit from the smartphone market comes as no surprise For those who follow the space, LG will be remembered fondly as a smartphone trailblazer. For a decade-and-a-half, the company was a major player in the Android category and a driving force behind a number of innovations that have since become standard.

Perhaps the most notable story is that of the LG Prada. Announced a month before the first iPhone, the device helped pioneer the touchscreen form factor that has come to define virtually every smartphone since. At the time, the company openly accused Apple of ripping off its design, noting, “We consider that Apple copycat Prada phone after the design was unveiled when it was presented in the iF Design Award and won the prize in September 2006.”

LG has continued pushing envelopes – albeit to mixed effect. In the end, however, the company just couldn’t keep up. This week, the South Korean electronics giant announced it will be getting out of the “incredibly competitive” category, choosing instead to focus on its myriad other departments.

The news comes as little surprise following months of rumors that the company was actively looking for a buyer for the smartphone unit. In the end, it seems, none were forthcoming. This July, the company will stop selling phones beyond what remains of its existing inventory.

The smartphone category is, indeed, a competitive one. And frankly, LG’s numbers have pretty consistently fallen into the “Others” category of global smartphone market share figures ruled by names like Samsung, Apple, Huawei and Xiaomi. The other names clustered beneath the top five have been, more often than not, other Chinese manufacturers like Vivo. ]]> Mon, 05 Apr 2021 17:48:53 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Apple Mobile Hardware Tech Smartphone Prada Lg 5g Samsung Apple Huawei EC Hardware EC News Analysis LG Prada Intel Releases First Official Graphics Driver for its Rocket Lake CPUs Featuring Iris Xe Integrated GPUs Intel's Rocket Lake series is the first one to get Iris Xe integrated GPUs and today Intel has released the first official graphics driver for its Rocket Lake CPUs.

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300 NVIDIA CMP Mining Cards Seized By Hong Kong Customs MyDrivers reports that Hong Kong customs has seized 300 NVIDIA CMP mining cards. The website did not mention the reason that why the cards were seized, but it can be linked to the all-time high price of Bitcoin and the ban of crypto mining farms by the Chinese authorities.

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MSI MEG Z590 ACE Gold Edition Motherboard Leaked New leaked pictures suggest that the MEG Z590 ACE will receive a new gold variant, The MEG Z590 ACE Gold Edition.

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