LG V34 is what the V20 should have been



You know that feeling of having the best gadget, only for it to be replaced by a much better version months later? LG V20 owners will likely feel this way once they see the just-launched V34.

This isn’t to say the V20 is any less the LG flagship it already is, but the V34 blows it out of the water in terms of portability and one special feature.

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The primary difference is the display size, shrinking to 5.2 inches from the V20’s 5.7-inch screen. And yet, despite the significant reduction in size, the removable battery maintains a capacity of 3000mAh — not bad, if you consider the slightly higher 3200mAh capacity of the V20.

There’s also IP67-rated dust and water proofing, similar to what we see on the newer Samsung Galaxy and Apple iPhone handsets. In comparison, the V20 only has a shock-resistant aluminum body.

LG V34 gold color

The great thing is that every other specification and feature from the V20 remains. You still get the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, Quad HD resolution, 4GB of memory, dual-camera setup (with same number of megapixels), secondary display above the main one, 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC audio capabilities, and Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box.

Does all this sound too good to be true? That’s because it is.

The full model name is LG V34 isai Beat, and it’s exclusive to au by KDDI (intentionally in lowercase for the former, and uppercase for the latter), meaning you can’t purchase it officially outside of Japan.

It’ll see the light of day in mid-November, and colors are limited to two: Gold and Titan. Any lucky LG fans in Japan around that time?

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Source: au by KDDI, via GSMArena


ASUS ZenFone Max Pro M1 receives global Android Pie update

More features coming up



The ZenFone Max Pro M1, which had been a mainstay on our Best Smartphones list, is officially seeing its Android 9 Pie update roll out internationally.

This comes a little over a year after the phone’s original launch. According to ASUS’ official online forum, the update is targeting model ZB602KL, which is the international unit. The update’s version number is 16.2017.1905.053.

The update is about 1.5GB in size and can be accessed by checking the System Updates option under System in the main settings menu. ASUS says that the update’s push is happening in batches, so it may take longer for some users to receive it.

The hefty update includes all the features that are bundled with Android Pie, along with the latest security patch from ASUS and some bug fixes.

Last month, only the Indian version of the ZenFone Max Pro M1 could be updated to Android Pie.

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Redmi 7A offers a solid budget phone experience

Continuing the legacy of great value



When we first reviewed the Redmi 5A, we dubbed it the best smartphone you could buy below US$ 100. But then the Redmi 6A happened, and it wasn’t nearly as impressive. Fast forward to the Redmi 7A, which looks to bring Xiaomi’s entry-level A-series back to its roots.

Xiaomi once again placed a capable Snapdragon chipset in its lowest-end Redmi model. This time, it’s the Snapdragon 439. With the 4000mAh battery, this phone is built to last long on a single charge.

The memory and storage options of 2GB+16GB and 3GB+32GB aren’t as impressive, especially against today’s standards, but as the previous two generations had proven. they’re sufficient for basic apps and tasks.

On the back is a single 13-megapixel camera while the front houses a standard 5-megapixel shooter. As for the display, it’s a 5.45-inch 720p LCD with no notch or hole in it. Once again, there’s no fingerprint scanner to be found.

Indeed, this is as basic as it gets for a smartphone, but like the Redmi 5A and 6A, the Redmi 7A is suitable for first-time smartphone users and those who needs an inexpensive secondary phone.

While no official pricing has been announced yet, it’s expected to retail for no more than US$ 100 like its predecessors. We’ll learn more during the Redmi K20 launch happening on May 28.

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Huawei’s phones can’t use microSD cards anymore

Another casualty of the ban



Everyone knows what happened to Huawei. As the week winds down, the Trump ban is dismantling the Chinese company piece by piece. Most notably, Google has stopped its business dealings with Huawei. Soon after, hardware company ARM ceased support for future Huawei chips. Huawei has lost considerable support on both hardware and software sides.

Now, the company has lost another major backer. Reported by Nikkei Asian Review, the SD Association has revoked Huawei’s membership status. As the name suggests, the trade group dictates the SD and microSD standards of the industry. The Chinese company cannot use the standard for future devices anymore. Fortunately, Huawei can still use the memory cards for existing phones.

However, the latest bridge-burning has drastically changed the company’s future. Given everything, Huawei’s future does not include Google, ARM, and microSD extensions, among others. All three components are major parts of today’s phones.

Fortunately, the loss of microSD support isn’t a deadly deal. Huawei can still use other standards for memory card extension. The company also has its own proprietary standard called the Nano Memory Card. Of course, proprietary hardware is almost always a turn-off. Despite cushioning the SD Association loss, the Nano Memory Card isn’t as appealing as the universally available microSD card.

In other news, Huawei has also “temporarily” lost access to the Wi-Fi Alliance. Much like the SD Association, the Wi-Fi Alliance dictates the connectivity standards of devices. Thankfully, Huawei can still use Wi-Fi in its devices. However, the company cannot participate in any discussions to shape Wi-Fi’s future.

Likewise, Huawei has voluntarily withdrawn from JEDEC, a trade group that defines semiconductor standards. As with the Wi-Fi Alliance, the company cannot contribute to any future discussions.

Fortunately, both restrictions don’t impact the company’s future as much. However, Huawei’s future is slowly moving away from industry standards. If the company hopes to survive, Huawei must develop its own proprietary hardware or find replacements elsewhere.

SEE ALSO: Philippines: Huawei ban ‘will have a little impact’ on the country

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