Almost a year ago, Lenovo released the Moto Z Play, a mid-range handset that could accept modular accessories. It is now seeing a fresh discount that cuts $50 off its original price. Read more…

Microsoft has mostly left the Surface Pro line untouched since late 2015, but the company is finally giving it a long overdue refresh today. Announced at an event in Shanghai earlier, the new machine — now simply dubbed Surface Pro — packs Intel’s 7th-gen Core processors (Kaby Lake; m3, i5 and i7 flavors), an enhanced 12.3-inch PixelSense display (2,736 x 1,824) plus optional LTE Advanced radio due later this year. Microsoft calls this “the lightest, the best sounding, the fastest and the quietest Surface Pro ever,” and the company was keen to claim that its own machine is 1.7 times faster than the iPad Pro.

Source: Microsoft

Gartner says a trio of Chinese manufacturers accounted for a quarter of global smartphone sales during Q1, similar to what the IDC had stated.

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Why the US market is so hard to crack

April 20, 2017

We previously reported that despite Samsung’s leading worldwide smartphone shipments, the International Data Corporation attributed global sales growth to Chinese OEMs like Huawei, OPPO, and Vivo. IDC’s data indicated that a total of 347 million devices were shipped during Q1 of 2017, and in contrast to Samsung and Apple’s near-zero percent year-over-year growth, the aforementioned Chinese trio all saw double-digit growth. Well, Gartner just released their own data regarding the global smartphone market, and it only seems to confirm the rapid rise of Chinese manufacturers.

The general landscape looks familiar: among the 380 million devices sold to end users, most were Samsung-made, followed by Apple. Samsung saw a decline compared to its market share during Q1 of 2016, which Gartner’s Anshul Gupta explains was partially due to the absence of a Note device last year. More importantly, however, neither of these two saw a sales jump precisely because of the increasing competition from Chinese brands.

The real story here is just how fast these Chinese electronics companies are catching up.

Indeed, a trio of Chinese companies – Huawei, OPPO, and Vivo – rank third, fourth, and fifth respectively in the number of devices sold during this past quarter. Companies like OPPO and Vivo, in particular, saw tremendous year-over-year growth, with OPPO retaining its No. 1 position in China. The real story here is just how fast these Chinese electronics companies are catching up. Just last year, the total market share of these three brands came out to be around 16 percent. This year, they account for a quarter of all smartphone sales. With offline retail strategies and affordable yet premium-looking devices, Chinese manufacturers are set to grow even further in highly lucrative markets like India and China.

And of course, thanks to Samsung’s lead and the rapid growth of Chinese OEMs, the gap between Android and iOS is widening. Of the 380 million devices sold during this past quarter, 327 million were Android devices, which equates to 86 percent in market share. In contrast, a total of 52 million iOS devices were sold, meaning a slight decrease in market share compared to last year’s Q1.

Do you think Chinese manufacturers like Huawei and OPPO will continue to see significant growth? Or will their growth plateau? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

A week ago, HTC took the wraps off the U11. One of the biggest selling points of the flagship is its camera, which currently has the highest DxOMark score of 90. It is followed by the Google Pixel in second place (89), and the HTC 10, Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy S7 Edge, and Sony Xperia Performance in third, all of which have a score of 88.

Sample images taken with the HTC U11 have now made their way online, and give us a better look at how good the flagship is in the photography department. Looking at the images, we can see that the camera does its job extremely well in low-light conditions, where a lot of flagship struggle. You can check out some of the pictures in the gallery below.

Based on the images above, we can say that there’s a good reason why the U11 has the highest DxOMark score. There are more pictures available, which you can check out via the button below.

What do you think about the pictures taken with the HTC U11? Does the device have a better camera than the Galaxy S8 or any other flagship device? Let us know by posting a comment down below.

Last week, Google started rolling out an update to its digital assistant that added typing support. What this means is that you can just type in Assistant to perform a task instead of using your voice. Google has now made the feature even better, as it has added a new suggestion row that contains various search phrases.

