Essential guide to care your laptop battery, laptop adapter, power tools battery

Sony new Vaio SA and SB-series with docking stations and battery slices

Sony is equipping its new Vaio SA-series and SB-series with docking stations and battery slices. The laptop battery life is going to double, and the annoying plugging in of power cables will be a thing of the past.
Sony laptop battery Sony new Vaio SA and SB series with docking stations and battery slicesSony Vaio VPC-SB1Z9EB with Battery Slice VGP-BPSC24 on the Docking Station VGP-PRS20

Who hasn’t stared jealously at the extensive docking and battery options available for the business class models from HP, Lenovo or Dell? Now Vaio users can profit from these features too. The mainstream consumer series, Vaio SA and SB, come with docking stations and battery slices, granting the user the ultimate battery life experience.

Docking Station VGP-PRS20

The docking station, VGP-PRS20 (about 129 Euros), uses a power adapter cable which is similar to that of the notebook (mixing the two up won’t cause any problems). As the user will have two power cables which serve the same purpose, he/she can leave the cable of the docking station plugged in during a trip for simplicity sake. The docking station can be used to recharge batteries (including the battery slice) and the slider on the right side allows the user to switch to “Extended Laptop Battery” mode.

The docking port offers HDMI, VGA, 4 USB ports (no USB 3.0; those are only available on the notebooks themselves) and 2 x RJ45 (LAN) ports. As soon as the Vaio is placed on the docking port, the HDMI, VGA and RJ45 ports of the laptop can no longer be used, and to prevent anyone from doing so, the docking station has two plastic flaps on the side which block these ports effectively.

The placement of the device does not involve the use of any latches or locks. This means: place the laptop on the two protruding bumps and you’re done. The subnotebook will not slip due to two securing hooks (silver) which stick out of the base unit and secure the model so that it doesn’t fall.

372f7ff2cf Sony new Vaio SA and SB series with docking stations and battery slices
VGP-PRS20: Point of view
88d2433cb8 Sony new Vaio SA and SB series with docking stations and battery slices
VGP-PRS20: Lying on top
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VGP-PRS20: Port blockers
6c66647404 Sony new Vaio SA and SB series with docking stations and battery slices
VGP-PRS20: Connector

Battery Slice VGP-BPSC24

The VGP-BPSC24 battery slice is a flat battery (Li-Polymer, 6 cell), which fits under the base unit of the Vaio SA- and SB series models. It has a capacity of 4.400 mAh or 49 Wh (11.1V). The notebooks have have a connector on the bottom which allows them to attach themselves to the slice battery. However, this connector is not the same as the one found on the docking port. This additional battery slice VGP-BPSC24 costs around 130 Euros and weighs 520 grams.

During notebook use, the laptop batteries are designed in such a way that the slice battery will be used first. The slice battery can be charged via the notebook or  through a small charging dongle (while the battery is not connected), so theoretically, the 13.3 inch device can run the entire day without internet.

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The black battery slice looks good when attached to the notebook, even though its colour only fits to that of the black Vaio SB. The latch has two metal hooks on the locking side. The holes for these hooks, on the other side, are made of synthetic material. To prevent an accidental unlocking, the security mechanism is two-fold (lock and release). The perpendicular hole in the middle of the slice battery is for the docking station (without this hole, the slice HP COMPAQ Business Notebook NC6400 Battery would raise the laptop enough to free the non-functioning ports).

Laptop Computer Battery Run time

For our test we used the series model VPC-SB1S1E/W with an i5-2410M processor. This model comes with a 50 Wh battery (4.540 mAh). We dimmed the brightness to roughly 100 cd/m² during our test. The CPU load was low while surfing on the web (no videos, only websites). One downside is that the charging of the duo packet (notebook battery + battery slice) takes a while: 5:46 hours.

WLAN-Test @50 Wh Standard: 314 minutes (5:14h)

WLAN-Test @50 Wh + 49 Wh: 648 minutes (10:48h)

Thanks to the docking station and battery slice, the user is spared the chaos of  cables all over the place, and the mobility is doubled. These two additional features are fully compatible with each other, which means that the Vaio notebook can still sit on the docking station, even if the slice battery is attached. These features are sure to immensely increase the comfort of the user, as both the Vaio SA (not available yet) and the Vaio SB can connect within one second to these peripheral devices.

a98a981650 Sony new Vaio SA and SB series with docking stations and battery slices
Docking Station VGP-PRS20: USB 3.0 is only available on the device

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Jelly Battery Can Power Small Electronics

ZZ7EF402E0 Jelly Battery Can Power Small ElectronicsJelly has long been used to describe many things, including Santa’s belly around the holidays. But it has never been associated with batteries…at least until now. A new battery news posted in Physics touts findings that jelly could become a solution to make less expensive, but equally effective, batteries for small electronics.

European scientists have invented a new type of polymer gel that can be utilized to manufacture less expensive lithium batteries without compromising performance for laptops, digital cameras, phones, and more. The jelly-like polymer could potentially replace the liquid electrolytes used in rechargeable battery cells. It looks like a solid film, but is actually about 70 percent liquid, and is made using the same principles as making jelly. Essentially you add a lot of hot water to a gelatin, which in this instance is a polymer and electrolyte mix, and as it cools it sets to form a solid yet flexible shape.

