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Honor 10 offers the best of Huawei minus the premium price

Gives up only a few features

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Huawei has done it once again, releasing a more affordable alternative to its latest flagship smartphone lineup and placing it under the more budget-friendly Honor brand. This time, we’re looking at the newly launched Honor 10.

Make no mistake about it, the Honor 10 is a feature-packed device. A lot of the high-end specifications found on the Huawei P20 series — such as the top-of-the-line Kirin 970 processor, glass and metal body, and latest EMUI 8.1 software (based on Android 8.1 Oreo) — are mostly here.

And yes, there’s a notch on top. It fits inside the 5.84-inch 1080p LCD with a 19:9 screen ratio. Underneath the display is the front-mounted fingerprint sensor, although Huawei’s usual facial recognition feature is available if you prefer that for unlocking your phone.

This being a Huawei device, you can expect the cameras to be great. In this case, there’s a 16- and 24-megapixel combo on the back, with the latter having a monochrome image sensor for sharper photos. Not to be outdone, the selfie shooter is of the 24-megapixel kind, as well. Unfortunately, there’s no Leica branding in sight, which explains why this phone can be sold cheaper, but you do get artificial intelligence in the cameras for smarter scene recognition.

Memory and storage configurations are excellent, with 6GB for the former and a choice between 64GB and 128GB for the latter. And because this is a big phone, a 3400mAh battery is found inside, just like on the P20. What’s extra special is the inclusion of a 3.5mm audio port, something Huawei flagships have given up on since the Mate 10 series.

Pricing starts at CNY 2,599 (US$ 412) for the 6GB memory with 64GB storage variant, and CNY 2,999 (US$ 477) for the model with 128GB of storage (neither of which can be expanded using a microSD card). There’s some difficulty in translating the exact color names to English, but rest assured there are four to choose from: black, gray, purple, and blue.

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The US is offering a $10 million reward to prevent election hacking

Better be safe than sorry

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For ages, civilization has announced a bounty to get a hold of criminals. The tactic usually works because money acts as a motivating factor, prompting everyone to be on a lookout. The US is using the tried and tested method to ensure its 2020 Presidential election aren’t meddled with.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US would offer a US$ 10 million reward to arrest anyone who interferes in the November elections. It includes attacks against US officials, US election infrastructure, voting machines, and also candidates and their staff.

Pompeo did not specify Russia but the US intelligence community has previously confirmed it expects another effort by Moscow as well as other US adversaries in the 2020 election.

The country is taking immense caution amid the Coronavirus pandemic to ensure fair elections. In 2016, many alleged that the elections weren’t fair since foreign entities had interfered. No substantial proof has been found yet, but it’s a widely known fact that hackers leveraged Facebook’s vulnerability to attack users psychologically.

“Such adversaries could also conduct malicious cyber operations against US political organizations or campaigns to steal confidential information and then leak that information as part of influence operations to undermine political organizations or candidates,” the State Department said.

Russian involvement has long been suspected and the US is already busy fighting a trade war with China. The hostile geopolitical scenario could be a perfect recipe for disaster if sharp vigilance isn’t maintained.

Modern warfare is pivoting towards digital offensives and the US has experience from both sides of the coin — a perpetrator as well as a victim. The US used cyberwarfare to derail Iran’s nuclear program. In retaliation, American companies are always a target, as proved by North Korea’s infiltration of Sony Pictures in 2014.

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Microsoft’s Your Phone app brings Android apps to Windows 10

This is what the future looks like

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Your Phone app will be able to run Android apps on your laptop or computer by streaming your phone’s screen. You can open an app, pin it to the taskbar, or quite literally do anything you want to. The feature will be extremely handy since it actually ports two completely different ecosystems into one.

Samsung just announced its top-tier offerings, including the Galaxy Note 20 series, Galaxy Tab 7, and the Galaxy Fold2 5G. They also announced further partnerships with Microsoft that’ll not only bundle Office apps on Samsung phones but also bring Android apps to a Windows computer.

Samsung has always marketed the Note-lineup as productivity-focused. With the Windows integration, you can complete work on-the-go with a Note 20 and quickly sync data with your primary machine.

This kind of looks like how Huawei Share works between a Huawei phone and laptop.

The more exciting part is the feature won’t be limited to the flagships. The list of compatible phones include but are not limited to the following:

  • Samsung Galaxy Note10
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10+
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10 Lite
  • Samsung Galaxy Fold
  • Samsung Galaxy S20
  • Samsung Galaxy S20+
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • Samsung Galaxy Z Flip
  • Samsung Galaxy A70
  • Samsung Galaxy A50s

The total number of supported devices stands at 33 at the moment.

There will also be new notification badges for your Android phone apps that you have kept open on the Windows machine. However, Microsoft does warn that certain apps may block this functionality considering they do limit the ability to cast screens to other devices.

This will also help you reduce app duplications. Simple apps like Spotify, WhatsApp, and Slack can be installed on one device and used seamlessly, without reaching out to another device.

The app is shipping to testers as part of the Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 20185 and is rolling out to Windows Insider testers at this time. With this app, Microsoft is not only advancing the experience of its own operating system but also ensuring its core products like Office are used the most on rival platforms like Android. To do so, it’s tapping Samsung’s potential as a phone maker.

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Samsung commits to three years of updates on its flagships

2019 flagships are also covered with the new change

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There’s one big change that Samsung is doing with the release of its latest flagships. From now on, Samsung is committing to three years of software updates. It’s a big change for the company.

All Samsung flagships starting with the Note 20 series will receive three major OS updates. This also applies to the recently-launched Galaxy Fold Z Fold2 5G. As such, buyers can expect the flagship to sport Android 13 since this recently-released flagship has Android 10 onboard.

In a surprising move, the company is also doing the same for the Galaxy S10 series released last year. The 2019 flagship has Android 9 on board, so users of that device can upgrade up to Android 12 in the future. As a matter of fact, Samsung confirmed to The Verge that all S, Note, and Z-series phones from 2019 will receive up to three years of updates.

See also: Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra — what the leaks didn’t tell you

As for the Galaxy A-series phones, Samsung said that support will vary depending on the hardware. Perhaps, budget-oriented A-series phones will stick to two years of updates. Still, it’s better to wait for Samsung’s official announcement regarding the per-device update roadmap.

Still, the change is a welcome move for everyone. In the past, the company only committed to two years of updates for most of its smartphones. For example, Samsung’s 2017 S flagship — Galaxy S8 — came with Android 7 Nougat and can be upgraded to Android 9 Pie. Moving to three years of updates allow users to keep the device for longer, which has a tremendous impact on the environment as well as the economy.

A looming domino effect?

With Samsung’s move, it is not far-fetched to think that other companies will follow suit. A major Android manufacturer pushing the needle for software updates is enough to compel others to provide a year or more of software updates.

Perhaps, this shall start a trend of supporting phones for longer. As more companies begin supporting their devices for longer, two years of updates will soon be not enough. In the future, Android users may expect three years to become the norm for updates. This is not just a pipe dream anymore, as Google and OnePlus are already doing it.

While it may seem like a big thing in the Android world, three years of updates are still measly compared to Apple’s support for its iPhones. Still, Samsung’s move is a step in the right direction, and it sure is a welcome one for those who keep their devices for longer.

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