News

vivo X50 series now official, employs Gimbal Camera System

Placing heavy emphasis on camera performance

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vivo’s been pretty quiet since the launch of the vivo NEX 3. Today, the company breaks its silence with the launch of the vivo X50 series. It consists of three phones: the X50, X50 Pro, and X50 Pro+.

The series is putting a strong emphasis on camera performance. Specifically, vivo is touting its Gimbal Camera System and its zoom capabilities. We’ll get to that more later.

The X50 series also promises a futuristic and user-centric design along with flagship grade performance. The company says it’s the first X-series to be released globally, so there’s a lot riding on these devices.

Gimbal Camera System

Gimbals are primarily used for stabilization. By adding what they call the Gimbal Camera System, vivo says they’ve unlocked the capability to take clear photos and videos while in motion. This applies, they claim, even at night.

Here’s how it works: the gimbal module, which was modeled from a full-size professional gimbal, moves in the opposite direction of shaking motion to provide stability. It also widens the rotation angle and anti-shake area — wider than the usual smartphone stabilization methods — to produce super clear images.

There’s a gimbal radar that lets users know when the frame is stable. It appears as an on-screen animated ball that reflects the gimbal’s movement. This works in concert with vivo’s motion-deblur algorithm, customized sensors and continuous focus tracking to improve the clarity even more.

If that seemed like it’s a lot to take in, that’s because it is. For our part, we’re excited how it actually works both in demo and in the real world.

Zoom and other camera features

There’s more to the X50 series than the gimbal camera system. vivo says all three are equipped with the cameras you expect from flagship smartphones. Both the X50 Pro and the X50 Pro+ have a periscope lens that supports up to 60x Hyper Zoom.

The X50 Pro has a quad-camera setup with a single selfie camera. Meanwhile, the X50 Pro+ sports a main camera that has a 1/1.3 inch ISOCELL GN1 sensor. This should result in photos with “breathtaking detail.”

The series also has a super wide-angle lens and a super macro lens, giving you versatility in various shooting situations. There’s also Super Night Mode for low light scenarios, and an Astro Mode for stunning nightscape images whether in a city or open field setting.

Lastly, there’s Portrait Mode. vivo says it’s now more refined thanks to a four-layer masking algorithm that not only separates the subject from the background, it’ll also let you apply separate effects for even better results.

A truly flagship series

All the phones in the X50 series will support 5G connectivity — which seems to be something we should expect from all flagship phones from here on out. The series will also have a high screen refresh rate — a choice between 90Hz/120Hz depending on the model.

Those screens, vivo claims, are now even better. They’re more flexible, slimmer, lighter, but also more durable than anything they’ve ever made before.

The X50 Pro+ is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+X55 processor. The Gimbal Camera System on the rear of the X50 Pro is in the shape of an eye for a unique design element. And lastly, the X50 is the slimmest 5G phone so far measuring at only 7.49mm

Pricing and availability

It will be available over the next three months in the following markets: Asia (specifically India, Indonesia, and more), Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe.

In India, pricing are as follows:

  • vivo X50 (8GB+128GB): Rs 34,990
  • vivo X50 (8GB+256GB): INR 37,990
  • vivo X50 Pro (8GB+256GB): INR49,999

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on June 1, 2020. It has been updated to with our video review, new images and to reflect pricing and availability.

News

Huawei Mate 40 Pro price and availability in Singapore

Is this the Mate for you?

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Huawei’s latest and greatest smartphone — the Huawei Mate 40 Pro — has arrived in Singapore.

The Mate 40 Pro continues the Mate line’s legacy of being a fantastic all around smartphone. It delivers the best in terms of design, build, cameras, and performance.

An all-around camera

Huawei’s mobile camera tech is one of the best in the business and there’s more of the same in the Mate 40 series.

The three phones come with an array of camera features found in Huawei phones past, all improved and upgraded. There’s Dual Cine Cameras, Steady Shot, Tracking Shot, Audio Focus, Audio Zoom and the list goes on.

A testament to how smart its cameras are is how you can lazily shoot with it and you’d still come up with pretty darn good shots.

Huawei Mate 40 Pro

A leap in performance

Every single phone in the Mate 40 series is powered by Kirin 9000 5G. Huawei is calling it “the most sophisticated 5nm 5G SoC  available.”

