iPhone 8 to Ditch Home Button for ‘Function Area’, Cost Over $1,000: KGI Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo

iPhone 8 to Ditch Home Button for 'Function Area', Cost Over $1,000: KGI Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo

KGI analyst Ming Chi Kuo in a new note to his clients has predicted a few more things about the iPhone 8. In his note, Kuo reiterates that the iPhone 8 will ditch the home button for a full-screen design. This additional real estate will used to have a function area towards the bottom of the display that will bring virtual ‘always-on’ buttons to the iPhone.

AppleInsider got hold of this note, in which Kuo explains in detail that the extra real estate at the bottom of the iPhone 8 will be used for system functions with dedicated buttons for each function. There’s not much clarity on what the ‘function area’ will bring, but Kuo suggests that Apple could introduce an always-on display with static system controls. The note suggest that this iPhone 8 static display could also have the capability to switch to active display when watching videos or playing game. However, this is all just speculation at this point.

Furthermore, Kuo states that the iPhone 8 will sport a 5.8-inch OLED screen, but will sport the form factor of the 4.7-inch iPhone 7. This is possible because the top and bottom bezels will now be gone, giving more real estate space to the iPhone 8.

Kuo also reiterates that iPhone 8 will ditch the dedicated Touch ID sensor, and Kuo believes that the iPhone 8 ‘will incorporate new bio-recognition assets to take over device security and Apple Pay authentication duties.’ This is in line with previous reports that claim Apple will introduce a new 3D sensing technology, which will be embedded in the display and be capable of reading fingerprints directly. A patent was also published about the same recently, further cementing the rumours that the iPhone 8 will introduce this feature. Even though a dedicated Touch ID sensor will disappear, the new and improved tech will retain the Touch ID branding.

Reiterating previous claims, says that the OLED variants of the iPhone 8 will be priced north of $1,000 because of 50 to 60 percent rise in production cost. The LCD variants will be priced cheaper.
[“source-ndtv”]

Moto G5, Moto G5 Plus Specifications, Photos Leaked Again Ahead of MWC 2017 Launch

Moto G5, Moto G5 Plus Specifications, Photos Leaked Again Ahead of MWC 2017 Launch

Lenovo’s mid-range Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus smartphones are expected to launch later this month at the company’s February 26 event at MWC 2017 in Barcelona. Ahead of the official Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus unveiling, a Spanish online retailer accidentally listed the yet-to-be-announced smartphones with purported official renders and promotional materials claiming features, specifications, and other details. It’s however worth noting that the Spanish listing K-Tronix has since pulled down the listings.

Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus Design

The latest Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus leak shows the two upcoming smartphones in all their glory. The new leaked renders corroborate previous leaks, and suggest that the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus will indeed sport metal bodies and will come with Lenovo branding on the side panels. The front panel of the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus can be seen featuring fingerprint scanner, which has been part of previous leaks as well, while the primary camera can be seen in the circular design at the back. The legendary Moto “M” logo is embossed at the back as well.

Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus Specifications

The Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus will come with similar specifications including full-HD screen resolution, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 cover for protection, run on Android 7.0 Nougat out-of-the-box, and support expandable storage via microSD card (up to 128GB). Some of the other similarities in the handsets include fingerprint scanner at the front, 2GB of RAM, 5-megapixel front camera, and water repellent coating. Both Moto G5 and G5 Plus are expected to come in Lunar Grey and Fine Gold colours.

moto g5 ktronix moto
Coming to the Moto G5 specifications, it will feature a 5-inch full-HD display with a pixel density of 441ppi; 32GB on board storage; 13-megapixel rear camera; 1.4GHz octa-core Snapdragon 430 SoC; 2800mAh battery with rapid charging support; 4G LTE support, and measure 144.3x73x9.5mm while weigh 145 grams. An earlier report has already claimed that the Moto G5 may be priced lower than its predecessor at launch.

