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Starmobile Play Five is a really affordable Marshmallow phone

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Starmobile Play Five

A little flabbergasted by all the overpriced phones coming out lately? Philippines-based Starmobile has something called the Play Five, and it costs over $600 less than an “entry-level” Google Pixel.

Not that we’d compare the Play Five to a premium handset, but it goes to show how you can buy a complete smartphone for only $35, or PhP 1,790 in the brand’s native Philippine market.

As part of Starmobile’s fifth anniversary in the business, the phone’s biggest claim to fame is its inclusion of Android 6.0 Marshmallow, which several manufacturers still fail to offer despite there being an even newer 7.0 Nougat available for over three months already.

Starmobile Play Five

Starmobile Play Five in red

Other than that, there isn’t much else to write about, but you can’t really complain, since this is targeted towards first-time smartphone users and those who need a backup phone.

If you must know, there’s a quad-core processor on board, along with a low-resolution 4-inch display and a pair of 5- and 2-megapixel rear and front-facing cameras.

The only major drawback that could hamper usability is the 4GB of internal storage. This means you won’t have a lot of space for apps, but you can slide in a microSD card (32GB at most) if you must store more data.

Although there’s no 4G LTE connectivity, its HSPA+ data speeds should suffice, and you have slots for two SIM cards to work at the same time.

The Play Five will be available beginning on the last week of November in three distinct colors: red, black, and white.

[irp posts=”7615″ name=”Best of 2016: Budget phones under $300″]

Enterprise

TikTok has collected user information illegally

They know who you are

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For months now, the US has hounded TikTok for potentially enabling Chinese cyber espionage. ByteDance, TikTok’s owner, is a Chinese company, making it a prime target for data collection. Of course, despite the numerous warnings, TikTok’s transgressions have only started appearing en masse recently. Today, a new conspiracy adds another drop to the overflowing bucket. Unfortunately, it’s a big one. Apparently, TikTok has collected user information illegally for over a year. TikTok knows who you are.

Reported by the Wall Street Journal, TikTok collected and sent valuable MAC addresses and advertising IDs to ByteDance until around November of last year. Of note, Google prohibits this questionable practice, banning apps that practice the method. However, TikTok applied a layer of encryption that hid the practice from the Play Store.

For the unfamiliar, MAC addresses are much more valuable than IP address. While IP addresses constantly change, MAC addresses are more difficult to alter. Most users will usually cycle through the lifespan of a device without giving their MAC addresses a second thought. However, the MAC address is an incredibly unique identifier for your device. Only you should ideally have that address. That said, TikTok’s sketchy collection tactic is much weightier than normal.

According to TikTok’s policies now, the platform does not collect these identifiers anymore. However, it doesn’t bode well for long-time TikTok users since last year. At its most docile, the practice likely facilitated advertising opportunities for the platform. However, it is still highly illegal to collect that data without permission. If anything, the report will give cybersecurity pundits more ammo against the already struggling company.

More than a week ago, Trump had already signed a ban against the app, giving the platform only until September 15 to divest its American assets over to an American corporation.

SEE ALSO: French privacy watchdog is now probing TikTok

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News

Huawei files patent for fullscreen fingerprint scanner

The future is fullscreen fingerprint

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The tech industry hopes to take under-display fingerprint scanners to the next level with impressive innovations.

Huawei recently filed a patent for an under-display fingerprint scanner that covers the entire screen. The filing shows multiple sensors will allow you to unlock your phone by pressing anywhere on the display.

Last last year, Qualcomm showed off its 3D Sonic Max tech featuring a larger area for the sensor but it’s nothing like what Huawei is developing.

Users can assign sensors to lock or unlock certain points on a screen. For example, setting a lock on the Image Gallery will require a fingerprint to access it. This should help keep personal information and data more secure.

To save on battery life, users will get the option to turn off sensors they don’t intend on using.

There’s currently no word on when the technology will roll out to devices in the future.

Business card psd created by yeven_popov – www.freepik.com

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Gaming

Hyper Scape is now available on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One

Another exciting and unique battle royale game in the market

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Ubisoft wants to join in the fray with their own battle royale game. Much like already successful titles, this new battle royale is free-to-play and available across multiple devices. The combat formula is roughly the same, but this time anarchy is the name of the game. Time to enter the world of Hyper Scape!

Hyper Scape is a 100-person battle royale that adds a more modern twist. Instead of mountains, hills, small towns, and battered scenery, you will compete inside a technologically-advanced setting. With a vareity of weapons, Hacks, and Fusion techniques, you will outlast everyone in Neo Arcadia. The entire game will also feature innovate gameplay mechanics that will surely spice up all the fights.

Along with the new game, Ubisoft also announced its first Battle Pass with a ton of rewards to offer. It includes an unlockable new weapon in the Dragonfly, and a new Hack called Magnet. Apart from these, there will also be limited time modes for players to grind out the Battle Pass along with standard modes.

What the team is truly proud of is its integration to the streaming platform, Twitch. This is possible through the game’s Twitch extension called Kudos — an extension purchased through Twitch bits. Essentially, Kudos will allow players to support their favorite streamers and react to exciting gameplay. Furthermore, this feature even contributes to Battle Pass progression by watching Twitch streams.

Hyper Scape is available for the PC through UPlay, the PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

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