Every year I look back at my Product of the Week choices and choose what I feel has made the most significant impact on my life as Product of the Year. There were too many contenders this year that I’ll cover, but I want to lead with why I’m calling out BlackBerry.

If you’ve been reading me for a while, you know that I’m a big fan of companies doing things right. For example:

  • Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration (CDA) program at the start of the pandemic proved incredibly useful for getting governments and schools to function while we were all locked down in our homes;
  • IBM’s focus on AI ethics may save us from building hostile AI;
  • Nvidia’s work to create world-class simulations to address global warming;
  • HP’s leadership in capturing and reusing ocean plastics; And
  • Dell’s aggressive examples of dismantling misogyny have caught my interest in the past.

But I was really struck by what was happening in Ukraine this year and I felt that we were not doing enough to deal with the terrible conditions in that country. BlackBerry showed massive resources for the Ukraine war effort and was able to effectively battle-train its security (Silence) and employee security applications (ethoc) which are now far more capable of keeping us safe.

Since much of 2022 has been about fear and vulnerability, choosing the product or company that does the most to reduce that fear across the country is a great way to persuade others to step up and help. Seems to be the best course of action.

While I usually point to Cisco as the gold standard for helping with that state security level, for 2022, BlackBerry’s extreme effort to help Ukraine stood out to me, so this is my pick for the product. like.

More on Blackberry later. Let’s look at the other contenders first.


Three laptops have stood out to me this year:

Alienware M17 R5 Gaming Laptop

If I were more of a gamer than I am, the Alienware M17 R5 would be the easy choice to lead the range, especially once I’ve got the proper drivers loaded and battery life down to something reasonable. When I first fired it up, I got two hours, but after a driver fix, that increased to six. The notebook is good looking, and if I were into first-person shooters where performance really shines, it would rank higher.

Alienware M17 R5 Gaming Laptop Angled Left View

Alienware M17 R5 Gaming Laptop | Image credit: Dell

ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 Laptop

The second was the ThinkBook Plus Gen 3. Again, battery life wasn’t great, but using dual screens and just the wow factor of this notebook make it more than ideal for those of us working primarily at home but don’t want to be locked out. Huh. With a desktop computer in the same room all day.

Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen3 17-inch Laptop

ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 17 Inch Laptop | Image credit: Lenovo

The dual screens on this ThinkBook also allow users to do two different things at the same time, such as participating in a Zoom meeting while being power-leveled or watching a video – it’s not always Do it yourself

HP Elite Folio 2-in-1 Notebook PC

The HP EliteBook Folio came out in 2021, but it’s still my favorite laptop. HP came out with a Dragonfly version this year that was Intel- and not Qualcomm-based, but that cut battery life by almost half. HP removed the leather bottom, making the product less comfortable to carry. So, while I would still rank the Folio first for 2022, the fact is that I think the 2021 version is still better suited to the way I work because, sometimes, companies make changes that affect the quality of the product. Not ideal for

hp elitebook folio

HP EliteBook Folio | Image credits: HP

The Snapdragon version of the product doesn’t perform as well as the Intel version, but for how I work — mostly writing, browsing the web, and watching videos while traveling — battery life, weight, and comfort are king. I’ve gone three days on a trip without needing a power supply for this notebook, which is unusual in a good way. Hence, last year’s HP EliteBook Folio was the best used laptop in 2022.

home tech

I have used ChilliSlip products ever since they first came out with ChilliPad. If there’s one solution that ensures I get a good night’s sleep, it’s the ChilliSleep Dock Pro by SleepMe. This product uses water to heat and cool your bed, just like race car drivers and astronauts use it to cool their suits. Whether it’s a hot or cold night, I’m like Goldilocks in the last bed: Perfect.

