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Huawei Mate 20 series launches with Kirin 980, new Leica cameras, wireless charging

Absolutely jam-packed inside and out

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Huawei, like most brands, try their best to cram as many features as they can into a single smartphone. Having done the best they could with the P20 Pro earlier this year, Huawei’s next attempt lies in the newly launched Mate 20 series, which is feature-packed to the brim.

Before anything else, there are two models again: a regular Mate 20 and a Mate 20 Pro. They look and feel quite different, despite owning mostly the same internals.

Let’s begin with the higher-end Mate 20 Pro. Yes, it has wide notch containing a 3D depth-sensing array to go with the 24-megapixel selfie shooter for better face scanning, but that’s on top of a 6.39-inch 1440p curved HDR OLED display — allowing the phone to come equipped with an in-display fingerprint reader.

Mate 20 Pro

More fascinating, however, are the Leica cameras on the rear. Like the P20 Pro, there are three in place, but they’re arranged in a square format. One is a 40-megapixel main camera, another has 20 megapixels and an ultra-wide lens, and the final module offers 8 megapixels with 3x optical zoom — no monochrome sensor this time.

Another headline feature is wireless reverse charging, which allows you to charge any other smartphone wirelessly by simply placing it on top of the Mate 20 Pro’s 4200mAh battery. Getting the large capacity to full is pretty quick too, thanks to the bundled 40W SuperCharge adapter.

Memory and storage combo is standard at 6GB and 128GB, respectively. The latter is expandable up to 256GB, but only through Huawei’s new Nano Memory Card standard, which has the same size as a nano-SIM card.

The regular Mate 20 is less amazing on paper, but doesn’t stop short of being a premium smartphone. While the 24-megapixel selfie camera is still there, there are no additional sensors for 3D face recognition in the smaller notch, and even though the 6.53-inch 1080p RGBW HDR LCD is larger, it isn’t curved on the edges and doesn’t offer an in-display fingerprint scanner.

Left: Mate 20, Right: Mate 20 Pro

You’ll also notice a similar square camera setup, but there are a few differences: the main camera has only 12 megapixels, the ultra-wide shooter settles for 16 megapixels, and the 8-megapixel telephoto camera goes up to only 2x optical zoom. Below this is a standard fingerprint sensor.

Other compromises include a marginally lighter 4000mAh battery (with no wireless reverse charging), slower 22.5W bundled SuperCharger, lack of IP68-rated water and dust resistance, and 4GB+128GB base memory and storage (although a 6GB+128GB option is still available, plus Nano Memory Card expansion).

Left: Mate 20, Right: Mate 20 Pro

As for similarities, there are quite a few. The most prominent one is the shared use of Huawei’s brand-new Kirin 980 chipset, which we first saw at IFA Berlin 2018. Next is the color options: Emerald Green, Midnight Blue, Twilight, Pink Gold, and Black.

And since we’re nearing the end of 2018, it’s only right for these flagships to sport Android 9 Pie topped with Huawei’s home-baked EMUI 9 skin. They are both dual-SIM as well, as long as you don’t use the second slot for the aforementioned Nano Memory Card.

Pricing goes like this: The Mate 20’s 4GB+128GB configuration retails for EUR 799 and its 6GB+128GB model goes for EUR 849. The Mate 20 Pro’s sole 6GB+128GB variant costs EUR 1,049. Availability begins on October 16.

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Limited edition Honor MagicWatch 2 design series unveiled

Honor taps into the world of art and fashion

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Time-pieces have always been more than just a way to tell time. In some ways, it’s become a form of self-expression. With that in mind, Honor launches nine limited edition Honor MagicWatch 2 designs.

The designs were made in collaboration with a number of rising stars in the worlds of art and graphic design including Jacky Tsai, George Greaves, Wang DongLing and Giovanni Ozzola. These were made with the vision of bringing together elements of illustration, graphic design, photography, sculpture and calligraphy.

HONOR x Jacky Tsai An Innovative Fusion of Pop Art and Chinese Craftmanship with “Floral Horse” and “Shanghai Tang Café” 

With two eye-catching limited-edition designs, named “Floral Horse” and “Shanghai Tang Café” respectively, Jacky fuses elements of pop art with iconic eastern influences using splashes of colour across the watch faces and straps.

“Floral Horse” by Jacky Tsai

With two eye-catching limited-edition designs, named “Floral Horse” and “Shanghai Tang Café” respectively, Jacky fuses elements of pop art with iconic eastern influences using splashes of colour across the watch faces and straps.

“Shanghai Tang Café” by Jacky Tsai

HONOR x George Greaves A Touch of Exotic with “The Palm Tree”

“The Palm Tree” by George Greeves

Bristol-based illustrator George Greaves is a master in dreamlike, archetypal imagery. Inspired by nature, the unisex palm tree design combines geometric elements with a muted color palette, evoking a sense of majestic landscapes and far-flung adventures

HONOR x Wang DongLing Reinterpreting Historical Calligraphy with “Cheng Hao, ‘Autumn Moon’, Entangled Script”

“Cheng Hao, Autumn Moon, Entangled Script 1” by Wang DongLing

Wang Dongling is widely recognized as China’s greatest living calligrapher and is known for his large abstract works that he calls “calligraphic paintings.” Bringing together poetry and painting, Dongling creates his work through performances where he translates the text of ancient Chinese verses into gestural interpretations of traditional characters.

