News

The first Android Q beta is now available on all Pixel phones

The public’s first look at Google’s latest OS

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Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL | GadgetMatch

Still waiting for Android 9 Pie? Phone manufacturers really need to catch up if Pie isn’t available for your phone yet, because the next version of Android has just entered the beta phase. Ladies and gentlemen, Android Q Beta 1 is now available for download.

Google has released the first beta build of Android Q (can also be referred to as Android 10) and it can be installed on all Pixel phones. This means that even the first Pixel or Pixel XL will get updated to the next major version of Android even though they have passed their promised support window — at least for major updates.

To try out Android Q, you’ll have to enroll your Pixel phone in the beta program first. Since this is an early preview, not everything is final and things can be unstable.

Android Q Logo | Google

What’s there to look forward to in Android Q? The big change is in the security department. The new Android version will give users more control over apps and shared files. It’ll also come with new codecs, especially the open source video codec AV1 which allows high-quality streaming. For audio, there’s Optus that’s optimized for speech and music streaming.

Furthermore, there are improvements to ART for speedier and more efficient apps. Android Q should be able to start an app faster than before while consuming less memory. Support for foldable phones is also built into Android Q, of course.

If you’re interested in reading what’s new on Android Q, you may read the full post on the Android Developers Blog. And for those who’d like to see Android Q in action, here’s a video showing some of the new features of Google’s latest release courtesy of Android Authority.

SEE ALSO: Qualcomm is testing a new chip series for Android Go phones

Automotive

There’s a new MX-5 Miata built for the track

Offering the joy of car racing at a reasonable cost

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A favorite sports car of many, the Mazda MX-5 just got a serious upgrade as a track car.

This coming 2020, RaceGAS Dynamics will be introducing a new one-make sports car racing series called the Miata Spec Series. It’s the country’s only rear-wheel-drive sports car racing championship that features the latest edition of the fourth-generation Mazda MX-5 Miata.

Latest edition of the 4th-gen MX-5 Miata

Developed for the track, the updated MX-5 is designed as an affordable car that will be equipped with custom competition parts to bring out its on-track full potential while still being street-legal.

We were able to review the MX-5 RF Club Edition roadster a few months back, and the performance of the stock MX-5 is already impressive enough.

There is an array of new upgrades including brand new Cusco coilovers and sway bar suspension components, a Sparco steering wheel, racing seat and racing harness, a six-point roll cage that allows operation of the soft top assembly, a full cat-back exhaust system, one set of 17×7.5-inch Concept One wheels and 215/45/ 17 Nitto tires, and finally, a full set of apparel which includes racing suit, shoes, and gloves.

Major engine, drivetrain, and electronic components will be sealed by the organizer prior to customer handover to ensure the cars’ conformity to the one-make racing formula.

President of RaceGAS Dynamics Allan Uy shares, “Ever since I began my racing career, I have always wanted to create a sports car series that allows the cars’ owners to enjoy their rides whether on the track or on the road. With the Mazda MX-5, we are able to realize this dream.” He further adds that the Miata Spec Series offers its participants the enjoyment of sports car racing at a reasonable cost.

Set to be released in May next year, Interested buyers may reach out to RaceGAS Dynamics through email ([email protected]) for inquiries about the cars and the upcoming 2020 Miata Spec Series season.

The expected introductory price is at PhP 2,500,000 for the brand new MX-5 Soft Top Manual Transmission unit by RaceGAS Dynamics.

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Enterprise

Apple: Students with Chromebooks ‘are not going to succeed’

Wants you to buy the MacBook Pro instead

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Are you buying the new MacBook Pro? Apple’s new 16-inch notebook is a powerful device built for heavy-duty use. If you’re a student today, a new MacBook is surely an asset, especially if you do heavy design work. In fact, Apple itself is advertising the device as the best option for academic life.

In a recent interview with Cnet, Apple’s marketing head Phil Schiller waxed poetic about the company’s continued dominance in academic institutions and creative industries. “College students’ [use] is dominated by Macs,” Schiller said. “In the majority of creative fields — writers, video editors, music creators and programmers — I think that’s an area that’s super strong.”

