With the LG G6, LG made a statement. It no longer wants to be Gyro Gearloose of the smartphone industry, pushing bold innovation that no one outside its focus groups asked for. LG cleaned house, stripped away all the complexity, and introduced one of 2017's most understated – and all-around pleasant – premium phones. It was a solid strategy, even though displays of clever engineering, such as the LG G5's removable battery, will be missed by those able to appreciate them.
According to a "trusted source" as cited by the ever diligent XDA Developers, the same revision awaits the LG V30 – a premium smartphone, primed as an alternative to the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 and, reportedly, scheduled for a late August announcement.
THE SECONDARY SCREEN IS ONLY "FORMALLY" GOING AWAYThe secondary display was a refreshing experiment that certainly stood out in the ocean of lookalike phones, but it didn't catch on either with consumers or mobile vendors. Thus, it makes sense that LG might abolish it in the V30, as XDA's source claims. However, this won't necessarily be the end to the concept of conveniently pulling certain shortcuts and notifications to a designated space above the main display.
Rather than going through the trouble of running two separate displays, LG might – for the first time in recent history – introduce an OLED display, likely in the same 18:9 screen ratio as the LG G6. Having a tall panel like this, it won't be a problem to basically "paste" the LG V20's secondary display above the rest of the content shown on screen – with the option of users disabling it if they want.
Mind you, while the source is certain about LG removing the secondary panel and switching to OLED, the rest is speculative information that may or may not pan out. In any case, are you going to miss the second screen? Do you think LG should go back to its wayward and unorthodox smartphone design style? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
On January 9th, 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the Apple iPhone. And as exciting as that was for many, it also meant waiting nearly half a year for the phone to be released. The launch date of June 29th was circled on many a calendar, and in the days leading up to the actual launch, it seemed as though the iPhone was being mentioned everywhere. One example of this, which you will find in the video slideshow below, is an amusing clip put together by David Pogue, who now writes about tech for Yahoo.
Exactly 10-years ago tomorrow, the New York Times released a video showing how hard it was for its tech scribe (Pogue) to keep faithful to the non-disclosure agreement Apple had him sign in exchange for a review unit of the Apple iPhone. Apple had already run some ads for the phone (we included one in the video slideshow for your viewing pleasure) and the hype machine was on full throttle ("I've seen the commercials and it looks really cool," says a young woman waiting in a long line on launch day).
A decade ago, the whole world was just four days away from being changed forever by a smartphone. Television networks covered the impending launch and analysts spoke breathlessly about the device and how many units it might sell. Even so, most people probably could not see what the future would hold, not just for the iPhone or for Apple, but for smartphones in general. We now have apps and app stores, phones that can be submerged and live on to tell the tale and handsets that last a full day without requiring a charge.
People now shop, make payments, deposit checks, lower their thermostat, get turn-by-turn directions to anywhere, and watch live television on their phone. And most handsets feature a virtual personal assistant to help make reservations, set alarms and more. You can't go anywhere without seeing a large number of people with their heads down, looking at the screen on their handset as they navigate their surroundings. All of this was still in the future a decade ago.
Keep in mind that the OG iPhone did have some flaws. It ran on AT&T's slow as molasses EDGE network, it did not support MMS or stereo Bluetooth. But not too many knew, or cared about these things which were all eventually taken care of in future versions of the phone.
June 25th, 2007 was a Monday, the start of a new work week that would end with the forces in motion that would soon change the world. Relive those days by clicking on the video slideshow below.
During the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump called on Apple to move production of its most popular product, the Apple iPhone, to the U.S. Trump's goal was to create more jobs for Americans and to stop exporting openings overseas. But Trump didn't take some things into consideration. Moving production from low wage countries to higher wage countries means that the cost of producing the iPhone will rise. And in order to maintain the same profit margin, iPhone prices will also rise making the device less affordable for Americans.
Back in November, a little over a week after the election, Apple said that it would consider moving some iPhone production to the U.S. Talks were held with the major contract manufacturers and there was some discussion about building a U.S. based supply chain. Today, Foxconn, the leading iPhone assembler, said that it is considering building a facility in Wisconsin. Besides the Dairy State, Michigan is also said to be in the running to host the factory.
Yesterday, President Trump visited Milwaukee and mentioned that an unnamed company was negotiating with the state to build a factory. Trump said that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker might get "a very happy surprise very soon." Foxconn assembles smartphones and tablets for Apple, BlackBerry, Sony and other brands. In China, it employs over 1 million people. Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council, says that a skilled workforce was probably one of the things that attracted Foxconn to the state.
When Apple spoke with Foxconn and Pegatron back in November about the possibility of building iPhone models in the U.S., both firms said that their main concern was creating a supply chain infrastructure similar to what was available for the manufacturers in China. Apparently the numerous studies that were created show that Wisconsin has what it takes to build such a supply chain for Foxconn.
