Smartphones

7 smartphones from 2017 still worth buying today

They’re much cheaper now, too!

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As much as we love promoting the latest and greatest from the smartphone world, we’re still committed to recommending the best bangs for one’s buck. Now that we’re more or less done covering 2018’s top flagship phones, let’s take a look back at which smartphones from 2017 are still worth buying today.

Here, we take discounted pricing, legacy features, and relevance in today’s market into consideration. There are lots of great products from last year to be found, but these seven are the ones that we would still wholeheartedly recommend up until now.

Essential Phone

This has to be the king of 2017 smartphones that are still relevant today. Not only does its build, performance, and software updates hold up to this day, you can find the Essential Phone at extremely discounted prices. Even better: There’s no successor in sight, so you know you’re getting nothing but the best support from Essential’s sole product.

Apple iPhone 8 Plus

Not a fan of the notched, Touch ID-less iPhone revolution? We feel like the iPhone 8 Plus with its untainted display and front-mounted fingerprint scanner is for those who want a more traditional experience. Apple still sells it, and at discounted prices. Get one while you can, because it’s looking like Apple has no plans of going back to this design.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Since the Galaxy Note 9 turned out to be such an incremental upgrade over its predecessor, the Note 8 became an even better deal a year after its initial release. Its hardware is top-notch, from the simpler S Pen to the gorgeous display, and it can be found at a price much lower than the Note 9’s.

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

Like the Galaxy Note 8, the Galaxy S8 pair doesn’t have such a lucrative successor, making these two models popular among bargain shoppers. You’d have to deal with only a single camera on the back, but every other major feature, including the sleek body, is already available.

Google Pixel 2 XL

Google disappointed a lot of fans this year by releasing the Pixel 3 XL with an overly deep notch. If that’s not your thing, and you can live without some of the minor upgrades of the successor, the Pixel 2 XL can do almost everything just as well without a hideous black cutout.

Huawei Mate 10 Pro

As great as the Mate 20 Pro is, Huawei’s effort on the Mate 10 Pro stands the test of time. Its Leica-infused cameras are fantastic even by today’s standards, and the phone does get faster through time. It’s also a little less daunting compared to this year’s model.

Razer Phone

Razer Phone unboxing

Watch! We’re unboxing the smartphone made for gamers! #RazerPhone

Posted by GadgetMatch on Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Because the Razer Phone 2 is practically an OG Razer Phone with slightly better components and cameras, choosing the 2017 model seems like a no-brainer if you’re looking to save a few bucks while still wanting a smartphone geared towards mobile gaming.

News

Samsung Galaxy Note 20+ leak completely reveals design

Bigger than ever!

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The Samsung Galaxy Note 20+ shall be the South Korean brand’s second flagship of 2020 and is months away from launching. But in-line with the industry trend, leaks are all over the place. The Note series is known for its huge display and Samsung is going to make it slightly bigger.

A new leak from OnLeaks in collaboration with Pigtou, shows the complete design of Note 20+. While the design language looks familiar, it has some drastic changes. On the rear are three cameras within a thick module alongside a ToF sensor. It looks similar to the S20 Ultra camera module setup. Though, a recent report has negated the claim about a ToF sensor, stating that Samsung could ditch it.

Unlike the Note 10, the successor has curved edges instead of a flat display. There’s barely any bezels and the chins are trimmed drastically. Going by the render, the phone feels like a slab of display in one’s hand. However, the company has retained a tiny cut-out in the display to house the front camera.

It will have a slightly larger 6.9-inch display compared to the Note 10+’s 6.8-inch display. The power and volume buttons are housed on the right side while the USB-C port, speaker grille, and the S-Pen slot reside at the bottom. However, a 3.5mm headphone jack is gone.

The phone is expected to launch in August. It’ll be powered by a flagship processor like the Snapdragon 865. We also expect to see a display with 120Hz refresh rate. There’s no doubt the phone will be a true flagship and continue Samsung’s mobility legacy.