It features a three-level power efficiency architecture with cores running at clock frequencies of up to 3.13Ghz. Really, all you need to know is it’s extremely powerful, extremely efficient, and it’s close to mind-boggling the things that it enables the phone to do.

The 24-core Mali-G78 GPU on the Mate 40 Pro and Mate 40 Pro+ is the most powerful GPU ever on a Huawei device. It’s great for intense graphic performance and works well with the 90Hz screen refresh rate and 240Hz touch sampling rate.

Of course, having 5G means it’s gonna take a toll on the battery. The Mate 40 has a 4,200mAh capacity while the Mate 40 Pro and Mate 40 Pro+ have 4,400mAh. But more than the numbers, Huawei says the phones are equipped with tech to handle the demands of 5G.

A new user experience

We’ve already been introduced to EMUI 11 and all it’s wonderful features. So there’s all of that plus a handful of improvements in several areas.

Smart Gesture Control makes a return. It’s the feature that lets you hover your hand over the device to wake it up, navigate, and answer a call. Like magic!

Huawei is also expanding Petal Search to Petal Maps, essentially replacing everything it lost with Google and putting their own stamp on it while making sure to communicate that it’s all private and secure.

Watch our Huawei Mate 40 Pro Unboxing and Review.

Pricing and availability

The Huawei Mate 40 Pro will be available in Singapore in limited quantities in two color variants: Mystic Silver and Black starting December 12 at a retail price of SG$ 1,598

Customers will also receive a HUAWEI SuperCharge Wireless Stand (40W) worth S$148 with every purchase, while stocks last.

Huawei Mate 40 Pro Singapore

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Apps

Facebook on iOS now has dark mode

It’s more dim than dark

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Facebook Dark Mode

Took them a while but it appears Facebook on iOS now has dark mode. The company started publicly testing the feature back in early November and it looks like more users are now able to make the switch.

To turn your Facebook app into dark mode on iOS, you only need to tap the Menu button on the lower-right hand side of the screen. Scroll down and look for Settings and Privacy then tap that. Afterwards, the Settings and Privacy option will expand. You’ll then see Dark Mode right up above App Language. Tap on Dark Mode. It’s turned off by default but you have the option to turn it on or match your system settings.

Earlier reports suggest the company is also testing the dark mode on Android. However, as of the moment, it’s only more widely available for iOS users.

Android users should be able to see the update come to their devices in the next few weeks.

It’s important to note that this is different from the dark mode that some Android UI/UX. This particular app date is native to the app versus the one forced by the Android skin.

SEE ALSO: Facebook launches dark mode for desktop

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Enterprise

Qualcomm reportedly launching a new Snapdragon 700 chip soon

To fight against the Exynos 1080

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When the Snapdragon 888 launched earlier this week, a lot of people were surprised. Most industry watchers were expecting the Snapdragon 875, as per Qualcomm’s usual naming scheme. However, much like the chipset’s specs, the Snapdragon 888’s name teases good things to come for next year’s flagships. Apparently, we’re not done. Qualcomm is reportedly launching a new Snapdragon 700 chipset to compete against the Exynos 1080.

Leaked on Weibo, the upcoming processor will occupy an upper-midrange slot that was conveniently missing from this week’s big event. According to the leak, the chipset will debut sometime within the first quarter of 2021. Most importantly, new smartphones with the processor will ship immediately after the debut.

Though the leaker did not reveal a lot of details, the new Snapdragon 700 series will supposedly go one-on-one with Samsung’s Exynos 1080 chipset. If this is true, Samsung’s and Qualcomm’s new lineups are strangely positioned. For one, the natural assumption is that the Snapdragon 888 will compare against the Exynos 1080, matching flagship against flagship.

With a potentially strange discrepancy, either the Exynos 1080 won’t perform like a flagship or the Samsung hasn’t announced next year’s flagship Exynos yet. Either way, next year’s processor lineups are shaping up into new and surprising levels of excitement. Already, several smartphone makers are already committing resources towards the newly announced chipsets from both Qualcomm and Samsung.

SEE ALSO: realme Race will be one of the first phones to have Snapdragon 888

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