Xiaomi tests wireless charging for the flagship Mi 7

Wireless charging appeared in smartphones for a long time, but only after the release of the new iPhone, Chinese manufacturers drew attention to this technology. Xiaomi was no exception – the company has already launched a test production of new charging modules for the next flagship model Xiaomi Mi 7.

What is known?

According to the source, Xiaomi successfully tested wireless charging and is about to start mass production of the component before the Chinese New Year (February 16). The company works with the same vendor that produces modules for Apple. By the way, the iPhone 8 and iPhone X have a flat NXP receiver coil, and Broadcom chip is responsible for charge control.

More recently, Xiaomi has joined the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), which is promoting the open wireless charging standard Qi. It is most often found in mobile devices, although Samsung smartphones also support PMA technology (works by the same inductive method, but uses a different frequency).

When to expect?

According to rumors, the official announcement of Xiaomi Mi 7 will be held in March-April 2018. Smartphone with frameless design will receive a top-end processor Snapdragon 845, but the new system of face recognition is unlikely to have time to prepare for the release of the flagship.

Increased in size, the clone OnePlus 5T went on sale – the official price

Following the Oppo R11s smartphone, which began to be sold earlier this month, today the enlarged OnePlus 5T clone entered the market, which can already be purchased in China and several other Asian countries. The novelty is called Oppo R11s Plus, and it is equipped with almost the latest technology. It should immediately be noted that the companies OnePlus and Oppo one owner, so the appearance of their mobile devices is repeated (apparently for the sake of economy).

The Oppo R11s Plus smartphone features a 6.43-inch screen (6.01-inch from OnePlus 5T), with a resolution of 2160×1080 pixels (Full HD +) and an 18: 9 aspect ratio, a dual 20Mp core and 20MP front-facing cameras, a scanner fingerprints on the back cover, 8-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor, 6 GB of operative and 64 GB of permanent flash memory, a microSD memory card slot up to 256 GB inclusive, and a 4000 mAh battery with Quick Charge 4.0 .

Among other things, the enlarged clone OnePlus 5T is equipped with 4G LTE modules, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, as well as a slot for installing two SIM-cards and a USB Type-C connector for recharging. The Oppo R11s Plus smartphone boasts a built-in ColorOS 3.2 firmware based on Android 7.1.1 Nougat a face scanner that recognizes the biometric appearance of the user over 128 key points. This function can be used to quickly unlock the phone, but only if there is light.

Starting today, everyone can buy an Oppo R11s Plus smartphone in China at the official recommended price of $ 560.

Samsung Galaxy S6 owners rejoice – Android 8.0 Oreo may be coming soon

Contrary to everything, it seems that the Samsung Galaxy S6 can really get the Android 8.0 Oreo software update.

Samsung Galaxy S6 appeared in 2015. This may seem short-lived, but this is the time for software updates. When the Galaxy S6 came out, it ran on the now-ancient Android 5.0 Lollipop (from 2014). Since then, Google has made its debut in three new major versions of its Android operating system for mobile devices.

The problem for Galaxy S6 owners was that Samsung usually only provides two major updates for Android for each flagship. This means that we never expected that the Galaxy S6 will be updated after last year’s version of Android 7.0 Nougat.

The Reddit stream created by the user CyberConCoder contains information about the alleged conversations with four different representatives of Samsung customer support. According to the user, all four suggested that the Galaxy S6 will receive an update to Oreo – including one who asked his supervisor for clarity.

The screenshots were also included in the stream, although this by no means confirms that the conversations are correct. In addition, while chat-rep can often be the source of other confidential information, it often happens that they are mistaken. Even the user admits that we all need to “take it with a huge amount of salt”.

If this is true, however, this is great news for owners of the Galaxy S6 – and owners of other Samsung phones in general. If the Galaxy S6 gets three major versions of updates for Android, this may mean that the same is true for other Galaxy phones in the future. This would mean, for example, that the Samsung Galaxy S8 will receive an updated Android Q update, which we expect live in 2019.

Sony launches impressive new Alpha A9 mirrorless full-frame camera

Sony has launched what it’s calling its “most technologically advanced” digital camera yet, and it certainly looks like a beast on paper.

Sony’s latest flagship mirrorless sits above the Alpha 7 range, and features a blackout-free viewfinder that allows for continuous shooting at up to 20fps and offers 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second.

The new A9 is a full-frame mirrorless camera that comes packing a load of features that should suit professional photographers looking for a great mirrorless offering.

It’s all down to what Sony is claiming is the world’s first full-frame stacked Exmor RS CMOS sensor, which comes with a 24.2-megapixel resolution.

Sony’s sensor allows for an impressive ISO range of 100–51,200, expandable to 50–204,800, along with super-fast data speed processing at up to 20 times faster than the company’s previous full-frame mirrorless cameras.

There’s also vibration-free shooting at speeds up to 1/32,000 sec with a fully electronic and silent shutter, along with a 5-axis image stabilisation system.

Not enough for you? Well, there’s plenty more, starting with the 693 phase-detect autofocus points, covering 93% of the frame.