Sony already announced no less than five new smartphones this year: Xperia XZ Premium, XperiaXZs, Xperia XA1, Xperia XA1 Ultra, and Xperia L1. But the company seemingly has at least three more handsets to introduce before the end of 2017, and one of them is expected to be a new Xperia Compact.
According to Georgian website Review.ge, Sony plans to announce the following phones at IFA 2017 (September 1 - September 7): Xperia XZ1, XperiaXZ1 Compact, and Xperia X1.
It's said that both the Xperia XZ1 and Xperia XZ1 Compact will be high-end devices, featuring Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processors and 4 GB of RAM - just like the already announced Xperia XZ Premium. However, the two new handsets should differ in size: the Xperia XZ1 reportedly offers a 5.2-inch 1080p display and a 3000 mAh battery, while the Xperia XZ1 Compact comes with a 4.6-inch 720p screen and a 2800 mAh battery. If these details are accurate, the XZ1 Compact will become Sony's most powerful 4.6-inch smartphone ever.
To be fair, it kind of makes sense for a new Sony-made compact handset to be revealed at IFA 2017 in September, as this would arrive one year after the Xperia X Compact (pictured in this article). Also of note is that two other previous compact phones - Xperia Z5Compact and Xperia Z3 Compact - were also announced during IFA events.
According to a report published in today's Wall Street Journal, Bixby has not been a good student when it comes to learning the English language. Apparently, Samsung's AI personal assistant is failing grammar and is also having problems with syntax. This means that Bixby is having difficulties creating sentences in English. The problem, as far as Samsung is concerned, is that competing assistants like Google Assistant and Siri have no problem turning out a snappy sentence in English when called on to do so.
The Journal's report says that it won't be before late June at the earliest before Bixby is launched in the U.S., a month later than the May launch that Sammy was originally aiming for. The delay in launching Bixby could affect sales of the recently released Samsung Galaxy S8 and Samsung Galaxy S8+ in the U.S., even though market research firm Ovum says that only 9% of smartphone users access their personal assistant on a regular basis. And only 50% of consumers have an interest in digital assistants like Bixby, Siri, Cortana and Google Assistant.
Still, the Samsung Galaxy S8 is on its way to topping the sales generated last year by the Samsung Galaxy S7. The latter became the highest grossing smartphone in Samsung's history. The company obviously does not want a problem with Bixby to prevent a new sales record from being set.
Ovum says that there are 3.5 billion active devices that have a native AI assistant on board. By 2021, the company expects that figure to reach 7.5 billion active devices. That would be more than the entire world population for that year, based on computations by the U.S. Census Bureau. Google Assistant is projected to have a leading 23% market share of the market for AI assistants by 2021, followed by Bixby's 15%. Siri will be third with 13%, followed by Alexa's 4%. But this is all a pipe dream for Bixby unless Samsung straightens out the current problem the personal AI assistant is having with the English language.
A hot new report from The Bellsuggests that Cupertino and Samsung have recently signed a deal for the shipment of more than 180 million OLED panels, which will be used for the creation of Apple's 2018 flagship, tentatively called the iPhone 9. This is more than twice the amount which Sammie's display division has allegedly agreed to produce for 2017, in which Tim Cook & Co. are said to unveil at least one OLED-powered iPhone model.
The Xperia XZ Premium is the Sony's first smartphone equipped with a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, the same CPU that's inside Samsung's flagships, the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.
However, unlike Samsung's smartphone, the Xperia XZ Premium is not yet available for purchase, though, it can be pre-ordered in many countries across the globe. As we reported a few days ago, Sony Xperia XZ Premium is likely to make its debut on the market at the end of May or early June.
If you've been wondering how powerful the Xperia XZ Premium really is in comparison with other Snapdragon 835-powered smartphones, you're in luck since Sony's flagship has just popped up at Geekbench.
Apparently, someone tested the Xperia XZ Premium in Geekbench, and the results seem promising enough. We don't know whether or not it was a retail unit that got tested or a sample device.
Although it did not manage to surpass the results achieved by the Galaxy S8 and S8+, Sony's flagship is quite powerful. The smartphone scored 1943 points in single core and 5824 points in the multi core tests.
In comparison, Samsung Galaxy S8 scored 2008 points in single core and 6575 points in multi core tests, while the Galaxy S8+ achieved 2006 points and 6708 points, respectively.
At first glance, the difference is almost negligible when it comes to single core tests, but the multi core tests show the Xperia XZ Premium is a bit behind Samsung's flagships. Still, we don't want to jump to conclusions just yet, at least not before we test a retail unit.
Apple is reportedly planning to discontinue the iPad mini, its 7.9-inch tablet that's been available since 2012. Of course, the tablet is now at its fourth iteration - iPad mini 4 - but this hasn't been properly updated since its original launch in 2015.
According to BGR, a "source close to Apple" mentioned that the iPad mini is being phased out because there's "fierce cannibalism" of Apple's own products, and sales numbers seemingly provide a "very clear" indication of the tablet's recent lack of popularity.