Chillisleep Dock Pro Large Bed Cooling System

ChilliSleep Dock Pro Control Unit | Image credits: Sleepme

This year SleepMe released a sleep tracker that I haven’t checked out yet that comes with a subscription so that the heat of the bed adjusts appropriately to optimize things like REM sleep. The only recurring problem is that I can’t take this thing with me when I travel. Hotels seriously need something like this because I am always too hot or cold when I sleep in a hotel. Put this product in the “can’t live without” category.

electric vehicles

I haven’t driven these in competition before, but I do drive a 2019 electric Jaguar I-Pace myself. Just before writing this column, I learned about the most terrifying electric car drag race ever. It was between a Lucid Air Sapphire, Tesla Plaid, and a Bugatti Chiron, which cost around $4 million. Oh, they also raced the Lucid against hot-rodded Ducatis (usually because of their high power-to-weight ratio, motorcycles usually dusting cars in these kinds of races).

So far, when it comes to straight-line drag races, Tesla is a winner against almost anything other than Bugatti. Here’s a plaid beating out a track-only dragster:

The Bugatti isn’t that fast, at least not until the quarter mile (top speed is a very different story, but none of us are driving at 250 mph until we’re driving our $4 million car). Do not want to forfeit for life). Long story short, in the race, the Lucid overtook the Bugatti, which beat the Tesla, gaping it, I mean by car lengths – even though the Bugatti has a lot more power.

The reason that electrics can generate a ton more traction is because traction control works better with electrics than with gas cars – and if you can’t put down the power, it doesn’t matter if you have it. how much is Thus, the Lucid Air Sapphire would be my pick for the best electric car in 2022. Plus, the thought of bashing a Bugatti into the lights with a family car brings a huge grin to my face.


The most powerful CPU remains the AMD Threadripper, and the most powerful GPU is Nvidia’s 4090 RTX card. Put those two in the same system and you’ll make your friends drool and your power meter spin like a top.

AMD took the lead in top-end workstations thanks to Threadripper, and I’ve seen people get boosted by their friends for using Intel processors for the first time this year, which is a huge win for AMD.

On graphics, Nvidia’s 4090 RTX is simply a beast which begs the question: why doesn’t AMD make a GPU like Threadripper to match it? Maybe next year, but while Intel is still there as the standard CPU for business, AMD has surpassed Intel in performance.

I’ll be doing a head-to-head on AMD, Nvidia, and Intel GPUs over the holidays, but when it comes to ultimate performance, AMD on CPUs and Nvidia on GPUs lead the pack in 2022.


So far, no one has come up with a phone that I like better than the Microsoft Surface Duo 2. a purple iPhone), more people walk in and ask about my phone by a factor of about eight to one.

The thing is, I’m a reader, and I use my phone to read books when I’m waiting in line, when I’m stuck in traffic, and when I’m waiting at a light. am (not when the car is running).

This phone has become something I never take off because I get bored easily. But if I can crack open a book, the wait time goes by in a flash, and I enjoy the extra attention the phone brings me.

So, for how I use the phone, the Microsoft Surface Duo 2 phone ranks highest. It feels and acts just like a book, compared to other foldable phones I’ve tried — and I must admit that having something more distinctive than your typical smartphone is more important to me.

BlackBerry is the 2022 Tech Company of the Year

blackberry logo

The reason I’m spotlighting BlackBerry, rather than individual products like Cylance and AtHoc, is because it was the company that partnered with several companies to protect the people of Ukraine by deploying thousands of experts to defend Ukraine against the Russian invasion. had stepped in to help in the fight. Its main mission.

The result is that Ukraine is safe, but also that BlackBerry’s products are the only ones in their category that are truly battle-tested. Battle testing is important, as Germany found out recently. Its tanks that were supposed to be invulnerable were anything but – something that would have been problematic if they needed them in battle.

A photo from the BlackBerry Network Operations Center in Waterloo, Canada.

BlackBerry Network Operations Center in Waterloo, Canada | Image credit: Blackberry

There are many hostile states and powerful organizations in the world that seek to harm us, and it is my view that only battle-tested security equipment will be up to the task because only those equipment will be truly tested against the highest threat levels.

We all want to feel secure, but I don’t want a false sense of security, and I want to know how my security works. By helping Ukraine, BlackBerry has ensured that its safety and security products will work in the most hostile of conditions. By doing something incredibly cool, BlackBerry has helped itself and its customers by assuring that its devices are up to the job.

