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BlackBerry finally gives up on creating its own phones

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The headline above was something we were expecting to write one day, but now that it’s happened, it’s still quite sad. BlackBerry’s original smartphone designs are no more.

In a lengthy PDF detailing BlackBerry’s recent financial highs and lows, the Canadian company chose to stick to what it’s good at, specifically software and security services. But this doesn’t mean that no more handsets are coming out of this development; all BlackBerry phones released from now on will simply be designed and manufactured by third-party hardware partners.

This process actually began over a month ago. The once high-end smartphone brand synonymous with QWERTY keyboards released the DTEK50, which is a $300 full-touchscreen Android handset. It’s something you wouldn’t imagine BlackBerry doing back when it was at the top of the smartphone world over half a decade ago.

blackberry-dtek50

BlackBerry DTEK50

It was a sign of things to come. The terribly named DTEK50 was just an Alcatel Idol 4 with BlackBerry’s branding plastered all over it. Once rumors surfaced of a successor in the DTEK60 being cooked up, which looks to be a rebranded Alcatel Idol 4S, the unfortunate announcement we’re hearing now becomes less of a surprise.

BlackBerry’s woes began when it couldn’t catch up to the momentum built by Google and Apple’s operating systems. Realizing that physical keypads were no longer desired by the majority of consumers, its software developers went hard at work on a more touchscreen-friendly BB10 OS, which first debuted on the Z10 and Q10 in early 2013. Its gesture-based interface introduced several good ideas outside of the usual Android and iOS functionality, but it arrived way too late.

Once that experiment failed, BlackBerry gave in and accepted the open-source Android system on October 2015. The Priv combined the richness of Android’s touchscreen interface with BlackBerry’s signature keyboard sliding out from underneath. Together with the company’s added security features, it seemed like a great deal, until everyone realized it cost $700 at launch.

blackberry-priv

BlackBerry Priv

Overall sales dwindled in the past few years, to the point of having less than one percent of the worldwide smartphone market share. That alone was a signal to retire.

On the bright side, we still have good memories to live with. Remember that awesome Bold 9900? It still stands as one of the best physical keyboard-equipped smartphones of all time. There was also the Curve 9220, which was the Nokia 3310 of BlackBerries. And who could forget the unjustly underrated PlayBo— wait, never mind. Even BlackBerry chose to forget it ever existed.

[irp posts=”7249″ name=”BlackBerry has a new security-focused flagship phone”]

Source: Business Insider

News

Qualcomm unveils the Snapdragon 888

Get ready, 2021 flagships!

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Were you expecting the Snapdragon 875? After months of speculation, Qualcomm has finally unveiled its next flagship processor, the Snapdragon 888. During today’s Snapdragon Tech Summit, the company revealed more details about the future of smartphones.

As with Qualcomm’s recent innovations, the Snapdragon 888 will feature 5G connectivity with the 3rd-generation Snapdragon X60 5G modem, offering compatibility with mmWave and sub-6 networks. To demonstrate the chipset’s seamless connectivity prowess, Qualcomm fitted two remote-controlled cars with the modem and controlled them from a mile away.

Additionally, a completely re-engineered Qualcomm Hexagon processor improves the generation’s AI Engine. The new system supposedly ramps up performance by up to 26 tera-operations per second.

The Snapdragon 888 also comes with an upgraded Adreno GPU, putting out frame rates going up to 144 frames per second.

As you might expect, the Snapdragon 888 will don next year’s flagships. Though the company has not revealed any compatible smartphones yet, Sony, OnePlus, and Xiaomi made an appearance during the event, renewing their support for Qualcomm’s chipsets. Further, Qualcomm has confirmed Snapdragon 888 support for ASUS, Black Shark, Lenovo, LG, MEIZU, Motorola, Nubia, realme, OPPO, Sharp, vivo, and ZTE.

More smartphone companies will likely reveal their support for the upcoming processor soon. For one, Samsung is probably launching their upcoming flagship, the Galaxy S21 series soon. If tradition holds next year, the flagship series will come with the new chipset, alongside an unannounced Exynos variant.