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News

Hackers have already jailbroken the latest iOS version

Covers iOS 11 to the new iOS 13.5

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In the past few years, jailbreaking seemingly disappeared, leaving behind a trail of unhacked iPhones. That wasn’t a coincidental accident. As of late, Apple upped its anti-jailbreaking measures, ensuring a sanctum against third-party developers and pirates. However, the company’s glorious anti-jailbreaking days are over.

Blasted out of nowhere, a jailbreaking team, known as Unc0ver, has released a jailbreaking tool that covers iPhones from iOS 11 to the recently released iOS 13.5. The new tool is a huge step, marking the first time a jailbreaking tool targets the latest iOS version off the bat. Like other jailbreaking tools, the Unc0ver team’s hack is available through platforms like AltStore and Cydia.

A sigh of relief for security enthusiasts, the tool will reportedly keep Apple’s security protocols intact. In a statement to Wired, the team’s lead developer Pwn20wnd says that the tool “basically just adds exceptions to the existing rules.” Rather than deleting Apple’s security entirely, the tool just squeezes in, leaving the other rules operational. Further, the team says that the tool will not cause extra battery drain.

However, the tool’s sudden arrival is a conundrum for both security enthusiasts and Apple itself. For one, the tool is not open source. Security researchers cannot analyze the tool if it creates additional security flaws. When it comes to security, the tool’s credibility hinges on the team’s statements.

Secondly, Apple has had no lead time with which to respond to the tool. It will take a while before the company can patch the vulnerability out. Especially for adamant users, anyone can use the hack without risking Apple’s quick actions.

That said, jailbreaking your iPhone is still a risk, whether because of Apple’s anti-jailbreaking policies or undiscovered security flaws.

SEE ALSO: Apple and Google release contact tracing software all over the world

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Deals

OPPO Find X2 Pro: Globe vs Smart postpaid plans comparison

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OPPO’s Find X series has always been about delivering the latest and greatest specs. The OPPO Find X2 Pro is a continuation of that trend. Now, it’s coming to the Philippines. It will retail at all OPPO physical stores. It will also be available as a postpaid device for both Globe and Smart.

To help you decide which is better for you, we’ve come up with a postpaid plan comparison for both telcos. We will base the comparison for both telcos on the postpaid plan that will give the perfect balance of what you get from what you will pay for.

As such, we’re picking Globe’s ThePlan 1999 and Smart’s Signature Plan L. It is important to note that Globe only offers a one-time cashout option while Smart offers both a one-time cashout and a staggered payment option for the OPPO Find X2 Pro. For the purpose of this comparison, we’ll choose the one-time cashout option for both telcos.

Without further ado, let’s compare the plans:

Plan Comparison

Globe Smart
Plan Name ThePlan 1999 Signature Plan L
Data 16 GB 15 GB
Text Unlimited to all networks Unlimited to all networks
Call
  • 150 mins. to any network
  • Unlimited to Globe/TM
  • 150 mins. to any network
  • Unlimited to Smart/Sun
Device Fee  PhP 28,800.00 PhP 31,200
Monthly Fee PhP 1,999 PhP 1,999
Freebies
  • Free 1 GB of Facebook monthly
  • 6-month Amazon Prime Video subscription
  • 3-month iflix VIP subscription
  • Free shipping
  • Free shipping
Contract Period 24 months 24 months
Total Cash-out Cost PhP 30,799 PhP 33,199

On cost and freebies alone, Globe wins this comparison. You are getting more when you avail Globe’s postpaid plan for this device. If you’re a heavy user of Facebook and Amazon Prime Video, you’ll really get the most out of ThePlan 1999 than Smart’s current offering. Plus, the lower overall cost makes Globe’s offering much more attractive if you want to get the most out of your postpaid plan.

However, that is not to say that you should avoid Smart altogether. Smart’s Signature Plan is better than ever, with exclusive perks and exclusives through the MVP Rewards. Plus, there are some areas in the country where Smart’s coverage is way better than Globe’s. If you live in these areas, it’s much better to avail of Smart’s offering.

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