Samsung Galaxy S8′s thin bezels revealed in new image

Samsung plans on officially unveiling its newest flagship, the Galaxy S8, on March 29. For those who are impatiently waiting for that big reveal, a new leak may hold you over for a bit longer.

Thanks to serial leaker Evan Blass (@evleaks), we’ve got another look at the Galaxy S8. This time it’s a very clear press render, showing the front of the upcoming handset. We can see the thin top and bottom bezels, and the curved glass along the right and left edges. The date on the phone’s display shows March 29, a wink to the big reveal date.

Aside from the familiar front-facing camera above the display, we can also see an iris scanner, which made its debut with the now-defunct Galaxy Note 7. We can also see that there are indeed no capacitive buttons below the display, as Samsung prepares to launch the Galaxy S8 with onscreen navigation options.

We also get to see the hardware buttons along both edges. The right edge houses the familiar power button, and the left edge has the long volume rocker. Below the volume keys is a third hardware button which is rumored to be the dedicated hardware key to launch “Bixby,” Samsung’s digital personal assistant. The artificial intelligence built into the Galaxy S8 is said to be a major focal point for Samsung moving forward, so having a dedicated hardware button to help sell it certainly seems to be in the company’s wheelhouse.

Just this week we saw the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8+ out in the wild, so this clear press render just reaffirms what we’re already expecting: flagship smartphones with remarkably thin bezels, with one model featuring a 5.8-inch display and another boasting a larger 6.2-inch screen.

Are you eagerly anticipating the arrival of the Galaxy S8?



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Google Keep integrated into Google Docs

Google Keep is a great tool to take notes, and now you’ll be able to use those notes seamlessly in Google Docs. Google has integrated Keep into the G Suite.

You can now open a side panel with the Keep app right by your document and even drag notes into your document, copying the data while retaining formatting. You’ll also be able to add notes to Keep from your document.

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This is a very useful feature for those who use Google Docs a lot. The feature is available today, though such features sometimes take a few days to roll out to everyone. Let us know when you get it!



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YouTube introduces live TV subscription service

Though plenty of people are cutting the cord and getting rid of their cable TV subscriptions, many others keep them despite the hassle and limitations. Contracts, cable box rentals, extra charge for DVRs, and being limited to one TV is a big hassle. YouTube aims to change that.

YouTube has announced YouTube TV, a live TV subscription service that works much like the regular video streaming service. For $35 a month, you’ll get access to ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, ESPN, regional sports networks and many other cable networks (with more available if you pay extra). Six YouTube accounts will have access to this service with three consecutive streams at a time. The DVR is in the cloud and travels with you. There are no DVR storage limits, just a nine-month time limit.

Best of all, you’ll be able to watch TV on any of your Android and iOS devices. You can also stream to any cast-enabled device like the Chomecast.

Unfortunately, there are some big downsides. A lot of popular channels are missing, though they may be added down the line. This is only the beginning. Also, it would have been nice to pick channels individually and lower the price if you only watch a few channels. Bundles are a pain for some people.

If you’d like to sign up for updates on market availability, head to this link and sign up. The service is launching in major US markets soon. Let us know what you think and if you’ll be signing up!



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Google has no plans to build another Pixel laptop

Though we now know the Pixel line to be Google’s high-end smartphones built by HTC, it started as a premium, in-house Chromebook. In fact, multiple Pixel products were built by Google, rather than a third-party like Nexus devices were.

Unfortunately, Google will not be building another Pixel laptop. Google’s senior vice president for hardware Rick Osterloh says that this is the end of the Chromebook Pixel line, at least for now, and that the current models are sold out and are no longer in production.

The future of Chrome OS is still strong as other manufacturers continue building the laptops. Google isn’t giving up on the OS. And the Pixel name isn’t going anywhere with the success of the recently released smartphones. Unfortunately, the ultra-premium Chromebook line is gone.



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Google Play Store being updated with developer-friendly tweaks

Google is improving the Play Store for Android, but rather than focus on the users this time around, the company is focusing on developers. It introduced some tweaks to help developers with apps, and games in particular, on the Play Store.

The first tweak is a change to the algorithm that promotes games. Rather than basing popularity strictly on installs, it will now take user engagement into account. This will push less popular apps that are getting a lot of use by dedicated fans further up in popularity and rankings.

Google is also allowing for strikethrough sales. Developers can run sales with the original price listed, which Google has noticed causes installs to go up 3x-20x.

Lastly, Google will be creating editorial pages later this month. These editorial pages will be themed and hand picked rather than using any algorithms.

If you’re a developer, hit the source link for more info on the new features. If you’re a regular user, keep an eye out for Google’s editorial pages this month!



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Xiaomi announces the Mi 5c with its first in-house chipset, the Surge S1

Xiaomi has been working on its own mobile chipset for just over two years, but that wait is finally over.

Xiaomi today announced the Mi 5c, which features the Surge S1 chipset under the hood. This is the company’s first in-house system-on-a-chip, and, of the many benefits Xiaomi expects, one of those is being able to send out updates for the Mi 5c much faster than previous devices.

The Surge S1 is an octa-core processor, featuring four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 2.2GHz and four A53 cores clocked at 1.4GHz. It also boasts a 32-bit high-performance DSP for better noise cancellation and voice processing. Xiaomi also says that its Surge S1 processor is 2 times faster than the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625.

As for the Mi 5c itself, it’s a mid-range handset with a 5.15-inch full HD display, the Surge S1 processor, 3GB of RAM, and 64GB of built-in storage. The battery is measured in at 2860mAh, and around back there’s a 12-megapixel camera. Xiaomi also notes the Mi 5c will be updated to Android 7.1 Nougat sometime in March.

What do you think of Xiaomi’s Mi 5c?

Sources: Xiaomi (1), (2)



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Google I/O 2017 ticket confirmations now being sent out

Google I/O 2017 will happen in May, so to make sure that the attendees have plenty of time to prepare, ticket confirmations are now being sent out.

