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Monday, September 28, 2015

Google Targets Intent With Email, YouTube And Search Matching And Universal App Campaigns

As Ad Week rolls into New York, the tech giants are rolling out their ad product news. Today Google announced moves further into Facebook-style targeting territory, with a new product called Customer Match that will let advertisers upload lists of emails and match them to signed-in Google users on Gmail, Search and YouTube. Google is also upping its game in app promotions.
Meanwhile, Facebook has announced a new service that itself is competitive with yet another platform: Twitter, and specifically in the area of nabbing more TV ad dollars. The social network will be working with Nielsen on a new metric and ad buying option to let advertisers more closely link their TV ad spend with Facebook video spend.
Google’s Customer Match — which will be getting rolled out in the next few weeks — will let advertisers build campaigns based around email address lists that they upload and match against Google’s own database of signed-in users across some of its biggest properties — including Gmail, YouTube and Search.
In an example given by  Sridhar Ramaswamy, SVP of Ads and Commerce at Google, a travel brand can upload the names of people in its rewards program, who will then be served ads from that travel brand the next time they are searching a relevant term. Similarly those ads (or others like them) can then follow a user when she or he visits YouTube or checking email on Gmail.
On top of this, Google will also be giving advertisers the ability to use that same data to find similar audiences — that is, signed-in users who may not be on your own lists but match profiles of those who are and are therefore more likely to be interested in your products.
If you think all of this sounds familiar, it’s because it is: Facebook has been letting advertisers run similar styles of campaigns based around customer databases for years already. Why has Google been so slow to come around to this? Regulatory scrutiny seems to be one key reason highlighted by Digiday, which had reported that targeting plans were in the works before Google made the news official: the search giant has been happy to let others take the lead on this kind of ad tech first because then Google appears as the competitor when it enters the market.
There could be other reasons, too: You could also argue that Google has been so successful with its core search products that the idea of adding new features may have been put on the backburner. Similarly, it may only be now that advertisers are showing so much interest in targeting and ad tech in general that Google has felt the push to roll out similar products itself.
The push from the wider market, and competition from Facebook, it could be argued, may also be behind the new Android app promotion tools that Google is also unveiling.
This is not the first time that Google has leveraged its larger networks in areas like search to promote apps: Google unveiled some initiatives in this space back in Mayduring its big I/O developer conference. Now we have a more complete picture in the form of Universal App Campaigns.
Essentially, what this is is a new type of AdWords product focused specifically on targeting app users across different Google platforms such as Search, Google Play, YouTube, and the Google Display Network, which Google says covers some 2 million websites. Some of this is similar to the intent that Google is trying to capture with Customer Match: a search for adventure gaming apps will yield an ad for, say, an adverture game. What’s less clear is if that intent then follows you to other platforms, or whether Google creates separate intent-based ads in, say, YouTube based on what you are watching.
As with other app-install networks, Google says a developer sets a cost-per-install in order to set up a campaign across different platforms.

Facebook’s video ambitions

If Google is wading deeper into Facebook’s territory with app install ads and email-based advertising databases, Facebook is also dipping its toes elsewhere, too.
Earlier today, Facebook, which says it now works with 2.5 million advertisers (up from 2 million in February), announced that it would work with Nielsen to develop and introduce a new metric that it calls the “total rating point” (TRP) to measure how Facebook video ads perform alongside corresponding TV ad campaigns. “Marketers can plan a campaign across TV and Facebook with a total TRP target in mind, and they can buy a share of those TRPs directly with Facebook,” Facebook notes in a blog post about the new product.
As with Nielsen’s early moves to work more closely with Twitter to measure and match up Twitter users with TV consumers, the idea here is to create a stronger link between the old platform and the new in order to encourage more advertising on the latter platform. Video is huge on Facebook, and the social network killing from video ads in its news feed (which are increasingly also going mobile). Making more products to align those even more closely, and with TV advertisers’ budgets, makes a lot of sense.
Other new Facebook products today include brand awareness optimization bidding; polling services coming to mobile; and — in one more push to enhance and expand video inventory — adding videos to the carousel format Facebook introduced earlier this year.

