News

LG Velvet revamps the company’s strategy, design, and branding

LG’s trying to carve a new niche

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South Korean phone maker LG has some grand plans for the near future. The brand is being revamped and a fresh new design language has been unveiled for its first phone — LG Velvet.

Yes, the next phone from the company will be called LG Velvet and they’ve already offered us a teaser of the new looks. They’ve stressed on “distinctive designs” and “tactile elegance”, a move away from a focus on spec sheets. It follows a minimalist look with no overwhelming square or rectangle camera arrays.

The sketch reveals three cameras on the rear in a vertical lineup on the upper left corner. Each lens descends according to its size. On the design front, it’ll feature what LG describes as a 3D Arc design marked by curved display edges. The company claims that it’ll help in improving the overall grip of the phone.

One of the image renders leaked by Twitter user @UniverseIce also features Irene Bae — the center and leader of popular Korean girl group Red Velvet.

A brand new look to resuscitate LG?

LG is also moving away from the standard practice of using alphanumeric names for its phones. We can assume there won’t be an L 0r G-series lineup, neither a Velvet 2 next year. The company wants to be more expressive of what you can expect from the phone.

“Our new branding reflects current trends of addressing the unique personal tastes and emotions of the individual with a greater emphasis on design,” said Chang Ma, senior vice president of product strategy of LG’s mobile business, in a statement.

A few years ago, the company used to go against Samsung in launching the best flagship of the year. Back in those days, even HTC was a player to be reckoned with. However, the smartphone industry has drastically changed now with the rise of affordable players like Xiaomi and Realme. In the high-end segment, Samsung and Apple still rule the game but are getting tough competition from OnePlus.

In a highly saturated market like this, LG is trying to carve a premium niche for itself. Similarly, Sony has also released teasers confirming it wants to grab the mobile photography segment and fill the void left by the massive failure of Pixel.

News

Samsung Galaxy S20 FE launches with ‘fan favorite’ features

The FE or Fan Edition kind of makes sense here

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You ask, Samsung provides. That’s the whole idea behind the member of the Galaxy S20 series — the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE (Fan Edition).

The South Korean company says this phone is their way of bringing together “fan favorite” features from the Galaxy S20 series at a more wallet-friendly price.

Those features include a super smooth display, AI-powered cameras, advanced processor, fast connectivity, all-day battery, expandable storage and streamlined design. Basically, awesome screen, awesome camera, long-lasting battery life. But expanded. Lol.

FANtastic display, capable cameras

Let’s dig into it. The display measures 6.5 inches. It’s flat, FHD+, and Super AMOLED with a 120Hz refresh rate for that buttery smooth scrolling experience. It’s also HDR10+ certified.

The Galaxy S20 FE also has an Infinity-O display. It means there’s a signature punch hole at the top-middle part of the screen. Inside that punch hole is the 32MP front-facing camera for shooting selfies and filming your vlogs or TikToks if you’re into that sort of thing.

Speaking of cameras, the Galaxy S20 FE is equipped with a triple-camera module. Here they are:

  • 12MP Ultra Wide Camera, 1.12μm, F2.2 (123 degree field of view)
  • 12MP Wide Angle Camera, 1.7μm, F1.8
  • 8MP Telephoto Camera, 1.0μm, F2.4

It’s not too different from the camera setup of the Galaxy Z Fold2 (save for the telephoto lens). Here’s what photos look like on this very similar camera array.

It also has Space Zoom which is capable of 3x Optical Zoom, up to 30x Super Resolution Zoom, OIS, and tracking AF (that’s auto focus, not the other AF you were thinking).

Snapdragon or Exynos?

In the US, it’s equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865. As of writing, we have no information if this will be the case in all markets. However, it’s safer to assume that if your market got Exynos 990 on the earlier Galaxy S20 series, then that’s likely what you’re getting on the Galaxy S20 FE as well.

This particular variant supports 5G, but again, as is the case in certain markets, Samsung may opt to release a 4G-only option. We’ll just have to wait and see.

For battery capacity, Samsung slapped on a 4,500mAh battery on this thing with support for support for fast charging, wireless charging, and wireless powershare (the reverse wireless charging thing).

It has either 6GB or 8GB of RAM depending on the market with 128GB of internal storage that’s expandable to up to 1TB via a MicroSD card.