I’d like other tech companies to learn from BlackBerry’s efforts because if ever we needed battle-tested capabilities, it’s now. Thus, BlackBerry is my Product/Company of the Year for 2022. Special credit goes to BlackBerry CEO John Chen, who recognized this critical need for battle-tested security tools and stepped in to provide them with his team.

I hope you all are staying safe and have a happy new year. We’ll be back next week with our predictions for 2023.

One of the pleasures of my job is to be exposed to many new and disruptive products. The Thanksgiving and December holidays are quickly approaching, so it’s that time of year when I’m fortunate enough to evaluate new tech products that deserve attention. It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.

Keep in mind that my comments are not intended as an in-depth review, but as preliminary impressions to prompt you to investigate and research further.

let’s get started.

HP Envy 34 All-in-One Desktop (2022)

Even though the all-in-one (AIO) PC market has simulated the overall contraction in the desktop PC market over the past few years, the pandemic-induced work-from-home phenomenon has proven to be a repeat for these convenient, mostly cable-free PC. Note, however, that AIOs typically offer minimal internal upgrade capability, which can be a problem for some power users who don’t want those restrictions.

HP is one of the few PC makers that continuously launches new AIO designs every year. The latest update to the HP Envy 34, currently with a starting price of $1,700, is one of the most beautifully designed models by the Palo Alto-based manufacturer.

HP Envy 34 All-in-One Desktop

HP Envy 34 All-in-One Desktop | image credit: HP

Squarely positioned to appeal to creative professionals, it also has broad utility for consumers and mainstream SMB users. The HP Envy 34 has an excellent non-glare 5K 34″ display, a mobile HD webcam with an integrated shutter for privacy protection, and great performance.

Of course, comparably priced legacy desktops can deliver more power, especially in the discrete GPU area. But given its extensive feature set, the HP Envy 34 offers excellent value for my money.

It’s the perfect PC for executive offices, home offices, and dorm rooms because of its cable-free nature – it only requires a power cord as the keyboard and mouse connect via Bluetooth.

On the back of the unit are the typical classifications of Unified Interfaces:

  • 4 USB-A Ports
  • 2 thunderbolt 4 port
  • Audio – Headphone/Microphone Combo
  • hdmi out
  • Gigabit Ethernet

Cable management is enhanced with a magnetic clip that helps keep cords organized and within reach, a great touch.

Creative professionals will be drawn to the massive 34″ display that’s paired with 5K resolution in a 21:9 aspect ratio, which puts the Envy 34 Display on par with Apple’s vaunted 27″ iMac. I found the 500 nits to be exceptionally bright on this display.

5K resolution (5120 x 2160) is common to all models of the HP Envy 34, though more expensive configurations include higher-end, game-friendly Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 discrete graphics.

Another important feature that users should love is that the stand easily accommodates two more USB-A ports, a media memory card reader, and a third USB-C port.

HP ENVY All-in-One 34-c0340t Ports Rear View

External I/O Ports on the HP Envy 34-c0340t All-in-One Desktop | image credit: HP

When configured with a high-end Intel i9-1100 processor, Nvidia RTX 3080 discrete graphics, 32GB of memory, and a 1TB SSD, the price can quickly climb to $3,430. But properly configured models are available for less than $2,000, and it’s the ideal PC for users working from home, design-sensitive corporate execs, and professional content creators.

If you’re considering an AIO PC, you can’t go wrong with the HP Envy 34.

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Notebook

Thin and light laptops have dominated the PC landscape ever since Steve Jobs dramatically pulled the original MacBook Air out of an envelope at an Apple launch event in January 2008. With its release, Apple effectively declared to the rest of the industry, “This is how a laptop should be designed.”

However, more than 14 years have passed, and the PC industry has not stood still. There are several excellent alternatives to the MacBook Air, most notably the recently announced Dell XPS 13 Plus, which allows the entire palm rest to be used as a touchpad.

While no product in this category has achieved perfection status, the new HP Elite Dragonfly G3 comes close. It’s an absolute pleasure to use with its lightweight, surprisingly thin, and elegant form factor design, featuring great performance, excellent battery life, and a superior 3:2 display that boosts productivity.

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Notebook

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Notebook | image credit: HP

Perhaps most importantly, the Elite Dragonfly G3 offers the best typing experience of any thin and light laptop I’ve come across.

