Stories by Carla Thornton

Nokia 'actively' considers notebooks

Nokia is seriously contemplating entering the notebook market, according to research firm DisplaySearch. A blog entry by analyst John Jacobs quotes Nokia CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo as saying in an interview with Finnish national broadcaster YLE that the company is "looking very actively" at the possibility.

Report: PC industry will see biggest decline ever in 2009

Along with much of the rest of the economy, the PC industry will be singing the blues this year, with worldwide shipments declining to 275 million units -- or almost 12 percent -- from 2008, according to a new Gartner report.

iPhone vs. Pre: Can Apple multi-touch patent shut down Palm?

Will Apple really slap a lawsuit on Palm the minute the Palm Pre starts shipping as a Sprint smartphone later this year? Apple's posturing has lots of people thinking so. The reason: Apple's newly awarded patent for multi-touch technology, which also drives the interface for the Palm Pre. Just when it began to look like Palm had finally produced an iPhone killer, Apple has conveniently found a way to shut down the whole show.

Forrester: Netbooks fill a niche, but branding is dangerous

Netbooks are more than a fad, and fill an important niche in the market for consumer PCs, according to a Forrester Research report. However, the report warned that manufacturers were confusing consumers with "dangerous" branding strategies.

Mobile Core 2 Duo okay, not great

Eight months ago Intel rocked the mobile processor world with its first dual-core CPUs, which boosted the speed of a notebook performing two tasks simultaneously by 30 percent. Now comes Core Duo's successor, Core 2 Duo, accompanied by Intel claims of even better performance and support for the coming era of 64-bit computing. Should you kick yourself for buying that Core Duo notebook in May?

Smart Tools for Smart Buyers

Of course you buy stuff online. You love the convenience. And you'd like it even more if you could easily get what you wanted at the best price--without clicking constantly from one e-tailer to another to compare prices, shipping charges, and so on. Another thing you'd like: not having to hand out your credit or debit card number all over the Internet.

Top 15 Notebook PCs

The newest light laptops--those equipped with one internal bay instead of two--are hot, as this month's chart attests. By leaving these units' external floppy drives at home, you can knock nearly a pound off their carrying weight, yet enjoy the same big screens and fast processors their heavier brethren offer.

Top 15 Notebook PCs

Gateway Inc. stages a near-complete coup d'e'tat this month, taking over two of the three top spots on our Top 15 list. The company's latest SUV-like desktop replacement, the Solo 9300XL, blazes in as our new number one power notebook. With a huge 15.7-inch screen and a PC WorldBench score approaching that of a Pentium III-750 notebook, it would make a good choice for digital and graphic artists who can use its built-in IEEE 1394 connection.

10 for the Road

While on a business trip, Bob Greschke thought he'd forgotten to pack his new, lightweight laptop. That's when he knew he'd made the right decision to buy it. "I had to keep checking the bag to make sure the notebook was there--the bag was so light, it felt empty," says Greschke, a Socorro, New Mexico-based programmer for the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. The 5-pound IBM Corp. ThinkPad 600X that Greschke bought in April weighs 3 pounds less than his old Toshiba Corp. 730XCDT notebook.

AMD to Intel: Take That, PIII

A jab of megahertz here, an uppercut to the cache memory or bus speed there. So goes the fight between Intel Corp. and Advanced Micro Devices Inc. as the two major chip makers spar in the ongoing battle for the title of fastest processor.

Top 15 Notebook PCs

Heads up, speed junkies: Three newcomers on the power chart mark the debut of Intel's latest processor, the Pentium III-700/550 SpeedStep. Of the three, the Quantex Corp. W-1511 leads the pack in performance by a nose. Just don't expect the moon from the new SpeedStep--it provides a relatively small boost for the megahertz. On average, the PIII-700 notebooks we've seen are only about 3 percent faster than a similarly configured PIII-650 model.

Top 15 Notebook PCs

Presto, change-o: Last month's budget and midrange Best Buys have switched places--a tricky feat. A price increase kicks Dell Computer Corp.'s Inspiron 3800 C500 GT, June's budget Best Buy, upstairs to the midrange chart. At $2026 it costs $98 more but remains a sweet deal. The June midrange champ, Micron Electronics Inc.'s $1999 TransPort LT C500, sheds $100 to become our new budget winner. Gateway 2000 Inc.'s Solo 9300LS still rules the power list after a $201 price drop.