Lifestyle

Vivo showcases new tech in FIFA World Cup TVC

Are we getting a retractable selfie camera?

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Last year, Vivo announced that they are FIFA’s official smartphone sponsors under a six-year contract. Expect to see a lot of the brand, especially during the World Cup in 2018 and 2022.

A TVC highlighting the partnership just dropped and Vivo showcases their newest and greatest in smartphone tech. From bezel-less displays to in-display fingerprint sensors, the video shows it all.

At first, because of the in-display fingerprint sensor, the video seems to feature the Vivo X21 which launched in Singapore early this month, and is set to release in other Asian countries in June. But, what’s really curious is that it eventually shows a bezel-less smartphone with a retractable selfie camera. The only other time we saw that type of camera from Vivo was at this year’s MWC when they unveiled the Vivo APEX concept phone which they stressed was just a prototype.

This teaser comes at a perfect time as Vivo is set to launch a new all-display smartphone in Shanghai a few days ahead of the 2018 World Cup in Russia that opens on June 14.

Will we be seeing a smartphone with a retractable selfie camera on the market soon? Only time will tell.

SEE ALSO: Vivo to launch all-display phone on June 12

Entertainment

Spotify is now adding free audiobooks

Narrators include Forest Whitaker and Hilary Swank

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A few years ago, Spotify implemented support for podcasts. Practically overnight, the audio streaming platform became a top destination for podcast listening, rivalling already established giants like Apple Podcasts and Pocket Casts. However, it isn’t done with expanding yet. Spotify is now adding free audiobooks to the service.

Reported by Hollywood Reporter, the platform now has a starting lineup of nine audiobooks. Currently, because of tough copyright laws, the lineup contains books already in the public domain. However, the audio recordings themselves are Spotify’s property.

Speaking of the recordings, the voices on the audiobooks are pretty special. The narrators include Hollywood actors like Forest Whitaker and Hilary Swank. The two celebrities narrate Frederick Douglass’ Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave and Kate Chopin’s The Awakening, respectively.

Other titles include Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (narrated by David Dobrik), Jane Austen’s Persuasion (narrated by Cynthia Erivo), Jean Toomer’s Cane (narrated by Audra McDonald), Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations (narrated by James Langston), Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre (narrated by Sarah Coombs), Nella Larsen’s Passing (narrated by Bahni Turpin), and Stephen Crane’s Red Badge of Courage (narrated by Santino Fontana).

This isn’t the first time you can listen to audiobooks on Spotify. Some podcasts, even on other platforms, are essentially audiobook readings. However, the new nine-title slate signifies a new push to deliver exclusive audiobooks to the platform. The new audiobooks are currently free for all Spotify users, premium or not.

SEE ALSO: Spotify is testing its own Stories feature

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Entertainment

Disney+ coming to the Philippines soon?

We’re cautiously optimistic

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Finally! The days of using VPN and “other means” to catch up on the latest The Mandalorian or WandaVision episodes could be coming to an end for Filipinos.

An Instagram account with the handle @disneyplusph was just activated and while it’s not verified, it certainly follows the look of other official Disney+ accounts.

Photo by GadgetMatch

Adding fuel to the fire that this is likely happening soon is the announcement that the entertainment giant’s streaming service is also hitting other Southeast Asian markets through Hotstar — a video streaming service most popular in India.

There was even news previously that Disney+ will be streaming in India via Hotstar but that was delayed.

We reached out to Disney’s representatives in the Philippines, but it still hasn’t been confirmed as of writing. There’s not a lot to go on for now but we’ll surely keep our eyes peeled for more updates.

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Malaysia

adidas Ultraboost 21 now official, has even more Boost

More comfortable and with an all-new design

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adidas unveiled the latest evolution of their popular Ultraboost silhouette — taking the popular sneaker line in an even more performance oriented direction with the new Ultraboost 21.

The Ultraboost 21 boasts a new redesigned torsion system, which includes LEP (“Linear Energy Push”) that makes the shoe even more responsive, along with an updated design, sustainably sourced materials, and more Boost in the midsole, all to create a shoe that’s even more comfortable, with even more energy return.

The dramatic heel curve of the midsole boasts 6 percent more Boost used, which should make the Ultraboost 21 even more comfortable than the UltraBoost 20 we reviewed last year.

Additionally, there’s a new Primenit+ upper, which has a more precisely designed knit to give enhanced support and movement. The upper is also created from adidas Primeblue, a recycled material of at least 50 percent Parley Ocean Plastic. adidas has a long history with Parley and we’re happy to see sustainably made materials being used in such a high-profile sneaker!

Lastly, there’s the new redesigned ‘Linear Energy Push’ torsion system with stiffer, reinforced material in the midsole to provide runners with less flex in the forefoot and increased responsiveness.

Announcing the new shoe, adidas Running‘s Senior Design Director Footwear Moritz Hollmüller said, “In creating the adidas Ultraboost 21, we have developed our most holistic running shoe ever, that is the ultimate expression of comfort and responsiveness. Ultraboost 21 takes all the aesthetic ingredients that were part of the original shoe’s DNA and fuses them with the latest technology, such as adidas LEP, to create a shoe that combines all of these great design features with incredible comfort, support and energy return.”

The Ultraboost 21 will release in a white and “Fluorescent Yellow” colorway this January 28, though some buyers will have early access to purchase the shoe via the adidas Store App in Malaysia and other parts of APAC.

In Malaysia, the Ultraboost 21 is priced at MYR 779. Other colorways will follow globally on February 4, 2021.

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