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2 days ago

This discounted 3-pack of USB-C adapters brings new life to your old cables

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Don't ditch your old cables completely.

The transition from micro-USB to USB-C has been a pretty positive one for most, but that means that a lot of our old cables are no longer useful to charge our gadgets. Odds are you have tons of old cables laying around that you don't want to get rid of, and luckily you don't have to.

Right now you can pick up Aukey's micro-USB to USB-C adapters for just $5.99 at Amazon when you check out using the coupon code AUKEYA23. This is a 3-pack of adapters so you can keep one at home, one at your office, and one in your pocket for those times you may need it at a friends house.

  • Charge and Sync: USB-C (male) to Micro-USB (female) adapter allows you to charge and sync USB-C devices with a micro-USB cable. 480Mbps USB 2.0 data transfer speeds
  • Safe Charging: Safe, configured charging output ensured by high-standard components, including a high-power 56 kilo ohm resistor
  • Wide Compatibility: Reversible USB-C connector that plugs in either way up. Compatible with Macbook Pro, Chromebook Pixel, ASUS Chromebook, Nexus 6P/5X, and other USB-C smartphones, tablets, and laptops
  • Easy Use: No driver is required to use this adapter. Just plug & play

Aukey backs the adapters with a two-year warranty.

See at Amazon

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2 days ago

Samsung Galaxy S9: Rumors, Specs, Release Date, and More!

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Samsung Galaxy S8+

The Galaxy S9 is on its way, and this is everything we know so far about Samsung's next flagship.

Even today, there's no denying that the Galaxy S8 is still one of the best-looking phones on the market. Its Quad HD AMOLED Infinity Display is a thing of beauty, its camera takes excellent photos, and even Samsung's software is finally enjoyable for once. All of the greatness found with the Galaxy S8 has put a lot of pressure and expectations on the S9, and although it probably won't be as big of an upgrade as the S8 was from the S7, it'll still likely be one of the best phones of 2018.

Here's everything we know about Samsung's upcoming flagship launch!

The Galaxy S9 will look a lot like the S8

If you were hoping for a big design upgrade with the Galaxy S9, you better stop now before you get your hopes up too much. A CAD render of the Galaxy S9 reveals what will most likely be the final look for the device, and although it's not a big change from the S8, that's really not a bad thing. The GS9 will have extremely tiny bezels around its display with a metal frame and glass back, but there is a change to the placement of the fingerprint sensor.

We still don't understand Samsung's reasoning for putting the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S8 where it did, but with the S9, it will be placed below the camera lens. In other words, unlocking a Samsung phone with your finger will no longer make you want to rip out your hair. Woohoo!

Bezels are going to keep shrinking 😮

Speaking of that Infinity Display, the Galaxy S9 is expected to make it even more impressive than it already is on the S8. The screen-to-body ratio of the Galaxy S8+ is still a thing of beauty at 84%, but according to a tip that SamMobile received, the S9+ will kick things up a notch with a screen-to-body ratio of 90%.

A 6% increase might not sound big on paper, but this will result in a virtually nonexistent bezel for the Galaxy S9's chin and a top bezel that's even smaller than the bottom one found on the S8. Nobody's complaining about the GS8 having big bezels, so the fact that the GS9 could reduce their size even more admittedly has us quite giddy.

The Galaxy S9 will be announced on February 26

During CES 2018, Samsung's president of mobile confirmed that the Galaxy S9 will be announced in February at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The convention officially begins on February 26, and according to a C-level executive at a case-maker that Evan Blass spoke with, this is the exact day when the Galaxy S9 will launch. Pre-orders for the phone will be quick to follow on March 1, and shipments will then go out a couple weeks later on March 16.

This would see Samsung releasing the phone about a month earlier than it did with the Galaxy S8 last year, but you won't find us complaining about that at all.

Iris scanning improvements to take on Face ID

Samsung might have been first to market with face/eye scanning technology as a way for biometrically unlocking your phone compared to Apple, but it's no secret that Face ID is superior to Samsung's iris scanning technology that's found on the Galaxy S8. Unsurprisingly, Samsung will be improving its iris scanning system on the Galaxy S9 to either meet or beat Apple's solution.

