Zoho’s New Operating System Zoho One Bundles All Its 35+ Apps, Costs Just $1 A Day Per User

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“At $1 a day, we are licensing not just our apps but peace of mind for our customers,” stated Sridhar Vembu, founder Zoho, at the launch of its new operating system for business, Zoho One.  Zoho One is an all-in-one suite of applications to run an entire business—across every function and organisational group. It includes more than 35 integrated web applications and some 55+ mobile apps. More so, all of this comes with a single sign-on and with centralised administration and provisioning at a price of $30 or INR 1,000 per month, per employee.

With Zoho One, a company has all the applications it needs to acquire and serve its customers (marketing, sales, and support apps) and run operations (finance, recruiting, and related HR apps). Also, it can provide all the tools for its employees to work collaboratively and get their work done (office suite, mail, personal productivity, and collaboration apps). Or, as Sridhar puts it, a whole enterprise can be run on the platform. The best part is that all of this is being offered in a single contract, negating the need for multiple contracts and multiple renewal cycles.

zoho-zoho one

Sridhar stated, “This is the unravelling of a strategy that has been in the works for 10 years. A suite like this typically costs hundreds of dollars and even then customers have to do software rationing. With Zoho One, not only are we doing away with the problem of rationed software but also making enterprise applications available to SMBs at consumer prices.”

Till now, Zoho has offered application bundles including CRM Plus, Workplace for office productivity and Finance Plus. Zoho One is the first time that it has offered all of its software bundled for one price. In fact, the price of Zoho One is less than what Zoho charges for some of its applications and bundles.

However, Zoho will still license individual apps and offer bundled suites and existing customers will not be forced to update their plans. In total, the company has now the breadth and depth of products from SMBs to large enterprise organisations. The three models—individual app licenses, bundled suites, and an all-in-one package with Zoho One —represent an approach similar to that of Google and Microsoft. In fact, Zoho will now be competing against the two software giants in many of these categories.

zoho-zoho one

The most noteworthy aspect of Zoho One is that it dispenses with traditional vendor pricing strategies like upgrades, add-ons, and multi-year contracts with one simple invoice for the entire organisation. As Sridhar says, “At Zoho, we fully embrace the consumerisation of IT. We believe that software should be ubiquitously available.”

Zoho One will also be offering hundreds of integration points across its applications. These integrations connect sales, marketing, customer support, accounting, human resources, and other activities, while also fostering communication and collaboration amongst colleagues, customers, and vendors. Contextual integrations bring in relevant information from other apps to improve the effectiveness of any app.

This approach simplifies the “Integration spaghetti” dilemma faced by companies. This is because the traditional approach to integration involves large budgets and armies of expensive IT consultants to integrate application silos from multiple vendors, a privilege restricted to large companies with deep pockets. With Zoho One, sophisticated software will now be available to every business.

Zoho One: Running An Enterprise At $1 A Day

With its disruptive pricing of $1 a day per user, Zoho is setting the benchmarking in software licensing.

Zoho Chief Evangelist, Raju Vegesna stated, “This comes as a welcome change for a market littered with vendors with bloated business models offering individual, overpriced applications. Zoho One changes the game by offering an all-you-can-eat application suite at an unheard of price.”

zoho-zoho one

Sridhar claims that the product has already signed up hundreds of users even without a formal launch. He adds that they are preparing for a deluge of users, a reason which made them accelerate the launch from September to July 2017. Some of these customers include online publishing platform Notion Press and online financial portal 5paisa.com.

The idea is to dispense with traditional vendor pricing strategies like upgrades, add-ons, multi-year contracts, and usage restrictions. They effectively chain the customer to the vendor and it was something which Sridhar always wanted to attack. He said, “This is how we always wanted the world to be. It is one of the reasons for developing Zoho One as I was personally sick of the tricks salespeople of software vendors play on clients.”

zoho-zoho one

With this competitive pricing and availability in multiple languages, Zoho is preparing itself for the next years, where it aims to target a billion paying users (Current user base is 30 Mn) as more and more people come online. It will be interesting to see how many organisations will make the switch for Zoho One and how bigger competitors will respond to Zoho’s aggressive pricing.