SEE ALSO: Five flagships will come with Snapdragon 875 early next year

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Huawei Mate 40 Pro price and availability in the Philippines

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Huawei’s latest and greatest smartphone — the Huawei Mate 40 Pro — is now in the Philippines.

The Mate 40 Pro continues the Mate line’s legacy of being a fantastic all around smartphone. It delivers the best in terms of design, build, cameras, and performance.

A leap in performance

Every single phone in the Mate 40 series is powered by Kirin 9000 5G. Huawei is calling it “the most sophisticated 5nm 5G SoC  available.”

It features a three-level power efficiency architecture with cores running at clock frequencies of up to 3.13Ghz. Really, all you need to know is it’s extremely powerful, extremely efficient, and it’s close to mind-boggling the things that it enables the phone to do.

The 24-core Mali-G78 GPU on the Mate 40 Pro and Mate 40 Pro+ is the most powerful GPU ever on a Huawei device. It’s great for intense graphic performance and works well with the 90Hz screen refresh rate and 240Hz touch sampling rate.

Of course, having 5G means it’s gonna take a toll on the battery. The Mate 40 has a 4,200mAh capacity while the Mate 40 Pro and Mate 40 Pro+ have 4,400mAh. But more than the numbers, Huawei says the phones are equipped with tech to handle the demands of 5G.

Huawei Mate 40 Pro

An all-around camera

Huawei’s mobile camera tech is one of the best in the business and there’s more of the same in the Mate 40 series.

The three phones come with an array of camera features found in Huawei phones past, all improved and upgraded. There’s Dual Cine Cameras, Steady Shot, Tracking Shot, Audio Focus, Audio Zoom and the list goes on.

A testament to how smart its cameras are is how you can lazily shoot with it and you’d still come up with pretty darn good shots.

A new user experience

We’ve already been introduced to EMUI 11 and all it’s wonderful features. So there’s all of that plus a handful of improvements in several areas.

Smart Gesture Control makes a return. It’s the feature that lets you hover your hand over the device to wake it up, navigate, and answer a call. Like magic!

Huawei is also expanding Petal Search to Petal Maps, essentially replacing everything it lost with Google and putting their own stamp on it while making sure to communicate that it’s all private and secure.

Watch our Huawei Mate 40 Pro Unboxing and Review.

 

Pricing and availability

The Huawei Mate 40 Pro retails for PhP 55,999 in the Philippines. It will be available starting December 4. If you purchase it from December 4-6, you’ll get a free Mate 40 Pro Ring Light case worth PhP 3,999 for free!

 

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Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege next gen versions now available

For both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S

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Rainbow Six Siege

Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S are now available.

These versions will allow gameplay in 4K and up to 120 fps, depending on the mode chosen by the players (performance or resolution), among many other improvements. Players will be able to upgrade their version on the same family of devices at no extra cost.

Current players on PlayStation 4 or Xbox One will also be able to keep their progression. Cross-generation play is also available within the same family of devices, allowing PlayStation 5 players to face PlayStation 4 players, and Xbox One players to face Xbox Series X|S players.

Cross-play between different families of consoles or between PC and consoles is not currently supported.

Players on next-gen consoles will be able to experience Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege with the highest graphical enhancements the game has yet to offer. These enhancements will offer multiple options for prioritizing either performance or resolution, granted players are equipped with a compatible device:

  • 4K resolution (PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X) / 1080p (Xbox Series S)
  • 120 fps (PlayStation® 5, Xbox Series X)
  • DualSense wireless controller capabilities for even deeper immersion (PlayStation 5)
  • Activities support for the most popular playlists so players can dive into the game faster (PlayStation 5)

The following features are also being implemented for an enhanced next-gen experience on all platforms:

  • Better accessibility (readability options, text to speech and speech to text)
  • Quick start (optimized login flow, streamlined intro sequence)
  • Ubisoft Connect overlay

This next generation of hardware provides the latest tech and features available, and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege will keep improving to leverage all the new opportunities afforded by these new platforms.

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