Malaysia

Study: Smartphones least affordable in Philippines, Vietnam

About two months’ worth of salary

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Xiaomi 12 Pro

With inflation rates skyrocketing everywhere lately, consumers wonder how much spending power has been generally affected.

Well, a recent iPrice study, “Highly Connected, But Highly Priced: Smartphones Out of Reach for Many in SEA”, revealed that when it comes to smartphone affordability, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Indonesia lag behind considerably.

The study took into account the salaries of workers in the three countries, and found out that mid-range smartphones cost twice an employee’s monthly salary on average.

In the same countries, high-end smartphones come as expensive investments, as they cost anywhere between about three to six times the monthly average salary of workers.

Study Smartphone

And as if adding insult to injury, the prices of phones top brands like Apple, OPPO, vivo, and Samsung are generally higher in the Philippines and Indonesia compared to other countries in the region.

This leads to consumers opting for postpaid plans from telecom providers, capitalizing on the free device in exchange of a two-year lock-in period.

The finding is a stark contrast to the same smartphones’ affordability in Singapore and Malaysia. In those two peninsular countries, phones cost only about a third of an employee’s monthly average salary.

The main takeaway from the study is: average monthly salaries do not only differ from one ASEAN country to another; for some reason, products and services in countries with less spending power also cost more. Life is unfair, isn’t it?

Gaming

God of War: Ragnarok price and availability

Comes in 4 editions

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After it was revealed earlier on the PlayStation Blog that God of War: Ragnarok’s release date will be on November 9, 2022, people are naturally curious to know how the price tags for the sequel to the 2018 game.

Luckily, we have all the details for you. God of War: Ragnarok will come in Standard Edition, Launch Edition, Collector’s Edition, and the premium Jotnar Edition.

Watch this unboxing to see what each Edition has to offer:

Of course, the pricier the edition you pre-order starting on July 15, the more extra premium items you’ll be able to enjoy with the full copy of the game.

For now, here are the prices for the physical and digital packages of the game for Singapore, Philippines, and Malaysia:

Singapore

Physical

  • Standard Physical Edition (PS5): SG$ 97.90
  • Standard Physical Edition (PS4): SG$ 79.90
  • Collector’s Edition: SG$ 279
  • Jötnar Edition: SG$ 359

Digital

  • Standard Digital Edition (PS5): SG$ 97.90
  • Standard Digital Edition (PS4): SG$ 79.90
  • Digital Deluxe Edition: SG$ 109

Philippines

Physical

  • Standard Physical Edition (PS5):PHP 3,490
  • Standard Physical Edition (PS4): PHP 2,990
  • Collector’s Edition: PHP 9,990
  • Jötnar Edition: PHP 12,990

Digital

  • Standard Digital Edition (PS5): PHP 3,490
  • Standard Digital Edition (PS4): PHP 2,990
  • Digital Deluxe Edition: SG$ 109

Malaysia

Physical

  • Standard Physical Edition (PS5): MYR 299
  • Standard Physical Edition (PS4): MYR 249
  • Collector’s Edition: MYR 839
  • Jötnar Edition: MYR 1,099

Digital

  • Standard Digital Edition (PS5): MYR 299
  • Standard Digital Edition (PS4): MYR 249
  • Digital Deluxe Edition: MYR 339
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Gaming

Call of Duty Mobile: Garena Masters II, Wild Dogs new gameplay announced

Major updates from Garena

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Call of Duty Mobile

The largest Call of Duty: Mobile (CODM) tournament in Southeast Asia is back.

Garena has announced the return of Garena Masters II – Redemption, wherein 16 teams from Singapore, Philippines, and Malaysia will battle it out for a US$ 25,000 prize pool and championship title. 

There will be nine teams from the Philippines, three teams from Singapore and Malaysia, and four finalists from the CODM Garena Masters to compete in the new battlegrounds.

Fans and CODM players also stand a chance to win in-game items when they tune in to matches. 

New gameplay for Wild Dogs

Garena also introduced an immersive new game play experience for its latest season, Wild Dogs.

There will be new maps, weapons, rewards, and modes, and players can also travel back in time to ancient Egypt, endure challenges, and compete to find the fallen spy satellite.

CODM is one of the largest FPS games in history, with over 200 million active players to date.

The popular mobile game also won Best Mobile Game back in The Games Awards 2019 and Mobile Game of the Year in the 16th British Academy Games Awards.

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Gaming

All-new PlayStation Plus coming to Asia on May 23

Excluding Japan

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In case you missed it, PlayStation has announced a brand spanking PlayStation Plus. They introduced three new tiers, expanding the service to include more games. At the time, we didn’t know exactly when the service will come. Only a vague June 2022 date was shared. Now, we know it’s heading to Asian markets first, excluding Japan, on May 23.

PlayStation didn’t specify on their blog why Asia is getting it first. But we speculate it’s likely because it’s easier to implement a download only option tiers versus the ones that include cloud streaming.

If you will recall, Asian markets won’t get the streaming option. And instead of the highest tier being called PlayStation Plus Premium, the region is instead getting PlayStation Plus Deluxe. With the primary difference being the lack of streaming option, which also means no access to PS3 titles.

There are still no concrete dates on when the all-new PlayStation Plus will hit other markets. But they did share target dates. They are as follows:

  • Japan — targeting June 1, 2022
  • Americas — targeting June 13, 2022
  •  Europe — targeting June 22, 2022

How will this affect my current subscription?

If you’re an existing PlayStation Plus subscriber and don’t really feel like upgrading then you can just stand pat. Your service will just be renamed PlayStation Plus Essential but will still get all the same benefits. No changes will be applied to your existing subscription unless: 1) You make any changes yourself, 2) Your subscription expires.

What if you want to upgrade? You can do that any time. You only need to pay he difference between your current plan and your new plan, adjusted for the remaining time of your subscription.

PlayStation Plus Extra and Deluxe

If you do decide to upgrade, here’s a brief look at what you’re getting:

PlayStation Plus Extra

Provides all the benefits from the Essential tier plus a catalogue1 of up to 400 of the most enjoyable PS4 and PS5 games, including:

  • Death Stranding
  • God of War
  • Mortal Kombat 11
  • Returnal
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales

PlayStation Plus Deluxe

Provides all the benefits from Essential and Extra tiers.

Adds a catalogue of beloved classic games available to download from the original PlayStation, PS2 and PSP generations.

Time-limited game trials will also be offered in this tier, so customers can try select games before they buy.

For the full details and pricing read here.

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