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Samsung Galaxy Note 9 to cost P75K for 512GB model in the Philippines

Yet another price increase

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With less than a month to go before launch, we have surprisingly little info on the upcoming Galaxy Note 9. With the exception of the possibly Bluetooth-enabled S Pen, we’re still uncertain if we’ll be seeing a revolutionary product or an incremental upgrade to the Galaxy Note 8 and S9 series.

According to a reliable source, however, we may already have pricing for the Galaxy Note 9 variants to be offered in the Philippines.

We’ve been told that there’ll be two storage variants in the Philippines — one with 128GB of storage and another with 512GB. The former will retail for approximately PhP 62,000 (US$ 1,160) while the latter will reportedly go for PhP 75,000 (US$ 1,400).

This information aligns with previous leaks stating that there’ll be a massive 512GB model for the Galaxy Note 9, although we can now confirm that it’ll be available outside of South Korea and China, as well.

For comparison, the Galaxy Note 8 retailed for PhP 49,990 (US$ 935) for the 64GB version when it launched in August 2017. On the other hand, the Galaxy S9+ goes for as much as PhP 60,990 (US$ 1,140), which has 256GB of onboard storage.

The rest of the Galaxy Note 9’s specs include what you’d expect from a 2018 flagship, including a high-end Snapdragon 845 processor, at least 6GB of memory, a hefty 4000mAh battery, and a multi-camera setup like before.

We’ll have to wait until August 9 for the official unveiling in New York to see how the Galaxy Note 9 will look and feel, but if early patents are any indication, we’re hoping to get our socks blown off.

Apps

Grab to refund its riders up to PhP 5M

The company was penalized for overcharging

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Do you use Grab daily? If so, then watch out for your Grab credits these coming weeks. An antitrust body in the Philippines ruled that Grab was overpricing its customers and ordered the company to refund its customers.

Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) announced on Monday that it has ordered Grab to return an estimated PhP 5.05 million to its riders. The antitrust body ruled that the company overcharged its car-hailing service from February 2019 to May 2019. So, the next time you open the Grab app, watch out for additional credits. You will receive it within 60 days — the time period PCC allotted for Grab to comply.

The exact reason why PCC found the company overcharging is unknown. However, this is not the first time the company was fined for overcharging. Last July 2018, Grab returned PhP 10 million plus rebate to its customers for overcharging and imposing a PhP 2 waiting time penalty to its riders.

PCC has already set conditions for Grab to avoid overcharging in the future. You are likely to benefit from these conditions, as Grab’s monopoly in Southeast Asia made it increase prices recently. Also, these conditions are meant to improve Grab’s car-hailing service, which is a win-win situation for you, the company, and the government.

However, the PhP 5.05 million fine is just a drop in the bucket for Grab. The company has diversified into new market segments, ensuring more profits and revenue. Plus, a big-name car manufacturer invested in the company last year for improving its car-hailing operations.

SOURCE: CNN Philippines

 

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Lifestyle

Huawei showcases Gentle Monster Eyewear, other wearables

“Connecting Tech with Fashion”

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We’ve come a long way from wearables that people won’t exactly be proud to wear. But Huawei is taking it further by “connecting tech with fashion.”

During “The Showroom” event in Singapore, Huawei paraded their set of wearables. Each one we’ve likely seen before like the FreeBuds 3 and the different variations of the Huawei Watch GT 2.

But perhaps one of their more unique offerings is the Gentle Monster — Huawei Eyewear.

Gentle Monster — Huawei Eyewear: New kind of wearable

Huawei calls it “an elegant and minimalist intelligent assistant for daily wear.” With it on, you can listen to music, take calls, and get voice updates from your virtual assistant. Which you’ll do simply by double tapping on either side of the eyewear’s frame.

If you’re worried about the audio blasting out too much, of course, Huawei took that into consideration. The eyewear has dual speakers and a semi-open design so you can hear the audio properly. At the same time it has a “unique audio cavity” to make sure sound doesn’t leak out.

It’s also combining hardware and software to deliver clear audio communications. The linear beam noise reduction design along with AI speech noise-reduction tech helps in this aspect.

The device also has an IP67 rating which means it’s dust and water resistant. It also comes with a portable leather case that doubles as a charger for the device. The charging, interestingly, is done wirelessly thanks to NFC.

Partnering with Gentle Monster appears to be another masterful branding move, akin to how Huawei hooked up with Leica for their flagship’s cameras. This means that the Gentle Monster — Huawei Eyewear will come in an array of different designs. So you should find something that will look good on you — which was hard for me, but I digress.

The Gentle Monster – Huawei Eyewear will be available on November 28 in Singapore in two design options: Smart Eastmoon and Smart Jackbye. No word yet on exact pricing.

Different Huawei Watch GT 2 designs to match your needs 

Another thing showcased was the Huawei Watch GT 2 — our review is coming up soon so watch out for it. But initial impressions suggest it’s one of the better smartwatch options for Android. It comes in two sizes: 46mm and 42mm.

There are plenty of design options to choose from. Here are pricing and availability:

  • HUAWEI Watch GT 2 (46mm) Sport Edition in Matte Black now available at SG $298 here
  • HUAWEI Watch GT 2 (46mm) Classic Edition in Pebble Brown now available at SG$ 328 here
  • HUAWEI Watch GT 2 (42mm) Sport Edition in Lake Cyan available on 28 November, pricing to be released on a closer date.
  • HUAWEI Watch GT 2 (42mm) Elegant Edition in Refined Gold available in December, further details to come.
  • HUAWEI Watch GT 2 (46mm) Elite Edition in Titanium Grey available in December, further details to come

Freebuds 3: AirPods Pro but for Android

Last, but certainly not least, is the Freebuds 3 which bears a striking resemblance to the AirPods by Apple. This particular design allowed Huawei to put their Kirin A1 wearable chip on the wireless earphones which helps in noise cancellation, a stable, fast bluetooth connection and better power efficiency.

The FreeBuds 3 will be available on November 28, in Carbon Black and Ceramic White.

Huawei’s ecosystem

These new devices should also work well with the ecosystem that Huawei is building. The company is going towards the full Internet of Things (IoT) route and while they’re building their own hardware, they’re also inviting other developers and manufacturers to create products that will fit in their ecosystem.

SEE ALSO: Huawei Mobile Cloud will have free storage for some users

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India

Vivo Y19 is an affordable phone with triple rear cameras

A phone that gets everything right

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Photo by GadgetMatch

The affordable segment has seen a wide range of new phones this year thanks to a raging war between Xiaomi and Realme. While the two are constantly trying to undercut each other, brands are striving to take advantage of the situation.

Vivo has unveiled a new phone dubbed the Y19 and it’s being launched in India as well as the Philippines. The design is rather different and incorporates a 3D design that can mimic a wide range of reflective colors. The phone will be available in Magnetic Black and Spring White color options.

On the front is a 6.5-inch LCD Full HD+ display with a tiny water-drop notch on the top. Powering the phone is an octa-core MediaTek Helio P65 SoC, paired with 4GB of RAM and 128GB internal storage.

In terms of optics, the triple rear camera setup of the Vivo Y19 includes a 16-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. The phone also gets a 16-megapixel selfie camera at the front.

It has dual SIM support and ships with Android 9 Pie-based Funtouch OS 9.2. For a better gaming experience, an Ultra Game Mode has been provided for optimization.

In India, the phone has been priced at INR 13,999 (US$ 195) and will be available for purchase via all major online as well as offline sellers.

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