Xiaomi Mi 9 SE: Price and availability in the Philippines

The cheaper flagship-grade Mi 9



Xiaomi Mi 9 SE | Image credit: Xiaomi

Flagship phones generally have the best specs, but manufacturers also offer flagship-grade features at a lower price point. Xiaomi already has the best value smartphones, but they have a new model coming to the Philippine market: the Mi 9 SE.

As part of the Mi 9 series, the Mi 9 SE is Xiaomi’s best offering to the midrange segment. Dubbed a “compact flagship,” it sports a 5.97-inch AMOLED display with a tall 19.5:9 aspect ratio and a “Dot Drop” notch. Size-wise, the Mi 9 SE is comparable to an old 5.1-inch smartphone.

The phone is powered by a Snapdragon 712 processor paired with fast LPDDR4x memory and UFS 2.1 storage. Like its more premium Mi 9 sibling, the Mi 9 SE also features a holographic rainbow spectrum back and an in-screen fingerprint sensor.

Xiaomi Mi 9 SE | Image credit: Xiaomi

Similar to flagship phones, the Mi 9 SE has a triple camera setup. It has a main 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor, a 13-megapixel ultra wide-angle shooter, and an 8-megapixel telephoto camera. For selfies, there’s a 20-megapixel front-facing camera in the screen’s notch.

A 3070mAh battery powers the phone with support for 18W fast charging through its USB-C port.

The variant coming to the Philippines is the 6GB+64GB configuration in black and blue colors for PhP 15,990. It’ll be initially available at the new Mi Authorized Store in Robinsons Place Manila starting May 18, while other stores will have it in stock at a later date.

SEE ALSO: Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 7 flies into space for a durability test


This is a real Banana Phone and you can buy it now

Connects to your smartphone like a headset



Image source: Banana Phone

In the deep annals of ancient internet history, one of the earliest memes was the infamous Banana Phone song. In fact, the word “meme” hadn’t even entered our common lexicon when the video first dropped on YouTube. Since then, the video has gained massive online popularity, earning it a spot in the internet hall of fame.

More than a decade later, we finally have the technology to create a real Banana Phone. Created by the Banana Phone LLC, the Banana Phone is literally a banana-shaped phone. Somewhat.

Instead of a smartphone (or even a dumb phone), the Banana Phone is a Bluetooth-enabled device that merely connects to your smartphone. In other words, yes, you can take calls on a banana.

The device isn’t a new one, either. The Banana Phone was first developed in 2017 through an Indiegogo campaign. However, The Verge has spotted a new one already in the works.

According to the founder himself, the upcoming Banana Phone will come with a loudspeaker built for music playback. If the mood takes you, you can actually play the original “Banana Phone” video through an actual Banana Phone. We’re living the dream.

Besides the loudspeaker, the new model will come with a bigger battery, capable of up to 20 hours of usage. Despite the upgrade, the Banana Phone will still have the same US$ 39.99 price tag.

Currently, the new model is still unavailable on the Banana Phone’s official site. However, it will likely launch sometime around the end of November.

SEE ALSO: Nokia 8110 4G Hands-On: Retro Banana Phone!

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Google discontinues Datally, its mobile data saving app

It’s gone from the Play store



Using the Datally app from Google? It’s time to move one and find another as Google officially discontinues its mobile data saving app.

In the official support page of Datally, Google notes that the app is not available on the Play store. True enough, visiting the link to Datally throws the app not found error.

Users of the mobile data saving app can continue using it, but the app will not receive future updates. To speed up its discontinuation, the app is giving a warning that it is incompatible with Android 10. So, users who upgraded to the latest OS can’t use the app anymore.

Datally launched last 2017 to help users control their mobile data usage. The app shows the data usage of every app as well as overall data usage metrics. It also let users block background data.

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Google Maps will now show you speed traps

You can also report road closures and accidents



Google Maps is borrowing several features from the company’s other popular navigation app, Waze. Google today announced a series of new features that will allow drivers using the Maps app on iOS to report accidents, speed traps and traffic jams.

Hazard reporting was introduced on Android earlier this year, but this is the first time that iPhone users can also help crowdsource traffic snarls. Google has also expanded the types of road hazards that can be reported through its incident feature to encompass ‘construction, lane closures, disabled vehicles, and objects on the road.

These features have been unique to Waze and many users preferred to use it over Google Maps. It was long-speculated that when Google purchased Waze for US$ 1.1 billion five years ago that the features would be swiftly migrated to Google Maps. The transition has been extremely slow, but it’s finally happening.

To report an incident, open Maps and start navigating to your destination. You’ll see a small location pin with a + sign button on the left side, tap it. Now, you’ll have multiple options that include speed traps, construction, lane closure, and more. Simply select one and you’re done.

Google’s algorithm constantly looks out for these reports and helps in rerouting other riders. These crowdsourced features made Waze a perfect alternative to Google Maps and many users claim they’ve reached faster.

A few months back, Google also added augmented reality support for pedestrian navigation. The feature has been highly appreciated since GPS accuracy may not always be very on-point.

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