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OnePlus 6 appears together with OnePlus 5T in official teaser

More teasers as the launch approaches

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We’ve been seeing a few teasers both official and leaked for OnePlus’ upcoming flagship, the OnePlus 6. They’ve come in all shapes and sizes, but this new one is a little different.

Shown off by OnePlus itself, the not-so-revealing image has the OnePlus 6 right under last year’s OnePlus 5T.

Take a look:

That’s as subtle as teasers can get. But there’s one thing we can spy out: antenna bands on the metal frame.

Big deal? Probably not; however, this could hint that the OnePlus 6 might have an all-metal frame like with the OnePlus 5T. This is arguable though, since the OPPO R15 has a glass back and OnePlus often shares features and materials with its sister company each generation.

Aside from that, OnePlus has confirmed the existence of a notch on the screen of its next flagship device which will be “bigger than the Essential Phone’s, smaller than the iPhone’s.” In addition, it’ll come with top-of-the-line specifications, including a Snapdragon 845 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of storage — possibly making it the most powerful Android once it launches.

We have yet to learn of a launch date or official pricing. We’ll need a few more leaks and teasers for those.

India

Apple reports its best ever quarter in India, sales double

iPhone 12 is an astounding success

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In 2018, I wrote a pretty long article on why Apple cannot grab a foothold in the Indian market. Back then, it had less than one percent market share while Android had the other 99 percent. Fast forward to 2021, Apple has announced its Q1 2021 results, and not only has it shipped more iPhones than ever globally, but it has also managed to double its sales in India.

While answering an analyst’s question during an earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Apple’s India business “roughly doubled” in the December quarter. More than 1.5 million iPhone units were shipped in the country, taking its market share to a whopping 4 percent.

It’s worth noting that according to IDC, India’s top smartphone maker is Xiaomi, with a share of almost 25 percent. But Apple’s rise is considered special because the Cupertino-based company focuses only on premium offerings that usually cost much more than Xiaomi or realme’s top offerings.

The iPhone 12 series sells like hotcakes, and the iPhone SE 2020 has found a special spot in the country. Apple says many factors have led to the rally, like its online store, which was opened last year. The smartphone maker has also tied up with assemblers like Foxconn, Pegatron, and Wistron to ramp up facilities.

Additionally, it also plans to open directly operated Apple Stores in the country, whose unveiling may have been hindered by the Coronavirus pandemic. But the company has confirmed that it still intends to continue with the plan and is working on expansion.

Apple announced its strongest ever quarter, with US$ 111.4 billion in revenue. The company’s profits rose by 29 percent YoY to US$ 28.76 billion, driven by growth in all of its product segments. iPhones contributed US$ 65 billion while services like Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and more brought US$ 15.7 billion.

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CES 2021

Acer launches the AMD-powered Chromebook Spin 514

An enterprise-focused model is also coming soon

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Chromebooks are increasingly becoming a major player in the laptop segment. Unlike in the past, Chromebooks of today are much more capable with manufacturers opting for more powerful processors and graphic cards. One of those Chromebooks that have capable internals inside is the AMD-powered Acer Chromebook Spin 514, which saw its debut at CES 2021.

AMD Ryzen inside

The headlining feature of Acer’s new Chromebook is the processor that powers it. Inside is a full-fledged AMD Ryzen processor which is rare for a Chromebook. The choice of processors includes the Ryzen 7 3700C for the top-end variant, a Ryzen 5 3500C variant, and an unspecified Ryzen 3 processor for the base variant. Both the Ryzen 7 and 5 variants get a graphics boost thanks to the inclusion of Radeon Vega. All variants max out at 16GB of DDR4 RAM memory and 256GB of SSD.

Acer claims that the Chromebook Spin 514 delivers up to 10 hours of battery life. The new AMD processor inside allows for a thinner and lighter profile than before, making it a good choice for students and professionals alike.