Jelly Batteries 300x169 Jelly Battery Can Power Small Electronics

Since it is flexible, it can be molded into various shapes and sizes to suit the device it is intended for, according to head researcher Professor Ian Ward.

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The battery technology has been licensed to American company Polystor Energy Corp., which is now conducting trials to determine the true potential for the future. Benefits initially cited include the new technology being safer, cheaper, and lighter. And since the jelly-cells are “sealed” through the manufacturing process, there is no excess flammable solvent or liquid electrolyte, which could eliminate any flammable concerns.

Don’t be looking for gelatin Toshiba pa3672u-1brs battery anytime soon, but the technology does seem likely for the future. In the meantime, you may not ever look at the jelly for your toast in quite the same way!

For your immediate battery needs, be sure to check out our prices and produces at laptop batteries company.

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How to Sync iPad To a New Computer – iPad Usage Tips by

batteries service How to Sync iPad To a New Computer   iPad Usage Tips by batteries company.comWant to Sync iPad to a new computer? When you get a new computer, it can be a bit of a downer to plug your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch into it and be told that you’ll have to erase it and start again, all because it’s synced to a different iTunes library. Don’t despair, because there’s a away to avoid wiping your precious device provided you still have access to the computer you’ve been syncing it to. It can seem a bit fiddly to do, but it’s a lot easier than having to start from scratch with a clean device.

The secret lies in the fact that your device syncs to a specific iTunes library, not a laptop computer. So the trick is to move your library from your old computer to the new one, and your iPad won’t know the difference!

If you’ve been using the default settings in iTunes (that is, letting it organize your media for you, as opposed to storing it elsewhere on your computer or on an external drive), what we’re going to do here should transfer your actual media files across, too. If you’ve been organizing your files in a different way, you’ll need to be sure to move those separately.

sync ipad to new computer batteries  How to Sync iPad To a New Computer   iPad Usage Tips by batteries

You need access to your old and new computers and a way of transferring a large amount of data between them. The fastest would be over a local Ethernet network, bit if the machines aren’t linked, an external hard drive or USB stick will do the job. We’ll show you below how to find out how much data you’re going to need to move.

Sync Your Device

Plug your iPhone, iPad or iPhone touch into your old computer for the last time and open iTunes. Right-click its name under Devices and choose sync. Once that’s done, unplug your device and lay it to one side for now.

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Find The Folder

Go to Edit> Preferences (Windows) or iTunes> Preferences (Mac). Click Advanced; we’re interested in where it says ‘iTunes Media folder location’. The folder we need to copy is called iTunes (not iTunes Media).

itunes media folder How to Sync iPad To a New Computer   iPad Usage Tips by batteries

Size Matters

Open Finder or Windows Explorer and browse to the location of the iTunes folder (in our case, that’s in C:/Users/YourFolder, and so on). Right – click the iTunes folder and choose Get info or properties to find out its size.

Copy The Folder

Armed with the size figure, get hold of a hard drive or USB stick big enough to fit it on. Copy the iTunes folder to it. Once everything’s across, disconnect the storage from your old computer and hook it up the new one.

Find The iTunes Folder

On your new machine, find the location of the iTunes folder as you did in step 2, then close iTunes. If you’ve got any media on this computer already, move the existing iTunes folder elsewhere to avoid overwriting it.

Open iTunes

Now copy the iTunes folder from your storage device into the exact place that we established in step 5. Once it’s copied, open iTunes. All being well, the music and apps from your old computer will be waiting for you.

Settings Tweak

If you stored media elsewhere on your old computer, add it to iTunes on the new one. In Preferences, click Devices and check the box to prevent automatic syncing, ensuring your device doesn’t get wiped when you plug it in.

Plug in Your Device

Now connect your device to the new computer and click the Apps tab. The sync box will be checked, indicating things are working well so far. Don’t sync yet, but right-click the iOS device in the left pane and choose Back-Up.


If you’d synced media automatically on your old computer, make sure it’s all present under Library on the new one, because when you sync, anything that’s missing will be wiped from your iOS device. If it’s all there, sync away!

Back up Your Computer

Now that everything’s transferred to your new computer and it’s syncing with your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, it’s a good time to back up the Mac or PC. In Mac OS X, click the Time Machine menu and choose Back Up Now.

And in Windows…

Create System Restore Point by right-clicking Computer, choosing Properties and then clicking System Protection on the left. Make sure Protection’s set to On for your hard drive, then click Create….to get started.

Deauthorise Old Machine

You can authorise five computers to use your iTunes account, so deauthorising old machines is wise. Open iTunes, click Store> De-authorize This Computer….., type in your Apple ID and password and click Deauthorize.

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How To Increase Your Laptop Battery Lifetime

batteries service How To Increase Your Laptop Battery LifetimeA laptop with a short  battery life is a nuisance, especially when you’re on the road and nowhere close to a power socket. To make each individual charge of your battery last longer, learn about the 20 Ways To Increase A Laptop’s Battery Life. What is even more annoying than a drained battery however, is a dying battery.