3D Touch Is Apple’s New Secret Weapon

I’m here to praise Apple again. Sorry. I have to do it. It’s not in my contract nor am I paid to do it – imagine if we were! We’d be rich! – but after manhandling the iPhone 6S Plus it’s abundantly clear that Apple has discovered another breakthrough. And they are surprisingly nonchalant about it.
Apple’s first interface breakthrough happened when it unleashed real multitouch on the world. Until the original iPhone, screens reacted to one single point and often required a stylus to operate. There were exceptions, but even after the iPhone launched competitors couldn’t keep up and had to release resistive screen phones until they could join in the multi-touch game.
This next interface trick is far more subtle. By sensing pressure applied on the surface of the Apple Watch, the new MacBook trackpad, and the new iPhones, Apple has added a new layer to the touchscreen experience. In short, they have gone deep, allowing us to move past surfaces and into more dynamic menu systems and even UI tactics. As it stands 3D touch is pretty boring right now but imagine 3D touching into an MRI scan or anatomy textbook. Imagine 3D touching through the cosmos. Imagine 3D touching in games where you focus with a little pressure. There is a clear reason Apple abandoned the moniker of “Force Touch:” what their experience offers has less to do with force and a lot more to do with a three dimensional experience.
3D Touch isn’t an incremental update. It is a real tool and you can be sure that, by CES time, manufacturers from Samsung to Xaomi will be offering stuff called Push Touch, Deep Finger, and Insert UI for their phones. It is inevitable. And Apple had it first.
This is not to say I don’t appreciate what competitors have brought to the table. Samsung’s Edge series is one of the most compelling and amazing screen technologies to reach the market in a long time and many manufacturers are doing things with materials and design that is to be commended. But none of them have released anything that intrinsically changes how we, as humans, interact with the slabs of glass and metal we hold in our pockets at all times. That’s a unique thing.
I’m not saying Force Touch has changed the world. What it has done is tweak the world in a very meaningful way. Apple’s products are starting to hit more senses. Thanks to haptics the iPhone and the Apple Watch are able to tap into our nervous system. In that case, Apple nuzzles us, offering a feather flick of interaction. Interestingly, I’m already feeling “phantom taps” even when I wear a mechanical watch, a sign that old Pavlov was right.
With 3D Touch, The Apple devices ask us to touch them with a little more intent, to move past the glass and into something deeper behind the surface. This is an important change in how we use our phones and one sure to be successful. Of all of the other improvements in these new phones, 3D Touch is the most compelling and it is the one so subtle that Apple itself didn’t really talk it up during the keynote or briefings. “By the way,” they seemed to say. “You can now stick your finger through the phone. No big deal.”
Apple hasn’t dented the universe in a while but they have tapped it with lots of force. They’ll ding it eventually, but until then we can all enjoy the odd ‘Tick’ of this latest feature.

Indian Prime Minister Tells Zuckerberg Social Media Creates A New Form Of Diplomacy

Prime Minister Narendra Modi told Mark Zuckerberg that social media can show governments where they’re going wrong, and allow heads of state to connect more personably than ever before. During a townhall Q&A at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters, the two leaders talked about the modernization of India and discussed topics from the 40,000 questions and comments submitted by the public. The talk can be watched here.
As the world’s largest democracy and a massively lucrative market for tech companies, execs from several tech giants made time to meet with Modi during his visit to Silicon Valley this week, including Google, Apple, and Tesla, as Re/Code reported.
Modi is likely pushing his vision for Digital India, in hopes that tech companies invest more there so the sector can drive greater economic outcomes for the nation. However, Internet accessibility campaigns in India like Facebook’s have endured criticism from those who think making certain companies gateways to the web could hurt Net Neutrality. Zuckerberg spoke at the U.N. yesterday pushing the idea that investments in Internet accessibility can alleviate poverty.
Zuckerberg began today’s talk by noting how his own travels to India reassured his confidence in building Facebook as an independent company.
“Early on in our history, before things were really going well and we had hit a tough patch and a lot of people wanted to buy Facebook and thought we should sell the company, I went and I saw one of my mentors Steve Jobs. And he told me that in order to reconnect with what I believed as the mission of the company, I should visit this temple that he had gone to in India early on in his evolution of thinking about what he wanted Apple and his vision of the future to be.
And so I went and I traveled for almost a month seeing the people, seeing how the people connected. And having the opportunity to feel how much better the world could be if everyone had a stronger ability to connect reinforced for me the importance of what we were doing. And that is something that I’ve always remembered over the last 10 years as we built Facebook.”
After thanking Modi for his commitment to creating a digital India, Modi returned the praise, complimenting Zuckerberg on being a role model for technologists.
Modi said that India is an $8 trillion economy today, but he dreams of it becoming a $20 trillion economy. Getting there will take success in three sectors:
  • Agricultural sector
  • Service sector
  • Manufacturing sector
Modi sees social media as driving the service sector and tourism in India. It has the potential to educate people faster, by connecting us to human guides rather than textbooks.
Via translator, Modi told Zuckerberg that social media “brought about a big change in my way of thinking”. He says people ostensibly vote via social media constantly, by sharing their opinion. It can make governments aware that they’re going in the wrong direction and gives them an opportunity to do a course correction.
Modi told the crowd “we used to have elections every five years, now we have them every five minutes.” If governments pay attention to this real-time information, they can improve their policy frameworks and speed up progress.
Zuckerberg Modi