Signature Galaxy S20 look

It has that signature Galaxy S20 series look with — simple and understated (or plain and boring depending on your disposition in life).

The Galaxy S20 FE comes in a really colorful set with a total of six options to choose from: Cloud Red, Cloud Orange, Cloud Lavender, Cloud Mint, Cloud Navy, and Cloud White. Not entirely sure what the ‘Cloud’ is for but hey, it is what it is.

There’s also an option to add Samsung Care+. It’s the companies support service where you can get a personal set-up session with a Samsung Care+ Pro, 24/7 dedicated support via phone or chat, discounted screen repair, extended warranty and coverage for accidental damage.

Pricing and availability

In the US, the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE starts at US$ 699 and will be available starting October 2, 2020. There are carrier and Unlocked by Samsung versions.

Consumers can get a Galaxy S20 FE 5G for US$ 249.99 or US$ 10.42 a month with eligible trade-in value up to $450 on Samsung.com and the Shop Samsung app. The offer is for a limited time.

Pre-orders for the Galaxy S20 FE 5G and S20 FE 5G UW begin on Samsung.com September 23, 2020 at 10:30am ET.

Consumers who pre-order the Galaxy S20 FE 5G between September 23, 2020 and October 1, 2020 can get a US$ 70 Samsung Credit to expand their Galaxy with cases, wearables and more.

In the Philippines, pricing hasn’t been revealed yet but it will also be available some time in October.

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Gaming

Metal Gear Solid Remake possibly coming to the PS5 and PC

If confirmed, this is already on top of the next-gen console’s insane lineup of games

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Metal Gear Solid

A Metal Gear Solid Remake might be upon us! According to several sources, it’s possible that we will be getting a full remake of the PlayStation classic for both the PS5 and PC.

YouTube creator RedGamingTech touched on this in his recent video, confirming from his numerous sources. Essentially, it suggests that the remake will be a PlayStation 5 exclusive with an available PC version.

The same YouTube creator also mentions that Metal Gear Solid 2, 3, and 4 are reportedly getting PC ports — or remasters. Whether or not all of these are true remains to be seen. But, if it is true, this will definitely bolster the amount of titles that will be available to the PS5, whether that’s upon launch or within the first year of its release.

Metal Gear Solid was first released in September 1998 for the PlayStation and PC. It’s a stealth game that follows Solid Snake — a soldier tasked to neutralize the terror threat FOXHOUND. The game was well-received by fans and critics. It sold over six million copies.

Within weeks since the price and release date reveal, people went crazy over Sony’s PlayStation 5. Apart from this, several game developers announced that they already have titles ready for the next-gen console.

Are you excited for this possible remake? What PS5 game are you most looking forward to?

SEE ALSO:
PS5 official pricing
Sony unveils more games coming to PS5

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Automotive

Tesla plans to make a US$ 25K autonomous electric car soon

Elon Musk is extremely optimistic

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At its Battery Day event, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company intends to launch an affordable electric car within three years. The aimed price is around US$ 25,000 — a radically low price for an electric vehicle. The future car hasn’t received a name yet, but rumors suggest it could be Tesla Model C, where C stands for compact.

The announcement was made after Musk reviewed Tesla’s battery development and manufacturing. He is confident that these factors shall help the company offer cut-throat pricing and make the cutting-edge technology available to the masses.

However, the most interesting feature of the car will be its autonomous capability. Sensors and other onboard equipment are expensive and it remains to be seen whether Tesla is able to fulfill its promise.

Musk revealed a new battery design that incorporates a larger and more efficient cell. The new technology is dubbed “tabless” and is said to increase density by five times, offering 16 percent more range. But the technology announced is likely to take years to implement.

The cost of electric cars has consistently dropped in the last few years and Tesla is relying on this trend to hype up its future products. According to The Verge, Prices have already fallen from a lofty US$ 1,100/kWh just ten years ago to about US$ 156/kWh in 2019.

Altough, this isn’t the first time Musk has announced an affordable EV. The Model 3 was initially touted to cost US$ 35,000 but the base option starts at US$ 37,990 while the Performance variant goes for US$ 54,990.

Ultimately, Tesla hopes to make 20 million vehicles a year, Musk said

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