A report from The Korea Herald says that Samsung will be upgrading the front-facing camera on the S9 from 2MP up to 3MP, and this will allow for faster scanning even when users are wearing glasses or in dark environments. The time it takes to unlock the S9 using iris scanning will be shorter than the current one-second time ont he S8, and there will also be improvements on the software side of things to make iris scanning just as (if not more) secure than Face ID.

Only the S9+ will get dual rear-cameras, but both will have a variable aperture

Only the larger GS9+ will get dual-camera love, but both will have a much more accessible fingerprint scanner.

Samsung's first phone to ship with dual cameras was the Galaxy Note 8, and as expected, this is a feature that'll trickle over to the Galaxy S9 release. However, only the larger Galaxy S9+ is reported to receive this treatment. The regular GS9 will retain a single camera, and while we don't expect it to take bad photos, this disparity between the smaller and larger variants is new for Samsung. On that same note, the Galaxy S9+ will also receive a small performance boost with an upgraded 6GB of RAM compared to the S9's 4GB count.

Reserving the dual-camera system for just the larger Galaxy S9+ is certainly a bummer for those that prefer smaller handsets, but no matter if you choose the S9 or S9+, it looks like you'll be able to use something even cooler – variable aperture.

A leaked image recently surfaced showing the back of a retail box for the Galaxy S9, and next to "Super Speed Dual Pixel 12MP OIS" it says "F1.5/F2.4." We've been able to digitally change aperture settings on phone cameras for some time now, but this would suggest that the Galaxy S9 has an aperture that can be physically changed. This is something that Samsung showed off with its W2018 flip-phone in China last December, and it too had a variable aperture of f/1.5 and f/2.4. Assuming this is actually present on the Galaxy S9, we'll be looking at a phone that should offer exceptional low-light camera performance.

Don't worry – the 3.5mm headphone jack will remain

Samsung Galaxy S8

The 3.5mm headphone jack is here to stay 🙏

One trend we've seen throughout 2017 is the rapid removal of the 3.5mm headphone jack. This is something that the likes of Apple, Google, Motorola, and HTC have all been more than willing to follow suit with, but we shouldn't have to worry about this with the Galaxy S9.

Venture Beat's same source supposedly confirmed that the Galaxy S9 will keep the headphone jack, and this lines up with a leaked case render for the phone that shows a covered section for the coveted port. Additionally, the CAD renders mentioned above also show the Galaxy S9 with this.

Battery increase of 200 mAh 🔋

There's not much to dislike about the Galaxy S8, but aside from the phone's awkward fingerprint sensor, one area that can be an annoyance is battery life. The S8's battery isn't bad, but it's also not the best we saw on a phone in 2017.

According to someone that supposedly has a test unit of the upcoming device, the Galaxy S9 will come equipped with a slightly larger battery of 3,200 mAh. That's not a huge increase compared to the Galaxy S8's 3,000 mAh pack, but a larger battery is still a larger battery. Additionally, this larger pack should also be accompanied by Quick Charge 3.0.

512GB storage option

Yep. When you go to buy a Galaxy S9 next year, you may very well have the option of purchasing one with 512GB of internal storage.

Samsung announced on December 5 that it had begun mass-producing the mobile industry's first 512GB chips, and although not directly mentioned, we wouldn't be surprised to see this extra storage make its way to the S9/S9+. Larger internal storage will always have the benefit over expansions with microSD cards, so with this much space to work with, it'll be interesting to see if Samsung tries axing the microSD card slot like it did with the S6 in 2015.

What about the Galaxy X?

Galaxy X render

Many rumors about the Galaxy S9 have also been peppered with bits of information on the rumored Galaxy X foldable phone, which is supposed to slot in above the Galaxy S line with a crazy foldable display. At this point it's seeming unlikely that the Galaxy X would make any sort of appearance alongside the Galaxy S9 and S9+ when they're announced, and at best we'll get some sort of a mention from Samsung that something else is coming later in 2018.

Samsung Galaxy X foldable phone: Rumors, Images, Details, and More!