Social Diplomacy

Perhaps most interestingly, Modi described how he sees social media changing relationships between whole governments.
 He told a story of how he wished China’s Prime Minister a happy birthday via Chinese social network Sina Weibo, and how that received a huge positive reaction from the public. Similarly, he congratulated the the Israeli Prime Minister in Hebrew for a festival in the country, and the Israeli Prime Minister thanked him in Hindi. That too went viral.
“I don’t think anyone ever thought this is what diplomacy would look like” Modi said.
Modi at facebook
When asked about India’s commitment to empowering women, Modi launched into a passionate defense of the country’s initiatives to support gender equality. He noted that India was uniquely suited to the task as some of its gods are female. He said the nation’s “fundamental values” position women in a very important place.
Citing programs reserving places in goverment for women, offering financial support through housing only if women are the primary home operator, and the “Educate the girl child” campaign, Modi said India was making progress.
Modi admitted that “it’s true over thousands of years we’ve had a certain deterioration. But as far as the government is concerned, if we want to achieve our economic goals then we cannot do that if we imprision 50% of our population within their homes.”
Modi Bows
While today’s talk went smoothly, Facebook and India will still have to resolve the situation to see if Facebook can help more Indians get on the web without being seen as excluding certain apps. Facebook is also staunchly pro gay rights, butIndia recently declared same-sex marriage illegal.
But if Zuckerberg and Modi’s relationship can tie Facebook and India closer together, the nation could become an even bigger market for the social network while locals gain access to the knowledge economy. That could not only connect Indians, but improve the average citizen’s quality of life.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Xiaomi Announces Impressive $200 Smartphone And Prepaid Mobile Services In China

Xiaomi has announced its latest smartphone, the Mi 4c, an impressive $200 budget version of its flagship Mi 4 device. That’s not all: the Chinese company also ventured into mobile operator services after revealing two prepaid packages for customers in China.
Like the Mi 4i, a smartphone that Xiaomi launched specifically for India back in April, so the Mi 4c is aimed at its China-based customers. And it’s mighty impressive… on paper, at least.
The Mi 4i sports a five-inch display and is powered by a 64-bit processor, Xiaomi claims it is the first device equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 808. There’s also a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera, and a five-megapixel “selfie” camera, as the front-facing camera is increasingly referred to. Also notable, the Mi 4i includes the new USB Type-C and ‘Quick Charge 2.0’ to help manage battery life.
The basic Mi 4c comes with 2GB RAM and 16GB in storage and will cost 1299 RMB ($203), an enhanced version — 3GB RAM and 32GB storage — will be available for RMB 1499 ($235). Both models will ship with Xiaomi’s older MI UI 6 software, but the company said an upgrade to its new MI UI version 7 will be available soon.Releasing impressively specc’ed devices at seriously aggressive prices is what Xiaomi is renowned for — the Mi 4c is yet another very competitive offering that should worry Samsung and others — but mobile operators services is something new altogether. The firm is one of a bunch of non-telecom companies that snagged MVNO (mobile virtual network) licenses in China. That allows them to resell mobile packages from telecom companies using their brand/name, and now Xiaomi is putting that to use in China.
‘Mi Mobile’, Xiaomi’s mobile offering, has two initial services. There’s a pay-as-you-go tariff charged at RMB 0.10 (sub $0.02) per voice call minute, SMS, or 1MB of data, and a RMB 59 ($10) monthly bundle that gives users 3GB of data. The first option is available from September 23, while the second comes online in October — both will be available from, Xiaomi’s online store, in China.
The mobile services ventures is an intriguing new business from Xiaomi. The company is the country’s top smartphone seller, and China accounted for the majority of the 34.7 million smartphones that Xiaomi sold in the first half of this year, but Xiaomi said it will fall short of its sales target for 2015. So, alongside its push to sell wearables and smart home devices, a move into mobile services is a way to strengthen its brand among customers and pick additional revenue.

