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Samsung Galaxy S20 series now official, focuses on new experiences

Ready for the future

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The leaks and rumors mostly got things right but there’s plenty about the Samsung Galaxy S20 series that wasn’t revealed yet, including but not limited to, where the S series is headed moving forward.

Let’s get the basic stuff out of the way. Yes, the S series has three phones — Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, and Galaxy S20 Ultra. We’ll get to the finer details of what makes each one different from the other. For now, let’s go through some highlight features.

First of, all three phones will have support for 5G. That includes different 5G bands like MmWave, TTD, and FDDc. That means no matter what 5G infrastructure your area supports, the Galaxy S20 series should have you covered.

While 5G is still in its early stages, Samsung is making sure you have a device that’s ready for the tech once it matures.

Experience over numbers 

Samsung is taking a slightly different approach with how they’re communicating the Galaxy S20 series. Make no mistake, the numbers on the phones’ cameras are still pretty outstanding, but the company says these only support the kind of experience they want to impart.

The main cameras on the Galaxy S20 and Galaxy S20+ are 64MP while the Galaxy S20 Ultra packs a whopping 108MP main shooter. That particular camera fuses every 9 pixels into one creating an image with plenty of detail. Samsung calls this process “Nona-Binning.” The company says the camera sensors are not only larger, they’re also smarter.

Those are some of the numbers but it’s the features that Samsung hopes will give you a better shooting experience. For instance, the zoom on the Galaxy S20 series should be the best among everything that Samsung has had on offer so far.

The Galaxy S20 and S20+ will have 3X lossless zoom and up to 30X hybrid zoom. Impressive. However, the Galaxy S20 Ultra takes things even further.

In a feature they call Space Zoom, the Galaxy S20 Ultra will give you 10X lossless zoom and up to 100X hybrid zoom.

Capture more at once

The feature Samsung is highlighting the most is called Single Take. What it does is it lets you take a 10-second clip with the phone also taking images of the “best moments” from that clip.

It takes away the anxiety of having to decide if you’d rather take a video or a photo. The company hopes it’s a feature that will help put you more in the moment instead of pouring too much energy into capturing it.

Speaking of video, the Galaxy S20 series is capable of capturing 8K video. If you happen to own a Samsung 8K TV, you can immediately stream your footage on that TV seamlessly.

Overall video taking also levels up with an improved Super Steady feature that uses anti-rolling stabilization and AI-motion analysis to eliminate shakes in your video. Mentioned in passing is the pro-grade level video that allows you to adjust aperture and other settings like you would on a DSLR.

Key partnerships 

In keeping with the “creating better experiences” theme, Samsung partnered with Spotify to take full advantage of the Samsung Galaxy Buds+.

On the Galaxy Buds+, there’s a dedicated gesture to quickly launch Spotify. It even syncs with Bixby Music so it knows the right playlist to fire up depending on the time of the day and your activity.

The Galaxy Buds+ is a step up from last year’s Galaxy Buds. It offers a longer 11-hours of battery life and has 2-way dynamic speakers all in the service of delivering a better audio experience.

Google Duo — Google’s video calling app — is also built into the phone. This lets you make Duo calls straight from the contacts app — very similar to how FaceTime works on the iPhone. Additionally, if the calls are between two Galaxy S20 phones, you can have it in full HD. Neat.

The specs 

As promised, to help differentiate the the Galaxy S20 series, here’s a quick table detailing the specs.

Galaxy S20
Galaxy S20+ Galaxy S20 Ultra
Display 6.2″ Super AMOLED, 120Hz 6.7″ Super AMOLED, 120Hz 6.9″ Super AMOLED, 120Hz
Processor Exynos 990 Exynos 990 Exynos 990
Storage and Memory
  • 128GB + 12GB
  • Expandable via MicroSD up to 1TB
  • 128GB + 12GB
  • 512GB +12GB
  • Expandable via MicroSD up to 1TB
  • 128GB + 12GB
  • 512GB +16GB
  • Expandable via MicroSD up to 1TB
Battery
  • 4000mAh
  • 25W charging
  • 4500mAh
  • 25W charging
  • 5000mAh
  • 45W charging (45W charger sold separately)
Cameras (Rear)
  • 12MP, F2.2 Ultra Wide
  • 12MP, F1.8 Wide-Angle
  • 64MP, F2.0 Telephoto
  • 12MP, F2.2 Ultra Wide
  • 12MP, F1.8 Wide-Angle
  • 64MP, F2.0 Telephoto
  • Depth Vision
  • 12MP, F2.2 Ultra Wide
  • 108MP, F1.8 Wide-Angle
  • 48MP, F3.5 Telephoto
  • Depth Vision
 

Camera (Selfie)

10MP, F2.2 10MP, F2.2 40MP, F2.2

All three phones will have the usual sensors and security features like the Ultrasonic Fingerprint Sensor and Face Recognition. The phones also have an IP68 rating making them dust and water resistant.