Meanwhile, the new high-resolution, high-luminance Quad-VGA OLED Tru-Finder viewfinder packs around 3,686,000 dots, which is the highest-resolution viewfinder Sony has yet packed into a camera and will produce highly-detailed shots.

The hybrid AF setup is said to be about 25% faster than the Alpha A7R II, and should ensure fast-moving subjects are captured without difficulty.

Sony has also made sure the camera can shoot Full HD video at 120fps, and there’s an Ethernet port to make for easy file transfer, along with two SD card slots.

The A9 can also shoot 4K video (3840 x 2160p), using full pixel readout without pixel binning to collect 6K of information – which means it oversamples the image to make sure you get super-high quality footage.

The company will release the A9 on May 25 for $4500 in the US while Europeans will have to wait until June when the camera will arrive for £4500 in the UK and €5300 in the rest of Europe.

Samsung ordered to pay $11.6 million to Huawei for patent infringements

The Chinese court ordered Samsung to pay damages to the Chinese company Huawei 80 million yuan ($ 11.6 million 9.3 million pounds sterling) in compensation for damages after the trial of patent infringement.

Huawei filed a lawsuit against Samsung in May last year, following further applications for patent violations in Shenzhen, China and California, regarding what it claims to be an unlicensed use of its 4G technology.

Huawei Device Co Ltd owns more than 50,000 technology patents and said that Samsung has implemented 20 different phones and tablets, including Galaxy S7, without permission.

In July, Samsung, which recently lost its position in the smartphone market of Huawei, acknowledged more than six alleged patent infringements.

This new implementation means that three Samsung Electronics units will have to repair the damage, while five company companies were ordered to stop violating Huawei’s copyright.

A representative of Huawei told the BBC: “Huawei notes the court’s decision on this case. Huawei believes that respecting and protecting the intellectual property of other companies allows all companies to recoup our investment in research and development.

“We believe that respect for intellectual property contributes to innovation and healthy, sustainable growth in the industry.”

A representative of Samsung told the BBC that the company will consider this decision before the full answer is issued.

The spokesman added: “For many years, Samsung Electronics has been the initiator of the development of innovative mobile technologies through constant investment in research and development to provide consumers with a wide range of innovative products.”

The victory of Huawei in China comes in the form of 4G patents.

The Chinese smartphone manufacturer received an order from the High Court of England and Wales to pay the American company Unwired Planet for the use of patents acquired from Ericsson.

Huawei is reportedly still evaluating the decision.


Panasonic’s SC-GA10 smart hi-fi speaker wants to take down Google Home

At IFA 2017 Panasonic has launched a hi-fi speaker armed with Google Assistant. The Panasonic SC-GA10 aims to supplant the Google Home by, well, sounding better.

There are two 20mm soft-dome tweeters placed at 45 degrees, which gives a full 180-degree sound field. The 8cm woofer is armed with dual voice coils for more robust bass, as well as a long reflex port. There are even manual and preset EQs. Basically, the Panasonic SC-GA10 claims to put a lot more focus on sound than the Google Home does.

It should be just as smart as the Google Home too, as it is fully compatible with Google Assistant. It supports major music streaming apps such as Spotify, Google Play and TuneIn Radio.

You can also perform basic web searches, make to-do lists, control smart home devices, and enjoy multi-room audio with other Chromecast-integrated speakers. Alternatively, you can get two Panasonic SC-GA10 units and use them in stereo configuration via Bluetooth.

The Panasonic SC-GA10 will go on sale in early 2018. No price has been announced as yet.

Google Home just caught up to Amazon Echo in a major way

It’s been a big week for Google Home owners. Firstly, the company began rolling out support for hands-free voice calling, and now it has opened up wider support for the world’s favourite music streaming service.

As promised back at Google I/O in June, Spotify Free users can now play music via the smart home speaker, as well as paying Premium customers.

Thanks to the update, those unwilling to fork out for their monthly streaming will be able to request hits, simply by adding “on Spotify” to their voice commands.

The rollout also allows Spotify Free users to Cast music to other speakers around the home, so long as they’re linked to the Home speaker.

If you wish to add your Spotify Free account, you can head to the Google Home app and browse to the music section (via Android Police).


Provided you have the app installed on your smartphone, you’ll be able to login in with your ad-supported Spotify Free account and away you go.

You’ll have to put up with lower quality audio, as is the case when you don’t pay for your music, but it’s a small price to pay.

How about Apple Music?

Full Spotify support comes following Deezer integration this month.

As far as music is concerned, Google Home is beginning to catch up with the Amazon Echo, which has long supported a wider range of options.

Both are still missing Apple Music. It’s hardly a surprise when Apple is going to be pushing its subscribers (possibily with extreme force) towards the HomePod.

Xbox One X release date, specs, price, games, pre-orders and everything we know

Xbox One X release date, specs, price, games and everything we know
Xbox One X, previously known as Project Scorpio, is Microsoft’s 4K UHD console coming later this year. We’ve compiled everything you need to know about the new system including its specs, release date, price and more.

Microsoft has fully spilled the beans on the Xbox One X, and it looks like it has been worth the wait.

