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In our Mi Mix 3 unboxing, we find out what new accessories Xiaomi included in the box.

A lot of brands increase prices as the years go by but Xiaomi’s proposition of getting more for less is here to stay — and the Mi Mix 3’s retail box is proof of that. Adding more accessories and features is always welcome; taking them away while increasing prices isn’t.

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What night outs are like when you’re older and wiser

Featuring the OPPO R17 Pro and my waning patience for clubs

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There comes a time in every party girl’s life when you realize you’ve lost it. By “it,” I mean the overwhelming urge to go out and stay out late, drinking as much alcohol as a thirsty camel that just escaped the desert.

A few years ago, you’d be lucky to find me home on a weekend. These days, times have sorely changed — Friday nights are spent indoors in the comfort of my bed. Clubbing has been replaced by Saturday brunch meets and coffee dates with friends. It’s been many hangover-free days, but all that was about to change because of a smartphone.

Just another normal day, phone and coffee in hand

This is the OPPO R17 Pro, or in Europe, the RX17 Pro. At the launch event in Milan, OPPO explained that this phone and its new night mode were made for you to be able to capture every moment in your life — including those that didn’t happen in good lighting. At that point, all the badly lit club snaps and the party selfies I’ve ever taken flashed into my mind.

The phone that’s forcing me to leave my bed

Touted as the phone which could “seize the night,” as its slogan had suggested, I decided to test it out in a realistic night out. Time to break my hibernation and finally get out of my very cozy and inviting bed.

I know, this is either my best idea or my worst idea yet.

Prep

Of course, any night out starts with an outfit. And since gone are my tiny dress, stiletto days, I opted for full coverage (and comfort) with a flowing navy skirt which matched the Emerald Green R17 Pro, topping the look off with a pink bag to match my hair and gold details.

And no, I didn’t even attempt to wear heels because the effort in finding a comfy-cute outfit alone was too much for me.

A quick note: This will be the last #OOTD section. As much as I wanted to shoot a phone-coordinated #OOTD for each of my night out attempts, 2018 Isa was just not having it and couldn’t be bothered.

First try: Wine and cheese night

Since I didn’t plan on, nor did I think I would have survived, visiting an actual bar just yet, I called on my friend Nikka for an evening of chatting and unli-wine. I know, I know. You expected a crazy party when I said “night out.” But, this just seemed so much more appealing to me — no chaos of the club and random strangers in a tight, sweaty space — just two girl friends chatting with cheese and tall glasses. Besides, the spot we picked gave us an al fresco table that was perfect for us: It was spacious and dimly lit.

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Since we were seated, I was only able to take sample photos from my seat, of Nikka, and my food. As the night progressed, however, photos got blurrier — but I can attribute that to me getting drunk and wobbly. Who would’ve thought you could get drunk with wine? Newsflash: You can and it can get messy.

The phone did pretty well that night, so much better than I can say for myself. The R17 Pro even took a nice group shot of the people on the other table I drunkenly started to make conversation with (my new friends, if I can remember their names 😅) despite me being a crappy inebriated photographer.

I woke up the next morning with a massive hangover (copious amounts of wine do that) and doubting this whole article pitch altogether but I had to soldier on. I have to say that OPPO’s custom beauty mode really worked wonders for me that day. The selfie below cannot even begin to show the sh*tstorm I felt inside.

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I was so over everything that day that I couldn’t even be bothered to turn the Portrait mode on the front-facing camera to blur out the crap that was behind me. Thankfully, I am to learn later on that the R17 Pro has a host of built-in editing tools, one of which allowed me to selectively blur parts of a photo. I literally drew my own bokeh effect on this selfie. Brownie points for me fixing my hangover mistakes!

We move on to my second night out attempt.

Second try: Birthday celebrations over tapas

When you’re older, you resort to adulting tactics to ensure you don’t inadvertently have a crazy night of drinking. The adulting tactic my friends pulled was the have-a-quiet-dinner-drinks-setup-on-a-Sunday-night-so-that-we-have-to-go-home-early-for-Monday-morning tactic.

Two of my friends, Ian and Shy, celebrated their joint birthdays at a quaint Spanish restaurant. Of course, there was wine, tapas, and even more drinks.

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I’m proud to say I didn’t drink a drop this evening, also because I was still reeling from that previous wine night. Hence, better photo samples with steadier, non-drunk hands. I can’t say the same for my friends, though. The photo below was quickly snapped by one of my drinking friends who decided that the people in the background also wanted in on the shot. 😅 Nevertheless, I fixed it with my newfound R17 Pro editing skills.

