Intel launches Core vPro processors

Intel has officially launched the second generation of its Core vPro processor family, which packs the technology and performance improvements of its Sandy Bridge architecture with security and identity protection technologies primarily aimed at businesses, but which may benefit consumers too. Among the new vPro’s capabilities is a new “poison pill” function that can disable a processor via a SMS message sent over a 3G cellular network in the event a machine is stolen.

amd skipping 10nm for 7nm intel sandy bridge wafer

“Businesses face numerous challenges today, but also opportunities in the wealth of new technologies that are helping workers be more productive, businesses to be more creative, and IT to be more innovative,” said Intel architecture group VP and general manager Rick Echevarria, in a statement. “The new Core vPro processor family has the capacity to offload tasks or even better share them to get the most from companion devices. With such performance, the PC could be a service provider, coordinating encryption, virus scanning, near transparent syncs and remote control.”

Like the Sandy Bridge Intel Core processors that Intel has already shipped for consumer PCs (and, subsequently, had to recall due to a flaw), the new Intel Core vPro line features enhanced Turbo Boost 2.0 technology, along with new Intel Advanced Vector Extensions that the company says can speed business applications by as much as 60 percent and multitasking by up to 100 percent—at least comparing a new Intel Core VPro Core i5 to its previous Intel Core 2 Duo processor. Intel says encryption can also be handled up to 300 percent faster.

Intel has also introduced its Anti-Theft Technology 3.0, which will work not only on the new Intel Core vPro processors but also the consumer-oriented second-generation Intel Core systems. The new version of the anti-theft technology enables “authorized IT or service personnel” to send a special SMS message via 3G cellular networks that can shut down a machine in the event it’s lost or stolen, disabling the system and preventing access to encrypted data. With the new version, the system can now be unlocked in the event the machine is recovered. Systems can also be set up to require an encryption login when woken up from a standby state.

The Core vPro and second-generation Intel Core chips also support Intel’s new Identity Protection Technology by generating a new six-digit numerical password every 30 seconds when connected to supporting online banking, commerce, and other secure sites: even if someone phishes the connection or executes a man-in-the-middle attack, the connection will become re-encrypted after (at most) 30 seconds. Symantec and Vasco are already rolling out support for the technology.

Intel says OEMs like Dell, Lenovo, Fujitsu, and HP are already gearing up a spate of notebooks, convertible tablets, and desktop systems built around the Intel vPro line. And we bet the company is hoping it won’t have to do a recall on these, too.

Product Review

The MacBook Air plays the oldies we love, but the band is getting old

We’ve waited for a long time for an update to the MacBook Air, and Apple finally delivered one. With a lot of features ported over from the MacBook Pro, is this new laptop what Apple fans have always wanted?

For the first time ever, PlayStation will be a no-show at E3

For the first time in the event's history, E3 2019 will not feature Sony or PlayStation. The massive event almost always features a lengthy press conference from Sony, often after all other major companies give theirs.

Google’s Gboard now uses A.I. to recommend GIFs based on your conversation

Google is bringing a new feature to Gboard that should make it better for those that regularly use GIFs and stickers. The feature essentially uses A.I. to recommend GIFs and stickers based on your conversation.
Product Review

This is the best budget laptop you can buy

One of our favorite laptops, the Asus Zenbook UX330UA, has been updated to feature the 8th-gen Intel Core CPU. It's still the best budget laptop on the market, offering great battery life and zippy performance at a discounted price.

All the best Apple MacBook deals for Black Friday 2018

Shoppers looking for a new Apple laptop could find huge savings on a new MacBook come Black Friday. Retailers are offering discounts as much as $650 on select MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro models this holiday season.

Apple discontinues AirPort Extreme, Time Capsule as it exits Wi-Fi router business

Apple is now officially no longer in the router business. The company had already stopped selling the AirPort Express, and now its retail stores and websites have stopped offering the AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule.

Crypto hangover could take blame for Nvidia’s potential GeForce RTX 2060 delay

Nvidia's delay in announcing a ship date for its GeForce RTX 2060 GPU could be due to a burst in the cryptocurrency mining bubble. Executives blamed the crypto hangover for an oversupply of inventory on existing GTX 1060 cards,

Secure your Excel documents with a password by following these quick steps

Excel documents are used by people and businesses all over the world. Given how often they contain sensitive information, it makes sense to keep them from the wrong eyes. Thankfully, it's easy to secure them with a password.

Lost your router? Here's how to find its IP address to help track it down

Changing the login information for your router isn't always easy, that's why so many have that little card on the back. But in order to use it, you need to know where to go. Here's how to find the IP address of your router.

PDF to JPG conversion is quick and easy using these simple methods

Converting file formats can be an absolute pain, but it doesn't have to be. We've put together a comprehensive guide on how to convert a PDF to JPG, no matter which operating system you're running.

Save $900 on the ThinkPad X1 Carbon and more with Lenovo’s Cyber Monday sales

In the latest set of holiday sales, Lenovo is heavily discounting its fifth-generation ThinkPad X1 Carbon and other popular Windows laptops and 2-in-1s for the holiday shopping season.

Want to make one hard drive act like two? Here's how to partition in Windows

If you don't want all of your files stored in one place but only have one drive to work with, partitioning is your best way forward. Here's how to partition a hard drive in Windows 10, step by step.

Go hands-free in Windows 10 with speech-to-text support

Looking for the dictation, speech-to-text, and voice control options in Windows 10? Here's how to set up speech-to-text in Windows 10 and use it to go hands-free in a variety of different tasks and applications within Windows.

These cheap laptops will make you wonder why anyone spends more

Looking for a budget notebook for school, work, or play? The best budget laptops, including our top pick -- the Asus ZenBook UX330UA -- will get the job done without digging too deep into your pockets.