Twitter’s Internal Numbers Show It’s Getting Less Awful at Fighting Abuse

Twitter's Internal Numbers Show It's Getting Less Awful at Fighting Abuse

Twitter on Thursday offered some top-line stats in a company blog post about the results of its latest anti-abuse efforts – showing how its approach is working as social media firms struggle with policing content on their networks.

Online abuse is a problem across all social networks. But Twitter particularly, has the reputation for being a hotbed for online abuse and for having a lot of trouble containing it. A recent Buzzfeed article outlined several troubling cases where Twitter seemed blind to abusive language or agonisingly slow to respond.

The statistics offered Thursday indicate there’s been some progress in Twitter’s fight against abuse – but didn’t offer hard numbers, apart from Twitter’s Ed Ho, the company’s general manager of consumer product and engineering, disclosing that Twitter suspends or limits “thousands more abusive accounts each day.” Overall, according to Thursday’s post, Twitter takes action on ten times more abuse per day than it did at the same time last year.

That could be read in a couple of ways. It is a sign that Twitter is dealing with more abusive content. But it also shows abuse is rampant, and Twitter was handling only a fraction of what was out there before.

Since January, the company has publicly said it’s redoubling its efforts across the company and forming a “Trust and Safety Council,” with members from several anti-abuse, anti-harassment and online safety groups.

On the product side, Twitter has also updated its policies to give users tools to avoid abuse, even if it’s directed at them. Users can choose, for example, not to be notified when people outside their network mention their usernames – a common tactic for abusers. Since introducing this policy, the company sees 40 percent fewer blocks in that scenario, which it takes as a sign that people aren’t seeing as much abuse on the site.

And looking at its persistent whack-a-mole problem, where abusers simply make new accounts once their old ones have been suspended, Twitter said that it’s doubled the number of these accounts it’s removed.

These are small moves. But Twitter’s efforts speak to shifting views toward regulating speech on all social media networks, said Stephen Balkam, chief executive of the non-profit Family Online Safety Institute. Balkam, a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council, said the network’s “come a long way” from a time early in the company’s history when it seemed to view free expression as being far more important that community safety. But, he said, there is a way to let people speak without threatening anyone’s safety and it’s worth figuring out how to get there.

“Our democratic values are messy, and more difficult and more challenging – but we would prefer that to censorship,” Balkam said.

Del Harvey, Twitter’s head of trust and safety, said some policies seem to change how people act on Twitter. The company now sometimes puts abusive users’ accounts into a sort of penalty box for a limited time, which keeps them from sending tweets or retweeting.

Penalized accounts, Twitter said, generate 25 percent fewer abuse reports going forward. And the majority of users who are slapped with limited functionality – 65 percent – don’t end up as repeat offenders, the company said.

“That’s not because they never come back,” Harvey said. “They are still tweeting.” And that, she believes, is a good thing – and a sign that maybe Twitter’s tools are changing behavior, at least a little, without having to lose users.

Still, Harvey and Ho acknowledge that these numbers still aren’t that good.

“This is going to be a long-haul thing,” Harvey said. “Our work here will never, ever be done.”


‘It’s creepier than Covfefe’: Deepika Padukone’s latest Instagram post leaves Internet confused

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Well, the 31-year-old actor uploaded what seemed like a .. umm.. well it seemed like she is probably trying to send out cryptic messages. (Source: Deepika Padukone/Instagram, File Photo)

It will not be an exaggeration to say that Deepika Padukone is among the actors who have a strong social media presence. With Alia Bhatt and Priyanka Chopra leading the pack by sharing almost every snippet of their lives, especially on Instagram, Padukone often uses the photo sharing app to share pictures from shoots, to talk about her close ones and family and even about the causes she support and has a result amassed a huge following of over 18 million people. But, one of her latest posts has left the Internet confused. So much so, somebody has even called it ‘as confusing as Covfefe’. Others turned to Ranveer Singh for some help.