Wireless charging is also available on all three devices. Another thing all three have in common is they no longer have a headphone jack. Last year, the Galaxy S10 still had that port.

Pricing and availability 

The Samsung Galaxy S20 series will be available starting March 6, 2020 and pre-order period will start on February 21. It will come in different colors. Color availability will depend on where you live.

  • Galaxy S20: Cosmic Grey, Cloud Blue, Cloud Pink — US$ 999.99
  • Galaxy S20+: Cosmic Grey, Cloud Blue, Cosmic Black — US$ 1,199.99
  • Galaxy S20 Ultra: Cosmic Grey, Cosmic Black —  US$ 1,399.99

News

OPPO Watch: Pricing and availability in the Philippines

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OPPO Watch

Announced months ago in China and launched globally at the start of the month, the OPPO Watch is also coming to the Philippines.

The OPPO Watch bears an undeniable resemblance with the Apple Watch. But the device has a larger 46mm variant with a 1.91-inch AMOLED curved display. Meanwhile, the 41mm variant has a 1.6-inch AMOLED display.

For now, only the 41mm variant will come to the Philippines.

It has five workout modes: Fitness Run, Fat Burn Run, Outdoor Walk, Outdoor Cycling, and Swimming. It has the usual plate of tracking measurements including heart rate and sleep tracking. It also comes with Google Fit in its software.

It does run Wear OS but with OPPO’s own customization. This means Google apps integration should be seamless.

The 41mm variant comes with a 300mAh battery, powering the watch for up to 24 hours normally and up to 14 days on Power Saver mode. It’s compatible with OPPO’s VOOC Flash Charging tech.

Pricing and availability

The OPPO Watch 41mm will be available in black for PhP 12,990 in all OPPO concept and online stores and exclusive e-commerce partner Lazada.

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News

Google is killing the Pixel 4 just nine months after launch

Making way for the Pixel 5

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Google’s flagship Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL are now discontinued. The announcement is shocking because the phones were launched just nine months ago and the company just recently announced its younger sibling — the Pixel 4a.

It’s worth noting that Google usually followed an 18-month sale cycle with its previous offerings. Going off course from the usual trend, Google has already confirmed the imminent arrival of Pixel 5 along with the Pixel 4a 5G.

“Google Store has sold through its inventory and completed sales of Pixel 4 and 4XL,” Google said in a statement to Business Insider. However, some variants are still said to be available in other regions for the time being. If you’re lucky, you can still search for pending stock with an offline seller or even marketplaces like Amazon.

The Pixel 4 series wasn’t able to take-off and meet expectations because its sale was limited to a few regions. It’s the first phone to feature radar and backed with Project Soli, it could offer the fastest secure face unlock on a smartphone. It further helped enable motion gestures on the phone, something no other phone has been able to so far.

But, its unique selling point also became the biggest hurdle to its sale. Markets like India do not have any regulation around civilian radar usage and the phone couldn’t compete in such price-sensitive environments.

Even in developed countries, Apple and Samsung continued to dominate the premium segment. The phone is an excellent piece of hardware that churns out pictures that are often comparable to a DSLR. But, poor battery, marketing, and brand recognition just couldn’t make the phone an ideal iPhone competitor.

Watch our Pixel 4a Unboxing and Review.

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Computers

Apple’s macOS Big Sur Public Beta is now available for download

It can still run on your old 2013 MacBooks and iMacs

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Good news for MacBook and iMac users, you can now start testing out the Public Beta release of Apple’s macOS Big Sur.

Here’s a list of supported devices:

  • MacBook (2015 and later)
  • MacBook Air (2013 and later)
  • MacBook Pro (Late 2013 and later)
  • Mac mini (2014 and later)
  • iMac (2014 and later)
  • iMac Pro (all models)
  • Mac Pro (2013 and later)

If your Mac is supported, you can head over to Apple’s Beta Program Website to enroll your device for download.

Just a refresher, Big Sur is the latest macOS update that was announced during Apple’s WWDC 2020 event together with iOS 14, iPadOS 14, and watchOS 7. Other than performance improvements, you also get a revised look with a simpler and more seamless UI compared to older versions of California-touting macOS versions including  Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra, and Sierra.

Another addition to Apple’s continuous Mac improvements are the newest 27-inch iMac with Intel’s latest Core i9 chipsets, before they ditch Intel-based architecture and completely rely on their in-house ARM chipsets — starting with the upcoming Apple Silicon-powered MacBook that should be available in the market as early as 2021.

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