India

realme X3, X3 SuperZoom now official in India

Near-flagship phones that don’t cost a bomb

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realme is all set to take on the midrange segment with today’s launch of the realme X3 series. This includes the realme X3 and the realme X3 SuperZoom. The brand has been teasing the launch for a very long time and with Coronavirus lockdown easing, now’s the best time to amp up the game.

The two phones have similar specs except for the cameras. On the design front, it has a 3D quad-curved glass on the rear with a matte-like finish that aims to reduce fingerprint smudges and improve egonomics. The display also has a pill-shaped cut-out that houses dual front cameras.

The front sports a 6.6-inch LCD display with Full HD+ resolution and Gorilla Glass 5 protection. In line with the current trend, the screen has a 120Hz refresh rate for smooth transitions and improvised gaming experience.

Powering the phones is a Snapdragon 855+ chipset but there’s no microSD card slot for storage expansion. The Realme X3 gets up to 8GB RAM and 128GB internal storage while the SuperZoom option goes up till 12GB+256GB.

Coming to the cameras, the Realme X3 SuperZoom gets a 64-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel periscope lens with 5x optical zoom, an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro sensor. For selfies, a 32-megapixel shooter is coupled with an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens.

Going by its name, the periscope lens will let you take detailed zoomed-in pictures. Realme has included a Starry Mode that leverages AI-based processing to enhance the sharpness and brightness of stars. This mode can be used along with the primary as well as the periscope lens.

On the other hand, the Realme X3 gets a 64-megapixel primary camera, a 12-megapixel telephoto lens, an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. For selfies, a 16-megapixel sensor tags along with an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens.

Backing these internals is a 4200mAh battery that supports 30W fast charging. realme claims it can charge fully within 55 minutes. For authentication, a physical fingerprint scanner is located on the side.

Pricing and availability

The realme X3 SuperZoom with 8GB+128GB starts at INR 27,999 (US$ 370) while the 12GB+256GB option is marked at INR 32,999 (US$ 436).

On the other hand, the realme X3 starts INR 24,999 (US$ 330) for 6GB+128GB while the 8GB+128GB goes for INR 25,999 (US$ 343). They’ll be available in Arctic White and Glacier Blue color options and sales start from June 30 via Flipkart and Realme.com.

India

Google to invest US$10 billion in India over 5-7 years

Tech companies are bullish about India

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Benjamin Dada on Unsplash

alAt its annual Google for India event, Google announced it will be investing INR 75,000 crore (US$ 10 billion) within the next five to seven years. Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the investment will be via multiple channels. This includes direct investments, partnerships, and infrastructure.

“Investments will focus on four areas important to India’s digitization,” he said emphasizing on infrastructure.

He added that the recent pandemic has shown the need for technology and the adoption of new digital tools. Google will focus on improving internet access and offer more information in regional languages like Hindi, Tamil, Punjabi, and more.

Secondly, it will focus on building new products and services that will empower India’s businesses. Leveraging AI in the fields of health, education, and agriculture is a priority.

Google added that its Internet Saathi has already helped more than 30 million women across India. It’s an initiative that strives to spread internet awareness.

The tech giant has also increased its focus on India in the last few years since the market is hugely untapped. One of its most successful launches has been Google Pay. It leverages the country’s UPI (Unified Payments Interface) to transfer money instantaneously to friends, businesses, and even online services.

Pichai lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of Digital India stating that India has made huge progress.

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India

Samsung starts making smartwatches in India

Includes an entire range of 18 smartwatches

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Samsung has launched the Galaxy Watch Active 2 4G Aluminium edition in India. The Galaxy Watch Active 2 has been available in the country for quite some time, but there’s something special about the Aluminium edition.

It’s the first Samsung smartwatch to be built in India. The brand said it has started manufacturing its entire range of 18 smartwatches in India as part of the Make for India program. The company has been making phones in India for years, but wearables were usually imported.

Samsung has a huge production facility in Noida, India. Smartphones are also built for export and the plant can be expanded further depending on demand. Amid the call to avoid foreign goods, Indians are actively looking for options that are made or designed in India.

Coming to the watch, it’s priced at INR 28,490 (US$ 378) and shall be available in Cloud Silver, Aqua Black, and Pink Gold color options.

It sports a 1.4-inch Super AMOLED display with Gorilla Glass DX+ for protection. The smartwatch is IP68 certified and rated to work at a maximum pressure of up to 5ATM. It runs on Tizen OS with 1.5GB RAM and 4GB internal storage.

Once connected to a phone, it can also access the smartphone camera, videos, and use Wireless PowerShare to transfer data quickly.

It has e-SIM connectivity that enables calls, messages, and notifications on-the-go. Lastly, it’s equipped with a heart-rate sensor, ECG sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, and ambient light sensor.

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POCO M2 Pro launches with Snapdragon 720G, quad cameras

A Redmi Note 9 Pro look-alike?

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After becoming an independent brand, POCO has focused on the affordable segment and is gradually expanding. Today, the brand launched the POCO M2 Pro in India and it’s the most affordable phone to sport a Snapdragon 720G chipset.

The phone looks eerily similar to the Redmi Note 9 Pro. In fact, the new phone directly undermines Redmi’s offering. It’s no surprise the two brands are leveraging Xiaomi’s supply chain perfectly.

Coming back to the phone, it has a 6.7-inch Full HD+ display with a punch-hole cut-out and Gorilla Glass 5 protection. Powering the phone is a Snapdragon 720G processor with up to 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage. The phone has a P2i coating that enables dust and water resistance.

On the rear is a quad-camera setup consisting of a 48-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, a 5-megapixel macro sensor, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. For selfies, a 16-megapixel selfie shooter is located on the front.

It ships with POCO Launcher 2.0 out-of-the-box. Powering the phone is a 5020mAh battery with support for 33W fast charging.

The phone is available in three configurations. The first one with 4GB+64GB costs INR 13,999 (US$ 186), followed by 6GB+64GB at INR 14,999 (US$ 200), and lastly, the 6GB+128GB options goes for INR 16,999 (US$ 226). Color options are called Out of the Blue, Green and Greener, and Two Shades of Black. The phone will be up for purchase via Flipkart from July 14.

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