For starters, the Xbox One X will be fully backwards-compatible with Xbox One games – and offer improved performance on these titles to boot.

On the technical side, there was some new information about the specs. The processor is cooled using a liquid vapour chamber, a technique that’s becoming more common on more compact devices. There’s also a brand-new power-management system for the most efficient delivery of electricity seen on an Xbox console.

And finally, Microsoft revealed the Xbox One X’s price and release date. Read on for full details of everything we now know about the Xbox One X.

Xbox One X pre-orders: when can I buy one?
You can now pre-order the Xbox One X ahead of its November release. Microsoft confirmed specific details during its recent Gamescom presentation, which is also saw the reveal of the Xbox One X: Project Scorpio Edition.

This hugely limited hardware is now available to pre-order, although many retailers have already ran out of stock. At the time of writing, it can still be pre-ordered directly from the Microsoft Store and GAME. It maintains the £449.99 price of the standard console, meaning this is something hardcore Xbox fans will want to have in their collection.

Xbox One X Specs: How powerful is the Xbox One X?
Here’s a quick breakdown of all the key Xbox One X specs:

CPU: Eight-core 2.3GHz processor
GPU: 40 compute units at 1172MHz
RAM: 12GB GDDR5 (shared between system and GPU)
Bandwidth: 326GB/s
Storage: 1TB hard disk
Disc: UHD Blu-ray player
Video: 4K output, HDR 10 support
Audio: DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Atmos, PCM 2.0, 5.1, 7.1
Wireless: Bluetooth, dual-band Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, IR blaster
Connectors: 2x HDMI (2.0b out, 1.4b in), 3x USB 3.0 ports, IR out, S/PDIF, Ethernet
First, let’s look at the headline Xbox One X specs before moving onto how this will affect gaming resolution and performance.

The One X uses an eight-core processor, likely from AMD although not officially stated, running at 2.3GHz. Seasoned PC gamers might not think this sounds like a lot and, indeed, it isn’t. But keep in mind console processors are packed into an incredibly tight space, and more GHz means more heat. This is still a substantial boost over the Xbox One, whose eight cores ran at 1.75GHz.

iPhone 8’s face-scanning feature may work even when phone lays flat

The iPhone 8 is fast-becoming the most leaked phone in history, with the mountain of rumours and reports growing ever-higher.

At the end of July we had a leak from none other than Apple itself, which accidentally pushed firmware for its upcoming HomePod smart speaker and inadvertently released details of forthcoming products.

That included the iPhone 8, which showed up in crude design outlines hidden within the code itself.

And now, it seems the code is still providing us with info about the upcoming handset, this time connected to the oft-rumoured facial recognition tech.

The HomePod’s firmware itself showed that the iPhone will come with infra-red face unlock in BiometricKit – a developer tool for biometric sensor tech.

But it seems the facial recognition, internally referred to as “Pearl”, will be more capable than existing versions of the feature, if the latest revelations from the code are accurate.

Instead of having to pick the phone up for the feature to work, code suggests it will be able to scan a user’s face and unlock a device while the phone is laying flat on a surface (via).

As iHelp BR found, code strings found in the firmware make reference to “AXRestingPearlUnlock” and “com.apple.accessibility.resting.pearl.unlock”.

Apple is expected to introduce the facial recognition feature, perhaps in place of the Touch ID fingerprint scanner, which will likely be affected by the new, almost full-face screen design.

Whether Apple will be able to integrate the fingerprint scanner into the display remains to be seen, but at this point there’s nothing to confirm that will be the case.

These code strings include “APPS_USING_PEARL” and “PEARL_AUTOLOCK”, suggesting the feature could be used to unlock specific apps and prevent particular people from using the phone.

At this point, it’s all still a bit unclear, but Apple is expected to unveil the phone in September so stay tuned.

Your non-Samsung phone could soon get Samsung Pay

Samsung may bring its Samsung Pay mobile payments service to non-Samsung phones for the first time, according to a new report.

Gadget 360 claims the company is investigating bringing the service to other handsets, based on information from “a source familiar with the developments”.

Sammy is said to be holding internal talks, both within the company and with OEMs, about Samsung Pay’s expansion.

The company’s mobile payments platform launched in the UK in May this year, with Samsung debuting PayPal support for US users earlier this month.

Sammy outdoes rival services from Apple and Google by allowing users to use the service with both NFC technology and magnetic secure transmission (MST) technology.

As it stands, only a handful of Samsung handsets support Samsung Pay, with some mid-range offerings in India only coming with a pared-down version of the feature called Samsung Pay Mini.

However, if the report is accurate, we could see the full service appearing on numerous new phones from other companies.

That said, outside companies will have to add a specialised chip in order to enable the use of MST technology and support Samsung Pay.

One way Samsung is trying to make this easier, according to the source, is by investigating the feasibility of an accessory, similar to LoopPay Card, that could attach to other phones.

What’s more, the source claims Samsung will be looking to introduce its plans, in whatever form they take, in mid-2018.

Samsung is yet to confirm any of this for now, so the usual due caution is advised here.