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

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Updated January 16, 2018: Added new information from Evan Blass about release schedule.

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2 days ago

Face Unlock now available for OnePlus 3/3T with OxygenOS beta

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Part of Open Beta 30 for the OnePlus 3 and Open Beta 21 for the 3T.

Right before 2017 was officially over, OnePlus announced that Face Unlock would be making its way to the OnePlus 5 with a future software update. The company also teased that the OnePlus 3/3T would see similar treatment in the near future, and now with the latest OxygenOS Open Beta for these two phones, that day has come.

Open Beta 30 for the OnePlus 3 and Open Beta 21 for the 3T have arrived, and the biggest addition with this update is Face Unlock. Just like on the OnePlus 5 and 5T, you'll now be able to use the 3 and 3T to unlock your phone by simply looking at it. Since Face Unlock doesn't require any special hardware sensors like Face ID on the iPhone X, it should work just as good on the 3 and 3T as it does on the 5T.

In addition to this, the built-in launcher is also getting some new tweaks. Folders will automatically be named when similar apps are added to them, the clock icon is dynamic and moves to show the actual time, and you can now view new categories when you use the search function in the app drawer.

Also new is Airtel VoLTE support in India, the OnePlus Switch app for moving information from one phone to another, and other general bug fixes and optimizations. You'll get the new software as an OTA update if you're already enrolled in the beta, but if not, you'll need to manually flash the file to your phone.

Some OnePlus customers have reported fraudulent credit card activity

OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3

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2 days ago

Moto E5 appears in render with rear fingerprint sensor

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Our first look at the Moto E5 shows a lot of similarities to the E4, but that's not a bad thing.

Of all the phones Motorola released in 2017, one that stood out the most was the Moto E4. The E4 might have been the least powerful of the bunch, but for its retail price of $129, it performed way above what we usually expect to see from something so cheap.

The very first render of its successor – the Moto E5 – just surfaced, and while it looks like more of the same, there are a couple tweaks to the design worth taking note of. For starters, the fingerprint sensor has been moved from the front to the back below the camera sensor. This means that Motorola is finally using its Moto dimple for something useful, and while that's something I've been wishing Motorola would do since the Moto X (2014), it is slightly disappointing to see that nothing new was done with the front of the phone.

We're finally getting a Moto dimple that doubles as a fingerprint sensor.

Where the fingerprint sensor used to be has been replaced by large Motorola branding, and the bottom bezel doesn't appear to be any smaller as a result of the change. I get this isn't a flagship phone, but I can't help but feel it's a poor use of space.

The other design tweak I'm seeing are slightly rounded corners on the display. This is something that was popularized by devices like the LG G6 and Galaxy S8 last year, but unlike those phones, the Moto E5 will probably retain the more traditional 16:9 aspect ratio.

The date of April 3 on the clock widget in the render suggests that this is when Motorola could announce the Moto E5, so we'll be keeping an eye on this to see if that comes to fruition.

Moto E4 review: Keeping it simple

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2 days ago

Best document scanning apps for Android

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Scan and save all the important documents in your life without hassle.

As our technology becomes more and more integrated with the world around us, it becomes easy to forget that many important documents are still printed out on paper. Being able to easily scan and save your lease, receipts, or other important paperwork can ensure that you never lose a document again. Of course, there are tons of apps out there, so we've done the hard work for you and narrowed that list down to just a few suggestions.

These are our picks for the best document scanning apps on Android.

Adobe Scan

Adobe Scan

If you are already familiar with Adobe, then seeing this app on our list should make your eyes light up. While you can sign in like usual with Google or Facebook, you can also use your Adobe ID and it supports exporting documents to your Adobe account. The app is free and full of features that make it easy to scan your documents even if they aren't in the best shape ever.

Adobe Scan will automatically detect a document once you have the app open, and you can scan and save several documents in a batch to be edited and saved together. As far as features go you have access to a drag and drop cropping tool that lets you adjust what is saved, edit the color of the document, reorder documents in a batch and even reorient documents so they all face the same way.

