News

Singaporean photographer wins #ShotOniPhone challenge

One of ten total winners

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Throughout the years, Apple’s iPhone has been proven as one of the major leaders when it comes to mobile photography. As fans became so loyal to their iPhones, they’ve shown how happy they are with its image processing and quality by using the hashtag #ShotOniPhone, which has become rampant, especially when posting photos on Instagram.

For the same reason, Apple also announced their #ShotOniPhone contest that’s open for everyone. Fans all around the world have participated to submit the best shots they have in their camera roll. Out of all the entries from several countries, winners have been selected by 11 notable judges in the field of photography and photojournalism. Darren Soh, a Singaporean photographer focusing on architectural visuals, talks to GadgetMatch about how honored he is being triumphant in said photo-centric competition.

With him being a proud Singaporean, he loves to show what the country has to offer through concrete slabs and aging rocks. Singapore, believe it or not, has become one of the most popular Asian tourist destinations and for him, the essence of capturing known landmarks such as the Marina Bay Sands and showing it to people is nowhere near as unique and breathtaking as capturing the puddle reflection of a public housing in the heartlands of the city.

Getting specific about his winning entry, he told us the photograph took place in Potong Pasir, a public housing estate well known for its architectural landscape, including “ski-slope roofs” on top of its buildings. Right after the basketball court got cleaned up, the perfect combination of the puddle and the housing’s recognizable outer structure made him grab his phone, experiment with the angles, and shoot as many photos as he could.

In an instantaneous moment, a crow suddenly appeared on the upper-right part of the photograph. Out of all the shots he took, the crow only appeared on one image, making it a picture-perfect shot with great composition and timing. Fair enough, the photo was captured using the iPhone XS Max, which is considered today as one of the most popular camera smartphones for professional mobile photography. It may not be on par with most professional DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, but it got the job done — a perfect fit for this year’s billboards and Apple store backdrops.

Behind his photo conveys a deeper message: “Singapore is a country that is changing so rapidly. We cannot save every old building but we can try our best to photograph them all,” Soh said.

With the continuous growth of the country, paired with the recent technological advancements and innovations, the cityscape and its cultural heritage are getting less preserved and appreciated. Soh’s appreciation for architecture through photographs is one clever way to preserve the time and overall look of Singapore’s dynamic growth and ever-changing skyline.

His entry, along with the other nine selected winners, will be featured on billboards in select cities, Apple retail stores, and across the web.

News

New leak reveals a much, much more expensive AirPods Pro

Costs as much as a midrange phone

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Recently, the rumor mill reignited discussions over an upcoming AirPods launch in the midrange segment. Supposedly, the mid-2020 device will sell for more than a pair of regular AirPods but less than a premium pair of AirPods Pro.

Surprisingly, the rumors are still going. This time, Target, the American superstore chain, has apparently readied its inventory system for an unannounced AirPods product, according to a leak from tech YouTuber Jon Prosser.

The product — named the Apple AirPods (X Generation) — will retail for a staggering US$ 399.99. For reference, the AirPods Pro sells for only $249.99. Given the heightened price, the AirPods (X Generation) is likely a pair of headphones worthy of the price, especially since the AirPods Pro is already the top-of-the-line product for earbuds.

According to a follow-up from Apple Insider, Target employees explained that reserving inventory slots for upcoming products, especially regarding pricing information. However, the official name will likely change on launch.

Additionally, Presser has also asked Apple for a potential launch date. According to another tweet, Apple is still undecided whether to hold an event in March.

Still, with a pair of wireless over-ear headphones, Apple will be ready to take on a market populated by its subsidiary brand Beats and competing brands like Bose, Sony, and JBL. We’re dreading the potential charging case, though.

SEE ALSO: Apple lets you personalize your AirPods case

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Enterprise

Samsung temporarily shuts down infected Galaxy Z Flip factory

Coronavirus strikes again

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The coronavirus epidemic is burning through the technology industry, leaving a trail of delays and shortages in its wake. So far, the virus has already torched Apple’s China-based manufacturers and the entire MWC 2020 event.

For the immediate future, the global epidemic can add Samsung to its list of victims. Previously, the South Korean company saved itself from the crisis, owing to its geographical roots. Unfortunately, if you turn into world news today, the virus has already made its way to South Korea.

In the city of Gumi, one of Samsung’s factory workers has contracted the disease, forcing the company to shut down the entire plant, according to a South Korean news outlet. The entire factory will open again on February 24. Additionally, the infected employee’s floor will remain shut down until February 25.

As for the workers themselves, Samsung has urged those who worked with the employee to put themselves in quarantine and undergo tests for potential infection. The company has also asked all employees to limit travel when possible, conducting business only through video calls.

Of course, Samsung has a tight hold on the South Korea business sector. The closure of just one factory probably won’t affect the company’s supply too much.

The affected Gumi factory specializes in Galaxy Fold and Galaxy Z Flip production. If anything, the temporary closure will only slow the foldable phone down partially. Regardless, it’s not a good look for Samsung, especially if the virus continues to spread across the country.

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Accessories

Apple is likely working on a midrange AirPods Pro

Coming mid-2020

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Have you bought into the wireless earbuds trend? Despite performing at a lesser capacity than wired earphones, wireless earbuds have infiltrated every major player in the tech industry. Currently, Apple, Huawei, and Samsung all sell their own variant of the growing market.

Now, Apple looks to expand their own catalog even further. According to Chinese publication Digitimes, the AirPods maker is developing a budget-friendly version of last year’s AirPods Pro — the AirPods Pro Lite.

Supposedly, Universal Scientific Industrial (USI), a Taiwan-based manufacturer will likely acquire orders from Apple for the upcoming device. The Taiwanese company is working with other manufacturers from China and the US to fulfill the orders.

According to the report, the AirPods Pro Lite will arrive sometime in the middle of the year. However, given the current situation in China, the device’s development might run into a few delays, especially if Apple pursues China-based manufacturers.

Because of the name, the AirPods Pro Lite will likely carry a price tag between the regular AirPods and the premium AirPods Pro. That puts it around US$ 199.

Despite being an accessory, the AirPods lineup is still one of Apple’s most successful products in the current generation. Of course, it helps that the audio accessory almost comes as a requirement for iPhone users.

SEE ALSO: Unboxing the Apple AirPods Pro

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