As is par for the course with I/O, tickets are determined by way of a raffle. Those interested in attending the event informed Google that they want to go, and then Google chose the lucky ones that will get to attend. As noted by Android Police, Google is now informing those winners that they’ve been selected.

Google IO 2017 ticket confirm

Emails are now being distributed to the winners, letting them know that their card on file will be charged the $1,150 for the ticket and giving them general ticket information.

The report indicates that if a confirmed attendee decides they don’t want to go, they can contact Google to make arrangements for their payment to be refunded and their ticket rescinded.

Google I/O will take place between May 17-19 at the Shoreline Ampitheatre in Mountain View, California.



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Three new BlackBerry phones may launch in 2017

TCL recently introduced the BlackBerry KEYone, a new Android-based smartphone that boasts a physical keyboard. Now TCL CEO Nicolas Zibell has confirmed that his company plans on launching at least three new BlackBerry smartphones this year. These handsets will run Android out of the box, but otherwise the details of these upcoming devices remains a mystery.

One source speaking with CNET did say that TCL plans on launching a full-touch device, similar to the DTEK60, but that TCL will drop the DTEK brand. So whatever TCL has planned for later this year, it sounds like they are shaking things up at least a little bit.

Interestingly enough, Zibell also noted that the company could bring back the Palm brand, which it acquired back in 2015. LG owns webOS, though, so the likelihood that TCL resurrects Palm with Android on board seems high.

Are you happy to see BlackBerry, and perhaps eventually Palm, back in the spotlight?



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Google Home arrives in the UK this spring

Google Home, the smart speaker, launched in the United States back on November 4. Since then, the international rollout for Home has been eagerly anticipated by those wanting to put the device in their living space. For those in the United Kingdom, the wait is almost over.

Early this morning, Rory Cellan-Jones of the BBC tweeted out that Google SVP of Hardware Rick Osterloh has confirmed that Home will arrive in the United Kingdom in the second quarter of this year.

The tweet added that the AI skills and “vast data” of Home would give it an advantage over Amazon’s Echo. The Echo has been available in the UK since September of last year, so it certainly has had plenty of time to gestate in the region.

If you’re in the US, do you own a Google Home? How do you like it? For those in the UK, are you eagerly awaiting the Home’s arrival?



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Xiaomi unveils In-house Surge S1 SoC with Mali T860 GPU, announces Mi 5C & Redmi 4X Smartphones

Xiaomi has officially announced its in-house Pinecone processor by unveiling the first-gen Surge S1 SoC and also announced Mi 5C which will be the first ever smartphone to use the PineCone processor along with Redmi 4X. Earlier we have seen Xiaomi collaborating with Leadcore to launch the affordable Redmi 2A with LC1860 SoC. The Surge S1 SoC comes with eight Cortex-A53 cores where four cores clock at 2.2 GHz and another run at 1.4 GHz. Moreover, it is built on TSMC’s 28nm HPC (high-performance computing) process.

Moreover, the device packs with Mali-T860 GPU and also supports HD calls on VoLTE. It also includes 14-bit dual Image Signal Processors will enhance the image processor capabilities, and it supports single frame HDR with improved dynamic range. The Surge S1 comes with the TEE architecture that gives better security with safety regulations. Nothing much about the PineCOne processor is mentioned yet, but it is expected to be made available very soon.

Xiaomi Mi 5C

Coming to the specifications of the Xiaomi Mi 5C, the device comes with 5.15-inch (1920×1080 pixels) Full HD curved glass display. To power the device, there is the 2.2GHz Xiaomi Surge S1 64-bit Octa-Core processor with quad-core Mali-T860 GPU and 3GB of RAM. The device comes with 64GB of onboard memory which can be extended via microSD card. The device comes with Android 7.1 Nougat operating system out of the box with MIUI 8 on top.

There is a 12MP rear-facing camera with LED flash, 6P lens 27-nm wide angle lens which will be accompanied with 8MP selfie camera. There is a fingerprint sensor along with Infrared sensor and supports 4G VoLTE connectivity. There is a 2860mAh battery built-in battery with fast charging technology. The device will be available in Rose Gold, Gold and Black color options and is priced at 1499 (approx Rs. 14560) Yuan and will go on sale from 3rd March in China.

Xiaomi Redmi 4X

The Xiaomi Redmi 4X comes with powered with 1.4GHz Octa-Core Snapdragon 435 processor coupled with Adreno 505 GPU and 2GB / 3GB RAM. It comes with 5-inch (1280 x 720 pixels) HD 2.5 D curved glass display and will come with Android operating system with MIUI 8 on top. Even this device comes with a fingerprint sensor and also an Infrared sensor. There is a 4100 mAh battery on the back and comes in 16GB / 32Gb storage options which can be further extended up to 128GB via microSD card slot.

Coming to the camera options, there is a 13MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture, 5P lens, PDAF, LED Flash, which will be accompanied with a 5MP selfie camera with f/2.2 aperture. The device comes with connectivity options like 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS and other sensors that are required for automation of the device. The Redmi 4X will come in Cherry Pink, Champagne Gold and Mate Black color options. The 2GB variant is priced at 600 Yuan (Approx Rs. 6790) and the 3GB RAM variant is priced at 899 Yuan (approx Rs. 8790).



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Buy Samsung Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge and get $100 gift card along with freebies

At the ongoing MWC 2017 the Galaxy S7 Edge was announced as the GSMA smartphone of the year, now if you have the plan of purchasing a Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge in the U.S then here is the perfect deal. Best Buy is offering a $100 gift card with every purchase and thats not the end, it is also providing a free Samsung Fast Charge wireless charger worth $59.99 along with a 256GB memory card worth $249.99. Isn’t this a good deal?