Moto G5 Plus, on the other hand, will feature a slightly larger 5.2-inch full-HD display; 64GB storage; 3000mAh battery with TurboPower charging; 12-megapixel camera with dual autofocus feature; powered by 2GHz octa-core Snapdragon 625 SoC; 4G LTE, and measure 150.2x74x7.9mm and weigh 155 grams.

The Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus leaked promotional material was spotted by a Reddit user while was first reported by Droid-Life.

Lenovo is teasing the Moto G5 launch alongside Moto G5 Plus smartphones at its February 26 event at the side-lines of MWC 2017 in Barcelona.
[“source-ndtv”]

MIT’s New Speech Recognition Chip Delivers Power Savings of Up to 99 Percent

MIT's New Speech Recognition Chip Delivers Power Savings of Up to 99 Percent

Researchers at MIT have developed a low-power special-purpose chip that is claimed to reduce the power consumption of electronic devices and help them save battery life as a result. The chip, which is specialised for automatic speech recognition, has been claimed to require between 0.2 and 10 milliwatts compared with 1 watt requirement by a standard smartphone running speech-recognition software.

This remarkable difference in power requirement effectively means that the new chip can result in power savings between 90 percent to 99 percent, the researchers claim. The drastic reduction in power consumption means that speech recognition can be introduced in more number of devices going forward, especially in those cases where power constraints were preventing the application of the technology.

As more and more devices are now getting support for speech recognition (recently introduced Android Wear 2.0 watches with Google Assistant being a good example), this new dedicated chip can prove to be a real game-changer. Further, as the size of the devices keeps getting smaller, and more and more power components are utilised, the battery life issues resolved by this chip might open new gates for the hardware developers.
“Speech input will become a natural interface for many wearable applications and intelligent devices,” Anantha Chandrakasan, head of the group that developed the new chip, was quoted as saying in the report. “The miniaturisation of these devices will require a different interface than touch or keyboard. It will be critical to embed the speech functionality locally to save system energy consumption compared to performing this operation in the cloud,” she said.

If you are wondering how the chip manages to save the power, it is all possible due to efficient implementation of speech-recognition networks. The chip additionally includes a “voice activity detection” circuit that separates the ambient noise to determine whether it might be speech or not. Only when this circuit confirms that it is a speech, a larger and more complex voice-recognition circuit is given the green signal to get into action.

Considering that adoption rate of IoT (Internet of Things) devices has picked up pace in recent times and devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home have seen good amount of success, this new chip might end up setting a new milestone in the industry.
[“source-ndtv”]

Nubia Z11, N1 to Get India-Specific Panic Button Feature Soon

Nubia Z11, N1 to Get India-Specific Panic Button Feature Soon

ZTE brand Nubia on Wednesday announced that its Nubia Z11 and N1 smartphones will soon get the India-specific panic button feature. The panic button feature will be available to existing Nubia phones through a software update. The company also confirmed that the upcoming Nubia phones will also come with panic button feature.

Nubia says that existing users, after updating their devices, will be able to use panic button by pressing the power button thrice which will connect them to the helpline. The India government mandated last year that all mobile phones in the country from January 1, 2017, will be sold with panic button feature. Though, the government recently extended the deadline by two months for mobile phone manufacturers to implement the panic button feature in new handsets.

Notably, Nubia isn’t the first to add panic button feature via a software update on their devices as Apple rolled out the feature back in December.
Existing Nubia users will be able to download the upcoming update from the company’s website. The company in press statement explains that all distress calls made by pressing the panic button will be connected currently to 100 and in future to India’s forthcoming single emergency response number 112, with the call going through even if the caller’s phone balance is zero. It’s worth noting that users will need an active SIM card to place the distress call. The call can be made by pressing the power button on Nubia devices thrice.

Commenting on the addition of panic button, Eric Hu, Country Manager, Nubia India said, “We adhere by the Indian government’s directive and its laws. Additionally, we would want every individual to be safe always. As a brand it is our responsibility to make sure we build technology that is meant to make life better and what better than using it for the security of an individual.”
[“source-ndtv”]

LeEco Le 2 Gold Variant to Go on Sale in Limited Quantities in India on Thursday

LeEco Le 2 Gold Variant to Go on Sale in Limited Quantities in India on Thursday

LeEco launched the Le 2 smartphone in June for the price of Rs. 11,999. The device was made available on its online LeMall store in Grey and Rose Gold colour variants, and now the company has introduced a Gold colour variant in India as well. The Gold colour Le 2 smartphone will be available on the LeMall website from February 16, and will be available in limited quantities.

