Wouldn’t it be cool if one device could give you the power of a PC, the convenience of a tablet and the mobility of a smartphone?
That’s what Samsung has set out to do. The company today announced two devices, the Galaxy Book Pro and Galaxy Book Pro 360. Both are designed to work seamlessly with Galaxy phones and smart-home devices.
Samsung's new Galaxy Book Pro
To develop these new devices, Samsung worked closely with both Intel and Microsoft. That resulted in some innovative features on these Windows 10 PCs. The new Samsung devices are also verified to Intel’s Evo platform for laptops.
“Today Samsung and Intel announced a new chapter in this shared vision,” Gregory Bryant, an Intel exec VP and GM of the company’s client computing group, said in a statement. “We’re bringing together the best of our companies to deliver advanced computing experiences across mobility, connectivity and performance….Intel is proud of the results.”
Samsung Galaxy Book Pro 360
Both new Samsung PCs are available in a choice of 13- or 15-inch displays. The 13-incher weighs just 0.87 kg (1.9 lb.) and at its thinnest point measures just 11.2 mm (0.44 in.).
Under the hood you’ll find the latest 11th gen Intel Core processors (your choice of i3, i5, or i7) and Intel Iris Xe GPU (i5 or i7). Memory goes up to 32GB, and storage tops out at 11TB of NVMe SSD. Ports include Thunderbolt 4 and USB-C.
The Galaxy Book Pro devices also come with some nice extras and features. These include Samsung’s S Pen pointing device, AKG speakers with Dolby Atmos, and a Super AMOLED display. For connectivity, the devices support good old LTE, up-and-coming 5G and Wi-Fi 6E.
Also included is Samsung’s Intelligent Performance Manager. This software utility automatically balances the device’s performance and power consumption, modulating fan noise, temperature and battery usage.
The new Samsung devices also can double as smart-home controllers. The SmartThings app is incorporated, letting users turn house lights on and off, set room temperatures and start kitchen appliances. Another app, SmartThings Find, helps you locate misplaced Bluetooth-paired Galaxy phones, tablets and wearable devices.
The new Samsung Galaxy Book Pro devices are available now for pre-order. Retail prices for the Galaxy Book Pro start at $1,000, and for the Galaxy Book Pro 360, at $1,200.
Are your data-center customers being held back by 4 common myths about QLC 3D NAND storage technology?
If so, they’re far from alone. Some of these mythical misconceptions have been spread by people who should know better, including industry analysts and market watchers.
The truth is, QLC 3D NAND is powerful technology. It offers high bandwidth, low latency reads for read-intensive workloads, as well as high capacity and excellent space efficiency — all at a low operating cost. Here’s how:
> QLC stands for quad-level cell, meaning 4 bits get stored on each cell. Previous technologies offered per-cell densities of 3 bits (TLC), 2 bits (MLC) and 1 bit (SLC).
> 3D refers to the way these cells are stacked vertically, like the floors of a skyscraper, reaching up to 144 layers. This increases storage density, yet without sacrificing data reliability.
> NAND is the flash architecture used in SSDs, USB drives, digital cameras and some smartphones.
Combined, all that innovation puts these drives in the sweet spot for “warm storage” of read-intensive workloads.
4 myths busted
With help from Intel, here’s your tech provider’s guide to these 4 common misconceptions about QLC 3D NAND technology — and what you can say to set your customers straight:
> Myth: For most workloads, SSDs powered by QLC 3D NAND technology are not sufficiently durable. As measured in drive writes per day (DWPD), QLC 3D NAND drives simply don’t last as long as other kinds.
> Reality: Intel QLC SSDs are actually more durable than conventional hard disk drives (HDDs). They also provide up to 4x more total bytes written (TBW) than other QLCs. That’s important. TBW offers a truer measure of drive endurance than DWPD. TBW does this by factoring in the drive’s capacity, which DWPD does not.
> Myth: QLC 3D NAND drives offer less read and write performance than TLC drives. They also offer poor performance/watt. And there’s no fit for QLC drives, given their performance and durability issues.