Moreover, to avail this deal, the purchase of the phone should be activated on Verizon Device payment, Sprint or AT&T Next 24 month installment plan. Sadly the promo is not available on 2-year activation, and nothing is mention when the deal will end, so you need to hurry up before the deal comes to a close.

The Galaxy S7 Edge comes with a larger 5.5-inch Quad HD display with an AMOLED screen like the S7. There is a 3600mAH battery on the rear of the device which is more than the S7 that has 3000mAH battery. Under the hood would be the Exynos 8890 or Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 processor, they both are Quad-core 64-bit chipsets accompanied with 4GB of RAM and options for 32GB and 64GB internal storage which can be further extended up to a maximum of 200GB via microSD card.

On the camera front, both the devices come with same sensors, sporting a 12MP Dual Pixel camera on the rear while there will be a 5MP camera on the front. It will come with many features that are helpful for editing the images and also comes with the always-on display which will make it easy to see all the notifications. These devices were launched last year, and now the next variant Galaxy S8 which will be the current flagship model of the South Korean giant has been showcased at ongoing MWC.

Source



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Lenovo’s new Tab 4 series tablets feature front-facing speakers, Nougat

Following Samsung’s announcement of a new Android tablet, Lenovo today revealed a quartet of its own new Android slates.

The Lenovo Tab 4 series is now official with four different models. The Tab 4 8 and Tab 4 10 are the more affordable of the set, and they share a largely similar spec list. Both tablets include Snapdragon 425 processor, 2GB of RAM, 5-megapixel rear and 2-megapixel front cameras, two front-facing speakers, 16GB of storage, and a microSD slot for adding more storage.

lenovotab410aam

The two big differences between these two devices are their screen sizes and battery sizes. The Tab 4 8 features an 8-inch 1280×800 display and 4850mAh battery, while the Tab 4 10 is packing a 10.1-inch 1280×800 screen and 7000mAh battery.

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The Tab 4 8 Plus and Tab 4 10 Plus are higher-end versions of those devices. Both Plus models include Snapdragon 625 processors, 4GB of RAM, 8-megapixel rear and 5-megapixel front cameras, dual front-facing speakers, and fingerprint readers. They also come with 64GB of built-in storage and a microSD slot if you need more storage on top of that.

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As with the non-Plus Tab 4 tablets, the differences between the Plus tablets are their screen and battery sizes. The Tab 4 8 Plus has an 8-inch 1920×1200 screen and 4850mAh battery, while the Tab 4 10 Plus includes a 10.1-inch 1920×1200 display and 7000mAh battery.

On the software side, all four tablets come equipped with Android 7.0 Nougat. Lenovo also touts that it’s got some of its own special features baked in, including multi-user support.

All four Tab 4 series tablets will begin rolling out globally in May. Pricing will start at €169 ($179 USD) for the Tab 4 8 and go up to €179 ($190 USD) for the Tab 4 10, €259 ($274 USD) for the Tab 4 8 Plus, and €299 ($316 USD) for the Tab 4 10 Plus.

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Rounding out today’s announcements are optional add-ons for the Tab 4 series tablets. Lenovo is prepping a Kid’s Pack that’ll include a shock-resistant bumper for your tablet, a blue-light filter, and some stickers for your device. Lenovo also offers a Kid’s Account on the software side along with parental controls and curated kid-friendly content.

For grown-ups, Lenovo will offer a Productivity Pack that’ll include a Bluetooth keyboard. This keyboard can also work as a stand and a protective sleeve.



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Oppo shows off slim 5x zoom camera setup

A second camera sensor for optical zoom isn’t anything new in smartphones, but usually it’s limited to 2x zoom. LG has been using a zoom sensor for a while, and the iPhone 7 Plus has a second 2x zoom sensor as well.

Oppo has taken it a step further and announced a new 5x optical zoom setup. It’s not currently being used in any device, but it likely will be in the future.

To reduce bulk, Oppo mounted the sensor sideways and used optics to take a photo at a 90 degree angle. This allows for the use of a series of lenses without adding thickness.

While 2x zoom isn’t very useful, 5x zoom definitely could be. Oppo’s implementation is definitely unique and interesting and we can’t wait to see it in a smartphone. It should be in a flagship this year!



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Facebook Video app now available on Samsung Smart TV

Facebook announced that its new video app will be coming to TVs and streaming boxes a few weeks ago, and it’s holding true to that promise. You can now download the app to your Samsung Smart TV if it was made in 2015, 2016, or 2017.

The app focuses on showing you videos that were posted by your friends as well as top videos on the site. Facebook is placing more of a focus on video, so pushing an app dedicated to video is a strong first step.

If you’re interested, check it out on your Samsung Smart TV today. It’s still coming to other platforms like the Apple TV in the future. Now it’s up to you to decide whether Facebook has any good, unique content to offer you.



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Cricket to start throttling unlimited data customers after 22GB

Cricket’s unlimited data plan has been truly unlimited. Though it’s limited to 8Mbps speeds, you still get as much data as you can use. Unfortunately, this is about to change.

Cricket has announced that it will be throttling unlimited data users after 22GB of data usage if the network is congested. This doesn’t mean that you’ll lose high speed data after 22GB, but you may be throttled depending on the network use around you. This practice will begin April 2.

Cricket is also releasing a new feature called Stream More at the same time, which will basically downgrade all streaming video to 480p. So you can “stream more” by streaming lower quality video. This is a good feature for many, but Cricket is making it opt-out rather than opt-in. It will be automatically enabled for everyone.

Looking ahead, the carrier announced that both WiFi calling and Voice over LTE will be coming later this year.

These are some big changes that are sure to upset some Cricket customers. Let us know what you think in the comments!



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Mozilla acquires article-saving app Pocket

Mozilla wants a bigger stake in the mobile space, and one way to do that is to acquire a service that has more than 10 million users across the globe.

Mozilla has officially announced that it has acquired the read-it-later service known as Pocket. The app, which allows users to save articles from around the internet to read later, has over 10 million monthly users and is one of the more popular article-saving apps out there.