(Source: Deepika Padukone/Instagram)

Well, the 31-year-old actor uploaded what seemed like a .. umm.. well it seemed like she is probably trying to send out cryptic messages. And being the loving fans that they are, people got down to deconstructing what she probably must have meant when uploading the picture.

“That a metal curve at the end of furniture, probably a chair or a lounge seat,” “Some porcelain top of a temple or lamp shade i guess,” some offered helpfully. Others, well, blinded by their love for Padukone (not your fault, guys) commented “Superb,” “Owsmmm”(Millenials way of writing awesome) on the picture. “It’s a Fleur de lis , the lily flower it’s the sign of life , light and perfection,” “Symbol of bharat scouts and guides,” wrote another Instagram Good Samaritan.


(Source: Deepika Padukone/Instagram)

Well, when we looked up, it did look like a certain Fleur de lis and the symbol of scouts — we’d still prefer the Padmavati actor to not leave us hanging on social media like this. As one of her fan aptly puts, “What is this dear Deepika?”

(Source: Deepika Padukone/Instagram)


Here’s China’s latest plan to keep its citizens from the open Internet

The Chinese government is cracking down on a key technology that Web surfers use to protect their privacy and get around online censorship, according to Bloomberg News.

Some of the country’s biggest telecom companies — Bloomberg lists state-run China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom — are being instructed to block customers from using virtual private networks, a technology that redirects a person’s Internet traffic through other servers to make it look like they are connected to the Web from someplace else.

For years, Chinese citizens have used VPNs to circumvent the country’s Great Firewall, the colloquial term for blocks and restrictions imposed on the Internet by Beijing in an effort to ensure that only a filtered version of the Web is visible to most of the country. VPNs have allowed tech-savvy Chinese Internet users to access restricted news sites and social media platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook.

China has periodically clamped down on Internet users’ attempts to evade the Great Firewall. The last such campaign took place in 2016, prompting widespread reports of VPN outages. But the government has intensified its attack on VPNs in recent months. In January, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology ruled that all VPNs that did not seek government approval to operate would be deemed illegal. Since then, a slew of VPN providers have been forced to shut down, citing regulatory warnings. Under President Xi Jinping, the VPN crackdown is part of an effort to “clean up” the Chinese Internet and enhance the country’s “cyber sovereignty,” the government has said.

The moves will make it harder for the average Chinese citizen, who may not be tech savvy, to find a way to access the open Internet, said Adam Segal, a cybersecurity expert and China scholar at the New York-based Council on Foreign Relations.

“Bad,” he said of the implications of the ban. “Getting around [it] will require using VPNs based outside of the mainland or setting up and using [one’s] own VPN servers, additional barriers for the individual user.”

Other analysts say China’s latest move raises the risk of even further action by the government down the road.

“It is clear that the crackdown has intensified,” said Charlie Smith, the pseudonymous co-founder of GreatFire.org, a website that monitors China’s Internet filtering and maintains an app to help Internet users get past the restrictions. “The authorities could take other steps to block our app, which would be extreme, more extreme than this. I didn’t think they would consider doing that before but I would say it is a possibility now.”

Commercial VPNs operate commonly worldwide. Many saw a flurry of interestfrom U.S. customers in the spring, as a Republican-led rollback of federal privacy protections prompted American Internet users to seek ways to shield their Web browsing activity from their own broadband providers. U.S. Internet providers said that adjusting the privacy protections could help them mine, store and share their customers’ Internet usage history to sell advertising and compete with major online advertisers, such as Google and Facebook.


System76 unveils its own Ubuntu-based Linux distribution called ‘Pop!_OS’


When Canonical announced the death of the Unity desktop environment, it sent shock waves through the Linux community. After all, Ubuntu is probably the most popular Linux-based desktop operating system and switching to GNOME was changing its trajectory. With Unity, Canonical was promising Ubuntu would be an OS that could scale from smartphone to desktop with a focus on convergence, and then suddenly, it wasn’t. Overnight, Ubuntu became just another desktop distro — not necessarily a bad thing.