> Reality: Intel QLC 3D NAND is the right technology for today’s high-growth segments, including AI, cloud storage and high-performance computing (HPC). These applications value the efficient movement of massive amounts of data at high speed. And QLC fits the bill. It’s perfect for these workloads, which require frequent, high-bandwidth reads with only infrequent writes.
QLC technology can also fill the gap between HDDs and TLC storage. TLC NAND SSDs offer high performance, but lack efficiency around both cost and capacity. HDDs, by contrast, offer a low cost per gigabyte, but fall short on both performance and operational efficiency. QLC can fill these two technologies’ cost-performance gap.
3. Quality & reliability
> Myth: SSDs based on QLC 3D NAND technology, compared with TLC SSDs are more error-prone and have reduced data retention. All that makes them risky replacements for HDDs.
> Reality: Intel QLC technology offers quality and reliability that’s just as good as that of TLC tech — and better than that of HDDs. Compared with HDDs, QLC drives offer a much lower actual annualized failure rate (AFR), 2x orders of magnitude better on uncorrectable bit errors (UBER), and a wider operating range.
> Myth: QLC technology is too new and unproven. Sticking with older TLC technology is safer and smarter.
> Reality: QLC 3D NAND isn’t actually that new. Intel has had the technology in volume production since 2017. That’s 4 years, plenty of time in the tech world. Also, Intel’s latest QLC drive, the SSD D5-P5316, is actually the company’s third generation of QLC NAND. Among the new drive’s many enhancements is support for the latest PCIe 4.0 interface.
Don’t let your data-center customers miss out on the value of QLC 3D NAND storage technology. Find out if they believe these common myths. If they do, set them straight.
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Intel Partner Connect, the company’s premier event for partners, is virtual this year. And the Americas edition happens this Thursday, April 22, starting at 8 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. ET. You’re invited to attend!
The 2021 Intel Partner Connect virtual event will include:
> Executive sessions: Hear from Intel leaders on the latest Intel strategies, priorities, challenges and opportunities — and how they apply to your own growth opportunities.
> Some 45 breakout sessions: Gain insights on Intel technologies shaping the future.
> Showcases: Choose from over 5 hours of demos and other content featuring the latest technologies. And connect with Intel and sponsoring partners including Accenture, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Microsoft and VMware.
> Matchmaking: Schedule private virtual sessions with Intel Partner Alliance leaders, customers, suppliers and innovators. Discuss new business opportunities.
You can also earn Intel training credits by attending this year’s Intel Partner Connect. The credits will be available both during and after the event through on-demand options.
The event will feature some special guests. The host for the 2021 Intel Partner Connect will be journalist Lisa Ling, host and executive producer of the CNN original series, “This is Life with Lisa Ling.”
Lisa Ling will be the Partner Connect event host
The event's guest speaker will be Simon Sinek, a popular TED Talk speaker and author of bestselling books that include “Start With Why.” He's scheduled to lead a conversation entitled "Leading Together."
Join Simon Sinek for “Leading Together”
In addition, Intel executive speakers at this year’s Intel Partner Connect will include:
> Pat Gelsinger, Intel’s new CEO
> John Kalvin, GM of the global scale and partner organization
> Michelle Johnston Holthaus, executive VP and GM of sales, marketing and communications
Mark your calendar and attend Intel Partner Connect 2021 this coming Thursday, April 22, from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. PT / 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET.
Intel’s new CEO, Pat Gelsinger, was among a group of U.S. corporate leaders who met yesterday with President Biden to address the chip shortage.
Shortly after the meeting, Gelsinger was interviewed by CNBC TechCheck. Here are his top 5 takeaways:
1) Government funding for the “Chips Act” (short for Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors) is essential. “We’ve seen the motivation,” Gelsinger said. “Now it’s time to get that funded.”
2) More chipmakers are needed, and in more countries. “We have to start building more capacity across the world,” Gelsinger said. “We’ve become way too dependent on a too small of a footprint in Asia. We need a more balanced supply chain globally.”
3) The U.S. government should provide incentives for American companies to build fab plants in the U.S. “We want to have the R&D, the research, the ownership of the technology — and not just the manufacturing — by American companies on American soil," he said. "That’s what we mean by a more balanced footprint across the world.”