Download: Adobe Scan(Free)

Office Lens

Office Lens

If you use Windows, then having an app that talks easily to OneDrive always makes things easier, and Office Lens is Microsoft's offering of a document scanning app. It's built to easily snap a photo of what you need and then save directly to OneNote or OneDrive.

Office Lens is really made to just snap a photo and quickly crop it, and it isn't really overflowing with options. It does scale photos taken from weird angles, and it has a few different modes depending on what you're scanning. This is a great option for anyone who is using Microsoft ecosystem to keep track of everything and is very simple and easy to use due to it's simplicity.

Download: Office Lens(Free)

Genius Scan

Genius Scan

If having a clean and intuitive UI that gives you access to a few features without going overboard is what you're after, then it's Genius Scan that you should take a look at. The one flaw with Genius Scan is that to get access to the full sharing capabilities, you'll need to pony up $4.95 for a premium subscription.

If being able to fine tune everything about your scanned documents is the way you want to go, Genius Scan is an excellent option. You can separate documents into folders, name each document or folder, and even tag documents. This means you can have taxes from multiple years in different folders that can still be found by searching through your tagging system.

Download: Genius Scan(Free)

CamScanner

Cam Scanner

CamScanner delivers a gorgeous and intuitive UI and some serious features for fine tuning each scanned document that you save. To get access to everything it offers, you will need to look into a subscription, but most users will be able to easily get by with the free version.

When you scan a document, you can reorient and crop the image as you'd expect, but it's the editing features that make CamScanner shine. You've got five or six versions of the scanned document to choose from, including modes that lighten up the paper that was scanned to make it easier to read. You can also personally adjust the balance if you're trying to get everything to look perfect. Once you've saved documents, you can tag them, store them in folders, and share them with friends. You're also able to mark scanned documents and attach notes, which makes this a great app for students studying on the go!

Download: CamScanner(Free)

Do you use a document scanner or do you like to keep paper documents around?

Let us know in the comments below!

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2 days ago

LG G7 (2018 flagship) rumor round-up: Everything you need to know

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The LG G6 was a solid phone that got overshadowed by the competition. With the G7 (or whatever it ends up being called), LG isn't going to let that happen again.

When talking about underrated phones from 2017, it's almost impossible to not mention the LG G6. LG made a huge comeback following the disaster that was the G5, but devices like the Samsung Galaxy S8 simply ate the G6 for breakfast and didn't leave it with much of a fighting chance to stand out from the crowd.

LG needs a winner this year with the G6's successor, and although details aren't quite as abundant as they are for the Galaxy S9, there are still a few solid rumors floating around that have us excited for what LG will release in 2018.

Without further ado, here's everything we know about LG's successor to the G6.

It won't be called the LG G7

If you noticed that we've refrained from actually saying "LG G7" so far, there's a reason for that. A report popped up on January 3 indicating that LG will be ditching its G-series branding in favor of something else for a phone that'll be released in "the first half" of the year.

Get ready to say goodbye to the G-series this year 👋

We're expecting this rebranding to make its debut with what would have been called the G7, and while the phone in question will be the sequel to the G6, it'll have a much different name. LG is supposedly playing around with the idea of having the phone launch with two digits in its name so that customers don't think it's outdated compared to the likes of the Galaxy S9 and iPhone X, but this could also change by the time the phone's released.

We'll refer to the G6's successor as the G7 throughout the rest of this article, but just know that it'll be called something else at release time.

The phone should be powered by the Snapdragon 845

As great as the G6 was, one of the main reasons you might have been inclined to choose the Galaxy S8 over it was because of the processor it shipped with. The G6 launched with the Snapdragon 821, and while the 821 was a perfectly fast CPU, the S8 launched just a few weeks later with the much newer 835.

This year, however, we aren't expecting LG to make the same mistake. A report from The Investor last May said that LG would be partnering with Qualcomm to release the G7 with its Snapdragon 845 processor, and towards the end of December, a list was found showing that the G7 would launch with the 845 in February.

Qualcomm's Snapdragon 845 is a big improvement compared to the 835, offering speed improvements, better camera performance, faster cellular speed, and a lot more. If LG can get this inside the G7, that'll put it on a much more level playing field than what we saw with the G6 and S8 last year.