Apple’s iPhone 6s Produces A Colorful Vision Of Haiti Through A Painter’s Eyes

In advance of the release of the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, Apple gave one to RYOT, maker of VR and documentary films. They produced a short about a painter in Haiti who is trying to transform the very poor neighborhood he lives in into a bright palette of colors.
The entire film was shot on the iPhone 6s, which now supports 4K resolution. I noted inmy review of the new device, out today, that the video and camera quality had outstripped any smartphone I’d tested before. Those capabilities are put to good use in this new documentary, which is short, sweet and worth watching. I’m the son of a painter — both houses and canvases — and the story probably may have had a greater effect on me than it might on you. But it’s still worth your time.
RYOT co-founders David Darg and Bryn Mooser shot “The Painter of Jalouzi” just a few days ago in Haiti. It’s the story of Duval, who lives in one of the biggest slums in Haiti. He paints and inspires his neighbors to paint. The color, he believes, whether it’s on busses or walls or cinder block fences, is an agent of change.

RYOT has experimented with other kinds of alternative filmmaking before, and have created a series of VR films that allow people to experience news stories as if they were there themselves.
I asked Darg and Mooser a few questions via email, which they’ve answered here.
How did you come to choose Duval as the subject of the film?
When we were given the opportunity to get early access to the new iPhone 6S Plus, we knew we needed to find a location that would really demonstrate the 4K camera’s capabilities. The community of Jalouzi is the ultimate test for a 4K camera because the hillside is full of detail and color. We have been friends with Duval since meeting him after the Haiti earthquake in 2010 as aid workers on the ground, and we’ve wanted to tell his story for a long time.  Haiti receives so much negative press, but the Haiti that we know and love is full of color, beauty and resilience.  This project allows us to test drive the new iPhone 6S Plus and share Duval’s story, and the story of Jalouzi.
What about the project was made possible by the new features of the iPhone?
The 4K resolution allowed us to use SLR lenses and an adaptor for a real cinematic feel for some of the shots. The lenses focus the image onto a plate which the camera captures. The image stabilization in the iPhone 6S Plus is amazing and we bought an electronic gimbal to use as a steady cam, but ended up hardly using it because the internal stabilizer allowed for some pretty incredible handheld shots. The evolution of high quality cameras into smaller and smaller devices has made shooting in tough conditions easier, and the iPhone 6S Plus has made it really easy to get pro-quality footage on the fly.
Was the time-lapse section shot in 1080p or 4K?
The time lapse was shot in 1080p and there are a handful of 1080 slo mo shots, too.  The only shot we really struggled with was getting a good aerial shot with our drone. We maneuvered several cradles together to try and isolate the phone from the vibrations, but it was really hard to get a good steady 4K shot. As a solution, we had to shoot at 120fps in1080p to try and isolate a long enough steady clip.  If we’d had another day we could have gotten the drone rigged up to get the ultimate aerial shot but we had to make do with the shot you see in the film.
How did the quality of image compare to similar equipment that RYOT has used?
Apple has done an amazing job with the iPhone 6S Plus – not just with packing a 4K camera into a phone, but where the iPhone 6S Plus really shines is in it’s ability to capture color. We were blown away at the color accuracy and the image overall. It’s really impressive when the telephone in your pocket can produce images that rival high-end cameras. The iPhone 6S Plus’s footage performed really well in post production, too.  It doesn’t seem that long ago that we were stoked by our first camera phone, which shot a tiny pixelated image. We’ve come so far, so fast!
Do you believe that iPhones will become a staple for documentary photographers?
We’ve used iPhone footage for a few clips here and there in previous projects but we’re seeing a shift to where the iPhone could be used in more and more of our work. After this project we feel more comfortable relying on the iPhone to shoot pretty much anything. As a camera, it was actually really practical as the battery lasted much longer than the cameras we traditionally use (although we did have airplane mode on and no other apps running) and the memory was more than enough for a full day shooting (on the 128gb model.)  
If there was a better way to use external lenses I think it would accelerate the iPhone into the major leagues and I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before someone creates a better adaptor or, better yet, Apple gets creative with lens mounts. No matter what, I’m sure we’ll start seeing a lot more iPhone footage in future productions. The funny thing is, because the quality is so good we’ll never know!
The short movie is pretty spectacular. Colors are bright, detail is sharp. Though most people won’t be able to watch it in its native 4K, you should if you can.
A few years ago, filmmakers began experimenting with the iPhone to shoot music videos, short projects and even feature films. But the rapid pace of improvements in the camera could open up options for an entirely new generation of filmmakers.
For just a few hundred dollars, they now have access to a high quality 4K camera that can be used in conjunction with adapters and lenses to solve creative problems.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Lenovo Vibe X3 (Lemon X) shows up at Chinese expo and TENAA

