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The OPPO F1s is an affordable ‘selfie expert’

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OPPO announced the F1 Plus (the R9 in its country of origin) to great fanfare, with the company estimating over 7 million units sold since the phone’s release in March. And OPPO isn’t done with the F1 branding yet, as it recently made the F1s official in some markets, namely China, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. A subsequent rollout is slated for the rest of Southeast Asia and regions where OPPO operates.

Another “selfie expert,” the F1s is essentially a much cheaper F1 Plus that has fewer attractions but offers longer battery life. It has more bells and whistles than the smaller F1, so in way, it’s some sort of a middle choice between the two previous F1 phones — the Goldilocks choice, if you will.

You get a slightly larger 5.5-inch phone featuring a nearly identical metal unibody frame with the same polish and attention to detail as that of the Plus model. It also runs the almost two-year-old Android Lollipop software, which could turn off seasoned Android users.

Beyond the F1 comparison, the F1s is likely capable of better selfies than any phone in its price point.

There are two metallic bands that run across the rear panel; two more wrap around the sides; the bottom edge houses the speaker, headphone jack, microUSB port, and what’s likely a cutout for the mic hole. The physical home button that also functions as a fingerprint reader is sandwiched between the backlit back and recent apps keys. Setup takes seconds, and engaging the reader is fast and, more importantly, accurate.

The F1s makes use of a bright 720p display with curved-edge Gorilla Glass protection. The resolution isn’t ideal for a phone this size, so those who want a sharper screen without spending too much should probably look elsewhere. That’s what’s great about today’s smartphone market: With so many options available, you don’t have to settle.

Inside the F1s, you’ll find an octa-core MediaTek processor, alongside 3GB of RAM and 32GB of expandablage store. We haven’t put the system-on-a-chip through its paces yet, but it runs Pokémon Go just fine. The 3,075mAh battery is the largest of any F1 phone, but it could take a while to charge from zero to full, as the F1s lacks quick charging.

But the best feature of all may be the selfie camera, which has a 16-megapixel sensor and an impressive aperture size of f/2.0. That combination, plus OPPO’s camera algorithm, results in bright and crisp self-portraits that look like they were captured by an upmarket phone’s rear camera. The F1s is also capable of shooting full-resolution video for superior video calls and conferencing.

Compared to the front-facer, the 13-megapixel camera around the back sounds a bit underwhelming, even though that’s not the case. But then again, how often do you come across a device with a more advanced camera on the front than on the rear?

The OPPO F1s runs between $280 and $300, depending on where you live. In the Philippines, it is priced at P12,990; in India, 15,985 rupees; Malaysia sells it for 1,198 ringgit. It costs 5,990,000 dong in Vietnam, around 10,000 baht in Thailand.

[irp posts=”11922″ name=”OPPO F1s finally gets long-delayed update”]

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Apple iPhone XR available for pre-order on October 19

Get ready!

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We’re finally on the cusp of getting a more affordable iPhone. All six colors of the iPhone XR will be available for pre-order starting October 19, 12:01 am (GMT+8) on apple.com/sg and the Apple Store app.

The iPhone XR was launched alongside the iPhone XS and XS Max last month, offering the same flagship features as its high-end brothers have but with a few differences here and there.

The same A12 Bionic chip with next-generation Neural Engine — one of the most powerful chipsets found in a smartphone today — powers the iPhone XR. It allows for better gaming and camera performance, a more immersive AR experience, and more efficient processing resulting in longer battery life compared to previous generations.

Instead of OLED, the iPhone XR’s display will be LCD — a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina display — the most advanced of its kind according to Apple. It’s also an all-glass phone that supports wireless charging, and is wrapped with aluminum around the edges instead of stainless steel. The body is water-resistant with a rating of IP67, and is safe from everyday spills including coffee, tea, and beer. Liquid damage is not covered under Apple’s warranty, however.

In the camera department, the iPhone XR sports the same wide-angle lens found on the iPhone XS and XS Max, but doesn’t come with the 2x telephoto zoom lens. You can still achieve that bokeh effect through Portrait Mode, thanks to internal improvements to the ISP, Neural Engine, and software algorithms. In front, the notch that houses the latest TrueDepth camera system also enables Portrait Mode and Portrait Lighting, plus Face ID for security and authentication.