A curved OLED display with slim bezels

A render of the LG G7

LG was one of the first companies to market with a near bezel-less phone, but Samsung's curved glass and AMOLED technology outshined the G6's flat design and use of an LED panel. LG took a few notes from good old Sammy later in the year with the V30 and finally adopted curved sides and used its own OLED display tech. Curved screens and OLED displays are what we've sort of come to expect in flagship phones these days, and that's likely what we'll see with the G7.

The OLED technology used on the V30 wasn't the best we've ever seen, but it was still a huge improvement from the last time LG toyed with OLED on the G Flex 2 back in 2015. In addition to offering deeper blacks and more contrasty colors, OLED on the G7 would also allow it to use Google's Daydream VR platform (something the G6 didn't support).

Don't expect the phone to launch until April at the earliest 😕

Although we were originally expecting the G7 to be unveiled during MWC in February, that no longer appears to be the case. Right after CES 2018 wrapped up, LG's CEO and Vice Chairman reportedly issued an order to the company's mobile division to halt all development of the current G7 and start over from scratch.

Sources say that LG wasn't able to "find a strong selling point" for the current version of the phone, and as such, it's back to the drawing board they go. Scrapping a project like this so close to the expected announcement date isn't a good sign for the G7's future, and it means that Samsung will have even more time to eat up the market with the Galaxy S9

LG G6

Verizon Sprint T-Mobile AT&T B&H

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Updated 1/16/18: Added report about G7 project being canned.

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2 days ago

The Inpatient VR: Everything you need to know

0

You'll need to uncover the mystery, and survive long enough to remember why you're here.

The Inpatient is the newest game from developer SuperMassive Games, and is a prequel to the breakout hit on PlayStation 4 called Until Dawn. You're transported sixty years into the past to the Blackwood Sanatorium where something has gone rather awry. If you've played Until Dawn, then the name should sound pretty familiar and you may have an idea of whats coming.

You play as an Amnesiac patient in the Sanatorium, and while the doctor keeps telling you that you're there for your own good, that may not be the case. You'll need to uncover the mystery on the grounds, and discover your past if you want to survive everything this game has to offer. With every choice you make you'll see consequences and changes to the story, so you'll need to be on your toes.

See The Inpatient at Playstation

Blackwood Sanatorium

While there haven't been tons of details about what you're being thrown into with Inpatient, fans of Until Dawn will recognize both the time period and the location. That's because this is set up as the prequel of that game, and when we say things go wrong at Blackwood, we mean they really go wrong.

The game is set during the 1950s in a Sanatorium up on the side of the mountain. While you're going to start out with very few details, it's clear that you are a patient. Through the game you'll need to uncover your past and why you were sent to the Sanatorium, as well as figure out what the heck is going on within elsewhere.

The Until Dawn Franchise

Until Dawn was a game version of the horror movie everyone has seen, where a group of friends go out into the woods and have to survive the night when things inevitably go awry. During the course of that game, you run through what is left of Blackwood Sanatorium and see rumors of a terrible tragedy that took place way back in the 1950s.

The Inpatient takes place in that same Sanatorium during the period when things go very, very, wrong at the Sanatorium. This is definitely a horror game, and the original made me jump more than I usually admit. However if the gameplay is anything like it's predecessor it will require plenty of quick time actions, rather than making you constantly run jump or dodge.

Since this is a VR game, this is pretty awesome for folks who enjoy the horror genre but deal with nausea or motion sickness when they play in VR.

Your choices change everything

If you aren't already acquainted with Supermassive Games through their choose your own adventure style games Until Dawn and Hidden Agenda then you've been seriously been missing out. These games are all story heavy and the choices you make during gameplay directly affect what happens next in the game.

A bad choice can mean you'll skip part of a chapter, or run into some serious trouble. We know that The Inpatient is going to be using the same sort of system, and looks somewhat familiar to Until Dawn itself. You'll end up interacting with doctors, patients, and nurses, and the decisions that you make will directly change the gameplay.