Battery lifetime not only depends on the type of battery and its quality, it also depends on how the laptop computer battery is cared for. In this article I will explain what determines the lifetime of Lithium-Ion laptop batteries, the type of rechargeable battery found in most if not all modern laptops, and what you can do to increase your battery lifetime.

Introduction To Lithium-Ion Batteries (Li-Ion)

Modern laptops are almost exclusively delivered with Li-Ion batteries. They are lighter, offer a higher performance, maintain their charger longer, and are less susceptible to the dreaded memory effect than previous types of rechargeable batteries.

In the US, Li-Ion batteries are classified as non-hazardous for the environment as they do not contain free toxic metals. In the EU however, vendors are required to recycle at least 25% of the batteries they produce. After all, Li-Ion batteries do contain material worth recycling, although the cost of doing so is rather high.

Priming Li-Ion Batteries

The predominant statement you will find is that new Li-Ion batteries do not require priming. Nevertheless, you should fully charge your Li-Ion battery before using it for the first time.

Cycling Li-Ion Batteries

Li-Ion batteries have a lifetime of 300 to 500 full charging cycles or up to 2000 partial cycles. There are reports that cycling a Li-Ion Dell Latitude D620 Battery   after long storage periods, i.e. fully discharging and re-charging it for two or three cycles, leads to to capacity gains. Other sources recommend cycling Li-Ion batteries every couple of weeks. Generally, you should not fully discharge your Li-Ion battery.

Laptop Battery Life batteries  How To Increase Your Laptop Battery Lifetime

Caring For Your Li-Ion Battery

While Li-Ion batteries do not have a memory effect and don’t need to be primed or cycled to maintain full capacity, their lifetime can still be shortened dramatically, if not cared for right. Two things can damage Li-Ion batteries: deep discharges and heat. All of the following battery DOs and DON’Ts are derived from these two major factors.

Li-Ion Battery DOs

  • partially discharge and recharge (no memory effect).
  • charge at lower voltage.
  • take out battery when laptop is running with AC adapter connected.
  • store Toshiba pa3534u-1brs battery in refrigerator with a 40-50% charge.
  • cycle the battery every few weeks or after every 30 partial charges.

Li-Ion Battery DON’Ts

  • deep discharge battery.
  • trickle charge.
  • ultra-fast charge.
  • leave fully charged battery in laptop while running on AC power (heat damage).
  • freeze battery.
  • buy old Li-Ion or spare laptop batteries (Li-Ion batteries age, see below).

Aging Of Li-Ion Batteries

One more thing to keep in mind is that Li-Ion batteries begin aging the moment they are produced and there is little you can do to prevent this. What causes the aging is that the electrolyte slowly breaks down the positive plate, causing the internal resistance to increase to a point where no energy can be delivered. A partial charge and low temperatures slow down this process and hence increase the lifetime of your Toshiba Pa3285u-3bas Battery.


Li-Ion batteries are superior to Nickel-Cadmium or Nickel-Metal Hybrid batteries in that they deliver a higher performance, show a much slower self-discharge, and don’t have a memory effect. However, they do age, withstand only a limited amount of charge and discharge cycles, and are damaged by heat. The best thing you can do to preserve battery lifetime, is to store your notebook battery in a cold place whenever you have reliable AC power available. Alternatively, maintain optimal cooling and airflow to decrease heat buildup. In any case you should perform a full discharge and recharge cycle every few weeks and avoid fully discharing your Li-Ion Acer Aspire 4720 laptop battery in the meantime.

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Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

What’s the best Android tablet for 2011?

If you’re looking for a tablet and don’t fancy an iPad, then Android is the way to go.

There are other options out there; Windows 7 tablets are available, the BlackBerry PlayBook is on sale now and the HP TouchPad has come and gone in a flurry of £99 panic-buying. But Android 3.0 is currently the main OS rival to the iPad, and the products are creeping onto the shelves one by one.

We’ve gone from zero Android tablets to stacks of the things in a very short space of time, and inevitably some are better than others.

Some have ten-inch screens, others seven, and there are big differences in battery life, processing power and on-board RAM. So while we wait for the likes of the Asus Eee Pad Slider, Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 and Amazon Kindle Fire, let’s see what the current best tablets are…

main 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

1. Asus Eee Pad Transformer

Best Android tablet PC for: replacing your netbook

We love the Asus Eee Pad Transformer. It’s been around for a while now, but in our opinion, it’s still the most compelling Android tablet available. Not only is it powerful and well featured, it’s designed to work with a keyboard dock which turns it into a fully-fledged Android-powered netbook. The fact is that Android as an OS is still lagging behind iOS in terms of tablet usability, so products need a USP.And on that score, this is the tablet that changed the game. Look out also for the Asus Eee Pad Slider which comes packing a slide-out keyboard – it’s coming soon and promises great things!

main 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

2. Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1

Best Android tablet for: the out-and-out tablet experience

While the Transformer offers something a little different at an unbeatable price, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 offers a direct alternative to Apple‘s iPad 2. Sporting the Tegra 2 dual-core CPU, it’s both marginally thinner and lighter than the iPad 2. This is some achievement, especially when you consider the fuss Apple made about how thin and light the iPad 2 was on launch. If you want an iPad-like tablet that’s not an iPad, this is the one. The prices are the same as the iPad 2, so it’s a straight shoot-out on features…

main 420 90 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

3. Sony Tablet S

Best Android tablet for: PlayStation gaming

As a veritable mega-giant in the consumer tech universe, Sony’s landing on Planet Tablet was always going to be interesting. Blasting off alongside the fold-in-half Tablet P, the Tablet S has a unique wedge-shaped design and top-end specs. It’s a very decent and refined tablet, and has the unique feature of having access to original PlayStation games. The only issue is that it’s not as tidy as the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and not as versatile as the Transformer. Apart from that, it’s one of the best Android tablets out there.

