Although the Galaxy Note 7 is not exactly enjoying a good reputation right now due to the faulty and hazardous batteries that some of the units are shipped with, there is no denying that the iris-scanner which the smartphone boasts of is one of its kind at the moment. The good news is that according to DJ Koh, the iris-scanners will also be seen on mid-range devices from Samsung as it becomes more cost-effective to do so, with time. He also mentions that he was personally associated with its development and in the coming months, Samsung will concentrate towards keeping the technology secure from all kind of privacy or security threats that it may encounter.
Here are some excerpts from the president of Samsung Mobiles speech at the "Unpacked" event press conference in New York.
"We did not put iris scanning in the flagship model just to do 'unlock'. In the long run, through third parties and API, we want to connect it with apps. For mobile banking, we are thinking of applying iris scanning for large transactions, and are already talking with banks in some countries,"
"Through continued cost cutting, iris scanning can trickle down to mid-end models,"
"There is a view that Android is weak in security compared to its competitor and we want to expand software security that can overcome this image"
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
Let's get something out of the way first; Samsung is not struggling by any means as it posted the highest profits ever this quarter, in spite of all the bad mojo that had been following them for a while now. In fact, even in its mobile department, Samsung is leading in all sectors in terms of sales figures across the world. Having said all that, it looks like Samsung's current premier handset is falling behind in sales numbers, as compared to the previous generation Galaxy S7.
Things didn't start off like that though as the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus broke all records as far as pre-orders were concerned. Now that the initial hype is over, reports are coming in with news that the Galaxy S8 is actually falling behind its predecessor in terms of sales now. According to The Bell, 9.8 million Galaxy S8/S8 Plus handsets have been sold in the two months following release; unfortunately, that number is roughly 20% lesser than the Galaxy S7/S7 Edge's 12 million sales figure within the same span of time last year. We will have to wait and see if the sales pick up again.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
A new Samsung smartphone is coming to the Indian market, as made obvious by the company's latest teaser on Amazon India and it will definitely carry the moniker "Star." Whether it will be called Galaxy A8 Star or Galaxy A9 Star is something that remains to be seen, because the same smartphone is known as A9 Star in China, but as A8 Star in all other markets. Now the real question is, will Indians be buying this smartphone in enough quantities to justify the launch?
Samsung has not been doing particularly well recently in the country due to the presence of its Chinese rival Xiaomi and their ridiculously cheap but better alternatives to Samsung's smartphones in the low-mid to mid-range segments. Even as Samsung prepares to launch the sleek looking device for around INR 30,000 (the exact price has not yet been revealed) or $430, Xiaomi has already launched the Pocophone F1 in India for a ridiculous starting price of only INR 21,000 ($300 approximately). Considering that the Pocophone F1 will sport a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, at least 6GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage for that price, it isn't looking particularly good for the Galaxy A8 Star, which is not only at least INR 10,000 ($143 approximately) more expensive than the Pocophone F1, but also sports a much weaker Snapdragon 660 SoC and just 4GB of RAM. Although the battery is a big one in the A8/A9 Star at 3,700mAh, it pales against the competition's 4,000mAh battery. The only advantage that Samsung has over Xiaomi is the "brand" factor, which matters in India because smartphones are seen as status symbols in the country for some reason!
After what happened with the CyanogenOS, people were in confusion regarding what would happen to the much loved CyanogenMod community. As it turns out, the events within Cyanogen Inc. has taken its toll on CyanogenMod as well. It was officially declared on their blog that the CyanogenMod OS versions are now discontinued as it is no longer possible to carry the community-driven project forward due to the current failing of the company. Even the very name, "Cyanogen" is up for grabs if any company wants to patent it.
The good news is that the OS might live on in the form of Lineage Android Distribution. According to reports, Lineage Android will be based on what CM has achieved so far and hopefully will continue to improve and update it. We are sad that one of the best alternatives to OEM supplied UI is going away for good, especially since it managed to touch so many hearts by providing Android firmware upgrades to phones that were abandoned a long time ago by their manufacturers. It is nevertheless, inspiring to see the basic admirable ideas behind the project live on, albeit with a different name.
Head over to https://forum.youmobile.org/downloads/ to find all the latest updates for your smartphone.
Saikat Kar (tech-enthusiast)
We reported before that Samsung is working on Android 5.1 Lollipop update for its latest flagships (S6, S6 edge, Note 4.. etc) and that the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge will be the first to receive the update.
Today, our source reports that Samsung's Android 5.1 Lollipop firmwares for its latest flagships Galaxy S6 (SM-G920) and Galaxy S6 Edge (SM-G925) are currently In-development. We don't have a change-log for the update currently as it's still in early development stages, but we can say that it will bring few UI changes to the TouchWiz along with various security enhancements, bug fixes and performance improvements. The update is expected to start rolling-out by Early Q3,2015, However, this date is not yet confirmed.
In other hands, Samsung is preparing a similar Android 5.1 Lollipop update the Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy Note Edge users with changes to the TouchWiz UI and new features too. Still, there is no reports if the Note 4 Lollipop 5.1 firmware has entered the development stages or not.
Follow Samsung's Official Lollipop Updates Page and Stay tuned for more info regarding Samsung's Android 5.1 Lollipop update.