OnePlus, the Chinese smartphone manufacturer famed for building cutting edge handsets without the expensive price tag has been reportedly working on a budget model for several months now.
The company made a big splash when it launched its first phone in 2014 with an asking price of just $299. Its prices have crept up since, partly from inflation, partly from more expensive components, and partly because it's possible to get away with it. This new budget model, currently known as the OnePlus Z, but previously referred to as the OnePlus 8 Lite is thought to be a way for the company to cater to consumers who aren't prepared to splash out $649 on a new phone.
A series of leaks in May and June have given us an ever-clearer picture of what the OnePlus Z will look like and what it will contain under the hood.
OnePlus Z Release Date
It's believed that OnePlus may have originally planned to launch the OnePlus Z at the same time as the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro, however, it was delayed to the summer. Recent leaks have suggested the OnePlus Z will hit shelves on 10th July.
The same leak suggested that it would go on sale first in India before getting a global launch. This was corroborated by the company's CEO, Pete Lau, who said an "unnamed budget device" would first launch in India.
OnePlus Z Cameras
This is an area that isn't conclusive. A leak from December 2019 that was published on the website OnLeaks showed renders of the OnePlus Z with a two-camera setup on the back. The images also show that the cameras had been moved to the top left corner of the device, moving away from the centre like the most recent handsets.
This would make the most sense since the flagship OnePlus 8 has three lenses on the rear. However, a tweet from renowned phone leaker, @MaxJmb is believed to suggest that the OnePlus Z will have four rear cameras. This seems a little unlikely though since the budget phone would have better photography capabilities than the top of the range OnePlus 8 Pro.
OnePluz Z Processor
One of the most important elements of a smartphone is its processor. A slow one will make the device feel sluggish, create lag, and cause frustration for the user. While flagship phones are usually packed with the most powerful chipsets on the market, corners are usually cut for budget devices.
Although the OnePlus Z isn't believed to be getting the same Snapdragon 865 processor as the OnePlus 8, a benchmark test published by Geekbench is believed to show a Snapdragon 765.
The 765 is an octa-core processor with a clock speed of 1.8 GHz, which delivers less performance than the latest flagship smartphones, but is still very respectable. Crucially, it also supports 5G, meaning the OnePlus Z will be able to take advantage of the new highspeed mobile networks being built across the world.
Despite having a less powerful processor, OnePlus Z will still be capable of running all the latest apps and games. This means you'll be able to enjoy everything from card games from PokerStars to augmented reality gaming with Minecraft Earth, with no performance issues whatsoever.
Since it'll also be running Android 10, you'll get access to the latest features like Desktop Mode so you can take a tiny computer with you, wherever you go.
OnePlus Z Price
The price of OnePlus Z will be one of the most important factors in its success. A leak from Agarwal has suggested the UK retail price would be £400 ($499). That's £199 less than the cheapest OnePlus 8.
Another suggestion, published by Android Authority was that OnePlus Z will go on sale in India priced at Rs. 25,000 ($330). This would mean that the OnePlus Z would be almost as cheap as the original OnePlus 1 back in 2014.
With a rumoured July release, we don't have much longer to wait before we find out.
We are so dependent on our smartphones these days that just a single day without one can feel quite disconcerting and extremely inconvenient, but what about a whole year? While there is little doubt about the fact that it would be very, very hard as long as you are still living within civilization, Vitaminwater (Coca Cola subsidiary) will give you a total of $100,000 for your inconveniences, provided you can complete the challenge without cheating! How will they know if the contestant cheated? Well, the contestant will have to take a polygraph test at the end of it to prove that they are indeed telling the truth about their technological abstinence!
In order to enter the contest, you will have to post on Instagram or Twitter about what you would do if you couldn't scroll or swipe for a whole year. The answer will have to be the most creative and entertaining to win of course. Also, don't forget to include the hashtags, #nophoneforayear and #contest. Just in case you are serious about entering this contest by Vitaminwater, here are a few other points that you would need to know in advance.
· There is a $10,000 prize if you can last for even six months
· The use of the internet via laptops, desktops and smart speakers will still be allowed
· A feature phone will be given to the contestant to allow basic communication via calls and SMS
Android M is just around the corner and as its announcement nears, and rumors about more and more plausible features of the platform's next version come to surface each and every day. We already have a pretty good understanding of what Android M is going to be all about, but we are certain that Google has a lot of hidden functionalities hidden up its sleeve.
One of these might be granular, user-manageable app permission controls. All versions of Android after 4.3 Jelly Bean have allowed users to grant or revoke app permissions after they've installed a given app, but this functionality is deeply hidden in the OS itself and can't be accessed without a third-party app, with the most popular being App Ops (requires root for certain versions), making it a bit tricky to access it.