The saga of the still unannounced Lenovo Vibe X3 continues. So far we've heard that this may have been codenamed Lemon X. Then again, the Lemon X could be another device. Anyway, we've seen leaked renders allegedly showing the Vibe X3 a few days ago, and now the exact same handset has been both certified by TENAA and handled in a couple of hands-on photos from a Chinese expo.

First off, the new TENAA certification is odd, because it's been seemingly done once before for the Vibe X3 - and for a unit that actually had the name Vibe on its back. On the other hand, the new phone, the one certified now, has different specs. So the plot thickens.
A while back a Lenovo X3 got benchmarked, and it boasted the exact same specs as the newly certified device. Confusing indeed. If this is the Vibe X3, then expect it to sport a 5.5-inch 1080p touchscreen, Qualcomm's Snapdragon 808 SoC with hexa-core CPU, 3GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, a 21 MP rear camera with dual-tone flash, an 8 MP selfie shooter, 4G LTE, dual-SIM functionality, and a 3,500 mAh battery. It runs Android 5.1.1 Lollipop.
Its dimensions are 154 x 76.4 x 9.4 mm and it weighs 175g. As you can see, it has a fingerprint scanner on the back and two stereo speakers on the front.
This device (whether it's the Vibe X3 or not) has also been seen in the flesh at the 2015 China Telecommunications Exhibition, an encounter which thankfully resulted in the two hands-on shots you can see below.

This phone definitely seems to have been designed with heavy input from Motorola employees, since it looks closer to a Moto device than past Lenovo offerings. Hopefully it will become official soon.
Source 1 (in Chinese) • Source 2 | Via

HTC One A9 leaked press renders confirm iPhone-esque design, multiple colors

Hot on the heels of today’s leaked blurry photo, alleged press images of the upcoming HTC One A9 made the rounds on Twitter, courtesy of @evleaks. The renders showcase the device in six different colors and confirm its iPhone-esque design.
HTC One A9 will be available in Acid Gold, Opal Silver, Deep Garnet, Carbon Gray, Rose Gold, and Cast Iron when it goes official. The smartphone scheduled to debut next week, on September 29.
Previously rumored specs of the One A9 include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 chipset, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of expandable memory, 13MP main camera with OIS, 4MP front-facing snapper, and Android Marshmallow. A 5” 1080p AMOLED display and 2,150mAh battery are also said to be on board.

Android-based BlackBerry Venice to be marketed as Priv

Android-based BlackBerry Venice smartphone, which has been the subject of various rumours and leaks in the recent months, will be launched as BlackBerry Priv, according to the usually reliable leakster @evleaks.
Back in June this year, in the wake of reports that BlackBerry is planning to launch an Android phone, the Canadian company's CEO John Chen had said that they are open to Android if they can make the phone secure enough. And the name Priv (which seems to be short forprivacy or private here) certainly falls in line with that vision.
From what is known till now, the handset is expected to be powered by a Snapdragon 808 chipset, and come with 3GB of RAM. It is said to feature an 18MP rear camera with dual-LED flash, and run Android Lollipop.
Via 1 2

New Lumia 950 XL leak confirms some specs we already knew

A new leak has surfaced online, confirming some of the already-known key specs of Microsoft's upcoming Lumia 950 XL smartphone. The said leak is in the form of a screenshot of the device running build 10547 of Windows 10 Mobile (shown below).
The screenshot above confirms that the Lumia 950 XL will be powered by a Snapdragon 810 SoC, and sport a 1440 x 2560 QHD display. It was also confirmed that the handset will have 3GB of RAM.
Other specs that we already know are: 32GB expandable storage, 20 MP rear camera, 5 MP front shooter, USB Type-C port for charging, and 3,300 mAh battery. As for the price, a recent leak suggested that the dual-SIM variant will carry a tag of around $840, at least in Europe.