Like previous Dragonfly models, this new one is made of magnesium and has been refreshed with a mix of magnesium and aluminum, which contributes to the curved “pillow corners” design on the display lid and outer base images.

Weighing in at just 2.2 pounds, this laptop has a highly polished executive look with a display that can be opened with one hand. It is available in 2 non-controversial colors: Slate Blue and Natural Silver.

Of course, HP offers the Elite Dragonfly G3 with a range of panel options, ranging from a multi-touch Full HD+ (1920 x 1280) WLED panel to a single 32K (3000 x 2000) OLED panel that delivers better crispness .

Internally, HP chose to use Intel’s more efficient 15-watt Core i5 1245U, Core i7 1255U, or Core i7 1256U, instead of Intel’s new 12th Gen Intel Core P Series, which uses more watts. It’s a wise choice as it extends the Elite Dragonfly’s battery life, which is impressively north of 14 hours.

hp elite dragonfly g3 port

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Right-Side Ports | image credit: HP

In terms of security, the Elite Dragonfly also supports Windows Hello facial and fingerprint recognition. I find the latter more convenient.

The icing on the cake is the Elite Dragonfly G3’s story of sustainability: The laptop’s outer carcass uses at least 90% recycled magnesium, which will warm the hearts of individuals with environmental concerns.

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Notebook Front View

HP Elite Dragonfly G3 Front View | image credit: HP

The HP Elite Dragonfly G3 is one of the most impressive laptops ever to cross my radar screen. Its “elite” design, strong battery life, rich feature set, and excellent connectivity features (Wi-Fi 6E and optional 4G LTE or 5G cellular support) will cost you dearly. A fully configured model will run over $3,000. Price aside, you’ll undoubtedly fall in love with the HP Elite Dragonfly G3 – if you can afford it.

Motorola Q14 Tri-Band Mesh Wi-Fi System (AXE5400)

Many readers of my technology column know that I’m a big fan of the overall Wi-Fi router trend, which has embraced mesh technology over the past several years.

These routers alone can solve one of home users’ biggest connectivity problems: reliably getting strong Wi-Fi coverage throughout the living space.

Mesh routers are game-changing in a typical home with many active uses, e.g., gaming, streaming, videoconferencing, productivity, etc.

While most consumers still use older Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) routers, several companies are offering faster mesh routing iterations based on Wi-Fi 6 or (more recently) Wi-Fi 6e.

Motorola has joined the mesh router party with its offering Q14 Tri-Band Mesh Wi-Fi System.

Motorola is catching up with more established players like Linksys, Netgear, and Asus. Despite its late arrival to market, there’s a lot to like about the new Q14.

Motorola Q14 front and rear

Motorola Q14-Wi-Fi 6E Mesh Router | image credit: motorola

The Q14 enables 6 GHz wireless bands for dramatically increased speeds and up to 160 wireless channels that can be used simultaneously. This feature translates to a recognizable increase in the number of Wi-Fi devices used simultaneously in your home without compromising on overall performance.

Mesh routers usually consist of the router itself and one or two “satellite” nodes that can extend coverage to 5,000 square feet, which is especially helpful for those with larger properties and Wi-Fi for devices outside the home. – Requires Fi connectivity, such as security cameras and sensor based alarms.

Priced at $649 (though you can currently buy it on Amazon for $500), the Q14 offering sent to me included a router and two nodes, so it provided maximum Wi-Fi connectivity in my home.

Wrapped in a premium mesh fabric, routers and satellites feature a cutting-edge modern design to complement any room. You won’t be embarrassed to have them sit on a bookshelf, desk or cabinet.

Motorola Q14-Wi-Fi 6E Mesh Router

The Motorola Q14 Wi-Fi 6E Mesh System can be proudly displayed as a design element. , image credit: motorola

What sets the Q14 apart from other mesh routers I’ve used isn’t just its overall excellent performance. Router setup is enabled by one of the most intuitive smartphone apps I’ve used, and it offers the convenience of parental controls and cybersecurity at no extra cost. The app designed by Minim allowed me to set up the Q14 in less than 20 minutes without any hiccups.

