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Qualcomm announces the updated Snapdragon 855 Plus

Will debut in the ASUS ROG Phone 2

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Are you ready for the next evolution in processor technology? Every year, Qualcomm launches substantial updates for its processors. Following the usual release schedule, 2019 should see the upcoming Snapdragon 865 chipset. Right on schedule, Qualcomm has launched a new processor for future smartphones. Unfortunately, the latest release isn’t the much-awaited sequel to the current Snapdragon 855. Instead, it’s only a minor update — the Snapdragon 855 Plus.

The Snapdragon 855 Plus will not introduce the next generation of flagship processors. Instead, it will cap off this year’s remaining slew of flagships. Notably, the new chipset will likely appear on the Samsung Galaxy Note 10, the Google Pixel 4, the OnePlus 7T, and the ASUS ROG Phone 2. Of this privileged lineup, ASUS’ gaming-centric smartphone will debut the chipset to the world.


 

The chipset will share the same architecture as the Snapdragon 855 chip. However, it will squeeze out more performance than its predecessor. The octa-core Kryo 485 CPU can now run up to 2.96GHz — a notch above its predecessor’s 2.84GHz performance. Further, the chip promises a 15 percent improvement in overall graphic performance. Supposedly, the marginal boost can make for a good gaming smartphone — hence, the ROG Phone 2 debut.

Additionally, the chipset will improve functionality for AR, VR, and AI features. Unfortunately, the upgrades don’t include a 5G modem, requiring smartphone manufacturers to implement their own modem.

Regardless, the Snapdragon 855 Plus should be enough to eke out an amazing second half for 2019. Hopefully, the 15 percent boost will translate into tangible real-world results. If not, expect a grander Snapdragon 855 sequel within the year.

SEE ALSO: Qualcomm announces 5G variant of the Snapdragon 8cx

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Xiaomi Mi A3: Price and availability in the Philippines

It still comes in an affordable price

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Image by GadgetMatch

Remember when Xiaomi announced the Mi A3 in India days ago? Good news for everyone as the Mi A3 will also be in the Philippines.

This latest A-series offering is known as the “stripped-down” version of the Mi CC9e. It packs the same internals: Snapdragon 665 chipset, 4GB RAM, plus 64 or 128GB storage options. What’s different? Instead of the heavily-skinned MIUI 10, it packs the Android One with a fresh, stock-like Android experience — just like using a Google Pixel.


Image by GadgetMatch

There’s a new 6.088-inch Super AMOLED display in tow. With the new display technology, it’s expected to be power-efficient. Although changing the technology from IPS-LCD may sound good, the downgrade of screen resolution from 1080p to 720p might become a dealbreaker for some. Other than that, there’s an optical in-display fingerprint scanner, eliminating the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner of the Mi A2.

Image by GadgetMatch

This year’s A3 packs a triple camera setup: 48-megapixel main camera, 2-megapixel depth sensor, and a new 8-megapixel ultra-wide shooter. The Dot Drop Display notch houses the 32-megapixel selfie camera. Both cameras have AI functionality.

Image by GadgetMatch

When it comes to battery, the 4,030 mAh capacity is a huge improvement over last year. It is expected to have a longer battery life than Mi A2’s so-so 3,000 mAh battery. 18W Fast Charge is still supported, all thanks to USB-C. They also brought back the 3.5mm audio jack for dongle-less usage. The IR blaster is still present for controlling appliances.

Pricing and availability

The Xiaomi Mi A3 will be available in local Mi Authorized stores starting August 24, 2019 and will be on Lazada and Shopee starting September 9, 2019. There are three color options to choose from: Not Just Blue, Kind of Grey, and More than White. The sole variant with 4GB/128GB configuration will retail at PhP 11,990.

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Spotify extends free trial to 3 months

Try Spotify Premium for a longer period of time

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Spotify offers a free trial for everyone wanting to try the Premium experience. Spotify Premium used to be free for just 30 days, but that is changing today. Starting this August, Spotify is extending its Premium free trial for three months.

Spotify Premium is now offering the first 3 months for free. Everyone can try it out. The feature is rolling out globally with all of the plans eligible upon sign-up.


However, the three month offer is open only for those who haven’t tried Premium before. To activate, visit the website of Spotify Premium. Signing up requires either a credit card or a carrier billing.

Those lucky to grab the three month offer gains access 50 million song tracks available on-demand and ad-free, along with access to 450,000 podcast titles. Spotify is the leading music streaming service globally, and it offers an Android, iOS, desktop and web apps for all. Today, it boasts 217 million users across 79 markets.

SEE ALSO: 5 steps to making the perfect Spotify playlist

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Android Q is just Android 10

10 is not a dessert

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Android is changing things up. After years of naming its newest iteration after a sweet treat, the newest version will now just be called Android 10.

Google’s mobile operating system explains that the decision to change its naming convention is aimed at being more inclusive.


Android says that while using names of tasty treats and desserts has always been a fun way of releasing each update annually, it wasn’t immediately understood by everyone. Especially not with a 2.5 billion user-base that’s spread all around the world. They’ve even gone out of their way to explain that “L and R are not distinguishable when spoken in some languages.”

They also made a fair point that it’s not easy for most people to identify if they’re device is running the latest OS. After all, there’s no clear indication that KitKat comes after Lollipop.

By switching to just Android 10, it becomes more easily understandable for all of its users, and the company felt that it was time for a change.

A new name also merits a new look. The Android robot is now officially part of the logo and the font color changed to black. The video below details the evolution.

 

 

 

 

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