With the increase in efficiency brought by the recent advances in silicon technology, manufacturers have been trying to cram more and more of a desktop PC into ever smaller and shinier casings, from basic models the size of a USB thumb drive to enthusiast grade offerings like Zotac’s “VR-ready” boxes that are no larger than a toaster.
A notable example that was unveiled this week is the Vensmile K8, which packs an Intel Atom Cherry Trail processor (1.44 GHz base frequency, up to 1.84 GHz boost), 4 GB of low-power DDR3 RAM, and 64 GB of eMMC storage. It offers a 10-point touchpad and a flexible keyboard (without the numeric keypad) that you can wrap around the base.
More impressive is that unlike Apple’s MacBook, the Vensmile K8 manages to offer decent connectivity, with one USB 2.0 port, one USB 3.0 port, HDMI and VGA video outputs, and even the 3.5 mm audio jack that has everyone debating whether the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are worth upgrading to.
The K8 also offers 802.11b/g/n dual-band WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity. Where it falls short is the price: you can pre-order one for $200 from Geekbuying, but keep in mind that flexible keyboards aren’t known to be the most reliable, and you might find the PIPO KB2 to be an attractive alternative.