A premium budget smartphone? That’s what the Flare S4 Plus is trying to be. Here’s our unboxing of the latest from Cherry Mobile.
If you’re into phablets, Cherry Mobile also has something for you. With the same processor as the Flare 4 and Flare S4, the 5.5-inch Flare S4 Plus one ups its little brothers with 3GB of RAM and better cameras, 16 megapixels on its rear and 8 megapixels up front. At P7,999 the Flare S4 Plus also supports LTE connectivity. You can use it as a dual SIM phone, or swap out one SIM for a microSD card.
Corning unveils tougher Gorilla Glass Victus 2
Can survive 1m drops on concrete
Smartphones are getting stronger. Because of ever-growing technology, smartphones today can more easily withstand bumps, dings, and accidents. Besides the intricate labyrinth of chips inside, it’s also important to look at the screen. In the next evolution of screen durability, Corning has unveiled next year’s Gorilla Glass Victus 2, featuring more protection against the most common smartphone accident.
If you’re out and about, there’s a good chance that you’re holding your phone in your hand. All it takes is either a miscalculation or slippery hands to send your phone tumbling onto the unforgiving concrete. According to Corning, “over 30 percent of the drops [smartphones] were having were on concrete, more than any other surface.”
Building on its predecessor’s formula, the Gorilla Glass Victus 2 can now survive drops from one meter on concrete. Plus, much like the original Victus, this version can withstand drops from two meters on smoother asphalt. The new material also compensates for larger and heavier form factors.
Now, the big question: Does it matter? Though it might seem insignificant, more durability on rougher surfaces means more protection in real-life scenarios. In the real world, not everything is as smooth as concrete. More often than not, smartphones will fall onto uneven surfaces. Even a single tiny bump can spell disaster for the hardiest of screens.
Corning has not confirmed which smartphones will get the new glass yet. However, the company hints that it’s coming to a flagship in the coming months. Given the timing (and the specs of the previous generation), it’s not difficult to assume that next year’s Galaxy S23 series will get the Victus 2 first.
Xiaomi, Huawei, MediaTek, iQOO postpone December launches
Because of a political figure’s passing
Though almost all major smartphone launches have already happened this year, some brands reserve December to close the year with a bang. Unfortunately, if you were waiting for one of the final launches this year, you might be in for a longer wait. Xiaomi, Huawei, MediaTek, and iQOO have all postponed their major launches in December.
It’s not a strange coincidence between four brands, of course. Jiang Zemin, the former General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, recently passed away at 96 years old. Though the four announcement did not mention the death as a reason for the postponement, the coincidence of all four at the same time does heavily point to it.
Regardless of the reason, the four scheduled launches will now happen at a later time. None of the four brands have decided on new dates yet.
Xiaomi was supposed to launch the Xiaomi 13 series and MIUI 14. Huawei was scheduled to unveil smartwatches with housing for TWS earbuds. MediaTek — both through new smartphones and its own launch — was going to reveal the new Dimensity 8200. Finally, iQOO was scheduled for the launch of the iQOO 11 series and the iQOO Neo7 SE.
If you were on the lookout for any of these launches, you’ll have to wait a little bit longer.
Google sued for misleading Pixel 4 ads
Featuring endorsers who never owned a Pixel 4
There’s something funny about celebrities endorsing new phones. Who can forget actress Gal Gadot’s big blunder when she promoted the Huawei Mate 10 Pro by tweeting with an iPhone? Though the phones are usually good, one has to wonder whether celebrity endorsers truly exchanged their iPhone for another brand. In a controversy a few years past its deadline, Google is now facing a similar conundrum in a new lawsuit surrounding the Pixel 4.
According to an official release from the FTC, Google and iHeartMedia are being sued in seven states for allegedly running misleading ads for the Pixel 4 a few years ago. All ads involved influencers who reportedly did not own a Pixel 4 prior to the filming of the ads. Regardless, each influencer promoted the phone’s features as if they owned the phone themselves.
As a result, the FTC plans to enforce harsher rules whenever Google rolls out a new ad. If successful, the suit will stop Google from featuring endorsers who don’t own a Pixel but claim to. The suit will also enforce compliance by forcing Google to properly show documentation whenever an endorser is in an ad.
For its part, Google plans to settle with at least six states. The company is currently facing US$ 9.4 million in penalties.
Unfortunately, Google’s troubles are only a drop in the bucket for misleading advertising. As stated above, Google isn’t the only company caught recruiting endorsers who don’t own the phones themselves.
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