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4. Motorola Xoom

Best Android tablet for: sleek good looks and solid performance

The Motorola Xoom was the first Honeycomb tablet to hit the shelves. Current prices are starting at about £330, which is great value for a 10-inch tablet of this calibre and it’s thus worthy of your attention. Solid build quality, decent HP 484170-001 laptop battery life, good performance.

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5. Toshiba AT100 / Thrive

Best Android tablet for: anyone who wants a full-size HDMI port

There’s a predicament with the Toshiba AT100: it has a certain appeal for advanced users who’ll appreciate the slick performance, but the bulky size is a major problem. One brilliant move was to make the USB and HDMI ports full size. You can just unplug your Xbox and snap in the Toshiba AT100 when you want to watch on an HD TV. The tablet enables you to plug in a regular keyboard and mouse – this ease of adding peripherals is a win. Toshiba pa3399u-2bas battery life is another bonus. Yet, the hefty size and weight (plus the passable screen quality) is the main reason we prefer other recent tablets.

main 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

6. LG Optimus Pad

Best Android tablet for: Playing around with 3D

The consumer electronics giants are throwing everything at 3D, and LG has decided that its first Android tablet should play a role in its ’3D is the best’ hearts and minds mission. The tablet has dual-5MP cameras which work together to shoot 3D images and record 3D footage. Cool, huh? The problem is that there’s no 3D screen, so if you want to watch your 3D movies you’ll need to either plug the tablet into a 3D TV or watch in anaglyph 3D on the tablet’s screen. If you’re crazy about 3D, this is your next Android tablet.

a500 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

7. Acer Iconia Tab A500

Best Android tablet for: fans of brushed aluminium bodywork

Acer’s Android tablet is good looking and offers similar performance to the other Android 3.0 tablets on show here. We like it, but it’s missing a bit of sparkle and there’s not much on show here that we can cling on to. It’s not as stylish as the Galaxy Tab 10.1, and doesn’t offer anything different like the Transformer does with its keyboard.

main%20photo%202%20copy%202 420 90 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

8. Acer Iconia Tab A100

Best Android tablet for: budget 7-inch tablet performance

It’s hard to recommend the Acer Iconia Tab A100 in light of the 10-inch alternatives. Yet, for such as ebook fans and those who like smaller tabs, this is the best of the 7-inch lot. In some ways, the BlackBerry PlayBook is better in a technical sense – at least it does real multitasking – but it has too few apps. We like the A100 for an express purpose: greater mobility and book reading. For most tasks, a 10-inch tablet is a wiser bet. But for well under £300, this is not a bad product.

htcflyer 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

9. HTC Flyer

Best Android tablet for: Portability and fans of Sense UI

HTC has decided to release the tablet running on Android Gingerbread, which will upset some purists that believe these tablets should run on Honeycomb. However, the HTC Sense overlay deals with that, offering a new range of widgets and content to mask the fact it’s running older versions of the OS (although a Honeycomb update is imminent). The new tablet has a 7-inch LCD screen, and comes with an aluminium unibody shell that feels very nice in the hand. However, with a price of nearly £600, can this tablet compete?

Samsung Galaxy Tab 420 90 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

10. Samsung Galaxy Tab

The original iPad rival – does the Galaxy Tab still have something to offer?

Samsung’s original 7-inch Galaxy Tab is looking a bit old and tired now, and we weren’t big fans of it when it was brand new anyway. However, with heavy discounts, this tablet is now available for under £300 and there are plenty of attractive 3G package deals available. There’s no Android 3.0 here though, which makes this Tab little more than a smartphone on steroids.

VPad7 1 front30 02 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

11. Viewsonic Viewpad 7

A decent Android 2.2 tablet but it’s already out of date

The Viewsonic Viewpad 7 is exactly the same, albeit slightly more expensive than the Linx Commtiva N700 – and confusingly, Viewsonic is marketing it as a smartphone. It’s a terrible smartphone but it’s a fairly competent 7-inch Android tablet: its 600MHz processor isn’t really fast enough for Flash though, not to mention recent Android releases. There’s no Android 3.0 on board here though, so this should only be considered if you can get it for a cut-down price.

HannsPad main 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

12. Hannspree Hannspad

Another Android tablet bereft of the Android Market

This tablet has more in common with Samsung’s current tablet offering, the seven-inch Galaxy Tab, than the new boys when it comes to software. However, it’s a match for them when it comes to hardware grunt. The problem is that it’s let down by the absence of Android 3.0 and the Android Market, an unresponsive touchscreen, poor viewing angles and some shoddy optimisations.