In fact, a quick trip to the nearest private college confirms this fact. Macs are super popular. “We just have great customers who love the Mac,” Schiller said.

Of course, the computing world isn’t populated by just Apple. Windows is still a capable alternative for a huge chunk of the world. Apple isn’t happy with Windows’ continued presence.

“The PC world is a world of sameness,” said Schiller. “You have commodity hardware [and] a generic operating system that has to work on a lot of stuff, so it doesn’t work great on any one thing.”

True enough, Apple’s devices are catered more for creative purposes. However, Schiller’s rant goes further. The marketing boss goes off against Google’s Chromebooks, lambasting them as the poorest option for students.

“You need to have these cutting-edge learning tools to help kids really achieve their best results,” Schiller said. “Yet Chromebooks don’t do that. Chromebooks have gotten to the classroom because, frankly, they’re cheap testing tools for required testing. If all you want to do is test kids, well, maybe a cheap notebook will do that. But they’re not going to succeed.”

Schiller’s follow-up tweet doesn’t do much to save face. “We discussed giving kids and teachers the content, curriculum and tools they need to learn, explore and grow. Not just to take a test,” he tweeted. Like the original interview, the tweet touts Apple’s superiority in bringing out success, despite their astronomical prices. To Apple, owning a MacBook is a requirement to be successful.

Schiller’s opinion is a strong statement against Google’s popular notebook. The Chromebook is still a massively affordable and massively flexible option for markets of all sizes. Despite the division losing strength, Schiller’s statement goes against all PCs, as well.

SEE ALSO: Apple sets another record this year

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News

The Motorola razr is now a foldable smartphone

The razr is back from the dead

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Image by GadgetMatch

Engineers from Motorola and Lenovo have been coming up with ideas, plans, and 20 prototypes on how to utilize the flexible display technology since 2015. Just a little short of a year, Motorola’s foldable patent appeared in the rumor mill and a press render leaked just a week ago. Today, Motorola proudly announces the newest ‘razr’ (take note of the branding in lowercase).

It’s no surprise that other manufacturers are coming up with foldables that will rival the likes of Samsung Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X. In a modern world full of slabs, the clamshell fad is getting stronger. Even the basic and nostalgic flip phone Nokia 2720 gained attention from consumers.

The harmony of flip design and foldable display

Motorola opted to use their old clamshell form factor as portability and practicality are still in mind when it comes to foldable phones. The design is carefully crafted with stainless steel and 3D Gorilla Glass technology. It’s also splash-proof and has water resistant nanocoating.

When folded, you can clearly see the 2.7-inch Quick View OLED display. It is interactive which lets you answer calls, switch songs, respond to custom notifications, use Google Assistant, all without ever opening the phone. There’s a single 16MP f/1.7 camera that also acts as a gesture-centric selfie camera and a mirror display. The fingerprint reader below (together with NFC) lets you pay with just a tap.

The magic starts when you open the phone as it reveals the 6.2-inch pOLED HD Flex Display with 21:9 aspect ratio. Although you rarely find ultra-wide flicks today, the aspect ratio is perfect in maximizing the overall screen real estate when using applications. App continuity is seamless when switching between the two displays. There’s also a smaller notch on top which houses the 5MP camera.

Motorola is confident enough with their zero-gap hinge which fully closes the phone without any slits. It’s also responsible for protecting the display from dust and debris and makes the device thinner than other competitors.

Android 9 Pie runs the device. Inside, you get a Snapdragon 710, 6GB RAM, 128GB storage, and as little as a 2,510 mAh battery. Unlike the original RAZR, the battery is non-removable. Still, the new razr supports 15W TurboPower charging. A SIM card slot is nowhere to be found. Instead, it runs on eSIM.

Pricing and availability

The new Motorola razr is only limited in a Noir Black colorway. You also get razr earbuds, accessories case, USB-C cable, TurboPower charger, and a headset adapter when you purchase the device.

The latest foldable will retail at US$ 1,499.99. It will be available exclusively on Verizon with pre-order starting on December 26, 2019 for $62.49 a month for 24 months on Verizon Device Payment. In-store availability starts in January 2020 at Verizon and select Walmart locations, as well as on motorola.com. In Canada, the new razr will be available in early 2020

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