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Apple Ships iMac Pro

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Apple starts shipping its first professional AIO desktop machine-- the iMac Pro, a workstation-grade machine aimed at demanding workflows such as video and graphics rendering, VR content creation and 3D rendering.

iMac ProFirst presented back at WWDC 2017, the iMac Pro comes in a number of configurations, all packed inside the 27-inch 5K (5120 x 2880 resolution) display found in the latest iMac. The base model carries an 8-core Intel Xeon W processor, Radeon Vega Pro 56 GPU, 32GB 2666MHz DDR4 ECC RAM and 1TB storage. Customers can upgrade the processor to a 10-, 14- or 18-core option, while RAM and storage max out to 128GB or 4TB respectively.

The First LG Nano IPS Monitor

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LG announces a first monitor with Nano IPS technology-- the 32UK950, a 32-inch UHD 4K number featuring HDR600 support for even higher dynamic range peak brightness and Thunderbolt 3 compatibility.

LG MonitorNano IPS technology involves the addition of nanometer-sized particles to the LED panel. According to LG the particles absorb excess light wavelengths, "greatly enhancing" on-screen colours. The monitor displays 98% of the CI-P3 colour spectrum, making it ideal for prosumers seeking "superb colour reproduction."

The 32UK950 is also the first monitor with surpport for Thunderbolt 3 docking, allowing the setup of dual 4K monitors. It connects to modern notebooks such as the Macbook Pro via single Thunderbolt 3 cable (no charging adapter or USB cables required) transmitting video, audio and 60W power.

IDC: "Solid Growth" For SSD Industry

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The outlook for the SSD industry remains "strong," IDC reports-- global SSD unit shipments are set to increase at a CAGR of 15.1% over the 2016-2021 forecast period, while revenues grow at a 14.8% CAGR to reach $33.6 billion by 2021.

Flash driveThe drivers behind such a forecast are the great product availability and improved pricing dynamics as the industry moves to 3D NAND flash. The analyst says current NAND supply constraints will diminish in 2018, bringing about further price erosion. In turn, lower SSD pricing drives greater SSD adoption in PCs and other client devices.

As a result, 2016-2021 SSD shipments in the PC and CE markets are forecast to grow at a CAGR of 15.8%. Enterprise SSD demand should also remain strong throughout the period, as customers turn to flash-optimised systems for both traditional storage and server-attached solutions.

Tech Data Expands Datech, Maverick AV to Global Markets

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In a perhaps unusual move, Tech Data announces the expansion of its two pan-European solution businesses-- Datech Solutions and Maverick AV Solutions-- into all global markets.

Tech Data"As the physical and virtual worlds become increasingly intermeshed, Tech Data enables our channel partners to meet the evolving demands of IT consumption by optimizing our global footprint and strengthening our end-to-end portfolio of products, solutions and services," the company says. "The expanded availability of these two solutions, as well as dedicated global leadership of our cloud strategy, will allow us to provide more value to our channel partners throughout the world than ever before."

Microsoft Intros Azure Bot Service

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Developers wanting to build enterprise AI chatbots get a pair of cloud-based solutions from Microsoft-- the Azure Bot Service and LanguageĀ Understanding (LUIS) as part of the Cognitive Service AI suite.

ChatbotFirst released in preview form back in November 2016, Azure Bot Service is designed to enable the creation of "conversational interfaces on multiple channels." It allows developers to target a number of Microsoft and 3rd party apps and services, including Cortana, Skype, Slack and Facebook Messenger, without need to adapt code for each.

The official release includes Premium Channels, allowing customers to communicate directly with the website or app users and access to open-source software for custom chatbots. The service is available in 9 Azure regions, including Ireland, Hong Kong and Sao Paulo, Brazil.

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