News

Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro now official

Now this is a flagship

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When Huawei said they’re rethinking possibilities with the Huawei Mate 30 series, they weren’t kidding at all. Unveiled in Munich, Germany, the Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro’s hardware do not disappoint.

A modern design

The Huawei Mate 30 series features an edge-to-edge screen that the company is calling the Horizon Display. It curves at an angle of 88 degrees deliver the most screen it can despite still having a notch — which Huawei says is ultra-narrow.

The edge-to-edge display on the Mate 30 Pro created the need for the Side-Touch Interaction feature. It replaces the physical volume keys. This also lets you customize the virtual button’s position giving you more control on how you want to interact with your device.

These are all very similar to the tech implemented by vivo on the NEX 3. Groundbreaking stuff. We’re quite surprised the invite wasn’t by innovation only. 😏

Rethinking the cameras 

Flip over the Huawei Mate 30 and you’ll see the phone’s triple camera module now enclosed in a circle. The cameras are as follows: A 40MP SuperSensing Camera, 16MP Ultra Wide-angle Camera and an 8MP Telephoto Camera.

On the Mate 30 Pro you’ll get a quad camera system: the 40MP Cine Camera, 40MP SuperSensing Camera, an 8MP Telephoto Camera and a 3D Depth Sensing Camera.

Huawei really pushed the boundaries on these cameras. The Cine Camera features a large 1/1.54-inch sensor size with a high maximum Video ISO of 51200 to capture videos with an extended dynamic range at 4K/60fps as well as ultra slow-motion at the highest 7680 fps.

The Mate 30 Pro also offers what Huawei calls pro-bokeh capabilities on video recording. We’ll have to test the feature if it’s any better than the bokeh effect found on the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+. Video also has a combination of Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) and AI Stabilisation (AIS) for superior stabilization.

The cameras also have a sensor larger than the ones found on other flagships today. This lends nicely to taking night shots. And the samples Huawei showed on stage was pretty impressive.

Shanghai at Night. Taken with the Huawei Mate 30 Pro Night Mode

Fast and powerful

We already know that the Huawei Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro is equipped with the Kirin 990. It’s a chip specifically designed to support 5G. In various graphs throughout the presentation, Huawei pointed out how they have built the most advanced 5G tech and put all of it in the Huawei Mate 30 series.

Of course, having 5G means larger power consumption. Fret not, the Huawei Mate 30 sports a 4200mAh battery while the Mate 30 Pro has an even bigger battery capacity with 4500mAh.

It also won’t take long to charge those batteries as the Huawei Mate 30 series supports the 27W Wireless Huawei SuperCharge and the 40W Huawei SuperCharge. The Reverse Wireless Charging feature that was introduced on the Mate 20 series is now also three times faster.

New materials, new variants

The 6.53-inch Huawei Mate 30 Pro and 6.62-inch HUAWEI Mate 30 come in various colour variants and materials: Emerald Green, Space Silver, Cosmic Purple, Black.

Huawei also introduced a new material — vegan leather. They say it’s also water and dust resistant. The vegan leather variants will come in two colors: Forest Green and Orange.

Pricing and availability

Pricing are as follows: Huawei Mate 30 with 8GB+128GB will retail for EUR 799, the Huawei Mate 30 PRO with 8GB+256GB will retail for EUR 1099. The 5G version of the Mate 30 Pro will retail for EUR 1199. Also announced at the event was the Huawei Mate 30 RS Porsche Edition with 12GB+512GB and it will retail for EUR 2095.

Update as of October 28: The Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro are now also available in the Philippines. The Mate 30 will retail for PhP 34,990 while the Mate 30 Pro will sell for PhP 50,990. Pre-order period is from October 28 to November 8. Those who pre-order will get freebies worth up to PhP 5,580.

News

OxygenOS 11 will come with major design changes

Eerily similar to OneUI

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OnePlus fans have always sworn by OxygenOS for its stock-like Android experience. However, that may soon change with the release of OxygenOS 11, the latest iteration based on the upcoming Android 11.

OnePlus dropped these changes on the latest developer preview of OxygenOS last August 11.  While these may change before the final release, some of them are already causing a stir among many fans and Android users.

Inspired by OneUI

The biggest takeaway from OxygenOS 11 is its likeness to OneUI. Clearly, OnePlus took some design inspiration from Samsung’s skin. The big headers and large empty spaces are straight out of OneUI’s playbook. Almost all system apps — settings, contacts, messages, and weather app — from OxygenOS 11 have been redesigned with this design principle. Even the drop-down notification shade and Shelf gets the redesign treatment.

Photo by dsmonteiro from OnePlus

To OnePlus’ credit though, this new version of OxygenOS is much more coherent on adhering to its own design language. OnePlus’ brand redesign culminated with a brand-new font, and it is debuting as OnePlus Sans here.