Design and display that is up to date

Speaking of design, the Chromebook comes in a sleek chassis made of anodized, sandblasted aluminum. Apparently, Acer went out of the way to make it more durable. That is, military-grade durability with Acer claiming MIL-STD 810H1 compliance. The design also incorporates a reinforced metal chassis resistant to dents and corrosion.

Those who are into the convertible form factor has a lot to love with the Chromebook Spin 514. It opens at a full 360 degrees and comes with a touchscreen display too. The display is a 14-inch full HD IPS display with a 16:9 aspect ratio. Acer states that it reinforced the display with a Corning Gorilla Glass and slimmed the bezels for a 78% screen-to-body ratio.

Plentiful ports to power peripherals and devices

Thankfully, a plethora of ports exists on the Chromebook for connecting multiple devices. It comes with two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C for transfer speeds of up to 5Gbps. That USB port also comes with support for DisplayPort and Power Delivery for charging and hooking into supported monitors. Traditional ports include two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A and a MicroSD card reader.

Select models of the new Chromebook come with an HDMI port so select that if you’re dependent on monitors that use this port.

Other connectivity features include a dual-band WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5. For staying in touch, the Chromebook has dual integrated stereo speakers and dual microphones for clearer audio and video calls. These dual microphones and stereo speakers also allow for a better experience when using Google Assistant.

Chromebooks for the enterprise

Acer is also launching an enterprise-focused model of the new Chromebook — the Chromebook Enterprise Spin 514. This model shares the same design, configuration, and ports as the regular one. The main difference lies in the software inside. It still touts Google’s ChromeOS but has added features geared solely for the enterprise sector.

Among those features are comprehensive security features integrated right into the OS. IT administrators can also take advantage of Google’s web-based management interface to control updates, configure apps, utilize extensions, and update policies. Finally, it has a zero-touch enrollment that lets employees connect to the enterprise network simply by connecting to the Internet.

Like its regular counterpart, businesses can configure this enterprise-focused Chromebook at 16GB of DDR4 memory and 256GB of NVMe SSD storage.

Price and availability

Acer hasn’t announced any dates for the availability of the new Chromebooks. However, a Google store listing is already active for pre-orders. Exact pricing for the regular and enterprise-focused model is not available at the moment, though the base variant is pegged at US$ 599.

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Apple fixes three critical vulnerabilities in iOS update

You should install the update immediately

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It’s a casual saying that iOS and macOS are among the most secure operating systems commercially available today. The idea is further exemplified by Apple’s simple yet restrictive approach that makes direct file-sharing or third-party installation difficult, or sometimes close to impossible.

However, this thought process could change soon. Apple researchers uncovered multiple vulnerabilities in the software powering iPhones and iPad. The company has released iOS 14.4 and iPadOS 14.4 to address three vulnerabilities that may have been actively exploited. Apple has provided very little detail on the vulnerabilities reported by anonymous research.

The first thing it addresses is in the kernel and affects the iPhone 6s and later, iPad Air 2 and later, iPad mini 4 and later, and iPod touch (7th generation). A malicious application may be able to elevate privileges and access files it’s not ideally supposed to. Apple says that this vulnerability may have been utilized.

The other two loopholes are in the WebKit affecting the iPhone 6s and later, iPad Air 2 and later, iPad mini 4 and later, and iPod touch (7th generation). According to the vulnerability description, a remote attacker may be able to cause arbitrary code execution. Safari uses the WebKit, and by exploiting a vulnerability there, attackers could then download malicious code.

Additionally, the update adds a new option under Settings to classify the type of third-party Bluetooth audio device in-use. The phone can correctly identify connected headphones and send relevant audio notifications.

What can you do to remain safe?

We recommend installing iOS 14.4 update as soon as it’s available on your device. While Apple hasn’t detailed how the vulnerability may have been leveraged, there is a slim chance that attackers are already using the technique to get deep access.

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