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Honor Magic shows off beauty and brains

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Honor Magic

Magic is real — actually, make that the Honor Magic.

After numerous teasers and leaks, we now have a definitive look at the latest addition to Huawei’s sub-brand, and it was well worth the wait.

It’s an absolutely gorgeous device, from its curved 5-inch Quad HD AMOLED display to the rounded edges and slim 7.8mm profile. There are two colors to choose from: golden black and porcelain white.

And that’s just the start. What awaits inside the operating system better justifies the Magic name.

Honor Magic

On top of its Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS, there’s something called Honor Magic Live, which is an intelligent system that can read your moves and predict what you’d need next. It’s a lot like Google Assistant, if you think about it, but there’s supposedly smarter predictions behind this implementation.

Instances include movie recommendations while bringing up the topic in an online conversation, automatic switching to driving mode when the phone notices you’re on the road, and providing useful information for a webpage after holding the home button.

Another interesting feature is WiseScreen. Using a combination of sensors on the phone’s frame and the infrared camera in front, the Honor Magic can detect when it’s in your hands and turn on automatically. The same applies to pocketing the handset, wherein it’ll go to sleep the moment it feels your pocket.

Even cooler is this function called FaceCode, which uses facial recognition to figure out who’s allowed to view message notifications. It sounds like more trouble than it’s worth, but we have to see some real-life tests before we can judge.

Honor Magic

Powering all these features is Huawei’s in-house Kirin 950 processor — the same one found in the Honor 8 launched last July. The chipset is assisted by 4GB of memory and 64GB of storage.

In front, you’ll find a physical home button, but it’s unlike anything you’d find on most Androids. You can tap and swipe on it to navigate around the interface, effectively removing any need for the usual Back and Apps Overview buttons. It also doubles as a fingerprint scanner.

On the back you have a 12-megapixel dual-camera setup, just like the one found on the Honor 8. It works the same way: One camera utilizes a color sensor while the other is monochrome. Put together, outputs are a lot sharper, and colors much brighter.

Finally, the Honor Magic makes use of truly fast charging for its 2900mAh battery. It can go from zero to 40 percent in 10 minutes, up to 70 percent in 20 minutes, and as much as 90 percent in only 30 minutes.

Pretty cool, huh? Hold on, because there are a couple of drawbacks. The Honor Magic is only available in China for the time being, and it retails for CNY 3,699, which translates to a premium $530 price tag.

Source: Android Authority

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Google bug leaks users’ location data from Home and Chromecast

Data privacy issues hit another tech giant in Google

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If you have been using Google products lately, particularly Google Home and/or Chromecast, be warned! A bug that affects these devices have reportedly been leaking location data of its users through the Google Home app. The bug was discovered by Craig Young, a researcher at Tripwire — a security firm in Portland, Oregon.

Young was creating an exercise to demonstrate how websites identify and control smart screens and speakers when he discovered the bug. He noticed it while using the Google Home app to access nearby wireless networks in the area. After the device connects to a wireless network, the app sends location data to Google’s geolocation services.

What is very interesting about the bug is that the location is precise, and hackers can easily track that location without the need for GPS. Young made a video below to demonstrate how the bug worked using a website he made. This basically shows that it is that easy for hackers to know exactly where you are and access your information — leaving your privacy at risk.

Young reported this issue to Google back in May, but the report was closed as a “Status: Won’t Fix (Intended Behavior)” message. This means that the code worked and produced the expected results it needed. However, when Krebs on Security contacted Google about the bug, the tech giant took action and is working on a patch to be released in July.

Young warns that the bug can be used for more dangerous privacy scams such as phishing, hacking, extortion, and blackmail. Scammers can also pose as the FBI to ask for your personal data based on your location. The bug can even affect your other smart devices like your smart TVs, not just the aforementioned Google products.

One solution that Young suggests is that you use your smart devices on multiple networks — either by adding a guest network or creating a multi-router system.

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Android Messages web client goes live and gets new features

Text, images, and stickers are all supported

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Android Messages‘ much-awaited feature is finally available and it’s not the only new thing to try out. Google has five new features for users of Messages, from web support to smart replies.

The web version of Android Messages is now rolling out to users, allowing them to send and view messages on their desktop or laptop’s browsers.

Users may visit messages.android.com to access the Android Messages for web. They must also have the updated app on their phone to pair their browser with their phone. People can send stickers, emoji, and attach images aside from sending simple text messages.

The other new features of Android Messages include nifty smart replies for quick responses, instant preview of a link to an article in the conversation, built-in GIF search capabilities, and a useful shortcut for copying one-time passwords such as verification codes when logging into certain apps.

The new features, according to Google, are slowly becoming available to Android users and the rollout will continue throughout the week.

Source: Google

SEE ALSO: The future of Android messaging gets support from carriers worldwide

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YouTube Music and YouTube Premium launch in more countries

YouTube continues to expand its services

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YouTube has come a long way since it was launched 13 years ago. Google is making sure their video-sharing service continues to evolve with the introduction of YouTube Music and YouTube Premium to more countries.

YouTube Music was already launched last month in very few countries including the US, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and South Korea. Today, it’s also making its way to the UK, Austria, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Spain, and Sweden. It offers music videos, albums, singles, remixes, live performances, and covers. It’s basically a dedicated music service like Spotify or Apple Music.

The new app that’s available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store features Smart Search that finds songs intelligently by lyrics or by song name. It can still look for what you are searching even with bizarre phrases like “That space-themed Spice Girls song in the desert.” YouTube Music is ad-supported, but there’s also a premium version for US$ 9.99 per month, or US$ 14.99 for a Family Plan.

YouTube Red is now YouTube Premium, and it’s available in more countries just like YouTube Music. The Premium service of YouTube is ad-free, has background playback, and it includes all the benefits of Music Premium. Premium members also get access to all YouTube Originals, including the hit Cobra Kai. Individual subscription is priced at US$ 11.99 per month or US$ 17.99 for a Family Plan

Source: YouTube

SEE ALSO: Incognito Mode becomes available to YouTube’s Android app

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