March of this year featured the first Apple event of the year, as well as the rollout of many products first previewed at CES. Apple's new devices aside, this month we got our first glimpse of QD-OLED technology in the form of a new TV and gaming monitor -- the debut products to use the advanced panel type.
Even beyond QD-OLED, the tech products that rocked our team's world this month show the futuristic tech that is finally coming to products you can actually buy.
Sony A95K QD-OLED TV
A quantum leap for OLED
- Next-level color purity
- High color brightness
- Wide color gamut
- Perfect black levels
- Great sound
The Sony A95K was the first QD-OLED television we got to actually see and test, and it did not disappoint. We don't hand out perfect scores very often, but for high-end TVs, QD-OLED is proving to be a truly transformative panel technology -- and Sony is leading the charge.
The Sony A95K has those perfect black levels that only OLED can deliver, but it also takes color accuracy and brightness to levels never seen before on an OLED. It's never cheap to buy yourself the latest and greatest tech, but in the case of the Sony A85K, it just might be worth it.
iPad Air (5th-gen)
Almost everything you want
- High-performance M1 processor
- Slim and light
- Software suitable for work or play
- Large, colorful, and sharp screen
- Wide array of quality accessories
- Center Stage works well
- 64GB storage isn't enough
- Battery life disappoints
Apple did the unthinkable with the latest iPad Air, now in its 5th generation. It comes with the M1 chip, the same impressive piece of Apple Silicon you'll find in the iPad Pro, MacBook Air, and even the iMac. It certainly has less room to flex in the iPad Air, but that doesn't make it any less impressive, especially since Apple isn't charging extra for it.
Beyond the extra performance of the M1, the new iPad Air is nearly unrecognizable next to last gen's model. Connected to the Magic Keyboard, it's a serviceable laptop replacement if you can manage with the small size. As a stand-alone tablet, it's just excellent -- portable, fast, and effortlessly fun to play with. It might be lacking some of the advanced features of the iPad Pro, such as Face ID and the Pro Motion display, but it's the iPad most people should buy.
Eero Pro 6E
Pro Wi-Fi for your whole home
- Supports fast, multigig connectivity
- Wi-Fi 6E onboard
- Easy to use and setup
- Great range
- Relatively affordable compared to competitors
- No quad-band design
- Late to the Wi-Fi 6E game
Wi-Fi has never been so important, but many of the fastest routers are way too expensive. The Eero Pro 6E brings the price down quite a bit on premium mesh routers, all without losing the speed we all want. In our testing, its range proved to be good, maintaining high speeds in even larger homes.
Of course, the Eero Pro 6E supports the higher bandwidth of Wi-Fi 6E, so long as you have the latest devices that also support it. But even if you don't, the Eero Pro 6E should be futureproof for many, many years, which is essential when it comes to buying a router.
Alienware 34 QD-OLED gaming monitor
The final frontier
- QD-OLED contrast is unbeatable
- Fantastic HDR performance
- Excellent color saturation
- Attractive, minimalist design
- Surprisingly affordable
- SDR brightness is a bit low
- Color accuracy isn't perfect
OLED gaming monitors are still basically unheard of. While console gamers have been able to enjoy the benefits of OLED televisions, PC gamers have been left in the dust.
But no more. The Alienware 34 QD-OLED finally delivers the incredible black levels of OLED to the PC gaming world, along with some excellent HDR performance with a peak brightness of up to 1,000 nits. The ultrawide and curved Alienware 34 delivers on the performance front too, bringing a 175Hz refresh rate at a 1440p resolution.
For even one of the best gaming monitors, this covers a surprisingly wide color gamut too. It's the whole package, and hopefully the first of an exciting new era for PC gaming monitors.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Plus+
As good as it can get
- Beautiful hardware
- Gorgeous display
- Great speakers
- Productivity powerhouse
- Keyboard case not included
- Some software trouble
If there's one company that has continued to support Android tablets over the years, it's Samsung. The company's latest release, the Galaxy Tab S8+, is an attempt at a true iPad Pro competitor, and it comes remarkably close. Thanks to some incredibly premium hardware and the convenience of Samsung DeX, the Galaxy Tab S8+ has a lot going for it.
The detachable keyboard has a hard time comparing with the Magic Keyboard, though, and there continue to be some glaring holes in the Android tablet app ecosystem. Some of that isn't Samsung's fault, but this isn't a cheap tablet, either. Samsung fans will love the way their phone and tablet work together though, even letting you freely use the same S Pen across both devices. That's just cool.
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