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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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Samsung, BTS will launch a custom Galaxy S20

Coming next month

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Celebrity endorsements are part and parcel of the smartphone lifecycle. Most companies have constantly leveraged local talent to promote their products. However, a lucky few have found more internationally known celebrities to brandish new devices. Amidst this ubiquitous strategy, Samsung and LG have a distinct advantage: a gallery of Korean idol groups right at their doorstep. For example, Samsung has already created BLACKPINK-themed Galaxy smartphones last year.

Recently, Samsung recruited BTS for this year’s Galaxy S20 series. At the time, the partnership was just for brand ambassadorship, creating promos with the “Captured #withGalaxy S20 Series.” Now, Samsung and BTS are taking it a step further.

In the last few days, Samsung’s Twitter account teased BTS-themed promos with a single date: July 9. The promos are very likely hinting at a BTS-themed device coming next month.

Thanks to Max Weinbach, we finally have a clearer idea of what the upcoming device is. Sent by one of his sources, the upcoming device is a Galaxy S20 variant in vibrant Mirror Purple, marking the BTS theme. Additionally, Samsung is also launching BTS-themed Galaxy Buds+ in the same Mirror Purple color. Both devices will come in custom BTS packaging.

At least for the phone, there isn’t any change internally. It’s still the same Galaxy S20 series. At the very least, the custom variant will arrive in the base Galaxy S20 model.

As the leak confirms, the upcoming device will launch on July 9 in South Korea. Pre-orders will start soon. However, there is no word yet whether the device will come to other countries.

SEE ALSO: Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 might now be in mass production

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CES 2021 will still push through with an in-person event

Will implement a lot of safety measures

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Image source: CES

So far, CES 2020 is the only massive tech trade show to escape the ongoing coronavirus pandemic unscathed. Soon after the first show of the year, other similar events — like MWC 2020 — started dropping out for fear of spreading the virus further. Some migrated to online avenues. Some are still pushing through but with severely limited attendance.

With more than half a year to go before the next event, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) has announced that CES 2021 will continue its years-long tradition of holding an in-person event for the trade showcase. Besides the in-person event, CES 2021 will also branch out into more digital spaces, allowing more livestreaming to broadcast the latest technologies for a wider reach. Though the announcement is only making the rounds now (via The Verge), the CTA has already made and publicized the decision on May 7 through the convention’s website.

This is, of course, a huge deal for the public events industry all over the world. All eyes are on CES 2021 as a safety barometer for the future of public spaces. Though some events are still continuing as normal this year, CES 2021 will likely usher in a new era with new health tools, the “new normal,” and, hopefully, a cure. Who knows what will happen at that point in time?

CES 2021 will still implement public health measure to limit the spread of disease during the show. The CTA is already pondering on various methods like social distancing, temperature scans, mask wearing, contactless payments, and sanitization stations.

Amidst all the potential safety measures in place, we’re seeing the “new normal” in action. For sure, CES 2021 will showcase huge breakthroughs in the tech industry, as it did this year. The annual event will take place from January 6 to 9 next year.

SEE ALSO: IFA 2020 to adopt an ‘innovative’ form of conferencing

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PLDT Home extends Speedboost and Double Data offers

Until June 30

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When people were forced to stay at and work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, PLDT stepped in to make sure Internet access was sufficient (debatable, we know). The speedboost they promised for the duration of the lockdown has now been extended.

The nationwide speedboost supposedly gave everyone a minimum of 25 Mbps. If you felt this boost, congratulations! You get to experience it for a little while longer.

If you’d rather go prepaid that options is on offer as well. You can get the PLDT Home Wifi Prepaid at just PhP 995 which comes with free 10GB worth of data valid for seven days and enjoy twice more data for all sites and apps.

If that doesn’t quite cut it for you there are other PLDT Home Wifi Prepaid options:

  • FamLoad package: FamLoad 199 now has 24GB of data for seven days
  • FamLoad 599 comes with 80GB of data for 15 days
  • FamLoad 999 has 130GB of data for 30 days
  • FamLoad 1499 gives you a whopping 200GB of data for 30 days.

To find out more, you can always visit the PLDT Website. Just cross your fingers that it never gets hacked like their Twitter account.

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