Android M might finally bring this undoubtedly handy feature up front and allow users to manage permission to their heartfelt content. There might be a dedicated menu in Settings that deals with app permissions. Also, it's rumored that on the next versions of Android, you won't need to grant various permissions before you install an app from the Play Store, which is a slightly cumbersome task that usually requires you to tap "yes" in a handful of dialogs.
In their own words, if you are a Verizon customer who consumes an "extraordinary amount" of data while using their unlimited data plans, the company will force you to switch over to The Verizon Plan by August 31. If you decide not to change your plan even after the warning and the deadline, your connection will be cut off from the network. After the connection has been shut down, the customer will be able to activate their connection back within fifty days, on switching over to some other Verizon plan than before.
It should be noted that Verizon Wireless had stopped with the unlimited plans a long time ago and this is a ploy to bring the remaining subscribers into one of their new data plans. Although they did mention that they will only contact customers who are using too much data on a monthly basis, no exact number was revealed. However, this makes one wonder, how one can possibly use too much data in a plan that's been marketed as "unlimited?" Whatever the logic at work over here might be, this is how the situation is right now, as reported by Droid-Life.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
"Free" as a word has the ability to get consumer attention instantly. While retail stores usually adopt this sales technique to boost sales, manufacturers are also not behind. For innovative companies pioneering in a field in which others fear to tread, free as a tool can be used to gain and retain competitive advantage against others.
In 2015 Samsung's smartphone arsenal comprising of the Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy S6 edge+, and Galaxy Note 5 is gaining eminence for wireless charging capabilities. Samsung played a masterstroke by incorporating wireless charging in the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge earlier this year, but the Korean giant took the game to another level by making wireless charging faster in the Galaxy S6 edge+ and the Galaxy Note 5. This resulted in faster charging times and in turn it would compel customers to adapt wireless charging as a necessary part of their lives.
Right now the only competitor to wireless charging is the USB Type-C technology which is available in flagship phones like Onplus 2, Nexus 6p. One problem with this new technology is the replacement cost, when USB Type-C cable gets damaged. If this gets accepted as a mainstream accessory, wireless charging will be left for the "early adopter". But, we consider that wireless charging is a better technology, as it saves the phone battery from mild electric shock whenever it is plugged in and thereby elongating the battery life.
In order to drive adoption and make wireless charging the de-facto technology of charging phones, Samsung can give away wireless charger as a necessary accessory in the high-end smartphones scheduled for release in the future.
We recently got to know that Samsung might be coming on-board with Google to optimize TouchWiz, and a new news has added more credibility to this rumour. As per ITHome, Samsung will be concentrating more on user experience enhancement with the Galaxy S7, while Google engineers will help the Samsung backend code on its popular customized version of Android.
The report also says that Samsung and Google's primary goal is to make a "a non-delayed operating experience", one with "superior fluency than iOS". Now, Android has got huge market and is probably having more support on high-end devices when it comes to general fluidity. In the recent times, given how Apple's updates to iOS continue to bring new issues (especially as they try to make the OS more flexible), it's not clear if Android will ever be as optimized as the iOS.
The Korean tech giant has already attained a significant level of optimization with the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge+, and it would be super exciting to see TouchWiz become even more efficient in the future (it would also be great to see Samsung solve the issues pertaining to multitasking in high-end devices). The report also establishes that the microSD slot will come back with the Galaxy S7, though at this very moment things are quite hazy. We'll wait and watch!
Following the Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 which suffered from initial reports out of Korea's Samsung about overheating in early mock-ups causing a delay in the release of one of their flagship phones, the Snapdragon 820 is expected to re-establish Qualcomm's leadership position in mobile-specific microchips.
Samsung develops its own Exynos range of SoC that it puts into model variants, particularly in Asian markets, which it used when Qualcomm came up short with the 810. The Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+ and Note 5 all used Samsung's over SoC instead of Qualcomm. However, the latter chip-maker is roaring back with its upcoming 820.
Leaked benchmark scores for both Geekbench and AnTuTu indicate that the Snapdragon 820 is likely to outperform the collection of competitors with their best 2015 releases. The benchmark scores beat the Note 5 and even matched the iPhone 6S Plus in some off-screen tests while lagging a little with the on-screen ones.
The test screenshots refer to the SD820 being used on a 6.2-inch smartphone with an eye-gouging 1600x2560 resolution with 4 GB of RAM. Clearly the 820 was being pushed hard with the sheer number of pixels being moved around on the screen during the testing on the Android 6.0 platform. In fact, the number of pixels being managed on-screen far exceeds that of the iPhone S6 Plus which likely explains the on-screen under-performance compared to the Apple model.
LeTV announced the Le Max Pro will use the 820, but Samsung is also expected to release details about the Galaxy S7 in a couple of weeks which is likely to adopt the new Qualcomm technology in some of its phone variants.