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Not drinking and pulling a Cinderella (leaving for home at midnight) did wonders for me. Who knew this was actually a choice? (Early twenty-something Isa who drank at every night out didn’t.)

I woke up Monday morning and was this fresh. This selfie is still with help from the custom beauty mode on light settings, but who’s checking?

Third try: Cocktail tasting

When my friend Sky invited me to a cocktail tasting event, I was about to decline the drinking invitation based on my newly learned no-saying adult capabilities. But, when I learned there were going to be pretty pink cocktails, I was sold. I found myself in a great-looking bar catching up with friends. This, sans a crazy crowd, was usually the type of place I’d have trouble photographing but lo and behold, the photos turned out great.

Three great-tasting strawberry sampaguita cocktails and some fun conversations later, the bar was filling up with people and it was time for me to go home with just the right buzz.

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No hangovers and yummy pink cocktails seemed like the best night out combo. Proof of life the next day is below:

And because I was actually functioning, there was a conscious effort to turn on an actual front-facing portrait mode this time. Though it cut out my earring and part of my glasses, nothing could dampen my non-hungover mood.

Key takeaways

A lot of things are to be learned from this little writing project and drinking experiment of mine. First and foremost is that I cannot, even if I tried, drink as much as I used to. I’m not the invincible twenty-something party machine I once was, and that’s okay. We all slow down; parties come and go but true friends and never-ending cheese platters remain.

I learned that in adulthood, I am seeing more wine and cocktails and fewer shots — thank goodness. Nevertheless, know that a wine hangover will kill you, or at least your will to function for a whole day. Even if a good beauty mode can cover up said hangover in selfies, you still feel it intensely.

I also learned that I’m still very friendly when I have alcohol in my system (some things never change), drunk people will never, ever take good photos (my drunken selfies will never, ever see the light of day), and the OPPO R17 Pro is a good night out companion.

Despite all these findings, life lessons, and great photos, I feel like I’m ready to crawl back into my bed and switch back to hibernation mode. This is the only “night mode” I’m willing to do for a while.

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Huawei midrange phones will soon have 20W SuperCharge

Another flagship feature for midrange phones

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Smartphones nowadays are not just about displays, performance, or cameras. Ultra-premium phones already have the capability to quickly fill up their batteries in just 30 minutes, just like the OPPO Find X Lamborghini Edition.

Huawei‘s new Mate 20 Pro with SuperCharge 2.0 technology also has incredible fast charging speeds (70 percent in 30 minutes) using its own 40W charger. But, what about midrange phones?

Image credit: ChargeLab

If this leaked document is real, it appears Huawei is already working on putting SuperCharge technology on its upcoming midrange phones.

According to the leaked information, the fast charger uses a charging protocol that produces half of the Mate 20 Pro charger’s power. So, instead of charging at 10V/4A with a 40W charger, the upcoming standard applies 10V/2A with a 20W charger. Also, it’ll have the reversible USB-C as its interface.

Huawei is expected to announce its new charging technology in 2019, but there’s no exact timeframe for now. There are rumors about plans to introduce it along with the P30 series, which should go official as early as the first quarter.

The charging tech could also be used by Huawei’s sub-brand Honor, so there’s a chance that it’ll be available on more affordable phones, as well.

Source: ChargerLab

SEE ALSO: Huawei pledges $2 billion to secure cybersecurity of hardware

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Samsung to supply Apple with cheaper OLED panels in 2019 — report

Will Apple lower their price as well?

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It’s no secret that despite the war fans are raging, Samsung and Apple are good business buddies. There’s a piece of Samsung in your iPhone X, XS, or XS Max — the display. The Korean company is the sole supplier of OLED panels for the current iPhones and they have a solution to keep the cost down.

The gorgeous displays of OLED-touting iPhones take a good chunk of the overall production cost and they drive the product’s price high. To address this, Samsung is reportedly offering a more affordable option by incorporating the so-called Y-Octa panels with in-cell touch technology.

Cheaper doesn’t mean worse, because this technology is used by Samsung on the Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy S9 phones which have one of the best mobile displays in the market today. It’ll allow Apple to design a thinner, lighter, and hopefully cheaper iPhones in 2019.

According to inside sources, the Y-Octa panels were already offered by Samsung for the production of this year’s iPhones, although Apple wasn’t quite happy about it, yet.

Could this mean iPhone prices will drop next year? It’s a long shot, but we do hope so.

SEE ALSO: Galaxy Note 10’s screen is larger than iPhone XS Max’s, leaks say

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