Here’s how it works. When you launch Assistant, you can tap on the keyboard icon at the bottom of the screen to start typing. When Gboard pops up, you now see the new suggestion row on top with phrases like, “What’s the temperature outside?”, and others. This makes it easy for you to get access to certain info, without having to manually type in the question.

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Update: Google officially announces Assistant for iOS devices

6 days ago

When you tap on a suggestion, it shows up in the text field, meaning you can edit it before it goes live. What’s interesting is that as soon as you start typing, the keyboard will offer you suggestions for the next word along with spelling suggestions. So the new search phrases found in Assistant are only visible when the text field is empty, which happens when you launch the app or right after you enter a question or command.

Keep in mind that the new feature might not be live for all users yet. But don’t worry too much if it hasn’t hit your device, as you probably won’t have to wait for much longer before you get it.

Typing in Assistant is a great feature to have and comes in quite handy when there are are a lot of people around and you don’t feel comfortable talking to your phone. Adding popular search phrases makes using it a lot faster and easier, as you can get info about the weather, for example, with just a tap or two.

Last week, Samsung Pay launched in the UK. The mobile payment service supports three banks (MBNA, Nationwide, and Santander), and is compatible with six smartphones: the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, and the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge.

In hopes of getting as many users on board as possible, the tech giant is now bringing the payment service to its smartwatches. You can now pay for goods and services at supported retailers across the UK with your Gear S3 and Gear S2. The payment process is super easy, as all you have to do is place the smartwatch near a terminal, wait for the transaction to be approved, and you’re good to go.

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Samsung Pay expands to four new countries

4 weeks ago

It’s worth pointing out that the Gear S3 supports both NFC as well as MST, which allows you to make payments at traditional (older) card readers. The Gear S2, on the other hand, doesn’t support MST, meaning that it’s only compatible with NFC-enabled terminals.

The update is already making its way to the Gear S3 and S2, but it might not be available for all users just yet. Some of you may have already received it, while others will have to wait for a few more days.

Do you see yourself using Samsung Pay on a smartwatch? Let us know down below.

Update, May 22: A Lenovo representative just confirmed that the Moto Z2 Play would have a significantly smaller battery compared to the Moto Z Play. The device, expected in the coming weeks, will feature a built-in 3,000 mAh battery, which is 17 percent lower than its predecessor’s.

@AnbhuleAnant Hi Anant. Moto Z2 Play has Non-removable Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery. Auxen_Lenovo

— Lenovo (@lenovo) May 20, 2017

Original post, May 5: A couple of weeks ago, a render of what the Moto Z2 Play from Motorola may look like got leaked to the internet. Now a new report claims to have more information on the upcoming mid-range phone, and how it may differ from the original Moto Z Play.

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Upcoming Moto Z2 Force won’t be a Verizon exclusive

April 17, 2017

The report comes from VentureBeat and noted gadget leaker Evan “@evleaks” Blass.  He claims, based on seeing some unreleased marketing material, that the Moto Z2 Play will only have a 3,000 mAh battery, which will last up to one day and six hours. That’s far smaller than the Moto Z Play’s 3,510 mAh battery pack which could last over two days with a single charge. This difference is apparently due to cutting down the thickness and weight on the Z2 Play.

Blass also claims that the Moto Z2 Play will have Android 7.1.1 Nougat out of the box. It will keep the 5.5-inch 1080p display from the original, and inside there will reportedly be a Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 processor running at 2.2 GHz. It will have 4 GB of RAM, 32 GB of on-board storage, a 12 MP rear-camera with dual auto-focus and a 5 MP front-facing camera. It will be released in Lunar Gray and Fine Gold colors, according to the report.

We should not have long before Motorola, and its parent company Lenovo, officially announce the new members of the Moto Z family of phones. In the meantime, what do you think of the rumors that the Z2 Play will get a big dip in battery life? Let us know in the comments!