Mozilla has also confirmed that the 25-person Pocket team will stay together, and that they will continue to do their work as a separate entity from Mozilla, but still be under the company’s umbrella moving forward. Mozilla’s technically folding Pocket into its open source project.

Pocket was originally founded back in 2007, when it was known simply as Read It Later.

Do you use Pocket or do you prefer another read-it-later service?



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ZTE Blade V8 Mini and ZTE Blade V8 Lite announced at MWC 2017

After announcing the flagship Blade V8 Pro, ZTE is back to unveil a pair of mid-rangers for the younger generations at this year’s Mobile World Congress.

First up, the Blade V8 Mini. This handset offers a 5-inch HD display, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor under the hood, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of built-in storage. There’s a microSD card slot for expandable storage, a fingerprint reader on the back, and a non-removable 2800mAh battery. It will run Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box.

On the back, ZTE included a dual camera setup with one 13-megapixel shooter and a 2-megapixel camera for capturing with bokeh-style photos. ZTE says owners will be able to take 3D photographs, too, by combining two images taken with each camera. The Blade V8 Mini also features support for HDR photos, manual shooting modes. The front-facing 5-megapixel camera features a moonlight flash feature.

When the Blade V8 Mini launches later this year, it will be available in Europe and some Asia Pacific regions. ZTE didn’t reveal how much it would cost.

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The other new addition is the Blade V8 Lite, which features a 5-inch FHD display and an 8-megapixel camera on the back. There’s a MediaTek MTK6750 processor inside, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of built-in storage that supports a microSD card. The 2500mAh battery is non-removable, it’s running Android 7.0 Nougat, and there’s a 5-megapixel front-facing camera above the display.

The Blade V8 Lite will launch in Italy, Germany, and Spain at some point in the near future, and according to ZTE, it will be aggressively priced. However, the company didn’t divulge how much it would actually be just yet.

Based on specs and design aesthetics, are these the devices to win over the younger generation?



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LG G6 to launch in South Korea on March 10, LG Pay arrives in June

LG officially announced the G6, its newest flagship yesterday, but at the time, it didn’t confirm a launch date or pricing. LG’s mobile chief, Cho Juno, has now confirmed a few key points.

The first is that the G6 will launch in South Korea on March 10. That lines up with a previous rumor, so it’s possible that the flagship handset will launch in the United States in early April. However, Juno did not confirm any launch news for the U.S. market just yet.

Additionally, Juno did mention that the Korean pricing for the G6 could be set around 899,800 won, which is about $795 USD. Nothing official just yet, but if the G6 is indeed priced there, it wouldn’t be too surprising.

Juno also mentioned LG Pay, the company’s efforts in the mobile payment space. While LG Pay was announced awhile ago, LG gone quiet on that front ever since. Juno says the company plans to launch LG Pay in June of this year, but didn’t go into any details on how that might work, where the service will be available at launch, or what type of support it will have out of the gate.

Finally, logos. According to Juno, the consumers in the United States actually like seeing the logo on the front, so that’s partly why the company decided to stick it just below the display, on that small bezel. However, he also noted that it’s “just a matter of time” before the company removes it altogether on the front, as screens continue to grow in size (and, presumably, bezels continue to shrink).

Are you planning on buying the LG G6 when it arrives?



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Top 5 most popular Android apps from last week: Cipher Chat, BatON

Every week we cover new Android apps with Fresh Meat on Wednesday, followed by Android Gaming on Thursday and Top 10 App Updates on Friday. When Monday rolls around, we look back to see which apps were the most appealing to our audience. Read on for the five most popular Android apps from last week. These apps are ones that are most likely new and haven’t appeared in the top five list more than three times.

1. YouTube Go

YouTube Go

App info: Find a world of videos: songs, movies, TV shows, comedy, fashion, cooking, how-to’s and many, many more! Download and watch your favorite videos. Instantly share videos – no data used to transfer. Search for any video and discover new videos. Only 8.5MB app size.

 

2. Island Delta

Island Delta

App info: Island Delta is an exciting action filled adventure game where you wield a powerful anti-gravity weapon to defeat dangerous enemies, solve puzzles and overcome hazardous traps. Explore this retro-futuristic world with heroes, Zoe and Baxter, as you set out on a daring rescue mission and face the evil Doctor Gunderson and his mechanical minions.

 

3. Email – Fast & Secure mail (Unreleased)

Email

App info: Email delivers an intuitive interface to keep things simple and manage all of your accounts in one place–including Gmail, Hotmail, iCloud, Yahoo, Outlook, Office/Outlook 365, AOL, and IMAP mail accounts.

 

4. BatON

BatON

App info: “This app _tries_ to show battery level of the bluetooth devices. Bluetooth device MUST has Hands-Free profile (accept, reject phone calls) or GATT profile (usually 4.0+ Low Energy devices).
To recheck battery level just tap on the notification.”

 

5. Cipher Chat

Cipher Chat

App info:  Chat anonymously. No phone number, email address or personal info required. Here you can be john doe. How does it work? Choose any username and password to login/register. Search for other people by their username or chat with complete strangers.

 

Note:  To ensure that all apps receive a fair chance to make the list, we will retire any app that has made the list for three consecutive weeks.



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Sony launches Xperia Touch smart projector

Mobile World Congress is in full swing, with product announcements left and right. One of the more notable products is Sony’s Xperia Touch Android projector. The Xperia Touch can turn any flat surface into a 23-inch HD touchscreen that has a variety of capabilities ranging from streaming video to playing games. More importantly, the fact that it’s powered by Android allows it to run any app or game from the Google Play Store, opening up a wide world of possibilities. Additionally, PlayStation 4 Remote Play works with the Xperia Touch, creating even more opportunities.

Sony Xperia Touch

The Xperia Touch uses Sony’s SXRD projection technology paired with a camera that senses Infrared light at 60 frame per seconds, enabling touch technology. Sony has created a custom home screen skin that’s designed for ease of use in any lighting condition. Users can quickly see the weather, take video notes, use Skype, see their calendar and more.