The old Grey and Rose Gold colour variants will be available as usual, and the Gold variant, which is currently shown as out of stock on the site, will be available for purchase starting Thursday. Apart from the colour change, everything else remains the same. The Gold variant will be made available on LeMall.com exclusively, and not on Flipkart – its online retail partner to sell the LeEco Le 2 smartphones.

LeEco recently also made the 64GB variant of the smartphone available on Snapdeal exclusively. The 64GB variant is available only in Rose Gold colour option. Snapdeal is also offering 10 percent instant discount on all Axis Bank debit and credit card payments. There is an up to 5 percent discount on Snapdeal HDFC Bank Credit Card, and free delivery of the Reliance Jio SIM card as well.
In our LeEco Le 2 review, we liked the device a lot, as it provides powerful hardware and plenty of little conveniences. The Le 2 smartphone houses a 5.5-inch bezel-less HD (1080×1920 pixel) display with 403ppi pixel density. It is powered by a 2.3GHz deca-core MediaTek Helio X20 SoC paired with 3GB of RAM and Mali GPU.

As for the optics, the smartphone sports a 16-megapixel rear camera, and an 8-megapixel front camera for selfies. The LeEco Le 2 smartphone packs a 3000mAh battery to keep the lights on, and supports LTE connectivity. It runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow out of the box, measures 151.10×74.20×7.50mm, and weighs 153.00 grams.
[“source-ndtv”]

Huawei Catches Up With Samsung, Apple in Smartphone Market

Huawei Catches Up With Samsung, Apple in Smartphone Market: Gartner

Chinese smartphone maker Huawei managed to gain ground on Samsung and Apple in terms of market share last year, following the problems encountered by the two sector giants, the Gartner consultancy group said on Wednesday.

Over the year as a whole, the Chinese maker saw its sales leap by 26.7 percent, while the South Korean and US rivals both saw their sales decline by 4.3 percent, Gartner said in a study.

As result, Huawei was able to increase its share of the smartphone sector to 8.9 percent in 2016 from 7.3 percent a year earlier, while Samsung saw its market share shrink by two full percentage points to 20.5 percent and Apple’s contracted to 14.4 percent from 15.9 percent.

“Chinese makers succeeded in winning market share over last year and Huawei now seems to be the main rival to the two giants, even if the gap remains large,” Gartner analyst Annette Zimmermann told AFP.

Among the other Chinese smartphone makers are Oppo, BBK Communication Equipment (with its OnePlus and Vivo brands), ZTE, Xiaomi and Lenovo.
“We’re seeing a very real progression compared with earlier years, when the number three maker and the others had struggled to hold on to a market share of more than four percent,” Zimmermann said.

“Huawei looks likely to strengthen its position again this year,” she added.

In the fourth quarter of 2016 alone, the launch of the iPhone 7 and Samsung’s difficulties with its Galaxy Note 7 model enabled Apple to take top slot in the market with a share of 17.9 percent or 77 million units sold.

Samsung sold 76.8 million smartphones in the October-December period, giving it a market share of 17.8 percent, while Huawei sold 40.8 million phones or a market share of 9.5 percent.

“Preliminary data for the current quarter suggest that Samsung will overtake Apple again. But it’s remarkable that Apple can hold on to that sort of share of the market with a closed eco-system,” the analyst said.