It was just yesterday that we brought to you images of a leaked case which provided us with multiple alleged external details of the upcoming Galaxy S8. Take a look at another one today coming in from Ghostek, featuring one of their Atomic Shock resistant cases for the S8. Before we delve into the details, keep in mind that this is just a render and nothing is guaranteed to be right at all.
We can see a single rear camera, which is consistent with all the recent rumors, but the cut-out on the case itself is suspiciously big enough for a dual camera module. No fingerprint scanners on the back and a lacking Home button in front indicates that Samsung is opting for an optical fingerprint sensor which will be placed under the glass. Just like the render by Slashgear had suggested, both the volume keys and the Power button can be seen on the left side.
Do you like what you see? Or do you think it's a complete hogwash? Let us know in the comments section below. In the meanwhile, we will have to wait a little while longer to see what is what as Samsung prepares the S8 for a mid-April launch (or is it going to be a February launch?).
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
If you were planning to get a S8 or S8+ from Sprint, you will now have one more reason to do so. If you pre-order either of the two devices from Sprint, Samsung will throw in an e-gift certificate worth $100 with the package. The certificate can however, only be used to buy or get a discount from the Samsung website.
If you choose any other carrier, there are some pretty good deals going on there as well and it mainly includes a gift offer. The gift offer translates to the buyer getting a 256GB MMC card, an Oculus content box and a Gear VR with controller/AKG headphones by paying only $99 extra. Granted it's not a bad deal, but we could be seeing better ones in the future.
Which offer appeals to you more? The gift bundle for an extra 100 bucks or the $100 e-certificate? Let us know in the comments.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
Dropbox has revamped its Pro plan with more storage, improved link sharing and remote wipe. The Dropbox Pro plan remains at $10 a month (or $100 per year) but you get 1TB of storage for that.
Having a Pro account lets you share password-protected links. Sharing links is arguably one of the best features of Dropbox and now you won't have to worry about the link getting in the wrong hands.
You can get some extra peace of mind by setting up an expiration date for shared links. You can pick 7 days, 30 days or a custom period. You can also adjust the expiration date later if you change your mind.
Another way to share files without giving up too much control over them is by using view-only shared folders. You can enable this for select members so that they always get the latest version of your files but will not be able to change them.
We live in an age where iGaming and sports betting is now omnipresent and the development of new technology has certainly helped to bring online gaming right into the consumer mainstream.
This is borne out by the statistics too, with a growing percentage of most sports audiences known to wager regularly as part of the experience. This includes 76.8% of football fans according to one report, the vast majority of which are increasingly engaged with real-time and in-play markets.
Online betting is becoming an increasingly scientific practice, however, which is why fans are turning to specific technology such as betting calculators to identify value in specific odds and wager types.
If you're a would be better, or just want to explore some different tools and strategies when you place a bet on your favourite team, ere are three of the best tools to help you on your way:
You may want to place a little flutter on your team but working out different odd combinations and post a bit of a numeracy challenge. Fear not however because there are dedicated and complex calculator applications that can help you out in no time at all.
Take the Photomath app, for example, which can be used for everything from completing simple calculators to solving arithmetic conundrums and complex calculus, all with the aid of your iPhone camera.
This tool also explains specific calculation in careful details, which is great if you're looking to get to grips with decimal odds and want to work out the impact that your stake has on your potential returns.
This app, which is compatible with both the iPhone and the iPad, is also available in multiple languages. Not only this, but it's free to access and can provide genuine value for betting novices and pros.
Next up is the Soulver app for the iPad and iPhone, which is best described as an elegant and functional notepad calculator that adds real value to punters.
Most importantly, you can include words alongside numbers and save results over a sustained period of time, helping you to record your betting outcomes in detail and create a learning resource that can inform your selections going forward.
This app also serves the dual purpose of carrying our quick and accurate calculations, and in this respect it's something of one-stop shop for all punters.
There are custom variables available to create more flexible working too, and whilst the app costs £2.99 from The Apple app Store it can more that justify this investment for serious sports bettors.
- The OddsMonkey Calculator
We close with one of the most popular sports wagering calculator types on the market, and one that can help you to get the most out of your matched betting strategies.
Make no mistake; a matched betting calculator is a critical component of platforms such as OddsMonkey, as this enables you to enter your stake, apply the relevant decimal odds and factor in any applicable commission percentage.
The oddsmonkey calculator that can be used at matchedbettingsites.com will then instantly produce a profit figure and full breakdown of how this is generated, helping you to make statistically informed decisions.
When placing multiple bets simultaneously, this type of all calculator can also help you to create a diverse and effective portfolio of wagers that are likely to deliver the best possible returns.
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