While this hit many people hard, computer-seller System76 was probably impacted the most. The company only sells machines running Ubuntu, meaning its entire customer base would be impacted by Canonical’s decision. Not content with simply following Canonical and embracing vanilla GNOME, System76 has decided to take its future into its own hands. Today, the company releases the first alpha of an all-new Linux-based operating system called “Pop!_OS,” which will eventually be the only OS pre-loaded on its computers. While it will still be based on Ubuntu and GNOME, System76 is tweaking it with its own style and included drivers. In other words, the company is better controlling the user experience, and that is smart.

“The Pop!_OS community is in its infancy. This is a fantastic time to engage with and help develop the processes and practices that will govern the future development of the operating system and its community. The team is currently opening up planning for the development roadmap, code of conduct, discussion forums, and the processes surrounding code contribution. Progress made on Pop!_OS has established an inviting, modern, and minimalist look and has improved the first-use experience including streamlining installation and user setup. Work on the first release, scheduled for October 19th, centers on appearance, stability, and overall tightness of the user experience followed by adding new features and greater customization ability,” says System76.


ALSO READ: System76 Galago Pro is the MacBook Pro alternative the Linux community has been waiting for [Review]

Carl Richell, CEO, System76 explains, “While our operating system and computers are great for any user, the ideas and features we develop for Pop!_OS will be squarely focused on the professionals and makers that use their computers to create. The project’s overarching purpose, by which all work will be measured, is making the Linux desktop as productive as possible for the engineering, devops, and computer science fields where Linux excels.”


You can check out the project on GitHub here and download the alpha ISO here. The company has even set up a subreddit. If you are worried that System76 will be putting in a lot of effort that won’t benefit the Linux community overall, don’t. The company will be working to get its contributions into the Ubuntu upstream. In other words, everyone wins from Pop!_OS.

emember, folks, this is an alpha release meaning there could be bugs and the possibility of data loss. I would advise against installing this on a production machine (although it is probably fine). Keep in mind, despite the fact that this operating system is intended for System76 computers, it should run fine on any machine compatible with Ubuntu. If you don’t own one of their computers but like their art style, you should give it a go. Heck, maybe you’ll ending up buying a System76 machine as a result.

What do you think of System76’s creation of a new operating system? Is this a smart move or is it further crowding the selection of distributions? Tell me in the comments below.


Google Stakes Its Future on a Piece of Software

Early in 2015, artificial-intelligence researchers at Google created an obscure piece of software called ­TensorFlow. Two years later the tool, which is used in building machine-­learning software, underpins many future ambitions of Google and its parent company, Alphabet.

TensorFlow makes it much easier for the company’s engineers to translate new approaches to artificial intelligence into practical code, improving services such as search and the accuracy of speech recognition. But just months after TensorFlow was released to Google’s army of coders, the company also began offering it to the world for free.

That decision could be seen as altruistic or possibly plain dumb, but nearly two years on, the benefits to Google of its great AI giveaway are increasingly evident. Today TensorFlow is becoming the clear leader among programmers building new things with machine learning. “We have significant usage today, and it’s accelerating,” says Jeff Dean, who led TensorFlow’s design and heads Google’s core artificial-­intelligence research group. Once you’ve built something with TensorFlow, you can run it anywherebut it’s especially easy to transfer it to Google’s cloud platform. The software’s popularity is helping Google fight for a bigger share of the roughly $40 billion (and growing) cloud infrastructure market, where the company lies a distant third behind Amazon and Microsoft.

