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August 22 [Wed], 2012, 19:18

Each holiday season, editors at and the five other sites in the TechTarget/TechnologyGuide family suggest holiday gift picks in various product categories Asus AL31-1005 Battery . This year's nod for top gift in the software category goes to McAfee All Access -- arguably the most comprehensive entry in an emerging breed of cross-device security products for guarding Windows PCs, Macs and mobile devices from harm Asus AL32-1005 Battery .

Each holiday season, editors at and the five other sites in the TechTarget/TechnologyGuide family suggest holiday gift picks in various product categories Asus ML31-1005 Charger . This year's nod for top gift in the software category goes to McAfee All Access -- arguably the most comprehensive entry in an emerging breed of cross-device security products for guarding Windows PCs, Macs and mobile devices from harm Asus ML32-1005 Battery .

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Almost 171 million Intenet-connected devices -- including PCs, tablets, and smartphones -- were sold in 2010 within the US alone Asus PL31-1005 Charger , and this number will soar higher in 2011, according to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). "Today the average owning household owns 3.02 computing devices when smartphones and tablets are included. Tablets and smartphones are experiencing significant momentum precisely because consumer-oriented computing services make them relevant," says Shawn DuBravac, the CEA's chief economist Asus PL32-1005 , in a new analyst report.

Analysts at Forrester put the number of PCs and other devices in the average computer-owning household even higher Asus TL31-1005 Battery , at four PCs and/or other devices per household.Vendors across many categories are recognizing this trend by starting to produce cross-device software products and services. Adobe, for example, just released the Apple iOS version of Carousel, a new online photo editing Asus TL32-1005 Battery , storage and sharing offering set for availability for Microsoft Windows PCs and Android devices early next year.

Security software vendors are also early pioneers in the cross-device space. Industry leaders like McAfee, Symantec Asus A42-G73 Charger , and Kaspersky have long produced antivirus software -- along with more feature-packed full security suites -- for Windows notebook and desktop PCs.

After the onslaught earlier this year of a barrage of malware targeting Android devices Asus 07G016DH1875 Battery , big name security software companies joined smaller mobile software specialists such as Lookout in providing anti-malware products specifically for smartphones and/or tablets.

Yet McAfee All Access and other products in the new category of cross-device security suites go much farther to provide wide ranging protection not just for one particular type of device Asus 70-NY81B1000Z Battery , but across multi-OS PCs and mobile gadgets.

In October, McAfee beat the competing Kaspersky One out the door with McAfee All Access Asus 90-NY81B1000Y Battery . By now, both of these cross-device security suites have been released. Symantec is also planning an offering in the space called Norton One. At this writing Asus A31-U53 Battery , though, only one element in the Norton One suite -- Norton Anti-Theft, an innovative app for Windows PCs and Android devices -- is available for purchase.

Folding in existing products such as McAfee Total Protection and McAfee Mobile Security Asus A31-UL30 Charger , the new McAfee All Access offers all-in-one protection across Windows PCs, Macs, and Android, BlackBerry OS, and Symbian mobile devices. Specifics vary according to device, however. Smartphones and tablets get location tracking and remote data wipe services, along with the anti-malware and "family protection" capabilities on the Windows PC and Mac sides Asus A31-UL50 .

Windows PCs get some of the most robust protections of all, with extra features that include a two-way firewall and a data shredder Asus A31-UL80 Battery , in addition to sophisticated anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-spam, and anti-phishing tools.Macs receive protections that include anti-malware safeguards, a firewall, and Web site ratings for helping to decide which Web sites are ones you want to avoid Asus A32-U53 Battery .

Particularly at a time when many holiday spending budgets are strained by the accumulating impacts of the recession Asus A32-UL30 Battery , McAfee All Access makes all kinds of sense as a highly useful gift for either the entire family or a plugged-in friend or significant other.

Although iPad and iPhone support isn't present yet, the product will help to maintain the functionality of just about all of the other PCs Asus A32-UL5 Battery , tablets, and smartphones your family or friend has already invested in before.

Subscription pricing of $99.99 for McAfee All Access provides protection for unlimited numbers of PCs and other devices owned by an individual user Asus A32-UL50 Charger . A $149.99 family package, on the other hand, protects up to five PCs and other devices.

Kaspersky One is another product you might consider as an alternative, depending on the needs of the person (or family) on your shopping list Asus A32-UL80 Battery . The pricing model for Kaspersky One is different, amounting to one-year subscription pricing of $79.95 for three devices, $99.95 for five devices, and $149.95 for ten devices.

Kaspersky One offers protections across the same PC and device platforms as McAfee All Access, while adding Windows Mobile smartphones to the mix Asus A41-U53 Battery . Features are in the same general neighborhood as those of McAfee All Access. Unlike McAfee All Access, however, Kaspersky's product doesn't include a two-way firewall or a data shredder for Windows PCs.

By the time the 2012 holiday season rolls around, there should be more cross-device security suites available to buy Asus A41-UL30 . Meanwhile, those already on the market are likely to have introduced new capabilities, and maybe increased device support. Yet with new security threats cropping up all the time, why wait another year?