And our pick of the hottest up-and-coming tablets is….

kindlefire 420 100 Top 12 best Android tablets in the world

Amazon Kindle Fire

After months of speculation, the Amazon Kindle Fire has been officially announced at an event in New York, marking the first time the company has entered the tablet market proper. The successor to the Amazon Kindle is a 7-inch device that comes with Android, albeit a version that has been heavily altered by Amazon to make the best use of the company’s e-shopping spine. The screen is an IPS display that’s made from Gorilla Glass, it houses dual-core processor, and weighs in at 14.6 ounces. There is a tablet-optimised shopping app on board – this is said to comprise simplified and streamlined pages, so it is easier to buy stuff on than the actual Amazon website.

Come back for our full Amazon Kindle Fire review very soon!

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Review Dell Latitude XT3 Enterprise-class Laptop

Dell Latitude XT3  Review Dell Latitude XT3 Enterprise class Laptop

The very sturdy Dell Latitude XT3 is an enterprise-class laptop that comes with a twist: You can quickly fold it into a tablet PC by rotating its screen on its single central hinge. Such so-called convertible PCs often land in large organizations, including those in the health care, education, and law enforcement fields. This kind of machine needs to perform well both as a laptop and as a tablet, hold up well in hectic environments, and deliver good battery life. For the most part, Dell’s third-generation Latitude XT fits the bill nicely.

The hefty but attractive midlevel model I tested sells for an equally hefty $3003 (as of April 12, 2012). The moment I picked up the XT3, I knew that it was made to take some knocks. The case is constructed of thick, stiff plastic with magnesium-alloy reinforced corners. I found almost no flex in the PC case or the display panel. Dell claims that it made the XT3 spill-resistant; I didn’t test that, but the thin rubber gaskets that line the keyboard, the screen bezel, and the perimeter of the computer’s top panel are reassuring.

My main rap on the XT3: It weighs too much. With the internal nine-cell internal battery pack, this convertible laptop weighs 5.2 pounds–not something you’ll want to hold in the crook of your arm for long. Its accessories bump the total travel weight to 6.7 pounds, making this portable a tough sell to road warriors. On the upside, the batteries just won’t quit. The internal pack lasted for 8 hours, 23 minutes in lab tests, 3 hours longer than the average all-purpose laptop. When we popped on the optional nine-cell slice ($199), it pumped battery life up to a marathon 19 hours, 46 minutes. However, that extra pack raises the total weight to 8.1 pounds. I’d hate to have to hoist the XT3 up into overhead baggage compartments on a regular basis, but I could easily shuttle it around the office between cubicles and meeting rooms.

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The XT3 is very smooth to use, with few snags. The 13.3-inch multitouch capacitive screen is a pleasure to view and tap on. Even though it’s smaller than many all-purpose laptop screens, it offers a decent 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, and I could read text on it even in bright light. The keyboard comes with the usual Chiclet-style keys, but they’re very crisp and comfortable to type on. As for pointing devices, you get both an eraserhead pointer nested in the middle of the keyboard and a touchpad. I have two nitpicks: It’s too easy to hit the Page Up and Page Down keys accidentally, and the hypersensitive eraserhead pointer sends the cursor dashing off in all directions. I stick with the touchpad, which works fine.

In tablet mode, the screen responds nimbly to finger touches. Brushing to scroll documents, pinching and unpinching documents to shrink and expand them…it all works quickly and effortlessly. The stylus works very well, but not perfectly. I had no trouble tapping menu items with it, but I started wishing for a little more screen stickiness during my inking test – the stylus glides a tad too easily. If you need to navigate the screen while wearing gloves, Dell offers a resistive touchscreen option.

One notable issue: When I rotate and lay the screen down on the keyboard, whether I’m closing the laptop or folding it into a tablet, the panel doesn’t easily lock into place. I often have to fiddle with the panel to get it to latch, and I don’t hear that reassuring click.

You pay a big premium for the XT3′s toughness and its dual laptop-tablet nature. On our WorldBench 7 test suite, this PC posted a score of 108, in line with its mostly midrange silicon (an Intel Core i5-2520M dual-core processor, 4GB of DDR3 memory, and a 128GB solid-state drive). You can buy as much oomph on some ultraportables costing under $1000. Our test results confirm that the XT3 is geared more for work than play: Although the XT3 cranked through image editing and video and audio encoding, gamers need not apply. This PC uses Intel’s HD Graphics 3000 chipset, handling games well only at low detail and resolutions. You can upgrade to a Core i7 dual-core processor and 8GB of memory for another $295.

The audio from the internal stereo speakers sounds exceptionally clean and vibrant. Bass is weak – typical for small speakers – but they don’t sound tinny. The webcam, embedded in the screen’s top panel between the array microphones, records remarkably sharp video at its maximum 1280-by-720-pixel resolution, and you get lots of controls to adjust the recording levels, including gamma. The array mics clearly recorded my voice even when I stood 6 feet away. The XT3 makes an excellent station for conducting VoIP calls, such as over Skype.