New LG V10 teaser offers a glimpse of the device's dual-screen

As you have probably heard, LG is planning to spice things up a little with the upcoming LG V10. What started out as a quirky and quite questionable dual screen phablet, has now passed through TENAA and appeared in a few leaks, more or less proving its existence.
But if there was any doubt left, LG's new teaser for the product, definitively proves that the smartphone will be unveiled on October 1. The video itself doesn't really offer too much info, nor does it give us a proper look and the V10. All we get is a glimpse of the second screen near the top of the unit, along with what looks to be a dual front camera setup.
Thankfully, a previous render does offers a better view of the V10, with the small secondary screen clearly visible above the main display. In this render it's filled with five app shortcuts, but perhaps it will have some other uses too - we can imagine LG might allow it to also show a few contacts, for example, in a similar fashion to the Edge display on Samsung's Galaxy S6 edge and Galaxy S6 edge+.
The teaser video does offer a vague reference to personalization with the "be you" slogan, so we can only assume that this will be LG's main marketing angle for the device. It is still interesting to see exactly how the second screen will work.

According to the aforementioned TENAA listing, the LG V10 will spout a spacious 5.7-inch QHD display and run on the Snapdragon 808 SoC, just like the LG G4. Memory is set at 3GB and 64GB of expandable storage.
The camera setup consists of a 16MP main shooter with a dual-LED flash and what is listed as a 5MP shooter on the front.

ZTE Axon Elite starts selling on eBay UK

ZTE has started selling the Axon Elite in the UK through eBay. The phone that made its European debut at IFA at the start of the month retails for €419.99 (£299.99 or $469.99).
The company is holding a special promotion for the first day of sales only and will throw in a free 64GB microSD card. ZTE is quite proud of the Axon Elite, which was awarded a "User Experience Gold Award" by the IDG and German Industry and Commerce at IFA.

The ZTE Axon Elite sports a 5.5" 1080p display and is powered by a Snapdragon 810 chipset. Internal storage is 32GB but is expandable by further 128GB via the microSD card slot. You can check out our hands-on to know more about the phone.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Android 6 Marshmallow for Moto X : Features and Release date

Marshmallow is the next big update for Motorola Moto X series. Google is going to unveil the next major Android revision on September 29th. It will be available in AOSP website after the launch. Motorola recently updated Moto X 1st Gen to Android 5.1.1 Lollipop. Previously Motorola released both Android 5.0.2 and Android 5.1.1 updates for Moto X 2nd Gen. In July Motorola also unveiled two Moto X flagships named as Moto X Play and Moto X Style (Pure Edition) which run on Android 5.1.1 Lollipop OS. Now Motorola has to update all these flagships to Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system.
According to reports, Motorola may start building Marshmallow updates for Moto X series in October. Moto X Style or Moto X Pure (2015) may receive Marshmallow earlier than other flagships. It will receive Android 6.0 update in the end of October or in November. Moto X Play will be next in the line to receive Marshmallow after Pure. Play edition may receive Android 6 update in November or in December. Moto X 2nd Gen and 1st Gen might get the Android Marshmallow update in December or January. Full details about the rollout of Marshmallow to Moto X flagships will be revealed in coming days.
There are no major User Interface changes in the Marshmallow update. But Google has improved Material design in Marshmallow. As Motorola uses stock Android in Moto X with almost no UI modifications, users can enjoy stock Marshmallow UI like Nexus users. New app permissions of Marshmallow is an exclusive improvement over previous android versions. New app permissions feature to install apps more easily. Marshmallow is also coming with 25MB Google Drive space to backup apps and app settings automatically. So users can easily migrate to a new device or restore apps after factory reset.
Doze mode is also an exclusive feature of Marshmallow. It improves device Standby time much. So Moto X drvices standby time will improve much after Marshmallow update. Google also improved performance in Marshmallow so that Moto X devices will run much faster on Marshmallow. New Google Now app is more user friendly. Now users can view weblinks in apps without switching between apps with new Chrome tabs. New Chrome tabs open as a window over app in a small portion. More interesting features of Marshmallow will be revealed in coming days.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Pre-Order in Europe Starts for Huawei Mate S

Huawei made the Mate S official at the beginning of the month during its IFA press conference, and now the phablet has gone up for pre-order in Europe.
Huawei itself is offering the device straight to consumers through its official online store for the continent. You can currently pre-order the Mate S if you live in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, or the UK.