With regard to the different operating systems, Android, which is used by the large majority of smartphone makers, commands a market share of 81.7 percent, while Apple’s iOS operating system of its iPhones and iPads accounts for 17.9 percent of the market.
[“source-ndtv”]

Huawei P10 Renders Leaked; Specifications Spotted on Benchmark Site

Huawei P10 Renders Leaked; Specifications Spotted on Benchmark Site

Huawei silenced all rumours by confirming that the P10 smartphone is launching at MWC 2017 on February 26. The device is largely expected to sport a dual camera setup, and come in different colour variants as well. Now, a new leak has come in showing renders from all angles, whilst the device was reportedly also spotted on benchmarking site GFXBench.

Tipster Onleaks (in collaboration with 91 Mobiles) has released what re claimed to be official renders of the Huawei P10, giving us a look at the device from all angles. The leaked renders show that the Huawei P10 is heavily inspired by the iPhone 7 Plus with its dual camera setup at the back, the antenna bands at the edges, and the metal frame with rounded corners. The Huawei P10 now has a Home Button in the front with the fingerprint sensor underneath. The predecessor Huawei P9, on the other hand, had no Home Button, and the fingerprint scanner was mounted at the back. The dual camera setup at the back comes with the Leica branding, just like its predecessor.

Furthermore, the Huawei P10 was also spotted on GFXBench, and it is listed to sport a 4GB RAM and run on Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box. This is in line with previous leaks that claim the smartphone will launch in various bundles. The fresh leak reveals that the Huawei P10 will launch in – 4GB RAM / 32GB storage, 4GB RAM / 64GB storage and 6GB RAM / 128GB storage – bundle variants. It is expected to be priced at CNY 3,488 (roughly Rs. 34,200), CNY 4,088 (roughly Rs. 40,000) and CNY 4,688 (roughly Rs. 45,930) respectively.
The Huawei P10 is tipped to support wireless charging, and sport a dual curved screen as well. The Huawei P10 specifications have also been leaked earlier, and it is expected to feature a 5.2-inch display with QHD resolution, and Kirin 960 octa-core processor with Mali G71 octa-core GPU. It is tipped to pack a 3100mAh battery and sport 20-megapixel and 12-megapixel dual rear sensors. At the front, there will be an 8-megapixel selfie camera setup.

The big-screen version of Huawei P10 – Huawei P10 Plus – is also reportedly incoming, and it is expected to have an 8GB RAM. This variant will supposedly be available in two configurations: 4GB RAM / 64GB storage and 6GB RAM / 128GB storage, and is expected to be priced at CNY 4,988 (roughly Rs. 48,870) and CNY 5,688 (roughly Rs. 55,730) respectively.

At its event, Huawei is also expected to launch the Huawei Watch 2 smartwatch. The big rumour about the device is that it is expected to come with a built-in SIM card slot, and run on Android Wear 2.0.
[“source-ndtv”]

Samsung Galaxy S8 Launch Date to Reportedly Be Revealed at MWC 2017

Samsung Galaxy S8 Launch Date to Reportedly Be Revealed at MWC 2017

Samsung’s Mobile Chief Koh Dong-jin has reportedly confirmed that the company will reveal the official launch date for the Galaxy S8 launch at MWC 2017 later this month. The South Korean company can be expected to announce the Samsung Galaxy S8 launch date during the company’s February 26 event, where it is expected to reveal the Galaxy Tab S3.

A South Korean publication quotes Dong-jin who confirmed the details about the Galaxy S8 launch date at an event in South Korea. Based on preliminary leaks, Samsung is widely expected to launch the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ premium smartphones at simultaneous launch events on March 29 that are expected to be held in the US and Europe. It is expected to be made available in April.

Apart from the launch event details, Samsung is also expected to surprise attendees at MWC 2017 in Barcelona with a one-minute teaser video of the smartphone. A recent report even claimed that Samsung may showcase its foldable smartphones in a closed door event at the side-lines of MWC 2017.
Thanks to a flurry of leaks, the Samsung Galaxy S8 is expected to launch alongside the Samsung Galaxy S8+, which has been confirmed by support pages going live on the company site. The new Galaxy S8 series is said to come with new virtual assistant Bixby.

