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Samsung Galaxy A9 Star looks like the Huawei P20

Launches in China first

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Some call it a bright star in an endless sea of black and rose gold; others call it a well-placed oil slick. Regardless of where you stand, Huawei’s Twilight gradient has turned more heads today than any other color in smartphone history.

The gradient got its start through the popular Huawei P20 and P20 Pro. Even now, the variant continues to sell out in authorized retailers. In fact, the P20 series popularized the trend so much that various other phones are adopting gradients for variants. Some have even gone so far as to copy Huawei entirely.


Despite the abundance of copycats, another brand is adding its own gradient phone — Samsung. The Korean phone maker has launched a new upper-midrange phone, the Galaxy A9 Star.

Surprisingly, instead of creating an original take on the trend, the A9 Star significantly copies from Huawei’s own design.

Like Huawei’s Twilight, the A9 Star equally dips from blue to purple. To add a bit of originality, the phone adds in curved accents underneath the surface.

Additionally, the phone curiously shifts the dual rear cameras to the top-left corner. Traditionally, Samsung prefers a central camera position. The new top-left position exactly mimics Huawei’s.

As for other hardware, the phone sports a 6.3-inch Super AMOLED display. It also boasts a midrange Snapdragon 660, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of internal storage. It touts a huge 3700mAh battery.

At the moment, the Samsung Galaxy A9 Star exclusively sells in China for US$ 470. Recently, the similar A8 Star launched in the region.

SEE ALSO: Samsung will soon introduce midrange Galaxy A8 Star with dual rear cameras

Enterprise

Huawei and Google release official statements regarding trade blacklist

Existing users shouldn’t worry

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The tech world erupted earlier today when a Reuters report claimed that Google is blacklisting Huawei devices after an executive order by US President Donald Trump imposed a trade ban between Huawei and the US.

To be specific, Huawei may not buy equipment from US companies without the approval of the North American government. At the same time, US companies also aren’t allowed to deal with Huawei for parts and services.


It was the deadly blow dealt after a years of accusations between the two camps. Previously, fellow Chinese brand ZTE experienced similar banning on North American soil because of concerns over security and data breaches.

With this order in action, Google must pull out its apps and services from future Huawei devices. These include YouTube, Gmail, and the Google Play store itself. To add insult to injury, other US-based tech companies have followed suit in the trade ban, namely Intel, Broadcom, and Qualcomm.

Fortunately — and this is the most positive spin to this developing story — Google released a statement explaining that existing Huawei products will continue to function and won’t be affected by this blacklisting.

The keyword here is existing, meaning Google isn’t promising support for future Huawei products. This hopefully doesn’t mean that other Chinese brands like Xiaomi and OnePlus will go through the same fate as Huawei’s.

Huawei had its own statement to share, and it’s just as reassuring to existing users:

“Huawei has made substantial contributions to the development and growth of Android around the world. As one of Android’s key global partners, we have worked closely with their open-source platform to develop an ecosystem that has benefited both users and the industry. Huawei will continue to provide security updates and after sales services to all existing Huawei and Honor smartphone and tablet products covering those have been sold or still in stock globally. We will continue to build a safe and sustainable software ecosystem, in order to provide the best experience for all users globally.”

The sentence in bold may be the biggest takeaway here. Not only is Huawei committed to providing promised firmware updates and support for current Huawei device holders, sub-brand Honor is part of the company’s reassurance, as well.

This also confirms that current Huawei and Honor users don’t have to sell or trade away their gadgets. Even a newly bought unit from the companies’ present lineups will work just fine with Google’s services and apps.

In effect, only future products will be affected, which brings into question how Honor will treat the Honor 20 launch in London tomorrow, as well as what the landscape will look like by the time Huawei’s flagship Mate 30 rolls in.

Additional questions at the moment are: How will upcoming Huawei smartphones look and function without an Android operating system? Will Huawei release its own OS in time for the next batch of handsets? Will American companies soon block trades with other Chinese manufacturers, too? For now, we’ll have to wait and see.

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Enterprise

Globe, Smart downplay Huawei ban imposed by US government

Subscribers won’t be affected — at least for now

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In light of recent (and shocking) news about the US government’s ban on Huawei, Philippine telcos have issued their respective statements to guarantee subscribers who are using Huawei devices on their networks.

In a statement posted on Facebook, the PLDTSmart group assured its subscribers that Huawei handsets and other devices availed via official PLDT-Smart channels will continue to work despite the trade ban.


“In light of the recent trade ban of the United States government on Huawei products, PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc. wish to assure its customers who have availed of Huawei handsets and devices via its official channels that said products will continue to function normally on the PLDT-Smart network,” the statement read.

Moreover, PLDT and Smart promised to work closely with Huawei to address concerns regarding future firmware and software updates for its devices. Currently, Smart offers Huawei phones and pocket Wi-Fi devices on both postpaid and prepaid services.

Globe also reassured their subscribers about subsequent security updates and after-sales services of Huawei phones and devices. “We wish to assure our customers that the current situation at Huawei will not impact its network services,” the statement added.

Like PLDT and Smart, Globe also sells Huawei phones under their postpaid and prepaid line, plus they offer prepaid home Wi-Fi solutions using Huawei LTE routers.

Additionally, both major Philippine telcos use Huawei infrastructures to deploy their services nationwide. However, the reported Huawei ban mainly affects consumer devices like phones because they rely on software and parts provided by US companies as well.

SEE ALSO: Intel, Broadcom, and Qualcomm reportedly staying away from Huawei

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Her GadgetMatch

A colored, Bluetooth-enabled Tamagotchi is coming

Still very cute!

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The cutest 90s pet is back and they’re in full color!

The Tamagotchi Go is a refreshed version of our favorite digital pet. Available in glitter cases and now fitted with colored screens, the 2019 Tamagotchi hopes to capture this new generation the same way they did ours: Through adorable virtual critters!


You still take care of an incessantly needy pet but this device now allows you to connect with other users via Bluetooth so that your Tamagotchi can make friends, marry, and even have more Tama babies. And, good news, there will even be a new Tamagotchi Hotel feature which will babysit your pet on days you can’t just deal — that means less dead pets! (90s kids will know 😅)

Additionally,  there’s an app, to be released later on, that will allow users to connect to other Tamagotchi worldwide.

Despite the advancements, the Tamagotchi Go will still be a straightforward device which runs on AAA batteries and needs no connection to your smartphone or the internet to run. The new Bandai toys will be onsale starting July 28 and it will retail for US$ 60 a piece.

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