4) The global pandemic has accelerated the centrality of tech. “Leadership in semiconductors is foundational for the digital lives that we’re all experiencing,” Gelsinger said. “We were on this path where more of our lives are becoming digital, and COVID just accelerated that dramatically."
5) The U.S. urgently needs to change course. “Twenty-plus years ago, the U.S. was at 37% of global [chip] supply. Today we’re at 12% — and headed to less than 10%. This is the most critical technology, and we’re going to lose control? We must act now….Our ‘moon shot’ should be that a third of semiconductors should be back on American soil, by American companies.”
The latest 3rd Generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors, announced earlier this month, are delivering support for the PCIe 4.0 interfaces. To bolster severs based on the new Xeon Scalable processors, Intel has announced a new Ethernet network adapter.
Known as the Intel Ethernet Network Adapter E810-2CQDA2, the new adapter delivers up to 200 gigabits per second (Gbps) of bandwidth in a PCIe 4.0-compliant server. Each QSFP28 port supports up to 100Gbps, providing the throughput and functionality of two 100Gbps adapters in a single PCIe 4.0 slot.
Intel set out to match the bus (PCIe 4.0) with the bandwidth (Ethernet network speed). This new adapter, by taking advantage of the increased bandwidth, balances platform performance and helps ensure the network isn’t a bottleneck. It’s all about getting a balanced platform.
PCIe for speed
Support for PCIe 4.0 is important. This latest iteration of the PCIe interface basically doubles overall throughput, when compared with 3.0.
Your data-center customers need that bandwidth to support today’s data-centric computing use cases. These include accelerated network storage, cloud, communications and high-performance computing (HPC).
Intel’s new network adapter is available from tech distributors, resellers and other channel partners. Also, several hardware OEMs are bringing to market servers based on the 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors. Some of these OEMs plan to support as many as 6 of the new Intel network adapters in a single server, bringing a physical server’s maximum throughput to 1,200 Gbps.
From the perspective of both the server OS and the user, the Intel Ethernet Network Adapter E810-2CQDA2 appears as 8 physical network adapters. That also means it can handle 8 separate networks.
800 Series support
Like other members of the Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapter family, the new E810-2CQDA2 supports several key technologies from Intel. These include:
> Application Device Queues: For predictability at scale, ADQ enables application-specific data steering, signaling, and rate limiting using an optimized application thread to the device data path. This increases performance, reduces latency and improves throughput.
> Ethernet Port Configuration Tool: EPCT lets the user program each port to act as a separate physical adapter. There are many possible configurations, including 2 x 100Gb, 4 x 50Gb, and 8 x 25Gb.
> Dynamic Device Personalization: DDP improves packet-processing efficiency. The Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapter firmware loads an enhanced DDP profile with many workload-specific protocols at driver initialization for greater flexibility.
> Remote Direct Memory Access: RDMA enables 2 machines on the same network to exchange memory without involving the operating system or the processor, further reducing latency. Both iWARP and RoCE v2 are supported simultaneously.
Security is provided using several methods. These include Zero Trust, which essentially means every server request, whether from inside or outside the network, must be verified to determine whether access should be granted.
Also, all Intel Ethernet 800 Series Network Adapter components comply with the NIST Cybersecurity Framework. Basically, this means that hardware-based security features protect the firmware and critical device settings.
These features include corruption detection and automated device recovery. If a device is attacked or corrupted, these features enable it to return to its originally programmed state.
Tell your data-center customers about Intel’s latest server processors and network adapters. Together, these components are powering the new generation of servers your customers need today.
You already know about the Intel NUC — but do you know this mini-PC is supported by a slew of third-party solutions?
Well, it is. Intel operates what it calls the Intel NUC Ecosystem Partner Solutions. It’s basically a set of products developed by third-party partners for Intel NUC products.
These products are sold, serviced, and supported exclusively by the ecosystem partners. In other words, Intel’s warranties do not apply.
That said, there’s a wealth of goodies to choose from. Intel has arranged them into 3 main categories: Element U, Element H, and Mini PC.