Samsung Galaxy S8 is pegged to have a dual-edged curved display with almost negligible bezel and come with two screen size variants – 5.7-inch and 6.2-inch. On design front, Samsung is expected to ditch the Home Button, and have an all-display front. The smartphone is expected to feature an iris scanner. Some of the highlights of the innards are expected to be the Snapdragon 835 chipset and up to 6GB of RAM.
[“source-ndtv”]

iPhone 8 to Sport AR Features and Glass Back With Steel Frame: Reports

iPhone 8 to Sport AR Features and Glass Back With Steel Frame: Reports

iPhone 8 rumours are coming in every day, and today’s set of leaks shed light on the metal and glass combination build of the device, some sort of augmented reality (AR) integration, and the removal of the dedicated fingerprint sensor. The iPhone 8 should get rid of the fingerprint reader on the physical Home Button, and look to embed it under the display screen.

Apple has previously mentioned about its focus on AR (and not VR), and KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has also noted that the company’s AR tech when it launches will be three or five years ahead of others. Goldman Sachs analyst Simona Jankowski claims that Apple will include AR content on its upcoming device, however, details on what exactly it will be, are still blurry.

In the memo obtained by Benzinga, Jankowski said, “The inclusion of 3D sensing functionality is increasingly likely, which could enable a robust augmented reality (AR) feature set that we believe will be a key differentiator for the 10-year anniversary iPhone.”
Apart from this, DigiTimes reiterates previous claims that the iPhone 8 should sport an all-glass back. The report further states that the edges should be made from stainless steel and the display will be of 5.8-inch. The other two 4.7-inch iPhone 7s and 5.5-inch iPhone 7s Plus will continue to sport an aluminium frame.

Lastly but importantly, a patent published on Tuesday by the US Patent and Trademark office indicates that future Apple devices could well be able to read fingerprints directly through the display, instead of by relying on a dedicated fingerprint reader. The patent was applied for back in June 2014. Currently, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus have a Home Button, under which the fingerprint sensor resides. The patent adds weight to rumours that the iPhone 8 will ditch the Home Button altogether, and sport a wraparound bezel-less display with the ability to read fingerprints underneath the display.

The iPhone 8 is also tipped to sport a dual camera setup at the back, have an OLED screen, larger battery life, sport advanced wireless charging, and improved 3D Touch.
[“source-ndtv”]

Meizu M5s Launched: Price, Release Date, Specifications, and More

Meizu M5s Launched: Price, Release Date, Specifications, and More

Meizu on Wednesday launched the M5s smartphone in China, and it will go on sale in the country from Monday, February 20. The smartphone has been launched in two variants – 16GB storage at CNY 799 (roughly Rs. 7,800) and 32GB storage at CNY 999 (roughly Rs. 9,700) – and will be available in Rose Gold, Moonlight Silver, Champagne Gold, and Star Grey colours.

The Meizu M5s is the successor of the Meizu M5, and is a dual-SIM (Nano-SIM) smartphone that runs Flyme 6.0 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow. It has a metal unibody design with a fingerprint sensor on the Home Button. The company says its mTouch technology will help unlock the smartphone in under 0.2 seconds.

The M5s sports a 5.2-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) IPS display with a pixel density of 282ppi. It is powered by a 1.3GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6753 SoC that’s coupled with 3GB of LPDDR3 RAM. Optics on the Meizu M5s include a 13-megapixel rear camera with an f/2.2 aperture, PDAF, and two-tone flash, apart from a 5-megapixel front camera with an f/2.0 aperture and ArcSoft beautification software. As we mentioned, it comes in 16GB and 32GB inbuilt storage variants, expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB) in a hybrid dual-SIM configuration.

Connectivity options include 4G LTE, GPS/ A-GPS, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n (with support for both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands), Bluetooth v4.0, 3.5mm headphone jack, and Micro-USB. The Meizu M5s sports a 3000mAh battery and comes bundled with an 18W fast charger. Sensors onboard include accelerometer, ambient light sensor, gyroscope, magnetometer, and infrared. It measures 148.2×72.5×8.4mm, and weighs in at 143 grams.
[“source-ndtv”]