Nokia has already announced three smartphones this year and plans on releasing at least one more. Called the Nokia 9, it will go head to head with high-end devices on the market including the Samsung Galaxy S8 and LG G6.

FrAndroid has managed to get its hands on a prototype of the smartphone and has posted a few images along with the specs on its website. The Nokia 9 features a 5.27-inch QHD display and is powered by the latest Snapdragon 835 chipset.

It has 4 GB of RAM and comes equipped with two 13 MP cameras on the back, which are positioned vertically. The device also offers 64 GB of storage, runs Android 7.1.1 Nougat, and has a fingerprint scanner that’s located on the front.

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Clove halts pre-orders for Nokia devices despite high demand

2 weeks ago

Unfortunately, we can’t really tell you much when it comes to the way the device looks. The prototype of the Nokia 9 is in a very bulky case that does a good job of hiding its design. However, we can see the dual-camera setup on the back, the home button below the screen along with capacitive buttons, the 3.5 mm headphone jack on top, and the USB Type-C port at the bottom.

The only other things that are visible are the volume rocker and the power button, which are both placed on the right side of the device. You can check out all the images in the gallery below.

There’s no word on when the Nokia 9 will be announced or how much it will retail for. We hope that the device will carry an affordable price tag, otherwise it will probably find it hard to compete with the flagships that are currently on the market.

Looking for a quick overview of stock Android smartphones and their features? StockDroids might be just what you need. After launching towards the end of 2016, the no-frills website has since seen a few upgrades to improve usability and keep the catalog up-to-date — and the latest version is more useful than ever.

StockDroids is based on a single landing page that provides a table of stock (or near-stock) Android devices. It defaults to a chronological list based on when the phones were first released and includes expected details like the dimensions, storage configurations, display resolutions etc. However, it also offers current price estimates, review scores and even whether the phones have Root information available or LineageOS support (the latter being among the most recent additions).

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This Was Google I/O 2017

15 hours ago

The page is easy to organize, letting you “pin” devices so you can put your own selection of devices alongside each other, and there are a list of sorting options so you can see, for example, the devices that weigh the most or have the largest display. What’s more, you can set minimum and maximum values for certain criteria so that you filter out products that don’t include what you’re interested in.

While it’s not a particularly inviting website in terms of looks, its layout does make it easy-to-use: check out StockDroids here and give us your thoughts on it in the comments.

The Nubia N1 Lite has made its way to India. Starting today, you can get your hands on the smartphone for Rs. 6,999. It comes in black and is exclusively available on Amazon.

The mid-ranger was officially announced back at MWC 2017 in Barcelona, Spain. It sports a 5.5-inch HD display and is powered by the MediaTek 6737 chipset. The device has 2 GB or RAM and offers only 16 GB of storage that is, fortunately, expandable (up to 128 GB).

It features an 8 MP primary camera with an f/2.0 aperture and a fingerprint scanner that’s positioned below it. According to the company, it can unlock the device in 0.3 seconds. There’s also a selfie snapper on board that has a 5 MP sensor and LED flash.

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Nubia launches three beautiful new phones in China, including Nubia M2

March 21, 2017

The smartphone offers a 3,000 mAh battery and runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with a custom skin on top. Unlike the Nubia N1, its made of plastic and has a speaker that’s positioned on the back, which is far from an ideal location.

If you’re looking for an affordable smartphone, the Nubia N1 Lite just might be up your alley. To get it, visit Amazon’s website by clicking the button below.

In addition to the Nubia N1 Lite, quite a few other smartphones went on sale in India over the last month or so. These include the Meizu M5, Honor 8 Lite, Asus Zenfone Go, Vivo V5s, and Samsung Galaxy On Nxt (64 GB version).

Read: Best Android phones in India under Rs. 30,000

What do you think about the Nubia N1 Lite? Would you consider buying it? Share your thoughts with us down below.

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