In Singapore, the iPhone XR will be available in 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB storage models in black, white, blue, yellow, coral, and (PRODUCT)RED starting at SG$ 1,229 (US$ 892) beginning Friday, October 26 at 8:00 am.

It will also be available in more than 50 countries and territories on the same date, including Malaysia, India, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Other countries in Southeast Asia like Cambodia, Myanmar, and Vietnam will get the iPhone XR starting November 2.

Through Apple GiveBack, customers can trade in their eligible device for an Apple Store Gift Card or a refund of up to SG$ 850 on their purchase. Trade-in values will vary based on the condition and model of your smartphone.

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Essential fires 30 percent of workers, announces new mobile device

No, it’s not a smartphone

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Despite enjoying a year in smartphone royalty, Essential just isn’t that essential anymore. Preceding the Essential Phone’s launch, the startup gained substantial hype owing to its ownership. Headed by Android co-founder Andy Rubin, it promised an unrivaled Android experience wrapped inside a beautiful package.

Truly, the first Essential Phone garnered positive reviews across the board. Among others, it was one of the more beautiful phones in 2017. Unfortunately, the phone’s price deterred most users from switching. Naturally, the startup’s first outing failed to meet expectations.

Drawing from this initial disappointment, Essential hinted at an eventual buyout a few months ago. Moreover, Rubin cancelled the Essential Phone 2’s development. However, months later, the startup (and everyone else) clearly exaggerated its demise. The company and its plans for a second phone still exist.

Sadly, its continued existence is still in dire jeopardy. The company has recently announced major layoffs in its workforce. As of today, Essential Products has fired 30 percent of its employees.

Despite the astonishing number, the startup has maintained its silence on possible reasons for the pink slips. One can only assume that this stems from its failed sales targets. Regardless, Essential remains hopeful for the future. “We are confident that our sharpened product focus will help us deliver a truly game-changing consumer product,” according to a spokesperson for the startup.

Reportedly, Essential is already working on a second mobile device for the future. Unfortunately, the planned device will not succeed the Essential Phone. Instead, it will leverage artificial intelligence to deliver an autonomous mobile experience.

Notably, the startup hesitates to use the word “smartphone.” While the device can make calls and send messages, it hopes to do more. For one, it can call, message, and plan events on its own without user input. Essentially, the device will replace humans as the primary digital communicators.

By the end of this year, Essential will out a prototype for this device. By then, the startup will finally reveal a possible roadmap for the future. Presently, the future-less startup’s survival is anything but assured.

SEE ALSO: Essential Phone is now a true Pixel-like flagship Android phone for only $399

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Xiaomi confirms 10GB RAM and 5G connectivity of the Mi Mix 3

Are we ready for these advancements?

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Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S | GadgetMatch

Xiaomi is set to announce their latest flagship phone — the Mi Mix 3. While the phone has been leaked a number of times already (but not as much as the Pixel 3), there are some features we’d like to get early confirmation for. Thankfully, Xiaomi gave us two teasers than confirmed not just one, but two major features of their upcoming smartphone.

When Xiaomi announces the Mi Mix 3, it’ll be the first phone to officially have 10GB of memory. OPPO did try to make a 10GB version of the Find X, but it’s probably sitting in their office at the moment.

To be honest, we’re not sure if it’s logical to have a phone with 10GB of memory, but we’re already at that stage. The Mi Mix 3 will probably have a lot more memory to spare than most standard laptops people currently own.

The second confirmed feature is something we’re already expecting — 5G connectivity. The Mi Mix 3 is one of the world’s first 5G-capable phones. It could even be the first widely available 5G phone if Xiaomi will release the Mi Mix 3 to its key markets immediately.

A lot of users probably won’t be able to take advantage of 5G for now, but this will make the Mi Mix 3 future-proof.

Other than these two, not much has been revealed yet about the Mi Mix 3. Xiaomi is teasing the phone as a device wherein art meets technology. Well, the existing Mi Mix series is already proof of that, but the Mi Mix 3 will surely bring something new to the table.

The Mi Mix 3 will be officially announced on October 25 in Beijing, which signals that the phone will be available in China first. We’re expecting the phone to retail internationally shortly after, just like the Mi Mix 2S.

SEE ALSO: Xiaomi teases Mi Mix 3 in full, reveals pop-up mechanism for cameras

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