The head of Google’s cloud business, Diane Greene, said in April that she expects to take the top spot within five years, and a core part of Google’s strategy for catching up is to appeal to the sudden enthusiasm about artificial intelligence in industries from health care to autos. Companies investing in the technology are expected to spend heavily with cloud providers to avoid the costs and complexity of building and running AI themselves, just as they pay today for cloud hosting of e-mail and websites. Customers like insurer AXAwhich used TensorFlow to make a system that predicts expensive traffic accidentsalso get the benefits of the same infrastructure Google uses to power their own products. Google says that means better performance at competitive prices. S. Somasegar, a managing director at venture fund Madrona who was previously head of Microsoft’s developer division, says TensorFlow’s prominence poses a genuine challenge to Google’s cloud rivals. “It’s a fantastic strategyGoogle is so far behind in cloud, but they’ve picked an area where they can create a beachhead,” he says.

Inside Google, TensorFlow powers products such as the Google Translate mobile app, which can translate a foreign menu in front of your eyes when you point your phone at it. The company has created specialized processors to make TensorFlow faster and reduce the power it consumes inside Google’s data centers. These processors propelled the historic victory of software called AlphaGo over a champion of the ancient board game Go last year and are credited with making possible a recent upgrade that brought Google’s translation service close to human level for some languages.

TensorFlow is far from the only tool out there for building machine-learning software, and experts can argue for hours about their individual merits. But the weight of Google’s brand and its technical advantages make its package stand out, says Reza Zadeh, an adjunct professor at Stanford. He originally built his startup Matroid, which helps companies create image recognition software, around a competing tool called Caffe, but he dumped it after trying TensorFlow. “I saw it was very clearly superior in all the technical aspects, and we decided to rip everything out,” he says.

Google’s tool is also becoming firmly lodged in the minds of the next generation of artificial-intelligence researchers and entrepreneurs. At the University of Toronto, an AI center that has schooled many of today’s leading researchers, lecturer Michael Guerzhoy teaches TensorFlow in the university’s massively oversubscribed introductory machine-learning course. “Ten years ago, it took me months to do something that for my students takes a few days with TensorFlow,” says Guerzhoy.

Since Google released TensorFlow, its competitors in cloud computing, Microsoft and Amazon, have released or started supporting their own free software tools to help coders build machine-learning systems. So far, says Guerzhoy, neither has as broad and dedicated a user base as TensorFlow among researchers, students, and working coders.


Flipkart Fashion Announces Divastri, Its First Private Label, Offering Ethnic Wear for Women

Flipkart Fashion Announces Divastri, Its First Private Label, Offering Ethnic Wear for Women


  • Flipkart Fashion has announced its first private label, Divastri
  • It offers ethnic wear for women
  • Private labels accounted for 21 percent of Myntra’s revenue

Flipkart Fashion has announced the launch of its first private fashion label, called Divastri. The new label is a fashion line of ethnic wear for women. According to the company, Flipkart Fashion identified shopper trends over the last couple of months to conceptualise and design its first private fashion line.

“Over the years Flipkart Fashion has witnessed tremendous growth both in terms of sales and meeting customer needs,” says Rishi Vasudev, head, Flipkart Fashion. “Keeping the momentum going, with our first private label launch Divastri – we aim to meet the rising demand for celebrity and bollywood inspired looks amongst our growing women customer base.”

“The new label is yet another commitment of Flipkart Fashion to offer customers high-quality products with superlative shopping experience at an affordable range,” Vasudev adds. Flipkart Fashion says that it has partnered with global agencies to ensure quality control, with testing of the fabric being used.

Flipkart Fashion is part of a larger Flipkart umbrella, which includes Myntra (acquired by Flipkart in 2014) and Jabong (acquired last year, by Myntra). Together, these account for 70 percent of the online apparel market, though all operate independently for now.

Although this is Flipkart Fashion’s first apparel label, it’s worth noting that Flipkart has taken this route with other products in the past. In December last year, Flipkart also launched SmartBuy, a private label for electronics, similar to Amazon Basics. Earlier, Flipkart launched it’s own home appliances and personal healthcare brand, called Citron. Flipkart also has a brand called Flippd in the apparel space, and Digiflip was its consumer electronics brand.

Sources tell Gadgets 360 Flipkart plans to add private labels for categories such as home appliances, grooming, and furniture.