Unlike many other companies that have taken a similar app-based approach to product setup, the Moto Sync app is highly visual and intuitive. It should be noted that Minim holds an exclusive global license to design and manufacture consumer networking products under the Motorola brand. Plus, the Q14 is an independent Wi-Fi network and can only mesh with other Q14 routers. It is not a universal expander.

Moto Sync App for Motorola Q14 Mesh Wi-Fi 6E Router

The Moto Sync app that powers the Motorola Q14 Mesh Wi-Fi 6E router. image credit: motorola

There are many appreciable mesh routers on the market, but the Q14 stands apart from a price standpoint. At less than $500 for the Q14-02, which covers 3,500 square feet, it’s a bargain compared to Netgear’s $1,499 Orbi quad-band Wi-Fi 6E mesh system, though the Q14’s technical feature set is more modest. Is.

Regardless, the performance differences will vary for most mainstream home users, and I’d recommend saving $1,000.

Dell Pro Webcam – WB5023

Last year, Dell impressed many in the tech industry with its stylish 4K Dell Ultrasharp Webcam. Initially priced at $200, it was positioned to appeal to users working from home who needed better videoconferencing capability and had other options than Logitech’s 4K Brio webcam.

Acknowledging the market demand for low-resolution webcams at a more value-oriented price, Dell recently unveiled its $110 Dell Pro Webcam – the WB5023 that delivers “good enough” 2K QHD video resolution (1440p/s). 30 fps or 1080p/60 fps). Which is more than enough for standard videoconferencing.

Dell Pro Webcam (WB5023)

Dell Pro Webcam WB5023 | image credit: Dell

With a built-in monitor clip with 78-degree field of view (FOV), 4X digital zoom, and tripod attachment capability, this webcam, like its 4K predecessor, looks and feels high-quality (Logitech 4K Brio) even more) ) in terms of hardware.

It’s probably not the right webcam if you’re creating high-quality video content or need 4K resolution for professionally produced podcasts, but its overall image quality is excellent.

What’s more, unlike 4K UltraSharp webcams, it includes more sophisticated features like a built-in microphone and AI auto-framing that tracks your face and keeps it focused on-screen.

Another important point: Dell’s webcams, including these models, are optimized for use with Windows PCs. They’ll work with Macs, but Dell doesn’t provide macOS drivers for tweaking webcam settings.

The bottom line is that it’s the ideal budget-friendly webcam that works well, underscoring Dell’s brand reputation for solid value.

closing thoughts

Remember that the tech product prices above are always a moving target as we are in the holiday season when online retailers have promotions that will offer substantial discounts off MSRP.

This point is especially true for Amazon, and the price of an item can vary greatly from day to day, so keep that in mind when you’re about to pull the trigger and order these or any other high-tech products. Do it.

Happy Holiday Shopping, everyone!

Cyber ​​security professionals want the computer industry to emphasize vendor consolidation and open standards.

This major change in the security networks of IT professionals is long overdue, according to new research from the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA) International and the independent industry analyst firm Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), a division of TechTarget.

Seller consolidation and the push toward open standards is driven by buyers themselves, who are challenged by increasing complexity, cost, and the promotion of best-of-breed technology “equipment sprawl”.

Nearly half (46%) organizations consolidate or plan to consolidate the number of vendors they do business with. Concerned by the growing complexities of security operations, 77% of InfoSec professionals would like to see greater industry collaboration and support for open standards that promote interoperability.

Thousands of cyber security technology vendors compete against each other in multiple security product categories. Organizations want to optimize all the security technologies in their stack at once.

According to the research report, vendors supporting open standards for technology integration will be best positioned to meet this shift in the industry.

“Given that nearly three-quarters (73%) of cybersecurity professionals feel that vendors are engaging in promotions on substance, vendors who demonstrate a genuine commitment to supporting open standards are more likely to engage industry-wide. would be in the best position to avoid consolidation,” he said. Candy Alexander, Board President, ISSA International.

He said CISO vendors have become so burdened with noise and security “equipment dispersion” that for many, the wave of vendor consolidation is like a breath of fresh air.