The Xperia Touch is rolling out to select European retailers in Spring 2017. It will also be available in select countries via the Xperia Store Online. Suggested pricing is set at €1499 ($1593 USD).



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Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ caught on camera in new photos and video

Expectations have been high for Samsung’s upcoming flagship, with potential buyers hoping the company can bounce back in a big way from the Galaxy Note 7 debacle of last year. Now, a series of new leaks have reportedly caught the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ out in the wild.

The photos and videos show the rounded corners and curved edges of the upcoming handsets. Both flagship smartphones are also reportedly ditching the capacitive navigation buttons of past models to make room for more display, and we get to see the on-screen buttons in these latest leaks.

Samsung Galaxy S8 leaked photo Samsung Galaxy S8 leak2 galaxys8sideleak galaxys8bottomleak

A tour of the handsets show the fingerprint reader on the back, curiously placed to the right of the rear camera. We get to see the hardware buttons alongside the right edge and USB Type-C port along the bottom. There’s a speaker down there as well, along with a 3.5mm headphone jack for good measure.

For anyone craving more of the Galaxy S8, and the Galaxy S8+, these newest images and video should fill the void for now. We still have about a month to wait before Samsung makes either one of these handsets official, though.

Are you getting excited for Samsung’s newest flagship?



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T-Mobile offering a free line of service beginning in March

T-Mobile is kicking off a new promotion to thank its customers.

The Un-carrier has announced that “virtually any” current T-Mobile customer can add an additional line of service for free as long as they have at least two current lines of voice service. That includes T-Mobile One plans as well as Simple Choice and Simple Choice No Credit. The promo will be available beginning Wednesday, March 1.

T-Mobile also confirmed that customers will be able to use that free line in whatever way they want: a new smartphone line, free access to a tablet, a smartwatch, or other options.

The new offer will also work with another deal: T-Mobile ONE’s two lines for $100 per month. That means that subscribers that can get three lines for only $100 per month (with AutoPay enabled).

What do you think of T-Mobile’s new deal?



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Sony launches Xperia XA1 and Xperia XA1 Ultra at MWC 2017

Alongside the unveiling of two new Xperia XZ-branded devices, Sony has revealed a pair of mid-range handsets to fill out the new lineup.

The first is the Xperia XA1 Ultra. Sony’s new mid-range device boasts a 6-inch full HD 1080p display, a MediaTek helio P20 octa-core processor, 4GB of RAM, and variants with either 32GB or 64GB of built-in storage. The handset supports microSD cards for expandable storage, a battery measured in at 2700mAh, and Android 7.0 Nougat on board.

The camera on the back is a 23-megapixel shooter, with Hybrid Autofocus, 5x Clear Image Zoom, HDR, and a 24mm wide-angle F2.0 lens. There’s also a 16-megapixel front-facing camera with optical image stabilization (OIS), autofocus, and a 23mm wide-angle F2.0 lens.

It will be available in gold, black, and pink, and it will launch in the spring of this year.

Sony Xperia XA1 official

Meanwhile, the XA1 features a 5-inch 720p HD display, a MediaTek helio P20 octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, up to 32GB of built-in storage, and support for expandable memory. The battery measures in at 2300mAh, and it will run Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box.

The camera on the back of the XA1 is a 23-megapixel shooter with Hybrid Autofocus, 5x Clear Image Zoom, SteadyShot, and a 24mm wide-angle F2.0 lens. Around front is an 8-megapixel camera with Autofocus, SteadyShot, and a 23mm wide-angle F2.0 lens.

The Xperia XA1 Ultra will be available in gold, pink, white, and black. It will launch this spring.



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Sony announces Xperia XZ Premium and Xperia XZs at MWC 2017

Mobile World Congress is officially underway, and Sony decided to make the first day exciting by announcing not just one new smartphone, but four.

Sony has filled out its flagship lineup with two new devices and then added a couple of mid-range handsets for good measure. At the top of the list is the Xperia XZ Premium, which touts a sharp, colorful display as well as the world’s first smartphone camera with super slow motion video capture.

The Xperia XZ Premium (pictured above) boasts a 5.5-inch 4K HDR TRILUMINOS display with Dynamic Contrast Enhancement and Sony’s proprietary X-Reality for mobile picture engine. Underneath the hood is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of built-in storage. It supports a microSD card up to 256GB for expandable storage. The battery is measured in at 3230mAh, it’s running Android 7.1 Nougat out of the box, has a USB Type-C port, and a fingerprint sensor as part of the power button (not available in all markets).

The big takeaway of the Xperia XZ Premium is the camera. On the back, it has a 19-megapixel shooter with Motion Eye and a memory-stacked Exmor RS sensor. This means that the flagship smartphone provides five times faster image scanning and data transfer. It supports video recording at 960 frames per second. It also supports Predictive Capture, anti-distortion shutter, triple image sensing technology, Predictive Hybrid Autofocus, SteadyShot with Intelligent Active Mode (5-axis stabilization), and 4K video recording.

Meanwhile, the front-facing camera is a 13-megapixel shooter with a 1/3.06” Exmor RS™ for mobile image sensor, 22mm wide angle lens, ISO6400, and F2.0.

The flagship device is also IP68-rated for water and dust-resistance. The Xperia XZ Premium will be available in Deepsea Black and Luminous Chrome in the spring of this year. Prices haven’t revealed at this time.

Sony Xperia XZs official

Sony also introduced the Xperia XZs, which has a 5.2-inch 1080p HD display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of built-in storage (a 64GB dual-SIM model also exists). The battery is measured in at 2900mA and there’s also a USB Type-C port, a fingerprint reader on the power button (on some models), and Android N out of the box.

