Saturday, August 19, 2017

Apple Park 4K drone footage offers close look at Steve Jobs Theater

Apple Park is gradually approaching its construction wrap up, and the latest drone video shows new updates from the site. As the work continues to be in progress, the drone footage uploaded by YouTuber Matthew Roberts shows new shots of the park and greenery around Steve Jobs Theater. The theater has been named after company’s late co-founder, and is said to be one of the major attractions at the campus.

The latest drone footage has surfaced online despite Apple’s attempt to restrict drone flying over the construction site. According to VentureBeat, several drone operators reported of Apple hiring security agencies to keep drone from flying above the Apple Park in order to maintain security, and privacy of its employees. Looking at the new video that shows the construction progress in the month of August, it seems the Apple Park has still not be declared as a No-Fly zone by the state.

About the updates on Apple Park, as it appears in the video a significant growth in greenery can be seen inside the “spaceship”. According to AppleInsider, keeping up with Job’s vision the administration is said to have around 9,000 trees on the premises with kinds of apple, apricot, cherry, and persimmon trees. To approach such numbers of trees, the Cupertino-based giant is pushing local contractors to get the foliage even from California, if push comes to shove. 

Alongside the flora, Apple Park is said to feature a number of other environment-friendly facilities which also include company’s data center powered by an on-site solar farm. Apple ”spaceship” will also utilize other sources of renewable source of energy and climate control.

Apple iPhone 6 (Gold, 32GB)

Android O will officially launch on August 21

August 21 is a very important day for both NASA and Google. While NASA will be live streaming the first eclipse to pass over the United States in the 21st century; Google has chosen the same day to reveal the name of its next Android version. Google has also put up a teaser site with the countdown for an Android O announcement scheduled this Monday, August 21.

The tech giant will hold a special event for Android O in New York City on August 21, starting at 2:40 PM ET (12:10 AM IST). A countdown to the big event is already live on the Android website. Google’s teaser site mentions, “On August 21st, a solar eclipse will sweep across the entire United States for the first time since 1918. Android is helping you experience this historic natural phenomenon so you can learn more about the eclipse and count down to the big day—when you’ll meet the next release of Android and all of it’s super (sweet) new powers, revealed via livestream from New York City at 2:40PM ET.”

Along with the countdown for the upcoming event, Google’s page also has links to the NASA live stream, which starts at 12:00PM EST (9:30PM IST), allowing users to watch the eclipse, and spend some time before the Android O event kicks starts.

Once the latest Android version is launched, the Android O release will be called Android 8.0 <dessert name> with the most popular guess still being Android Oreo. If given more thought, launching Android O on the same day as eclipse, hints even more towards the Android version being called Oreo. Just like Oreo’s creamy white layer is covered between two black discs, the moon too covers the sun during an eclipse. Also apart from Android Oreo, there have been no new names suggested for the upcoming Android OS. Some older reports suggested Android Oatmeal Cookie, which doesn’t sound that appealing. However, Google’s Hiroshi Lockheimer recently revealed that the company has scheduled the releases after “tasty treats” like Pizza. He has also put up an image suggesting few names for the upcoming Android O. 

Well, that is not the only case where Google hinted that the Android O might NOT be called Oreo. According to 9to5Google, a teaser posted on Google+ reveals a different name for the upcoming Android version. The video’s file name posted on Google+ reveals the name as GoogleOreo_Teaser_0817_noDroids (1).mp4. However, the file was later taken down and instead another file going by the name OctopusTeaser.mp4 was put up. But the file name was later changes to OatmealCookie_Teaser.mp4.

Google has earlier this year rolled out preview versions for the upcoming Android O. The first developer preview arrived in mid-March, with the second developer preview during Google I/O in May, and the third in mid-June. The fourth and final preview arrived in mid-July. Reports also suggest that the public beta of Android 8.0 for supported Pixel, Nexus, and Android One devices will be out most likely in late August or early September. 

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017), Galaxy A7 (2017) price cut in India; now start at Rs 22,900

Earlier this year, Samsung launched the Galaxy A5 (2017) and Galaxy A7 (2017) in India, priced at Rs 28,990 and Rs 34,490, respectively. Both smartphones have now received a flat price cut of Rs 5,000.  Post price cut, the Galaxy A5 (2017) is now selling for Rs 22,900, whereas the Galaxy A7 (2017) will set you back by Rs 25,900. With the pricing now under Rs 26,000 mark, the smartphones will now compete with the likes of Vivo V5 Plus, Honor 8 Pro and Motorola Moto Z2 Play.