This also means that there is a decent chance of being able to replay the game without getting the same outcome. It also means that things may not always end the same way, but we won't know that for sure until it releases.

Arriving soon

So with all of this, you've probably got one very important question. When is The Inpatient releasing?

While it was originally slated for release back in November of 2017, we'll finally be able to jump into it on January 23, 2018. That's right, just a few short days away. Since it's a PlayStation VR game your best bet is going to be downloading it from the source so you can dive right in.

See The Inpatient at Playstation

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2 days ago

Amazon Echo Spot now up for preorder in the UK

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Amazon's little round screen is expanding to the UK from late January.

If you ever wanted a little more screen with your Amazon Echo but the Echo Show is too big, then the Echo Spot might be just what you're looking for. The little round Echo contains the best of Alexa, added video features and is small enough to go anywhere in your home.

And very soon it'll be available to UK buyers, too.

Priced at £119.99 it's substantially cheaper than the Echo Show and you can get it in white or black. It's only on preorder right now, with shipping set to commence for January 24. If you're looking for more than one, add two to your Amazon basket for £199.98, saving £40.

More: Amazon Echo Spot review

See at Amazon

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2 days ago

How has your Project Fi experience been?

32

If you don't use a lot of mobile data, Fi is still the way to go.

It's hard to believe that 2018 will mark Project Fi's three year anniversary, but then again, I suppose time flies when you're saving heaps of cash each month on your monthly phone bill.

Project Fi was an interesting concept when it first launched with the Nexus 6 in 2015, but now that you can use phones like the Pixel 2 and Moto X4 with the service, it's a much more serious contender in the MVNO space than it ever was before.

Some of our forum users recently got into a discussion about their own experiences using Project Fi, and this is what they had to say.

*/
TraderGary 01-14-2018 11:30 PM “

I've had my Pixel 2 XL 128 since launch and we went with Google Fi at the same time. My wife, who couldn't care less about phones, is using my old Nexus 6 on Fi and is quite pleased with it. I've found Google Fi support to be superb and available 24/7. You shouldn't find any problems with support. We came from Sprint where our monthly cost for the two of us averaged about $125. Our Google...

Reply
*/
billchat 01-15-2018 05:46 AM “

Signed up to Project Fi a couple of months ago - no regrets. I use little, or no, cellular data, home on wifi most of the time. Verizon bill had been $52, this month's Fi bill id $26.45. I see no difference in the phone call quality. As far as Customer service, no issues for me.

Reply
*/
raqball 01-15-2018 05:13 PM “

I've been using Fi for a few years now and it's great! No complaints from me whatsoever! I am a light data user (I'm almost always on WiFi) and my bill is generally about $24-$27 a month.. I've been using the Pixel 2 (non XL) on Fi for about 3 or 4 months now and am happy with the performance.

Reply
*/
paradroid 01-15-2018 05:58 PM “

I am on Fi for 3 months now and my bill has been about $25 per month. It would have been lower but at a small drink fest at a buddies house I played one of my Pandora channels on his bluetooth speak for about 3 hours.. Did not think about asking for his wifi password and used almost a gig of data that day. I have not used Fi on any road trips yet.t. I was up north Michigan on T-Mobile...

Reply

Now we'd like to hear from you – If you're a Project Fi customer, how's your experience with it been?

Join the conversation in the forums!

Google Project Fi

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2 days ago

What CES tells us about VR and AR in 2018

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Generally speaking, CES is a decent lens to view trends for the year.

As fast as the tech industry seems to move, smartphones in particular, there are some general trends that can be easily observed at CES. Products are put on display from every corner of the world, and of the few that make it to release this year, only a few will be worth remembering. Still, CES is a solid way to see where the industry thinks people will spend their money, and that paints a decent picture of what we can expect for the year.

Here's what CES tells us about VR and AR in 2018.

Virtual Reality — ditching the tethers, keeping the games

Virtual Reality products at CES this year all had a similar theme: freedom from limitations. This was more easily observed from HTC with its wireless adapter for the Vive and Vive Pro, but the trend continued all over the place. Intel showed off its WiGig adapter for VR headsets, TPCast announced support for Windows Mixed Reality, and it quickly became clear wires were going to be on the way out by the end of the year.