The Xperia XZs has a 19-megapixel camera on the back that supports:

  • Motion Eye
  • 19MP 1/ 2.3” Exmor RS™ for mobile, memory stacked image sensor
  • Super slow motion 960fps video capture
  • Ant-distortion shutter
  • Triple image sensing technology
  • Predictive Hybrid Autofocus
  • SteadyShot™ with Intelligent Active Mode (5-axis stabilization)
  • 4K video recording

The Xperia XZs will be available in Ice Blue, Warm Silver, and Black in April of 2017.



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How to install Official B130 EMUI 5.0 firmware based on Android 7.0 Nougat for Honor 8

Honor, the sub-brand of Huawei launched the Honor 8 smartphone last year and the smartphone runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow out of the box. While the company has officially announced the Nougat update is underway and most people, in fact, have already received it, a lot of people are still waiting for the same. Talking about the specs of the device, it is powered by a 1.8GHz octa-core Kirin 950 processor and it comes with 4GB of RAM. It also has 32GB of internal storage which is also expandable via a microSD card slot. On the front, we have a 5.2 LTPS display with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels.

The firmware which we are about to install today was already available for the Huawei Mate 9 smartphone and now the same is now available for the Honor 8 smartphone. And this is the official version of the software from Honor and hence you can go ahead and install this without having to worry about anything.

About the Firmware

This firmware as mentioned earlier is based on the Android 7.0 Nougat and the UI version is Emotion UI 5.0. The firmware version is B130 and it will work with honor 8 smartphone only. Do make note that this will work with Honor 8 smartphone only and hence don’t try to install it on any other smartphone. The CUST version is CUSTC675D002 and it is a stable and official version of the software.

Prerequisite

  • The first step is to download EMUI 5.0 full package file for Honor 8 from the link given below. It is mandatory for the installation.
  • The next step is to create a backup of the smartphone since we will be wiping the internal memory clean.
  • Also, make sure that you have about 50-60 % of battery for flashing. If your smartphone ends up with a drained battery during the installation, then you may end up with a bricked smartphone as well.

Download EMUI 5.0 For Honor 8

Installation

  1. Assuming that you have created a backup of your smartphone and have downloaded the files from the link given above, we can now proceed with the installation.
  2. The next step is to extract the file which you downloaded.
  3. Now create a new folder called dload and copy the file named content.app to dload folder.
  4. Now simply switch off your smartphone by holding the volume up + Volume down + Power for a few seconds. This will start the installation of the firmware automatically.
  5. Once the flashing will get over, your smartphone will be automatically rebooted into the new firmware.

Do make a note that first reboot may take some time and hence we suggest you stay patient with the same. If you have any qierries with the installation of the software, then be sure to let us know in the comment section below and also, stay tuned to Android Advices for more such tutorials.



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Alcatel’s latest Android phones include one with an LED-covered back

Alcatel is the latest manufacturer to show off new Android hardware at MWC 2017.

Alcatel’s got three new affordable Android smartphones to show today, starting with the Alcatel U5 (shown above). The U5 runs Android 6.0 on a 5-inch 854×480 display and places a big focus on its selfie features, which include a 2-megapixel front camera with LED flash and software features like Face Mask and Face Beauty.

Other features of the Alcatel U5 include a 5-megapixel rear camera with flash, quad-core MediaTek MT6737M processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, a microSD slot, and a 2050mAh battery.

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Next up is the Alcatel A3. This one’s all about selfies, too, packing a 5-megapixel front facing camera with a wide angle 84-degree lens and similar software features to the U5. There’s also a 13-megapixel around on the back of the A3.

The Alcatel A3 features Android 6.0 and a 5-inch 1280×720 screen, and inside its shell lives a quad-core MediaTek MT6737 processor paired with 1.5GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a microSD card slot. There’s a 2460mAh battery packed inside there, too.

alcatela5ledtitle

Rounding out the trio of new Alcatel phones is the Alcatel A5 LED, which Alcatel touts as “the world’s first interactive LED-covered smartphone.” Its back panel is covered in LEDs that can show different lights for notifications, and there’s also Color Catcher 2.0 for creating special LED cover patterns and themes.

When it comes to raw specs, the Alcatel A5 LED is running Android 6.0 on a 5.2-inch 1280×720 screen and it’s packing an 8-megapixel rear camera with dual-tone flash and a 5-megapixel front camera with a wide angle lens and flash. Inside the A5 LED is an octa-core MediaTek MT6753 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, a microSD slot, and a 2800mAh battery.

With its new phones, Alcatel looks to be targeting the affordable Android market and shoppers that care more about special features than high-end specs. Two of the devices have lots of selfie features, and then there’s the A5 LED, which is sure to get some attention when you’re out and about. So if those features pique your interest, keep an eye out for Alcatel’s new handsets.



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AT&T Unlimited Plus and Choice plans official, coming March 2

The unlimited data war in the US continues this evening.

AT&T says that this Thursday, March 2, it’ll launch two new unlimited data plans. The first is Unlimited Plus, which starts at $90 per month for a single line with autopay and paperless billing and goes up to $145 per month for two lines and then $20 per line per month for additional lines.

With Unlimited Plus, you’ll get unlimited talk, text, and data, HD video streaming with Stream Saver turned off, and 10GB of high-speed mobile hotspot with speeds slowed to 128Kbps after. After 22GB of usage, though, your speeds may be slowed during times of network congestion.

If you’d like to add a tablet or hotspot to your Unlimited Plus plan, you can do so at a rate of $20 per device per month. Smartwatches can be added for $10 per device per month.

attbuilding

AT&T is also offering deals on TV service to Unlimited Plus customers. Unlimited Plus customers that sign up for DirecTV, DirecTV Now, or U-verse TV can get a $25 monthly video credit on their bill. With this discount, Unlimited Plus with DirecTV Now will cost $100 per month, while Unlimited Plus with DirecTV will cost $115 per month.