Samsung says that the price cuts for the Galaxy A7 (2017) and Galaxy A5 (2017) are in line with the upcoming festive season in India. Both the smartphones feature a glass and metal design which was introduced with last year’s model. The Galaxy A5 (2017) and Galaxy A7 (2017) also come with an always-on display, fingerprint sensor, Samsung Knox, and S- Voice. Samsung has also introduced Samsung Pay, its payments service with the Galaxy A5 (2017) and Galaxy A7 (2017). Both smartphones also come with IP68 certification for water and dust resistance.

Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) features and specifications

The Galaxy A5 (2017) comes with a slightly smaller 5.2-inch full HD Super AMOLED display as compared to the Galaxy A7 (2017). This year’s edition takes forward the glass and metal design introduced with last year’s model. Under the hood, the smartphone comes with 1.9GHz octa-core Exynos 7880 processor coupled with 3GB of RAM and 32 GB of internal storage. The smartphone comes with a dedicated slot for storage expansion up to 256GB via microSD card. 

For photography, the Galaxy A5 receives a boost as compared to its predecessor. It now boasts 16-megapixel camera both in the front and rear with f/1.9 aperture. The rear camera is supported with a LED flash whereas for selfies, the screen doubles up as a flash. In comparison, the older Galaxy A5 (2016) comes with a 13-megapixel rear camera along with a 5-megapixel front snapper.

There is also an increase in battery capacity in this year’s model. Fuelling the Galaxy A5 (2017) is a 3,000mAh battery with fast charging capabilities, up from 2,900mAh in the older model. On the software front, the smartphone runs Android Marshmallow. Connectivity options include 4G LTE support, dual-SIM compatibility, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2, USB Type C, NFC, and ANT+.

Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) features and specifications

As mentioned earlier, the Galaxy A7 (2017) only differs in terms of display and battery capacity. It boasts a larger 5.7-inch full HD Super AMOLED display and under the hood is the same chipset as seen on the Galaxy A5 (2017) with an option for expandable storage.

The camera specifications also remain the same with 16-megapixel rear and front camera. The Galaxy A7 (2017) is fuelled by a larger 3,600mAh battery with fast charging capabilities. On the software front, the smartphone runs Android Marshmallow. Connectivity options include 4G LTE support, dual-SIM compatibility, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2, USB Type C, NFC, and ANT+.

Galaxy A7 2017 

Galaxy A5 2017 

Galaxy J7 Pro

Friday, August 18, 2017

Nokia 8 likely to launch in India during Diwali

Finnish company HMD Global launched its much-awaited flagship device Nokia 8 that will be available in India during the festival season. Available in four colors — polished blue, polished copper, tempered blue and steel — Nokia 8 would be available at the global price of 599 euros ($705) through September, the company said in a statement. The device boasts three industry-first features for Android smartphones, including a collaboration with ZEISS optics, Nokia ‘OZO Audio’ and ‘Dual-Sight’ mode.

With only 4.6mm thin at the edge and 7.3mm slim on average, the flagship device’s unibody is made from 6000 series aluminium with select models featuring a high-gloss mirror finish. “People are inspired by the content they consume. It’s these people who have inspired us to craft a flagship smartphone which perfectly balances premium design, an outstanding experience, and powerful performance,” said Juho Sarvikas, Chief Product Officer of HMD Global.

Nokia 8 enables its users live stream videos on social feeds such as Facebook and YouTube using its Dual-Sight feature that uses both the front and rear cameras simultaneously in a split screen visual for both photos and videos.  The front and rear-facing cameras on the Nokia 8 have been co-developed with ZEISS optics for ‘bothie’. Users also get unlimited photo and video uploads to Google Photos. 

Nokia 8 is also the first smartphone to feature Nokia OZO Audio. OZO spatial 360 degrees audio brings an immersive experience to 4K video. The phone features Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip, offers pure, secure and updated Android experience and is Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 compatible for 3,090 mAh battery. The device comes with a lightweight, water, sweat, and dust-proof premium Nokia ‘Active Wireless Headset’.

