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Unregistered drone owners risk jail time

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An estimated 1.6 million drones were sold in 2015, half of which landed as Christmas gifts, in socks over the fireplace, and under Christmas trees. If you were lucky enough to unwrap one of these high-tech quadcopters, some action may be required to avoid some unplanned jail time.

With drones believed to be the next big thing in tech, the U.S. Federal government through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), is making it mandatory for all US citizens and permanent residents over the age of 13 to register their “small unmanned aircrafts.”

Failure to register comes with severe consequences, including civil penalties of up to $27,500 and criminal penalties of up to $250,000 and/or up to three years in prison.  

You have until February 19, 2016 to complete the online registration process to avoid any kind of penalty for the drones you already own. If you are planning on buying a drone in the future you will need to register your new toy before you are allowed to operate it.

Nearly 300,000 US drone owners have registered with the FAA’s online database since the registration process went live on December 21, 2015. But with the deadline looming, and millions of drones sold, the requirement to register all existing drones may just be a lofty goal.

The online process costs $5.00 and is currently only open to hobbyists with drones that weigh more than 250g (0.55lbs) and less than 25kg (55lbs). If you own a nano drone like the OnagoFly which we reviewed during the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, you’re exempt from the process altogether.

Commercial users and owners of unmanned aircrafts that are on the heavy side (above 25 kg or 55 lbs.) are still bound to a paper registration process. Although the FAA promised to change this to an online registration as well by March 21, 2016.

Once registered each owner receives a number and a certificate. The number then has to be noted on every unmanned aircraft you plan to operate. There isn’t an actual license plate or sticker. Instead, we recommend using a waterproof pen to write the number directly on your drone to ensure your registration number will be visible even after a flight through the rain.

Good news is that registration process is based on individual users and doesn’t have to be repeated for each drone you plan on buying.

The FAA says that the registration number will help them to quickly identify drone operators in case of accidents and will provide a way to inform you about safety requirements and future regulations. 

[irp posts=”7560″ name=”GoPro recalls Karma drone because of ‘performance issues'”]

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Nokia XR20: Rugged smartphone with 4 years of updates

Launched alongside the budget C30 and a 6310 remake

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Fancy a smartphone that could withstand extreme conditions? Well, Nokia now has one — and with guaranteed four years of updates too. The Nokia XR20 is the company’s first rugged smartphone, complete with a host of features.

The design, for a start, is something that you would expect from a rugged smartphone. It’s a bit chunky and for a good reason: the phone is MIL-STD certified, surviving drops from 1.8 meters. The ruggedized casing also helps in shock-proofing the phone. For a peace of mind, the phone also has an IP68 water and dust resistance along with Gorilla Glass Victus on the front.

Now, some people would equate rugged smartphones with outdated specs. This is not the case for the Nokia XR20, as it rocks features on par for the mid-range market.

First up, it has a sizable 6.67-inch IPS FHD+ display with a 20:9 aspect ratio. One unique thing about this display is that it has a maximum brightness of 550 nits, and it can even operate with gloves. It’s also worth mentioning that the front bezels here don’t have any “Nokia” branding at all — a first for the company’s recent smartphone lineup.

The camera on this phone is also par for the course. Up front, there is an 8MP selfie camera located on a centered punch hole. Meanwhile, the rear cameras are made of a main 48MP wide-angle lens and a 13MP ultra-wide-angle lens.

On the performance front, there is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 480 chipset powering the device. It is a mid-range chipset at its best, and fortunately, it has 5G built-in for future-proofing. By default, it comes with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. It also has plenty of support — four years of security updates, plus three years of major OS updates.

For connectivity, it has a lone USB 3.0 Type-C port with Bluetooth 5.1 built in. There’s even a 3.5 mm headphone jack included into the mix. However, Nokia also integrated dual speakers on this device if listening out loud is your jam. Finally, the device can keep up for two days thanks to its 4,630mAh battery.

The device will retail on August 24 for a price of US$ 549. Buyers can get it in two color configurations: Ultra Blue or Granite Grey.

Nokia C30 and 6310: budget and nostalgic pairs

Aside from the rugged XR20, the company also announced two new devices — the Nokia C30 and 6310. The former is a budget device that adds to the fledgling Nokia C-series line-up. It has a big 6.82 HD+ display, complete with a V-notch housing the 5MP selfie camera. The back houses the two rear cameras with a 13 MP wide-angle lens and a 2 MP depth sensor. Nokia is using an Unisoc processor here, along with the trimmed-down Android 11 Go. Furthermore, it comes with a 6,000mAh battery which is humongous for its class.

Image from Nokia

Meanwhile, the Nokia 6310 is revived and modernized 6310 that many people know from the past. Just like you would expect, it features the classic design of the long-gone feature phone but with a twist. It has a curved 2.8-inch display, a rear-facing 0.3MP camera, and Series 30+ OS. Strangely enough, there is Bluetooth 5.0 here yet 4G is nowhere to be found.

Image from Nokia

The Nokia C30 will retail for EUR 99 while the 6310 will go for EUR 40.

Via: GSMArena.com (1) (2)

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Smart Signature Plan 599 is now available

It’s their most affordable Signature Plan to date

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Smart unveils new signature plan for only PhP 599. There are two variations of this plan: a sim-only version and a signature lite with device. For the inclusions of the sim-only plan we have 5 GB monthly data allocation. Followed by unlimited calls and texts to all networks, and 100 minutes of calls to any PLDT landline.

For the signature lite with device, you get 2.5GB monthly data with unlimited calls and texts to all networks. Followed by 25 minutes of calls to any PLDT landline, this sounds like a promising plan for PhP 599.

The signature plan lite is available to new subscribers as well as existing postpaid customers. Customers may sign up for the signature plan lite at any smart store nationwide. Alternatively, you can also book a virtual appointment via Stay Smart.

“Smart’s superior network offers a superior digital experience. By launching our most affordable postpaid plan yet, we aim to empower more Filipinos with this differentiated experience so they can simply achieve more in their chosen career or passion,” said Jane J. Basas, SVP and Head of Consumer Wireless Business at Smart.

Smart’s new plan competes directly with Globe’s own plan 599.

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Apple: Leaks are causing wrongly sized iPhone cases

Issues cease-and-desist order

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Leaks have always been an important part of the smartphone cycle. Before a huge smartphone launch, leakers have always found a way to release information before the actual company. Premature information normally doesn’t affect the actual release. However, some companies certainly want to clamp down on leaks. Apple, for one, has always despised leaks. However, the company now has a different purpose for doing so: to prevent wrongly sized phone cases.

Reported by Vice, Apple has issued a cease-and-desist order against a Chinese citizen caught leaking info about upcoming iPhones. The leaker supposedly released prototypes for the devices to the public.

According to Apple, leaks ruin the surprise for consumers especially since they spoil the company’s plans. Additionally, the company says that releasing information outside of Apple’s purview will dupe case manufacturers into making cases of the wrong size especially if the actual products are of a different size.

Historically, Apple has been antagonistic against people leaking company secrets. The company has even filed lawsuits against employees caught smuggling out company secrets. Despite how much hype that leaks can generate for the company, Apple really doesn’t like its leaks.

Currently, there have already been a substantial amount of leaks surrounding the upcoming iPhone 13 series. There have also been hints for next year’s iPhone 14 series.

SEE ALSO: iPhone 14 series might use titanium chassis

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