But it's not just wires people want to ditch; phones are on the way out too. Lenovo's Mirage Solo and Oculus Go made big appearances at CES as options for totally standalone VR experiences that would previously have required a phone to act as the brains. Oculus has been teasing high-end standalone VR for over a year now, and Google's efforts to expand Daydream were made clear during its conference late last year. It's clear we're going to see quite a bit from these two companies as mobile VR moves beyond the phone.

The one thing that is absolutely remaining the same this year is the purpose of VR for most consumers — entertainment. These headsets are leaning heavier than ever on games and movies, including a renewed focus on VR180 capture from Google. While there are certainly practical applications for these headsets popping up every day, the dominant focus this year will continue to be fun.

Augmented Reality — eventually we'll have glasses worth wearing

If you were hoping this was the year augmented reality made its way to your glasses, I have some bad news for you. This year is going to be more about commercial applications for AR, like the glasses made in partnership with FLIR. In a kind of sad way, most augmented reality hardware manufacturers are only now starting to catch up to where Google was with Glass years ago.

This year all of the augmented reality most of us will experience is going to continue to live on our phones. Google will expand its ARCore experience to a ton more phones, and Apple will keep pushing ahead with ARKit. It'll be at least another year because we see glasses people actually want to wear, and likely another year after that before those glasses are available from a company most people are willing to give their money to.

Are you looking forward to anything specific in the VR or AR world this year? Share you thoughts in the comments!

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2 days ago

Ingenico's latest mobile POS reader runs Android out of the box

2

With the Moby M70, Ingenico is offering a mobile POS solution running Android 7.0 Nougat.

Ingenico is one of the largest integrated payment solution providers in the world. Even if you haven't heard the name previously, if you've used a credit card reader at a retail store recently, chances are it was made by either Ingenico or Verifone. Ingenico has been offering POS (point of sale) systems for over 35 years, and the company is now rolling out its next-gen mobile POS solution, dubbed the Moby M70.

The highlight of the Moby M70 is that it runs Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box. There have been mPOS solutions based on Android before, but where the Moby M70 differs is that it comes with full access to the Play Store. That's a huge deal as it gives developers the ability to distribute apps directly through the Play Store.

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3 days ago

Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus: Top 5 things you need to know

5
Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus

The 18:9 screen is new, but the rest of the phone should be familiar to anyone that has used a Redmi Note 4.

Xiaomi unveiled the Redmi 5 Plus last month, bringing the 18:9 form factor to the budget segment. The Chinese manufacturer isn't the first to roll out a budget phone with minimal bezels, but the company is once again showing that it can absolutely dominate when it comes to the value proposition. The base variant of the Redmi 5 Plus retails for the equivalent of $150, making it an incredible bargain when you consider the hardware on offer.

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3 days ago

Samsung Galaxy X foldable phone: Rumors, Images, Details, and More!

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Samsung foldable display

This will be the next big thing ... at some point.

The mobile industry has been tracking this rumored Samsung "Galaxy X" prototype phone for several months, gradually pushing back the supposed launch timeline for what's supposed to be a successor to the general "Galaxy S" line. But as waves of details about the upcoming Galaxy S9 and S9+ come in, we're still struggling for details on what this supposed Galaxy X with a foldable display will be. Reports with new details out of CES 2018 are at least giving us something to work with.

No, you didn't miss an announcement — Samsung didn't have anything public to say about the Galaxy X (if that is its real name) at CES. But as many companies do, Samsung took the opportunity of having so many high-up industry people together to show off what it's working on to partners. According to The Investor, this year that included the Galaxy X. The device in question has a 7.3-inch display that can fold in the middle — multiple versions were shown, with different capabilities such as folding both inwards and outwards.

Samsung Galaxy Note Edge and Galaxy S6 edge

The inward-folding model (protecting the screen when closed) is reportedly the design with the most traction at the moment. The outward-folding one, on the other hand, includes "more advanced next-generation technology," whatever that entails. The rest of the specs of the phone aren't yet known, and considering how far out we are from a potential release — reportedly in 2019 — those can and will change between now and then.