Size-wise, the iPad mini stands between the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus and the 9.7-inch iPad (including the Pro version). Unlike in 2012, 2013, or a large part of 2014, when there were no 5.5-inch iPhones on the market, the iPad mini is now in a rather awkward position, and it looks like consumers are simply less interested in mini tablets (especially when they're not exactly cheap).
Earlier this year, Apple changed its iPad mini 4 offering, so it's currently selling only a 128 GB version of the slate, and you can choose to get it in Wi-Fi-only ($399), or Wi-Fi + LTE ($529) flavors.
For now, there's no word on exactly when Apple will stop selling the iPad mini 4. Also, it's not clear if the company already stopped producing the device or not. But maybe we'll get an official statement on this sometime soon.
The highly-anticipated iPhone 8, edge-to-edge OLED screen and all, is apparently going to throw Apple fans in an upgrade "super cycle," or so think the analysts, whose predictions made investors take notice, and push Apple's stock past the $800 billion market cap mark yesterday after the quarterly resultswere announced. To put things into perspective, that's the first time in the history of the US stock market that a company has reached this exorbitant market capitalization.
An affordable duo of Huawei-branded Android tablets was silently introduced in Europe last week, the MediaPad T3 slates. They are now available for purchase for prices starting at €129, a good deal for those looking for their first Android tablet.
However, the MediaPad T3 tablets won't be the only ones to make their debut on the market this year, as Huawei is readying yet another Android slate.
Not quite the sequel to the MediaPad M3, a Lite version of the tablet recently made a stop at Wi-Fi Alliance where it was granted certification by the regulatory commission.
Huawei MediaPad M3 Lite is a mid-range tablet that runs Android 7.0 Nougat operating system. It sports a large 10-inch display and packs 3GB RAM, along with 32GB expandable storage.
The Chinese company is expected to launch two variations of the tablet, which will sell for different prices. The Wi-Fi only model will cost only €329 outright, whereas the LTE-enabled variant will be available for purchase for €379.
Now, the only thing that remains to be determined is when exactly Huawei will unleash the Lite version of the MediaPad M3 on the market.
Analysts: HTC cut prices because of 'bleak prospects' with carriers, may refocus on phones like Pixel
Venmo is a free digital wallet that allows users to wire funds into or out of their Venmo account, bank account or debit card. Today, word surfaced about meetings that Apple has held with firms in this industry about starting up its own money transfer system. In other words, Apple is looking to build a Venmo competitor that would allow iPhone owners to transfer funds to and from others' iPhone handsets.
Those in the know say that Apple could officially unveil this new payment service some time later this year, allowing Apple to compete with others in the industry such as Pay Pal, Square Cash and Chase's Quick Pay. The latter processed a leading $28 billion last year while Venmo had a hand in $17.6 billion worth of financial maneuvers; Venmo's annual payment volume is doubling each year. Subscribers to these so-called peer-to-peer services use them to split the tip on a dinner, or to come up with their share of next month's rent.
Most financial companies that offer such a service use them as a loss leader. This means that huge financial supermarkets typically lose money offering such small sum wireless money transfers. But they are willing to do that in order to get consumers hooked on their firm, hoping that new subscribers end up using other profitable services offered by the banking company. Need a loan, a credit card or a mortgage? If you already have a money transfer arrangement with a financial firm, you're more likely to use that company for a loan that is highly profitable to the lender. Apple, however, doesn't think in terms of loss leaders. If it does make a go at starting a peer-to-peer wireless financial service, it would do so with the intent of turning a profit on the business.
Keep in mind that Apple has been rumored to be setting up such a P2P (peer-to-peer) money transferring system before. Back in 2015, the Wall Street Journal said that Apple was about to start such a service in 2016, which would have been folded into Apple Pay. The inclusion of Apple Pay in the new service remains a strong possibility. However, the new rumor does include talk about a new Visa card that would be offered by Apple, but would run through Visa's debit card system. It would work with the new P2P service by allowing those wired funds from an iPhone user to have access to that money instantly, instead of waiting for the money to hit the user's bank account. This is something that PayPal currently does.
Bank executives are not happy about Apple working with Visa, and plan on letting Visa know that at an annual summit that is set to be held next week.
The Sony Concept team announced that it's preparing an Android 7.1.2 concept update for the Xperia X smartphone. Concept releases are a way to get the latest pure Android version running on your Xperia phoneif you would like that in place of the official Sony firmware, which is a reasonably clean build of Android as well.
The Android 7.1.2 update will bring Bluetooth connectivity improvements, battery usage alerts, and various other fixes. Notably, this Android build gave Google Pixel and some Nexus phones issues with their fingerprint sensors. The changes Google applied to this part won't be included in the Xperia X Concept Update.
A drawback to the update is that the setup wizard for the initial setup (or after performing 'factory reset' and 'add user' functions) after powering the phone will only work with Wi-Fi. It's not very likely you will be impacted by this in any major way.
The concept update is ready for release and is going to be published soon. The Xperia X Concept program is only available to Sony's European users for some reason.