The reason why the e-commerce companies invest in private labels is two-fold. For one, it gives them more control over the inventory, but also, the margins are much better when they own the brand making the products. It’s also a strong income stream. For example, Flipkart-owned Myntra told Gadgets 360 in March that the Roadster private label contributed Rs. 600 crore in sales. Myntra already has 14 private labels, that together account for 21 percent of its revenue, so it’s no surprise that Flipkart Fashion would follow a similar strategy.


Teenage Engineering’s new pocket synth is its most versatile yet (updated)

Teenage Engineering debuted its first trio of pocket-sized $59 synthesizersalmost exactly two years ago. In 2016, the company followed those with a second set of three Pocket Operators featuring the sounds of the ’80s. Now the company is back with a third installment: the PO-32. Like the half-dozen different options that are already available, the PO-32 remains a compact drum and percussion synth that runs on a pair of AAA batteries. However, there are two new key features that set this new model apart from the rest.

First, the PO-32 features a built-in microphone that handles the direct transfer of sounds and pattern data between multiple units. The other key addition is the ability to import/export patches and patterns to and from the compact instrument. Using Microtonic, a desktop machine and percussion synth, you can make tweaks and send them wirelessly back to the PO-32. In fact, this new Pocket Operator is a collaboration between Teenage Engineering and Sonic Charge, the company behind Microtonic.

There are also 16 sounds and 16 punch-in effects along with a sequencer and pattern locks. A built-in speaker handles playback of all the patterns and sounds you create. Speaking of patterns, you can chain up to 64 of them together and the LCD display from the first few models is back again. Despite the fact that the PO-32 runs on AAA batteries, Teenage Engineering says you can expect to use it for a full month before you will need to swap out the power source.

As you might expect, the added functionality means a slight price increase from the first two series. The PO-32 is available now in limited quantities as a bundle with the Microtonic audio software for $139. If you just want the pocket synth itself, you will have to wait until early April. When the time comes, expect to pay $89 to nab one.



[Source:- Engadget]

How Fitbit Keeps Its Customers Moving in Social Media and Online Communities

Fitbit, a global leader in wearable fitness technology, has made it easier and more fun for millions of people to live a healthier life. And they’ve done it by focusing on the experience.

“Customer experience is really paramount to everything we do here,” says Allison Leahy, the director of community at Fitbit, adding that in the online space, “Fitbit is trying to be everywhere you are and more”.

The company employs a bilateral approach to online customer care, focusing separately on social media and communities, though both groups report up through the same department. While Leahy considers the two channels “different disciplines” with different tools (and hence different agents), one similarity is that Fitbit does a lot of customer listening in both. The team has a system to “incorporate all of our great customer feedback into the products and services we develop,” she adds.


Community platforms are used “as a way to organize information around emerging issues and to troubleshoot and gather information from customers who may be experiencing a certain type of issue so that we can get a good assessment and bring that back to our engineering teams,” says Leahy. Weekly reporting shares quantitative and qualitative feedback to the product and engineering teams, and the most popular ideas get integrated into future product releases.

One recent such example was “Reminders to Move,” a buzzing reminder on the Fitbit device that encourages the user to get up and take some steps. Users in the community forums had self-titled it “Idle Alert,” but the core idea was the same.

A blogger for much of her career, Leahy was an early supporter of communities. “It was really through blogging that I started to notice the power of online comments and user engagement and develop an interest in the psychological aspects of online community,” she said. “In particular, what happens when you carve out spaces for debate and self-expression and even support spaces for brands and companies online.” She helped Fitbit launch its first customer-centric community platform.

“Customer experience is really paramount to everything we do here.”

— Alison Leahy, Director of Community for Fitbit

Here’s how Fitbit approaches social media and communities differently, according to Leahy:

Social Media: “In social care our key practice revolves around fully resolving all customer inquiries, doing some of that broad social listening, providing customers with a little bit more delight from the brand, and giving customers a really fast support experience.”