Samsung has of course been putting curved panels in production phones since the Galaxy Note Edge that eventually spawned into a phenomenon that has become a hallmark of Samsung's high-end devices. The company has been experimenting with bendable OLED panels for years, going so far as to show them off publicly as technology demonstrations. But the question is whether it could make devices with displays that could be actively bent or folded thousands of times as a regular part of use. The display would have to be very robust, but then you also have the issue of what covers the display panel — typical Gorilla Glass wouldn't do the trick.

Galaxy X render concept

LetsGoDigital has worked up renderings based on reports and patent filings that show the Galaxy X as a vertical-orientation phone, but with a hinge mechanism built into the sides of the phone. The phone would be rigid (and what looks to be extremely tall as well) when the display is extended and flat, but you could pull the top and bottom apart to expose the hinge to then bend while the screen follows suit.

Further renders show the phone while closed, which leaves a gap around the hinge portion not unlike a Microsoft Surface Book laptop. Large internal components would of course split between the top and bottom halves of the phone by the hinge.

Galaxy X render concept

Early rumors pointed to a Galaxy X with a hinge and two displays, but now we're talking about just one panel.

Early rumors of the Galaxy X pointed to some sort of announcement or teaser as early as late 2017, which obviously didn't happen. But those same rumors questioned whether the Galaxy X was truly a "bendable" phone with a single screen, or simply a hinged device with two distinct panels — like the ZTE Axon M, for example. It seems now that Samsung's going to attempt a full-on single bendable display. Other rumors also had indicated Samsung had a more tablet-shaped device with this bendable display technology in place, and that may still be on the table in different future devices, but in terms of the "Galaxy X" it looks to be a traditional vertical phone orientation.

Our next best bet for when we'll hear more about the Galaxy X will be MWC 2018, which kicks off at the end of February. That's where Samsung has already said it will unveil the Galaxy S9 and S9+, and perhaps that will come along with a tease or some sort of information on what's coming after that. Fingers crossed.

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3 days ago

Traveling will get easier with this $34 AmazonBasics Carry-On Backpack

0

Now you just need a destination.

Amazon has its AmazonBasics Carry-On Travel Backpack on sale for $34, down from a normal price of $50. This will make traveling a breeze since you'll never have to worry whether your bag fits the proper airline dimensions.

  • Carry-on travel backpack with internal, zippered laptop sleeve
  • Ultra-flexible and lightweight
  • Main compartment with zipper mesh space, optional midway shelf, and internal/external compression straps
  • Front pocket & front-top pocket for easy access to documents and travel liquids
  • Main upper packing compartment with organizer, expandable storage space, and key clip
  • Hide-away water bottle pocket & tuck-away ID pocket
  • Padded shoulder straps disconnect & store easily

This backpack received 4.3 out of 5 stars from 174 customer reviews. Make sure your liquids are TSA-approved with these silicone travel bottles.

See at Amazon

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3 days ago

Samsung Pay updated with a cleaner and more traditional UI

24

The bottom navigation bar strikes again.

During my short stint with the Galaxy S8 last year, one of my favorite features was easily Samsung Pay. Between MST support and reward points for making regular purchases, it's definitely my prefered mobile payment service of choice. The app in its current state is perfectly functional, but the latest update brings a new design that looks rather nice.

First spotted by our friends at Droid Life, updating Samsung Pay to build number 2.8.18 brings a new user interface that's cleaned up and makes a bit more sense from a usability point of view.

As you can see in the left screenshot below, the version of Samsung Pay we've had for a while has the main navigation buttons for the app smack dab in the middle below the rotating hero images. In the new version, these buttons have been moved down to a bottom navigation bar like we've been seeing in more and more Android apps as of late.

Samsung Pay's old UI (left) and the new one (right).

The Home page shows all of the latest promotions, your current status with Samsung Rewards, how many cards are in your wallet, and any recent transactions you've made. Along with this, there are separate pages for Wallet, Rewards, Store, and Deals.

What do you think about Samsung Pay's new look?

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