News

What to expect from Apple’s March 21 announcement

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Apple may be in hot water with the feds, but that doesn’t mean the California-based tech giant is slamming the breaks on its product release cycle in lieu of its legal battle with U.S. authorities. Apple today sent out invites to a press event at 10 a.m. (Pacific time) on March 21 at its Cupertino campus.

“Let us loop you in,” the invite simply says. If we didn’t know any better, we’d say it’s a nod to Apple’s Infinite Loop campus.

The products to be announced, in usual Apple fashion, remain a mystery, though recent reports point to a successor of the 9.7-inch iPad and a new 4-inch iPhone packing the same internals as the iPhone 6s.

Dubbed the iPhone SE, it will likely replace the iPhone 5s (and, possibly, iPhone 6) as Apple’s lowest-priced smartphone. Why? Because Apple, now more than ever, desperately needs a serious midrange option if it wants to grow its business in emerging economies, where price is too often the deciding factor.

More Apple Watch bands and materials are also expected to take the stage, in addition to a new software update for the company’s smartwatch. We may also see the release announcement for an iTunes update and iOS 9.3, which is currently in beta testing.

You can watch Apple’s March 21 keynote live on your Apple products, or by heading to Apple’s dedicated event page here using Safari or Microsoft Edge on Windows 10.

News

Vivo NEX S pop-up camera goes under the knife in durability test

There’s only one way to find out…

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As a tech enthusiast, some of the cringiest videos you can find on web are those from JerryRigEverything’s channel. YouTuber Zack Nelson scratches, burns, and bends the hottest phones on the planet for both our entertainment and to see just how durable these gadgets are.

His latest victim is the NEX S, which is Vivo’s most premium and innovative smartphone to date. Not only does it have an in-display fingerprint reader and some of the thinnest bezels around, it also owns a pop-up camera that discreetly hides when not needed.

While many applauded Vivo for the pioneering feature, others were skeptical of its durability after long-term use. It’s only been a month since the NEX series launched, so we can’t say for certain how well it’ll hold up, but we have JerryRigEverything to speed up the process for us.

In this video, we see the NEX S and its pop-up camera go under the knife — as well as through flames and a pair of hands that try their hardest to bend the phone.

See the torture test for yourself and try your best not to cringe:

Overall, the NEX S escaped the session well enough, proving that its build quality can keep up with the best of them. We can now say for certain that Vivo took physical endurance seriously when crafting its latest high-end device, and that it can take a beating (at the beginning at least).

If you want to see the Vivo NEX taken care of a lot better, you can watch our unboxing and hands-on video below:

 

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Gaming

Genki finally gives us Bluetooth audio support for the Nintendo Switch

It’s about time!

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When I first bought a Switch, I knew I was getting the best-possible mobile gaming experience available today. However, my high hopes suddenly went downhill once I realized there’s no way of connecting my favorite Bluetooth headphones.

That’s right: Despite being designed for gaming on the go, the Switch has no way of accepting any form of Bluetooth audio — a feature that’s been present on smartphones and other gaming consoles for ages.

If you want sound outside of the built-in stereo speakers, you’d have to connect your headphones or portable speaker to the 3.5mm port. That’s not too bad, but it goes against the truly wireless era smartphones and mobile gadgets are (forcefully) ushering us into.

This is where Genki comes in. It’s a straightforward dongle that plugs into the USB-C port of the Switch and enables you to connect any Bluetooth audio device to the Nintendo console.

What’s great is that Genki draws minimal power from the console and can even provide sound to two devices at once thanks to the power of Bluetooth 5.0.

This is a simple solution to a problem Nintendo should’ve addressed long time ago. The Switch has been available for over a year now, and no first-party accessories have been released to add Bluetooth support.

It’s currently being funded on Kickstarter with only four days left to reach it’s US$ 30,000 goal. Clearly, people are seeing the need for Genki, since it has already amassed nearly US$ 400,000 as of writing!

There’s still time to pledge, but the cheapest US$ 29 deal is already gone and the US$ 49 Day One Edition is also no longer available. The estimated delivery date is October 2018.

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Deals

Huawei P20 Lite and Nova 2i are now priced cheaper in the Philippines

To make way for new Huawei midrange phones

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Huawei P20 Lite | GadgetMatch

Huawei is set to unveil new smartphones in the coming weeks as competitive midrange offerings. In the Philippines, we already know that upcoming Nova 3i is going to be priced just below PhP 16,000, which is the same as the slightly older P20 Lite model. To make way for the new phone (or phones), Huawei just slashed the retail prices of two of their best-selling midrangers.

Effective immediately, the Huawei P20 Lite is now only PhP 13,990 which is two thousand pesos below its original price. Since the P20 Lite is now cheaper, the Huawei Nova 2i gets another price cut to just PhP 11,990.

Both phones sport Kirin 659 processors, Full HD+ displays with tall aspect ratios, dual rear cameras, and rear fingerprint readers. Design-wise, the P20 Lite looks a lot its P20 sibling with a notched display and glass back, while the Nova 2i features a metal unibody.

If you wanna know more about the P20 Lite, we have a video review that you can watch below:

We also have one for the Nova 2i:

SEE ALSO: Huawei Nova 3i pre-order details and price in the Philippines

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