Here’s a brief description and sampling of all 3 categories:
Intel NUC Element U
This group features third-party ecosystem products including all-in-ones (AIO), mini PCs, notebooks and Open Pluggable Specification (OPS).Offering suppliers in this category include:
Catch the Bleu Jour Wave
> Loop: This hardware designer and manufacturer offers the LP-238, a modular all-in-one PC based on an Intel NUC compute element.
> Shenzhen MADIGI: This Chinese designer and manufacturer offers the MPC33, a PC based on the Intel NUC compute element; MOP02, a compute element based on OPS; the N133D, a 2-in-1 convertible laptop; and the N141H, a clamshell laptop.
Intel NUC Element H
These are third-party products based on NUC chassis and graphics cards. Offering suppliers in this category include:
> AsusTek Computer: You know ASUS for their PCs. But the company also offers for Intel NUC a Dual GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Mini graphics card, GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card, and 1660 Super Mini graphics card.
> Cooler Master: As the name implies, this company makes PC coolers. For the Intel NUC, Cooler Master offers the Mastercase NC100, a small-form-factor enclosure with two 92mm fans; it’s compatible with the Intel NUC 9 Extreme compute element.
Cooler Master Mastercases for Intel NUC
> SilverStone Technology: This Taiwanese company, founded in 2003, offers enclosures for Intel NUC compute elements. Current NUC offerings include the Vital 3 (model no. SST-VT03) and Vital 4 (SST-VT04).
Intel NUC Mini PC
In this category, you’ll find third-party ecosystem products including NUC chassis, accessories and add-ons.
> EWC Technologies: This company specializes in providing Intel NUC services. That includes Power over Ethernet (PoE) versions of the Intel mini-PCs.
> GORITE: Get nitty-gritty with this supplier’s cabling solutions for customizing Intel NUC mini-PCs.
> Simply NUC: A NUC specialist, this company is now featuring the Porcoolpine, a mini-PC that uses fins instead of fans to stay cool. Here's a look:
Get more NUC:
Today, when Intel announced its latest 3rd gen Intel Xeon Scalable processor, company officers pointed out that the new CPU is not just a component. Instead, they said, it’s part of Intel’s newly reimagined edge-to-cloud portfolio.
The new processor was announced as part of a one-hour livestream entitled “Solve for X.” In this case, X can be whatever world-changing technology your customers are developing.
Navin Shenoy, GM of Intel’s data platform, was among the speakers, and he pointed to 4 inflection points Intel says necessitate a new kind of data-center CPU: hybrid cloud, AI, 5G and edge computing. These changes, he added, are leading to the “fastest, biggest computing build-out in history.”
New platform for new computing
The new 3rd gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors have been designed for the cloud, high-speed networks and the edge, Shenoy added.
That includes built-in AI, cryptographic acceleration, hardware-based security, and support for both Intel’s Optane SSDs and Optane Persistent Memory.
Intel says the new Xeon Scalable processors deliver an average performance improvement on popular data-center workloads of 46%. That’s compared with the previous, 2nd gen.
Virtually all the top cloud service providers plan to offer solutions based on the new Xeon Scalable processors soon, Shenoy said. Today’s livestream included presentations from officers of Microsoft, Oracle and Verizon.
As explained by the second main speaker, Lisa Spelman, Intel’s GM of Xeon and memory, the new Xeon processors support 1, 2, 4 and 8-socket configurations. Up to 40 cores are possible, and up to 64 lanes of the PCIe 4.0, the latest version.
AI is provided, in part, by Intel’s Deep Learning Boost. And hardware-based security is coming from Intel Software Guard Extension (SGX).
Spelman also said a new version, Xeon D, is now sampling. It’s designed for what she called “form-factor-constrained environments.”
The new Intel Xeon Scalable processors are also being supported by Intel’s 2 solutions programs: Market Ready Solutions and Intel Select Solutions. Intel says these programs now offer more than 500 ready-to-deploy solutions for IoT that are supported by the new CPUs.
The morning’s third speaker was Intel’s new CEO, Pat Gelsinger. He was careful to spell out that Intel is now focused on providing solutions that matter.
“We are no longer just the CPU company,” he insisted.