The handset can be bought in two color versions, Titanium Silver or Mystic Champagne. Pricing is as follows: £469 in the UK, €649 in the Eurozone, and CHF 649 in Switzerland. Pre-orders are only set to ship in about four to five weeks, so unfortunately you still have a lot of waiting to do if you're craving the Mate S.
The smartphone comes with a 5.5-inch 1080p AMOLED touchscreen, a 13 MP rear camera with OIS and dual-LED flash, an 8 MP selfie snapper with a LED flash of its own, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of expandable storage, a fingerprint scanner on the back, and a 2,700 mAh battery. It's powered by Huawei's own Kirin 935 chipset, with an octa-core CPU clocked at up to 2.2 GHz. It runs Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with Emotion UI 3.1 on top.
Source | Via

Spanish retailer leaks Lumia 950 and 950 XL prices

Just days after there were reports that the Microsoft Lumia 950 XL will carry a price tag comparable to that of the Apple iPhone 6s, a Spanish retailer has leaked the price of the up coming Windows 10 device, as well as that of its smaller sibling, the Lumia 950.

As per the listing, the dual-SIM variants of the Lumia 950 XL and Lumia 950 will set you back €749 ($838) and €659 ($738), respectively. This compares with the iPhone 6s (16GB variant), which carries a price tag in the range of €740-€750 in some European countries - its Spanish prices are yet to be announced.

Specs-wise, from what is known till now, both the Microsoft handsets sport QHD display, 3GB RAM, and 32GB expandable storage. They feature a 20 MP rear camera, a 5 MP front shooter, and a USB Type-C port for charging.
While the 950 XL is expected to be powered by Snapdragon 810 SoC and pack in a 3,300 mAh battery, the Lumia 950 is said to feature the Snapdragon 808 chipset and a 3,000 mAh cell.

Coolpad unveils Rogue

Chinese smartphone vendor Coolpad has announced a new, ultra budget-friendly smartphone. Dubbed Rogue, the device is priced at $50, and will be available for purchase in the US starting September 30, both online and at T-Mobile stores.
Specs-wise, the handset is powered by a dual-core 1.1GHz Snapdragon processor, and sports a 4.0-inch WVGA display. It comes with 1GB RAM and 4GB internal memory, which is expandable up to 32GB.
In terms of camera, the Rogue features a 2MP rear unit and a VGA front shooter. It offers LTE support (2, 4, 12, AWS3 bands) and runs a customized version of Android 5.1 Lollipop OS.
"We are extremely excited that Coolpad can bring our 'Live Smart' motto of providing cool technology, easy-to-use interface, affordable prices, and attractive designs to T-Mobile customers," said Charlie Parke, VP of Coolpad Technologies.
The partnership with T-Mobile is the company's first with a tier-one mobile carrier in the US.

Xiaomi Mi 4c goes official

As scheduled, Xiaomi has announced the launch of its Mi 4c smartphone today. The China-only device is priced starting at RMB 1,299 ($204), and will be available from September 23 (tomorrow) on and Tmall.
Specs-wise, the handset is powered by a 64-bit Snapdragon 808 chipset offering a hexa-core CPU with two Cortex-A57 cores and four Cortex-A53 cores, along with Adreno 418 GPU. It sports a 5-inch 1080p display, and comes in 2GB/3GB (RAM) and 16GB/32GB (storage) options.
In terms of camera, the Mi 4c features a 13 MP rear unit which supports phase detection autofocus (PDAF), and a 5MP selfie shooter.
Measuring 7.8mm and weighing in at 132g (which is 11g less than the iPhone 6s), the device packs in a 3080mAh battery, supports Quick Charge 2.0, and features a USB Type-C port having a reversible design.
There's also a built-in IR blaster that the company claims lets you control more than 2000 different appliances, including dSLR cameras, from the device.
On the software side, the smartphone comes with a new Edge Tap feature that allows it to respond to light taps. As the company explains, "A double tap on one side allows you to go back easily without having to stretch for the Back button, and a single tap on the side while in the camera app snaps a photo."
The handset runs the company's MIUI 6 OS, although Xiaomi says that an upgrade to MIUI 7 will happen soon. As for the price, the 2GB/16GB variant will cost RMB 1,299 ($204), while the 3GB/32GB variant will set you back RMB 1,499 ($235). Color options include white, grey, pink, yellow and blue.