Always-on display makes a debut

Another big thing debuting on OxygenOS 11 is always-on display (AOD). Technically, OnePlus’ phones had an always-on display in the form of ambient display. However, the implementation in the new version of OxygenOS is much closer to how other phone manufacturers implement AOD. The company even threw some slick new AOD styles, including the unique “Insights” style.

Zen Mode, Gallery, dark mode, and RAM optimizations

Some of the apps get new additions and optimizations for OxygenOS 11. Zen Mode gains a new sharing feature that enables users to share their sessions with other users. The gallery app, on one hand, has a revamped explore tab that automatically creates stories based on taken shots.

Users can now set dark mode to toggle automatically too. There are tweaks to the dark mode and more system apps now support it too.

Furthermore, OxygenOS 11 brings RAM optimization that should address aggressive app killing in the background. This is a small but welcome change considering that OnePlus ranks among the worst offender for aggressive RAM optimization.

Developer preview out now

Users who are willing to try out OxygenOS 11 may do so by downloading it directly from OnePlus’ website. As of now, it is only available for technically-inclined users of the OnePlus 8 series. A public beta is not long in the tooth now, considering that stable Android 11 is almost here.

All-in-all, OxygenOS 11 is set to be a major design change that will surely polarize long-time OnePlus fans and users. Perhaps, this change will be another in the long line of controversial decisions that OnePlus did in an effort to catch up with major phone manufacturers.

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Accessories

Sony WH-1000XM4 price and availability in the Philippines

Right around how much we expected it to be

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Sony’s best just got better as the Sony WH-1000XM4 is now official and has come to the Philippines.

New to the headphones in its 4th iteration is Multiple device pairing. This has been one of this headphones’ weaknesses and it has finally been addressed. You can now connect the Sony WH-1000XM4 to two devices simultaneously.

When a call comes in, your headphones will know which device is ringing and connect to it automatically. You’ll also be able to quickly switch your headphones to either of the two devices in a single tap.

Sound of the WH-1000XM-line has always been stellar and the XM4 should be no different. The ever-reliable QN1 is still here for noise-cancellation but it’s now paired with a new Bluetooth Audio SoC. It can sense and adjust to music and noise at over 700 times per second.

It now also has Edge-AI, DSEE Extreme which more accurately rebuilds audio lost during digital compression for a full fidelity experience. The 360 Reality Audio feature is now also making its way to these headphones. It lets listeners enjoy a custom immersive musical field that is perfectly optimized for each individual user.

The WH-1000XM4 also supports Google’s helpful new Fast Pair feature that lets you easily locate where you left your WH-1000XM4 by ringing them.

Lastly, there’s Speak-to-chat. Previously, you had to cover one of the ear cups to disable the noise-cancelling for a short period. Now, you only have to speak and the headphones will recognize your voice, automatically stop your music and let in ambient sound so you can conduct a conversation without removing your headphones.

Pricing and availability 

The Sony WH-1000XM4 will retail for PhP 19,999 and is available in the Philippines starting August 14, 2020 in all Sony Centers and dealers nationwide.

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Enterprise

TikTok has collected user information illegally

They know who you are

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For months now, the US has hounded TikTok for potentially enabling Chinese cyber espionage. ByteDance, TikTok’s owner, is a Chinese company, making it a prime target for data collection. Of course, despite the numerous warnings, TikTok’s transgressions have only started appearing en masse recently. Today, a new conspiracy adds another drop to the overflowing bucket. Unfortunately, it’s a big one. Apparently, TikTok has collected user information illegally for over a year. TikTok knows who you are.

Reported by the Wall Street Journal, TikTok collected and sent valuable MAC addresses and advertising IDs to ByteDance until around November of last year. Of note, Google prohibits this questionable practice, banning apps that practice the method. However, TikTok applied a layer of encryption that hid the practice from the Play Store.

For the unfamiliar, MAC addresses are much more valuable than IP address. While IP addresses constantly change, MAC addresses are more difficult to alter. Most users will usually cycle through the lifespan of a device without giving their MAC addresses a second thought. However, the MAC address is an incredibly unique identifier for your device. Only you should ideally have that address. That said, TikTok’s sketchy collection tactic is much weightier than normal.

According to TikTok’s policies now, the platform does not collect these identifiers anymore. However, it doesn’t bode well for long-time TikTok users since last year. At its most docile, the practice likely facilitated advertising opportunities for the platform. However, it is still highly illegal to collect that data without permission. If anything, the report will give cybersecurity pundits more ammo against the already struggling company.

More than a week ago, Trump had already signed a ban against the app, giving the platform only until September 15 to divest its American assets over to an American corporation.

SEE ALSO: French privacy watchdog is now probing TikTok

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