HTC U11 Life is company’s first Android One smartphone



The Android One platform is back, and it’s in full swing with its latest entry, the HTC U11 Life.

This is HTC’s first smartphone in the revived program, bringing in a stock Android interface similar to what we see on Google’s own Pixel phones. By being an Android One device, the U11 Life is guaranteed to receive timely software updates with no bloatware along the way.

The 5.2-inch U11 Life is loosely based on the original U11, but forgoes some of the flagship features in favor of a more affordable package. For one, a lower-end yet highly capable Snapdragon 630 processor is in place, and the memory and storage configurations are capped at 4GB and 64GB, respectively.

Its cameras also won’t be as incredible as the U11’s, but HTC seems confident that the 16-megapixel cameras on the front and back will still be competitive in this segment.

Aside from those, the U11 Life has several features unheard of on an Android One handset, including HTC’s Edge Sense function to activate certain apps by squeezing the body, IP67-level water and dust resistance, as well as high-res audio capabilities with the bundled noise-canceling earphones.

As expected, it’ll ship with Android 8.0 Oreo right away, providing you with an instant leg up over phones that are still stuck on Nougat. You’ll just have to deal with the lack of an audio port and the less-than-stellar 2600mAh battery capacity.

The other catch is that this won’t be available in North and Latin America; those regions will receive another version of the U11 Life, which comes with Android 7.1 Nougat and HTC’s own Sense user interface — no Android One for them.

We’ll update this space as we learn more about the regional pricing and availability.

SEE ALSO: 24 hours in Beijing with the HTC U11

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Finally! Grab users may now pay directly using GCash

Much-awaited partnership



GCash Grab

Grab Philippines and GCash have finally struck a partnership deal that will make payments on the superapp even easier and more convenient.

Starting February, users will be able to add GCash as a direct payment method on the Grab app, making cashless transactions on food and grocery deliveries, car transport, and other services cashless.

Prior to the collaboration, GCash users could only send money from their account to their GrabPay wallet, and vice-versa, causing a bit of hassle switching in between apps on one’s phone screen.

The partnership also means there will be no more transaction fees unlike before when Grab users have to cash in using their credit or debit cards or linked bank accounts.

Grab customers may also avail of GCash exclusive deals, and even get treats when they pay using the e-wallet.

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Samsung offers $100 for Galaxy S23 preorders

Or the upcoming Galaxy Book



The Galaxy S23 series is coming. Samsung has officially scheduled the first Galaxy Unpacked event of the year for early February, heralding the coming of the Galaxy S23 series. While the flagship series will certainly wow a lot of users, buying one might crumple bank accounts so soon after the holidays. Luckily, Samsung is holding an early reservation promo ahead of the Galaxy Unpacked event.

If you reserve either the new Galaxy S23 or the new Galaxy Book now, Samsung is giving away US$ 50 worth of Samsung Credit. Additionally, users can reserve both devices and get US$ 100 worth of credit for use on any eligible products in the store.

Simply by signing up with your email address, you can use this link to save up to US$ 100 when you shop with Samsung.

The promo ends next Wednesday, February 1, by 11:59pm EST.

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Apple halts development of in-house chip

Broadcom is still in



Apple is currently on a quest to reduce its reliance on third-party components for its devices. For the most part, the company is successful in doing so. Apple Silicon is already an important part of the brand’s identity — with work on more in-house components ongoing. Now, Apple is reportedly pausing development on one of its upcoming chips.

According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple will delay the development of its in-house connectivity chip. In the meantime, the brand will keep relying on Broadcom for the same components, going into the iPhone 15 series.

To be clear, the paused component only deals with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. Apple is still developing its in-house modem for 5G connectivity — according to outside reports, at least. While the Broadcom deal will still continue, Qualcomm might still get the axe after Apple develops its replacement chip.

Given the positive response to Apple Silicon, building more in-house components might ultimately work well for the brand. If anything, the company can rest easier by controlling how one of its components is produced.

Besides Apple, other brands are also developing their in-house chipsets to rival component makers like Qualcomm. Google, for instance, is doing relatively well with the Tensor lineup. Additionally, though the upcoming series will rely on Qualcomm, Samsung is currently working to bring the Exynos lineup to match current standards.

SEE ALSO: Apple iPhone 15 Rumor Roundup: Goodbye Pro Max, hello Ultra

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