Communities: “Community is really where we have more time and attention from users. It’s also more of a one-to-many platform and our community forums are really rooted in a peer-to-peer support philosophy. So we’re constantly impressed with the wealth of knowledge and expertise our users bring to the table… they’re often the best suited to answer each other’s questions and motivate each other to get the most of their Fitbit experience.”

Fitbit promotes both community and Twitter support on its Contact Us page, alongside telephone, email, and chat support. Leahy says that social media is “definitely a high CSAT [Customer Satisfaction] channel and it’s a great channel from a business standpoint because cost per contact is a little lower than some of the other channels”. But when questions can’t be answered completely in social media, the other service channels come in handy.

Leahy joined me for Episode 44 of the Focus on Customer Service Podcast, sharing Fitbit’s best practices for being successful in both social care and online community management.




[Source:- Socialmediatoday]

Intel unveils its 7th-gen CPUs for desktops and performance laptops

Intel hasn’t forgotten about desktop aficionados. Only a few months after debuting its seventh-generation CPUs for ultraportables, the chip giant is rounding things out with new processors for more powerful machines. There’s the “H-series,” targeted at “performance laptops and mobile workstations,” and the “S-series,” which are meant for more traditional desktops. They’ll complement the two other lines of seventh-generation CPUs, which cover ultra-thin designs (the “Y-series”) and faster ultraportables (the “U-series”).

Naturally, you can expect the new desktop chips to perform better than their predecessors. Intel claims the S-series i7-7700K CPU is 25 percent faster than the i7-4770K (which, it’s worth noting, is three generations older). There’s likely a much smaller performance gap when comparing it to Intel’s fifth and sixth-generation CPUs. The company also claims the i7-7700K can “create, share and stitch” 4K 360-degree videos 35 percent faster than the 4770K. That’s a particularly niche use case to call out right now, but it might become more important as 360-degree video takes off.

When it comes to the H-series chips, Intel says they’ll perform about 20 percent faster than a comparable fourth-gen chip (the i7-4700HQ) and handle 4K 360-degree videos 65 percent faster. You’ll see the H-series in bulkier gaming and desktop-replacement laptops, and it sounds like they’ll pair pretty well with modern mobile GPUs like NVIDIA’s 10-series and AMD’s Polaris lineup (which recently made an appearance in Dell’s latest Alienware laptops).

The highest-end S-series CPU, the $339 i7-7700K, will feature a base clock speed of 4.2GHz with boost speeds up to 4.5GHz. In comparison, the 6700K was clocked between 4GHz and 4.2GHz. The new chip still packs in four cores and eight threads (thanks to Hyperthreading) and it includes Intel HD 630 graphics.

For the first time, Intel is also offering an unlocked Core i3 model, the $168 7350K, a dual-core CPU with four threads running at 4.2GHz. It’s something overclockers will appreciate, since they can tweak its speed settings to their heart’s content. And beyond that model, Intel claims all of its new seventh-gen chips will overclock better than previous models, thanks to several features that will stabilize the chips when pushing them beyond their listed speeds. The CPUs will also run on the company’s new 200-series chipset, which will support up to 24 PCI Express 3.0 chipset lanes and 10 USB 3.0 ports (along with a wealth of other technical upgrades).

Together with the new CPUs, Intel is also debuting an intriguing new technology called Optane Memory, which plugs into M.2 connections on motherboards to speed up systems. It’s not clear, exactly, how it all comes together, but Intel claims it’ll deliver SSD-like system speeds when used with a traditional hard drive. We’ll have to wait and see if it’s actually a better option than using an M.2 SSD with a hard drive, though — especially as SSD prices have fallen considerably over the years.

Just like with the earlier seventh-gen CPUs, you can expect Intel’s new desktop chips to handle 4K video pretty efficiently. That won’t mean as much for battery life savings, but it could make them much more useful for playing 4K on home theater PCs.

Basically, there’s a lot to look forward to if you’re buying a new desktop this year. But the new chips are more compelling if you’re upgrading from a system that’s a few years old, rather than something from last year. That’s a tad disappointing, but at the very least it’ll lead to some good deals on last year’s high-end CPUs.

[Source:- Engadget]