Also launching on March 2 is the Unlimited Choice plan. This rate plan also offers unlimited talk, text, and data, but the data is capped at 3Mbps and video streaming tops out at 480p and 1.5Mbps.

Pricing for Unlimited Choice is $60 per month for a single line after autopay and paperless billing and $115 per month for two lines. From there, it’s an additional $20 per line per month. You can add tablets or hotspots for $20 per device per month or smartwatches for $10 per device per month.

This announcement comes days after AT&T announced that it was making its previous unlimited data plan available to all of its customers. The good news here is that AT&T’s new Unlimited Plus plan is an improvement over the previous plan, offering 10GB of hotspot like unlimited plans from other US carriers. And while Unlimited Choice may not sound like a very attractive plan to some of us, $60 for unlimited data could be a decent option for lighter users or folks that don’t stream a ton of video.

Sources: AT&T (1), (2)



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Galaxy Tab S3 with 9.7-inch Super AMOLED, S-Pen & more – Details

While the tablet market is shrinking at a rapid pace globally, Samsung has announced the Tab S3 in a grand way in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress. Tab S3 smartphones comes with the 9.7inched screen along with the much needed bump in specs list compared to all other previous generation of tablets by Samsung. Let’s check out on what are the specs and features of this tablet in the due course.

Samsung-Galaxy-Tab-S3

Specs and Features of Galaxy Tab S3:
With 9.7 inches of screen size, this device also comes with 2.15GHz quad-core Snapdragon 820 64-bit Quad-Core processor along with Android 7.0 Nougat OS. With hardware like 4GB RAM, 32GB internal memory, this tablet also comes with expandable memory up to 256GB with expandable microSD card slot. With 13MP/ 5MP of rear/ front facign camera, this tablet also has 6000mAH of battery which also supports fast charging. Let’s check out detailed specs below;
• 9.7-inch Display with 2048×1536 pixel Resolution
• QXGA Super AMOLED display
• Dimensions: 169 x 237.3 x 6mm; Weight: 429g
• 2.15GHz Quad-core Snapdragon 820 with 64-bit Quad-Core processor
• Adreno 530 GPU
• 4GB RAM,
• 32GB internal memory,
• Expandable memory up to 256GB with microSD
• Android 7.0 Nougat OS
• 13MP rear facing camera
• 5MP front camera
• Fingerprint sensor
• Connectivity Options – 4G LTE (optional), Bluetooth 4.2, WiFi 802.11 ac (2.4GHz/5GHz) MIMO, Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, GLONASS, USB 3.1 Type-C
• 6000mAh battery with Fast Charging support

Samsung-Galaxy-Tab-S3-1

Pricing and Availability:
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 comes in Silver & Black color options with the prie tag of 679 Euros/ 769 Euros for WiFi/ LTE variants respectively. This will be available in Europe in Q2 2017.



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Samsung Gear VR gains a controller

Today turned out to be a pretty big day for Samsung at MWC 2017. In addition to introducing a new Android tablet and teasing its next flagship, the company debuted a new controller for the Gear VR.

The Gear VR with Controller is a bundle that includes a Gear VR headset and a wireless controller. That controller includes a touchpad and Home, Volume, and Back buttons, letting you use those features with the controller in your hand rather than making you reach up to your headset overtime you want to use them.

The controller, which runs on AAA batteries, also includes a wrist strap so that you don’t accidentally send it flying during a gaming session.

Oculus, who Samsung has partnered with on the Gear VR, says that there are more than 70 new controller titles in development. All of the existing touchpad apps will also work with the new controller.

The Gear VR headset itself seems to be similar to the one that Samsung launched late last year, offering 42mm lenses, a 101-degree field of view, and both microUSB and USB Type-C support.

If you’ve been thinking about buying a Gear VR, it may be worth holding out for this model, because the addition of the controller seems like it’d make using the Gear VR quite a bit easier. Unfortunately, there’s no word yet on when the Gear VR with Controller will launch, so for now we’ll just have to wait for Samsung to spill the beans. Maybe it’ll happen on March 29?



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Samsung teases upcoming Galaxy S8 with March 29 announcement date

Samsung previously confirmed that it would not be unveiling the Galaxy S8 at this year’s Mobile World Congress, and instead it lent the stage to a new flagship tablet. But the company also confirmed that we wouldn’t be completely without Galaxy S8 news.

Indeed, Samsung planned to announce the big reveal date for the Galaxy S8 at this year’s MWC, and now it’s done just that. After announcing all of its other keynote products for 2017, it launched a quick video to tease the incoming handset.

The video measures in at about 30 seconds, and it shows a variety of different ways to represent a phone. And, as Samsung makes it pretty clear, our smartphones all share a pretty common theme. However, Samsung is looking to change things up a bit with the Galaxy S8, as it teases at the end of the video with the tagline “Unbox your phone.”

In that last image, we are teased with a phone that’s only major defining outline will be the bezels at the top and bottom of the handset.

This would certainly line up with the laundry list of rumors and leaks that have seen the light of day over the last few weeks. The last leak we saw of the handset showed its minimal bezels as well as onscreen navigation buttons.

Word on the street is that Samsung plans to launch the Galaxy S8 globally on April 21 following its big reveal date on March 29.

Are you looking forward to picking this phone up when it launches?



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Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 announced with S Pen and four speakers

Samsung has officially announced a brand new Android product at Mobile World Congress. As expected, it’s a brand new tablet.

Officially known as the Galaxy Tab S3, Samsung unveiled the device today, showcasing a new flagship device with a large 9.7-inch display and all the bells and whistles potential buyers would come to expect.

As far as the specs go, that 9.7-inch display supports High Dynamic Range (HDR), and it’s a Super AMOLED panel with 2048×1536 resolution. Under the hood, there’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and 4GB of RAM. It offers 32GB of built-in storage, but the Galaxy Tab S3 also offers a microSD card slot for expandable storage.

