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Xiaomi launches the insane-looking Mi Mix Alpha

Almost entirely all screen!

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We literally haven’t seen anything like this before. Xiaomi showcased today a concept smartphone that’s made almost entirely of a display. No, that’s not an exaggeration. It’s called the Mi Mix Alpha.

The screen on the Alpha wraps around the device. Xiaomi is calling it the surround display. This makes for an absolutely insane 180.6% screen-t0-body ratio. That’s unheard of. Xiaomi says they used aerospace-grade titanium alloy together with a single piece of sapphire glass embedded in high-precision ceramics to pull-off this design.

Having a device like this means there are no physical buttons. Instead, the sides of the device — which are still made of the display — are pressure sensitive. A linear motor simulates physical touch to still give you that feel.

While we just recently saw the Vivo NEX 3 and the Huawei Mate 30 Pro push limits on the display with similar implementations of no physical buttons, what Xiaomi has done here is pushing things even further.

The display only really stops right around the camera module on its back. Status icons are displayed on the side and having a screen on its back means you don’t need a front-facing camera. You simply flip the phone over and use the display on its back as a monitor while still using the rear camera module.

Insane cameras

Speaking of the cameras, the Mi Mix Alpha has a triple camera module. It’s home to an even more insane 108MP primary lens, a 20MP ultra wide angle camera, and a 12MP telephoto camera that also supports 2X optical zoom and Dual PD focus.

Xiaomi shared a photo on their official Twitter account to showcase the Alpha’s camera capability. The photo below showcases how you don’t lose detail even after zooming the photo up to eight times.

 

Another shot shows off its wide-angle prowess.

Top-of-the-line specs

A phone that looks this exceptional has to also perform exceptionally. To do that, Xiaomi put a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ SoC on the Alpha to go along with 12GB of RAM and 512GB of internal storage. It’s also equipped with a 4050mAh battery that supports 40W wired fast charging.

Other announcements: Mi 9 Pro 5G, MIUI 11, and Mi Full Screen TV Pro

Also announced during the event is a 5G variant of the Mi 9 Pro. This is Xiaomi’s second 5G smartphone. It’s seven-antenna design allows it to get a download speed of up to 2.02Gbps (lab) and 1.78Gbps (field test). Xiaomi says this is 10 times faster than the standard Mi 9. The device will come in Dynamic White and Titanium Black.

The Mi 9 Pro 5G will alunch with MIUI 11. It features new always-on display effects, dynamic font-scaling, among other things. This is launching on closed beta today for Chinese users via WeChat. The open beta will be available on September 27 on 17 Chinese devices. There are no confirmed dates yet for global users.

Lastly, Xiaomi also launched the Mi Full Screen TV Pro. It’s a 4K UHD Smart TV that supports 8K video playback. It’s available in three sizes: 43”, 55” and 65”.

Apps

Amazon bans TikTok for employees, reverses decision in a few hours

Everyone’s worried about using TikTok now

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Amazon sent an internal memo to its employees, asking them to remove the TikTok from any mobile device that can access their company email. The memo was picked up by the mainstream media almost immediately and it served as an indication of how American companies are losing trust in the Chinese-backed app.

However, the company soon backtracked and an Amazon spokesperson said the request had been sent out in error and that there was no change to the company’s policies at the moment.

Company spokeswoman Jaci Anderson declined to answer questions about what caused the confounding turnaround or error. The original memo cited “security risks” as the reason for avoiding TikTok.

In response, TikTok failed to understand Amazon’s concerns. It did not receive any communication from Amazon before the email went out.

However, the social media app has received a lot of backlash from authorities due to its poor data privacy history. TikTok is banned in India and recently, the US suggested it’s considering a similar ban on the app.

Furthermore, US lawmakers have been concerned about the app for months now. The US army and navy instructed soldiers to delete the app from military devices in December. The biggest concern regarding TikTok is that its parent company, based in China, is required to share information collected on users with the Chinese government.

“We still do not understand their concerns, we welcome a dialogue so we can address any issues they may have and enable their team to continue participating in our community,” TikTok said.

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Lenovo Legion confirmed to launch on July 22

One of the first phones to have Snapdragon 865 Plus

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Between the ROG Phone 3 and the Lenovo Legion, the gaming smartphone wars is turning up the heat. As of late, ASUS’s ROG Phone 3 has made more waves than its Lenovo counterpart. Now, we know a lot about the device’s specifications and potential launch date. Of course, Lenovo will eventually take its turn in the limelight.

Recently, Lenovo has confirmed more details about its gaming phone, the Lenovo Legion. Posted on Weibo, the company is launching the Legion on July 22, at 7:30 p.m. (presumably in China).

Besides the official launch date, the included poster also confirms the device’s chipset. As was also confirmed by Qualcomm earlier, the Lenovo Legion will tout the Snapdragon 865 Plus — one of the first phones to have the new chipset.

Of course, we already know a lot about the Lenovo Legion based on previous rumors. Most notably, the device will have a high-RPM cooling fan, maintaining a good temperature for high-performance gaming. It might also get a side pop-up camera. It will have two USB-C ports; one on the bottom and another on the side, enabling easy charging depending on how you’re using the phone. Finally, it will have a sizable 5050mAh battery.

If you’re a fan of gaming smartphones, July is a perfect month to get a new model. Besides the Lenovo Legion, the ROG Phone 3 is also expected to launch sometime this month.

SEE ALSO: Lenovo Legion 5, Legion Tower 5i coming to Philippines

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Laptops

Apple: Don’t cover your MacBook webcams

Might damage your screen

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Lately, the conversation surround cybersecurity has ramped up. Users are making sure that no one is spying on them through their favorite devices. One of the most popular ways of doing so is placing a cover on a laptop’s built-in webcam. However, Apple has issued an official warning against the obscuring method.

Reported by MacRumors, Apple has posted a new support page on its official website about closing a MacBook with a cover attached. Apparently, doing so can severely damage your screen. The laptop wasn’t designed for such use, Apple says. Further, covering your webcam can affect the different sensors on the device.

In lieu of a physical cover, Apple is asking users to trust the green indicator light instead. According to the page, “the camera is engineered so that it can’t activate without the camera indicator light also turning on.”

Of course, trusting a device’s hardware isn’t always the best option. If absolutely needed, Apple has issued a few criteria for appropriate covers: thinner than 0.1mm (or about the thickness of a piece of printer paper), no adhesive residue, and removing the cover whenever closing the device.

With camera covers becoming all the rage, issuing some safety tips might be the best course of action for the MacBook maker. Certainly, people will still cover their devices despite warnings. And more certainly, people will still remain wary about malicious parties spying on their cameras.

SEE ALSO: Apple will stop using Intel in MacBooks next year

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