It comes with a 4GB RAM and 64GB storage that can be extended up to 256GB. It has a 5.3-inch IPS LCD QHD display and is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

Asus Zenfone 4, Zenfone 4 Pro, and 4 other Zenfone smartphones launched: Price, specifications, features

Asus has today taken the wraps off its Zenfone 4-series of smartphones at a global launch event in Taiwan. The company has launched six different models under the new series – Zenfone 4, Zenfone 4 Pro, Zenfone 4 Max, Zenfone 4 Max Pro, Zenfone 4 Selfie, and Zenfone 4 Selfie Pro. However, the highlight of the event was the Zenfone 4 and Zenfone 4 Pro.

The Zenfone 4 and Zenfone 4 Pro are the flagship devices, followed by the Zenfone Selfie and Zenfone Selfie Pro, which are mid-rangers with a focus on the front camera. The Zenfone Max and Zenfone Max Pro too are mid-range smartphones with their focus on the battery performance.

Asus has currently revealed the price of only four models. The Zenfone 4 will start from $399 (Rs 25,500 approximately), while the Pro model will cost $599 (Rs 38,400 approximately). On the other hand, the Zenfone Selfie and Zenfone Selfie Pro will set you back by $279 and $379, which translates to roughly Rs 17,800 and Rs 24,300 respectively.

ALSO READ: Asus ZenFone Zoom S with With dual rear cameras, 5000mAh battery launched in India, Price at Rs. 26,999: Specs and features

Asus Zenfone 4, Zenfone 4 Pro specifications, feature

In terms of design, both the smartphones look very similar with metal and glass design with a textured back. Up front, the there is a 2.5D glass that is blended with an aluminum frame, giving both the smartphones a premium look. There are the capacitive buttons along with fingerprint scanner embeded into the home button. The only difference that can be noted in both the smartphones is at the back. The Zenfone 4 Pro comes with a camera that is slightly more protruding as compared to Zenfone 4. The ZenFone 4 Pro also comes with a glossy finish to add to its metal body.

There is not much of a difference in Zenfone 4 and Zenfone 4 Pro smartphones. Both feature a 5.5-inch display. The Zenfone 4 Pro is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC paired with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. While the Zenfone 4 comes in two variants – one with Snapdragon 630 SoC, and one with Snapdragon 660 SoC. Both variants come with 6GB of RAM, and internal memory that can be expanded up to 64GB. Keeping the smartphones ticking are 3,300mAh and 3,6000mAh batteries respectively. On the camera front, the smartphones come with a 12-megapixel rear camera. The Zenfone 4 Pro model, however, comes with a sensor for 2X zoom, while the Zenfone 4 comes with a 120-degree wide-angle lens instead.

Asus Zenfone 4 Selfie, Zenfone 4 Selfie Pro specifications, feature

As the names suggest, the Zenfone 4 Selfie, Zenfone 4 Selfie Pro smartphones come with their focus on the selfie camera.  The Zenfone 4 Selfie comes with 20-megapixel front snapper, while the Zenfone 4 Selfie Pro model comes with a 24-megapixel camera up front. However, only Zenfone 4 Selfie Pro smartphone users can take wide-angle selfies. Apart from this, the smartphones feature a 5.5-inch AMOLED display, with the Pro variant featuring a full HD display, and the standard variant featuring an HD display. In terms of processor, the Pro-model is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 SoC, whereas the Zenfone Selfie comes with Snapdragon 430 SoC. Both the smartphones come paired with 4GB of RAM  and a 3,000mAh battery. 

Asus Zenfone 4 Max, Zenfone 4 Max Pro specifications, features

Asus launched the Zenfone 4 Max smartphone last month in Russia. The USP on both devices is the massive 5,000mAh battery underneath. The Zenfone 4 Max Pro comes with just a few upgrades over the Max version. It features a 16-megapixel dual-rear camera as compared to 13-megapixel dual-rear cameras on the Zenfone 4 Max. 