Typical of enterprise PCs, the XT3 comes loaded with slots and ports, offering extra security options (such as SmartCard access and an optional fingerprint reader) and ensuring broad compatibility with different site installations. The XT3 comes with three dedicated USB ports plus a combo USB/eSATA port. My main beef: The USB ports max out at 2.0. For video, you get VGA and HDMI ports, but no DisplayPort. Other slots and ports include those for a 34mm ExpressCard, SD Card or MultiMediaCard, FireWire, and a headset.


How to Calibrate Battery On Android Devices

Calibrate Battery On Android Devices With Battery Calibration

android battery  How to Calibrate Battery On Android Devices

Experienced ROM flashers of Android devices will be quite familiar with the concept of clearing the battery stats every time in order to calibrate the HP probook 4510s replacement battery. This is mostly needed when a new ROM is flashed with the battery at less then 100 percent. Earlier, we covered the manual method on how to fix the battery drain issue on rooted Android devices, but this manual re-calibration can be quite cumbersome depending on your device type as it requires you to boot into recovery mode, and more. Not anymore, thanks to XDA-Developers forum member marosige, who has come up with an app named, Battery Calibration. This app allows you to clear those battery stats rather more conveniently through a simple user interface. Read on for more on this app and to download it.

Now, the question many would be asking is, “What’s the advantage of using this app over clearing battery stats from recovery and then fully charging and discharging your phone?”. The answer is a threefold one.

  • This app first of all, eliminates the need to boot into recovery and rocking a few hardware keys.
  • Secondly, the app will only let you delete the battery stats when and only the battery is charged at 100 percent, thereby eliminating any false calibration that may or may not occur when going through recovery.
  • That said, this app can be really handy for users with stock recoveries but rooted devices where you can’t clear the battery stats via recovery. This app will still allow you to do that.

But one thing this app will not do for you is discharge the phone completely and then charge back to 100 percent. Yes, in order to truly calibrate your Dell inspiron 1545 battery, you will have to do that manually. There is no automated way out of that for now.

You can see below a few screenshots of the very simple interface that only requires you to hit the Battery Calibration button once the phone is charged at 100 percent. The app shows you the current battery level as well for convenience.

android device battery calibration How to Calibrate Battery On Android Devicesbattery calibration error How to Calibrate Battery On Android Devices


Lithium Ion Batteries Baby Steps: 3-Year Warranty Laptop Battery

leydenenergy batteries  Lithium Ion Batteries Baby Steps: 3 Year Warranty Laptop BatteryThe next-generation of lithium-ion batteries aren’t just here to power the first wave of electric cars and remake the power grid; they’ll be providing better energy storage for our gadgets and computers, too. On Monday, venture capital-backed lithium-ion battery player Leyden Energy(formerly called Mobius Power) is launching a replacement lithium-ion laptop battery for laptops that won’t degrade (start losing its full charge) for at least three years, and will come with a three-year warranty.

Most standard laptop batteries start losing their ability to fully charge (providing fewer and fewer hours of battery life) after about a year and a half. Anyone who’s a laptop user knows how annoying it is to have a battery that suddenly won’t hold a charge for very long, even though it’s still early in the life of the laptop itself. Leyden Energy says its battery has one of the highest energy densities and run times for a lithium-ion laptop battery on the market, with 440 watt hours per liter and over 1,000 cycles, and the battery can operate at higher temperatures than traditional batteries.

Leyden Energy’s three-year warranty laptop battery will cost a premium over a standard one-year battery, and while Leyden Energy hasn’t yet determined the exact price it will sell the battery for, Leyden Energy CEO and President Aakar Patel told me in an interview that a three-year battery will be less than double the cost of a one-year battery. Leyden Energy will also announce a deal Monday to sell its battery through the Australia  battery retailer aussiebattery and, and interested customers will be able to buy the battery online in a couple of weeks through the retailer.

 Lithium Ion Batteries Baby Steps: 3 Year Warranty Laptop BatteryLeyden Energy was founded in 2007 with a patent acquired from chemical giant Dupont, and a $4.5 million investment from investors at Walden International, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Sigma Partners. Leyden’s secret sauce is an innovation for the electrolyte part of the battery. A battery has a positive and a negative plate and then an electrolyte in between, which is the substance through which electrons transfer back and forth while the battery charges and discharges.

While standard lithium-ion batteries use a salt-based solvent within the electrolyte that starts degrading at a temperature of between 70 to 80 degrees Celsius, Leyden uses a salt-solvent in its electrolyte that doesn’t degrade up to temperatures of 300 degrees Celsius. Leyden Energy holds a patent for this innovation. As Patel explained it to me, when a Dell Latitude D620 Battery charges and discharges, think of the electrons as rods that move across the electrolyte (between the anode and the cathode) and fill holes on the other side. After a certain point in time, standard electrolytes, particularly at high temperatures, let the rods start to break down and the holes start to fill up, but Leyden’s Asus A32-F3 Battery can maintain the integrity of those rods and holes at higher temperatures for a longer period of time.

In the grand scheme of innovations, and with startups trying to change the game with designs for battery-powered cars with hundreds of miles of range, Leyden’s innovation is kind of like baby steps. But if Leyden can manage to get a deal with a major laptop manufacturer to embed the battery directly in a laptop, or market the battery with a popular laptop, then the company could do well. In 2008, Boston Power launched its three-year-lasting lithium-ion battery with laptop maker HP, and is backed by Oak Investment Partners, Venrock, GGV Capital and Gabriel Venture Partners.