Gelsinger also introduced a new series of “innovation events” called Intel On. The first event in the series, he added, will be held in San Francisco in October.
Intel’s new CEO, Pat Gelsinger, has presented a bold new vision for the company’s future. If you’d like to hear that vision firsthand, you won’t want to miss an upcoming Intel event.
Called “How Wonderful Gets Done 2021,” this online event will offer expert insights from Intel and its ecosystem partners. The event is happening on Tuesday, April 6, starting at 8 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. ET.
Intel has also said that it will use the April 6 “Wonderful” event to introduce the new 3rd gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, code-named Ice Lake. Other new products set for announcement that day include hardware and software for data centers, 5G networks and intelligent edge infrastructures.
Featured Intel speakers at the April 6 event will include CEO Gelsinger; Navin Shenoy, GM of the data platforms group; and Lisa Spelman, GM of the Xeon and memory group.
The day will also include technical sessions on AI, IoT, 5G networking, high performance computing (HPC), and cloud infrastructure. These sessions will be led by Intel subject-matter experts.
All in all, it should be an exciting and informative event, and one that Intel partners will want to attend.
Learn more about the How Wonderful Gets Done 2021 event, and plan to join Intel’s tech elite on Tuesday, April 6 at 8 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. ET.
One important aspect of the new Intel Partner Alliance is what’s known as roles.
Every member of Intel Partner Alliance will be assigned a role based on their business competency. Each role has its own set of requirements and benefits. The new roles are also designed to unite partners in a program designed to meet their business needs and spur innovation.
Which role fits your company? Here’s a complete list of the 9 new Intel Partner Alliance roles, along with their official definitions:
> FPGA design services: Offers engineering services related to Intel field-programmable gate array products. These include RTL design, design optimization, IP integration, feasibility studies, testing and verification, and FPGA board design.
> Cloud service provider (CSP): Offers as-a-Service cloud offerings that include software (SaaS), infrastructure (IaaS), and platform (PaaS).
> Independent software vendor (ISV): Develops, sells and supports both branded and non-branded software and applications.
> Distributor: Sells the latest Intel processors, SSDs, server products and other components, all sourced directly from Intel.
> Manufacturer: Builds systems and subsystems (including motherboards) for both compute and IoT. These companies then provide these products to other partners (such as OEMs) in the value chain.
> OEM: Designs and brands their own products. Some have their own manufacturing, assembly and configuration operations. Others purchase from manufacturers and then resell under their own brand.
> Solution provider: Resells OEM systems and software, and providers of IT services. They provide solutions directly to customers, through channel networks and via storefront retail.
> Service integrator: Architects and implements business-process transformation and solution integrations. Also offer consulting by connecting and integrating software, hardware and cloud solutions.
> Guest: None of the above.
Intel will determine your role based on information you provide, information from Intel field staff, and information from public sources.
Most likely, you’ll qualify for just one role. But if multiple roles are appropriate, or if you believe you’ve been assigned an incorrect role, get in touch with your Intel field rep or customer-support person.
Intel Partner Alliance offers some powerful benefits. Make sure you’ve activated your account. And start enjoying your new partnership role.
Congratulations, you’ve made it to Friday. Here are some fun facts to help you and other tech providers wrap up the work week and get ready for the weekend.
AI backpack for the blind
An Intel developer has created an AI-powered backpack designed to help the visually impaired walk around safely.
The developer, Jagadesh Mahendran, says the backpack can detect traffic signs, hanging obstacles, moving objects, even changing elevations. Learn more.
Citi: Zoom-free Fridays
Who says bankers are uptight? Citibank CEO Jan Fraser this week launched Zoom-Free Fridays. She says they're aimed at giving Citi employees a break from Zoom fatigue.
Okay, Citi is a bit uptight. The bank also said that Friday calls with clients and regulators may still be done on Zoom. The new easing applies only to internal calls. But still. Check out the memo.
Bad news for cryptocurrency fans: Fraud-prevention company Bolster finds that the number of cryptocurrency-related scams nearly doubled last year.
This year, Bolster expects, suspicious activity around cryptocurrency will increase by an estimated 75%. Read more…