Shift to security platform

ESG studied 280 cyber security professionals, most of whom are ISSA members. The results, released last month, focused on security processes and technologies, and show that 83% of security professionals believe the technology interoperability of the future depends on setting industry standards.

The report’s details demonstrate a cybersecurity landscape that looks favorably toward a security product suite (or platform) as it moves away from a defense-intensive strategy based on deploying best-of-breed cybersecurity products. This approach is based on historical precedent that has consistently increased organizational complexity and contributed to substantial operations.

“The report shows that massive changes are taking place within the industry in what many believe is a long time to come,” said John Oltsik, Senior Principal Analyst and ESG Fellow.

“The fact that 36% of organizations may be willing to purchase most security technologies from a single vendor speaks volumes for a change in buying behavior as CISOs are openly considering security platforms in lieu of best-of-breed point of view devices. are,” he said.

Why Jump from Best-of-Breed

The number of competing security suites has skyrocketed with many organizations managing 25 or more independent security tools. It follows that security professionals are now stressing the need to juggle so many independent security products to do their job.

Managing an assortment of security products from different vendors has increased training requirements, makes it difficult to get an overall picture of safety, and requires manual intervention to fill in the gaps between products. As a result, 21% of organizations are consolidating the number of cybersecurity vendors they do business with, and another 25% are considering consolidating.

“In general, buying, implementing, configuring and operating too many different tools has become very difficult, let alone ongoing support relationships with vendors. Consolidation management/operations makes sense,” says Oltsik told TechNewsWorld.

This ongoing complication is prompting 53% of cybersecurity professionals to purchase security technology platforms instead of best-of-breed products. The study showed that 84% of respondents believe a product’s integration capabilities are important, and 86% consider it important or important that integration with other products create best-of-breed products.

According to 60% of IT teams, strict integration between already separate security controls is a primary requirement rather than a best buy. Improved threat detection efficiency such as accurate high-fidelity alerts and improved cyber-threat detection were on the wish list for 51%.

generalized government mandate

Cybersecurity products cover the basics, noted Oltsik. This includes antivirus software, firewalls, some sort of identity management system, and a range of products for endpoint encryption.

“In many cases, these technologies are mandated by government and industry regulations,” he said. “The biggest influencer in cybersecurity protections is the US federal government which can and does mandate certain standards.

For example, the Security Content Automation Protocol (SCAP) is a synthesis of interoperable specifications derived from community considerations. The In-Process Cyber ​​Security Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) standard mandates certain security certifications for DoD vendors.

“We have also seen standards from industry, such as the activity of the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS) and other OASIS standards. This week, we introduced the Open Cyber ​​Security Framework (OCSF), a standard data schema for security data. Saw the beginning. There are also many identity management standards,” he said.

Finding a shared security base

After reviewing this data, ESG and ISSA recommend that organizations encourage their security vendors to adopt open industry standards, possibly in collaboration with the Industry Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC). In addition, there are some established security standards available from MITER, OASIS and Open Cyber ​​Security Alliance (OCA).

Many vendors speak in favor of open standards, but most do not actively participate or contribute to them. However, this lukewarm behavior can change quickly.

For this to happen, cybersecurity professionals – especially large organizations big enough to send signals to the market – establish best practices for vendor qualification.

In addition, they need to emphasize process requirements that include adoption and development of open standards for technology integration as part of a broader process for all security technology procurement, according to the report.

expected result

Cyber ​​security standards and vendor integration will strengthen the cyber security landscape against the continuing increase in cyber threats by easing product development and integration. Oltsik explained that this will allow industry and security teams to focus more on innovation and security fundamentals and less on building connectors for interoperability.

He sees an opportunity within the industry to support these efforts.

“It seems that some industry leaders are collaborating. I point to OCSF where 18 vendors agreed to support it,” he said.

This group includes a number of leaders – AWS, CrowdStrike, IBM, Okta and Splunk, for starters. He said another potential driver would be the support of large security technology customers.

Oltsik concluded, “If Goldman Sachs, GM, Walmart and the US federal government said they would only buy from vendors that support OCSF, it would really hit the industry.”

The full ESG-ISSA report titled “Technology Perspectives from Cyber ​​Security Professionals” is available here. No form filling is required.