Like Boston Power, Leyden Energy has been eying the electric vehicle battery market, too, and is working with Brammo to supply the Dell Vostro 1520 Laptop Battery for its electric motorcycle the Empulse, a more powerful version of Brammo’s original e-scooter the Enertia. Leyden and a vehicle maker partner were also awarded a $2.96 million grant from the California Energy Commission to produce ten electric vehicle batteries per month. Leyden seems like it’s focusing more on batteries for the laptop and consumer electronics markets, instead of electric vehicles, as it seems like the market for electric vehicles is moving slower than some have expected.

See Also

New wireless hard drive for iPad now available

Laptops move towards all-day battery life

How to revive a dying laptop battery

10 Best Rated Laptops Reviews

Best Laptop Battery Life of 7+ Hrs Laptops

Top Power for Netbooks and Tablets

Professional Laptop Battery Knowledge Tips & FAQ

Dell latitude d620 laptop battery buying tips

Laptop battery and ac adapter issues troubleshooting guide


Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Now that the new iPad has been revealed, everyone’s chiming in on whether it’s a disappointing incremental upgrade or a fantastic breakthrough. None of that matters to its success, of course. If every single previous iPhone and iPad product launch is any indication, Apple is going to sell truckloads of these things no matter what any expert, hater or fanboy says.

However, there’s one thing that makes this iPad release different from ealier ones: The new iPad will be the Apple device that goes head-to-head with Windows 8 tablets when they arrive later this year. Microsoft‘s new OS will spawn an entirely different species of tablet than the Android devices that have so far been Apple’s main competition. And if Microsoft plays its cards right, it could be the one that finally gives the iPad a serious challenge in the market.

So far, no product has been able to do that. The first “real” Android tablets, like the Motorola Xoom, were largely ignored by consumers. The newer tablets and latest Android upgrades are certainly better, but they’re still hampered by an amorphous ecosystem. Those examples of up-scaled phone apps on Android that Tim Cook cued up in his keynote were pretty damning, and he also said there were 200,000 iPad apps in the App Store. Google doesn’t give an official count of tablet-specific Android apps in Google Play, but estimates are in the thousands.

Tablet Non-Contenders

Non-Android tablets look even worse. RIM fumbled the launch of the BlackBerry PlayBook so badly that the tablet — and possibly RIM’s whole credibility in the space — will never recover. HP killed its consumer tablet offering, the TouchPad, mere weeks after launch upon realizing the iPad was an opponent it couldn’t hope to defeat.

Certainly, the Amazon Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble Nook are success stories, but they kind of cheated. Both have only managed to carve out a niche market among tablets by selling their devices at a rock-bottom prices (the Kindle Fire’s is so low that Amazon may be selling it at a loss). They can only do this by using the device itself as an outlet to sell specialized content. These products aren’t going toe-to-toe with the iPad — they’re fighting over the scraps of the market it’s left behind.

So far no device has been able to seriously challenge the iPad experience in its entirety. Basically, the tablet market has yet to see its Motorola Droid, the phone that finally showed, along with Android 2.0 software, that the iPhone wasn’t the end-all-be-all of smartphones. Android’s success skyrocketed after its release.

Windows 8 to the Rescue?

Could the tablet market’s dark horse be a Windows 8 device? It’s possible, but it hinges entirely on how consumers respond to the new user interface, Metro.

The thrust of Windows 8 — and why it’s such a big gamble my Microsoft — is that it brings the same UI to tablets and traditional PCs (desktops and laptops). Metro is ideally suited for touchscreens, but it works with a mouse and keyboard, too.

There’s a reason Microsoft has done this, and it’s not really the spirit of bringing tablet features to your laptop. Quite the opposite, in fact. In order to have any hope of succeeding in tablets, Microsoft has to convince its army of Windows developers to make software for those tablets. But no one’s going to develop software for an unproven OS where the company has seen little commercial success (no current Windows tablet has significant market share).

However, if your entire OS, including traditional PCs, is running the same software, then developers almost have no choice but to design apps for tablets. Windows 8 essentially turns all Windows developers into tablet developers, potentially giving the Windows 8 tablet platform the fuel it needs to expand rapidly and finally give the iPad a real opponent.

The Catch: Metro

Again, almost. There’s one thing that could hold it back: consumers rejecting Metro. You see, Windows 8 lets any user turn off Metro and just use the traditional desktop. If enough of them do, many developers may simply choose not to create Metro apps. After all, if most of your customers are just switching to the old Windows environment anyway, why bother?

That would let the air out of the expanding Windows 8 tablet balloon pretty quickly, and that’s even before we consider the wild cards of potential device fragmentation, how Windows will work on ARM devices and whether or not consumers will even accept a tablet as their main computing device.

Microsoft needs to get Metro 100% right if Windows 8 tablets are going to have any hope. If users like Metro, then the developers will follow, and a real ecosystem will emerge. If not, the iPad will probably be the only tablet worth talking about for a long, long time.

