India

Vivo V11 Pro with an in-display fingerprint scanner launched

A repackaged X21 with better design

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Vivo was the first company to launch a phone with an in-display fingerprint scanner and is the only brand to sell phones with the feature in India. The midrange segment is very competitive right now thanks to offerings from Xiaomi, ASUS, and Nokia.

To differentiate its products from the rest, Vivo has launched the V11 Pro in India today. While many call it a close sibling of the X21, the V11 Pro packs a lot of new features like a much smaller water-droplet notch and a unique body.

The front now looks very futuristic thanks to thinner chin, higher screen-to-body ratio, and the addition of an infrared sensor for facial recognition. Thanks to the smaller notch, Vivo managed to pack a 6.4-inch FullView display with a 91.27 percent screen-to-body ratio.

The display also houses the fingerprint scanner, and the technology has improved a lot. The sensor is now fourth-generation and slightly faster than the X21’s.

The back has a vertical dual-camera setup — a 12-megapixel primary sensor and a 5-megapixel secondary sensor that are capable of shooting pictures with a bokeh effect. The front has a 25-megapixel sensor that produces AI-assisted pictures.

The V11 Pro is powered by a Snapdragon 660 SoC along with 6GB RAM and 64GB internal storage. Backing these internals is a 3400mAh battery that supports dual-engine fast charging. It runs on Android 8.1 Oreo-based Funtouch OS 4.5 that has added features like gesture navigation.

Vivo also launched the V11, which houses the same internals, but misses out an in-display fingerprint scanner. In many other international markets, the V11 Pro is also called simply the V11.

The phone is available for purchase via all major online and offline sellers for INR 25,990 (US$ 360). HDFC Bank is offering an INR 2,000 cashback when purchased using their credit or debit cards.

India

OPPO launches Reno5 5G series in international markets

It has 65W fast charging!

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Why settle for nice pictures when you can also have great videos? OPPO is starting the new year with the Reno5 5G series that boasts a quad-camera setup and is designed for content creation. The phone also has a distinctive premium design that makes it perfect for the Instagram generation.

The Reno5 and Reno5 Pro made their debut in India a few days ago, and now they’re available in Singapore. More markets are expected to join the list soon. As the name suggests, the phone has 5G support.

The company has been quite aggressive in launching the series with a quick unveiling and launch. Demand for smartphones has risen dramatically due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and OPPO doesn’t want to miss the bus.

Reno5 Pro 5G

The OPPO Reno5 Pro 5G has a 6.55-inch AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate and HDR10+ support. Powering the phone is a MediaTek Dimensity 1000+ processor that’s built on a 7nm process. The phone doesn’t have a microSD card, and the top variant comes with 8GB RAM and 256GB storage.

The rear is a 64-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel wide-angle lens, a 2-megapixel macro sensor, and a 2-megapixel depth camera. For selfies, a 32-megapixel camera is located within the punch-hole cut-out. OPPO has also bundled in many video-oriented features such as Ultra Night Video and Dual View video.

The phone is powered by a 4350mAh battery that supports 65W fast charging. The Pro ditches the headphone jack but gets NFC instead. Both the phones ship with ColorOS 11.1 out-of-the-box. It’ll be available in Astral Blue, Starry Black, Starry Dream, and Star Wish Red color options.

Reno5 5G

The OPPO Reno5 5G has a slightly smaller 6.4-inch AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate. Under the hood is a Snapdragon 765G processor with up to 12GB RAM and 256GB storage.

It has the same camera module as the Reno5 Pro, but the front camera sensor is slightly different, with a focal length of 26mm instead of 24mm. The phone is backed by a 4300mAh battery that supports 65W fast charging. It’ll be available in Aurora Blue, Moonlight Black, and Starry Dream color options.

Price and availability

Singapore: Reno5 5G – SG$ 699 (8GB+128GB) | Reno5 Pro 5G – SG$899 (12GB+256GB)

India: Reno5 Pro 5G – INR 35,999 / US$ 492 (8GB+128GB)

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India

OnePlus Band is now official with AMOLED display, 14 day battery life

Challenging the Mi Band 5

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OnePlus has finally made a debut in the wearable segment, and while the OnePlus Watch has leaked in the past, the first device is actually the OnePlus Band. Focusing on fitness, the band aims to deliver a feature-packed experience at an affordable price.

The band works with Android out-of-the-box, and iOS support is expected to come soon. On the front is a 1.1-inch AMOLED display that’ll help you navigate the interface. An array of sensors includes a blood oxygen sensor, a three-axis accelerometer and gyroscope, and an optical heart-rate sensor.

The OnePlus Band gets many watch faces and personalization options through the OnePlus Health app. Coming to fitness, it has 13 pre-installed modes that include outdoor run, indoor run, fat burn run, outdoor walk, outdoor cycling, indoor cycling, elliptical trainer, rowing machine, cricket, badminton, pool swimming, yoga, and free training.

It’s certified for 5ATM and IP68 water resistance, and it has Bluetooth 5.0 support for seamless connections. Other nifty features include displaying notifications, as well as music playback and camera shutter controls.

The OnePlus Band packs a 100mAh battery that is touted to deliver up to 14 days of usage on a single charge. It’s priced at INR 2,499 (US$ 34), and sales are limited to the Indian market for now. Color options include Black, Navy, and Tangerine Gray.

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Gaming

FAU-G is an Indian alternative to PUBG Mobile, launches on January 26

FAU-G stands for Fearless and United Guard

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PUBG Mobile has been a global sensation, and players love it. But it’s not available in the world’s second-largest smartphone market right now. India banned the game last year, and local developers are rushing to fill the gap. One of them is nCore Games, and it plans to launch an alternative called FAU-G soon.

FAU-G stands for Fearless and United Guard, but the term fauji means soldier in Hindi, one of India’s official languages. Making things more interesting, the game is endorsed by one of India’s most popular actors — Akshay Kumar. There is an immense demand for the game due to the PUBG Mobile vacuum, anti-China sentiments, and increasing nationalist attitude that prefers indigenous products over others.

The game was supposed to launch in October 2019 but was indefinitely delayed. Thankfully, nCore Games has announced it’ll be releasing the game on January 26, the day India celebrates its seventy-fourth Republic Day.

Earlier in December 2020, the registrations for the game went live as well. FAU-G created a record with over one million pre-registrations in just 24 hours. All we know so far is, it’ll be a first-person shooter game, and since it’s supposed to bridge the PUBG Mobile gap, a battle royale mode is quite obvious.

 

So far, the developer has only released a few marketing pictures of the game, followed by a teaser. Intricate details of the game are still unknown, but the game’s description on the Play Store says, “it brings to life the thrill and adrenaline of a life spent guarding India’s borders.”

However, it’s a herculean task to build a massive game like PUBG Mobile within such a short period of time. FAU-G will have a minimal time frame to quash bugs and attain a clean experience because it’ll always be compared to seasoned competitors like PUBG Mobile, Call of Duty: Mobile, Fornite, and Mobile Legends.

Adding to this, PUBG Corporation has severed ties with Tencent to dodge anti-China sanctions and plans to launch a modified game similar to PUBG Mobile, specially designed for the Indian market. It’s a race against time right now, and the first one to debut has an edge. But that edge won’t last forever.

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