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Windows Phone is dead, but Microsoft tried to make it better

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A moment of silence. Joe Belfiore, who used to head the mobile division of Microsoft, took to Twitter for his announcement about the death of Windows Phone or Windows 10 Mobile as it’s called now.

If you own a Windows 10 Mobile device, this is hard to accept. While there’s still no official announcement directly from Microsoft, Belfiore’s tweets confirmed that they’re no longer pushing forward.

It started when a user asked if it’s time to leave the Windows Phone platform, and Belfiore subtle answered that it depends on who and what purpose it serves. The enterprise sector is still a big market for Windows Phone, so it’s not one hundred percent over, yet.

He did specify, though, that new features and hardware are not the focus of their team. No worries! Minor updates for bug fixes and security patches are still part of their gameplan. He also admitted that the low (or “too low”) volume of users is a reason for Microsoft to shut down the platform.

While we do have our own share of disappointment about the slow progress of Windows phones, Microsoft did plan to release a borderless device running Windows Phone 8.1 back in 2014. As reported by Windows Central, the Microsoft Lumia 435 could have been a game-changer. It was planned to be the first-ever borderless Windows smartphone and cost under US$ 200. It was canceled later that year.

There were prototypes and Windows Central was able to get a hold of one.Take a look:

Image from Windows Central

We’re not sure if stores are still selling Windows Phone or Windows 10 Mobile devices, but we strongly suggest not to buy any model now, unless you want to keep a piece of Microsoft’s last efforts to save its mobile platform.

SEE ALSO: Microsoft Surface Pro isn’t just an incremental update

Gaming

Alienware, Hilton Panama opens hotel room for hardcore gamers

If Panama gets too boring

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What’s more relaxing than lounging on a beach in Panama? Playing Overwatch in the hotel room, of course!

Sand is coarse, irritating, and gets everywhere. Why would you settle for Panama’s sands when you could enjoy PUBG’s new desert map instead?

Finally, Hilton Panama will fulfill your inner gamer’s dreams of playing away from home. In the newly built Room 2425, the hotel has packed in more Alienware in a suite than Mass Effect 3.

Besides Hilton’s usual amenities, guests can enjoy an Alienware PC, equipped with an Intel Core i7-8700 processor, 32GB DDR4 RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti at 11GB, 512GB SSD, and 1TB HDD.

Additionally, if you still want to enjoy the sun, you can take an Alienware 15 gaming notebook with you. The laptop rocks an Intel Core i7-7700 HQ quad-core chip, 32GB DDR4 RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 at 8GB, 256GB SSD, and 1TB HDD.

The room also comes with a 34-inch Alienware monitor for your gaming needs. Further, you can enjoy heavier gaming with a 65-inch 4K OLED TV with 5.1-channel audio support.

If you feel the need to stretch your legs, you can use the room’s Oculus Rift headset. The room fulfills your desire to transport yourself away from boring, old Panama.

Pulling yourself away from the action, you can rest in two king-sized beds and an extravagant bathroom filled with Alienware-branded amenities.

Alienware’s Room 2425 at the Hilton Panama is now available for booking at a steady US $349 per night.

SEE ALSO: Dell G series gaming laptops start at only $749

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Apple’s next iPhone might sell for only $550

It comes in dual SIM, too!

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Much of Apple’s strife with users last year hovered around talks of price. For the first time, an iPhone touched the US $1,000 mark. This year, Apple is likely aiming for the opposite end of the spectrum.

In a recent investor’s note, long-time Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has reported Apple’s plans to release a US $550 iPhone this year.

The cheaper iPhone will reportedly ship with a larger 6.1-inch LCD screen. Usually, Apple has avoided six inches in the past. If true, this year’s iPhones break a huge barrier for Apple.

Moreover, the reported phone will come in two variants: single and dual SIM. The single SIM variant will hover between US $550 and US $650. Meanwhile, the dual SIM variant will ship with pricier range between US $650 and US $750.

Kuo predicts that the phone’s lower price tag and dual SIM capabilities will power Apple’s sales this year. Particularly, he predicts that it will outperform Apple’s other mobile offerings this year.

Prior to the additional report on the 6.1-inch iPhone, Kuo has predicted that this year will see three new iPhone models — the mentioned 6.1-inch iPhone, a 5.8-inch OLED iPhone, and a towering 6.5-inch OLED iPhone.

Additionally, Kuo predicts that one will succeed the iPhone X while another will follow the iPhone SE.

If 2018 does come in threes, it’s shaping up to be a huge year for Apple. Regardless of where your preferences lie, three iPhones will cover any if not all your smartphone needs.

SEE ALSO: Apple iPhone X Review: Is it worth the hype?

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LG G7 ThinQ will have a dedicated button for Google Assistant

No ThinQ for you

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Raise your hands if you enjoyed Samsung’s Bixby button. Now, put those non-existent hands back down. However, if you were one of the scant few who did use it, you might enjoy the upcoming LG G7 ThinQ.

As you might have noticed from leaked renders, LG’s new flagship sports an extra button that curiously looks like a dedicated ThinQ button. Now, we have reports that our hunches have a little bit of truth to them.

According to CNET, the G7’s inconspicuous little button links directly to Google Assistant, rather than LG’s ThinQ AI. The button will occupy the phone’s left edge, opposite the power button on the right.

Even without the button, users can pull up the Google Assistant by long-pressing the home button or through voice commands. A dedicated button will eliminate the need for a long press or for shouting “Okay, Google” in public.

Like LG’s other phones, the G7 will have voice commands exclusive to LG. Previously, these mainly include the various functions available to their camera technology. With the G7, we can hope for a more generalized slew of commands tailored for other phone functions.

With the G7 ThinQ, LG will be the first smartphone maker to ship with a dedicated button for Google. Before, dedicated AI buttons linked only to their brand’s exclusive assistant. Most popularly, Samsung’s Bixby button opened the phone’s assistant of the same name.

Sadly, like Bixby, LG won’t allow G7 users to rebind the button for other apps. This exclusivity is the same pain point that the Bixby button suffered from.

Of course, the LG G7 ThinQ will still launch officially on May 2 in New York. Anything can happen before then. If the reports are true, its Google Assistant button will enjoy more staying power if LG allows us to rebind it for other purposes.

SEE ALSO: LG G7 ThinkQ appears in a promo teaser showing a new angle

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