There’s a 13-megapixel camera with autofocus and a flash on the back, and on the front there’s a 5-megapixel shooter for selfies. A USB Type-C port is on the bottom, it’s running Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box, and the battery measures in at 6000mAh. Fast charging support is in there, too.

The new Galaxy Tab S3 also comes with a “refined” S Pen, which is a bit thicker than previous generations to help with handling on the larger tablet display. The tip of the pen has been reduced to only 0.7mm, and it has increased pressure sensitivity. The S Pen will also support the ability to take notes on the tablet’s display while it’s off, PDF annotation, and more.

Unfortunately, while the tablet has been revealed, a release date and pricing have not. Hopefully Samsung announces those particular details soon.

What do you think of the Galaxy Tab S3?



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Moto announces new Moto Mods, one with Amazon Alexa support

Amazon‘s Alexa, the digital personal assistant, has certainly expanded beyond Amazon-branded products like the Echo smart speaker.

That trend continues with a new announcement out of Moto from Mobile World Congress 2017. The company has confirmed that it is set to launch a variety of new Moto Mods, the modular accessories for the Moto Z flagship line, in the first half of this year.

The most notable new addition to the Mods lineup is one that supports Amazon’s Alexa. The Mod will allow users to simply ask the digital personal assistant for updates on the news, request a ride from ride-hailing services like Lyft, and control your smart home accessories.

Moto also announced that it will be directly integrating Alexa into its smartphones beginning later this year, but didn’t reveal too much in that regard.

More Moto Mods set to arrive a little later this year. They include a Moto Power Pack that will instantly add 50 percent more battery life to your smartphone without adding any bulk. It also has a “special efficiency mode,” which will automatically charge your phone to keep efficiency at its peak. Moto says it will launch in the United States sometime in March for $49 USD.

There are others on the way, too. That includes a wireless charging Moto Mod, a Turbo Power Moto Mod, and a charging adaptor. The Gamepad Moto Mod is another newcomer to the family, which Moto hopes will transform your Moto Z into a mobile gaming console by adding an integrated battery, physical controls that flank the phone’s display, and more.

These new Moto Mods are set to arrive in the first half of 2017.

If you own a Moto Z, do you use Moto Mods?



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New Nokia Android phones unveiled along with updated Nokia 3310

Back in early January, the Nokia name made a comeback with the debut of the Nokia 6, a new Android phone produced by HMD Global. Now that comeback continues with a few more new devices.

Nokia today took the wraps off two new Android phones and a new feature phone, and also shared some big news regarding the Nokia 6. Here’s how it all breaks down:

  • Nokia 6 is launching internationally in Matte Black, Silver, Tempered Blue, and Copper color options. Pricing will be set at €229 ($242 USD). There will also be a limited edition Nokia 6 Arte Black edition with 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, and a high gloss black finish for €299 ($316 USD).

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  • Nokia 5 will sell for €189 ($200 USD) in Matte Black, Silver, Tempered Blue and Copper colors. Specs include Android 7.1.1 running on a 5.2-inch 1280×720 display, 13-megapixel rear camera with phase detection autofocus, 8-megapixel front camera, Snapdragon 430 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, a microSD slot, and a 3000mAh battery.

nokia3colorsaam

  • Nokia 3 is even more affordable, coming in at a price of €139 ($147 USD) and Silver White, Matte Black, Tempered Blue and Copper White color options. Buyers will get an Android 7.0 smartphone with a 5-inch 1280×720 screen, 8-megapixel front and rear cameras, quad-core MTK6737 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, microSD slot, and a 2650mAh battery.

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  • Nokia 3310 is the updated version of a classic mobile phone. This new model runs Nokia Series 30+ software and has a 2.4-inch QVGA display. Included is a 2-megapixel camera, 16MB of storage, a microSD slot, FM radio, microUSB, 2G network support, and a 1200mAh battery. Nokia and HMD are also throwing in the classic game of Snake that’s been updated for 2017. The Nokia 3310 will sell for €49 ($52 USD).

As a reminder, these new phones aren’t actually being built by Nokia. Instead, Finnish company HMD Global is making the devices and licensing the Nokia name. That doesn’t change the fact that these Nokia-branded Android phones look like solid pieces of kit. They’ve got clean designs and run the pure version of Android Nougat, complete with Google Assistant, and they’re priced affordably, too. We’re looking forward to checking them all out — including the new Nokia 3310 — when they start rolling out globally in Q2 2017.



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Motorola G5 and G5 Plus announced at MWC 2017

The Moto G series has been a longstanding presence in the Lenovo-owned Motorola‘s stable of devices, and now the fifth generation of the lineup has arrived.

Motorola officially announced the Moto G5 and the Moto G5 Plus today at Mobile World Congress. Both handsets share a common design cue from the Moto Z flagship series of handsets, and they both feature a metal frame. Both handsets also have full HD displays, Android 7.0 Nougat, a water-repellant coating, and support for an external memory card.

The Moto G5 Plus (pictured above) boasts a 5.2-inch display, and there is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor under the hood that’s clocked at 2.0GHz. It will be available in two variants: 2GB of RAM and 32GB of built-in storage or 3GB of RAM and 64GB of built-in storage. The 12-megapixel camera on the back has an aperture of f/1.7 and Dual Autofocus Pixels. The camera on the front is a 5-megapixel shooter. The battery is measured in at 3000mAh, and it supports Motorola’s Turbo Charging feature. The international version supports NFC, but apparently the model destined for the United States won’t have it.

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Meanwhile, the Moto G5 has a 5-inch display, and the processor under the hood is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 chipset. It has 2GB of RAM and 32GB of built-in storage, a 2800mAh battery, with a 13-megapixel camera on the back with an f/2.0 aperture. There’s a 5MP front-facing camera.

The Moto G5 won’t actually be launching in the United States at all, but the G5 Plus will arrive sometime in April of this year. The G5 Plus will be priced at $229 when it launches.

How do you like Motorola’s new Moto G5 devices?



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