News

Despite ban, the Huawei P40 still has American parts

Includes Qualcomm in component list

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Last year, the Huawei P30 marked the company’s last hurrah with American parts in the foreseeable future. Since then, Huawei’s next flagship series — the Mate 30 series — launched without Google, shifting the brand away from the widely popular suite of apps for the first time since its renaissance. Recently, the company launched the Huawei P40 series, the second flagship series under this era. Of course, it was business as usual for the now America-less smartphone company.

However, after a Financial Times breakdown, the new flagship series still has a few distinctly American parts hiding underneath its surface. Most notably, the phone’s radio-frequency front-end modules (or what the phone uses to call people) come from Qualcomm, Skyworks, and Qorvo. All three companies hail from the US.

Given the current ban, this comes as a surprise. However, if anything, Qualcomm can explain its way out of the mystery. According to an insider source, the American company already has an operating exception against the current ban. Of course, this is still disputable since the US has kept its silence over which companies have successfully received an exception. Currently, only Microsoft has explicitly confirmed its accepted exemption.

Permits aside, Qualcomm also exports its products to third-party subsidiaries outside of the US, which can, in turn, sell the same products to Huawei. At this time, this strategy is still an allowable way for Huawei to use American components.

Unfortunately, neither Skyworks nor Qorvo have spoken about their involvement in the latest Huawei phone. For its part, Huawei has assured consumers that it is still complying with the current regulations set by the government.

Besides the three modules, the Huawei P40 has another blatantly American feature: Android. Despite all the news, the smartphone is still using the world’s most popular operating system. Compared to hardware, Android’s presence is more explainable. The smartphone uses an open-source version of the system. It just doesn’t have Google’s stamp of approval or its suite of apps.

Regardless of the mysteries, Huawei is still doing its best to make up for the loss of its American parts. The Huawei P40 is just its latest attempt to recreate the magic.

SEE ALSO: Huawei acknowledges the US ban is hindering its sales

News

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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Apps

Nickelodeon Pixel Town: Another game to play while on lockdown

They’ve got adorable pixel art!

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Nickelodeon is serving up a new mobile game for us: Nickelodeon Pixel Town. A mobile game we can all sink our teeth into as we try to cope with everything that 2020 has been throwing at us so far.
So, what is it exactly? Nickelodeon Pixel Town is a city building game. The name of the game is building your own Nickelodeon city where you can collect characters, costumes, iconic buildings, and items from different Nickelodeon series. The most charming bit? It’s all drawn in highly stylistic retro pixel art.

For your city inhabitants, you get to collect characters from SpongeBob SquarePants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Invader Zim, CatDog, The Fairly OddParents, Danny Phantom, Rugrats, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Avatar: The Legend of Korra, Rocko’s Modern Life, Hey Arnold! and The Wild Thornberrys.

Honestly, if you don’t have a Switch and have been gritting your teeth through the lockdown while people have been playing Animal Crossing: New Horizons, this is a decent mobile game to bring back some nostalgia. Because with all the hellish news lately, don’t we all just want to curl up into a ball and go back to a time when times seemed so much simpler? Not any better of a place and time perse, sure. But, just a time when we were too young to know any better.

Want to give this game a go?

Nickelodeon has an official launch celebration for the Pixel Town.  You can use the code PIXELTOWNHL to redeem 500 Gems for free! To redeem it, you can go to their website, click redemption, and fill up the necessary info.

If you want to build up a reason to disconnect and play like me, you can. The freebies are valid until 30 June 2020, 11:59PM (GMT+8). That’s a pretty good amount of time to be rally up enough pent up emotions to need some time away to hop back fiercer. Nickelodeon Pixel Town is available in Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia on Google Play and Apple App Store.

SEE ALSO: 10 offline free-to-play mobile games

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Apps

GrabPay Card launches for hassle-free online payments

In partnership with MasterCard

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The ongoing health crisis has made cashless payments a necessity. After expanding their payment portfolio, Grab is now launching GrabPay Card to offer even more ways to handle cashless transactions.

Grab partnered with MasterCard to make this happen. MasterCard’s research showed that in April 2020, 40% of Filipinos resorted to contactless payments. Hardly surprising given the health crisis, but important information to act on nevertheless.

Which brings us now to the GrabPay Card. So what exactly does it do? Its aim is simple: to bring financial inclusion to the millions of underbanked and unbanked in Southeast Asia.

What does it do?

  • Pay for everything online. The GrabPay digital card vastly expands Grab’s online merchant ecosystem, allowing users, regardless of whether they have a bank account, to transact securely and easily online at nearly 53 million merchants worldwide that accept Mastercard cards.
  • Safe and secure cashless payments. As a digital-first card, its details are stored securely within the Grab app. It has an in-app card lock function enabled by Face ID and fingerprint biometric security, and PIN-protection that allow users to instantly suspend payments in case of lost cards or suspicious transactions.
  • More ways to earn GrabRewards. Whether you are using it to purchase an item online, pay for digital subscriptions, or transact locally and globally, users can earn GrabRewards points for transactions made in millions of merchant-partners that accept Mastercard.
  • Unique benefits for users. GrabPay Card users get Mobile protection insurance allowing them to pay for mobile postpaid phone bills using the GrabPay Card and receive protection against accidental damage or theft. The card is also equipped with E-commerce protection that allows users to receive coverage for online transactions in the event that a wrong and/or defective item is delivered, and incomplete or non-delivery of the item.

Worried about security? GrabPay Card is regulated by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas or BSP. It comes with a 24/7 fraud detection engine so you can sleep soundly knowing your transactions are encrypted and protected.

How to get the Card

To use the GrabPay Card, you first need to upgrade the GrabPay wallet by following the in-app verification process. After verification, follow these steps:

    1. Tap ‘Payment’ icon at the bottom of your Grab homescreen
    2. Ensure you have activated and upgraded your GrabPay Wallet
    3. Tap ‘Get your GrabPay Card now’ to access your card details
    4. Enter your PIN to secure your card
    5. Start using your digital card details for your online transactions

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