The Portege Z835 (also called the Z830) is an Ultrabook, a new class of notebook computers characterized by their thinness, light weight Asus A41-UL50 Charger , and use of Intel Ultra Low Voltage (ULV) processors. These are essentially the Windows alternatives to the Apple MacBook Air.

The Z835 has a professional-looking design with normal straight lines and squared-off edges Asus A41-UL80 Battery ; Toshiba’s Portege line of notebooks has typically been business oriented so this makes sense. The Z835 will most certainly draw wandering eyes despite its utilitarian appearance due to the sheer thinness – it really is that thin at only 0.63 inches high. The chassis is constructed entirely of magnesium alloy, a lightweight yet strong material. As a result the Z835 feels like almost nothing at 2.4 pounds Asus A42-U53 Charger .

The chassis is remarkably stiff and hardly flexes; it is almost a necessity for Ultrabooks to be built as such since they are designed for constant travel. If the chassis allowed flex Dell W358P Battery , the internal circuit boards could bend and increase the likeliness of failure due to stress cracks over time. The fit and finish is good; all areas of the notebook seem to have received about the same attention to detail. The corners of the chassis are a bit sharp as is the cut-out for the Ethernet port on the back of the notebook Dell T96F2 Battery .

Upgradeability is not something Ultrabooks are designed for; there are no user-accessible panels on the bottom of the chassis Dell CMP3D Battery . The entire bottom of the chassis needs to be removed to get at any of the internals. An additional impediment to upgradeability is the non-standard SSD; you can’t simply put a normal SSD or hard drive in this notebook as the chassis is not thick enough to accommodate them Dell 3K4T8 Battery .

Today HP unveiled the all-new ENVY 15 and ENVY 17 notebooks. The ENVY design has always been contentious, and even HP admitted to borrowing more than a little from Apple's MacBook Pro. The new design eases off a bit, adding a pop of red trim and a capacitive touch volume dial - read on to hear our thoughts Dell NJ644 .

Looking at the all-new ENVY laptops, it's clear that HP didn't stray too-far from the MacBook look; having said that, however Dell 2T6K2 Battery , these new notebooks have strong design hints in their own right, with the gleaming black, silver and red reminiscent of an art deco sculpture. Regardless of where you come down on who originally inspired the last vestiges of HP's Voodoo acquisition Dell 854TJ Battery , you can't deny that they're lookers.

The new design uses the red accents judiciously, with an attractive strip showcasing the inset keyboard Dell 312-0966 Charger , as well as touches on the power button and Beats Audio (of course, Beats Audio is still tied deeply into the ENVY identity) capacitive button.

Speaking of audio, one of the first things we noticed when looking at the new ENVY is a jog dial built into the side of the machine Dell G9PX2 Battery . This dial actually sticks out from the plane of the notebook's edge eeeeever so slightly. It's just enough for you to be able to spin the dial without it actually detracting from the elegant designs Dell 0XXDG0 Charger . While it may bring to mind Toshibas (et al.) of old, which actually used a potentiometer dial to regulate audio levels, this is strictly a software solution - it won't work outside of Windows (or presumably Linux).

On top of the volume dial is a capactive button that, when tapped, launches the Beats Audio control panel plug-in Dell 451-11354 . We'd like to see HP let repurpose this button to toggle the mute status in future ENVY iterations; chances are you'll use that a heck of a lot more than you would the Beats Audio control panel levels.

The keyboard looks much the same as it did in previous generations, but the backlighting setup is new; in an attempt to minimize light bleed Dell 50TKN Battery , most keys on the keyboad have individual LEDs responsible for their illumination. This prevents light from spilling from in between all of the keys. The trackpad isn't too much changed, and, like most HP notebooks, can be completely disabled with a quick double-tap in the upper-left corner Dell 7W5X09C Battery .

One thing the new ENVY notebooks do not lack is port selection - with the possible exception of Intel's Light Peak interconnect Dell 0F116N Charger , there's almost nothing missing from these notebooks. The left side of the notebooks offer the slot-loading optical disc drive, two SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports, a microphone jack and dual headphone jacks. The right side lets users access another USB port (though just USB 2.0 this time), an SD card slot, Kensington Lock slot, HDMI out, DisplayPort out, Gigabit Ethernet, and the A/C power jack Dell P649N Battery .

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Old ENVY fans will rejoice to hear that the 3D screen isn't the only change HP made to the display - the company has managed to bring the Radiance panels back from the dead as well Dell 312-0882 Battery . These LED-backlit screens offer superior brightness and contrast ratings to traditional LCDs and many consumers mourned the day HP stopped making them an option on the ENVY lineup Dell K899K Charger .

Speaking of 3D, however, it works, and it works well, or at least as well as you'd expect it might. A pair of active shutter glasses gets tossed in the box of every 3D ENVY notebook, and they're nice, too, like the ones we got with the new HP TouchSmart 620 3D desktop Dell P769K Battery . As part of the AMD graphics that power the 3D effects, HP has leveraged that company's Eyefinity graphics technology to enable multiple screen support - up to three external displays can be hooked up to the new ENVY computers, with the notebook panel itself acting as a fourth Dell 05Y4YV .

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