“Cheng Hao, Autumn Moon, Entangled Script 2” by Wang DongLing

HONOR x Giovanni Ozzola Experimenting with light, photography and sculpture in “One Day”, Old Walls” and “Ficus” 

“One Day” by Giovanni Ozzola

Originating from Florence, Giovanni is a multidisciplinary artist working primarily in photography, as well as video and sculptural installation.

“Old Walls” by Giovanni Ozzola

His artworks have been exhibited internationally in numerous public and private institutions, including Fosun Foundation in Shanghai, 313 Art Project in Seoul, District 6 Museum in Cape Town, Tate Modern in London and many more.

“Ficus” by Giovanni Ozzola

HONOR x Zhou Li Creating movement and rhythm with dynamic lines and brunch strokes

“Peach Blossom Yard” by Zhou Li

Known for her oriental aesthetic and acute sensory observations of the world, Zhou Li is one of the most influential female artists in China. Zhou creates paintings, sculptures, installations and public arts using multiple mediums including oil paint, ink, charcoal and cotton textiles.

HONOR x Pencil Bryan Capturing the surreal through dreamlike illustration

“Pencil Bryan” by Xu Lei

Founder of Pencil Bryan’s design team, Xu Lei has produced a number of illustrations for high-end fashion magazines over the years as well as collaborating with a range of global brands. Xu is known for his surreal, conceptual art, with a vivid and unique style, combing the rational and the conceptual he is able to illustrate the perceived world with a unique, avant-gard perspective.

Honor MagicWatch 2 pricing and availability

The Honor MagicWatch 2 will be available in two sizes — 46mm and 42mm.  The 46mm variant is designed with an auto-racing watch panel for a sporty, bold and adventurous look, the 42mm variant is designed with fashion in mind.

It has a 1.39-inch full-color AMOLED touchscreen, customizable watchfaces, up to 14 days of ultra long-lasting battery life and a range of health and fitness features. There will also be three straps to choose from: including elastic rubber (an eco-friendly hypoallergenic material), leather and metal, you can customize the watch for any occasion.

The Honor MagicWatch 2 46mm Charcoal Black is available to purchase from GBP 159.99 in the UK on Amazon and eBay and coming soon to John Lewis starting  February 3, 2020. The 42mm Agate Black variant of the watch will be available from GBP 149.99 in the UK on Amazon and John Lewis starting from February 12, 2020.

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Samsung Galaxy S20 series pricing leak online

The 5G models are pretty expensive

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The tech community is busy scouring the Internet for details regarding Samsung’s next flagship. The Galaxy S20 series, as well as another flagship foldable from Samsung, will go official by February. Until then, leaks keep pouring about the details of these phones.

The latest of these leaks come courtesy of XDA Developer’s Max Weinbach. On Twitter, he posted the pricing information of upcoming Galaxy S20 phones. Note that the prices are approximate pricing in Euros.

For those who missed out on rumors, Samsung is revamping the naming scheme of its flagships. Expect a Huawei-like naming scheme on Samsung’s next generation of flagships.

The Galaxy S20 will supposedly arrive in 4G and 5G models. The pricing for 4G models is EUR 100 less than their 5G counterparts.

Furthermore, Weinbach believes the US pricing for S20, S20+, and S20 Ultra would be US$ 850, US$ 950, US$ 1200, respectively. The pricing is a notch higher than the current pricing of the Galaxy S10 series. However, it is worth noting that the Galaxy S20 will arrive with chock-full of improvements over its predecessors.

As for the Galaxy Z Flip, details remain scarce on what the phone will look like. However, Samsung teased a clamshell foldable last October, so this could be an early look at how the foldable will look.

The world will know more about Samsung’s next flagships at Unpacked 2020 taking place on February 11.

SEE ALSO:
Samsung Galaxy S20+ rumor roundup: 120Hz display, ultrasonic fingerprint scanner
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip rumor roundup: the next foldable smartphone

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Mystery 44-megapixel selfie cam surfaces on Twitter

Can you guess who made it?

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Image source: Arun Maini / Twitter

By now, we’ve heard of the 108-megapixel smartphone. But, have you heard of the 44-megapixel selfie shooter?

While the world is focusing on blockbusting rear cameras, a mystery smartphone maker has sneaked in a 44-megapixel front-facing shooter from under our noses. A famous British tech personality, Arun Maini, has leaked an unnamed smartphone with the world’s first 44-megapixel dual punch-hole camera.

Mysteriously, Maini has not revealed the device’s brand or model, prompting Twitter users to guess instead. While the guesses are undeniably varied, a clear leader is emerging as the rumored brand: OPPO.

OPPO has launched a similar user interface in the past. Most recently, the punch-hole camera was featured in the new Reno3 and Reno3 Pro. Further, the company uses a very similar layout and wallpaper on its phones.

However, the leaked phone is clearly not the recently released series. The Reno3 Pro has a sizable but smaller 32-megapixel selfie shooter. Whatever this is, it’s something new.

If anything, the Twitterverse is right. The leaked phone is likely an OPPO smartphone.

That said, we are now approaching the age of huge selfie shooters. Besides OPPO, Samsung is also rumored to launch a huge front-facing camera. Reportedly, the upcoming Galaxy S20 Ultra will carry a whopping 40-megapixel shooter in the front. Undoubtedly, 2020 is bringing the sexy selfie back.

SEE ALSO: Will the OPPO A9 2020 last our 10-hour binge-watch test?

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