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ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe’s reign may be more short-lived than we thought

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We had a feeling that the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe’s reign on the throne would’t last long — it’s only started to catch on in certain Asian markets this month — but it may be even more short-lived than we thought.

ASUS is already sending out press invites for the next Zennovation event at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2017 in Las Vegas. The event, which will be streamed live on ASUS’ website, will take place on January 4th, 2017, and it’s highly likely that the Taiwan-based manufacturer will use it as a launch pad to introduce a premium ZenFone handset built around Qualcomm’s next-gen Snapdragon 835 system-on-a-chip, the successor to the Snapdragon 821 found in today’s heavy hitters.

The Snapdragon branding already appears on the invite, so we would be foolish to assume otherwise. ASUS has somewhat been a pioneer when it comes to using the best components available anywhere; the ZenFone 3 Deluxe — however late (and controversial) it may be — is among the first handsets to launch with the Snapdragon 821 in tow.

ASUS Zennovation invite

Next year, ASUS could once again find itself in the same exclusive club as the likes of Google and OnePlus when all is said and done at CES 2017. Hopefully, if it does announce a Snapdragon 835-based phone, pricing will be competitive with industry disruptors from the Far East. That, or CEO Jerry Shen will take the stage rocking a transcendental product that’s more than just the sum of its glass, metal, and bleeding-edge silicon parts.

The ZenFone 3 Deluxe, though likable, lacks a headline-grabbing feature that truly distinguishes it from other flagships. Obviously, arriving late and being sold at roughly the same price as the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge and Apple iPhone 7 Plus doesn’t help its cause, either.

So now the waiting game begins, and we’ll be waiting with bated breath for news of updates. We’re pretty sure you will, too. In any case, we’ll be on the ground at CES 2017 on January 4 to find out all of ASUS’ intentions.

Gaming

Nike, Paul George unveil PlayStation-themed shoes

Features extra goodies for PS4 owners

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Basketball shoes are a way for fans to show their love for the game. However, Nike’s new shoes show appreciation for a different kind of game — the video game.

Sporting a PlayStation logo and a load of other gamer goodies, the PG2 is Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George’s latest collaboration with Nike. His second signature shoe with the sneaker company boasts both his twin loves — basketball and video games.

George, who previously played for the Indiana Pacers, is no stranger to collaborations with the gaming world. Last year, the star was featured on the cover of NBA 2K17, when he was still donning the blue and gold. In the same year, he also launched his first shoe, the PG1, which sported a cameo of his 2K17 render.

The PG2 shares a similar design with the PG1, particularly its traditional look compared to the standard bootie design today.

The shoe exudes a dark blue with black accents look. It shows off the PG brand and PlayStation logos on the right and left tongues, respectively. Mimicking the PS4’s DualShock controllers, both logos light up and pulse when activated by buttons. The lighting mechanism contains a 150-hour non-removable battery.

The shoe’s lace locks are painted red, green, blue, and pink to look like the iconic PlayStation symbols. The actual symbols themselves highlight the patented leather on the shoes’ sides.

Also, Sony lent its PlayStation Galaxy theme to the shoes’ sock liner and midsole. Splotches of red, purple, and blue accompany the Nike swoosh on the midsole. Meanwhile, the sock liner dons the stellar theme.

PlayStation gamers will also enjoy a digital goodie bag after purchasing the shoe. A PlayStation Network barcode on the right shoe unlocks access to a dynamic Paul George theme on the PS4. It will also unlock a surprise that George and designer Tony Hardman are keeping under wraps until its launch.

The PG2 PlayStation shoes will hit stores on February 10 at a modest US$ 110. Paul George himself debuted the shoes at the Thunder’s 24-point blowout win against the Cleveland Cavaliers last January 20.

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Automotive

Ford unveils revived Ranger pickup

A benched player returning back to the game

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Ford has previously announced that it’s once again introducing its Ranger pickup to the US market after its hiatus since 2011. The company has then unveiled the all-new truck at this year’s North American Auto Show (NAIAS) and fans of the vehicle seemed excited enough during the event.

The Ranger has the same body-on-frame construction which is supported by a high-strength steel frame backbone. Ford is also sticking with their standard steel bumpers for this one, folks. Overall, it has that assertive stance that Ranger fans have grown to love.

Under the hood, this midsize pickup truck is equipped with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine and is mated to a 10-speed auto transmission. There will be 2WD and 4WD variants with an XL, XLT, and the Lariat trims with a choice of chrome, sport, or the FX Off-Road packages for the Supercab or SuperCrew models.

In-car tech comes standard and features blind spot warning system, lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and automatic emergency brakes. Production will start later this year at Michigan with actual units for sale arriving in 2019.

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Cameras

Hasselblad’s new medium-format camera shoots 400MP photos

Each image file is 2.4GB!

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Did you ever feel like the resolution of your smartphone or camera’s pictures weren’t enough? Has the thought of needing 400 megapixels ever crossed your mind?

Unless your phone is from tech’s stone age or you’re a professional photographer (a really serious one), you’re likely to say no to both. Fortunately, Hasselblad doesn’t care what you, I, or other regular folks think, and has released a monstrous 400-megapixel medium-format camera.

You read that correctly: The H6D-400c MS is a real camera with an incredibly high resolution output and equally astounding price tag. This behemoth costs a whopping US$ 47,995 or EUR 39,999 (and that’s only for the body without any lenses).

See it from all angles in this official video:

You’ll notice that the 53.4 x 40mm image sensor (that’s much larger than the full-frame sensors we’re accustomed to) has only 100 megapixels on it, but the 400-megapixel outputs actually come from a technique called multi-shot.

The camera takes four 100-megapixel shots with slight shifts in pixels to produce one 23200 x 17400-pixel photo, which is equal to 400 megapixels. As you can imagine, the file size would be massive — a single TIFF image is 2.4GB! You could easily fill up a 1TB hard disk during a single photo shoot.

This clearly isn’t for regular consumers. Only pros who need to capture every single detail of a subject and post-process on a large monitor would be interested in such a camera.

If you’ve reached this point and are seriously considering one, pre-orders are already being accepted and shipping begins in March.

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