BONUS: A Tour of Windows 8 and Metro

View As Slideshow »

Start Menu

Here’s what greets you every time you log into your Windows 8 machine. Yes, the tiles are customizable, though it’s a little unwieldy in practice.

start menu Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Sharing in Metro

Sharing is arguably Metro’s most powerful feature. Although the sharing option is only populated with Mail right now, once Windows 8 apps get going, you’ll see options here like Facebook, Twitter and all the rest — in every app.

sharing pane Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Finance Metro App

Many apps, like the native Finance app, look beautiful in Metro.

finance Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Traditional Desktop

You can still get back to the familiar desktop anytime you want in Windows 8. Note the absence of a Start button, which you get to by mousing into the lower-left corner.

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desktop Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Bing Maps

Bing Maps, like all Metro apps, makes use of the entire screen. Right-clicking brings up options.

bing maps big Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Multitasking Menu

You can see which apps are running by pointing your mouse to one of the left corners and then moving it alongside. Right-clicking an app lets you stop it.

app menu Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Action Menu

The side action menu slides out via the side and is the same no matter what app you’re in.

start settings Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Buggy Email

The consumer preview of Windows 8 still has lots of bugs in it, as evidenced by this screen shot of the email app.

buggy email Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Internet Explorer Tabs

Since the entire screen in Internet Explorer is dedicated to showing you the web page, right-clicking twice shows you the tabs that are open.

ie tabs Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad


Messaging ties with your People app, bringing in contacts on Windows Messenger or Facebook.

messaging Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Flickr Integration

The Windows 8 Photo app has built-in integration with Flickr, but it wasn’t working on our device.

flickr empty Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad


Your 25GB of free SkyDrive space is easily accessible via a live tile, and it integrates with the Photos app, letting you avoid sending large email attachments by uploading pics to SkyDrive.

skydrive Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Weather App

The Weather app also looks beautiful in Metro.

weather Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

PC Settings

Through settings, you can make changes to your Windows profile, which will show up — apps and all — on any Windows 8 machine you log into.

settings Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Flash Player Download

Yep, you still need to download Flash to get your browsers to play many videos, like those on YouTube.

flash player Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Adding Apps to Start Menu

You can customize your Start menu with specific apps, even if they’re desktop-only apps like the browsers seen here.

custom start Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Video Hub

The video hub doesn’t just show video files — it also promotes content as well. Whether that’s a plus or a minus is up to you.

video hub Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad


Solitaire was available on our Consumer Preview device via Xbox Live, though Microsoft said it couldn’t guarantee it would be in the general release.

solitaire Windows 8 Tablets Could Seriously Challenge the New iPad

Windows 8 With a Mouse and Keyboard
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The laptop’s motherboard was at fault could affect battery life

A reader thinks an error with his motherboard has caused his laptop’s battery to fail – is he covered under his warranty and should Dell replace the battery?

laptop battery life The laptops motherboard was at fault could affect battery life

The laptop’s motherboard was at fault – could this affect battery life?

A few weeks ago my daughter’s laptop displayed a message saying that the battery was unable to charge normally. The message also said the battery was reaching the end of its life and suggested buying a replacement Dell laptop battery. I contacted Dell and was advised that the laptop was outside the warranty period and the laptop battery was not covered.

It has been established that the motherboard was at fault and this has been fixed. Dell then said if the problem continued it would replace the motherboard free. I am concerned that this fault caused the much reduced lifetime of the battery.

Adrian Dobson

Dell explained to Mr Dobson that the motherboard problems he had experienced were caused by static building up in the motherboard’s capacitors. Once these were drained, the problem was resolved.

However, Mr Dobson wanted to know if he had a case to force Dell to replace the battery, which was just over a year old. He asked if Dell has a duty to do this, free, because he believes the problem with the motherboard reduced its lifespan.

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While there is legal protection if faulty goods cause damage to other components or property, he would need to prove his case. He won’t find this easy. Laptop batteries are notorious for giving people problems and are often not covered by warranties, or covered for longer than 12 months.

It is hard to say how long a battery should last too, as this depends on how often it is charged and discharged. Some will inexplicably fail within six months; others can last up to five years or more.

He could appeal to Dell to see if the company will consider providing a new laptop battery. The company has said that if the motherboard continues to show problems it would replace this free of charge.

As a goodwill gesture it may consider offering a new battery as well. But if it refuses to do this, Mr Dobson will probably find it difficult to prove that the build-up of static – which is not an inherent fault – reduced the notebook battery life. It will probably cost more to prove this than buying a new battery.

He could try recharging the battery and exhausting it a number of times. This may extend battery life and improve the performance.

The Sale of Goods Act 1979 says a customer should not be out of pocket because they have bought inherently faulty goods. This means that the customer must be in the same position financially as they were before a fault was discovered.

So if one faulty component in a computer damages another, the retailer will be liable to ensure that it repairs or replaces both of these.

Read More

Best Laptop Battery Life of 7+ Hrs Laptops

Top Power for Netbooks and Tablets

Professional Battery Knowledge Tips & FAQ

How to Use and Maintenance of Your Laptop Batteries

Dell latitude d620 laptop battery buying tips

Laptop battery and ac adapter issues troubleshooting guide

Laptop Battery Life Saving Tips & Buy Laptop Batteries Guide

How to Use Disk Defragmenter to Save Your Laptop Battery Power

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