Both the smartphones feature a 5.5-inch display with 1080×1920 pixels resolution. It is available in two variants – one powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 SoC, and other with Snapdragon 425 SoC. The smartphone further includes up to 4GB of RAM with 16GB/32GB/64GB of internal storage, which is expandable up to 256GB via microSD card. Asus did not reveal much about the Zenfone 4 Max Pro at the event.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

LG V30 press renders reportedly leaked ahead of August 31 official launch

LG is reportedly looking at the official launch of the LG V30 smartphone. While press invites sent by the company earlier was centered around the camera of the LG V30, another press invite tips the smartphone could go official on August 31 at 9 AM BST (2 PM IST). Now, latest reports suggest new renders of the smartphone that have leaked ahead of the launch.

According to new renders tipped by Evan Blass, the smartphone looks very similar to what we have seen in images leaked earlier. The renders look very graphic and detailed giving a better idea about the upcoming smartphone. The V30 smartphone is expected to include curves as part of its design, compared to the LG G6 flagship launched earlier this year, which was mostly about straight lines.

There have been several leaks of the V30 smartphone in the past, and a lot is already known about the device. However, we’d know for sure only once the smartphone is officially launched. From what we know, the smartphone will feature the proprietary FullVision display by LG with 18:9 aspect ratio and thin bezels running across it. We also expect a curved display, as LG is said to utilize plastic OLED panels keeping the display flexible to bend on edges.

From the renders, the smartphone appears to have a metal unibody design with a distinctive antenna band design. On the back, is a dual-camera setup with LED flash placed on the right-hand side and outside the camera ring. Below the primary camera is the fingerprint scanner followed by the V30 logo and LG branding. 

In terms of specification, the V30 smartphone is said to be powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC paired with 4GB of RAM. The phone will offer 64GB of internal storage to begin with, but it’s not clear if LG will support expandable storage on the V30. The dual-camera setup is said to come with 4K video recording, f/1.6 aperture that is the largest on a smartphone ever.


Nokia 8 with Snapdragon 835 SoC, dual cameras launched: Price, specifications, features

HMD Global was yesterday taken the wraps off its first Nokia-branded flagship device – Nokia 8. Unlike the Nokia Android smartphones already launched, this new device comes with premium design, top-of-the-line specs, and will compete in the high-end market segment.

In terms of design, the Nokia 8 shares a lot of similarities with the Nokia 5. It features an unibody design built using a single block of aluminum. The device is quite slim with an average thickness of 7.3mm, and 4.6mm at the edges. Despite the slim profile, HMD Global is ensuring there is no overheating, when the smartphone is being pushed to its limits. Underneath is a graphite shielded copper cooling pipe that dissipates heat across the length and breadth of the handset.

The highlight of the Nokia 8 is no doubt the dual-camera setup at the back. Back in July, HMD Global announced its partnership with Carl ZEISS, and the Nokia 8 is the smartphone to boast the camera technology. The camera setup includes a pair of 13-megapixel sensors – one clicking photos in RGB, and the other in monochrome. The primary sensor comes with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) and PDAF support, f/2.0 aperture, and IR range finder. Up front, there is a 13-megapixel snapper with PDAF support, f/2.0 aperture, and display flash.

HMD Global has only launched one variant of the Nokia 8 that is priced at €599. When converted into Indian currency, it translates to approximately Rs 45,000. The smartphone will be available globally starting early September. Buyers will be able to choose from four color options – Polished Blue, Polished Copper, Tempered Blue, and Steel.

Nokia 8 specifications and features

As far as specifications are concerned, the Nokia 8 flaunts a 5.3-inch IPS 2K resolution display with an insane 700nits of brightness. Protecting the display is Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5. Under the hood is Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 835 SOC paired with 4GB of RAM. There is also 64GB of storage on offer, which can be expanded up to 256GB using a microSD card.

The Nokia 8 also features three microphones for audio recording. It uses Nokia’s OZO Audio technology to capture audio with 360-degree spatial surround sound. The rest of the specifications include a fingerprint sensor, 3,090mAh battery with Quick Charge 3.0 support, IP54 certification making it splashproof. Connectivity options include dual-SIM card slots (select markets only), 4G LTE, USB Type-C port, 3.5mm audio jack, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 5.0.

As is the talking point on Nokia smartphones, the Nokia 8 too runs on stock Android OS. The smartphone runs on Android 7.1.1 Nougat out-of-the-box, but the company promises that Android O update will be rolled out as soon as Google releases it.